Zomaris:Khanate Rising/Chapter 16

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Note: This log is still in IRC format, and may be awkward to read as a result.

Chapter #16: I don't want to die for Grolthish

This log was generated from annafirtree's client, not mainstreet's as per usual during this campaign (due to intense connection troubles by mainstreet), so the formatting looks different.

Iethloc: The scene before you is grisly. Bodies lay scattered about, human, orc, and ones too torn apart to identify. Clearly there has been an unsuccessful attempt to fight it out with the orcs. And damn, the bodies have already been picked clean!

Magwitch: continues Chanting.

Emilia: pulls out her sword. "Let's do this."

Iethloc: You step over the corpses, carefully approaching the flank of the orc force. Several of them turn to face you, watching warily but not immediately charging. If they got out from their fortifications, the forces of the city would have another chance to fight through, so they wait. It's almost unusual for orcs to be this disciplined. Soon enough, an invisible line is crossed, the orc archers turning and nocking their arrows.

Capn_Mercy: "Do what, exactly? Just what *is* the plan here?"

Magwitch: and Twinkle hover over the battlefield, eyes locked on the possible necromancer and the odd effigy.

Emilia: Emilia opens her mouth, "We..." she snaps it shut.

Fir: "Go kill the giant dancing statue," Fir says, pointing in the direction of the effigy and its dancer.

Capn_Mercy: "Consider it murdered."

Emilia: "A statue huh? Shouldn't be too much of a challenge."

Iethloc: Two archers have turned all their focus on the group, and two zombies are nearby. More and more and more are relatively near, but awareness seems to be rippling out slowly as most continue focusing on the siege

Magwitch: casts Call Lightning, which takes a full round. In that time, it guide Twinkle to maintain hovering position over the party (say 20ft up) so that Magwitch and continue to Chant next round and sustain their Fortune Hexes.

Emilia: Emilia runs up to the nearest zombie in the correct direction and slashes at it.

Iethloc: Upon being poked, the zombie...pops like a particularly morbid balloon. Little specks of zombie get everywhere. Eugh!

Emilia: Emilia nods to herself.

Iethloc: The other zombie, upon being splashed in undead gore, slowly turns towards Emilia. "Brains?" it inquires. Then it lunges!

Iethloc: It...lunges right past Emilia, standing there awkwardly a couple feet away

Iethloc: Gerel eyes the dancer in the distance, some mad whim taking over her mind. "WORRY NOT, I WILL SLAY THE THING!" she shouts at the top of her lungs, and then blurs off into the distance. Wait, how the heck did she run that fast?

Capn_Mercy: Mercy stares off after Gerel. Facepalms. Sighs. Shuffles over to the remaining zombie and lightly taps it on the head with the side of her hammer. It instantly explodes in a shower of viscera.

mainstreet: Emilia slips forward in front of the zombie, causing it to explode not as near her as it otherwise might have. "Ha!"

Fir: targets the largest group of enemies in sight, says "tutmaq" as if that's a perfectly normal thing to say, then makes a claw-grabbing motion at them. Thorns begin to sprout around the enemies' feet.

Iethloc: Thorned shrubs and roots reach up from the sands, entangling a portion of the orc phalanx guarding the effigy. Many shout futilely in orcish, while some manage to slip from the thorns. Reinforcements will be slower to come now.

Iethloc: Two archers off to the side with arrows already nocked let them loose! One arrow each find their way to Emilia and Mercy

Iethloc: Turns out the arrows actually are not good at finding their way, thudding in the sand several feet away

Iethloc: The dancer continues their dance, their chanting loud but still too distant to really make out

Iethloc: Two orc fighters from a non-entangled part of the phalanx, big ol' axes in hand, start making their way towards the group

Magwitch: Twinkle lets loose a 4d6 Fireball from her Necklace of Fireballs and tries to maintain position within Chanting range of most of the party. She has given up on doing so for Gerel. Looks like a bee stung that one.

Magwitch: The fireball is aimed at the main phalanx of zombie orcs, conveniently tied up by Entanglement.

Magwitch: Magwitch summons a lightning bolt at the effigy and then continues to Chant.

Iethloc: Several orcs cry out as the flames wash over them, and a few zombies are popped. The purple flames around the effigy twitch and writhe in response to the lightning, but they burn still. All the zombies that weren't popped seem to twitch a bit

Emilia: Emilia: "Ha! You're a moron and so is your boss!" She charges in at the nearest orc fighter and attempts to slice him up.

Iethloc: The orc apparently speaks common, as he growls at the insult, then howls in pain as he is showered in shallow cuts

Capn_Mercy: Mercy drops into a crouched sprint, dashes toward the other orc, and slams the hammer into his kneecap.

Iethloc: The orc, surprisingly, takes it like a champ. Well, sort of. You can see a tear form in the corner of his eye, though there is no sound but the cracking of bone.

Fir: runs forward with all her tiny might and cracks her new stick against the orc that Mercy just hit.

Iethloc: He stands there for just a moment longer, and then collapses under the weight of his gear, finally letting out a noise: a pathetic whimper

Magwitch: is impressed.

Fir: feels the strength flow from the spell that was released when the stick hit, and directs that strength into Mercy.

Magwitch: notices those pectorals swelling.

Capn_Mercy: "Hey, nice hit. ...wha?" Mercy blinks, then doubles over, groaning. "AAARRRGH...!" She visibly bulks up like David Banner on a bad day, muscles swelling, veins popping up. "RAAAAWR! Mercy strongest there is!"

Capn_Mercy: She blinks again. "...ahem. Sorry, don't know where that came from."

Iethloc: From close to the effigy is a shout in orcish. All the orc soldiers stop, many craning their necks to turn to the source of the sound

Iethloc: Many members of the phalanx even step aside, perhaps from fear or perhaps because the shout was an order

Fir: Oh wait, I found it. I moved it to A36. Common, Sylvan, and Druidic.

Iethloc: Gerel is finally revealed, surprisingly not much worse for war, as the crowd disperses. Getting closer to her, and to the group, is the dancer...

Iethloc: The dancer is tall, almost emaciated, his skin forest green and hair all shaved. His mask is as wide as a man's torso, carved with intricate faces and symbols you don't recognize. In one hand he clutches a staff, various pods and vials dangling and jangling from it. He wears little more than a breechcloth and sash, all the better for dancing under the dimming desert sun.

Iethloc: “I am Urozol, witch doctor of the People of Hand and Eye,” he declares in Common. Then he holds up his staff defiantly, smoke pouring out from around his mask as arcane syllables pour from his lips

Iethloc: Mercy: Whoa, everything is...colorful. There's like, purple and stuff. Colors you haven't even seen before! And stomach-wracking pain like you haven't felt before

Capn_Mercy: Mercy stands tall (and, as of a few moments ago, broad). "Hah! Is that all you've go-URP!" Suddenly, she clamps a hand over her mouth, her face turning green.

Magwitch: "Looks like those steroids didn't agree with Mercy", Magwitch comments to Twinkle, before summoning another Lightning Bolt and continuing to Chant.

Magwitch: Twinkle launches the last 6d6 fireball at a spot which will overlap with the dancer and the effigy, moving first if necessary to do so. If there's no overlap, she overlaps with the phalanx.

Capn_Mercy: Mercy continues to hold it in for a moment, then swallows. Her eyes go unfocused, and she begins to smile a dopey smile. "Whoa...check out the light show..."

Iethloc: A torrent of water suddenly appears around the dancer, extinguishing some of the flames coming at him. The effigy, however, suffers a bit.

Iethloc: All the zombies twitch again, this time much more noticeably. All of them turn their heads towards the party...

Emilia: rolls up to the dancer and swings her sword. "May my sword have mercy upon your blackened soul, for Mercy's hammer will surely have none," she aims for full slice.

Capn_Mercy: "'Sombuddy call me? ...URP"

Magwitch: Magwitch recognises a bunch of protective effects on the dancer, one in particular that stuns anyone who attacks him. He therefore gets Twinkle to relay as much information as possible about the buffs /via telepathy/ to all party members. Magwitch doesn't want to shout, because doing so might draw attention to the mote in the sky.

Emilia: Emilia does her superior feint thing that would have nice a nice description except it was lost to computer death.

Iethloc: A bunch of zombies start lurching towards the group, but aren't in a position to do anything yet

Iethloc: Sword already out, Gerel runs over and waves it around in the general direction of Urozol, hoping to take advantage of the window of opportunity

Iethloc: And little more is done than the sword being waved around. Jeez, Gerel, that was your moment!

Capn_Mercy: Mercy looks like she can't decide if she'd rather throw up or pass out.

Fir: "I don't feel so good," Fir says a little woozily, thanks to the cloud. She pulls a concoction out of her bag, looks at it, looks at Mercy alternating between vomiting and staring enraptured at the stinky cloud, and says, "You need this more." She forces the concoction down Mercy's throat.

Capn_Mercy: Mercy looks straight at Fir, her eyes glazed over. "Duuude, a talking tree--HRK" She gags as Fir shoves a bottle into her mouth, swallowing out of reflex.

Capn_Mercy: Suddenly, she stands up straight, throwing the bottle away and wiping her mouth with the back of her hand. The Popeye theme song plays as she flexes her new stolen muscles. "Oh YEEEEAH!" Then she's leaping towards the witch doctor (which doctor? That one! HAR HAR!), hammer raised overhead.

Iethloc: The hammer comes down so hard that the witch doctor is shoved almost a foot downward into the sand, cracks spreading throughout his mask and probably his skull. You can see his eyes bugging out through the eyeholes

mainstreet: Emilia grimaces. "Ewww."

Fir: "Worth it," Fir says, holding her sick-ish stomach.

Capn_Mercy: "Totally."

Capn_Mercy: (Reminder: Mercy now goes *after* Fir in the init order.)

Emilia: Emilia nods and looks around. "LOOK WHAT'S COMING FOR YOU!" she yells in the vicinity.

Capn_Mercy: "RAAAWR!" Mercy does he rbest to look suitably scary.

Iethloc: The witch doctor looks around. The forces of Mylgate are beginning to pour forth into the orc horde, the zombies keep twitching and occasionally acting up, and he is surrounded by very scary people

Iethloc: He mutters something in orcish, then shouts something else in orcish, and drops his staff. THe zombies stop, and the orcs pause to look at each other. Then, hesitantly, the orc banners are lowered, white flags raised in their place. Many in the forces of Mylgate look confused at the sudden surrender

Iethloc: "This...doing this was a mistake. I surrender," Urozol says in Common

Iethloc: "I don't want to die for Grolthish. Enough of my kin have died for Grolthish."

Fir: "Yeah, only die for yourself," Fir says helpfully.

Iethloc: "One day, but hopefully not today. If...if you can make sure Mylgate accepts our surrender, I'll talk."

Capn_Mercy: "Aww, but I wanna kill 'em? Look at me, I'm a murder machine!"

Iethloc: "Orcs surrendering? Huh..." Gerel comments

Fir: "Yeah, who knew. But, like...Mercy. So, you know."

Capn_Mercy: "Rawr."

Iethloc: After a bit of talking, Kiyomi is deployed to negotiate with the Mylgate forces before the orcs get slaughtered. After some time spent on that, Urozol invites the party to one of his tents to surrender some precious exposition - er, information. The tent itself is pretty bare, holding only a table with maps and plans on it, and some chairs.

Iethloc: "Grolthish tasked me with sieging this city, gave me the effigy that controlled the zombie forces, and let me decide the time table. With...the recent changes, I thought it better to go for Mylgate sooner rather than later. I wanted to...prove our tribe to him," Urozol admits, lowering his head near the end.

Fir: "Who is Grolly and where does he live?"

Capn_Mercy: Mercy (who is back to her usual curvy-yet-athletic self) frowns. "Who's Grolthish?"

Capn_Mercy: "And what recent changes?"

Fir: "Alicia Dragon taking over the country, of course," Fir says to Mercy.

Iethloc: "We know about the change of leadership in Xalrin, though not many details. We assumed things would be...vulnerable during the change."

Iethloc: "I did not expect people as powerful as yourself to be on their way here."

Fir: "Where is this Grollster?"

Iethloc: "If he has his own base of operations, I do not know of it."

Fir: "Where did YOU meet him?"

Iethloc: "He came to my tribe's lands, promising power and alliances."

Fir: "Why did you believe him?"

Iethloc: "He could kill with the sound of his voice, and make the dead walk with it, too. He has power. Terrifying power."

Iethloc: "He looks like a gray-skinned orc, but he has a dark aura about him," Urozol says and shudder. "Partly, we agreed out of fear."

Fir: nods. "That's a good reason."

Capn_Mercy: "And then you did it again when we showed up. Nice precedent you're setting."

Fir: "So how do we find him?"

Iethloc: Urozol cradles his head. "I have acted dishonorably, yes, but at least I am alive to make up for it later."

Iethloc: "I believe he spends most of his time in the city of one of the other two orc tribes under his command, the Anvilborne."

Iethloc: "The tribe I have not yet named are the Children of Mezgolob."

Fir: "So the Hammers and the Kids hang out in which city?"

Iethloc: "The Children have their own lands, though not too far from the city of the Anvilborne. The Anvilborne are deep in what you call the 'wastes'."

Iethloc: "I know not how they survive out there. I know they aren't like other orcs, though."

Emilia: Emilia groans. "Oh great."

Fir: "So they have lots of cities, and we have to search all of them for the Dark Orc?"

Iethloc: "The Anvilborne have only one massive city."

Emilia: "We're not going to go searching for this guy, Fir."

Fir: "Why not?"

Iethloc: Urozol shrugs. "It is likely he will be a problem for you some time in the future."

Emilia: "Because I prefer to live, not throw my life away wandering the Wastes."

Capn_Mercy: "What's so bad about the Wastes? Is it full of trash or something?"

Emilia: Emilia just looks at Mercy oddly.

Fir: "I have spells and concoctions that make the Wastes a lot more pleasant."

Emilia: Emilia just shakes her head.

Iethloc: "The Promised Lands are tamed and lived in by my people, those of the Hand and Eye, but we rarely welcome your kind there. Neighboring areas of the 'wastes' are even less welcoming."

Iethloc: "After all, why would we be nice to someone who repeatedly calls our homeland 'the wastes'?"

Emilia: "It's called the Wastes because most people that go there don't live to tell the tale," Emilia points out dryly.

Iethloc: "I live there, and here I am, telling you tales."

Fir: "So your plan is to just wait for the Dark Orc to come find us?"

Emilia: Emilia sniffs.

Iethloc: "He might come for my kind first, but the People of Hand and Eye far outnumber the other two tribes under his control. We will not be wiped out so easily."

Magwitch: surreptitiously casts Detect Evil and stares at the witchdoctor.

Iethloc: He is suspiciously non-evil

Capn_Mercy: Mercy shoots Emilia a snide grin. "I'm sorry, I thought you were a Zoma. Not a chicken."

Iethloc: Or, maybe not suspiciously. Depends on how paranoid you are.

Magwitch: is suspicious.

Emilia: Emilia growls at Mercy, "Easy for you to say, you won't get murdered on sight by about half the... things... in there!"

Magwitch: "Can you dispell all your undead?"

Iethloc: Urozol stands up. "Are you implying my kind are 'things'?!"

Capn_Mercy: "Hey, you wanted in on this group, didn't you? This is how we roll. Buckle up, or bail out."

Iethloc: Urozol sighs. "Yes, the undead can be dispelled. The talismans can be broken. They almost already were, so it will be easy."

Magwitch: "Do so."

Iethloc: "It is already being worked on. The people of Mylgate insisted. They wisely fear the disease these zombies brought."

Iethloc: "I will tell you another thing about Grolthish, however. I have seen through his dark aura. He claims to be the warlord of multiple orcish tribes, but I do not think he is actually an orc."

Emilia: Emilia sighs at Urozol. "Of course not. You know who I speak of. I'm sure you fear them too."

Emilia: Emilia sighs again. "And somehow, that does not surprise me."

Fir: "Umm...who you talking 'bout?"

Fir: "Sand monsters?"

Fir: "Dead waterless things that like the sun?"

Emilia: "The evil ones, of course. Those that exist solely to try to enslave the rest of us."

Fir: "Umm...cacti?"

Fir: "Evil cacti?"

Iethloc: Urozol stares incredulously at Fir

Capn_Mercy: "I think they're saying that our 'dark orc' is actually the same evil mastermind we've been after."

Fir: "We're after an evil mastermind? I thought we were delivering Kimmy here."

Magwitch: scratches its head and hopes Twinkle is tracking the conversation better.

Iethloc: "Evil mastermind?"

Capn_Mercy: "Don't you remember? Those two who ran out on us during the coup? Their boss."

Magwitch: "With the tribute?"

Iethloc: Gerel stands in the background, drooling slightly.

Fir: "Oh. There was someone. I don't remember her name. Queen Something? Y'all don't seem to want to say her name, so I guess She Who Must Not Be Named will do."

Capn_Mercy: Mercy turns to Urozol. "The...erm, previous regime was being backed by some woman who was also manipulating the resistance. Sounds like she might also be this Dark Orc or whatever."

Iethloc: Urozol scratches his head. "I did not get the sense he was...a Queen?"

Fir: "Yeah, I'm not convinced one was the other."

Iethloc: "All I know there was something wrong, something...other about him."

Iethloc: Urozol shudders. "Just remembering it is awful."

Emilia: "Anything is possible."

Fir: "So...what are we gonna do?"

Iethloc: "Well, there will have to be negotiations for the fate of the People of Hand and Eye, but other than that...you do what you want?" Urozol offers

Fir: "I wasn't asking you," Fir says, rolling her eyes. She turns back to Magwitch, Mercy, and Emilia. "Chase the Dark One or just head back to Dragon Lady when we're done?"

Emilia: "We're not done yet. We were heading to Deladar. I see no reason to decide now."