Scorching Dawn

Episode 6

Training Day

The story so far…

  • After sleeping off the ale from the night before Darrius and Jorn meet for breakfast back at The Tooth & Nail Tavern. Darrius has begun to wonder what they will do when they do find Hanurai since he is far more powerful than them. He has also begun to wonder if they should return to the Kaer and report to the Council that the world is survivable if not necessarily hospitable.
  • Jorn agrees that the group needs to learn more about their Disciplines and become more powerful if they are going to deal with Hanurai but isn’t yet convinced that having the rest of the Broken Hills citizens leave the kaer is a wise move. Jorn also reminds Darrius that Hanurai has the kaer’s pattern item and that it will give him power over anyone connected to the kaer if he decides to use it for revenge. Darrius and Jorn decide that it might be wise to learn more about the world. Darrius then borrows 3 silver from Jorn so that he can pay to have his sword examined by the local Weaponsmith.
  • After breakfast Jorn returns to the market to meet with Dusty, the dwarf beggar he’d met the previous day. The two set off into the wilderness with Dusty leading the way in search of the Illusionist who taught Dusty the basic of Illusionism.
  • After a couple of hours of travel up a rocky hillside they come come upon a clearing. As they crest the hill they see the an ancient stone tower engulfed in flames. Dusty, horrified rushes down towards the tower. A stunned Jorn stands at the crest of the hill.
  • Jorn spies a large wolf-like creature emerging from the flames in the tower, as does Dusty, who begins to run back towards Jorn in a panic. Jorn begins to weave threads to his Displace Self spell.
  • The beast appears to have flames pouring from its mouth and as Dusty flees a ball of flame erupts from the beasts mouth igniting Dusty’s back. Dusty drops to the ground and starts to extinguish the flames.
  • Jorn casts Displace Self on himself then draws his sword and runs to Dusty’s aid, calling out to get the beast’s attention. The beast whirls around to attack Jorn, sniffing the air but then jumping to attack Jorn’s illusion as Jorn swings his blade at the beast. The beast passes harmlessly through Jorn’s illusion but senses Jorn’s attack and gives Jorn a wide berth.
  • Unsure about Jorn the beast decides to attack the easy prey. As Dusty tries to crawl to freedom the beast lunges at him, grabbing Dusty’s neck in his jaws and tearing out his throat. Satisfied, the beast then returns to cautiously attacking Jorn.
  • The beast senses that something is wrong about Jorn and again opens its mouth and emits a large ball of flame that engulfs Jorn’s arm. The beast then charges at Jorn, effortless avoiding his sword blows and bites into his flesh.
  • Once again, a desperate Jorn resorts to casting raw magic and casts an Ephemeral Bolt at the beast. The beast whimpers and runs from Jorn, seemly shrinking in size as he runs to Jorn’s puzzlement.
  • Jorn rushes to Dusty’s side and is surprised to find a pulse. Realizing he might have been tricked he wills away the illusion as Dusty sits up. Dusty congratulates Jorn on surviving the ordeal though comments that he needs to become more observant and offers to train Jorn for a price of 200 silver pieces.
  • Jorn balks a bit at the price and Dusty tells him he’d also consider Jorn’s services as payment and offers to give him his first lesson for free, “If you want to become a better Illusionist you might want to rely more on spellcasting and less on swordsmanship.”
  • On the walk back to Thadizar Jorn asks Dusty why he lives as a beggar on the street and Dusty tells him that people let their guard down when they think you’re nothing. He also tells Jorn that the Illusionist’s skill is not just to trick people but rather to see through deception themselves and expose trickery.
  • Meanwhile Darrius returns to the Blacksmith and pays to have him study his sword and learns its key knowledges. The Blacksmith takes the blade and tells Darrius to return in a week.
  • Afterwards Darrius searches for Korgash and finds him boasting/lecturing some of the militia soldiers at the city gates. After his speech, Darrius approaches Korgash and jokes with him about the previous night’s festivities. Darrius mentions that he would like to train to a higher circle and Korgash tells him he’d be happy to oblige for 20 gold pieces.
  • Darrius half-heartedly challenges Korgash to a duel with training as the stakes but Korgash simply laughs it off and tells Darrius that there is lots of treasure available for the taking and that if Darrius can come up with the gold in the next three weeks that Korgash will happily train him.
  • Darrius then performs a Karma Ritual at the militia’s training ground, demonstrating his skills to the soldiers.
  • After waking, Stubbs decides to visit the local Apothecary and see if he can learn anything about the flower than Rickett left him. The Apothecary is an elderly dwarf who studies the flower and tells Stubbs that he can tell him what it is for a price. Stubbs tries to bluff and convince the Apothecary that he already knows what the flower is but this just annoys the dwarf.
  • Stubbs then offers to collect herbs and other plants that the Apothecary might need. The dwarf agrees to pay Stubbs two silver and tell him about the flower if Stubbs can return with a sack of useful plants. Stubbs then heads out of the city to find plants.
  • After a few hours of searching Stubbs has found enough plants to fill half a sack when he comes across one of the flowers growing in a sunken dust bowl surrounded by brown, dried out plants. Curious how the flower has managed to avoid the fate of its surrounding plants Stubb approaches and studies the plant. It appears to be quite healthy but as he goes to dig it up and grasps the plant he feels a prick on his fingers and blood gushes out of his hand.
  • Stubbs pulls back and realizes the wound is merely a small prick and has bled much more than it should have. He wraps his hand then carefully digs up the flower revealing a large swollen root. He decides to head back to the city with his find.
  • Back at the Apothecary Stubbs tries to bargain with the shop keeper and manages to get 1 silver for the half a bag of goods and learns that the flower is a rare desert plant that absorbs the moisture from everything around it. The swollen root contains enough water inside to last a day and can be a life saver for a man lost in the desert. The Apothecary tells him that though the plant can be dangerous Stubbs shouldn’t worry about his injury though cautions him that if the flower has come in contact with horror tainted blood it could be dangerous. Stubbs briefly considers performing one of his artistic rituals to see if he bears a horror mark.
  • Stubbs leaves and then heads back to the inn where he first met Rickett. There he bribes the bartender for more information about Rickett and learns that he is a semi-regular at the tavern and then when he is in town he ofter does scouting jobs for the local Merchant Houses and the city militia. Stubbs heads to the militia camp to see if anyone there might know where Rickett could be.
  • At the militia camp Stubbs meets up with Darrius who has just finished his karma ritual. The two of them speak with one of the guards who takes them to see the captain. The captain tells them that Rickett is not currently working for them. Stubbs informs that captain that he is also available for scouting missions should the need arise and then asks if he could survey the surrounding countryside from one of the city’s archer towers. The captain agrees to allow them to use the tower and has a guard show them the way.
  • From the tower Stubbs can see that the countryside rises into sharp, rocky mountains to the east and west while the land continues to slop downwards to the north. Returning to the ground he decides to see if he can track Rickett out in the wilderness.
  • He asks Darrius if we wants to accompany him and offers to split any earning they might make from finding herbs on the way. Darrius agrees to journey with him and the two head out of the city where they rendezvous with a returning Jorn and Dusty.
  • Dusty returns to the city and Jorn joins Stubbs and Darrius. After a few minutes of searching Stubbs does come across one of Rickett’s boot prints and begins to follow the trail. The three men head east into the mountains.
  • After many hours of travel the three men find themselves high on a canyon wall looking over a rocky bluff. Stubbs hears a whispered voice telling him to get down and the three drop to the ground. A hidden Rickett emerges and congratulates Stubbs on finding him and asks if he brought the flower.
  • Stubbs reveals the flower he found and Rickett asks him if he learned anything about it. Stubbs tells him he knows about the flower’s ability to collect and store water. Satisfied Rickett then asks him to peek over the bluff and tell him what he sees in the canyon. Stubbs looks but sees nothing special but tries to bluff and asks Rickett what he’s supposed to be looking for without revealing he hasn’t noticed anything.
  • Rickett points out an entrance to a cave within a crack in the canyon wall that has been reinforced with wooden beams and rope. He tells the group that he has been hired by House Telvarri to track down the men responsible for taking Tanya Telvarri captive and that he has tracked them here.
  • Rickett proposes that the group return to Telvarri with the information while he continues to watch them and see what Telvarri wants to do next though he offers that he suspects Kane will not be kind to these men.
  • The group decides that rather than returning to Thadizar they should attack the men and capture or kill them if they can. Rickett is not opposed to the idea but tells them he has no intention of putting himself in danger though he might lend them a distraction if they need it. They decide to wait until nightfall. Darrius and Jorn rest while Stubbs collects dried leaves and other plants in a sack.
  • After dark the three climb down into the canyon and start to slowly approach. Jorn kicks a few loose stones accidentally but they are not heard by the watchman.
  • Stubbs sneaks up ahead with the sack until he can see the guard with his heat vistion. He realizes that the guard is also a Dwarf and will be able to see him so ducks behind the sack and waits.
  • Jorn and Darrius see Stubbs waiting and decide to sneak up to where he is however Jorn trips as they leave their hiding place and scatters a collection of stones that alerts the guard. He calls out and another guard emerges from the cave.
  • Seeing little option Stubbs decides to rush the guard. He ignites his moist sack and then pops out from cover, tossing his sack over the guards’ heads and into the cavern hoping to cause a smokescreen and cause confusion in the cave. The guards draw their swords and one of the them runs back into the cave sounding the alarm while the other rushes out to attack Stubbs.
  • Jorn meanwhile has cast Displace Self on himself and Darrius. Darrius rushes forward to help Stubbs who is hit by the guard’s attacks and takes a serious wound that knocks him to his feet. Darrius taunts the guard as the guard turns to intercept Darrius and nearly manages to land a blow on the elf but instead strikes at Darrius’ illusion with enough skill to break the illusion. Seeing that he is outnumbered he begins to retreat just a Jorn casts Fun With Doors and makes the cavern entrance appear to be sealed by a great wooden gate.
  • With his back to the wall the guard goes into a defensive stance and manages to hold his own against Darrius’ attacks but is barely able to strike back. Stubbs retreats to the canyon walls and starts taking pot shots with his sling.
  • Jorn decides to attempt to blind the guard with his Light spell and causes a ball of light to appear in front of the guard. The spell doesn’t blind the guard but provides Rickett, who is still hidden above on the bluff, with enough light to shoot the guard with a crossbow bolt, dealing a serious injury to the man.
  • Peering through his own illusion Jorn can see that the other bandits are at the false gate and are trying to break through it and that their leader, Cassius is leading the charge atop his mount.

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