Drinking & Dragons

13A:Play/6 Starfish Magic

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Starring: 📜Elistheren, 🐾 Kaelon, 🌲 Qistis, Steinar, 📚 Annalana
Guest Starring: Justa Goblin, Goblin Chieftan; Moonmast (wererat)
Location: Stranglesea
Date Played: 2017 January 03

Goblin Encampment

🐾 Kaelon
I held back at a distance, encampments are touchy places even in the best of times... I can't imagine one comprised of goblins would be any better. Annalana and Steiner parlay with the inhabitants - no bloodshed but tensions seemed to be high. I kept an arrow knocked all the same.
🌲 Qistis
We spend a decent amount of the afternoon arguing on where to go next. Our options are limited but one of the factions here must be aware of where Inigo in on this damned pile of seaweeds. We settle on heading for the goblins but I intend on keeping my distance. I don't really expect it to go particularly well (especially if Annalana is going to be involved).
I'm proven wrong though as the talks with the goblins go shockingly well. We go back to the ship later in the evening to deal with their matriarch. They've apparently had some dealings with Sharp but not in some time. We'll have to seek more information elsewhere, though at least we know the goblins are easier to deal with than at least I once thought.
'Nary an evil heart take hold of a visage that rest at breathy betrayal. Blessed be the hunger in fear, for it bays the spur to violence and keeps evil at a submissive bay. Such is the blessing of the lesser evils, for they can be rank into the just hand.'
"Teachings of Darmineous"
📚 Annalana
We spent the majority of the 2nd day on the “island” criss crossing the island. As we get close to the Goblin ship, we see a goblin camp. They are sitting on metal plates and each plate has a fire on it.
The Goblin ship itself was not built by Goblins but taken by them. It has been here longer than the Dwarven ship, more deteriorated. Steiner and Annalana approach them. Steiner gives them food.
Annalana yells hail and one of the terrified goblins is pushed forward to shake hands. They have been here for 2 generations. They have a rough relationship with the Dwarves and the Rats. This goblin (Justa Goblin) has gone into the ship to see if the Chieftain will meet with us. She will meet with us but not until after the moon is full (several hours).
Elis pulls a mud flap lady of sheet metal to sleep on.
One side of the ship has a hole that was cut with a saw. It has been renovated over and over again. Dried skins of jellyfish provide illumination inside. The whole place reeks of rotten fish oil. We see about a half dozen goblins inside and the meditators remain outside. There seems to be a pecking order.
An old crone of a goblin woman approaches Steiner very closely, no personal space, taking a deep, deep sniff. She seems to swallow the scent and says “What boon do you seek of us?” Steiner replies about Inigo, and she calls him the Old Wise One, who was trying to help them turn the ship into a grand palace. Before he completed it, Inigo convinced another goblin to leave with him. Anna asks about how long ago this was and the old woman talks about how they don’t track time and Anna gets mad and decides to walk away.
She insists that the goblins only defend themselves and do not make attacks. She tries to talk us out of senseless killing.
What about the goblin who left with Inigo. He was a violent goblin, named *Glara*.

Wreckrat Ship

🐾 Kaelon
Through a process of elimination we ended up at the Wreckrats ship - the ground on this 'island' makes tracking difficult and my quarry's anatomy is unknown to me... a frustrating situation. I am left with a sense that for my own growth I should remain here - for starters I need to learn how to track in this environment and more importantly, it is largely untamed.
The ship itself is inhabited by some forlorn souls - one of whom tries to bite of Elistheren's finger. A skirmish ensues, a number of the defenders employ use of harpoon attacks... a sorry excuse for ranged attacks. I remain planted on the beach and fire onto the ship. We clear out, what we would discover was the first wave, and I board the ship. At the stern is another occupant, Annalana makes an attempt to speak with him - this only sparks another ambush. The fight is difficult, especially for my companions who insist on closing to range. I am left untouched at my position on the bow - the rest are weary and in need of a break.
🌲 Qistis
Our only other option for clues are with the Wreckrats. Our integration with them went as well as could be expected, meaning we get there and end up killing most of them. To be fair the one did almost bight off Elistheren's finger over a ring so we did have our reasons at least. But this mat has had nothing but confusion based magics and misdirections, it really is starting to get ridiculous at this point. Once again nearly half the party ends up confused and I'm attacked at least twice by Annalana (again). I'm beginning to wonder if somewhere in her mind she secretly wished me dead. More likely it's her prejudice against elves that's provoking these but regardless I feel like some kind of talk will need to happen in order to get these to stop.
'"What is a man," asked Bounard while he brushed caked-on mud off of his face.
Jula, his keeper, paused for a second, his brow furrowed in deep thought. "One may have you believe nothing but a miserable pile of little secrets," he began, wringing out his tale, "but there is a bit more to that. I feel man is good, as long as he is not left to his own devices."
Bounard tilts his head, "His own devices?"
"Man is good when there are other people to be good for. Put man in isolation, or with one that lust for power and holds greed to dear to their heard, and you will see man go sour." Jula then gave a sigh and pulled off his boot, dumping swampy water in a feted pool in front of him. "This is why we run, for man's heart turned dark."'
"The World without Man::
📚 Annalana
We are comfortable when we wake up and we feel as though we could live out our lives here. It seems that some of us have been compelled to think this is a nice place.
As we approach a mast there is a pile of bones, well picked clean. Each of them has a little wooden plank next to it with horrible spelling. They are mostly human bones but mixed races. “Here dies Zaba the Gnome, the fattest cook you’ve ever seen”.
A stretch of weed mat with benches, barrels, and chairs. There are various common races ready against our incursion. Something seems wrong with the people. They mutter and growl as we approach.
One lone person approaches Eli, who asked about “a brain in a jar”, is told that “We are all out of pickling juices”. He has been on the island almost two years. His name is *Moonmast*. He asks to inspect the ring that Eli has. He sucks on Eli’s finger, which turns into a bite. Annalana charges, pushing him out of the way and Kaelon shoots him dead with arrows.
Anna shouts for everyone to run to get out of range of the harpoons. We engage them in combat. Anna has a harpoon put through her, holding her in place. After the foe is killed, she pushes off of the harpoon and weighs the odds.
We kill everyone and then rest, but there are more swashbucklers on the rear of the “ship”. Anna tries to parley but they make no response, so she draws her bow to fire. Suddenly spell casters and more fighters join the fight. Whoops.
A swarm of sharks jump out of the water, attacking the bad guys. Annalana has her first memory, remembering fighting with elven casters who were using magic similar to the starfish faced casters we now face. Anna reaches into her bag of unknown things pulls a root out that the dwarves use to counteract this magic, and tosses it to Qistis.
Anna is confused by a starfish caster who says that her memories are false, so she attacks Qistis again, spearing her good. In retaliation Qistis nearly catches Anna with a Thundersnap.
We take care of the bad guys and hole up in the ship for the night.

Player Leveling Up Comments

🐾 Kaelon
I must learn to not focus my fire so often - I am usually unable to finish off an attacker with a second volley. Instead I should spend some time testing the enemy defenses, perhaps a weak target will become known. (Explains my double archery feat choice)
🌲 Qistis
With each battle my inner power grows and I can feel the heaviness of my shadows weigh on me like a heavy curtain. My magic has helped on more than one occasion against our foes but I don't seem to be as useful outside of combat. I'm reluctant to admit but I should take a page out of the wizard's book and learn to harness my powers in any situation. I don't know what this will mean for the leaves that appear on the cover of my book, but hopefully it will not speed along their growth. (Explains the Ritual Magic feat.)
Everyone seems really excited when Arminious does well. He's even spurned the group to some heroics. I've done some more research into the history of Arminious and found some ferocious battles where he even outperformed his liege. With this, he seems to have grown more competent in battle. (Explanation of feat that lets Arminious use the escalation die.)
📚 Annalana
Each of us is powerful in unique ways that are a little too treasured. When we enter combat we win, not as a unit, but as individuals. I think that we could be more formidable if we worked as a unit. My notebooks tell me that my overtures for this fall on deaf ears until we are in the heat of battle. I must get better at making them listen so that we can overcome, and we don't lose anyone. (Explanation for the additional tactic that allows an ally to pop free from an opponent.)

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