Shielding Alliance

A new day, yet some things never change
so the group has a new name. {cough}

Florent rises from his prostration towards the rising sun as he concludes his morning prayers. “Praise be to ‘Elm. ‘E ‘as ‘eard my supplications, and granted ‘is ‘ealing power.” He tries to convey confidence as he makes this proclamation, but the relief is evident in his face. It was a harrowing retreat from the Temple, and many in the party were sorely wounded. If Helm had not answered his pleas for the divine grace to heal, they would been in desparate straights. Knowing he has their attention now, he repeats his urgent message. “Remember, though, I agree to return to ‘Omlette because we need two full days to regain divine and arcane strength, and so it make sense to unload all this gear anyway.” He points towards the make shift sled he has been dragging behind him. “We can report back, place orders if needed, and buy necessary supplies, like 4 more bolts for Furnock. But I will no stay in town longer than is absolutely necessary. No ten day delay, no lapse in vigilance. I intend to return to our mission of crushing evil under ‘and of ‘Elm toute suite. No delay. I leave day after tomorrow at mid morn to return to Tempel. I ‘ope full strength of Alliance de Shielding is with me, but I no delay longer than this.” Florent turns to those most wounded and blows his divine wad of healing, [scratch that,] and expends all his healing power in an attempt to bring everyone back to full strength.

OOG: I’m not sure when exactly Florent is talking- on the way back to the Temple (I.e just after the B-Conversation or was he saying this after we were already back?

” I ‘ope full strength of Alliance de Shielding is with me, but I no delay longer than this.”

Turtle bites down a mean frown, looking obviously upset. “I will not discuss anything else of seriousness tonight. On one hand we have made much progress towards our group yet on the other there is the surprising news of Elvish assassins.” She holds up her hands respectfully. “No more arguing tonight friends. I would have us sleep on what we’ve learned, and add to your thoughts that while Helm is indeed watchful, it was actually a simple potion that saved Sulmia from the headed beast and an arcane fire amulet which saved me from the burning sword and axe. No diety or even his one of his agents.” She holds said arcane amulet out. “I can normally endure much pain even without such magics so I will just have to be more careful, because I cannot afford to keep this.” She pulls it off and offers the jewelry outstretched. “It should be around the neck of someone else anyways.”

(Furnock pulls the stopper from a old potion bottle and swigs its contents.) Furnock shouts in with his somewhat intelligable accent “What!? Did you forget the many headed fire belching beast? You and Florant are the primary defence aginst such a threat and now you don’t want to carry the protecting fire necklace because you might have to give up some shine! We are headed into the FIRE Temple now! (swigs more of the contents of the bottle) Now you don’t need the expensive life saving FIRE protecting necklace. You are penny wise and pound foolish! An to add insult to injury you offer it to one us knowing full well the newly established rules concerning party and individual debt. Debt is OK for Florant but mighty fighters need no protection! It stinks like the stench from carrion crawler’s nest. Furnock spits on the ground and begins kicking grass and dirt at Turtle. He stumbles then drains the rest of the bottle’s contents.

The elf moves quickly to try and defuse the situation. “No need to get this emotional. In any case, I do agree that it’s best Turtle keeps the necklace at least until we are done fighting the denizens of the Fire Temple. We could sell it then, if no one is interested in it.”

As the intoxicated gambler’s feet chuck dirt at her Turtle’s eyes narrow and she begins reaching for her shields with practiced hands. The Elven voice seems to calm her intentions, and soothed, she relaxes a little. “I fear it has already gotten emotional. I have been lied to, derided, and now openly mocked.” She points a finger at Furnock. “It is unwise to insult people, especially when you’re drunk and they’re not. I am asking you politely not to do so, less I become too angry for even Elven words.”

Looking back and forth between Sulmia and Treveylan. “Anyone else care to disparage me? If not than we should make haste for the town.”

Sulmia, “Seems to me some of us need to decide where their loyalties lie. I hear plenty of talk about saving a town an’ adopting a name of heroics. This from the same mouths that split coppers like a Calimshan moneychanger.

Give the damn sword to the elf, hang the magic jewels around Turtle’s neck, and to hell with the charts and graphs!

I give insult to the idea that you are all giving weight to splitting of treasure when the lands around you, lands filled with people with less than it takes to clean your shield, or power your spells, or train your hands for battle, or dress you to your whims, those people are what suffer should we fail.

We’ve an opportunity to strike deep to the heart of something that has grown like a cancer beneath our feet. Do we treat our company like a business in fear, wondering if our ‘due’ will come if someone who heals us, or shields us, can’t hand over the coin? Are you to fire me because my arrows will not pierce the enemy? Have you recompense for the shadow of mine you attacked, a blow that I felt in my own bones? Are all of you to add price to that, as well?

I will be happy to quibble over spoils when the Elemental Temple lies in ruins, not a moment before.”

“Well spoken, mon cheri. You ‘ave the wisdom of ‘Elm, and I thank you for making truth clear pour moi. I share your sense of urgency and priorities, and once again say we must go back toute suite, right away. Agree you that we ‘ead back morning after tomorrow? 48 hours is enough time for place orders, buy supplies, and prayer before ‘Elm, no?”

OOG: We seem to have fluxuations in the space time continuim here in the Heartlands. This time its my fault for backing up the conversation to before we got back into Homlette. In game I know we got back and talked to some people, etc. What time/day was it when we ended our session? My guess is that we’ve been back in town for a day and a half now, and its late afternoon, evening. That about right? OOG: I tried to describe the fact that Florent was speaking in the morning after the first night away from the Temple, and after the nobility revelation, hence the praying for spells at dawn, etc. I’ll drop more hints next time. Florent knew that they would be back in town that same day, and wanted to convey the message that he felt its should be as short of a return trip as possible. Hence the conviction to be back on the road to the Temple 48 hours from “now” when they woke up a half day from town.

“Turtel, how you say you no afford to keep amulet, yet you say amulet save your life? I see this with my own eyes. Plus you already make choice to ‘ave it identified, wear it through fire Tempel, get great use out of it, and now say can no keep it. This sound like you want to ‘ave cake and sell it too, ‘alf eaten. Why you speak of economy and what you afford? Party can no afford you die while we in ‘eat of battle. If this is about you wanting to get share of gold for selling item, than this is selfish to me, no selfless like you make it seem. For good of party who better to wear necklace than Alpha team door kicker opener?”

I thought we had “just” gotten back to town… we had talked a bit.. but not too much. I don’t think a day and a half in town is right, but what does a Half-Elf know about time ; )D

Argue? Us?

The DM can clear this up, but I thought we arrived in town late the first day, since it takes a day and a half to get back from the temple. I then thought we rested and identified a bunch of stuff, which would put us into the second day in Homlette. Either way, Florent wants to hit the road ASAP.

OOG: This time its my fault for backing up the conversation to before we got back into Homlette.

*I think that was a pretty realistic way to get stuff accomplished ont he way back so that we’re not spending too much time in town talking amongst ourselves; discussing party stuff on the journey back makes good use of the trip, while giving us privacy. Can we have a player vote that it’ll be SOP?

In game, there was the A-Conversation of how to leave the Temple, then the ‘seraching of/setting fire to’ the rooms, then the battle, then the leaving, then the B-Conversation with the naming. Then maybe we argued about the necklace and some other things (which we’re doing right now via emails), then we got back to town, bought some pearls, etc.

View
The Original Half-Blood Prince
Where are heroes learn of a surprising secret that causes the group some duress.

Furnock, riled with energetic enthusiasm hollers, “Here here! I vote keep the name. As a man who has often gotten a bad reputation for no reason what so ever,” he states sarcastically, “I believe its better to have a name we have chosen rather than a possible negative name. NO UNANIMUS VOTES!” the gambler bellows excitedly, thumping Pertinax on the back. The Elf coughs, attempts to not fall off his seat, barely managing.

There is a small chorus of cheers. The elf clears his throat quite dramatically. “With four votes for keeping the voting system as is, and four votes to keep our group name, these questions seem settled. We are the Shielding Alliance,” he announces. More cheers. “Furnock, I am still curious to know if the townspeople have named us. Have you heard anything?”

From Elvish to Common: As far as Furnock knows ‘no,’ the townspeople haven’t given us a name. Furnock votes for a retreat by the safest (i.e.) route we know and have just used. Trevelyan express your opinion; Furnock does and never to his detriment. When he disagrees with plunging on deeper into the temple he whines about it or gives up searching for traps as a sign of protest. Your opinion and vote counts but we all have to make compromises to get anything done. We have a demon to slay. It’s about give and take…”

Trevalyn shakes his head and affirms angrily, “I have given enough in my life…I have sacrificed all that I am…All that I could have been…And yet nothing changes…” The half-Elf scornfully stares around with resentful eyes “No matter what I have said, none of you have really entertained my ideas…I will say no more…” His body sulks. “That is all.” Then, grumbling under his breath, “Alliance… really.”

Pertinax arches his eyebrow. “I can’t speak for the rest but I did consider your words. I just diagree. Why are you taking this so hard? It’s just a name.” Turtle makes another face at this last statement yet again keeps quiet. “And when did you sacrifice all that you are? What does that even mean?” His light hands wave about exasperatedly. “These things aren’t usually enough to overwhelm my keen Elven intellect but you sir, have managed to do it. I don’t understand.” The humans chuckle at this admission.

Treveylan says nothing for over a full minute, the only sound being an occasional popping from the fire. “When I left the Shea, I left on the wrong terms with me father… Tis been weighin on me mind ever since.” He places his hands upon a furrowed brow. “I left angry, said many things I wish I hadn’t…because he told me the truth about me mother… She was the one who made me half as noble as you are Pertinax…sort of. She was the Elven King’s daughter… She and my father fell in love…despite the xenophobic nature of the King.” He has everyone’s full attention. “My mother gave me up, so that me father could raise me…away from her father, who wanted me dead. As far as he knows, I am dead…,” his statement ends with almost a moan.

Pertinax’s head shakes. “A very sad story indeed. It would seem you are royalty. I still don’t see what this has to do with our current naming situation though and your reaction to our vote. I am as confused as I was before your story. Just sadder.”

“I suppose my hesitancy regarding the party’s vote has nothing to do with my past but I do not want to make it easier for him to find me…” Treveylan keeps his head down. “I was hidden for a while…but the notoriety of a Half-Elf ranger does not remain hidden for long in the Shae. The Elven king abhors half-blooded beings more than he does Humans and I hate him more for what he has done to my mother and father than anything else,” his hands squeeze together in rage, as if by will alone he could put them around that distant neck to strangle. Composed, he goes on. “I am sorry… I care not about the name. But I will not wear any marker that indicates my allegiance to the group. If only to stave of his search for me.” So it’s the Shielding Alliance, is it? Not very apropos, as only two of the party bear shields. But then, what does a name really mean?” He smiles slightly at the jest.

Turtle waits for the Elves to finish, before speaking slowly, as if making herself be patient. “No one is going to be forced to wear anything.” {pause} “I would think however, that by now I’ve explained enough why a name has importance, even if only to some of us.” {another pause} “And I have also clarified on several occasions how the ‘shielding’ part, while having some literal basis, is more descriptive about our goal of protecting the weak. In any event, the vote has been made, the die cast.” {long pause} “We are The Shielding Alliance, and may we each Stand And Be True, all through our final breath.” She makes a quick genuflecting gesture, exhales and speaks normally. “Treveylan, by ‘him’ I take you mean this Elven King or his agents? Do you have reason to suspect that they are actively looking for you? Should we be wary of this?” She looks around as if expecting Elven vengeance to come raining down or errant arrows to come flying out of the darkness.

“And this was sin against your mother and father was…exile? Imprisonment? Her face shows a deep sympathy. “I too have had my family broken, through faults from everyone and no one. We drift on god-blown seas, to be sent heading towards unknown shores.” She sighs tiredly for a second time. “Life is a troublesome lot for many who live it.”

Florent is deeply confused. “Eir to the throne but no way to prove it or claim it? Reluctant to enter Shielding Alliance and recently shot me in the back… Tell moi, this recent communication about your ‘eritage and birthright, is it an Elvish kind of recent meaning some time in the past decade, or are you receiving communication in recent days between trips to the Tempel?” Florent rubs the fresh scar the half-elf who seems to hate humans recently gave him. “Your story is grand, but surely you understand that it seem far fetched.”

“Florent… I have been carrying this information with me even before we met. It is why I crossed the sea to escape the Ilse… to avoid being killed by the King or his servants. My mother is the Kings daughter. Therefore I am a would-be prince. Would-be in the sense that if the King died, I am the next male in the bloodline and would therefore inherit the title if the King died. Again. I am sorry I shot you, it was an accident and I had no intention of harming you. I know my words mean nothing to you, but it is all I can provide at this time.”

Sulmia scolds from darkness. “My, your a plague of sadness on even my shadows. I suppose I can’t imagine how it feels to be part of the faerie folk and have centuries of dwelling on the past to look forward to.” Pertinax’s facial expression confirms this.

The half-Elf squirms, noticeably uncomfortable with the party’s focus on his past. “My frustration lies with the idea that I cannot return home. I am not sure we should fear the King or his agents. He may have servants who are hunting for me, but I am not sure. I am technically the next male heir to the throne… So perhaps I am a threat to him. My mother had a choice, kill me or be killed herself. That is how I came to be raised by my father. I just recently learned all this about my past, and is why I have not really been open with you all. I suppose the naming of our group has caused me to become restless, as mine own name is dangerous enough for me. I am sorry.” He sounds genuine and more than one comrade is showing sympathy.

Furnock shakes his head and tries to straighten his utterly destroyed lace collar. His speech is garbled and mingles several accents but the gist is; “I knew a whore in Baldur’s Gate who had a story, she said was the long lost daughter of the Pasha of Calimport, now SHE was a FANTASTIC regardless of her sob story! So don’t you worry Treveleyn, your story doesn’t seem to be effecting your killing skills in the least.” Furnock believes that this is consolation. He even moves to pat Treveleyn on the back.

Turtle inhales a deep breath and lets it out gradually. “OK. Better late than never. Certainly, if we had been attacked by Elvish assassins, this would be a VERY different conversation.” She tries to stymie a glare, starts, but softens. “There is still confusion here. On the one hand, you are ‘not sure we should fear the king’ yet you feared him enough to cross the sea.” Her fingers tally the list voice gradually rising as she traces back through what he’s told so far. “You then speculate offhandedly that you are ‘perhaps a threat to him,’ yet you- a half-breed whom he abhors, would inherit his throne. You claimed mere minutes ago that your “hesitancy regarding the party’s {name} has nothing to do with my past,” yet JUST NOW you re-canted, saying the naming of our group has caused you to become ‘restless’ whatever the hells that is supposed to mean.” She spits on the ground. “I would have excused the ‘just recently learned’ part of this ever-evolving narrative, as I realize the Elvish mind sees time differently. To us mere humans such a statement would imply, like Florent asked, between forays into the Temple. But we have spilled enough blood enough times by now to have warranted forewarning sooner, especially since you have known before you even met us.”

She shakes her head. “Especially since it could put our lives in jeopardy.”

I have to say that whole exchange was even funnier the second time I read it. Thank you, Steve. Most entertaining.

I especially liked the “Half-Blood Prince” document title. I can even see the Snape/Treveylan comparisons at work…

I suppose these emails would have more meaning if I > had a computer, and was able to open attachments…

“I suppose my hesitancy regarding the partys has nothing to do with my past…” “I suppose the naming of our group has caused me to become restless, ” “I suppose I can’t imagine how it feels to be part of the faerie folk” ‘I suppose if I make a character with the background of threatening an Elven KIng’s throne it may one day come back to bite me in the ass. And I suppose this might make my other party members may be upset at this.’ ’;P

it was not intended as a slight against your work Steve.. If that is how it came across.

I am sure it is an exceptional piece of writing…

The party has every right to be mad at Treveylan for this.. Hes used to people being angry with him, so this wont be any different from what he is used to.

View
Turtle's Take
wherein our heroine explains her thought process behind 'Shielding Alliance', as well as some secrets

Turtle leans forward, seemingly eager to go first. “Treveylan, indeed spoke well. If I am to understand Pertinax’s summations, there is a motion regarding unanimity for subsequent motions to pass- or in short, we need to vote to see if all future votes need to be all yea to pass.” She smiles. “Fairness is indeed tough is it not?” A few others agree. “I vote ‘nay’ regarding all or nothing. I care about everyone, but we each see the world in various, sometimes quite opposite ways. I would think it nigh impossible to get us to always agree, and if so, we’d not be able to decide or do much. Simple majority rule for me, and no special treatment on voting for the issue of name alone.” She stretches out her legs. “Regarding anonymity, the Harpers are far from anonymous yet still thrive on secrecy. If we need to be concealed, we cover our markers and sigils, travel swiftly, and even use aliases, deception, and disguises. One would say a name that is raised through reputation could strike fear into the heart’s of enemies. On the issue of revoking the name, I again vote ‘nay’ for those reasons and Furnock’s.”

“As far as the people naming us, I have sworn holy oaths to protect this village and will see the matter through. But the manner I do this in is on my conscience. What need are names? In some lands adventuring bands are required under law to register their company. In magic arts, names have power and significance.” Pertinax bows briefly in concurrence. “Finally, for matters of honor and deed, history and stories are connected to names. They tell of what we have done.” Sulmia cocks her head, considering this.

Turtle takes a swig of water. “I will be the first volunteer to go into any room, and I shall be the very last one to go out. I do this not for bravado or glory, but to defend. To guard the rear. And this responsibility scares me, for I have recently had visions of fell darkness, and in some of these dreams I do not triumph.” A heavy sigh follows. “Florent is right to mention the hyrda-thing. Sooner or later, there will be a beast or a trap or a spell that brings one of us down. I see my own doom sure enough in giants, let alone in a demonness. Yet if I am to fall, I would fall dying to protect my friends, dying for a cause. Dying under a name…a group name…with which to be fully remembered.” She points to the mithril spikes. “And that identity is from our resolve: ‘Shielding’ because of protection and ‘Alliance’ because of this common cause. It is truly a good name- a HOLY name, in fact. I will keep it ‘til my end’s-end.” She leans back then arcs her head forward to spit a trail of liquid onto the fire, watching it hiss satisfactorily. “Besides, I am sure the Homleteers would much rather have a donation of coins or goods than the projected honor of trying to argue amongst themselves as to what we should be called. That process would be quite…chaotic.” She scowls at the thought of this. “Moreover from the last meeting with the ‘village elders’ that were involved with Feldron’s case, they made it quite clear that we are our own group, and as a unique entity to this place, should make our own counsel about matters. Certainly naming ourselves only affects us, so therefore we are the ones who shall have to resolve it.” She squats.

View
except maybe they don't
aka, one member of the Alliance does not want to be referred to as being in the Alliance

“I didn’t abstain… I will not be referenced by either name,” comes the curt reply.

Pertinax sits back down, apparently a little perturbed. “”The Shielding Alliance isn’t your name. It’s the moniker of our band. What’s your problem with it?”

The half-Elven scout is rigid in his response. “I know it tis not ‘my’ name… it just that either name does not really strike any sort of chord in my heart… perhaps it be better that we take a name the “people” have given us… as most party names have somehow been derived from their exploits and their renown… namin’ ourselves is just …well, I am not sure… it just does not seem right to me.” He crosses his arms and continues. “Further, by not havin a name, we do not draw any more attention to ourselves, if certain aspects of our enemy be searchin for us…”

Without missing a beat Turtle says dryly, “Maybe it’ll sound better in Elvish. You guys have been ‘practicing’ after all.” She resumes repairing her scorched chain shirt.

He turns quickly to her, his tone civil yet unwavering. “I am not bothered by your statements or any yer beliefs of a need for a name…” Treveylan shrugs simply, “I come from me own line and clan… and dis discussion does in no way vex me…”

“You’ve a need to lighten up. Least of the dangers we face is our ration being soured by your frowns,” a sardonic Sulmia chastises from the corner.

“Me fadder once said that a name given to oneself, is as arrogant as the king who thinks his people truly need him, and could not live without him.” At the mention of his father the scout becomes poignant. “I am just not sure we be needing to name ourselves… let nature takes its course, and let the name come to us…,” he counsels softly.

“You should have voiced your concerns before the vote. I fear it is too late. We are the Shielding Alliance.” Pertinax swipes his fine Elven steel through the air as if striking an invisible foe. “If our enemy wants to search for us, let them. We’ll be ready.”

Trevelayn grumbles in Elvish mixed with common about being ‘too busy, too distracted to have participated so far.’ A woodchip from the fire lands on his shoulder, and he brushes it off angrily. He catches himself before reacting, and the frown disappears as he changes tactics. “As we have thus far voted on many things… I think we should weigh the options of naming ourselves. While it seems that a name might give us a so-called “common” alignment, that which we already have, what true need is there for naming our party??” He allows the question to hang in the air before moving onto another point. “Anonymity would better provide us cover… should we need to go into a place of ill-repute or where we may not want to be so ‘out in the open.’ While a name, and a sigil, I am sure will be next, is most definitely easier to spot, and may draw unneeded, or unwanted scrutiny.” The scout makes a gesture towards the darkness, as if there already could be unseen foes gathering around the Shielding Alliance’s campfire. “Back in the ‘Shae, the clan that I hail from did not name ourselves. Granted, we have a family name,” and again at the reference to family, he practically winces.

“The name we were called was given to us by the people we protected…for as we were their servants and protectors, it was not our right to claim the right to name ourselves. The people, will, in time, provide us the name you so desire. Let our actions speak for ourselves… not a name that we do not ALL agree upon. For if we choose to name ourselves, should it not be a name that we ALL agree to? Not merely a name by whom votes toward one name or the other… an actual agreement between the whole of us?” Again, as if a practiced orator the half-Elf waits dramatically before forging ahead.

“Alone we would not fair well by ourselves, together we stand strong and true… and while we may struggle, not much can stop us thus far, as we have proven. Our strengths and weaknesses are covered, and we have shown true merit in our resolve to rid this world of the maligned arts that the temple is harboring. Let us not dwell on the alleged need for a name, for now… we have much more that is far more important.” Here he rises to his feet, his voice filling with emotion, his hands articulating emphasis.

“But is you think that a name is so desperately needed, at least consider each person’s view… and do not let their ideas, nor their protests go unheard.” He circles carefully clockwise around the low campfire as he says this, meeting everyone’s gaze individually. “We work as a team, and therefore the name should reflect something we all agree to. That is my opinion… but then, it may not count… yet again, ” he smiles slyly at Pertinax, evidently attempting insinuation before returning quietly to his seat on a log.

Florent takes a moment to lean on his shield and scratch his head. “Treveylan, you are as charming as ever, but you make no sense. Ow does letting populus name us give us more anonymity than naming ourselves? Clearly we already ‘ave made name for ourselves. ‘Omlette knows of our exploits, Tempel knows of our exploits, surely they call us something… “You no think they recognize us by now? I think shining shield and whistle more of identifier than sigil.” He turns the headlight on his tower shield towards Treveylan to emphasize his own point, to which the scout bites his lip. “And when we start making decisions based on consensus? I no remember this requirement for unanimous agreement. We ‘ave been going with vote of majority all along, no?”

The others indicate their agreement enthusiastically. “And while I appreciate your confidence about ‘not much can stop us’, but didn’t we just run from ‘Ydra?” Turtle holds up a still-smoking shield in testament. “I say we already voted, majority like Alliance de Shielding, that is our name. Eef name no fit, or town come up with better name, we vote again.” Turtle makes a frowning face at this un-agreed upon statement but remains silent. “Your resistance and your words sound nice, but logic… ‘ow you say… come up tall?” The young cleric touches the very top of his lengthy tower shield, sticking himself with a splinter. Embarrassed, he tries to pull it out and purses his lips.

The Elf reaches over and deftly plucks the splinter from Florent’s paw. “Treveylan, thank you for that eloquent statement. I will do my best to use my headband-aided intellect to sum up your points for a more coherent debate and ultimately voting.” He minutely adjusts the magical device. “On one hand you prefer we stay nameless because you feel a name is unnecessary and because it would protect us if we need to work incognito. Florent counters that we are already known and it is too late to go incognito. So a potential vote would be to revoke our name, Shielding Alliance, and go unnamed.”

“Then you want us to wait until the populace names us because you feel it is unwise or pretentious to name your own band. I think most bands are named by their own members. Regardless, if we are to go nameless again at what point would you have us adopt a name given by the populace? I am also sure you know that the populace could very well give us an unflattering or unseemly name if they so choose or they are swayed by people who aren’t benefited by our actions nearby. I don’t see a vote needed here though. We would just wait until nature takes it’s course and people start referring to our band in some fashion. They probably do already. Furnock, have you heard anything?”

Seeing the rogue distracted with counting the plantinum coins, Pertinax carries on “Third, you’d like to change our voting system from simple majority to unanimous votes, at least in reference to party names.” It is unclear whether he is being sarcastic or prosaic here. “As far as not allowing people to express themselves, we had an open discussion and your reply was curt and distancing so we went ahead with the vote.” The Elf’s tone is not negative so much as it is matter-of-fact. “It seems like the first vote needs to be on the issue of unanimity when it comes to naming the band. I vote that a simple majority is good enough.” He holds a thumb up in the air to indicate approval. “Once this vote is resolved we can tally the votes for the issue of keeping or rejecting our current name, Shielding Alliance. I vote to keep the name.” Again, the Elf raises a thumb for his vote. “The issue of being named by the populace should only be addressed if we lose our current name. Does that make sense? What say the others on these topics?”

View
The Names' the Thing.
wherein our sordid band (minus one) finally agrees what to call itself

Later, around the safety and warmth of a campfire, the Elven Wizard returns to the earlier line of conversation about what to call their group. “I agree we need a name but I’m not sure I like the Shielded Alliance,” he begins. “Since three of our members do use shields, two very prominently, that could be a theme. Like the Company of the Mithril Shield, or the Order of the Gilded Shield, since our shields are actually very pleasant to the eye. That human armorsmith must have some Elven ancestry.” More groans from the humans of the band. “Of course, our shieldless brethren might protest.” Turtle mutters something about the silliness of not carrying a shield, to which his Elven sensibility chooses to ignore. “How about themes that all six of us have in common? Like our base of operations, Hommlet. The Hommlet Alliance or Hommlet Defenders? The Hommlet Six? The Knights of Hommlet?” His back arches even straighter than normal. “I am a bit partial to the Knights of Hommlet.”

Furnock glances around and speaks in Elvish. “Pertinax can you translate for me. My common accent is so heavy few can understand.” Unsurprised, the Elf does as asked in perfect common, turning the rogue’s thick accent into more comprehendable language. “We need to attempt a new plan for tackling this next level.” The Elf’s voice echoes after his decadently dressed companion’s. “I think that the “Hommelet…” names sound good. Among the not so good are the shielded alliance; not all of us are shielded. I’m not so fond of the Knights of Hommelet name for several reasons: A) none of us are Knightly. Knights ride horses, we abandon them in the woods still attached to carts. Several chuckles go around at this rookie mistake the group had made early on. “Hopefully they won’t be coming back to collect a treasure share!” Turtle guffaws. B) some of us are cowards, (and here here Furnock does not shy away from the admission) knights are not cowards C) Knights are usually tied to liege lords, owe oaths of fealty nobles like the lords of Waterdeep or others. D) Knights are Aristocrats, are any of us of noble birth? Aristocrats get touchy about people assuming airs when they are not nobles.

Turtle waits for the Pertinax-speaking-Furnock to finish this list before adding; “In some areas, a knight is a formal title, given in ceremony. It might incur anger at having presumed such a level, even if we meant it informally.” After noting the objections to the Knights term the elf nods in understanding. Furnock presses on with his halting Elven. “I really like the other “Hommelet names” suggested though. I would also put forth my own name,” (dramatic pause and then with a flourish of ruffled hands) the “Order of Hommelet:” it’s authoritative, strikes fear into the hearts of the villanous, without implying anything we are not.” He beams at his suggestion.

The Elf murmurs positively and continues in his own melodic voice. “Like Turtle, I would like our name to be meaningful in more ways than just identifying how many of us there are. The Order of Hommelet to me sounds proper.” Furnock’s chest practically swells with pride, so the party’s wizard continues on, as if giving an academic lecture. “There are many types of knights, and one of the most popular adventuring bands I know was called the Knights of Myth Drannor even though they did not totally fit into the picture of knights described by Furnock. Having said that I understand the objection,” the Elf thinks aloud. “The reason why I like Hommelet is because that’s where we trace our origins as a group or fellowship. I don’t think our name ties us down at all. It is just a nod to our birthplace as a band,” he explains, flicking a piece of debris off his collar.

A frustrated sigh emits from the female fighter as her leg kicks away a small stone. “As much as I’ve come to love my second home, I’d like to not be tied down to it, even in name. I’d like to wander the Realms a bit before I settle,” she whispers with a wistful shine in her eyes. “Perhaps there could also be the possibility that our association with the village, particularly if we named ourselves after it, could cause enemies to take retribution there. Finally there is the possibility that the village itself would not want a band of adventurers roaming around with their name,” she hefts the bag of platinum coins, “at least not without some manner of compensation.”

Furnock chimes in. “How about the Order of the Hand? Not attached to the town and we do help out the Helmites a lot.” Pertinax is quick to politely dismiss that idea, “As much as I appreciate the help of Helm through Florent I would rather not give the impression that this band is a personal prelature of the Helmites.” The gambler has moved on, distracted by the clink of valuable metal.

Letting the sack down (which Furnock’s eyes follow the whole time) Turtle announces, “I should also be more specific; I meant the SHIELDING Alliance. The shield part being ‘to protect’ and the ‘Alliance part meaning a group formed out of common interests,” she clarifies, poking a stick into the fire. “I have grown to feel a bond of kinship with all of you, despite our differences. I know this would not have happened if we had not joined together, if we had not…ALLIED for a common goal. My heart tells me that we are a Shielding Alliance. A group drawn together to protect those that need us.”

There is a growing sound of approval from various members, with the walking metal that is the party’s cleric the first to voice his agreement. “Shielding Alliance gets my vote. This reflects our protection against growing evil of Tempel as well as precepts of ‘Elm. For some reason, people in this area ‘ave trouble understanding moi.” Many of the figures around the flames chuckle at his being able to make the observation, yet his ignorance of his linguistic complexities. “Eef I call ourselves “Order of ‘Omlette” I fear they give me plate of eggs. I no understand this, why vous ne moi comprehende, but ‘and of ‘alf dozen fits in same category,” he confides confusedly.

“Shielding Alliance? That sounds a bit better. Not sure if we make up an order. What with rules, laws, by-laws. That sounds more like’n Turtle’s habits at needin’ that.“ The other woman gives an icy glare in the direction of Sulmia’s voice, muttering about ‘hayseeds.’ Perhaps in enjoyment, the ShadowDancer takes no notice of her. “An alliance sounds better…” The occupying silhouette bobs in agreement.

Florent, who still has an obvious affection for young adventurer, is quick to follow in her symbolic footsteps. “Alliance de Shielding. Je t’aime! I think this great name. Eet strick fear into ‘eart of all doers of evil, he proclaims smugly. “’Omlette will know they are under our protection, and the ‘and of ‘Elm watches over them. Are any of you good with drawing or carving? An emblem representing who we are would also be tres bon. I shall proclaim our valiant ‘eroics and name in the face of the next abomination of this Temple I face. They shall know the ‘ard ‘and of ‘Elm and the Alliance de Shielding!” He raises a mailed mist in a gesture of triumph at the thought of proclaiming this loudly.

Furnock bellows, much to the displeasure of his compatriots, “Does that make each member a Shield? Taht’d be swell! Anyway I’m just glad I get to change my name from Furnock, the alcoholic gambler who wanders evil temples and complains a lot, To; FURNOCK member of the Shielding Alliance! Where to next?”

“Wherever you’ll be Q-U-I-E-T,” Turtle buzzes acidly. Abashed, he complies.

“Then that’s that. We are the Shielding Alliance given that Treveylan abstained.” The Elf rises gracefully from his seat, ready to move onto his arcane studies now that the designation matter is finally settled.

One minor point an I do mean minor. Furnock is proud of his cowardice to a certain extent. Being alive is his prime directive. Furnock never fails to look out for Furnock. *No problem. I’ve changed that passage (the ‘B’ part of Furnock not agreeing with us being called knights) to:

“(here Furnock does not shy away from the admission)”

Don’t anyone hesitate to correct me if I’m getting the style/flavor of your character down incorrectly. I had to assume a lot to make it sound like a story.

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Rest for the weary?
aka, a compilation with some artistic license of the 'A-Conversation' in various emails

Florent looks around at his battered companions as something occurs to him: “Mes Amis, Regarding the idea of resting ‘ere in this room instead of taking time to go back and find safer place, there is something else to consider. I ‘ave to wait till dawn tomorrow to pray to ‘Elm for more spells. This matter of resting for more than just 8 ‘ours, no? The longer we wait ‘ere, better the chance that ‘ydra get free and we get flambe. You know this word? Like the desert with the burning liquor on top? Anyway, it is no good.”

Pertinax smiles, an expression on his face as if he is remembering the taste. “I know this dessert. We elves have perfected the technique.” Many in the party groan quietly at yet another example of ethnocentrism. Distracted by memories or choosing to ignore, he presses on, “In any case, I do agree that it might be best to sleep outside.” His slender fingers reach instinctively to find the well-read spellbook he studies.

The female fighter nicknamed Turtle follows the movement out of the corner of her eye but continues guarding one of the doors leading into the pillow-filled chamber. “You all may find this odd, but it feels…good…to be back here. I am invigorated after that tenday and owe the armorer many thanks for her efforts.” She practices moving her improved defenses in sweeping arcs for emphasis. “Even though the temple will be tougher, the Shielded Alliance will be tougher still.” She peeks around with a smile of her own to gauge the reaction of this, before continuing quickly. “This was a righteous fight, although I admit to feeling a certain sorrow for the mage whom I abruptly crushed down.” A sad gaze looks into the other room. She sighs and goes returns to watching the door. ”’Battles which last but a minute leave scars which last across a lifetime.’ Parts of her still smoke from hydra-fire as if in answer. “Florent, would you say a benediction over the bodies before we leave? It might give them some peace.”

The Helmite priest looks back at the room with the three recently-slain bodies before responding to the benediction request, “I pray for fallen in morning when I commune with ‘Elm, no when ‘ydra is beating on door in next room. They choose there path when they chose to do work of evil. Eet is for their God to judge them now. You were right to charge in and beat them down before they could do more harm, Turtel. No let mercy stay your ‘and at critical time, or I be praying benediction for one of us next time.”

She bows her head in agreement or possibly a quick prayer and turns to the others. “Friends, I would have us press on enough to see if this section leads back to the beginning. We may yet hold have the element of surprise and could strike while the iron is still hot. I realize its been a tough series, but the going will only be tougher. I would suggest moving on to deal more unexpected blows and increase our learning of this level.” She pulls back her hair. “I think it’d be good practice for when we have to confront yonder demonness. I’m sure she won’t let us dictate the terms then.”

The elven wizard flexes his slender fingers as if preparing to cast one of his potent arcane energies. “Indeed, although it might do us good to be as ready for her as possible. We need to study demons and their weaknesses.”

Turtle shudders visibly at his adding an ‘s’ onto that horrible word, as if suggesting they may face more than the Temple’s evil ruler the druid from Hommlet had warned about. “Perhaps you can later speak of what you already know? It would be a conversation to help keep our watch alert,“ ‘…and I don’t want to be caught napping,’ she thinks to herself.

Pertinax reddens, as if embarrassed about something. “I have to confess that I need to learn more about the subject,” he admits slowly. “Having said that there is some knowledge I can impart.” (Dan: Knowledge:The Planes +6)”

Turtle listens to his brief report with a worried look. “I’d like to continue this discussion around a fire and where we’re not in the bowels of an enemy lair. Otherwise we may not live to share a name with anyone.” A quick turn of the each wrist readies both manticore-embossed shields. “Is everyone else feeling ok enough to head back in the direction of the entrance but with the resolve of going through new territory as we do so?”

Florent wheezing and leaning heavily on his own shield, a huge towering one, is the first to reply. ‘Ow sure are you that these new doors lead back to where we were before? I can no keep my head straight in this twisted Tempel. I think it better to follow trail of dead bad guys back to surface instead.” A grim smile comes to his feminine lips.

The Elf shrugs non-commitedly. ““I’d prefer to rest and regain our magical might but if we press on I’ll be far from useless.” He quickly unsheathes the longsword he refers to as ‘Fine Eleven Steel’ and re-sheathes the blade just as fast. “As you may have noticed, I have been studying the martial arts as well as the Art and have acquired a significant level of proficiency with a longbow, as is my birthright. I still have some spells, though none of the third order including elven alacrity. My fine elven bow works well and my quiver is near full.” He reaches back to grab the beautifully-crafted missile weapon.

Turtle, interrupts good-humoredly, “So Florent will have to now watch out for TWO sets of Elvish arrows?” she jests, grinning about an errant shot from the bloody battle just minutes ago.

Pertinax smiles back smugly. “You’ll know that the precise set of elven arrows came from my bow, though.” He raps his weapon lightly for emphasis.

The shadows carries the voice of a farmer’s daughter. “You all sound less n’ heroes an’ more the likes of Luskan merchants. Votes? I vote we think that a five headed beast is loose in these warrens and I need remind you our spellthrower’s best magic doesn’t hurt it. Let’s get topside and hope it doesn’t give chase with its handlers behind it until we’ve caught our breath.” Sulmia the ShadowDancer blurs into the corner, her own shadow moving separately from her body. The shadow had become a living thing, born from some eldritch sorcery. Turtle frowns in disapproval of this uncertain companion, gripping her shields tighter. It had already felt the spines once and would do so again if it was not careful.

Florent adjusts his own defenses as if sharing the feeling. “I am also concerned about us, how you say, pressing our luck? ‘Elm calls for action and vigilance. I ‘ave been too ambitious and charge ahead before, with no so good results. Balance of doing most good without being foolish. When does ‘just one more door’ become door ‘olding ‘ydra that kills us all? I say we pull back now to rest and re-group in safe camp outside. I have very little ‘ealing power of ‘Elm to call on. Eef we are wounded more seriously eet will take multiple days to recover, or a trip back to town. Better to return at full strength tomorrow with strategy than to make mistake that causes greater delay.” The boy priest’s usual headlong determination was gone, replaced with an obvious fear of the monster they had been able to escape. If Furnock hadn’t gotten the lever to bring down beast’s cage…

As if on cue, the gambler turned rogue pokes saunters in, a bag of coins jingling in one hand and a scroll tube in another. His cautious search of the former inhabitant’s room apparently successful. He nods to the others talk of leaving directly in his own tongue; ” ‘er we should be duck’n for it methinks. Then I’m always for show’n te bucktail dough, eh? Lets knuckle under and run fer it.Then put up an shack up someway safe as pearl in a clam. eh?” While the gist of what he wants is clear, it still takes the rest of the party a few seconds to acknowledge. For her part, Turtle stares dumbly at him, clearly not following a word.

To move things along, the elf unveils the document he’s crafted along their journey throughout this level. “I have a map which clearly illustrates where we have been. I prefer to go back to safety the way we came in but if we open a few of these doors, particularly the silent ones, I wouldn’t be opposed. Clearly, the consensus is to seek refuge somewhere else. Either the first floor or outside. I feel the first floor has served us well before.” The elf waits to hear from the others.

Comments welcome.

Nicely done! Very entertaining.

I can’t wait to see you give “the treatment” to the revelation that we are amongst exiled royalty. Screw the temple and Hommelet! Let’s go get Treveylan his rightful kingdom! In exchange for lands and nobility titles, of course.

actually, Brian had told me this awhile back, so I was wondering if we’d ever hear about it. I’m curious as to how it’ll affect the campaign.

As far as ‘the treatment,’ here is the next batch, which I’ve broken down into 3 parts based on what made sense and the natural divisions in the flow of the emails. I’ve finished with the first and thought it made sense to send them out indivdually. There will also be a revised ‘Rest for the Weary’ which includes a comment by Treveylan of what to do next that I found late buried in the discussion of naming emails, and plastic surgery for Floren’ts lips, which was a joke on my part to see if people paid attention.

What will Pertinax name his lands? Pertinaxshire? Pertinaxia? Pertyland? State of High Elven Insufferability? Xenophobialand? Otisville.

I like the editorial license you took with the description, except for the part about Florent having feminine lips. He shaves… once a month at least. Got to keep up with the peach fuzz.

Good work!

Man o man that was well done. If we choose to follow Treveylan. Furnock is choosing an area he likes to call Catan. You are all welcome to build settlements there and grow rich or until one of us gets 10 victory points.

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summary of roleplaying 'discussion'
aka bickering

Regarding the ‘bickering,’ the conversations, while certainly containing definite disagreement at times, were largely civil. Such a discussion was both realistic and necessary for a mainly Lawful band and I enjoyed the roleplaying.

1)We will allow party debt and speed at which said debt will be repaid

Florent gets to keep his ring of freedom of movement,> for example, which we can’t afford out of his share.> He owes the rest of the party for the item. He has to> repay his debt as soon as he can.

another vote was taken on whether there should be a limit on this debt, and in true American governance style, there are no limits to the debt.

2)We defined party items

More than one person can use them and the benefit can> be applied to everyone

it was also a factor that such a benefit was important to the group and could not be better replicated by an existing or easily obtained other item.

3)We established a system to allocate magical items> > when two or more individuals have legitimate claims(they will wax> > eloquently on why they should get the item and the rest of the party votes)

This manner was advocated by Turte over the random approach and by Sulmia over the auction style.

Diplomacy only works on NPCs.

and even then, apparently not all that well. :P it will be interesting to see if Sulmia is considered an NPC

4) Turtle asked who would want to be brought back in the event of their death. Both Sulmia and Furnock said ‘no.’ (although Furnock might change his mind after the Carrion Crawler incident) we assumed Trevalyn as a paragon of his race would want to continue breathing

5) Feldron’s armor was returned to him, with some members (notably Sulmia and Pertinax) refusing shares from it. he is still to be kept under watch until a suitable consequence can be administered. Turtle paid 220ish gold for the upkeep of him and Chan and to improve security at the temple. Florent got manacles to better secure future prisoners, after a slight rebuking from Terjon.

6) the splinter-cell sneakiness was discussed, with the admonition that lying to other party members is not cool. the group shot doen Floren’ts idea to ‘take a walk’ over to the Temple and Turtle’s suggestion to explore Knulb.

and as we speak we’re back in the Temple courtyard after running out gagging from a yucky tower. i.e via After all of that we waited for our new equipment to get to town and returned to the temple, checking out the escape tunnel first.

We fought four carrion crawlers and other than Furnock, who in a rare moment of bravery almost got himself killed, triumphed in a spectacular manner. I’m sure tha means we will get our assess kicked inthe temple.

No we aren’t heros, nor exceedingly rich, and Furnock’s bravery is well… hmmm Furnock has his moments shall we say… sort of like Han Solo, He is getting braver sorta… no advance recon… I turned in my knives and mail ordered a rapier so I have to kick myself for the delay… It could have been quite comical; Florant, Trevelyn, and Furnock trying their best to slink about the Temple…

(Covert Team comes upon roaming monster) Florant: Sacre Blur! We must fight le evaal! (begins attacking from behind tower shield) Trevalyn: shouts we must fall back! (draws bow, fires, drops bow, draws sword, swings) Furnock: (receeding sound of his footsteps as he flees)

What is Treveylan’s equal share??

That he can actually spend, it’s about 6100 gp or so. The total share is 8k something but we can’t spend that much because of the debt.

How damaged is Treveylan???

Either untouched or slightly dented.

After thinking more about this I think Florent’s decision to keep the ring is a very good one. That is one awesome ring! He will never be grappled, will be able to move underwater just as he moves above water, no spell that hinders movement will ever do anything to him and so on and so forth. It’s pretty damn nice and at 50% cost quite the bargain.

From Dan, the GM: Sulmia thought so, too. But it was obvious the spoiled child of The Protector would have sooner parted with his excuse for a root than the ring….

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summary of new SA, explained OOC

1)We will allow party debt and speed at which said debt will be repaid

BRIAN: Meaning what exactly?? ROBERTO: Florent gets to keep his ring of freedom of movement, for example, which we can’t afford out of his share. He owes the rest of the party for the item. He has to repay his debt as soon as he can.

2)We defined party items

BRIAN: Defined them how?? ROBERTO: More than one person can use them and the benefit can be applied to everyone in the party.

3)We established a system to allocate magical items when two or more individuals have legitimate claims(they will wax eloquently on why they should get the item and the rest of the party votes)

BRIAN: Ooooh, so Treveylan might actually be able to “persuade the party to see his point, should he want something someone else does?? I guess a high diplomacy score totally helps out, huh?? ; ) ROBERTO: Diplomacy only works on NPCs. You are on your own, my friend. It will be the words that you put in Treveylan’s mouth that will determine if he gets what he wants or not.

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meeting the Helm big boys
aka Turtle and Florent seek some spiritual guidance

{In broken Elvish} “There are things worth more than gold.” She gets up to go. {switching back to guttural monkey-speak} “If you don’t mind, I will take my leave of you. We should meet back up tomorrow morning. Let sleep freshen our minds.” She bows curtly and heads out.

{assuming no one runs out/says more crap}

Turtle makes tracks to the Temple of Helm, where she asks to be let in. “I wish to stay inside the Watcher’s domain tonight so I may help keep vigilant eyes on the charges.” {assuming she is let in} “Please tell Terjon I wish to speak with him in the morning. If my companion Florent is also around please let him know that I am here.”

She goes to check in on Feldron and who is guarding him. If he truly really seems to be asleep, (talking quietly with both his guards and a LISTEN check at the door) she will move on to look in on Chan, before sitting outside in the hallway, offering to take over the next 2 watches from those who are out. She does but request to be checked upon every hour.

The next morning when Florent next sees Turtle alone he asks: “Pardon moi, sister de shields, but I ‘eard you respond to Furnock and Treveylan and it sounded like you were speaking their language. Did you know what they were talking about, because the ‘we’re just practicing our Elvish’ line is as bad as some of my pick up lines.” Florent blushes at this analogy, and quickly presses on. “What’s ‘appening?”

I think Florent was up praying at the Temple right from the get-go when we got back. This helped Roberto not have to do any more split personality. SOOOO… I don’t know if he was around when ‘SPLINTER CELL SNEAKINESS’ happened.

If Florent does walk around during the night or is otherwise awake, he may either see/hear Turtle directly or be told by an acolyte that she has come up to the Temple to help keep watch, and wanted him to know. This same acolyte may also be aware that she requested a meeting with Turgeon in the morning.

We’re running out of time until next session, so in the interests of moving the story along…

If Florent does walk around during the night or is otherwise awake, he may either see/hear Turtle directly or be told by an acolyte that she has come up to the Temple to help keep watch, and wanted him to know.  This same acolyte may also be aware that she requested a meeting with Turgeon in the morning.*

Asssuming nothing crazy happens at night, if she comes upon Florent she says to him: “I need to meet briefly with you and Tourjohn about a moral issue that you raised during the last mission that has been troubling me. I’ve requested his council early in the ‘morrow, so that we may resolve it quickly, move on, and then get the most out of the day. Will you join us?” {this is sort of a rhetorical question, but in any event, she steadfastly resists any attempts to explain beforehand what her concern is, only that it is related to the ‘spiritual well being of the party’}

If Florent sleeps soundly through the night, I’m guessing that he would be summoned after morning prayer/breakfast. Turtle has a troubled look on her face as she slowly begins:

“Thank you both for agreeing to meet with me. While not a direct follower of the Watcher myself, I am a believer in His missions and support most of his aims. Surely his temple here is no accident in line of the great evil re-awakening not far from us. I have also grown fond of Florent, and as a shield brother, he has repeatedly stood fast beside me in the face of grim peril. He is undoubtedly a fervent servant of the Vigilant One, and I respect his cause. However…”

Here she pauses to collect her thoughts.

“On our last sally into the darkness, there came to be a split amonst us as to how best handle our prisoner. The differences put myself and Florent were almost on opposite sides- my wanting to treat him honorably and with mercy, while Florent..{she initially has trouble meeting his gaze, but breathes, and seems to gain some inner strength to find his eyes}...Florent at one point advocated torture.”

She swallows here. “I think that he was still filled with the heat from battle and would not have done such a dark deed- nor would I have let him. Nonetheless, in our holy quest it is important that we not only guard our companion’s physical bodies, but guard our companion’s mortal souls as well. So I have come to Helm’s authority to request judgement in this matter, after Florent has had a chance to explain himself. I ask this in hopes that he and I may come out properly attoned, spirtually stronger and more united in cause.”

Her gaze stays steady, her eyes remain true.

Florent responds with his eyes brightened by a unwavering faith and belief. “I am glad to ‘ear of your interest in ‘Elm, Turtel. I think ‘is power is growing in you.”

(Turtle starts to move her head side to side, but stops)

“But misunderstand me, no? When we were in Tempel and captured this assasin, we try to tie ‘im up, but he escape with ease, no?”

She nods in agreement. “He was certainly skilled. We expected that, as we ourselves would have tried to escape under similar circumstances. Of course, you’re neglecting to mention that after slipping off his bonds, he remained seated on the bed until we awoke. Nor did he try to leave again or otherwise slow or mislead us.” She smiles in this scolding.

“I suggest we break ‘is legs no as a means of torture, but as a means of detainment. This ‘urt ‘im, yes, but we ‘ave no other way of knowing he no able to escape and go back to serving Tempel of Evil. I plan on saving a ‘ealing spell for ‘im, so ‘is injuries only temporary and no permanent.”

She shakes her head determinedly. “Evil done for good is still evil.” She crosses her arms suredly. “This is not something I can negotiate on and coming to point, is why we are here.”

“Alternative is to take ‘im back ‘ere and waste so much time while evil grows, which I no think is will of Ever Vigilant ‘Elm. A few hours of pain is justice, I say, for the good lives assasin ended.”

Again, a shake of the head. “Feldron is an honorable man. An evil man, but one who follows a code. Justice is not vengeance. Justice is fairness.

“Before we leave for Tempel again we need buy good set of manicles to lock prisoners in, then we no need for such extreme measures.”

She laughs. “I was actually going to stop by the blacksmith for some. I am glad there is an easy solution for the future.”

“But I stand by efficacy of breaking legs of evil man, no as a way of torture, but as a way of protection and security. ‘E pass out from pain, and when ‘e wake ‘e already ‘ave legs back. I still think this would ‘ave been better than this ten day side trip while letting evil grow stronger.”

Zeal burns in the eyes of the young man. Good and Evil are clearly black and white to him, so difficult choices are easy to make for him. Next he will start talking about the “axis of evil” and draw up plans to go to war with Iran and North Korea… wait, wrong zealot.

She sighs resignedly. “Of all these things, we will have to agree to disagree. Which is why we are here having this conversation.” (she shows a solitary index finger) “One, I will never do evil in the name of good, for protection or security, in Helm’s name or otherwise.” (putting the next finger) “Two, magic may fix the physical damage to him but there would be the memory for him and a scar on your soul.” (another finger) “And three, the evil may grow strong while we’re gone, so we will have to grow stronger on the meanwhile.” (turning to Terjon) “We need some guidance. This issue may seem trivial to some in our group, but to me it is a growing schisim.”

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recap

This week on Temple of Elemental Evil… OOG:

No consensus on trying to get a consensus as to the loot we have from adventuring. A brief discussion about how we break down party treasure. Confusion from everyone except Furnock as to why le cleric would love so much debt. Furnock knows debt is good especially when they owe YOU money. Money can be exchanged for goods and services and Furnock likes being serviced.

Party returns to Hommelet. We take Feldron the unrepentant to temple of Helm. Callmur is distressed to have a deadly assasin in his Temple but puts the POW up anyway and takes Feldron’s gear to check for scrying enchantments. All this while Turtle is adamant about upholding the Waterdeep Fair Treatment of Evil Prisoners Convention of 937.

Next the party heads to Jeroo Ashstaff who does know Feldron was one of the mercenaries who helped attack the Temple 60 years ago. The Mercenaries acted as a distraction during the battle and most died. Next the party splits up with Trevelyn, Furnock, and Pertinax going to the Inn. Sulmia goes to visit her father and Turtle going and buying new shields from the new weapon smith. Florent stays at the Helmite Temple.

Around supper time the party dines with Sulmea and her father. The next morning Pertinax gets super elven pissed when he finds out that Turtle’s new shields will take a ten day to complete, because the rest of us had counted on heading right back out to the ToEE. Furnock is secretly pleased because know he can cheat people out of their money at the Inn and drink alot. The party returns to the Helmite Temple to meet with the Hommelet civic leaders board and decide the fate of Feldron. Florent says the assasasin must die. Turtle says no. Everyone else is iffy until Sulmia convinces them to be merciful. The group decides to exile Feldron but make him do community sevice before he is given the boot. We level up except Furnock with roleplaying experience.

Regarding the ring, Florent exclaims: “Le ring save my life. Being inside monster of goo is bad enough. No being able to move is tres worse. I can no imagine giving away ring for something you say me is better. Eef someone else want ring, then we figure eet out. But eef only me want ring or we sell eet, I keep ring. You keep my gold.”

OOG: Florent is going with the bird in hand that saved his life is better than bunch of stuff he’s never seen before but others say is cool, in bush. (Insert joke here). Not tactically the best move, but this is Florent we’re talking about.

Regarding the prisoner: “What is this community service merde? Who ever ‘eard of such ridiculous thing. Next you say ‘Omlette need a service director and we ‘ire someone for this stupeed job. Unless my superiors correct me, assasin for ‘ire is bad. I say we definitely no give ‘im back ‘is stuff, no matter what pledge ‘e make.

Regarding the ten day wait: “Mon Dieu! Merde! Why we no send them some gold why we are at eet? Maybe some extra oil for burning us, and potions for ‘ealing. I know we should have broke ‘is legs and pressed on. Now eet ees my legs that get broken. Couf toi femmes et grand sen… mumbles rant in broken Florentese” I am with the irate elf on this one, for sure. Roberto, throw some good made up French curses in there for me.

Furnock glances around at the rest of the unnamed party of adventurers as the walk back towards Hommelet. He adjusts the mostly tattered remains of his frilly cuffs, clears his throat, and begins speaking. There is a quaver to his voice at first but he gains strength and volume as he talks to no one in particular…

“It’ll be o’ importy to knew ‘r cut ‘o ‘e loot. The Helm’s leg ‘umper wants his wee ring. Tas finn tat is to me. I say if’n any ‘o you lairdy bucks want not the shine but a sweet ‘itle trinket or bit ‘o pad’n thats o’l weel an gut, me thinks. No ‘un shood ‘ave a clatter ‘o plates agin tat, I say.

Nexty ‘o me mind is the busy ‘o cred’t ‘o tabs ‘o some such as. A boyo in deb’ can be count’n on in a pinch I always say. ‘cause it says in the scriptures ‘a in deb’t man be a proomis’d to his ‘older ‘o funds’ so its said. so we’un can count on debtors as it says in the scriptures it does. how much can someone claim ‘on credit?’

Lassenly is ‘e madder ‘o wieght and its pullers. Ta half human arrow chucker is a Lord ‘o ‘e bags ta me way ‘o tink’n. The res’ put in w’re caan do an we takes it nowce an’ show like. Aye? Watch cha say me hearty laddybucks?

“Furnock, mon ami, je ne compris toi. What is this umper of leg you speak of? I stand as ‘and of ‘Elm, no the leg. Mean you “un pere” of ‘Elm, as they say where I from, that ‘Elm is my father? Que’se que ce?”

OOG: I am with Steve on this one. Between the French slang I am blundering through with Helm’s horny little dog servant, and whatever accent Furnock has, I think the confusion only adds to the roleplaying possibilities. You can always ask for clarification, try to guess what he means, or in the case of Florent, take it as a license to translate his words into whatever meaning you want.

Furnock: “Feldron I ood ‘e be me tought. The feller donna be wear’n no goggles. Nor would ye ev’r peep ‘pon Furnock from the fron’. He bucks off too much methinks.”

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