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Porthca Landing II: Lost & Found

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DevilishEgg

Member
The more time Eliza spent inspecting the staff, the wider her grin got. “Fantastic, simply fantastic!” An invisible hand fished through her bad before plucking out a water-logged notebook and some mercifully intact writing instruments. The half-orc snapped a finger absentmindedly and the pages of the book starting shaking itself dry before opening to an empty page.

She dipped the quill in ink and wrote at length about the staff, noting down everything dhe could in her short hand. “Check this out!” She called out to Val, “You can store spells in this! That would have come in handy earlier. You can also store ‘metamagic’ I think, but Tyrius is more of an expert in that regard.” She pointed out several glyphs etched in the wood as the staff rotated midair held up by mage hand.

She placed the staff gently by her side already feeling much better. She glanced at the pile of promising magical weapons just waiting to be discovered again. “Okay, I will just have a quick glance at...this sword.” She innocently held up the rapier.

Almost an hour and a half later the beaming wizard tossed the other big axe into the mess of dangerous items after a final flourish of her quill. “That was enlightening. I can’t wait to show the others what we found here.” She held the staff again tracing the etchings, “One day...one day, I will be able to make something like this.” She wished she could show her parents all the powerful magical items she saw in her travels. Until then, her meticulous notes would do.

Dusting off her clothes, she got up with a faint wince and got ready to face their next challenge.
 

Ash-6116

Senior Member
Seeing Niradnam getting strangled by his clothing at the statue admonished the researcher on his fashion sense, Tyrius looked around the room, figuring it was likely another enchantment and just rushing forward would end up with meeting the same fate. Looking around carefully, Tyrius spied a wardrobe and a chest of drawers nearby, the wardrobe's oak doors open slightly revealing an array of outfits crammed inside. Taking another look at the statue, Tyrius tried to work out exactly what sort of outfit the statue was dressed in.

'This is just another lock and key,' thought Tyrius to himself. 'Wouldn't have thought of it had Niradnam not got caught but this should be interesting.' Donning a flowy outfit with a large shirt with flared sleeves, baggy trousers that became tighter as they neared the ankles and a flowery sunhat Tyrius walked in front of the statue, fairly sure he had the details right. A second or two of nervously waiting until the statue responded, calling out "Finally! Someone with a sense of style! Show the world what they're missing!" before motioning to the mirror with a smooth marble hand. Glancing in the mirror, Tyrius smiled at his reflection before walking forward, passing through the mirror as if it was nothing but air. Standing in the reflection, Tyrius looked back with a grin.
 

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Evening of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave | Left:

Rowanne and Banrigg watched Eliza go through identifying all the remaining weapons, Rowanne starting to pace the longer it all took. Hearing the mage stand up she approached, "Are we finally going to get moving again?"

With a nod around the group they continued out of the armory, Rowanne recasting light on her badge as the sound of rushing water grew louder and louder -- suddenly the sides of the cavern opened into a large room, the ceiling covered in faint blue glowing lights. The path narrowed, leading to a simple altar that with the glow of Rowanne's light had faint red specks splattered across it, a small hole visible in the center where the altar was sunken in, like a bowl.

In faint nearly invisible writing underneath the bowl, it read: "The Maiden's Sacrifice is Necessary for Life."

Banrigg growled loudly, adjusting the weapons he carried, "This bloody place, ain't nothin' just simple an' easy, innit."


Evening of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave | Right:


While Tyrius sorted out his outfit, Niradnam made a cushion out of various clothes and sat to begin the ritual of Detect Magic, finishing just in time to see the dragon sorcerer slip through the mirror dressed in some very interesting clothes. Shaking his head slightly, the dark elf muttered, "Well, I suppose we know the answer now -- might as well see what's around here, right?" Looking around the room a few things seemed to catch his attention, but when he looked at the statue directly it practically blinded him.

Discussing with Ander for a little bit about the items he'd found, and working to identify them, Niradnam gathered up the rest into a pile, stating, "Alright ... we should probably follow Tyrius through the mirror, right? We still need to catch up with the others." Flipping through a few pages of his spellbook he muttered a quick spell as it seemed a presence was suddenly there, like a faint haze in the air. "Ander, meet Tnavres, my unseen helper. Tnavres, please help us find similar outfits to what the statue has -- there's far too much here for us to reasonably search ourselves."

Fabric started shifting and moving on its own while Niradnam started to dig through himself, though he could be heard faintly muttering, "Statue thinks my clothes are bad ... what does he know ..."

---

Tyrius sitting in the hallway just beyond the room could still see into it, faintly hearing conversation, but any time he placed a clawed hand up towards the mirror, the statue seemed to wink and shake its head faintly. Hesitant to continue without the others, the only company now a slightly irregular drip of water from somewhere further in, falling into a puddle.
 
Giggling to herself, "Ander said a halfling swear."

you know Magnolia people are allowed to say bad words

yes but it's only funny when a paladin does it. Especially one like him, because he always acts so mature and responsible.

so what's everyone doing with these mirrors moving things around? Probably part of some puzzle... Oh cool a secret door! Our friends are so smart.


The head injury had certainly got her talking to herself again. The rude statue in the next room almost choked someone and that wasn't alright. "You're one to talk, how long have you been here? Probably over a century? Got a monthly subscription to the hottest fashion mags down here? Jerk..."

you realise you are arguing with a statue right?

yeah but he was a jerk, and tried to choke our friend. Hey look clothes!
 
Ander could see no downside to being a bit harder to hit, so he quickly removed his old splint armor that was barely holding itself together and placed the plate over his cassock. The fir and things were a bit odd, but he felt safer than he had in a while after putting it on, so he took that as possibly a good thing. The items that Niradnam hadn't gotten to check out went into Ander's pack, as he knew he was the one who could most easily carry more weight, especially with the splint left on the floor. He returned his attention to the narcissistic statue after getting equipped and pulling his two holy symbols over the breastplate. He did his best to put together outfits, with the help of the others, that would pass the vain being's muster, saving himself and what he threw on over his armor for last. "I sure hope this works," he whispered aloud to no one in particular.
 

NotHaruka

Member
"Ooh. Ouch. Yeah," Virra commiserated. "You'd think the elders would tell you to mix with as many people as possible and hope a few drow fall out. Like with me — my dad's a deep gnome and my mom's a forest gnome, but me and my sister both came out like this." She gestured to her deep grey skin. "I mean, I don't know if it's different for you elves, but this whole "purity" business just sounds like an excuse to control you."

Arriving in the bedchamber, she found herself unable to retaliate as the statue began to attack the elf with his own clothes — what was she going to do, shoot it with her bow? — so she decided to be a team player and get dressed up along with the others. She ached to try on some of the magic things, but grudgingly let Ander take them for safety-checking purposes, and contented herself with pulling on the frilliest accessories she could find that seemed vaguely similar to the outfit they were trying to emulate. "Tell me I'm not the cutting edge of fashion," she challenged the statue, twirling in a motley of pink lace and taffeta over mottled scales.
 

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Evening of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave | Left:

Watching Valerie pour water into the altar, the four watched as the liquid flowed down into the bowl, a stone pathway extended, giving them access to a new area.


Night of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave | Right:

Turning away from the mirror slowly, trying to lock eyes with itself as long as it could, the statue peered at the group, studying their clothes and styles. Eventually it made another Tsk! noise, the voice replying, "Sadly none can compare to me, but I suppose the best you can do is try to mimic." Placing a marble hand on its chest, "Go! Brave the world and show them all what true fashion looks like!"

Stepping through the mirror, Niradnam immediately threw off the obnoxious clothing, making flame in his hand for a moment as he stared at them on the ground, then closed his hands with a sigh. Creating the Dancing Lights once more, the group continued ...

---​

Night of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

Each group continuing down their respective pathway, they started to hear footsteps approaching, the tunnel curving around, losing any fine details it had before and becoming the rough cave appearance from before. Rowanne and Banrigg both rested their hands on their weapons, Niradnam doing the same with the other group, until eventually the groups found themselves staring at each other at a T intersection of the pathway.

Banrigg smiled, "'Bout time we found ya! Thought maybe I was gonna have ta carry these ladies th' rest of the way!" Rowanne started to step towards Niradnam before thinking better of it and staying with the others.

Niradnam tilted his head, seeing all the weapons the group was carrying, "Uh ... did you guys raid a blacksmith?"
 
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DevilishEgg

Member
A bruised and bloodied Eliza had to stifle a laugh as she saw the strange get-ups the others had gotten into, “Something like that,” She waved the new staff, “We come bearing presents. I hope your day has been better than ours has.”
 

Ash-6116

Senior Member
Continuing to wear the outfit for the moment, Tyrius looked over the wounds Eliza had and wondered what on earth they'd got involved in. "We sort of raided the thief's wardrobe because an insulting statue decided to try and strangle people if we didn't." explained Tyrius, "This would be after we got pushed into a room with a giant mirror and invisible objects that only showed in the reflection, including the way out."

Seeing the staff Eliza was waving, Tyrius smiled, "So, what's your new super cane do Eliza?"
 

DevilishEgg

Member
“It is more like what this super cane can do for you, Tyrius Silverbane.” Eliza said in her wisest wizened gnome voice. She took a moment to ruffle through her book to find her notes about the staff that she passed to the now-dragonborn.

“The amount of magic that went into this...this...” spluttering she seemed lost for words, “I was raised on tales of legendary items and to be surrounded by so many all of a sudden.” The bruised yet starry-eyed half-orc seemed lost for words again.

She shook her head snapping out of her daydreams, “I have spent two hours studying this and I am sure...yes, I am quite sure it isn’t quite the right fit for me. It suits you much better, I can feel it getting warmer in your presence.” She tossed the staff to the sorcerer and leaned back on her familiar staff, “Anyway, no self-respecting Carabelli would be caught dead using an arcane focus not of their making. Honestly, what would my parents say if they saw me using a staff ‘off the rack’.”
 

Ash-6116

Senior Member
As Eliza passed him the staff, Tyrius looked over the notes, finding them extremely detailed. One thing stuck out easily to him - increases the potency of fire based spells. The moment he read that part of Eliza's cursive Tyrius found the one downside to being a dragonborn over a human - it was much harder to grin when your face was mostly covered in scales. Instead Tyrius held the staff as he gazed over each and every part of it while behind him his tail twitched excitedly like a puppy.

"Hopefully we get to meet them soon," remarked Tyrius, "I'm sure they're as talented and kind hearted as you are." said Tyrius, though his eyes barely left the staff long enough to give Eliza an approximation of a smile. "Makes me wonder if something this powerful is here, what else could we find?" said Tyrius, vaguely aware from the mirror that Virra, Magnolia, Ander and Niradnam had found magic clothes but leaving it to them to share that fact.
 
Inside the wardrobe Mags discovered a great many hats, many of which were obnoxious. Only one however was truely obnoxious enough for her, she has seen pictures at one point of fancy women wearing such things. It's wide brimmed nature and elongated feather were just the thing she needed in her life.

Plopping it promptly apon her head as well as a fancy new magical belt. She felt more then adequately dressed, especially with the fir lined cape to tie it together.

The mirror was a strange sensation, but luckily enough her outfit held up and she did the statutes bidding to venture forth. Even though personally she thought she looked better then it ever did... If only she had a cane...

"Hey guys! Like my new hat and cloak?" of course they would love it, she looked fantastic.

"Hey that's some kickass weapons you found, that javelin is neat!"
 

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Night of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

Banrigg dumped some of the weapons on the ground, giving the current gnome a strange look, "Aye it's ... interesting. While ya were off playin' dressup, we were fightin' weapons. Th' ones that din't get rowdy we brought with us," he pointed towards Eliza, with her spell faded she had returned to the beautiful and graceful looking women, "Th' lass i-dent-e-fied 'em, whatever that means. Th' two have been excited fer a bit now."

Rowanne rolled her eyes behind the goliath's back, "She used a ritual to understand their properties -- from what I heard, a few of them are very potent and powerful."

Approaching to study the pile, Niradnam nodded, a hand on his chin, "Interesting ... we found similar, though not weapons -- instead clothing and armor. Didn't get a chance to study them all yet, we weren't sure we'd have the time." Looking up he saw some of the bruises from the ice on Rowanne and became concerned, "How rough was the fight? Do any of you need to be healed ...? I could try to help if you want?"
 

NotHaruka

Member
Still chewing on Niradnam's promise to tell her more about his situation later, Virra stepped through the portal and cheered as the others came into view. She let Ty and Niradnam take the lead on explaining what they'd been up to, adding a few supportive nods. "And we haven't split the armour between us yet, so just ask if you guys wanna try things on," she said breezily, more interested in the haul of weapons that Banrigg had dumped at his feet than she was in speaking. There was a little of everything in that collection: javelins, axes, and bows too; huge ones that Virra could never have hoped to draw, and a normal one made of what looked like woven silk. And oh, that one with all the gems... so pretty. She would have to interrogate Eliza for what they all could do.

It took her a moment, but she finally realised that Banrigg had specified "the ones that didn't get rowdy" when he spoke. "Wait, you said there were more weapons back there? Were they magic too?" Proverbial stars danced in her eyes. "Can we go back...?"
 

DevilishEgg

Member
“There were four that we had to ‘put down’ but we brought all the rest with us.” She thumbed through her notes and gave a quick summary about the properties of of the weapons as mage hand held each one in the air showing it off to its full effect.

“I don’t know about you guys, but these bones would appreciate a long rest, and while we are at it I could take a quick look at the unidentified items in the group.” She muttered innocently and matter-of-factly. “Won’t take but a few minutes really.”
 

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Night of the Sixteenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

Rowanne sat on the floor while Eliza did her showcase, not saying much while Niradnam attempted to get a better look at the bruises now forming from the pelting she took earlier.

The darkelf glanced over his shoulder at Eliza, "Uhm ... I'd rather we try to just do this all in one go, you know? I'm still in pretty good condition, I'm getting a little tired, but that's more from being up so long I expect." Nodding toward the pile of new items he offered, "I can help identify those so it goes faster ..." Turning back to Rowanne, she seemed to avoid meeting his gaze while he continued, "... but if you all want to rest, I can try to set up an Alarm in case something happens."
 
Seriously Niradnam? You are going to heal people?

Does he not realise that's kind of our thing? Not like we are a war cleric, grrrr my god smash eeerr. LAME


"Alright folks listen up, I know we haven't been hanging around long, but instead of letting randoms poke you, leave it to the pros." She find herself gesturing rather obnoxiously to herself with both hands. "I'm not saying I'm the best, but I am on a mission from God."

Well that was brazen Magnolia and rather rude.

I'm not rude, they are rude. It's literally our only job, to keep people alive.

Yes dear but there is nicer ways to put it...


Her face went flush from embarrassment, "sorry, it's just kind of my thing..."
 

WetHawk

One Thousand Club
Valerie giggled at Magnolia's enthusiasm to help them. "I very much appreciate the offer of aid, Magnolia, but I assure you that I am doing well, for the most part. I am afraid that these rather unappealing bruises may last for quite some time, however..." She paused for a moment before realizing that she did in fact have an immediate solution. "Oh. Right." Her pale face was briefly shrouded in salt before fading away, the bruises appearing to have disappeared from her form. Valerie held up a hand and a white compact mirror formed in her hand. She touched where one of the bruises was and winced. "Well, at the very least it is kinder on the eyes."

Crushing the mirror to salt in her hands, Valerie then looked over to the small hoard of magical artifacts they had assembled. Looking over the weapons once again, she had a sudden realization. Ander is the bravest and strongest warrior we have, and none of those weapons suit him. None other than... It took only a moment for her to consider the decision before Valerie walked over to Ander, her empty hands clasped behind her back as the former human smiled warmly up at him. "Hello Ander, I am glad to see that your side of the expedition fared better than ours did." She paused, her pure white eyes looking back over to the weapons. "I was thinking... you do not strike me as a man that would be particularly skilled with a rapier, nor one that would use a weapon like that axe over there. I actually ended up bonding to another weapon earlier that we had discovered. It is rather pretty, and very powerful, but I believe that it may be better in your hands than mine." She took her hands out from behind her back and salt swirled from her ring before forming into the powerful form of Glitter, although the weapon seemed to be encrusted with a layer of salt. "I have taken to calling it Glitter. Do you like it? I will clean it off before giving it to you, of course. At the moment, it is still bound to the power of my ring."
 
Morning? of the Seventeenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Morning? of the Seventeenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

Niradnam and Eliza work to identify the rest of the items, and while the group picked and traded, the dark elf worked quietly on a ritual in an attempt to protect the group. Finishing, he placed his spellbook away, a hand on his stomach as it rumbled, wincing in hunger. Banrigg laughed, slapping the smaller man hard on the back, causing him to stumble, "Ah lad -- not used ta missing meals, eh?"

Coughing from the blow, Niradnam answered, "Fortunately not ... I had hoped we would be in and out of here without needing to rest." The lilac eyes shifted to a white as he continued, "So far the wagon looks fine at least ... hopefully it'll stay safe until we get back."

The group continuing any idle chatter as they worked to attune to their items and eventually fell asleep, resting, though sore from sleeping on the hard floor, guts complaining in hunger leaving them all feeling uncomfortable.

When people seemed to wake up once more, Niradnam muttered, creating globes of light again, looking tired as he leaned against the wall. "If everyone's ready to go ... I'm very ready to leave this place. I don't care to be underground like this, not sure about the rest of you."
 

NotHaruka

Member
Virra was just as adamant about not stopping for a break as she had been about keeping the group together in the caves, but she gave in without getting too sulky. It helped that she had been given two exquisite treasures to hold onto: the bejewelled shortbow she'd picked out of the pile, and a blue amulet that apparently would make her better at... everything. She spent a dull hour concentrating on the inanimate objects, then fell asleep beside them feeling a little more herself than she had since becoming a kobold.

Upon waking, she quickly realised what she'd forgotten. The hollowness in her stomach seemed to grow more acute every time she moved a muscle; it took almost a minute for Virra to pull herself to her feet, and in the process she groaned so loudly she almost didn't hear Niradnam speak. "Gimme a minute. I swear this lizard belly is ten times more whiny than my regular one."

Suddenly in desperate need of a distraction, she made another mental link with the elf-in-hiding. "So, did you wanna talk about it? Your home situation, I mean," she asked.
 

Ash-6116

Senior Member
Waking up curled up with his tail wrapped around his legs, Tyrius yawned loudly as he felt as if he should still be sleeping and wanted a big stack of crispy bacon. Just thinking about even one rasher of bacon was making Tyrius feel even hungrier. Standing up, Tyrius clutched his new quarterstaff protectively with his gloved hands.

"We still need to find The Sea's stolen treasure though," said Tyrius, remembering the fact that Ander had a piglet and regretting how much he craved pork products as a result. "But doing it fast would be good - kind of worried about Bookwyrm."
 

Abrahms

One Thousand Club
Morning? of the Seventeenth Day | Faded Knoll Forest | The Cave:

The dark elf scholar rubbed his brow as he heard Virra's voice in his mind, peering at the kobold through his fingers. "... I don't really want to talk about it, but I did promise." Niradnam watched the globes of light lazily float through the room, "I understand not much is known of Elves outside the Forest ... I've overheard people claim they can all shapeshift, or are all part dryad and similar. However," he started making the globes move in a tighter circle, "what is true is that Elves ... reincarnation is part of our lineage. It is a truth that I was someone else before I was born -- not a legend, not a story my mother told me at bedtime. When I was younger the memories were stronger ... now they're a haze, vague memories and occasional flickers of recognition in places I've never been."

The lights broke from their circle, floating as they liked around the others, Niradnam continued in Virra's mind, "When elves mix with other races, another line fades, the cycle gets broken. Dark elves, Drow, were always the smallest population, so when a few broke off it impacted us far more than the others. Over time it builds ... bringing us to this point."

Rowanne watched the dancing lights with a raised eyebrow, her hair floating around her head while she worked to collect her items, trying to ignore the tender bruises that had filled in while she slept. "I don't recall if the 'stolen treasure' was mentioned to me, but I'm hoping we don't have much further to go. I'm worried about the horses more than I am the wyvern eggs."

Pacing around the group Banrigg hefted his weapon, trying to peer further into the cavern, "I'm jus' ready ta' go -- do anythin'. I don't care fer sittin' like this, though I am startin' to like the height diff'rence." The goliath smiled down at the others, "Gonna be annoyed, gettin' stuck lookin' up people's noses again."
 
Ander grinned, this time without the wince as a rest in this skin has made him feel slightly more at home. He had an odd sleep, unsure how to explain it, but he felt renewed and stronger with some magic flowing through him in a way that usually only happened when he prayed.

"Being away from the sun so long is startin' ta get ta me, and I'm hopin' one of yer 'animals' will help Rupert get some food," he mentioned, looking between the Aasimar and the Drow.

He stood, nearly hitting his head on the ceiling again, and held the glimmering axe in one hand as he felt how much lighter it felt after that rest. "I'm with ya, Banrigg. Let's go do somethin', ay?"
 

DevilishEgg

Member
Eliza had become very familiar with the gnawing hunger pangs from her destitute trek down to Porthca not that long ago and though she hadn’t missed the feeling of her intestines chewing on itself, she had learned how to deal with it. ”The sooner we deal with the pearl, the sooner we can leave this place.”

She wasn’t a stranger to pain either but the familiar dull aches from her foot was shadowed by the overwhelming cacophony her darkening bruises were playing. Even that failed to dim her spirits though, diving head deep in what felt like an ocean of magic would do that to an arcana starved half-orc wizard. She hugged her notebook closer, feeling her heart swell in size and warmth.
 

NotHaruka

Member
Virra sat with legs crossed, recognising that Niradnam's situation was worth paying attention to. It took her a few moments to digest once he'd finished -- maybe it was because she'd had time to sleep on the first revelations he'd shared, bu these new ones weren't provoking as much of a visceral reaction from her; the sadness she felt was more dull than poignant.

"So," she said, "that's why you guys never leave your forest? Because these elders of yours are worried that mixing with other races will mean no more elves are born, and no more reincarnations?" She'd merely been trying to put her thoughts in order so she wouldn't come across as stupid, but as she spoke it became more clear to her how she felt on the matter.

"I don't know how much you're invested in continuing the drow," she said carefully. "I mean, those elders obviously care a whole lot about it, and you said you came here to find some magic that'll help, but..." She shrugged. "What'll you do if there is no magic that'll help? Go back home and get with one of the drow girls, or stay out here in the rest of the world?" She tried not to make it sound like a challenge, but if she was honest, that was more or less what it was. There was a "right" answer already in her mind. So she admitted it. "If I were you, I... don't think I could do that first one. But I've never thought I could have more than this one life."

Gosh, what a depressing talk to wake up to. Realising she didn't feel quite as damp as she did the other night, she leaned over to the nearby puddle and dipped her fingers in it. "Hey Clingy, look alive. We've got a little way to go yet." The others were already moving, and she was anxious to see what else lay in store in the caves. Maybe it'd help her not to think so hard about what Niradnam had told her.
 
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