Prologue - The Feast

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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  KatherineRaelin on Fri Apr 20, 2012 8:42 pm

Nal’em returned to her rented room in the middle district and lit a fire in the modest fireplace. Dawn was fast approaching and she looked forward to the respite. Her room was sparse and only a few essentials sat on a nearby table; a bag of coin, freshly feathered arrows, a whet stone, and a book of poisons she had relieved from an alchemist a few nights back. Leaning over the table she reached out for the book, but stopped when the creak of wood broke the otherwise silent night. She frowned and reached for the dagger at her hip instead, pulling it silently from the leather scabbard.

On tip-toe, Nal’em crept to the window where the sound had originated and pressed her body to the wall, careful to control her breathing. She froze as the shutter was pulled back and a man slipped into her quarters. She waited for him to take a few steps into the room before sidling up behind him. He stood a good eight inches taller than her which would make it difficult to slit his throat from behind, so she took a more direct approach. Her heel connected with the middle of his back and sent him sprawling to the floor. She was then pressing her knees into his shoulders with her blade poised at the middle of this neck.

“Please! I’m just a messenger!”

Nal’em’s eyes narrowed and she pushed the point of the blade against his flesh.

“RIGHT POCKET! RIGHT POCKET! SWEET MERCIFUL GODS!”

She moved the blade to her left hand and with her right, fished a bit of parchment out of his pocket. There was a wax seal on it, unbroken, but that didn’t mean much.

“Who sent you?”

“Dagonet.”

“Next time use the door.”

Nal’em let him up and re-sheather the dagger. She broke the seal and began to read it.

So this is business, not pleasure. Finally.

The man stood awkwardly, not sure that to do with himself. She looked up from the letter.

“M’lord said that I should return with your answer.”

Nal’em read the letter again.

So the king wants to clean up the Stolen Lands, and Varthus sees fit to send a whelp. Why have a bandit tag along to help clear out brothers?

A disquiet settled around her. It was one thing to send knights and leal lords to clear the rabble, but there were several master spies and thieves in that area. She balled up the letter and threw it in the fire.

This warrants more attention. If indeed the spymasters are still there, surely their birds will warn them.

Nal’em turned to the messenger and nodded.

He started for the window.

“No, use the door.”

He paused, then exited out the door. Nal’em locked the door after him and pulled a wooden chair over to the fireplace before sitting down. She rested her feet on the raised hearth and slipped into a light dreamless sleep, her hands resting lightly on the hilts of her daggers. Two days was more than enough time to be ready.

-----------------------------------------------

Dusk bloomed in shades of indigo and a light breeze drifted through the window. With it came the smell of cook fires, roasted meat, breads, and ale. Nal’em stirred in her chair and sleepily raised her head. The warmth of the room had fled with the dying of the fire in the hearth, but the embers still kept it pleasantly cozy if one sat close enough. A quick stretch relieved her cramped muscles and knotted shoulders before heading out into the night.

The roads had been turned to the consistency of brown gravy with the recent rains. She slung a small sack over her shoulders and stepped out into the evening, the first stop being her fence. As she stepped out into the street, a passing wagon splashed mud from a nearby puddle, spraying her. Nal’em looked down, frowned, then looked after the cart, taking a mental note of the contents before carrying on.

The fence was down a small alley in the center of the town. It was a tiny, forgettable place with one large display window holding a few nicknacks and odds and ends. Nal’em slipped in and nodded at the proprietor, who smiled.

“Evenin’ miss. I have what you ordered in the back, if you’ll just follow me.”

“We’re the only ones here, Mathias, drop the act.”

The man looked nonplussed and looked around the store.

“Oh.... well, you never know who’s listening. Lets see what you’ve brought me.”

They moved to the back of the store where Nal’em emptied the contents of the bag. Mathias poured over the pieces greedily, examining each one closely.

“Nothing too large this time, mostly just trinkets, some jewelry, a gem or two.” He noted, “I can melt down the gold and the silver, the gems can be re-cut. Modest, but good. I like modest, easier to handle. Cashing all of this in? Or are you on the market for something.”

“Nothing from you today, I have to see a man about a horse.”

“You should talk to Quinten, then. The man takes good care of his stables, and will provide you a decent price if you give him my name. Short of a lord’s stable, there’s no better place to go. But that’s just my humble opinion.”

Nal’em nodded and looked at him from across the table.

“I’ll take the advice. What are you gonna give me for all this?”

“Well, it’s not the work of a great thief, but great thieves don’t live long.” Mathias pulled out a bag and began counting out the money, “Besides, I’m going to have a little work to do prior to putting these items back on the market, so there’s a small fee for that.” He tied the drawstring into place and tossed it to her.

She weighed it and tied it to her belt.

“You’re leaving town?”

“Royal summons, it would seem.”

He nodded, not pressing for more information. He probably already knew all he wanted to by now anyway. Even fences had their birds.

“Thanks for the tip on the horse.”

“Any time.”

She left the shop and went to find the stables. All she really had to do was follow the smell and the sight of a small boy mucking out the stalls confirmed that she was in the right place. The man that she pegged for Quinten was grooming one of the mares, a flat brush in his hand as it slowly went the length of withers to flanks. He was talking softly to her and patting her neck.

“Excuse me, sir, but I was told you have horses for sale.”
The man looked at her and smiled.

“I certainly do, for lords and ladies and small folk alike. Everything from heavy draught to garrons. All are even tempered as well. What were you looking for?”

“One that’s fleet of foot and travels well. It also needs to be able to handle loads and rough terrain.”

The stable master thought for a moment and then beckoned her down the length of stalls. They stopped in front of a stall with a black mare inside.

“I believe this one will do you well. Her name is Rho’an, a mix between one of my work horses and one owned by a courier. She has stamina, she’s nimble, and she can pull a cart or carry loaded bags.”

“Lets have a look at her.”

When he guided her from the stall, Nal’em noticed that the horse wasn’t actually black, but a deep red, a color that often fetched a high price, but because the breed was mixed, it wouldn’t be too high. She checked the teeth and hooves and made sure the shoes were new.

“She’s a fine mount.”

“Thank you, I’d had a mind to sell her to one of the merchants so his son might have a horse to learn on.”

So the asking price is that high...

“Mathias mentioned you were a decent man with decent prices.”

“That you can be assured of, each of my beauties is priced what they are worth.”

They haggled over the price for a good hour and a half and by the end of it, she had the horse, saddle, bridle, bit, and bags, but only a few coins left to her. She hoped it would be enough to get the rest of her provisions. Glad to be able to ride above the muck in the streets instead of trudging through it, she made her way to the local alchemist and the food market.

By the time the evening was over, her money dwindled to a small pittance, Nal’em went back to her room to pack.

Items added to inventory:

Rations (salt beef and fish, hard bread)
Skin of wine
Poisons (if allowed):
Vial of Black adder venom
Vial of Blue Whinnis
Vial of Bloodroot
Vial of Drow Poison
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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  TimMarsh on Sat Apr 21, 2012 9:13 am

OOC: At the risk of seeming nitpicky, I need to ask both Chris and Riley, do elves sleep in Pathfinder? It may sound like a stupid question, but in D&D 3 and 3.5, elves (as a racial trait) do not sleep in the way that humans do, which is why they have an immunity to sleep-type mind-effecting spells and conditions. Their brains are wired differently, such that they never shift into 8 hours of sleeping non-consciousness, but instead go into a 4-hour long meditative trance where they simply slow their perceptions and become introspective. It was always one of the biggest perks of being an elf, you have less down-time than other races, can't be forced into a state of sleep, and when you're meditating you're generally more aware of your surroundings and find it easier to get up in an emergency than someone who is truly sleeping.
It doesn't explicitly mention that elves don't sleep on their race page in the Pathfinder SRD website, but they do retain immunity to sleep-effects, and they still have the 3.5 alternate racial ability Dreamspeaker as a replacement for sleep-immunity (in 3.5, those elves who are biologically abnormal, and CAN sleep normally if they so choose, have the ability to dreamspeak, because their sleeping is magical nature, and they can send dream-messages to other sleeping persons). I only ask because Nal'em seems like the kind of character who would be grateful for never having to sleep, if that was the way elves are wired in this world.

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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  Nephilim on Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:01 pm

OOC: After reading through the Elves section in the Inner Sea World Guide, and the Pathfinder core book, I see no reference to Elves having the meditation thing that they did in 3.x. However, I actually assumed they still had it, for the same reason that Tim saw: That Elves still had Sleep Immunity. Now, I would have also looked in Elves of Golarion, however that product was put out under 3.5, so will no doubt say that they do have meditation. I am on the fence on this one. by RAW Pathfinder they do not, unless someone can find a reference that they can. It means little to me, and won't break the game either way, so what do y'all think?

EDIT - This is from the Elves of Golarion (3.5 OGL) - This was still 3.5, and the only citation I can see from Paizo re - Elves doing the 4 hour sleep thing:

Though elves are immune to magical sleep effects, the
idea that they never rest is a myth. Instead, though
they do not fall unconscious the way other humanoids
do, elves may enter a deep trance that has the same
refreshing effect on the mind as human sleep. An elf
only needs to meditate in this fashion for 4 hours per
day, though some prefer longer periods. During this rest,
an elf performs habitual mental exercises, reviews old
memories, allows his intuition to seek enlightenment,
and so on. Some mischievous elves enjoy perpetuating
the myth that their kind is always awake and elven towns
have no beds; the truth is that while some elves prefer
to meditate in a chair or on a couch, others enjoy the
comfort of an actual bed

EDIT EDIT:

James Jacobs, Editor in Chief for Paizo Publishing.
Elves not sleeping is indeed relatively setting specific, and while trances are in Elves of Golarion, it's something we'll honestly probably be moving away from in Golarion. We've done a fair amount to reimagine our elves, and by having them sleep (or at least implying they sleep) does help to make Golarion's elves more Golarion and less Forgotten Realms (which is the actual only setting in which elves don't sleep, I believe... even though they seem to still be on a day-night cycle and often have beds in their homes...).

BUT! If you prefer the non-sleeping elves, that certainly still works in your game. Unless I'm wrong, there's nothing in the elf flavor text in the PRPG that says they DO sleep, is there?

Reference: http://paizo.com/forums/dmtz5i4u?Elves-and-sleep#11
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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  KatherineRaelin on Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:10 pm

OOC:

I'm flexible. Because I couldn't find anything that said elves still specifically had the meditation, I took a guess. I mean, it was 50/50 anyway. I'm fine changing to the 3.5 rules and having the meditative state (would prefer it, actually). As long as no one sees any trouble with that, I'm good and will construct the posts with that in mind now. Either way, let me know. Ultimately it's whatever will fit the world the characters live in.
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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  Nephilim on Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:26 pm

OOC: I am interested in having Elves sleep normally, only because I have now researched and found that the whole Elf Meditation was an FR thing, not an Elf thing. This requires no changing from now on, and means we can continue as normal.
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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  KatherineRaelin on Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:58 pm

Nephilim wrote:OOC: I am interested in having Elves sleep normally, only because I have now researched and found that the whole Elf Meditation was an FR thing, not an Elf thing. This requires no changing from now on, and means we can continue as normal.

Sounds good to me! Let the good times roll!
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Re: Prologue - The Feast

Post  Dunnotaur on Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:39 am

Aeldeth lef tthe feast quite excited about her upcoming adventure. She returned quickly to her modest dewlling just off the main street of town. Her evening devotionals were much shorter than normal, but she figured that Desna would understand.
She woke early the next morning and went through her devotional routine to start the day right, and then quickly made a list of everything she thought she would need from the markets. She then went out back to check on her, potions and poultices as she figured that being over prepared was the best option when going on a long journey. hopefully we will not need all of this she said outloud to the room.
Aeldeth then walked out the back door and went over to the small single stall stable and stood for a second looking at her beautiful dappled grey mare who she called Elanessë, or Ela for short. As she walked into the stall she said

"i hope you're ready for a wonderful adventure, it may be quite a while before we make it back here"

The horse just looked at her, but she thought she saw a glimmer of anticipation in the horse's eyes. She then set about the task of cleaning and oiling the leather of her saddle and bridle to make sure they were in top shape for the journey. She then quickly cleaned and brushed Ela, before returning back inside and gathering her things to head to the market.

Once at the market she scouted for a while and then made her choices, and got some good bargans.

OOC: Itemps purchased & added to saddle bags/ on horse: Bedroll, planket, flint & steel, journal (3), lantern & oil, medical kit, healing potions (3), pen & ink, silk rope, soap, extra clothes, tent (medium), waterskin.

Once she returned from town and stowed everything into her saddle bags, she quickly checked to make sure she had everything she would need, and layed out her clothing. Another quick devotional was done before bed, and she slept soundly all night, so when she woke in the morning she was more than ready to take on whatever layed ahead.
She dressed in loose fitting woolen breeches, a loose white linen shirt with a pale green vest over top. Aeldeth then went out back and brushed Ela, and saddled her. The morning was crisp, but not cold enough for her cloak so she stowed that on top of one of her saddle bags, for later. She then swung her leg gracefully over grabbed the reigns and made way for the meeting area to set off on her adventure....


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