Chapter 1 : Vogh Returns to Ptolus : Part 11

///Chapter 1 : Vogh Returns to Ptolus : Part 11

Chapter 1 : Vogh Returns to Ptolus : Part 11

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Talin mentioned they could take the items to Delver’s Square’s Myraeth’s Oddities, but Vogh mentioned she had a friend, Inlios at the Exotic Market who owed her a favor.

They made their way down Center Street into the South Market District turning onto Emperor’s Road which would take them into Oldtown, but the exotic market was just before the steep climb into Oldtown on Dragon Street.

As always the market consists of a strange jumble of small wooden stalls, temporary tents, a few open-frame buildings, and even people selling out of the back of wagons. Nearly every race can be seen here, both buying and selling. Trinkets, magical and non, are displayed on wagons, and stalls. Exotic fabrics that carry an exotic price, and even small, strange animals in cages.

The chaotic and often changing scene made it hard to find the same vendor twice on any visit to the Exotic Market. They meandered through the menagerie until Vogh heard the fast speaking gnome prattling off his wares.

Inlios Pabovini stood atop a stool twice his height, bringing him level with most other races. Vogh and Talin moved up to greet him as a customer left with a purchase in hand. Inlios was stashing the coin into a pouch on his person which he secreted back beneath his small cloak.

“Wellhelloagain Vogh! Andwhoisit You broughtwithoyoutoday?!” He smiled politely and looked Talin up and down. Vogh made introductions and the gnome shook Talin’s hand.

When she explained they had some magical items for him to determine their use his eyes lit up with excitement.

“YesYesYes! Illtakecareofthatforyou. Rightaway!”

He identified the potions quickly with just a sniff to be Bear’s Endurance and Levitate. The cloak took him little more time as he explained it to be a Cloak of Resistance, the weakest one available but still a useful item. The Arcanum book he was very interested in. He explained to Vogh it was a book of theories and thoughts on magic. He offered them 20 gold for it immediately.

“Igotabuyerforthis, right away, ifyoullsellit.”

Figuring the two would keep the potions and cloak he didn’t even make them an offer on those items.

Quickly he followed up with Vogh about the woman who thought he was making magic items, “Youtoldher, riiight? Idon’tmakemagic! See, Ijustbuyitfrompeople, peoplelikeyouandothers. Did you tell her?” Inlios actually slowed down his speech to a normal speed as he enunciated his final question to Vogh. The gnome was greatly appreciative of Vogh’s efforts.

Feel free to add any roleplay here you want to. I’m going to move the story forward again with a long post, but you can interject anything that happened before you left. Also let me know if you’ll sell the book or not, or the other items as well.

Vogh expressed her happiness to assist the friendly gnome and they both bid him adieu.

Since they were already so close to Oldtown and they had the signed wanted writ both Vogh and Talin decided it would be a good time to head to the Government Administration Building to claim the bounty for Toridan Cran.

Leaving the Exotic Market they went up the incline of Emperor’s Road which lead them into Oldtown. Immediately the road forked and they turned left onto Dalenguard Road once more. Last time they walked here they were heading to Vogh’s home in the Noble District. But they didn’t have far to go as the Administration Building was well before Dalenguard Castle.

The Ptolus Administration Building holds offices for various city officials and administrative employees: architects, accountants, assayers, auditors, clerks, diplomats, engineers, inspectors, record keepers, scribes, and tax collectors. The Administration Building is the very heart of the byzantine bureaucracy of Imperial government in Ptolus. Most citizens come here only when they need a particular permit or license—a business license, marriage license, firearms license, building permit, and so forth. All Imperial records for the city are kept here as well, so if one needed to find out who owned a particular piece of land, or when a particular citizen died, one could do so here. However, wading through the bureaucracy proves difficult and time consuming.

The giant building’s courtyard is directly off Dalenguard Road. Giant double doors overlook the water pool out front. The courtyard is bustling with people, mostly humans, but a few elves can be seen as well. Anyone wishing to get their Imperial Citizenship or Identification Papers must pass through this building which keeps it very busy.

Two city watch guards were standing to either side of the open double doors. Full body-length tower shields rested on the ground. Long spears were in their opposite hands, with long swords strapped to their hips. They wore the City Watch helms, wrapped in blue fabric, and the blue tunics. Both their tunics and shields bore the golden hawk on a field of blue.

They entered the massive, stone building and found a reference chart on the wall. Payouts of Bounties fell under the City Watch office located here. The bards entered the office and waited in a line of two people before them. One man looked rough indeed, with a scraggly beard and long hair, but the dual swords on his hip, the bow across his back, the daggers on his belt, and the pair of bolas on his belt marked him a bounty hunter. He turned in five writs and collected a bag of coins. Scowling at those behind him, then giving Vogh the up-down, he quickly moved out.
When it came their turn the entire process was very simple. They handed over their signed writ and the lady behind the counter handed them a bag of coins.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh was happy to see the little guy doing well.  When they talked about what they had and he identified the objects, Vogh handed the potions to Talin. (what color is the cloak?)

After he said he could sell the arcana book, Vogh looked to Talin and nodded, that sounds fair.  What about a spell book?  Vogh took out the spell book and let Inlios look it over.  We also have some decent quality weapons, though not magical we need to get rid of.  Can you take care of that as well?  One is a master quality axe and the others are just normal daggers.

Once her business was complete and they said their farewells, Vogh and Talin headed to Old town.  She saw the bounty hunter just before them collect on some decent writs and VOgh had an idea for some cash.  Once they collected their writ, Vogh asked the person behind the counter where a person would go to apply for a bounty.

Once she was told she moved away from the counter and asked Talin what he thought about collecting on the WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE Seraphina Duststone, young female human fortune teller. 500 gold reward. Wanted for Murder. Apply at Dalengard.

WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE Rullus Hobb, Male Human, for crimes against the empire, including murder of a public official and animating the dead. Reward of 5,000 gold thrones for his capture or proof of his demise. Apply at Dalengard.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Inlios is interested in the spell book. He leafs through it quickly.

“Whydidn’tyoushowbefore?! Hrm… Alllowlevelspells. 50 gold?”

In regard to weapon sales he had a simple reply:

“Ohidon’tdoweapons. Takethoseto Rastor’s indelverssquare. Hethebestforweapons.”

The older lady behind the counter at the Administration Building City Watch office explained one need not apply to pursue a bounty, one need only bring the person to justice and apply to retrieve the posted bounty. Which is exactly what they did here today; however, some bounties are paid at Dalengard instead of here.

She explained that it’s similar to how The Church of Lothian offers a bounty of 3 gp for the tail of any ratman or dire rat brought in. The church pays that bounty, not Dalengard or the City.

“I understand that’s a lot of coin, but someone worth 500 or 5,000 gold would probably be incredibly dangerous. However, it shouldn’t hurt to ask around about these people, unless of course they hear about it and come to actually hurt us…” Talin self-deprecatingly smirks with his final statement.

As they exited the Administration Building a young man approached them with a pile of papers which he quickly handed one to each of them and headed off to the next person he could catch.
The flyer advertised a big republican rally to be held in front of the Administration Building. The Republicans want Ptolus to secede from the Empire and form its own new independent government run by representatives elected by the people instead of Emperors.

It was twilight after all they had done. Little else happened on their way back to the Minstrel, and their room. There were two plates of food outside the door of their room. They unlocked entered to find Phon was still present and more than a little happy to see them.

“By the spire! Finally! I’ve been too scared to leave the room all day. I haven’t eaten anything since you all left. Did you figure out what was going on? Am I safe?!”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh succumbed to Talin’s logic and dropped the subject about the bounties for now.  Perhaps he was right though.  In the end they had gold now and a couple of items to boot.  It was a good day.

When they got to the room and saw the uneaten food on the ground in front of the door, Vogh worried at first, but when they opened the door to see Phon inside unharmed she relaxed.  They brought you food.  It is sitting on the floor just outside our door. Vogh then continued on explained what all had transpired and that for now she had better stay with them since the person who put out the contract on her was still out there.  Have you ever heard of Methul Watcher, Phon?

We don’t sell the spell book. It should be worth more than that.  How many spells and what level are inside?  Vogh will look once they are comfortable.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Phon replied in the negative. She had never heard of anyone by that name.

“I really need​ to get back to work. Do you think I’m safe now? I just want to get back to my life.”

I found a spell book value calculator online and it said it was worth like 175gp but the spells are​ all low level and Ptolus is a high magic city so i took it down to 50gp. That’s still a crap ton of money to the average person. You can see everything about it in the loot thread.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh honestly wasnt sure if Phon was safe ir not.  This watcher fellow was still out there and wanted her dead for some reason.

I am not going to say you are safe, but we can’t keep you walled up forever.  So, if you want to go back to work I would suggest you are never alone.  I would always have someone with you.  That is all the advise she can give the young woman.

I wish you all the luck with the baby.  She opens the door to the room and says her goodbyes to Phon.

With the mission seemingly finished Vogh looks to Talin and asks,Do you want to head to Rasters and sell the stuff we got?

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Talin was excited about the additional 50 gold the spell book brought. Plus the 50 from the bounty and 20 for the arcane text, they had a lot of gold!

After Phon left he shared his agreement with Vogh worrying about her safety. They ran out of leads for the moment. At least they could tell the Brother good news. 4 criminals taken off the street was no small thing.

They had only cross the Square, which was mostly round so why they called it that was confusing, to reach Rastor’s.

They walked in to the always busy shop and saw the vast array of armaments on display. Nearly every type of bladed or strung weapon could be found here.

The huge litorian behind the counter was looking over a sword one man laid on the counter. Rastor made an offer and handed over the coins. His lion paws lifted the fine blade easily and set it behind the counter with a few others to shelve later.

Everyone else was browsing so Vogh and Talin approached the large, lion man. They laid out the great axe, three daggers, short sword and 20 arrows.

“I pay 50% of face value for everything. You can take it or leave it..” His deep voice reverberated through them as he talked. He was large, even by litorian standards. His muscles bulged beneath the fur covering his whole body and he stood over a head taller than Talin, who was not short.

“Since the great axe is masterwork, plus three mundane daggers, short sword, and 20 arrows and I’m seeing 168 gold and 5 silver here…”

Talin’s jaw dropped. Yes, he was well traveled and we’ll equiped. But never had so much gold been in his possession at one time.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Talin’s excitement was enough for her to just accept the gold from the man and head out the door.  Actually they had done pretty well for themselves the last week.  308gp and 24 silver total plus a few potions and a cloak was a decent hall, not too mention the free healing.

So Talin, what would you like to do?  Vogh asked as she shook the bag of gold before him.  I’m buying.  She said with a glint in her eye.

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
“Well before we go anywhere, I’ve got to know what’s inside Cran’s locked box here…” he rubs his hands together eyeballing the box.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Back in the room again, Vogh looks over the box looking for traps.

Take 20 for a 27 on my check to find a trap.

Then to disable the trap I have a 15 modifier and I think I will just use the 17 I rolled for diplomacy check to make it a 32 disable.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Vogh takes over an hour inspecting and reinspecting the box until the finds the single poison needle trap which would have pricked her finger had she not disabled it first. Simply holding a small block of wood in place as he unlocked the last tumbler caught the poisoned dart.

She opened the lid of the strong, iron box, reveled it’s contents.

Inside the box are two potions of cure light wounds, two doses of the same green poison used on the trap, a flask of antitoxin, a flask of alchemist’s fire, and a leather bag containing 150 sp and 84 gp.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh’s eyes lit up when she finally got the box open.  Quite a bit of stuff inside.  The potions would come in handy in a pinch.  The antitoxin might have a use, and the other alchemy item she could see a use for that as well.

We have quite a bit of coin here.  We should go trade a good portion of it out for platinum coins.  What do you say?  Then we can just sit and relax a while.  Perhaps we go see a performance by Ilsandrin?

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
Talin set down on the bed somewhat overwhelmed.

“Do you have any idea how long it would take me to earn this much money from performing…? Magic… I’m going to tell Tellith I won’t be plucking my lute down stairs for a little while so they can find someone else. Who can change that amount of gold out for bigger coins?”

He leans back a big, resting his body on his outstretched arms and hands.

“I mean. We could not work and just relax for months… We could definitely go catch some shows! I never thought that would be possible. Amazing. Truly amazing.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
We could certainly do that if that is what you want.  I would love to just spend time with you and get to know you more.  We can enjoy the sights of the city and even spend some time at my house for some time.  You still have to meet my brother.

She mentions that she could probably change it out with Inlios.

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
“All good ideas. I wonder if your gnome friend would buy this ring too? He didn’t seem to have any other jewelry he was selling. I’m certain someone in this city will buy it though.” He smiles and flips the ring in the air like a coin, catching it in his deft fingers.

“We have a trapped lock box now. We just need a key for it and we could store our valuables in here for now. The Minstrel seems to be a very safe place.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
I am certain we can find a locksmith in this city.  As for Inlios buying the ring, I doubt it.  We could find a jeweler easy enough as well.

Vogh jumps onto Talin’s lap and gives him a great big kiss.  Shall we go?

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Talin smiled at the lovely lady he had been able to spend so much time with. He agreed to head out and they set off with more coin than he had ever carried and a box to carry it in.

Once again Talen insisted on a carriage to better protect against pickpockets. It would also look a little suspicious for two people to be carrying around an iron box. He was fairly paranoid and certain everyone would assume it was full of money and attack.

When asking around for a locksmith they were directed to Wilian’s Keys which wasn’t far from them in Midtown.

For 5 silver he assessed the iron chest and told them he could fashion a key. He took a wax mold and told them he would deliver the key to them at the ghostly Minstrel. They paid him the silver upfront as good faith.

Vogh’s gnome friend was happy to do a simple coin exchange for them and didn’t even charge for the convenience. He quickly stashed the coins and retrieved the fewer Platinum pieces inside a locked door inside a locked box bolted to the inside of his wagon.

With their iron chest considerably lighter with the fewer, more valuable coins, and secure in the knowledge they would soon be able to lock the chest the couple returned to the minstrel.

The next couple weeks were full of enjoyed laziness and several shows. They enjoyed their rescued friend’s singing, another show with a very young boy aptly titled The Boy Who Could Sing, and a few other theater delights.

Their Newfound wealth brought the luxury of time, good food, and good wine.

Vogh was hot unaccustomed to luxury but Talin certainly was. He explained how he had been working his while life and that while music was love and far less difficult than say mining, or construction, it was still the greatest gift of the gods to relax and slow down.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
The time spent with Talin was wonderful, they each purchased some new fancy clothing for their jaunts to the opera house or the theater.  It was perfect.  It even had Vogh thinking about settling down…. settling down, she had never thought she would think it.  She had been keeping her eye out as they passed houses for sale and such to get an idea of what they would need before even talking about it.

After a few weeks, Vogh said to Talin, I am in a mood for some adventure.  What do you think about heading to Delver’s and joining a group to adventure some?

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
“You want to go into the undercity? The dungeons? That’s not a kind of adventure I ever thought I would be having… But you’ve brought me nothing other than extraordinary wealth and luck so I’m going to follow your instincts!” He gave Vogh a big tooth smile.

Doing research on Delver’s Guild. I’ll have another post later.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Vogh and Talin didn’t have far to go to reach the Delver’s Guild Office. They left the Minstrel and crossed the Square to the stairway heading below the earth into the undercity.

“You know, I’ve actually never been down here before.” Talin remarks as they descend on the right side with everyone else heading down. The left was where those ascending walked.

Leaving the sun behind they entered the well lit Undercity Market’s main cavern. Carts covered the entire complex. Light did filter down from the stairs to the land above, but the whole complex was lined with everburning torches. They emitted no smoke but danced with a magical flame that never went out.

A sign directed them to the Delver’s Guild Office located just off the surface entrance to the Undercity Market. They walked down the long hallway and entered a large open room with people milling around. Several people sat at desks with others sitting in front of them. There was no shortage of seating. Couches and chairs were arranged around tables throughout the open part of the space.  Most people were eating, drinking, smoking and conversating throughout the space. There was also a large part of the wall dedicated to postings which the two couldn’t make out at this distance. The entire place was also well lit with more everburning torches and clearly there was some manner of ventilation because the air was not damp and musty like a basement and the smoke did not cloud the air.

An attractive, middle-aged woman with short blond hair and dressed smartly approached them through the crowd carrying a pad of paper and ink pen. She gave Vogh and Talin a big smile as she addressed them.

“Hello! My name is Gorti. Welcome to the Delver’s Guild. How can I help you today?”

When the bards tell her they are interested in joining the Guild she brought them over to a younger, even more attractive woman dressed very fashionably in a laced up tight shirt with more than a little cleavage showing. “This is Aiyana and she can answer all of your questions, give you a tour and outline the benefits of Guild membership.” With that she walked away to address someone else and continued to move about the space.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you. Please have a seat.”

Ailyana gestured to the two padded leather seats without arm rests in front of her desk. When Vogh and Talin took seats, adjusting their swords to stick beside and behind the chairs she began.

” Where you’re seated now is both the Delver’s Guild Office and the Gathering Hall. Light refreshments are served all day long. The purpose of our hall is to allow delvers to connect with each other and work together. While some delvers looking for jobs do hang around, mostly people post notices.”

She gestured to the far wall covered in papers with a large group of people standing all along its length.

“Those posted bills either announce the availability of a delver, or a group of delvers, or advertise positions open for delvers to go on a specific mission. Those are typically posted by a potential patron. Postings are also present inviting someone to join a group preparing for a mission.”

Waiting for Vogh and Talin to look back at her, Ailyana was wearing a big smile as she continued.

“There are four levels of Delver’s Guild membership. The first two you could join immediately, the second levels take one to three years before you’re eligible.” Ailyana went on to explain the four levels.

Associate Guildsman

Open to anyone.
Dues: 10 gp per year (payable upon admission).
Benefits: Access to guild information, 10 percent discount at Ebbert’s Outfitters.

Guildsman

Open to anyone.
Dues: 20 gp per year (payable upon admission).
Benefits: As associate, plus access to guild library, maproom, and waystations.

Master Delver.

Open to guildsmen after at least one year’s membership.
Dues: 500 gp per year.
Benefits: As guildsman, plus voting privileges and retrieval insurance.

Grand Master.

Open to master delvers with at least three year’s membership. Title held by all founding members (18 total).
Dues: 5,000 gp per year.
Benefits: As master delver, plus claim staking.

“I highly recommend you start out at the Guildman level as most do. Without access to the library, maproom and waystations you’re really missing out on all the benefits the Delver’s Guild has to offer. We compile reports of what our membership encounters below the city in terms of dangers and treasures. The guild keeps track of monsters, inhabitants, traps, hazards, and other factors of note. It then rates each area on a scale of 1 to 20 based on difficulty and reward. Regarding the Library and Maproom, it’s located in Oldtown. Shad Livbovic is our Librarian and very knowledgeable. No one has better maps of the world below than the Delver’s Guild. In addition we also maintain Waystations. Each one is accessed by voice-activated magical locks controlled by a password given to the entire membership above Gildsman rank when they change weekly. A waystation is a safe point where you can rest. They are stocked with food, clean water, torches, even some healing options, as well as typical equipment needed by Delvers.”

Ailyana stopped and took a breath, then a small drink of water from a glass on her desk as she waited for Vogh and Talin to process everything she had just shared with them.

“So, would you like to go ahead and sign up as the Guildsman level today? It’s only twenty gold each year, paid today, and you’re assured to regain that investment quickly!”

Role play and ask as many questions as you want here.

After Vogh and Talin had finished with Ailyana they went over to check out the postings wall. Talin grabbed a couple pastries and mugs of light ale from the free table of refreshments then joined Vogh. The entire wall was filled with posted flyers, some even plastered atop more beneath. The stone did not show through on any part of the wall.

One section was neatly organized and exclusive for notices made by the government. The largest and most prevalent notice was about the bounty on ratmen.

There were countless notices and it would take days to read all of them. Everything from individuals of every skillset requesting to join a group to groups seeking individuals to join their existing numbers. Many jobs were posted as well. Some jobs didn’t even pertain to anything beneath the surface but clearly this was a good place to find people of means and capability.

There was even another section which was simply Wanted posters like they had seen in the City Guard. Watchhouse

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
The sights and sounds in the undercity was all new to Vogh as well.  I too have never been down here.  It is quite unique I would say.

When it came down to the cost, Vogh dug in a pouch and fished out 40 gold to pay for the membership.  It seemed reasonable enough for a year.  She didn’t really have any questions for the woman as she was very adept at her work and explanation about the benefits.

As the two strolled over to the postings, Vogh looked for interesting ones that still payed well.  Course she also looked for groups that may have a need for 2 bards.  She wasn’t going to do this alone.  See anything that looks interesting to you Talin my love?  We seem to specialize in helping females in a jam.  The one to recover the mission daughter could be interesting depending on where she was lost?

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
Ailyana provided them with that weeks password for the waystations as well as two patches with the Delver’s Guild symbol on them.

“Wow, there are so many, it’s hard to know where to start. I like 200 gold for just finding someone, but I doubt that’s below the surface, which is what you said you wanted to test out. There are several groups wanting to add members and not mentioning any specific skill set. We’re both handy with our weapons and music.”

He kept looking over all the postings.

“Here is one that’s interesting. New members can get paid on a weekly basis to join teams to restock the waystations. That might be a good way to familiarize ourselves with the below, with other people, and not intentionally running into danger.”

He kept looking, moving up and down the wall then finally stopped and walked back over to Vogh.

“I’m open to whatever you are.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
You are right, I did want to come down here and explore some.  How about we join a group that is going to start a mission.  We bring more than just our music.  We can fight and even heal a little if needed.  Vogh said with a smile.  She grabbed a flier and read it over.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
There were a plethora of fliers seeking adventurers. The one that caught Vogh’s eye was an open invitation from a group of four fighters who needed some magical assistance. She figured that matched her and Talin fairly well. The flier said to ask for Juel at the Welcome Inn.

“Seems like a good place to start. An existing group hopefully with some knowledge of what’s down there who we can grant some assistance. Have you visited the welcome inn before?”

Do you think we should start Chapter 2, or should we just fill up chapter 1 until we reach the 1,000 message cap? 🙂

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
I am not sure I have been to the Welcome Inn.  Guess I will find out though as we have to go find this Juel person.  Having some heavy fighter types will hopefully help, though I hope they aren’t expecting too much magic as we don’t have a lot.  Vogh said.

Shall we head there now?

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Talin readily agreed. He had performed a couple times at The Welcome Inn and said the owners, a husband wife team: the Schuk’s, were really good people.

They left the Undercity Market and climbed the right side of the steps bringing them back up into the light of day behind the giant statue and fountain that dominated Delver’s Square.

Following the press of people they flowed out onto Center Street and headed toward Emperor’s Road. The cry of vendors with carts as they passed, the rumbling carts and constant movement of people and product made the trip loud. As they reached the intersection of Emperor’s Road and Center Street they were both assaulted.

The smell coming from Ramoro’s Bakery was absolutely overpowering today! Whatever Ramoro’s wife Carlatia was making today caused both Talin and Vogh to start salivating. With their pockets flush with coin Talin couldn’t say no to a tasty treat today! The tables out in the yard around the bakery were full of people enjoying all manner of delicious treats. Most passerby’s couldn’t help but gaze on, some obviously too poor to afford such delicacies.

Ramoro’s was a freestanding structure with no other buildings touching it. Originally it once was an upscale house. Now the building is very old and ill kept. Despite its appearance, however, the Udelis’ cook absolutely mouth watering treats.

Vogh and Talin walked into the open door which let the smells waft out and joined the press of people ordering. Open racks displayed the various pastries, frosted and jellied rolls, as well as honey, fruit, and nut breads.

Talin selected a fruit filled pastry and kept it away from his new shirt and vest to prevent any spills or stains. Talin handed over two silver coins, leaving a bit of a tip for the delectable treats then they headed back out and went south on the Emperor’s Road.

The South Wall and the South Gate loomed before them as they neared the end of the Emperor’s road. The Welcome Inn was one of a handful of taverns and inns situated around the South Gate. Is was by far the largest establishment in the area. A long, two-story brick building that originally served as a small monastery many years ago. The owners, Markus and Valene Schuk are a friendly older couple with two attractive daughters who help them run the business. Travelers just arriving from the south can find lodging, a drink, and a meal in easy reach.

They swing the door open and entered the common room. Only a handful of people were seated around, eating an early lunch. The common room was well lit with walls of windows on 3 sides and the kitchen, stairs and private rooms in the back. The older Shucks were behind the bar area in the kitchen lightly cooking and primarily cleaning up from breakfast.

Vogh and Talin approached the bar and inquired after Juel. Valene, obviously an aged lady, wife and mother, expressed she was not familiar with the name and politely asked if they wanted food or drink.

A young man stood from his table where he sat alone. He walked toward the two and addressed them, “Excuse me, I do not know the man but he was in here last night. Big brute? Juel? He and his friends were celebrating finding something from the Undercity. I don’t believe they stayed here last night, but they likely slept in wherever they are this morning after the amount of ale they consumed last night. They were throwing a lot of coin around. Anyway, hope that’s helpful. Valene, may I have another light ale at your convenience? Thank you.” With that he returned to his table and sat back lightly smoking a small pipe.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
The pastry she had was delicious and thanked Talin for stopping, as she had asked when the smell wafted out the door when a customer had went inside.  Her was a light honeyed roll which just melted in her mouth.

When they got to the welcome in and received the bad news, she wondered if they were too late and they weren’t in need of people to help.  Excuse me, were there 3 other men with Juel?  She wanted to know so she knew what to ask about for.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Markus, the father, walks up to the bar leaving something simmering on the stove in a large pot. “You talking about four guys all together? We did rent two rooms to them guys who were really rowdy last night and buying drinks for a bunch of folks.”

When Vogh answered in the affirmative Markus says that could be them.

The young man now sipping on the light ale Valene brought him apologized without standing from his table. “Sorry about that. I turned in early last night.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Ah that was a relief, they were probably still sleeping upstairs.

Okay then, think we will wait for them to wake.  Is it too late for some breakfast?  We did have a pastry earlier, but I am still hungry and more than a little thirsty.

===========================================================
Markus
———————————————————–
“I could cook some eggs and breakfast for you, but since it’s so close to midday, would you rather have me whip up some lunch?”

Markus obliges their request and he works in the kitchen while Valene continues to clean up.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh looks to Talin and his grin tells her enough.  Yes please, lunch would be delightful.  Thank you much.  Vogh said with a smile.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Not long after Vogh and Talin finished eating their lunch which was a tasty mixture of fried fish and potatoes, several more people started filling the common room for lunch.

The two relaxed and enjoyed their food and light wine watching the patrons passively.

A group of four dwarves came in together. Three were dirty and heavily armed and armored in plate mail, splint mail, and chain mail with a spear, long sword and a strange bardiche. The fourth was very clean. He was tall and thin, with long white hair and narrow gray eyes. He was also wearing well-made clothing wielding only a single dagger. They sat down and ordered heavy ales and meat for a stout lunch.

One elf came in alone and ordered a light wine and lunch of all fruit and vegetables. He showed no weapon and was dressed in all black tunic and breechees.

The only other person of interest was a lone halfling who was covered in plate armor and had a flail hanging banging on his armored hip. What part of him that wasn’t covered with overlapping metal plates showed extensive tattoos on his skin.

The rest of the people who entered the Welcome Inn seemed to be common humans grabbing lunch after arriving to the city, or just grabbing a bite to eat during their busy day.

The two bards couldn’t help but watch all the patrons. Life was interesting, and the sentient beings of Ptolus made life VERY interesting.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
When the dwarves came in Vogh couldn’t help herself.  They looked like they were all ready for a fight, or at least they perhaps just came from one.  She made her way to their table and with a smile she said, excuse me fine men, mind if I ask if you have just come from the undercity?  My friend and I are looking for a group to go down with.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
“Bru ha ha! We ain’t fine men. We’re dwarves! Huzzah!” The four of them smiled and all repeated the cheer together. “Now missie, I prefer dwarf to human but if you want to go down on someone, I won’t complain. Huzzah!”

Again the troop laughed, including what you’re pretty sure is a dwarf female.

“Yeah. We were down a while. What’s a thing like you wanna go down there fer?”

They were all seated and called for a stout mead and meat.

The lone elf crinkled his nose at the dwarf troop.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh ignored the brash remarks from the dwarf for she knew them to be like this.  She had met a couple along her travels outside the walls of Ptolus and they weren’t much different.

Well, we are looking for adventure and a chance to find some magic perhaps.  Will you be heading down any time soon?  Talin and I are capable bards and skilled with our blades as well.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
“Bru ha ha! Little lady, I’ll go down anytime.”

The three males all laughed but the fourth Vogh was now sure to be female smacked the rouser on the arm. Then she responded while the others kept chuckling and started drinking.

“We just finished a supply and expand run. We filled some waystations and extended some tunnels. I doubt you’re as good with a rock pick as you are that sword. Plus, we run dark. We don’t use torches.”

She lady dwarf smiled at her and drank from her own mug.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
The lewd comment made Vogh frown and play the wounded roll holding her hand to her heart.  You wound me dwarf with your words.  Though I get it, trust me.  She said.  Ah we were thinking about taking on the job to fill way stations as well, but if you run dark that would be tough for us.  Enjoy your drinks!  With that she went over to the elf’s table.

I suppose you heard us talking… who couldn’t actually?  My name is Vogh, what is yours?

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
“I care not what yours is and will not be giving mine. Leave me lesser.”

Vogh’s eye brows shot up at the rude response and actually had to pat her hand toward Talin who was standing quickly…

As she was making the rounds the only other person of interest had to be the strangely armed and armored halfling.

She greeted him as well. He was much more affable.

“Well hello there my lady. My name is Reggy, full-ling warrior. Why no, I haven’t spent any time below the surface. There are enough nasties to smack up hare.” He smiled and leaned back in his chair, both the seat and his armor creaking.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Greetings my friend.  Name is Vogh, it is nice to meet you.  So do you just take the jobs that keep you above ground then?  Vogh asked.

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“Yeah. Pretty much little lady.”

Vogh had to chuckle at being called little by someone literally half her height.

“You looking for something to do?”

He looks her​ over, noticing her armor and strange weapon.

“What skills you got?”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
The comment was funny and had her giggle cutely. Well Reggy, I myself am able to use my music to affect my allies by strengthening them so they can hit better and harder.  I can also influence enemy spellcasters with it different tunes as well.  When all else fails I charge in with my blade that can harmonize with my music to make it last longer and strike my foes dead.

Talin, Vogh leans in, My lover, she moves back out, is versed in the same sword play, but he has a knack for scaring the hell out of people with his music.

How about yourself?

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“A song to make a sword last longer sure sounds handy. I just like to smack nasties. I do some caravan protection. I also do some hired work around the city​. Whatever pays the bills!”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Are you currently on any mission?  Vogh inquires.

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“No ma’am. Just came through the south gate with a Rogue Moon caravan. Got my coin and came for a meal that wasn’t trail jerky or reheated stew.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Welcome to town Reggy!  So you said you smack things around.  You are a fighter then?  What do you specialize in?  Vogh was interested now and even asked if he would like to join them at their table.

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“Happy to little lady.” He grabbed his plate of food and mug of ale then hopped from the full size chair over to their table.

He set the plate and mug on the table and hoisted himself up with ease despite the heavy armor. Looking to Talin he asked, “Do you have a song to make your sword last longer to?” He laughed at his own joke before they had a chance.

“Definitely a fighter. I love it. Nothing like the look on a raiding orcs face when this fulling smacks him harder than a human ever has.”

===========================================================
Talin
———————————————————–
As the halfling came over and sat down to join Vogh and Talin, Talin said welcome friend.  The answer is not a song, but the sword itself does it.  Kind of neat I have to say. What do you hit the orcs with, if I may ask?  Talin questioned.

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
Reggy just shakes his butt from side to side making the flail strapped to his hip dance.

“Helga here. She’s prickly like my ex and packs a wallop.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh laughs, pretty funny Reggy.  You have quite the sense of humor on you.  So are you staying in Ptolus long?

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“Pah. I doubt it. Rogue Moon always has caravans going in and out. They pay well and the work is pretty simple. Probably just relax a bit then head out in a few days. You two wanting to caravan guard?”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh looks over to Talin who shakes his head, No I think we are sticking around here.  We wish you all the luck out there though.  If you don’t have a place to stay yet, you should check out the Ghostly Minstrel, we play there every now and again.

===========================================================
Reggy
———————————————————–
“Yeah. I might pop in there some time. I stay out of the Square most often because it’s so dang crowded. And most caravans leave from down South here anyway. But a bit of fun might do before I head out again.” He gives them a bit smile and hikes his ale in salute then drinks it.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh holds up her wine glass and salutes.  They talk a while until Juel comes down with his buddies.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Two big humans come lumbering down the stairs clearly unhappy with the noise and the amount of light in the room. They immediately went to the bar and ordered food, and light drinks.

Not too long after two more humans came down as well, both smaller than the first two.

None wore armor, and the smallest of the four simply had a dagger strapped to his simple, leather belt. The smaller of the two seemed less affected by the light and noise. They must not have drank as heavily as the larger two.

The same young man who addressed them before leaned over from his table nearer them and whispered loudly, “The biggest one there is Juel.” He leaned back over nursing his pale ale and pipe.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Reggy, if you will excuse me.  Someone finally showed up that I have been looking for.  Vogh gets up from her chair and moves towards the bar.

Not wanting to scare the big guy and lose her head maybe, Vogh calls from 10 ft away.  Excuse me are you Juel by chance?  You have an add seeking adventurers to join you in the undercity.

PM
[Private to GM: I need a weapon made for a character in another game.  Think you could handle it?  It is a weapon for my character and I don’t want to make it.  It is a magical spear that has a +4 str bonus to it, and that is all I know.  I do know it has more to it, but I am not sure.  I may even be intelligent.  I was thinking about just random rolling, but a custom one is better.  The old GM even hinted it could be artifact material, but I don’t know about that….]

===========================================================
Juel
———————————————————–
The big man turns only his head with a big mug in one hand and fork in the other.

“Yeah. We need some muscle. You know any?”

He and the three other guys chuckle at the beautiful Vogh’s expense.

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
I guess the drink has your mind forgetting what you posted then.  I remember it said magical assistance.  From the looks of the two of you there is plenty of muscle.  But, my friend and I are more than capable with our blades as well.  Vogh said with arms crossed.

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
no comment about plenty of muscle but not enough brains? 🙂

“Yeah. We had a good find this week and we’re celebrating. Let me clear my head and finish my meal then we’ll talk.”

The four of them all sat together, comically​ from largest to smallest. Their clothing was not new, but only patched in one or two places so in respectably good shape. They were dressed in the standard breeches, shirt and boots. Heavier boots than the average person walking around the city would wear. Closer to what a guardsman would wear. Strong. Sturdy. Thick sole. Tied tight up past the ankle for support.

The group finished and came over to where Vogh and Talin were sitting. They occupied the table next to the duo so all four could sit together.

“Well, I’m curious what you’ve got to offer. You’re right that we got the strength of arms covered. And Otule here is good with locks and traps. He’s kept us safe from some nasties down there.”

When Vogh and Talin explained their skills set it was clear the whole group was intrigued.

“We ‘ad a couple o’ finger flickers chat us up. But twerent none-o-em ‘dat powerful. Ain’t no good with a blade neither.” Otule chimed in.

“Seeing as you’re both human and have a bit of magic and skill with a blade I imagine we might be able to work something together. We four split it all even, but seeing as your new I think we’ll split 5 ways and you two split the fifth. If you’re more than a couple of rock crops then we’ll talk about evens later. We had a good find this week but didn’t come without a fight.”

Chule, Juel’s younger and slightly smaller brother piped in. “Hey. We don’t know nothing about them and we’re just going to lead them straight to our last score? That don’t seem right…”

“Nobody said we were going to take them to our last score…”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
She doesn’t know them long enough to call them names.

Vogh wasn’t sure how it all went normally with these negotiations, but a 5 way split for 6 people didn’t makes sense to her, but she also wanted to go and she might not be able to make a deal for more.  One moment while my friend and I talk it over.

Vogh comments all her thoughts to Talin and he confirms her fear that they might just leave without them or find someone different for the right price.

Vogh moves back to Juel and says, you have a deal then.  When do we leave?

===========================================================
Juel
———————————————————–
“You all ready to go tonight? Do you have equipment? Torches and all? Are you guild members?”

He was happy they were members as it made things easier. But the fact that they lacked all basic delving equipment was a problem.

“If you still want to go then let’s meet tomorrow morning in the Gathering Room and we’ll head out.”

===========================================================
Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh looked at the big man, we don’t travel around town with all our gear.  We have that back at our room.  We will get it and meet in the morning as planned.

A good night sleep would be good before heading down and a change in spell selection might be good as well.  Vogh and Talin went back to their room for the night to have a little fun and get some good rest.

Once morning came they met in the gathering room.

By |2018-07-27T00:00:40+00:00Growth 28th, 2018|Campaigns, Vogh|Comments Off on Chapter 1 : Vogh Returns to Ptolus : Part 11

About the Author: