A Faulty Foundation: Part II

Released In:

Librarian Note:

This Critical Role one-shot was created in collaboration with Zenimax Online. It aired on YouTube on August 21st, 2021. You can access the video here.

Although A Faulty Foundation is one long video, we have chosen to separate it into two parts of transcription, split at the location of the video’s commercial break.


PART II

MARISHA: Welcome back. You all are still inside the stone cabin. Four corpses at your feet. What do you do?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Loot the bodies!

MARISHA: All right.

TAVIMA: Nice.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’m going to not loot the body, I’m going to go around the area to see if there’s any things in drawers or, you know?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh!

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And also listen, because he was definitely yelling to somebody.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh yeah.

MARISHA: Okay. You’re looting, so investigation check, investigation check.

HOA SEN: I want to use my Expert Hunter ability to, I can sense any living creature within a 120-foot cone, just in case.

MARISHA: Do you have to roll for that, or is that?

HOA SEN: It just says, I just do it.

MARISHA: Cool, yeah.

HOA SEN: Sounds like I automatically do it.

MARISHA: Works for me.

HOA SEN: Yeah!

MARISHA: What do you got, Grelnok?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 14.

MALLORY KLAXTON: 21.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: 15 to investigate.

TAVIMA: Can I loot? I wanted to loot.

MARISHA: Sure, yeah.

TAVIMA: Ooh. 17.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Wow, we all did great.

MARISHA: Great, great. The three of you, as you are looting through the bodies, you find a handful of gold on some of the what were definitely more of the followers. The one who was the team leader, Mallory, you start rooting in his pockets, and you find a pouch filled with what appears to be 500 gold.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ooh, we’re done!

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We’re done.

MALLORY KLAXTON: You don’t know I found it.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 500 gold?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You’re right.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m kidding, of course.

MARISHA: And wrapped around the pouch is a piece of parchment.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: An elder scroll? 

HOA SEN: We beat the game!

MARISHA: Not one of those.

HOA SEN: Aw.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is that a thing that?

HOA SEN: It’s a regular–

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s a younger scroll.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s a baby scroll.

TAVIMA: It’s a middle-aged scroll with nothing wrong with it.

MARISHA: Yeah.

HOA SEN: Adolescent scroll.

MARISHA: Yeah, you find a letter.

MALLORY KLAXTON: All right, let’s take a look. I’m going to unroll it.

MARISHA: It says–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Old.

MARISHA: “Here is the agreed upon upfront payment. Remember, there is more where this came from upon confirmation of total dispatchment.”

MARISHA: And that’s all it says. No signature.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Dispatchment of us?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Dispatchment of Orimen Granoth?

HOA SEN: Hmm.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I wonder.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I feel like this is not about us.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Well, I don’t know, we got sent here specifically by that fucker, maybe he sent, I forgot what voice I was doing. And now I remember! 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Welcome back.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe he hired people in those two hours to come and kill us.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You think my You think Devon, Devin–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Dev, Davin, Devin, Devynne.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Hired someone to kill us? To what end? Why?

HOA SEN: But–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe he wants the bar.

TAVIMA: Why wouldn’t he be– if he hired the soldiers that were in there?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It is a great bar.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s a great bah!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It is a great bah!

HOA SEN: I thought it was actually quite decrepit, and that was the whole reason we’re out here, because it’s falling apart.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But it’s got good bones.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We know.

TAVIMA: It doesn’t, the bones are crumbling.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It has a really good location.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You’re right, it doesn’t have good bones, it has character!

TAVIMA: It has osteoporosis, and that’s why we’re here.

HOA SEN: And the secret chamber in the back that we don’t really ever talk about, but yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe they were here for Orimen.

MARISHA: Slaughter, you find–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh yes, I’m going around the other–

MARISHA: Yeah, as you pull open a drawer, and you find an old ledger, that’s got orders and business papers, very detailed contracts, things that clearly these were, you know, business transactions, and they–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: About stone masonry?

MARISHA: Yes, all about stone masonry. All labeled to Orimen Granoth, but it appears to be about seven years old.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh.

MARISHA: Nothing new.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I found an elder ledger.  But it runs out seven years ago. I’ll rifle around, and just look for any signs of anything newer than seven years ago.

MARISHA: You find a little bit of trash, some old broken bottles from maybe some squatters that have found this place, but have since moved on. Some old satchels that are crumpled up in the corner, but far long empty. This seems pretty ransacked aside from a few faded papers with charcoal scratchings across them.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Elder papers?

MARISHA: Yes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Seven years!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Devon, Devin must have definitely known that this guy wasn’t here anymore.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Right?

HOA SEN: Maybe he sent us the– Well, how could he have known those marauders were up hiding in this cavern, though, the whole time?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: He sent them.

HOA SEN: Unless they could’ve– Do you think they raced us here from the bar?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Hmm.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: He could’ve paid them yesterday, or a week ago, and said, “I’m going to be sending these folks your way, lay in wait for them.”

HOA SEN: Yes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe Divin– What the fuck is his name?

MARISHA: I don’t know. What did Matt say it was? Devon, Divin?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Davon?

MARISHA: Devin.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Divin?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Divin? It’s maybe Divin.

MARISHA: Divin, it’s got an accent, it’s Devin.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: — doesn’t sound right. Maybe he was one of the cultists. And he’s getting even with us.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The cultists that we discovered in our last adventure?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, yeah, yeah, forever ago.

TAVIMA: Yeah, we’re still wearing their jackets.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I know, they’re all green now.

HOA SEN: All green.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Why don’t we–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Why don’t we just go deeper into the cavern, and then we’ll find out more?

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m okay with that if everybody else is–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We have enough to pay our fee, but there is a deeper mystery here.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We have to find out what happened to Orimen.

TAVIMA: We don’t, we could find another, I mean–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We have to!

TAVIMA: Okay, okay. Sorry, refresh my memory. Did– Everything’s old and dusty, but did it look like–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Elder. 

TAVIMA: It is an elder cabin.

MARISHA: Yes.

TAVIMA: But were there signs of an elder struggle that maybe Orimen perished in?

MARISHA: No signs of struggle, no. The most recent thing that you found was when Grelnok found those footprints that upon closer inspection, do match the boots of these sellswords, yeah.

TAVIMA: So do we think Orimen was here, maybe looking for something, and then vanished when he found whatever it was?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe he fell into a hole.

TAVIMA: Yeah, probably.

HOA SEN: Well, I mean, with the evidence of the big cavern behind us, perhaps he did discover something, and went in to find it, and never came out.

TAVIMA: I’m going to run back outside really quick, just to go grab that pickaxe.

MARISHA: Sure.

TAVIMA: This feels like a stone adventure, and maybe this will help.

HOA SEN: Ah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Why not?

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: Okay.

MARISHA: You grab the pickaxe.

TAVIMA: Yeah.

HOA SEN: Do I sense any living beings or creatures within 120 feet?

MARISHA: Your vision extends. You can hear birds, little chipmunks in the nearby forest edge. No humanoids.

MARISHA: Yeah, that’s the sound of chipmunks.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yep. 

HOA SEN: Really relaxed chipmunks here, but nothing else that I can sense.

MARISHA: ASMR chipmunks.  But no, no signs of life. Seems that this place is pretty remote. You have to know that this cabin is here, it seems.

HOA SEN: Cavern seem safe to me, I can’t hear anything bad for now.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Let’s try.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah, let’s give it a try.

MARISHA: Okay. Everyone give me, unless there’s any other way you want to try, and get up this slope, give me an acrobatics check.

HOA SEN: Oh.  And this is how we die.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We do have a rope. We do have Mallory’s rope.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I do have a rope.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So if one of us can get up, that’s more dart-y than the rest.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Acrobatics?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Is anybody dart-y?

MARISHA: Acrobatics.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’m feeling pretty good.

MALLORY KLAXTON: All right, here, have a rope.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m not particularly dart-y, oof.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I mean, I’m doing fine by myself, so that’s.

MARISHA: What do you got, Slaughter?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: 17.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Natural 20.

MARISHA: Ooh!

TAVIMA: Dirty 20.

MARISHA: Dirty 20.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, uh, mm. A seven.

MARISHA: All right.

HOA SEN: Me too!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Hey!

MARISHA: So, Hoa and Grelnok, you’re like, “Let’s do this,” and you start trying to make your way up the slope. And then your foot just falls out from under you, as rock, and rubble, and these tiny micro-pebbles start to just erode out from under, yes, around your feet. And you just slowly keep– It’s a war of attrition, you take one step forward and two steps back. The three of you, however, especially Mallory, you can look and you can see these outcroppings of little rock that are protruding out of the stone, and you can boof, boof, boof.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Like skiing up hills.

TAVIMA: Yeah.

MARISHA: Yeah, you bounce back and forth, and you do manage to make progress with the two of you following closely behind. Sometimes some rubble and rock kicks out from under you, it unfortunately comes tumbling right back down into your all’s eyes and face, and you have to dodge some kicked out rocks.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to toss down the rope.

HOA SEN: Oh, excellent, thank you, rope, rope, rope. Grelnok, rope.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm. I’ll go behind you, so if you fall, I can catch you.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, okay, you’re saving me, excellent, nice thinking.

MARISHA: You have darkvision, right?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yep.

MARISHA: You look up further into this tunnel, and it is just pure darkness just falling off to black. Do you keep going?

MALLORY KLAXTON: I mean, yeah. I mean, how many of us are together at this point?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The three of us up with you.

MARISHA: You’re a little bit higher. The two of them are maybe five feet below you as you’re all, the three of you are perched, wedged up in the back of this tunnel.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’ll wait for everybody, but–

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Keeping an eye out, keeping an ear open.

MARISHA: You toss out the rope. You all are able to, much easier, yeah, no checks needed.

HOA SEN: Okay, I was wondering.

MARISHA: Just scale the wall.

MALLORY KLAXTON: You have to mime.

MARISHA: Give me another acrobatics check.

MALLORY KLAXTON: 16!

MARISHA: You start trying to look. The shadows are so dark, it’s a little bit harder to find little grab holes, and purchase. You go two little pounces up, and you start realizing that the ceiling of this cavern is starting to come to this pincer point. It’s starting to come down on you, and it’s definitely still dark, you can’t see much further, but the slope is starting to close.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m going to take out the torch, and chuck it forward for Mallory to catch. Are we that badass? 

MARISHA: Roll an acrobatics check.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: No-look catch.

MARISHA: Yeah, roll for catch.

MALLORY KLAXTON: 20.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We are that badass!

MARISHA: Psh, you grab it.  That’s the sound of catching something.

MARISHA, SAM, and MALLORY KLAXTON: Psh!

HOA SEN: Little explosion.

MARISHA: Yeah.  Yeah, a little cherry bomb erupts in your hand.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Moving the shadows around, taking a look.

MARISHA: So you move the shadows around, this comes to a close. It does not go any further. You do see, as you look, and the lights starts glistening. You can see what looks like very small remnants of silver ore veins that are crackling up through the roof and the ground of this cavern. But you can tell that it looks like whatever anyone was trying to get out of this, they felt like they reached a point where it wasn’t worth their effort much more.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Down below, before we hiked up this slope, were there any other caverns that delved deeper into the darkness?

MARISHA: No, not really.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to– Do I feel any air movement in here at all?

MARISHA: No.

TAVIMA: Look at the torch. Does the flame flicker?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Flame doing anything weird?

MARISHA: Over by Tavima’s breath, and as you exhale, you see a little bit of it flicker. You hold your breath for a minute. Nothing.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Well, shit.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Head down a little further, see if there’s any air movement in here at all.

MARISHA: Okay. Roll, give me one more check.

HOA SEN: Ooh.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Athletics?

MARISHA: Athletics or acrobatics.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Finally a to– Well, hey, that could’ve been worse. 10.

MARISHA: Okay. You crouch down, the ceiling getting closer and closer to you.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Oh, I was trying to go back down.

MARISHA: Oh, you were trying to go back down. Yeah, you slide down.

MALLORY KLAXTON: All right.

MARISHA: You’re fine.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Just seeing if there’s any–

MARISHA: Oh, around the edges?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah.

MARISHA: It looks like there might’ve been a few little concave, maybe what once was the start of a tunnel that was never pursued.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Hmm.

MARISHA: Pretty empty and clear.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Are there any rugs in his cabin?

MARISHA: Rugs?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Mm.

MARISHA: You don’t see any rugs, no, just the bare, exposed dirt floor. If there was once a rug, it is long gone.

HOA SEN: Can I do an arcana check for magic things?

MARISHA: Sure.

HOA SEN: Words, maybe? ♪ Ba ba ba ba ba ♪ That’s 14.

MARISHA: You do a pretty extensive arcana check. The only thing that you are sensing is the magical items, and your cloaks that you were wearing.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Two thoughts.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Hmm?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Hmm, I’m going to pull out that letter that we were looking at that last time.

MARISHA: Yeah.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Does the handwriting match the handwriting on the notice on the door?

MARISHA: What would this be? Well, the writing on the door was a more official ledger, but you have gotten plenty of, you know, you’ve peeked over Diven’s shoulder. Roll a– I don’t know what this should be. History check? Roll for memory.  Roll a history check.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Speaking of Diven’s handwriting, earlier, when you were playing Diven, you held up your post-it, and it was just a bunch of squiggles. It was real cute.

MARISHA: Yeah, it was definitely a bunch of squiggles, yeah. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: writing anything.

MALLORY KLAXTON: He’s a doctor, by god!

MARISHA: I just wanted the noise of pencil on the paper.

HOA SEN: Yes.

MALLORY KLAXTON: 19.

TAVIMA: Let’s go.

MARISHA: There does seem to be a similarity.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The serifs, the curls, the way that the I’s are dotted with hearts! 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It was him!

HOA SEN: And I was trying to give him the benefit of the doubt.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We gave him pie!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Just a little.

TAVIMA: Just a tiny bit of pie.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Only thing I can think to do other than this is–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Go kill Diven?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Well, that too, but where were those mercenaries hiding? I feel like they were– where were they hiding?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: They were tucked up here in this alcove.

MARISHA: Yeah, it was just, it’s so dark in here, they crawled their way up here, and they camped for a bit. You can actually, you can see where it looks like some cans were opened, and a little bit of soot residue is tossed aside, where it looks like they were maybe hanging out here for a little bit. A little bit of a urine smell in the corner.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Mm.

MARISHA: Yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’m going to go really investigate that. 

MARISHA: Yeah. I mean, it smells like piss, yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s piss.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Practically a compliment.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: What, what– Why the fuck would he want to kill us? Why the fuck would he think that four marauders are going to take us down?

TAVIMA: Thank you.

HOA SEN: Maybe he–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We’re just restaurateurs, he doesn’t know any that–

HOA SEN: Well, maybe he wanted something in our restaurant, like one of our magical items, or maybe that big cultist lair we found behind the shed.

TAVIMA: Oh no.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Or the restaurant itself?

HOA SEN: Uh, maybe?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s a cash cow.

MICHELLE and TAVIMA: Hmm.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Meh.

TAVIMA: That seems generous.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I mean, we’re breaking even, let’s be honest.

HOA SEN: I think it’s a labor of love.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I agree! We get paid in friendship–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 

HOA SEN: Uh-huh!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Community, and family.

HOA SEN: And sometimes tips, but not all the time, apparently.

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s a labor of like, really, more, but it’s fair.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Shall we go back and kill him, then?

TAVIMA: Yeah, we should go back quickly.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Interrogate, then kill.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: All right.

HOA SEN: We should scurry, I can imagine, if he thought we were going to leave and then die here, he probably moved right in already.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: How will we find him? If he doesn’t actually work for the, for the Valenwood authorities, then how will we, he might be gone. He might’ve gotten whatever he wanted from our place, and vanished.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We run back.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Run through the woods.

TAVIMA: I would like to mind meld with my old horse. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh, can you see through like Beastmaster?

TAVIMA: I can warg into the horse.

HOA SEN: If you can do that, I can do that with my birds, too.

MARISHA: Wait, can you do this? Is that a real thing you–? Oh.

TAVIMA: That would be amazing, no.

HOA SEN: We’re just asking.

MARISHA: I was like, this is going to be dope if you can.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You can.

MARISHA: Let me check the Nest cam real quick. Yeah.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Neigh.

MARISHA: Yeah, it’s called a Neigh Cam.

TAVIMA: The Neigh Cam.

HOA SEN: Birds have a Nest.

MARISHA: Yeah. 

HOA SEN: Nobody else? Nope!

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: Did we bring some birds back?

HOA SEN: No, I can’t.  I can also do not have this ability.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Let’s be quiet when we approach the restaurant, maybe, and just see what’s up. Maybe we’ll catch him in the act.

LAURA and TAVIMA: Yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It must be getting late now, right? And it took us a few hours to get up here. We left around one or noon or something, right?

MARISHA: Yes, by the time you got here, it was around 2:00, 2:30, and you’ve been here for a little bit.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yep, get home before dark.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

HOA SEN: It’s summer, it stays light out till like eight o’clock, we’ll be fine.

MARISHA: She’s not entirely wrong, she’s not wrong. With this newfound discovery and new impetus behind you, you, following the path that you came across, already knowing what’s out there, and what’s in there, in the forest, make haste. Let me just get a general survival check from everybody, as you move swiftly, but stealthily through the wood. as you move swiftly, but stealthily through the wood. Uh-oh. Six, okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 18.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: Nine.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Eight.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: 22 to bring us home.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Whoa!

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Me and you got this.

HOA SEN: Can you share? 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I like a good hike.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 

TAVIMA: And definitely, we’re falling back, because I am, I got to help my brother out, and just, stay back!

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: We’re tripping in the darkness while I give them a little clearance.

MARISHA: Yeah, and as you start to go into the forest, and there is that point where the sun is starting to drop below the treeline, and it does get even darker, even within the forest canopy. So it is a little bit harder to see, and stay oriented to where you’re going. So it does take you a little bit longer as it is starting to get darker. Also, as you hear movement in the forest, there are moments where you pause, wait, I’d say it takes you about two, two and a half hours to get back home at this rate through the forest. You emerge on the opposite side, and start making your way to the tavern. As you keep moving, the sun cresting below the horizon, it is getting darker, but not cooler. The heat and the moisture in the air is just holding that summer air. You’re now sticky and sweaty from moving through this forest. Still warm, you can feel your lungs trying to pump a little bit harder, as you are a little bit worn out, and tired from moving through this journey, but–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ordinarily, my quills help cool me. But because of the molting that is canonically associated with my character type.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: They fell out. 

MARISHA: You rush back to the tavern. As you return, the tavern, getting larger in your sights, posted out front on either side of the Grelnok’s Skull Tavern, you see two humanoids in red cloaks–

MARISHA: — flanking the front door.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: He was, he was!

MARISHA: Both of them standing erect and at attention, one holding a flame in his right hand, the other in his left, flanked on either side of the door.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Flame is coming out of their hand, just magically?

MARISHA: Just holding a little– a little pocket of fire.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay.

MARISHA: Just controlling.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Do they have red above their heads, do we know if they’re bad guys?

MARISHA: Yeah, yeah, yeah. They’ve got a health bar. Yeah, if you have the patch, uh-huh. They’re standing there and you can just see their heads scanning the horizon, standing guard.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: What’s up?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Should we go stealthy?

HOA SEN: I think we should–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Or should we?

TAVIMA: Before we go in, I want to use my Rune Focus ability to give myself some hit points back. And the next attack on me will have disadvantage.

MARISHA: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: What’s our play here?

HOA SEN: I could set a trap, so that when they cross to come over here, they’ll get hit with the bugs that with the teeth.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, that’s nice.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But we’d have to lure them over.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: What if I call them?

SAM and HOA SEN: Mm-hmm?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Might they not leave their post?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I mean.

HOA SEN: If anyone’s excellent in mimicry, we could perhaps try to pretend to be Diven, and call them over.

TAVIMA: What if we–?

HOA SEN: Not me, though. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I mean, your accent is closest. 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s pretty close. I could try.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I could certainly try.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You’ve got that nice baritone that Diven had.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, that Devin, Dev–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Devon had.

TAVIMA: “Devon.”

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You won’t have– If you’re mimicking him, you won’t have to say your own name, probably.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That’s true.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You wouldn’t say, hey–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s me.

HOA SEN: It’s me.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s me? 

MALLORY KLAXTON: My god.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Set the trap.

HOA SEN: Okay, okay. I scoot out a little bit forward, and set the Barbed Trap down.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Should any of us– I’m just throwing this out there. Should any of us go around the back to have a second entry point, or?

TAVIMA: I like that.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Or?

TAVIMA: Yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: To see if in the– Do we have windows back there?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe we should just go back, and we shouldn’t even bother these guys in the front.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I don’t know.

TAVIMA: Well, if they’re guards, they will alert if they hear or see anything. So if you can, if we can kill them quickly, sorry, I’m very into just the murder part of this now. I am done negotiating.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Just get them away from the door, kill them quietly, super quietly. We have to do it quietly.

TAVIMA: That’s the part.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That’s dangerous, yeah. We could do it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: So you’re going to shout something like, “Hey, come over here, gents.”

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Hey gents, you want to talk to me? It’s Diven. 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Don’t say your own name, that’s weird.

HOA SEN: We should just throw a rock.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Should someone else say it? Should one of us be like, “Oh no, more taxes to pay? Diven, you’re the worst!”

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, but Diven’s obviously a cultist!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh, you’re right.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: He doesn’t do taxes!

TAVIMA: Okay, let’s just sneak around the back.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay, let’s just–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Wait, we’re abandoning this altogether?

MALLORY KLAXTON: We’re putting it aside, we may come back to it.

HOA SEN: Okay, trap’s out though, I did spend a stamina on that.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh, you did!

HOA SEN: No, no, that’s fine, they’ll come out, someone will come near this thing.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Well, what if it’s just Marty from down the street? 

HOA SEN: I can probably deactivate it.

MARISHA: Oh, poor Marty.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No, no, leave it, leave it, it’ll be funny.

HOA SEN: I leave it?

MARISHA: Okay, and just for clarity, you placed it on the street in front of across the– Where did you place this?

HOA SEN: Uh.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Near the toy store. 

HOA SEN: Well, where are we all standing, looking at those guards? In a bush, probably.

MARISHA: Yeah, so, your all’s tavern is on the north side of town, where it does start to encroach into where the edge of the wood is. So it’s not like the busiest thoroughfare, but there are other businesses across the street from you.

HOA SEN: Okay, you know what I do? Leave it. I go back a little. I take the quill back from your ear.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Slaughter.

HOA SEN: And I– Slaughter– and I make another note, I just put it, you know, so they can’t see it, it just says, “Hey, don’t, just– Not open right now, don’t go this way, okay? Heart,” and I just put it right.

MARISHA: In front of this alley that you guys are lurked in, okay.

HOA SEN: So they can’t see from their side, but from the other side, you’d be like, “Oh, I shouldn’t go in here.”

MARISHA: All right.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I feel like I would obey a lot more traffic laws, if that were. 

HOA SEN: I am just okay with writing notes.

MARISHA: Give me, Hoa, give me a– Give me a performance check, I guess, just to see if people could even read this sign in the darkness.

HOA SEN: Oh, no, my handwriting is amazing.

MARISHA: It’s more like, you know.

HOA SEN: 15 plus two, 17.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah, so, doing the best that you can, you take a scrap paper and scribble, watch your step. You fold it and crease it to make it seem like a safety cone in around it.

HOA SEN: I’ll place one of my fletcherflies right on top.

MARISHA: Oh, okay, yeah.

HOA SEN: Stay here, little buddy.

MARISHA: We’ll see. I guess. Hopefully someone sees it. And is paying attention.

HOA SEN: I feel like this is–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I think it’s a good idea.

HOA SEN: Due diligence.

MARISHA: Yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Nothing wrong with setting random traps.

HOA SEN: We have to really remember that’s here, though, okay, when we’re done with this.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, right, right, right.

MALLORY KLAXTON: This may pay off later.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah!

HOA SEN: Yeah, probably.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Unexpected way.

MALLORY KLAXTON: In an interesting way.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah.

HOA SEN: Hopefully. Let’s go to the back, then, I guess.

MARISHA: Okay, are you guys all traveling together?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah.

SAM, LAURA, and TAVIMA: Stealthily.

MARISHA: Okay, stealth checks from everybody.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh no.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Here we go, here we go.

TAVIMA: It’s going to be fine, it’s going to be great.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yep.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Hey.

HOA SEN: Nat 20!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, that’s great, that’ll balance whatever I get, yeah. 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Does it balance?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: It’s not a one.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Seven.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: 11.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Five.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Nine.

HOA SEN: We can’t be like this any more!

MALLORY KLAXTON: We’re terrible at everything!

HOA SEN: This was after we leveled up.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, you should just … a bar.

MALLORY KLAXTON: No wonder we opened a restaurant, we’re terrible at this!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We’re not good at things.

MARISHA: As you all decide to case the perimeter as a group. 

MARISHA: You hit a few puddles, there was a recent summer rain. You try, you think you’re keeping a wide berth. You make your way around to the backside of–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: ♪ Makin’ my way! ♪

MARISHA: ♪ Making your way ♪ to the backside of the tavern, where you see two more cultists stationed in the back, two more figures in red cloaks, and another one stationed in front of the cavern.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: The shed.

MARISHA: The shed, that is chained off across.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Are they within, like, visual?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Of each other?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MARISHA: Yes, the three of them around back can all see each other.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is the horse alive?

MARISHA: The horse is barely hanging on. It is hot, and–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But not because of anything they did to it?

MARISHA: No, no, he’s just old as fuck, and you guys haven’t refilled his water trough in three days.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No, that’s not true.

HOA SEN: Did we do that?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That’s not true. Grelnok would definitely take care of the animals.

TAVIMA: I’m very forgetful. I may have forgotten.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It hasn’t eaten.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I keep emptying his water trough.

TAVIMA: It’s so humid, I figured it’s not as important.

MARISHA: It’s evaporated a little.

TAVIMA: You can just breathe and you get the water in you?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: No, it’s true, horses get most of their water content from just the air.

MARISHA: They’ve got gills.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: From osmosis.

MARISHA: Yeah.

HOA SEN: Horse facts, thank you.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Reverse sweating.

MARISHA: As you move around to the back side of this tavern– 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Thank you. That’s all I wanted.

MARISHA: Poor Slaughter and Hoa, just not really seeing these puddles, splash. And one of the cultists goes, “Who goes there? Psst, hey. Eyes to the left.”

HOA SEN: I yell: It’s me. Hold on. It’s me, Devin. 

MARISHA: Roll a deception check?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Devin. Hello.

MARISHA: “It’s me, Devin.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: They don’t know his name.

MARISHA: “Groovy, baby.”

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Bond.

MARISHA: Yes, yes!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: James Bond.

HOA SEN: It’s not terrible, but I don’t know if it’s going to work. This is a 13.

MARISHA: They just go, “Who? Who goes there? What?” You’ve just alerted them a little bit more.

HOA SEN: Cool.

MALLORY KLAXTON: The yellow meter is now hitting the red. It’s almost the red exclamation point.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We all crouch and wait until the eye closes. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The eye closes?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: You know what I mean.

MARISHA: As you all crouch down–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I don’t know. Is that a Skyrim thing?

MARISHA: Yeah. As you all crouch down, and the cultist that is framed closest to you all turns to the others like, “I’m going to go check it out,” and starts taking a few steps toward your direction, peering into the bushes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Should we run back to the trap?

MARISHA: And about this time, you see a female dremora in a deep indigo dress, flowing a bit tattered at the bottom with a red cloak draped over top. She busts out of the cellar that was once chained to the adventure that you had not too long ago. The lock is no longer there. As she storms out, furious in rage, “It’s gone. The Ambition is gone!”

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: The what is gone?

MARISHA: The Ambition. The cultist who was stationed in front of the cellar says, “I’m sorry, Lieutenant.” She turns, snaps her head in his direction in fury, as she reaches out and grabs him by the throat. And in a split second, his head bursts into an immolation of flame.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh!

MARISHA: “You disappoint me.” Lets go as a flaming corpse drops to the ground. Upset, she then storms into the tavern from the back door.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is the one still coming for us, or was that the guy?

MARISHA: No, that was not the guy. The one who was coming towards you, now seeing his lieutenant come out, rushes back and stands back in attention towards the back door, now seemingly distracted from what he just saw.

MALLORY KLAXTON: One down.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: If we wait long enough– 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: She’ll come out again! 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I forget, do we have any windows on our tavern?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We must, right? It’s a tavern.

HOA SEN: One stained glass one in the front for sure.

MARISHA: Yeah. There are a few towards the back, yes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Can we see into the tavern? How many people are in there?

MARISHA: Make a perception check.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 14?

MARISHA: It’s hard to make out–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Is that good? We’re like, “Yes!”

MARISHA: Yeah. It’s hard to make out exactly how many figures are in there, but you do see, like a stage show, a few bodies moving around on the inside. And for a brief second, the window almost blacks out with what seems to be a much larger, hulking figure, that passes by. But you can’t fully make out what’s going on.

HOA SEN: Is this when it’s okay to burn the tavern down? Because I am so scared of everything inside of that.

TAVIMA: Plan B is valid.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Burn our tavern down?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: But it’s our tavern.

HOA SEN: I was against it before, but it’s full of bad guys now.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I mean, we do have 500 gold now.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We could–

TAVIMA: Buy a new tavern.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Other than the foundation, it’s got a lot of memories for me in there.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Make new memories.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Mallory doesn’t give a shit.

MALLORY KLAXTON: No, I don’t give a fuck.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But it’s got six good burners.

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s got four good burners, let’s be honest. 

HOA SEN: I thought it was one. Down to one, no?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We could–

HOA SEN: 

TAVIMA: I love burning things down, but I do just want to straight murder that lady.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Your window!

HOA SEN: That dremora–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: If we start– The thing is, if we burn it, everything will come running out and then we’ll have to fight all of the things.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Unless they’re, like– Well, I guess we’ve just seen that they’re not immune to fire because one of their heads just caught on fire.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: But she created the fire, so the guards aren’t immune to fire, but she might be–

TAVIMA: Hold on. I do fire magic all the time–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And the big hulking thing might be. and I burn the shit out of myself all the time.

HOA SEN: Doesn’t mean you’re immune, you have resistance, usually. Yes. If they’re out the front– If they run out the front, won’t they hit my trap? That’s good. It won’t kill them, though, just to be fair.

TAVIMA: Why don’t we ferry them out the front?

HOA SEN: It’s just 4d6.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: They also might see the note that says there’s a trap. 

HOA SEN: No, no.

MARISHA: It’s from the back.

HOA SEN: It’s from the other side. If you’re an innocent, you’ll see the sign–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I just want to kill something right now.

TAVIMA: Right now, right?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Can we just kill the guards?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Can we agree that what we’re witnessing is, they’re using our tavern as a sort of a staging area to go delve into the tunnels that we excavated, right?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Grab one guy and kill him.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: So they might not even care about our tavern.

MARISHA: Grelnok.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh no.

MARISHA: As you’re continuing to peer into the window that you have very limited range of what you can see, as this conversation is happening you see a flash of red glow that subsides a bit again.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: They’re doing something in there.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Maybe that’s one more dead.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: They’re doing something in there. We need to get in there and kill everything.

TAVIMA: Hold on. Why don’t we question one of these dummies?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Question? They’ll see us! There’s windows.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: What if, kill one, question the other–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We kill one–

TAVIMA: — and figure out what’s going on.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’ll whip the other one over here.

TAVIMA: Yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Should we just try to call him over and if it doesn’t work, then we kill him?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We can do the same thing, just be like, “Hey, it’s still me.” 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’m still over here.

HOA SEN: Should I pretend to be that lady instead?

MALLORY KLAXTON: They know that she’s inside. 

MALLORY KLAXTON: That’d be really weird.

HOA SEN: Oh. Yeah, I suppose you’re right. I didn’t really think that through.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah.

HOA SEN: Maybe they don’t even know who Devin is.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Possible.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Who’s Devin?

TAVIMA: 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Oh! Devon, yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Diven.

TALIESIN and TAVIMA: Diven.

TAVIMA: That sounds right.

HOA SEN: Davon?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Does not sound right.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Doesn’t sound right.

HOA SEN: We’ll never really know. There’s no way of knowing.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right, so we have four different plans. We either burn the house down, lure somebody over, send them into the trap. I guess just three.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I got a weird idea.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay, four. 

MALLORY KLAXTON: I think I can get them to leave their posts.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: How?

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to sneak over, right on the other side of the shed and just say, “You two, come take a look at this.” See what happens.

TAVIMA: Do it. This is perfect.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay, and what will we do when they walk away?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Going to kill them both when they come over–

HOA SEN: Oh, from behind.

TAVIMA: Interrogate one.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Walk them away from the door and then kill them.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

HOA SEN: One, keep one? Keep one?

TAVIMA: Leave one alive.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah, all right.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, sure, sure, sure. Just get ’em over here so we can kill ’em.

HOA SEN: But keep one.

MARISHA: Mallory, what are you doing?

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to circle around and try and get a little closer to the house on the side of the shed so that they can’t see me.

MARISHA: Make a stealth check.

MALLORY KLAXTON: This’ll go great.

HOA SEN: Uh-huh.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Bless. 

MALLORY KLAXTON: 11.

HOA SEN: Shit.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I got my hood up, I’m going to just–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: He’s got his hood up, Marisha.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: In the dark, it might look like it’s red.

HOA SEN: Yeah, and his cape is gray, so it’s dark.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s 6:00. 

HOA SEN: Crap. Crap.

MARISHA: You hear the one that was already a little suspicious go, “I swear I’m hearing something.”

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: This guy’s not very good.

MARISHA: “Is it that possum? I know we have a possum in this station.”

TAVIMA: Love our possum.

MALLORY KLAXTON: You two, over here.

MARISHA: “Wh–?”

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Say, “Come take a look at this.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: Take a look at this.

MARISHA: They whistle up–

HOA SEN: Fuck!

MARISHA: And they say, “Eyes on the back.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: There’s one on the roof.

HOA SEN: Should’ve made a possum noise.

TAVIMA: There’s one high?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: There’s something.

MARISHA: Someone roll a perception check for me.

HOA SEN: I’ll do– oh.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Oh, I’m not in the place to see it anyway.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Who’s rolling?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: She was.

HOA SEN: 24.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh!

TAVIMA: Yes!

MARISHA: Hoa, you are the only one who can see it, and only because of that roll, they say, “Eyes over here,” and you do look up and you train your eyes upwards to the roof. And all you can see– You can’t see a body, but you can see just the tip and the cross section of a crossbow peek over the apex of the roof of your tavern.

HOA SEN: Okay, there’s a sniper up top with a crossbow, so just stay down.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Not good.

HOA SEN: Very bad, this is very bad.

TAVIMA: I want to go try to climb to the roof.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, climb–

HOA SEN: Are you good at climbing? Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Knock him off, yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But they’re already coming over here!

MALLORY KLAXTON: They don’t seem like they’re moving, are they? Are they coming over?

MARISHA: They’re on high alert.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay.

MARISHA: They’ve been–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: What does it take to get these fuckers to walk over here?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We just are going to have to kill them.

MALLORY KLAXTON: First the one on the roof.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: While we’re standing back here, I’m going to Hardened Armor myself.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: I’m climbing. I’m going up to the roof.

MARISHA: Make a stealth check.

TAVIMA: Oh no. Yes. Dirty 20.

MARISHA: All right, yeah. You know this tavern.

TAVIMA: I use my little pickaxe!

MARISHA: You use your little pickaxe. You, of all people, have been stationed on the outside of this tavern more than anyone else in this crew. You’ve been doing perimeters, you are the bouncer. So you know that there’s a brick on this side that’s protruding a little bit more out of the foundation, and this ledge from the window sill. And with nice ease, you start to slowly crawl your way up. Give me an athletics check, since I know that’s your jam.

TAVIMA: Thank you. 17.

MARISHA: Great. You climb the roof.

TAVIMA: What do I see?

MARISHA: With your stealth check, keeping that in mind, you see two cultists–

TAVIMA: Two!

MARISHA: — with crossbow bolts. Crossbow bolts that are peering over the pitch of the roof. And they very much are focused towards the backside towards where Mallory shouted. They’re looking in that direction. So you’re perfectly on their profile, not 100% out of their peripheral vision, but you haven’t been seen yet.

TAVIMA: How close together are they?

MARISHA: They’re perched on opposite side of the roof, so I’d say 15 feet apart.

TAVIMA: All right. I’m going to take two small copper coins out of my pocket I’m going to take two small copper coins out of my pocket and drop them off the roof one after another as close to Grelnok because I know she was watching me go up just to give her quiet notice that there’s two people up here.

MARISHA: Brilliant.

HOA SEN: So good.

TAVIMA: And then I’m going to–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m going to prep to attack the guy on the ground by the door with my magic whip as soon as you do anything up there.

MARISHA: Okay. So you guys have this perfect– you’re both on the east-facing side of the building. You’re up top with Grelnok at the bottom, both with two guards in your sight.

TAVIMA: So to the guard that’s closest to where I came up and around, I want to sneak over, and my goal is just to try to tug him off the roof and drop him for my friend.

MARISHA: Amazing.

TAVIMA: We want to do a murder.

HOA SEN: Yes.

MARISHA: Man. What type of roll is this? Just give me one more stealth check to see if he notices.

TAVIMA: Please. Please be good. 12?

MARISHA: I’d say that’s fine. Now give me a strength check.

TAVIMA: Yes. Is it athletics?

MARISHA: Yeah, yeah.

TAVIMA: Oh no, that’s seven. No!

MARISHA: As you’re right slowly within range, and moments before you’re about to reach out and grab him, your foot slips on the shingle just a little bit.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: God, our fucking tavern sucks.

TAVIMA: It sucks.

MARISHA: As the cultist turns and looks over, he sees you, he goes, “Shit!” But it’s too late, you grab him. You do have grapple on him.

TAVIMA: Sweet.

MARISHA: I’m going to give you an opposed strength check to see if you can throw him off.

TAVIMA: Die, you’ve got to do this for me. Natural 20.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh!

MARISHA: I rolled a three.

TAVIMA: Yes!

MARISHA: “Shit!” And as he says this, you toss him off.

TAVIMA: Can I try to keep his crossbow?

MARISHA: Oh my god. Give me a–

TAVIMA: A nat 20.

MARISHA: Give me a sleight of hand check–

TAVIMA: Oh god, oh god.

MARISHA: — on top of it. Nine.

MARISHA: You knock his crossbow bolt out of his hand as he’s already fumbling. It tumbles on the roof a little bit and starts sliding down the shingles. You do not have it in your grasp, but it is nearby.

TAVIMA: Fuck it, I want to kick it off the roof and then start running for the other guy.

MARISHA: Amazing. It goes flying, this guy is falling, he is on his ass. He landed not far from you, Grelnok, and the other one goes, “They’re here!” And turns and aims his crossbolt– Crossbow bolt to you. Roll for initiative.

HOA SEN: We’re not stealthing anymore. Nat 20.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I was prepped to do my magic whip as soon as she knocked somebody off the roof, but–

MARISHA: Go ahead and do it now as part of all of this, as the surprise round.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: This is to yank the guy at the door closer, so he can get away from the door a little bit.

MARISHA: Okay, I love it.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh yeah, that definitely hits. 17 plus whatever.

MARISHA: That hits. Roll for damage.

TAVIMA: Get him, get him, get him, get him, get him.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: My other– 

TAVIMA: It lights up?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, it’s from Taliesin.

TAVIMA: That’s rad as shit!

MALLORY KLAXTON: Thank you.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 15 points of fire damage.

MARISHA: Oh my god.

HOA SEN: Hell yeah.

MARISHA: So once again, in a moment, as your whip wraps around his body, it just sears in and almost start bisecting him. You do yank him towards you, but the side of his body starts collapsing in on himself and he almost buckles within your force that you ripped him towards you. He is dead.

TAVIMA: Oh my god!

MARISHA: One down.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Damn.

TAVIMA: That’s amazing.

MARISHA: Give me initiative. Hoa, you rolled a nat 20.

HOA SEN: Yes, thank you.

MARISHA: Anyone else over 20? 20 to 15?

MALLORY KLAXTON: 18.

MARISHA: Okay, Mallory. 15 to 10?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: 12.

TAVIMA: 10.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ooh.

MARISHA: Slaughter– Did you say 10?

TAVIMA: I got a 10.

MARISHA: Tavima. Bringing up the years, the rears, the ears.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah. 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Again.

MARISHA: Grelnok. Okay. That kind of works. You did something cool up front. Hoa, you’re up front.

HOA SEN: Since I’m around a lot of you, except for, you’re still on the roof, right? I’m going to cast Frost Cloak so everyone gets a plus one to their AC. You’re covered in a thick cloak of frost, so you kind of look like cool ice monsters. If anyone hits you in melee, they get three damage.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Hey!

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

MARISHA: And it feels nice because it’s so hot.

HOA SEN: It’s so hot.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So hot.

HOA SEN: You guys feel like a cool air conditioning.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: That’s nice.

HOA SEN: Let’s do this. Let’s kill, I guess.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Thank you, Hoa.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And then if they hit us, or if they attack us?

HOA SEN: Yes, if they hit.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So did somebody fall off the roof?

MARISHA: Yes.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Are they alive?

MARISHA: Yes. But prone.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to take my advantage with my–

MARISHA: And also he would’ve taken fall damage. Ooh, mm-hmm. Hang on. Sorry.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So I’m going to hit them with my staff.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I assume that’s advantage because they’re prone?

MARISHA: Yes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We’re the staff.

MALLORY KLAXTON: 14?

MARISHA: Hits.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Let’s do–

TAVIMA: Let’s go.

MALLORY KLAXTON: That’s seven points of bludgeoning damage.

MARISHA: Whack! You just smash his head into a pulp in one fell strike, You just smash his head into a pulp in one fell strike, just like a butcher–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Cultists.

MARISHA: — killing his meal. He is dead.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to try and get a little cover from the other guy. I’m going to back off a bit–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: ♪ Get a little cover ♪

MALLORY KLAXTON: Get a little cover.

MARISHA: All right. Oh, oh my god, that’s the cultists’ turn. Okay. So the one that is coming after you, he’s going to train his crossbow bolt towards you, pull the trigger–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s always a bolt.

MARISHA: Words, crossbow bolt.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Crossbow bolt.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Not a crossbow.

MARISHA: Nope. I got to say the full thing because of you, this is your problem, you did this. 17 to hit.

TAVIMA: It does hit.

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Even with your plus one from–

TAVIMA: It’s exactly 17.

HOA SEN: Ugh.

MARISHA: You take five damage as he gets one bolt off onto you.

TAVIMA: All right.

MARISHA: And then the one who is also in the back turns, knowing that you all are here, he sees you, Mallory, and starts moving towards you. He has his flame in his hand. He is going to hurl the flame towards you.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, it’s like what you try to do!

MARISHA: With a natural 20.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ooh. He’s good at that.

HOA SEN: Nuts.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Watch them. Watch those.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: He’s a lefty. Maybe I should switch?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe you should switch.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Maybe I’m a lefty! You know, I probably grew up as lefty and my parents trained me to be a righty, that’s what happens a lot.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: You always feel like you’re not as good.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Bring it.

MARISHA: You take 12 points of fire damage.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Ow!

MARISHA: As he tosses his flame towards you.

HOA SEN: If only those were melee attacks.

MARISHA: With all of this commotion, the two cultists that were stationed up front go, “They’re here. Run back!” And start to move around. The one that was towards the left front peeks around and he sees you, Hoa. You just cast your spell as this ice magic forms around you. Yeah, I think he hits with a 17.

HOA SEN: 12, 13, 14. Yep, sure do.

TAVIMA: Oop.

MARISHA: He’s going to do the same thing. He is going to toss a flame towards you for three damage. Not as good as the other guy. The other ones move around. They’re not close enough to do anything else. And that is the cultists’ turn. Slaughter, you’re up.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Lay of the land here, DM.

MARISHA: Yes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: How many– There’s a cultist on the roof that’s tangling with you. There’s at least one or two guards by the shed, one guard by the shed.

MARISHA: The guard that was by the shed is now dead.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: There was only one and they’re gone.

MARISHA: There’s only one. There are– One of the one in the back… So there’s now one more in the back that is moving around–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And two from the front that are–

MARISHA: And then two from the front that are now peeking around.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And one on the roof. So four total.

MARISHA: Correct.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The folks inside, I’m not aware if they’ve heard or might be coming out.

MARISHA: Correct.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Should I seal the door? Should I– So the two guards coming around from the front, are they together? Are they near each other?

MARISHA: One’s trailing a little bit behind just based on their positioning, but they’re… Yeah, they’re together. They’re trying to be strategic about their placement as well, and they’re not directly next to each other, but they’re within five feet.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay. Tapping Webs!

MARISHA: Do it!

TAVIMA: Yeah!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Thwip, thwip!

HOA SEN: Oh!

MARISHA: They have to roll a dex saving throw.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: A dex saving throw of 14.

MARISHA: Okay, the first one rolls a two. The second one rolls a natural 19. So the one that is leading the charge gets hit in the face with this web, it’s almost like a bukkake.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Ew!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh, sponsored content. 

MARISHA: Just in his mouth a little bit and he is grappled.

HOA SEN: Hoa’s really into it, by the way. She’s applauding from the side like, “Yes, very good. Good placement, okay.”

MARISHA: Yes, the one… The left front cultist is webbed.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay. So he, or she, or they, are grappled.

MARISHA: Yes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: For at least a full turn.

MARISHA: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And I might have a bonus action. No, not really. But I’ll charge out more into the fray, closer to these other folks. We were at least 30 feet away or something?

MARISHA: Yeah, probably right exactly at 30 feet.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay. So I’ll just– I’ll run in, and I don’t know, I’ll get next to one of the cultists in a possible flanking way, inviting one of the brawlier folks to come to the other side of said individual.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah. There’s still the one who’s coming around from the back side. So he starts closing in on you as you square off.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right.

MARISHA: And that is Tavima.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I instinctively flare out my quills to protect myself, and then I realize they’re not there because canonically my species loses their quills at a certain point of their lifespan. 

TAVIMA: Amazing. Okay, so the cultist that spun around, they turned, but are they still at the edge of the roof?

MARISHA: I’d say they’re within five feet of the edge of the roof, yeah.

TAVIMA: Good enough for me.

MARISHA: Pretty close.

TAVIMA: Shield Charge.

MARISHA: Do it!

MARISHA: Do it. This is going to be so cool.

TAVIMA: The dice do not want this for me.

MARISHA: No.

TAVIMA: No.

TAVIMA: Eight. I got an eight. Eight is what I got to do it.

MARISHA: You rush towards him and he sees it’s coming and then just full-on turns to the side. You bolt past him and then just put on the brakes, dig in your heels, sliding a little bit, especially with the rickety shingles, and almost go over the edge yourself, but then right yourself, and then turn and he is right in your face now.

TAVIMA: Sweet. Looking out over the edge as I did my little, do I see the two guards from the front coming around?

MARISHA: So you’re on the far side of the building, you’re now furthest in, they’re heading backwards.

TAVIMA: Backwards this way. Okay, cool.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TAVIMA: I just want the lay of the land as they’re coming around.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TAVIMA: I don’t know if you guys know that, so I just shout it like: They’re coming back! And yeah, while we’re in melee I’ll swing with my longsword.

MARISHA: Do it.

TAVIMA: Jesus Christ. Does a nine hit?

MARISHA: No, it doesn’t.

TAVIMA: It’s real slippy up here. It’s so humid and–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So slippy.

HOA SEN: Slippy.

TAVIMA: It got real slick and I’m like, eh.

MARISHA: Yeah, there’s– It’s summer, there’s some moss and stuff that’s started growing, and your footing just slips again as you try and get purchase.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That’s okay.

MARISHA: They back up a little bit.

TAVIMA: All right, eff it. Last one. One magicka, majica for Backlash.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: DC 15 con save. Everyone has made this today, so I’m assuming I’m just throwing a majica into the wind.

MARISHA: It has only been– Only good rolls is the only way… Natural one.

TAVIMA: Oh my god.

HOA SEN: Yay!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Hey!

MARISHA: So they make it this time.

HOA SEN: Excellent.

TAVIMA: And sixes on the dice, so 12 points of fire damage. And they are Doomed until the end of my next turn.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: They’re doomed!

TAVIMA: So if I ever hit again, it will be bad.

HOA SEN: Wow.

MARISHA: You swipe, you swipe, they dodge. They get a little cocky, they’re like.  As they chuckle in your face, just from your mind, they burst into flame. Light themselves on fire, and as they are in a full panic they slip and fall off of the edge of the building to their death in a flaming ball of fire. He is dead.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Dramatic.

TAVIMA: Vibes. Cool. Man, I like magic way more. Sword, we got to work on this. And I very gingerly walk across the roof because I’m afraid of it.

MARISHA: Yeah.  Perfect. It is now Grelnok’s turn.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh! I’m going to charge forward and flank the one that Slaughter’s on the other side of.

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And hit it with my axe.

MARISHA: Do it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Don’t hit me!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m not going to, don’t worry. That is 13.

MARISHA: To hit?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MARISHA: That hits.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Sweet. That’s seven slashing damage, and I’m going to use one of my stamina to add another d8 of slashing damage. That’s another four.

MARISHA: Just a scream, once again, erupts from this person as they are dead, they’re dead.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Sweet.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Nice.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Are there any other ones near me?

MARISHA: You can see the two that are coming around from the front that have started wrapping around the building and they’re assessing the action.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: All right.

MARISHA: So you see two more.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m going to stand and go: Hit me! 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Wait, me?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No, no, no.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Me?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m standing in front of you, Slaughter.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No!  I want them to hit me and not you!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh, okay, okay. Hit her!

MARISHA: And for the second time today, two people are like– a little confused, but, you know, alerted.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I look angry, I like fight.

MARISHA: One of the female cultists who’s there just goes back at you. And Hoa, it is your turn.

HOA SEN: So the one that’s webbed was the one who died, right?

MARISHA: No, the one that is webbed is still there.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Still webbed.

MARISHA: Yes.

HOA SEN: As a free action, can I have a small chat or no?

MARISHA: Sure.

HOA SEN: I just go over again, very into this. Hey, hi, my name’s Hoa. Do you– So, like, what are you doing here? I just feel like, have I seen you around or no? What are you guys doing here? It could be merciful, I just thought– Hi.

MARISHA: Roll a persuasion check.

HOA SEN: Woof. That’s a 10.

MARISHA: They just go, “Ha, funny coming from someone who’s so unworthy.” And starts trying to continue to struggle.

HOA SEN: Okay, you’re webbed and I tried my best, but okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Do the webs explode? When do the webs explode?

HOA SEN: Next turn, not yet.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: At the start of my next turn.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, okay.

HOA SEN: I back up a little bit.  Whatever the range of that is, I back up, and then I cast Swarm again.

MARISHA: On the webbed person or the one behind them?

HOA SEN: On the webbed person.

MARISHA: Okay.

HOA SEN: I’m feeling a little turned off. That’s a DC 14 con save, please.

MARISHA: I rolled a 14, no, I rolled a 17.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ooh.

HOA SEN: But they’re webbed.

MARISHA: They save. I don’t think their web effects their constitution.

HOA SEN: The fetcherflies just fly around like “What? Ugh, gross, webs.”

MARISHA: They’re like, “Webs,” yeah.  They’re like, “Oh, we know what this means,” yeah.

HOA SEN: They fly away.  I did try my best. Okay, all right, I need to really focus. And I walk away.

MARISHA: Mallory, you’re on deck.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I love the idea that you have summoned a swarm of insects and they just go.  Well, I brought ’em, but they’re really not interested in anything happening here. Okay, first thing I’m going to use my bonus action to heal a little bit because I’m bleeding heavily.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So that’s a–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Healing potion?

MALLORY KLAXTON: I don’t have healing potions. I just have a thing I can do.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We didn’t buy anything.

MARISHA: Nope.

HOA SEN: We sure didn’t have a short rest.

MALLORY KLAXTON: That’s not great, but that’s okay.

MARISHA: I thought about it, I was like, “Would they find healing potions in this abandoned shack? Nah, they wouldn’t, they just wouldn’t.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: That’s a little bit and yeah, let’s– There’s just solo people right now, there’s nobody grouped?

MARISHA: There are the two cultists who came around from the front. The one is webbed and there’s another one who’s about five feet from that person.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay. Let’s just have a little fun with a Lightning Splash then.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I thought the ones that were webbed were the ones coming around from the front.

MARISHA: Yeah, that’s what I’m saying. Those are the two that are still grouped together. Yeah.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So I’m going to get out of the range of the other one. I’m going to try and situate myself so that other people are more exciting targets.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: And I’m going to use a Lightning Splash. So I’m going to create a little 10-foot sphere to catch both of them.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: From a great distance, and they have to make a dex save, a 14 dex save and I’m pretty sure the webbed one, I don’t know.

MARISHA: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is grappled and probably can’t make it.

MARISHA: The grappled one fails. The other one rolled a natural 20.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Wow, that one’s dodgy.

MARISHA: Yeah.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay, so the one that failed takes– Ooh, that’s nice. Takes 16 points of lightning damage.

MARISHA: As they are tangled in this web, they erupt and I’m going to say as the lightning catches the web, it all explodes all at once into this electrified poison cloud that just bursts and I would say the other cultist would be close by to potentially get some poison damage. So the one that is webbed fries as the web acts like a conduit to the electricity and arcing lightning shatters across their body and they die! And the other one takes how many points of poison damage?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I rolled 16 points of poison damage.

MARISHA: And the other one is just too close to it, and dies from asphyxiation.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Nice.

MARISHA: As poisoned ozone erupts nearby and just takes them both out.

SAM and TAVIMA: Nice.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Double kill.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Going to need some healing at some point, but thank you.

TAVIMA: Tight.

HOA SEN: Short rest in our future.

MARISHA: All of the cultists on the outside are now dead. So. I’m going to say you’re not out of initiative, but the cultists will miss this turn. Slaughter, you’re up.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Are we going in? Should we burn the place down? What are we doing?

TAVIMA: I’ll meet you from the other side.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh hi, yeah.

TAVIMA: Yeah, good job. Can you toss the crossbow up?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh! 

TAVIMA: I slip and drop it again. I don’t fucking need it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Are we burning it down? Are we going in? Are we SWAT-teaming this?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Can we see now? Can we get a better vantage point of how many people are on the inside?

MARISHA: Are you peeking in through the window?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MARISHA: Okay. You see just one person stationed at the top and holding onto this leash, this heavy chain, they have what is known as a daedroth, which looks like a bipedal, dual-horned, almost like an alligator-mouthed, demon-like Daedric monster creature that’s probably standing– it fills– almost fills the entirety and reaches the ceiling of your tavern, probably about 12, 15 feet tall.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Shit.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But they’re not moving? They’re not making defensive moves, or?

MARISHA: They’re just waiting.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: This thing is huge! This thing is fucking huge.

TAVIMA: Why don’t we seal it off? We all have keys to this place.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No, there’s other people in there, it’s not alone.

TAVIMA: I bet they’re all bad.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Seal it off and burn it?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Lock it and burn it?

TAVIMA: Lock it and burn it. It’s got good bones, we can build a new place on good bones.

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s got terrible bones. I feel like we’ve established that. There’s no bones.

HOA SEN: It’s true.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Just meat.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Lock it up, try to burn it. As they try to escape, we attack ’em.

TAVIMA: There we go.

HOA SEN: I feel like it would be extra bonus points if we went to the front so they could run towards us and get trapped in my trap. 

HOA SEN: It’s still there.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You really want to use that trap.

HOA SEN: I mean.

TAVIMA: Yep.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I mean, I feel that.

MARISHA: As you all are having this conversation.

HOA SEN: Ah, too long.

TAVIMA: Shit.

MARISHA: Grelnok, you are peering into the window, your face–

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Stealthily!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s my turn, right?

MARISHA: It is your turn.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay.

MARISHA: Your face pretty close to the glass, you see as the daedroth fills the window with its enormous snout and fogs the glass, it notices your presence.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Burn it, burn it now, burn it now.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay, I will cast, we’re trying to get them to flee out the front door, is that right?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I don’t know. I’m going to run over to the back door and try to start locking it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Don’t bother, it’s my turn. I’m going to do webs over the door.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, good.

MARISHA: Okay. Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And that’s my action. For my movement and stuff, I’ll just start trucking around towards the front door to see if they’re popping out there, I guess, and someone else is going to set it on fire, right? Someone else can do fire, maybe?

TAVIMA: Brrah!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay. 

HOA SEN: Oh my gosh.

MARISHA: Tavima, it is your turn, if that is the end of yours.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah, that’s all I can do.

TAVIMA: Sweet, I just look down and I go: I got you. And I want to stomp on the ground because because I know these are loose tiles and expose and break through the tile to get down to the wood of this, and cast Sunfire directly below me and sprint to get off the front.

MARISHA: Amazing. Yeah, your tavern is pretty derelict at this point and you– Yeah, your tavern is pretty derelict at this point and you–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Terrible.

TAVIMA: It’s got terrible bones.

MARISHA: Break through the hole and you’re aiming towards the daedroth?

TAVIMA: Can I punch a hole through and see down into the interior?

MARISHA: You can.

AABRIA and GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Yeah, just. Fuck you! And just light it up.

MARISHA: Amazing, is that a saving throw for me?

TAVIMA: Who could possibly know? No, it’s a spell attack.

MARISHA: Okay, go for it.

TAVIMA: Okay. 17.

MARISHA: That hits.

TAVIMA: Cool, cool, cool. 3d8. I can’t do math. 19 points of fire damage.

MARISHA: Holy shit.

TAVIMA: Is the person holding them on the leash within five feet of them?

MARISHA: Yes.

TAVIMA: Sweet, and then they also take one point of fire damage.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah.

MARISHA: So as the Sunfire hits, it just courses through the chain a little bit and the cultist goes like, “Ow.” It burns his hand a little bit, but he’s okay. The daedroth, you can see the heat has supercharged almost his plates, his thick hide. supercharged almost his plates, his thick hide. He did take damage, but he looks up at you and snorts as fire just puffs out of his nose.

TAVIMA: Less effective than I wanted. And I want to get off the front of the roof.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: And I don’t know if you will let me, as a bonus action, attempt to lock the front door.

MARISHA: Yeah, I’d say– You’re sliding off the roof. Give me an acrobatics check to see if you can land it.

TAVIMA: Four? Is four good?

MARISHA: You’re like, “Fuck yeah,” right as you’re about to do this awesome three-point landing, there goes another shingle. And then you–

MALLORY KLAXTON: Parkour!

MARISHA: You land right on your tailbone.

TAVIMA: Uh-huh!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, that fucking hurts.

MARISHA: Yeah, right up your spine a little bit. You’re okay, but it wasn’t the most graceful fall.

TAVIMA: Cool, cool, cool.

MARISHA: Yeah, I’d say you can’t lock the door this turn.

TAVIMA: I just get up and I’m waiting for Slaughter to come around to the front and I’m like: Ow.

MARISHA: Yeah,  yeah.

TAVIMA: The door, the door, the door, the door.

MARISHA: Grelnok, it is your turn. Hoa, you’re on deck.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m going to take out my torch. 

MARISHA: Yes!

HOA SEN: Pay off!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And just use my free action to start burning as much as I can around the bar.

MARISHA: Let’s see.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I can use my whole action if it’s necessary. I just want to fucking, you know, catch things.

MARISHA: It takes a little bit of time to try and get things to catch, but yeah, that side of the building slowly does start to slowly burn away.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MARISHA: That’s probably your turn.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Roll up some newspaper first, and then get some smaller sticks.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah, I know.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I feel like our place probably has balled up trash, and dried rags and stuff and oil.

MARISHA: The wood is dry rotted, so it’s like, you know. But there is still some stone in the foundation that doesn’t catch. So you’re trying to go for the wood beams.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Can I use– Can I still move?

MARISHA: Yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay, then I’m going to try to make a run for the front.

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And then as my bonus action, I can move up to my speed toward an enemy of my choice. So I’m going to use another full movement to get to the front and try to run around to the front window.

MARISHA: The front window?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

MARISHA: Because he webbed the door.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: The back door.

MARISHA: You webbed the back door.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I want to get to the front door.

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: To, like– I don’t think I’d be able to lock it on my turn, but I want to be ready to, like– Anything that comes out of that window, I want to try to be in front of it.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah. I’d say you definitely are able to get to the front, and then that’s probably about all you can do this turn.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: As long as it gets me closer to an enemy than I started, would it?

MARISHA: Yes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

MARISHA: I’d say yes.

HOA SEN: I do the running to the front thing as well, and after I run to the front, I can lock the front door. Can I do this?

MARISHA: Sure!

HOA SEN: Okay, I lock the front door. I don’t want to, I feel so bad about our memories and our friendships built in this building.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Get the sign off the door, at least.

HOA SEN: All right, and I take the sign off the door. You know what? I don’t know if you’ll let me do this because I already moved once. Maybe I can divide up my movement. I want to go to the horse and make sure it’s not going to get the horse. The horse!

MARISHA: The horse is around back.

HOA SEN: Oh shit.

MARISHA: You’ve already used your movement to move around front. I think it would be another move to get to the horse.

HOA SEN: I use the rest of my movement to go to my bird pen, my bird cage pen.

MARISHA: Oh, yeah, yeah.

HOA SEN: And then I open it and I say: Be free!  I let them go to be free.

HOA SEN: Not towards the fire, away from the fire. Other way, other way.

MARISHA: Your precious birdies are no longer caged.

HOA SEN: That was my whole turn.

MARISHA: Oh, that’s so sweet, though!

HOA SEN: I don’t want them to die.

MARISHA: Mallory, you’re up.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m the only one left at the back, aren’t I?

MARISHA: You are.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay.

MARISHA: I think Slaughter is also–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: En route to the front.

MARISHA: Yeah, around the side of the building. So Slaughter is the closest one to you.

MALLORY KLAXTON: How’s the horse look?

MARISHA: Once again, it’s still–

TAVIMA: He will outlive us all!

MARISHA: Its knees are kind of shaky. So he just lays down and tucks his hooves under him and still foaming at the mouth. You’re not sure what’s with this foaming thing.

MALLORY KLAXTON: It seems like a problem that can be dealt with later.

MARISHA: Yeah, the horse is no worse off than what you left it at.

MALLORY KLAXTON: The horse is not an imminent threat.

MARISHA: The horse doesn’t know what’s happening. It’s so old, it doesn’t know.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s got cataracts.

MARISHA: Yes.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to try and take the other direction around the house because I feel like there’s less commotion and I’m feeling a little ragged. So I’m going to want to jump to some cover on my way there.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: But before I go, I’m going to throw a Lightning Splash into the house because it’s got a 60-foot range where I can make a ball explode.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Cool.

MARISHA: Can you do it through walls?

MALLORY KLAXTON: As long as I think I can see. I think as long as I can see, it’s fine.

MARISHA: Yeah, fine, works with me, I don’t know.

MALLORY KLAXTON: As long as I can see through the window, and I’m going to try and get both of them in that little splash.

MARISHA: Okay, the cultist and the monster?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah, and I’m going to put a Power Surge in it.

MARISHA: That’s a dex save once again?

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s two dex saves. Yeah, it’s a dex save.

MARISHA: Okay, for the cultist. The cultist rolls a natural 17, so I think it’s a save.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Damn, these guys roll good.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Boo.

TAVIMA: They roll so good.

MARISHA: Ooh. Ooh, ooh, ooh. The daedroth does not roll– The daedroth fails.

MALLORY KLAXTON: So okay, this is lightning damage. Let’s see what we got. Ehh. Okay. 11 points of lightning damage.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: That’s what I got.

MARISHA: He’s looking rough.

MALLORY KLAXTON: And now I’m going to roll my way and I’m going to try and take some cover so that these things, I’m going to find a place to hide. I’m going to make my way around and–

LAURA and MARISHA: ♪ Makin’ my way! ♪

MALLORY KLAXTON: — because I am squishy.

MARISHA: Okay. It is the cultist’s turn.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh boy.

MARISHA: Sort of in the direction that you already started catching the house on fire, the daedroth rears back and you can just hear this guttural as a sucking-in noise and then as it unleashes a fire breath across this wall and starts cutting a hole in the place that you’ve already started.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh.

MARISHA: It is a 15-foot cone. I’m going to say– I’m going to say Hoa, Grelnok, and Tavima to make a dexterity saving throw for me.

TAVIMA: Oh! 13.

HOA SEN: Six.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 11.

MARISHA: 13, six, and 11. It is– Okay, it is a DC 11 dex saving throw. So you pass, the other two of you take, I’m going to say it’s through the wall, so I’m going to actually still say that it’s half damage. You take six points of fire damage.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

MARISHA: But where you already started weakening the foundation is now just carved open like this nice, long, vertical window hole.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So that’s in the front of the house?

MARISHA: Burning.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Front of the building now?

MARISHA: I’d say it’s, like, where the side of the building and the corner of the building meet where you already started burning it down on the side of the building. He’s taken out this chunk of the corner of the building where you guys are.

TAVIMA: We’re good, this is fine.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Our place.

MARISHA: And then the cultist who is also there– What can the cultist do? The cultist also has a flame and he sees Hoa through this window.

HOA SEN: Oh god.

MARISHA: Chucking the flame.

HOA SEN: No.

MARISHA: I believe that hits with, once again, another 17.

HOA SEN: Sure do.

MARISHA: And he now has this nice, carved opening. You take three fire damage.

HOA SEN: Okay, I’m fine, it’s fine.

MARISHA: And that is the cultist’s turn. Slaughter, you are up.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh!

MARISHA: With Tavima on deck.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Can I see inside the house, the tavern through this hole that the creature has carved?

MARISHA: Because you’re still making your way around the front, right?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah, I’m heading that way.

MARISHA: You saw these licks of fire course out into the front.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay.

MARISHA: In front of you.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Then I’ll continue running around.

MARISHA: Okay, I was going to say you do have this window which was where Grelnok was looking through before. So you do see this giant, blue-scaled, horned demon beast in there–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Okay.

MARISHA: — that just took out the front of your tavern.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Do you think I could make it to the front if I ran up there?

MARISHA: Mm-hmm.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right, I’ll run to the front and see if I can get an opening over there.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And then I’m going to pop a skull, set it on fire.

MARISHA: Yeah .

TAVIMA: Shotgun it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Light it on fire.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: And then wheel back to throw it, but then look at my chosen sister and realize that maybe I’ve been doing this wrong this whole time. I’ll flip it to my left hand.

TAVIMA: Yeah.

MARISHA: Oh.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Throw it lefty and see if that works.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: This is it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Natural one. I’m just a poor, a very poor thrower. A bad pitcher.

MARISHA: You try to go right through this perfectly carved hole and for some reason, even though you have 15 feet in front of you that’s open, you clip the side of the building and it just bounces right back towards you.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Fuck!

TAVIMA: I pick it up. Here you go, try again.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right, that’s my action, that uses a majica point and I used my movement. I mean, I can’t really do anything else. So I’ll use my bonus action, Patient Defense.  I don’t have anything else I can do.

MARISHA: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’ll use my bonus action to make sure no children are running into your trap.

HOA SEN: In case they couldn’t read the note, that’s fair.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Can you heal with any of your actions or bonus actions?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: With an action, I can.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah. Are you looking rough? Okay, I’ll remember that for next time.

MARISHA: As you turn around to look, you do see a few citizens that are just on their–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Get away! Shoo!

MARISHA: And at that, they’re just–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Get away! Get away from here.

MARISHA: And they turn and they run. They don’t know what’s going on.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Must be a fantasy world where people just don’t huddle closer to a giant–

MARISHA and TAVIMA: Yeah . A whole lot’s going down in the Dominion right now. People are nervous. That was Slaughter. Tavima.

TAVIMA: Sweet. It’s open, so what is on the inside? So there’s a big, bad boy.

MARISHA: Yes.

TAVIMA: Someone holding it.

MARISHA: Do a quick perception check for me.

TAVIMA: 11.

MARISHA: That’s okay, you didn’t need much. You see inside the tavern that the entire floor of your entrance dining room is gone.

MARISHA: The foundation has been ripped open to reveal this glowing red hole and at the precipice of this hidden basement is a massive spiral staircase. And you can only see from your perspective, you can really only see, like, you’re trying to peer over maybe five or six steps that start spiraling down as this red glow is emanating from the bottom. And that’s about all you can see from your vantage.

TAVIMA: That’s insane.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Who sold us this place?

TAVIMA: Yeah! 

TAVIMA: This place is dope. How many enemies are still on the inside?

MARISHA: Still just the two. You still just see this daedroth that is looking pretty rough, and the cultist that is still looking fine.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So the bad chick went down, I see.

TAVIMA: Vibes. I–

MARISHA: 

TAVIMA: I’m looking through where it’s burning, and then I just scooch five feet to the right and I’m going to bust through my cool window to get inside.

MARISHA: Amazing. Yes.

TAVIMA: And I want to Shield Charge the daedroth.

MARISHA: Okay, you don’t even have to roll. This is your window, you’ve built this. So you do a full barrel roll, you tuck and–

TAVIMA: Captain America nonsense.

MARISHA: 100%. As you roll in and you stick the landing and you’re inside.

TAVIMA: Tight.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Okay, so I want to Shield Charge the daedroth and see if it does anything. Oh yeah, 14 plus five. 19.

MARISHA: That hits.

TAVIMA: To bash the guy, cool. 3d6. 11 points of bludgeoning damage and a DC 13 strength saving throw. I’m trying to knock it prone.

MARISHA: Natural one.

TAVIMA: Dude, okay, so he’s knocked down. Sword out.

MARISHA: How do you want to do this?

TAVIMA: Oh, shut up!

MARISHA: Yeah. You guys rolled really hard on this beast early.

TAVIMA: Yes!

MARISHA: He was supposed to be a thing, and he’s not now.

TAVIMA: With that, then, I think she comes in, charges him, and then as she pushes it away, this thing has a weird, heated carapace, right?

MARISHA: Yeah, you can see his fire breath that can course beneath his plate armor.

TAVIMA: This Templar reaches out with this almost sun ray-like hand of fire and grabs in between it and just jams her sword in between some of the bits and rocks down with it and then just looks up at its handler.

MARISHA: It’s like when you see a blacksmith using hot metal on hot metal, and it’s like pudding, it just melts right through his platelets. Platelets?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah.

TAVIMA: That seems fine.

MARISHA: Yeah, that’s a thing, right?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Yeah. And it starts to just sink and sear and can hear that searing noise as it falls into him.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is the searing noise?

HOA SEN: That sounded good! 

TAVIMA: Amazing! All right, and that’s me.

MARISHA: Awesome, and you push him back, right? Or he falls prone.

TAVIMA: He falls prone.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah, yeah, so he collapsed. You see this giant beast that is now, he almost fills what is left of the floor of your tavern. he almost fills what is left of the floor of your tavern.

TAVIMA: I just want to turn and look at him or at the handler and just go: Run.

MARISHA: Make an intimidation check.

TAVIMA: Yes, I’m proficient in that.

HOA SEN: Run into the trap!

TAVIMA: 16.

MARISHA: Amazing, I’m going to say that that was totally effective, and the next person who attacks the cultist has advantage because they are now a little freaked out.

TAVIMA: Cool.

MARISHA: And that next person is Grelnok.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Sick.

TAVIMA: Let’s go.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: All right. I’m watching all that happen as the window starts closing, I’m going to jump right through it again.

MARISHA: Yes!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Three-point landing.

MARISHA: As almost it barely has a moment to complete and its image comes into focus before, same sound effect. It breaks open again.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I look up, I look at the cultist and go: Did my friend scare you?

TAVIMA: Yeah!

MARISHA: Attack with advantage.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Let’s go.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Here we go.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Please.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Two ones.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: No, no, no! 16 and a 17, so that’s a 24 to attack.

MARISHA: Oh yeah, definitely hits.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Misses.

MARISHA: That definitely hits. 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: This one’s dodgy. Whoa, what was that?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That was terrible.

MARISHA: What did you do?

HOA SEN: The evil magic.

TAVIMA: The green sniper, what?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That was a d12 plus five. So 17.

MARISHA: Damage?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yes.

MARISHA: Oh my god. So as you burst through and you slice your sword across him, he is just pushed back from the force of your attack and falls down this giant hole and falls down this giant hole in the spiral staircase.

TAVIMA: You are literally the coolest person I have ever known.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Look at this thing you just killed. You just fucking killed that thing.

TAVIMA: But that guy’s slinking down. He just keeps going end over end.

TAVIMA: This is a sick beat, I just start throwing it back to the sound of this guy falling dead.

HOA SEN: Should be our new birthday song. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: ♪ We wish you a merry ♪

MARISHA: He is dead.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Nice.

MARISHA: You all have this quick moment to regroup. The side of your tavern is still, I wouldn’t say it’s in a full blown flame, but there are still tiny embers and flames that are licking and slowly eating the sides of your tavern from where you started, it’s eroding away as the flames spread around. But you see inside, a better vantage as you can get inside, this giant hole in the ground. You look down and you see that this spiral staircase goes down what must be 50, 100 feet. All you can see from now is the top of what looks like this giant statue, it must be 50-foot. Somebody roll a history check for me in this moment.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Sure.

MARISHA: Or– No, no. History or religion.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I have a plus zero to both. 

TAVIMA: Do it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: So 12.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: Yes.

MARISHA: You know that this is Daedric in nature from what you’ve heard and especially you, Slaughter, who’s a little bit more in touch and especially after talking with the soldiers earlier and the one that was giving you shit for believing in Daedric magic. You know this to be Mehrunes Dagon, an imposing demon-like figure with short horns erupting from the top of his head. He’s got huge arms, four of them erupting from his torso. Three of them brace against a massive rock jutting out from the surface of the chamber below while the fourth arm holds a giant battleaxe. And you can’t see the base of the staircase from here, but the staircase wraps around this giant statue.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: So when we found that our shed had a portal into a nightmare place, we didn’t check under our crawlspace or anything? We just were like, “That’s probably the only one?”

HOA SEN: We thought it wasn’t related.

TAVIMA: Could you have imagined that there’d be a giant spiral staircase to hell?

HOA SEN: Lightning can’t strike twice, I think is the expression.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Are there any other places that we should check around the property after this?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: The whole thing, maybe the whole thing–

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s about to get cleaned out anyway, because eventually the fires are going to hit the gas leak in the kitchen.

TAVIMA: Oh god.

HOA SEN: I would like to cast Frost Cloak on the building to stop the fire.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: But it’s a total loss now. Maybe we should just let it burn.

TAVIMA: No.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We don’t have the insurance.

HOA SEN: We don’t have insurance.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m going to use my stick to crack open the window and gingerly step through the stained glass window because I’m not jumping through that.

TAVIMA: Yeah, that’s fair.

HOA SEN: And lock the front door also, yes.

MARISHA: Okay, so yes, with a little bit of time– How much time do you want to take putting out the flame?

HOA SEN: The Frost Cloak duration is only 10 minutes anyway. So I guess that, 10 or 20.

MARISHA: Okay, okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: We need to heal anyway.

MARISHA: If you want to take the time, you can.

HOA SEN: Uh oh, oh. Should we not do this? Hold on, I got scared.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m tapped, so if we take a second.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I– I am–

HOA SEN: You’re like dying, right?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I could heal both of you for a few rounds.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Really?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yeah.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

HOA SEN: If it’s a short rest, we can roll our hit dice.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: How long is a short rest, an hour or 30 minutes?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: This lieutenant just ran down there, we’ve got to pursue.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I know, we got to– They’re going to know, they’re going to come up.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We’ll be fine.

TAVIMA: If we just wait like a minute, I think our majica–

MARISHA: Another flash of red pumps from the bottom.

TAVIMA: — back online.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right. I will cast Spirit Mender. Come close with me. And “At the start of your turn for the next three rounds, you or an ally you choose,” is that just one ally? “Regains 1d4 four plus one hit point.”

MARISHA: Okay. That’s pretty good.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: For three rounds.

TAVIMA: How long does it take–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Four.

TAVIMA: — to regen our stamina and magicka? Majica? I don’t know how to say it.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: 11 points.

HOA SEN: I thought that was every new battle, no?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: 11 points?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’ll do for you.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Can you heal this one? Hoa, can you heal this one or no?

HOA SEN: I need a short rest–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh boy.

HOA SEN: — for me to do that spell.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I could use that 11.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’ve already given it away.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: But we’re– you can do it again as we’re on our way down. It’s a round, right, or three rounds?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I am out of magicka. Unless after fights, we regenerate it.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: After fights, we get it back.

MALLORY KLAXTON: After fights, we regenerate.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Right, DM?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah.

TAVIMA: Got to check those notes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Yep. That’s what she just said.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: “Yes, that’s right, that’s exactly right.”

MARISHA: Yep, you regenerate it after fights.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That I what Matt had told us after the first game.

MARISHA: Once you leave initiative, you regenerate, yes.

TAVIMA: Okay, vibes.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’m clean slating?

MARISHA: You have been in initiative since the start of– since you have come into the tavern.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Are we out of initiative now?

MARISHA: Yeah, I’ll say you’re out of initiative now, fine.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I will cast Spirit Mender on you, giving you also 11 hit points.

TAVIMA: Nice.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I am okay.

MARISHA: Were you attempting to quell the flames? As it is.

HOA SEN: Yeah, I’ll do that, it’s just an action and yeah, it’s just one action to do that.

MARISHA: Okay, I’ll say you are able to tamp them down. There’s still a little bit of burning embers on the edges of the wood, but you are able to slow down the spread pretty significantly.

HOA SEN: Just so we can get back out.

TAVIMA: It’s humid. It’ll be fine.

HOA SEN: Just so we can get back up.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Maybe it’ll rains.

MARISHA: That’s not how fire works, but yeah, I mean, sure.

TAVIMA: I don’t know how fire or water work.

HOA SEN: Or water, yeah.

TAVIMA: Neither thing.

HOA SEN: Yeah, if we had one minute, maybe someone can give the horse out in the back some water.

TAVIMA: I just gesture down the hole.

MALLORY KLAXTON: We should go right now.

MARISHA: You all hear a bit of an echo.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: There’s a devil ritual going.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yeah. Listen, there’s things happening.

MARISHA: That starts reverberating from the bottom of, “Please, please!”

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Let’s go down.

MARISHA: “Please, Mehrunes!”

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Oh, that’s not– That’s bad. Let’s kill her before she wakes up Mehrunes.

HOA SEN: I was told at the beginning of this to not try to look for Mehrunes, so this is bad.

TAVIMA: Oop.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Go, go, go. Run down the stairs.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Who’s going first?

TAVIMA: Me!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’ll follow.

MARISHA: Okay.

MALLORY KLAXTON: All right.

MARISHA: As you guys slowly move down the staircase, you continue to hear echoes of begging, pleading, “I beg of you, what must I do to prove my worth?” As you continue to move down.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We pick up speed.

TAVIMA: Yep, yep, yep.

MARISHA: “Can you hear me, great prince?” And all of you, seeming to emanate throughout the whole bodies and within your skulls almost reverberating from your bones, “Serendipity is on your side, beggar. Seems we have intruders amongst us.” And about this time, you see the lieutenant, beautiful woman, pale skin, cloak pulled over her head, pulls back, her long ears pointing up. Looks up at you, eyes dripping with blood as she sees you descending the spiral staircase. “I knew you’d be back.” Roll for initiative again.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh my god.

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

HOA SEN: I mean, we live here.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Is this Devin? Diven?

MARISHA: It is not Devin. You do not recognize this woman.

HOA SEN: Oh, Devin.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Natural 20.

TAVIMA: Yeah!

MARISHA: What we got, what do we got? Grelnok, finally?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Natural 20.

MARISHA: Hell yes.

TAVIMA: Brrah! Anyone else over 20?

TAVIMA: Just a dirty 20.

MARISHA: Okay, perfect, that’s great. Let me roll for her.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Flank sisters.

TAVIMA: Yah! Brrah!

MARISHA: Ooh, she rolled real bad. She did not do good.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Is there other people? Is it just her right now?

MARISHA: You see two other cultists at her side.

TAVIMA: Well.

MARISHA: And she just rolled terribly, okay. Sorry, bear with me.

TAVIMA: No, you’re good.

MARISHA: Tavima. 20 to 15? 15 to 10?

HOA SEN: 11.

MARISHA: Okay. Yeah.

HOA SEN: So I’m third? Wow. 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: We are so shitty. 

MARISHA: That then puts her–

HOA SEN: We’re level two shitty.

MARISHA: And then five to zero?

MALLORY KLAXTON: Six.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Three.

MARISHA: Oh, you did say– It was six, three? Okay, okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Wow.

MARISHA: Mallory, Slaughter, okay.

HOA SEN: Has it been over 10 minutes since we started the battle in the back of the house?

MARISHA: With the break that you guys just took, I’d say right at 10 minutes.

HOA SEN: Frost Cloak is gone, but I’ll do it again.

MARISHA: Okay. And then, wait, Mallory, Slaughter Grimm, you’re last?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Three.

MARISHA: Okay. Grelnok, you are first.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: All right.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: All right, Grel.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: How far away are we?

MARISHA: You’re still perched up on the spiral staircase. I’d say you’re about 20 feet up and another 10 feet away from her, and you look down and you can see that there are these Daedric runes carved around this gigantic statue of Mehrunes Dagon and that has been this pulsing red energy emanating from these runes with this lieutenant, this Daedra lieutenant– Dremora, sorry– Dremora lieutenant standing in the middle of it as she’s crying these red tears, attempting to commune with Mehrunes Dagon.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m afraid to go in the middle of those runes. This seems bad.

TAVIMA: Just kill her.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: How close are the other people to her?

MARISHA: They’re five feet flanked behind her. They’re her squad, you know?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Aight, I’m going to give it a try. I’m going to run up and try to get within– right next to her. I’m going to get up right next to her.

MARISHA: Okay.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And right as I slide up next to her, I’m going to run up, grab my axe, and slam it down into the ground, and cast Stone Fist to try to hit all three at once.

MARISHA: Amazing, do it.

TAVIMA: Oh!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Triple play.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So this is a dexterity save of 14.

MARISHA: Oh.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: For all of these.

MARISHA: There’s no way. Okay, let’s do her first. Nope. The cultists. Okay, one of the cultists made it, one of her little minions, the one that’s back to the right of her. Everyone else failed.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: They take 15 force damage, the ones that failed, and half that for the one that saved.

MARISHA: Okay. So the cultist that’s to her left immediately is obliterated as these rocks from the ground–

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

MARISHA: — pop up around them and completely crushes them without a second thought. So that one is dead. The other one, you said, takes half damage, he is looking rough and then she’s– That’s what she’s at.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: And then for my bonus action, I’m going to Venomous Claw her.

MARISHA: Okay, make an attack.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Ooh! That’s good, 15 plus something.

MARISHA: Yeah, hits.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Okay.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ow.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So that’s 3d8 plus my strength modifier.

MARISHA: Hell yes.

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So that’s–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: That’s a lot.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Six, 10, 13 more points of poison damage to her.

TAVIMA: Heck yes.

HOA SEN: Gosh. That’s a hell of a round.

TAVIMA: You rock!

HOA SEN: Kill them all!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Is it on the lieutenant or on the cultist?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: On the lieutenant.

MARISHA: Oh my god, I’m not good at math. Okay, there we go, there we go, there we go. 13. Hang on, hang on. Get me a calculator. I don’t have a calculator. Let me just do this old school style.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Carry the three.

MARISHA: Yes, full-on. Okay, okay, yeah, all right, there we go, I was right.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m just going to grab her shirt and pull her forward and I’m going to go: Hit me.

TAVIMA: Yeah!

MARISHA: Once again, she is like, “What?”

HOA SEN: We all nod, “Yep, mm-hmm.”

MARISHA: “Okay.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: She likes it, it’s fine.

MARISHA: Tavima, it’s your turn.

TAVIMA: Let’s go. I love my battle sister, and I just sprint in. All right, I had to write it all out. As I run down, cast Backlash, so DC 15 con save.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Backlash.

MARISHA: Hits.

TAVIMA: Wait, did she make it?

MARISHA: She fails.

TAVIMA: Oh cool, cool.

MARISHA: Yes.

TAVIMA: Sweet. All right, five points of fire damage and Doomed until the end of the next turn.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Doomed?

TAVIMA: Yeah. So she’s about to take way more damage. Finish running, Shield Charge her.

MARISHA: Okay, roll to hit.

TAVIMA: Do I get an advantage because of melee? I want to come around and flank. Yeah, I’m not trying to run into you.

MARISHA: Sure, if you’re flanking, yeah.

TAVIMA: Cool, because that was much better, 16.

MARISHA: That hits.

TAVIMA: Yes!

HOA SEN: Ooh!

MALLORY KLAXTON: Ooh!

TAVIMA: Cool, cool, cool. 3d6 plus strength. Which is another– those are low rolls. Nine, no. 10 points of bludgeoning damage plus 2d4. Plus another six fire damage from Backlash. And now I’m going to use, for my action, longsword attack.

MARISHA: Oh my god, yeah.

TAVIMA: Oh yeah, sorry, before that, I need a DC 13 strength saving throw or she’s knocked prone from the Shield Charge.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Good gravy.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: What a great–

MARISHA: Fail.

TAVIMA: Yes! So this is also with advantage now because she’s down on the ground.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: God.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Oh my.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: That’s clutch!

TAVIMA: 18 to hit.

MARISHA: Hits.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Oh my god.

TAVIMA: Sweet.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You’re going to kill her in one move.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Yes!

HOA SEN: We’re just attempting to take a mental photograph.

TAVIMA: For another seven points of slashing damage, and I get another 2d4 fire damage because it’s every time I hit with melee.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Because she’s Doomed.

TAVIMA: Yep, because she’s Doomed. So another six points of fire damage.

MALLORY KLAXTON: What?!

TAVIMA: And then I’m going to spend one more stamina as a free action to puncture her. So I need a DC 14 dexterity check.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Oh my god!

TAVIMA: She’s prone, so that should be with disadvantage.

MARISHA: You’re right. She rolled a 16 on that first one, and then a 13 on the second, she fails.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Ooh!

HOA SEN: Uh!

TAVIMA: For another eight points of piercing damage.

MARISHA: This was supposed to be–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: A multi-round thing?

MARISHA: The climactic culmination– 

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Battle sister.

MARISHA: With things that happened: How do you want to do this?

TAVIMA: Yes! Oh, yay!

MARISHA: Sorry, other players.

TAVIMA: I’m sorry.

MARISHA: Sorry.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: I’ll be right there! 

MALLORY KLAXTON: Hi. Well.

HOA SEN: I’m drawing a picture of the scene while I’m– 

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m sitting down. I’m just going to sit down.

HOA SEN: I’ll remember this forever.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: I’m just drooling watching her fight.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Nosebleed?

TAVIMA: I do all of this while never breaking eye contact with Grelnok.

HOA SEN: Aw.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Have some chips to dip.

MARISHA: this.

TAVIMA: Yep. Yeah, I don’t know how to redescribe it. You make it cool, I don’t know.

MARISHA: Okay, so as you just come at her, this woman who is already vulnerable and– 

MARISHA: — emotionally charged in the middle of trying to commune with and get this all power, you slash into her once, you bash her again. She tumbles back into this runic circle and falls downward as the runes burst again with this red energy, and falls downward as the runes burst again with this red energy, and you almost see the tendrils of the energy reach out and begin to consume her as blood starts being siphoned and pouring out of her pores as blood starts being siphoned and pouring out of her pores as her skin pulls back all over her body, as her entire life force is just siphoned out of her and you see these blood droplets floating in the air mixing with this red, necromantic demonic energy mixing with this red, necromantic demonic energy and then gets sucked right back down into the runes that were glowing this red energy.

HOA SEN: We just fed the monsters.

TAVIMA: So I do all that, and then I just turn back to everyone that’s still coming down like: Oop.

MARISHA: And then you hear as much as everything was on fire and the clanging and the banging as your fellow teammates come running down the stairs, that same voice echoes within all of your all’s heads and throughout the building. “A pact will be fulfilled. The time of the Ambitions has come. Only those worthy will claim their power.” And as quickly as this escalated, silence. You see one more remaining cultist who looks around.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You better leave.

MARISHA: And just begins walking up the staircase, looking to see.  He encounters you, Mallory.

MALLORY KLAXTON: Do I recognize the face?

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Is it Timothy? 

TAVIMA: Timothy!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: You bastard.

MARISHA: Yeah, you know what? It’s Timothy. 

MARISHA: Why not? It’s Timothy, fuck this guy.

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: We should screen our employees better.

HOA SEN: Inside job.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I’m just going to take a swing with my stick.

MARISHA: Okay.

TAVIMA: Let’s go!

MALLORY KLAXTON: All right, taking a swing.

MARISHA: “Mallory?”

MALLORY KLAXTON: 16 to hit.

MARISHA: “Please.” It hits. “Please, we had good times.”

MALLORY KLAXTON: It’s four points of damage. Go, shoo!

MARISHA: You kick him back down the stairs.

TAVIMA: Oh damn.

MARISHA: Falls, collapses on top of the lieutenant’s body as once again the final runes, only three though, not all of them, just a few runes go like. Yeah.  Just sucks what few remaining hit points was left in poor Timothy.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Poor little Chalamet. 

TAVIMA: Oh, it’s an honor.

HOA SEN: Is that his name?

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: He’s totally little and cute.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: So little and cute.

MALLORY KLAXTON: He’s a snitch.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: He was gone before his time.

MALLORY KLAXTON: I can’t stand a snitch.

MARISHA: With the cultists defeated–

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: That’s your two weeks’ notice. 

MARISHA: This new emergent silence, quiet. You, the tavern keepers, are now alone with the remnants of your tavern that must now need a bit more renovations and repairs to get running again. The good news, however, your property just expanded by about 350 square feet.

TAVIMA: Vibes.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: Nice!

MARISHA: And that is where we will close Part Two of our three-shot of Elder Scrolls Online.

TAVIMA: I want to look over at all of you. We need to name the horse.

MARISHA: What did I do? Did I do it wrong?

TAVIMA: We never named the horse.

MARISHA: Part Two of our three-shot. 

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: Wait, we never named the horse. We’re going to have to rename the bar now as well because it’s been destroyed.

MALLORY KLAXTON: But there’s now a really nice hole!

HOA SEN: There is a nice hole!

SLAUGHTER GRIMM: It’s a really nice hole! 

MALLORY KLAXTON: We’ve got a dining room inside a wine cellar. This is awesome.

MARISHA: It all comes around.

MALLORY KLAXTON: We can put a glass floor in and rent it.

MARISHA: It all works out.

HOA SEN: We did that thing where we materialized it into being.

GRELNOK NIGHTBRINGER: “The Secret.”

TAVIMA: Praise Oprah.

MARISHA: Thank you all for hanging out with us. Please go check out Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood now at www.elderscrollsonline.com/buy now at www.elderscrollsonline.com/buy and we will see you for the grand finale of this three-shot. 

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