Thursday, April 2, 2020

Se'Kai Part 3: Why Are We Splitting The Party Again?

This one was a long one. Remember kids, don't split the party, unless you really want to make your DM work harder than he was planning!

Somehow the party was able to keep a low profile throughout the night while the city was searched, and the next morning they met to formulate a plan of how to get out. After gathering some information, the party discovered that the goblins were working under the command of the hobgoblin Orkovac the Wrath, and while there was the necessary high level of organization for the goblins and hobgoblins to take over the city of Doncaster, there was a distinct lack of camaraderie among the goblins. Orkovac was notorious for playing favorites with his soldiers, and put his favorites in the richer areas of the city, securing for himself the mansion the city's mayor, Admiral Elias Dicken, leaving those who hadn't gained his favor to make their scant living in the slums. The inequality suggested that, if Orkovac and his posse just disappeared, the goblins would leave for greener pastures.

Naturally, when presented with a decent spread of information over several areas in the city, the party did the most logical thing possible.

Oh, wait, that would be finding which house in particular Orkovac was staying at, rolling up as a group, and ending him.

No, the party decided to split up, with Somen and Savin wanting to, in their own ways, scope out the richer parts of the city, Jangle going back to the ship for his knife, and Bubbles taking Yesmae and Grula to the slums to see if they could gather some more information on any weaknesses that Orkovac had or easy ways he could be reached.


Bubbles, Grula, and Yesmae slowly made their way to the slums of the city. It definitely appeared that, perhaps a half-century ago, this was a rather busy center of commerce, but with the passage of time, as the city expanded and new districts sprang up, this once-lively neighborhood soon lay forgotten to all but those who could afford no better.

It did not take long for the group to spot a handful of bored-looking goblins. Before they could agree on a plan, Bubbles quickly greeted the goblins.

The goblins, not sure how to respond, quickly muttered among themselves. One finally broke the silence, asking, "Who are you and what do you what?"

"Ah, I'm sorry. My friends and I were just passing through. My name is," and then, in typical Kenku fashion, Bubbles gave the true pronunciation of his name, imitating the sound of boiling water.

Naturally, the goblins had zero idea how to respond to that, to which Bubbles said, "Bubbles is also fine. Anywho we were wondering how it is that you guys ended up in the slums."

"Orkovac is a-" followed by an unseemly insult in the Goblinish language. "He led us in this campaign as a way to get us out of caves and into some decent living, but then he just holed up where all those classy people are with his friends."

Bubbles, seeing an opportunity, said, "Oh, what do you say we step into that tavern over there and chat about this?"

The goblins agreed, and they entered.

Not long after, the Bubbles had encouraged the goblins to drink themselves into thinking that a revolt, followed by joining up with our ragtag group of heroes starting the next day, would be a good idea. And I mean, I tried. I actually had everyone who was drinking roll a quick Constitution Save, and while Bubbles was fine, the goblins got completely smashed. So I, as the DM, resolved that, if the players could pull this off, they might have a few new crew mates.


Irritated about being volunteered to attempt to speak with the richer citizens of the city, Somen spent some time considering how best to approach the situation. He followed the wall of the richer, uptown area, to its one opening, a gate manned by a quiet, unassuming guardsman, seated, bored, reading a book.

Upon seeing the well-dressed nobleman approaching him, the guardsman quickly put down his book and bowed to Somen. "I do apologize, welcome, welcome, to what do we owe the pleasure of a visit from such a distinguished..."

"Lord. Lord Somen Hing. I just happened to be passing through on holiday and hoped to stop by to leave my favor with the mayor. I've heard that he's indisposed,"

"Oh, he ain't that busy at the moment. Let me check his schedule." He then flipped through another book on the desk of the guard station. "It looks like he's not expecting anybody."

Somen smirked at this comment. Of course the mayor wasn't busy. If he was alive he was likely doing nothing. The fact that he wasn't held in a jail cell likely meant that the goblins were having him take care of all the official city business while they gorged themselves on whatever they could find. Important work, certainly, but he would not be busy. Certainly not too busy to briefly speak with a traveling noble. If any of the plebeians in this city had that kind of sense, it would be the mayor.

"Right, so if you'll kindly show me your papers, I can let you through."

Somen grimaced. The papers, right, the one thing he had hoped he would not have to draw upon. Hopefully any unsavory news Somen was trying to escape would not have reached this guardsman's ears. Wanting to avoid making an unnecessary scene, Somen produced the necessary documents.

The guardsman quickly leafed through the papers. "Ah yes, everything appears to be in order. Uter, you say? That's quite a long way from here."

"Yes, as I said, I am on holiday."

"Well, I see no issues. Carry on." He handed the paper back to Somen.

Somen tried to offer no clue to his thoughts. "Where am I to go?"

"Ah yes, right, the mayor's manor. Biggest one at the top of the hill. You can't miss it."

"Thank you." Somen continued through the gate, up the hill to the indicated mansion, a three-story mansion with a large circular window in the center of the top floor.

The meeting with the mayor was as awkward as it was brief, until Somen used the Message spell to telepathically speak with the mayor about what was really happening, quickly gleaning much of the same information as the party in the slums, with the added knowledge that Orkovac was residing in the mayor's manor, currently gorging himself in the mayor's chambers. Somen promised to bring his friends back and quickly take care of Orkovac to bring the city back to some semblance of normal.


As Savin watched Somen enter the more wealthy district of the city, he considered what options he had, and then he flipped a coin.

"Tch, tails. Looks like I'm about to do something really stupid."

Making sure Somen had a decent lead on him, Savin also made his way to the same guard station. Naturally, the guard was confused at not one, but two unscheduled visits. "Yes, how can I help you, sir?" he asked.

"Oh, I don't mean to cause any trouble, I am but a simple travelling musician. I was hoping to drop in on Orkovac and offer my services."

The guard paused for a bit, and then said, "Well, I don't know, I just let someone else through, and I don't want to draw any undue attention."

Savin casually produced a few coins from a pouch hidden in his sleeve. "Perhaps this can sweeten the deal?"

The guard hesitated, then reached for the coins. "You know, maybe some levity would cause the goblins to loosen up a bit. Go ahead, sir, but, try not to cause any trouble. Though that shouldn't matter. I'm grabbing my family and leaving." With that, he quickly pocketed the gold and sprinted out of the guard station and into the city. Savin shrugged and continued up to the mansion, where he was stopped by a human guard doing his rounds, followed closely by a few goblins.

"What business brings you here, bard?"

"Good afternoon, I am Savin Breen, and I have come to introduce myself to Orkovac, and possibly work out a deal with him to perform music for him."

The guard nervously looked at the goblins, who nodded, and he said, "Yes, of course, I shall show you to his chambers."

Following the guard up to the third floor, Sabin took note of the mansion, trying to commit to memory any important features in case he should return or make a quick escape.

The guard sheepishly knocked at the door, and announced the arrival of a musician. From the other side of the door came some grumbling, before it was opened, revealing a rather annoyed hobgoblin. "Let him in, let's get this over with."

Savin introduced himself, taking note of the spacious room that Orkovac had claimed as his own. In particular, he noticed a large circular window at the edge of the room, overlooking the city below. As they discussed a possibility of organizing a concert, Savin walked towards the window. He sighed. This is a lovely view of the city, don't you think?"

Orkovac stood and walked to the window in front of Savin. "Y'know, it is, ain't it?"

"What drove you to take over this city?"

Orkovac, a little taken aback by the forwardness of the question, shrugged. "I just wanted something more for myself and my crew than what we were getting before. Hiding in caves and beating up traveling adventurer parties isn't exactly the most lucrative business."

"Haven't you paid any mind to what your actions could be doing to these townsfolk, by disrupting their lives?"

"I let them do what they want, they just have to make sure to pay regular tribute to myself and my crew. Anyway, it's nothing different from the way I was treated in the caves."

Savin frowned. Hopefully, Lady Luck was feeling generous.

Savin drew his rapier and lunged at Orkovac, the flourish of which combined with Orkovac's genuine surprise at the assault sent him careening through the window to the streets below, right as Somen was passing through the front door...

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