Thursday, April 9, 2020

Part 4: The One Where Everyone Gets Really Violent For Some Reason

Remember how last time I started the post by saying that the party managed to keep a low profile? And remember how Savin was usually considered the voice of reason, the one who was most likely to deescalate bad situations? Also, do you remember how Savin tried to assassinate Orkovac, by himself while the party was split up?

Yeah, there were always going to be some consequences for that.

Confused at the sudden shower of glass and hobgoblin, Somen quickly cast his eyes round about the square to see several goblins run off in different directions, including one rushing past him into the mansion, as the rest of the townsfolk quickly tried to escape from the shortly-ensuing brawl.

Seizing his opportunity to finish the job before things got worse, Savin quickly cast Feather Fall on himself and leaped out the window, gently floating to the ground. However, while he was on his way to the ground, Orkovac quickly stood and, after reaching for an absent weapon, threw up his hands and cast a Fire Bolt at Savin.

Fortunately for Savin, in his haste to fire off the spell, Orkovac missed Savin completely, instead hitting and igniting part of the house. Unfortunately, upon landing, Savin was rushed by one of the remaining goblins, taking a glancing blow while trying to dodge the goblin's short sword.

Seeing his opportunity to escape to a safe distance, Orkovac threw himself a decent distance behind two other goblins, planning to use magic to defeat his new foe while his two goblin flunkies tried to form a decent line of defense for their boss.

I say they tried because, seeing an opportunity to quickly solve the problem without much collateral damage, Somen cast a quick Fireball, quickly scorching the two goblins, leaving Orkovac completely unprotected.

Seeing an opportunity, Savin rushed at Orkovac with his rapier drawn. Orkovac, seeing an opportunity, once again threw up his hands to cast a spell, this time a Scorching Ray. Again, completely missing his target. This is a common problem with my villains. By the time the fight rolls around, their rolls are complete garbage.

By this time, the rest of the party had become aware of the brawl that had broken out and regrouped to give their friends some backup, as more goblins arrived. Seeing that this was as good an opportunity as any, Bubbles shouted, "Goblins, attack!" sending his new (still very drunk) friends into the fray.

Yesmae seized a chance to help Savin deal with Orkovac, and...well...

Okay so it wasn't quite that gory. Still, she did jump in and use Flurry of Blows on a pretty beat-up enemy, so he wasn't going to last long once the rest of the party joined the fray.

However, Orkovac had one thing hidden away in case of emergency that, while I informed Somen's player of because he had spoken to Admiral Dicken about it, I forgot to mention it in the last entry.

That detail, of course, was a troll.

Blasting the mansion's front door off its hinges, the troll scrambled through, goblin in hand. Well, for a moment, anyway, because shortly after the troll its goblin directly at the party, hitting Bubbles and knocking him flat.

The party focused all its attacks on the troll, Somen launching a fireball and Grula firing at it with her longbow, before Savin got the idea to try to intimidate it back into the burning building so the party could make a clean getaway. To do this, he quickly cast Dissonant Whispers, causing the troll to have auditory hallucinations.

Gripped with a new sense of paralyzing fear, the troll quickly dashed back into the mansion, trying to carve (literally) a direct path through the mansion and away from Savin.

However, because she wanted to avoid causing any unnecessary casualties, though the rest of the party moved to escape with Savin, Yesmae dashed after the troll into the collapsing house, eager to finish it off.

Grula rushed after Yesmae in hopes of pulling her out of the house before she could be hurt, but all that resulted was a tug-of-war between two characters with low Strength stats. What a gripping battle that was. A contested strength check with Yesmae rolling an 11. And winning. Because Grula rolled a 10.

Anyway, with Grula's urging, Yesmae decided the best bet would be to make a few more attacks on the troll to weaken it, her player reasoning that it would make the troll less likely to survive the collapsing mansion. Unbeknownst to her, the troll was already on its last legs anyway.

After her last attack, Yesmae spent a ki point to use Step of the Wind to avoid provoking an attack of opportunity from the troll, grabbed Grula, and booked it out of the house, troll in hot pursuit (I'm not sorry).

While this was happening, Bubbles quickly resuscitated the goblin that had been thrown at him (doing enough damage to both to actually reduce the goblin to 0 hit points), suggesting that the goblin join the party's crew. After this, he stood and watched the door, waiting for an opportunity for a clear shot with the pistol I kept forgetting he had (despite deciding from the outset that early firearms exist in this setting), Bubbles used his Heat Metal ability to, well...heat a bullet, the idea to add 2d8 fire damage to his shot. You might think this is an incredibly stupid idea, since this could accidentally ignite the gunpowder used for the pistol shot, and you're right. So I warned Bubbles' player about the risks if the gun misfired, though thankfully apparently Bubbles has read up on his gun safety practices, since his player suggested that if it misfired, he planned on having the barrel of the gun not pointing at himself or anyone else.

Naturally, this is an idea I put in my back pocket for future use, but for now, the shot connected with the troll, doing enough damage on its own to finish the troll off barring possible regeneration, as trolls in D&D can regain health if not attacked with fire or acid damage.

Oh boy wouldn't it be a shame if someone had shot the troll with a flaming sphere of steel doing an extra 2d8 fire damage oh wait that's exactly what happened, and the troll doubled back, bursting into flames.

But wait, you say, what about Jangle? Ah yes, what about Jangle indeed, for you see, while the party was locked in combat against Orkovac, the troll, and the goblins, Jangle took an opportunity to sneak into the (need I remind you, collapsing and on fire) mansion to search for loot to steal, deigning to try to escape from the third floor window when things got too hectic.

Again, I like to think of myself as a fair DM. I don't believe in telling my players that they can't do something if it's something they could reasonably pull off with their abilities (or at the very least some creativity), so I made sure to warn Jangle's player that Jangle was, in fact, a cat, so he wouldn't be able to get much, nor would he have much of a chance of survival if the house collapsed, and that I wasn't going to pull punches. So I rolled a few d20s, basically reasoning that, if I rolled above a certain threshold, parts of the house would collapse.

Well, my terrible rolls struck again, and Jangle made it out of the house unscathed with a decent amount of cash.

As the fight reached its conclusion, the city's guards reached the location in front of the house, demanding an explanation of what had happened. The surviving goblins circled around Bubbles, who pointed at Savin, with Savin responding, "What makes you think it was me?"

Bubbles then said, "You are good at talking. You talk."

Savin, realizing he wasn't thrown under the bus, quickly composed himself and explained everything that had happened to the guard captain, who quickly thanked the party, offering them a place to stay and clearance to leave when necessary, as he considered the possibility that, since the mayor was now nowhere to be found, he was suddenly the one in charge of keeping the now destabilized town from falling into chaos, and the party returned to the tavern to celebrate a job well done.

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