Critical Role

Linkable transcripts

Campaign 1 Episode 100

Unfinished Business

# MATT
Hello everyone, and welcome to tonight's episode of Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy-ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons & Dragons.
(cheering)
For our special 100th episode, which is crazy.
(cheering)
So, you may have noticed, we have a new set.
Our crew's been kicking ass and working hard to get this done in time for this episode, and we're pretty keen on it. so welcome to the visual upgrade to Critical Role. That includes the glasses, the hats, and the various accoutrements.
I should probably put mine up too.
# LAURA
They'll be here forever.
# MATT
Perfect, that's what was missing. Right in my lav. Anyway, welcome. The start of the episode.
All day, the energy from the community on the internet has been just overwhelming. The stories, the messages, the art. It's been intense. That's because of you guys, all of you. There are so many people to thank for the fact that we've been doing this as long as we have, and enjoying it as much as we have every step of the way. Thank you to everyone here at Geek & Sundry that brought us in, and had faith in this weird little show. Thank you to my incredible cast that really make the show. I set the table, you all actually make the dinner.
# TRAVIS
Eat it.
# MATT
You all eat it. Thank you to everyone who's been a part of it. Thank you to Orion Acaba and Tiberius, who started this adventure with us before going off on his own, thank you to all of our amazing guests we've had: Wil Wheaton, Felicia Day, Will Friedle, Mary Elizabeth, Chris Perkins, Patrick Rothfuss, Noelle Stevenson, Jason Charles Miller, Phil Lamarr and Ashly Burch who we had on one of our one-shots, which was fantastic. And tonight, returning to this next chapter of the story, we have Jon Heder.
# LAURA
Kit Buss!
# MATT
And Kit Buss who came in! Our fantastic artist, Kit Buss. We've had a few guests.
# LIAM
Tom Hanks was great.
# LAURA
He was wonderful. Renee Zellweger was phenomenal.
# SAM
You guys missed the Dalai Lama.
(laughter)
# LIAM
Such a min-maxer though
# MATT
Barbarian the whole way, I wouldn't have expected it.
# MARISHA
And of course, the latest, Jon Heder.
# MATT
Jon Heder, who will be here. But thank you, everybody, and more than anyone that I just mentioned, the community. You guys, you guys who have somehow taken our crazy adventure into your hearts and come along and laughed and cried and tensed your butthole at the moments we did.
# TRAVIS
Tensed. Your buttholes.
# MATT
Yes.
# LIAM
Never stop.
# MATT
Never stop. You guys, it is an honor, it's a privilege, it's overwhelming, it is humbling. It is truly magical, of anything I've experienced outside of this wonderful girl here.
# LAURA
Who's that?
# SAM
I think he was talking to you.
# MATT
I was pointing at Taliesin.
# TALIESIN
Yeah.
# MATT
But no, thank you all so very, very much.
We're all so happy to have you here. And let's get into our announcements for the evening.
(cheering)
# MARISHA
There's so many.
# MATT
First and foremost, our hundredth episode tonight is sponsored by Marvel Puzzle Quest, returning once again. Thank you so much for being our amazing sponsor. Sam? If you want to.
# SAM
I'm going to do a super fast throw out-- well, I'm not going to rush them, 'cause they are our sponsor. Marvel Puzzle Quest, everyone, great game. Download Marvel Puzzle Quest, available on the App Store, Google Play, and Steam. New characters are added every two weeks, and you can play as heroes, villangers-- Villangers? Villains, the Avengers, X-Men, Spider-Man, and more.
Speaking of the characters, I'm going to do a quick trivia quiz with Taliesin Jaffe here. Master of comic books. I'm going to read a list of characters available on Marvel Puzzle Quest game.
Some of them of them are real, some of them are yoga positions. You tell me which is a character and which is a yoga position. Ready?
# TALIESIN
Yes.
# SAM
Spider-Man.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character.
# SAM
Flying-man.
# TALIESIN
Uh, yoga position.
# SAM
Firefly.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character?
# SAM
Yoga position. Devil Dinosaur.
# TALIESIN
Devil Dinosaur is definitely a Marvel character.
# SAM
Invisible Woman.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character.
# SAM
Wild Thing.
# TALIESIN
Both?
# SAM
Yoga pose. Medusa.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character.
# SAM
Bird of Paradise.
# TALIESIN
Yoga position.
# SAM
Yes. Cow Face.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character?
# SAM
Yoga pose! The Hood.
# TALIESIN
Oh, Marvel character.
# SAM
The Warrior.
# TALIESIN
Yoga position.
# SAM
Yes. Ares.
# TALIESIN
Marvel character.
# SAM
Extended puppy.
# TALIESIN
Later. Yoga position.
# SAM
Correct, yay! Marvel Puzzle Quest, everybody.
Get it wherever you get your games, today.
# MARISHA
Watch him on the Wednesday Club.
Shameless plug.
# TALIESIN
There will be another shameless plug later.
# MATT
We all laugh now, until the announcement of the Extended Puppy comic series at Comic Con in a few months.
# SAM
We're also supposed to give a quick shoutout to Backblaze for sponsoring the first set of episodes of...
# MATT
Of, if you want to go ahead and discuss this-- who wants to pick this up? We have--
# SAM
Did I skip? Did I skip? It says on my page! I'm sorry!
# MARISHA
No, it's okay. As a lot of people already probably know, we announced it in our press rollout, but in honor of the hundredth episode, we now have episodes zero-- which is all of our backstories-- through ten in podcast form.
Critical Role podcast. And then what's going to start happening is, towards the end of the month, we want to start rolling out one a day, on work days. Five a week. Don't kill us. All right? Every day to catch up, 'til we get back on track.
# TRAVIS
(sings) It's the end of the month.
TRAVIS & MATT: (sings) Wake up, wake up, wake up, It's the end of the month.
Bone Thugs? Thank you, Matt.
# MARISHA
There's a podcast.
# TALIESIN
You can find it on iTunes, you can find it on Google.
# MATT
Google Play Music, or the Geek and Sundry website.
# LAURA
Yeah, there's definitely-- all the links are on geekandsundry.com.
# MARISHA
Yes, and Google Play, and yeah. The stuff like that.
# LAURA
Can we talk-- can we talk about this thing now?
# MATT
Yes, we can. So, getting into our merch and part of the celebration of the hundredth episode, Laura. What have you got in store?
# LAURA
Oh, well, thank you for asking, Matthew.
Well, number one, we have our amazing Scanlan concert tees.
# MATT
Yes.
# LAURA
As being worn by the buff and glorious Sam Riegel. Gorgeous. Just gorgeous, with all the tour cities on the back and everything. And then, also, a commemorative item for the hundredth episode. We worked with David Mack-- Who is, like, this amazing artist. He's-- you know him. Tell some of his work, 'cause--
# LIAM
Oh my gosh, he does covers for everything.
Daredevil--
# LAURA
Jessica Jones, I saw Jessica Jones work.
Kabuki. All of it. So he does this amazing watercolor work and he did an amazing art print for us, so--
# LIAM
Here it is.
# LAURA
Without further ado.
(cheering)
# LIAM
(sings) Look at this motherfucker.
# SAM
The intensity. The glamor.
# LIAM
The splatter.
# LAURA
I mean, I'm so excited about this. Number one, just because it looks so freaking amazing.
But then, he incorporated all of this amazing stuff like quotes and everything that has to do with the characters, and things that mean so much to us as the characters. And he just worked with us nonstop to try to make the most amazing thing for you guys, and I'm so proud of it and so happy.
# LIAM
It's farkin' beautiful.
# LAURA
And we have this amazing gold emblem in the bottom. I don't know if you can tell, but it's like extra shiny and fancy. It's a special Vex.
And the paper's really heavy, and so it's super, super special. So--
# ASHLEY
It feels like it was-- like it's a one-of-a-kind watercolor. Like that's what it-- up close, it's crazy.
# LAURA
It looks like he painted it on the page.
# SAM
400 thread count.
(laughter)
# MATT
And we're only selling the one.
# LAURA
Venetian silk.
# LIAM
Also, like our shirts that you can't tell how soft they are until you're wearing them, like the Joe Mad poster that was so beautiful but until you saw it in person you didn't get it. This thing in person is unbelievable.
# LAURA
So yeah. This will be available for one month and one month only in the Geek and Sundry store starting today. And then after that, it is gone. And we're doing the same thing that we did last time, which is also offering a limited edition signed version, so if you guys want to check that out, that's only available for three weeks so we can try to get as many signatures before Ashley has to leave.
# ASHLEY
Sorry.
# TRAVIS
(sings) Sorry.
# LAURA
So yeah, three weeks from today you can get the autographed. Starting today, only for three weeks, and then it's gone forever from the store.
# TRAVIS
We already got copies, right?
# LAURA
We already have copies, yeah.
# ASHLEY
I love it so much.
# LAURA
Thank you David. Thank you for being amazing. We love you.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, it's so nice.
# MATT
Thank you, David. Really appreciate it, man.
Awesome. And what else you guys got?
# MARISHA
So, The Slayer's Cake-- the members of The Slayer's Cake-- Yes, have a new product they have just released.
# SAM
Is it a baked good of some sort?
# MARISHA
Well...
# LAURA
We should show them.
# MARISHA
I think, you know, they worked so hard on making a commercial, so we should let them--
# LAURA
We should let them talk about it.
# MARISHA
So here is a commercial from The Slayer's Cake.
# SAM
Oh, hello there. I'm Taryon Darrington of The Slayer's Cake. The Slayer's Cake, your pals in a pastry pinch. Go now? Okay. (clears throat) Heading to a fancy banquet and not sure if your hosts are undead? (gasps) Slayer's Cake. Say it's Winter's Crest, and you don't know what to get your secret Sarenrae. Possibly because you've never given a gift before. It could happen.
Slayer's Cake! We even have miniature cakes for that special gnome-one in your life.
# LAURA
Those are cupcakes, Tary!
# SAM
Oh, okay, well, I mean, mm! But hey, if I still haven't convinced you, don't take my word for it! Are we still--
# LAURA
Mm, delicious.
# ASHLEY
Wow, so light, and I would know, I'm a cleric. Er, what?
# SAM
So come on down to the Slayer's Cake, located in downtown Whitestone. Look for the big unsanitary bear. You can't miss it! And don't forget, don't step in bear shit!
# MARISHA
Bumper VO. The Slayer's Cake, open till 6PM, 7 on weekends. Closed Thursdays for adventuring. Slayer's Cake aprons available now.
What? We have aprons? Tary, you didn't tell me we have aprons! (cheering)
# LAURA
Wait, wait, can you see me? There it is! So we had the aprons made, which we're so excited about. I didn't do it, Ben did it, and he's amazing. Ben did this! He made cupcakes with the Slayer's Cake logo for us for the 100th episode.
We can eat them! So I'm passing them around.
# ASHLEY
What if we save them forever?
# LAURA
I'm just so excited about this, you guys! I kind of just wanted to get the apron made so I could personally have it.
# MARISHA
I know, I know!
# TRAVIS
She's not lying. She wanted to have the apron.
# TALIESIN
Oh! Cupcake down!
# MARISHA
It's fine, it's fine. Don't worry about it. I'm taking that one.
# LAURA
I don't know if I want to wear this the whole episode. I might. I'm going to hang out. Oh yeah, save a cupcake for Jon. Wait, Matthew!
# TALIESIN
Matt, Matt!
# MATT
I don't want any of your shit! Don't want it! Brian, eat it. I don't want it. Don't! I have things to do!
# MARISHA
Give it to Heder, give it to Heder!
# TALIESIN
Heder's got one.
# MATT
All righty, so, thank you very much for those announcements, guys. Other cool things coming up. Our fine friends at Wyrmwood, we have an awesome spot to show during the break today, showing some of their awesome craftsmanship and their partnership, showing off their products as well. There's an amazing giveaway at the mid-break that we'll show you guys when we get there, so stick around for the mid-break when we get to that point to see the process of what they do and how they do it and all the awesome things they produce there. You can find their stuff, by the way, at wyrmwoodgaming.com/criticalrole for free domestic shipping with the promo code-- Liam?
# LIAM
Yes!
# MATT
What's the promo code?
# LIAM
Oh. Uh, I don't have any of the shit in front of me! Critrole? Is it Critrole now? It's Critrole again? It's back?
# SAM
Wyrmwood's has always been Critrole, hasn't it?
# LIAM
Critrole.
# LAURA
It's hard to remember because it's been such a long time since you said it.
# LIAM
No one told me.
# MATT
That's okay. Anyway, thank you very much.
Looking forward to that at the break. Also, those asking about campaign guide information, for the Tal'dorei campaign guide. All that is up on the Green Ronin website. You can go there, go ahead and find out when it's coming out, how to find it, all that fun stuff, and I hope you like it. Soon, I guess. Also, we have an awesome infographic up on social media and the website, put together from our friends at CritRoleStats, Andrew and all you awesome guys. So they're awesome, go check that out, a lot of fun trivia elements about how long we've been running the show, and apparently how many nonexistent characters live in my brain.
We're in the 500s.
# LIAM
It's just the tip of the iceberg, Matt.
# MATT
That has to be certifiable on some level.
# LIAM
Campaign four, I'm waiting for it.
# MATT
Give it time, I'm sure.
# SAM
Matt, that soda pop looks like you're drinking it out of a wine glass.
# MATT
We are running out of receptacles for soda pop, Sam.
# SAM
Okay.
# MATT
Also, I'm going to be at A-Kon tomorrow. Fly out in the morning to Texas. So, looking forward to seeing you guys in Dallas.
# LAURA
What were you thinking?
# MATT
I agreed to this a long time ago! And it all just coordinated.
# LIAM
Freakin' Willy Loman, man.
# ASHLEY
Do you at least have a late flight?
# MATT
No.
# TRAVIS
Does it start with an 'AM'?
# MATT
Yes.
# LIAM
Take a break. Run away upstate, for the summertime.
# TRAVIS
Take a break! Sing it, Liam.
# LIAM
Take a break!
# MATT
Nonstop.
# SAM
Halfway through announcements.
# LAURA
Our infographic is no longer valid!
# MARISHA
Completely outdated, immediately.
# MATT
That's okay, it was nice while it lasted. So see you guys at A-Kon in Dallas, Texas. Talks Machina, always live, Tuesdays, 7PM Pacific time on Twitch and Alpha. Talk about this crazy episode next week. Hosted by the fantastic Brian Wayne Foster. Thank you for eating my cupcake. Still, surprisingly. All right, Signal Boost, new episode, with?
# MARISHA
Jeff Lewis. Everyone knows him and loves him from the Guild. Check it out.
# MATT
Or as Waluigi in "There Will Be Brawl."
# MARISHA
Or as Waluigi. He's been so many things.
Everyone knows who Jeff Lewis is. Go watch it.
# MATT
There you go. And we have some other cool announcements coming up in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out and an ear out for each episode.
We'll have a few more fun things that we can announce as the month goes on. So, that, I believe, will bring us to --
# LIAM
Well, I have a little thing, I just have to share this. Friend of the show, Kiki-- not our Kiki, the other Kiki who's made so many vestiges-- brought me a little something today.
(laughing)
There it is. Got to lose those. Oh yeah.
# LAURA
No, no, no, maybe Vax needs glasses to see in the dark.
# LIAM
Maybe he does! Maybe he does. Look at my shoulders! I'm like Travis Willingham! Is this what it feels like, Travis?
# TRAVIS
Yeah, I have to put them on under each shirt. It's a real bitch.
# LIAM
Man, I've been Crossfitting all day! That's like stitching knitwear, right? Crossfitting all day.
# LAURA
Ah, you're hitting me with your shoulders.
# LIAM
Cacaw!
# LAURA
That's amazing.
# LIAM
Thank you, Kiki. Thank you. Oh my god.
# LAURA
You're phenomenal!
# LIAM
This will sit in my office and scare my children. Yeah.
# MATT
Appreciate it, Medhiv. All right, guys. We ready? Let's dive in now to tonight's episode of Critical Role.
[dramatic music]
Welcome back, everyone. So. You all right, Jon?
# TALIESIN
He's jacking in.
# SAM
He's jacking in.
# MATT
And the lava's connected. Welcome back, Jon! Glad you could join us again.
(cheering)
All righty. So, picking up where we left off last time, Vox Machina had just completed their adventure in the distant countryside of Wildmount, interfacing with the Darrington family and apparently their long-acquired debt with the Myriad, a criminal syndicate on that side of the world. After making a deal that would salvage elements of the Darrington family, you made your way back and encountered a half-orc bardbarian by the way of Lionel, who was there on behest of his boss, Aes Adon, or, as you were immediately referred to as, the Meat Man. Immediately. You were brought to a nearby tavern in Whitestone where the vicinity had been rented out entirely and you met with a large, intimidating-looking gentleman. Scarred, pockmarked, ready to go ahead and wheel and deal some business with you. After some interesting conversation and some sly insights by Vex'ahlia and Keyleth, it was discovered that the Meat Man was indeed your old compatriot Scanlan under an illusion, to attempt to notify you that he'd discovered something quite dangerous on his side of Exandria. You discovered that this fantastic bardbarian Lionel had been working for him under his Meat Man guise in Ank'Harel for the better part of a year, and while set on a mission with a number of other compatriots of his, Lionel had stumbled upon an area called the Smouldercrown, a mountain range not terribly far from Ank'harel, what seemed to be a cavern structure that led to an underground pyramid, similar to the ziggurat that you guys had been keeping an eye on underneath Whitestone, which also contained its own small black spherical orb in which they were feeding magical items towards, it looked like. However, they were discovered in that tunnel and Lionel was the only one to escape with his life. The rest fell behind and were left for dead. Upon notifying Scanlan, or the Meat Man, of this information, he knew it was pertinent to return and get this to you in person. After which, apologies were made; some were accepted, some were not. But it was generally decided by the team that, based on this information, you needed to make your way to Ank'Harel post-haste and discover what exactly resides beneath the mountains of the Smouldercrown.
You gathered up the following moment, well rested, all met up at the base of the Sun Tree in the center of the square, and that's where we left off. So, as you've gathered your materials, your weapons, your armor, what you think you may need for this trek, you've all gathered around the base of the Sun Tree. Some shade has been thrown, but you have gathered. So, what do you wish to do?
# SAM
We've gone through the Sun Tree or not?
# LAURA
No, we're right outside the Sun Tree, just before we've left Whitestone.
# TALIESIN
I just want to make a point that I've alerted everybody in the government-- everybody reasonable-- where we're going, why we're going, and that there should be people watching the Ziggurat underneath Whitestone 24/7 while we're on this mission.
Anything happens, be prepared for anything.
# LAURA
You're so brilliant, darling.
# MARISHA
I don't understand. There's not a lot of shade. It's noon.
# TALIESIN
We've been throwing it, it's not here.
# LIAM
Thrown from a distance.
# LAURA
I think we should probably head out.
# MARISHA
Yeah, yeah. Where in Ank'harel?
# LAURA
Where are we going, Scanlan, again? Shadowy Mountain?
# MARISHA
Do I know anyplace that's near?
# MATT
You've been to Ank'harel, you've been around quite a bit, and you've seen a number of trees.
The city itself, within the walls, through magical means or otherwise, there is an interior oasis within the city itself. There is the sand and dust that blows in from the outside desert that surrounds it in Marquet, but there are a number of ponds and rivers and large palm trees and other types of trees that are risen. There are small clusters that form almost minute forests throughout the city, whether they be a park to wander through or a means of harvesting whatever the trees have to offer for the people that live there. But you've seen a number of trees and it's easy enough to make your way there.
# MARISHA
Okay. I'll do the oasis.
# MATT
Okay. As Keyleth reaches out, Lionel, you watch as the small half-elf red-headed girl reaches out and touches the tree, and suddenly the trunk splits open at the base, and you watch as what seems to be a glowing doorway of divine energy appears.
# MARISHA
Go, go! Six seconds, go! Go, go!
# TALIESIN
I help shove.
# SAM
I should note that Doty is coming with us as well.
# LIAM
Hey, quickly!
# LAURA
Sure, I'll note that Trinket is coming as well, even though it's a fucking given.
# LIAM
I shove my sister through the tree.
# TRAVIS
Warming up.
# LAURA
I mean, just kidding, I love you Tary.
# LIAM
You're not here, I just shoved you through the tree. I made it up, I created it, right there on the fly.
# TRAVIS
We all go through the tree, yeah?
# ALL
Yeah!
# MATT
After an incredibly long, well-stretched six seconds, you all eventually make your way through the doorway into the center of Ank'harel. The temperature difference is stark, it's immediate.
Whereas you had a gradual transition to Ank'harel last time you were there, going from the Whitestone colder, more damp climate to the immediate dry heat of the central Marquet desert is just immediate, it's uncomfortable-- it may be comfortable for some of you-- and your mouth immediately dries out for a moment, and you have to adjust to the new atmosphere. Looking around you, you've emerged from the outside of one of the central oases, which is kind of near the Lux Run where you originally entered the city. There, you see the streets are bustling and busy. It's starting to get closer to later in the evening now, on this part of Exandria. You can see the sky's starting to get a little darker. There's an element of dusk that will probably be setting in about an hour. But here you are.
# LAURA
Well, Scanlan?
# JON
Why didn't we do this before? It's so much faster! Why did we take a 500-day journey?
# SAM
It was just ten days, first of all.
# JON
Again, I don't get days. Why don't we just make that tree open up?
# SAM
I am very powerful, but there's some things that I can't do, all right? Ever since you found out I was short, you're much snappier and snippier with me.
# JON
You're just much smaller, I mean, I didn't realize.
Why don't you just go back to looking like Aes?
# SAM
Maybe I should.
# TRAVIS
Maybe you should.
# SAM
Yeah, because I'm known around these parts, so that would probably be better.
# LAURA
Does Aes wear this stupid headband? Because it's really fucking distracting.
# JON
What headband?
# MATT
Perfect.
# SAM
I'll put on the hat and become the Meat Man.
# MATT
So you step off to the side to a point where you're not being noticed and take on, once again, the illusory facade of the Meat Man. Stepping out into the sunlight once more, you see the imposing figure of the Meat Man now amongst you.
# LAURA
You're so scary and big. Do you have a place that you always stay?
# SAM
I have many places.
# LAURA
That's what I figured.
# LIAM
I try sticking my fingers through the fake head a little bit.
# SAM
Get off! Get off! Stop it!
# JON
No wonder you said hands off!
# LAURA
You didn't touch him this entire year?
# JON
He always said hands off. No matter how many times I tried.
# ASHLEY
You never went to brothels or anything like that then, I guess.
# TALIESIN
Probably not together.
# MARISHA
Have you been hugged in a year? Has anyone given you a hug? I give him a hug.
# JON
Are you trying to go through me to him?
# MARISHA
No, I'm just giving you a hug!
# JON
That gives me, like, 50 extra attack points or something, right? I feel like something cool when someone hugs me.
# MARISHA
Can I use my Inspiring Leader feat?
# MATT
If you would like to take a moment to give everyone hugs as part of your Inspiring Leader, sure.
# MARISHA
You know what, guys?
# SAM
Oh, she's speeching.
# MARISHA
Human contact's important, you know? So come on, come on, let's all group hug! Group hug!
# TALIESIN
No! No!
# JON
Can I hug everybody else?
# SAM
The Meat Man does not hug.
# TRAVIS
This is a ten-minute huddle?
# MATT
It's a ten-minute, like, hug it out.
# LAURA
Ten minutes is so awkward!
# MATT
I know! And not in Keyleth's bailiwick at all!
# TRAVIS
Are we attracting any awkward looks?
# LAURA
I feel like I would have abstained from the ten-minute group hug.
# TALIESIN
I would have brought you into it.
# MARISHA
I keep trying to grab Vex. Come on! Come on, hug it out!
# MATT
So, you brought Scanlan and Tary for this.
# SAM
Yes.
# MATT
Are they both?
# SAM
Scanlan stepped out. Tary's in.
# MATT
So everyone except for Scanlan gets 17 temporary hit points.
# LAURA
Thanks, Kiki! No, no, no, Percy brought me in.
# MARISHA
Brought her out of her comfort bubble.
# MATT
As you all slowly begin to realize the slight display you've given in the center of the town, especially those of you in your darker, heavier leathers amongst this very warm, open air.
# LAURA
Oh, I thought we knew we were going to Ank'harel so we dressed for it. That's what we said the last episode.
# MATT
Did you?
# LAURA
That's what you said, actually. You said "you all showed up dressed for Ank'harel."
# LIAM
My armor is fire set.
# MATT
Okay, I'll trust you on that.
# LAURA
I feel like you said it?
# MATT
You would've, it's fine. But it's less the attire. You're still wearing your armor, I assume.
# LAURA
Yes, yes, yes.
# MATT
So, you're still in heavy leathers.
# LIAM
Yeah, we're just doing the whole Lawrence of Arabia.
# MATT
So you're still a display of people in heavy leather hugging for ten minutes in the middle of this open thoroughfare.
# LIAM
Yeah, we're still very awkward. At all times.
# MATT
So it's not like all of a sudden there's a crowd gathered around you. But occasionally there's a few merchants across the way that are like, "So, anyway, as I was saying..."
# LIAM
Bidet!
# LAURA
Be pleased!
# MATT
"Be pleased."
# TRAVIS
You guys are all saying it wrong. I don't know why. Vax can pick it up, it's not that hard.
# LIAM
I am very smart.
# LAURA
Where do we go?
# SAM
Come with me.
# MATT
You watch as the Meat Man leads you down four or five different streets, dodging through a couple of alleyways and off onto the southern-eastern side of Ank'harel. There is a modest-looking tobacco shop that is in a poorer district, it's a little run-down. Run-down compared to a lot of Ank'harel, which is pretty colorful and very well-kept. So, it's pretty decent, average fare for Emon, considered the poorer side of Ank'harel. But you-- (laughs)
# SAM
Was that a fart?
# MATT
It's one of the various beasts of burden that you're walking past in the streets of Ank'harel. (fart sound)
# LAURA
That was awesome.
# MATT
To be fair, sometimes the Slayer's Cakes get a little...
# LIAM
They're rich.
# LAURA
We're working out the ingredients.
# MATT
Adventurers can't get it right all the time.
So you come to this modest tobacco shop. As you lead them into the interior, one of your employees, Doran, who is a rather scrawny-looking boy maybe of 22, 23, completely shaved head, tanned skin, a little sallow, but he's sitting there, balancing a long, thin, almost like a railroad-spike-type metal rod. He's just kind of balancing it over the wood, and as soon as the door opens, he fumbles.
"Ah. Aes. It is a pleasure to have you back."
# SAM
How are things in my absence?
# MATT
"They have been well. You've only been gone for a few hours, but they've been uneventful."
# SAM
Oh, yes, yes, that's right, yes. Any new reports of the hooded people?
# MATT
"None within the town, not since last-- oh, hi, Lionel!"
# JON
Hey, what's up?
# MATT
"It's good to see you. Anyway." (laughter)
# JON
You want a hug? It makes you, like, super-strong.
# MATT
"Really?"
# JON
Yeah. At least, that's what I--
# SAM
No fraternizing.
# MATT
"But anyway." And he reaches down and pulls a small wooden lever, and it's like you see he's having to struggle with it. And as he does so, you hear the scraping of wood, and a chain-winch going. You watch as one of the small furrows in the back corner slowly lifts up and reveals a narrow staircase that leads down into a subterranean area.
# LIAM
This is kind of cool.
# JON
It's really awesome. You guys should-- we should go. This is like our cool hideout.
# MARISHA
What was the guy's name again?
# MATT
Doran.
# MARISHA
Doran.
# TRAVIS
Doran, you known Aes long?
# MATT
"For a number of months, yes."
# TRAVIS
Yeah. Good guy?
# MATT
"We don't converse often, but he pays well, and the work is-- the work is very rewarding."
# TRAVIS
Right. Does he have a firm handshake?
# MATT
(stammers)
# TRAVIS
You should find out. Yeah, no, shake his hand. No, go ahead, right now.
# MATT
"I do not presume to want to-- I mean, unless you would want to?"
# SAM
No.
# MATT
"Okay, yes, I am sorry, I do not mean to--"
# TRAVIS
In his custom, 'no' means 'yes, I crave it deeply'.
# MATT
Make a deception check.
# TALIESIN
Your voice got really high during that.
# TRAVIS
Oh, shit.
# LAURA
What'd you roll? What'd you roll?
# TRAVIS
19.
# MATT
19. (laughs) "Uh. I mean, if you--"
# TRAVIS
Known him for years. Really.
# SAM
I will just walk by him and go down into the hidey-hole.
# MATT
Okay. "I think you have some incorrect intel, my friend."
# TRAVIS
No, I think you're probably gonna need a new job pretty soon. That was a diss. It's all right. Just look elsewhere. That's all I'm saying.
# MATT
He sits back on his stool and takes his little rod and jams it into the wood and huffs as you guys all make your way down there. Which, both Lionel and Grog, you guys have to cannonball up real tight to make it through the corridor. You drag your way through by pulling on the little bits of wood and earth that mark the exterior walls of this descending staircase. The smell is musty. It's not damp, but you can sense that there is a smell of tobacco. You thought, oh, this tobacco shop's a front. As you go down, you see about ten feet down there is a large storage room that contains barrels of dried tobacco of all sorts, and has a very rich, pungent, but also like a nice spice scent to it in places. Spice. Ah! You lead them on down to the far end of the hallway.
There is another door that is locked. You pull out a set of keys, unlock it, open it. It leads down another hallway, and then eventually what looks to be some smaller sets of barracks rooms. You see a few doors that are ajar and empty with some beds inside. You lead down another 20 or so feet to another chamber. And as it opens up, inside, you can see there are three tables arranged in a triangular pattern, and at the far end of the table, there is a single-- what looks like a throne-like chair. It's very well-crafted. It's gold-leafed in places, it has intricate scrolling on the sides and where the armrests are, and there you see an individual with a hooded cloak and a deep, bluish-purple color with what looks like a red crimson slash design around the back, a number of jewelry, and they're facing away, speaking towards the chair, for there on the chair sits an identical large, looming human male with long, dark hair and mustache, pockmarked skin, and is mid-conversation.
# LAURA
You guys really should plan this out better.
# SAM
Bit of warning. Don't use her name. All right, so I'll just walk up to them.
# MATT
You walk up to the two of them?
# SAM
Yeah, sure.
# MATT
All right. The cloaked figure is in the middle of conversation, and speaking Marquesian, which you understand, to the effect of, "We've been looking, and apparently all the shipments have "been diverted and held off until--" And hears the footsteps and turns over and sees you. "Oh." (confused sounds)
# LAURA
(clears throat) Twins. Funny.
# LIAM
What are the odds?
# MATT
Deception check.
# LAURA
Motherfuck. Oh, you know, like 11.
# MATT
"I, um." Begins to pull a small blade out to the side. "I am under the impression that perhaps "one of you is a doppelganger, and whoever my boss is, would you please raise your hand?"
# SAM
I do not raise my hand.
# MATT
The other one does. "Aes, what do we do?" And puts the blade forward, and you watch as the other Meat Man on the throne just says, "We do nothing. I know this man, and we will do our "business. Tell no one what you saw here, but if two more leave, I have been taken by its will and "you'll have to kill us both. I'm just kidding, that's a complete joke. But no, seriously, you "really-- go, go." And the--
# JON
Should I go kill him?
# SAM
No, no.
# MATT
The person with the cloak kind of--
# JON
It's fine, I won't kill you.
# MATT
"Thank you. Be pleased." And darts out of the room real fast. The other Meat Man on the throne goes, "Oh, Verath, I'm gonna work real hard to try and convince him other of that."
# SAM
Sorry about that.
# MATT
(clears throat) "It is all right."
# LAURA
Good to see you again.
# MATT
"Good to see you as well. You all look...
spry. You look alive."
# SAM
Is anyone in the room, now, Matt, besides--
# MATT
Besides you guys? No, it's just you guys and Lionel.
# SAM
All right, so. We can drop all of the illusions. They all know what's going on now.
# MATT
Looks earnestly at Lionel.
# SAM
Even Chod.
# JON
Lionel.
# MATT
"Aye, very well." And you watch as the Meat Man on the throne suddenly diminishes into a smaller, gnome figure as well, only female, with short, almost buzzed sides of her dark brunette hair that poofs into a curl there. You can see she's also much tanner than you remember. She is wearing what looks to be a leather tunic that's straining against her rather large muscles for a small gnome, it looks like she's been making sure that nobody messes with her while she's in the city.
# LAURA
Shit. Is she buff now?
# MATT
She's pretty buff.
# LAURA
Shit.
# MARISHA
You got a haircut! I love it.
# MATT
"You know. The hot weather around here is a bit of a bitch this time of the year, so best to "get it taken care of. Anyway. What the fuck are you all doing here?"
# SAM
I went to get them to tell them about the thing that we found.
# MATT
"Right, okay. Great."
# SAM
I was going to escort them there. Do you think you have things handled if we go for a day?
# MATT
"Oh, that's fine, I've only been dealing with this for the past two and half weeks without "you just fine, no one's noticed, until you came up inside looking the same as me. That's great!"
# SAM
Sorry, I didn't know you were throning.
# MARISHA
'Throning'.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, is that a thing?
# SAM
Well, when we're in command, yeah.
# MATT
"It's not called throning, don't listen to him."
# LAURA
How long have you been here?
# MATT
"Been here? Ank'harel? I've lost track of time. Better part of maybe eight months, nine months?"
# TRAVIS
We've heard you've risen through the ranks.
Very successful, you are.
# MATT
"Not too bad, if I do say so myself."
# TRAVIS
Well done.
# MATT
"This one's almost ruined us a few times."
# TRAVIS
That's not surprising.
# LIAM
How are things with the old man?
# MATT
"They're fine. Talks about you lot an awful lot."
# LIAM
Oh, really?
# SAM
Not true, not true.
# ASHLEY
Did you have a good year together? Sort of, I guess. That was the last time we saw you.
Have things been good?
# MATT
She pats the side of her coin purse, which you can see is rather thick and makes a heavy (clinking) of clinking coin. "Not been too bad, if I say so myself. More than I ever made playing violin."
# TALIESIN
Profit suits you well.
# MARISHA
I don't know if she was referring to monetary wealth, but sure.
# TRAVIS
Well, if you can't have an earnest relationship with someone, at least she's got money.
# TALIESIN
It's also very hard to put an earnest relationship in a coin purse.
# MATT
"Anyway. So. What can I do for you, or have you just come by to say hi?"
# SAM
No, I didn't, I came to make sure you were all right, and is everything all right? Have we heard of any other attacks or incidents?
# MATT
"None yet, before you came in and rudely interrupted my update from Verath over there, but "it seems that there hasn't been any more activity.
All the hooded ones we've seen have all absconded "over towards the mountain range again."
# TALIESIN
Hooded ones?
# SAM
Yeah, the ones in the mountain, in the cave.
What about buyers? Have we had any new interest?
# MATT
"No, not too bad. Carthol's been working around the clock. I believe he's working on a new "game set. Something ivory and Issylrian in nature.
Supposed to go for a pretty penny, if we take it "across over up on Wildmount, but it'll take a little longer to make it. You know, one-man job.
"He's good. He's not that good."
# SAM
Just remind him to put some imperfections in it. He always likes to make things too beautiful.
# MATT
"I will, I will."
# LAURA
Why don't you want to sell beautiful things?
# SAM
We want to sell real things, not things that look like they're brand-new. If things are really old, they have dents and scuffs on them.
# JON
Wait, so you're lying again.
# MATT
"Modifying the presentation."
# JON
I don't know who to trust anymore.
# SAM
You should trust me because I pay you.
# MATT
"I don't know. Looks like he might be growing up." (laughter)
# JON
I have been eating more.
# MATT
"Oh, I can tell that." (laughs) She sets off the throne and comes up and leaps and smacks you on the shoulder. Pretty good hit.
# JON
That's awesome!
# MATT
"I know. Anyway."
# SAM
All right, so we'll be gone-- we've rested recently, right?
# MATT
Yeah, the night before.
# SAM
So we'll be going for a while, and just hold down the fort while we're gone. Also, I know it sounds stupid, but can you look into getting a few ducks? Just as pets?
# MATT
"Sure."
# SAM
Yeah, I know. It's just a thank-you.
# MATT
"Ducks."
# SAM
Yes.
# JON
They have awesome information.
# MATT
"Right, okay. Ducks it is. I'll get right to it. I'll talk to my duck distributor."
# SAM
Just ask, just ask us and that would be fine, too.
# JON
Yeah, but ducks will know things that you don't!
# MATT
"I'll send some word to the Fowl District of Ank'harel to provide the proper--"
# MARISHA
There's a fowl district?
# MATT
"No, there's not a fowl district! I'm fucking with you."
# SAM
You should always assume she's fucking with you. Every time.
# MATT
"You traveled with this one long enough.
Figure it out."
# LIAM
Wonder where she gets it from?
# MATT
"Don't you say a goddamn thing or I'll cut your tongue out."
# LIAM
Promises, promises.
# MATT
"All right. Go about your business. I've got it here. Don't die. Any of you. Especially you.
"I've got ducks coming for you, don't know what to do if you don't show up back here to pick 'em up."
# JON
I won't die.
# MATT
"Good. Don't."
# SAM
If he does, we'll just eat the ducks.
# MATT
"I don't care, then. Ducks are pretty tasty."
# JON
They'll tell you where to bury me.
(laughter)
They know all the proper spots.
# SAM
Sure. Okay.
# MATT
"All right, then, shoo. Night's about to come. You can travel over the cool evening air."
# SAM
Do any of you need any supplies or anything before we go? Are we good to travel on foot?"
# LAURA
What kind of potions you got available? Healing potions?
# SAM
Healing potions? I can heal with my words.
Why would I need healing potions?
# LAURA
Just in case you run away.
# LIAM
Is that a no?
# ASHLEY
Just in case you decide to leave again, which is probably highly probable. I don't know.
Just in case.
# SAM
No, I don't have any of those. But it can be arranged if you are short. I can have my second here look into it for you.
# LAURA
I have three regular healing potions and that's it.
# TALIESIN
Cleared out.
# LAURA
I think we're pretty much out.
# SAM
Crutch, will you--
# JON
I have 375 grams.
# SAM
That's gold.
# LAURA
You have 375 grams?
# JON
Gold, I guess.
# LAURA
Grams of gold?
# JON
They look the same. But I can buy lots of potions with that, right?
# SAM
No, you cannot buy any. But the Crutch here will look into it while we're gone. We won't have any until we get back, though.
# TRAVIS
He calls you the Crutch?
# MATT
"The Crutch is my work name. It's what the Meat Man calls me 'cause of my height."
# LAURA
Oh. I see.
# TALIESIN
So it's a name for when he's ribbing you. Ribbing. I'm just so excited by all the puns that are available.
# LAURA
So no healing, then? Let's just go?
# SAM
No, we have to just go.
# MATT
"Hold on, hold on." She walks over and starts rummaging through a few small crates that are to the side. She's like, "These haven't been organized properly." Grabs a little crowbar and wedges it in. Pops off the top, starts rummaging through, tossing various things out the side like small metal cups roll across the ground, come to a stop. Pulls out a small, looks like a leather satchel of some kind that's wrapped over the top and the side with twine. Unwraps it. "There's a "few something for you." Sets it down. Pulls a necklace off. "You're borrowing this, but you're "bringing it back when you're done."
# SAM
Of course.
# MATT
"All right. Now, which one of you but him wants it?"
# JON
Oh, I do, I do!
# MATT
"Okay." Throws it to you.
# JON
It's really cool-looking.
# MATT
It's a heavy, somewhat tarnished silver chain that smells of old ale-stained wood.
# JON
Oh, I don't like it, someone else take it.
# LAURA
No, no, no, I called it.
# LIAM
Give it to me, give it to me, I called it as well! Dad, make us roll for it.
# JON
Why don't you guys just cut it in half?
# LAURA
Tickle-tickle-tickle!
# MATT
Both of you guys make strength checks.
# LAURA
But I don't wanna break it! Don't pull so hard that you break it!
# LIAM
Why would I do that? I have so much finesse.
That's cocked. It was cocked, you say cocked eighty thousand times, and now I'm gonna use Luck, because I wanna beat you.
# LAURA
You motherfuck!
# LIAM
Oh, it's the same thing! So what is this, strength?
# MATT
Strength, add the strength modifier.
# LIAM
I will.
# LAURA
Oh, no.
# LIAM
You go first.
# LAURA
Nine.
# LIAM
Oh, she beat me! (laughter)
# MATT
You rip the chain from his grip.
# LAURA
What did I get? What is it?
# MATT
"It's an Amulet of the Drunkard."
# LAURA
What's that mean?
# MATT
"You wear that, you drink yourself some fine, fine alcohol, might heal you a bit."
# LAURA
Do you already wear a necklace? I already wear a necklace, so I probably can't wear it, huh? You can get up. It's okay, you can go. You've got 30 feet!
# SAM
Jack off, jack off, jack off!
# MATT
The umbilical! There you go.
# MARISHA
You're good, you're good.
# TALIESIN
It turns spirits into potions. That's pretty solid.
# TRAVIS
Beer, ale, mead, or wine will cause you to regain 2d4 + 2 hit points.
# LAURA
Oh jeez, that's so cool. Do you already wear a necklace, Grog? Do you have to attune to it?
# MATT
It is not attuned. But there is a limit to it, if you read it.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, you can only once until the next dawn.
# MATT
So once a day, you can just drink a pint of some alcoholic drink, and it'll heal you like a basic healing potion.
# TRAVIS
Fucking awesome.
# MARISHA
Who was out of healing potions?
# TALIESIN
I'm out.
# LAURA
I've got three for the party, it's not for me. I have none for myself.
# SAM
I know I've been rather quiet this journey, but I could just provide us with a few more, if that would help things--
# TRAVIS
Tary, that is very considerate of you, yeah.
# JON
Is this Taryon?
# SAM
Yeah, sorry, it's odd for me. I will rip off my last remaining potion patch on the robe, which has four small healing potions.
# MATT
There you go, so you have-- and the satchel that you received from the Crutch has three more additional regular healing potions.
# SAM
So we have seven regular healing potions.
# LAURA
Okay, okay, okay. So everybody take one?
# MARISHA
I have four on me.
# LAURA
Oh, jeez. Everybody but Keyleth take one?
# MARISHA
I made a few over the break, if we want them.
# TALIESIN
Well, as long as I've gone one in there.
# MARISHA
I'm gonna hand another one to Percy.
# TALIESIN
I'll take two.
# LIAM
Hey, T., are you feeling sentimental, being back in Marquet?
# SAM
The weather is certainly dry.
# LIAM
You've come full circle.
# SAM
Yes. I certainly have. It's good to be back, but I'm a little nervous.
I don't know why, really.
# LIAM
New setting.
# SAM
Yes. New dynamic.
# TRAVIS
Your hair's holding up well in the heat, though.
# SAM
Only because it's under the Helm. Believe me, it's a nightmare in there if you look underneath.
# ASHLEY
I'm sure you look beautiful.
# LIAM
Does it retain the shape of the helmet?
# SAM
Unfortunately, yes.
(laughter)
# LAURA
I'm just holding this necklace. I have a necklace on, I can't wear it.
# JON
I thought you were giving it to him.
# LAURA
Can you wear it?
# JON
To Gog over there.
# LIAM
No, I'm not wearing a necklace.
# LAURA
Well then, let me give it to you.
# LIAM
I didn't actually want it. I just wanted to best you.
# LAURA
Well, now you have it.
# TALIESIN
You can actually use it, though.
# LIAM
Can I have the thingie?
# TRAVIS
You're not giving it to me?
# LAURA
I thought you said you already wore a necklace!
# TRAVIS
No. No! I mean, I wear, like, ears and fingers and toes around my neck, but you can always accessorize some more, fuck, shit! I'm the only one that walks around with alcohol on me all the time, anyway.
# MARISHA
So wait, can he combo-use that and be like fine wine and chug it?
# MATT
Any relatively alcoholic drink labeled on the thing, he can drink a pint of.
# LIAM
A pint, though, Grog? A pint? You'd snort that up your left nostril, right?
# TRAVIS
Yeah. It's like a little traveler's bottle of soap.
# LIAM
Yeah, that's like you sneezing into a bottle.
# JON
Do you have an extra necklace that turns chocolate milk into, like, healing?
# MATT
"I'll put the word out for you. See what we can find."
# LAURA
Are we heading out immediately?
# SAM
There's nothing to wait for.
# MARISHA
I actually do have a necklace. I have an old necklace.
# SAM
What are we talking about now?
# JON
Everybody went from no potions to, well, I've got this, I've got this.
# LAURA
I don't know why I asked for potions when we had four fucking potions.
# TALIESIN
It might be that thing that I got rid of.
# MARISHA
I had an old card that was the necklace that gave +1 to attack and damage while--
# SAM
That's an attunement item. We don't need that shit. Let's go.
# MARISHA
All right. Sorry your employer overruled me, Kord. Or Card. Or Chode.
# LAURA
Lionel.
# MATT
"All right. Please. Out of my space." And you watch as her form shifts back to that of Aes Adan, the Meat Man.
# TRAVIS
That's impressive.
# MATT
"Thank you. Treat that well. If you lose it, I'm making you pay for it!"
# TRAVIS
Oh, no, it's in good hands.
# MATT
"All right, then. Good luck! Don't die."
# LAURA
The Crutch.
# MATT
"I'm the Meat Man now."
# TRAVIS
Yeah, she changed back.
# LAURA
Sorry, I was looking at necklaces.
# SAM
All right. On we go.
# TRAVIS
Yeah. We head back out the cramped little tunnel.
# MATT
All right. Make your way back up through the tobacco shop to the streets of Ank'harel. You are aware that the Smouldercrown mountain range is about 290 miles southeast of Ank'harel across the desert.
# JON
You guys, it's gonna be a really long hike, so let's find another burning tree, or Sun Tree or something that we can just walk into. 'Cause that was way easier than traveling.
# TALIESIN
Misty Step.
# LAURA
Not Misty Step. Wind Walk.
# TRAVIS
You can do the tree thing too?
# JON
No, I've never seen that. I can show you how to get there, but it seems--
# TRAVIS
Have you ever tried?
# JON
Tried through the Sun Tree? What do I do? Do I just--
# LAURA
You have to ask him.
# JON
I'm good at-- okay.
# LIAM
Absolute conviction.
# JON
So I go over to the nearest tree.
# MATT
Okay. About maybe one block up, there's--
# JON
About one block, guys, come on. Leading the way.
# MATT
All right. Solid trunk palm.
# MARISHA
He likes it when you're super chill and casual with him, so be cool.
# JON
He? So the trees are like dudes?
# LAURA
All of them?
# MARISHA
(mouths) Just go with it.
# JON
He likes it when you're what?
# TALIESIN
Chill and casual.
# JON
Oh. Okay. So I go up to the tree. Do I touch it? You're the tree. Hey, can you open up and take us to Crown-- what was it? Smouldercrown entrance, just 'cause. Wait, it would be way easier to just go straight to the pyramid.
# LIAM
Yeah, but it's more like a stroking thing.
You don't just leave your hand in place.
# JON
Okay, so hey, I'm chill. Can you just take us? Be cool?
# TRAVIS
The bark's a little dry. Maybe it needs a little moisture. There you go.
# SAM
(screams)
# JON
So yeah, it's cool, we're cool, if you want to take us there. If not, we get it. Is that pretty chill?
# MARISHA
That's pretty chill, yeah.
# LAURA
I'm surprised it's not working, honestly.
That's the most chill I've ever seen.
# SAM
Why am I playing the tree?
# JON
Are you guys--
# MARISHA
You know that intimate hug we had earlier? Kinda do that.
# JON
Aes? Now I'm talking to Aes.
# SAM
Oh, okay. Yes.
# JON
This reminds me of times when I was a kid and kids would-- are they making fun of me?
# SAM
They are definitely making fun of you.
# JON
Oh, come on!
# LIAM
What're you telling him lies for?
# TALIESIN
We do this to everybody. It's all right.
# JON
You do?
# MARISHA
It's part of the initiation.
# TALIESIN
But yes, we are making fun of you.
# JON
Sorry, tree. Wait, are the trees really alive?
# LAURA
No, they are.
# JON
Okay, sorry, tree. But that was kinda fun, stroking it.
# MARISHA
The tree appreciates it.
# JON
Anyways, why don't you guys just do the Sun Tree thing?
# SAM
We can't really do that. We need to know where the tree is that we're going to be going to.
# LIAM
There's a lot of tree science involved.
# MARISHA
If you could maybe potentially help me, Meat Man.
# SAM
I haven't been there, have I?
# MATT
You haven't been to Smouldercrown, no.
# MARISHA
Why were you just talking like the Meat Man?
# SAM
I have not been to the place we are going. I do not know of any tree.
# MATT
Yeah, the only one who's been there is Lionel.
# MARISHA
You've been there.
# JON
Yeah, I'm the one who saw it and told you guys about it.
# MARISHA
Were there trees?
# JON
Yeah, there were a couple dead-looking trees, not huge ones. How big do they have to be?
# MARISHA
They looked dead?
# JON
They looked a little dead-ish.
# MARISHA
They were dead? Like very dead?
# JON
Do they have to be alive?
# MARISHA
I think so? Right?
# JON
I really wanted to see that Sun Tree thing.
# TRAVIS
We'll use it to go back.
# MARISHA
Would you prefer to be a cloud?
# JON
I can be a cloud?
# MARISHA
I could be a cloud, but I'm gonna blow a 7th-level spell for it.
# LAURA
Wait, but how many people can you do, because we also have Doty.
# MARISHA
Ten? Let me see.
# LIAM
Can you turn an automaton, a robit, into cloud? Did we do that already?
# SAM
Not too many. We're ten exactly.
# TRAVIS
Really?
# LAURA
Yeah, Trinket's in the necklace.
# TRAVIS
Doty, Taryon, Scanlan.
# LAURA
Oh, shit. Taryon and Scanlan.
# SAM
That's ten, isn't it?
# ASHLEY
But that's blowing a 7th-level spell. How long does it take to hike up there?
# SAM
290 miles.
# MATT
Wind Walk is a 6th-level spell. Not a 7th.
# MARISHA
But I've already used my 6th-level spell to Transport Via Plants. That's what I'm saying.
So I'm gonna have to use a 7th-level spell to do it.
# MATT
This is true.
# TRAVIS
It's worth it.
# LIAM
Does that work on Doty?
# MATT
So you'd be able to get all of you.
# TALIESIN
Would it work on Doty?
# MATT
Willing creatures. Technically he's considered a creature for the targeting reason of spells and effects, so yeah.
# LIAM
Tary.
# MARISHA
So we can do that, but then we might wanna rest. Or we can do some scouting, take a look. I won't be completely tapped out.
# LIAM
We can camp it up if we need to.
# TALIESIN
It'll take more than a day to get there anyway, so this way we'll just save some time and we'll take a day to take a look around.
# LAURA
Let's go!
# LIAM
Lionel, this is really awesome. For real, you're going to like this.
# MARISHA
Ready? Ready? Everybody join hands, join hands, join hands.
# LAURA
Do we have to join hands for this?
# SAM
We don't at all. Not at all.
# JON
Can we still do it?
# MARISHA
Poof!
# MATT
All right, you guys feel a warm, magical effect go through you. As you're concentrating, consider yourself being a cloud, you are the cloud. You open your eyes, Lionel, and you look, and you are a fucking cloud! You're like 20 feet up!
# JON
Oh, check this out! (spits)
# MATT
As you do that, you watch as more cloud spit goes (fft) and just more cloud. Your body is moisture. When you try and talk, it just goes (exhale).
# JON
So you can't really talk.
# MATT
Can't really talk. You're a cloud. So if you wanted to, you could spend a minute to concentrate and revert back, and you can do that-- you have an eight-hour period where you can just turn back and forth.
# LAURA
We should probably concentrate for just a minute. I'm gonna turn back, just so I can shout out, we should all follow-- you know how to get there, right, Lionel?
# JON
(wind noises)
# LAURA
Bob up and down if it's a yes. Okay. We're going to follow you, all right? And when it's ready to land, then just hover down, and we'll all follow your lead.
# JON
(fart sound) (laughter)
# LAURA
That's totally normal. We all do it. All right.
# MATT
All right. So you all go into your mist forms and begin to follow after Lionel's lead. As you guys coast over the upper areas of Ank'harel, it's a beautiful view looking down at this gorgeous city, just this glittering jewel of color and architecture, one of the older cities in Exandria that portions of it seem to have survived elements of the Age of Arcanum and the Calamity, and one of the first societies to spring up thereafter. And it's beautiful to see this history, far longer than that of Tal'Dorei, or at least the human societies of Tal'Dorei, just standing obstinate against the dark oppression of the surrounding desert. You continue to head in that direction, with you leading. Lionel, I need you to roll a survival check.
# LAURA
Survival check. We might get lost?
# TALIESIN
Add that to your survival.
# JON
14.
# MATT
14. All right. So you're traveling at an incredible speed. Like you're used to walking speed, running speed sometimes, maybe horsey speed. This is a very, very fast speed. You're coasting through the air right as the sun begins to set, and the night begins to hit. You keep relatively low to the ground, so you have your Darkvision to see the topography and get an idea of where it's going and the direction. You can look up and see the stars above. You've traveled, and you've been amongst this desert most of your life, so you have a good sense of how to follow that, and because of that, you're able to maintain your directional position towards the Smouldercrown Mountains. You push on. About halfway through the journey, you can see some little flames occasionally in the distance, what looks to be either caravan camps or bandit camps or various nomad circles that are set up for the night where different campfires are placed, whether it's beacons, traps, or just people to stay warm for the evening. You know, best not to stop whenever you see a flame in the middle of the desert. The winds are picking up and getting colder, the stark contrast between the temperature of the day and the night here is immense, and your moisture form takes on the cold fairly quickly, and you feel, even though you're in this form, the chill still captures you a bit as your condensation begins to slightly crystallize in places, but you push on. Roll one more survival check, please.
# LAURA
Don't get us lost!
# JON
15.
# MATT
15. And without an issue or any sort of a loss of step or position, eventually you watch as the ominous spire-like jagged dagger-topped Smouldercrown Mountains begin to break the horizon and make their way towards you. You're now, at that speed, it hasn't been that long since you left, maybe a few hours out of Ank'harel. So you're maybe around ten o'clock in the evening or so, 10:30. Going to go ahead and move over here to a non--
# TALIESIN
I was gonna argue that since he has the Duck Totem, that technically he would have a natural migration sense of what direction he was gonna go.
# MATT
That's a good argument to make, but not necessary, but good for holding on to that.
# TALIESIN
Yeah, just thought I'd put that out there. I feel like his duck sense would be tingling. Always knows where South is.
# MATT
Not denying. Recognized, but unnecessary in the moment.
# TALIESIN
Unnecessary, but worth noting.
# MATT
Worth noting, indeed. But yeah. So the spires of the mountain are surprisingly steep.
They're steeple-like, almost, in a lot of places.
They're all just jutting up like these gargantuan spikes that were pressed out of the earth from some sort of landmass shift or some volcanic activity long, long ago. But you can see the densely packed rock formations, and the mountain cluster is maybe, at most, I'll say three miles, four miles across. It's not a very, very big mountain range. And it's called Smouldercrown because the circular pattern of the oval-like pattern of the mountains that rise up and resembles at a distance like a king's crown in the way that it circles around itself. You recall one of three different entrances, the one that was safest that you guys took when you entered, the central portion of the mountain range from the outside, and you guide the rest of them to the exterior of this space. You can see it's a small valley between two of the exterior mountains that collide together, and there is a valley path, where you see a number of dried trees. Some do appear to be alive, Keyleth, though they're designed to weather extreme droughts. They seem to have some sort of weird fruit that they're bearing, dripping off some of the branches, but the leaves themselves are brown and withered and you haven't quite seen plant la-life-- plant life like this before.
# LAURA
Plant la-la-la.
# MATT
Plant la-va-la-fl.
# MARISHA
Does it look like it's natural decay?
# MATT
If you want to go and approach it and inspect it, you can.
# MARISHA
How far-- we're still clouds?
# MATT
You guys are maybe 100 feet up or so, and you've just now hit the edge of the Smouldercrown mountain range.
# MARISHA
Starting to go into the entrance.
# MATT
Yes. The entrance of the mountains. You haven't found an entrance to the actual mountain rock itself.
# MARISHA
Are we going to go on foot from here?
# MATT
That's up to you guys.
# TALIESIN
I think we'll get a little closer.
# MARISHA
I'll wait 'til we get closer. From up here, does the mountain formation look like it's naturally formed, or like some sort of other event? Is it seismically formed?
# MATT
Make a nature check.
# MARISHA
Oh, not good. What's my nature? Okay, 16.
# MATT
16, not bad. They appear to be seismically formed. You can see some of the rocks, the way they rise up in the smaller areas, are at an angle where it's smooth on one side, and you can see the layers beneath where portions of the earth seem to have been jammed, cracked, and pushed upward. But because it's so localized, it isn't like there's tectonic plates shifting or anything, it's not a mass range. Most mountain ranges are long, driven locations that mark where those various boundaries are. This is just a central formation, so you're uncertain as to what the nature of this creation was, but it seems natural.
# LAURA
I'm picturing beautiful Bob Ross mountains.
Just lightly touch.
# MARISHA
Happy accidents.
# TALIESIN
Happy little TPK.
# MATT
Yeah. Percy, can I have you roll a perception check, please?
# TALIESIN
Yes. I'm not gonna roll that, 'cause you've been-- I feel like that's yours. It landed on other dice. I'm gonna let it be there, though.
Actually, yeah, it's 20.
# MATT
Okay. You, Mr. Human, with no actual Darkvision, do not get lost on the path. Taryon, could I have you also roll a perception check?
# SAM
15 plus something. Minus one. 14.
# MATT
Okay, so you fall a little behind the group.
# SAM
Doty has low-light vision, I think.
# MATT
Doty has Darkvision. We'll say that Doty manages to get you caught up a little bit. You fall a bit behind, but you do manage to find the rest of the team. You don't get terribly lost in the middle of the dark, desert sky of these small wisps of cloud with no light other than starlight there to guide your path forward. They begin to just pull ahead and vanish into the horizon. You freak out but Doty eventually finds you as a cloud and you swear you hear the wind go, "Tary." (laughter)
You continue to push forward, eventually leading into the outside of this entrance of Smouldercrown, where the rest of them have gathered. You guys begin to slowly push into the valley that makes its way towards the center of Smouldercrown, following Lionel's leads. These trees that you notice, Keyleth, they're sporadic in places, and there is scrub brush, sparse, there are areas of the ground where it's dried and cracked. The badlands here, the sands of the deserts, the big storms largely don't make it into the center of the valley because the mountains protect it. While there are elements of it here and there, you can see the topography and the landscape here is very dried, cracked, red earth. Little moisture seems to be contained here. The plant life that exists here is designed to subsist on very, very little water.
You eventually come, Lionel, to the area where you believe you found the last entrance. Make an investigation check, if you don't mind.
# JON
21.
# MATT
21, okay then. You very quickly look around and recall some of the landmarks.
# JON
I'm still in cloud form.
# MATT
You're still in cloud form. But you see some of the landmarks that seem to triangulate where you originally found the entrance. However, to truly search in this area, you'd have to get low and probably go to your physical form to seek it out. All right, so. You take a minute to concentrate and you revert back into your half-orc form.
# LAURA
I go down and do it, too, 'cause he did it.
# MATT
Okay. Everyone else joining him?
# ALL
Yes.
# MATT
All right, so the rest of the party goes, and they take their physical form.
(laughter)
# JON
That was awesome, guys.
# LAURA
Is this where it is?
# MATT
You're able to see in the dark for a decent amount. You walk the perimeter of this space where the first cavern was, and you feel around, and you gather that there was a path here, but it looks like there's been a small cave-in. A lot of the rocks appear like they've been recently fallen in, and there's some sort of a grade to them where you watch loose rocks have recently been tossed around that are of a deeper-set red color and haven't been quite as weathered as the exterior of the mountain appears to be. So apparently the entrance that you originally used either has collapsed on its own, or was intentionally shut.
# JON
I could've sworn it was right here, you guys.
I don't know what's with all these rocks.
# LAURA
It looks like it was caved in, actually.
# LIAM
This is 100% the spot?
# JON
Pretty sure. I mean, I don't have the best memory or knowledge or brains or really any skills, but I'm pretty sure this was it.
# LAURA
Don't be so hard on yourself, Lionel.
# MARISHA
Does it look deliberate, or does it look natural?
# MATT
Make an investigation check.
# JON
Well, it could be. I have an idea, you guys.
Let's ask the ducks!
# LAURA
Are there ducks here?
# JON
There's no ducks here?
# MARISHA
Natural 19 from Gil. 22.
# JON
We can see if there are if we Commune With Ducks.
# MATT
The cave-in is not natural. The rocks you can see, the portion of the archway where the natural mountain rock becomes the rockslide that seems to have filled the space, there is no damage that seems to be seismic or quaked, and you can see what appear to be some cleft sides at the edge of this entrance where it appears like elements of it were actually hacked or damaged until it eventually fell in.
# LAURA
Are there any kind of tracks around, or footfalls that look like it was recent?
# MATT
Roll a-- for you, it would be a survival check, 'cause you're a tracker.
# LAURA
And it's a mountain!
# TALIESIN
I honestly think they might have trapped it.
# LAURA
I can roll that one again.
# LIAM
I'll wait until she has looked, and then I'll take a look.
# LAURA
Yeah, that's way better! 27!
# MATT
As you guys are having this moment, and you get low to the ground and begin to read the patterns of the different rocks that have tumbled and left small grooves and a little bit of dust and sand that does reside over this dark, caked dirt and rock, and you do notice a number of footprints. They're scattered a bit, some older, some newer. There's been a lot of foot traffic in and out of this cavern fairly recently, like a week or so ago. And you begin to follow the tracks. Some lead back the path you came, some seem to circle around further into the valley around this mountain.
# LAURA
I think I've picked something up. Should we follow it now or should we--
# SAM
It's dark.
# LAURA
-- camp out and do it in the morning.
# MARISHA
Cover for me. I'm gonna drop down and do a Commune With Nature.
# TRAVIS
How do we cover you?
# TALIESIN
She talks to non-ducks.
# MARISHA
Can Lionel and I commune together and do bonuses? Can I be like, can you call your ducks?
# JON
That's what I was trying to do.
# MARISHA
All right.
# MATT
I'll say, as you begin to cast the spell, you take Lionel's hands and focus, and Lionel, you close your eyes and you imagine before you the most beautiful desert duck that could ever exist.
And for a good 45 seconds, 50 seconds, 60 seconds, nothing. And that sadness in your heart sinks a bit, that perhaps Aes, or Scanlan, as these weird people keep calling him, said, there are no ducks here. And you hear, in the darkness, (flapping wings, squawk, impact sound). It runs into the side of the mountain, tumbles down onto the ground. (duck sounds)
# SAM
It's a miracle!
# TALIESIN
It certainly is.
# JON
The duck!
# LAURA
Wait, you can call them to you?
# JON
I mean, I just, normally that happens.
# LAURA
That's a power, that's amazing.
# TALIESIN
Do they obey you, or is it a partnership?
# LAURA
Could you call multiple to you and they pick you up and fly you through the air?
# JON
You guys are confusing me. Look, I just talk to them.
# MARISHA
You know, it's okay.
# TALIESIN
Let's not question this.
# MATT
So which of you wants to commune with the duck?
# LIAM
Let the expert.
# JON
Okay, what do we wanna know?
# MARISHA
How deep is the cave-in?
# JON
How deep is the cave-in? Okay.
# SAM
To the duck?
# TALIESIN
They knew about the others.
# SAM
Sure, sure.
# JON
I ask the duck, how deep is the cave-in?
# MATT
Okay, the duck, "20 feet".
(laughter)
# TRAVIS
That's a chill-as-fuck duck, y'all!
# JON
You couldn't understand that. I was like, you guys, that duck was really chill.
(laughter)
# LAURA
No, I can tell, his body language is super chill for a duck.
# JON
20 feet. What else do we want? Do we wanna ask if he recognizes who did this?
# MARISHA
That's a good one, that's a good one, yeah, yeah, yeah.
# JON
Hey, greenie. How-- who did this? What caused the cave-in?
# MATT
"People."
# MARISHA
You know, I have a similar problem when I try to talk to cows. They have face-blindness.
# LAURA
I'm just gonna stealthily start following the path around.
# MATT
Stealth check.
# MARISHA
Is there another entrance into this cavern?
# JON
That's good, that's good. Should we ask the nearest? Where's the nearest entrance?
# LAURA
29.
# JON
Or the safest entrance?
# MARISHA
Are there other entrances?
# JON
Hey, Greenie, how many other entrances are there to this, about?
# MATT
"Two."
# JON
Two. Uh-oh, that was two questions.
# MARISHA
Is that two including this entrance?
# MATT
(flapping wings)
# JON
Wait, wait, wait!
# TRAVIS
Duck Hunt! Shoot it! Vex!
# JON
Meant to ask where the entrances are. Sorry, you guys.
# MARISHA
Well, there is another one. It's good, it's fine, it's good. In fact, I can double down on this. Can I now do my Commune With Nature and see if I can map out this cavern and find the other entrances?
# MATT
Okay, so as you've now sat down, and you focus, you can sense the guardian duck that was temporarily summoned is now wandering out to the desert, probably to dehydrate and die horribly when the morning light comes.
# JON
I don't know about this, I don't know about this. Aw, he's going home to his family.
# TALIESIN
In a way, yes.
# MATT
However, you connect and you can feel your spiritual essence connect with the land here. The landscape is something you're not used to.
Elements of it remind you of Pyrah, though not as visceral and volcanic, but the general heat and barren aspect of the landscape is familiar in some ways. So as you extend yourself, you can breathe and you can feel the land breathe with you, and as that communion hits, you feel you could ask some questions of the terrain.
# MARISHA
Where are the other two entrances to this cavern?
# MATT
You get, as is the essence of answering these questions, you sense that there is one near the top of the spire and there is one not terribly far from where you are, kind of continuing inward towards the valley. But it doesn't specify directly where, it doesn't put an 'x' on your map for you. You just know that one's towards the top, and one's further around the path you're going.
# MARISHA
Can I-- hang on-- around the path. Okay.
How deep is the Ziggurat from here? Can I sense the other Ziggurat?
# MATT
You focus, and you sense that there is almost like a cyst in the ground. You can sense some subterranean cavern. Maybe about 400, 500 feet into the heart of the mountain from where you currently sit. You can sense there this kind of pulsing darkness, almost like a terrible, cancerous heartbeat in the center of this land.
# MARISHA
Okay. What else? What's the last one? What should I do?
# SAM
Are there any people around?
# TALIESIN
Has anybody been through that upper passageway?
# MARISHA
Yeah, yeah, yeah, can I sense any other maraudering douchebags?
# MATT
Well, you can ask questions about people, powerful celestials, fey, fiends, elementals, or undead, influence from means of other existences.
# MARISHA
Humanoids? What about humanoids?
# MATT
You want to try and sense humanoids? You ask about it. Your attention is shifted back towards that weird cyst-Ziggurat area in the center of the mountain, and the land seems to give you the idea that there are a number of humanoids there right now.
# MARISHA
Shit. Do they look like cultist-y people?
# MATT
You don't have a visual. Your vision isn't brought there, you just kind of sense that they're there. They're inside the mountain.
# MARISHA
What?
# JON
I could've told you there was people at the pyramid.
# TALIESIN
Well, last time. Who's here now?
# JON
Well, why would they leave?
# MARISHA
I don't know. I said there's all these cool cult people.
Yeah, they could leave.
# JON
It's good to know that they're still there.
# TRAVIS
Were there people inside?
# MARISHA
A decent amount of people.
# MATT
So Vex is gone.
# TRAVIS
Where's Vex?
# LIAM
What did you find out?
# MARISHA
A lot of people. There's another entrance nearby, I think further down this path. It's close.
# LIAM
Well, Vex went this way. Is it in that direction?
# MARISHA
What? What do you mean? She went where?
# MATT
You actually didn't see the direction she went.
# LIAM
Do we see footprints going in a direction, though, you described?
# MATT
Nobody else did. Only she was tracking.
Literally, you all turn around and Vex is just gone.
# MARISHA
I think there's also an entrance at the top of this spire, if we want to do a downward approach, but that seems risky.
# MATT
You follow the tracks, and about 200 or so feet around the edge, and you have to follow them between a few smaller rocks that are jutting out at the base of the mountain, and the terrain itself rolls a bit, and cracks in places. There are small fissures from recent rains that caused the earth to well up and tear in places, and eventually the tracks curve in towards the mountain and end, and it's just sheer mountain.
There's no sign of an entryway visually.
# LAURA
Can I search for one?
# MATT
Make an investigation check.
# LAURA
Do I get advantage because it's a mountain?
# MATT
You do, actually, yes. Favored terrain.
# LAURA
Fucking balls. Perception?
# MATT
Investigation.
# LAURA
No, I want perception.
# MATT
You're getting investigation.
# LAURA
11.
# MATT
11? You have no idea where the entrance is.
The tracks end in this general vicinity, and it's just rock. It doesn't even look like there's handholds.
# LAURA
Weird. I wonder if it's an illusion. Can I put my hand on the rocks and see if there's an illusion?
# MATT
Okay. You put your hands out to feel against the rock, and your hand passes through.
# LAURA
What-what! I feel like Vex is really good at finding illusions. Oh, shit! Okay, well, can I put the front of my face through the wall and see what I see?
# MATT
Sure. You poke into the darkness, and it is pitch-black on the inside. As you poke past the illusion, it's about two inches or so of this rocky, heavy orange-red stone, and as you peer in you can see a cavern about ten feet wide or so and about 12 to ten feet tall. Natural along the walls, you can see the ground itself is smoothed over, and it's straight. It's a straight tunnel.
It's not a rocky natural formation, it's like it was pushed and carved into the rock, like something heavy or something very focused drove through. You glance over to the side, and you catch what appears to be a face in the wall, about that big around. It's featureless, you just see two eye sockets, a mouth, and a nose. You see a flash of green light. I need you to make a constitution saving throw.
# LAURA
Well, it's too late. Constitution saving throw?
# TRAVIS
Can we also say that we put our earrings back in the next day?
# MATT
I assumed you did.
# TRAVIS
Because we're professionals.
# LAURA
That was almost so good, but then it wasn't. Ten.
# MATT
Ten. No, that does not succeed.
# TRAVIS
Curious little cat.
# LAURA
I'm a rogue now, you guys!
# TALIESIN
Had to poke it.
# MATT
You take 61 points of necrotic damage. As a familiar sting, as the green light flash turns into a piercing beam of life-draining energy, one that once almost brought you to the edge of death before, and as it hits you, you feel your breath and life essence sucked out of your nose and mouth and ears like a giant vacuum is pulling the essence out of your body. The veins bulge, you can't breathe, and you pull yourself back out of the illusory wall, and have to gasp for a moment.
You guys hear the gasping as you begin to approach that side, and you find your sister there grabbing herself.
# LAURA
(coughing) Jenga. Not full Jenga.
# ASHLEY
What happened, what happened, what happened?
# LAURA
Don't go through the wall. Can I heal, Pike?
# ASHLEY
Yes, yes.
# LAURA
There's a thing in there. There's a face, and it sucks your life out. I found a door, though, guys!
# JON
Where's the door?
# LAURA
Don't. I'm not even going to tell you where the door is.
I'm not going to tell him where the door is.
# TRAVIS
We don't see a door.
# JON
I don't see a door.
# LAURA
Nobody touch the rocks!
# LIAM
But there's a bad door somewhere around here?
# LAURA
There's a bad door. Just listen for a moment. Bad door. Right in front of me: fake, bad door. If you go through it, there is a very bad face that sucks your life out.
# LIAM
A bad face.
# LAURA
Yeah.
# TALIESIN
There's a door you cannot see, and a bad face sucks your life away.
# LAURA
Yeah. I'm going to take my Oracle Arrow and crouch down.
# SAM
Wait, wait, wait, before you do that, are you sure that's--
# LIAM
Yeah, slow down, you're doing all the shit.
# SAM
You're going to just shoot something in there? What if they see it fly in?
# LAURA
That's why I was going to crouch down and shoot the arrow super low to the ground.
# LIAM
What if they still see the arrow fly in?
# LAURA
Well, when I peeked my head in, before I got my life sucked out, I didn't see anything in front of me. Did I?
# LIAM
I'm going to assume that before we heard her gasping, Keyleth was filling us in.
# MARISHA
You know, I think it's right around that direction. Follow the gasping. It feels like it's really close to the gasping.
# LIAM
I'm going to go check out the top. (mist sound)
# LAURA
Give me shit, and then take off on your own.
# LIAM
Well, I'm not going to stick my face in something.
# MATT
All right. So you fly up. (flapping wings) 60 feet a round. It'll take you a good five minutes or so to make your way towards the top end of the spire. As you're going, make an investigation check.
# LIAM
Can I stealth as cloud?
# MATT
Oh, you're going cloud! Sorry, I thought you were doing your wings. As a cloud, you get there really fast. So as you make it up there, you cannot-- I will say, for the purposes of this...
# LIAM
I'm wind. I'm not going high, I'm going through the treetops.
# MATT
Yeah, so make a stealth check.
# LIAM
All right, I will. That is very good. That is a 35.
# MATT
35, okay. As far as you understand, no one seems to see you. Make an investigation check as you make your way up the mountainside to check for any sort of entrances.
# LAURA
You should mark off one of your Lucks because you already used it for the day.
# LIAM
I did, it's on the plastic.
# SAM
Keep him honest.
# LIAM
Oh man. I love you so wholeheartedly, and on a regular basis you kick me in the goolies. I don't understand it.
# SAM
Good old four-Luck O'Brien.
# LIAM
Seven Luck. It's not per game, it's per day, so if we go to bed, it resets. Fart knockers. I'm doing investigation? That's 18.
# MATT
18. You glide around there for a good ten, 15 minutes or so, scouring the edge. All you know is it's near the top, and you see no sign of an entrance.
# LIAM
Okay. So it's not a volcanic hole or anything, there's just a secret entrance.
# MATT
No. She told you there was supposedly an entrance, but you see nothing. Sheer rock. There are a couple of indents that could be cave entrances, but when you get close you see it's just a small alcove that ends.
# LAURA
Maybe you should try sticking your face against some of the sheer rock face.
# LIAM
I return to my loving sister, kind and good.
I land, and say, I saw another face, but I didn't stick my face in it, because that would be stupid.
# MARISHA
I wonder if there's another face behind the cave-in.
# LAURA
You know what, I should probably find out! And I shoot the Oracle Arrow.
# MATT
Okay. You shoot the Oracle Arrow and--
# MARISHA
Wait, into the cave-in, or the illusory wall?
# MATT
How far do you fire it? Is it full strength, is it a lob?
# LAURA
No, I don't want to go crazy far. I want to get in, a little bit further to see if I can find any more traps, and see how that face works.
# TRAVIS
What percentage of your strength do you shoot it at? 70? 50? 25?
# LAURA
65 percent of my strength is used.
# MATT
Okay. (whoosh) As you release it, it's still a good distance. It (whoosh) continues through. As you go past the face, the one that shot the green light, you can see the front of it is darkened now, from where before it was untouched. It cruises past. You see the formations. It looks like there's some cool designs here and there. The arrow eventually comes to rest. You don't see anything of interest as you pass by that quickly.
You do see a very, very faint glow down the hall.
You can see the glimmer of light, and as you watch, it's shifting ever so slightly, flickering like firelight.
# LAURA
I think there's a fire further in.
# TRAVIS
Was the face there?
# LAURA
The face is in there.
# TRAVIS
Was it doing the life-sucking thing?
# LAURA
Not to my arrow. But it was there on the wall.
# TRAVIS
I'll go in.
# LAURA
No, no, no, Grog, don't!
# ASHLEY
She got hurt!
# TRAVIS
Yeah, but I'm stacked for days.
# LAURA
We should dispel it or something.
# JON
I got your back, Grog.
# TALIESIN
We've got another entrance.
# MARISHA
I can Dispel Magic still.
# LAURA
Yeah, see if you can dispel the magic!
# TALIESIN
Let's see if there's a second entrance.
# MARISHA
Well, there is a second entrance. One is up top.
# TALIESIN
Well, they're going to think we're coming in through here, because they know about this entrance. Maybe they don't know about the other one, so we could maybe be super tricky and take an entrance they don't know about at all.
# MARISHA
I can clear out the cave-in. I imagine if someone is trying to cause an intentional cave-in, they're anticipating no one going through that cave-in, and we can start there.
# JON
I at least know my way in, if we cleared that.
# TALIESIN
If I were expecting people, I'd expect them through the entrance I take or the cave-in, not a third entrance I don't know about, though.
Assuming they don't know about it.
# MARISHA
But they do know about the up. He said there was a face.
# JON
No, he's talking about the third entrance, that's lower.
# TALIESIN
Higher.
# JON
No, I thought that was the higher one.
# MARISHA
Hang on, hang on. There are three entrances: the cave-in, the one where Vex just got exploded, and one through the top of the spire.
# LIAM
Which I could not find.
# TALIESIN
Should we take a group look for the top of the spire?
# MARISHA
If we go through the cave-in entrance, I can clear it out. I will clear one of my last high-level spells, but Lionel knows his way through that way.
# LAURA
Yeah, but we shouldn't go in the night. We need to rest.
# MARISHA
But I can clear it tonight.
# TALIESIN
We could just make a tiny hole in the cave-in and become smoke and go inside. Is that not possible? He asked.
# MATT
That may be quite possible, actually.
# TALIESIN
So that they wouldn't even know that we had cleared it.
It would just be relatively untouched.
# MARISHA
Can we camp out inside?
# MATT
It's a gaseous form, so yeah.
# LAURA
We would have to camp inside the cave-in.
# TALIESIN
It's either that or camp right in front of the front door after just triggering a spell.
# LAURA
Oh, Scanlan! We've been so long without you, I forgot we had it!
# MARISHA
Oh my god, we have the mansion!
# LIAM
I mean, only if you want to. I remember that being a sore spot.
# SAM
I don't even know if you guys want me to come in with you. I've taken you this far. But if you need me in there, I'll come.
# ASHLEY
No, you'll be coming.
# SAM
All right. Let's make a hole and go in, and then we can camp the night inside.
# JON
I think some of my dead comrades we could use as pillows. They're probably still in there.
# TALIESIN
That may not be necessary.
# ASHLEY
Body pillow.
# TALIESIN
I'm so proud of you! That was amazing!
# MATT
So what's the plan, guys?
# LAURA
We're going to go back to the cave-in. Oh, wait, wait, wait! I did have a question. I feel like it might be smart to get my arrow out of there, in case anybody comes out and sees an arrow.
# ASHLEY
That's a good idea.
# LAURA
But I don't know how to do that. Is there an Unseen Servant or something?
# JON
I'll run in real fast and get it.
# SAM
No, do not do that. I, Scanlan Shorthalt, can go get it, if you'd like.
# LAURA
No, Scanlan, that's not what I meant.
# SAM
I can go get it if you'd like.
# LAURA
No, I don't want you to go in! It fucking sucks your life out!
# SAM
It's easy. I'll be there and back in two seconds.
# JON
But there's a face-sucking thing.
# LAURA
Do I know how many feet in it went?
# MATT
You're not entirely certain. I'd say a couple hundred, maybe. 150.
# TRAVIS
You did 65 percent of your...
# SAM
You're an expert marksman, you know. Within 100 feet? Yeah, how about this? Why don't you shoot an arrow right now, outside the cave, same strength, and see how far it goes?
# LAURA
You got it.
# MATT
Okay. So what's the range on your bow?
# LAURA
Oh, that's a good question. Fenthras, exalted.
# MATT
It's a longbow. It's just a general longbow's range. Do you have that written down?
# LAURA
What? Like 120 feet? Is it that, or is it more?
# MATT
150 is your first increment, and then 600 is your second increment.
# TALIESIN
65 is like 400 feet.
# MATT
Approximately, yeah.
# TALIESIN
Or the closest wall. Did it hit a wall?
# MATT
It did not hit a wall.
# TALIESIN
400 feet.
# LAURA
That's really far. No, but how would you do it? How would you do it?
# SAM
I have ways.
# LIAM
Could you see through the mouth of this face that you saw, when you were in there?
# LAURA
I saw eyes.
# MATT
There was no eyes. There was empty sockets, a mouth, and a nose, and then suddenly the sockets began to glow green for a second, and then the hit.
# LAURA
The sockets glowed green and then I got hit.
# LIAM
So you couldn't see through the mouth, it was just a dark maw.
# LAURA
Right. But the eyes glowed.
# ASHLEY
You're just going to go in there, Scanlan?
# SAM
You want to come?
# ASHLEY
How are you going to do this?
# SAM
The way I always go. Dimension Door.
# LAURA
What if it can reach you that far in?
# SAM
It can't.
# ASHLEY
How do you know?
# SAM
I assume.
# ASHLEY
Well, I'm not going with you!
# SAM
Great.
# LIAM
I'll go with you.
# SAM
You can't.
# LAURA
You're too big.
# SAM
I'll just go. Dimension Door 400 feet straight in.
# ASHLEY
Wait, I'll go with him. I'm going to go with you. I'm keeping my eye on him.
# MATT
All right. (poof) You guys appear inside the cavern. Darkness. You can see the firelight ahead, the flicker at the end of the tunnel, and you can see the tunnel, the straight portion of it, maybe 100 feet forward, begins to shift and bend a little bit. It starts to turn into more of a natural cavern as it goes. Whatever drove its way in here has merged with a natural path on the inside of the mountain, possibly even merged with the cave-in path. You look on the ground, and both of you guys make investigation checks, if you don't mind.
# ASHLEY
Investigation, did you say?
# SAM
30.
# ASHLEY
I'm sure he found something. 11.
# MATT
In the time it takes you to go, "Okay, we're looking..." He's like, "Found it!" You find the arrow. A little dust drifts off of it, and as you're walking you can see that there's a softness to the ground here. You get the sense that the formation, whatever rock was pushed through here, was... There's no pile of rock outside, there's no symbol of the earth that was carved out of this tunnel, recently it seems, placed anywhere.
There's just an absence of rock, and there's a heavy layer of dust on the ground.
# LAURA
Do either of you have Dust of Tracelessness?
# ASHLEY
No. Well.
# SAM
Go back?
# ASHLEY
Yeah. Let's go back.
# SAM
Will you hold my hand?
# ASHLEY
No. No, don't push your luck.
# MATT
(poof) You guys bamf back out of the outside. You watch as Scanlan and Pike reemerge from the outside, Scanlan holding your arrow triumphant.
# LAURA
Oh, it's dusty. Was it dusty in there?
# SAM
It was very dusty in there.
# LIAM
Any footprints?
# ASHLEY
None that we could see.
# SAM
Soft un-tread earth.
# LIAM
Weird.
# LAURA
Thank you.
# MARISHA
Oh, no.
# LIAM
What is it, Kiki?
# MARISHA
Maybe this is the unused entrance. Maybe the cave-in is the more recent.
# LAURA
No, I see tracks coming in and out of this place. I know there's people that use this.
# MATT
Yeah, fairly recent tracks.
# LIAM
But you saw no footprints inside?
# ASHLEY
Did you, Scanlan? You should've seen something. Did you look?
# SAM
No, I forgot. I was looking for the arrow.
That was our mission.
# ASHLEY
Well, I was just making sure you weren't going to run away, so I was preoccupied.
# JON
So you guys both accomplished your missions! Awesome!
# LAURA
Maybe we should go back into the other side, then. Unless somebody can just fucking dispel that face, and then we can just go in this way.
# MARISHA
I could attempt it. I have Dispel Magic with me right now.
# TRAVIS
Do it!
# MARISHA
All right. I'll do it.
# LIAM
Is the plan to camp out tonight? In the mansion, by a fire, whichever?
# LAURA
In the mansion.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to point out, I've already been looking for a way into the cave-in while you've all been being ridiculous.
# LAURA
You've already gone back?
# TALIESIN
The minute he suggested that he get it, I didn't want to be a part of that, so I just immediately went in to start testing to see if there was ways we could just meld through the cave-in, or if we actually had to make a hole.
# MATT
So you're inspecting?
# TALIESIN
I misty-ed out of that the minute that he started working on it.
# MATT
So you're over, currently looking for a way through?
# TALIESIN
Seeing if I can find ways through.
# MATT
You manage to squeeze through a few crevices between the stones and rock, but it's pretty densely packed. You get maybe five feet in before you can't really find a way to get your whole mist form through.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to start, back to normal, at the very top of the pile, looking to see if I can start scraping through using my sword to make a crevice.
# MATT
Okay, so you're working on that. What are you guys doing?
# SAM
Are we trying to dispel the magic or are we going in the other way? Maybe we should just make a decision.
# MARISHA
I'm trying to dispel the magic.
# MATT
Okay. So you walk up to the illusory wall.
# MARISHA
I'm having Vex be like, tell me where it is. Can I prepare it so as soon as I poke my head in, I can be like (dink)!
# MATT
Okay. You poke your head in, and as soon as you glance off to the side, you can see the stone face in the wall.
# MARISHA
(poof)
# MATT
Cast Dispel Magic... Doesn't seem to have an effect.
# MARISHA
Bail. Bail! Bail! Out!
# LAURA
Did it hit you that fast? It didn't hit you?
# MATT
There was no attack from the face, either.
# TALIESIN
I get the distinct impression, perhaps, that you used it up, and probably alerted them that somebody was at that entrance.
# LAURA
Let's maybe move away from the entrance.
# MARISHA
Can I peek my head back in and do a...
# MATT
You glance in. No trigger, nothing. The face seems inert.
# LAURA
I peek my head in. Does the flickering light in the distance seem brighter?
# MATT
Make a perception check.
# LAURA
It's too many choices. Too many dice.
Fucking shit, motherfuck! Wait, wait, it's a mountain.
# MATT
It is a mountain. You get to have an advantage. That's what rangers do, man!
# LIAM
Was the light seen by the arrow?
# MATT
The light was seen by the arrow.
# LIAM
So you're looking at the face.
# LAURA
No, I'm looking in the fucking tunnel.
# MATT
The face is on the side of it. It's beyond.
# LIAM
Oh, it keeps going?
# MATT
Yeah. So depending on how high her perception is, she may, now that she sees the flicker at the end, she may be able to see something. So how high did you roll?
# LAURA
31.
# MATT
That would be high enough to just barely focus your half-elven eyes and glance down. You get to see the very faint bead of light at the very tip, and it doesn't seem to change over the next 30 seconds, next minute, next two minutes while you focus intently.
You don't see any shift or change.
# ASHLEY
Should we just go in?
# LAURA
We could.
# JON
So you think the face is recharging?
# LAURA
I think I might have used up its only charge, potentially. Or it's recharging.
# JON
It's like a booby trap, used once.
# LIAM
I will take a look at it, and look at the area and see if there's anything left to it or other traps further down.
# MATT
Okay. Make an investigation check.
# SAM
Well, if he's going in, Taryon will go in and Identify the thing.
# MATT
Okay. Go ahead and make an arcana check.
# LIAM
19.
# MATT
19, okay. You glance by, you check it. As you both are looking at it, both Taryon and Vax approach the face, and the carving is rudimentary.
It looks more like it was prepared as the basis of-- what did you roll?
# SAM
17, but I've got Identify.
# MATT
Yeah. There's no magical essence to it any longer, but your arcana check shows that you can see that there are certain small carvings in it that look to be some sort of sigil or glyph that is designed to hold a spell until triggered, and then it's released. Actually, Pike, you've used this once before. It's an actual Glyph of Warding spell that is utilized to hold a spell in and release it upon some sort of a trigger.
# SAM
So it's one-time use, so we're good to go in this way if we'd like.
# LAURA
Does the Glyph of Warding alert you once it's gone off?
# ASHLEY
I don't think so.
# MATT
You don't recall. You didn't know your glyph went off until you found the destroyed body of the prisoner that you had released in Westruun long ago.
# LAURA
Oh, right. The guy that was stealing all that gold.
# ASHLEY
And then I think we also put one on the top of the loot for the dragon?
# MATT
That's the one that got him. He tried to get some money on the way out, and you found his body blown up and dragged about 20 feet off before he expired.
# ASHLEY
Yeah, I don't think it alerts anybody.
# LAURA
Okay, good. Then we are probably safe going in. I'm going to cast Pass Without a Trace on us.
I'm going to see how many people I can cast it on.
Every creature I choose within 30 feet of me! So, sweet, it's everybody.
# MATT
Yep. All right. You notice, Lionel, as you guys step in, even in your Darkvision-- which, by the way, for your two human companions, it is complete darkness. You had a little bit of starlight, and your eyes had adjusted to it where you could see the edges and rims of different shapes within the mountain range, but once you step past the illusory barrier into the interior of the cavern, it is just darkness.
# LAURA
Is Percy back yet?
# TALIESIN
Yes, I just got back.
# LAURA
Percy, hold on to my waist, dear.
# SAM
Should we use our flashlights or no?
# TALIESIN
No, I don't think so.
# LIAM
I'm going to stay 30 feet in front of the group and continue to check for traps.
# MATT
All right, so everyone roll stealth.
# LAURA
And add ten to it because of Pass Without a Trace.
# SAM
Doty's going to click his boots of whatever.
His boots of elven...
# MATT
That give him the bonus on stealth checks?
# SAM
Yeah, elvenkind.
# TRAVIS
26.
# ASHLEY
30! That's never going to happen again.
# MATT
Vex?
# LAURA
25.
# LIAM
37.
# MATT
Pike is more stealthy than Vex right now!
# LAURA
It's because Percy's holding on to my waist.
# MATT
I understand. Keyleth?
# MARISHA
26.
# TALIESIN
21.
# JON
28.
# SAM
Scanlan got 29, Taryon got 25, and Doty got a two, but with his boots-- what do his boots do? Shit!
# MATT
The boots give him advantage on stealth checks. He gets to roll again.
# SAM
Okay. 17! Plus ten, yeah.
# MATT
There you go. So you guys silently make your way in. I would like a marching order on this, because it is about ten feet wide, this tunnel, and you guys can only go in there two at a time, shoulder-to-shoulder.
# TALIESIN
Who's got the best night vision?
# LAURA
Actually, Doty has the best night vision.
He's got complete Darkvision? Oh, we all have Darkvision.
# MATT
Okay, so Vax and Pike in the front.
# LIAM
Check for traps, check for traps, check for traps.
# LAURA
We didn't take a nap.
# SAM
Do you want to stop and camp?
# LAURA
Maybe in a little bit.
# TALIESIN
I'm all right with the notion of getting a little deeper in.
# MATT
All right, so. Pike and Vax at the front.
All right. Who's after them?
# LAURA
Me and Percy.
# ASHLEY
I tug on Vax's shirt just to let him know I'm there.
# SAM
I feel like good old Chod should be near the tip of the spear since he knows the inside of this place a bit.
# LAURA
That's true. What did he roll for stealth?
# MATT
He rolled a 28 I think.
# JON
Have I been in this area?
# MATT
You have not been in this specific tunnel.
You haven't seen anything that looks familiar. The path you went before was a natural cavern. This one is pushed straight through.
# JON
Yeah. But I can see how, I'm the only one who's been in this mountain, so there's maybe a little trust. I got this! I haven't been here, but I got it!
# MATT
All right, so do you push your way towards the front?
# JON
Sure.
# MATT
All right. So, Pike and Vax, as you guys are moving forward, your bardbarian friend pushes aside and muscles up to become the point at the tip of the sphere.
# JON
I crop-dust all of you as I go in front of you.
# MATT
After that, after Percy and Vex?
# MARISHA
I'll go.
# MATT
All right. Keyleth, and we still have Taryon, Scanlan...
# SAM
Taryon next, with Doty with him.
# MATT
Taryon with Doty behind. Doty is going to be two people in the cavern. So who's behind Doty?
# TRAVIS
Me.
# MATT
All right, Grog. And...
# SAM
Scanlan will be in the rear.
# MATT
All right, so Scanlan is alongside Grog. I imagine you have Trinket in your necklace?
# LAURA
Yes.
# MATT
All right. So at the very end, Grog, you're walking, and Scanlan's there at your side, and Doty walking in front of you, lumbering, surprisingly quiet. And you get the sense the reason you're so stealthy in here is because as you step, it's soft. It's like stepping on a bunch of very, very fine powder. (heavy footsteps) It helps cushion your footfalls.
# MARISHA
Like snow? Or ash?
# MATT
Like ash, almost. Like a very, very fine dust.
# MARISHA
Can I dip down and grab a bit of it and do a nature check on it? Is it ash?
# MATT
Sure, make a nature check.
# LAURA
It's cocaine!
# MATT
First she eats the soul, then she just does a line in the middle of the tunnel. Keyleth's gone off the end, it's really bad.
# MARISHA
15.
# MATT
15's not too bad. You taste it, and you smell it. It's not ash. It's very, very, very fine powder. It has an earthy rock taste to it.
# LIAM
And are there any tracks or footprints ahead of Pike and I?
# MATT
Make a survival check.
# LIAM
Survival. Ooh, that's good. 19.
# MATT
19. You do see some tracks stepping up and down, yes.
# LIAM
Both ways?
# MATT
Both ways.
# LIAM
Shite.
# MATT
All right. So pushing forward, another 30 or 40 feet, roll another investigation check.
# LIAM
Not perception?
# MATT
Not for checking for traps, man, it's investigation. Always been.
# LIAM
21.
# MATT
21, okay.
# SAM
Fine, if Matt wants to change the rules 100 games in, I guess so.
# MATT
All right, so you continue moving forward.
You do not see any traps, anything that catches your attention.
# MARISHA
Can I just do a little, I'm going to scoop up a little bit and say, Percy, can I get a little bit of water added onto this? Can I do another nature check on what this is?
# TRAVIS
You are fucking fascinated with the god damn ash.
# MATT
I'm not going to tell you to make another nature check. You can't keep making rolls until you get a better one. It turns into an immediate mud. It's a very, very fine silt, almost.
# TALIESIN
What color is the rock?
# MATT
The powder, you mean?
# TALIESIN
I can't see anything, can I? Never mind.
# MATT
You can see nothing. In fact, when you say, "Percy, get some water on this," you're like, "What? I don't-- where?" You have to guide his hand.
# LIAM
And is it dead silent in here?
# MATT
It's dead quiet from where you currently are. You can make a perception check to listen in to see if you hear anything ahead.
# LIAM
24.
# MATT
24. You listen carefully and you hear faint sounds of footsteps and scraping stone. In one little, sounds like a (whistle), like a brief sucking sound, and that's it.
# LIAM
Over the earring, not alone. Not alone.
Something up ahead. I don't think we're camping.
# LAURA
If we camp, then they won't find us. They can't see the door.
# LIAM
What do y'all want to do?
# TRAVIS
You're on point. Keep going.
# ASHLEY
I say we keep going. If it's an emergency, we can all jump into the mansion, maybe.
# TALIESIN
I'll activate my boots.
# ASHLEY
Is everybody okay to keep going?
# MATT
Okay. You continue another 40, 50 feet down the path. Make another investigation check.
# LIAM
Natural 20.
# MATT
You go a little further ahead and you come upon what appears to be two more of those faces, that are facing the inside of the wall maybe 30 feet ahead. And you stop. You can see they're both facing outward, towards the center of the hallway.
# LIAM
Kiki, a couple more faces. Can you shimmy your way up here, please?
# MARISHA
I get down on my hands and elbows.
# LAURA
Percy, spread your legs! I let her crawl through us.
# LIAM
Left hand green!
# MARISHA
Where are they?
# LIAM
Right over there, right up ahead, 30 feet.
Both sides.
# MATT
He points it out to you, and you can just barely see the smooth walls, the almost oval, circular passageway, you can see the slight lift of the side rock where the faces form a very faint profile.
# MARISHA
I scootch a few more inches and use my last two 3rd-level spells.
# MATT
Okay. Roll a d20. Add your wisdom modifier, please.
# MARISHA
Just my straight modifier?
# MATT
Yep.
# MARISHA
Don't fuck me Gil! Okay, that's good, that's good. 19 on the first one.
# MATT
Okay, roll again on the second one.
# MARISHA
18 on the second one.
# MATT
Okay. As you take a moment (whoosh), the first one releases, and you watch as the face suddenly begins to glow with this dull, grayish, black crackling energy, and then (poof). The energy seems to vanish and disperse, with the one on the left. You turn and release Dispel Magic on the one on the right, and you watch as the same effect happens. (poof) Disperses as well.
# MARISHA
Okay, we're good!
# LAURA
(sings) You're the best around! Okay, keep going forward.
# LIAM
Grab her shoulder, move slowly past, pull Pickle along, and continue to carefully search.
# MATT
Okay. As you approach and step toward the space right between where the two faces are, you make one footfall between the two of them, and nothing happens.
You successfully dispelled the effect.
# ASHLEY
You sneaky.
# MATT
Wanted to fuck with you. You continue pushing forward for another 50 or so feet. You're starting to get fairly close at this point to where the arrow may have dropped.
# LAURA
Oh, shit, you were right by fucking other faces when you popped in before!
# MATT
You moved just a little bit beyond them.
Make another investigation check. You're not there yet, but you're getting closer.
# LIAM
18.
# MATT
18, okay. You don't seem to notice any strange or different elements of the topography that worry you. You push on for another 40, 50 feet or so, and you're just now on the cusp of where the arrow dropped. Make another investigation check.
# LAURA
Roll super good.
# LIAM
That's at least an 18. Oh, it's better than 18. It is 26.
# MATT
Okay. You don't notice any traps or any issues in the vicinity. You do see the footprints of Pike and Scanlan where they first arrived earlier before, venturing into this cavern, and pushing forward about 20 or so feet, the smooth cavern begins to turn into more of a natural, almost a volcanic tube-type physicality to it, and you can see to the left, another tunnel merges with it. You begin to recognize this. It looks like this carved tunnel is now dovetailing into the path that you guys found your way in, the one that was collapsed on the exit. Now the path that you know and the path you're traversing have finally merged into one singular path.
# JON
I know this place, you guys! Let's go down the left one.
# LAURA
Shh!
# TALIESIN
Left?
# JON
Yeah. There's one that's-- we can either go straight, or there's one at the...
# MATT
The one that's on the left will lead you back to the entrance where you first came in, but it was collapsed, the one that you knew. If you keep going straight, it'll lead you towards the light and where you saw these people last time you were here.
# JON
If we go left, it's going to take us back the other way, so that's safe, but we could keep going straight where the light is.
# LIAM
We're here for your friends, right?
# JON
Yeah, they might still be alive. And I call out, hello?
# MATT
Okay. It echoes. "Hello?" Everyone make a perception check.
# SAM
Right now I'm looking at the back of Grog's ass. But I got a 19.
# MARISHA
Natural 19.
# TRAVIS
10.
# ASHLEY
22.
# LAURA
22.
# JON
21.
# TALIESIN
13.
# MATT
19, you got, right?
# MARISHA
Yeah. That's a 34 total.
# LIAM
32.
# MATT
All right. Everyone over 20, you listen and you can hear very faint voices (whispering), and it sounds like movement moving quicker.
# LAURA
Scanlan? Maybe now is the time for that door.
# SAM
For the door? The mansion?
# LAURA
Yeah.
# SAM
Okay. It takes a minute to cast.
# LIAM
That's not going to work. We've got company coming.
# LAURA
How near do the voices sound?
# MATT
They don't sound like they're getting louder. Doesn't sound like they're getting closer, you just hear voices.
# SAM
Do you want me to?
# LAURA
Let's backtrack to the caved-in tunnel.
# JON
Maybe it's my friends. Should we go?
# LAURA
No. Let's backtrack to the caved-in tunnel and set up the door.
# MARISHA
You guys go. I'll wait here just in case.
# JON
I'll stay with you.
# TALIESIN
Be quiet.
# MATT
Okay. You guys make your way towards the caved-in entrance.
# TALIESIN
I'll stay with the two of you because I can't see shit and I'll slow you down. If things happen, they're going to light up. It'll be all right.
# MATT
Okay. So you guys make your way back to the entranceway.
# LIAM
I actually stay halfway between both.
# MATT
You stay halfway between, okay. It's roughly about 150, 200 feet this direction. It's a shallower cavern to this area than the one you came through. It's a longer way in, but you manage to find the other end of this cave-in. It's rocks that have tumbled in and clustered. Keyleth, you glance over and you see shapes moving in the light, and as you glance up ahead, about 30 feet ahead of you, you see six figures heading your direction. Humanoid.
# SAM
That's 100,000 dollars, yo. Six figures, moving your direction!
# MARISHA
Holy shit, a brand new Tesla is coming this way! Okay. Hey, we have people. We have people coming this way, about six of them. Just letting you know, probably going to be some fighting coming up, and that is your update from the Voice of the Tempest.
# LIAM
I'm creeping back.
# MATT
All right. So you go ahead and you meet up with Keyleth. The rest of you are back by the doorway. Scanlan, you're taking a minute to cast this?
# SAM
I mean, you told me to do this, right?
# LAURA
I thought we were not going to fight, but it's up to everybody else.
# TALIESIN
We may need a place to disappear to, so yes.
# MARISHA
It's not a bad idea. We can hold them off.
# SAM
Okay. I'm out of the fight, then. So I'll start casting and singing.
# MATT
Okay, so Scanlan begins working on casting the magnificent--
# SAM
(sings) When people keep repeating that you need a place to sleep, when everybody starts retreating but you need a really cool keep, let Scanlan open the door. Let Scanlan open the door! Let Scanlan open the door to your house!
# MATT
So as this is commencing-- Oh, I've missed that.
# JON
I've never heard music. I want to stay back with him. No, I'm kidding, I want to stay. I'm still with her.
# MATT
All right, so we have Lionel, Keyleth, and eventually Vax, and the rest of you are still back at the entranceway.
# MARISHA
And Percy.
# MATT
Oh, Percy's there.
# LAURA
I'm going to stand at the entrance of the tunnel and guard Scanlan.
# MATT
Okay. Keyleth, you keep an eye out and you watch as they approach. They're in a sprint, a wild sprint. You notice the humanoid figures, there's a lot of clacking sounds, and you immediately notice they're thinner than a fleshed-out human. These are skeletal. They are skeletons in armor with shields and weapons, and they're (snarling) scattering through the hallway towards you at a very fast pace.
# MARISHA
I'm just going to say, Pike? Pike, I think we've got some undead coming our way.
Probably going to need some Divine Smiting.
# ASHLEY
Coming right up.
# MATT
Pike's little legs start making her way.
It's going to take you a while to get there.
# MARISHA
As I call Pike, I'm going to go ahead and be like, here we go. (boom).
# MATT
What do you do?
# MARISHA
Fireball.
# MATT
A Fireball!
# MARISHA
I can see them, right? They're close enough?
# MATT
For a Fireball, most definitely.
# MARISHA
Okay. Out of the spire.
# MATT
So. Keyleth, I want you to go ahead and roll your damage.
# MARISHA
Okay. Fireball is... Hang on, wait, I'm not a sorcerer. I should've had this prepared. I admit I should've had this. It's something d8? d10's? Fireball. 8d6 fire damage.
# MATT
One of them rolled a natural 20.
# MARISHA
One, two, three, four, five, six, give me two more.
# MATT
That was a 19 and a 20.
# MARISHA
A 19 and a 20? That's a lot.
# MATT
Your spell DC is what, 21?
# MARISHA
21, yeah.
# MATT
All right, so two of them make their save.
# TALIESIN
You re-roll.
# MARISHA
I reroll ones. (counting) 34 damage.
# MATT
34 damage. All right. You watch as four of these skeletons explode, their bones detonating and exploding all over the cavern. You watch as it bounces around and breaks and shatters, and you hear them all clattering into the dust below. Two more push through the flames. You can see the armor, the leather they have on is now burning behind them and is causing this glow in the alley.
You see this, Percy.
# TALIESIN
How loud was this Fireball?
# MATT
It was pretty loud. It's a Fireball.
# TALIESIN
I'll take two shots at the two that came through.
# MATT
Okay.
# MARISHA
We're here.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to curl up to the top and upside-down, take two shots.
# MATT
Okay.
# JON
This is with your rifle?
# TALIESIN
Yeah, with my big rifle. That's not bad.
A 20 and a 27 to hit.
# MATT
Both hit.
# TALIESIN
Actually, even more than that.
# MATT
Don't even worry about rolling damage because even your minimum damage, with what damage they'd taken from the Fireball? Both shots, you hit them both in the ribcage, in the sternum and the back of the spinal column and they fold into themselves and crumple into spinning pieces of bone. You watch as the momentum of their movement causes them to scatter across the dust. Both of them. (gunshots)
# MARISHA
Hey, Pike? Hold that order for that divine smiting. We're going to need it probably in a second.
# ASHLEY
I'm here. Did you save any for me?
# TALIESIN
There will be more.
# MARISHA
I think there's going to be more.
# ASHLEY
I take out my mace and get ready.
# JON
I want some now.
# MATT
All right, as you guys are waiting there...
30 seconds passes. 30 seconds pass. Scanlan, you finish your spell. The doorway appears up. There doesn't appear to be anything else currently coming down the hall after you.
# LAURA
(singing) Scanlan, open the door.
# MARISHA
(singing) Scanlan, open the door.
# TRAVIS
We going in or what?
# LAURA
You guys want to camp? Let's go.
# TALIESIN
Can we leave something here? Is there some sort of alarm that we can set?
# LAURA
Like a glyph?
# ASHLEY
A Glyph of Warding?
# TALIESIN
Like a Glyph of Warding.
# ASHLEY
Yes, we can.
# JON
Can you put it on the faces that already exist so that they think--
# ASHLEY
Ooh. Chod!
# SAM
And an idiot shall lead them.
# JON
What's an idiot?
# LIAM
Broken clock. Twice a day. Well done.
# TALIESIN
Let's take a long rest and see if we can get two more.
# MATT
You do notice, Keyleth, that the flickering light, the firelight, is getting brighter. The firelight is now becoming more of a white light, and it's a flickering white light.
# MARISHA
How hot does a campfire normally get? Not that hot, right?
# LAURA
Not that hot.
# MARISHA
Oh no. Something bad. Hey, Pike? Fire.
Fire is very white. White fire.
# ASHLEY
Huh.
# LAURA
Feel like coming to the campsite? Maybe?
# TALIESIN
Let's start backing up.
# ASHLEY, MARISHA
Okay.
# MARISHA
Back up a little bit.
# ASHLEY
Are we close to the faces at all, still?
# MATT
You're maybe about 70 to 100 feet.
# ASHLEY
On the way back?
# MATT
You're backing up through a different tunnel, so there's no faces that you've seen on this side.
# TALIESIN
Let's leave it at the shift, so if they go up our tunnel, we'll know.
# ASHLEY
Great. I throw up a Glyph of Warding right there.
# MATT
Glyph of Warding. What's the casting time on the glyph?
# ASHLEY
A gift for someone.
# MATT
What's the casting time on the glyph?
# SAM
A gif of cording.
# MATT
Yes, that one.
# LAURA
We can't find the card.
# ASHLEY
Give me just one second. I don't know if it slipped underneath.
# SAM
Probably a minute.
# TALIESIN
Everything fun takes a minute.
# MATT
All right. Glyph of Warding is one hour casting time.
# TALIESIN
Oh, never mind!
# ASHLEY
You know what? We don't have time, so maybe we can just hop into the mansion.
# TALIESIN
Watch an episode of House of Cards, and by then Glyph of Warding will be done?
# LAURA
Keep an eye. Hop in the mansion?
# TALIESIN
Let's hop in the mansion.
# MATT
All right. You guys hop into the mansion.
You all make your way into the center of Scanlan's magnificent mansion. Lionel, you step through this weird sparkling purple doorway that wasn't there before, and as you go through, the temperature becomes very comfortable-warm. It's well-kept inside. It's climate-controlled. There's these beautiful marble pillars. There's this royal red and gold carpet that spreads out over this dual staircase that winds up to a second floor. It's a gorgeous mansion. The interior's immaculately designed, and you watch as about a dozen or so spectral people suddenly float in with their arms crossed and give a bow and a nod to you as you arrive.
# LAURA
Before we go in, will you throw down the Dust of Tracelessness?
# TRAVIS
No.
# LAURA
Grog.
# TRAVIS
Yeah.
(laughter)
# MATT
All right. You guys are all inside the mansion.
# LAURA
Well. That was fun.
# MARISHA
It's been a while. You've redecorated.
# SAM
I put some new art pieces in here. They're all counterfeit, but still good.
# LIAM
How's the menu?
# SAM
The menu's changed quite a bit.
# TALIESIN
Oh, do tell.
# SAM
Kaylie got sick of chicken about two weeks in, so she's got me on this vegan thing. (sighs) She says it'll make me last longer and feel healthier and stuff.
# LAURA
Last longer?
# SAM
Well, you know. Live longer. She said all that meat was probably bad for me, so it's all salads now.
# MARISHA
Only salads?
# SAM
Yeah. Different kinds of salad.
# LAURA
That's it? That's all they make, is salad?
# SAM
That's what she told them to make, and that's what they're making now.
# LAURA
But you run the place.
# SAM
Well, I don't want to cross her. She has me on a diet, and I'm trying to stick to it. It will be all salad.
# TALIESIN
Is it more tasteful in here now?
# SAM
Tasteful?
# TALIESIN
Is it more tasteful in the mansion?
# MATT
Is it more tasteful in the mansion? No, I didn't think so.
# LAURA
Is the picture still up that Pike commissioned?
# SAM
Yeah, sure. It's there.
# TRAVIS
You didn't replace that?
# SAM
Maybe we should all retire to our rooms for a while and come back for dinner.
# LAURA
Is Tary-- does he have his own room, as well?
# SAM
Oh, that's the fancy fellow you've brought with you.
# LAURA
Yeah. Tary, Scanlan. Scanlan, Tary.
# SAM
The new Scanlan. Yeah, right.
# TRAVIS
Tary, say hi.
# SAM
Hello! I'm Taryon Darrington. I've been quite pleased to spend some time with your friends for the last year, and it's-- you have wonderful friends. You should honor and cherish them. They are the best people I've ever met in my life, and this is a lovely home you have.
# TRAVIS
Scanlan, don't be rude. Respond.
# SAM
(sighs) It's nice to meet you, too. Thank you for looking after my friends. I guess any friend of Vox Machina is a friend of mine. You can use the downstairs. The basement room.
# LAURA
Scanlan, you can add a room at a thought!
# TALIESIN
He can have my room.
# LAURA
He can have your room.
# TALIESIN
That will be fine.
# JON
Do you have any bunkbeds?
# SAM
No. I don't have bunkbeds.
# JON
Do you have a hammock?
# SAM
No, I don't think I do, but there might be some spare cots and stuff downstairs.
# TRAVIS
Lionel, there is a war room down in the bottom of this bitch.
# JON
War room?
# TRAVIS
Yeah. It's got all the things people like you and me need. We're covered.
# JON
Sweet.
# TRAVIS
Sand pit, fighting dummies.
# JON
Dibs on the sand pit.
# TRAVIS
Shit.
(laughter)
# JON
It'll make me feel like I'm at home.
# TRAVIS
Fair enough.
# ASHLEY
There's also the spa, right?
# SAM
Yeah. It was destroyed but rebuilt. It's lined with iron now, in case there's an explosion.
# LIAM
Wise.
# SAM
Yeah.
# MATT
Do you guys all scatter to your rooms for a moment to take a rest?
# LAURA
I guess so.
# LIAM
Do you want to play some cards or something?
# SAM
Sure! That will be great.
# LIAM
Want to go back to, what, your room?
# SAM
That will be fine, yeah. Let's go.
# MATT
All righty. You guys head back to Scanlan's room? We're going to take a break here. We'll return here and pick up from that exact moment here, in just a few minutes. Real fast, we do have a Wyrmwood giveaway. It is the black walnut complete dice tower system and tabletop dice tray with leather rolling surface.
# LAURA
Should we open it and see what color that is?
# MATT
I'll open some of it. I'm not going to open all of it.
# LAURA
Just one, because it's all black walnut.
# MATT
Black walnut is this really nice dark color.
The leather interior is really nice. This will be going to the person who wins in the Twitch chat.
Enter the code "hundred." The word "hundred" is the code for the evening. Put it in there. Good luck to whoever wins, and we'll see you guys back here in a few minutes.
(cheering) [break]
And welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, to Critical Role. First and foremost, we have our winner in the chat: AJSparks08, congratulations, you won the fantastic Wyrmwood package. Denovo will contact you shortly to get your address and shipping information. Congratulations, on our 100th episode Wyrmwood giveaway! Also, it's come to our attention that the chat room and the Internet is convinced that this is not a real set and we are apparently on a green screen, so I wanted to show you guys how incredibly real this -- no, I'm kidding, it's actually real. It's a real set, it's actually here. It's a real set.
# LAURA
Don't fuck up the wrinkles, they look so good in the light!
# MATT
But I do understand illusions are prominent in magical realms, apparently.
# TRAVIS
Because of the beautiful spot behind you, can you give us one Vidal Sassoon wave of your--
# LAURA
Yeah, because you have a backlight!
# MATT
No.
# LAURA
And a halo around you, because of the shield!
# TRAVIS
It's kind of magnificent. Yeah!
# MATT
I hate you all so much.
# LAURA
Now your hair is extra fluffy because you did it.
# MATT
God damn it. All right! Why do I listen to these people?
# SAM
Maybe he's born with it.
# JON
Maybe it's--
# MATT
"Tary?" All right, so leaving us back where we left off, you guys had all scattered to your various rooms in Scanlan's magnificent mansion.
Vax, you had gone off with Scanlan?
# LIAM
Catch up, play cards.
# MATT
All right, so you make your way to the chambers.
# LIAM
Boy, it is more extravagant in here than I remember.
# SAM
Well, to be fair, you hadn't spent a lot of time in my room.
# LIAM
No, but there was just one mirror on the ceiling, and now there are three.
# SAM
I need to get every angle, don't I?
# LIAM
Yeah, that's weird. Do you want to play cards?
# SAM
Sure. Rummy gin? Gin rummy? Pinochle?
# LIAM
Yeah, I'll pretend to know what those are.
# SAM
Spades? Hearts?
# LIAM
Let's do hearts.
# SAM
Okay. I'll deal.
# LIAM
Okay. No idea how to play this game. But Vax does!
# SAM
I will win.
# LIAM
All right, so catch me up, man!
# SAM
I mean, there's a lot to talk about in a year. We--
# LIAM
What happened in the beginning? What happened right after you left? First couple of weeks?
# SAM
We went on sort of a walkabout. Me and Kaylie went off to the woods, did some camping. We found some travelers and sang to them, and told stories like we do. Entertained some folks. Some nights were spent alone, some nights in the company of people who wandered by. We weren't too far away from Whitestone.
# LIAM
So how did you get to Marquet?
# SAM
After about a month or two of being hobos, I guess, she wanted to do something. You know, anything. She was getting bored, she's young. So I told her, I don't really have anywhere to go, but I do know of two fuckfaces I have to get revenge on. I asked her if she'd be interested in that, and she said, fuck yeah! So she came down with me.
We got a boat, went across the sea, and we went back to that casino. It was really the only piece of unfinished business from our time together that I had to deal with.
# LIAM
And that somehow stumbled into all this?
# SAM
Well, when I got my revenge on them, I learned a bit about what they were up to. They weren't really drug dealers. It's embarrassing, but the drugs they sold me were not real. I know that's hard to believe, but I was swindled by them.
# LIAM
That is hard to believe. I don't think it's true.
# SAM
It is true. They sold me a bunch of shit.
# LIAM
Oh, surely not, no.
# SAM
But they were in this other game, of selling counterfeit stuff. So I did the thing that I knew would hurt them most. I took away their counterfeiter, and now he works for me. So I put them out of business, and I put me into business.
And since then I've been doing that for a while, and it turns out I'm very good at it.
# LIAM
That actually is not surprising.
# SAM
We don't try to swindle people who are innocent. We started off by taking down-- well, not taking down, but ripping off a few guys who were corrupt officials in the city, and built from there. It's not a big operation, if I can be honest with you. It's just me and Kaylie and a few other people.
# LIAM
I mean, I'm not going to lie, I think it's pretty cool.
# SAM
Thank you. It is kind of cool. I have this persona, and people know who it is, and when I go places, they're scared of me a little bit.
# LIAM
I mean, you did save a fucking continent, you are scary.
# SAM
That's true.
# LIAM
It is true.
# SAM
I helped, a bit.
# LIAM
A bit? You've had a year to clear your head, you think it was just a bit?
# SAM
I don't know, maybe. We all did our part. We all did our part!
# LIAM
You know there are multiple times we'd all be dead if it weren't for you. You know that. You know that! And the same could be said for any of us, that's true, but you take any one piece away, and the tower falls. Jenga, man.
# SAM
I don't know what that game is. But, I know, I know. Listen, I did a lot of thinking over the year, and I-- Yeah. I appreciate you all much more now than I did, and I realize that you probably appreciated me, too, but at the time I just didn't know. I was so used to being a loner that I didn't know really how to behave in a group, that's all.
So I left.
# LIAM
You know, it was ugly, on all sides, when you left, but I've always understood why you left.
I admire it.
# SAM
Really?
# LIAM
I wish my dad gave half as much effort as you have this year. Or I used to. Anyway, you know, we've missed you. Everybody has.
# SAM
That's not true.
# LIAM
It is true. And I certainly have, and if I did anything or said anything to make you feel lonely, I'm sorry. I really am. Fucking missed you, man.
# SAM
You don't have to apologize for anything. It was me. It was me, and I don't know if we'll ever have what we had before, but I can tell you that fighting alongside you all was the best time of my life, and not because of the glory, or the fortune, or the fame that we got. It was just to fight alongside you, and to see the looks on your faces when I did something really cool in battle.
# LIAM
Fucking every time. I know I miss that flair.
# SAM
But you've got this new guy, and he seems really-- He's very handsome.
# LIAM
Well, I don't know. Yeah, he's good looking.
That's true. I don't know that we have-- I mean, we've scattered a bit. I live in Zephra now.
# SAM
Oh, really?
# LIAM
I'm on holiday, yeah.
# SAM
Zephra Heights?
# LIAM
Pretty much, yeah. It's all Zephra Heights.
No, I'm very happy right now.
# SAM
You are happy?
# LIAM
Yeah.
# SAM
That's so weird.
# LIAM
I know. I was happy for a long time.
# SAM
But still with the black. You're not giving that up.
# LIAM
I mean, this is, no! This is part of the bargain.
# SAM
I mean, some turquoise could pop it up a little bit.
# LIAM
Yeah, but you know I have sunshine in my life every day, so it's all right.
# SAM
That's true. How's that all going?
# LIAM
Fucking the best, man! It's the fucking best!
# SAM
Yeah?
# LIAM
Yeah. But, you know, all I care about is that you're happier now than you were. You seem a little happier.
# SAM
I'm certainly better off than I was when I left you all. I don't know that I'm happier, just better off.
# LIAM
Well, that's a step up. And Kaylie, is she better off?
# SAM
Most certainly.
# LIAM
Well, that's great.
# SAM
Listen, thank you for coming up here and stuff. I don't really know what to do with the others.
# LIAM
Well, again, a lot of hard shit was said on your way out, in many directions, and the way I look at it, it's to be expected. We went through hell together, that's going to have an effect. But even the ones who are angry at you, they did miss you. And family doesn't break apart that easy.
Don't scare away. Just be patient.
# SAM
I'll try.
# LIAM
Clap him on the back of the head.
# SAM
I can't reach.
# LIAM
I can. I love you, man.
# SAM
You too. I'm sorry.
# LIAM
It's good to see you.
# SAM
We're not going to play cards, are we?
# LIAM
I don't know how to play this game.
# SAM
Yeah, okay.
# LIAM
But thanks for the conversation.
# SAM
Sure.
# LIAM
That's been about an hour, I think.
# SAM
Yeah, you should just go.
# LIAM
Yeah.
# SAM
I mean, yeah.
# LIAM
I walk away.
# MATT
All righty. All right. If anyone else wants to do anything else before dinner, or after?
# MARISHA
I take all the mirrors off the roof of our bedroom while he talks with Scanlan, and then we go to sleep.
# MATT
There are mirrors in yours as well?
# MARISHA
I assume.
# SAM
I hadn't intended on it, but there's definitely a mirror in there.
# MATT
All right. Your wonderful exposé on salad types are presented to you by the spectral servants. A fantastic dinner of greens of all shades--
# TRAVIS
Where's the meat?
# SAM
There's lima beans.
# TALIESIN
Do they serve meat for guests, or is it just Scanlan that's barred?
# LIAM
Not even chicken salad in this mansion?
# SAM
No, the closest we have is lima beans.
# LAURA
They know how to make chicken, though, I know the servants know how to make chicken!
# SAM
If I have them make chicken, they'll tell her, and I'll get in trouble.
# TALIESIN
Tell her you didn't have any.
# TRAVIS
That's true. I have an idea. Bring me a cow. No, I'm kidding.
# MATT
The spectral servant's like--
# SAM
Don't do it.
# TRAVIS
It worked once before.
# SAM
Listen. They make a great cucumber salad.
They've got an excellent endive.
# TRAVIS
What?
# LAURA
Fabulous.
# SAM
A couscous. And a tabbouleh.
# ASHLEY
So, basically, it's one of those meals that you're still hungry when you eat it all.
# SAM
Yeah, it's really not filling at all. It's terrible.
# MATT
And he's not lying.
# TALIESIN
Do we lose hit points from this meal?
# LAURA
Oh, shit, did we say that we have to buy chalices before we have any more fucking feasts?
# MATT
Yes.
# LAURA
Shit balls.
# LIAM
Said Vex.
# LAURA
We're out of chalices!
# ASHLEY
Do we have any chalices in here?
# SAM
For what?
# MATT
They're referring to the Heroes' Feast meal, but no. Stuff like that, you stock up on.
# LAURA
We've got to remember. We've got to do it.
# MATT
All right. So the meal is filling to varying degrees of enjoyment, but you find rest at your disposal. Relatively early into your day, though it is night in Ank'harel. You guys have been awake for approximately five hours. Do you go to rest?
# SAM
I mean, if we all rest, when we wake up, those things are gonna be swarming outside the door, right?
# LAURA
Yes, potentially, or they could have given up. What if we just peek out the door and see?
# SAM
We can do that.
# LAURA
Yeah. I'm going to peek out the door.
# MATT
Okay.
# LAURA
Very stealthily open the door a little bit and see. Yeah, I'm going to stay inside the door but just look outside the door.
# MATT
You peek outside the door, and right as you glance through, you see about 13 or so skeletons that are all clustered right there at the door going (zombie groans).
# LAURA
Ah, fuck. Shut it.
# TALIESIN
I feel like that can wait till morning.
# LAURA
I think it might keep getting worse, I'm not sure.
# SAM
Maybe we should sleep.
# LIAM
We wait till morning and we throw Pike out the door.
# ASHLEY
Yeah, that's fine. I'll volunteer.
# JON
Can they come into this magic door?
# SAM
No, they have to be invited.
# JON
They can't? Are they vampires?
# LIAM
They're all bones.
# JON
Okay. So we're okay. They can't come in.
# SAM
For a while.
# JON
Is there a back door to this place?
# SAM
Oh, no.
# JON
So if we wake up in the morning and there's 200 of them, then--
# SAM
We're fucked.
# MARISHA
We're okay. We have Pike.
# TALIESIN
We have options.
# JON
What's Pike going to do?
# ASHLEY
Undead is my favored terrain.
# JON
Are you going to talk to them?
# ASHLEY
I could. But what's the point?
# JON
Well, maybe they have secrets.
Do you have Commune with Skeletons?
# MARISHA
Not all skeletons are like ducks.
# LAURA
Yeah, some of them are a lot meaner.
# ASHLEY
If we find your friends, I can talk to them if they're dead.
# JON
Maybe they're unhappy with their employer.
Maybe we can find their good side.
# LAURA
We could turn some undead.
# ASHLEY
That's not a bad idea.
# JON
I'm sorry, I never talk so much. I'm just really hungry after that stupid meal.
# ASHLEY
Same, it's okay. I feel starving.
# TALIESIN
Let's have a nightcap.
# SAM
They can make you a fruit smoothie.
# LAURA
Yes. I want that. I do want it. Yes. Bring it.
# TALIESIN
That may be breakfast.
# TRAVIS
That'll give you the runs, you don't want that.
# MARISHA
Can we put some rum in it?
# ASHLEY
Can you have eggs, or is that not vegan?
# SAM
She said vegan. No eggs.
# LAURA
This fucking sucks.
# TALIESIN
A shallow ghost of a dinner served by shallow ghosts of people. I'm ready for a nightcap, and an end of the evening.
# MATT
So you pull out the various bottles you've stored amongst Grog's Bag of Holding. Scatter a nightcap amongst those who wish to partake, and find yourself resting for the evening within the mansion.
# TALIESIN
To a death in the morning.
# MARISHA
To a pina colada.
# LAURA
As we're walking towards the rooms, can I pull Pike aside for a second?
# MATT
Sure. So as you guys are heading off--
# LAURA
How are you?
# ASHLEY
Well, I'm fine. I'm just finding myself a little angry.
# LAURA
Well, I think it's reasonable to be angry.
# ASHLEY
And I'm trying not to be.
# LAURA
It's a different side of you.
# ASHLEY
I know. I don't like it. But I can't help it. What should I do?
# LAURA
Well. Your emotions are justified. But you found it in your heart to forgive your family, and they did terrible things to you. Maybe it's harder with people that are closer. They cut deeper.
# ASHLEY
Yeah. I think it's just because I didn't really know them. Maybe it was easier to just let them go, and I wasn't as angry as I am with him.
# LAURA
Have you talked to Sarenrae about it?
# ASHLEY
No. I'm just nervous. I know what she'll say, and have me do, and I just want to be--
# LAURA
You don't want to do it yet.
# ASHLEY
I don't want to do it! I just want to be mad for a while, I guess, but... I don't know. I guess just seeing him again. Slowly but surely, I'm not as mad, but--
# LAURA
He's still charming.
# ASHLEY
I know, I just feel like now I'm acting like I'm mad, almost, around him. I don't know.
He's making me feel so many different kinds of emotions. I'm confused.
# LAURA
I don't know what tomorrow will bring.
Probably a battle of some sort, which is usually life-endangering. Just ask yourself if you would want to die without saying how you feel.
# ASHLEY
Okay. That's a good idea. I would feel very bad if something happened to him and I didn't say anything. I mean, if I died, then I just wouldn't know, I guess.
# LAURA
You'd know a few minutes later when we tried to bring you back.
I just spit on you, I'm sorry.
# ASHLEY
It's fine, I don't care. Okay. Well, that's true. Thank you.
# LAURA
It's hard.
# ASHLEY
I know. It is hard.
# LAURA
Well, you know, if you feel like staying up and wandering around and talking to some people--
# TALIESIN
I come running up. No, now. We're going.
Good night. Good night! Now! Now.
No more. Good night!
# ASHLEY
Well, good night.
# TALIESIN
Good night!
# ASHLEY
Okay. Well, good night, you two.
# LAURA
We haven't been here in a while.
# TALIESIN
I know. I kind of want to break a few things. You've earned it, fucker.
# ASHLEY
I go and I knock on Grog's door.
# MATT
Okay. Grog doesn't have a door, Grog is currently staying in the war room area.
# ASHLEY
Oh, that's right.
# MATT
So as you head down, you see, curled up on the sand pit, this half-orc snoring loudly, like a golden retriever that had rotated twice and passed out in the sand. Grog, what are you doing?
# TRAVIS
I'm like the dog that's staring at the cat that stole its fucking bed.
# JON
Can't argue with the dibs policy.
# TRAVIS
It's supreme. It's absolute. It's binding in all planes.
# JON
All barbarians understand it. It's the law.
# ASHLEY
I stand next to him and stare at Chod-- Lionel in the sand pit.
# TRAVIS
This is bullshit, right? Everything I had, everything I was, right there. Just another one.
# ASHLEY
Grog, I know that you probably feel replaced, but there's no way he could fill your shoes.
# TRAVIS
I mean, he's big! Look at those feet! It's like clown feet! I bet he's a great swimmer.
# ASHLEY
He could-- I mean, but his feet are a little bit too big, you know.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, too big.
# ASHLEY
Your feet are just right.
# TRAVIS
Right. Mm-hm.
# ASHLEY
I have an idea. How about we go get a bunch of blankets, the ones out of my room. We'll just make a fort by the fireplace. We'll make a better spot.
# TRAVIS
A new spot. Yeah, okay.
# ASHLEY
I just talked to Vex, and she said that maybe if something were to happen tomorrow, maybe it would be better to just say some things, so that you're not, you know, thinking about it if somebody dies.
# TRAVIS
Is somebody dying tomorrow?
# ASHLEY
No.
# TRAVIS
Are you going to die? Pike, you mean the world to me. Listen, I couldn't go on--
# ASHLEY
I'll be fine, I promise. Just, I guess, Scanlan.
# TRAVIS
What?
# ASHLEY
Maybe, do you feel like you want to talk to him?
# TRAVIS
No! Yes. No!
# ASHLEY
I think I'm angry with him, but I can tell you're also angry with him.
# TRAVIS
Yeah!
# ASHLEY
So I'll stay mad at him as long as you are.
# TRAVIS
Really?
# ASHLEY
But I feel like maybe he feels a little bad.
# TRAVIS
Are you sure? I can't tell. He changed the inside of the mansion. He's got a new dog sleeping in the sandpit. He called him his best man. You heard it. I did.
# ASHLEY
That was weird.
# TRAVIS
Yeah. It's fucked up, is what it was.
# ASHLEY
Well, you know what we should do? We should just tomorrow--
# TRAVIS
Kill him.
# ASHLEY
That's definitely an option, but I feel like maybe we could just try to be better than him. Maybe you could really show off, and show him that you are better, and that we're better, and we're better friends, and you know, that he should come back and hang out with us.
# TRAVIS
Yeah! No, I like this idea. This is really something we can roll with! Yeah! He should miss us! In fact, he should be coming to beg us to be like, I miss you! You're so cool!
# ASHLEY
He should!
# TRAVIS
Yeah! We've got to make him remember.
# ASHLEY
We've got to make him remember.
# TRAVIS
Yep.
# ASHLEY
We've got to make him remember how great we are and what he's lost.
# TRAVIS
Yeah. So tomorrow, all the tricks out the bag, throw caution to the wind, you and me, it's a show.
# ASHLEY
All the tricks.
# TRAVIS
Yeah.
# JON
I suddenly wake up. You guys, I'm used to sleeping alone. You guys are talking so much.
# ASHLEY
Oh, sorry, we didn't realize you were awake.
# TRAVIS
Just roll over. If you pile the sand up, you make little earmuffs.
# JON
It's not working, I'm used to silence, and you guys are like two alarms.
# TRAVIS
We're going to go. We go make a blanket fort.
# ASHLEY
We make a blanket fort by the fireplace.
# TRAVIS
Yeah.
# JON
Thank you!
# MATT
All right. As you guys go make a blanket fort, curl up and sleep takes you. The next morning, you come to consciousness, are greeted with a fantastic, spiritually brought, vegan breakfast.
# LAURA
Ooh, but like an acai bowl?
# SAM
Yeah, sure. Yeah, that's a thing.
# MATT
There you go, so it picks up the second day! There you go.
# LAURA
Is there granola?
# TRAVIS
It doesn't pick up. Don't defend this shit!
# MATT
Comparatively!
# TRAVIS
Just because it's sweet doesn't mean that it's savory or satisfying.
# MATT
Fair enough.
# JON
There's nothing sticking it together, so it's just loose.
# TALIESIN
It's only the things that make granola good that make it not vegan.
# JON
Exactly. It's just all loose.
# TRAVIS
Any proteins that used to have a heartbeat, in any way? No? Yeah, fuck it.
# LIAM
This is a world of magic and delight!
# LAURA
It's going to catch up when you burp really good.
# MARISHA
But we have a sound guy who's like--
# LAURA
But what if I want it to catch when I burp?
# MARISHA
That's what sound guys do.
# MATT
That's how it works? Okay. So what's the plan, guys?
# LIAM
Stay in the mansion forever.
# MATT
Yeah.
# JON
Let's take a look again.
# ASHLEY
Can I peek out the door?
# TRAVIS
Pike and I go to peek out the door, because we're not eating shit vegan breakfast.
# MATT
Okay. You peek out into the hallway, and there before you, you see about 20 or so armored skeletons that are all clustered into this hallway, maybe five feet between a few of them, but they're scattered throughout, they're just in this holding pattern.
# TRAVIS
What do you see?
# ASHLEY
There's just 20 or so skeletons out there.
# TRAVIS
This is the perfect opportunity!
# ASHLEY
This is the perfect opportunity. Maybe we take care of it ourselves?
# TRAVIS
I'm saying! You lead the way!
# ASHLEY
Let's do it.
# TRAVIS
Do it.
# SAM
Oh, shit.
# TALIESIN
Oh, shit.
# MARISHA
I approve of this so hard.
# SAM
Wait, we're all still eating breakfast?
# MATT
You guys are eating breakfast, wondering where Pike and Grog are.
# TRAVIS
Before we break through the door, I should yell something like, Pike, don't be so brave!
# ASHLEY
Okay, you can yell, Pike, don't be so brave, and then I can say something like, but Grog, you're too strong! I don't know, let me workshop it.
# TRAVIS
Yeah.
# ASHLEY
Grog, you're too strong! You're too strong, you're just going to kill them all anyway.
# TRAVIS
This is true.
# ASHLEY
Should we just wing it?
# TRAVIS
Yeah, just what happens.
# ASHLEY
Okay, ready?
# TRAVIS
On the count of what?
# ASHLEY
On the count of three.
# TRAVIS
I can do that.
# ASHLEY
I know you can!
# TRAVIS
All right.
# ASHLEY
Okay. I'm going to get my mace ready.
# MATT
Okay.
# TRAVIS
I have my blood axe.
# LIAM
Back at the breakfast table, just before they make whatever loud sound they're doing: It's good, it's almond milk, but I like cream a little bit (explosion).
# MATT
Yep, suddenly you guys hear-- What do they hear?
# TRAVIS
One.
# ASHLEY
Two. Three.
# TRAVIS
Oh, that's it, yeah. Three!
# MATT
All right. Scanlan, because this is your mansion, you feel the door, suddenly, you sense the breaching of the front door opening.
# SAM
Oh, God. The door's open.
# ASHLEY
Grog, you're so strong!
# TRAVIS
Oh, Pike, you're so brave!
# LAURA
Oh, shit.
# TRAVIS
You put yourself before others!
# LAURA
I take off running.
# ASHLEY
I'm going to start swinging my mace.
# MATT
You guys all of a sudden drop your meals and start charging out. The door's already open, and it's vacant. You guys, as you charge out, all of a sudden you watch as ten of these creatures (zombie snarling) and leap towards you. What are you doing, Pike?
# ASHLEY
I start swinging my Mace of Disruption.
Can I just do this as I go through?
# MATT
You'll still do attacks, but they'll get attacks on you as you go back and forth.
# ASHLEY
Yeah.
# MATT
You rush forward. Go ahead and make your attack. Is it, as a war-- do you have two attacks? As a bonus action, you can attack, right?
# ASHLEY
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah! I forgot, I haven't done this in a minute with undead! Okay.
# LAURA
What does the Mace of Disruption do to undead?
# LIAM
Area of effect, y'all.
# MATT
No, no, it just hits targets. It's the other one does.
# ASHLEY
It says when you hit a fiend or undead with this magic weapon, the creature takes an extra 2d6 radiant damage.
# MATT
Yep.
# ASHLEY
So. Oh, okay. So 17 and 22.
# MATT
17 and 22 both hit. Go ahead and roll damage for each, with the additional disruption damage.
# ASHLEY
Okay, so, I don't have all of the dice out.
# LAURA
See, this is why you take the time at the beginning to organize.
# MATT
I know. Grog, while this is happening, you're also charging in with her and you're attacking?
# TRAVIS
Yeah, Great Weapon Master with the blood axe.
# MATT
Go ahead and make your two attacks with it.
# ASHLEY
So with undead I also roll an additional 2d6, so am I doing four? How many?
# MATT
You would do additional damage as part of your cleric's war--
# ASHLEY
Okay, so 1d6, plus 2d8.
# MATT
Is the additional disruption damage?
# ASHLEY
Is just one strike. Sorry, I haven't done this in a while.
# MATT
All right, so as a war domain cleric, you can make a weapon attack as a bonus action, up to your wisdom modifier per day, so that's one use there. And you deal an additional 1d8 weapon damage on the attack, so it's-- How much damage does your mace do?
# ASHLEY
1d6 plus six and 2d8 is what I have written down.
# LAURA
For Divine Strike.
# ASHLEY
For Divine Strike.
# MATT
Correct, yes. Yeah, because you reached 14th level. So yeah, it's plus 2d8. You got it. 1d6 plus 2d8 plus whatever the disruption damage is.
# ASHLEY
Okay, so 18.
# MATT
18 damage on the first hit? You slam the mace into the side of a skeleton, and it crushes a lot of the bone, and a lot of it just seems to erode away as the divine flash impacts it, and you watch as the bleached white turns to gray and black. However, it still stands, largely wrecked, but still (zombie snarling). And your second attack, you hit the same one?
# ASHLEY
Yep.
# MATT
All right, go ahead and roll damage for that one.
# ASHLEY
Okay. 14.
# MATT
All right, that one (whack) you hit the side of the skull, and the head just turns into dust to the side. The bones collapse into a pile. You destroyed one skeleton out of about 20 or so.
Grog, what are you doing?
# TRAVIS
I did my first attack, it was a 26, and so was the second one, both with Great Weapon Master.
# MATT
Both hit with Great Weapon Master. Go ahead and roll damage.
# TRAVIS
The first one was 26 damage.
# MATT
You completely destroy a skeleton in one hit. It turns into a scattering of bone (shatter) across the wall.
# TRAVIS
That's what up.
# ASHLEY
Grog, it's so crazy how strong you are! They're all dying!
# TRAVIS
I know, but I only do it to protect my friends! And the second one is 39 points of damage.
# MATT
And with that second hit, a second skeleton that's leaping towards you, with a giant scimitar in the air and a buckler around the side of its wrist, (zombie snarling), you just batter-up swing it, and it explodes across and rains down upon you. Pike, a couple of the bones hit your armor, fall to the side.
# TRAVIS
With my bonus action, can I go into a rage and go, I kill these skeletons because I would never replace a friend like you!
# ASHLEY
I know, Grog!
# MATT
All right, and so as you guys are rushing into the doorway, the skeletons immediately turn and swarm in. That's going to be five attacks on each of you within this range here.
So, against Pike.
# LAURA
Quick, use your spells!
# MATT
All right, so it misses Pike. Misses Pike.
God, misses Pike. Misses Pike.
And a 20. What's your AC?
# ASHLEY
My AC is 23.
# MATT
23. All of them leap onto you, but they can't get through the armor. They're all clustered up around you, they're piled up almost, like you're just being dogpiled by skeletons, and while none of them are getting to your flesh, there are all these skulls biting in front of your face as you're holding them back with your shield and mace. Grog. Miss. Natural one, miss.
Two, miss. 20?
# TRAVIS
That hits.
# MATT
And 21?
# TRAVIS
Also hits.
# MATT
All right. So, you take 22 points of slashing damage, reduced to 11, from the two attacks together. As both of these skeletons just start hacking into you with their weapons. One has a long sword, one has what looks to be some sort of a war pick and is just, both of them, jamming into your flesh, and you just take it without an issue. All right. You guys all rush to the door and you look out and you can see this group of undead there, swarming your two friends. You get there just-- Well, you start preparing for the round. They're going first.
Pike, what are you doing?
# ASHLEY
I'm going to Guiding Bolt down the hallway. Towards the rest of the skeletons.
# MATT
Guiding Bolt can only hit one target.
# ASHLEY
Oh shit!
# MATT
Yeah, the area effects that you have are your Turn Undead or Destroy Undead, or any of the spells that you have.
# LAURA
Destroy Undead!
# ASHLEY
Oh yeah, Destroy Undead. Fuck, I forgot about-- Sorry, it's been a minute since I've been around them. Okay, yeah, Destroy Undead.
# LIAM
Come on, cleric.
# MATT
Okay. So you are--
# ASHLEY
It's been a minute.
# MATT
Yeah. You're a 17th level cleric now? 16th level? What level are you?
# ASHLEY
I think 16th level. I don't know if I've leveled.
# MATT
Yeah, 16th level. So, CR 3 or lower. These are definitely there. All right. All righty. So, you're going to affect with that, in a radial area here, which is a radius of 30 feet. That's going to affect 15 of these undead.
# LAURA
Nice!
# MATT
Within the ones that are piled on you, that piled on Grog, and the ones that are swarming behind. What's your spell DC?
# ASHLEY
18.
# MATT
Okay. Rolled an 18, but it's a minus one.
# LAURA
Yay. Do you roll for all 15?
# MATT
Mm-hm.
# LIAM
Here he goes. Math. Still math.
# MATT
Oh, no, that one survived.
# LIAM
More math.
# LAURA
Don't confuse him. It's a lot to keep track of. Hey guys, we have these amazing art prints by David Mack.
# MATT
Almost done.
# ASHLEY
Oh fuck, are they all making it?
# MATT
All right. So, out of the 15, two survive.
As you're held down by all of these skeletons, suddenly this beacon of divine, bright flame begins to burst from you. And you watch as the flaming wings of Sarenrae swirl up out of her like a phoenix. And as it does, you see above her the image of the dark skin, light flaming hair Sarenrae embodying her like a JoJo stand, as it takes this pose. And as soon as Pike brings her arms out and screams (yells), the image bursts out and you watch as every skeleton practically in that radius just turns to ash and dust in the vicinity, leaving two skeletons there, that are like (breathy groan). So there's maybe four of them left in the whole tunnel, from that one burst.
# TRAVIS
Damn!
# LAURA
I nudge Scanlan.
# TRAVIS
That was amazing.
# ASHLEY
Do you think Scanlan saw?
# TRAVIS
Yeah, how could he miss it?
# SAM
I'm at the door.
# TRAVIS
(voice breaking) You and me against the world, huh?
# ASHLEY
You and me, Grog. We're so loyal to each other.
# TRAVIS
Yep, to the end. Best friends.
# ASHLEY
Best friends till the end.
# MATT
Grog, what are you doing?
# TRAVIS
I'm hitting things.
# MATT
All right, so you rush up to the two.
# LIAM
I walk back to the kitchen and start clearing people's plates.
# MATT
Okay.
(laughter)
# SAM
I'll step out into the fray just to watch.
# TRAVIS
A regular strike, 25.
# MATT
Hits.
# TRAVIS
Ooh, and a 17.
# MATT
Yeah, they all hit.
# TRAVIS
That's as low as I can roll.
# MATT
17 is a low for you.
# TRAVIS
I know. 16 points of damage on the first one.
# MATT
All right, first hit, it smacks into the side and breaks part of its upper shoulder and upper arm. It cuts off one of its arms, but it's still standing there in front of you.
# TRAVIS
That's embarrassing. I use the second strike on the same skeleton and hope Scanlan didn't notice.
# SAM
I saw.
(laughter)
# TRAVIS
Fuck. 15 points of damage.
# MATT
15 points of damage does destroy the skeleton, the one that's giving you a hard time.
This time you just cleave through the center of its spinal column and torso. It tumbles over and just scatters into a pile of bones.
# TRAVIS
Yeah. He saw it, didn't he? I fucked it up. He saw it and my whole plan's gone to shit.
# ASHLEY
So much is happening at once, he can't see, he didn't see.
# MATT
All right, so. Vex, you're at the door.
Scanlan, you're at the door. You're at the door, Lionel. What are you guys doing?
# LAURA
I sh-- I'm going to hold it.
# MATT
There's three skeletons still standing.
# LAURA
All right, I'll shoot one of the skeletons.
# MATT
Go for it. Roll for attack. Lionel, what are you doing?
# JON
I'm just like: it's cool. I'm just watching.
I forget, you know--
# MATT
Okay.
# JON
But then I see and I'm like: Oh, I got them.
So I think it's now time to impress Grog a little bit, because he knows-- He goes into a rage.
# MATT
All right, so you go into a rage. Pull your great sword?
# JON
My what? (laughter)
# MATT
All right, so you're charging out. What did you roll?
# LAURA
Oh, I just decided maybe I shouldn't hit them, though.
# MATT
All right, so you go to fire and then pull the arrow back.
# LAURA
Because I rolled a one.
(laughter)
# MATT
Oh.
# JON
Wait a second.
# LAURA
Oh no, it's the chicken-Scanlan incident all over again.
# MATT
So what happens is, you go and release it, and you just mis-strung it (sound of rope snapping), and you're like: Oh, I just didn't--
# LAURA
You know what? I'm going to leave it. It's for them.
# TRAVIS
She's got the bruise on the--
# MATT
Yeah. So you rush up alongside Grog at the three skeletons that are there.
# LAURA
I got a blood blister on my arm.
# JON
I roll this?
# TALIESIN
Yeah, and you add the attack bonus of your great sword, which is right in the center.
# JON
Plus 12.
# TALIESIN
Oh, natural 20!
# MATT
Oh, critical hit on the first hit?
# TRAVIS
Motherfucker.
# MATT
All right, so that hits. Roll the second attack.
# SAM
He's so strong.
# LAURA
Don't say that!
# TALIESIN
Another?! What?! What?!
# JON
Another 20.
# MATT
Did you roll two 20s in a row?
# TALIESIN
Oh my god.
# JON
He's raging, dude, and he's had a really great sleep in the sand.
# SAM
I've never seen anyone so strong and powerful before.
# TALIESIN
He doesn't even understand what just happened.
# JON
Are you getting turned on?
# SAM
Yes!
# MATT
You're honing Vin Diesel right now with this crit power.
# JON
Well, he's finally-- He likes these guys, he wants to finally show off and do something cool.
# TALIESIN
Travis just aged a year.
# LAURA
Oh no.
# MATT
So you rush forward to the first skeleton.
Roll 2d6.
# TALIESIN
Roll 4d6.
# MATT
Yeah, roll 4d6.
# TALIESIN
Roll four of these.
# JON
Which ones? Okay.
# TALIESIN
And I think you get to reroll.
# JON
I have to roll the two dice.
# TALIESIN
Yeah, roll those and add two more. Or roll them twice.
Yeah, there you go. Four of those.
# MATT
And then you get to reroll any ones or twos.
# TALIESIN
Oh my god!
# TRAVIS
What? Are they all fucking sixes?
# JON
Is that a six?
# TALIESIN
That's a six.
# JON
Six, six, three, three.
# MATT
Okay, so 12, 18 plus?
# TRAVIS
Percy, take your hand off of him.
# JON
No, he needs the help.
# MATT
So as you rush forward with your greatsword, big smile on your face, next to Grog. Whack! You just shatter one skeleton with the first attack.
Roll damage for the second attack.
# TALIESIN
All four.
# MATT
All four again.
# SAM
Six. That one's cocked, reroll it. Six.
(laughter)
# TRAVIS
I'm leaving. I'm going away.
# JON
And I'm like: Grog, look at this, this is awesome! I think I'm channeling you.
# TRAVIS
(strained voice) Yep. Real impressive.
# MATT
You just, one skeleton, the other comes jumping at you and you just grab it in your hand and crush its skull in your hand.
# TRAVIS
(strained voice) That was real cool.
# JON
And then I go: Look, I'm a gymnast! (laughter)
With all the chalk and everything.
# LIAM
You've got to appreciate that, Travis.
# TRAVIS
(strained voice) It was a good moment.
That was really impressive.
# MATT
Percy. You want to do anything?
# TALIESIN
I'm just going to sit next to Vex and I think we're just going to stand and let this happen.
# MATT
So Pike, Grog, Lionel, you're right there, there's one skeleton left that's like (breathy hiss). And it leaps at you, since you just crushed its friend. And it hits you on your breastplate and just goes (metal ringing out sound) (breathy hiss). That's all it does. It's a sad sight.
# JON
Look, it's doing the Duck Flail to me. It's not as good, but that is what he's doing.
# MATT
All right, who wants to finish this poor thing?
# ASHLEY
Finish him, Grog, finish it.
# TRAVIS
I'm broken on the inside. Did you see that display?
# ASHLEY
Grog, I need your help!
# TRAVIS
(yells) Reckless, Great Weapon Master.
(laughter)
# MATT
Go for it, Grog.
# TRAVIS
A one?!
# TALIESIN
Yes!
# TRAVIS
A one?!! (laughter and yelling)
# ASHLEY
Can I War God's Bless it?
# MATT
A natural one is an auto fail. I cannot-- I cannot--
# TRAVIS
What is going on?! (laughter)
# MATT
As you look at the one skeleton, just feeling this embarrassment, you swing with your axe and the skeleton (metal impact sound) stops it with its own blade and parries the axe to the side. The one that just didn't barely dent his armor.
# JON
And then I say: It's okay, Grog. Everybody messes up sometimes, let me get this one.
(laughter)
Can I roll?
# MATT
Yeah.
# TALIESIN
That's a nine.
# SAM
As he rolls, I will inspire him.
# JON
Nine plus 12, that's 21. 22!
# SAM
I'm going to sing-- Oh well, that's fine, that's fine.
# MATT
So that hits. Go ahead and roll damage. Just 2d6 plus seven. Well, plus your--
# TALIESIN
Just two.
# JON
Oh, okay.
# SAM
Okay, that's not as good.
# MATT
Well, it's plus seven, plus your rage damage. So it's plus ten.
# SAM
To this? 15.
# TALIESIN
No, plus seven also.
# MATT
Plus ten to whatever he rolled there.
# SAM
Five plus ten.
# MATT
All right, so 20 points. So as you hack down this other skeleton, you cut into it and it destroys part of its torso. Its arm that's holding its weapon is hanging to the side, but it's still standing. Its jaw is unhinged.
# TALIESIN
You get another shot, don't you?
# MATT
Yep. So you attack again.
# TALIESIN
Yeah, attack again.
# JON
Four?
# TALIESIN
16?
# MATT
16 still hits. It's a skeleton. That's enough. You finish it off. You destroy the other skeleton in two hits.
# JON
That was kind of a tough one, I get it. It's okay. That was a really hard skeleton. But he's dead now. Let's go--
# ASHLEY
We had it. We just-- We had it.
# JON
Can we eat these skeletons, because that breakfast is still blowing.
# ASHLEY
Yes you can. Give it a bite. Give it a bite.
# JON
Is there any meat left on those bones?
# SAM
Chod, that was amazing. You slew those skeletons like they were nothing. Incredible.
# JON
Oh, I just do whatever I can for my friends.
You guys are all awesome and I'm just glad I could be of service and help.
# SAM
Yes. It's good to have someone like you by our side.
# JON
Awesome!
# ASHLEY
I walk back inside of the mansion.
# TRAVIS
I take out the giant cask of ale and I just...
# MATT
Just chug it.
# SAM
Are you drinking it or just pouring it all over you?
# TRAVIS
Both.
# LIAM
I come out with fresh coffee for Percy and Keyleth. What happened?
# TALIESIN
It was beautiful, terrible. I'm not entirely sure.
# ASHLEY
Chod saved the day. Chod saved the day.
# TALIESIN
Well, really, he cleaned up after you two finished it all off.
# ASHLEY
He did. He did.
# TALIESIN
He swept up.
# LAURA
That was a lot of skeletons that you killed, Pike, with that spell.
That was really good.
# TALIESIN
You and Grog were most of the skeletons, easily.
# ASHLEY
Yeah.
# SAM
Are we all back in the mansion?
# MATT
You're all back in the mansion, now.
# LIAM
Why is it so tense in here all of a sudden?
# SAM
I think I know what's going on.
# ASHLEY
I don't know what happened.
# SAM
Grog. Grog, Pike, can I say something? I feel like there's some tension between us and we need to clear the air if we're going to go fight today.
You guys are really bad today. Well. And I think it's because I haven't made you feel at ease. So can I please just take a moment before we go out there and just, for once and for all, say I'm sorry to you guys for what I did and how I left things. I said things that were really cruel and meant to hurt you, and that's wrong and I'll probably regret it for the rest of my life. But I needed to go and I just didn't know how to express myself. And I'm so sorry that I insulted you.
Pike, I've said awful things to you for as long as we've known each other, and I can't take them back, but I can at least try to be a better person. And can I confess something to you? During the last year, I've-- I think I've been praying. I mean, I just talk at night and nobody hears me, but I guess that's praying, right? And sometimes I talk to Sarenrae, because that's the only one I know. And she seems cool. And she seems like someone who could be a good guide. And it feels good. And I even wrote a little poem about her and about her teachings. It's very simple, but can I tell you it?
# ASHLEY
Let's hear.
# SAM
It's really simple. It goes: "Everybody people, everybody bleed, everybody need something.
"Everybody love, everybody know, how it go." I know it's stupid, but there's a certain Logic to it.
# ASHLEY
Certain Logic to it. That actually makes a lot of sense.
# SAM
It makes me feel connected to you guys, even though you're not there. So I say that to myself every night before I go to sleep.
# ASHLEY
It just makes you feel connected to Everybody people.
# SAM
Yeah.
# ASHLEY
Yeah.
# SAM
And Grog.
# TRAVIS
No, stop.
# SAM
I can't apologize to you, because words don't work.
# TRAVIS
So, let me get this straight. You think you can go away for a year, and come back, in a disguise, and apologize to this group, and that's going to be good enough for me? And then when I'm still pissed, you're going to give me a combo apology with Pike, and that's going to be good enough for me? I'm still pissed. You came back in a costume. A costume! I'm not even really that smart, it's not hard to trick me. And I'm a big guy, but you made me feel small. I don't know if you missed us; I don't know if somebody is making us go down into this Zigga-fuck.
# ASHLEY
(whispers) Ziggurat.
# TRAVIS
Ziggurat. I don't even know why we're here. I thought maybe you'd come back and be like, oh my best mate, the guy that would do anything to keep me alive, there he is, I missed him. No. You come back, you've found yourself a brand new idiot. One that does amazing strikes, twice in a row. And talks to ducks. Has all sorts of new tricks, brand new model, new and improved in every way. I bet you do all sorts of fun things with him. So no. You do not get to apologize to me.
# SAM
I wasn't going to. I was just going to give you a gift. Because the times we had together were the best times ever. You might be a little slow.
But you're the best friend I ever had. And our times together were great, not because of our conversations, or our witty repartee. It was because of the fun we had together and the experiences we had. So last night, I wrote something for you. I know you can't read, but--
# LAURA
He can read.
# TRAVIS
No, Vex. He doesn't know that.
# SAM
I just got you a gift. Because if you won't spend time with me now, maybe you'll be able to spend time on your own. So I wrote you this. Maybe someone else can read it for him.
# ASHLEY
He might be able to read it, Scanlan.
# LAURA
It depends on if there are long words.
# SAM
There's really long words.
# TRAVIS
It's a big word. It's a bit--
# ASHLEY
Well, just give it a try.
# TRAVIS
Aoo, ooh, shh.
# SAM
Nope. Nope.
# TRAVIS
(whispering) I'm really embarrassed. I'm really embarrassed.
# ASHLEY
(whispering) I'll whisper it to you, then you say it out loud.
# TRAVIS
(clears throat) Yeah, I don't feel like showing off my powers. I can't read the dirty hand of betrayal.
# ASHLEY
All who read this, let it be known, by order of Aes Adon-- it's a stupid name, Scanlan.
But it's fine.
# SAM
It's Elvish.
# LIAM
It's a stupid name.
# ASHLEY
AKA the Meat Man, AKA Vicoul the Vicious, AKA Reddish the Bold, AKA the Little Paws, AKA François Bertrand Jean-Luc Australia, be aware that the bearer of this note, Grog Strongjaw, shall be entitled to any libation of his choosing at any pub, tavern, restaurant, inn, alehouse, brewery, or house of lady favors within the city limits of Ank'Harel. He shall be allowed to drink until drunk, and enjoy no molestation by any employee of said establishment, unless he requests it. All charges and bills related to his drinking, cavorting, or violent behavior resulting from drunkenness, shall be forwarded to the Meat Man for timely payment in full. By complying with this request, you are hereby under the protection of the Meat Man, and shall receive all the benefits and goodwill accompanying such association. The Meat Man always remembers. Sincerely, Aes Adon.
# TRAVIS
Probably best to test it out. See if it's even worth anything.
# SAM
Grog, I love you. I'm sorry that we won't get to hang out, because you hate me now. But I would never replace you. And if you ask me right now--
# TRAVIS
You'll kill him?
# SAM
I will kill him.
# JON
Who? (hushed laughter)
# TALIESIN
(quietly) I wouldn't worry about it.
# JON
Okay. I really like this job.
# TRAVIS
He's all right.
(hushed laughter)
# SAM
Will you go drinking with me some time?
# TRAVIS
We'll see. By the way, I want you to know: when you died, I sang a song I would never sing for anyone else, and I'm sorry you didn't hear it, but it was really hard.
# SAM
Is that true?
# LAURA, LIAM
Yes.
# SAM
He sang?
# TALIESIN
Yes.
# JON
Do a truthful check.
# LAURA
Do you know what he sang?
# SAM
A truthful check? Sure, I'll roll a truthful check.
# MATT
An insight check? Okay.
# SAM
Natural 20.
# LAURA
Whoa.
# MATT
Honest as the day, or Grog dick is long, he apparently sang.
# TRAVIS
It is, I can just lean forward.
# MARISHA
Happy 100th.
# MATT
Happy 100th.
(laughter)
# LAURA
Grog, I didn't hear it. Maybe you should sing it, and let him know what it was.
# TRAVIS
Oh, you know, it's like the face of death in the hallway, once it uses up its power, it's done.
# SAM
I'm so sorry I missed it. And I hope someday we'll sing together, in a drunken stupor together.
Maybe that will remind you.
# TRAVIS
Maybe.
# SAM
I was an asshole, Grog, I'm sorry. I would never, never replace you, ever.
You're irreplaceable.
# ASHLEY
And he could've read this, by the way.
# SAM
That's incredible.
# TRAVIS
I would've gotten the name right.
# MARISHA
Wait, did you frame it like a coupon book? That's very impressive.
# SAM
I had some time last night.
# ASHLEY
Coupons, that you can sort of pick out of it like a--
# LAURA
A free massage.
# MARISHA
Like a couple on Valentine's Day. Who forgot it was Valentine's Day.
# ASHLEY
It looks like there's a free steak.
# SAM
Listen, we need to go kill some things right now, but I just want to say to all of you, I'm so sorry the way I left, it was awful of me.
Percival, I said awful things to you, I said awful things to all of you. But just know I've done and said worse things to Kaylee, and she's forgiven me, and I've done and said worse things to myself, and I've managed to forgive myself, and I hope that someday, you'll all be able to forgive me.
And until then, I'll just keep trying, and that's all I can do. And after this fight, if you want me to stay, and you guys go home, that's fine. But if not, maybe we can start over.
# MATT
Vex, Vax, Keyleth. At this moment, you hear what sounds like footsteps making their way up the tunnel. Not where the light was before, but the path you previously stepped from.
# MARISHA
Does it sound like skeletons, or heavier?
# MATT
From just your passing hearing, it just sounds like patterned footsteps.
# LAURA
I cast Pass Without a Trace on everybody.
# MATT
Okay.
# LIAM
Everybody quiet down.
# MARISHA
We're inside a glowing door, I think they know where we are.
# MATT
So, you guys all close the door to the mansion.
# LAURA
Well, I don't want to close the door to the mansion, but turn out the lights in the mansion so you can't see.
# MARISHA
No one's home! We're out of candy, no trick-or-treating.
# MATT
Up the hall, you watch as two humanoid figures with hoods are carrying each side of what looks like a chest or a crate that has handles.
They just pass and then continue going.
# SAM
(whispering) You've seen that? You've seen that? Those are the guys?
# JON
(whispering) Those are the guys.
# SAM
(whispering) We should kill him. Let's go kill them.
# LIAM
(whispering) Can I murder one first?
# TALIESIN
(whispering) Yes.
# LIAM
(whispering) Thank you.
# LAURA
(whispering) Wait, I shoot--
# MATT
You're still inside the mansion.
# LIAM
I thought she said the door was just barely open.
# MATT
Yeah, but they're not walking by; you made the door way back in the tunnel. You see them up toward the T-juncture. So you guys would have to leave the mansion and get there quickly.
# LAURA
Shit. We sneak out. We sneak out and shoot them from behind.
# MATT
All right, stealth check for those who are moving forward.
# SAM
Maybe we should all go.
# LIAM
Now, wait a second.
# LAURA
If you feel like it, you can go. This is a team.
# TRAVIS
You Pass-Without-a-Traced us, right?
# LAURA
Yeah.
# MATT
Those who are moving forward, stealth check?
# LIAM
43.
# MATT
Happy hundredth.
# MARISHA
24.
# LAURA
27.
# MATT
Anybody else moving forward with them?
# TALIESIN
I'm a little bit behind them. 28.
# SAM
Wait, are we all going?
# MATT
Up to you guys. Whoever's going?
# SAM
Did everyone else leave?
# JON
20.
# SAM
If he's going, I'm going.
# TALIESIN
I'm behind you guys.
# SAM
Natural 20.
# LIAM
Twins are in the front.
# TALIESIN
Yeah, we're letting them go first.
# JON
Oh, I'm behind, but I'm going.
# MATT
You do have advantage on your stealth checks because of your boots, Pike.
# MARISHA
Table right is hanging back behind the twins.
# ASHLEY
16.
# LAURA
Plus ten?
# ASHLEY
Oh, 26!
# MATT
All right, everyone got above 20.
# SAM
Taryon's still asleep.
# LAURA
No!
# MATT
Taryon is still asleep. Okay. All right, so.
You carefully move forward. The twins, you, at full stealthing pace, make it up to the corner, and as you crest around the side, about 20, 25 feet up, you see the two humanoid figures with hoods that come to a underoff point that hangs to one side. Looks like a leathery or rubbery substance from the little bit of light that's coming through, it's hard to really tell. They're wearing long black cloth, like a tunic, and what looks to be dark leather or thick black cloth, pants and boots.
# LAURA
Pants and boots and pants.
# MATT
Boots and pants and boots and pants. Not gloved hands, but they're both just carrying this chest along, they're just quietly moving along.
# LAURA
I bramble shot one of them.
# LIAM
(dagger throwing noise)
# MATT
Okay, so, roll for your attack. On the one that's closest to you, or further?
# LIAM
On the left.
# MATT
Well, they're both moving away from you.
# LAURA, LIAM
Oh.
# LIAM
Well, you're further.
# LAURA
I'll go for the further one.
# TRAVIS
Please both be old people.
(laughter)
# LAURA
Should I roll two for attack?
# MATT
Yeah, because they do not know you're there, so you have advantage.
# LAURA
Ooh.
# LIAM
29.
# MATT
That hits.
# LIAM
And this is assassinate, critical hit.
# MATT
Yes it is, it's an auto crit.
# LAURA
So, Oh! I'm an assassin too!
# MATT
Correct.
# LAURA
So I get an automatic?
# MATT
Auto crit. If you're a level three, you do.
So both you guys auto crit.
# LAURA
Sweet!! Ooh, so I double all my dice?
# MATT
Yep, including the bramble shot.
# LAURA
Oh shit!
# TALIESIN
That's the end of both of them. It's going to be a cadaver and a fern.
# MARISHA
Oh, new chest. We could put our blankets in it.
# TALIESIN
I'm working on a quilt.
# MARISHA
I was going to say, the quilt from your grandmother.
# JON
This thing must be worth them dying for.
# LAURA
66 on the first hit.
# MATT
66 damage?
# LAURA
For the arrow, yeah.
# LIAM
78 on the first hit.
# LAURA
Oh wait, I didn't do my sneak attack damage! (cackling)
# JON
They can just obliterate anything?
# TALIESIN
Yeah, they're monsters.
# LIAM
And I use a bonus action for an offhand attack. And I got a critical on it.
I rolled a 20.
# MATT
You rolled a 20 on the second one? Okay.
Roll damage on that.
# LAURA
76 for the first hit.
# MATT
Okay. In an instant-- don't worry about the second attack, critical damage. Both of them just go-- (footsteps) (thud) (laughter)
# ASHLEY
What's in the box?
# TRAVIS
What's in the box?
# MATT
You lift up the box--
# LAURA
We check it for traps.
# MATT
Okay, investigation check.
# LIAM
Let's both check.
# LAURA
Okay.
# LIAM
Natural 20.
# MATT
What the fuck? You guys tonight. Talk about the hundredth episode mojo here. Unless you're Grog. Sorry, buddy.
# TRAVIS
Fucking leave it in the past!
# MATT
All righty, so. Who rolled investigation on that one?
# LAURA
He did.
# MATT
What did you get?
# LIAM
20.
# MATT
20. Natural, oh that's right, (blows raspberry) I'm stupid. Yeah, no, it is not trapped, it's not locked, it's just closed.
# LIAM
Spick and span.
# MATT
Inside you see what looks like a polished stone of smooth jade that is affixed to a grey leather band that loops in the back. You see a scimitar, a very well-made scimitar, that has a series of pearlescent gems across the hilt, it has a very Marquesian flair to it. And you see what appears to be a rusty iron sphere that is about three inches in diameter and weighs about a pound.
It has a bunch of really strange shapes and design, almost like it was made from condensed chains that were then melted down into a single sphere.
It has a really rough texture on the outside.
# LAURA
We need to have Tary Identify it. Can we drag the box back to the mansion?
# MATT
Yeah, you drag it back (dragging noises). I mean, the box has some food and blankets that are meant to keep it hidden, so you search through as you find them. Those are the only things of interest in the box, the rest of it just seems to be to fill the space.
# LAURA
Can we hide the bodies?
# MATT
Sure. You guys drag the bodies back?
# LAURA
Yeah. And Dust of Tracelessness to hide where they were dragged.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to take their cloaks.
# TRAVIS
You want me to hide the bodies?
# LAURA
Yeah, Grog.
# TRAVIS
I put the bodies in the Bag of Holding.
(laughter)
# MATT
Okay. The opening is about that big, so it takes you a second, just like when you had to put Dork the Ox in there, it's like trying to fit a king-sized pillow in a twin-sized pillowcase.
# TALIESIN
I fully support it. Whatever you need to do to feel better, man.
# TRAVIS
I'm trying to get over these double ones, man, I'm working it out.
# TALIESIN
I'm curious about a couple things here.
# LAURA
Don't touch any of it, until we get Tary to look at it.
# MARISHA
While they drag the bodies back, Percy and I take the robes.
# TALIESIN
We're going to strip the cult members of their culty pants.
# MATT
So, Percival and Keyleth are currently wearing--
# MARISHA
Can I study one of the guys' face, and take that for Alter Self?
# MATT
Sure, easy enough. You also find that both of them have what looks like a dark iron symbol hanging around their neck, hidden beneath their robes. It resembles a four-pronged pitchfork that has a single rod beneath it that forms a loop.
# LAURA
Do you have a picture?
# MATT
I'm going to sketch it for you.
# SAM
Dickbutt.
# LAURA
I spilled coffee on my paper, and it looks like David Mack watercolor.
# MARISHA
Yeah, yeah, it's aged a little.
# LIAM
Mack spatter.
# SAM
Hey, in the store tonight, we've got lots of--
# MATT
It looks like that.
# TALIESIN
Angry happy face with a goatee.
# MATT
Kind of, yeah. So you have the corpses both being stuffed into the Bag of Holding, you guys find the whatever symbols are hanging, and the robes are on you.
# LAURA
We go back to Tary.
# MATT
You go back to Tary.
# SAM
(as Tary) 34, 35. Other side, Doty. One.
# LAURA
Tary? We're in the mansion. Tary?
# SAM
Hello? Yes? I'm not decent yet.
# LAURA
Tary. I've seen you naked.
# SAM
Come in, come in. Hello.
# LIAM
Thank you. We have a box of crazy shit, will you look at it and tell us what we're looking at?
# SAM
Of course.
# LAURA
What are you doing in here, why didn't you come down with us?
# SAM
I'm doing my daily preparations. I had to pluck my eyebrows, I had to comb my hair. My unmentionables needed to be washed and--
# JON
Waxed?
# SAM
Yes. I will identify these objects.
# MATT
Easy enough to do as a ritual for each. The scimitar is a Scimitar of Speed.
# TALIESIN
I'm excited.
# SAM
Oh, oh. I'm jacked in.
# LAURA
You can go, you can go, you've got 30 feet of jack.
# MATT
All right, don't go so far. These are the other two items you've got.
# SAM
Oh my god, there's so many items.
# LAURA
Whoa, go us!
# SAM
What we have here is a Scimitar of Speed. You gain a +2 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with this magical weapon. In addition, you can make one attack with it as a bonus action on each of your turns.
# LAURA
Shut up. Is it attunable? Do you have to attune it?
# TALIESIN
Yes, you do.
# SAM
But maybe this guy can do it. We've also found the Third Eye of Awareness. A single polished stone of smooth jade is affixed to a grey leather band that loops in the back. The wearer gains advantage on initiative.
(gasps)
Not attunable.
(louder excited gasps)
# LAURA
We're in the room, we're in the room!
# LIAM
Tary, I am an assassin of the highest caliber.
# LAURA
Tary. I'm your best friend.
# SAM
Oh. Little Elf Girl.
# LAURA
Oh wait, is it a necklace?
# SAM
No, it's a leather band.
# MATT
It's a headband.
# SAM
Of course Vex gets this. All the times we've had together.
# JON
What are the other Eyes of Awareness? Have you guys come across the others? It says that's the third one.
# SAM
The last item is called the Iron Bands of Bilarro. This rusty iron sphere measures three inches in diameter, and weighs one pound. Like my dick.
(laughter)
# LIAM
It says that on the paper, Matt?
# MATT
I didn't-- no-- I didn't-- Wait-- No.
# MARISHA
Wait, does that require attunement?
# SAM
You can use an action to speak the command word and throw the sphere at a huge or smaller creature, like my dick, that you can see within 60 feet of you. As the sphere moves through the air, it opens into a tangle of metal bands, like my dick. Make a ranged attack roll with an attack bonus equal to your dex modifier plus your blah blah blah, if you hit it, the target is restrained until you take a bonus action to speak a command word and release it. Doing so, or missing, causes the bands to contract and become a sphere once more. So it's like a trap ball. Trap ball.
# MATT
It's like, you know in Doctor Strange, that prison exoskeleton it threw on him? It's like that.
# SAM
Once the band is used, it can't be used again until the next dawn, like my dick.
# LAURA
Tary, you've never been quite so obsessed with your dick before.
# SAM
It's just that gnome, he's so weird and he rubs off on people, like my dick! Oh, I'm doing it again!
# LAURA
You're doing it! How are you? You've been hiding a lot!
# SAM
Well, it seems like you guys are working through a thing, and I should really be getting back home, anyway. I don't know, I don't feel quite as needed any more.
# LAURA
Oh no!
# JON
You're not, I don't think.
# LAURA
You're not there!
# SAM
How did he get in here?
# MATT
You turn around and realize that Lionel has followed you into the room.
# JON
What else do I have to do?
# SAM
After this is all done, I'll say my proper goodbyes. But I should be going. He's your best guy, right? You need him. He's part of the team, he always has been.
# LAURA
You're my best guy!
# SAM
I love you both. I'm definitely poorer for having known you, though.
# LAURA
I mean, you were poorer without knowing us, you just didn't realize it.
# LIAM
I mean, poorer, but richer.
# SAM
That's true.
# TRAVIS
Your family's actually poorer because of you.
# LAURA
This mansion disappears in 24 hours, so you can't just hide in here.
# SAM
All right, I'll come outside. Doty, get my armor ready. Spritz it!
# MATT
"Tary." Doty pulls an arm up, and you can see one of the slight changes that they had made in his construction is a slight mister on the other hand that goes (water spraying).
# TRAVIS
For your face or for your armor?
# SAM
His armor!
# TRAVIS
Oh my god!
# MATT
Depends how hot the day is.
# LIAM
Freddie! Where's Fred?
# LAURA
I feel like Percy would like this a lot. We found something that you might enjoy.
# LIAM
What's this?
# TALIESIN
Scimitar of Speed.
# LIAM
Well, I think you might like this thing. You could come up with very creative solutions with that.
# TALIESIN
This could go-- (interested noises) Yes.
Yes, I think I could do something with this.
# SAM
Let's go kill some shit, shall we? Come on!
# TALIESIN
I've even got a codeword for it!
# SAM
Codeword?
# MARISHA
There's a codeword?
# TALIESIN
You have to speak a word to make it work.
# MATT
A command word, yeah.
# TALIESIN
Can I program the word? I've programmed it. Perfect.
# LAURA
I put this on.
# MATT
Okay, you put that on. All right. Who is going where? What are you doing?
# LIAM
Wait, hold on. Would you like this, either of you? It's not my bag.
# ASHLEY
Gain a plus two bonus to attack... It's a weapon.
# MATT
All right, so what's the plan, guys? What are you doing?
# LIAM
We should go.
# LAURA
We should go attack things.
# TRAVIS
Campfire!
# LIAM
Well, let's go quietly, you and I, take point.
# LAURA
And head deeper in, see where the people have been.
# LIAM
Twins are in the lead.
# MATT
New stealth checks from you guys since you've had combat.
# LAURA
Still have Pass Without a Trace going.
# TALIESIN
Everybody roll who's walking.
# MATT
Sam, are you bringing Scanlan?
# LAURA
Natural 20!
# MATT
So, across the board.
# TRAVIS
What are we rolling?
# MATT
Stealth.
# TRAVIS
Oh, I did that already. 23.
# ASHLEY
35!
# LAURA
Natural 20.
# LIAM
I rolled a two, so it's a 27.
# MATT
Reliable Talent, man, it's awesome.
# MARISHA
29.
# TALIESIN
23.
# JON
19.
# MATT
Plus ten.
# JON
Yeah, that was with ten.
# SAM
20, 23, 23.
# MATT
Okay!
# ASHLEY
Question!
# SAM
Scanlan, Taryon, Doty. I tried to leave them behind, guys!
# LAURA
But he's in a mansion, he'll just pop out and then he'll be sitting in a tunnel by himself!
# TRAVIS
You opened this hole, man, you gotta pay for it!
# LIAM
Yeah, you've got to juggle these balls.
# MATT
All righty.
# LAURA
Sorry, Matt. What do we do? He's going to kill him! He's going to kill one of them! What should we do?
# SAM
Let's go!
# MATT
You move further into the tunnel.
# LIAM
Twins in the lead, point, traps. All that.
# MATT
All right.
# LAURA
Searching, keeping an eye out for any other people as well.
# MATT
All right, it's only 80 feet until the winding tunnel opens up slightly. So, make another investigation check partway up, about halfway to that period.
# LAURA
God damn it.
# LIAM
18.
# MATT
Okay. You make your way there. And you begin to push towards the entranceway. The soft dust on the ground, which is the same color as the rest of the stonework. Vax, you step onto one section that seems to step in a little further than the others, and you feel a (click).
# LIAM
Nobody move. Don't move.
# MATT
I need you and Vex, and who was following them?
# SAM
Everybody.
# MATT
I need everybody to make a constitution saving throw.
# LAURA
Oh no.
# SAM
Saving throws are up there.
# LIAM
Sam. I'm using my first Luck of the new day.
Okay?
# SAM
Great. That's the third one, then?
# LIAM
The first one of the day.
# TALIESIN
Oh, I can reroll a saving throw.
# MATT
All right. Grog?
# TRAVIS
17.
# MATT
17. You take 36 points of necrotic damage.
Pike?
# ASHLEY
Five.
# MATT
36 points of necrotic damage.
# LIAM
Constitution saving throw?
# MATT
Yep. Vex?
# LAURA
16?
# MATT
36 points of necrotic damage.
# LIAM
18, but armor after those faces, is set to necrotic damage.
# MATT
Right, because you never un-set it from that. Okay. All right, I'll let you do that. All right, so instead of 36, that's 18.
# LIAM
I rolled an 18.
# MATT
You did not succeed on the saving throw, but you halved it.
# MARISHA
20 total?
# MATT
20 total? You take 16 points of necrotic damage. You make it.
# TALIESIN
Out of curiosity, is this a magic saving throw?
# MATT
Against a spell effect? Yes.
# TALIESIN
Then I don't even have to use a resolve.
19.
# MATT
19 does not succeed. You take 36 points of necrotic damage.
# JON
16.
# MATT
36 points of necrotic damage.
# TALIESIN
We don't have the bonus hit points, either, do we?
# MATT
Nope.
# TALIESIN
Okay.
# SAM
Scanlan, 26.
# MATT
Takes 16 points of necrotic damage.
# SAM
Is it 18 points?
# MATT
Yes, 18.
# SAM
Taryon, 26.
# MATT
Wow. 18 points of necrotic damage.
# SAM
Doty, one.
# MATT
Doty takes 36 points of necrotic damage. All righty. You watch as you pull back and the sand sifts in and you see another face below, with a burst of dark energy that echoes out in a 60-foot radius. Fills the hallway with this high-pitched shrieking sound. As it hits all of you and the breath escapes you for a second, this circle of death-like sphere passes all of you, and you hear the shriek echo through both sides of the hallway.
# LAURA
Well, if anything's going to bring more skeletons, it's that.
# LIAM
Clicking my boots.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to burn my quick heal. Might as well.
# MATT
What are you guys doing? Pushing forward, staying where you are?
# LAURA
Should you heal us before we pop into anything more? Can you heal us?
# ASHLEY
Yeah. I can heal us.
# LAURA
That was a lot.
# ASHLEY
That was a lot.
# LIAM
I'm doing this.
# MATT
Perception check.
# ASHLEY
I'll cast Mass Cure Wounds.
# TRAVIS
Pike's doing this.
# MATT
Mass Cure Wounds. How much does that heal everybody?
# ASHLEY
3d8 plus spellcasting ability modifier.
# MATT
So whatever you roll plus five.
# LIAM
31 perception.
# MATT
Okay. You listen out, and you hear what sounds like low voices, things shifting, a slight general humming sound. The bright light that was there before is not there at the moment. You still see the fire.
# LIAM
Does it sound like anything I've ever heard before?
# MATT
Make an intelligence check.
# ASHLEY
Everybody heals an extra 18 hit points.
# LIAM
Natural 20.
# MATT
Natural 20. You do remember it. The low hum that temporarily appears was very close to the sound whenever anybody was throwing something into the dark sphere above the ziggurat.
# LIAM
I was wondering. All right.
# SAM
You said 18?
# ASHLEY
18 points, yeah.
# JON
They've heard that before.
# MATT
Apparently. A different one.
# MARISHA
No one's rolled initiative. No one knows we're here yet.
# MATT
Not yet. You haven't thrown into combat yet.
You guys just hit a trap and heard things ahead.
# MARISHA
If you can wait 60 seconds, I can make us an elemental.
# TALIESIN
Will the magic fade if we get too close to the ziggurat, though?
# LAURA
Maybe we'll have to fight things outside of the ziggurat.
# MARISHA
That's a good question. I have a mild confession, and maybe I should have said this a little earlier, but I'm going to say it now. One night, I might have sneaked down into the middle of the ziggurat, and I stuck my hand in it.
# LAURA
What the fuck?
# SAM
Why would you do that, and what happened?
# MARISHA
Well, I wanted to find out what would happen, and I found out it's real bad. It's really bad, is what I found out, and it nearly crushed my hand to a point of oblivion and I think I got really lucky, so I think it just crushes anything that it tries to suck in.
# LAURA
But it's a doorway. I shot an arrow through it.
# MARISHA
It is. I think your arrow happened to be tiny and fast.
# TALIESIN
Well.
# LIAM
Those 60 seconds have passed.
# TALIESIN
Let's go.
# MATT
You were talking instead of casting a spell.
Do you want to take another minute to cast a spell?
# TRAVIS
Thanks for the confession, though.
# MATT
All right, so what are you guys doing?
# LAURA
Moving forward. Keeping an eye out for those--
# MARISHA
That's all I mean. Don't jump in.
# LIAM
Do you want to go elemental?
# LAURA
No, she wanted to summon an elemental.
# MARISHA
I wanted to summon an elemental.
# MATT
You guys rush forward, and a hot wind is picking up through the tunnel. You're not quite sure directionally where it's coming from. But as you move forward and through the winding passage, maybe 60 feet ahead as it opens up, you see it splits into two different pathways of natural interior rock formations, and you can see a larger chamber beyond that. You have the right and left.
# LAURA
I pop Trinket out.
# MATT
Okay. Trinket pops out of your necklace.
What are you guys doing?
# LAURA
Can I hear the noise of the ziggurat coming from either side more?
# MATT
You hear it coming from both sides.
# TRAVIS
Let's split up.
# LAURA
What about wind or anything?
# MATT
There's the general wind in the room, but it's (whoosh) whipping around you, picking up sand and dust from the ground.
# LAURA
Do we see faces on either side?
# MATT
Perception check.
# LIAM
I'll have a look, as well.
# LAURA
28.
# LIAM
24.
# MATT
Okay. You do not see any faces immediately within the two paths that are ahead of you.
However, as you glance past one of the edges, within the chamber, you can see the sources of some of that flickering firelight. You see two clay bowls, large clay bowls that are set in the ground that have burning materials inside. Wood, cloth. Who knows what, but they're burning this bright orange-red flame. Not a natural yellow flame. A deep orange-red flame. It's causing this glow to emanate around the room, and you see the flames flickering and moving with the wind that's blowing about.
# TRAVIS
Safe to assume this goes to the same room, yeah? Just two different entrances?
# LAURA
Maybe.
# TRAVIS
So let's flank.
# LAURA
I feel like there's traps.
# MARISHA
I go with Percy, since we have the robes over top of us.
# MATT
All right. Who's going left and right?
# TRAVIS
I'm going right.
# JON
I'll go left.
# ASHLEY
I'm going right.
# MATT
Left?
# LIAM
I'll roll with Percy and Keyleth.
# MATT
Percy and Keyleth with Vax. Grog on the right. Who else is on the right?
# LAURA
I'll go right.
# MATT
Vex is right. Pike? Right or left?
# ASHLEY
Yeah, right.
# MATT
Trinket's with you.
# SAM
All my people to the right.
# MATT
All righty. Indeed, what looked like two different hallways was one entrance to the chamber that was divided by a singular column in the center. You both flank around as it opens up inside. You see a 50-foot-tall, 70-foot-wide natural cavern chamber that rounds out over the top, and you see it end on the opposite side.
There are two pillars nearer to your end that both hold defaced statues of a woman on each. Defaced statues of a woman. Partially destroyed and collapsed. There are elements of it broken on the ground. The heads removed. In the center of the chamber, you see before you a massive stone-stepped pyramid, similar to the ziggurat you've found. The design is a little different, and you get the sense that a lot of it is still buried and it's just the top that has been uncovered and repurposed for whatever this may be.
You do see, there are a number of cloaked figures scattered across these steps, and some of them are out looking in your direction as soon as you come around the side. They're all wearing the same black outfits, the cloaks. Some of them have the hoods back; some of them have the hoods on.
Roughly, you have what looks to be six or seven from what you can view. There are two of them at the very top that currently have what looks like another crate that has been opened, and there above them, you can see the black orb, exactly like the one you have underneath Whitestone, and they're in the process of taking objects out and throwing them up into the sphere, and you watch as they flash and vanish into the darkness. You see one cloaked figure that's currently shouting out and giving commands right now.
# LAURA
Do they see us?
# MATT
With all of your stealth? You got a 19, correct? One of them shouts out, "We have visitors!"
# LAURA
Do they only see that side? Do they see us come around the other side of the pillar? They see all of us.
# MATT
As soon as they all glance over, you guys are out in the open of a hallway. Once they see him, they see the spread of you. As this happens, you watch as a number of skeletons walk out from the halls on the sides, and one seems to suddenly shake and rise up from the ground: a large skeleton with what looks like giant horns that curve out of the head, standing about 12 feet tall. Looks to be some sort of minotaur-like beast, but bone and anger.
# LAURA
How far away is the ziggurat?
# MATT
The ziggurat from you guys? Let's pull out a map.
(cheering)
# ASHLEY
Do you need help?
# MATT
I may be able to get this here.
# LAURA
It's such a big map.
# MATT
It's a big one. Actually, Travis, do you want to help me with this real fast?
# JON
This time, it's big.
# MATT
We're working out the kinks here, guys.
Thank you very much.
# SAM
Guys. So many great things available in the store tonight. Those posters? The Scanlan thing. Oh shit.
# LIAM
Combat. Here we go! This is the real deal.
# LAURA
Wait, we didn't do this last time, did we?
# JON
If I hadn't sneezed, you guys, we never would have seen this.
# TALIESIN
They would all be dead right now. We would have taken them all out in one clean kill.
# JON
We would have quietly (blow gun sounds).
# SAM
An overhead cam? An out-of-focus overhead cam?
# JON
This is the place, guys.
# LAURA
Wait, so it's reversed?
# SAM
Matt only has to manage 22 individual characters right now.
# MATT
No, it's great, guys. I love it; it's wonderful.
# LAURA
So when we tell you which direction we want to go, Matt, it's from your perspective.
# MATT
Well, do the best you can to see.
# TRAVIS
The map's right.
# TALIESIN
Towards and away from the ziggurat, and the ziggurat's 12:00 and we're 6:00.
# SAM
We'll just say leeward and windward.
Starboard.
# MATT
Okay, so. There is a singular figure standing up here that seems to be giving orders and shouting it out to the side. Female voice rings out across the center of the chamber and says, "Remnants, slay the intruders and grant their bodies to the cause!"
# LAURA
Can I see whose voice that was?
# MATT
Make a perception check.
# LAURA
That was crazy. 27.
# MATT
27. It's hard to see. She's in the dark right there and the sphere doesn't give a lot of light, but the voice sounds familiar.
# SAM, LAURA
Familiar?
# MATT
All right, so at this point the woman pulls an amulet. The woman pulls an amulet out from beneath the robe, and as she clutches it in her hand, the orb shifts from black to white, to a white-gray color, and you watch as the wind (whoosh) gets whipped up even heavier and lights up the area around the space. You watch as the cloaked hood flows back, and for a brief moment, before the grin crawls across her face, you see the face of Delilah Briarwood.
(gasps)
# SAM
We killed her! She's dead!
# LAURA
No!
# TRAVIS
Look at Percy.
# SAM
She's dead. She died. We killed her!
# ASHLEY
Oh no.
# MATT
Yet there she is at the top of the ziggurat.
# LAURA
How?!
# SAM
This is like a soap opera!
# LAURA
Dun dun dun!
# TRAVIS
I broke the world for you returns!
# MATT
I would like you all to roll initiative.
# TRAVIS
(laughs) What?
# LAURA
I know.
# ASHLEY
This looks like a crazy fight.
# MARISHA
Natural 20.
# MATT
Nice.
# MARISHA
If only it was for something a little more important, but it's fine.
# TALIESIN
You get to go first.
# MATT
So 25 to 20?
# TALIESIN
20.
# SAM
20 for Scanlan.
# MATT
What was it?
# MARISHA
22, tied with Scanlan.
# SAM
No, mine's just 20.
# MATT
All right, so Percy.
# TALIESIN
Percy and Scanlan are tied.
# MATT
Scanlan. Okay. All right.
# SAM
Wait, does Doty roll? I forget. No, he just goes when Taryon does.
# MATT
Yeah, I'm letting him go with Taryon. It's easier to check that. All right, 20 to 15?
# TRAVIS
17.
# SAM
Taryon's 16.
# LIAM
15.
# MATT
All right, so we have Grog. You got, what did you say? 17? Vax, what did you say?
# TRAVIS
15.
# MATT
Oh, 15 and you said 17 for Taryon?
# SAM
16 for Taryon.
# MATT
All right.
# LAURA
14.
# MATT
14.
# SAM
What did you get?
# JON
17.
# SAM
He got 17. Did he tell you?
# MATT
Oh, he didn't tell me that. Sorry about that.
# ASHLEY
Okay. So many things on the board. I wonder if those statues are going to come to life.
# MATT
All righty. So who else is left. Pike?
# ASHLEY
Seven! She's so good at initiative rolling.
# MATT
All right, so at the beginning of this initiation, with the orb now flaring this pale gray-white and Delilah Briarwood standing there at the top of the ziggurat, staring down and focusing on the group of intruders that have just rushed in. Keyleth, it's your turn.
# MARISHA
Oh god. Okay. I am going to, under the cult hood that I have, transform my face with Alter Self into Sylas Briarwood.
# MATT
Okay.
# MARISHA
Her husband. Her dead husband. I'm going to have his face, and I'm going to walk forward and say, Delilah. Don't. It is me.
# MATT
Make a deception check.
# MARISHA
Deception?
# MATT
So as you step forward into the chamber.
# MARISHA
This is not good.
# LIAM
Sunshine, roll high.
# MARISHA
I'm not good at this shit. Oh, that's not bad! 14? That's it. 14. That's all I got. 14 is good for me.
# TALIESIN
It's dark.
# MATT
Okay, so that's your action. As you say this to Delilah, her eyes flash over to you, and her face goes--
# SAM
She's mad.
# LAURA
So pissed!
# MATT
You have your movement and your bonus, still.
# MARISHA
Movement and a bonus? (sighs)
# LIAM
Feeblemind on the dragon.
# MARISHA
I am going to take my bonus to ignite my form into a fire elemental and rush towards the closest thing to me.
# MATT
Okay, there are two skeletons to your right and left.
You're turning into a fire elemental.
# MARISHA
Yeah. I don't know. Where are we?
# MATT
There you go, Keyleth.
# MARISHA
Okay, I have a 50-foot movement. I want to hit as many skeletons as I can by running through them and catching them on fire.
# MATT
Okay, so with that, you can do (counting).
You can probably get this whole cluster here. All righty. They all catch fire as you rush through.
You do get attacks of opportunity on you as you rush by. That is 15?
# MARISHA
What am I against?
# MATT
What's your AC for your fire elemental?
# MARISHA
Hit.
# MATT
All right, so that's 11 points of slashing damage, reduced to half because you take half damage, right?
# MARISHA
Yep. So five.
# MATT
That's a 13?
# MARISHA
Miss. No, hit. Armor class is 13.
# MATT
Another five points of slashing damage.
Ten?
# MARISHA
Miss.
# MATT
Eight.
# MARISHA
Miss.
# MATT
Okay. That one and that one. That is a 15 from the minotaur skeleton.
# MARISHA
Hit.
# MATT
You take 17 points of slashing damage, reduced to eight. And the last one is a natural 20, so you take 22 points of slashing damage, reduced to 11. And they are all set aflame. All of them take, I believe, fire damage from impacting you?
# MARISHA
Yep.
# MATT
So we'll say eight damage across the board for all of them. All of them get hit with fire as they swipe out at you, including the giant minotaur that swings over you with this large greataxe in its hands and bursts into flames as it does so. Awesome. All right, that ends your turn, Keyleth. Delilah, who's currently glaring at Keyleth and the rest of you, looks out and goes, "Of course it would be you, wouldn't it?" She takes a step back. Without breaking eye contact, goes, "Finish your work." (foreign words) And slams her hand down on the ground, and you watch as this sphere of rainbow color completely encompasses around the top of the ziggurat. You now see this large orb, this dome of multicolored rainbows that flickers for a second, and then briefly becomes a singular color.
# LAURA
It's a giant--
# MATT
You see it is a giant Prismatic Sphere around. The color you see now as it flickers for a minute becomes stark red, just deep ruby red.
# JON
It's so pretty. Look at it, you guys.
# LIAM
Taste the rainbow.
# TRAVIS
These people kill ducks, Lionel.
# JON
(gasps) Kill them all!
# MATT
Percival, Scanlan. What are you guys doing?
# TALIESIN
Scanlan, you first. My plan just went up the rainbow.
# SAM
All right. I'll step forward and I will-- is Vax or Vex near me? Vex is near me, right?
# MATT
Vex is near you, yeah.
# SAM
I will inspire Vex. I will sing to her. I will sing, (singing) you don't need anybody else.
When I stand beside you, I touch you, elf. Whoa.
(laughter)
Something creepy.
# LAURA
Working your way back up.
# SAM
And then I'll cast Reverse Gravity on everybody. Everybody in there. All their shit.
# MATT
All righty! What's the radius on that? My templates are still back on the shelf. Can someone grab my templates real fast? That would be awesome.
# SAM
50 feet.
# MATT
50-foot radius?
# SAM
50 feet radius.
# MATT
Oh, that's going to get everybody in there, including probably Keyleth.
# MARISHA
I can take it. I'm into this.
# MATT
You can fly, though, right?
# MARISHA
I can fire hover?
# TALIESIN
I have sticky feet right now, so I ain't going nowhere.
# MATT
Reverse Gravity, perfect. Dexterity save across the board.
What's the spell DC with the hand cone?
# SAM
22.
# TALIESIN
Fuck their shit up!
# SAM
Does it affect people in the dome?
# MATT
You don't know.
# TALIESIN
We'll hear a thunk, won't we?
# MATT
You see over here, a number of other robed figures and one that looks like it's heavily armored in the front, as well. A couple of small other cultists down on the sides, but they all-- apparently. Okay, the armored one actually manages to grab the stonework and hold on.
# SAM
Oh boy, Matt's hating this.
# MATT
Everyone else, except for that one armored guard, rises up and (wham) slams into the ceiling 50 feet up. That is 5d10 points of damage. 5d6, sorry. Thank you very much. Perfect.
# MARISHA
Is that including me, or no?
# MATT
That would be including you.
# MARISHA
Okay.
# LIAM
Let me just reiterate, we always appreciated Scanlan.
# SAM
I just need to hear it more, guys.
# MATT
20 points of bludgeoning damage, which completely destroys these skeletons that were damaged earlier from the fire.
# LIAM
So long, pawns.
# MATT
All right. Are you maintaining it, or letting them fall?
# SAM
Maintain!
# MATT
All righty, so everyone else is held in the air right now against the ceiling.
# SAM
The people inside the dome? No.
# MATT
Seem to be unaffected.
# SAM
Oh, that ziggurat.
# LAURA
Anti-magic dome.
# SAM
I'll move a little closer in.
# MATT
So over here next to Pike?
# SAM
Done. Percival.
# MATT
That ends Scanlan's turn. Percy, what are you doing?
# TALIESIN
I'm going to pull out Bad News.
Actually, let's pull out Animus. This will be funnier if I'm walking around that way, which is always a fun thing to say. There's that one guy holding on, right?
# MATT
There's one guy holding on, yeah.
# TALIESIN
There's one guy holding on. I'm going to use my gun to make him drop an object of my choosing. And that object is going to be the pyramid. So just remembering how to do this.
# MATT
Roll for an attack.
# TALIESIN
Roll for an attack. That's 29?
# MATT
That will hit. All right, he has to make a strength saving throw?
# TALIESIN
Strength saving throw against 20.
# MATT
Nope, five plus five. That is a no, so he goes (whoosh) and slams into the ceiling, as well, taking-- ooh, that is 22 points of bludgeoning damage.
# MARISHA
Can Keyleth clothesline him on the way up as a fire elemental?
# MATT
Sure. Close enough. You swoosh over there; it's fine. More of a flavor element. So all the visible creatures you can see right now are held against the ceiling.
# TALIESIN
Okay, is he still alive? I don't suppose I have advantage to hit anything that's pinned to the ceiling.
# MATT
I'm going to say for the purposes of falling up, a lot of them are prone, so you would actually have disadvantage.
# TALIESIN
So weird. I'll take it. I hit the wrong thing. There we are. I'll burn another point for advantage and shoot him again. Just with a straight roll. That's 19.
# MATT
That hits. Same armored guy?
# TALIESIN
Same guy. That's nine points of damage, plus three points of psychic damage.
# MATT
Okay. All right?
# TALIESIN
And I'll hit him again. Same thing. Hit him again. This time I'm going to take a bonus for a Hex on him, too, for extra fun. That's 27.
# MATT
Yeah, that hits.
# TALIESIN
So that's not bad. That's 17 points of damage, plus three points of psychic damage and five points of necrotic damage.
# MATT
Nice! You're just firing up at this figure.
The one shot sends it flying up into the ceiling, and I'd say even before it impacts, as it's still floating up in the air, you shoot it once while it's still falling upward, and then it slams into the ceiling and you get one final shot to hit it while it's there. (grunts) Across the top. It's hard to see if it's really that hurt, but it's currently a little wounded.
# TALIESIN
Yeah, and he's got disadvantage on dexterity checks for now, because that's funny.
# MATT
Are you going to move, Percival, or are you going to stay where you are?
# TALIESIN
I'm slowly going to make my way towards the ziggurat, so I'm going to be actually walking up on the wall. So you can put me up on the little creases. Yeah, I'm walking sideways, as gravity's reversed right now. I'll make my way, as far as I can get, towards the sphere.
# MATT
Okay, and that radius, by the way, is maintained as long as you concentrate on that. So anybody who walks into that radius will have to make a dex save or be flung up into that. So! That being the case, ending Scanlan's turn and Percy's turn, the cultists that are currently flung to the ceiling are going to get up and run this way, so they're technically up on the ceiling right now.
Those two are going to continue their work. You don't see what's in there. Grog, you're up.
# TRAVIS
Is it me and Chad?
# MATT
Let's see here. Actually, no. I disagree.
They actually can take an action this turn from that distance. So I need Grog and Pike to both make wisdom saving throws.
# LAURA
Are you both wise?
# ASHLEY
I have gnome cunning, so I have advantage on wisdom.
# TRAVIS
14.
# MATT
14.
# ASHLEY
What did you say it was, wisdom? 20?
# LAURA
Roll your advantage. You get advantage.
# ASHLEY
Maybe I don't need it?
# LAURA
Try it. Maybe you'll roll a natural 20.
# MATT
Advantage for which one?
# ASHLEY
I have gnome cunning. I have advantage on wisdom, intelligence, charisma saving throws.
# MATT
Just in general?
# ASHLEY
I guess so.
# MATT
Against magic, I think it was? So yeah, both of you guys shrug off the effect. You feel the magic try to take hold over the inside of your brain and your muscles seize up and you manage to shrug it off. It's a familiar feeling. It is one that you're familiar with, as well, Pike. It is a Hold Person attempt on both of you.
# ASHLEY
I know what you did. I know what you were trying to do!
# MATT
All right, that ends their turn. Grog, you're up.
# TRAVIS
Okay, where does that sphere of vertical influence start?
# MATT
You're not entirely certain, Grog.
# TRAVIS
Awesome. I'm going to go into a rage and haul ass along this wall.
# MATT
Okay, as you rush into this wall here, I need you to make a dexterity saving throw.
# TRAVIS
I have advantage on those. 14.
# MATT
Grog, you start running and then (yelps) go flying up into the ceiling.
# SAM
Oh shit, it affects the area?
# TRAVIS
(screams)
# MATT
You take 17 points of bludgeoning.
# TRAVIS
I raged at the beginning.
# MATT
So half that. You're now locked on the ceiling, as well. However, that does put you in melee range, and prone, with one of the cultists on the ceiling.
# TRAVIS
Totally meant to do that. I'll attack.
# MATT
You're upside-down on the ceiling. The guy who cast a spell and it didn't work on you watched you tumble up, land, get up, and stare him down in his face.
# TRAVIS
Hi.
# MATT
His hood falls off. You see a guy who's staring at you now with one eye plucked out of its socket.
# TRAVIS
Might as well make a matching one.
Reckless! Natural 20.
(cheering)
# MATT
Roll some damage.
# TRAVIS
So I rolled a ten. Two more of these, seven. 31, 11, 42.
# MATT
Okay. You smile at him, bring the axe back, and you completely-- we're talking tree trunk. He slides over and his body attaches to the ceiling and collapses against that, blood splattering out from his midsection. It seems really gross, in a sense. You still have at half movement, about 20 feet to run across.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, I'll keep trying to come to this wall.
# MATT
This wall? Okay. That's about as far as you get, but you don't have range with your axe.
# TRAVIS
That's my turn.
# MATT
Okay. Finishes Grog's turn. Lionel. You're over here, currently.
# JON
I move forward and I jump into the radius so I can float up, too. And as I'm flying, I say, I'll save you, Grog!
# TRAVIS
Come on, buddy!
# MATT
Do you go into a rage first? It will reduce your impact damage as you land.
# JON
Wait, what?
# TALIESIN
You take less damage.
# MATT
If you want to be raging first, you'll take less damage from the impact.
# JON
Yeah, you know what? Let's rage.
# MATT
Okay. You joyfully leap into the sky.
# JON
It's the duck rage.
# MATT
You take 16, reduced to half, so you take eight points of bludgeoning damage as you slam into the ground at the top, and you stand up and there's about five feet between you and Grog, and one of the cultists is there right in front of you, who's like, "Shit!"
# JON
I rage.
# MATT
Do you want to attack him? Go for it.
# JON
I think the anti-gravity is screwing me up.
Three, plus 12.
# MATT
Three plus 12 still hits, actually.
# JON
He does it clumsily.
# MATT
Your first strike is 2d6 plus ten damage.
# JON
Seven. 17.
# MATT
17 points of slashing damage as you pull your greataxe up and rake past. You see his chest split open and he (grunts) pulls back. He's still alive, and as he looks up at you from under the hood, he is also missing one of his eyes. (pants)
# JON
Second attack? Rage, bonus action...
# MATT
You have an extra attack as a barbarian, so you get a second attack.
# JON
Okay.
# TALIESIN
d20.
# JON
Do the same thing.
# TALIESIN
Natural 20! Now roll 4d6.
# MATT
Roll 4d6.
# TRAVIS
Stop touching him!
# TALIESIN
He's so plush, though. It's really nice.
Whoa! Does he get to reroll ones?
# SAM
Oh, that's a one.
# TALIESIN
Does he get to reroll a one?
# MATT
He does, because of his great weapon fighting, yeah.
# TALIESIN
Reroll it. Better.
# JON
So it's 17. Plus ten. 27.
# MATT
Okay. The first strike cuts him across the chest. (pants) Rears back. Oh, that wasn't enough, and with a second half-assed swipe, he goes down and spills out all across the ceiling. That cultist is done. All righty, that finishes your turn. Taryon.
# SAM
Doty, stay here. I'll jump on the broom. I cast Fly on-- no, I don't have to cast Fly.
I'm on a broom!
# LAURA
It's hard to keep track of three characters.
# SAM
Well, Matt does it all the time.
# TALIESIN
The walls are tall enough that you can put that above people and it won't be a problem.
# MATT
Possibly. We'll find out. Where are you going, Tary?
# SAM
I'm going to fly straight in to the steps.
# MATT
All right, so you're doing a dash? Or just your movement?
# SAM
Can I get there in one fly?
# MATT
What's the speed of the broom?
# SAM
It's 40, right?
# MATT
You can get there. That's as close as you can get with one movement.
# TALIESIN
You're close, though. You can throw something at it.
# SAM
I can't get all the way there, so I'll cast something. Shit. It's a prismatic thing, right?
# MATT
Right now you have this ruby, bright-red dome that's glowing with light right now.
# SAM
Would a Prismatic Spray beat a Prismatic Spray? Probably not, right?
# MATT
I don't know. What do you think?
# SAM
Shit. I'm not going to risk it. I'm going to point straight up.
Is there anyone right above me?
# MATT
Yes, actually. These guys here are on the ceiling right now. Anything you see there are on the ceiling, currently.
# SAM
And I'm up a bit, so I could throw something at them? I guess drop it. I'll drop a thing of fire up there. Alchemic fire. A little pot.
# MATT
At which one?
# SAM
Can I get two of them? It has a five-foot radius.
# MATT
Yes, you can hit these two.
# SAM
Great. I'll go for both of them.
# MATT
All right, so the skeleton and guy get to make...
what's the DC?
# SAM
17.
# MATT
17? Unfortunately, the cultist makes it.
Skeleton does not. So the cultist dodges out of the way on the ceiling. It smashes on the ground by the skeleton and bursts into flames. How much damage does it deal to the skeleton?
# SAM
I'm 15th level or 16th level?
# MATT
15th.
# SAM
Okay. 5d6.
# MATT
5d6 fire damage to the skeleton.
# SAM
16.
# MATT
16 points of fire damage? That skeleton, fire consumes it. It's still currently standing, and now the flames are licking through its ribcage. That ends your turn?
# SAM
I will, as a bonus action, cast Sanctuary. Am I within 30 feet of any of my friends?
# MATT
Right now? Nope.
# SAM
On myself.
# MATT
All righty. Vax, you're up.
# LIAM
Boots on, poof go the wings. I have two actions left. It's really hard to see. How far am I from skeletal minotaur?
# MATT
Right there? You're approximately 40 feet.
45.
# LIAM
And nowhere on the board are any of my allies within melee combat range of any enemy.
# MATT
Nope! Anyone that was killed whatever they were fighting.
# LIAM
That's what I figured. Okay, so I'm going to use my two remaining actions to throw daggers at minotaur skeleton.
# MATT
From where you are? From where you're standing?
# LIAM
I'm 40 feet away. I'm in range.
# MATT
Yeah, and you have sharpshooter.
# LIAM
I didn't say it on the first.
# MATT
You have sharpshooter, right? Sharpshooter feat.
# LIAM
I have it if I choose it, but I don't want to choose it.
# MATT
Right, I'm asking because that ignores cover.
# LIAM
I have sharpshooter. Right, so I ignore three-quarters cover. So the first one is a 19?
# MATT
Hits.
# LIAM
Good, and the second one-- oh, that hits, for sure. That's a 16... 28. Okay, so for the first one, I'm going to unload some Smite into this motherfucker because I know he's undead. That is three, plus eight is 11, plus psychic damage is 17, plus 3d8 because he's undead. So 17 plus eight is 25, 29, 36 for the first attack.
# MATT
36 damage. As you fling the dagger out, it seems to skid across the stone of the pillar in front of it, leaving these bright white sparks as it hits. Comes through and strikes through the chest. As it does, a burst of divine energy. You watch as some of the ribs shatter and scatter across the stonework. (roars)
# LIAM
Fucking feathers, buddy. And then the second one is four, plus the Smite, and I get four plus eight is 12, 15, 22.
# MATT
22.
# LIAM
Wait, I can only smite once per round?
# MATT
You can smite. I believe so. I think it's whenever you expend a spell slot, so I don't think there's a limitation per round. That's part of what makes paladins so crazy at the higher levels, actually. But just to make sure of that or the internet's going to hate me. No, there's no limitation on that. So 22?
# LIAM
I'm also going to use my movement. Is there enough room to fly safely over big skeleton?
# MATT
Yeah, it's about 12 feet tall, so as long as you get 20 feet over it, you can.
# LIAM
Then I want to get into the back corner closest to Liam, on the map.
# MATT
Over here?
# LIAM
Yeah. 120 feet of movement.
# MATT
Over here, you mean.
# LIAM
Yeah.
# MATT
All right, you're over here in this area.
# LIAM
As far back from the enemies as I can be.
That's good. Done.
# MATT
All right, that ends your turn. Vex.
# LAURA
Has anybody tried shooting anything through the orb?
# MATT
Not yet, no.
# LAURA
Okay. Well, I'm going to try Hunter's Marking Delilah.
# MATT
You have no sight on her.
# LAURA
I don't?
# MATT
No. All you see is a sphere of red. It blocks everything. All sight is obscured with light. It's very bright; the whole room is lit up.
You almost have to squint a little, looking at it.
# LAURA
Okay. I'm going to try to shoot an arrow, then, at where I remember her being.
# MATT
Okay, go for it. Roll an attack.
# LAURA
Because it's red. Natural 20!
# MATT
Awesome. The arrow shatters. No effect.
# LAURA
Oh, what a waste. Because it was red.
Motherfuck. Okay, then I'm going to Hunter's Mark that big guy and I'm going to shoot him with a flaming bowstring.
# LIAM
Y'all motherfuckers need Sarenrae.
# LAURA
Are you fucking kidding me?
# LIAM
Well, you got a 20 on the last one.
# LAURA
Yeah, when it didn't fucking count!
# LIAM
Well, we've all got to eat a little humble pie every once in a while. Even you.
# LAURA
You motherfuck. Don't rub it in my face when I just rolled a one.
# MATT
Anything you want to do with Trinket? Movement?
# LAURA
No, he has to wait because he's going to get hit. He's going to get bludgeoned.
# MATT
Okay, ends Vex's turn. Skeletons are now going to go.
# LAURA
I am going to move back into the little corner that's next to me.
# MATT
Right here.
# LAURA
Yeah, and Trinket will follow me in there.
# MATT
Perfect. The skeletons get up and start rushing in towards the nearest things. This one's going to rush towards Grog. This one's going to rush towards Keyleth there. This one's also going to rush towards Keyleth. The minotaur, who got impacted angrily, sees you dart past. Turns around. You're not within range, so it's going to move up towards (heavy footsteps). This knight is also going to move in towards Keyleth. These guys up at the top are going to focus in that way. All right, first, the minotaur swings with its axe. Makes a giant swing towards you, Lionel.
Actually, no. What it's going to do is it's going to rush up, instead, put its head down, and charge forward towards you with its horns in front. It's attempting to strike you with its horns. That's 18 to hit. What's your armor class?
# JON
It is 18.
# MATT
18, okay, so that just barely hits. You suffer 13 plus nine. You take 21 points of piercing damage, reduced to half, so it's ten, because you're raging. I need you to make a strength saving throw.
# JON
So mine's plus ten. That's with this dice, right?
# MATT
Yes. Roll that, plus ten.
# JON
23.
# MATT
23, yeah. You're not pushed. You get the impact and the horns come to your chest and you're like, "ooh, that hurt," but this giant creature's stopped in its tracks. Its hooves are scraping into the ground, and you're immovable. That's the end of its turn. Skeleton attacks on Keyleth.
That's 18?
# MARISHA
Hits.
# MATT
13?
# MARISHA
Hits. 13 is my armor class.
# MATT
All right, you take 22 points of slashing damage, reduced to 11, from the two attacks.
# MARISHA
11, so I'm at 52.
# MATT
And all right.
# TALIESIN
Dungeons and Dragons. Yeah.
# MATT
The blackguard is going to make three attacks with this giant glaive that it has. Now you've got up close, you can see this jagged black armor. He's going to rush up with his glaive and spins. All three attacks on you. That is 23? 18? And 16. All righty, so you take nine, plus Thunderous Smite damage. That's going to be 21 points of damage. Sorry, it's going to be nine points of slashing, which is reduced to four, and then you take an additional 15 points of thunder damage.
# MARISHA
So 19 points total?
# MATT
Correct. Mark that off.
# TALIESIN
No, it's the big motherfucker. The minotaur.
# LIAM
Wait, smite?
# MATT
The second strike is going to hit you again.
He's going to burn another slot for another smite.
On the second one, you take another four points of slashing damage, plus 13 points of radiant damage to you. This would be necrotic damage.
# TRAVIS
From the skeleton minotaur?
# MATT
No, this is from the armored guy.
# TRAVIS
Gotcha. Okay. We've got to get you out of there.
# MATT
And the third strike hits you for four points of slashing and a third dark smite. Another 13 points of necrotic damage.
# MARISHA
That brings me exactly to zero.
# MATT
You drop your form.
# MARISHA
I drop form. Just form. I tanked that motherfucking fight, y'all.
# MATT
So at that point, all of a sudden your form drops in place.
# MARISHA
I'm still on the ceiling, right?
# MATT
Yes, you are. The war priest across the way is going to look outward and begin to focus and chant under his breath, and the little bit of light begins to show, once again, the missing eye on most of these individuals. Delilah is not missing an eye, it seems, but the rest of them seem to have this appearance amongst them. As it releases this form of energy, you watch as a familiar, darker-burning flame begins to spill across the ceiling as a Flame Strike makes its way-- not a Fire Storm, Flame Strike. Sorry, so it's a column.
# SAM
Am I close to him?
# MATT
Scanlan is-- it's a 60-foot range, is what you're asking? Yes, it is.
# SAM
I'll Counterspell that.
# MATT
Counterspell the Flame Strike?
# SAM
Sure.
# MARISHA
Scanlan!
# LIAM
I missed you.
# TALIESIN
It's so nice that this is not a problem.
# MATT
I need you to roll a d20. Add your charisma modifier.
# SAM
It's just a plus two? Oh, wait. Wrong guy! Ooh, 19.
# MATT
19 will do it. With that, as the flames begin to well out in this column of fire and dark divine energy, you just reach out and snap your fingers and the spell vanishes on the spot.
# LIAM
Shorthalt.
# ASHLEY
Shorthalt.
# LAURA
Shorthalt!
# SAM
I don't feel the love! I need to go away for another year.
# TRAVIS
It's a start.
# MATT
That necromancer, however, is going to impact in the center of the chamber a burst of necrotic energy that billows out from the center in a 60-foot radius.
It's going to affect all of you guys.
# LIAM
Me up in the corner?
# MATT
Everyone but you because you're away. Mr.
Way Out of the Way Guy.
# LIAM
It's what I do.
# MARISHA
Ceiling and floor?
# MATT
Ceiling and floor, because it's a large enough radius where it affects the entire space. I need you guys to roll a constitution saving throw for me, please.
# LAURA
Who?
# MATT
Everybody but Vax. No, it will still affect Doty.
# TALIESIN
I have advantage because of Cabal.
# LAURA
I suck tonight!
# MARISHA
Yeah!
# LAURA
I can't help it!
# LIAM
Mother bitch!
# SAM
Laura, did you roll?
# LAURA
Oh, I can add inspiration! Okay. No, that's not going to save me.
# MATT
So over here. Grog?
# TRAVIS
26.
# MATT
26. You take 15 points of necrotic damage.
Pike.
# ASHLEY
15.
# MATT
15? You take 15 points of necrotic damage.
# LAURA
Ten.
# MATT
You take 30 points of necrotic damage.
# MARISHA
23.
# MATT
You take 15 points of necrotic damage.
# TALIESIN
Natural 20.
# MATT
15 points of necrotic damage.
# JON
Ten.
# MATT
30 points of necrotic damage. Scanlan?
# SAM
24.
# MATT
24? You take 15 points of necrotic damage, and make a concentration check, please.
Constitution saving throw, with advantage because you have war caster.
# SAM
Plus anything?
# MATT
Plus your constitution saving throw bonus.
# SAM
Constitution saving throw. It's a lot. 22 on the first one.
# MATT
You have advantage, but yeah. You maintain concentration. You're fine.
All righty, and I need Taryon.
# SAM
13 plus seven. 20.
# MATT
All right. 15 points of necrotic damage to Taryon. As the wave fades off, you hear the chuckle of the two cultists, and they step backward into the red sphere.
# TALIESIN
Weren't they on the ceiling?
# MATT
Oh, you're right. Sorry. They were on the ceiling. Thank you for the reminder!
# TALIESIN
They were my least favorite.
# MATT
I know. Fair enough.
# SAM
Does Doty get hit?
# MATT
Doty does get hit, yes.
# SAM
He's out.
# MATT
Doty is (creak, impact) on the ground. Thank you for the reminder. Sorry.
# SAM
Wait, how many points?
# MATT
30. 30 necrotic.
# LAURA
Trinket.
# MATT
Did Trinket roll? Roll for Trinket.
# LAURA
No.
# MATT
30 points of necrotic for Trinket. All righty. That ends their go there. Pike?
# ASHLEY
Okay, so I am going to hold my turn until after Scanlan goes.
# MATT
All you can hold is an action. What action are you going to hold?
# ASHLEY
I have to tell you what I'm going to do?
# MATT
Essentially, yeah. As opposed to moving your initiative around in the order, you can still move on your turn, and then if you're going to cast or attack, you start it and then wait for something to trigger it and then release it when that happens.
# ASHLEY
I'm going to cast Guiding Bolt, but I'm going to hold it until after Scanlan's turn.
# LIAM
He's at the bottom?
# LAURA
She's at the bottom.
# MATT
Scanlan's close to the top. Okay, so you begin casting Guiding Bolt. What's the trigger? For Scanlan to go?
# ASHLEY
For Scanlan to go.
# MATT
Okay. You begin concentrating on the spell.
End of your turn?
# ASHLEY
Yes.
# MATT
Keyleth, you're up.
# MARISHA
Okay. How many people are still on the ceiling with me?
# MATT
Grog, Lionel, and a number of skeletons. The blackguard, the two other casters over there, the minotaur skeleton...
# MARISHA
Okay. I drop form. I'm going to look around and go, (nervous laughter) and drop my staff and do Fire Storm radiating out from me, and I want to try and avoid Lionel and Grog, but basically radiating out, fire floods the ceiling.
# MATT
Okay. You can hit him. (counting) You can get everyone but these two skeletons, if you want to do a swath through that.
# MARISHA
Everyone but the two skeletons?
# MATT
Actually, if you started it here, you could go... (counting) You can either avoid the two skeletons or avoid one of those casters. Your call.
# MARISHA
No, fuck the casters.
# MATT
So those two skeletons next to you: untouched. Everything else in there has to make a dexterity saving throw against a DC 21. Natural 20 on that first skeleton.
# MARISHA
What a dick!
# MATT
Minotaur does not make it. Let's see.
Blackguard does not make it. Natural 20 on that caster there, and a 13 on that one. So this one fails, that caster succeeds, blackguard fails, minotaur fails, skeleton succeeds. Roll damage on that.
# MARISHA
I get to reroll ones. (counting) 26. Roll two more. 12 more damage. What did I just say?
# TALIESIN
26.
# MARISHA
26, plus 12 more. 38 damage.
# MATT
38 points of damage. This skeleton is burned into ash and destroyed. The minotaur skeleton, even though it made the save with a 20, it had taken damage from the fall earlier and it was enough to wipe it out. Minotaur skeleton, with that last bit, also burns up. The flames burn around the blackguard, but it stands there, defiant. It seems to almost be relishing the pain as it burns and tears through its armor. You don't see a face. All you see is black armor, jagged at the tips, long cloak that is burned to the back, big glaive that spins in his arm.
# TRAVIS
Where is he?
# MATT
Right there. He takes half the damage.
# TALIESIN
Is he on fire, too?
# MATT
It doesn't set them on fire. All righty.
Keyleth, that's your action. What else are you going to do?
# MARISHA
Can I move any? Can I back out of wherever I am? Where am I?
# MATT
You're right there. Two skeletons get attacks of opportunity on you if you move.
It's up to you.
# MARISHA
I'll stay. Let me back out of it.
# MATT
Okay. Two attacks of opportunity on you.
That is a 24?
# MARISHA
Yeah.
# MATT
And a 17.
# MARISHA
Yeah.
# MATT
All right. You take 22 points of slashing damage.
# LIAM
Sorry, honey.
# MARISHA
It's okay.
# LIAM
You're fine. Oh, you're dead.
# MARISHA
I'm fine.
# MATT
Okay. Delilah.
# SAM
Wait, she goes through the thing?!
# MATT
Yeah. She walks through.
# LIAM
She can go wherever the fuck she wants.
# MATT
She's going to make a dexterity check to hold on right there, and she rolls a 23. No, a 22.
Your DC is 22 for Scanlan? She just steps out of it and holds onto the edge. Actually, she wouldn't have had to do that. She steps to the edge. She succeeded, but she basically just looks out of the sphere. You watch her face appear out, and her hand.
She begins to look around for her next target.
# LIAM
Matt Mercer in drag, shitting all over us.
# SAM
All it ever has been.
# MATT
She looks over at you, Pike, and goes, "Not this time, my dear." I need you-- Delilah's got the Player's Handbook-- I need you to make an intelligence saving throw, please.
# ASHLEY
Intelligence saving throw? Okay, I get advantages. Okay.
# LAURA
Don't jinx this.
# TRAVIS
The same fucking thing.
# LIAM
Two eights. Holy fuck.
# ASHLEY
Nine.
# MATT
Nine. As her finger reaches out to you, your brain goes a little numb and a little fuzzy, and the spell that you were preparing dissipates, and conscious thought becomes difficult as the Feeblemind spell takes effect.
# MARISHA
No! Bitch!
# LAURA
What works on Feeblemind?
# MARISHA
This is my karma!
# MATT
Your intelligence and charisma become one.
You can't cast spells, you cannot understand language or communicate in any intelligible way.
# MARISHA
I might be able to do a Greater Restoration on you, but I don't know if I can help you there.
# LAURA
Tiberius had it one time. How did we heal him?
# MARISHA
It was a restoration spell.
# MATT
She steps, laughing, back into the orb.
# LIAM
Back into the Skittle? Fuck you, Delilah.
Holy shit!
# MATT
Percy, you're up.
# TALIESIN
God fucking damn it.
# TRAVIS
Can you point to where Pike is on the map? Okay.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to continue further down the wall towards the evil orb of death.
# MATT
Okay.
# TALIESIN
Is that as far as I can get?
# MATT
That's as far as you can get in a 30-foot movement, yeah.
# TALIESIN
Okay. And the cultist closest to me on the ceiling?
# MATT
That's going to be that one right there.
# TALIESIN
That one right there? Let's do some damage with Animus, and let's add a sharpshooter for it, just for fun.
# MATT
Okay.
# TALIESIN
That's 16 to hit.
# MATT
16 to hit does not hit.
# TALIESIN
Hold on, I may have done that wrong. 17 to hit.
# MATT
Still does not hit. As soon as you fire, it hits but it sparks off what looks like big plate armor on this caster that the robes were obscuring. As it hits, it tears through the cloth and you see the reflection of armor beneath.
# TALIESIN
That's irritating. All right, forget sharpshooter. One more. That's better. 24 to hit.
# MATT
24 hits, yeah.
# TALIESIN
This is not the one I have the Hex on, right? Okay, that's fine. I should have done that differently. 12 points of damage and one point of psychic damage.
# MATT
All righty. This does hit. (gunshot) Doesn't seem to affect him much.
# TALIESIN
He's still fine, isn't he? That's fine.
I'm going to hit him again.
# MATT
Go for it. Scanlan, you're up next.
# TALIESIN
That's like 35 to hit. Jesus Christ, I rolled a 19. And that's 17 points of damage and one point of psychic damage.
# MATT
All righty. Still standing. Not showing any wear and tear. Taking damage, but does not appear to be wounded significantly.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to use my bonus to heal myself a little bit because goddamn it. Oh, Jesus.
# JON
You're attacking who?
# TALIESIN
I'm attacking one of the cultists. I'm up to 120 hit points now.
# MATT
This isn't the one in the fully dark armor.
This is the one that has armor under a cloak. It looks like an older man's face. Has this staff at the side and a mace hanging from the belt and is currently casting spells from the ceiling right now.
# TALIESIN
Goddamn it. I wanted to throw some electricity on it and I blanked because my brain is made of Swiss cheese. Is it too late?
# MATT
I'll let you throw it on.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to add-- on that last shot, I'm going to add 5d6 worth of electricity damage.
# MATT
Go for it.
# TALIESIN
(counting) 16 points of lightning damage.
# MATT
16 points of lightning damage.
# TALIESIN
That's five Cabal's. (blast) Five Cabal's.
# MATT
All righty. That ends your turn, Percival?
# TALIESIN
Yeah.
# MATT
Scanlan, you're up.
# SAM
I don't have much.
# TALIESIN
Really?
# MARISHA
You've always ever said that.
# TALIESIN
You always say that. That doesn't mean anything.
# TRAVIS
The minotaur's down, right?
# MATT
The minotaur fell, yeah. It was incinerated by the Fire Storm.
# LAURA
It's cultists and Delilah left?
# MATT
And some skeletons.
# TRAVIS
And a dark paladin's still up there.
# MARISHA
The blackguard, yeah.
# JON
The one who's got all that black. The really powerful one.
# LAURA
Okay.
# TALIESIN
It's possible we can run straight into the ball.
# SAM
Who's with me? Who's near me? Nobody, right?
# MATT
Right now? Nobody is near you. Right, Pike is right next to you.
# SAM
I can't do anything to Pike or with Pike.
(fake sobs) All right. I'll inspire myself. The saddest inspiration. (singing) It's raining gnomes. Hallelujah, it's raining gnomes.
Everywhere we go. Short, stout, tough, and mean.
The handsomest I've ever seen.
# MATT
What are you doing?
# SAM
I'm going to Dimension Door into the orb, into the whatever this thing is.
The prismatic ball.
# MATT
Okay.
# LAURA
If it's doable to pass through a magic barrier.
# TALIESIN
It might be concentration-based, and if he can knock it out...
# ASHLEY
Clever gnome.
# LIAM
Come on, baby.
# MATT
I'm going to check one thing. This is important, because this will make a big difference.
# LAURA
Is it an action to drop anti-gravity?
# SAM
I can do it at will.
# LAURA
They'll all get bludgeoning damage from the fall.
# SAM
So will you.
# LAURA
I'm not on the ceiling.
# MATT
All right.
# SAM
Not into the orb of death.
# MATT
But inside the sphere. I understand. I will say, as is the nature of the spell versus a Dimension Door, I need you, as you begin to pass through, your form folds through the magic, the very powerful magic and intent of this sphere. The dome of red hits you immediately. I need you to make a dexterity saving throw, please.
# SAM
Two.
# MATT
Two.
# SAM
Oh, wait. Plus six. That's eight. Plus, I'm inspired.
# MATT
You can inspire and roll on top of that, if you want.
# SAM
Ten. So 18.
# MATT
18. Not enough. All right.
# TALIESIN
Oh god, there's a lot of d6 I hear rolling.
# MATT
You take 28 points of fire damage for the red. As soon as you flash through, and there's orange behind it. I need you to make another dexterity saving throw.
# LAURA
Oh no, it's a whole rainbow!
# JON
Rainbow, ending with indigo!
# SAM
18.
# MATT
18.
# TALIESIN
Oh no.
# LIAM
And if you make it in, you're in a death box.
# MATT
You take 34 points of force damage. Sorry, lightning damage on this. Acid damage. I'm reading the wrong one.
# SAM
Acid, I get halved.
# MATT
All right, so you take 17 points of acid damage.
# TALIESIN
Oh god.
# MATT
You pass through that into yellow. Make another dexterity saving throw.
# SAM
I thought Dimension Door, I disappear to another plane and reappear.
# MATT
The essence of this 9th-level spell is to not let anything pass through it.
# SAM
All right. Keep it coming.
# MATT
Make a dexterity saving throw.
# SAM
16.
# MATT
All right.
# TALIESIN
Can he bounce off at some point and stop pulling through this fucking rainbow of death?
# MATT
This is the first time that I've used this, so I'm making sure that I can...
# LIAM
Scanlan Shorthalt, killed by ROYGBIV.
# MARISHA
What fucking spell is this?
# MATT
You know what?
# SAM
No, keep it coming. I got this.
# MATT
No, based on how it's written, it's passing through the sphere.
# SAM
What do you mean, passing through?
# MATT
Physically passing through the sphere, so I will say, looking at the rules now and really thinking about how it's worded. It doesn't say otherwise.
I'll say you can teleport into the sphere.
# LAURA
Oh my god. You're going to another plane!
# TRAVIS
It's not a gimme.
# MATT
I'm going to take that damage back.
# SAM
I can take it, Matt. Bring it!
# MATT
No. You've made a valid point, and the spell does specify "pass through it." You do not pass through it. You appear on the other side. So what's the range on that?
# SAM
500 feet.
# MATT
You appear inside. You appear within, and you're now on the inside. You can see, the bright colors are there, blinding you from the interior.
Make a constitution saving throw.
# LIAM
Congratulations. You're in a prison cell with Charles Manson.
# SAM
15.
# MATT
15.
# SAM
I still have my inspiration.
# MATT
You do.
# SAM
18.
# MATT
Okay. The good news is, you didn't take any of that damage as you bamf inside the sphere. Bad news is, you're blinded for a minute.
# SAM
Great.
# MATT
The colors are so bright in there, your eyes immediately go stark, flashing white. You cannot see anything in there.
# SAM
Great.
# LIAM
Hi, my name's Jeffrey Dahmer. Welcome to my Prismatic Sphere.
# TALIESIN
You know, I would watch Jeffrey Dahmer's Prismatic Sphere.
# MATT
Scanlan, that's your action.
# SAM
And my bonus.
# MATT
Is that your turn?
# SAM
Yeah, that's it. That's all I've got. I can't see the danger I'm in.
# MATT
That's true. However, you didn't take any damage, so you didn't lose your concentration on the spell. You're just blinded. All right, so now those cultists have all been slain. I forgot to do the skeletons last time, so I'll have them move in. These two skeletons are going to rush in. This one's going to go ahead and... 25. That's four skeletons on you, Keyleth.
# MARISHA
Four skeletons on me?
# MATT
Yeah. Eight misses you. 13 misses you, I'm pretty sure. Eight again.
# MARISHA
Miss!
# MATT
And a 24. You take 11 points of slashing damage. Three of them are swinging at you and you're dodging out of the way, and then one of them catches you across the shoulder and you're like, (grunts). All right, that ends their go.
Grog.
# TRAVIS
I'm going to charge in towards the pedestal. What's the first thing that I reach?
# MATT
The first thing that you reach over here is a skeleton.
# TRAVIS
Yeah. Reckless, great weapon master.
# MATT
Go for it.
# TRAVIS
27?
# MATT
That hits. Minimum damage, you destroy it, because of the great weapon master. You walk up, smash. There's one also adjacent to you there.
# TRAVIS
Yep. Him, too.
# MATT
Go for it.
# TRAVIS
Reckless again. 20, even.
# MATT
20 hits. Minimum damage shatters that skeleton. You can move five feet in and get a third one, if you'd like.
# TRAVIS
Actually, I would like to smash the Titanstone Knuckles together and cast Enlarge on myself.
# MATT
Okay. So instead, you go into full, large-size Grog mode here. (impact sound) There you have it.
# TRAVIS
Fee fie foe, you're fucked.
# MATT
That's your turn, Grog? Lionel.
# JON
Okay. Who's the closest to me?
# MATT
Closest to you are the skeletons here, or if you wanted to rush around and get the guy with the big heavy armor.
# JON
That's the old guy?
# MATT
There's an old one with a staff, there's a black knight in all the armor with the halberd, or there's some skeletons.
# JON
Can I make it over to the black knight?
# MATT
Yeah, you can make it over to him.
# JON
Yeah.
# MATT
You get up to him right there.
# JON
Is there any of my teammates? I want to give bardic inspiration to someone. Are you close? You need it? I'm going to give you--
# MARISHA
We're upside-down on the ceiling.
# JON
L-E-T-S-G-O. Let's go, let's go.
(laughter)
# MARISHA
I'm like, you know how to spell, Lionel!
# JON
That's the only thing I learned.
# MARISHA
I'm so impressed.
# JON
It's the only song I know, but it works.
# MARISHA
How much do I get?
# MATT
You take a d8, I think?
# JON
1d8 times three per short rest.
# MATT
Yeah, you can use it three times. You get a d8 inspiration die, Keyleth.
# LIAM, MARISHA
Be aggressive.
# JON
I'm going to do a Hold Person. I want to hold that guy.
# MATT
All right. He's going to make a wisdom saving throw. What's your spell DC?
# JON
16.
# MATT
16. Natural 20.
# JON
So it doesn't work.
# MATT
No. As you begin to cast the spell on him and you reach out for his mind to clench it, he (chuckles) and readies his halberd. No effect.
# JON
Okay. Don't I have another attack? Is raging done with now?
# MATT
You're still raging. You can maintain your rage as long as you're attacking things. You used your action to cast the spell instead of attacking.
# JON
So my turn is done.
# MATT
That's your turn, yeah. Unfortunately.
Sorry, man. All righty, Taryon.
# SAM
I don't think I can get through that thing, can I? I'll fly up closer to the orb.
# TALIESIN
We still have two cultists full of magic.
# SAM
Oh. Where are they?
# TALIESIN
They're above you.
# SAM
They're right above me?
# TALIESIN
On the roof.
# SAM
Oh. Well, then I'll attack them, I guess. How wide is my Prismatic Spray cone?
# MATT
How wide is your Prismatic Spray cone? What's the cone size on it that it says?
# SAM
It's just the standard Prismatic Spray spell.
# TALIESIN
It's your everyday Prismatic Spray. It sprays in a cone.
It's a sugar cone, not a waffle cone.
# MATT
Prismatic Spray I'm pretty sure is a 60-foot cone. So it is this big old fun guy.
What are you doing?
# SAM
Will it hit the protective thing, as well as the people on the ceiling?
# MATT
You can try and spray them, as it is a cone.
You can aim it up probably to catch the edge of it.
# SAM
I'm mainly aiming at the two dudes above.
# MATT
All right, so you can hit those guys and the blackguard, if you want to. All righty, so roll a d8.
# SAM
A d8? Just 1d8?
# MATT
For that guy there.
# SAM
Oh, that's right, to pick the color. Four.
# MATT
All righty, that's green, so poison for him.
For the sphere?
# SAM
Seven.
# MATT
Seven for the sphere. That is violet. No effect. Okay, that guy there?
# SAM
Two.
# MATT
Two. Orange. Acid. And the guard.
# SAM
Five.
# MATT
Five. Cold. All right, so roll 10d6. Failure for him. Failure for the blackguard, who rolled a four. All three of them fail.
# SAM
Okay. (counting) 39.
# MATT
39. All righty... This war priest over here, the one on the far end, as you strike. That was with the acid ray. The green ray strikes him and he goes (death rattle) and slowly dissolves into a pile of purplish-red mush that begins to smear across the roof. The other two are impacted by it, and they're reeling from the pain. They're starting to show some real wear and tear now.
That's going to end yours?
# SAM
Yeah, pretty much. Oh, and I'll fly closer to the sphere. I said that already.
# MATT
Yeah. Vax.
# LIAM
Oh, I'm up? Lionel is right on that dark paladin, right?
# MATT
That is correct.
# LIAM
All right. I would like to use my movement to fly. It's probably not all of it, but 120 feet to get to his backside and stab him in the back.
# MATT
You can get there.
# LIAM
We'll start with that.
# MATT
You rush in.
# LIAM
That is a 19.
# MATT
19 will hit, yes.
# LIAM
All right, so that is sneak attack damage.
He gets three plus eight is 11, plus... where the hell did my d8 go? Okay, 16 plus sneak attack damage. (counting) 45.
So that guy took 45 in the back.
# MATT
Yes, and as you rush down with the speed of an elven bullet, you drive the blade right into the center of the armor plates, and you watch as he's chuckling with his glaive out, glaring at Lionel. (chuckles, death rattle, thud) And falls dead to the ground.
# LIAM
Perfect. So that's movement, action, and what I have left is hasted action and bonus action, so I would like to use my bonus action to zip over to Pike, 120 feet.
# MATT
As a dash. Okay.
# LIAM
Yeah, and use my hasted action to carry her out of here, out where there's nobody. Towards the end of your map.
# MATT
Okay, grabbing her, you can move at half movement to try and pull her along.
# LIAM
That's 60 feet.
# MATT
Correct. You get her about over here.
# LIAM
That's great.
# MATT
That ends your turn.
# LIAM
I give her a bonus-bonus action to tousle her hair. Next.
# MATT
Easy enough with the wind blowing around.
Vex.
# LAURA
Okay. I'm going to take aim at the other cultist. I'm going to Hunter's Mark them. That's the old one with the staff?
# MATT
There are two of them that appear to be staff wielders. The older one has been destroyed with acid. The other one you haven't really gotten close enough to see the face of.
# LAURA
But they're holding a staff?
# MATT
Yeah.
# LAURA
I'm going to bramble shot that one. No.
Yeah, I'm going to bramble shot the one that I haven't seen his face yet.
# MATT
Okay, so roll to attack.
# LAURA
That was a 33.
# MATT
Yeah, that will hit. Roll damage.
# LAURA
Okay. (counting) Nobody's standing next to him, right?
# MATT
Nope.
# LAURA
(counting) 27. So 27 damage, and then DC of 17. Strength DC of 17.
# LIAM
You're a fucking beast.
# MATT
Does not succeed. He is restrained. (grunts) As you slam with the arrow from the other side, (grunts) the vines curl up and wrap around, constraining him. He's still holding the staff through part of it, but he's completely unable to move and is restrained.
# LAURA
But he's holding the staff, still?
# MATT
Yeah.
# LAURA
Okay, I'm going to hit him again.
# MATT
Go for it.
# TRAVIS, ASHLEY
Get him!
# LAURA
I can't fucking add! 22?
# MATT
22 does hit. Roll damage.
# LAURA
I know.
# MATT
100th episode, guys.
# TRAVIS
It's extravagant.
# SAM
We're onto our bonus material.
# MATT
I know. I want to finish this to a narrative beat. Sorry. Thanks for coming along, guys.
# LAURA
Do I get sneak attack because he's restrained?
# MATT
You do.
# LIAM
Advantage, yeah. Yeah, motherfucker.
# LAURA
That was the shittiest additional four. Oh no. I don't have any idea what I rolled before that.
# MATT
Then roll again.
# LAURA
Oh god. I'm so sorry! (counting) This is so much better than the first roll. 23, and then.
33.
# MATT
33. Got it. All right, so (arrow impact) the other arrow hits. Blood pours out of the mouth as they're being held there. They're trying to break away, but they're not very strong. End of your turn? Trinket?
# LAURA
I'm going to get on my broom.
# MATT
Okay, you get on your broom. You going to move anywhere?
# LAURA
No, but I'm going to be ready to.
# LIAM
(motorcycle revving)
# MATT
All righty, so the necromancer that you just hit--
# LAURA
I Hunter's Marked him, too, didn't I? I didn't add my Hunter's Mark on either of those attacks. An additional seven for Hunter's Mark.
# MATT
Okay. All righty. He angrily, from beneath the vines, gets his staff forward and begins chanting something under his breath. Rears back and exhales, and you watch as a cloud of green, billowing, poisonous smoke spills out in this area. That's going to get all of you guys. I want Keyleth, Grog, Lionel, and Percy to all make a constitution saving throw, please.
# TALIESIN
Is it magical?
# MATT
It is magical. It is a Cloudkill spell.
# TRAVIS
It's not poison, though, right?
# MATT
It is poison.
# MARISHA
Don't fuck me, Gil. Ooh, that's not great. I'm going to go ahead and roll my inspiration. That's better.
# MATT
Okay, so you take--
# TRAVIS
I have resistance against poison because of the Belt of Dwarvenkind.
# MATT
15 points of poison damage, reduced to seven.
# TRAVIS
Okay.
# MATT
All right.
# MARISHA
12.
# MATT
12. You suffer 30 points of poison damage.
# MARISHA
I'm okay. I'm all right.
# MATT
Lionel?
# MARISHA
How much? 31?
# MATT
30 points of poison damage.
# JON
18, but how does off a duck's back work, again?
# MATT
You use your reaction to reduce the damage by half.
# JON
Do I have a reaction? Can I do that now?
# MATT
Yes, and you succeed on that, so you actually reduce it to a quarter, so instead it is seven points of poison damage. Percival?
# TALIESIN
I rolled 27.
# MATT
15 points of poison damage.
# SAM
Off a duck's back? Oh mallard.
# MATT
The cloud remains in this area, so this whole area is a billowing cloud of bad news.
# LAURA
I assume we didn't hear that terrible pun from inside the orb of death?
# JON
What was it?
# SAM
I said, oh mal-lard. Oh mallard.
# MATT
Yes, I understand it happens at the start of their turn, but we're trying to get through this quickly, guys. Don't worry. Calming down the internet. It's fine. Yep. Two skeletons already went. That brings us to Pike.
# ASHLEY
Can I do anything?
# MATT
You can move and attack. No spells.
# LAURA
She can attack. Oh, she can't attack.
# LIAM
But we're way in the back.
# SAM
You can't do anything?
# MATT
Not much you can do from this angle, unfortunately. What do you want to do?
# ASHLEY
There's no rolling against it or anything?
# MATT
Nope. You get to roll against it in 30 days.
# ASHLEY
Oh, cool. I'll be back in New York.
# TRAVIS
We'll time-jump.
# MARISHA
I can fix it. Just give me a hot second.
# LAURA
What if you die?
# ASHLEY
Yeah, what if you die?
# LIAM
We'll have several problems if Keyleth dies.
# ASHLEY
Just wander off? I'll start walking back towards that way.
# MATT
This way?
# ASHLEY
Just start wandering. Yeah.
# MATT
You can dash again.
# ASHLEY
I don't need to dash.
# MATT
Okay. You'll stay back there? We'll say you get that far. That ends Pike's turn.
Keyleth, you're up.
# MARISHA
Who's left on the ceiling with me?
# MATT
It's you and Grog and Lionel on the ceiling with two skeletons.
# MARISHA
Two skeletons? That's it?
# MATT
And one cultist.
# MARISHA
And one fucking cultist?
# JON
He's been pretty hard to kill.
# TALIESIN
I can't help.
# MARISHA
Oh my god. A lot of things have changed in a hot second. Okay. What's going on right now?
# TALIESIN
I can't help. I'm not allowed to help.
# MARISHA
Where's Delilah?
# LAURA
She's hiding in the ball. We can't get to her.
# TRAVIS
Smoke everybody outside that bitch.
# MARISHA
I mean, why not? Go big or go home. I'm going to burn my 9th-level Shapechange and go...
I'm going to go red dragon?
# MATT
Okay.
# MARISHA
And that's all I can do, right?
# MATT
Yep. That is your action.
# MARISHA
I'm a dragon on the ceiling.
# MATT
You can still move if you want to, but you are a dragon on the ceiling.
# JON
Cool.
# LIAM
Do you have a giant crate of the things she can turn into?
# MARISHA
He does. He had to pack a lot of stuff because of me. I feel mildly guilty.
# MATT
That's fine. What are you doing, Keyleth?
# MARISHA
Can I move, (impacts) giant dragon walking on the ceiling, and then look down at Delilah backwards and upside down and say, hello!
# MATT
You get two attacks of opportunity from the two skeletons as you step over. 18 and 21.
# MARISHA
No, yes.
# MATT
Take 11 points of slashing damage. Do you have damage resistance in your dragon form?
# MARISHA
Yeah, I do.
# MATT
You move over and you look down. It's an orb, it's not a cylinder, so you just see the giant red dome. You can't see her because it's a dome.
# MARISHA
I can't see her.
# MATT
Nope. So, you get up and you glance down.
For the purposes of this, you are currently right there and it's just a big red dome. There, it's fine. Reverse Gravity makes this battlefield so easy to keep track of.
# LIAM
Sorry, Matt!
# MATT
It's fine. All right, Keyleth, is that your go? It was an action to cast it and your move.
# MARISHA
I have Frightful Presence for anyone who might be terrified of me. That's it.
# MATT
Nobody sees you right now through the sphere. That ends your turn. All right. Delilah, within the sphere, the cultists next to her end up throwing the last object up and they-- well, no, sorry, they have not been throwing it in there because when the sphere turned, they'd been holding in there waiting for a moment. Delilah glances out and sees the dragon up there, she gets to make her save against your Frightful Presence.
That is a 21 wisdom.
# MARISHA
What's that against?
# MATT
The DC of whatever your Frightful Presence is.
# MARISHA
19. Versus wisdom save.
# MATT
Wisdom saves, yeah, she makes it. She looks out, seeing everyone falling apart out there, pulls back in, looks at Scanlan and goes, "There's more important things to do." She grabs her amulet that she has around her neck and as she holds it again, you watch as the white orb that was glowing turns to black once again. In that instant, Grog, you revert back to your regular size, Keyleth, you return to your form, Percy, you fall off the side of the wall and land on your feet barely. The skeletons just collapse into piles of bones. Tary, you fall and land on the ground there. This Prismatic Wall vanishes.
# SAM
Does Feeblemind end?
# MATT
Feeblemind, currently, right now, is not affecting you. Meaning, Feeblemind, whatever the spell is right now, doesn't seem to be having an effect. All of a sudden, your consciousness comes back to you.
# ASHLEY
Really?!
# MATT
Uh-huh.
# ASHLEY
Oh, fucking hell!
# MATT
She, clutching the amulet, gives a nod to the two other cultists and all three of them step into the black orb. You watch as their forms (whooshing noises) and vanish.
# TRAVIS
They disapparated.
# ASHLEY
They stepped into the circle?
# MATT
Yep!
# LAURA
The orb, they went into the orb!
# TRAVIS
They're moving freely and it looked like pretty familiarly--
# MATT
Through the sphere.
# MARISHA
They went into the thing! They're gone forever!
# TALIESIN
No!
# TRAVIS
And they've done it before.
# LAURA
That's how they got over here!
# MATT
Scanlan, I want you to roll a perception check.
# SAM
Not great. Five.
# MATT
Okay. Never mind.
# MARISHA
If she went in the tiny thing.
# MATT
Yep!
# MARISHA
I still have Shapechange for another hour.
# SAM
No, it's gone, you're done.
# MARISHA
Wait, did she cancel my spell, or is it just the orb that's done?
# MATT
You sense the concentration is still there, but the spell has no effect where you currently are. By the way, Lionel and Grog, you both (falling sounds) slamming into the ground.
# TRAVIS
Dexterity?
# MATT
Nope! You guys suffer 15 points of bludgeoning damage. So, reduced to half for both of you because you're raging, so seven bludgeoning damage each.
# LIAM
And are the wings schlorped back in?
# MATT
Yes. Your wings (retracting sound).
# JON
Mine says "while raging, resist bludgeoning damage."
# MATT
That's what I'm saying, you're taking half damage from this.
You take seven, as opposed to 15.
# SAM
Am I still there?
# MATT
You're still there, right next to the orb.
# TALIESIN
I am going to unload a couple shots into the orb and see what happens.
# MATT
Okay, go ahead and take a shot.
# TALIESIN
Animus freezes up, I throw it. Pull Bad News. Bad News freezes up.
I pull Retort. That hits.
# MATT
Technically, fire, discard, quick draw, right? Quick draw means you can do it as a free action as a part of it?
# TALIESIN
Yeah, I'll burn an action surge for this.
# MATT
We'll say because you only used your bonus action to-- oh, not to reload. As a quick draw, you can pull it as an attack, you're fine. So, you do three attacks, the third one fires. You fire (bullet) and it vanishes into the orb.
# TALIESIN
I'm going to sit and fix my guns.
# TRAVIS
Are there any enemies left on the map?
# MATT
Currently, there's the one right there who's being held by the brambles. The brambles have vanished, and he's currently still conscious, and it's not his turn yet. So, Percy took all the shots into the orb. It is now Scanlan's turn.
# SAM
I will draw my blade and scream and hit that thing with my sword. No, the guy! The guy, not the orb.
# MATT
You rush towards the guy as the brambles wither away and fall to the ground. He turns around to rush towards the orb just as you rush towards him. Your bardic battle cry just "Argh!" with Mythcarver. Go ahead and make your attack.
# SAM
Jon's dice. 11 plus I think it's ten.
Somewhere.
# MATT
That'll hit. His armor class isn't very high; it's just a mage armor of 15.
# LAURA
Yay!
# SAM
It's just a sword; it's not even magical now.
Shit, I can't find anything, I think it's 1d8 plus two.
# MATT
It's 1d8 plus your strength.
# SAM
1d8 plus three. Right?
# MATT
Well, it doesn't have a magical bonus right now. So just 1d8 plus your strength modifier.
What's your strength modifier?
# SAM
I can't even find it. I think it's one, but this is an old sheet.
# MATT
So, 1d8 plus one, your strength hasn't gone up.
# SAM
Thank you. Seven.
# MATT
Seven damage.
# SAM
Plus one. So eight damage.
# MATT
Eight damage. How do you want to do this, Scanlan?
# LAURA
The most lackluster how do you want to do this!
# MATT
He had, like, three hit points left. How do you want to do this?
# SAM
I'll just stab him in his toes over and over and I'll say, this is what you get for separating me from my friends! Who I want to be around forever because I love them! Is this what we're supposed to do now, is this the thing?
# TRAVIS
Don't question it.
# SAM
Okay. Yeah, my friends!
# MATT
As you repeatedly stab it in the feet, he's like, "Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow!" and it's like trying to pull away from you down the side of the pyramid ziggurat. "What are you doing?!" as you keep stabbing it over and over again into the feet until it falls unconscious. Bleeding out through his ankles. How very Scanlan.
# TRAVIS
Through his ankles.
# LAURA
(laughing) That is the stupidest death!
# TRAVIS
All right, we're going in the little sphere. Here we go.
# LAURA
No!
# MARISHA
So, what? What?
# TRAVIS
No, no, no.
# MARISHA
So it's only a dark magical, anti-magical field because she wants it to be?!
# TRAVIS
She manipulated it.
# LAURA
She turned it into that.
# MARISHA
Which means--
# LAURA
She succeeded on the previous one. This a pathway into some other world now.
# MARISHA
She can change it!
# JON
She did something. It was black before, then she turned it white, and I don't know if that allowed magic. But when she turned it black again, all magic stops, so.
# TRAVIS
Which is like the one that we've been around.
# LIAM
I mean, she knows what she's doing.
# TRAVIS
Who has Speak with Dead?
# LAURA
We can't do anything in here.
# TALIESIN
We're going to drag this cadaver outside.
# LAURA
Okay, let's take the cadaver outside.
# MARISHA
So, it's just very strong magic which makes her change what it is?
# LIAM
She knows how it works. We don't know why she's here, but she figured shit out the last time.
# LAURA
We fucking killed her. How did we kill her before? How did she die?
# MATT
You killed her in the hallway as she was trying to escape back to Castle Whitestone when you were fighting Orthax.
# LAURA
Like, she fully fucking died.
# MATT
You killed her and threw her body in the acid pit.
# LAURA
Holy shit.
# TALIESIN
Yeah.
# TRAVIS
Not a lot of remains to be, you know.
# TALIESIN
Resurrected.
# MARISHA
All of their magic was necromantic.
# SAM
What if it's just her soul or something?
# LAURA
What if it's not really her?
# TRAVIS
Well, listen, we're not going in the orb, right?
# TALIESIN
No.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, so let's drag one of these smart-looking fucks outside and have Pike do Twenty Questions.
# SAM
I'm a little worried that once we walk outside, Pike becomes dumb again.
# LAURA
Well, she can Greater Restoration her as soon as we walk outside.
# MARISHA
I can.
# TALIESIN
Let's take this outside. Just take it outside. Nothing good happens here.
# MARISHA
Wait, before we go. Pike, does Sarenrae know anything about this? Anything?
# ASHLEY
I can check.
# TRAVIS
Sam, I think you're right.
# TALIESIN
You're just going to waste your attempt in here.
# JON
There might be some ducks.
# MATT
Are you going to try to have a brief communion with Sarenrae in the temple?
# LAURA
I mean, you could try.
# LIAM
If you lose your brain, you can't do it, so why not?
# ASHLEY
I'll try.
# MATT
You drop to your knees for a moment and concentrate, hoping for her wisdom. Go ahead and make a general wisdom check. Roll a d20 and add your wisdom modifier. Plus five.
# ASHLEY
Wisdom modifier?
# MATT
Yeah, I believe it's plus five.
# ASHLEY
Okay. 22.
# MATT
22. As you concentrate, you feel the warmth of Sarenrae's embrace descend from the darkness of the inside of your eyelids. You see the angelic form of her flaming aura come down and her hands touch the sides of your cheek. She turns your head around towards the orb. And, where previously you saw the little black dot, instead, you see a large oval doorway. Around it, it is flickering madly like a hundred spinning razors around the edges, but just beyond it you can see what appears to be a desolate, gray landscape, what looks to be a scattering of city buildings across this broken, black shadowland, and in the center a singular black obsidian tower that rises up to where you can't quite see the top from your current angle.
And she gets down really close to the side of your ear. You feel the warmth of her divine breath against your face. She says, "This is the destiny.
"This needs to stop. Only terror will come through this."
# ASHLEY
We have to go there?
# MATT
"Whatever way you can. Our reach cannot go beyond the Divine Gate."
# ASHLEY
If I go there, will you not be able to go with me?
# MATT
"I will be diminished, if at all able to."
# ASHLEY
Okay. Thank you.
# MATT
And her finger touches your head and she kisses the top of your forehead and you feel the warm presence again, and she withdraws. As she withdraws, the cold is even harder with her absence because now the proximity of that shadow, of this room, just this general sense of negative energy and death that emanates from this direction behind you. As soon as you watch her light vanish and you open your eyes again, you're chilled to the bone.
# ASHLEY
Okay. Well, it's a doorway, and we have to go there. It's the only way to stop this.
# LAURA
Stop what?
# ASHLEY
I don't know.
# LAURA
Well, we can't go through now.
# TALIESIN
Can't we?
# MARISHA
Is it just like this now? Like the ziggurat in Whitestone?
# TALIESIN
I don't know. Can't we?
# TRAVIS
Yeah, we can.
# LAURA
Oh, fuck. But, we're not even healed. They just went through. We're going to go through and just die immediately.
# SAM
We have to go at least find out if the spells are still affecting us.
If we go through and Pike's dumb--
# ASHLEY
Maybe we should back out.
# MARISHA
The last time I put my hand in the sphere when it was black it nearly tore me apart. We could try again.
# LAURA
It was just a doorway?
# ASHLEY
It was a doorway, and it opened into a city of sorts and in the middle was an obsidian tower.
# LAURA
That's what I saw through the other one!
# ASHLEY
Okay.
# LIAM
Do I feel anything? Sense anything?
# MATT
In what way?
# LIAM
From my patron.
# MATT
Do you wish to try to concentrate there?
# LIAM
Yeah.
# MATT
Make a wisdom check. d20, add your wisdom modifier.
# LIAM
Use my last Luck of the day. Same thing.
It's shit. Seven.
# MATT
Seven? You concentrate and you get the sense that the proximity of this orb and something about the nature of this whole occurrence is interfering with your connection with your deity temporarily.
You try and reach out to her, but nothing is returning your call.
# TRAVIS
Yeah, let's step out of the range, see what happens.
# LAURA
Can we back out and see how far the range goes? Is it the same distance as our ziggurat?
# MATT
So, you drag a body, you said?
# LAURA
Yeah, one of the bodies.
# TRAVIS
Which one, the dark paladin?
# LIAM
Yeah, that asshole.
# MATT
So, you take the black guard, drag it behind you. The rest of you all continue down the pathway. You get to about where that T-intersection was and Pike, your brain goes numb once more.
# ASHLEY
(laughing) No!
# MARISHA
Keyleth goes over to Pike and puts her palm on her head and casts Greater Restoration.
# MATT
The spell immediately loses its hold and you regain control of your facilities.
# ASHLEY
Disaster averted, Keyleth. I throw my arms around her and I kiss her on the forehead, on the cheek.
# LAURA
Just full on her lips.
# ASHLEY
Sorry, I'm just so intense.
# MARISHA
The amount you've saved us. It's nothing.
I've learned it from you.
# ASHLEY
Okay, do we need to talk to this dead person?
# TRAVIS
Yeah.
# MARISHA
No.
# TRAVIS
What? We don't need to talk to this dead person?
# MARISHA
Sorry, I was answering a different question. Continue.
# TRAVIS
Do it.
# ASHLEY
I'll cast Speak with Dead.
# MATT
Speak with Dead. You watch the plate armor rouse ever so slightly as the fresh corpse begins to clink and tense against the metal plates. You hear the creaking sound of breath trying to escape from the reedy thin slit where, apparently, part of the dagger blow that you had shoved in the back of its neck went through and cut part of the vocal cards.
# LAURA
Eww! Fucking gross!
# MATT
You have its attention.
# ASHLEY
Is this one of the ones where his eye is missing, is he one of those guys?
# MATT
As you glance closer to the black guard, because the helmet's still on, you'd have to pull the helmet off.
# ASHLEY
He's the guy with the-- yeah. Pull it off for sure.
# MATT
Pull the helmet off-- it's missing its eye.
# SAM
By the way, while this is going on, I'm dragging Doty out.
# MATT
Okay. (creaking)
# LAURA
I help. Trinket helps, too, because he's stronger.
# ASHLEY
Okay, what do we want to know?
# MATT
Five questions.
# ASHLEY
Why an eye is missing?
# TRAVIS
How they access the gate.
# TALIESIN
What is it?
# LIAM
You've got five?
# ASHLEY
Five.
# LIAM
Is the gate safe for us to travel?
# ASHLEY
Who do you work for? Okay. Is it safe for any of us to get through the gate?
# MATT
You can see the lips are curled back against the teeth and the skin is stretched tight against the skull. While once living, this had some sort of necrotic twisting to its flesh, whether it be by proximity or practice. But the jaws open.
(gasping) Through the jaw doesn't move, you hear the escaping thin air forming words that say, "You need one of the crafted stones to pass unharmed."
# LAURA
Or the blade, the sphere!
# MATT
(gasping) "Or be hearty enough to survive its ravishing doorway."
# ASHLEY
Who do you serve?
# MATT
"We are the Remnants. Small parts of the whole, given purpose to come together and remake "the vessel of the Undying King."
# ASHLEY
Why do you have one eye missing?
# MATT
"To bequeath ourselves of the highest Remnant order to the Whispered One is to gift our "sight like he did. Be granted knowledge he keeps."
# LAURA
There's only two more questions left.
# LIAM
Suggestion. How did Ripley return--
# LAURA
Not Ripley. Delilah.
# LIAM
That's what I meant to say. Delilah.
# ASHLEY
Was that Delilah?
# LAURA, LIAM
Yeah.
# LIAM
How did Delilah return?
# ASHLEY
I have one job!
# LAURA
It's stupid!
# ASHLEY
How did Delilah return?
# MATT
"I know not the means. But she is a powerful necromancer, and with the right preparation, even "death can be averted."
# ASHLEY
What did you say?
# LAURA
Or, do they have plans to attack through the orbs? Or how many orbs are there on this plane?
# LIAM
He didn't know the answer to the last one.
So he might not know the answer.
# LAURA
Yeah, are there plans to come through the orbs?
# ASHLEY
Yeah, that's a great one.
# LIAM
Is there anything that Delilah is afraid of?
# LAURA
Nah, he wouldn't know that.
# ASHLEY
What are your plans? What are The Remnants' plans?
# MATT
The whisper becomes a slight chuckle.
(chuckling) "His return is nigh. The Whispered One "will come. His acolytes will help him complete his destiny through the Ritual of Seeding. From within "the gate he will rise, the solitary tyrant and lord of Exandria. And with the sole crown of "creation guarded upon his head, we who were his body will be rewarded with life eternal at his side." (gasping) And the spell fades.
# TALIESIN
Did he not have one more?
# MATT
That was five questions.
# LAURA
Great.
# MATT
As you sit here in the cavern, contemplating what these words mean, what the next step of your accelerated involvement in this plot, we're going to end tonight's episode. Ran a little over, guys; hundredth episode, that's a record.
# MARISHA
What time is it? 12:41! Oh my god!
# LIAM
12:41?!
# LAURA
Is that the longest we've ever gone?
# MATT
Holy shit. For those who are still here, hanging out, thank you for staying! For those who aren't, enjoy your two-parter!
# MARISHA
A lot to unpack, there.
# TALIESIN
Tune in next week for a shopping episode.
# LAURA
Yeah, for sure.
# TALIESIN
Critical Role goes to the beach.
# LIAM
Scanlan, Taryon. Wow.
# TALIESIN
Doty.
# MARISHA
The eight characters on this side of the table.
# MATT
Yeah, seriously. Dude, thank you again, Jon, for joining us! (cheering)
Thank you guys so much for watching. Thank you for being part of our hundredth episode.
# LAURA
Thank you, Marvel Puzzle Quest!
# MATT
Thank you, Marvel Puzzle Quest for being our amazing sponsor. Thank you, Critters, for being amazing. I'm going to get my, like, four hours of sleep before getting on a plane to a convention.
So I'll see you guys in Texas!
# LIAM
Real soon.
# MATT
Yep. Anyway, love you all. Have a wonderful night, and is it Thursday yet? Good night! [music]