MATT: Hello, everybody, and welcome to tonight’s episode of Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy-ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons & Dragons. ALL: We play Dungeons & Dragons! MATT: So yes, before we jump into tonight’s session, we have some announcements to get through, so hang tight for just a second, while we go into our first of two sponsorships for the night. Our first, our friends at Hero Forge. Sam. MARISHA: ♪ Hero Forge ♪
SAM: Hero Forge? Tonight’s episode brought to you by our friends at Hero Forge, makers of on-demand miniatures of all types. I’ve used it, and it is sweet. But now, it’s now even sweeter, because of their newly updated online platform, Hero Forge 2.0, where you can still customize and print your 3D minis, but for the first time, you can also do it in color. Yes, you can now design and color your personal minis with a variety of colors and techniques, including dry brushing, washing and more. They just launched the update this week. So be one of the first to get a 3D custom colored mini, at heroforge.com/Kickstarter. Now, as I said, this new update makes their platform even sweeter, and it got me thinking, everything is better when it’s sweeter, right? Well, thanks to Hero Forge, come bring it out, boys, I’m going to put that theory to the test. I’ve taken common food items, and with, that we all know and love– TALIESIN: No.
MARISHA: This is going to be gross. SAM: And I’m going to test if making them sweeter makes them better. So we’ll start with the common chili dog. TRAVIS: What?
TALIESIN: Nope. SAM: Adding a little whipped cream to it.
ASHLEY: What’s already on it? SAM: Yep, and let’s see. LAURA: Nope.
SAM: If it makes it better. TALIESIN: May I use this as a shield? LAURA: No, wait, hold that down. SAM: It’s better. TRAVIS: No way.
SAM: That is better. TRAVIS: You’re such a foodie, how are you even doing this? LAURA: Yeah, get that– do not put that near me. MARISHA: Don’t, just ugh. SAM: Let’s try a salad.
TRAVIS: No! SAM: This is your standard Caesar. LAURA: That looks better than the chili dog. SAM: Let’s see what a salad tastes like with whipped cream. TALIESIN: Help!
ASHLEY: That might not be as bad. LAURA: That one’s not bad.
ASHLEY: That one’s not– TALIESIN: If there’s vinegar in there, it’s going to curdle. It’s going to curdle.
SAM: It’s better. (laughter) Oh! There’s a sound effect. LIAM: We’ll miss you, Hero Forge, we’ll miss you. SAM: Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. ASHLEY: Whoa, hey, ho, hey, hold on, hold on. Give me some before you ruin them. SAM: Sure. ASHLEY: Because I love Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. SAM: Are they better sweeter? Let’s find out. TALIESIN: Okay, I’m all right with this,
I’m all right with this. MARISHA: It’s like a– ASHLEY: I feel like it’s going to be good. LAURA: Why you do you have to
make such a mess about it, Sam? MARISHA: It’s spicy.
TRAVIS: — shit through the back of your chair. LAURA: How is it?
TRAVIS: It’s going to be a river of magma.
SAM: It’s better. TRAVIS: No!
DANI (V.O.): Better. ASHLEY: How is it?
LAURA: It’s not bad. SAM: There’s two more.
LAURA: It’s really not bad. SAM: There’s two more, two more.
LAURA: No. SAM: Pepperoni pizza.
LAURA: Nope. MATT: Aw, that one’s been sitting out for a while. LIAM: You going to fold that shit, fold that. LAURA: No, no, be careful with the table. SAM: Mm.
TRAVIS: (groaning) ASHLEY: It’s all over your–
TRAVIS: Oh god. TALIESIN: Oh, yep, no, it’s on the, no. SAM: Not as good.
TRAVIS: Okay. DANI (V.O.): Worse. (laughter) SAM: But last but not least–
TRAVIS: You’re not. MATT: Oh no. SAM: Fine wine. LAURA: No! (yelling) MARISHA: It instantly curdled. TRAVIS: Don’t, no, don’t, no! ASHLEY: It’s dessert. TALIESIN: Go for it, go for it! MARISHA: Ooh, did you see that? TRAVIS: Yeah, I did, I did, I did. SAM: Worse. (laughter)
DANI (V.O.): Worse. SAM: Wait, let me try it again. (yelling) SAM: Worse. DANI (V.O.): Worse. SAM: Oh, that was good. Maybe I should brush my teeth a little. MATT: (shouting) No, no, no! SAM: You know, just clean off the old teeth. TALIESIN: No, no, no. MATT: I’m pretty sure all this is against TOS. SAM: Worse. DANI (V.O.): Worse.
SAM: Oh, wait. Better. DANI (V.O.): Better. SAM: Well, I think I’ve proven a point, guys. Making things sweeter makes it better. So go check out the sweet new update at heroforge.com/Kickstarter and thanks to Hero Forge for supporting the show. TRAVIS: Don’t!
(yelling) No, stop it!
(laughter) TALIESIN: No. TRAVIS: You looked like you walked under a street lamp. SAM: Back to you, Matt. LAURA: Oh no.
TRAVIS: No, no, no, why? (laughter) TRAVIS: Do you have antacids on standby? SAM: I’ll just brush my teeth again. LAURA: I’m so glad that I moved further away. MATT: Thank you, Sam. MARISHA: That got me a little in the back of my throat. MATT: Thank you so much. And thank you, Hero Forge, for sponsoring this show. I’m sure none of us could have expected– MARISHA: Do it. LAURA: No, it’s good, it’s good. ASHLEY: (crunching) Oh, that is actually really good. MARISHA: Yeah, that makes the most sense. ASHLEY: That makes the most sense to me. The wine one did, but–
TRAVIS: Get at us Frito Lay, we’ll– MATT: All right, moving on.
ASHLEY: Okay, okay, okay. MATT: To our– TALIESIN: –wine slushie.
MATT: Much more clean…? (chuckling) TALIESIN: Oh, God.
Table top appropriate sponsor, D&D Beyond. TRAVIS: ♪ D&D Beyond ♪ MATT: Our returning sponsors since the beginning of this campaign and if
you haven’t checked them out, they’re an amazing online digital tool for keeping track of your D&D campaigns, your characters in all formats of content for D&D 5th Edition, it’s amazing. Check it out if you haven’t. And thank you, guys, once again,
for supporting the show. Other announcements we have, the next issue of Vox Machina Origins, our comic book series, created with our friends
at Dark Horse Comics– what is even– I don’t– will be available
on Wednesday, February 19th. Be sure to pick up your copy at your favorite local comic book shop,
or digitally at ComiXology, or Dark Horse Digital, and anywhere else where fine comic books can be located. And in other Vox Machina Origins news, we want to take a moment to share the cover art for our free Comic Book Day special comic that’s coming out. The cover art was created
by amazing Critter Hunter Bonyun and colors by Stephan McGowan. You can pick up your own
issue for Free Comic Book Day at your local comic book
shop on Free Comic Book Day. It’s May 2nd, so keep
an eye on your calendars now for it, it’s exciting, because it’s a fun,
little stand alone piece. Even if you haven’t read
any of Vox Machina Origins, it sits a little bit outside of the realm of the first campaign, and it’s got some cool perspective. And we get to share a
cover with the name Neil Gaiman, who has content in there, as well, and that’s kind of cool. TRAVIS: Sure.
MATT: Hi, Neil. ASHLEY: “Has content in there as well.”
TALIESIN: Yeah, I know. MATT: Well, it’s weird, because it’s like us, and it’s like, also Neil Gaiman. I’m like, this should be
the other way around, but okay. But yeah, check it out. I think that’s it for me, and Marisha, you have an announcement. TRAVIS: I do. Speaking of Sam’s ridiculous antics, and also Liam, All Work, No Play is coming back! SAM: What?! LIAM: No, surely not, no! MARISHA: I know. Just– you know, we had to
keep up with the tradition of the podcast and make
it take forever for Season 2. LIAM: We recorded a minute a week. TRAVIS: Did you drink the entire time? MARISHA: Oh, yes, everyone continues
to have its signature cocktail attached to it, but it is premiering not this next Tuesday,
but the Tuesday after, February 4th.
TRAVIS: Woo! MARISHA: At 4:00 p.m. on our Twitch channel for our Season 2 premiere. We are airing the show
a little bit differently. Instead of a Friday night
show, we’re going to put it in the Yee-Haw Game Ranch time slot. TRAVIS: Mm-hmm. MARISHA: And it’s going to air
biweekly for the entire season. SAM: We’re very excited about it. Yep, we did some fun stuff.
MARISHA: It’s hilarious. There are some references
to times of the year. SAM: When we shot it?
MARISHA: When we shot it. (laughter) LIAM: You will be shocked
at how long ago we started. MARISHA: Yes.
(laughter) It took a bit, but yes. It’s worth the wait. TRAVIS: Old President Obama.
MARISHA: Yeah. (laughter) MATT: The Force Awakens is coming up. MARISHA: That’s more accurate. Yeah, there’s like shit like that in it. Like, oh, wait, what? Okay. Yeah, it’s great. It’s worth the wait, tune in. MATT: There we go.
MARISHA: Content. TRAVIS: Finger guns.
MARISHA: Pew, pew. TRAVIS and MARISHA: Pew, pew, pew. MATT: Thank you, Marisha.
MARISHA: Yeah. MATT: Laura, you have some
announcements as well. LAURA: Oh me?
SAM: Oh, she does. MATT: You.
LAURA: Oh, well, you guys may have noticed, I’m wearing this fantabulous Traveler Con–
(yelling) What what! MARISHA: It’s so cute. LAURA: That’s available in our stores right now. MARISHA: You too can join the cult. LAURA: Were they handmade by Jester? Possibly. TRAVIS: What’s on the–
what’s on the cuff there? SAM: Oh, is that a secret? LAURA: Why you gotta
call it out like that? SAM: Let me see it.
TRAVIS: I just saw it. I don’t know. SAM: Don’t show them. LAURA: I don’t know what you’re talking about. ASHLEY: Oh, that’s cool.
LAURA: It’s cute, right? ASHLEY: Yeah.
SAM: Ooh, there’s an Easter egg. LAURA: So anyway.
ASHLEY: You’re supposed to wear it this way, right? LAURA: Yeah.
(laughter) TRAVIS: Are all the cultists ordering?
LAURA: So yeah, check them out, they’re in both our U.S. and UK shops. And then, other thing that I wanted to mention is on Saturday, I will be joining
the Pull Your Finger Out, what finger, where it was, I don’t know, but I’ll be joining the
Pull Your Finger Out charity stream– MATT: That’s a long name
for a charity stream. TALIESIN: Is it better if it’s sweeter
is really my question. (laughter)
LAURA: Oh, no. LAURA: It’s a charity stream put
together by my very good friend, Liam McIntyre to benefit those affected by the Australian bush fires. So that’s going on from 11:00 to 5:00 on Saturday. Our good friends at
Retro Replay are hosting it, so check it out on
youtube.com/c/RetroReplay. I’ll be joining around 3:00 p.m., if you want to come show the critter love, I would appreciate it.
ASHLEY: Give it a critter a hug! LAURA: That’s right.
LIAM: Critter hug! MATT: Thank you, Laura. All right, then, I believe that concludes our announcements for the evening. So let’s go ahead and jump
into tonight’s episode of… Critical Role. (yelling) (water bubbling)
(thunder rumbling) ♪ Roll, roll, critical, critical ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Roll the dice ♪ ♪ Roll the dice ♪ ♪ The adventure begins ♪ ♪ They were always beside you ♪ ♪ Your nerdy best friends ♪ ♪ And the DM to guide you ♪ ♪ And they rise from the flames ♪ ♪ For the battles ahead ♪ ♪ Villains beware ’cause you’re ’bout to be dead ♪ ♪ They’ve got magic and flair ♪ ♪ They got falchions and cunning ♪ ♪ They don’t see over there ♪ ♪ There’s a monster incoming ♪ ♪ Inspiration is waiting ♪ ♪ Rise up, don’t think twice ♪ ♪ Put your fate in your hands ♪ ♪ Take a chance, roll the dice ♪ ♪ Roll the dice ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Role, Critical Role ♪ ♪ Ooh, oh ♪ ♪ Can you answer the call ♪ ♪ Digging deep in your soul ♪ ♪ As the legend unfolds ♪ ♪ Now it’s your turn (your turn)♪ ♪ Your turn ♪ ♪ To roll ♪ (flames crackling) MATT: And welcome back. Oh, happy to have you join us, Sam. SAM: Just brushed my teeth again. MATT: (laughs) Is that how you keep them so large? (laughter) SAM: Wow.
TRAVIS: DM burn! Oh shit, we’re in trouble. SAM: Burn.
TALIESIN: Mercer family hot sauce. TRAVIS: Two beholders and a fucking tarrasque– LIAM: Way to go tea on that man.
That is evil twin Matthew Mercer. (laughter) MATT: I get one every century. TALIESIN: That’s the most tea I’ve ever seen you throw. TALIESIN: Holy shit.
ASHLEY: We should be nervous. TRAVIS: He’s stunned, ladies and
gentlemen, he’s on the ropes. MARISHA: I’m so proud!
ASHLEY: I know, it’s like, “I might kill you all.” MATT: So. (laughter) Last we left off, the Mighty Nein had brokered a coming negotiation between the warring nations of the Dwendalian Empire in the Kryn Dynasty. Set to occur somewhere in the Lucidian Ocean between Nicodranas and the Whitedawn Lagoon, about four, roughly four weeks out, I think is when they had confirmed it. You also heard that they had acquired and arrested Vence, the fugitive who was part of the Angel of Irons cult. And in the interim, you made your way back to Xhorhas. You made it to your home, the Xhorhaus, and had an evening to rest after an extended period of extreme duress and stress, the recovery of your friend Yasha, some underground pit fighting, and a dinner with Essek after an invitation–
MARISHA: Hot boi! ASHLEY: Hot boi!
TRAVIS: Wow. MATT: In which you got a chance to know each other a little better. You then, in discussing your plans moving forward, some possibilities and pursuing some of the various goals that still remain looming for a few of you, you were greeted by Essek and he offered at one point to help you with this strange problem you were having with this equation for the spell that you had been developing since discovering its early sketches, essentially, or the first half of its development by Halas within his Happy Fun Ball, as you put it. With the aid of Essek, both Nott and Caleb, up in his tower, finished the development of this spell. You all rushed to gather your materials that were required for its casting and watched as Caleb prepared the ritual to bring Nott back to her original form, the body she is meant to have. The ritual progressed, seemingly without issue until the moment in which the transition of the body was meant to happen. Reaching towards it, however, the magic was balked by some sort of dark power, a curse that remained laid upon Nott, preventing it from succeeding, locking herself still to the current goblin body that she’s grown to loathe. Well, maybe grown a little more comfortable with it since then, but. SAM: She sure doesn’t like her teeth anymore. (laughter) MATT: As the ritual comes to a… unexpected end, you look as the clay element of the tub that Nott had been placed upon has shattered and scattered across the room, the magic itself suddenly flaring out, the sigil that marked the ritual going cold, and all of you look down to see Nott there, sitting atop the broken sections of hardened clay, a goblin as she’s always been since you met her. LIAM: Caleb just starts checking his notes and everything that they worked on together to see what went wrong. SAM: It didn’t– it didn’t work, did it? LAURA: I mean, I think you’re a little less green than you were before. SAM: Just look at my hands and stuff. Looks the same? MATT: Unchanged. SAM: Yeah, yeah, yes, look all around, see if it’s all the same. LAURA: I’ll check the ears and I’ll check the back of the head to see. MATT: Some flecks of dry, brown clay that had gotten wedged in the elements of the hair, but beyond that, no noticeable change. SAM: (sighs)
LAURA: You’re still Nott. SAM: Huh. I– well, I mean, did you do it right? Did he do it right? MATT: Essek goes, “From what I could observe of this ritual, “everything was done to the required specifications.” LIAM: I’m meticulous. SAM: Yes, you are. Did you all hear that? The– LAURA: Hear what? SAM: The woman laughing? MARISHA: Did we?
LAURA: No, we didn’t– MATT: Only the both of you heard it. LAURA: I don’t know what you’re talking about. TALIESIN: No.
ASHLEY: None of us were laughing. SAM: I hope not. LIAM: I heard it. LAURA: What did it sound like? SAM: It sounded distant, and evil, and it sounded like– yeah, I mean, the only person I can think of is the person who did this to me, this woman, this mage woman. It sounded like her, maybe. Maybe? LAURA: Did it sound like when I send you a message? SAM: I don’t know that you’ve ever sent me a message. LAURA: I’m going to send Nott a message right now. MATT: Okay, what are you going to send? LAURA: I’m going to say– this is weird being right next to. Is it going to be like feedback on a cellphone? SAM: I can hear a delay. LAURA: What does it sound like? SAM: Oh, I have to leave the room. MATT: (laughs)
TALIESIN: Go downstairs. SAM: I’ll leave the room. Okay, go.
LAURA: Does it sound like this? Did it sound like the laughing?
TRAVIS: That’s it. SAM: Did it sound like that? MATT: A different kind of sense. This is a series of words being placed into your mind, into your very aware consciousness. The laughter felt deep-seated within you. SAM: Not the same.
MATT: No. MARISHA: Well, I mean, it’s gotta to be exactly that. SAM: What does that mean? She’s watching me, she’s haunting me? LIAM: She still has some sort of grasp on you, yeah? LAURA: Oh my gosh. Do you think she can hear everything you do? SAM: Has she been with us this whole time? Who is she? LAURA: Do you remember anything about her, Nott? LIAM: Go over it again in your mind. Tell us the story again. SAM: Oh, well. I’ll skip some of it. The pertinent parts are they took me to a river, they drowned me, and that’s all I remembered for a long time, except, then, when I woke up, it was to the sound of that laughter. It was to the sound of that woman, just enjoying whatever she had done to me. I was in a sort of a state of shock, I didn’t feel like myself. I wasn’t sure what was going on. Things sounded louder, and felt different, and my body was colder, and I wasn’t paying much attention but she was there. She was robed, and she was older, and– TRAVIS: You were at the river still? SAM: No, they had taken me somewhere, to her home? Did she seem–
Lair? Did she seem short? Do you remember?
Taller than me. What was the surrounding landscape? Okay, well, it wasn’t Felderwin. It wasn’t terribly far, but I, it was a wooded area at the base or in some mountains, a wooded, mountainous area. How did you get out? They took me. The goblins were still there. And you saw yourself leave from this lair, this house at the base of the mountains? Well, yes, they put me in the back of, just some sort of a cart and tied me up– Get the map out–
With them. Get the map out.
Which one, which, I have so many.
The Empire. The Empire one. Well, not near, but not terribly far. Well, it should take us back to this river. Where’s our Empire map? The river was closer to Felderwin. I–
No, that’s beyond us. Well, if they didn’t take you that far, there cannot be many mountains– Hang on, hang on, let’s look at the map. Let’s look at the map. Where’s the map, Fjord?
Oh, there it is, there it is, okay.
I’ve been sharing them with Yasha, okay, it’s not always me. It was days in travel, once you had been, once you had reawoken and they had pulled you away, but it, you never left. Once you left the mountains, you know you were in the Marrow Valley.
Okay. This is all Marrow Valley? Yeah, the whole Marrow Valley’s the southern area of the Empire. How long did it take you to get back to your goblin–
I wasn’t counting, I was mostly crying and trying to tear my bindings, and– Damn, your emotional state.
I know. A day, two, three maybe? Also, we were stopping frequently. They were doing raids on the way. I don’t know how long it would’ve taken if we had driven straight through. Wait, what? Mm. Why did they take you to the river to drown you anyway? Why do you think they chose you to do this? Well, I had killed one of them, and they didn’t like that very much. I had killed their leader, and in my frantic escape, I had killed their leader, and his wife was not very happy about that, and she wanted to make an example of me, or punish me in a way that was much more cruel than death. Hmm. You want to restore yourself, don’t you? Of course. Then we have to go there.
Why? How, what are you talking about? We have to find this woman and kill her. To find this woman. We have to approach this village of goblins you’re talking about, to find some sort of lead, or go to the place of your drowning. Yeah, the goblins could essentially, hopefully, take us back to her, point us in that direction? And then what? We have–
What was it you were just saying? I was distracted by looking at the map about some woman who wanted to punish you? What did you do, what? The goblins, they didn’t just kill me, because I had, I had killed one of their own, their chief or whatever, and his wife was not very pleased, and so, she–
A goblin wife. And so that Beau can be reminded of things that we’ve already heard, and you killed their chief because why? I was escaping, I was trying to escape– He was trying to escape.
Yes. Why were you captured in the first place? They had captured many of us from the village, including my husband and my baby, and we escaped one night. I had them, we split off, because I was faster, and I drew–
See? Well, faster than, yes, I mean, he’s, he’s a bit of a nerd, you know? So? Nerds can be fast–
Nope, they can’t. They cannot be. So we split up, they got away, but I was captured, and in my struggle, I got in a good shot. Sounds like it. Caleb’s right, we should try and find these goblins again. I know how terrible that must be, but that would be the fastest way to– To do what, though?
Find them. I mean, find this woman, and what? Tell her to undo what she has done? Yeah. Although I–
What if I kill, what if we kill her, and it doesn’t wear off? What if it’s permanent? Well, then we will coerce her. We will–
Of course, yeah. Wait, maybe we can try a great restoration sort of thing and break the curse. Does that work? What would we know about this big curse? Does it sound like a curse? You can go ahead and make a religion check. Anything that has a residual laugh on it, it sure sounds like it. 17. 17.
I’m looking at the map. The nature of what prevented you from breaking through this spell wasn’t any sort of abjuration based offense. It wasn’t any sort of arcane deflection. This was something outside of the spectrum of general arcane development. This was something older and something with a little more of a divine or outside magical force than what you’re used to dealing with, and the best thing you can attribute it to with your experience is a curse or something that is laid deeply within that resists a spell such as what you were attempting. It has its own rules. Yeah, which we have encountered curses to an extent before?
Lesser ones. Yeah, lesser ones. On this note, the only way to break it is to find the caster, is that right? We don’t know, but what is the other– The spell magic!
What is the alternative? Whoa.
Did it work? I don’t know. What level did you cast there? Yeah, what draws–
Jesus. You cast the spell magic on Nott. Yeah. At six level.
Okay. Well, did it work? Do you feel any different? You don’t look any different. Do you have chills? Are they multiplying?
(laughter) ♪ Are you losing control ♪ I’m going to remember that. Okay.
(laughter) I feel the same.
I hate Grease. (laughter)
Oh boy. So the woman that you can remember turning you into this form wasn’t a goblin? It was someone else?
No. No, was she, she was a human? She was a humanoid? From what I remember, humanoid. Older, robed. You were looking up at her, so it’s hard to remember the details, and you only caught a glimpse of her in the surroundings, but she definitely seemed to be like an older humanoid, human-type face, but definitely deep-set lines. You can hear the brief instance of the laughter and then, the only words you recall her saying dealt with, a debt has been paid. Okay. I convey that to them. A debt has been paid, like the goblins owed her a debt? Or no, she owed the goblins a debt. She must’ve owed them a debt. That’s what it sounds like it. This goblin wife settled up with whoever this woman was, and an exchange was made, and she must be close to that place, and otherwise, you will just have to throw up your hands and accept that it’s the only option. Of course, but I mean, we would have to go and find the goblins who did this first, and there’s many of them, and they move a lot. I’ve got cottonmouth. Does anybody want anything to drink? Are we still in the, where are we? You’re still in the Essek Tower. We should go, why don’t we go? Why don’t we go back home? Go back to the Xhorhaus? God, I’m itchy.
What is wrong? Are you okay?
Itchy? I’m just sweaty all of a sudden. Let’s go back to the–
You feeling sick? A little.
Yeah. We should get you back, then. Yeah. And we can pick this up there. She does this, it’s an extreme case of syphilis that surfaces once in awhile, so you know, she takes some STD–
It’s in remission. Yeah.
All right. Try to keep it under wraps, but thanks, Caleb. Oh, well, we are friends. We are. We are good friends, aren’t we, Essek? Apparently. My apologies that this did not work in your favor. Thank you for helping us get this far. Thank you for everything. Yeah. I hope the cheese was all right. It was delicious. Your pastries could use some work, but the cheese was delicious. I accept the criticism. It’s all right if I take a little of the cheese– I will punish the bakery. So sorry for–
Don’t punish, Essek. Just order better things next time. I was attempting a joke.
Oh. (laughter) Sorry for–
You see a crack of a smile.
Digging up your garden back there, too.
Eh, it is fine. Easy to fix. Anyway. Sorry then to dash like this. Of course. We could also help you one day to put together your garden again. I can have some servants take care of that. Okay. We will see you soon. She snaps back like that. She’s like that.
Wonderful. He gestures for you to make your exit. As you’re about to leave, Caleb grabs your shoulder for a minute and is like, if it’s at all possible, because I helped also with the completion of this, would I be able to make a copy of this, but for my own records? Of course. I would not have been able to do it without you. Wonderful.
This is your spell, as well as mine.
Thank you. And the art mages. All right?
You all talk so closely when you speak to one another. We didn’t want to upset you. I know how you get when it flares like that. Yeah.
Let’s get you home. And I start to walk–
Okay. Okay. All right.
Once in the street. Do you really have syphilis? I don’t know.
Why is– Because everything was sharing a hot tub with you. What’s going on?
I feel splotchy. Are you okay?
You look splotchy. What’s going on, Beau?
We’re just trying to leave. No, I just, well, I was also just trying to leave. Oh my God, if there was some shit in the clay or something, Nott, how do you feel? Maybe there were like parasites or something. I don’t know about that.
What the fuck are you talking about? She wasn’t in the clay.
Are you actually itchy? No, I just, it’s all freakishly familiar. It’s reminding me of stuff that my father babbled about all the fucking time.
What is, my story? Let’s take this back to the Xhorhaus. Ah.
Okay. And then, Caleb starts leading, just walking towards the home, in hope– I’m pretty sure I broke the curse on Nott, we should just try the spell again. I’m pretty sure I broke it. We should try it. Is there an actual rash happening here? Is Beau–
Your perception of– My passive perception.
Of 19. Is, yeah, my passive perception is like, cartoonishly– Yeah. Beyond just the red marks for her scratching, doesn’t appear to be any sort of actual rash or– Just mentally itchy. Can I–
Strip? Come over and just, may I look at whatever– Yeah, whatever.
(laughter) Do you mind if I take, is that what itches over there? Are you actually having a rash? No, I think I just– No, these are just scratch marks, I rub Beau’s arm. Looks like scratch marks from scratching. We’re focusing on the wrong part of the role play, everybody. (laughter) So she’s mental–
Allergic to a fabric or– (laughter)
is it– Started wearing–
Do you have an EpiPen? EpiPen–
Of course I carry an EpiPen. Don’t touch that chair. So are we back at the Xhorhaus yet? Yes, oh here we are at the Xhorhaus. Beau–
Let’s make sure we don’t come in contact with any synthetic fabrics. Need an antihistamine?
Go sit down. Go sit down. Both of you, sit down. I think, in this instance, we should definitely focus on Beau, because she’s in way worse shape than I am. An oatmeal bath or something. Here. No, no, wait, that’s not, no. What is that? What do you have? What do you have– You said you had cottonmouth. Yeah.
Oh yeah. We just a–
It’s just a lot of– Sorry. She didn’t say? Now it’s trumpet. Where do you find all these instrument skills? (laughter) I have learned that a trumpet helps with cottonmouth. Oh.
Saliva going– Saliva going.
Yep. (blowing) (Beau imitating a dying trumpet) Rewind, rewind, rewind. Wow. Talk about it. You said that it reminded you of something. What? My dad said he made a deal with a woman, in the woods, like an old fortune teller woman. Okay? Did he say she had a weird laugh, or that she was in robes and she did something with goblins? What was the deal for? He wanted to be successful, and to be wealthy, and to have the ability to marry my mother. He was just a poor asshole street urchin who was in love with this lady of the town. And it worked? In a way. It’s, he built his entire fucking life around this fortune teller, around a fucking tarot deck, basically. But did it work, is he rich? Is he married to your mom? Yeah.
She, yeah. But he, she said that he would just, he would be successful and that she told him that he should start, he should buy a plot of land and just try farming, and he ended up buying this shitty piece of land that no one wanted because they couldn’t grow anything, and he was able to get grapes to grow, and then, he turned it into this really successful winery, but he busted his ass doing it. It wasn’t that he had fortune, or the future told. He just–
But what about the woman? It sounds like–
What did she– Did he say–
Why do you think– How he found her? Like how, who–
Did she talk about debts or something? Also, you two live very far away from each other. Do you?
Many fairy tales with an old crone in the woods. Well, here’s the thing. You’re up here, right? Where are you, Beau? Yeah, protocol–
Beau is here. Felderwin is over here.
Yeah, but if she lives in the mountains or something, maybe Beau’s–
Yeah, they’re only like four inches from each other. (laughter) Should we ask your dad? Is this Mount Mentiri? What is Mount Mentiri? Right around–
What is that, what does that mean?
This is Mount Mentiri. Mount Mentiri actually is right in this region.
See? That’s days, that’s a day, that’s a couple days traveling from Felderwin.
I mean– Yeah.
We really– Is that where he met this woman? He said he walked on foot, he heard about some woman who could trade. She had a home in the woods, in the mountains? She had a home in the woods, and he just walked barefoot until he eventually found her. I’m setting up a little circle. And she, he asked how he could find his own wealth, and she told him that he would be successful, and that he would have a successful winery, and that he would marry the woman he loved, and that he would birth a young beau to inherit the family business. Well, he didn’t do that–
And he took it so literally that he named me Beau. Wow, your dad is super superstitious. Yep. This piece of jade that he gave me, it’s the only thing that I keep on me. It’s the only real gift he ever gave me, because he thought it would protect me. What was it–
He always gave me good luck trinkets.
Interesting. It’s a piece of jade?
Are you sure it’s just a good luck trinket? It’s just a piece, it’s just a jade necklace. Holy shit, you never checked? Ooh, Caleb, check it out. Is it expensive?
I feel like, okay, you know, it’s been a rough day, but in the last six hours we’ve learned that Caduceus and Fjord are brothers. We’ve not known that.
And that, we’ve learned everything about you and me. Maybe we should all just say everything that’s ever happened to us– I’ve told my story before.
In our lives. Well, I’ve told my story before. Why didn’t you hear it before? Because it, a woman dousing you in a river could be any old woman. I didn’t, I don’t know. It’s hard to hear on this side of the table. (laughter) I have begun casting Commune. Okay. I thought it was a coincidence. I didn’t think it had any merits to connect our pasts. It sounded vague enough, I don’t know. How can, can you ask your father what this– Yeah, would you–
Woman looked like? What was her name? Or where she was found, or, can you send him a message? You can–
I’ll send him a message. Father, her father?
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, it freaks him out. Okay, okay, okay, what if I send him a message, I pretend to be the old woman– Of course, that’s a no-brainer. Yeah.
Didn’t you do that once already?
Well, I didn’t know who I was pretending to be, I just spit a little, but I didn’t know who I was pretending to be, but this time, I will pretend to be the old woman. So you just say, “Hi, I’m the old woman who–” What’s my name?
What’s my name and where do I live?
Where do I live? Tell me that. If you can tell me that, you’re free from all your curses. Can I do that? About that moment, you see Caduceus, who has prepared a small circle of trinkets, implements that are on the ground, fall into a momentary trace. Caduceus, all the sounds of chatting and bickering and confused, raised voices here in the house begin to fade, as you feel the familiar warm breeze blow over you. You can sense the clouds above traveling at a far greater speed. Time begins to accelerate, but slow to a crawl simultaneously, and you feel the warm, familiar presence of your protector. Does the woman who cursed Nott live? The breeze comes cold and biting, not in a way to deny it, but in a way that shivers the truth through you. Has this creature ever had a conversation with Beau’s father? The cold breeze rescinds, and then, blows with equal strength. Oh.
(tense music) Was that a yes or a no? I think it’s a no.
Can’t you read wind? (laughter) That’s a yes from me.
(Jester blowing) (laughter) Does my family wait for me at the Menagerie? (tense music) The cold breeze comes once more, but this time, it turns warm, to confirm, as well, but this answer with less intensity. But all confirmations nonetheless. Okay, good.
(tense music) (sighing) I regret my weakness. What did you learn, Caduceus? What does that mean? We need to go see your father. What do you mean, you regret your weakness? Oh, that wasn’t for you. Uh-huh. We need to talk to your father. I don’t want to? Oh, yeah, but if we talk to your dad, we don’t have to go see the goblins. More to the point, we don’t know where the goblins are, but we do know where your father is. If you don’t want to talk to your father, I could do it. Hi, I’m Beau, I don’t give a fuck. Fuck you, Dad. It’s pretty good, actually. (laughter) When was the last time that you saw your dad? The night he slapped me across the face as I was getting drug out by the monks. Ooh. He slapped you as you were leaving? Yeah. I really don’t like your dad. Yeah, I’m starting to like him even less than I did before. He’s a complicated man. I don’t know, that didn’t sound too complicated. Yeah, but for our friend, would you, would you? Yeah. Thank you, Beauregard. Yes, thank you. But do we need to go there in person? It’s very far away. It’s kind of close to Rexxentrum. How would we not go there in person? Closest to Zadash– Could we just send a message or? If we’re going to go find her, we going to go there anyway. It’s true. Yeah, we need to go to that region. We could warn your father that we are coming. I could take us to Zadash. We could travel on foot. Well, I don’t know if this is a conversation I want to have in 25 words. We should go in person. You want to just show up at the doorstep? Wait, wait–
He threw me off the doorstep so why can’t I just fucking show up? That’s right.
I’ll also point out– Show him.
You’d probably, you’d have a hard time throwing you off the doorstep again at this point. That’s true. We could throw him off the doorstep, and slap him across the face, right as we do it. But also, being nice enough so that he’ll tell us the information that we’re– We can make him talk if we’re mean. Jesus.
In all seriousness, I do have it on pretty good authority that there is something to be gained, of seeing one’s parents once we’ve matured enough to see how fragile they are. I appreciate all of you, you know, committing to go and do these things on my behalf but we had a plan, we have a plan. We’re going to Caduceus’ family and we’re going to meet, we have to, I think we’ve, have we sent the boat to meet us already or no? It’s weeks away. Weeks.
We still have time. But this is the other direction by thousands of miles. Not really. It is, though. The Menagerie is where? South, straight down. I can just tell Orly, it’s been like what, an hour, he hasn’t left yet, I can tell Orly, hey, don’t meet us there. Meet us in Nicodranas. It’s not just, it’s not just about that. I mean, there’s no immediacy. We don’t have to find this woman today. Caduceus, you are on a path. I don’t know if I’m quite ready yet. You seemed to be. Hmm. I don’t know. I mean, it’s not just you, either. You’ve got a brother now. (Beau laughing) Mm, mm, mm.
I mean, he wants to meet his family, too. No, it’s not, no, nope. I see the resemblance. Listen, you can’t deny the immense coincidence involved. Of course, yes. That has to mean something. I don’t think it does. I think it does mean something. I just don’t necessarily think we know what it means, and I’ve–
(laughter) I mean, it’s pretty obvious. No, it really isn’t.
You got the same nose. We really don’t.
No. He is a total different–
Literally, it couldn’t be more different. His hair is far better than mine. Accents are the same.
Thank you. I like your hair.
You share a comb. Yeah.
Well, that. Not just that.
No. It’s a lot.
Yeah, it’s a lot. And sometimes, coincidences are just coincidences. Exactly. Sometimes, though, it means that, you know, your dad interacted with the person that cursed your friend. Do we know that for sure? Or is that–
Yeah. We just got confirmation from the Wildmother. Yes.
Yeah, I mean– We’re going the right direction. Fjord talked to The Wild, oh, I’m sorry. You’re Caduceus. I get them mixed up sometimes, because they’re so similar.
(laughter) It’s bothered me. I’ve been trying to think of a way to help you through it for a long while, Nott, and what I can do to, everyone else is easier to help with their struggles. You are complicated, and it’s been difficult in this, and it’s nice to finally have a path forward, and there’s a way to help you. Yes, plus what if this is not the only hold that she has over you? I mean, she prevented the tremendously powerful spell from taking effect. What if there’s something else? We have to find out what leads to. We don’t have to confront your dad, or even involve you, if you’re really uncomfortable about it. We’re not forcing anybody to do anything, but I think we need to clear your ledger. You do have access to the library, to research if you wanted to. In Zadash? Well, in pretty much any of the Cobalt Soul Libraries, but that’s the nearest one there. It’s all you, we have been working toward. I know, but, I don’t know, if I’m being honest, we got so close, and I think I had a little bit of a cold feet. What do you mean?
How do you feel now? You got really close, you committed to it. I know.
Do you feel relief? A little bit, yeah. Sometimes, when you play eenie, meenie, miney moe, because you don’t know which choice you want, and then, you get to the moe, and then, you know, at the end, if you wanted the thing or if you didn’t want the thing by what you land on. You know what I mean? It makes the choice for you, when you find out what you can and can’t do. I know what you mean.
I do know what you mean. But–
Well, but. I mean, I can’t, I have to pursue it. I do want to be me again. It’s just, it was happening so fast. It was a little scary. I mean, Caduceus, you said you’re not ready yet. I don’t know if I’m ready yet. I don’t know if I’m ready to see my dad yet, but that’s a bunch of us waiting for something to happen to us. And I’ve accepted the inevitability that when we head towards the Traveler that we’re going to be right where I need to be, and that’s inevitable. That’s gravity pulling me there. I don’t, I think we have to spend the time before that doing as much as we can for everybody. How long has it been, Beau, since you’ve seen your father? How many years? Two, three? Close to three years.
Three? A lot can happen in that amount of time. How would we get there? Teleport.
We teleport to Zadash. It’s still days away. A couple of days.
A few days, but that would take us to Nicodranas. It’s not that far on horseback. I know, I’ve done the trek. Yeah, we ride. Has he reached out to you since? I got a letter from my mother, about six months or so, maybe more, being at the Cobalt Soul, saying that they had been granted their greatest wish and had a son. Named him Thoreau, Jr. After my father. How many guys you got? I guess he’s like two now. You’ve never met your brother? Do you want to? It’s hard to even think of him as my brother. Why? No connection or contacts for the kid. He’s just a name and a letter. Do you wonder if, when you see him, you’ll feel that way? Maybe. You said that the woman told your father that he would have a beau, and that that would do what? That that would complete the spell or what is that? Young beau to take on his name, continue his bloodline, and take over his family business and all of those things, and– But beau means like–
Boy. Your boyfriend or something. Or boy.
Oh, it’s just a boy? I think so. It has a few different interpretations. And he thought he was getting a boy, so as soon as my mom got pregnant, he got really set on that son. And you know, for a long time, I tried to bend my life to what he wanted. I was willing to take over the family business. I just wanted to do it my way, and he didn’t want that. What does your way look like? I liked traveling and fighting, and talking to people, so. I wanted to take the Lionett wine, and take it to neighboring cities, and expand it into Zadash, and we’d get this big name and I tried to convince him several times to load up a cart and a couple of horses, and give me a few crates and let me take off and see what I could do, selling crates to different taverns, of anyone who would take it. And he thought that that was a useless waste of time, and that I would get hurt, something would happen to me. And that it was best if I just learned how to crunch numbers and do accounting and balance books. He didn’t want me to leave. He never wanted me to leave, because he was terrified that fate was going to come knocking at his door. And then, one day, I realized that I was building my whole life around what someone else told him his life was going to be, and that it was in this fucking cycle of everyone chasing a destiny. And how fathers do love their sons. Yes, they do. Sounds like he was very protective of you. He was. I’d always felt selfish, like if something happened to me, his entire fucking dynasty would come crumbling down around him. Give me a picture of your family now, they’re very successful in this area. Does that mean that you have lived on an estate? Is there security? Does your father have men? Or is it as simple as walking up and knocking on the door? Hmm, pretty big winery, big house, a few stories. Very upper-class life that he built. Does my dad have any men? Do we have bodyguards? Maybe a couple? He’d probably have a couple of folks that work to both just watch the premises they lived at and to keep watch on storage of their wines, suppose the process. I relay the message. Does he know how capable you are in battle, Beau? Because you’re one of the best fighters I’ve ever seen. I don’t know what he knows. Hmm. Him giving me away was the greatest thing that ever happened to me. It led me to all of you. We should let him know that. Let him see what got away. (whimsical adventure music) We have to speak to him. Even if we don’t go trudging into the mountains or into the middle of the goblin camp, we need to find out. We have talked about it for, (sighing) ages. Yeah, I know. I know, yes, you’re right. You’re right.
And we have the time now. We can follow this trail as far as we want, and Beau can lead. Yes, and I suppose, even after we find this woman, we don’t have to do the thing right away, if– Exactly.
If I’m not feeling it. Right, we can–
It is an open offer. We can go find a woman, we destroy her, or we destroy the curse, whichever. At least we take a step in that direction. And then, you can be free to do whatever you want to. If we destroy her or destroy her magic, does that somehow mean that Beau’s father will lose everything? And–
Hmm. I don’t think so. Possible. I don’t think so, either. Like he won’t die or anything, right? It won’t be sort of like a Back to the Future situation? Maybe it will protect him, because whatever deal he made with her, I’m sure she traded something pretty valuable for it. I don’t know if there’s any way to know. I threw the sword in the lava, and that was it. I’m sure if we did– You’re Fjord, right? That was it for Uk’otoa. Sorry I dropped my staff again. You going to stop doing that. It’s getting tinier and tinier each time. It’s splintering into pieces. Let me get it for you–
Get a new one. Thank you, thank you.
(sword whooshing) It’s nunchuks now, dope!
(laughter) I don’t know, I think if we did destroy this woman, it would not undo time. It would, maybe it would spoil the land, if that. Well, it’s evening now? I don’t know, it’s, after all the work and preparing for the ritual that you guys did, it’s afternoon. I mean, do we go now?
I say we go now. Let’s go. If we’re going through Zadash, and we’re going through the Cobalt Soul, we can do a little bit of research first before we leave. Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm. Sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet. I say we go now, and then, get horses, and leave in the morning from– Yeah, we can always stay the night in my room. Oh, yeah, all of us just pile in? Yeah. This is exciting. Totally serious, but exciting. Yeah, yeah, no, yeah, it’s exciting, yeah. Yep. Doing it? We’re doing it?
Let’s do it. We’re on our way.
All right. All right, hang on, make sure everything’s unplugged. Just turn off the hot water heater. Oven’s off. All right. I’m going to go upstairs, check everything. It looks like some fruit over here. Should we just–
Just take it. Just, no, put it in my bag, put it my bag. Compost into the kitchen– I mean, what are we going to do with 12 oranges? Take them with us.
All right. I will eat that shit. Caleb goes to their shared laboratory, and just does 90% of what is required to travel to Zadash. All right.
Waits til everyone is ready. Fair enough.
Drain the hot tub. You drain your hot tub.
(laughter) Oh, man, that’s going to take forever to fill back up. You don’t want to come back to the green water. It’s terrible.
(Jester gagging) That’s for everyone.
Yeah. Get syphilis from it.
All righty. Is there anything specific that needs to prep before you make your way towards Caleb’s Teleportation Circle? You ready?
I feel pretty good. No.
Here we go. Do we need to prep anything? The back of my neck gets really sweaty. Psyche yourself up.
Ugh. We don’t need to tell Essek we’re leaving, we don’t need to do anything. No.
We’re just going to go. I’m going to Essek we’re leaving. Yeah, last thing I said to him is that we would see him soon. Okay, yeah, I’m going to send Essek a message. All right. Hey, Essek, we’re going to find that evil laughing lady so that means we’ll be back, I don’t know when. We’ll be at the negotiations, though, don’t worry. Practice was fun. He got most of that.
Okay. (Matt chuckling)
Forgot to capitalize– Just this once.
(Jester laughing) Very well. I have my own business to attend to, as well. So good luck, and I’m sure we’ll cross paths again very soon. He says he loves you so much, Caleb. What?
You did? Yeah, he loves Caleb. Yeah, I am such a, yeah. (laughter)
That was great. That is a 23.
Aw. (laughter) Make a deception check test. (laughter) Roll versus roll. Yeah, boom!
Seven. All righty. You’ve gathered your things from the Xhorhaus– Fuck me.
You go and meet Caleb in the laboratory as he completes the majority of the teleportation circle with the central sigil that leads you towards Zadash. Zadash. He finishes the final marking, and vroom, you see it light up in the familiar sense. The doorway is open. You rush through, one after the other– Were we supposed to point when we’re coming? (laughter) Oh, shoot. We are the worst. Oh.
It’s too much to track, man. It’s so much to track. You return to the familiar underground teleportation nexus of the Cobalt Soul where two of the guards, and they spin around, (yelling). I’m sorry, oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t meant to do the last marking on the floor. I got a little overexcited– It’s all right, it’s all right. Forgetting the protocol. It’s my bad. I, remember, I’m the one that does it. I should’ve sent a message. It was a Sunday, I wasn’t thinking of people being in on office hours. What’s Sunday?
What’s a Sunday? There’s sun every day.
(laughter) That’s what’s hitting their mind real hard. Oh, that’s fast.
(laughter) There’s the itch.
It itches. Then you lose track of the days, then your ears fall off.
(laughter) You’re the old crone, it’s you. (Beau laughing) Let’s reset some shit.
All right. All right, so you have access to a couple of tomes. Anything you want to specifically try and research, now is the time to do so. Is there a book on old women? Old hags in woods?
Who grant wishes? Is there, there’s going to be, right? Like myths, and then, local myths? Yeah, yeah. Well, what is it your trying to research I guess is more the question? Worldly deal-makers. Old ladies in woods. Women that trade in fortune.
Okay. The mysterious women who grant wishes who live in the forest calendar of this year. (laughter) It’s going to be a calendar. There are no titles matching that search. I found a calendar for men with plants this week, I’m not kidding, it was just pictures of men with plants. They’ve got a calendar for everything. Don’t google that.
So– Oh boy.
(laughter) The towel’s not endorsed. Who wants to research what? What preparation are you doing? Who’s looking for what? I’m going to hit local myths. Local myths. That sound like old hags in– Yeah, fairy tales in Kamordah. I will assist Beauregard.
I can do some research, too. I’m going to do, any books about goblin movements around, goblin, goblin.
Okay. Tracing patterns. Go ahead and make, if you’re assisting, go ahead and make an investigation check with advantage. (dice clattering)
♪ Yay for advantage. ♪ 24.
24. Oh, 23, 23.
23. Still pretty dang good. That’s actually really good, okay. So what you end up finding is a record of somewhat, I’d say known, but at least spoken about soothsayers and hermits that fits similar to the realm of what you’re looking for, within the region of the Marrow Valley. There’s a number of them, and some that are up north. There are some that, you know, wander through the Cyrios Mountains. On the Menagerie Coast side, there’s talk of one hermit that lives way, way out in the Menagerie Coast, this female protector of the island creatures. All of these are unique stories and stuff. There’s one that you, there’s two that you find that are local to the area you’re looking in the Marrow Valley. One is Isharnai, the Prism Sage. Ashani–
Isharnai, the Prism Sage. Do I dare ask you to spell that? I-S-H-A-R-N-A-I.
Isharnai. The Prison Sage?
The Prism? The Prism Sage. A woman who lives alone among the Cyrios Mountain Woods, north of the Bromkiln Hills. She wields strange magics, weaving boons and hexes for those who make the journey to find her. Many high prices for her deeds, sometimes beyond mere coin. You also find Old Masqier. Old?
Old Masqier. Mask?
M-A-S-Q-I-E-R. Mm, okay.
Oh. Yeah, that’s a better spelling. Old Masqier is a gnarled gnome of terse temperament, who migrates through the Cyrengreen Forest. Learned to take sides with the forest over civilization, he has both been a healer and an adversary to some over the decades, depending on the disposition when encountering them. That’s a man–
That’s a gnome? A gnomish man?
Yes. A wandering–
That sounds like not the right one.
What was his name? Old–
Old Masqier. Old Masqier.
Masqier. The Cyrengreen Forest, is that what you said? Correct.
It all makes sense. Where is that? The Cyrengreen Forest is here. Okay. Okay.
And the other is north of Bromkiln Hills.
North of the Bromkiln Hills. I’m excited by both these options. What with Old Masqier? It’s going to be Isharnai. Is that it, or are those the– Those are the two that find that match what you’re looking for loosely, as far as hermited sages and you know, soothsayers, people that deal in the sorta stuff that you’re looking for in the region. Any other detail on Isharnai? Is she old? Does it say how long these stories go back, anything? The stories go back about 50 or so years. That doesn’t feel right. And they’re just, you know, loose mutterings of people who had encounters with both of them. Here’s another stack, try these. Mm, okay. All right. This one, that’s my roll. Okay, pretty good.
Right? Yeah. Hey, maybe I can try scrying with Isharnai. Describe what she looks like again. Well, she’s a human, so sort of like Beau, except way older.
Okay. And not strong like Beau? And also, with a hood, and also, not looking anything like Beauregard in any way. So just basically human. Like a human. Like an old ass human.
Yeah, yeah, like saggy jowls, and–
Are you sure it was a human and not like a half-elf? You know what, I’m really not, no. Humanoid, old ass humanoid. Old ass humanoid.
In robes. Yeah, that day.
Okay. And she said, “Debt paid,” and her voice sounded like this, “A debt paid.” It sounded like you. Yeah.
Okay. Well, if you want, roll an intelligence check for me. Just a straight intelligence? 13.
13. Okay, you have a fairly decent recollection of what she looks like from the brief moment you encountered. You actually have a pretty good mental image. Can you make yourself look like her? I can try. I will cast whatever that is. Disguise Self? Disguise Self, thank you. And do my best. There’s some blurry bits.
Okay. Yeah, there’s no hood beyond the one that Nott has, so there’s no clothing element to it, but from the face that you can see, you see what appears to be a humanoid woman, elongated features, very high cheekbones that ride the side of the face back far, jowls that seem very deep, but then hang below, almost like a droopy dog type– Ugh.
Aesthetic. Droopy dog.
But far less adorable. But we see it.
(laughter) And these dull, green eyes. Does she look human to me, or does she look like otherworldly to me? It rides a line.
Okay. And because I didn’t see her hair– It’s pretty stretched. I could just make of it a hook, and because I didn’t see her body very much, I’m just going to make it look like three co. bolts. (laughter) I’m going to focus on the face.
(laughter) But it is quite a sight for the rest of them. Okay, okay, okay, okay, okay. I’m going to try and scry on her. Okay, so you’re saying you’re going to attempt a scry. Yeah, in the library.
Okay. As you’re sketching it up, one of the monks is like, “I’m sorry, miss?”
Huh? They’re with me. One.
I’m, huh, what? Nothing, continue. And they shuffle (laughs) That’s awesome. You finish the spell, you close your eyes, leech your consciousness out to the Traveler, to take you where it needs to be. Hello.
Here it is. Uh-oh. Uh-oh. Some betting over there. The Traveler, you see the sleeves emerge from the ether around you, the imagery of the arms touching and framing yours like a papa bear over the cub. Kind of like matching, like teeth? A little bit, yeah. And as you do, you feel your consciousness drift out of the library, brought up into the clouds once more, rushed through the darkened, rain-bearing sky, until eventually you’re brought down rapidly through fog, and through mists into the treetops. You come through brambled forests, and dark, dangerous wood, and rocky, mountainside cliffs before you come to rest where it seems like the interior of some sort of a house. Small, dense, cluttered, organized, in a way. Everything has its place, but it is very, very jam packed, filled, and you see that the radius, what looks like the outline of many collected books, papers, broken lanterns and pieces, elements of animal bone. You can see what looks to be a large collection of jars and vials of things that you can’t quite make out the details of what’s inside. You see just in the corner, what looks to be a collection of stones that are arranged in a pattern, and then, in the center of the chamber, you see a woman wrapped in heavy tattered robes with these long elements of gold trim rope wrapped around shoulder to side shoulder to side, holding it on in a very unique sort of ready to travel pattern. You see the familiar face of her, currently looking down, and grasped some of these arranged runes in the side.
Are her arms long? Her arms are long.
Yeah. The fingers extending outward, reminding you of Keona the Keen, but with a physicality that matches. Ooh. What is she? The movement seems, while you were debating the human aspect of her with the visual element of the illusion, the physicality of her definitely scatters any idea of your standard human soothsayer. Unable to really gauge size, it’s hard to tell, but the movements themselves are sweeping unnatural grace to rapid grasps, and then, snatching, as she takes some of these arranged runes and you can see, to the ground in front of her, there are these unique sketches with, it looks almost like charcoal of some kind, like you have these small circles. She takes the runes and scatters them onto the ground. As they all scatter and then arrange, almost like there are magnets holding them to place. Do the runes look familiar to me at all? They’re just outside of the range to make any detail, but you can see them hitting and scattering into place.
Okay. At which point, her eyes go.
(Jester gasping) Hello.
Oh, shit. Who is this I see? Um, Fiona Fancypants.
(laughter) You can’t converse through it. Oh no. But she just slowly stands up, very aware of the scrying, arcane bobble that you’ve sent there, and just puts the arms almost like wrapping around it, and just moves like, (groaning). Oh, my curiosity is piqued. I hope this means I’m having visitors, (Matt clapping)
(gasping) and it slams out.
(Jester yelling) Are you okay? What happened?
Oh my God. She’s so scary, she’s so scary. She knew I was there, she knew I was scrying on her. Oh my God.
Did she threaten you? Did she see you? Did she know who you are? I don’t know. I don’t know if she saw me, I don’t know if she saw who I was, I don’t know, I don’t know. She just said that she thought she was going to have company, because she saw that I was looking at her. She had really long hands and long arms, and she’s scary as fuck. There goes the element of surprise. Oh my God. Oh my God.
She must be very magical. Her face was so close to my scrying eye. It was so close. (laughs) Did you see up her nose? I mean, I saw hair coming out of it, I saw a booger hanging on the side of her nose. That’s how close she was. Did she say anything? She said, “What is this curiosity?” See, I told you she sounded like that. Well, she sounded, too– Did she, can you disguise yourself and make you look like her? Oh my God, I cast Disguise Self, and I do it so everyone can see how scary she was. Ooh, ah.
Ugh. And then she was like that. Ugh, with the fingers? And then, suddenly go like this, and then like–
What is that? You can see the gnarled clumps of hair that drift out of the sides of the robe themselves, tangled and knotted into these large, gather rats’ nests. I walk up and start dancing next to Fjord. (Jester hissing)
Please no. There are now four members of the Cobalt Soul Library that are about 25 feet away, going. It’s all right. A few others are coming to join. We are the Mighty Nein. Beauregard, should we get bottle service over here? What’s wrong with you? Are you okay?
I’m okay. Does that ring any bells, that visage? Wait, have you seen this person? No.
Okay. Does this look like, this looks like the woman, yeah? Am I traumatizing you, Nott, or do you want me to drop it? No, I mean, I just looked like her a second ago. That’s true.
So it’s fine. But then you can’t see that part, you know what I mean? That’s true.
Are you all right? No, it’s fine. You do look super creepy, though. Wait, you said she was laughing at you, or? She was laughing, yes, and– I dropped it. (laughs) She seemed delighted that whatever she did to me worked and that she’d created something horrifying. You said you were hoping– Why, do you know something about her, as well? No.
Oh, okay. I was just going to say if maybe– Because everyone seems to be connected all of a sudden. Oh, man, she’s really smart. What if she connects the dots that it’s you, that it’s something about you that was scrying on her, because you know, she just laughed– How would she do that?
At you– What?
Because she just laughed in your head, you know? But that could’ve been from ages ago. That’s true. But maybe she gets senses when it happens, because she’s really powerful. Let’s go get some drinks. Oh, that’s not a bad idea. Are we done looking up everything? I think so. Let’s go. I have checked out all of the information on where to find this. I draw. Okay, yeah, it’s, Cyrios Mountain Woods, north of the Bromkiln Hills. Some Kama Sutra– Maybe in the Cobalt Soul books, those are really– Roughly.
Okay, goodbye. Yeah.
It’s scattered. She drew something in some books. Mm. Need a sleight of hand check. Give me guidance–
Really? Guide me.
Not for this. I’m going to die–
Guidance. (laughter) ♪ Sleight of hand ♪ 19.
19? Oh, wait, I got a D4, too. Hold on, hold on, I guided myself. I’ll remind you to guide it, but I’m not going to guide it for you. Ah, 20.
20, okay. You proceed to leave a series– ♪ Churning the butter ♪
(Matt laughing) Call back.
And as tightly watched as you are, Beau’s presence leaves them a little more comfortable about the fact that you’re not having to look over your shoulder for the research you’re doing. You manage to leave a few of these sketches within the books you find, and put them away without being called on it. You’re uncertain if you’ve been noticed, but you certainly weren’t called out or publicly punished for it. Nice. We’re going to go get a drink. Are we staying in Beau’s house tonight? Or are we going to stay at Dad’s place? Dad’s is a bit of a ways off. Yeah, we’re in Zadash. We probably need to find a place to stay for the evening, and set off in the morning. Yeah.
Beau’s house was the plan. Beau’s house is–
I mean, Beau’s place. They’re talking about The Gentleman. The Gentleman, my mama, my dad. Yeah, the Evening Nips, The Gentleman. We’ve got a room there, too, you know? Wherever we want to go. Maybe we see where we’ll end up after we drink. But Beau’s room is nicer. But Gentleman’s House is your dad, right? Yup. Dad seems the theme– Of the day.
This is my dad. Should we go get drinks at the Leaky Nip and then– (laughs) It’s the Evening Nip. And then see if– Have you told us that before? What? Have you told us that dad bit? How are you–
I mean, we suspected it, right? Do we have confirmation? Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean, I’m assuming that I told you. Okay, yeah. We’re roommates, so I’d say all. Yeah.
This is Jester and Marisha. Yeah.
(laughter) But yeah, you guys, he totally, definitely told me, he’s definitely, totally my dad. Yasha, my dad is The Gentleman. The, the–
The blue guy? Really moist and blue? The moist guy?
He’s, yeah, it’s, yeah. Tall drink of water. Who has all of our blood on file. Yeah, but now we know he’s going to be cool about it, because he’s my dad. He’s not going to do anything fucked up, you know? That’s really cool. Mm. He seemed really cool.
Uh. He is. I really, I liked him, I feel weird that he has some of my blood, but I really like him. I think it’s very cool that you found your dad. I feel like the moral of the last couple of months is dads can do some messed up things. I don’t know if he’s my dad, he’s not going to do anything uncool is really the moral we’re supposed to walk away with. I’m pretty sure that’s what it is. Okay. Well, we have options. We can go to the Leaky Tap, we can go to the Evening Nip, we can go the Song and Supper Inn. It’s a karaoke bar. We can go up to the Pillow Trove. (laughter) We can go to Chastity’s Nook Porn Shop. We can go to–
Always a solid option. Karaoke bar that only has public– Poobah and Souls. Did we have anything, is he making us anything? Nope.
Okay. There’s a porn shop? There’s a porn shop.
No, no. It wasn’t really porn, it was more like cheap– Tusk Love, Yasha. Does anybody got a Player’s Handbook? Oh, that’s right.
Nope. Here’s one right there. Are we going to go to the karaoke place? No, it’s too loud at the karaoke place. Let’s go to The Gentleman’s. People sing. Yeah, let’s go to–
What’s wrong with singing? Singing’s nice. When people do karaoke, they try too hard. No, you have your song that you go, you have a song that you always sing, and you’re good at it.
Do you have a song that you always sing? What do you sing? Sweet Caroline.
(laughter) How does it go? Well, it’s in–
(laughter) It’s in Abyssal.
(laughter) I want to speak Abyssal, so I’ll know exactly what you’re singing. (laughter) It goes like this. (singing in foreign language) ♪ Bum, bum, bum ♪ (singing in foreign language) ♪ Bah, bah, bah ♪ (singing in foreign language) (laughter)
Oh. Wow. I feel like a lot of those, you said, you had sentences that sometimes didn’t make sense.
(laughter) I learned it like third hand, and I think, all the people, you know, they had a selection of songs, and some of them were in Abyssal. I think they got their book from an Abyssal karaoke bar? Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. Or something, and so–
That’s weird that that’s your go to, though. Well, I mean, nobody sang those songs, so I felt like those were more open game. Everyone kept singing the same songs all the time. Yeah, because you said something like, “Good times never felt so flute.” It was like wrong–
Kind of conjugation. Well, no, that these good times never felt so good, I think. That makes a lot more sense. That doesn’t make any sense. Good times never felt so good? What’s the lyrics?
Stupid lyrics. Some lazy songwriting. ♪ Good times never felt so good ♪ ♪ Blah blah blah ♪
That’s stupid. I think it’s flute.
Listen. Good times never felt so flute. What the shit is going on? So karaoke or?
No. Leaky Nip?
No. (laughs) Leaky Nip.
Leaky Nip. Yeah, we already got some music from– There’s the Leaky Tap and there’s the Evening Nip. Where you going? (laughs) The Evening Nip. We open our own tavern.
Leaky Nip. In between the two places. We’re going to the Gentleman’s. I’m kind of into this.
Okay. All righty. We should save money for this. It’s a good idea. (laughs) All righty. Both businesses hate us. So, you make your way to the familiar dive bar that is the Evening Nip. Your remember, you get a password, and are let down within the subterranean bar. It’s a bit empty at the moment. At this point, not entire sure whether people are busy or have other business to take care of. The Gentleman is not immediately in the bar, but you are recognized upon arrival, and are allowed your use of the space. There is a bartender there who’s in the process of half-sleeping in the corner, that as soon as you approach, and speak with the familiar ogre bodyguard at the interior, he’s like, (grunting) All right, lets you in. The bartender shoots up and can I get you drinks? Yeah, my dad said give us whatever we want. (laughs) Oh, she’s a loud and crazy guy. What would you want then? Whatever they want. Whiskey.
Whiskey. Whiskey all round. Whiskey.
Here. Whiskey juice.
Whiskey juice? Milk. I really hope he brings you a whiskey juice. What’s a whiskey juice?
Exactly. Did you find out? He brings around–
A case of whiskey juice– A shot of whiskey, a shot of whiskey, a shot of whiskey, a shot of whiskey, milk, juice, whiskey. All right, bottoms up. That is a very, very terrible tasting, strong, pungent juice, very strong bite to it. I got something for this, hold on. Same with the milk. That’s a whiskey milk.
Oh. That’s a whiskey milk. I’m going to put a little– Partially curdled. Ugh.
Just a tiny bit of that I’ve saving some of that– Put some whipped cream on it. Hallucinogenic fruit that I’ve now preserved as best I can. I’m just going to use it like nutmeg, and see if I can fix this. Put some in here, too. Yeah, okay. Here we go.
Okay. Upgrading this night. Are you making a white Xhorhasian again? (laughs) It helps with the sting of the flavor. Oh, I love that. Yeah. So you enjoy some drinks, you have a space, you know, to relax for a bit. Gonna ask around for your pops or no? Yeah, I’m going to go find my dad’s office, go say hello. Okay. (laughs) I’m going to cast Disguise Self to still look just like me, except Fjord in my clothes with my hair. I knew it.
(laughter) Just trying to be off in the periphery, sitting next to you. But you’re super tall now. No, I can actually–
Oh. Yeah, I can do that. Jester, have you ever had alcohol before? Yes.
You have? Yeah. But not many times.
Not many times. I didn’t down my milk, you can have my milk, whiskey milk if you want to. I feel like, I, okay. It’s got some lumps in it. That’s, you know. Oh, it would curdle. Yeah, it’d curdle.
It’d curdle, oh. It’s chewy.
(groaning) Interesting taste.
It’s got chunks. Yeah, I feel like I would just get the whiskey next time, maybe.
Yeah. You’re starting to feel a little funny. That is, yeah. Hello, I’m Fjord.
(Nott and Jester gasping) Try it, wait, wait. You lost your accent.
Hello, I’m Fjord. Yeah, it’s–
Are you being old Fjord or current Fjord? Trying to do your accent. It’s–
Oh, he’s going– Hello, all.
That’s very close. That’s pretty good.
That’s not bad, yeah. Say this, say this. Say this.
I don’t know, I can’t remember. I don’t know, I can’t remember. It’s just like him.
No, I can’t remember. I can’t, like I can’t remember. Hit us with a Eldritch Blast. Eldritch Blast, ooh, that’s hard to say. Blast, blast.
You got caught up in the moment, and you’re just like, just, drift–
It’s really cool when you do that, though. It is just one of the, you know, you know, it’s pretty cool when you do that. As you come to the office door– Dad! Dad, Dad, it’s me. Yes? Dad, it’s Jester, I’m here to say hi. Open the door.
Okay. Hi. As you walk inside his office, you can see there’s, his desk currently is strewn with some papers, and he’s putting something away, and turning in his chair toward you. Ah, I had no idea you’d be joining me. Well, I didn’t either. We just found out. Oh, welcome. Are your friends here as well? They are, they’re drinking. I told them it’s on the house. Sure.
(laughter) So what have you been up to? Business. What have you been up to? Oh my God, just don’t, I tell him everything. Just like launch into the whole thing. As it progresses, he just leans further and further back in his chair, until he hits the back of the chair. Yeah, so anyway, we got to find this weird, creepy lady who totally saw me scrying on her. We got to find out what the deal with it is, we can break the curse, then, we going to to go to the negotiations, then Traveler Con, and somewhere, we’re fitting into that Clay’s family stuff. One of these days, I’m going to have to teach you something I’ve learned at a very young age, which is how to not have to do everything yourself. It’s much easier. Okay, I’m okay with that. Teach me your ways. In time.
Have you called Mom? Have you sent her a letter? Have you gone to see her? Have you been like, oh my gosh, I miss you? (tense music) No, there’s been a lot to take care of here. There’s, in the midst of, conflict, if done right, in the Empire, can be a very profitable endeavor, but one has to be very on top of their organization to maintain it, so I’ve been, been working a lot. Will you make me, well, will you do me a favor? Possibly. If, by any chance, when people offer you things or whatever, you come across smuggled items that resemble the beacons that I told you about– Right, right. If you come across anything like that, will you let me know before you try to sell it another person? For you, yes. Thank you. I’ll send you messages every once in awhile just so you can get it to me, if you, you know. Because we travel around a lot. You won’t know where I am, so. Of course.
Okay. If I don’t respond, don’t take it personally. I might be indisposed. Like how? Many things. Okay, okay, okay, okay, okay, here’s the thing. What if I send you a message, and you should have a way to communicate with me that you’re indisposed, like so I can know that you’re not just in trouble but you’re boning somebody, or you’re in a meeting or something, you could be like, or you could be like, what if you just cough when I send, or you say like. A cough, a cough would do well. Okay.
I’ll cough, and we’ll pick it up another time. All right, all right, all right. Look at us, we have a code. Can I sleep in the room tonight that you said we could have? Sure, sure. Thank you, Dad.
I’ll arrange it. He laughs in spite of himself. You can see him trying to organize being in a deep moment of thought and the whirlwind of chaos that is Jester just blowing in like a storm, and in spite of his momentary frustration, he can’t help but crack a smile. Well, say hello to your friends for me. Okay. Close the door on your way out. I will. We have a room! So do you have to say Eldritch Blast every time, or is that part of the spell, or do you just do it because it’s just, like, I’ve always wondered is it just like–
Showmanship, right? So it’s like going whoosh, when you’re like– It’s also like stay clear, because shit’s about to go down. Oh, so it’s for us–
Hey, Eldritch Blast. Oh, that’s–
You could try it for other things. You could say, “Magician’s Judge,” and be really like, judge! I’m going to hit you. A little, maybe work that phrase more. It’s kind of ordinary. I’m going to kill you. I’m going to heal you.
Yeah. Ooh, that’s good, too.
I like it. Here it comes.
You’re okay. Sometimes, though, it’s also good not to telegraph what you’re about to do before you do it, because then you surprise them more. What if you go, I’m going to heal you, and then, you Magician’s Judge them. Or branding’s very important, so maybe instead of, I’m going to hit you, I’m going to judge you. Ooh.
Oh, wow. You have been judged!
Oh, that’s good. That’s good, that’s after you’ve killed him. And the jury’s going to deliberate. That’s good. And Caduceus could be like, “I’m going to duck and drop a deuce on you.” Ooh. I’m going to do the deuce.
Yep. Wait, Jester, how did it go with your dad? Oh my God, you guys, he loves me so much. Of course he does. What’s there not to love?
What’s not to love? (laughs) He said you could have a room, he said that we could have free drinks, he said that if he runs across any beacons, he’ll let us know. Oh, that’s nice. That’s great.
Yeah. Did you happen to ask him about any magical women hid in the woods or anything? No, I mean, we already know– Okay, okay.
What exactly we’re looking for here.
Or maybe he’s interacted with her in the past.
Oh my God. I’ll pick up my jacket and head over to where Beau is. Mm. How are you doing? I’m great. Your histamine reactions are going again. Yeah. I’ve been away from Zadash for a little bit, so the pollen, it’s kicking a little, you know? I take it you don’t fully, fully hate your dad. It’s going to be hard to hear this. (uplifting adventure music) Everyone wants to make their dad proud, you know? Just hoping he could, he could show some of that. You don’t know that he can’t. It’s been years. You’ve grown, you’ve changed. I’m sure you were even more of an unbearable shit before. I’m not saying he deserves a second chance, but, he is your father, and you do have a mother and a brother that you’ve never met. (Beau sniffing) I guess it’s hard when, the word inevitable has been brought up several times in the past 24 hours amongst us. I feel like I’ve found my family with The Mighty Nein. I don’t like looking at my past, because it doesn’t have The Mighty Nein in it, and I think I put off the inevitable, because I’m going to, I’m afraid it’s going to be like my past. I don’t think one contaminates the other. You’ve got good, solid footing here. I mean, shit, if we want to run, we run. If we want to kick his ass, we’ll kick his ass. Yeah. (sniffing) I don’t want to kick his ass, and I don’t want to run. Could I ask you, in your wildest dreams, and feel free to say you don’t want to tell me, what would you have happen when we go there? (tense adventure music) I think I’ve worked so hard because I scripted this day, in my inevitable future that I would go back to him, successful woman, respectable member of society, Cobalt Soul, and Expositor, the thing he threw me away to, and I embraced. And then, I would get mad at myself, because I felt like I was doing exactly what he was doing to me my entire life, scripting me to be something else. And I’m still doing it. I haven’t seen him in three years, and I’m still trying to be something, and I think what’s scary is that I like this, and what I’ve found, and I don’t think it was until Nott started talking about having to go home and go away that it truly started terrifying me. (upbeat adventure music) Because for the first time, I’m happy. And what if that goes away? It could always go away. It could go away tonight. The Gentleman’s debtors could come calling. (Beau chuckling) And I think I know that, and I think I say things to not like, you don’t have to put those stipulations on yourself, because I’ve convinced myself that destiny or the inevitability won’t come knocking. If you ignore it, it won’t exist, and that’s not true. (both sighing) It’ll be interesting either way. Your face is leaking. I hate it. I won’t tell–
Don’t tell anybody. Yep. You’re a good friend, you’re a good trainer. We’re still working out tomorrow. So I don’t know if you give a fuck is all I’m saying. Fair enough. Thank you. Of course. And you’re still my captain. Ball eater or no.
Come back Thursday. Thank you. Then you guys finish your drinks, wind down for the night, share a bit of a rousing toast with the Gentleman as we he emerges from his work for the day, to congratulate you on the multitude of things that he seems to know about.
(Jester laughing) Every detail of your travels.
Hey. Wait, what I’d miss? How does he, what’d I miss? Just have a drink.
Okay. You’re all very talented, it seems, or extremely stupid, or both. Yeah, it’s a bit of both. That’s a rare combination, but it’ll keep you alive. Listen to her. What?
Listen to Jester? Always.
Good. She’s got a good blood in her. Now, rest up. Apparently, you’ve got a bit of travel to do in the morning. I like, I sort of told him what we were doing. That’s okay, he’s your dad. You can trust him.
Yeah. I need to go blow off some steam. Don’t message me for awhile. Oh, he’s going to go bone somebody, gross. Oh, if you’re going to, maybe, you might want to just, you’re schvitzing still. His face just goes. So just do a little dab. Don’t wipe, just dab.
A little rub– A little dab’ll do you. Good night. And he leaves.
(laughter) A little dab’ll do you. (laughter)
Goddamn it. You find a way to your quarters to rest for the night. Sleep takes you, thoughts of early morning travel towards whatever strange direction and destination calls you. We’ll get to that when we come back from the break. Oh.
Oh, shit. Oh.
Take some spells with you. We’ll return shortly. Make sure you get your spells prepared, those of you who do that. But for the next morning, we have our giveaway from our friends at Wyrmwood. We have the padauk dice vault, the bright orange awesome coloration. It’s very cool.
Ooh. The keyword for tonight, for whoever wants to enter the possibility of winning this lovely piece, the keyword for tonight is stone, S-T-O-N-E. Enter it more than one, enter it once only. More than once, you’ll be disqualified, and once again, only folks in the U.S. and Canada, yeah, I had to dig it in.
(laughter) But we’ll come back to you in a little bit with a winner, and the rest of tonight’s session. So see you in a little bit.
(cheering) (upbeat music) ♪ You got the perfect warlock ♪ ♪ Her weapons and supplies ♪ ♪ But you need a place to track your stuff ♪ ♪ ‘Cause you’re so disorganized ♪ ♪ You click, open a webpage ♪ ♪ You heard about on Critical Role ♪ ♪ And now, you’re ready to kick some butt ♪ ♪ In that mine shaft full of gnolls ♪ ♪ It’s D&D ♪
♪ It’s D&D ♪ ♪ D&D Beyond ♪ ♪ Yeah, D&D ♪
♪ D&D ♪ ♪ D&D Beyond ♪ ♪ You got your stats, you’ve got your swords ♪ ♪ And you’ve got your invisible wand ♪ ♪ It’s D&D ♪
♪ D&D ♪ ♪ D&D ♪
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(light adventure music) (upbeat music) Guess what, America? Nope.
(beeping) Guess what, world? We’re back. All Work, No Play.
That’s inaccurate. We’re not back?
We’re not back. (beeping)
We will be back. Oh, okay.
We’re coming back at, in– (beeping)
We don’t know when we’re coming back. We’re very close, we’ve been shooting stuff, we’ve been doing all kinds of activities, like– Are you looking at that camera? Should I look at that camera? (beeping)
Gene splicing, intelligence uploads.
But like that one or this one?
(beeping) I’m going to just commit to this camera. Anyway, catch all that and more on, oh, hi. (beeping)
Clones in the future of me. I want that. I want clones. They won’t remember you. And you won’t know them, and they won’t be you. But I just want more of me around. (twinkling music) This season is going to be packed with amazing stuff like– Shark baiting.
Okay. Shark dating.
Uh-huh. Shark mating.
Oh, boy. What else can we do with a shark, I wonder? You’ll have to wait to find out. (beeping) Yeah, that’s pretty good. Let’s do it again.
(Sam laughing) (upbeat music) I’m Sam Riegel, this is Liam O’Brien, we’re the hosts of your favorite show, All Work, No Play, which is coming back to the Critical Role Twitch and YouTube channels. You can catch us on twitch.tv/criticalrole on some night of the week, which will be displayed in front of us, starting soon, and on YouTube.com/criticalrole. So tune in, subscribe, like, tell your friends, have a viewing party, I don’t know. Just watch the (buzzing) show. (upbeat music) Last time, on Talks Machina. Sam, I have a question. Are they remaking The Wire and setting it in Beverly Hills about the plight of the bike messenger? (Sam laughing)
Harsh. What’s happening here?
Guys, I’m just a hip teen. My wife knitted this hat. She claims it takes four hours per hat, but I don’t know, there’s a lot of hats at our house right now. There’s probably 15, 18, 20 hats at our house right now. Share a few hats.
Are you, you should see, your–
(Sam laughing) It’s like a huge bong right now. Hey, man.
Turn your head to left. There you go, yeah.
I don’t know if we can do this on Twitch. What was it that ultimately convinced her to take the jump? Ooh.
(Sam sighing) I mean, deep down, she knew she was going to do it at some point, and she wanted a moment to think about, this is a big shift, a big change, and sometimes, you want something so long, and you’re right at the cusp of it, right on the edge of getting it, and you’re like, ooh, wait, do I really want this? It was also looking across the table, and seeing us going, “Do it, you chickenshit coward. “Do it.” (laughs) Yeah.
Well, there is a bit of Sam Riegel as a D&D player, I mean, you going to do stuff. Yeah.
You going to do stuff. You going to make decisions and go. Not a play it safer. Yeah, you going to make hard choices and live with them, so. Yeah.
That’s, you know, you also going to trust that Matt Mercer’s going to have something on the other side for you. I just figured it out. You look like a homeless millionaire’s son. You know why? If I may, I can tell why this is throwing you, Brian, why this look is throwing literally everyone in the studio. Oh, okay, yeah.
I look like Marisha. Oh no.
People are confused, because they’re like, why does Marisha look particularly extra gorgeous today? Right, yep.
Hey, Travis? Yes? This was not the first time that Caduceus mentioned the name Stone, like we talked about a minute ago, having told the story of Stone, Dust and Clay before. Is there a reason it clicked with you now, or were you just not listening before? The question on everyone’s mind. No, I was not listening before, okay? I check in and out. Thursday nights for me are a time to enjoy my friends, some food–
But Marisha takes notes. She is a note taking machine. Yeah.
Why would I pay attention? Why would you pay attention? You can’t be bothered with intricate storytelling. No! Look, this is how I got through college. I just looked at the person’s paper next to mine. It’s rule one of improv, listen when you feel like it. Yep.
(group laughing) It’s funny to me that your name, your last name was Stone. Mm-hmm.
And you start, at least in the theme song, title sequence, by sinking to the bottom of the ocean. Like a stone. What?
Are you fucking high? Yeah, this is what high people think about, yeah. Have you ever looked at a $2 bill on weed?
(group laughing) It looks like a $22 bill. Is there a guy in the bushes? I don’t know. Red Team, go. It’s from Half Baked–
I know. The greatest movie.
(Sam laughing) Just take in the secondhand– (Travis inhaling) After learning so much about Essek in the previous episode, and seeing him playing a major part in finishing that spell as well as the ritual for Nott, what is your respective character’s opinion about him now? I don’t trust him.
I don’t trust him, either. (both laughing)
Ah, interesting. Not a bit.
No– Not a bit.
Interesting. He just went from being cold and aloof to being all of a sudden, really warm and I know when there’s been time, and I know he’s probably, it seems like he lives a very isolated life, and he’s probably putting himself out there, and all those things, and with time, it’ll show that he’s being genuine. Maybe. But all of our haunches were up. We were all on level five alert. We’ve also been giving Essek like all this, we’re spilling dirt left and right, sharing secrets, giving him vials of shit, telling him about extra dodecahedrons that are out there in the word. We really have opened up. Yeah, we’re making him look pretty good. Yeah. I mean, he could just be riding the coattails of, you know, The Might Nein. I would not be surprised, though, if he stabs us in the back. Nott clearly loves Yeza and Luc, but is she still in love with Yeza? If they don’t have a child, if they didn’t have a child, would she be considering going back at all? I mean, I don’t know. I don’t know if she, she hasn’t been with him for awhile, and she, like I said, she loves her new life, she loves these people. Had all these minotaurs walking around in front of her. She’s seen so much now. It’s hard to be with your high school sweetheart and then, be exposed to the world. Yeza isn’t on her mind every second of every day anymore. Used to be.
Well, yeah, but there’s a lot going on. Yeah.
A little bit. A little bit.
A little bit. Yeah, yeah. Oh, man, I feel guilty talking about Yeza. He’s a fictional character, and I feel like he’s watching this show and he’s like, “What the fuck did you say about me?” Uh-huh.
He’s sitting there, going, did you just make fun of my hat? You look so cute doing, it, though. You’re dressed like Macaulay Cocaine. (laughter) Do you have any lines in the new Beverly Hills Cop, or are you just robbing a Tiffany’s? (group laughing) (laughs) Oh my god.
Guys. I took a big swing with this outfit. Yeah.
Might’ve failed. I mean, we’ve gotten 89 minutes of material out of it tonight, so I think, (laughs). It’s like, the components of this outfit are things that I wear all the time. Yeah, but–
But I think when you put them together, it just doesn’t feel right. I commented back at the office, you looked very nice. I did! I said those words. You look like you wrote Pitch Perfect. (group laughing) I don’t know what that means. (bright country music) (cheering) Yeah! We did it, yeah! Sam Riegel, you just won the Superb Bowl. What are you going to do now? I’m subscribing to Critical Role! Wonderful, and that’s–
It’s about perseverance, like remembering to resubscribe with Twitch Prime every month. Yeah, woo, woo, woo. So could you–
Have done it without my teammates? Come on, no way. And they couldn’t have done it without the Twitch subscriptions that I gave them. Right, guys? Yeah.
Okay, Sam, but what about–
What about, what about, what about what inspires me, you mean? Well, Yee-Haw Game Ranch really does. I mean, watching that dehydrated piece of string cheese, Brian Foster every couple of weeks, really gets me pumped for the big game. Sam, hold on–
(Klaxon blaring) You can’t believe it, you can’t believe it? Is that what you said? Well, it’s true, because every Yee-Haw VOD is instantly available as soon as you subscribe. It’s amazing.
Sam! We did it, guys.
Sam. Yeah, yeah.
Sam. Yeah! What, sorry?
Just say, “I’m going to Disneyland.” You’re doing a commercial for Disneyland. (crowd cheering)
Oh. What’s a Disneyland? (dramatic music) (whistle blowing) I don’t know, I going to be honest with you. Oh.
I got hit in the head pretty hard out there.
Oh my God. Woo, I’m not good at sports. Oh! (dramatic music)
(group cheering) (dramatic adventure music) And welcome back. So we have our winner of the Wyrmwood giveaway. The winner tonight is d__man.
Yeah! D__man, congratulations. We’ll get that to you ASAP. So, Might Nein, after the evening’s rest, in the morning, you come to, and underneath the Evening Nip, within the confines of the Gentleman’s private, I’m going to say, organizational base, the day is early and yours. What would you like to do? How early we talking? You would know, I’d say, you guys probably went to bed relatively early, knowing you’d probably be traveling fairly quick, so unless you want to get up any earlier, I was say naturally, around probably 7:00, 8:00 inn the morning.
Okay. Should make the most of the day, yeah, for travel? Get horses, no? Yeah, get some horses. I suppose we could ask on the way out, if your, yeah, does your father have a, you know, does he have any steeds, anyone he knows? That’s a good question. I should go ask him. Okay. He’s, it’s early, you go to his chambers. Hey. (knocking) Are you naked? (knocking) It’s your daughter.
Oh my God. It’s Jester. Are you awake? Making up for lost time.
(Beau laughing) (knocking) Are you awake? You hear the iron handle like (squeaking) and you see a half-asleep, half-elf woman come to the door and be like, hello? Hello.
(laughter) Is the Gentleman in here? “He’s indis–” you hear a voice go, (as The Gentleman) “Ugh, just leave, “it’s– go.” Leave, go. Just throw them over and walks out through the chamber. You can see one of the other guardians through there, like guides her upstairs to leave, and the door’s ajar, and he’s like– I walk in. She is not that great. Well, you don’t know her.
(laughter) What can I do for you? Do you have any horses?
(laughter) I take it this is for your journey? I don’t own horses. I kept debts, and there is a livery that, let me write something for you, and throws his robe on, heads over to this little like, end table task he has in the corner, pulls out a sheet of paper, and just writes something down, folds it, goes and takes one of the small candles off to the side, and gets a wax seal, presses it in, closes and hands it to you. For this–
While he’s off doing that– Okay? Ransack the room. I’m going to get out my special paints, and I’m going to paint a ruby, about this big.
Whoa. It’s not, it doesn’t turn into a real ruby, but it’ll be a glass ruby. Okay.
When it’s done. It’ll look like a ruby. And I’m going to place it right next to his bed, so he sees it when he wakes up in the morning and when he goes to sleep. Okay. Make a stealth check for me. Unless, yeah, this would you– As a child of divorce, I’m so into this right now. (laughter) Ooh, hee, ooh, 22! Okay. He seems engrossed in his letter, and does not notice you quickly, deftly, artistically create this ruby, and place it. By the time he finishes the envelope, and turns around, you’re already right back where you started, and it goes right into your grasp. Thank you. Look for a Kiefer Stables. Kiefer is the proprietor. Just hand him the letter, and tell him how many horses you need. He should take care of it. Thank you so much. It’s in the south of the, south of the city? Hmm? Is it the stables in the south of the city? This would be in the western side. Oh, so it would not be Kiefer of the southern lands. (groaning) No, no.
Wow. Oh, boy.
I’ll go now. No, please don’t. Thank you for letting us stay here last night. Yes. Happy to provide when in need. Thank you for, you know, being nice to me, and being nice to my friends and stuff, and it’s really good to see you again, and I hug him, I give him a kiss on the cheek. It’s good to see you as well, Jester. Call Mom whenever, you know, just remember she is, you know, she’s there, she’s really pretty, and she’s really great and talented. Okay, bye. (laughs) Door closes. Too little ruby. I know, I should’ve left a little sapphire next to it. All right. How did it go? We have horses?
We got, well, he’s, we maybe have horses. We’re to the Kiefer Stables, and they owe Dad a debt or something, and they’ll give us some horses or something. Your dad is hooking us up. I know!
Free lodging, free food, free booze, free horses.
Yeah. I mean, he loves the shit out of you. Yeah. Do we have to go– I think he’s making up–
And rough anyone up? For lost time, you know what I mean? Yeah, of course. Do we have to what? Do we have to rough anybody up? Do we have to be like intimidating for your dad? I don’t think so. I just have to give him this piece of paper. Maybe it says somebody’s going to kill them if they don’t give them what we need, you know? Cool.
All right, now, let’s walk in.
Follow your lead, yeah. You don’t want to read it? It’s sealed–
There’s the wax in it. Is there a wax thing on it? Yes. Beau’s the queen of mail fraud over here. She could probably do it. Pop that and reseal it. Spoilers, it says, “Give these people some horses.” (Nott laughing)
(laughs) Yeah, right. Let’s go get these fucking horses. Kill these people, leave their bodies in a ditch. (laughter) Let’s go full Hamlet here.
(laughter) What’s the stamp? The stamp is just a simple, like it’s just a simple G, but it’s a very meticulously carved G, to almost look like a, for lack of a better term, a detailed, intricate lock. There’s not like a lot of filagree around it, but it has a–
It’s cool. Yes. With my background– Oh Jesus.
Oh, sorry. Yes?
Goddamn horses. If I like– I want to lift it, and I want to peel it, and I want to start seeing how hard it might be to separate the wax with a knife. I mean, it’s going to be hard, but it’s probably doable. I hold it up to the light. Can I see through it? Can I read a little bit? This is Act II. Make a perception check.
(Beau laughing) (dice clattering)
Oh, that was almost good. Eight.
Eight, mm, unfortunately, it’s very, very solid material. It’s all right, Beau. We’ll find out soon enough. We can just be there when they read it. We make our way to the Kiefer Stables. All right. Heading westward through Zadash, you make your way to the West, asking a few questions, keeping any eye out, you haven’t quite–
Asking questions? Yes. You haven’t spent a lot of time on this far end of the city. Ooh.
Necessarily. So it takes a little bit to find out where the Kiefer Stables are, but upon arriving, they’re not small, they’re not big. They’re just a standard medium sized livery. There are two individuals that are in the process of providing feed for the, you see they have mostly horses. There are a couple of beasts of burden there, as well, look like they also sell those types of creatures, two big ox-looking beasts. But you enter the front, and there is one man you see, probably in his late 50s, early 60s or so, extremely curly, poof red hair around the back and sides of a bald head, 5 o’clock shadow all across his chin, with a bit of a double chin, just in the process of organizing stuff for the day, putting tools in the walls, and setting things up this early in morning. As soon as you walk in, he turns around. Oh, hello. Is, sure, we’re open. How can I help you?
Is this all right? I know it’s early. It’s, you’ve got here in time. What can I do for you? Do you run this place? I am Kiefer, yes. I’ve got a note for you, Kiefer. Thank you. It’s not as ominous as it seems. Or maybe it is. Or maybe it is. All right, mm-hmm. Excuse me a moment. And he walks over to the side of a desk, and pulls up a little, you know, knife, and you can see him, he’s, his movements are a bit erratic and quick, and he, shh, shh, opens it. What do you need? Wow. I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse. We need some, oh, Caleb, do you want to take care of this? I, this is your father’s. Oh, I mean, but we need some horses. How many? Yeah, for all of us.
Yeah. One each–
Well, I don’t– One each!
Take your pick. Seven horses, yours. I don’t need a horse– I’m sure things go well with us– I’d rather someone else drive. Take the fucking horse.
I can only. You’re only going to need the horses for this one leg of the journey. I’m sure we can–
How do we get them back to you when we’re done with them? Oh, they are yours to keep. What, I rent–
If you would like. How generous.
Thank you. Wow. Thank you, Kiefer. You’re welcome. We will have them prepared for you. Just tell them which ones you want, and we’ll have them outfitted, saddles– What did the letter say?
Feed. It’s, (sighing) (laughter)
I will provide. I want to know so bad. He’s basically saying, like we will provide feed and everything you require. Wow. Will wrote you up.
Holy shit. Whatever you need. All right.
We’ll meet you outside then. Thank you.
Of course. So much. Sometimes, it is just that easy. Wow. I go up to him, I’ll give you 50 gold for that letter. Jesus.
Who are you people? I’ll take it with me, it’ll be gone. 50 gold. You’ll never see it again. (laughter) How much would the horses have cost? 50 gold.
(laughter) I want to know what it is. No, the horses are a little pricier. Oh, okay. She’s got his head right there. Mm-hmm, mm-hmm. Okay. Okay, you look at the letter. Wow.
I’ll wait ’til we leave. Okay. I don’t want to embarrass some man. I’m a tactful woman.
Of course you are. I have about, say, 18 or so horses that are currently kept here. They’re, some of them are healthier, some are older, some are younger, there are a number to pick from that all function and work well. You find ones that befit your personalities, and have them outfitted. A week’s worth of feed is provided. Wow.
Within saddle bags and other elements there, weighing them for a longer journey, uncertain of how long you’ll be going. You’re given the full package. My horse keeps chasing Fjord’s horse. (laughter) That’s a joke that no one will get. (laughter) I’m not saying, named caddy. There you go.
Yeah, yeah. God dabbit.
(laughter) So, um–
Listen to Sam. Listen to me.
(laughter) You have your horses, you have your materials. The day is still young. No problems, no questions. You are free to go and make your way westward. That went really, really well. Are we outside?
Terrifyingly smoothly. Yeah, you’re outside. You’re on horseback. You’re making your way towards the outer perimeter of the city walls. Cool.
I pop the seal, and I try really hard, like I take a little– It’s already open.
It’s super easy. It’s already opened. Oh right.
(Fjord laughing) Is the seal broken? Did he crack it? He read the letter, so he had to open it, yes. The wax is broken.
Because sometimes you, whatever, okay, okay, yeah. What’s in the letter? All it says is–
Oh, come on. Give me something good.
(Nott laughing) All it says is, “Give them many gifts, “whatever they ask, Gentleman.” (Beau sighing) Could have asked for anything. There it is, the secret of the Luxon unmasked. Yeah.
As he said, though, got his handwriting, though. That’s good. Maybe we could, maybe you could learn it, forge something. Send a letter to my mom, saying, “Oh my gosh, I miss you so much?” We could Parent Trap them! Oh, I was worried that we were going to do that. You could Parent Trap them. We got The Parent Trap.
(crying) Oh no. Meet me here, and because I still love you, and then, you send a letter to him, because you probably know your mom’s handwriting. Yeah, obviously. I want to meet you at this place, at this time. Oh my gosh. And we’ll be waiting in the bushes. Then we can watch them reunite. Can we get Patty Duke on to play the ruby, I’ll stop, okay. We’re going to Parent Trap your parents. I can’t wait. It’s going to be so great, you guys. Start planning, man. Do it at Traveler Con. You’ll have the Traveler there to guide you. Kill both your parents, it’s cool. It’s true. I wonder if he would help me. This is a noble pursuit. Only works with identical twin. I bet he would. This seems like exactly what he does. He plays pranks and tricks of people, for a greater good. This is a trick that is for the greater good. What could go wrong?
(Caduceus snorting) I feel like we need to do this. Is this one of those ones that we intervene on, or we just let it go? I’m not really sure at this point. All right.
Yeah. Oh, are we going?
(laughter) Whoa. And wipe. Scene transition. Oh my God.
Turn, turn. Use your foot, use your outside foot. Parent Trap montage starts. And did we get one per Mighty Nein? Are you riding a horse for the first time ever solo? I think so, and yep, unless it goes poorly. Yeah, I’d like to go ahead– It’s a pony.
I will say this. Because this is your first time handling a horse– Yes! Make an animal handling check for me. Oh no.
That’s a two plus one. (laughter) I will say your pace is slightly lessened. For the first hour or so that you’re trying to get Nott’s horse to do anything correctly. So familiar.
Yeah, yeah. Checks out.
Sam, where are you going? Nott’s horse just takes off in a gallop. (laughs) East.
(laughter) This is. (laughs)
(laughter) Art imitating life. But nevertheless, eventually, righting yourselves and finding the path, you continue westward. Eventually, to the, I believe it’s the Amber Crossroads, and then, continuing westward towards the Truscan Vale on the western side of the Marrow Valley. At a fast pace on horseback, it’s 36 miles a day. I’ll say it’ll take you about two and a half, three days. You can try and push your horses further if you want, but you risk exhaustion both for yourselves and the horses. Yeah.
We’ll just do it. Yeah, we’re not dying for time. No, we’re good.
Okay. First day of travels, relatively uneventful. This side of the Vale, or this side of the Empire is not extremely eventful, especially in the open fields, in comparison to some of the places you’ve been, especially after going to Xhorhas, and traveling that dangerous landscape, the return to the Marrow Valley and these open roads and green, rolling grass and you know, mild hills in the distance with the framing of the valley mountains on each side, it’s almost comfortable and picturesque to be in a place where you’re not completely left in the unknown of what’s trying to hunt or eat you. As the night grows darker, around, look at the map one more time. You have the–
Sure. The region here. I’m keeping my eyes open for anything unusual along the route, as well. Okay, so I’d say you, yeah, so westward, are you heading along the Bromkiln Byway, Bromkiln Byway, or are you just cutting right across the valley? Well, I could cast my 6th level spell. Which is what?
Find the path. That’s a straight line, right? I don’t know, it finds the shortest route, but, that might take us, you know. It’s the worst spell ever, by the way. It’s a pretty shitty spell. Completely waste.
It’s basically waste. This finds the shortest, most direct physical route to a specific–
It’s a line. Location.
Jesus– Do you want to cast it?
I mean, should I cast it? Sure.
Hey, you know what? This is a spell we’re never going to cast. We might as well cast it. It’s so highly situation, yeah. It’s super useful, in the very rare circumstances where it is useful. Otherwise, it’s kind of.
Yeah. So let’s see what happens.
Do it. Do it.
Yeah, sure. Wow, I agree with Taliesin. It’s either this or in a maze in the Abyss. Go for it. I say we go.
I mean you could– Oh, true.
Yeah. All right. So as you shrug, as part of the casting spell, it’s part of the somatic components of it, you focus and the wind blows by, you can see the waves of grass and grain across the field shift with it, and as it does, you see a portion of the grass seems to almost grow brighter and taller than the rest rapidly.
Wow. And it continues in a direct line, in a direction slightly north of where you were already heading, but that direction, you can see it carrying that way.
We go that way? That would be fun.
All right, let’s go. All right. It is getting dark, if you guys want to set camp or push through. Uh.
Oh. Because you’re now diverging from the Byway to do this, so. Well, you just began it, so follow it a little longer. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. It is for a day, but I have concentrate on it. Do I have to, can I sleep when I concentrate? Generally, no.
Yeah. I should’ve cast this in the morning, but– That’s all right. We’ll get a few hours out of it. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Follow the bait. Okay. When we find a place that looks nice for setting up camp.
Okay. So as you pull off into this space here, there’s patches of trees and little elements of scattered woodland. You wait as the last bit of the sunlight begins to escape from the sky, and the gold and reds of sunset begin to vanish in with the purples and blues of night. You begin to find a place to set up camp, and you see what looks to be a distant fire, maybe about a half mile or so away from you. What kind of fire, big fire? Or like campfire? Like a standard campfire size. Can you see any figures, any shapes– Not from this distance. You have to get a lot closer. Want me to go check it out? Are we on the flat lands, or is it sort of a descent down to that fire? Right here, there’s hills to the north and south sides of it, right now, it’s in the middle of a small valley between this hilly portion. Let’s go?
All of us? No. Well, we can just make camp. Just ignore it?
Yeah. I mean, they stay over there, we stay over here. Nott goes, checks it out.
I’m going to go check it out, for sure.
Well, I was going to say, I wonder if we can make camp close enough that everything, we could check it out. Yeah. Sneak near the unknown quantity. Yeah.
But we can, we don’t even have–
Because you have a hut. Yeah, we have a hut. We could just be wherever. They don’t, they can fuck off. Yeah, but, why? Okay, I am a team player.
(Jester laughing) Is this where we want to be? How is this? It’s fine.
It’s fine. (laughter) All right.
Definitely fine. Muddled, Caleb starts to do what he needs to do to put the dome up, and it’ll be the same color green as the grass that is growing all around. All right. You guys bundle up for the night. You feel safer in the dome. You can keep watch if you’d like, or you can all just take a night’s rest. It’ll last for eight hours, so. I want to go check out that campfire or no? Yeah, we’re doing that–
Do you want to go check out the campfire?
I feel like we all want to check out the campfire. I think it only matters what you want to do, in this situation. Ah, yeah, I’ll go check it out. Well, all right, then. Do you want me to come close? Of course.
Okay, I’ll follow, but at a distance. And I remove the rocks from the dome. The rocks? Oh, good idea.
Yeah. I’m going to sit outside the dome until you guys come back, just so that there’s somebody who can hear it if you signal for help. And while they’re away, Caleb will also turn Frumpkin into a raven.
Okay. Just go ahead and mark off the elements of that. I’m going to, as we get close, I’m going to cast Enhance Ability on Nott. I’m going to cast Cat’s Grace, so that you have better, you have advantage on dexterity checks. Okay. I don’t know.
(laughter) Sam’s never seen one.
Yeah. ♪ Jellicle cats, Jellicle cats, Jellicle cats ♪ Oh, yeah.
Sing it, sing it. As we get closer, I’ll cast, well, when we get close enough, I’ll cast Invisibility on myself. Okay, well, go ahead and roll a stealth check as you approach.
Oh, you already get advantage on that.
Got advantage on it already. 28.
28. You feel fairly confident that no one has seen you get within a safe distance of the campfire. I’ll go invisible.
All right. And creep ever closer, looking for– Okay. As you’re looking, you can see the source of the fire that appears like there’s a few bundles around it. There’s a few figures sitting in the bundles, looking into the fire. You can see there’s between the hill, like a pace here, there’s a little gap, and there’s some, what looks like a carcass has been left in the outskirts, between you and the campfire, a little bit southward, I guess. They’re not cooking it, it’s just a dead thing? Correct. So it’s a ways away, but there it is. Towards me, or on the other side? Towards you.
Well, I’m going to go look at that carcass.
Okay. As you get closer to the carcass, you can see what looks to be a hunt’s, you see there are arrows in it, and elements of it have been butchered and left open. Only a little bit of meat has been cut off, and the rest of it’s just been left there. But what, do I recognize the animal? You have to get closer to probably take a look. I get closer.
Okay. You get right up next to the carcass and look at it, and right as you do, you hear this (whooshing)
Oh shit. Go ahead and make dexterity saving throw for me. But you get advantage. Nope, that’s–
I do? Not at saving throws, no. Dex save, 12.
12! You got a 12 on your dex save! I rolled a three.
(Matt laughing) Oh no.
Oh no. No, he rubbed his hands together. He’s doing the hands.
You hear the whoosh, and you see, suddenly, from just over the hill, there was a thin, tall tree that had been ratcheted down and held, go (whooshing) and arch upward, and suddenly, your ankle pulls out from under you, and you get flung through the air for a second, and flung down, you hang for a second. (screeching) After you–
I’m still invisible, though. You are.
Okay, but they know that something’s there. Fucking Ewoks.
Okay. You got Looney Tunes.
Suddenly, the figures all stand up, look over in the direction of the tree. One of them goes ahead and gets, grabs a bow, and knocks an arrow.
I start getting closer, sneaking as close as I can.
You’ve been following Nott. Well, yeah, that’s why I was able to– Yeah.
I see the tree– Oh, yeah, you see the tree go. Ah, fuck.
All right. Ah, okay. Um, I guess if they haven’t seen me, let’s see, what will lose my invisibility? Attacking anything, right? Or fire– Attacking and casting a spell. Spells.
Casting a spell. Attacking, but using a weapon to cut a rope? Is that an attack?
That won’t break it, no. Okay, okay. (sighing) Okay.
Let’s see, Traveler, be with me, as I’m going.
Okay. I will, I’ll get out my short sword, or my dagger, and I’ll start cutting the rope a bit. Okay. Easy enough to cut it, and your foot comes lose.
23. It’s, it’s not a very intricate knot, nor is it a, it’s a thick piece of rope, but this blade is easy enough to cut through, 23? You go ahead and approach, and you can see that the figure’s rushing towards the tree.
Oh shit. You get the sense that, at the moment, they do not notice you, because they are focused more on what has just transpired at the south of their camp.
Okay. How high up am I? Dangling, I’d say you’re about 10 feet up. Oh, oh God, I don’t know what to do. I’m going to wait ’til they get closer. Actually, you’d be about 15, because your weight is so minimal compared to what this trap was designed for. Are they around me at this point, or are they approaching?
They’re approaching, and look up now, and they’re like, you can see the back of their head. But actually, you have Dark Vision, right, as a goblin– I do.
So you can see an element of them. They appear to be human, simple leather armor, caps on, some hunting gear and weapons. And they look up, and they’ll go, oh, shit it broke. Where the fuck did it go? Shit, shit. I’ll just wait a bit, see if they run off. Okay. What are you?
Well, I’m waiting to see if they attack at Nott or anything. They don’t. They scatter a bit around the space and begin looking in the area. One of them goes over, back to the carcass, he looks around at it. Are you doing anything, Nott? I’m still just waiting. They’re still around the vicinity, right? They’re starting to scatter a bit, and scan, and from this position, you can see there are few different corpses, of other creatures that have been hunted, and you can see they’ve cooked up elements of some of them, and they’ve been eating at the fire in the center, and elements have been left out, and you can see now, from this perspective, actually, make a perception check for me. All right–
I feel like it’s just a hunting party.
For sure it does. 18 plus one, 19.
19. You can see, near some of these other corpses, there are a few other contraptions similar to this. Sometimes, one of them’s a little more of a net-type thing, but these are very, very basic hunting traps that have been set up around here. I shouldn’t kill them all.
(Fjord snorting) Probably not. All right.
Just some. I will, as deftly as possible, drop from my location.
Okay. And try to land without making too much noise. A 10 point landing.
Make stealth check with advantage.
(dice clattering) Ooh.
A Natural 20. You don’t even take any fall damage. (laughter)
You just. Just a little bit of dust goes. (laughter)
Super quiet. No one notices. You can see them looking around, and they look a little jittery and nervous, as whatever it was broke their trap, and they see nothing moving around, and they’re in a really unfortunate space right now of trying to figure what happened. These poor people.
The damn possums. As far as I know, Nott is still up in the tree. Mm-hmm.
Okay. Should I rob them first, or just– (laughter) All right, I’m going to try to slip between them, and keep heading out, keep, head back to our camp. Okay. They do not notice you in the middle of the night with your invisible self, who’s also super stealthy. They are, you know, you don’t really take a moment to see anything, other than just darting through the gap of where they are. Is there, there’s a tiny piece of rope that’s just scattering through the, is the rope visible that’s still around his ankle? Well, no. The rope had been cut like, in a way where it released–
Darn, I was really hoping a tiny little rope just– Yep. What are you doing, Jester? I’m going to wait until they get far enough away from the tree, and then, I’m going to go try to get Nott out of the tree.
Okay. Oh God.
Okay. They eventually begin to circle around the northern side, doing their perimeter, and you see a moment where you can scoot through. Yeah, I go up to the trap. You rush up, and look up in the tree, and the rope is just dangling loose. Nott, Nott. I’ve left that area already. Yep.
Nott. Shit, I’m going to cast Sending. Jester? I’m going to cast Sending– Jester!
To Nott. Nott, are you still, are you in the tree? Where are you?
No, I’m not in the tree. You can’t respond. I’m still talking. Wait ’til I finish talking, and then you can respond. Just let me know–
That’s way over the words. (laughter)
I’m not in the tree. I’m gone, meet, oh shit, where are you? Are you both invisible? No.
Oh. But Nott’s like back at camp now. (laughter) I point in a direction of where I think she might be, and I cast Message. Can you hear me? Jester, where are you? At this point, you’re just out, was it a 500 range? No, it’s 120, I think.
120? Yeah. Oh, no.
Double check. I thought it was shorter than that. 120, yeah.
Yeah, so yeah. Nothing.
I don’t want to go back. Shit. I’ll run back to camp. Hey, hey, hey, hi, hi. They’re not bad at all, they’re fine. Okay.
Did Jester come back? Nope.
No. Okay, it’s fine, it’s fine. Wait, I–
No, it’s fine. It’s fine, she’s just, I’ll be right back. You have five minutes. I start stealthily making my way back to our camp. Into the camp?
Okay. Both of you make perception checks. (yelling)
(laughter) I’m so excited.
Oh no. Five.
Seven. (laughter) You pass each other. (laughs) All right, okay. All right, I get back to our camp. Jester, Jester, where are you? You see one of them go, I heard something. (laughter) I peek my head into the bubble. Hey, um–
No, I’m– Is Nott back then? She was just looking for you. She was looking for me? She just went to go look for you. For me?
You probably just passed each other.
Okay, okay, okay. Don’t worry about it, I’ll be right back. Or you can stay here.
And I go– The two of them now have bow and arrows knocked– I’m going to start shuffling back to get to Nott. In front of the dome.
The third one has two short swords at the ready, and you can see now they’re both doing, earlier, they were a little spooked. Now, they’re like, fuck, something’s here. So wait, you’re running back? I’m going back to their camp now. Make another stealth check. Oh. Uh, 23.
I’m just scanning around their camp, looking for her. Have they captured her? Is she in a trap? I start looking at all that carcasses. (laughter)
Okay. Shoved her in an ox. Well, like, then, I assume there’s traps near the– Yeah, you don’t see any of the traps set off. But you see them ready to go for a fight. Shit, shit. Okay. I’ll go halfway back towards our camp. Okay, both of you guys make perception checks. Oh no, no, no.
Is this perception? Yeah.
You keep running back to their camp, and you stop halfway, you don’t see each other, because you’re both being stealthy in the night.
(laughter) And you’re always missing each other. I’m going to say a–
Right next to each other. Say a silent prayer, load up my crossbow with a flare bolt, and shoot it straight up. Okay. Jester, as you’re running, all of a sudden, this bright light (whooshing) fills up the space around you, and you look up at this flare bolt (whooshing) leading this trail of burning flame. Jester!
Nott, I hear you! Yasha.
I’m preparing Charm Persons. You see three figures now rushing in your direction, and you, as you’re preparing, you kind glance over and you hear, Sh. Pretty tired.
Yeah. Does an 18 hit you?
Pass me that– The arrow–
That’s under you? (whooshing) Pass this way. Ah!
Shit. Let’s go.
Oh, no, no, no. No, no, no.
What do you mean, no? How far away are they? As this point, about 70 feet. I’m going to, I’m going to. Another arrow comes at you. Then we duck.
Actually, the two arrows, actually now, that’s a 22. LAURA: Shit. MATT: And a 19. LAURA: Uh-huh.
MATT: Okay. MARISHA: Is she getting pelted with arrows? TALIESIN: Yep. (laughter) LAURA: Wait, wait, wait.
MATT: You take four points of piercing damage, and you take three points of piercing damage. SAM: Let’s get out of here! LAURA: I’m saying wait.
SAM: What do you mean, wait?! LAURA: Wait, are they close? MATT: No, the two of them are there just loading arrows and firing.
LAURA: Ah, I’m going to zig zag towards them.
SAM: Zig zag towards them?! MATT: (laughs) Okay, you go running– LAURA: Wait!
SAM: What are you doing? LAURA: Wait! MATT: You guys can hear this, by the way. You guys saw this flare go, pfft up in the sky, and started hearing yelling in the distance. TALIESIN: I’m walking that direction. LAURA: I’m going to cast– how many are there? MATT: There are three of them. LAURA: I’m going to cast Charm Person at a 3rd-level. MATT: Okay. (laughter) MARISHA: You’re using–
MATT: It’s a 19 on the first one. LAURA: Shit.
MARISHA: — scare tactics to like–
MATT: Natural one on the second. Wow, they’re actually– two of them rolled pretty well– and 17 on the third one. Well, 17 is is the wisdom check. Okay, so two of them save, one of them doesn’t. Shit. So one of them, who, the one who has both of the swords at the sides, like stops and goes, ah, don’t worry about.
(laughter) And the other one’s like, what the fuck you talking about? It’s your friend Jester, it’s your friend. What are you doing, Jester? Let’s run.
Why? You guys are approaching now at this point. I’m walking towards, I’m walking towards, yeah, I’ve. Yeah, we walk out, and the dome just goes (whooshing). Yasha.
I’ve lit up my staff– Yeah.
I’m walking towards it. You want to just have a drink and watch from the hill? Sure.
All right. All right. Yeah, I’m not going in there. They got this.
All right. The two that aren’t trying to rush up, seeing you put your hands there, and they have their arrows knocking– So why are you mad at me? It’s your friend. Did it work?
It, huh? The two, no. Only one of them worked.
I know that, I’m asking them.
Okay. Oh, you’re asking them? They both look at each other. You guys currently have, the flare is gone. So there’s no real light source. They don’t have as good of eyes as you, so one of them goes, and like, the one who’s charmed in the back, goes, hold on, hold on. Lights a torch, and approaches. Don’t worry, they’re friends Hey, we’re friends. And the two see, as they approach, and they look at you and they go, fuck. Fuck?
And they look at each other– Because we’re–
And they both drop their weapons, and go, we didn’t know, we’re so sorry. Wait.
We’re so sorry. Okay, who are you? We’re just–
(Nott gasping) Look, we’re hunters.
It’s you. It’s you.
It’s you again. You fuckers. I shoot one in the leg.
(laughter) Throw it. (laughs) Oh.
I was hoping so hard. Cheers.
If it’s an emergency, we can go down there, but I think– No, this is more–
This is a great show. Eight point, I don’t get sneak attack. Eight points of damage.
Okay. Which one do you shoot, the one who’s holding the torch, or the two that have the bows? The bow, the bow guys.
Okay. So they go, (screaming). What is going–
Please don’t, don’t incinerate us, we didn’t know. Look, we’re not thieving. We’re just hunting. They were just hunting, Nott. Yeah, but they’re assholes. We’ll listen to you, we’ll listen to you. Whatever–
Stealing in general. No, no, no, we haven’t, I swear to God, we didn’t–
She can read minds. I can.
Read their mind. Zone of Truth.
Oh, oh, that, I don’t have it prepared, but I’m– Just say that you’re doing it. I’m casting Zone of Truth on them, but I’m not actually–
Deception check with advantage.
Okay, good. (Jester laughing)
Oh, oh, oh, 19 plus. Stuff.
19 plus five, 24. She can tell the truth. She can tell if you’re telling the truth. I’ll get it, that’s fine. Have you been stealing? No.
Huh. They’re telling the truth. Well, we haven’t been robbing. Mm.
What does that mean? What does that mean?
What does that mean? We’re not doing like, he’s like, shut up, man. No–
He’s like, I can’t lie. She put the magic on us. Well, when we–
(laughter) We’re not robbing people, we’re not anymore, and you know, couldn’t afford everything, so we took a couple of things when they weren’t looking, and it wasn’t a big thing.
That’s not that bad, that’s not bad.
That’s fine. As long as you’re not attacking people when you’re stealing things, right? We’re selling pelts and stuff. Oh, okay, that’s very good. I’m proud of you for making an honest living. We were just checking up on you to make sure you were– You know.
On the straight and narrow. And the guy with the torch goes, I believe them. (laughter)
You know? A giant red ape lumbers slowly past Jester– (screaming) And they just run, they just run screaming into the night.
No, come back. You have all your, your pelts. And the ape starts picking through their camp, and just looking through shit. (laughter) Well.
You know what? I’m really proud of them.
They have made a change. Yeah.
They’ve turned over a new leaf.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. They look healthier.
They did. Their clothes.
They looked, yeah, they looked like they were eating good. I assumed I’d have to cure somebody. I heard terrible screaming and– Nah, we got it handled.
Just going to cut off lots of little pieces of meat for you to sprinkle. You’ve got a little arrow. Oh, yeah, they hit me a couple of times. Oh, yeah.
Look at that. Yeah, it’s sticking out of my– Can I–
Could be worse. Yeah.
Yes, you can. Okay.
(dice clattering) Feces. A, this would be what?
An investigation check, we’re using the–
Right. That’s a nine.
A nine. (Beau laughing)
All right. There are the carcasses. Okay.
In which you instinctually grab and one, and like (chomping). Yeah.
Ew. There’s a collection of pelts, actually. Oh. And you can see the remnants of other hunting jobs they’re bringing with them. Whether, you get the sense based on what they had, they were in the process of heading back into some town. Aw, I hope they come back.
To sell their wares. Caleb puts a bunch of pelts on his head like a hat, and then, just lumbers back to their campsite. Okay. (laughs) We’re back.
How did that go? It was fine.
Oh my gosh, we ran into some old friends. It was super fun.
You defused the situation pretty well.
It was great. We knew you had it so–
Into the night. Did you see us?
Yeah, no, we thought about intervening, and then, we realized we didn’t want to.
Do you remember the Valley Bandits?
We do. We met them again.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. (Caleb panting)
Caleb was an ape. Caleb was there.
What’s on your, what’s on his head?
(Caleb growling) A hat.
Skin. A hat.
He drapes it all the way over Fjord, so you can’t even see his head anymore.
(laughter) It’s just a big bear pelt that’s mostly tanned, it’s still a little damp in place. It’s very warm and disgusting. Mm.
You know, every time we see them, they’re doing a little better. Maybe next time we see them, they’ll be running a business–
Or have a store somewhere? Yeah, how many were there? We saw three, so it could’ve been more. And you let them go, you didn’t injure them or kill any.
Well, Nott sort of hurt one of them.
Oh. I shot one with a–
We did see them running away from you, so.
That was because of Caleb. Oh.
(Caleb panting) Well, that’s good. I’m you glad you probably stopped them from thieving, right, they were probably doing something illegal. They said, they actually freely admitted to have done some bad things.
Right. But no more than we do bad things, you know? Hmm.
Yes. They were just, this was an honest thing that they were doing here tonight, that we scared them away from doing. Yeah, and stole their pelts that they were– But it’s like the Scared Straight program. You know, we just keep scaring them, and eventually, they’ll go straight. Okay.
Does that– Okay, I don’t, yeah. I think I read records about that never working. Well, we’re trying.
(laughter) Can we go see–
Yeah. Yes, feel free.
Sorry about that, Fjord. All right. Caleb starts recreating the hut. Fair enough. This evening’s rest is far more uneventful as the campfire in the distance slowly peters to a darkness.
They probably would’ve wandered in here, you know? For sure.
Tried to see what was going on.
Not a chance. They would never have noticed us. They’re not that talented. All right.
Well, I mean, in case, they would’ve noticed us, you certainly took care of the problem. That’s true.
Well done. We do have, lots of horses sitting right outside of our bubble, so–
They could’ve taken the horses, yep. That really felt like there was a lesson here, and I’m pretty sure we haven’t learned it. To protect Toilet Jr. and Crapper Jr. Oh, that’s right.
John, Jr. Old W.C.
Good ol’ W.C., J.R. Are those the horses’ names? Yeah.
They are now. (laughter)
That’s, yeah. Evening is uneventful, rest comes easy. The next morning, bright and early, the warmth of the sun would’ve hit you, if you weren’t inside the dome when it begins to grow warm, but however, the dome does eventually fade and you all come to have your morning meal before stepping onto your horses, and continuing again. Are you casting Find the Path again? Oh, that is a 6th level spell, what do you guys think?
Yeah, do it. Oh, man, all right. Where is it lead you to now? To the Isharnai, the Pri–
Okay. Nope, wait, wait, we’re going straight to her? We’re not going to go to Beau’s dad? Kamordah?
Oh. I just figured if we could go straight to her. Do we know where she is? We don’t where she is? We’re going–
The spell will probably take you there.
Oh, I thought it had to be a place that you know.
Does it, Caleb? I think it does. No, it says, that you’re familiar with. You don’t know where she lives. But you, well, she scryed on it, so she would know–
You know the location? I’m familiar with it.
Oh, with the place, oh. So we’re shortcutting us. Great.
I thought we were going to go, I thought we were going there just to get–
But yeah, that makes sense.
A little more data. We should probably do that first. Up to you.
Yeah. I don’t know what to do.
Beau. I mean, if we need further confirmation, we only have this name from a book. That’s not necessarily that we need confirmation. I’d like to–
Fjord is going to make a choice for us.
Beau’s house. Yeah.
We’re going to Beau’s house, right?
Yeah. Because we are assuming that that woman is the same– The same woman.
We’re pretty sure, but I would also like to know what we’re really dealing with, which we don’t really know. To Maison Lionett! Yeah, let’s go to–
We need some firsthand– So we don’t need the Find the Path for that. You know where we’re going. Yeah, more or less. We are out in the middle of nowhere right now. That way’s north, so where do we go if that is north? West.
East? You made this journey a number of times in your youth. You know how to guide them to Kamordah. You, well–
Looking for a fight, it’s all muscle memory at this point. All right.
One to one west, north. Well, it–
A diamond, a diamond. We get it, you have a baby. Sorry.
(laughter) No, I’m just playing. Yeah.
(laughter) The horses just take off running. We’re not going to go at all. Yasha.
Goddamn, Beau, we’re not even ready to go. I love it, I love it. Lost an hour.
Packs up the food, yeah. The second day of travel, along the path, guided by Beauregard, also uneventful. You do see occasionally some couriers on horseback, riding quickly across the southern road. Most of them travel upon the Bromkiln Byway but you guys have taken the path separately that heads to the Bromkiln Hills and Kamordah directly, based on the direction the spell took you, to cut off a little bit of time. You can take the road. The road is generally considered safer, if people can’t defend themselves. But you guys generally don’t have to worry too much about that, so cutting the corners on this, you come to the second night’s rest. You set up the camp.
Mm-hmm. And the evening comes to claim you for a night of sleep. In the middle of the night, Caleb is not sleeping too well. Mm-hmm.
And looks over at Yasha. I don’t like sleeping. You don’t sleep easy? I seem to be not very good at it lately. Some nights have been easier, but, I sometimes don’t like to go sleep and possibly dream, you know? You have not been yourself for awhile? Yeah. I guess I’m trying to figure out what that is right now. Things just feel a little weird, but I’m getting through it. (sighing) (eerie music)
It’s fresh. Yeah. (melancholy music) I hope I’m not being too forward in asking you this, but, how do you deal with it? I–
Is it that obvious? I guess from someone who knows. I’ve only heard things about, your past, but. Mm. We don’t have to talk about it. I just.
Nott? Yeah, I don’t remember, actually. Nott. Sometimes, I feel like two people. I’m better with them, and one of me is, my thing is old. So I guess I’m accustomed to it. (tense music) I thought that we were similar when we first met. It’s not just, it’s not just Obann. You have blood in your eye. Yeah. I’m sorry. Why are you sorry? I see a hesitation and regret in you. And it is like a mirror. I know regret, and I regret, I regret, and unless my intuition is very off, you know regret. So it never goes away? No. But, it’s easier with people around you, to make you feel more like you. I feel a little bit like, the forgiveness is almost harder to deal with. I feel like anger is an emotion that I know how to deal with, because that’s where I live. (woman vocalizing)
(eerie music) But I feel like, with everyone being so nice and accepting, I don’t know how to handle it. I know I’m not handling it well, but I’m trying. Caleb is spinning a diamond over and over and over and over and over and over and over in his hand. I don’t think we can. But, when we are never going to wash our hands, we can use them to leave something better in the world, and maybe the curtain never rises from our eyes, but what else do we do? You either lose yourself to it, and forget, or you do your part. They’re pretty, and he looks around at them all, they’re pretty great. We don’t deserve them. Do you love her? Who? I don’t need to tell you who. I’m sorry, I, as someone who has lost someone that they love very much, I know how important it is to say things before it is too late. It’s too late, Yasha. It’s not. Maybe not, I don’t know. You reach out just a hand and just, look away and pat the top of her hand, and then, curl up and face the outside of the dome. I just sort of stay sitting up and watching him. There’s a flash in the distance. Another one a moment later. There is a storm brewing. It’s comforting. I close my eyes and I try to sleep. (ethereal music) The morning eventually comes for you all. As the spell fades, and the morning sun does not peek through, as the previous morning did. Instead, as the dome begins to fade, the wet rain begins to suddenly fill the space, and you all rapidly grab your things, and start bundling it up quickly. Oh, ugh. It’s probably going to be raining.
Are we almost there, Beau? Are we almost there? We’re going to be riding in this shit all fucking day. It’s going to take the rest of the day, right? For the most part. All right, this is going to suck, let’s go. Yeah! Yeah.
(laughter) Getting back on the horseback, continuing to follow Beauregard’s lead across the Truscan Vale, ignoring the roads, onwards towards the Bromkiln Hills. Most of the day progresses, all of you getting bundled with your cloaks and materials close, to maintain heat, and as as much dryness as you can, though elements of the rain seep into your boots, you can feel the moisture causing your skin to clam within. Looking up ahead, you can see the mountain range of this side of the Cyrios Mountains beginning to grow larger and larger, until you begin to see the greenish grassy plains of the Truscan Vale begin to give way to a different coloration. The grass has begun to become duller, brown and yellow in places, and as you reach the beginning of the Bromkiln Hills themselves, you can see already, not beyond, just that the hills getting larger and oddly shaped, but the landscape go from patches of completely lack of vegetation, where it’s just cracked ground and mud, to areas where you can see all manner of strange colored earth and mud and minerals beginning to emerge from what look almost like small steam vents that rise from the ground. As you begin to–
We’re close. This is where you grew up? Shitty, right? Doesn’t look like farmland. Exactly. Heading towards the outskirts of Kamordah, as you crest one of the hills, begin to see in the later hours of the day, not quite nearing sunrise yet but dark enough where the clouds remain overhead that you can see the lights of all the interior lit homes of the village, just begin to make their way to your eyes on the horizon. All around you, the smell changes, too. As opposed to wet earth and grass, you can smell strange minerals. Some smells sweet and have almost like a jasmine type pleasant smell to it, and then, waves of heavy sulfur and other deep, earth minerals emerging from the, what you can now see around you, pockets of very heavy, geothermal activity that seem to be brewing through the nearby landscape. You can see dozens and dozens of sorts of these vents, just this gentle white mist and every now and then, you’ll see the small, little geyser (hissing) emerge from spots. Oh, is there a volcano around here? I think one that used to be active a long time ago in the mountains when, this whole landscape is just filled with geothermal activity and steam vents. Don’t stick your hands into any of the water. It will melt, it will slough right of your bones. What? Have you seen it happen? No, just heard stories. That sounds, Beau, have you seen it happen? You lived around here. We used to throw in snails and shit in there, and see what would happen. That was fun.
That’s really fucked up. Yeah, yeah. We were kids. But yeah, let’s keep going, though. How does Beau seem compared to how’s she’s normally? Totally good, doing great. Beau?
Awesome. Yeah, blue skies. How do you seem, Beau? Anxious? Barricaded behind emotional walls. I’m trapped in a glass case of emotions. There you go.
More closed off than she’s been in a while?
Yes. Definitely. If anything, it’s shades of the first time you guys met coming through. Heading towards the outskirts of the city, as you approach the actual town proper, there are wrought iron gates and small stone walls about waist to chest high in places. The ground itself gives way to mud, a combination of the recent weather, and just probably the strange, ashen ground that makes up a lot of the town here. Vineyards, you know that, and have heard that fine wines come from here. This is not a landscape that would be kind to any sort of standard vineyard. At the front of the city, there are a few of the town’s guard posted, that just keep an eye as you approach, careful and untrusting, but keeping to their space, just looking over to each of you intently as you go. How’s the weather today? Is it still rainy? Oh, it’s still rainy.
Just gray. It does not sound–
(laughter) Yeah, the thunder and the lightning that rolled through the night seems to have faded through the day, but it is still raining pretty hard. Heading inward, you can see, this is a town built largely of pale rock and dull, petrified wood, which you know is a lot of the forests in the mountains surrounding here, some of it’s very lush from how rich, how mineral-rich a lot of the earth is, and other areas are just died off, since whatever altered this mountain range happened, the lush forest that once carried it all patches off and just, (squeaking) withered up, and that becomes very cheap wood to build with. So it’s funny. For as much as you hear about wealth and, the Truscan Vale is known to be a rich area, Deastok in particular, to the south. This town, the elements that you’re seeing is, upon arriving, seem a little more ramshackle, and in some ways, remind of Shadycreek Run, though not as seedy, necessarily, but definitely built for function over aesthetics. A lot of people you can see bringing their work loads through the streets, themselves hoods and cloaks up, looking miserable in the weather, shouting to each other and pulling materials through. You can see carts exiting past you, heading toward the southern side of the city as they leave, a number of them carrying what look to be large barrels, some of these exports on their way out, and well-armed guards watching them as they go. See how miserable everyone looks? I mean, they’re probably drunk, because everyone’s drunk on wine, right? This is wine place. Nah, it just sucks. Caduceus, your homeland, it’s, you said it was dying, right, the nature was dying? Is it like this? Is this natural?
Because there are, this is different, but it’s still very alive, it’s just a different kind of alive. Yeah, this is not the same. Farmlands here passed from hand to hand and farmer to farmer, and they kept selling it off trying to get shit to grow, and of course, they couldn’t get anything to grow until my dad, maybe a couple other farmers came in, threw down some grapes, and it turns out that the mineral-rich soil and the shitty weather from all the ocean mist makes for some great fucking grapes. Mm.
Grapes. A lot of grapes, so many fucking grapes. Right, all that stuff and some crazy old woman. Yeah. Passing through, you can see what you know is the mud fields, which are an element of a lower end residential town, though it’s not a slum, per se, but it’s just the standard workers’ homesteads here. The streets themselves just brown and mucky, especially with all the water that’s starting to flood in some places. You can see some folks are in the process of currently taking buckets and making sure that certain areas don’t get too soggy. You can see situated greenhouses that are arranged in places that are enclosed entirely, where it seems some semblance of green is being maintained from the interior. You know these people have brought soil from other locations and have begun to try and find what other types of vegetation do take to the landscape here, and some do, not as profitable as wine is, and even then, it’s very selective of which patches of land do. Making your way through the mud fields, you eventually head towards what is called the Rainbow Vineyards, which is along the base of the mountains here that lead into the Cyrios Range. There are these winding cliffs, and you can see where they have carved walkways. They go up the side, and there are buildings held in, there are heavy ropes dangling what looks to be where materials and goods are brought down to lower elevation, or carried up on high, as well as donkeys and horses carrying things up these paths if need be. You can see clusters and clusters of oddly colored grape vines, all just set upon the entire mountainside here. And when I say mountainside, it visually is a mountainside, but none like what you’ve seen. There are layers and layers, and the colors transition brightly from a dull gray to a bright yellow, to almost a dripping orange in some locales. There’s areas where you can see pools of hot, hot water, that are emerging in these puddles of mud, where it’s boiling, bubbling, and you can see the coloration turning blue at the edges almost, and around that edge, you can see cultivating additional grape vines, and other strange, odd plants that are starting to take into there, all very carefully under watch, and very carefully guarded and well-manned, and you get the sense that there’s probably a lot of the, well, at least, a surprising section of this town makes its living tending to vineyards here. As they’ve been traveling through here, Frumpkin the Raven goes (whooshing) and lands on Beauregard’s shoulder, and not sharp or painful or hard at all, but just, every once in awhile, gives a little (tapping), and Caleb doesn’t look at all, he’s just face forward. Okay. What, Frumpkin? Stop, stop. You can feel the muscles of your back and shoulders and neck, tightening and knotting in a way that can remember experiencing. The heat that’s building along the back of your neck and your spine is tremendous, matching almost what you imagine the temperature of these steam pits that are just slowly releasing, the cold rain hitting, and the hot steam being released from it. For a moment, you feel almost like you’re matching that temperature. As you guys crest up on one side of the Rainbow Vineyards section, and you can see the three story estate of the Lionett family, lit from the inside. Beau. Whatever happens, he was an asshole for being mean to you. You’re a wonderful person. You are a wonderful person.
Yeah, yeah. You’re a wonderful person. He was lucky to have you for a daughter. Hopefully, he will realize that now. If he doesn’t, remember what you told me. Fuck them.
(Beau laughing) You have us, and we love you so much, okay? Thanks, Jes, and I give her a hug. (sighing deeply) They added an arch. It’s even more pretentious now. Okay, let’s go. Do we knock or call or– There is a heavy gate on the outside, with an arch in the front gate is, it’s replaced the familiar entrance to the house. There’s a little courtyard, where you can see there have been some trees and bushes that are tended to there. The soil within the courtyard is different from the soil surrounding, though you can see even what’s been placed supposedly to try and keep the transplanted greenery intact is still browning and graying, a failed experiment on making a nice grounds around their home.
Are there any flowers? No. This is a flowerless place. I was going to pick all of them. (laughter) As we’re approaching, is there anyone on the roof, guarding the wall?
Make a perception check. (dice clattering) 10. 10.
(laughter) It’s hard to tell at this distance, and as the light gets darker, at this point, you can sense now from just the slow shift in brightness that you’re probably about half an hour from dusk.
It’s all that sulfur. But you would know that there’s usually, at any give point in time, two folks patrolling the grounds, just to ensure that nothing happens to the family or the business. Yeah.
Natch. The gate is there, it’s locked, but you know one of many tricks to get by it. So you just walk up to the lock, we’ll say one of the pin materials that you often use to keep your hair up, you just quickly, and the lock just goes (squeaking). I think I have a lock picking kit. Probably.
I still have one, yeah. Blackwood sword.
Yeah. (players talking over each other) Just give it a condescending look. There is a hitching post just outside, or say three hitching posts right there for travelers, you can leave the horses there. After you, Beauregard. If you want us to attack anyone at all, just say, “Armadillo.” “Armadillo,” got it. Armadillo
Armadillo. Okay. Let’s go. Do you want us with you? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I rolled deep, that looks fucking awesome. You’re charge in us, you’re the leader of the group. Cool, cool, cool? It’s fine, it’s fine, it’s fine. Okay, let’s go. Okay. As you guys all begin to walk along the central pathway where some of the first cobblestones you’ve seen, you glancing at a fork, can see on the second floor, there is a railing, and there is a cloaked, hooded figure with a crossbow just leaning on the edge, not aimed at you, but just watches you carefully, and intentionally making his presence known as you approach, in a way that guards do oh so subtly when they’re hired hands. Coming to the familiar front door, you can see there is a bit of a, a frosted glass window, in the front, that gives a little bit of light from the inside. The heavy metal knocker sits resting, familiar. (Matt beatboxing)
(laughter) It’s very cool.
(laughter) And you hear, poof. It’s on a delay, yeah. We need to change the batteries on my– Yeah. (Fjord imitating slow motion voice) A moment passes, and then, you hear the, (clicking) (squeaking) and the door opens, and you see a woman standing there. Probably early 30s, hair just tied back. She’s wearing not upper-class clothing, more just like a worker or a servant outfit. Hello, can I help you? Do I know who she is?
You do not recognize her. Is it your mom?
Stepmom. Oh, okay.
No. My mom is way more garish in the way she dresses. Is the lady or man of the house here today? (chuckling) Oh, may I ask who’s inquiring? Beauregard Lionett. Oh, um. I’m afraid the master is tending to the vineyard at the moment. He’ll probably be back shortly for dinner. But Ms. Lionett is inside. Please, please, enter. Oh, shit. She opens the door.
What’s wrong? Beau, what if your dad recognizes my voice? He probably will.
Just change your voice. I’m just going to change my voice. I wouldn’t worry.
I’m just going to make– It’s fine, yeah, don’t worry about it. She steps to the side and, just nods her head a little bit of like, I had no idea, I am so sorry. Looking inside, it is warm, it’s inviting, especially in the cold rain, but as you step inside, and kick off your muddy boots or not, depending on how you feel about it, immediately, here in this foyer area, you can see it has a beautiful rustic aesthetic. There are antlers on the wall. You can see, it’s like a dark mahogany wood interior lined with a brighter wood used to set the walls apart. There is a staircase that goes to a second landing that wraps around the main foyer area, and there is a iron chandelier that sits in the middle that is circular with magically-held candles that just keep a constant, nice glow there. This is nice.
Yeah. You can, the servant closes the door behind you, and then, rushes off. Just wait just a moment. (clearing throat) And runs upstairs. Madame? Madame? And you can hear some giggling upstairs. She goes and leaves into another room, and here’s–
Over to the fireplace. Mm-hmm. It’s warm, the hearth is burning. Yeah, I mean, it looks pretty awful here. Right? No? Your family has done all right for themselves. How you are, how are you doing?
How you are? How are you are doing?
(laughter) How you are–
How are y’all doing? (laughter) Huh? Beauregard!
(gasping) And you all look and turn and partway down the stair landing, you see a woman, you know, similar, darker olive skin, hair put up into this very, very tight bun with a bit of ponytail that dangles behind, a really, really nice, a really nice dress for just being casually at the house, but comfortable, of a deep green color. You can see, she is leaning in a very startled way, just looking directly down at Beau. Hey, Mom. I’m sorry, I didn’t know you were coming. Yeah, it’s kind of a trend that I have going on. Well, uh. And she heads down the stairs at a brisk pace, and approaches, and steps up to you, and then, halts, unsure how to greet you. Gives a somewhat warm, somewhat stilted hug, and then pulls back a bit. I’m sorry to barge in. I know you were wanting to keep me distant from the family, but I need to talk to Dad. It’s important, and then, we’ll be gone, and you don’t have to–
No, no, you– Fuck with me anymore.
You could stay as long as you like. I, who are your friends here? And you hear a voice from upstairs go like, Mommy?
(laughter) And you see, from around the corner, the servants trying to catch up to him, but you see a young boy, who, in many ways, looks like a young, boyish Beauregard, longer hair that’s in this wild curl, looks like he just got out of a shower or something and had his head briskly dried. He’s wearing these baggy pajamas that drag just past the fingers, and he begins running down the stairs. Oh, at two? Oof.
(laughter) Talented kid.
Two and a half– Waiting for that.
Two and a half. It’s not, when I say tumbling down the stairs. (laughter)
That sounds right, that sounds right.
Yeah. And restore.
(laughter) There you go.
(laughter) They bounce back.
Yeah. No, it’s the servant trying to catch up with him, and they both come down to join as Clara still isn’t breaking eye contact and she just reaches out and takes your hand, and says, it’s good to see you. Yeah. Would you like to stay for dinner? (Jester humming)
That’s most gracious of you, we are the Mighty Nein. Mm-hmm.
We are esteemed friends of your daughter.
Well, many friends of Beauregard are friends of ours, so. Hi.
Hi. How you are?
I’m Clara Lionett, Beauregard’s mother, but I assume you know that by now. I’ll ensure some places are set. Hey, Mom, remember that year we had that mud slide that ended up happening, and took out half of our stock, and we only had a few bottles left from that year? Yes? Can we go grab one of those? Of course. I’ve been talking about Alina a lot, you know, I’d love to–
Yes, yes, yes, of course. Janine, could you get one of those bottles? And she goes, right away, and then, darts out. Anyway, oh, oh, my goodness, oh my goodness, I didn’t even, Beauregard, and she turns, and you know, clutching the side, holding onto the edge, with a big smile, bright eyes, the little boy looks up at all of you. Whoa. (hopeful whimsical music) Thoreau, Jr., I’d like you to meet your older sister, Beauregard. Beauregard, this is Thoreau, Jr. That is sister? Yes, it’s your sister. And he walks up to you. I crouch down. And he puts his arms around you. He has that smell to him, like all the fucking kids in Kamordah. He pulls back a little bit, and he’s still holding onto you a little bit. And he’s just looking at you, and he’s just taking you in, as Clara goes, we were hoping you’d come by sometime, to meet him. Did you know, it’s the timeline that was always interesting to me. Did you know you were pregnant with him when you sent me away? The meadow is lovely. Jester, would you help me over here for a moment, Nott, perhaps, everyone, if we could just. I lean down to TJ. Hey, little man. Hey. What’s your favorite color? (laughter) And he points at his mother’s dress. Green? Well, here, you might, you might like this, then. I give him the jade necklace, put it around him. Yeah.
Yep, yep. (laughter) It’s been in some dank places, little man, so it’ll help you really build up your immune system. (laughter) And he’s just looking at you, going, and slobber coming off of it. Antibodies.
Ah, what? It tastes like indigo.
(Beau laughing) Look, Beauregard, things are challenging all around. I didn’t, your father didn’t mean things to become so tense when you went away. Well, it was a hell of a goodbye, you know? I’m not entirely sure why anyone would think that that was a good fucking idea to handle a situation with a daughter that was clearly, just wanting your fucking attention. I’m sorry? I know it doesn’t mean much, your father was under a lot of stress, and things should’ve been handled differently, you’re right, you’re absolutely right. Fuck, Mom. So you’re just as passive as you were back in the day. Did you get that bottle of wine? Janine’s new here, the footsteps are coming from under the cellar. Janine! Here’s the–
My hero. Passes the bottle–
Janine, Janine, Janine, Janine. Thank you, thank you. I’ll take care of it.
Yeah. It’s like a, it’s one of our most expensive bottles of wine, so enjoy. We should’ve sold some, you know, Mom? Oh, someone’s home. The front door opens, and you can hear the rain from outside, and you see a figure step in with a heavy overcoat, hat on, step inside, kick off a bit, close the door, take the hat and the coat off, hang it on the side, and turn, and then, as your father looks you directly in the face, and immediately just looks like he’s seen a ghost. Beauregard. Hi.
(Matt chuckling) I’m home.
I can see that. I was not expecting to see you today. Or ever.
Welcome, welcome. Friends of yours, I assume? Ah, yeah, Mom, Dad, this is the Mighty Nein. He looks towards all of you, and then looks to Nott, he goes. Hi. How you are?
Hello. Looks to Clara–
Dad, don’t do that, Dad. Don’t.
Looks back, and picks up TJ, and puts him in her arms, and. Oh, it’s fine, it’s fine. You’re fucking embarrassing.
Cute kid. He looks very tasty.
(laughter) By this point, TJ is looking right at Nott, after seeing, he’s like, whoa. Cool, right?
And Clara’s like, uh, I’m going to go put TJ to, I’m going to put him down. And then, takes off a little bit, and Thoreau steps in a bit. Well, it’s pleasure to have you all. I am glad you’ve all been, been traveling, I assume. Just going to go and start rifling around for some cups or something. I have been receiving updates about your work with the Cobalt Soul. Apparently, been doing some, quite some fine work. I guess I should say Expositor Beauregard? That’s incredible. I mean.
Still sending you those tuition updates, huh? Well, it’s important for us to, you know, make sure we know how our Beauregard’s doing. Unparalleled, she is. Mm-hmm. As she would be. Insight check.
Ooh. I want to know if he seems like he’s genuinely proud of her or if–
Go for it, the insight check. Come on, Jessie. Roll hot.
What is that, 23? 23.
Wow. Whispers, whispers. Whispers.
This is intense family drama that you’ll only get, you only get thanks to Hero Forge. (laughter) Hero Forge, makers or minis and also, supporters of intense family dramas. Travis is, both of his finger are in his nose right now. Is that allergies–
What do you mean, allergies? It’s winter. There’s no allergies.
In our own way. As the cocaine wears off. You need more. Now they know our secret.
That’s right. (laughter)
It’s Adderall. Eh, good hit, man.
(Matt sighing) Now back in.
Found a couple cups. Oh, thank you. For this, I will try a sip. Ooh, here you go.
Oh. Well, I, a toast to Expositor Beauregard Lionett. Cheers. I know you well enough, Beauregard, to assume you haven’t come for the sake of pleasantries. I just go up and stand next to Beau, and put my hand on her back, and I’m going to whisper in her ear. Do you want us to stay? Please. Yep, you know me, Dad. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t want something. (Jester murmuring intensely) Listen, that story that you love to tell, at every family gathering, and for bedtime, and any chance you had, that old hag that you talked about, we need to find her. (Matt chuckling) Is that story even real, or is that just meant to terrify me? And he finishes his drink and sets it down. Of course it’s real, Beauregard. Look, I know you, I know we’ve had our differences. And I’ve not, I’ve not been the pinnacle of a father, in the same way that you’ve not been a pinnacle of a daughter. I accept my responsibilities in the things that I’ve, maybe been a bit harsh on. But look what you’ve become. It feels like a weird justification of your behaviors, but I’d like to hope that what I became had nothing to fucking do with you, but maybe I’d be lying to myself. Yeah, I was difficult. I have my own mess in everything that happened. (tense music) But I thought a dad was supposed to stay by their kid when they’re having a fucking hard time. His eyes get–
Mom already fucking mentioned that life gets difficult and it’s hard. So you’re right. Maybe it’s easy to justify the easy way out, just get rid of the problem. That’s not what this was about. You were on the self-destructive path. We didn’t know what to do. I’ve never been a, no one teaches you how to be a good father. I regret choices I’ve made, and you don’t think I don’t hold myself responsible for, I thought I was doing what was best for you, truly. You did? It was probably the best thing you could’ve done for me. So thank you. Tell me the story again, and then I’ll go. It’s true. I haven’t lied to you or made anything up. Why are you asking about this? She has information we need. You’re trying to actually go to her. We need her. What for? Why are you afraid? I’m not afraid, I’m just curious. We think she has something to do with why. We needed to break a curse. That’s all.
(laughter) Damn it.
That voice. Judy Garland just showed up. (laughs) Your daughter’s trying to do what she always does, help a friend. Well, I mean, I’ve just heard the stories growing up about the witch in the mountains. What was her name? I don’t remember. She was just a witch in the mountains. Beau, you know how I grew up. We had nothing. I was in the street, I had nothing else to lose. I mean, if I was lucky, this would work. If I was not quite as lucky, she would’ve just chopped me up and eaten me. I didn’t have anything else waiting for me. So I went and just wandered north, through the mountains, through the forests, and my shoes began to split, and I was chased by wolves and worse, until eventually, one day, I just stumbled upon this little shack. And there was the witch. Right when I began to think it was all a lie, and I had thrown myself to the wolves for nothing, there she was, with her crooked smile, and hungry eyes, and– Did she have long arms?
(tense music) Longer than natural, yeah. And she asked me how I’d come here, I threw myself so withered before her, and I said I had nothing to lose. And heard that she can help people. She said she could.
(tense adventure music) She said she was a fortune teller. She said fortune was her specialty. And so, she threw her runes, and played her cards, and said that there was a way to get what I always wanted for just a fragment of my fortune, and I said, well, I don’t have a fortune. She said, not that fortune, your fortune. And I agreed, because I had nothing to lose. I said, this woman I wanted to marry doesn’t deserve an impoverished man, whatever it takes. And so, (sighing) she said, I’ll be a great craftsman, working in vines, spirits, to pick a place in the mountain land, and wherever I picked, the ground would grow. She said a young beau will take on the great name, to continue this success, until everything, eventually, will humble me by that which I desired most. (mysterious adventure music) And then she sent me on my way. (intense adventure music) We came back, we built on land that would last a bit, we could borrow from her family, and she was right, and we had another blessing. (melancholy music) And the fact that it all worked means I don’t know what else she took, and I don’t know what’s coming to humble me, and I just want to protect my family. So if you intend to actually go and see this witch, just be careful. For me? Or for you and yours? For us, Beauregard.
(melancholy music) Maybe I’m the one that’s sent to humble you. (Matt sighing) Beauregard, don’t think for any moment your mother and I haven’t loved you from the depths of our hearts this entire time. I’m sorry if we didn’t show it properly. (melancholy music) (Beauregard chuckling) I don’t know if I feel validated or vindicated or what. It’s confusing. My apologies. I didn’t realize this would be the evening I think any of us was coming home to. I’m a bit caught off guard and unprepared. Yeah. Well, some things never change. Do they, Dad?
Beau? I pull her aside. Ooh, I’m like seconds away from losing my shit. I know, I know you are. I just want you to know–
(beverage bubbling) you know, he looks like he’s telling the truth, Beau. Obviously, he was terrible to you. Obviously, they did terrible things, and they sent you away, and that’s horrible. But I do believe they love you, I do, and I don’t expect you to forgive them right away, by any means. But I would just encourage to maybe, maybe listen to them the way you listened to us, with open ears. How did you do it?
Do what? Forgive your dad so quickly. (tense music)
Well, I mean, he seemed pretty earnest, and there’s not a lot to be gained from holding grudges. You know, it feels like poison inside of you. How much better would it feel if you could just be clean? I’m so good at holding grudges. I know, you’re really good at it. You make an interesting point, though. I walk back over.
This is an excellent wine. Well, looking at the bottle, it’s an extremely rare one, that I would’ve preferred to have kept in the cellar, but it’s a special occasion, so enjoy it. The most special occasion, a reunion. (clearing throat) Beauregard. I’m going to go find this woman that you based so much of our entire lives around, and hope that I can better understand why and where you’re coming from, because while you and Mom didn’t do a lot of the footwork into understanding me, it doesn’t mean that I can’t do my research to better understand where I came from. I’ve done a lot to reflect on what choices I’ve made to put me in the position that I’m in. And I guess I’m just mildly disappointed to see that the same amount of work hasn’t been done or at least even remotely attempted. That’s not entirely true, Beauregard. Not entirely wrong, either. I gave Thoreau Jr. the jade necklace. Make sure he doesn’t choke on it. (tense adventure music) Well, then don’t, don’t leave and go to this woman without any sort of protection. Hold on just a second, and he nervously runs past you, and heads off into one of the side chambers. You’re doing great, you’re doing amazing. You’ve done a really good job, Beau. Yeah.
We all are here with you. Question, protection? He thinks that protects you? I told you he was incredibly superstitious. We never checked it out, though. It might’ve been protective, or really valuable, I don’t know. Cast Good and Evil. Okay, Detect Good and Evil. Fireball.
(laughter) With white shells.
(laughter) I’m curious if this is a guy who’s had things blast cursed. Sure.
How superstitious is he in this house, how fearful is he? Okay. Well, Detect Good and Evil, all right. I know, I’m going to do a Detect Magic on top of it. Okay. He rushes back in, and in his hands, and you can see a different design, but there is another tighter jade necklace, different carvings, he rushes over and he goes, this is your mother’s, but just please, please, for me, if you’re going to do this. Always good to have an upgrade. You don’t sense anything on the list. Detect Magic, just for fun, too, just for the room, for everything.
Okay. And the lights above, definitely. You know, the equipment you’re wearing. The necklace he’s granting is not magical. Mm.
It’s super special, though. Yeah. And he just, as he grabs your hands, handing it to you, withdraws and recomposes himself. (hopeful music) I only hope, I hope I can make up to you the missteps that I can plainly see behind me. It’s rare that a child’s damage at that age and behavior doesn’t reflect how I, hmm, misstepped in my parenting. (tense music) Thank you for that. Your grandfather was no beach, either, and there’s, there’s difficulty in realizing how much you intended to be different, and then, to realize you’ve become so similar. So I hope with the company you keep, maybe you won’t repeat the same mistakes I have, by treating the people around you. I’m trying to do better. I’ll let you know how it goes. Good, good. Are we staying, are we going– Are you staying for dinner? What exactly are we doing? We’ll leave now, yeah? We should go.
Yeah? Yeah, yeah. Tell Mom thank you. Mom! You look back and she’s actually looking out past the doorway, and darts behind, and then walks out. Yes? I’m going, Mom.
Oh. Oh, all right, and she reaches behind, and pulls TJ behind her. You see he like comes up alongside her, and she walks up to you, and hands TJ over to your father, and takes your hand, sorry things, things are strained tonight, but it’s good to see you. I just lean in and I whisper, you’re allowed to have an opinion, too, Mom. I’ll let you know how it goes. Of course. And she squeezes your hand and lets go, and then, she looks over, and TJ comes up again. He looks up at you, and holds the necklace back up again and starts sucking on it again, and Clara’s like, no, no, honey.
(soft laughter) No, no, no, no, no. And your dad turns to you. Be safe.
(tense music) I will, I promise. Keep her safe.
Always. Of course. You want to give her an awkward hug or anything? You know she’s going to face a pretty powerful being. I think we’re good.
Right. Okay, just checking. Good luck to you, too.
Any landmarks to look out for? If you hear noise, run. There was a, a sick, bramble tangle, partially grayed and petrified like many of the woods there. That means you’re close. If the ground begins to tar, it looks like, you’re almost there. And if I recall, it’s pretty straight north from here. All right. Should we take horses there, or should we go on foot? You can take horses as far as you want, but there’ll be a point where you won’t be able to bring them with you. Maybe we should leave the horses here? We’ll take them a bit.
All right. (laughter) Oh, you care about horses. Well, the Mighty Nein, it’s been a pleasure having you. Welcome to the Lionett Estate, and travel safe. We look forward to seeing you here again. And you, too. I, many years ago, I was granted a wish by that same witch, and I turned into this as a result, so I hope that doesn’t happen to you. (laughter) Bye.
Bye, Dad. I swipe another bottle of wine that they have on display on the way out.
And I will steal literally anything.
(laughter) If I don’t see anything on the way out, I’ll just take the cup I was drinking. The cup you still have, definitely. It’s a nice cup. On the way out, there are these small, square windows off to each side of the entryway, and they have these little, decorative tables with nice velvet over them, and you can see, there’s a couple of art pieces there that are relatively easy to grab. I’ll grab one.
Doing it stealthily or– Stealthily.
Roll sleight of hand. (groaning) 28.
I am so disappointed. You glance down, and it’s this beautiful jade rabbit sculpture.
Ooh. When our friend gets out of the shitter, tell him to meet us outside. (laughter) I’m just going to linger and hang back. (laughter) I’m one of the last ones to walk out. Okay. Thoreau approaches to close the door behind. You should be very proud of your daughter. You are very lucky to have her. I agree. You should show her that more, then. If, for some reason, we end up killing this hag, will all of this go away? I don’t know.
(tense music) Well, maybe that would help you remember what’s important. Have a good night. As you leave, he just stands there with the door open, watching you all walk away, those words still echoing through his ears before the door slowly (clicking). Orphan. As you all–
(laughter) As you all step back out into the cold night rain. Teaches a lot.
The sun now set, the sky darkened beneath the storm clouds, as another distant flash of lightning brings the calming thunder to your ears, Yasha. I cry a little bit, and then, just grab everybody, and huddle everybody in. Hug, hug, hug, hug, hug, hug. And you all come in for a cold, rainy hug here in the mud, on the outskirts on the Lionett Estate, here in Kamordah, a union of support. Yeah, it’s good. And that’s where we’ll end tonight’s episode. Ooh.
(Taliesin snapping fingers) Man, whoa.
Oh man. Oof.
Yeah. Totally where you expected it to go, right? Totally expected. It was a good show. I’ve had all these battle maps for all the different direction for a lot of this, and I don’t care. This has all been a great fucking role play, man. Travis, Travis, when you were gone, was Fjord’s stool solid or runnier, or? Stony.
(laughter) Vegan milkshake stony, like that level. Whoa.
Yeah. It’s a rough time. Wow, guys, wow. My eyes were puffy.
Yeah. I can’t imagine why.
(Marisha laughing) You’re going to be exhausted. I’m going to sleep so good. Man, it’s so weird playing your asshole dad. Yeah.
(laughter) Yeah, it’s kind of creepy. It’s a very strange disassociation exercise. I hope so.
Oh yeah. (laughter) Man. Well, thank you guys for joining us. (cheering)
(laughter) That’s still funny.
Have fun on this show. We have fun.
Oh yeah. We have–
I am sweating, and was just stress eating.
Yeah. It was so much stress eating. The back of my neck is drenched. Ugh, oh man, this is, ugh. No, no.
There are NPCs that are challenging and such, but between your dad and Taryon’s dad, those are two NPCs that have been the grossest to step into for different reasons. (Marisha laughing)
Challenges. Yeah. Well.
Yeah, but the syphilis, man, it’s the–
That’s just funny. (laughter)
The syphilis arc. You left an impression. I’m just looking over here, I’m like– It was Benadryl.
I’m looking down here, I’m like rolling to see, like yeah, no, they’re going to run into them again. Ooh, that was tough. Yeah, a fun recurring theme. I felt that there was something in that fire that was worth, I’m so glad, that was great. The fire?
Mm-hmm. The bandit camp.
Oh. That’s a whole different thing. There’s a coincidence down there. I know, anyway.
Wanna look that up. Thank you guys for joining us for this extensively emotionally tense episode. We’ll be back here next Thursday. Looks like treading into the Cyrios Mountains. Oh God.
Surrounding Mount Mentiri. Oh, you guys remember when we first started, when we were like, witch hut, witch hut– Witch hut, witch hut.
We’re going to a witch hut. Oh man.
And we surrounding that hut, we’re like, there’s a witch in it. Nope, yeah there is.
It was a troll. Yeah there is.
Yeah. There’s an actual witch hunt. Oh my God.
And we know, we’re going to be prepared, we’re going to have our stuff together. Sure we’re going to be prepared. We’re going to make some good choices.
♪ Have syphilis await ♪ Hey! I’m going to take control of water. Everything’s going to fine.
Yeah. That’d be great. All right, guys, well, we hope to see you next Thursday. In the meantime, be safe, take care of each other. Know that we love you very much, and visit Thursday at– Woo hoo!
(bubbles popping) Good night.
Good night. (tense adventure music)