Ep 10: "Magically Boned"

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Cyl came to GB’s place of work, Powers’ Flowers, to get a get-well gift for Seldanna as she recovers from her stabbing. Cyl also hoped to ask for help with the Scroll of Sending that Afra gifted her. Reaching out to Cyl’s mother across the continent might be a way to get guidance about the disease affecting the eirshale. And Cyl had previously painted a portrait of her mother as a commissioned gift to Seldanna’s family, so there would hopefully be enough familiarity with her face to get the spell to work.
Across town, Lark saw but did not engage Pip the farrosh, who was heading toward the leather shop Tip to Tail. The barbarian was dragging a giant spider by a harness made of spider silk (still attached to the spider’s backside). Breyer, the leatherworker at Tip-to-Tail, told Pip that she couldn’t make leather out of the giant spider, and Pip proceeded to list off the ways that on could prepare the creature for meat, if nothing else. Breyer and her siblings carried the spider corpse off.
Outside, Pip saw Lark, Cyl, and GB walking through town and they all met on the street. They invited Pip to come with them to the Pearl District. And Pip regaled the group with a traditional farrosh dance (of sexy times).
Pearl District:
Lark, Cyl, Pip, and GB spoke on the way to Seldanna’s home. Cyl said she would be happy to help Lark get a job with her “Maestro,” the royal artist of the city. Lark showed off a painting he was working on: it featured “Whatever”, the goth poet, sitting in the park on a broken teeter-totter while Cyl reached up for the other side. Lark gave the painting to Cyl. Later, Lark suggested that we could get Pip a job hunting for the goblins in Green Iron Village.
The group passed by the Lockridge Estate, the house that had been entirely transformed into bone. Pip scurried over to try to find a way in or a thin spot to focus his efforts on. He eventually ran headlong into a bone window and broke a hole inside. The group decided to come back later, rather than go inside with only the four of them, and no healer.
Arasys Estate:
At Seldanna’s home, the group were welcomed by Stoax, the Arasys family’s bugbear butler. He stood over six feet tall, lean, wore a tailored suit, and had well-trimmed facial fur and henna-tattooed tusks. He was extremely polite, a consummate gentleman. He left us to wait in the non-denominational chapel, while he fetched Seldanna.
When Seldanna arrived, she expressed concern about her family discovering her divine magic, and more importantly, concern that she wouldn’t be able to get the sending scroll to work because of being still shaken by her near-death experience. Cyl offered encouragement, and promised not to be upset if they didn’t succeed, if Seldanna was at least willing to do her best and try. Seldanna agreed, and the group went to her bedroom for more privacy. Pip danced the “concentration dance” of his people and Lark and GB joined him to help. (At this point its clear that all of Pip’s farrosh dances are the same)
Seldanna attempted the spell, but her concentration was disturbed by flashbacks of her trauma. Cyl was more than willing to wait until Seldanna feels better cast the scroll spell, and thanked her for trying.
GB suggested that they go to the Lockridge Estate to investigate the inside of the bone-house. He and Pip were both very excited by the prospect. Seldanna warned the others that Tybalt Lockridge was still alive and currently dealing with the family estate, so it might not be safe to wander on private property. Regardless, she agreed come with them.
As they left the house, Seldanna attempted to avoid her mother Jastra, but the party ended up being discovered and then invited to a party at the house that evening. Jastra showed some mild fascination at Pip being a bit of exotic flare for the event. Cyl assumed that she would be expected to perform as usual, but Jastra told her that her painting exhibition would not be needed and she was welcomed as a guest. The kenku singing group Bawk-apella would be performing. Finally, Jastra gave Seldanna 27 gold pieces to spend on formal outfits for her friends.
As they walked back to the Lockridge Estate, Seldanna seemed down about having another party at her home. Her mother had been trying to marry her off for some time now, and the party would surely be attended by too many eligible rich young men. She brightened a little when the party promised that they would keep her company.
Lockridge Estate:
They entered the house through the hole that Pip made in a window. Every object inside had been turned to dry bone. Closed doors were now solid barriers. There were no bodies inside, likely taken out by an undertaker or the like. They broke through doorways on their way upstairs and investigated rooms. GB and Lark tried to pry a bone-book as a home decoration for GB, but they can’t get it dislodged. The only magical aura they detected in the house was affecting the ground underneath the estate.
Cyl bashed through various bone-doors with her sledge-hammer until she found a trap door going into the basement. It led to a fully-stocked but now useless wine cellar. Cyl somehow felt at home in the haunting room full of featureless white bone. Seldanna’s detect magic spell revealed a crack in the floor, filled with green liquid teeming with necromantic energy. Lark reached out with his divine senses and confirmed that the entire estate grounds had been desecrated.
To test the necrotic energy inside the floor crack, Seldanna stuck a candle into the green pool. It transformed the candlestick into dry bone, along with Seldanna’s finger up to the first knuckle. Her finger became fused with the candelstick. The party (understandably) freaked out, and Seldanna fell into yet another panic. GB left a piece of parchment next to the crack with the warning: “Don’t touch: Will turn you to bone.”
The group rushed upstairs to track down their only resource for help, the wizard Pinbol. As they reached the front door, a human began stepping out of the bone material as if through a portal. It was Tyrael, “The Sprocket Man”, who had sworn vengeance on Tybalt and the rest of the Lockridge family, and who the party suspected cause the house to turn to bone. Tyrael questioned why the group was there and Pip fibbed that they saw the window broken and investigated. They denied Tyrael’s accusation that they are trying to sabotage him, but their denial was half-hearted. His efforts to ruin the Lockridge’s seemed reckless at best, and at worst, disastrous for dozens of innocent people.
They asked Tyrael to help reverse the “magical boning” of Seldanna’s finger. Disgruntled, he nonetheless began treating the effects by mixing a homemade salve. One of the material components was a very small amount of an unlabeled white powder. Cyl asked him vaguely about the boat lift and curing disease, and he hesitated with the vial of white powder. The group considered that the powder was related to curing diseases somehow.
Tyrael warned Seldanna that the treatment would hurt, and as he cast greater restoration on her, sensation (and pain) returned to her finger and the bone-candle fell away. The spell also relieved Seldanna’s exhaustion. The process for the spell to be cast, for the finger to return to normal, and for the pain to subside, took about one minute and seemed very taxing on Tyrael, as though he was working outside his magical comfort zone.
They thanked Tyrael for his help, but he heavily implied that he would kill them if they got in his way again. As the group left through the busted window, Tyrael cast some magic over the house, causing the bone to grow back over the hole they’d made and become even thicker to prevent further entry.
Arasys Estate:
The group got lunch, clothing, and accessories for the party, then arrived as guests to the Arasys Estate. Stoax greeted them at the door, and two kenku of Bawk-apella were squawking out music on the second-floor balcony. The group discovered Pesk had also been invited. She was waiting in the art gallery wearing a huge flouncy blue-teal dress with ruffles and green ribbons. The group small-talked for a while, eating finger foods and admiring the young men that Jastra has summoned to the party to woo Seldanna.
Stoax announced “Lady Seldanna” and she entered down the stairwell, in a simple dark purple dress and a braid in her hair. Stoax then announced that dancing would begin in the Great Hall. The group followed Seldanna and all of the young eligible bachelors. Just before entering, Jastra fidgeted with Seldanna’s appearance in an overbearing and judgmental manner.
Seldanna danced with a full list of suitors throughout the first hour of the party. Lark watched and whenever he saw Seldanna particularly uncomfortable, he politely cut in to dance with her as a break from the attention.
Pip and Pesk war-danced. (Same dance as all of his others.)
Cyl wore no clothes to the party, showing off her natural sculpt: bald, with a plate of bronze shoulder armor, androgynous bare torso, a warrior’s skirt, and bronze armor plating on her shins. GB sat with her and together they played tricks on some of the nobles that came up to admire and critique her as if she were an inanimate statue.
A cadre of men gathered around Seldanna, 26 horny boys standing around her. Seldanna managed to stand up to them authoritatively (with a NAT 20!), excuse herself, and walk out of the crowd. They parted around her. She got herself a ‘real’ drink and a bite of food, but her mother Jastra immediately swooped in and handed her water instead, warning her to “not eat too much”.
Pesk asked Lark to distract Jastra so the group could whisk Seldanna away for a moment to herself to eat and drink something. Lark waited until Jastra was speaking with someone she seemed to respect, then he asked her to dance to “his favorite song”. Unable to refuse when asked so politely, and in front of her other guests, she agreed. The dance was competent, but not great. Meanwhile, Pesk got Seldanna some food and some breathing room. When the next song began, Lark latched onto Jastra’s hand and declared that this was also one of his favorite songs, and asked her to dance again. Caught off guard by Lark’s repeated brashness, Jastra agreed. That dance was not nearly as skillful.
Eventually, Pip asked Cyl and GB to dance with him, ending with a twelve-person conga line formed behind them. Tybalt showed up quite late with a dark-skinned high-elf woman in an elegant dress. Jastra left her daughter alone for nearly half an hour, during which Seldanna was able to enjoy the party and her friends’ company.
Late into the party, Stoax pulled Lark aside. Lark showed him Dermot, his giant stuffed bear divine focus, who Lark had dressed up for the party to look like Stoax. The bugbear butler, unphased, spoke directly to Dermot to greet him and compliment his outfit. Stoax then extended an invitation to Lark to join Jastra in her private room. Lark began to head up only to have Cyl stop him. She was worried that Jastra couldn’t be trusted and that Lark might get in trouble. He declined her assistance but suggested she stay outside the door just in case he needed backup.
In Lady Arasys’s bedroom, Jastra invited Lark to join her in a bed draped in a dark red curtain. He parted the curtain and found her only wearing a nightgown. (pan to the fireplace…you can read the rest in Lark’s downtime!)
Back downstairs, Stoax told Seldanna that her mother was ‘indisposed’ for the rest of the evening, and that she now had authority over the party. He suggested it would be appropriate to let the party continue for another 30 minutes. Seldanna agreed, and immediately told her friends that she would be retiring upstairs. The rest of the group spent the next 30 minutes enjoying the party and then began to depart.
Pip and GB grabbed a doggy bag each, only to have servants present them with small crates for even more leftovers. Pesk looked for Lark and Cyl, and met the latter descending the staircase with a bit of a bashful stare. Cyl announced flatly that she was “ready to go home now”, and reassured Pesk that Lark would be “just fine” on his own that night. As the guests left the estate, Pip allowed Cyl to lean into his fur for warmth (without body hair, Goa are prone to getting cold). Lark stayed the night with Jastra, (partially) because of the city curfew.
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