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  #136  
Old 11-21-2019, 09:08 AM
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Windmill, 12:20 PM, rain
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The old woman smiled and nodded her head at the large armored woman. “Well… we certainly don’t walk around like you… not sure how you take care of your personal business in that contraption your wearing,” she said as she moved the chairs about. “My kin and I travel during the day only… to answer your question. To travel at night is just to commit slow suicide… eventually you will die. But during the day… if you stick to the roads… you are fine.” Renata listens to the old woman as she totters about the small room and whether the fact that the woman is talking unnaturally fast, or the fact that the paladin has experienced the dangers of Barovia herself, she can tell that the baker is not being totally truthful.

Once everyone has squeezed into the room and out of the rain, the woman claps her hands at Maja’s offer to help bake. “Well young lady... that is music to my ears. I can always use some extra help… our pies are in high demand.” She points a rack of rolling pins and a barrel filled with finely ground white powder. “I’m sorry to say but the water we need for the pies. The wine is so much better and better for you anyway.” She grabs a few open bottles of red wine and gives one to Renata to pass around. The woman then proceeds to walk Maja through the motions of adding water to the flour… kneading, rolling, and filling it with various types of sweet smelling meat.

As she goes about her work, the baker talks over her shoulder to Gareth. “Young man, my name is Bella and you must have met my mother… bless her heart. She still insists on making the rounds, selling the pies.” She laughs as she slams some pies into the oven. “Just as well though, truth be told… she can’t make them as good as me… neither can my sister. That’s why she is stuck upstairs grinding the flour.”

Gauth declines to enter the house, instead he is keen on inspecting the outside of the windmill, looking for signs of his missing charge. The driving rain makes the investigation quite difficult and as much as he looks, the goliath finds no signs of matted down grass, no blood trail… nothing. Resigned to failure, Gauth makes his way back to the front door.


 
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  #137  
Old 11-21-2019, 11:35 AM
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Aubron Wranlana
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Aubron followed along as they entered the windmill and met the old woman and shared talk of her sweet pies. The elf was in no mood to eat anything, however, as the days events were weighing hard on his mind.

Maja went about the business of introducing them all to the woman, and Aubron nodded towards the women as he sat in the large room, happy to be out of the rain from outside. When the goliath came back in to report that he was unable to pick up the trail of his young boy, Aubron started to become discouraged.

The elements were very tricky in erasing tracks and trails of those that had come before. But, it was not impossible, especially to an expert tracker as himself. "We'll look again when we are done here," he said to Gauth attempting to give some comfort to the giant.
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  #138  
Old 11-21-2019, 06:21 PM
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Gareth Blackcroft
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Gareth raises an eyebrow at the old woman's reply to Renata, but says nothing. Instead, he begins to snoop around the living space the moment their host turns her back on him, peeking here and there.

Something behind the door catches his eye and as he moves to inspect a rusty old sword and moldy umbrella he calls back over his shoulder.

"It's a pleasure to meet you, Bella. You and your sisters are an inspiration to entrepreneurs everywhere. And I prefer not to drink while traveling. I'll just fetch some more water from the well."

As he speaks he pulls the sword from the umbrella stand and turns it over, inspecting the ancient weapon.

OOC
Dice Investigation:
1d20+4 (11)+4 Total = 15
on the sword.

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Last edited by OldSchool; 11-21-2019 at 06:21 PM.
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  #139  
Old 11-22-2019, 08:11 AM
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Maja
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Maja Tallstag (click to enlarge)
"No," Maja replied to Bella determinedly when the woman advised her to taste from the red wine. "Thank you, but I don't drink alcohol and I doubt that it is good for me. Why don't we put out a bucket? By the rate it is raining, it will soon contain enough water, for the pies as well as for the tea."

With light hands, Maja began to prepare the flour and to treat the door. She proved to be quick and eager to learn and it seemed she had never done anything else in her childhood. The girl stopped wondering about it. She was the daughter of a couple of cartographers, not of bakers. Nevertheless, inside this house, baking was as natural to her as was charting maps.

She raised her eyes when Gareth began to speak up. The telepath was surprised. He, the rogue, had declined the wine? Since when did he listen to reason? Then, Maja caught a glimpse of the rusty sword he was taking to inspect.

"Mrs..., er, Bella," Maja quickly began to address the baker's woman, "You said your pies are in high demand. Do you happen to be the purveyor to the court as well?"

The girl raised her chin in the direction where Castle Ravenloft lied. "The count and his comital household will certainly only want to be delivered the best goods available."
OOCProficiency: Baker's Tools.
Insight: +3.
Deception: +6.
Persuasion: +6.
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  #140  
Old 11-23-2019, 07:53 AM
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Gauth-Touri of the Auranthanati
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”Travel at night is just to commit slow suicide … eventually you will die.” the old woman was saying as Gauth ducked his head to enter the building. Then I must find him before nightfall … Gauth thought, but the lady had moved on to talking about pies and wine as if there was not a young child out there on his own.

”Pardon me lady, but what makes this land dangerous? And why particularly at night? My charge is out there somewhere – he is strong, wily, and can look after himself, but you say to be out at night is suicide. Why?”


He looked around the building for a moment, then said ”Your building is tall, it commands quite a view of the surroundings, I should like to climb to the top and see if I can see any sign of him from afar.”


Then turning to Maja, he added ”Maja Tallstag, you offered to search for him with your mind. From what the lady says it seems we should do this before nightfall, so I may fetch him before whatever peril stalks this land finds him.”


OOC
Is there any obvious way to the top of the windmill?

 


 
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  #141  
Old 11-23-2019, 01:08 PM
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Renata Tyrfille
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While she silently passes on the wine as well, Renata nods earnestly in agreement with Gauth's proposal of a higher vantage, then immediately moves toward the upstairs area to which Bella referred.

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  #142  
Old 11-23-2019, 02:07 PM
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Tarton Wetfeet
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Tarton entered the mill with the others but stayed quiet - he'd seen too often too many voices and questions could overwhelm a person and they'd get less info. So he accepted the pie with a smile of thanks, and poured himself a healthy glass full of wine. He listened to the questions the others asked and paid attention to the woman's answers, trying to sense if she was leading them astray, or genuine.

OOCAction: Insight to see if she's being honest - is she related to the other pie maker that we saw?
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d20+5 (2)+5 Total = 7
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  #143  
Old 11-24-2019, 09:00 AM
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Windmill, 12:40 PM, rain
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Bella busied herself about the kitchen, letting out a frustrated ‘hmph’ every time one of the party refused her hospitality, passing on the wine and fresh pie. She sees out of the corner of her eye, Gareth grab up the old rusting sword and she continues her work. “You can have it if you want… an old boyfriend left it behind… I keep it as a memento to wilder days… and nights,” she says with a naughty laugh as she kneads a large pile of dough.

When Maja inquires about the court, Bella stops… for a moment confused… but then she nods knowingly as she catches the mystic’s meaning. “No child… they have no need for specialty pies… though when we have made a fresh batch of wine, they have been known to send for an order.” She turns to the goliath and says matter of factly, “The night belongs to the dead… or to the hunters… sometimes both. Either way you would do well to heed my words on that point.”

The congenial atmosphere in the cramped little room shifts suddenly as Gauth speaks about ascending to the top of the windmill. Bella cocks her head at the large man and shakes her head. “That’s my bedroom up there… and my kin’s as well. My sister is grinding flour as we speak… I’d rather not disturb her... she is hard enough to get working as it is.” As she spoke Renata moved to the foot of the stairs.

“You are being rude!” Bella announces as she slams her rolling pin on the counter, causing a cloud of flour to jump into the air. As the room fills with tension, Tarton sits drinking his wine… a bit thick… slight copper aftertaste, and snacking on the piping hot pie… delicious.



 
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  #144  
Old 11-24-2019, 10:25 AM
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Renata Tyrfille
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Renata stops at Bella's rebuke, then slowly nods her assent to the restriction. The paladin moved toward Tarton, and with her back toward her host, whispered to him, "What can your bird find for us upstairs?"

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  #145  
Old 11-24-2019, 11:01 AM
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Tarton Wetfeet
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Tarton winked at Renata quickly and took another bite of pit. "you'll have to excuse my companions. They are, well, uncultured. I have to excuse myself briefly as well, that wine is delicious and I've overindulged a bit." He stood slowly and bowed slightly to the woman before heading outside - looking for a spot with a little bit of cover, Tarton pulled Kiki from the ether and sent her up to see what she could tell him. He stood as if relieving himself, not yet in Kiki's senses but waiting for the owl to report anything out of the ordinary to him. Be careful, he told her.

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  #146  
Old 11-24-2019, 11:32 AM
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Maja
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"Thank you," Maja replied to Bella after the baker had answered her question. "Where does your wine come from, by the way?" she asked with interest. "Wine grapes need a lot of sunshine but the prevailing weather condition here seems to be overcast weather."

Gareth had been successful in acquiring the rusted sword for the party. Maja was eager to learn what story the item would tell. She would ask the rogue to lend her the sword so that she could examine it. "Your boyfriend was a knight?" she asked Bella. "What happened to him? Didn't you marry?"

Maja began to fill a number of pies she had prepared with minced meat. Once they were ready to be shoved into the oven, she turned to the goliath.

"Maja is enough," she said softly. "Not Maja Tallstag. This is how my mother calls me when I am, er, when she thinks that I have been particularly naughty."

She looks through the window at the bad weather outside. "You are right, Gauth-Touri. We cannot afford to waste more time. I need a bit of peace, though."

The girl looked at Bella. "Could I pull out? I am a bit tired and would like to sit down if you don't mind."
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Insight: +3.
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  #147  
Old 11-24-2019, 03:11 PM
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Gauth-Touri of the Auranthanati
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”Maja? … OK, Maja. That is good of you. I shall look from upstairs while you search with your mind” said Gauth.


”That’s my bedroom up there… “ interjected Bella. Gauth looked down impassively at her as she explained the sleeping arrangements …

… then a slam of rolling pin on counter and shouted at Bella ”You are being rude!”.

Renata stepped back from the stairs and whispered something to Tarton who excused himself from the room.


Gauth stood a moment, eyes flicking from the windmills door to Renata, to Maja to Bella. He thought a moment, the took a breath.


”Miss Bella. I am truly grateful for your shelter and your offer of sustenance, but I am afraid that Aran-Tho’s safety is of paramount interest to me. And if, as you say, the night will be perilous, then I cannot stand by and drink and talk while he is lost out somewhere. I am sorry if it will disturb your sister, but a little disturbance is nothing against the life of a child.”

He gave a small bow and began to climb the stairs.


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  #148  
Old 11-24-2019, 03:25 PM
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Gareth Blackcroft
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Gareth hefts the rusted blade and considers Bella's words. The young man has a smirk on his face and he is clearly pleased with himself.

"Who would leave their sword behind in such a dangerous land? Surely your old boyfriend knew the dangers of the road. He must have been a mighty warrior."

Gareth gives Bella a pleasant smile as he wanders over to inspect a shelf of herbs and spices.

"How long have you and your family lived here, Bella?"

Oddly, Gareth doesn't wait for Maja or Gauth to finish speaking, but neither does he speak over them. Instead he talks at the same time, noting that Bella's patience seems to be wearing thin and apparently trying to annoy her even further.

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Last edited by OldSchool; 11-24-2019 at 03:26 PM.
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  #149  
Old 11-24-2019, 05:29 PM
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Windmill, 12:45 PM, rain
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Tarton excuses himself under the guise of an upset stomach… a harbinger of perhaps what was to come. Kiki flutters up into the air, headed for the second floor window but quickly realizes that the caked on dirt and grime make it impossible to see inside. Kiki then makes its way to the third floor window, where the owl finds it shares a perch with a jet black raven who caws incessantly while pecking at the window. The raven peers intently at Kiki, caws loudly, and then pecks at the grime covered window.

Downstairs… It all unravels at once… the goliath moves for the stairs, disregarding Bella’s wishes. At the same time, Gareth does his best to needle the old lady… a very ungentlemanly thing to do.

Bella drops the rolling pin on the counter with a ‘clang’... “You could have enjoyed the pie… the wine… and been on your way,” the old woman says, her voice becoming haggard… grave. Bella suddenly throws her head back, her neck bending in such a way as to look like her entire head might snap off. With a disturbing cackle she straightens back out and where kindly Bella once stood, now stands a decrepit old hag, her skin sallow and sagging from her bones. Her blood red eyes sparkle at the wonderful meal that has invited itself to her dinner.

“Offalia!” the hag calls out, her voice calm and confident. “We have dinner guests!”

OocHere we go! Map is up... roll initiative! Beat a 10 and you can act. Offalia is not in the fight... yet


 
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Last edited by Begon Ugo; 11-25-2019 at 01:00 PM.
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  #150  
Old 11-24-2019, 11:30 PM
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Tarton Wetfeet
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Tarton blinked and his pupils returned to his eyes - he heard a commotion as soon as he returned to his senses. He slowly made his way back to the doorway and looked in to see that the woman had turned into a....witch? Tarton uttered a word of power and she was very briefly outlined in a sickly yellow - then he ducked back behind the door.

OOCAction: Cast bane on the hag - DC12 Charisma save
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