4-5 Sydenstar (Grissen/Monday) 845 PD
Plans: Magic and Abilities
At the Birth Heart Tree, Fisch begins talking to the gathered group of moose. Tāmarai realizes that Stubby has been looking at her oddly, and pulls out a mirror to look herself over. Something is up, but Tāmarai puts it (and her new appearance) aside for them to focus on resting up and planning for what might await them in the city below. Rinn does a bad job at bandaging Stubby’s arm (it’s the thought that counts?) while Tāmarai looks over their items. Rinn did check over their blades the night before at Victor’s, but looking over them again might not be a bad thing.
First thing when they get to New Vasselheim: get the Luxon to the Xhorhasian Embassy. Barring that, to (Professor) Saphy (See Session 14!) at the Luxon Temple, then to any of the other temples as a distant third. Most importantly, they do not want the Empress to get her hands on it.
Other plans! Tāmarai flat out asks Rinn about his magic. He does his best to answer, though it’s obvious he has NOT had any sort of formal, magical training. His spells do not need any prep work (like a wizard or others). Some he can do all the time, with nearly no limit. Others are limited to how many times he can do them each day before he can’t anymore. Tāmarai asks him about the easy ones, cantrips. Rinn doesn’t know the ‘proper’ names for them, but explains them, showing a couple. (Shocking Grasp, Light, Blade Ward, Lightning Lure, Booming Blade, Gust.) All storm things, as Stubby points out, and Rinn agrees. Tāmarai is impressed that he’s figured these out all on his own. (She also figures out that the copper bracelets that Rinn wears are an arcane focii for his magic, not that Rinn would be able to define them as such.)
Tāmarai mentions her own cantrips, then looks at Stubby. Stubby doesn’t consider what she can do ‘spells’, but goes over the things she has made that she can do easily and without having to rebuild or recharge things (Artificer cantrips). One of those is a dunamancy spell that the Xhorhasian Ambassador taught her. Tāmarai tells her not to use it where it can be seen, as dunamancy is supposed to be a closely guarded secret in Xhorhas, and not meant to be shared. Rinn doesn’t think anything can be kept a secret for long, though Tāmarai says they’ve kept it a secret since the Calamity. But since the Ambassador taught Stubby, and not Tāmarai, maybe it isn’t so bad.
Stubby recalls something, and starts pulling equipment out of the Bag of Holding, including a bunch of metal feathers that she had been casting back in New Vasselheim. It should form a collapsible shield, she just needs to put it together and needs some extra hands to lock the pieces into place. Rinn and Tāmarai help out.
Raven Queen armor (with feather motifs), Raven Feather dagger, and now this shield. Rinn is amused, Tāmarai is proud, and explains how things all matching make them less likely to stand out and be noticed.
Tāmarai goes back to her questions, asking Rinn about his more powerful spells. They probably have seen them all, but he explains them. (Feather Fall, Thunderwave, Witch Bolt, Warding Wind, and Shield.) He also explains something he thinks he can do (all of his magic is very instinctual for him), using some more magic to bend some of the force away from people, when a spell targets an area. He doesn’t think it would be all of it, but should keep allies from getting hurt as much as enemies. (Metamagic Careful Spell.)
On to Stubby, and she shows off some of her gadgets and what they can do. (Grease, Fire Bolt, Enlarge/Reduce) She does point out that they aren’t spells, they are things she can build, but she has to do them ahead of time.
Tāmarai is hopeful for what they should be able to accomplish in New Vasselheim, thinking that her own magics and what she can do aren’t good in a fight. Rinn and Stubby both point out that her abilities are good for keeping them out of fights, mentioning convincing Abe to keep the Thieves Guild from continuing their assassination attempts, and then befriending the (saner) rats in Old Vasselheim that took them to meet Osysa. But as Tāmarai points out, they are going into a fight, many of them, and ones she probably cannot stop. She does go over her own cantrips, explaining them. (Prestidigitation, Primal Savagery, Sapping Sting, Sacred Flame, and Vicious Mockery.)
Rinn and Stubby are amused and astonished that damage can be done to someone by calling them names, and offer up more vocabulary for Tāmarai to use, but the polite and kind gnome is still loath to do so. Tāmarai goes over a few more spells (Faerie Fire, Dissonent Whispers, Healing Word, Fortune’s Favor, Immovable Object, Lesser Restoration, Dispel Magic, and Tiny Hut.) Her magic may not be good for fighting, exactly, but it can help them (and others) with their own fighting. Buffs, not damage, to which Rinn points out that damage is mostly what he can do. (He’s slowly coming to terms of what his magic is good for.)
Stubby adds in that “Rinn is our powerhouse, Tam is our ambassador,” and that she is the brains of the operation- causing Rinn to use one of his favorite terms for her, a term in draconic that means ‘pain in the ass’ (literal translation ‘sand under the scales’).
Tāmarai reacts to this suddenly- more so than she has for pinning Rinn to explain the other nicknames and phrases he’s used in other languages (Zemnian) for them. This is odd, and Rinn sheepishly translates it for Tāmarai. She is still shocked, saying it is different somehow. Stubby steps in and explains that Rinn’s draconic is slightly different from the one that Stubby knows- his is Ravenite Dragonborn Draconic, while hers is Dragon Draconic. There’s also a bit of a discussion on how his Zemnian accent affects it, and also how more humanoid mouths affect how the language is pronounced- but wait, Tāmarai didn’t know any sort of draconic before?
Tāmarai is sort stunned, and Rinn kneels in front of her, worried. She asks him to say more in Draconic, to which he complies. Maybe it’s something here in the city that causes this, though Rinn isn’t sure what else Stubby would have to learn. (Because who knows, maybe this is how Rinn all of a sudden understands and can speak Primordial, though he is NOT mentioning this now.) Tāmarai agrees, relieved, maybe it is something in the city- and she replies in draconic as well. This is a bit of a revelation, though like everything else, Tāmarai is ready to put this aside to focus on the task ahead.
Next in their plans, the Empress. They might be able to go to the castle and ask for an audience- which should get them to Lydia safely. Rinn points out that everything with who Lydia is, and her motives against Stubby’s family, all put aside- the Empress should be taken down by the people of Vasselheim, not outsiders and not for personal motives. Yes, they will help, but removing her to save others from the Empress’ plans is more important than Stubby’s own legit personal reasons.
Stubby reiterates that she does not want anyone to know who the Empress is, (Reminder: Vex the third, from the timeline where Stubby’s-mom-Vex went crazy and started working with Vecna and had to be taken down by Keyleth!), to protect her family. Rinn agrees, and so does Tāmarai- who says she will wait until after they’re all dead to write it down. That still upsets Stubby, who doesn’t want any of it getting out, ever. Tāmarai agrees- at least for the moment.
So, the plans. Stubby says her and Fisch can probably do better against the empress up front, while Rinn and Tāmarai can do more from a distance. Rinn agrees, (but pretty much is thinking he will do what needs to be done, distance or close). Get to the city, get this safe-
And here he pulls the Luxon out of the Bag of Holding. After all this, he wants to at least take a look at it. Tāmarai tries to not freak out. Stubby is curious and scoots in closer to look. Their curiosity is innocent, though Tāmarai warns them about looking into it too deeply, especially since they aren’t ‘committed’ to it.
Rinn has heard a few things about it from other people (Otel, Saphy), and has put a few pieces together. With Saphy mentioning other lives, Otel going to look for people with ‘pieces’ in them, and whatnot- he asks Tāmarai if it causes people to start hearing things, or being other people. Tāmarai hedges, not wanting to reveal ‘state’ secrets. But Rinn presses, for a good reason, wanting to know when the hearing/remembering things start. Tāmarai finally relents and confirms his question that it starts as a young teenager. Which- Rinn has heard of. This sort of thing has happened in Zadash, enough for it to be discussed all around the city. Young teens going ‘crazy’ talking about other lives. Those are the ‘lost ones’ Tāmarai says, sadly. People connected to the Luxons, without guidance to help them process everything. (So there must be a Luxon in Zadash for this to be happening.) That’s enough for Rinn, and he passes the Luxon on to Stubby.
They discuss where to go if things go badly. Rinn thinks back up here would be best- by now, the Empress would know of their connections to the Xhorhasian Embassy, the Take, and the Vons. But Old Vasselheim is far away from the new city, so they will still try those places first or that ‘drug’ store in the Rat Docks that Rinn took them to on the first day, when Bob wanted some ‘medicine’. Tāmarai remembers the way, Rinn knows it as well, and Stubby should hopefully be with either one of them.
Rinn is a little apprehensive, thinking over all of this. This whole thing, the rebellion against the Empress is a big thing, nevermind stopping her as how they know her as Stubby’s future relative. Stubby is thrilled, this is something big, like from a story. Except the stories never say how much people get hurt, Rinn points out. Tāmarai steps in, saying that Stubby’s family wouldn’t have kept the realistic details from her. Stubby agrees, saying she knows how dangerous it is, and that’s why they need to do it. Her passionate response is a good one (dirty 20 on Persuasion). Rinn agrees- he just wants them all to survive this!
More planning, discussing how to perhaps use their spells. Tāmarai can hide the magical nature of things, and thinks maybe to use it on the Bag of Holding so it doesn’t get taken away from them if they go to see the Empress. A good idea, but save that spell if that does happen.
Rinn points out something the Empress doesn’t know- him. All she would know is that he is the escort hired (by her own spymaster) from the Take. And no one else in the city really knows about Rinn’s magic. So they can hope that bit of information will be a surprise.
While Tāmarai and Rinn keep discussing things (what weapons he’s skilled with), Stubby has been studying the Luxon, and has allowed herself to get pulled in. The other two don’t notice this for a little while, but then turn to ask her something, and-
Cue into our next live session!