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Unread 15th of August, 2006, 10:40
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Jiangu! Chapter 5, Scene 1: Golem Delivery

Jiangu! Chapter 5, Scene 1: Golem Delivery

Setting: The Dreaded Tower of Golock outside of Ichiba in ZunYan Province, 4th Morning of Midsummer, 300th Year of the Monkey

Nine days after their returns from the last adventure, the henchmen are summoned into Golock’s audience chamber. Once the customary greetings are exchanged, he gets down to business.

“My clay golem will be finished in four days, and the Interim Government has agreed to purchase it from me. I’m sure that I could have gotten a much higher price if I had auctioned it to the highest bidder, but honor would only allow me to sell it to the interim government. According to our arrangement, I must deliver the golem to their army in the field, and they will pay me once I present the treasury with a signed delivery receipt.”

“Of course it would be more expedient for me to teleport it with me to the army camp in order to deliver it. However, it is a location with which I am unfamiliar. Besides, if I wanted to waste spells and go galavanting all over the empire, I wouldn’t need henchmen.”

“You have until the 8th day of Midsummer to plan and prepare. Your mission is to deliver the clay golem to Colonel Qian Xun, the commander of the Fifth Imperial Regiment. The Fifth Regiment is marshalling in CaoYuan province before attacking the Aikou army in Merak Hoi. They may not have reached CaoYuan yet, or they may have already left for Merak Hoi by the time you arrive. Wherever they are, you will have to find them.”

“I will command the clay golem to obey Termix. Termix can command it to obey someone else. Once its obedience is transferred, it will only obey its current master. When you reach Colonel Qian Xun, command the golem to obey him once he signs this delivery receipt. Bring the delivery receipt back to me.”

Golock hands them a waterproof scrollcase. Within is a very formal legal document that has already been signed by the minister of the treasury, and leaves a prominent space for the signature of the Fifth Regiment commander.

“I imagine you may encounter some trouble enroute, but do not order the clay golem to attack anyone! There is always a slight chance that it will go berserk permanently. That is the nature of glolems. Armies usually send a golem deep into the enemy formation in a major battle, so that it will continue to destroy the enemy even if it goes berserk. Turning the tide of an important battle is worth the price of a golem.”

“Plan your route and get your gear ready. You must set out on the 8th of Midsummer and deliver the golem as quickly as possible. Until then, keep secret everything I have told you- the golem, the location of the fifth regiment, all of it.”

“What are your questions? There should be none.” The foul-tempered wizard glares at the henchmen.


OOC:
Everyone receives 20gp monthly pay on the last day of Early Summer.

Last edited by crueldespot; 15th of August, 2006 at 10:49.
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Unread 15th of August, 2006, 11:02
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Kierna knows better than to ask questions of the ever-impatient dreaded wizard by now, but she wonders just how easily bracketed they will be by the enemy. After all, they will be escorting a valuable weapons platform cross-country by themselves; scouts will see this and realize that the clay golem can be comandeered and used against the 5th Regiment if only the henchmen are eliminated first. The journey will be dangerous.

Kierna sighs. The journey is always dangerous.
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Unread 15th of August, 2006, 11:10
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"It seems clear enough my lord." Nimdor shrugs, not at all upset or uncomfortable around the volatile wizard.

This wizard is fairly easy compared to my old guildmaster
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Unread 15th of August, 2006, 13:44
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Termix knows his grandfather has a wisdom greater than his own, and if he says there should be no questions, there are none. He also knows there is an unspoken standard that silence means there are no questions and the greatest of respect.
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Unread 15th of August, 2006, 21:52
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Linus merely shakes his head. No questions.

Later, he seeks out Gizerak. "Many thanks to you and Sha-Gaat for healing me. The nightmares I had - indescribable, and much better off in dream than reality. For a time, I felt as if I had been sucked into the Abyss, lost for good in the realm of demons. That alternated strangely with visions of Aikou and Golock atop a cloud, feeding tea to each other out of porcelain kettles. Flarrgj was there with his kidnapped bride, and the townspeople were burning them alive, together. The most horrifying thing was watching the smiles on the faces of the people, as they morphed into hobgoblins and beings of pure fire and hatred. No, I'm glad to be back amongst the living, and I owe it to you."

Before the party is ready to leave, Linus heads to the tack shop and pays for his pony.
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Unread 16th of August, 2006, 04:01
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Despite Golock's declaritive statement, Fugen does indeed have a question which he relays through one of the halflings: How fast will the golem be able to move? As fast as a man? A horse?
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Unread 16th of August, 2006, 10:54
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"It walks slow, like, halfling slow" answers Golock. "But it never gets tired, so it can run all day and all night."

He turns to Termix and asks him accusingly "You didn't know that? They have to ask me?"

He rises to his feet with lots of creaking from his joints. "Now if you will excuse me, I have a golem waiting on me that needs finger articulation and ears." Golock heads back to his lab.



OOC:
Re: BP's question - Yes the campaign world map in the Campaign Info and Rules thread jives with the new reality.
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Unread 16th of August, 2006, 11:04
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Nimdor turns to his new partners, and speaks up. "Well, this could be interesting. What are the odds that we'll make it there without having to fight through at least 3 battles? Anybody want to bet on it?"
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Unread 16th of August, 2006, 13:05
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"The problem is, I did know." Termix says, but the point is mute. "They just didn't ask me....Anyways, I'd say we'll have four fights, not just three. And I'll bet a gold on it." Termix isn't really a gambling man, but he got in one fight before meeting with the group, and then two more the next day. There's surely going to be at least that many in the first two days, plus they really can't stop whenever they want, having a deadline and all.
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Unread 16th of August, 2006, 13:35
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Flarrgj stands a giant sentinal in corner of the room. You notice that the has exchanged his leathers and furs for a loos fitting garment of a flowing material that apears to be silk. The trousers flow about his large legs, and the shirt is open at the chest, undernieth is his glittering chain mail armor. At his back is now a massive Katana, his great axe gone.

((OOC, he's now wearing Monk clothes and wields a great sword instead of the great axe.))
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Unread 17th of August, 2006, 00:24
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His question answered, however abruptly, Fugen sets down to figuring out the best way to get to CaoYuan, starting by studying the tapestry map, but also asking Barnabas if there are any more detailed maps avaliable to help in planning a route.

[OOC: Knowledge (Geography) to fill in as much information as possible about the territories between Iciba and CaoYuan. Hopefully the use of whatever maps Golock has avaliable translate into a +2 bonus on the check.]
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Unread 17th of August, 2006, 05:53
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Gizerak stands nearby, trying to aid Fugen in any way that he can. Hopefully his knowledge of Merak Hoi (though limited to what little he saw of his homeland) will be of use to the courier, who seems to be much better at this type of thing.
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Unread 17th of August, 2006, 11:55
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Jiangu! Chapter 5, Scene 1:1 The Map

Fugen analyzes the map. He recalls geography lessons from his training and lore that he has gained from his fellow messengers.

CaoYuan province lies only 80 miles away, yet beyond the formidable mountains of the Northern Heartland.

The primary route to the Shamaal region is the highway pass overlooked by Mikon’s Tower, which leads to Merak Hoi province. There is no route through the mountains in SiHuTong or ZuLi provinces without dangerous mountainclimbing. There is a minor pass through Deng Province in the far Northwest.

The Western mountains are not as high and formidable, so there are many avenues through to the Wasteland frontier. These passages are little used because there is little trade through the barren wilderness of the wasteland.



OOC
5,1:1 (1d20=11)
Knowledge:geography 11+mods succeeds vs DC15 to provide useful info.

In addition to the info above, I added more details to the map and provided info on the named provinces in the encyclopedia post of Campaign Info thread.



Last edited by crueldespot; 17th of August, 2006 at 19:40.
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Unread 17th of August, 2006, 21:21
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Linus, again, leaves the planning to the courier. His familiarity with the geography was leaps and bounds better than the halfling's own. Thinking back to the last mission, and things that could have gone better, the rogue realizes he failed most at finding and disarming the traps. After all, that's where that damned disease came from.

Linus sets out to find a locksmith to procure some masterwork tools. Maybe with something better than the crappy ones he had, he could be more delicate with the intricate mechanisms at hand, and thereby save himself some pain.
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Unread 17th of August, 2006, 21:39
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Kierna examines the map with Fugen.

"As much as I would like to keep distance between ourselves and Aikou, especially on a mission such as this, the most direct route is probably our best option if we are trying to meet a deadline with a slow golem dragging us down."
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Unread 18th of August, 2006, 13:06
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"The question becomes one of learning where the General's forces are. It wouldn't do to have the golem falling into his hands prematurely. I think we really need to see what Fugen calculates out. He seems quite up on these things and can suggest the best route."
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Unread 18th of August, 2006, 20:08
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OOC: This map shows the area controlled by Aikou as Golock described earlier (the area within the black battlement line)

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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 00:13
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The golem will be slow, so mounts will give us little advantage. Fugen thinks, as he studies the maps.

Akiou, should he learn of our mission, or even our existance given that we'll have a golem with us, will do every thing in his power to stop us. So, we should avoid him as much as possible. However, the highway that will get us closest to CaoYuan goes right through Marek Hoi, a province that Akiou controls.

Not satisfied with the information he has, Fugen seeks out Barnabas to ask if Golock has any more detailed maps of QingShan, ZuLi, and Yu provinces. He also spends some time shopping around Ichiba for the same things if Golock doesn't.
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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 13:14
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Studying the maps he was able to obtain from Barnabas and from merchants in Ichiba, Fugen is frustrated to find out that the most direct route appears to be completely blocked by the mountians. He had really been hoping to find evidence of a pass through the mountians in ZuLi. That, however, had proven difficult to find, so he'd started looking for the same thing in ShiHuTong as well. Unfortunately the best information he can find says that no such path exits in either province.

Now the party could go cross country, relying on Kierna's abilities to find a way through the wilderness, but there was no telling what kind of obstacles they might encounter in the back country nor whether or not the golem could handle them, especially in the mountians.

No, it seemed they had two options: go through Marek Hoi, territory that Akiou controled, or through Deng, a fairly round about route.

Presenting his ideas to the others that night after dinner, Fugen suggests that they take the longer route through Deng. It was a a 150 mile journey to central CaoYuan, plus whatever additional distance they had to travel after that to find the general. Given the golem's limitation to the speed of a walking halfling, Fugen didn't think that mounts would be of much use. The group should have one or two for scouting puposes, but the golem would have them at a walk anyway. Given that Fugen estimates the journey should take 2 days on the highway, 4 on the smaller roads to the mountians, 2 days through the mountians, and another 3 on the small roads past the mountians, where the terrain appeared to be gentler than what they were used to in ZunYan to reach central CaoYuan.
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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 13:20
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"You are the expert, I'm not all that knowledgable about travelling these lands, or about the wilderness. I'll trust your judgment."
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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 13:35
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"Eleven days, plus any additional delays we face from weather, enemies on the road and so on...the Colonel may have moved by then, but I trust your judgment, Fugen. If we arrive in CaoYuan and discover that our golem recipient has begun marching for Merak Hoi, I can easily track them from horseback. Even at the golem's slower speed, we should be able to overtake a regiment on the move unless they are hustling."
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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 19:37
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"Just because the golem walks as fast as a halfling means nothing." Termix speaks up. "Its all automated: movement, actions, everything. It has no lungs, no heart, no muscles. It can run all day, and not get exhausted. Unless our path takes us through quite a lot of wilderness, we should have mounts. That shall speed the process, without delays. You have to remember that the golem will run as long as it is told to, and only stop when told to do so."Hopefully that will help them plan better, and us get there faster....
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Unread 19th of August, 2006, 23:02
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Kierna looked at Termix quizzically. "But we still need rest, right? The golem cannot travel without us, and we cannot travel all night, so the golem is trapped by our schedule and we are trapped by the golem's sluggish speed. I do not see a way around that; we could split up into two groups and have each group take a night shift and a day shift, but that would probably be unwise."
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Unread 20th of August, 2006, 00:30
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Thinking about what Termix says, Fugen has much the same reaction as Kierna. However, his mind also picks up on one other word that Termix used, which, come to think of it, Golock had also used, it was just that Fugen hadn't noticed at the time.

Signing quickly to the halflings, Fugen asks them to get Termix to clarify if he really means that the golem can run all day, as opposed to walk.
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Unread 20th of August, 2006, 11:43
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"I have some business in town to take care of, I'll meet you in a little while, back at the entrance to the tower."

Nimdor leaves, and heads into town, looking to lift somebody of a pony and somebody else of some food for the travels.
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