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msherman
Here for a while
(4/18/03 5:15 am)
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A different Nierethi Poscurian thread
My party's cleared most of the moathouse, leaving only the area behind the Wall Of Stone. They know roughly what's there, though -- Spugnoir drew a map for them when they rescued him, marking the wall as magical, the location of the cockatrice nest, the passage to the secret entrance, and "Lareth The Beautiful's Resting Place". One of the players has been saying that he wants to go back to the moathouse to clear it out -- he's got a self-described "video game level clearing attitude". I'd like to avoid wasting another session at the moathouse to kill a bunch of CR3 cockatrices, so I'm trying to think of a way to have Nierethi beat them to it.

The party cleared the moathouse about 2 weeks ago game time, and I don't expect they'll be back in Hommlet for at least another week; they're currently in Verbobonc buying magic weapons to deal with the undead in Nulb. In the interim, before leaving for Verbobonc, they did a fair bit of bragging around Hommlet, so Nierethi certainly would know that the moathouse has been cleared of undead and cultists. The party has already met Nierethi, back before their first trip to the moathouse, when he heard they were going at the WW and asked them to keep an eye out for any books or ledgers detailing Lareth's fate -- he's a bit of a fan and collector.

So, I've got two problems:
1) How does Nierethi manage to clear out the moathouse while the party is away? Would he go alone, thinking it's safe, or would he recruit help? There aren't that many NPCs left in Hommlet who would help him. The party hasn't met Questin Himmble yet, he could help, and perhaps for the right bribe and some coaxing about information Telna would go (info about the final fate of Lareth might be interesting for Iuz). I'm sure they could recruit a couple off-duty guardsmen for muscle, too. This band could surely defeat 3 cockatrices, right?

2) How do I subtly inform the party that they needn't bother going back to the moathouse? Perhaps Questin gets stoned by a cockatrice, and when Y'dey is taking care of that for them, they mention that they've discovered that the body in the moathouse isn't really Lareth's, but a plant? This would surely interest Y'dey, since she was the one who killed Lareth in the first place. But I'm worried that this story might make the party want to go back to the moathouse to investigate even more... :/

Any advice?

Infiniti2000
Still here? Wow.
(4/18/03 6:55 am)
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ezSupporter
Re: A different Nierethi Poscurian thread
I would not dissuade the party from going back. It is a very interesting plot element if they find the burned body. It could make the party think that Lareth is dead. So, when they meet the hermit in Nulb, they won't think he is Lareth and won't feel obligated to kill him. Also, when they eventually find out that the hermit in Nulb is Lareth, their outlook on Lareth and the ToAC will change drastically, they'll get pissed off (which is a good thing), and the party should become more highly motivated to succeed.

This seemingly small event could have bigger implications down the road. It might not, true, but don't purposefully act to deny them that.

That said, it is still a good idea to go ahead with Nierethi's plan. It certainly provides a dynamic feel and should somewhat awaken your CRPG player to the fact that this is not a video game. I like the idea of Questin joining him, possibly with a couple of hired mooks to join them, maybe even Yundi and Wyst for some backup healing power. As to their success, I'd run it myself, but otherwise I'd make it successful, with a couple of them turned to stone (choose randomly or pick the ones best suited to motivate your group - if you have a druid, then make the wolf and one of the mooks turned to stone). The body will be left behind and now it is up to the party to decide what that means. Nierethi will ask for payment for any information, particularly if they want to see anything he might have taken.

At this point, I think you want to somewhat discourage the party's reliance on the clerics in town. Y'Dey will probably not deign to see them unless it is important. Calmer will say, "I'm sorry, the Canoness is very busy and can't be bothered with such trivial matters as this. I'll let her know in good time about what you found and she'll contact you should she have any need of you." Leaving no doubt she does not. For the right price, of course, she will still cast spells (like break enchantment should the party want to free the wolf or mook from stone).

msherman
Here for a while
(4/18/03 7:11 am)
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Re: A different Nierethi Poscurian thread
Interesting idea, Infinity. So they may still go to the moathouse, but since the monsters will already be dead, it won't fill up much real-world time, and they can move on to more interesting stuff in the same session.

One party member just took on a Ranger cohort, so if they want to find out who ransacked "Lareth's" quarters, Track should find gnomish footprints easily enough. If they need another cluebat to figure out who was there, Spugnoir could tell them that Nierethi and Questin bought a bag full of CLW potions from him last week. I think I'll have the skull missing from the body; Nierethi thinks its the real Lareth, and took a trophy. Alas, poor Lareth, I knew him well. :)

Quote:
...maybe even Yundi and Wyst for some backup healing power.
Sadly, the party's already slaughtered poor old Wyst, when they were nosing around the grove in the dead of night looking for clues about the doppleganger they'd killed. Yundi is no friend to the party, needless to say. :)

Edited by: msherman at: 4/18/03 7:13:59 am
Infiniti2000
Still here? Wow.
(4/18/03 7:18 am)
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ezSupporter
Re: A different Nierethi Poscurian thread
Should the ranger cohort find out about the slaughter of Wyst and that the party did not atone for such actions, he should certainly withdraw from the group. Perhaps you can help them out here by having Yundi join Nierethi, get turned to stone, and see if the party rescues him. Nierethi and Questin certainly wouldn't. If the party does not, then they will certainly never be friends with good-aligned rangers or druids and words of their actions might reach Kella.

msherman
Here for a while
(4/18/03 7:40 am)
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Re: A different Nierethi Poscurian thread
Oh, they attoned -- well, they apologized (and seemed to really mean it, anyway). That doesn't mean that Yundi forgives them, though. Having Yundi get stoned is a great idea to give them a chance to really make it up to him.

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