Staycation Day 1 - Slept in by way over an hour. I'm worried I'm gonna waste this vacation just like I did the last time!
No way to drop off books at the library, the bin is full.
Lunch = bec from Bagels on Park. I love this place, I love the food, I love the people. Felt physically sick though from all the people who weren't wearing masks. What the fuck is wrong with people??
Kept hacking away at the More Heroes mod. Started reading Voice of Mars by David Guymer.
Took a shower.
Dinner = sardine sandwich. There wasn't time to order anything. Also 2 drinks afterwards.
D&D: unnamed 5e campaign
We took groundskeeper Jones to a nearby themed bar. We ordered chowder. Jones slumped, in a daze. The server was concerned, but we told her we had this. Things in the house seemed quiet enough. Nothing really happened at first. Slowly events began to pass in a haze. A man visited, asked a few questions. Tall, thin, tattooed head. Jones didn't get a good look @ the tattoos. Too much of life was a haze by then. Jones described the weirdness he'd noted to date. Ajax tried to get more details out of him, but few of the people before that man arrived had mentioned their names. One even used only a single letter, Q. The house had no previous caretaker that he'd known about. Jones' family doesn't live in the city. Can Ajax help restore Jones' life? Maybe. Ajax vows to try.
The chowder arrived. Jones couldn't taste it. He could smell it, but he couldn't taste it at all, and that made him even sadder than before. Al insisted he just needs some food and rest.
Ajax got a sending from The Librarian. The 24 hours are almost up. Ajax responds with our current location, and The Warden and Librarian both portal in to join us. I declined to share my chowder with them. They ordered food and drink like they were our friends. Ajax introduced them to Jones. They asked how we survived, and we told them that we just walked out. We described what had happened so far.
The server dropped off whiskey and food. The Warden drained her whiskey, then admitted to knowing about the Xermanos House. The family was causing trouble, and the house is "stained" as a result, just like in Hemwick. The Xermanos family asked for "eternal" something. Ajax told them about the journal, which I have, and I kicked Ajax for talking to much. Ajax filled in the rest of the story.
I offered the journal in exchange for the Ars Arcanum. No joy, but then I offered the journal if The Alchemist will intervene with Garl on my behalf... The Warden agreed to try, so the Librarian went to check on her.
The Warden filled in some details on the family. In fact, it was the Vertruses who put an enchantment on the house to keep people (especially children!) out. Either the spell didn't work on us or the spell had worn off. I asked the Warden to join us to check on the enchantment. Before sending Jones to the Vertruse House, we asked him to tell The Warden about the dude who visited. But there's a time paradox: the enchantment was put up before Jones was hired by the city to be the caretaker. Jones was shocked that someone would deliberately do this to him. The Warden offered to ask some clergy she knows to try restorative magic on Jones. Jones thanked her and Ajax, then stepped through the portal.
The Warden asked if weird shit happened to us since meeting her brother. YES. Why? We don't know, maybe related to being unmoored.
Off to the Xermanos House. We could see it. The Warden confirmed that the enchantment was still up. Even grabbed an NPC to check if they could see it. Nope, couldn't see a thing because the enchantment was still active. OK then.
Al needed to restock on marbles. Ajax prayed, his deva responded. "Be wary, dark things stand in front of you. Be strong." Al asked The Warden why they didn't burn the house down. The Librarian tried!
We teleported into the Vertruse Manor's fancy teleportation room. I asked where I could sit that won't get me stuck in a force cage. Warden smiled and said anywhere as long as I don't go near the library. Librarian arrived. I asked about the library. Nope.
I went to sulk and re-read the journal. There's a passage about a cousin who was going to send information about the family to the Xermanos House, but no word on whether we've encountered that material yet.
Meanwhile, Ajax tried to stay calm and not be affected by his PTSD.
Al asked about the Ars Arcanum. I told him what I know about that book, why I want it, and also that they told me to stay out of the library... but they didn't say anything about keeping Al out! The Warden returned just yet before our plot could proceed any further... with a promise from Garl to consider some other form of payment instead of the Ars Arcanum! I handed over the Xermanos journal. The pact is sealed.
We teleported back to the Xermanos House. We put on our amulets and walked closer to the house. We felt static in our head, but it was comfortable to deal with. Not at all like last time. Al kicked the front steps. "No! Bad!" We explained to The Warden how we broke in last time. Off to the basement.
We showed The Warden the bloody skeleton. We also showed her the rose & crown amulet, which is still active. It occurred to us that we should have showed her what we found **BEFORE** we returned to this stupid place. The Warden decided to use the tarot for some inexplicable reason. She interpreted the results as meaning a child was sacrificed to summon whatever is haunting this place.
The Warden mentioned books. My ears perked up, and I was unjustly accused of having a one track mind. The Warden dispelled the barrier around the circle, and 5 ooey gooey translucent things showed up. Al urged The Warden to exit the room so he could fling holy mist grenade marbles into the room.
Stayed up late getting the last few bits of the More Heroes mod working. So close!
Stupid delivery box mixup. How do people still not know that my neighbor & I are 2 different doors?
RIP Hana Kimura. What an utterly horrible mess.
If you wish to comment, please do so at the entry itself and not on LJ. Thanks for reading!