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Preparation for Our Night's Work

Posted in: Play by Ariel on April 25, 2009

We expected a few guards to be inside the Jasidian temple the night before Solstice.rock-attack We didn’t expect six guards and two stone giants.

It was a great plan — a quick disguise to fool the two half-orcs out front of the temple and then, bam! we’re inside. The first part was fine; we just hadn’t planned on six more guards and the giants.

I’ll begin at the beginning.

Ever since we heard about the Jasidian expansion of the temple, I have been praying for guidance. The Temple of Wee Jas, the new, expanded temple, will block the morning sun from reaching the Temple of Pelor. This is a problem. And I am the solution.
Add to this the fact that one Jasidian cleric hired assassins to remove us and another one swapped spell components to remove the head Pelorian clerics and we have just cause to be inside the temple after hours.

If you were Acgar you’d be saying that it’s one thing to be inside the temple, it’s another thing entirely to be planning on blowing the roof off it. talkI didn’t have an easy time convincing my fellow adventurers to blow up the temple. I laid out my arguments and waited for their questions.

Acgar was the first to speak. “This is evil. You are talking about willful destruction of property, not to mention whatever innocents get caught in the rubble. I want no part of it.” She looked at me for a long moment. “You’ve changed. We were too long on that evil plane, perhaps.”

Her words hit home, so I hurriedly called out to Sadi.
“Sadi! Please be the voice of reason, OK? What more proof do we need that Wee Jas is tied up in all of this?”
Sadi shrugged. “I’m in. How do we do it?” Myntilly rubbed her chin. “We really just need to take off the top of the temple. That’s not so bad.”
Inside I was cheering. Outwardly I said, “Exactly. This will be surgical.” I turned to Ian. “You know about stuff like this, right?” He looked startled. “Me? What?” I felt a little sheepish. “You’re a gnome. So you kind know about engineering and stuff, right?” He cocked his head. “I can do some simple carpentry, I guess. Is the temple made of wood?”

I stopped, because I realized I had no idea what it was made of. “I….” Various interrupted: “I have made a study, hurried though it is, of Cauldron’s architecture. It’s a small sideline of mine. A few journals publish my monographs on architecture and design. The Jasidian temple is made of stone. The facade is quite clever actually. You see they’ve added stone and then shaped it to appear as a single rock, hewn if you will, from the ground in one act. Quite breathtaking, actually.”

No one knew quite what to say to all of that. Sadi stood up. “We need alchemy. If we’re going to do this, let’s go see Weer.”

cauldron-map-copyImagine that Cauldron is a clock. The Jasidian temple is at four o’clock; the Pelorian temple is at five o’clock and Weer’s Elixirs is at eight o’clock. We walked up to Weer’s shop. He greeted us heartily. “Divas! Buying or selling? Always welcome!”

“We need to clear away a quantity of stone.” (I spoke the literal truth.) “Ha ha! Easy to do. Easy. To. Do.” His eyes glowed with pleasure. “The best method will be a lovely little concoction called thermite. You take powdered aluminum, rust, some potassium chlorate and a pinch of sugar. Give it a spark and there goes the rock. Molten iron. That’s the ticket.”

Myntilly smiled. “That’s perfect. Can the spark be, say, a lightning spell?” Weer drew in his breath. “I don’t know! Let’s do a little experiment, shall we?”

He took us out back and set up a small clay pot. He filled it with a pinch of several powders, put a lid on it and shook it gently. Myntilly put a fist-sized rock beside the pot. We all stood back about 30 feet. Myntilly cast lightning at the clay pot. There was a flash of light and lots of heat and when it died down, Myntilly’s rock was half melted.

“Well,” said Weer, “I guess lightning will work just fine. Thank you, young lady. I never would have thought of it! Now, how much do you need?”
I turned to Various. “How big is the temple, would you say?”
“What temple? You said you needed to move rock! What are you planning here?” Weer’s face got serious. Myntilly jumped in to cover my mistake. “She’s just trying to figure it out based on the Pelorian temple as a comparable size. You know? How people do that…..” He was silent for a moment. “Yes, yes. Of course! You’re a Pelorian. Why would you blow up your own temple? Ha ha!”

Various scribbled some figures on a piece of paper. “I’d say we’re talking about 3,000 square feet. Give or take since it’s really the top we’re concerned with.” Ian looked over her shoulder. “Are you sure? As we place the thermite around the temple –”
“Cave!” Myntilly yelled.
“Yes, the cave,” agreed Ian. “As we do it, we’ll need to account for the Bezoni effect.” Various nodded vigorously. “Yes! True. If we take the square of the area divided by the hypotenuse of the ceiling to floor angle……” She bent over the paper.

“I don’t know from Baroni or his effects, but I can tell you that you’ll need a powerful sum of aluminum. And she ain’t cheap.” Weer did some of his own calculations. “We’re talking somewhere in the neighborhood of 35,000 gp. Give or take.” There was a moment of silence as we all thought about the money.
I cleared my throat and smiled. “How’s our credit?” Weer did not return my smile.

Various looked up again. “I can make aluminum. Get the rest.”
Weer raised his eyebrow at this, but he quickly did his sums. “1,750 gp. Rust is cheap. Potassium isn’t.” He moved around the shop, quickly filling casks with the materials. “You be careful with this. You could blow up a block of Cauldron if you’re not careful!”

As we left the shop I couldn’t help but grin. “I love it when a plan comes together!”

1 Comment

  1. Beth, your dialogue writing is wonderful to read. Awesome!

    Comment by Dyskko — April 27, 2009 @ 9:35 am

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