DM | Thomas Koch | https://twitter.com/ThomasAKoch
UZO | Warren Reid | https://twitter.com/urbanmasque
REMY the Fox | Beau C. Williams | https://twitter.com/Beau_C_Williams
ANDRASTE | Tiana Hanson | https://twitter.com/Vana1895
RUKUS | Aaron Acosta | https://twitter.com/AaronThatDay
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Episode 13 – Dark Times
**EDITOR’S NOTE 1** This episode features several incredible and emotional performances from the cast. I’ve done my best to capture the discussions including one full transcription with that contains multiple points that will be important in future episodes. However, no written word can convey their full impact, and I highly recommend you watch this episode. – BC/SS
**EDITOR’S NOTE 2** The Rings of Protection +2 from last episode have been retconned. Instead, each character has the following:
Uzo – Darkshard Amulet
Remy – Ring of Protection +1
Andraste – Keoghtom’s Ointment
Rukus – Boots of Spider climbing. These are attuned, but in order to wear them he must remove his armored greaves and take -1 to AC.
Remy, in wererat form, flees the hostel and the rest of the Foxy Irregulars. Rukus follows him because he thinks this wererat stole Remy’s clothes. Andraste knows the truth, and once Rukus points her in the right direction, yells “on your left” and passes him. She catches Remy with her elven speed and grapples him to the ground but he escapes. She catches him again, and after several repetitions he realizes he can’t escape.
“Leave me alone,” he growls in a monstrous voice. Andraste replies “I can’t. You know I can’t.” At this point Rukus and Uzo catch up. Rukus slowly catches on to what has actually happened and Uzo says Remy owes Kuma an apology. Andraste points out that this isn’t the time.
Remy tries to talk through the snarls coming from his snout. He doesn’t know how to control this lycanthropy and he can’t erase the barbarism he did back there. Uzo says he did nothing wrong, just rescuing his friends. Remy spits out part of a halfling nose caught in his throat. Rukus picks it up but Andraste slaps it out of his hand. He starts to say something in his typical fashion, but Remy spits back “When you eat another halfling, you can talk to me, Rukus. Until then, shut your mouth.” Rukus actually does.
They cover Remy in Rukus’s cloak and they stealthily make their way to Remy’s nearby home where they can regroup. Messy and run down, it’s not the nicest, but it’s home for Remy. He tries to light some herb in his pipe but his wererat hands fail. Andraste packs it for him and he smokes. He apologizes and slowly shifts back to himself as he relaxes. Uzo says there’s nothing to apologize for but Remy disagrees.
He says, “I’m sorry I didn’t tell you. I couldn’t. And now we’ve gone to a place I’m afraid we cannot get back from. I don’t know how to process what has just happened but it wouldn’t have happened if I’d been honest with you. If I’d trusted you. And I didn’t. And for that I am so sorry. Please help me. Please. I know it’s been only less than a tenday but it’s become very evident that I need you all. And now I don’t know what to do. Please help.”
Andraste says they’re not going anywhere and Rukus reminds them they need to figure out what to do about the bodies of the wererats. Uzo adds they need to handle the halfling Rukus killed with the door too.
Rukus is amazed that the flying door killed him, and Andraste is appalled. Uzo tries to comfort her saying that no one in a place like that was guiltless, but Andraste won’t hear it. She says, “That’s not our job! We were there for the wererats, we weren’t there for civilians. I could have helped! I could have done something! But I didn’t I didn’t even think about it. I didn’t even think about the second person. I healed the one and ran.”
“You ran because of me,” Remy adds.
Rukus asks for a beverage to help calm them and Remy takes out a fine whisky, stops Rukus from chugging it, then pours out drinks. The team tries to figure out their next move. Andraste says they can cure the lycanthropy if that’s what Remy wants. He says he hates it. Changing m ore than just his physical form, the transformation makes him ruthless and bloodthirsty.
As they discuss, Rukus feels a vibration in his pocket, and after some awkwardness, realizes it’s the nimblewright detector. He realizes he’s standing by a window, looks both ways, and jumps through it. “I’ll pay for it later!” he yells and runs off.
Uzo leaves Baga and Kuma, telling them to stay here but not to drink the whiskey. The three of them chase after Rukus and come to the corner of an alley but don’t see the nimblewright. Uzo casts the illusion of a wall behind the nimblewright so it will think it’s trapped and sneaks up on it with Remy.
Remy pounces and deals a critical strike, but the nimblewright stabs him in return. Rukus, from 60 feet away, shrugs off Andraste’s warning hand even though she willingly lets him go. “No one ever pays attention to the mom friend,” she laments, just as Rukus accidentally jumps all the way to the nimblewright. He’s so surprised that he misses and his sword digs in the ground.
Andraste tries to magically hold the nimblewright, but it’s a construct, and it doesn’t work. Uzo does what warlocks do and casts Eldritch Blast. As the nimblewright attacks again, Remy feels his adrenaline rush and he starts to shift, but he pushes it down, determined to stay himself. They trade more blows, and Andraste throws guided rays of light, one of which drills into the nimblewright’s forehead and knocks off its head.
Remy looks to see if the nimblewright has the Stone of Golorr, but only finds a folded slip of paper. It’s a map to somewhere in Waterdeep’s, cemetery the City of the Dead, and there’s an X next to the word Cassalanter.
As the Irregulars debate what to do next, two City Watch stumble through the illusory wall, demanding answers. The team explains what just happened and the guards agree to take the nimblewright’s remains back to the precinct to process it. Remy takes the head with its glorious mustache. The guards leave, and the party decides they don’t want to look guilty after all the violence of the day. They head to Barnibus’s house to personally explain.
As they catch a carriage back to the North Ward, Andraste asks Rukus how he cast the jump spell. He’s surprised he cast magic. He’d thought the fire he shot out of his hands was just spicy food. Andraste explodes in laughter and Remy is sad that everyone can do magic except for him. Uzo reminds him he can turn into a rat. Remy isn’t amused.
It’s dark by the time they reach Barnibus’s house and they manage to stop Rukus before he kicks down the door. Barnibus isn’t there, so they decide to leave a note. Rukus tries to write it “just like any other person who can write a note” with many excuses before Andraste finally takes it, ending the charade. They argue about the tone of the letter and finally slip the note through the mail slot saying:
“Dear Barnibus, we the foxy irregulars stopped by your domicile at the hour of 7 to discuss the most unfortunate incident in the dock ward at the hostel leaving several dead. We wished to come directly to you after the incident however mitigating circumstances were such that we could not make it until this hour. We have the head of the nimblewright. We are on the path to the stone of golorr. Please come and meet us at the irregular tavern at your earliest convenience. Your discretion is greatly appreciated. – The Foxy Irregulars.”
Rukus asks if this could be used as evidence against them, and Andraste says of course it can. Uzo remarks he’s actually getting smarter somehow. Rukus breaks the fourth wall.
They head back toward the tavern to taste wine and cheese with some trepidation in case the Watch is waiting for them. When they reach Trollskull Alley they see a crowd spilling out of the tavern and into the street. Andraste and Remy head inside while Uzo and Rukus wait as reinforcement. They make bets whether the other two will be arrested or killed first.
Remy realizes the commotion might be preparations for the octopus and cheese cooking competition. He throws open the door, crying “Remy has arrived!” but he’s overwhelmed by cheering as Broxley announces that the winner of the competition is Steven. They’ve missed everything, and Remy lets out a Skywalker-worthy “NOOOOOO!!!!” He jumps on Andraste’s shoulders (much to her chagrin) and gets everyone’s attention, then flips and lands on a table, drawing his sword and announcing that the Irregulars are here to taste.
He tells someone in the back to “lean out and scream that Remy says to Uzo get your ass in here.” When someone does, Rukus thinks Remy’s in danger. He rushes in, sword drawn, just barely figuring out in time not to punch the unfortunate tavern-goer. Remy puts on his best Master of Ceremonies hat and proceeds to entertain the crowd as he goes to taste the dishes.
After far too much detail useless banter over spices, ingredients, and whether the Octopeers massaged the octopus enough, the Irregulars get down to tasting. Uzo takes a handfull of each, slaps it on his plate, and goes upstairs to eat. The other three try each of the four chefs’ dishes.
Steven, whom Broxley has proclaimed the winner, has prepared octopus with a buttery, nutty sauce. He’s also managed to somehow shred goat cheese over it. Rukus wants just a cup of sauce. Overall it’s palatable.
Rachel has a wonderful dish with a hint of paprika. The octopus is massaged and cooked perfectly.
Dave (another one), the chef at the Skewered Dragon, has raw octopus and cut cheese. It’s awful and rubbery. Remy says they have good news for him. There’s work as a chef in the North Ward, but it’s down the street at Frewn’s Brews.
A fourth person is mentioned but inexplicably ignored.
The party over, Broxley gets everyone to leave and gives the party 60 silver in door fees. As he leaves, Rukus gets a horrible case of the hiccups and starts drinking to cure it.
Andraste sits down with Remy to talk about his curse. She says that the necklace she got from the Emerald Enclave can cast Greater Restoration and cure it. Remy isn’t sure. He wonders how it will affect their credibility if he can’t prove he can turn. Andraste suggest maybe he can try to stop himself. He tests it by stabbing himself in the leg. He manages to stop the transformation, but it’s horrible. He isn’t sure if he can control it in a crisis. Rukus belches.
Anraste takes Remy’s hand and casts the spell. He’s instantly cured and he breathes deep. They speak together thusly:
R: It’s like my mind has been trapped in a cage and all of a sudden I’m free again. It feels better. These last days have been excruciating with anxiety and I’m so sorry I didn’t tell you.
A: I wish you had. You can. I’ve seen all sorts of very strange things in the forest. You can tell me things.
R: I know. But you remember when Uzo was gone? When he came back we had words. He told me that we weren’t friends, that we’re business partners.
A: And you believed him?! He comes running into danger to protect us! Any sensible person who didn’t have his friends in the middle of things would run in the other direction! He comes running into danger because we’re his friends! Obviously. Any sensible person would look at The Foxy Irregulars and run. But none of us are sensible and we all need each other. And we’re all here together as a group.
R: I just felt maybe how I was feeling about this group, finally like somewhere I belonged, maybe I was seeing things. So I shut down. It was embarrassing being a wererat. I’m usually Johnny on the spot, and then I was out of my element. And I couldn’t admit it. Thank you.
A: Do you understand i’ve been alone for 5 years? After the orcs, after my tribe, after my family, I didn’t have anyone. I was alone out in the forest. For five years. Trying to figure out where I belonged, trying to figure out everything. And I’ve only known you for less than a tenday, but if anything happened to you then I would kill everyone and then myself. I found a family again. And I am not letting you go.
R: Do you mean that?
A: I do
R: Thank you.
A: We are excruciatingly irregular. But I wouldn’t trade our little family for the world.
R: That just leaves one question. (Looks into her eyes) Your room or mine?
A: Mine for me and you in yours.
R: But things were going so well there! Are you sure? No? (Unbuttons shirt a little to expose halfling chest hair)
A: My dear, elves mate for life. Are you really-
R: I’m good! (Does not gauge how truthful she is) I’m not ready to commit. As much as I think you’re a wonderful person, there’s somebody that I’m waiting for and I hope that one day I’ll be in a better place so that she will come back to me.
A: Well she’s a lucky person.
R: Lucky I’m gone I think.
A: I don’t. Have a good night Remy.
R: What? You weren’t just coming on to me again?
A: You’re waiting for your special someone, remember? Good evening.
R: Thank you Andraste. And I’m glad you’re not alone anymore.
A-me too. It’s not a good existence.
She gets up to reveal Rukus still sitting there, watching the beautiful moment. Remy says he can’t utter a word to anyone. Leif draws a bearded face on the chalkboard with a single tear. Rukus says she likes him better anyway. Remy wishes him good luck because he’s clearly had no luck whatsoever. Rukus is okay with the friendzone. He chokes on water, then passes out on the table.
The team sleeps until Leif gently wakes them at 4:00 in the morning. Barnibus is in the tavern waiting for them. He hasn’t gone to bed since processing the crime scene and came here right after finding their note. The party give him the nimblewright’s head and explain everything that has transpired including the brawl at the hostel, the fight with the nimblewright, and how the Emerald Enclave’s boon cured Remy’s curse. Barnibus tells them that the watch found missing contraband at the hideout, along with the six missing Watchmen who had gone to investigate. The two surviving Sharters told everything. They weren’t all wererats yet. The one Rukus killed with the door was a gang member too. Andraste is hugely relieved at this.
Barnibus also gives the Irregulars 1000 gold in reward for handling the wererats problem and says there’s another 1000 for the nimblewright. The Gralhunds have already been apprehended for ordering the fireball attack. He also says that if they want to do this type of work again they need to be sworn in as honorary members of the Watch. It should have been taken care of during their meeting with Laeral Silverhand. The team cringes. In all the chaos they completely forgot about their meeting. Barnibus says he can set up another meeting. He examines each of them under zone of truth before he leaves and finds out that Remy’s real name is Slade Remington.
Rukus asks Barnibus for word of Hrabazz, but since he wasn’t implicated, he was set free. Barnibus tells them to go continue their search for the Stone of Golorr, but not to kill anyone else. The Irregulars discuss the moral issues of their actions so far, Andraste revealing she still feels guilty for not healing that halfling. Uzo is happy she accepts this guilt because he gets to sleep without it. Now well rested, they head toward the City of the Dead.