Let’s pretend I posted this on time. Stream time!
My villains are bad. Here is a spoiler for a villain that is definitely upcoming and that our party of heroes will have to defeat:
I’m supposed to update the LP today but I’m tired. I’ll update tomorrow, sorry.
Don’t worry about it. Additionally merry Christmas or (insert holiday here) to everyone.
As the fan we keep lovingly referring to in many of our videos I think you should know that I’ve written a lot of good content in the form of spicy NPC dialog for our next D&D session which will be happening next week. (This week we’re doing a holiday break session.) So look forward to that good shit, I guess!
I hope you enjoyed your holiday! Thanks for supporting us!
Like I said before, my villains are terrible. LET’S KILL A LICH:
Hey we forgot to post in either of our threads that we were streaming yesterday but we streamed yesterday and I since I am abnormally proud of last night’s session I am taking the time to remind all our fan of our companion thread We Stream Games! where I post much of our non-D&D content. It’s the holiday season, treat yourself by binging our good content! I definitely recommend the Carpet People Saga, our DBZ game, and the Honey Heist session we played yesterday!
As always, thank you for watching and supporting our nonsense and don’t be afraid to post in these threads! Tune in next week for:
-Epic Dragon battle!
On today’s stream: we will die, physically and emotionally.
I love tactics too much, if the thing the enemy would do is fuck me up I will always suggest it
I appreciate Jeff helping me not suck at encounters and look forward to getting better about running them in the future! Anyway, it’s Tuesday and people actually interacted with, and read, terrible stuff I wrote. I’m dying.
I promised I would post a lot of the writing I did for this episode but there’s actually a bit more writing I’ve done that’ll show up NEXT episode so I’ll add the content ya’ll desire to THAT update next week.
Aaaaaa I forgot to upload yesterday, I’m sorry! I’m usually pretty good about uploading on time too. I was just SO TIRED. To be honest, I am still extremely tired but I’m doing it.
I already say it in the video but for those of you who have watched our sessions and continue to watch our sessions, thank you very much from the bottom of my heart! I know these sessions are very long and finding over two hours in a day is a luxury for many people so the fact that ya’ll make the time to listen/watch our antics means a whole lot to me. <3
I also promised I’d share a bunch of the writing I did for these past few sessions so I’m gonna do that. I’m also going to talk a bit about how I went about writing these things and give y’all some insight into the NPCs we all know and love. Here we go:
Arram: The crew and I have talked openly about how there is an NPC like Arram in every game I’ve ever run. Usually that NPC is Ark, in this game it is Arram. But, while all these Wholesome Pure Good Boys are extremely similar to one another they don’t all have the same back story. When I am writing dialog for a character I feel I have an obligation to be as true to that character as I can. It didn’t feel right to just write as myself and staying in character in all this dialog was very challenging because there was a lot that I, the creator, wanted to say as and tell about the character but my characters only have so much ability to express these things. (I also have to be mindful of my players and make sure they get the spotlight too!) Anyway, Arram is a dense but well-meaning boy who comes from a poor and shitty family. That’s what I had in my heart as I wrote his dialog.
Arram: Tomorrow is the big day but what’s really on my mind right now is trying to find the exact moment we started dating so that we can celebrate our anniversary after you kick this army’s ass.
Arram: I think it was when you slipped me the note in the cultist base. I don’t know if fighting a massive army for our survival is what I would call the ideal way to commemorate almost a month of extremely dating but I’m in no position to really alter the situation so I guess I’ll take it.
Arram: Every once in awhile I think about just how lucky I’ve been in my life. [Laughter] I absolutely failed my way through everything. I just had to keep trying, you know? I didn’t think I could really rely on anyone but myself. It’s kind of expected of people to make it on their own even though it’s unrealistic. So I had convinced myself that nobody was gonna save me but me. Then you and your friends showed up and kicked my ass and you just kept showing up and rescuing me and it’s just like, not only could I not save me but I needed to be saved from me.
It’s a lot, actually. Thank you.
Arram: I look back on all the shit I lived through to get here and I’m just like, wow, how did I even do that? And it occurs to me that months after today I’ll be looking back on now with the same awe and wonder but I hope, once all the dust is settled, that we can make a future where nobody has to be amazed by how they survived because you and your friends made survival easy.
I hope I’m not pressuring you or being too presumptuous but I would like to be part of making that future with you.
Arram: Since it was a red dragon that came in and fucked everything up the folks who are rightfully not big fans of the greedy tyrant dragon have been pretty intolerant of red dragonborn even though we have nothing to do with it.
But it’s just like, fine, they can’t exactly take out their anger on the red dragon, she’s a red dragon for god’s sake, so they may as well take their anger out on me. Maybe it helps them deal with their hardships better to treat me like shit and if that’s the case than it’s worth it because I just want to make people feel better.
Arram: Is it arrogant to think that Eon intervened in my life and brought me to you? I genuinely feel like I experienced a miracle. It’s kinda hard to not believe in the gods when there are clerics and paladins calling on their power on a regular basis. But even though I acknowledge the existence of the gods I was never under the illusion that they gave a shit about me. I didn’t feel like I owed them anything. I’ve had to unpack a lot with this revelation that Eon did care about me and was looking out for me even though I didn’t know they existed.
I’ve always been really good at compartmentalizing stuff, you kind of have to be when your family beats you all the time, so I’m usually able to just handle this kind of stuff.
But I don’t know what to do about being cared about, by you or by Eon. I don’t know how to be good enough for either of you. And I don’t know how to believe in something.
Urist: Urist was a bit of a delightful surprise for me! I didn’t know about Urist, Breadmaster just kinda dumped her on me out of the blue one session. But I’ll die before I have an NPC in my game that doesn’t have their own lives and drives. Breadmaster didn’t tell me much of what he wanted or expected out of Urist and I’d like to believe he just trusted me to make a good NPC because we’ve kind of established that relationship. In writing Urist I took a lot of guidance from how Breadmaster had been playing Lenox to date and thought to myself what kind of person would fall in love with, marry, and procreate with someone like Lenox. They’d have to be a very stubborn, strong-willed, and independent person who is incredibly down to earth and just generally chill. I created Urist with the assumption that Lenox was always this pragmatic grump with loose morals, his wife had to be the kind of person who would find such a personality appealing and charming. In writing Urist, what I had most in my heart was making sure I conveyed a person who had a lot of respect, love, and esteem for her spouse.
Urist: The thieves guild got our daughter out of the town, she’s being taken to my sister’s in the Mountainhome. I could have left too, and I bet you would have preferred that but let’s be honest our entire relationship is built off the foundation of me not doing what you prefer and it’s not changing now.
Urist: Us dwarves pretty much marry for life, you know. Our spouses can become were-creatures, vampires, go insane, become war criminals, get so injured in battle that they can’t even function any more and we other halves stick with them. There’s a very real chance that you could die tomorrow. All I want is to be as close to at your side as I can be.
Urist: When you started this whole mercenary nonsense I was fine with it because we needed the money and I have accepted my empty nest. House to myself sounds about nice. I can fill it full of crafts and engravings! But, y’know, we’re living under a dictatorship so I just assumed you’d be hired into the Red Dragon army and do some war crimes and come home all traumatized forever.
But look at you, my accidental husband joining up with the good guys. I bet they hate you.
Urist: Y’know I’m not sure you’re any happier now, as a renowned liberator, than you were as a grad student when we met all those years ago. I always kinda just wanted you to be happy, though I knew I wasn’t responsible for your feelings and couldn’t make you happy. At this point you’ll definitely get tenure and the city won’t be a miserable hell pit to boot. You humans only live, what 80 years max? And I don’t even remember your age but I hope we have at least 70 more years together because I’m not ready to give up on seeing you happy yet.
Mimolette: Mimolette is especially difficult to write because I actually got to play her as a PC which means I already had a very silly character in mind for her. Additionally, I have never had a positive relationship with a blood sibling and do not have much of an idea of how to portray one. Mimolette loves her sister and would die for her. She is extremely protective of Brie and just wants her to be happy but doesn’t actually know what Brie wants. Mimolette is extremely cavalier and likes to go with the flow. In writing Mimolette I tried to channel the energy of a best friend I hadn’t seen in a few years but was able to just pick up the relationship where we left off with.
Mim: Sis, I gotta fight with the Fae army so we’re gonna have to part ways again. I don’t think I’ve ever been really good at this kind of thing but I know I ain’t dying and you ain’t allowed to die either. When this is all over, I’ll go back to bringing you weird wilderness ingredients to experiment with, just like old times.
Also you should probably meet my satyr boyfriend.
Mimolette: Brie I just want you to know that I’m really glad a wicked fae creature tried to kidnap me and swap me out with you but was foiled because you’re the best sister ever. I thought, when I set off to find your real parents, that I was doing it for you but I realize now that I was doing it for me because I wanted to prove my family was better and that we deserved you.
Mim: Mom told us there is no bond closer than twins but we’ve also now fought in a war together and I’d just like to take this moment to declare us ultra bonded.
Shae: It should come as no surprise to anyone but I like Shae a lot. Shae is actually the first NPC I came up with. The moment Loaka revealed Amnon’s backstory to me on character creation I created Shae. Shae is surprisingly easy to write for! She’s a person who desperately wants to be good and to have a family who just so happens to be stuck in a family that is absolutely terrible. Shae is an expression of my belief that it is the family you create for yourself, not the one you are born into, that matters. A lot of times, when a person becomes a mother, society kinda stops seeing them as a person and starts seeing them as a just a mom. I’m not sure how successful I’ve been in this regard but one of my objectives with Shae was to make sure that I acknowledged that yes, she is a mother, but she is also a person outside of that. Shae is a neurotic lesbian who cares too much about other people and not enough about herself.
Shae: Wait, Marigold before you go. I have something for you.
[[Hands a letter]]
I tried to think of some appropriate parting gift and settled on this. Don’t open it, it’s bad luck!
It’s a victory speech, for when you win. It was the best way I could come up to show you how much I believe in you. In the story books, heroes are always just prepared for this stuff and can whip up an amazing speech out of nowhere and I don’t doubt your ability to improvise so this gift is more symbolic than anything. I hope that, from the moment you carry this into battle to the moment when you read this in the aftermath and are overwhelmed by how absolutely awful it is that you will know that I will do everything in my power to meet you on the other side of this. After all, I wouldn’t want to miss our date.
Shae: Before meeting your group I didn’t even know Vikulg and Alvoni existed. But I did witness the effects of their efforts on this hell town. Families suddenly having enough to bail out their relatives, rumors of sick people or families with ill members getting medicine, in winter–guh it’s almost winter now-- families would find piles of wood stacked up by their doors so they could stay warm all season. It’s nice to finally meet the people who were behind all that.
While you and your group were out for that week and a half, blowing up drugs and casually starting peasant uprisings, Vikulg, Alvoni and I spent a lot of time together. And the pair of them just seemed so impressed with me for going into the slums every day and adopting Lilah. But, like, that’s nothing compared to everything they’ve done. It’s nothing compared to everything you’ve done. And honestly what was I supposed to do, let her die? Absolutely not.
I think about all the ways things are just getting so fucked and I see Vikulg fighting, I see Alvoni fighting, and I see you and your group fighting and it makes me want to fight too.
You make me want to be a better person, and I recognize that you’re more than that and that you’re not mine to lose.
But I don’t want to lose that. So try not to die I guess?
Esme: Let’s be honest, Esme is my favorite NPC and it shows. I think she has the most dialog and development out of all my NPCs. I think if I had any regrets it is that I really don’t give all my NPCs the amount of TLC they definitely deserve because they’re all really good! But, they’re also NPCs, and a tabletop campaign is about the story of the Player Characters, not the NPCs. If I wanted to just tell the story of a bunch of NPCs I would write a book. (By the way, I wrote a book.) ANYWAY, Esme has gone through a lot of shit in her life but she is a simple woman with simple needs. Esme’s whole character is established pretty well in her dialog. She’s a laid back sex positive gal who feels guilty for not being selfless and for being born with privilege. She wasn’t prepared for the life she chose and she’s handling it poorly.
Esme, via a sending: On the way to Calimshan we had to cut through territory the army now marching on the gates of Almraiven passed through. We happened upon a village that had been utterly devastated by them. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the smell of dead bodies. Thinking of you, fighting for my home and your home too, while I’m here safe…ish and hoping you not only survive, but that you don’t get hurt in ways I can’t mend. Thanks for the sex, stay alive.
So on the way to Calimshan to destroy the phylactery that allowed my horrible lich fiance to live forever it occurred to me that I kinda sent my lover out to kill my fiance and wow, how noble of me.
And I mean that both ways as in sarcastically condemning my virtue of nobility but also tacitly acknowledging my behavior as profoundly noble in act because that’s just how we are, isn’t it?
No wonder they want to kill us all.
I’m not including you in this ‘us’ by the way. You’re the solution to a problem we’ve been creating for generations. And I never would have learned this if I hadn’t told my family to go fuck themselves and taken to adventuring. I would be sitting in the noble quarter right now, with the rest of them, blaming the poors for the hardships and problems we created for them.
Part of me thinks that even though I know better now I maybe shouldn’t be spared. Justice should fall evenly on all criminals and it shouldn’t pass harmlessly over me just because I’m fucking one of the people behind the liberation.
Esme: Almraiven will have it’s revolution and I sincerely hope the people get what they deserve. And, so long as I choose to make a life here, I’ll have to find a new social role to fill because the people have made it clear that Almraiven is no place for the bourgeois.
But I gotta be honest, even though I’m a cleric of Lathander and I’ve done a lot of helping people, and it feels good, I don’t think I’m a particularly altruistic person. I started adventuring because I wanted to meet buff adventurers, men and women, with huge biceps and well-defined abs who could utterly destroy me at any moment not because I wanted to make the world a better place.
I guess I could heal the sick and injured and I guess that would suit me just fine but that’s not what I want to do and I just don’t think I’m a good person.
When you have the gift of healing you’re supposed to be selfless and want that stuff. You’re supposed to live for that shit. And I don’t and I’m not sure I ever will.
Before I joined up with Daein and the rest I adventured briefly with another group and one of the members told me she really only started adventuring because it meant she could kill people without consequence. She said that nobody cared if you killed people if you killed the right people and adventuring has a steady supply of right people to kill. And I have to be honest, I felt that.
Not everyone who is doing the right thing is doing it for the right reasons. Though I honestly see nothing immoral about me wanting to fuck buff hotties.
When all is said and done, what will you do?
Esme: You’re gonna be in history books, Amnon, even after you die people will probably know who you are for a long time. But one or two generations after I die I’ll be forgotten and that’s how I want it to be.
It’s kind of comforting to know that I was never remarkable enough to go down in history. That all the terrible things I’ve done over my life, that I obsess and beat myself up over on a regular basis, will simply be forgotten, will be washed away by time. My tombstone simply reading: “Here lies Esme Utmir, she loved to fuck.” [Laughs]
Esme: Hahahaha, I was wrong! I thought I survived all the trauma but actually it fundamentally changed me and how my brain works and I’m not the person I was before all the bullshit and that person I was is gone and never coming back and bahahaha I died bitch!
Events: I also wrote out the two main events in these sessions, The Victory Speech and Time to Be a Mom. It occurs to me that both these events are Shae centric, as one event is something written by Shae, and the other is an event that prominently features Shae. Maybe I don’t neglect her as much as I think I do? Look, folks, when Shae isn’t in the scene everyone should be asking, “Where’s Shae?” ok? ANYWAY, I GOTTA TALK ABOUT THESE NOW. I tweeted about this but I doubt any of you follow my Twitter so I’ll just repeat it here: I unironically believe that the speech in the movie Independence Day is the single greatest speech of all time. EVERY TIME I have had to write a speech for anything (and it’s actually come up a few times in my life) I refer to the Speech from Independence Day as my guide and IT HAS NEVER STEERED ME WRONG. So I listened to and read this speech about a dozen times while writing this victory speech, and then I made it as Shae as I could. I think it’s very important that I impress upon you all that until all this stuff I wrote started being interacted with sincerely I thought it was amazing and very good writing and was very proud of it. But the moment it became a Real Thing that Real People were going to experience and interact with I kinda died a little. So yeah, when Breadmaster read this speech out loud I may have put my face in my hands and wished for death the entire time.
The Victory Speech
People of Almraiven and allies all, the moment we are all sharing now is one we made together. But this moment, this crucial victory, did not come without a price. It was built upon the hardship, the suffering, and the very bones of generations of our ancestors who toiled to lay the foundation for us to build this future.
Our beloved town can be rebuilt, our farms replanted, but those who fell before us, including those who fell today, cannot be replaced, and their sacrifices are a part of the architecture of our victory today. We would do well to honor them and and their families. For while we all will be building a better world for everyone together they are the ones who will have to go home to empty beds, and empty seats at the table, and convince themselves that it was worth it. Let us build a society where it was worth it but also where it will never be necessary again.
This is not the end. There is more to be done. But let the world know that wherever there is a tyrant there will be people who will fight with all they have to depose them.
I know that I, and my friends, will be lauded as heroes, saviors, for what we have accomplished from our adventuring but all of you who fought today weren’t saved by us, you saved yourselves. And it doesn’t have to stop here, you can keep saving yourselves.
We are going to kill the red dragon, we are going to redistribute her wealth to the rebuilding efforts and to the needy, and we are going to drag this city into a new, better, future that we will be proud to leave behind for our heirs. And you were a part of it. And nobody can take that away from you.
Time to Be a Mom: Loaka: I love being sad. Me: Have I got a treat for you!
Time to Be a Mom is the only event I didn’t write up in the Discord because I didn’t want my players accidentally reading it and spoiling it. I am very proud of Time to Be a Mom, but I was shaking and tearing up in real life while reading it and that lead me to overscrolling and botching the delivery a bit. In Time to Be a Mom, Shae makes the ultimate sacrifice, betraying Lilah and turning her over to the Thieves Guild to ensure that she lives should the worst come to pass. I had, up until this moment, already established Shae as the Ultimate Mom but in this moment Shae truly makes the Ultimate Mom Choice. #ShaeDidNothingWrong
Time to Be a Mom
Scene, the afternoon of the Final Day before the invasion. Shae is speaking to the leader of the Thieves Guild. (The Thieves Guild has been, up to this point, helping children, the elderly, and others unable to fight out of Almraiven.)
Shae: To be honest, I should have done this sooner. I shouldn’t have humored her. But she wanted to help and I wanted to spend every last moment I could with her. I should have been a better mother.
Guildmaster: You have done all the things that you have done up to this point because you are a good person and you are doing what you’re doing now because you’re a good mother. What you ask of us… it will be done.
As the day ebs towards night Shae tells Lilah that she’s taking her to a small army made up of young people like her who have been organized by Pelagia. Lilah looks both excited and a little scared and asks her mother, “You’re not going to fight with me?”
Shae, fighting back tears: Oh no, I will. I will be fighting with you. We’ll all be fighting with you. Mommy just has to be in the adult army.
Lilah seems happy with that answer and walks with her mother. As they move closer and closer to the slums the homes around them with their windows boarded up and entryways barricaded Shae’s hand around Lilah’s hand tightens and she starts losing her fight against tears.
Lilah, completely earnest: It’s okay, mommy. Cousin Amnon and Marigold are gonna win.
Shae smiles a fractured smile that does not reach her eyes.
They get to the old well in the slums, long since dried up, and Lilah finds not an army of children awaiting her but a small group of cloaked thieves milling anxiously about.
Lilah: Mommy, what’s going on?
Shae, tearfully shoving Lilah into the hands of the thieves: Take her, quickly!
The thieves grasp Lilah and have to physically tear her away from Shae as Lilah is holding onto her with all her might.
Lilah: Mom! No!
Shae, choking on tears: You’ll forgive me one day.
Lilah, as she is being pulled away: Mom! You promised us we’d fight together.
Shae, watching with anguish, she doesn’t want Lilah’s last memory of her to be of her walking away: Lilah before I found you I wasn’t sure I wanted to become a mother. Now I know that becoming a mother was the best thing I ever did in my life. If something should happen to me in this war, they will take care of you and find you a new family. It is the best thing I can do for you as your mother and one day I hope you’ll understand.
Lilah: I DON’T WANT ANOTHER FAMILY, I WANT YOU!
Shae: I want you too, and I will always want you. But I have to be a mother now. I love you.
Lilah, screaming, protesting, and crying, is pulled into the sewers by the thieves of the thieves guild. As the sun descends upon Almraiven, Shae walks alone, not to the burned out church that has become her home, but to join a small army of grad students, bards, sex workers, and people of all walks of life who have mustered with all the equipment Vikulg and the party could provide them. Standing amongst this citizens army, ready to fight and, if necessary, die in defense of her home Shae can’t remember a time when she has felt so alone.