Part 23: Team Aggravated Burglary
Update 22: Team Aggravated Burglary
"I still can't believe the rest of Team Brute Force walked out on me and I'm stuck with you jerks."
"I know what will cheer you up: we can go loot a castle!"
"We don't have a Castle Key, you know. I doubt they have any intention of letting us in."
"Since when did we let that stop us?"
"Mattybee, I joined this party to keep you out of trouble, and the first thing you do is force your way into a castle? You should be ashamed of yourself."
"Can you two save the arguing for later? If you wanna live, you'd better fight right now."
The battle goes predictably; the party murders the guards in short order and breaks into Lord Hoardall's castle.
"Wait, what's that door on the left?"
"Well, I know which door we're going through first."
About half this castle is off-limits and filled with guards that attack every three steps or so. Luckily, they never attack in groups of more than 10 at a time so the party can basically just autocombat them to death.
There's also a lot of these lying around.
"Don't mind if I do!"
"500 gold? What a gyp. We can get ten times that from roughing up one group of castle guards."
"Speaking of which, it looks like we just hit the jackpot."
"That's a very nice offer, but I'm afraid we're not on a quest right now."
"Besides, if we're given a quest we don't want, can't we just, uh, not do it?"
"Oh, hey, more guards. This should be--"
So as it turns out, stealing treasure from the castle wasn't such a great idea. Stone Golems don't have any fancy tricks besides a fairly powerful melee attack, but they have 250 HP and are immune to all physical attacks so they're a huge pain to kill. There are about a dozen places throughout the castle where golems will attack if you go there after stealing treasure: for a few hundred gold, it's really not worth the trouble.
"I believe escape may be our best option at this point."
Fortunately, the golems forget about you as soon as you leave the castle, so you can walk right back in and listen to some lame orc jokes.
"Wow. Who put all this junk here?"
"This must be why he's called Lord Hoardall."
"A cupie doll? What the hell am I supposed to do with a cupie doll?"
There are lots of piles of stuff like this scattered around the castle, full of random low-value items like Cupie Dolls or Rope 'n' Hooks.
"What's this? It doesn't look like anything I've seen before..."
"Yay, M-27 Radicon! I'll keep this in case I ever find out what it's for."
Just like Luxus Palace, Castle Woodhaven has free food (hidden in a secret passage, oddly enough).
"Is there anything in this castle that you louts don't plan to steal?"
"Hmm. We probably won't steal any more stuff from those junk piles, because, well, it's junk. Apart from that, we're pretty much gonna take everything that's not nailed down."
While the party was fooling around with Lord Hoardall's collection of junk, a day passed and the jester started telling a new orc joke.
"We could win three Green Ticket battles now, no problem. Might as well come back here and free this guy when we do."
"Why are we talking to Lord Hoardall again?"
"Everyone knows he's the richest man in Cron! I bet he keeps all his best treasure for people who help him out! That's what I'd do, anyway."
"Is nobody here trained as a Crusader? Well, there's nothing for it but to go to Tundara and learn."
"While we're at it, we should go win the Green Ticket Triple Crown."
First is Middlegate's arena. The party already won a battle here back when they were around level 2, so this should be a cinch.
Next up, Sandsobar!
"I almost feel sorry for them."
And finally, Atlantium. Will this arena give the party a decent challenge?
Don't count on it.
"Wait, don't we also need a key to actually get the bishop out?"
"I remember seeing a key shop in Middlegate..."
"500 gold, huh? This bishop had better be able to repay us for this."
Well, it's back to the castle for us!
"Heh. That one's actually kinda funny, if only because they misspelled 'tattoo'."
"Yeah, I guess that was worth it. Go on, get outta here, you."
13000 experience in exchange for 500 gold at almost no risk is a pretty good deal at lower levels, especially since the money from the arena more than pays for the cost of the key. At the party's current level, they could also buy a Yellow Key in Sandsobar, do the Yellow Ticket challenge and free the Yellow Bishop in Castle Pinehurst for a total of 55000 experience, which is still a lot even at level 10. It takes a while to run around to all those arenas, though.
"Hey, weren't we supposed to be talking to Lord Hoardall?"
Right, right, on we go with the plot, then.
"We could barely get in the door for all the clutter here. With all due respect, my lord, do you not already have enough items?"
"I want you to listen to me, boy, and listen well: there's no such thing as enough items. Now do you want a quest or don't you?"
"Um, I guess we'll take a Page's Quest to start with."
"An Energy Whip? That's lame. Ask us for something else."
So here's the deal with Lord Hoardall: any of his first three quests will send the party off to fetch a random magic weapon, which could take forever to find if you're not lucky. The Lord's Quest is the only one worth bothering with.
"Maybe it's time we tried out Uncle Spudly's Quest Removal Elixir."
"Cool. Time to go back and ask for the Lord's Quest!"
"Wait, why do we think the Lord's Quest is going to be any easier?"
"We don't, but at least the reward's probably better."
"Have you any idea where these swords might be hidden?"
"If I knew that, I'd have them already."
"If you had them already, they wouldn't be hidden, would they?"
"Just go and find them!"
"Okay, okay, I'm going, I'm going. Geez."
"It doesn't look like we'll get any more out of Lord Hoardall's castle until we find those swords. Time to head home, I guess."
Aaand we pick up one last bad joke on the way out.
"Three legendary swords, huh? Why don't we just keep 'em?"
"They're swords of chivalry, Tarquinn. They wouldn't suit you."
"I didn't get any lines in this update. Bein' a hireling sucks."
"I still don't get why drinking that elixir made Lord Hoardall forget that he'd given us a quest."
"Hmm. Maybe if I hold it like this -- no, that didn't work. Maybe it's broken. Does anyone have a repair manual for an M-27 Radicon?"
"I may have been an accomplice to theft, but at least my comrades have finally begun a noble quest. Perhaps this will set them on the right path."
"I think this armour is giving me a rash. Y'know, the first three points of magical enhancement on body armour are all purely anti-chafing magic. You'd be surprised how much of a difference it makes in combat."
"Travelling with this party has served me well. Why, this should be almost enough money to pay off my creditors when I return to my mansion."
That's it for today, boys and girls. Luckily for you, there are quite a few things you can vote for the party to do next time. There's one more castle to visit, the dungeons under the castles remain unexplored, Tarquinn's group can look for the three magic swords, or Preacher's group can search for Sherman. Vote now!