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The Murder Hobos – Shore Leave – Episode 2 – Nessa

She sniffed the air, pausing. That was strange. It didn’t smell right. It was salty, and sorta like fish. And not good fish like you’d get for dinner. This was raw, or rotten, or both. It was also new, different. Nessa adjusted the pack on her back, smiling at the birds that flew overhead. They were heading north, back toward the wood where she lived. That meant spring was here, and summer would be coming soon. All the plants would bloom and the air would smell sweeter. Wandering aimlessly, she let her feet find the path through the trees. She hummed tunelessly as she walked. The forest ended and the bright afternoon sun made her blink. Raising one hand to shield her eyes, her jaw dropped. B...
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The Murder Hobos – Shore Leave – Episode 1 – Manak

Our new game won’t start until June 27th, but I wanted to start introducing the cast to you all!  A hand slapped the side of the wagon, jolting Manak awake. “We’re here,” the driver growled. “Get out.” Carefully, he scooted toward the end of the cart. He’d broken a crate climbing in, and he’d depleted his coin stash paying for the damages. “Where’s here?” “Saltmarsh,” the man replied. “Where?” “Look,” he stared at Manak, exasperated, “You handed me coin and asked me to take you as far from Baldur’s Gate as that would get you. No questions asked. This is it.” He stared at him. Manak slid out of the back of the wagon, one massive hand gripping his pack. The unmistakable odor of salt water perm...
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To remain silent is to be complicit

Let’s get something straight. Black lives matter. My life hasn’t always been great. I can tell stories that’ll make many of you cringe. But I am white. I grew up related to half a county sheriff’s department (through blood, friendship, or marriage). I have privilege that thousands in this country do not. Simply because the color of their skin. And that’s wrong. Cops should not be armed like soldiers. They should not be targeting someone based on their race. They damn well should NOT be killing them for that reason alone.     Original link
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 89 – Forever Family

The music followed Thia out to the balcony. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to celebrate Pan’s wedding to Eli. For now, though, everything overwhelmed her. All she wanted to do was breathe some of the cool night air and calm her mind. “So, Thia,” Jinnaari said from behind her, “how are things with you?” She laughed as she turned around. “Still up to your paladin mind tricks?” He shrugged, “What makes you think I ever stopped?” Moving closer, he sat down on one end of a stone bench. “We’re family, Thia. I know that face. Talk to me.” She sat down, facing the party. Pan danced with his husband in the center of the revelry. They looked beyond happy. “It’s over, isn’t it?” Her voice cracked a lit...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 88 – Out of the frying pan

“Let’s go,” Pan insisted. “We did what we came to do, Jinnaari!” The paladin shook his head. “Not yet. We have to go back for the Gnome. I’m not leaving her here.” Without waiting to see who followed, he headed out of the room. Halaster’s body, the robe he wore still smoldering, lay abandoned on the floor as he ran past. His head was in Jinnaari’s bag. Helix cleared his name, but he felt it necessary to bring the Baroness proof that the lich was dead. And, without his head, he’d have a harder time regenerating. He heard someone coming up behind him. Glancing over his shoulder, he saw Thia running to catch up to him. “Are you sure?” she asked. “Pan said he talked to Ash.” “I’m sure,” he repli...
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Getting ready to move on

Morning everyone! If you’ve ever played D&D, you know that there comes a time to retire the characters you’ve been playing. It could be due to death of the character, wanting to rebuild it because he/she doesn’t fit well in the adventure/play well with the rest of the group, the end of the adventure arc, or you’ve taken them as high as you can. For The Murder Hobos, the time is coming. One thing I love about my group is that we like seeing how far we can take our characters. We explore the upper levels of the game, push boundaries as far as role play/fleshing out our characters. Thia, Jinnaari, Adam, and the rest are approaching 20th level now. That’s the top range of the game. We figure on ...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 87 – Exoneration

Jinnaari stopped short, waiting for Helix to turn around. He’d gotten so used to the Tabaxi just materializing that it didn’t startle him any longer. “Helix,” he said, “what’s up?” The Tabaxi smiled. “I’ve been doing other things. Earning my keep within your Court, as it were.” He held out a sealed parchment to Jinnaari. Taking it from him, he examined the imprint in the green wax. The Baroness of Cirrain. Sliding one finger underneath the flap, he broke the seal and began to read.               Unto His Royal Highness, Prince Jinnaari Althir,               Your companion has presented Us with incontrovertible evidence that you were not behind the death of Our brother, Randy. Additional noti...
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40 years ago, a volcano blew up.

There’s a lot of things in my life I want to forget, even more that I never will. One of the latter were the skies on this day 40 years ago.I was 12. I lived in my roller skates at that age. There was some sort of competition up at the mall that day. We went, I tried, I didn’t do well.I remember bits and pieces of that.It was after the competition, when we were back home and doing yard work, when I saw the ash cloud.We’d heard about the eruption, knew what was going on. Well, as much as 12 year old me cared to understand. I remember this thick blanket o gray. Not rain cloud gray. Ash gray. It was so thick that the only way to tell one section of the sky from another were these small ‘pillows...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 86 – Who is worthy to wield?

Thia stood back, trying to figure out what it was Jinnaari and Moon were fighting. To her, it was nothing more than a whisper of color within the whirlwind. Helix had disappeared. That wasn’t new, but the look on his face made her think he may not be coming back. Adam and Caelynn were still sequestered with his Patron, somewhere. And Gnat…. well, the goblin was as good if not better at hiding than Helix was. Face it, she thought. It’s just the three of us. Against an Archlich, and maybe Tiamat.             As her fingers drew the sigil, sending her spell toward the invisible foe, she heard Jinnaari swear in Draconic. She couldn’t understand him, but it certainly sounded colorful. Glancing hi...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 85 – Trick Shot

Jinnaari picked up the bead, letting it bounce off the palm of his hand. Two slaads rested inside, trapped. The other two were now mush. He glanced at Thia, making sure she was okay. She’d fought harder than normal this time, and took a lot of damage for it. “What are you going to do with that?” she asked. “I have an idea.” He walked down to the far end of the room. “The room was down here, right Helix?” “Yes,” the Tabaxi answered. “Why?” Reaching the archway, he looked inside without crossing the threshold. A bare room, with a petrified…something…in the corner. Adorning the far wall was a face carved into the stone. The spitting image of the lich that’d framed him for murder. “Let’s see wha...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 84 – Forkke and Spoone

“Thia, wait here,” Jinnaari said as he looked down the hall they’d just walked through. He could hear Moon and Gnat arguing over…something. “I just want to look at it! It’s shiny!” Moon practically screamed. “No! Mine!” the goblin shot back. “Hey, both of you, calm down. What’s going on?” Jinnaari took a deep breath after he spoke. Moon hung from the ceiling, her paws were, well, pawing at the air trying to reach a crystal orb that Gnat was holding. Bahamut give me strength!             “Forkke is mine! Mine! He’s my oldestest friend ever!” the goblin asserted. “Jinnaari!” Moon whined, “Tell him to give it to me! I just want to look at it!” “Will you give it back?” The Tabaxi bit her lip and...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 83 – Sitting idle

Caelynn randomly plucked at the strings of the instrument. Sighing, she put it down. Her heart wasn’t into the music today. It hadn’t been for days. Had it been days since Adam’s Patron brought them here? Or months? The isolation of the tower wore on her soul. It was, for the most part, just the two of them. His Patron made rare visits, and usually stayed with the warlock only. Unseen servants kept things clean, made their meals. She gave up trying to play. Placing the harp back onto the table, she walked to a window. The mountain’s peak rose above the clouds that obscured the world below them. From what little bit of news they’d received, that’s where their friends were. Under the mountain,...
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Day 40

It’s the final Monday of April! That’s something, right? Several packages arriving this week. Baked goodies to make and deliver. Words to write, game to prep for, and lawn to deal with. And a lot of deep breathing. Switching to curbside pick up for my groceries, starting this week. The store’s just getting too crowded at times, with too many people who won’t wear a mask/observe social distancing while waiting for the cashier. I’m not a germaphobe. So far, no one I know personally has been infected with this. And I want to keep it that way. It’s not about me and how I’m inconvenienced. It’s about the people around me. The ones I give a damn about. The ones that I’d miss. If you still don’t un...
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Is April over yet?

We made it to Sunday. The 5 years that have happened in the month of April are coming to a close. I honestly don’t see me personally returning to work (at the retail job, writing is happening still) until June. The last announcement from Gov. Inslee talked about the state’s recovery being like a dial over a switch. Slowly, in manageable increments, we’ll return to a normal life. I know I’m coming from a place of privilege. My hubby’s still working. We have money saved up. We can afford to still pay our bills each month. We’ve made some cutbacks, yes, but not on essentials. Many of my friends cannot say this. I recognize that some may think I’ve got it easy because of that. What is stressing ...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 82 – Turning a screw

Thia took a moment and healed herself before Jinnaari could. She hadn’t stood back this time. Instead, she dove into the middle of the fight. Her body was bruised and battered, yes, but she’d survived. “Did Lolth teach you those moves, Thia?” Helix said, far enough away from her she couldn’t instantly reach out and grab his throat. Tired of the constant barbs the Tabaxi had thrown at her during the fight, she lunged for him. Jinnaari grabbed her arm, stopping her. “No, Thia,” he said. “I’m going to kill him,” she growled. “He’s just trying to get under your skin. Stop letting him. Bahamut has a purpose for him. Trust in that.” She snorted, “Bahamut may have a plan, but Kelemvor would love to...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 81 – A return to normalcy

“Hey, Jinnaari,” Thia kept her voice low. He’d stayed up, keeping watch with her, after they’d gotten things straight between them. “On the whole Helix problem. I think I have a solution.” “Keep talking.” She shifted, “In his journal, he mentioned he’s been curling up at my feet to sleep while in the ethereal plane. Granted, that’s more than a little creepy to me. Especially since he made note of my habits so he could know when I was likely to crash.” “Yeah, that’s creepy. Want me to say something to him?” “Not yet. Hear me out on this. What if I changed one of my spells out? I could swap out one, be able to go ethereal myself. A day or two later, wake me up an hour into your watch instead o...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 80 – Gabriel and Adam

Adam stood at the railing of the balcony, staring at the clouds. The mountain seemed to be cut in two by them. Below the tower, somewhere in the Undermountain, were his companions. With luck, they’d found the proof they needed to clear Jinnaari’s name. If not, he hoped that he and Caelynn would be allowed to rejoin them and help with that. Somehow. The air to his left stirred as a pair of powerful wings beat in rhythm. Adam turned, his eyes growing wide with awe. The bright light he’d associated with his Patron faded. The Solar stood, his white wings folded behind him. “It’s time for you to learn more, Adam,” he said. “More of what? Magic?” “No,” his patron smiled, “more of why I brought you...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 79 – Push comes to shove

Thia leaned against the cavern wall, watching the others sleep. Drozan was an interesting addition to the group. She didn’t trust him, not yet, but they’d needed his help to fight the golems and gargoyles. For that, she was glad he’d shown up. However it happened. She turned her head to scan the hallway beyond the room. Nothing. At least here I don’t have to worry about Drow showing up, she thought. Someone stirred and moved toward her. Keeping her attention down the passage, she waited. Whoever it was, they’d say something. Eventually. It was only an hour into her watch. If they were awake, it wasn’t because they needed to be. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Jinnaari sit down on the o...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 78 – Drozan

Drozan woke, slowly rising onto his four legs. The forest around him was bathed in the soft light of dawn. The centaur slung his bag across his shoulder before grabbing his lances. It was time to hunt. It was strangely quiet. Not even the birds stirred. He looked up as he walked, scanning the branches above him. No squirrels darted from nests. Gripping his weapons even tighter, he stopped. This was wrong. That’s when he heard the noise in the distance. A grinding of rock against rock. A high-pitched squeal. Stone wings taking flight. A single, deep voice that said, “Get ready.” The world spun. The trees bent into a mass of color, blending into a single point of blackness. When the spinning s...
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The Murder Hobos – Episode 77 – Going Back Home

“Pan,” Valerie’s voice was quiet but insistent. “Stay here for a few minutes.” He stopped, watching as the rest of the group retreated down the passage. “What’s wrong?” “We need to go home, Pan. Now.” “All right. Let me go tell Thia.” A small smile appeared on her face, “She already knows.” He blinked. “How?” Valerie turned around, and Pan moved with her. “I talked to her on our way here. The family, our mother, needs us both right now. We have to bury our uncle, and you have to take up the job that is yours. Thia needs to find her own way.” He kept his arm at her elbow, ready to help if she needed it, “Do you think she’ll come home?” “It’s up to her to decide where ‘home’ is, Pan. Not us. S...
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