25. Bachelorette Party V

Round up the challengers for a demon horse contest. Will our party ring up a win or get rung out to dry? Johnny walks on the catwalk. Inara gives chase. Tracey likes to win.

 

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Cast & Crew

- Dungeon Master: Eric Silver

- TR8c (Tracey): Brandon Grugle

- Inara Harthorn: Amanda McLoughlin

- Johnny B. Goodlight: Michael Fische

- Creative Contributors: Connor McLoughlin, Julia Schifini, Heddy Hunt

- Multitude: multitude.productions


Transcript

Amanda: Last time on Join the Party...

Eric: As our party prepares for the first challenge of the Bachelorette, Johnny gets aggro during his morning tai chi. So when Kevin greets everyone with a wazzup...

Michael: I cast Eldritch Blast at Kevin Vacation.

Eric: Before the game begins, some interested parties talk to the contestants. Johnny shows his bravado to local artist and power broker Noto Oto. Inara gets some secret information from Autumn.

Eric (as Autumn): Okay, fine. At the end of this, go into your secret bathroom, your secret private bathroom which I really wanted, and go and knock on the mirror three times.

Amanda (as Inara): Fine.

Eric (as Autumn): Fine.

Eric: And Tracey realizes his chess opponent isn’t just one person.

Eric: And the trenchcoat opens and it is a halfling with a red bandana over their face.

Eric (as halfling): Tracey, you wanna take this thing down, don’t you?

Eric: As the contestants step into the ring, Representative Brink places a black horse figurine on the ground that grows into a flaming steed of terror.

Eric (as Representative Brink): Alright, this is a Nightmare ring toss. Whoever wins gets a one-on-one date with me. Let’s do it!

Eric: Grab your lasso, your saddle, and another piece of horsey gear. Let’s get the party started.

[theme music]

[intense, industrial-sounding electronic music with thumping bass plays]

Eric: The seven of you have your backs up against the colosseum walls, looking at the Nightmare that is flying high above your head, trying to break free of the collar that is keeping it pinned down to the middle of the colosseum from a very large chain. The goal here is to throw your wrought iron flower crowns, which all of you are holding in your hands, and get it to land on top of the flying Nightmare’s head. And make it look fancy free. It’s the three jailbirds as we know them, we also have Autumn, Alice of the Undying Light, Crews who is a dwarf looking for his-

Michael: Aw, the poor man who doesn’t know his catchphrase…

Eric: Yeah, trying to look for his catchphrase.

Michael: Aww. What was the last one?

Eric: It was- I think it was, “Sock it to me,” or something.

[all chuckling]

Michael: Oh my gosh. So unfortunate.

Eric: And Ash, who is a centaur with flowing blond hair. Here’s how this is gonna work game-wise. We’re all gonna roll Initiative, for you three and the other four contestants, and during your Initiative roll, you’re going to be preparing to throw the flower crown. This might be helping yourself, this might be hurting somebody else, doing any of the sort of things we have done in the colosseum so far. After the Initiative goes all the way through, everyone is going to have the opportunity to throw the flower crown all at the same time. And you can choose whether or not to throw the flower crown after the Initiative round has gone all the way through. Remember, you only have one throw, so you might- if you miss, you’re going to have to go try to pick it up. Okay, is everybody ready?

[music fades]

[sounds of the stadium: crowd cheering, horns blowing, applause]

Michael: Yes.

Amanda: Yes.

Brandon: Yup.

Eric: Okay, so let’s roooooooll for Initiative! [singing] Bow-bow-na-booooow!

[dice rolling]

Eric: Ba- bana-booooow!

Brandon: I’m rolling with- the first time with my new dice.

Amanda: Oooh! I’m using my sparkly gold cronch-able dice today.

[Michael laughing hysterically]

Amanda: [laughing] Oh! Brandon!

Eric: Oh no! [laughing] Alright, what did everybody get?

Amanda: 12.

Michael: 13.

Brandon: Now, what happens if you critically fail on an Initiative roll? Do you- Are you out of the game? Like are you done?

Eric: No, you still get to play.

Brandon: Okay, well it’s 1 + 1 for a 2.

Amanda: Well, I mean, it’s kind of-

Michael: Oh no it was a crit 1.

Eric: That’s a crit 1. Tracey’s still last. Don’t worry. Let’s make this very clear.

[Michel laughing]

Eric: Okay, all of you have your hands up against the back of the colosseum, and it’s like on the Jumbotron, it- then like it starts to count down, and then it goes, “10! 9!” and then the whole audience gets into it and goes

Eric: “8! 7!” And under her breath, Autumn whispers to Inara and says

Eric (as Autumn): You can do whatever you want, but I’m just gonna hurt people.

Eric: “5! 4! 3!”

Michael (as Johnny): [projecting his voice to echo through the stadium] Friends, let the Undying Light help you on this task, for together we shall all succeed.

Michael: And I’m attempting to get specifically the four other contestants to look over at me.

Eric: Okay.

Michael: And I can roll a Charisma roll of some sort if you want.

Eric: Please do.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 17.

Eric: Okay, I think with the 17, you get Crews’, Alice’s, and Ash’s attention.

Michael: Okay.

Eric: And I think you have Alice wrapped.

Michael: Sure.

Eric: As well as Ash, and then Crews is like still poised to move, but like, definitely looks over at you, and is like-

Michael: But facing me, sure.

Eric: -and definitely faces you.

Michael: Great.

Eric: Okay, “3! 2! 1!”

Eric: And right before 1 goes, Crews goes

Eric (as Crews): Sock it to me!

Michael: Booooooo!

Eric: And then it goes “booooowwwwwww!”

[buzzer sounds as Eric makes buzzer sound]

Eric: And the contest is on. Crews is gonna go first in the Initiative and Crews immediately starts to run towards the chain. So he starts to climb up the chain, and he’s like- only gets like 10 feet up because the entire time he’s still looking back at Johnny to be like

Eric (as Crews): Oh yeah, like gimme some of that. Like I need- we all need help here.

Eric: Alice is by Johnny’s side, and she decides to just like hang back and talk to you.

Michael: [under his breath] Ugh. So unfortunate.

Eric: And she’s like

Eric (as Alice): Well, Johnny, I really appreciate you. I think everyone should- we could all work together here, and the Undyin’ Light is all about community. It’s all about family, and fun, and good clean family fun here. [speaking louder] The Representative- you know what-

Eric: And she also calls out to the Representative. The Representative’s been hanging out on the platform that has the big purple and gold chair.

Eric (as Alice): Brinksy come over here! Johnny’s gonna share some wisdom that’s gonna make our time a little bit easier!

Brandon: I feel like Alice would bring like a Jell-o salad to the church picnic.

[Michael sighs deeply]

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: Oh, absolutely.

Amanda: Now I’m just thinking about Chad as a giant Jell-o salad.

Brandon: [gasps] Can we put marshmallows on top of Chad?

Michael: While he’s asleep!

Amanda: Can we put like- can we put like canned pineapple inside him?

[Brandon laughing]

Brandon: That would be a horrible and very mean prank-

Amanda: Yeah.

Brandon: But yeah, we should.

[Amanda giggling]

Eric: I think it’s good. The Representative does not come over. She like pretends not to hear her and just waves, and then like waves at all of you, and then strikes a pose for the audience.

Eric (as Alice): Oh! It’s starting!

Eric: And she has both hands on her face like that dramatically.

[dice rolling]

Brandon: I rolled a 10, so Tracey’s halfway impressed.

Eric: [laughing] That was an “impressed” roll.

Brandon: Mhm.

Eric: Johnny, with a 13 it is your turn.

Michael: Facing the three competitors I have, I begin to preach.

Michael (as Johnny): [echoing] May the Undying Light protect us and help us as we are here to impress the great Representative Brink.

Michael: And out of my hands comes, one would say, a Color Spray onto the three competitors to blind them.

[all laughing]

Eric: Oh, of course!

[dice being shaken then rolled]

Michael: I got 43 to all of them.

Eric: Sure, what does Color Spray look like again?

Michael: As I raise my hands, giving the blessing of the Undying Light to all the competitors that aren't my peeps, colors start to wave out of each of my fingertips into this dazzling rainbow. And it starts almost like little stars or speckles of those colors like fall upon those who are listening, and if it causes their eyes to become blinded by the lights and the colors, you know I can’t do anything about that. That’s not my fault. That's just their fault for being there and accepting the Undying Light’s gift.

[Eric laughing]

Amanda: Like in a club where you sweat off your own glitter into your eyes, and it is just really hard to get that glitter out of your eyes.

Michael: Yup.

Eric: [laughing] Yup, that’s it! Yup, that’s it!

Alright, I would say that like Crews as a dwarf just like is very furry, and if there was glitter it’s like his massive eyebrows would just like keep it from going in his eyes. I think I would say the same thing about the centaur- they’re just like very hairy people, so they’re fine, but I think that when it sprays out, it’s like Alice was standing right there looking at you with like arms outstretched, and now just like her eyes are just like wide open and glittering, and she thinks that she’s accept- I think she really believes that she’s accepting the praise of the Undying Light.

Michael: For her this is a net positive, and I’m so glad that she’s accepting of it and one less person who can throw the thingy onto the other thing.

Eric (as Alice): [yelling] The love of the Undyin’ Light burns sometimes, but-

Michael: [abruptly] I’ve already turned away.

Eric: Now she’s like doing it- she’s like evangelizing to the crowd.

Michael: But she can’t see them. She doesn’t -

Amanda: Is she pointing toward the wall though, maybe?

Eric: [laughing] Yeah, she’s like pointing directly to the wall. It’s like

Eric (as Alice): Look at how the blessin’s of the Undyin’ Light can come upon me!

Eric: And the crowd cheers. They thought that was really cool. Okay, this is Ash’s turn. Ash is like blocking the- the glitter out of his face, and he tries to run you over. Make a Dexterity saving throw.

Michael: 13.

Eric: Okay, yeah you jump out of the way while he- he tries to run at you, and he’s trying to go directly for the horse. It’s like he- he’s just tracking it underneath the Nightmare that’s coming, and he’s trying to call out to it in a centaur language, which is just like horse language, so he’s just like [making horse whinny sound]. Inara, it is your turn.

Amanda: I am going to hop on my Grind Machine. Insert Grind Machine musical tag here. Thank you.

Eric: It’s- it’s just like ska from the 90s.

Brandon: It’s just a trombone.

Eric: Yeah. [imitating trombone ska music] ba-da-ba-ba-ba-ba-dum.

Michael: [imitating ska music] Get it up! Get it up! Get it up*!

[all laughing]

Eric: Yup. Yeah, there it is.

Amanda: So I’m gonna jump onboard the Grind Machine and take off in the opposite direction that Ash is running, like counterclockwise to his clockwise for example.

Eric: Got it. Got it.

Amanda: I’m going to do my best to run through any piles of glitter that may be standing on the floor of the arena, just to give my wheels of my Grind Machine that nice, nice light-up 90s look.

Eric: Okay.

Michael: You’re leaving a trail that is just the rainbow behind you.

Amanda: Taste the rainbow, see the rainbow, feel the rainbow, follow the rainbow. Do whatever you want.

Eric: [imitating ska music once more] Get up! Get up! Get up! Get up!

[Amanda laughing]

Eric: Ba-da-ba-ba-ba-ba-dum

Amanda: So yeah, I am going to kind of do one lap of the arena to take in the scenario and kind of figure out what we’re dealing with here. And then I’m actually gonna stop in front of the stage on my second lap and look up at Brinksy, put one foot down, pop the board up with the other foot, and like throw my cloak over my shoulder a little bit to put my hand on my hip, like pose a little bit. Uh.. a lot a bit. And I’m gonna say to her

Amanda (as Inara): So, any tips?

Eric: Okay, that would be Performance I think, but you have advantage on Charisma rolls.

Amanda: I do.

[dice rolling]

Amanda: That’s a 16.

Eric: Okay, I think you get one good line in and the crowd loves it. It’s like a kiss cam is like going over you guys where it’s just like someone did like an artificial heart graphic over you two.

Amanda: Mission accomplished.

Eric: And the Representative chuckles and she says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Just don’t get hurt!

Amanda (as Inara): I’ll do my best!

Amanda: And then I’m going to keep going on my laps.

Eric: And she like performatively like blushes and like gets coy and shy for the crowd.

Amanda: Nice.

Eric: It is now Autumn’s turn. I think Autumn is gonna run over to the chain as well, where Crews is trying to shimmy his way up. And he only got like 10 feet up there, so she immediately tries to jump up and just punch him in the stomach to get him to drop the chain.

[dice rolling]

Eric: And she got a nat-20. So, Autumn is a lot quicker than she looks just like being a Valley Girl. She just like jumps from one spot to another- like Naruto ninja-style, and she just like goes and upper cuts him in the stomach, and Crews immediately just lets go of the chain and falls down in a pile of mud. Tracey, it’s your turn.

Brandon: Yay, finally. Okay, so I think what Tracey’s gonna do for this first round is just perform, try to get some crowd points.

Eric: Okay.

Brandon: So I’m gonna reach back and grab my Armor of the Punk Rocker.

Eric: Nice, nice, nice.

Brandon: Slap those on.

Amanda: Woo!

Brandon: And I’m gonna get my help horn and start blowing that as loud as I can, and shooting blanks out of my thunder cannon

[sound of thunderous shots]

Brandon: But it’s a thunder cannon, so it sounds like thunder. I’m walking around the arena in circles just kind of beating my chest, trying to get the crowd all riled up for me.

Eric: [amused] What does Tracey say when he wants to be a big bad man?

Brandon: Well he has his mouth on the help horn, but, um, I think in between blasts on the help horn, Tracey just screams into the crowd

Brandon (as Tracey): [strained screaming] BEEP BOOP!

[all chuckle]

Eric: You just- you just do your robot thing?

Brandon: I’m so scared to let this dice go.

Eric: Do it. Let’s do it.

[Brandon takes a deep breath]

[Dice rolling]

[Michael laughing]

Brandon: You know, I bought new dice hoping I wouldn’t roll so poorly anymore…

Eric: Brandon, what’d you roll, bud?

Brandon: I got a 4.

Eric: Oh no.

Brandon: Plus 0 for 4.

Eric: Okay, well first let’s get the game mechanics stuff out of the way. Since you failed your roll for Armor of the Punk Rocker, you get negative 2 to your AC for the remainder.

Brandon: Got it.

Eric: Okay. You’re such like a sweet cinnamon roll of a robot boy that just like no one believes you. It’s like, um, like a child is putting on their adult’s clothing, and just like you’re walking around in your mom’s high heels, and just like no one believes you.

Brandon: [laughing] I love that.

Eric: So I think people are more confused than anything else. It’s like you’re not doing the full heel-turn.

Brandon: [defeated] Yeah… I’m so glad I had to wait so long for my turn.

[Eric laughing]

Eric: Okay, now we’re at the throwing stage. Does anyone wanna throw their flower crown?

Brandon: I do not.

Amanda: Nope.

Michael: I do not.

Amanda: I’ll pass.

Eric: Okay. Cool. We’re gonna go to the beginning. Crews is-

Michael: Say, “ouch.”

Eric: Yeah.

Eric (as Crews): Argh! My insides!

Eric: And he’s gonna try to continue to climb up the chain once again. And he’s trying to- he’s very like single minded. Like regardless of the fact that he just got uppercutted off this chain, he’s just like single minded trying to climb up the chain.

Michael: What does he say as he's trying to climb up that chain?

Eric (as Crews): Yowza! These pretzels are making me thirsty!

Michael: [sighing] Oh god.

Eric: And then he tries to climb back up.

[dice rolling]

Eric: Crews gets a lot farther up the chain, and also while he’s doing it, he’s like waving to the crowd. But the chain is still like going around in a circle, so he gets about halfway up the chain. Alice is still blinded. Can she like get the Color Spray off her face?

Michael: I mean she can choose to, but would she choose to, or is she just fully accepting this because she is so happy?

Eric: Yeah, I don’t think she wants to clear it out necessarily, but she’s gonna use her action to like lean on you as a person, and I think that you would not be accepting of this, so I feel like she needs to like do it to you.

Michael: Is this a grapple roll, what you’re saying?

Eric: [laughing] It’s gonna be a grapple roll!

[Brandon laughing]

Eric: But it’s like a kind of grapple roll, it’s like she needs you to like support her and you don’t want to.

Amanda: It’s like- it’s like snuggle attack. Like snuggle monster. Lil’ snuggle buddy.

[dice rolling]

Eric: Well, my first roll was a nat-20, but then I rolled a 5.

Michael: Oh, so then I win, because I have a 3 + 3 for a 6.

[all laughing]

Amanda: Still counts.

Brandon: Johnny is a weak, weak boy.

Eric: She’s walking around like looking for you to like lean on her and like support her, it’s like

Eric (as Alice): Johnny! I think that I got too much Undyin’ Light in my eyes! It’s too much!

Michael: As she says that, I’m just like

Michael (as Johnny): [in Southern accent] I’m ova here! You’re not finding’ me!

[Eric laughing]

Eric: Johnny, it’s your turn.

Michael (as Johnny): Alice, I know you wanna give me a hug. How about you give me instead of a hug, that crown you have there? Your worshipping’ the Undyin’ Light, and in the meantime I can help you out, and place that crown up on the horse’s head so you and I can be the victors.

Michael: [laughing] Roll a Deception check…

Eric: Roll- yeah, let’s roll this.

Michael: [still in Southern accent] That’s a 22.

Eric: [laughing] Oh…

Amanda: Oh my god.

Eric: Yeah, I think she readily gives it to you. She’s just like

Eric (as Alice): Johnny, I can’t see you, but if you’re willin’ to help me, here have this!

Eric: And she gives you the ring.

Michael: I take it and I cast Light on her. She doesn’t see it, but just I do it on her forehead so she feels the Light on her forehead.

Eric: Yeah, and I think with such a high Deception check, the entire audience buys it.

[Brandon laughing]

Amanda: Uh oh.

Michael: Of course!

Amanda: Uh oh!

Brandon: You just convinced an entire stadium of people!

Eric: They’re all like

Eric (as audience member): Oh wow look at how nice Johnny was!

Michael (as Johnny): I’m the nicest!

Eric: So now you have two rings.

Michael: [no longer in Southern accent] There’s a Jumbotron, right?

Amanda: Oooooooh.

Eric: Yeah. yeah.

Michael: And I’m assuming for maintenance purposes, there’s some sort of scaffolding there-

Eric: Yeah. yeah.

Michael: So that whatever throw I would do would just be super easy from up there.

Eric: Yeah, okay. [laughing]

Michael: [resuming Southern accent] So, using his highest level spell slot available, Johnny, who’s gonna talk like this - Michael as well - casts Light Step as a bonus action, appearin’ himself on the scaffolding by the Jumbotron. And I’m hopefully capturin’ the attention and the adoration of the crowd.

Eric: Yeah, and I think that when you go up- up against the catwalk it’s the outline of Johnny against like this background of light.

Brandon: Now when the Jumbotron camera shoots the Jumbotron to look at Johnny, and then portrays the image on the Jumbotron-

[Amanda gasps]

Brandon: - are we just talking about infinite Jumbotrons?

Amanda: Infinite. Infinite-

Eric: Infinite Johnnys.

Michael: [at the same time as Eric] Infinite Johnnys.

Brandon: Infinite regress Johnny?

Eric: Yeah.

Brandon: Cool.

Eric: It’s now Ash’s turn. Ash is still calling out to the Nightmare using his like half-horse language. And at this point I think that he’s been doing it for so long that the Nightmare dives down to talk to him.

Eric (as Ash): Come down to me, fellow equine brother! We can-

Michael: [chanting to himself] It eats him. It eats him. It eats him. It eats him…

Amanda: Please make him eat him.

Eric (as Ash): Equine brother, come down and we can talk about this crown situation! We are both kings of the fields and the oats!

Michael: [chanting to himself] Crunch. Crunch. Crunch.

Amanda: [joining in] Crunch. Crunch. Crunch…

[Brandon laughing]

Brandon: Is this horse named “King of the Oats”?

Eric (as Ash): They call me Ash in the common realm, but my true name is King of Oats.

Eric: And the Nightmare dives down to meet him, and-

Amanda: I’m sorry, is his wife named Hall?

[all snickering quietly]

[Amanda joyfully laughing at her pun]

Eric: If they live in the castle, then she’s the Queen of the Halls.

Amanda: Heeeeyy!

Eric: There it is. Yeah. So, he puts a hand on the flank of the Nightmare, and then the Nightmare whinnies loudly and rears back and disappears with Ash as well. And then a few seconds later, the Nightmare reappears and Ash is gone.

Brandon: This is very distressing.

Eric: And the flames on the Nightmare’s mane is just like- burns a little bit brighter.

Brandon: You sure you wanna be this close to the Nightmare now, Johnny?

Michael: I’m not that close, I’m just above it. Don’t worry, It’s still- it’s still attached to the thingy.

Eric: Inara, it’s your turn.

Amanda: Alright, I’m going to be following the Nightmare on my skateboard like I was before, but this time I’m going to follow it instead of going anti-clockwise to it. I’m gonna kind of crouch lower on my skateboard. I have my cloak from Kohl, the hood up over my face. And whenever the Nightmare stops, like it’s stopped right now, I’m going to kind of lurk behind it and use my Hiding skill that I have as a rogue to stay out of its way and stay out of eyesight.

Eric: I like it. Next up is Autumn. And I think Autumn is going to continue following Crews just to like make his life terrible. I think that when the Nightmare dove to deal with Ash, the chain slackened, and I made a Dexterity saving throw to like hold onto the chain, and here’s the thing- Crews rolled a 7.

[everyone chuckling]

Eric: So I think that Crews again- yet again fell on the ground. Again, landed full on and in some glittery mud, and just splashed everywhere, and he once again said

Eric (as Crews): [shakily] Sock it to me…

Eric: So I think with Crews on the ground, Autumn is just like going over there and just like continuing to wail on him. Like almost like dramatically at this point. It’s like in the way that in like a wrestling ring how you can really see they take every punch, and pulls it back, and then like drops it down on a body.

Amanda: Like would be in slow-mo if she could.

Eric: Exactly. Like dramatically. And then the crowd is just like

Eric (as the audience): Autumn! Autumn! Autumn!

Eric: Tracey, it’s your turn.

Brandon: Who’s the closest person to me?

Michael: Oh no… blinded Alice, isn’t it?

Eric: Yeah, I think it’s Alice. Yeah.

Amanda: Oh nooooooo!

[Michael laughing]

Brandon: And who’s the second closest person to me?

[all laughing]

Eric: Um, I think that it would be the collective of Crews and Autumn.

Brandon: And how far away are they?

Eric: Close enough.

[Amanda giggles]

Brandon: Okay, so I’m going to shoot my Long Arm of the Law over to Crews, and aim it for his ring, and try to snatch it.

Eric: Okay.

[dice rolls]

Brandon: 8 + 3 for 11.

Eric: Yeah, he doesn’t give any resistance and you’re able to pull it out of his hand.

Brandon: Great, so I have two rings now?

Eric: Yeah, now you have two hoops.

Brandon: Two hoops! Hoops! That’s what they called me… in… college.

Michael: Did they?

Brandon: They didn’t.

Michael: That’s-

Brandon: There was no sports… [muttering]

Eric: Does anyone want to- this is now the throwing round. Does anyone wanna throw their hoop?

Amanda: I will throw my hoop.

Michael: I will throw my hoop.

Brandon: … No.

Eric: Okay, this is a ranged attack roll, so use your Dexterity?

Michael: Yes.

Eric: And you guys are not proficient in throwing hoops, so just your Dexterity.

Amanda: Uhh, 15 + 6 for a 21.

Eric: Nice.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 15 + 3 for an 18.

Eric: Alright, I think both of you throw your hoops, and it lands very delicately on top of the head of the Nightmare.

Michael: One ear each. One on each ear.

Eric: Yeah- one- just like one-

Amanda: No, because then neither of us would win. It has to be pancake-style on top of the head.

Michael: Okay, well then just trying to help-

Amanda: Thank you, thank you.

Eric: It’s not carnival- it’s not carnival rules!

Amanda: I want to make sure this happens, because we wanna win!

Michael: Okay, yeah.

Eric: This isn’t carnival rules, but I think you guys still manage to do it.

Amanda: Alriiiiight!

Eric: Yeah. You get one-two, stacked right on top of each other. And just like someone like shoots cannons off

[sound of fireworks]

Eric: And like fireworks and they go, “1, 2!” and your replays of your throws go up on the Jumbotron.

Michael: Where I’m also celebrating casting Light.

Eric: It’s really weird because Inara- it’s like Inara’s on a skateboard, like trying to keep up-

Michael: But then it’s just me-

Eric: But then Johnny’s like - it’s like there’s a picture in picture of Johnny up there.

Michael: Hey, as long as I’m on the screen at all times.

Eric: And Representative Brink says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Oh, wow! Two winners already! Only one more person to throw the ring on top of the Nightmare. Let’s go, everybody! Crews! Tracey! Woo! Let’s go!

Eric: She goes and sits down on the purple and gold chair, and her voice like then starts to project throughout the entire colosseum and says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Maybe using a cursed item wasn’t the best idea for our first challenge, but I think that Ash will find a new home in the Ethereal Plane. Oops!

Amanda: Inara is quite confused by this, and as I kind of keep skateboarding away, I’m gonna go in fact away from Representative Brink, because the best way to keep someone’s affection is to play hard to get, so I’m just gonna take cover at the other end of the stadium and kind of wave up to the fans, but I’m sort of saying like

Amanda (as Inara): [muttering to self] Ugh, three people like this on a date, ugh god.

Eric: It’s now Crews’s turn. Crews doesn’t get up. He’s just like keep getting walloped by Autumn on top of him.

Michael: Does he say anything?

Brandon: Did I- Did I steal from a dead man? [nervously laughing]

Eric: And Alice- she wipes the glitter out of her eyes and she says

Eric (as Alice): Oh wow, this is still goin’ on? I still got a chance!

[Michael chuckles]

Michael: Nope.

Eric: And then she looks down and she doesn’t have her ring with her.

Eric (as Alice): Johnny, do it for me! Please! You’re my only hope!

Eric: And she runs over to the purple and gold chair, and Brink gets up and like offers the chair to her, and she sits down and says

Eric (as Alice): Wow, Johnny is so swell to me. If anyone could be a better prophet for this Undyin’ Light religion, I just don’t know who else it would be! I hope that when he drops the ring down, it’ll count for me to have more time with my Representative, and we can bring the religion to these heathen places. Aha!

Michael: So, is she just the Shadow, just like in disguise?

Brandon: She unzips her skin suit-

Michael: And she’s just the Shadow?

Amanda: Eeeeewwwww!

Michael: I think she's just the Shadow.

Eric: And everyone in the audience- like the crowd- they believe her. They are expecting you, if you drop the ring on, that it will count for her. Johnny, do you want to do anything?

Michael: So I’m going to… throw with Deception.

Brandon: You’re gonna throw it like a tennis ball to a dog? Like palm it behind your back after you throw it?

Michael: No it’s like-

Amanda: Or like undershoot.

Michael: It’s like- I’m gonna put a show on how I throw it, as if I’m doing it for the lovely Alice, but in reality I’m actually passing it to Tracey, so-

Eric: Do Performance, I think.

Michael: Okay.

Eric: This is more like the kayfabe of it. You like do like a big wind up-

Michael: Hey, I’ll do Performance, Deception, whatever you want. It’s all Charisma, so-

Eric: I think it’s Performance.

Michael: [laughing] - I’m doing great-

Eric: It is. It is. But it’s not like a lie. Like you’re- you’re doing a show.

Michael: Sure, sure, sure. So Johnny speaks with his booming voice

Michael (as Johnny): [in bad Southern accent] This is for you, Alice! A-here I go!

Michael: And I toss it.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 17 + 4 for a 21.

Eric: Hot damn, okay.

Michael: So now with my Dexterity, I’m actually aiming to pass it to Tracey.

Eric: I got it. Okay, cool. Ash is gone. So it’s Inara’s turn.

Amanda: I’m going to commence a victory lap of the stadium, waving to my adoring fans, not going too close to Brinksy, lest I come off as eager as I am, so-

[Eric starts laughing]

Amanda: That’s the Amanda McLoughlin way.

Eric: There it is.

Amanda: And I’m actually gonna pass by Autumn and say to her

Amanda (as Inara): [whispering] Hey, hey. Get off of him! You can’t kill him!

Eric (as Autumn): What are you talking about? I already did.

Eric: Inara, I think that with your assassin training, you look down at the body and like there’s a very small imperceptible cut like right in his lower abdomen.

Eric (as Autumn): Yeah, uh I had a dagger in my- in my sleeve the entire time. That’s like Assassin 101. Now get out of my light! I need everyone to think that I’m real cool. Get out of here!

Amanda: I… am going to continue on without a word.

Eric: And now it’s Autumn’s turn. She goes up and she just like elbow drops down onto Crews, and she gets up and like dusts herself off, and she starts to climb the chain this time. And she makes it like pretty far. So now it’s Tracey’s turn!

Brandon: Hey! Okay. So I think Tracey has exhausted all of his performance options, so at this point he just wants to get this over and done and just win it, so he’s gonna take his pocket watch out of his pocket- that’s where he holds the pocket watch.

Eric: Yeah, I would say so.

Amanda: Huh. It’s almost like it was made for that.

Brandon: Weird. And he’s gonna look at the clock and watch the Mare. And time-

[Eric starts laughing]

Brandon: The exact time for each rotation, and figure out exactly when he needs to throw the ring, and do the calculation to figure out exactly how to get it on top of the Mare’s head.

Eric: Why don’t you make a Intelligence roll?

Brandon: Um, that would be a 19 + 2 for a 21.

[all cheering at once]

Amanda: Hey!!

Eric: Hell yeah!

Michael: Yaaaay!

Eric: I think that you’ve definitely timed this throw correctly, and it’s gonna be a lot easier for you to do it.

Brandon: You mean I will get it perfect.

Eric: I- your dice rolls will be the decider of that.

Amanda: Heart of the dice, heart of the dice.

Michael: My heart grows that he uses the pocket watch that we made together. +1 temporary health point.

Brandon: +1 to sweetness.

Michael: Because his heart grows.

Eric: Yeah, his heart grows three sizes, so you get three points to your Con.

Okay, its the throwing round. Autumn is going to throw hers from the chain. Johnny, roll for your fake throw, and then Autumn and Tracey are going to roll for the toss.

Michael: You know what’d be great, if I got a 1 and it lands right on the horse.

[dice rolling]

Amanda: That would be amazing.

Michael: Unfortunately, I did not land it on the horse.

[dice rolling]

Michael: I got a 19 for my fake throw. When I imagine it, it’s like a fancy frisbee throw where it goes in one direction, and it’s like right over the horse’s head, like it’s about to land, and then it makes a slight change- No, not a slight change. A major change.

Eric: Like a hard- a hard-

Michael: A hard left.

Eric: You really flick it.

Amanda: We call this one the Oopsie Daisy.

Michael: It’s the Oopsie Daisy. And-

Brandon: No- uh- the Hoopsie Daisy.

Eric: The Hoopsie Daisy.

[everyone gasps]

Michael: Oof. Oof.

Amanda: How did I miss that?!

Brandon: I don’t know! [laughing]

Michael: Oof.

Eric: I’m going to keep all of my frisbee terminology to myself as we go, but yeah, it lands right at Tracey's feet.

Michael: Cool.

Eric: Brandon, you threw your dice across the room.

Brandon: I did.

Eric: What did you roll?

[Amanda gasps]

Amanda: Hoof-sie Daisy!

[Brandon laughing]

Amanda: I found it! I found it!

Brandon: I got a 4 + 1 for a 5.

Eric: Ugh. Okay. I think that using your timing, you try to toss the ring to where it should be, and just like the horse- you’re using your timing, it’s been like standard like velocity the whole time, and the horse just like speeds up right at the end there, and it just brushes it off.

Brandon: Yeah, you can’t calculate mid-throw.

Eric: No. And the horse like hits it into the crowd, and someone has a nice souvenir now.

Brandon: And somewhere you hear GPS say, “Recalculating.”

Amanda: Aww.

Eric: And from her spot on the chain, Autumn like tosses the crown up in the air, and it delicately lands right on the snout of the horse.

[Amanda sighs angrily]

Brandon: I shoot Autumn in the face.

[Eric laughing]

Amanda: Please.

Eric: Yeah, and the challenge is over. More fireworks

[sound of fireworks]

Eric: And Autumn’s face goes up on the Jumbotron. Repre-

Michael: I’m going to, as soon as it does, cast basically everything I can-

[Brandon and Amanda laughing]

Michael: - To obscure her face from the Jumbotron. I’m casting like all sorts of fireworks, all sorts of-

Amanda: Spelling out, “Johnny and Inara.”

Michael: Light, honestly it does look like a picture of the three of us just like bad boy pose.

[all laughing]

Amanda: Charlie’s Angels?

Michael: Ooh!

Brandon: Yeah.

Michael: Yeah, Charlie’s Angels.

Amanda: Who’s in the middle?

Michael: Johnny’s in the center.

Eric: I like it. And Representative Brink says

Eric (as Representative Brink): The challenge is over! Thank you to Johnny, Inara, and Autumn for bringing it home!

Brandon (asTracey): Boooooo! Boooooooooo!

Michael: I cast something to make that very loud.

Brandon (asTracey): Boooooooo!

Eric: And everyone’s booing.

Michael: All you hear is booing at the name of Autumn.

Eric: From wherever you’re standing, like before you sink into the mud, the last thing that you see are some producer mud creatures investigating where Ash disappeared, and picking up Crews, who’s still laid out on the ground, and taking him somewhere else. A few of the mud creatures are like pulling the chain, one muddy hand after another, pulling the Nightmare down from the sky, and it’s like bucking and twisting its head around. And as it gets close enough to the ground, Representative Brink hops down off of the platform, walks over to it, and says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Aground.

Eric: And the Nightmare turns back into the figurine.

[breathy string tone plays]

Eric: Hey, it’s Eric. Imagine you’re in a restaurant. Maybe it’s a chili’s or a cheesecake factory, I don’t know wherever. And you’ve ordered your food and making riveting conversation with your friends and family. And you see a waiter walk over with that oversized platter, and you think, “Oh man! is this for us? Could this truly be our food?” and as they walk closer you can see the number of plates and you count your party and the numbers match! Four foods for four people. And, with certainty, you know the food is coming for you. Welcome to the midroll. You got ranch on the side.

Hello new Patrons: Ina, Katie, Patrick, Samantha, Jillian, Kelsey - and Katie’s DeliveryService, Art Lord of the Realm, Squared, and Kelsie Marie for upping their pledges! You are the first buds of spring, and buds has two meanings. Plants and friends. Over on Patreon, we’re getting ready to share the EXCLUSIVE map of Fidapolis we have commissioned, and we are SO FLIPPING exciting about it. It’s beautiful, really really beautiful. If you wanna get on it, just go to Patreon.com/JointhePartyPod

And in case you haven’t heard the news: we are having a live show in New York City on June 9th! That is six-slash-nine, nice! You can see our faces! In person! We just ran a practice one-shot to get ready, and it was wild and we’re so excited to do something like it for you. So tell your friends, your family, your gamer bros, your co-workers, the people you only kind of know through hearthstone. You can get your tickets now at bit.ly/jointhepartylive.

We are sponsored this week by 20 Sided Store in Brooklyn, New York. And I’ve got to tell you about the Learn to Paint Kit from Reaper. I have never painted minis before because I’m a fake geek boy, but this is an awesome introduction to painting. It comes with three minis, two brushes, 11 paints, a tiny bottle for water, and 1 one extremely helpful instructional booklet to teach you everything you need to know. This thing has paint techniques! Which I need! Because I am heavy-handed and using tiny brushes is hard for me! If you’re looking to level up your battlemat game or need a new RPG book to bolster your library, you can head over to twenty sided store dot com- twenty the number, sided store dot com-  or visit them in person in Brooklyn, NY and use our discount code, JOINTHEPARTY, for 20% off. So head over to twentysidedstore.com and use our discount code JOINTHEPARTY, all one word, to get 20% off.

We are also sponsored this week by Cantrip Candles. Pride month is coming up and Cantrip Candles have teamed up with the Paola's Pixels to create a pin to help celebrate D&D and equality. Featuring a classic black d20 with a surrounding pride flag ribbon, this hard enamel pin is designed by those who wish to display both pride and support. Best of all- a portion of the proceeds will be donated to two AMAZING organizations: OutRight Action International and the Los Angeles LGBT Center. Pre-Orders will be available through May 9. So get on this as soon as possible. The pins will be shipped out at the end of May, just in time for pride month. Go to cantripcandles.com and show your pride support your pride, or just have pride. Paola did our original designs for all our merch, and we trust her with our art lives, so anything that she does is amazing, and this is such a good cause. Thank you Cantrip Candles for doing this, and we are happy to have you in our midroll.

And finally, we want to give a shoutout to the audio collective we are a part of - Multitude. We’re a bunch of friends who love podcasts together, and we want to share that with you. Think of us like a boy band: There is us, the sassy one. Spirits, a drunken dive into myths and legends, who is the smart one. Potterless, a twenty-five year old man reading Harry Potter for the first time, the sporty one. And Waystation, a fancast of a queer, sexy, Canadian monster-of-the-week show, the spooky one. Check out all the shows and find our website at Multitude.Productions. Check check check check it out!

Now Let’s get back to the show.

[tone plays again]

Eric: All of you descend through the ceiling of Arch Spire Hideaway through the mud passages, and everyone lands on their feet, and I think all of the contestants are like crowded around the space in the main hall where all of you dropped down, and they all like applaud. They’ve been watching the whole contest on like a big screen on the wall. And everyone’s patting people on the back, and being shady like

Eric (as contestant): Mmm, yeah, good- good Color Spray… that you’re doin’... Bruh.

Michael: ...Who said that to me?

[Eric laughing]

Amanda: I thought Kevin Vacation was gone.

Michael: Maybe you should rethink that that’s what someone’s telling me.

Eric: Dayton, who’s one of the dragonborn is like getting in your face about like

Eric (as Dayton): Aw, try to use Color Spray to like blind people. That’s really like- that’s a real bush league move.

Eric: Do you like threaten ‘em?

Michael: No, I won’t threaten them

Brandon: I’ll just murder them.

Michael: That. Um… with both hands I finger guns and out of each is an Eldritch Blast.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 16.

Eric: Yup. That was exactly the AC I came up with in my head. Goddamnit.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 7 + 9 for a 16, + 4 for Charisma. 20 and then add a-

Eric: Add your aggro d6.

Michael: I’m aggro’d y’all.

Amanda: We can tell.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 25 damage.

Amanda: Oh my god! [laughing]

Eric: Jesus! Again, you blow this dragonborn directly off their feet. And again, with the Eldritch Blast it’s usually just like light going through, but now there’s just like a lot of Shadow braided in with the Light.

Michael: Sure. Great.

Eric: In the back of your head, the Shadow whispers to you

Eric (as the Shadow): Maybe this acceptance is gonna go a little easier than I thought.

Brandon (as Tracey): Johnny, what are you doing?! Stop hitting people with magic!!

Michael (as Johnny): They should stop talking to me.

Brandon: I lightly place my hands on Johnny’s finger guns and lower them to the ground.

Eric: Dayton Sands picks themselves up and hobbles away. While people are just like, “I have something to say for the camera!”

Amanda (as Inara): Uh, Johnny, why don’t we go do some tai chi? I know I usually make fun of you- weird motions, really slow, not very punchy, but I feel like- I feel like everyone could just benefit from some, you know, calmness. Right, Trace?

Brandon (as Tracey): Always. Literally always.

Amanda (as Inara): Like now. Now. Now is one time.

Brandon (as Tracey): Yup. Now is a good time.

Amanda (as Inara): It is. It’s the time.

Michael: Am I acting this way for any reason? Why am I being a dick? I’m just asking in general.

Eric: Now that you’ve used both your aggro dice, I feel pretty good about telling you this. It’s kind of like you like try to snap yourself out of it, and then you like retrace your steps and it’s like, “Man I started acting like such a jerk after I was in the gym.”

Michael: Huh.

Michael (as Johnny): Hey, Inara, let’s do some tai chi. Tracey if you want to come, you can too. Let’s go to the gym.

Amanda (as Inara): But the- the balcony has like a nice view and stuff.

Michael (as Johnny): Let’s go to the gym. I need to… take a shower as well. You don’t have to be there for that, but let’s go to the gym.

[Eric laughing]

Amanda (as Inara): Uh… alright I guess.

[sound of a treadmill running in the background]

Eric: I don’t know if you’ve seen like- there's a new thing on reality shows where they like to show more of the downtime. These mansions are in the middle of nowhere, but somehow they brought in like ten treadmills, and Stairmasters and weights, and you don’t know where they came from. Its like someone put a Planet Fitness in the middle of a mansion.

Michael: Mmm. Those places are already like really filled with shadows and evil anyway, so-

Amanda: Mmm, yeah.

Michael: I can definitely see why Johnny got hit with some Shadow times.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: And everything’s very pristine and it smells like ammonia and just like totally wiped clean.

Michael: Gross.

Eric: And there’s always just one person who’s like running on the treadmill the whole time. You know what, that’s P0R0. He’s ratcheted the treadmill to just like as fast as possible, and just like he’s super heavy so every step is just like THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP.

Michael: I wave to P0R0, but quickly try to disengage and not talk to them.

Amanda: Yeah, and Oatcake is following us into the weight room and smelling all the bleach. She sneezes.

Michael: I guess we’re just gonna do some investi-magations.

Eric: Sure, what would you like to do?

Amanda: Yeah.

Michael: So I would actually like to do Arcana checks to see if I’m like feeling any kind of magical sources emanating in any part of this room, and try to identify what they would be.

Amanda: And I’m going to do Investigation. I’m interested to see if there’s like unexpected cameras, surveillance equipment, tripwire at the door, some kind of like mechanical- you know, you’re looking at the magical, I’m gonna look at the physical to see what we can find.

Eric: Tight.

[dice rolling]

Michael: 17 for Arcana check.

Eric: Cool.

Amanda: I’m really glad, because I got an 8 on Investigation.

Eric: I think that Inara, as you case the joint, there are different cameras in the gym, but it’s like- there’s one right in the corner, and it’s like, “Huh, why would they have one in the gym at all times? Like that’s not a traditional place to put one.”

Amanda: I got an 8, so fair enough.

Eric: Yeah, I think that’s pretty much all I can give you.

Michael: 17 Arcana though.

Eric: 17 Arcana though. I think with a 17, you get a strong sense of Enchantment magic in this room. Enchantment are spells that affect the minds of others, influencing or controlling their behavior.

Michael: When I came in this morning, I was tired and I just wanted to do tai chi, and so I was susceptible to whatever this was, and now I’m like, “Oh, wow, we should not be in here. There is some magic happening affecting us.”

Eric: Bingo.

Michael: Now that I’ve turned into the specific magic, you think I’d be able to, you know, follow it if it’s appearing in any other part of the house?

Eric: Sure. I would say that it’s at- right near where the weights are. The free weights.

Michael: Mmm.

Eric: And it’s over in that area you’re getting the strongest sense.

Michael (as Johnny): Inara, I’m sorry I acted this way. Clearly it wasn’t me, and it’s obvious now that it’s the work of someone trying to influence our thoughts- probably to make better television. I doubt it’s for a worse purpose, but I am not going to apologize to those clowns though because they deserve it.

Amanda (as Inara): No, man. I think you made your point, you set your reputation, you scared ‘em straight. And now you can just rely on that, and you don’t have to do any more punching, I promise.

Michael (as Johnny): I would hope I don’t do any punching. Let’s get out of here before either of us get infected. Should we tell P0R0 to leave, or?

Eric: THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP.

Michael: I give P0R0 some bicep curl-like poses to inspire them as they’re doing training, which they absolutely don’t need because they’re a robit-

Amanda: Yup.

Michael: And it’s not like they’re gaining mass or anything. This makes no sense, but you know I wanna convey positivity.

Amanda: Encourage.

Michael: Yeah.

Michael (as Johnny): Let’s go take a nap.

Amanda (as Inara): Ugh, sounds great.

Amanda: Oatcake and me are gonna cuddle up. She’s gonna snuffle on my cheek.

Eric: Cool.

Michael: Johnny’s gonna do-

Brandon: Snuffle?

Amanda: Little head on my head- [gently] little make little snuffle noises when she’s sleeping!

Brandon: Awww!

Eric: Aww.

Michael: Johnny’s gonna affect the light in the room to make it so that we can sleep.

Amanda: Can you give us some like nice ocean noises? Like some white noise?

Michael: I wish I could do the seagull [tries to make seagull squawking noise]. Nah, that didn’t work. Like the caw.

Amanda: That’s pretty close, Fish.

[Michael tries again]

Brandon: Eric, I hate this game.

Eric: I love this game. Dungeons and Dragons. What’s Tracey doing?

Brandon: Tracey was standing next to Inara and Johnny when they were making these plans to do weird workout routines together, which they’ve never done before, so Tracey’s a little weirded out by that, but when they walk away, Tracey just sort of like plasters a fake, smile and doesn't walk with them.

[Eric laughs]

Brandon: I don’t think they notice, because they’re very focused on what their task was, and I’m gonna go and find Chad.

Eric: Okay.

Brandon: Kinda nudge him a little bit with my elbow and say

Brandon (as Tracey): You wanna go play a game upstairs?

Eric: Chad is trying to sit like on a high back chair in the front room, but he just keeps like swallowing it up in his body. And Chad says

Eric (as Chad): I, me as a hu-man, I would love to play a game with you. Thank you, Tracey friend!

Brandon (as Tracey): Cool, let’s go!

Eric: And Chad wobbles his way following you.

Michael: Does he take the chair with him?

Eric: He does.

[Brandon laughing]

Eric: So now there’s a chair just floating in Chad.

Brandon: We go up to our shared room, I pull up a chair, and I guess Chad uses the same chair he’s sort of existing in.

Eric: Yeah, he just like sits there and the chair like floats to the bottom of the ooze.

Michael: But it’s now starting to disintegrate.

Brandon: Tracey ruffles around in his pack and he pulls out the Shock-It game.

Eric: Sure.

Brandon: He sits down with Chad and he says

Brandon (as Tracey): This is a game called Shock-It. Have you ever played before?

Eric (as Chad): I have not played Shock-It before. Please tell me how to play!

Brandon (as Tracey): So, what this game does is it’s going to light up and it’s going to tell you instructions, and you follow these instructions exactly, and if you do them exactly and in the right order, you’ll win. Do you follow?

Eric (as Chad): That sounds good to me. I think I can do it.

Brandon (as Tracey):  Great!

Brandon: And Tracey flips on the On switch.

Eric (as Shock-It): [fuzzy electronic voice] It’s Shock-It! Press the center button to start!

Brandon (as Tracey):  So I’m gonna start by pressing the center button.

Brandon: And Tracey presses the center button.

Eric (as Shock-It): Shock-It! [singing, like Bop-It toy song] Duh-nuh-nuh-nuh Do-ch-do-do-ch. Center!

Brandon (as Tracey):  So I press the center button now. Um, so I’m gonna press it.

Brandon: Tracey presses the button.

Eric (as Shock-It): Alright! Do-ch-do-do-ch! Twist it!

Brandon (as Tracey):  So I’m gonna twist it.

Brandon: And I twist it.

Eric (as Shock-It): Alright! Do-chh-do-do-chh! Thwap it!

Brandon (as Tracey): So now I’m gonna tell you to thwap it. So Chad, thwap it.

Eric (as Chad): Okay, I think I can do that!

Eric: Chad like- he’s an ooze. So he doesn’t like have a hand necessarily.

Brandon: He’s an ooze?!

Eric: He doesn’t have a hand nec- yeah, right? He doesn’t have a hand necessarily, but he like brings it down like on one of the sides that it’s like a big whoopee cushion. And it goes womp! And it goes

Eric (as Shock-It): Alright! Do-ch-do-do-ch.

Brandon (as Tracey):  Great. So now we continue on in the game because you followed on my instructions.

Eric (as Shock-It): Center!

Brandon (as Tracey):  Chad, you know what to do.

Eric: And Chad uses his like whole body to just like collapse on top of it. Now it’s like wobbling inside of him and he goes

Eric (as Shock-It): [muffled, through the ooze] Alriiiiight. You win Level One.

Brandon (as Tracey): Great.

Brandon: And I reach inside and grab the game out and kind of wipe it off and say-

Michael: These are normal human things that you’re describing.

Amanda: These are just ways that friends bond.

Eric: Yeah.

Brandon (as Tracey): So Chad, do you like winning?

Eric (as Chad): Of course I like winning! All friends love to win!

Brandon (as Tracey): Well, in order to win, we’re going to have to make a lot of enemies, and you’re going to have to listen to exactly what I say. You wanna win?

Eric (as Chad): I will follow you to win as the humans win! I think I would be perfect to rule Tortipolis with the Representative. I love her! Bum-bum! Bum-bum! That’s the sound of my heart!

[Brandon laughs]

Brandon: And Tracey high-fives Chad.

Eric: Oh no.

[dice rolling]

Brandon: I rolled a nat-20 for a high five.

Eric: No you didn’t.

Brandon: I really did.

Michael: He absolutely did.

Eric: Oh my god.

Amanda: Like Michelangelo's sculpture emerging from a block of granite, Chad has created a perfectly formed hand.

Eric: Exactly. I would say like after Johnny and Inara come inside, and they take a nap, and you guys just kind of kick it, it’s a short rest. You guys are just kind of chillin’ for a while.

Amanda: Do you ever wake up after a nap and just say before you open your eyes, “Did I regain my spell slots?!”

[all laughing]

Michael: Um, I’ll tell you I’ve not been sleeping well lately. I’ve not felt like I’ve regained any spell slots in the past three weeks.

Amanda: Yeah, no. I woke up this morning and I was like, “Mmm that was a short rest.”

Eric: Over the next few hours, everyone else like competed in their own challenges as well.

Michael: What were they?

Eric: There’s one where like everyone is tied together, like by long strands of rope, and like one person needs to pull the rest of the people so they can go and like hit a button.

Amanda: Whoa. That sounds awful and would have gone very badly for us.

Michael: Yeah, well, not for Tracey, but for-

Eric: There’s another one where there was like a massive puzzle, like a vertical puzzle, where you just need to like shift it everywhere and no one is good at puzzles so this one actually took like two hours, and everyone got bored by the end of it, so eventually they just called it and nobody won. There was one with like- you had to like destroy a car. That was pretty cool.

[Brandon laughing]

Michael: Oh, we would have excelled- well, I would have excelled at that.

Eric: It was pretty straightforward. I think they had to bring out like a really basic one after the puzzle. You guys are just like kind of dozed around and waited for other people to come back, and everyone like comes back down, and some people cheer, and some people cry. It felt like a whole day has gone by. Outside of like the really high windows, and you see like the sun has gone down and it’s nighttime. And after a while a producer pops up in like everybody’s room, and they all say at the same time

Eric (as producer): Great challenge, everybody. We’re gonna have our first elimination ceremony down at the pool. Please wear your nicest outfits.

Eric: And then they all kind of disappear. Everybody collects down by the pool. There are like some nice risers that they’ve put down here. And there are 15 people left, and everyone comes down in like their formal attire.

[sound of the pool filling, filter buzzing, crickets chirping]

Michael: I helped Inara and Tracey and myself out with some magic to help us look good.

Amanda: Oh yeah, got some more floral over my tactical clothing and pants and boots. Johnny, is it fair to say that we use a scrap of fabric to make a little flower collar for Oatcake?

Michael: Yeah, of course. To match you, yeah.

Amanda: Yeah.

Brandon: I think Tracey came down- he was a little confused by having a formal ceremony by a pool, so he’s wearing like a swim trunks, but he’s also wearing like a tuxedo top.

Amanda: Yes!

[Eric laughing]

Amanda: Cumberbundt.

Michael: I did the best I could.

Brandon: And I’m also wearing my cape still, of course. I had two hoops left from the challenge, so I’ve taken the flowers, and I’ve sort of interwoven them into the iron casing around his cannon.

Amanda: What print are the swim trunks?

Brandon: They’re just a bunch of tiny pineapples.

Amanda: That’s good.

Eric: I like it.

Michael: Johnny’s doing his traditional robe over robe.

[Amanda giggles]

Michael: For formal events. And the nicest sock-sandal combo that he has.

Amanda: Mhm. Mhm.

Brandon: The most elegant socks and sandals.

Michael: Yeah.

Amanda: Now tell me, do you combine prints? Multiple florals?

Michael: Because it’s more night time, I’ve switched from floral to more of a Starry Night kind of thing.

Amanda: Ooh! Nice.

Michael: There’s a moon, and my sunhat actually has a moon theme, as I have it behind me.

Eric: And Representative Brink walks out from the middle of nowhere and like some people are like trying to make eye contact with her, to get like one final ascertation that they’re not going home. Representative Brink comes over to a table, and on the table are 12 glittering stones. The TV lights that have been like set up, like catch a bunch of them and they shine like a red, a blue, a green, a purple.

Eric (as Representative Brink): Alright, everybody. This is our first elimination. I just want everyone to know that you have a special place in my heart, but some of you just are not as special as the other ones.

[all snickering]

Amanda: Burn!

Michael: Damn!

Eric (as Representative Brink): Here it goes.

Eric: They start playing like dramatic music.

[dramatic music with heavy beating drums and horns begins playing, fuzzily through a PA system]

Eric: They just play it over the speaker system in the actual mansion. She gives out stones to everyone.

Eric (as Representative Brink): This first heart stone goes to Inara.

[Inara gasps]

Amanda: Inara like straightens up and pushes to the front of the crowd.

Eric: And she holds it out and says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Inara, do you still want to stay in this competition.

Amanda (as Inara): Yeah, you seem pretty cool.

Eric: Alright, she gives you the stone.

Amanda: And I’m gonna give her a little smile. Not a full wink. Close to it. Little shoulder shimmy up. And turn back to stand with Johnny and Tracey.

Eric (as Representative Brink): The next stone that I’m gonna give this to is... Johnny.

Michael: Johnny walks up to her, before taking it casts Light on her dress to accentuate it so that the rest of the ceremony she looks better and more on camera.

Eric: I didn’t even say what she was wearing! That’s so silly of me. She’s wearing like a formal jumpsuit with pinstripes. It’s like off the shoulder too. And she looks really good. And again, she’s wearing the same boots.

Michael: I’m also going to try to sneakily cast Prestidigitation to clean the mud off of her boots.

Eric: Very good.

Amanda: Nice.

Eric: You’ve cast Prestidigitation more times than I think any other D&D character has ever done.

Michael: [excitedly] Did I win? Is this- are you- did I win awards?

Brandon: [singing fanfare] buh-da-ba-ba-ba-ba! Here’s your big chance!

Michael: This is the hundred millionth Prestidigitation! You win!

Eric: And every-

Amanda: The ghost of Gary Gygax is gonna give you a noogie.

[all laughing]

Eric: And every time you’ve cast it so far, it’s just been like immediate, like a wipe. Like automatically you smell good, automatically you’re clean and not a speck of dirt on you. But when you do it, it’s like- have you ever cleaned a pot that you just can’t scrape the gunk off the bottom? Like it’s burned on?

Michael: Hmm.

Eric: And no matter what you do, just like steel wool, you just like cannot get it off. It’s like the magic is trying to like scrub it off, but it just cannot be scrubbed off of the boots.

Michael: Okay. My answer was casting the Light magic stuff on her- was the yes.

Eric: Okay and she giggles and goes

Eric (as Representative Brink): Ha, I’ll take that as a yes!

Michael: Does she notice that I-

Eric: No, she doesn’t.

Michael: Okay.

Eric: She doesn’t. She says,

Eric (as Representative Brink): Mischa. And Dayton. And Ambrose K. Ambrose S. Ambrose P.

[dramatic music intensifies]

Eric: And it goes one by one by one. There are five people left now. There is Polly, Minerva the treant, Alice, P0R0, and Tracey. And there are two rocks left. The Representative picks one of the rocks up and holds it close to her chest and sighs deeply and says

Eric (as Representative Brink): P0R0.

Eric: And P0R0 like stomps down the risers and pushes people out of the way.

Eric (as P0R0): Beep boop. I am here to accept your love. Thank you for your love.

Eric: And like stomps back to the risers. The remaining four are Tracey, Alice, Polly, and Minerva. The producer mud people are like running around like trying to make sure everything's set for the dramatic moment, and again like in slow motion, the Representative reaches down, grabs the rock, again holds it tightly to her chest and takes an even deeper sigh this time.

Brandon: Tracey takes out his pocket watch and is just checking the time.

Eric: And the Representative looks up and looks at all four of you and says

Eric (as Representative Brink): Tracey.

[music ends]

Amanda (as Inara):  Yeah!

Amanda: Inara punches the air.

Eric: In your ear you’re just like

Eric (as producer): [through earpiece] Tracey, what- go!

Brandon (as Tracey):  Oh! Oh! My bad! Sorry!

Brandon: Tracey puts the pocket watch away and walks up to the front.

Eric (as Representative Brink): Tracey, do you want to stay in this competition?

Brandon (as Tracey):  I can take it or leave it.

Eric: And in your ear, he says

Eric (as producer): Yes. Beep boop.

Brandon (as Tracey):  Yes. Beep boop.

Eric: The Representative laughs to herself and gives you the stone.

Eric (as Representative Brink): Polly, Minerva, Alice, I’m sorry but... your love is just not my love. I’ll give everybody a second to say goodbye.

Eric: And I think everybody is like giving like tearful hugs to everyone, and Polly and Minerva are just like

Eric (as Polly and Minerva): Ah yeah, I just like- just wasn’t my time.

Eric: And Alice looks worried. She says

Eric (as Alice): [confused]I- I thought I was here for the Undying Light. I thought I was protected by it. [shouting] This is me! I should stay! I deserve to stay!

Eric: As she gets more confused and worried and like agitated, like you can see like the producer mud people like really start to collect around her. It’s just like becoming a commotion at this point, and one of the producers, they like mime talking into a walkie talkie, but like it’s mud so they’re just kind of like talking in their own muddy wrist. He says

Eric (as mud person): We got a problem.

Eric: And six mud people converge on Alice, and everybody scatters. And they start pulling her back towards the center of the middle of the back patio.

[slow, echoing music begins playing]

Michael: I raise the lantern up and the orb goes and rests on her forehead and then like just sinks into her head.

Eric: All of a sudden she’s just in awe as it comes towards her and slowly it starts to grow and grow a little bit, and really it becomes the size- the largest size it can inside the lantern, like the size of a basketball. And all while this is happening, the producers are still like swarming around, and one of them grabs the treant and the other one grabs Polly, and they all kind of like collect together in like one like muddy pile. And then the floor opens up.

Every time that you’ve traveled between levels, it’s been really smooth. You just kind of like go in and out. But this one seems like they’re trying to force someone like through the ground. The mud just like opens up and it lingers for a while. And the Undying Light just starts to spread and holds the hole that the mud is creating in the floor open. For a second, all you hear is these three people fall through the ground and land somewhere else. And suddenly, you hear a twang, and an arrow comes out through the hole, hits the top of the back patio roof, explodes in a burst of light, and the floor closes.

[theme music]

Eric: Join the Party is brought to you by Brandon Grugle, Amanda McLoughlin, Michael Fische, and me, Eric Silver. I’m your host and game master; Brandon edits, mixes, and scores the show; Amanda manages our community and our digital life; and Michael archives, manual-checks, and cartographs our world. Special thanks to our creative consultants Connor McLoughlin, Julia Schifini and Heddy Hunt.

Michael: The party doesn’t stop here! The day after every episode comes out we publish the Afterparty, where we sit down to discuss what just happened and learn what could have happened. Send us your questions anytime.

Brandon: Join our community online by following @jointhepartypod on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. We’ve also got every episode up on our website, jointhepartypod.com; and you can email us questions or stories anytime at hello@jointhepartypod.com.

Amanda: If you’re enjoying this ride as much as we are, help the show out by subscribing to us in iTunes and leaving a quick rating. For even more Join the Party goodness, check out our Patreon. Just a few dollars will get you access to drawings, character backstories, bloopers, and so much more at patreon.com/jointhepartypod.

Eric: We’ll see you in two weeks. You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here.