The party must recover the Liar’s Mouthpiece, but it’s somewhere within the wrestling arena. In what level—or layer—is it hidden? And who knows what’s inside? Tracey flourishes. Inara makes an entrance. Eugene talks it out.
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Cast & Crew
- Dungeon Master: Eric Silver
- TR8c (Tracey): Brandon Grugle
- Inara Harthorn: Amanda McLoughlin
- Eugene: Mike Schubert
- Multitude: multitude.productions
Join the Party is a collaborative storytelling and roleplaying podcast. That means a group of friends create a story together, chapter by chapter, that everyone from seasoned players to true beginners can enjoy. Where else can you get adventure, intrigue, magic, drama, and lots of high fives all in one place? Right here.
After each episode we sit down for the Afterparty, where we break down our game and answer your questions about how to play Dungeons & Dragons and other roleplaying games at home. We also have the Punchbowl, an interview series with people pushing D&D forward creatively, communally and socially. It’s a party, and you’re invited! Find out more at jointhepartypod.com.
Amanda: Last time, on Join the Party...
Eric: Alonzo escapes with the stolen battery and the party is back to square one. Inara and Finale try to wheel Tracey out in the same way that they entered, but gotta hide when they run into museum workers. And with Tracey left alone…
Eric: Hey Tracey, you hear footsteps come up behind you, and then you hear buzz….
[abrupt electrical buzz, footsteps stop]
And then everything goes totally dark.
Eric: Casey kidnaps Tracey and disappears into the night. Luckily, Finale knows the one place he could have gone: Electro Shack. Now, why would someone want to kidnap our Warforged friend? Well, maybe Warforged used to be a destructing force a millennium ago and they were powered by the Undying Light and someone needs to ask some questions.
Eric (as Driftwood Franny Sunflower): Okay, so starting from the beginning because Peter needs a refresher. Hello! I am Driftwood Franny Sunflower. I am the Hag of Infropolis, it’s not a burn, I literally am.
Eric: She lays out a plan. She’ll shut off all the lights to the wrestling match if Inara and Tracey recover the Liar’s Mouthpiece, which is attached to Kohl’s megaphone.
Eric: [singing] I got two tickets to paradise. And by paradise, I mean a wrestling match. Let’s get the party started.
[serene music plays]
Eric: Finale has some packing up to do, so she [giggling] wordlessly waves-waves goodbye.
And sends Tracey and Inara on your way.
Amanda: Like any good house guest, I left her with a stack of pancakes. Not just a short stack, a full stack. So, her mouth is full, and she was just enjoying those on the way out.
Eric: [chuckling] It’s true. Just covered in syrup, she waves goodbye to you. So… what do you want to do?
Amanda: I think it is time to find Kohl, but what time is it? It’s about noon?
Eric: Yeah, I think that you guys had a luxurious breakfast, and Finale spent a bunch of time telling you emotional things about her fiancé and her life. So, I think it took a little bit of time, I would say it's noon.
Amanda: So, I think it is probably logical that Kohl would be at the stadium. Getting ready, warming up, getting her whole makeup, you know, shadowy eye routine going on. So probably, we should find her there.
Amanda: And just be extremely careful that nobody kidnaps, my dog.
Brandon: Yes. Or me again.
[Eric & Brandon chuckling]
Amanda: That’s also true, my bad. I forgot.
Eric: In this episode, Inara’s getting kidnapped. [chuckles] Oh no! I ruined it! Oh beans!
[serene music fades, distant inaudible crowd noises begin]
Eric: Well I guess it’s pretty easy to find Infropolis stadium, which has recently been rebranded to Jersey Mike’s Arena.
[Brandon & Eric chuckling]
But you can hear, there are crowds that are lined up outside of the arena, like kind of tailgating before the game.
Amanda: [gasping] What are they making?!
Brandon: Yeah, what are these dope snacks?
Eric: Uh, why don’t you both make Perception checks? And I’ll roll for Oatcake.
Amanda: Roll for waft of hot dog.
Brandon: Roll for bacon-wrapped sausages.
Amanda: [sadly] I got a 5…
Eric: Oh no.
Amanda: I’m too full to notice.
Brandon: I got… a 5.
Amanda: We’re so full!
[Amanda & Brandon chuckling]
Eric: You two haven’t had time for leisure, so you’re just like, oh food! I love that! It’s very good!
Eric: Uh, Oatcake rolled a 12. So, Oatcake…
Amanda: Proud of you.
Eric: Puts her nose up and starts sniffing hard.
[Oatcake sniffs and huffs]
Eric: Oatcake has the scent of something. Jersey Mike’s Arena is the - one of the biggest buildings in the whole city and it is loud, so you can pretty much easily find your way there.
Brandon: Is it shaped like a sandwich?
Eric: No, it’s an arena. [laughing] You know what, yes, they - it used to be round and then they stretched it out when Jersey Mike sponsored it. Uh, so it’s about a 15-minute walk. As you draw closer, you know the -the reverberations and the bass that you only get when there is a lot of people that are just chattering together?
Eric: It’s just like nonsensical conversations that just become this wave of sound. And there are a lot of people here, especially because Jersey Mike’s Arena has a relatively small parking lot. So, everyone is very densely packed in. You are overwhelmed by the amount of different grilled meats that you are smelling. Oatcake puts her nose up and she blinks out of the papoose you’ve made for her.
Eric: And she starts to walk over, she’s like sniffing around, and she’s looking for this particular smell that she’s sniffing. She stops in front of this smoker and standing in front of the smoker, is a human with two oversized oven-mitts, on both hands. And who’s just about...
Amanda: Two per hand?!
Eric: Yes - yes, two per hands.
Amanda: One on the hand and one hanging beneath as a back-up?!
Eric: Yeah, it’s like - it’s a wrist-guard.
Eric: And, uh he’s opening up the smoker and letting a little bit of that scent out. And then Oatcake runs up to him and starts barking at him.
Mike (as Human): [deep, bro voice, excitedly reacting] Oh! Hello little friend! How’s it going?
[Oatcake barks in acknowledgement]
Mike (as Human): You are absolutely adorable, my dude!
Amanda (as Inara): [flustered] Oatcake, come back. Oh! You can’t go that far. Hi, I’m so sorry. She just - It smells really good.
Mike (as the Human): Don’t apologize! Why would you do that? This dog is so cute! Hi, I’m Eugene. But you can call me Twister.
Amanda (as Inara): Sure Twister, is this your, do - do you have like a restaurant? Like do you just do this a lot before games?
Mike (as Twister): I mean restaurant is like, a construct.
This is more of just how I bring food into the world.
Eric: [chuckling] This is amazing, but I need to describe what this man looks like. Alright Mike, so what does Eugene/Twister, what’s he wearing? What does he look like?
Mike: Eugene is wearing the outfit of Bender from Breakfast Club, and if you don’t know what that is it’s like a red plaid shirt with a denim jacket, and fingerless gloves, and jeans, and like really cool big clunky boots.
Mike: And there’s like a bandana tied around one of the boots.
Eric: Eugene also has a Rubik’s cube on a necklace that is on like a strong hemp rope tied around his neck.
Mike: And it is a not completed Rubik’s cube.
Amanda: I was going to ask, so thank you.
Eric: It is very mixed up, it’s very important that it’s really mixed up.
[Mike continues chuckling]
Eric: Uh, there’s also a bunch of other dudes, who are similarly dressed to Eugene. But not like exactly, it’s not like a cult!
Eric: But they all have like denim jackets and various layered pieces. And they’re just like hanging around. Some of them are drinking beers, other of them like walk over to their grills and kinda like poke a hot dog or two. But sometimes they walk over, and they smell the smoker and they’re like [nonchalantly] “Oh, what are… hey, what are you - what are you doing there?”
Twenty people are milling in and out of Eugene’s whole area. He tailgated, so he has like this car that he backed up. And he has his trunk is open and there’s like tons of stuff spilling out. He has a folding table with bunches of red cups on it, there’s like a crudité which no one has touched. He’s like very set up to be here for a long time.
Mike: Eugene does not know what crudité means.
Eric: [chuckling] No, so he’s just like I found these carrots! And he put them down.
[Brandon joins in laughing with Eric]
Amanda (as Inara): So, uh what kind of stuff are you cooking?
Mike (as Twister): Oh, you know, just whatever it is…
Brandon (as Tracey): You got turkey legs?
Mike: Do I? Oh. Uh,
Brandon (as Tracey): Hi. I’m Tracey.
Mike (as Twister): Hi, nice to meet you.
Brandon (as Tracey): Nice to meet you.
Mike (as Twister): You’re a very large… thing.
Brandon (as Tracey): Thanks.
Mike (as Twister): But yeah, we got some turkey legs, I’ll throw one in the smoker for ya.
Brandon (as Tracey): Hey, thanks!
Mike (as Twister): No problem! Yeah, we just got a bunch of stuff. I brought some turkey legs, I brought some bacon, brought some burger stuff but really, if - if people come with anything they want to throw in the smoker. I’m down, like if you got veggies, or tofu stuff, I’m happy to smoke whatever.
Amanda (as Inara): Can we try…
To smoke an oatcake?
Amanda (as Inara): [realizing how that sounds] NOT… no. That’s her name too. She’s great.
Mike (as Twister): Oh, okay.
Amanda (as Inara): I also have…
Amanda: And then Inara pulls out of her bag. I also have a sleeve full of her patented oatcakes,
Amanda (as Inara): They’re cookies, but I think they could be cool? Like a savory dessert?
Mike (as Twister): I think we can make this work, yeah. I - I haven’t done this, but let’s give it a shot! I love where your head’s at!
Eric: At this point, a small goblin runs up to Eugene and gives him like a sack, and it’s just like, wet and damp. He points to the smoker, and then looks at you, and then points to the smoker again, and then walks away.
Mike: I put it in the smoker.
Eric: Yeah, it’s like [starts laughing]…
Mike: Do I have to roll for…
Eric: No! It’s totally fine.
Mike: [chuckling] Okay…
Eric: It’s just liked the head of some unnamed animal. And you’re just like - the goblin gives you a thumbs up and then walks away.
Mike: I throw my classic seasoning on it and throw it in the smoker.
Amanda: Oh! Tell me about that seasoning.
Mike (as Twister): Oh, it’s my own invention, just with trials of adding in more garlic powder and even more garlic powder. And every now and then throwing in some spices, different peppers. It’s - it’s always evolving and changing and it’s never really a set recipe.
Amanda: So, do you have a favorite for the fight tonight, or you just kind of come to anything going on over here?
Mike (as Twister): I mean, I am such a big fan of anything that goes down at Jersey Mike’s Arena. But the wrestling, ugh, top notch! And honestly, I’m a big underdog fan, so as long as Gordon Lighthammer doesn’t win, I’m on board man! I wanna see the little guy come through, you know?
Eric: Do you have money on Kohl?
Mike: Twister is in it purely for the enjoyment. He doesn’t want to put wagers in the fact because then that complicates it. He just, his investment is purely in entertainment purposes. He doesn’t want to complicate that with financial burdens.
Eric: Sure. I would say that as you-you talk, which is like, the love of the game, a bunch of the guys who are milling around are like,
Eric (as tailgater): [slurring] Oh no, man, I got like $200 on the devil chick, she sounds dope!!
Eric: I think that Oatcake has been sniffing around at your feet for a while. And then as you open the smoker a little bit, to like - check on how it’s doing, Oatcake poofs on top of your head to get a better look.
Mike: [surprised, excited] Wow, hey! I didn’t know this dog…you said this dog’s name was Oatcake? Is it like the same as Lucius?
Amanda (as Inara): Uh, no they look really similar isn’t that funny?
Amanda: And then I grab Oatcake. I’m like,
Amanda (as Inara): [flustered] Here girl! Here girl!
Amanda: And then I tuck her back into the pashmina um, and sort of whisper,
Amanda (as Inara): [whispering with discipline] Hey, don’t, do that again!
Brandon (as Tracey): [whispering] Inara, we really need to go, we don’t have time.
Eric: I think that one of the guys who is hanging around Eugene also be like,
Eric (as another tailgater): [enthusiastically tripping over words] Oh wait! That’s -that, Oh - uhhh [garbled] I want the dog’s autograph! Please, I - I have an autograph book right here! I keep it on me at all tailgates!
Mike (as Twister): Reg - Reginald, that’s not Lucius, it’s just a dog that looks the same and does the same stuff.
Eric (as Reginald): Ehhh - I [contemplating] … but the dog did a big, POOF!
Mike (as Twister): No! Reginald this dog’s name is Oatcake. That doesn’t even sound like Lucius, you’re being ridiculous.
Eric: [laughing heartily] Alright make a Deception check.
Mike: [excitedly] 16!
Eric: Alright! With a 16, Reginald looks at you, and be like,
Eric (as Reginald): I do confuse dogs sometimes, so I really appreciate you looking out for me Twister! I know you always do that, and you always have my back.
Mike (as Twister): I always have your back man. Hey, and don’t worry, the food’s almost ready and I can take you to Flavor Village.
Eric (as Reginald): Oh man, I love Flavor Village.
Mike (as Twister): Flavor Village, baby! I got the key to the city.
Eric (as Reginald): It’s delicious, and in my mouth!
Mike (as Twister): [grunting] Mhmmm.
Eric (as Reginald): Hey! Adamah be with you, thanks man.
Mike (as Twister): No problem.
Amanda: I gotta ask, what is that Cubikness all about?
Mike (as Twister): Oh well, you know, It’s just an-an homage to Adamah.
Amanda (as Inara): Oh… like, how?
Brandon (as Tracey): What?
Mike (as Twister): Oh, you guys... don’t you don’t know about Adamah?
Amanda (as Inara): No... I’m - I’m from the Forest, from the Great Green, you know? And he’s just...
Brandon (as Tracey): I’m a thing.
Amanda (as Inara): He’s old.
Mike (as Twister): That’s what I did say yeah. No, Adamah is just - gosh how do I say this...I want to - I want to put it in layman’s terms, but she’s just - that’s just her vibe you know? Kinda her essence so to speak?
I feel like the Rubik’s cube is just a testament to what she’s like and what she stands for. It’s not necessarily an official relic of her, but just kind of, what makes me think of her and how I represent her. I’m a big fan, and I just like to show it. I have no idea how to solve this thing, but I think it looks pretty cool too.
Eric (as Reginald): Yeah, I mean we all have like these Rubik’s cubes, they symbolize, uh, you know like the Prophet Rubiks who like brought Adamah’s teaching to all the-all the Concentric States. Y’know, as we put the puzzle together, it’s like we’re putting together life, just like how Adamah runs lives. And runs all the multidimensional different lives that are out there.
Mike (as Twister): Yeah, she just kind of keeps everything working... you know?
Eric: The goblin comes back, and opens up the smoker, and looks at the head, and then puts it back and he says,
Eric (as Goblin): [high-pitched, piercing] Yeah, Adamah really changed my life. Uh, before, I just like didn’t really have anything pushing forward my life but when I thought about how took all those meetings, like in the sky, and also made all of the like brand relationships in the way that like I have to make brand relationships with my-with my friends and family. It was really a guiding force. Also, I changed my whole wardrobe to be more like Adamah. You can see by my awesome shoulder pads.
Mike (as Twister): Man, and now you’re so much more righteous for it... Florpy.
Mike: And we do a secret handshake.
Eric: Yeah, and at the end, it’s like... Adamah’s great.
[Eric & Mike chuckling]
Amanda (as Inara): Wow.
Brandon (as Tracey): That was a lot…
Amanda (as Inara): Where’d you learn about her?
[Mike sighs trying to remember]
Eric (as Florpy): Summer camp. We all went to Adamah’s summer camp. I mean, I did, and I had to do it like as an adult. Like I’m a born-again Adamah follower.
Mike (as Twister): Yeah, that summer camp was super sweet. There was like a big tennis ball launcher, and things where you were on bungee cords and jumped down and jumped up.
Mike (as Twister): It was almost like we were gladiators or something…
A lot of long hair.
Eric (as Florpy): Yeah, there were just flocks of seagulls everywhere. We all got the same haircut.
Mike (as Twister): And we all had spandex, it was a great summer camp.
Eric (as Florpy): It was good, listen, as an adult I still appreciated it. [tone becomes more serious] Uh, but you know, sometimes I still run into trouble… um. You know Twister [short pause] I’m in bad man…
[Eric trying to stifle laughing]
Mike (as Twister): Bad - bad meaning bad or bad meaning good?
Eric (as Florpy): No, bad meaning bad. The regular way.
Mike (as Twister): Oh no!
Eric (as Florpy): Uh yeah, you know I put too much money on Lighthammer, I shouldn’t have done it.
Mike (as Twister): Oh, dude. I told you it’s more about the enjoyment, not the financial aspects.
Eric (as Florpy): But here’s the thing, [chuckling] I also love the financial aspects.
Mike (as Twister): Aww... damn. Do you need help man?
Eric (as Florpy): Yeah... I mean the - the I think I can’t pay, and I put 5000 gold pieces down, and I do not have that much! And the bookies are definitely trying to come to find me.
Mike (as Twister): Alright.
Brandon: Tracey has started to just shuffle backwards slowly out of this environment.
Amanda: Yeah, I’m going to be like,
Amanda (as Inara): [awkwardly] Uh yeah, I hope that you guys enjoy your smoking, enjoy your meal. You can just take those cookies as a gift from me to you, I hope they work out really well.
Mike (as Twister): Wow, wow! you’re just leaving the oatcakes? Hold on, I haven’t been-haven’t been that good of a house-guest here so to speak. What are, what brings you-what brings you two here? Are you-
Eric (as Florpy): [interrupting, panicked] I mean, listen I REALLY need you to take care of this, THEY’RE COMING LIKE, RIGHT NOW.
Amanda (as Inara): This guy is kind of in crisis, we’re actually on our way - on our way uh you know past the stadium to actually go to an appointment, um…
Eric (as Florpy): [out of breath, again cutting in] No, I mean listen, hey! I need as many as possible to help me, Florpy, the fun goblin, who’s also in a bunch of debt. I can definitely get you inside of the stadium.
You want VIP tickets? I have VIP tickets. See this is why I’m in so much debt! I spent all the money on VIP tickets!
Mike (as Twister): That’ll explain it.
Eric (as Florpy): That’s how I do - I love things!
Brandon (as Tracey): Can you get us, like in the green room or the backstage?
Eric (as Florpy): Uh, proud no, I – I – I can get you as far as possible though.
Mike (as Twister): [hesitantly] Wait, you guys-you want to go backstage?
Brandon (as Tracey): We have a package we have to deliver.
Amanda (as Inara): Yeah.
Mike (as Twister): Oh, well. Alright, uh…
Eric: [giggling] Wait a second. Wait, roll- Brandon, roll a Deception check.
Amanda: Is it-is it not good Brando?
[short pause in response to roll]
Brandon: 7+0 for a 7...
Eric: Okay, for whatever reason everyone knows that this is an obvious lie [giggling].
Amanda (as Inara): I mean, Tracey is being kind of modest. I actually want to try out for the CWC…
Mike (as Twister): Oh!
Amanda (as Inara): Um, and I was really hoping to run into someone from their association in the backstage area. So, I know it’s kinda like aggressive, but I read this book about you know, just getting ahead and making people want to help you. And I hear that just being really really forward and meeting them where they are, like just doing it man! Is really important. So, yeah.
Mike (as Twister): Oh wow, that’s incredible! I also wanted to try out for the CWC.
Amanda (as Inara): Oh, no way!
Mike (as Twister): Yeah, I’m - I was super into it. Trained and stuff. It didn’t work out for me, but I think it can work out for you.
Amanda (as Inara): Aw, thanks man.
Mike (as Twister): So, here’s the deal. I, you know, I don’t like to associate myself with my career. But on the day-to-day basis I work as a plumber, and I used to do the stuff for Jersey Mike’s. You know when they rebranded and changed it from an arena shape, to a sandwich shaped building?
Amanda (as Inara): Oh yeah.
Mike (as Twister): They had me and my company do all of the plumbing work, so I kinda know all of the ins and outs of the stadium so to speak. And I know how tricky the CWC can be with stuff. So, I, if you need some help, I can-I can work some way to get you guys back there?
Amanda (as Inara): That’d be really cool. Maybe-maybe, uh Florpy, was that your name?
Eric (as Florpy): [hysterically] But like seriously! THESE BOOKIES ARE COMING, they are like right here! I need like-are you behind me?! PLEASE!!
Mike (as Twister): If we need to fend them off, I gotcha man.
Amanda (as Inara): Um, well I was going to say, we can actually just give you some gold in exchange for those tickets? That way, you know for whatever reason, if you get caught...
Eric (as Florpy): [interrupting] You can tell that to the bookies!
Eric: You see that two skinny but like, built elves are pushing their way through the crowd and are kinda just like snaking their way through. Not even started like moving out of the way, but just small nudges that gets people to like move out the way enough. And then they - It’s just like they’re walking through water. They’re making a beeline towards Florpy.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Florpy, it’s time. You-you have to pay up before the match is about to start, you know our rules.
Eric: And the other one says,
Eric (as Other Elf Bookie): Yeah! That’s what that guy said... and you're in trouble… definitely.
Mike (as Twister): Hey man, Florpy doesn’t have the money right now. So just back off. He’ll get it to you.
Eric (as Florpy): [nervously] Yeah, that’s what I said the first time! I definitely have the money, I’m very resourceful!
Amanda (as Inara): Tracey and I are looking at each other like, what did we do to get here?
Eric (as Other Elf Bookie): Hey, listen, our whole secret underground terrible business is predicated on the fact that the money comes up straight. We… don’t have like any sort of governing body here, you just have to give us the money or then you don’t get to participate, and you’ve thrown off the whole economy here. When you say you have it, you have it? Yeah, that’s right, I definitely know how underground betting works!
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Listen, this is this guy’s first day...
Brandon (as Tracey): [exasperated] Look, look, look, can you all stop?
Eric (as Elf Bookie): We’re, excuse me, excuse me. We’re talking to these people here.
Brandon (as Tracey): You’re very small, shut up for a second. Just let me talk to you. How about I’ll bet… double that the match doesn’t finish, but... I’ll have to pay you at the end of the match.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): I mean, we don’t even have a prop bet necessarily for - for that. Hm...
Amanda (as Inara): Thinking outside of the box man, that’s what we do.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Uh, I think you’re going to have to lay something down as collateral. Uh...
Brandon (as Tracey): I can give you a small down payment for sure.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Yeah, also like, your whole deal is very cool. This is a very good like...
Brandon (as Tracey): Thank you.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): How come, what’s the name of that wrestler? This is a really -It’s a really great Alabaster cosplay you have going on.
Brandon (as Tracey): [disappointed] Ouch. That hurts, okay. Uhhh, moving on...
Eric (as Elf #1): I mean, listen, you look exactly like him. Which is wild.
Brandon (as Tracey): Wild. Inara is that true?
Amanda (as Inara): You know, we think of it as less of a costume um, and more of a way of life. So that’s, we just take that really seriously. Anyway, Trace let's get to our gold out. And we can just move this along. Yep? Okay?
Eric (as New Elf Bookie): Yep, yeah, my cousin, he’s like a Druid, and he’s always like a squirrel so I know exactly what you’re going through.
Amanda (as Inara): Okay...
Brandon (as Tracey): Yep, here’s ten gold.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Yeah, I’m going to need more of a down payment than that.
Brandon (as Tracey): How much?
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Uh, let’s see, if you’re going to put down 10000 gold pieces, uh, I would say you need to put down at least a 1000.
Brandon (as Tracey): Okay, so 100, I’ll give you 1%.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): No, again, that’s not the thing that I told you.
Brandon (as Tracey): I’ll give you a 100, and then I‘ll give you a turkey leg. [short pause] It’s real good.
Mike (as Twister): Are you sure...?
Amanda (as Inara): Listen man, what if we registered this as a smaller bet than it is? And we give you a proper down payment for let’s say, a 1000 gold piece bet, 100 gold pieces, right? 10%. And then, when it’s much bigger, you know, who knows what the number is that’s reported, and maybe the difference makes its way to you directly?
Eric (as New Elf Bookie): Ah, see this is the fun part about running an illicit betting ring. [chuckling] Like this is absolutely... I like having some of this back. Okay. Alright. So, what your saying is...
Amanda (as Inara): We don’t have to recap the whole-the whole uh…
Illusion I made there. The whole suggestion? But I think you’re picking what I’m putting down.
Mike (as Twister): Listen here bud, I’ll throw in the recipe for my secret dry rub.
Amanda (as Inara): Wow, that’s gotta be, like a 5-million-dollar evaluation at least, am I right?
Mike (as Twister): Literally priceless.
Amanda (as Inara): Yep.
Eric: I want you both to roll, just straight up Charisma.
[2 dice rolls]
Mike: [enthused] Oh! I rolled a 17+1 for an 18.
Amanda: 16, flat.
Eric: Nice, okay.
Eric: Yeah, very charismatic.
Eric (as New Elf Bookie): You know I have been looking for things to spice up just the regular dinner that I’m having. Okay, secret illicit bet, I’m going to have to write this down in my notes. Secret…illicit…bet.
Amanda (as Inara): That’s on you man.
Eric (as New Elf Bookie): 100 that means 1000 that actually means 10000 from the thing.
Brandon (as Tracey): Yep.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): What I do need though, is I will need some, how am I-how am I going to get back in touch with you? As a follow-up?
Amanda (as Inara): You give me your card, and we find you after the match. If we won, we need to get our money.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Right, but if you lose, then that would be, I mean this is my first day, but if you lose, then you can just run away.
Amanda (as Inara): I mean, you look like the kinds of people that would find us, and we want to avoid that.
Eric (as New Elf Bookie): [laughing heartily] Yeah, that’s a good point. We would definitely find you and do terrible things to you. Yeah, so, yeah that’s absolutely right.
Amanda (as Inara): I think we’re on the same page.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): Sounds good. Okay, alright. Just meet us outside, meet us outside, like on the lettuce layer of the Jersey Mike’s Arena.
Brandon (as Tracey): That’s slippery…
Amanda (as Inara): That’s disgusting.
Eric (as Elf Bookie): No, that’s the tomato layer, you don’t want to go there. But it’s like in between the tomato and the meat layer. But you won’t be there, we’ll be watching for you.
Eric: Alright, the two elves look at each other, and give each other a high-five. And then put two fingers in both their eyes and do it towards Florpy. And then they walk back and snake back into the crowd.
Eric (as Florpy): Oh [sighs in relief] man!!! That was so cool! I can’t believe you offered him 100 gold and a turkey leg! No one in a million years would have taken that! That was bold!
Brandon (as Tracey): I thought that... I would’ve taken that.
Amanda (as Inara): Hey!
Brandon (as Tracey): Have you ever had a turkey leg?
Eric (as Florpy): No, I just eat the heads of animals!
Amanda (as Inara): Hey, listen Florpy, you seem like a nice guy. But… we’re doing a kinda big mission today…
Eric (as Florpy): Nice!
Amanda (as Inara): You know trying to get me into my new career and all.
Eric (as Florpy): Yeah, same.
Amanda (as Inara): And we don’t have the ability to make others people’s problems into our problems. So... happy to help you out of a tight position, but from here on in we gotta - gotta focus on the task at hand. And that’s getting us inside without detecting any problems.
Eric (as Florpy): That’s fine, that’s what Adamah says. Just like, work it out. It’s your thing. Deal with it.
Amanda (as Inara): What else does Adamah say?
Eric (as Florpy): She’s very like... she just throws out business advice and like life advice. Just like...
Amanda (as Inara): No, I want to know.
Eric (as Florpy): Like hey, get it done! The report was due on Monday! Like emotionally…
Mike (as Twister): She’ll also say things like teamwork makes the dream work.
Eric (as Florpy): And reach for the stars, cause if you end up there, you’re in space, which is cool!
Mike (as Twister): Shoot at the moon, worse case you’ll be amongst the stars...
Eric (as Florpy): And the gods!
Mike (as Twister): Mhm.
Eric (as Florpy): With me, at the corner office!
Mike (as Twister): She has such a way with words, she’s just so motivational.
Amanda (as Inara): What does she say about like, the other gods?
Eric (as Florpy): She’s yeah, like she’s really focused on her work. She doesn’t have a lot of time for-for Ze’ol. You know, but I think, ehh, it’s fine.
Amanda (as Inara): She’s never like ugh Ze’ol, guys the worst ughhh. Always delinquent with his reports, augh.
Mike (as Twister): No, she’s not really one to speak ill of others. She’s just...
Amanda (as Inara): For sure, I respect that, yeah.
Mike (as Twister): She’s just sticking to-just sticking to her guns.
Amanda (as Inara): Eyes on the prize, isn’t that uh, Adamah? Right, aww.
Mike (as Twister): Wow, yeah, she did say that!
Eric (as Florpy): I can’t believe you knew that! It’s like #1 in the employee/religious following manual!
Mike (as Twister): That’s right next to where it says lift with your legs and not your back.
Amanda (as Inara): Why don’t we keep both of those things as our kind of like, our North Star, our guiding light if you will? Eyes on the prize, lift with your legs, not your back.
Mike (as Twister): Yeah...
Eric (as Florpy): It’s true!
Amanda (as Inara): Right?
Eric (as Florpy): Yeah!
Amanda (as Inara): Shall we say that on 3, everybody?
Eric (as Florpy): Bo - both of them?
Amanda (as Inara): The last one, it sounds better when you shout it.
Eric (as Florpy): Okay, alright.
Amanda (as Inara): Ready?
Everyone: [cheering] 1... 2...3! Lift with your legs and not with your back!!
Eric: Hey, it’s Eric. I know everyone has Netflix or Hulu or some other streaming service nowadays, but remember DVDs? And remember how there was always a themed menu at the beginning, like you could play all or pick a scene or look at extras? And it simultaneously had to be on brand, and also incorporate parts of the movie or TV season AND it couldn’t be actually that invasive? I think about the graphic designers who had to make it. I hope they have new jobs now. Welcome to the midroll. That video of Monica with a turkey on her head is just going to keep looping.
Hey hi hello to our newest patrons: Casey, Darien, Isabelle, Justin, Phoebe, The Lorax aka Forrest, Will, Saroona, Janessa, Lada, Jenelle, and Sean.
Hey, did you know we just passed the 300-patron mark? 300! That’s an entire spartan army! It is wild and we appreciate you. Instead of kicking people into bottomless pits, we are making art. Which is a lot more constructive, when you think about it. If you want to join up, head over to patreon.com/jointhepartypod.
Our sponsor this week is Tavour, the best way to try new and exciting beer. Tavour is your cool friend who knows stuff about beer but isn’t in your face about it. They make friends with award-winning craft brewers that don’t have wide distribution and gives you access to those beers you cannot get anywhere else. Every day, on their app, they introduce a new beer currently making waves in the craft beer community. And all you have to do is press “Get it” on the app and you get it in your beer cellar. Once you decide you have enough beers, your whole cellar gets shipped to you. I’ve been using Tavour for YEARS, and I have to tell you, there is nothing more exciting than getting a big box full of alcohol shipped to your door. Also, the mailman is very confused which is a joy in itself. It’s all of the good holidays rolled into one at 10% ABV. SO, go to tavour.com - T A V O U R - download the app, and get beer buying right now. If you use the code JOINTHEPARTY, you’ll get $10 off after your first order of $25 or more. And those $10 will go a lot way to very good beer. Once again, T A V O U R, and use the code JOINTHEPARTY to save $10 on your first order.
We’re sponsored this week as we are every week by 20 Sided Store in Brooklyn, NY. I usually review games, but Amanda has really strong feelings about puzzles, so she really wants to talk about puzzles. Amanda:
Amanda: Listen, there’s not a lot of things in life that you can win, but you can win puzzles. You don’t have to have finely tuned fine motor skills created over decades of playing video games. You just gotta like, look at those little pieces and find them their little home. And they fit together perfectly! And they want to be together, and it’s so colorful. And I love them. Do puzzles y'all!
If you have a puzzmaster in your life, there’s nowhere better to shop than Twenty Sided Store. Visit them online at twentysidedstore.com or in person in Brooklyn, NY. Use our discount code, JOINTHEPARTY, for 20% off. That’s twenty (the full word) sided store dot com and use our discount code JOINTHEPARTY.
And finally, we’d love to thank everyone who’s been recommending the show to their friends and family. There is no better way to help a show than recommending it to a friend. So, offer to load up someone’s phone with enough episodes to get them through their spring break or a rainy commute, you’re doing mitzvah. When you do, let us know -- and we’ll bestow upon you a special item for use in your next campaign! Just let us know, I have nothing better to do. I’ll just make this up for you.
Amanda: All right! Now, let’s get back to the show.
[background crowd noises begin]
Eric: Florpy holds a VIP ticket out to all of you. It’s embossed with gold lettering and you see that there is like a little bit of magic on it. So, it’s like there’s like a picture of Kohl and a picture of Gordon Lighthammer, and they’re growling at each other.
Amanda: So, is Florpy going to stay behind, and let’s say, maybe man the smoker while we’re inside?
Eric: Yeah no, Florpy was going go like, reassess his faith.
So yeah, the VIP entrance is kinda like, right in the middle, because that’s the best part of the sandwich. You can see that there’s already a line that’s snaking like all through the parking lot and ends on either side of the sandwich. But in the middle there’s a roped off area, sponsored by Soup River. There’s a velvet rope, and everything. You can see that there are people on line that are like giving you all the stink eye as you walk up the stairs into the middle of Jersey Mike Arena.
Brandon: Eric, would you say that the people, the employees of Jersey Mike Arena, have some sort of uniform or unifying characteristic?
Eric: They do! A lot of the employees are wearing red tunics and black pants, and they have Jersey Mike Arena emblazoned on the middle and they’re all wearing red caps. But the VIP person who is in front of you, is wearing that, but it’s all black. As you walk up, you see that some of the security people open up a velvet rope to a very, very like - 1.5 times as large as them, woman with a very very neat and high topknot. Who walks in and gives finger guns to them.
Brandon: So, as we walk up, I want to take note of the security guard and what they are wearing and what they look like and how they’re acting.
Brandon: And, I’m going to sort of get out of there, I’m going to say,
Brandon (as Tracey): Hey guys, hold on just one second, before we go in...
Brandon: Tracey has a feature that he hasn’t used before, called Disguise Self.
Brandon: It’s a new little magic thing. He’s going to play to the advantage, be a bodyguard. [giggles] And this is my favorite part, the way he disguises himself, is he twirls around his cape and yells, [screaming] “I LOOK GREAT!!”
Brandon: And then make a costume change.
Amanda: Very good.
Mike: [sighs] That’s very good
Eric: That does not surprise me…
Mike: Very good.
Brandon: And then I’m going to go back up to my friends, and say,
Brandon (as Tracey): [whispering] Guys, it’s me, it’s Tracey.
Don’t - don’t - don’t freak out, it’s just me.
Amanda (as Inara): What should I call you? Peter?
Brandon (as Tracey): Uh, Peter’s good, I like Peter.
Amanda (as Inara): Okay.
Mike (as Twister): What about Trace… D?
Amanda (as Inara): Good contribution, I think…
Mike (as Twister): Not my strong suit.
Amanda (as Inara): Something a little bit different.
Mike (as Twister): Okay. Yeah, good, yeah…
Mike (as Twister): I’m sorry, you’re right.
Amanda (as Inara): No, no. You shot for the moon man, and you landed among the stars.
Mike (as Twister): Pretty good place to be.
Brandon (as Tracey): Alright, I’m going to get you guys in, don’t worry.
Amanda (as Inara): Yeah.
Brandon (as Tracey): Give me-give me your tickets.
Amanda (as Inara): Okay, so I hand them over,
Amanda (as Inara): And you guys should call me Jocasta, just as a-like as a, so they can’t like look me up…you know get in touch with Fidapolis, ask me who I am, etcetera, etcetera, and Oatcake, girl, you are going to stay in this harness, okay?
Eric: [giggles] Oatcake looks at you and licks you in the face.
Amanda (as Inara): It is really important. I cannot lose you.
Eric: Oatcake poofs on top of your head and then, poofs back into the papoose.
Amanda (as Inara): I’m glad that you’re demonstrating that you understand, but we’re going to do that in the future without any of the poofing, okay?
Eric: She nods.
Amanda: I give her a little scratch in between -in between her little forehead, eye area.
Eric: It’s very good pets.
Eric: You walk up to the bouncers in the VIP area, and they say,
Eric (as Bouncer): Tickets! Here you go.
Eric: Yeah, the security guard you give it to looks at them, bites it, each of them individually and gives it back to you and says like,
Eric (as Bouncer): Yeah, it’s real.
Brandon (as Tracey): [deep, gravelly voice] Chill, gross, cool, thanks.
Eric (as Bouncer): Eh, excuse me sir, this is just uh…
Brandon (as Tracey): No, I mean…
Eric (as Bouncer): I mean you work here, so you should probably know.
Brandon (as Tracey): No, no we’re part of the training, it’s fine.
Mike (as Twister): No, gross is new slang, gross is good now. You know how bad can sometimes mean good? Gross is not gross now.
Eric (as Bouncer): Huh…
Mike (as Twister): Yeah.
Eric (as Bouncer): Alright, well, it’s…
Mike (as Twister): It was a compliment.
Brandon (as Tracey): Can we go?
Amanda (as Inara): [exasperated] Let’s go…
Eric (as Bouncer): Well, he definitely works here, so it’s fine.
Eric: [chuckling] So you open the red velvet rope and you walk up the stairs.
[crowd noise fades out]
So… Eugene works here. And Eugene knows where everything is, so If you want to go somewhere Eugene can point you the way. I don’t know if you have spent any time back away where the customers aren’t supposed to be in an arena, but it’s just like it’s all concrete and like painted over stucco. And it’s just like cavernous. So, you right now are in the turkey level.
Amanda (as Inara): So, we want to get to the dressing rooms, can you help us do that, and also make sure it’s Kohls and not Lighthammer’s? That part, very important.
Mike (as Twister): I know exactly where it is! Follow me.
Eric: Okay, so the dressing rooms are up three flights of stairs, unfortunately you have to kinda cross through the entire stadium, you guys are like on one side, but they want the-the dressing rooms to be as far away from the, any sort of entrance, as possible, so it’s up, so you guys are going to cross the stadium.
Brandon: There’s a lot of mustard in the way, you know, pools of mayo.
Amanda: A whole river of pickles.
Eric: You walk up one flight of stairs, and you have to walk across, and it is a pretty large hallway. So, on one side, there is a coordinator with a headset on, who is leaving ten fans who are all probably the most hyped-up, excited, face-painted fans you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Of various people, there’s one who like, it’s almost eerie how much she looks like Kohl. Like how well they did the cosplay. There’s another person who is just painted head to toe in like blue and white. And on the other side of the hallway, there is another security guard looking person who is standing in front of a large doorway that leads to the right.
Amanda (as Inara): So, uh Twister, should we go in directly? Is there like a side entrance? What’s the plan?
Mike (as Twister): Alright, here’s the deal. I’ll talk to the dude outside of the door, keep him busy. And then you guys can go through.
Mike: And I’m gonna use my feat, which is shooting the shit,
Mike: Uh, where…
[Amanda & Brandon laughing]
Eric: So, uh Mike, I want you to roll a Charisma roll, just before you start talking to this person, to see if you remember to tell them where this doorway leads.
Mike: It’s a 16 +…
Mike: 1 for a 17.
Eric: Okay, so good. This is - this is great.
Amanda: We got a high roller here.
Eric: Yeah. You said…
Mike: Don’t jinx it!
Eric: So, before you walk up to the people, and strategize, this is like the walkway to lead into the ring. Like this is where like wrestlers get brought down and kept here before they do their big entrance. So, this is like, there’s like that big walkway that goes back to the ring, and they’re probably setting up.
Mike (as Twister): Alright guys, so that door over there goes into the walkway where the wrestlers actually go through where they’re gonna get all hyped and get the crowd going. If you go through there, the dressing rooms are just on the other side. It’s the quickest way to get through. I’ll talk to that security guard outside, you two make your way through.
Amanda: I’m going to very solemnly shake Twister’s hand and say,
Amanda (as Inara): [solemnly] Thank you sir, for your noble service. Enjoy those cookies.
Mike (as Twister): No problem, I will.
Mike: And I turn it into a secret handshake on the end of it. It starts as a normal handshake, but by the end I’ve done some cool stuff.
Amanda: Oh yeah no I got a 16 for performance.
Eric: Man, yeah, it happens flawlessly.
[Brandon continues chuckling]
Congratulations. You didn’t even have to say Adamah is great at the end of it.
Amanda: Mm. We know, we just do a little wink, and we know.
Eric: You touch your shoulders.
Brandon (as Tracey): [clearing throat deeply] Uh, it’s been chill bro.
Brandon: And I, I raise my hand up and one of us goes for a fist bump and the other goes for a high five and it’s real awkward.
Eric: Eugene/Twister, you walk up to the security guard who is holding this clipboard.
Eric: And he’s looking down at it, and he looks up and sees you walk up and is like,
Eric (as Security Guard): Are you trying to enter in? What’s your name?
Mike (as Twister): Hey! My name’s Eugene! You can call me Twister if you want though.
Eric: He flips through the clipboard, the papers on the clipboard, and is like,
Eric (as Security Guard): You know, a Twister, I do not have a Twister on the list.
Mike (as Twister): That’s okay, uh. Oh! That’s a nice clipboard you got there!
[Amanda & Brandon laughing]
You - you use an all wood clipboard? Wow! Most people use a plastic, I like your dedication towards the craft.
Eric (as Security Guard): Yeah, I mean, I um, I borrowed this one from home. I mean, like - it’s mine - it’s mine.
Mike (as Twister): Wow!
Eric (as Security Guard): I mean, it’s mine.
Mike (as Twister): Did you make that yourself?
Eric (as Security Guard): Well… no, I mean, I didn’t but my sister like her - her partner makes wood, does woodworking and made it for me. And I thought it was really sweet, like you know… it was for my birthday, and I wasn’t really expecting it, but then like she gave it to me, and I was like, oh my god that was so nice of you!
Mike (as Twister): That is absolutely incredible! I can’t think of a better, more genuine birthday gift than to give you a handmade item that you can use every day, that’s incredible!
Brandon: Tracey and Inara start walking forward a little bit.
Eric: Alright, Mike, you are going to take your Charisma, and add your proficiency bonus which is 3, and I’m going to give you advantage on this roll.
Mike: Oh, so I get to roll twice?
Eric: And you take the high.
Amanda: Nice, so you’ve been listening to Join the Party...
Mike: Uh huh, they taught me how to play Dungeons and Dragons.
Mike: [yelling] OH, I GOT A NAT 20, BABY!!
[garbled yells of excitement]
On the first roll!
Eric: Hot damn! Roll again, I just want to see - I just want to see.
Mike: A 20 again?
Brandon: Another 20, yeah…
Mike: That was a 1!
[yells of enthusiasm]
Amanda: Oh my god that really was.
Mike: The alpha, the omega, the yin and the yang, I’m super stoked to become this dude’s best man at his wedding!
[Everyone laughing heartily]
Eric: So yeah, I mean, [chuckling] I don’t even know how else to act this out. I loved everything that was there. Yeah, you get sucked into the conversation and you like, move back a few steps to like…
Mike: I slowly rotate to the left as we’re talking, like I kinda lean my arm against the wall to be like,
Mike (as Twister): WOW, so sweet!
Mike: And we shift towards the side, kinda like when you’re at a party and you know you’re in the way, and you kinda like slowly…
Amanda: Oh yeah.
Mike: Move out of the way so people can walk by you…
Amanda: Oh yeah.
Mike: We’re doing that, so they can slip through the door and I very intentionally have his eyes faced away from the door now, so he can’t see them try to sneak through.
Eric: I will also say, and this might come up later, but you station yourself, so you still have an eye, like looking into the arena.
Eric: So, you can see everything that’s about to happen when you’re not...
Eric: So, they’re having like a meaningful relationship and they’re talking about like they’re getting into family stuff now and are like,
Eric (as Security Guard): I don’t know if I’d really be able to connect to my sister’s partner like that, but like they really become part of the family.
Mike (as Twister): Yo, it’s such a shame that in-laws get such this negative connotation, they’re essentially like an extension of your family. I don’t understand why there’s such a negative stereotype about it. It’s so strange to me!
Eric (as Security Guard): Uh, More like sister in love!
Mike (as Twister): Yeah, aww!
[Mike & Eric laughing]
Eric: And now you guys have a secret handshake. Uh, now Inara and Tracey you can continue unencumbered.
Amanda: Yeah, so I’m just looking like kinda busy and disaffected which is how I think all celebrities/rich people are. As Tracey kinda ushers me into the walkway, so we’re just going to walk in. I act as if I have sunglasses on, even though I don’t.
[Eric & Mike laughing]
Brandon: Alright, do you just have a scroll out?
Amanda: Yeah, I definitely just looking busily at some papers in my hand that are definitely just some napkins from Finale’s house.
[Eric & Mike laughing]
Brandon: Yeah, and Tracey’s just looking purposefully ahead and confident, not making any awareness of anyone else in the room.
Amanda: Hearing that there is an elevator up to the top, I guess we will stop at the first elevator type door we see and press the button.
Eric: Well that’s a great, that’s an interesting, uh idea. That...
As you’re going to go over to the elevator. Uh, because here’s what happens. So, you walk down, and as you are passing the actual wrestling ring, you can see that there are workers putting up banners and saving specific seats. And like putting blue and red washcloths down, that people can like swing around during the match. And then you see two wrestlers that are toweling themselves off and climb down out of the ring.
Eric: And one of them has an Andre the Giant style one-piece on, and the other one is like wearing a tracksuit, and they’re just like talking to each other about how like their thing is going to go later.
Amanda: I mean, we’re going to ignore them and just try to walk to the elevator.
Eric: As you walk down, you see a very large shadow in the doorway on the other side that leads to the elevator. It is the same extremely large woman who is 1.5 times the size of the security guards who is walking down towards you and now you get a good look of her face. The topknot is still in place, but she just looks so happy to be there and she is wearing flannel and has worn jeans on and big black boots. And she starts walking down the stairs from the elevator.
Brandon: As a security personal, I would just keep walking forward.
Amanda: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Me too.
Brandon: Yeah, let’s try it.
Eric: Yeah, she looks up towards you.
Amanda: I give her a brief nod and then look back down at my papers.
Eric: She calls out,
Eric (as Large Woman): Hey! Are we supposed to… we have to practice before this!
Brandon (as Tracey): [deep, gravelly] Ma’am, I have to get my talent to the green room. She’ll be right back.
Eric (as Large Woman): Uh, yeah no. I know. I mean, I have… you know like, yeah, we’re wrestlers. I mean… yeah, okay. But like, we need to practice, this is our time. They-the-the people before us, um the you know the Monkey Man, and uh Tracksuit Jack like just finished and now it’s our turn. So…
Brandon (as Tracey): We just-we just need five minutes please. Five minutes. I know we’re running behind, but the schedule-the schedule will stay on track I promise.
Amanda (as Inara): So sorry.
Amanda: And then I’m going to keep walking towards the elevator…
Eric (as Large Woman): [agitated] I mean, I never even got your name and we’re supposed to wrestle each other now? I mean, I know you’re new, but we really need to stay on schedule here…
Amanda (as Inara): Hey, listen. Why don’t you start warming up and I’ll be right back down, I just, have to drop off some stuff? Thank you for letting me know, but I’ll - I’ll be right back.
Eric (as the Woman): Okay, well can I - can I get your name? At least? So, I like call up if I’m just waiting here?
Amanda (as Inara): I mean, my name is obviously listed, but my friends call me Jocasta.
Eric (as the Woman): Okay, a wrestler named Jocasta. I guess - I guess we’re using our fake names. Alright, um I’m The Oak. So, I guess, I guess I’m fighting you later. Okay. I’ll see you in five. Well…
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Great to meet you! Love the hair!
Eric (as The Oak): I’ll stretch.
Brandon (as Tracey): I’m looking forward to it, it’s going to be fun!
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Alright.
Eric (as The Oak): Thanks. Hey - Hey. If you see my giant ax up there just like grab it. I, I forgot it up there.
Brandon (as Tracey): Oh, I will.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Mhm.
Amanda: And I’ll press the button.
Eric (as The Oak): I mean, like, don’t take it for yourself. That was… it seemed the way that you said that made it seem like you were going to take it for yourself.
Amanda: [whispering] Press the button again.
Brandon: [chuckling] Press the button again.
Brandon (as Tracey): No, of course not! I was going to - going to clean it for you.
Eric: Wait, this is really funny. I want you both to roll a d6 to see how long it takes for the elevator to get here.
[Amanda sighs, dice rolls]
Amanda: Well, I got a 6.
Brandon: [laughs] 5.
Eric: [chuckles] Okay. So yeah, you’re waiting for the elevator to come and it’s still - it’s still is a few floors down. It’s like,
Eric (as The Oak): Okay, well, I mean, don’t touch my stuff. I just need…
Brandon (as Tracey): We-we won’t! It’s fine, it’s chill. Jocasta, you got some paperwork…
Brandon: And I hand her a piece of parchment that just says, that just has a smiley face on it, that’s like winking.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Oh yeah, no, I wonder if they got my writer in time, because…
Amanda: And then I’ll just try to mutter, like,
[Amanda incoherently mumbles]
And point to the paper.
Eric: I want you to make, both of you to make Persuasion checks.
Eric: Okay, with an 11 and a 9, I think The Oak says,
Eric (as The Oak): Okay, well I mean it seems like the elevator isn’t really coming and your security guard guy can just go up and grab it for you. C’mon, Jocasta, just get in, let’s just do this quickly, I mean, I - I’ve done this a million times before, I know you’re probably just nervous, uh we can do this like really quickly.
Brandon (as Tracey, as Security): Ma’am, Jocasta can’t handle, I…
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Uh, Peter, it’s okay
[towards The Oak] Uh, listen, you seem great, you’ve probably been doing this longer than me but I’m going to respect your process and I ask you to respect mine. And I need to get in my head right before the match. I’m sure you know what that’s like.
I’ll be down when I can to practice, but until then, this is your time, and you’re welcome to use it. So, I’m just going to wait for the elevator now, focus, visualize. You know, do as Adamah says, and keep my eyes on the prize and I’ll see you later.
Eric (as The Oak): You know what, I know exactly what this is. You’re probably just extremely nervous, I know that this is your big-your first big time match. I guess, you know, Kohl has told me a lot about you, so come on, listen. Just come on.
Eric: And she walks over to Inara and puts her hand out.
Brandon (as Tracey, as Security): Ma’am, if all you need is a wrestling partner, I will fight you right now.
Eric (as The Oak): No, I, again [sighs] we already have one robot in the…
Brandon (as Tracey, as Security): I am fully trained in the art of grappling. I will take you down.
Eric (as The Oak): Alright, well you can just watch him do it. I guess, if you don’t want to… someone needs to wrestle me, and I guess it’s going to be one of you. So, I think it needs to happen now. We’re running out of time.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Why don’t we start with the approach, what’s your entrance going to be like?
Eric (as The Oak): Well you know, I don’t know if you’ve seen any of my moves before, uh…
Amanda: Inara is just going to smile.
Amanda (as Inara): [sarcastically cheerful] Uh huh!
Eric (as The Oak): Yeah, you hear the sound of a chainsaw go, and then it transitions into that really like dope rocking music and then I come down, I have my giant ax, and then I cheer and everything and I go in and I flex and everything, cause I’m big and strong as a tree!
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Uh huh.
Eric (as The Oak): As they say. So, um, that’s what I do. Do you know what you’re going to do?
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): You know, I’ve kinda been thinking about it, and it’s going to be a new sting, I think? Um, so I actually want to go up and listen to my entrance track because I haven’t heard the final mix. Um, so I’ve been thinking about it, but I’ll probably enter on my skateboard.
Eric (as The Oak): Okay! You know, you listen, we’re, it seems like the elevator doesn’t seem to be working, so just go do it! Just do it! You know, you need to do your reps.
Amanda: So, I’ll put myself down and kinda surreptitiously take off my wrap to place Oatcake in the top of my pack, as I take out my skateboard. So, I’ll open the pack, take the skateboard out, kinda bend over and put Oatcake in there, and say,
Amanda (as Inara): [sternly whispers] Stay. Please.
Eric: She looks-she looks at you and she’s going to stay.
Amanda: Gonna wrap up my hair, give it some good height, going to stretch my neck, stretch my shoulder a little bit. I’ll put one hand on Tracey’s elbow and use him as a kind of you know thing to stretch out my quad or whatever. Hamstring. I don’t know, I’m not very athletic.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): [sighs] Okay, so uh, which side are we entering from, this one or that one?
Eric (as the Woman): Uh, the other one over there. It gives you the most uh way to ride down.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Alright.
Amanda: So, I’ll get on my skateboard, normally, without any flair, and ride on down there. Back up the hallway slightly, and then start to ride down. I’m going to circle the ring once and then twice, and kickflip over the rope into the center of the ring.
Eric: [chuckling] Okay. Do a Performance check.
Eric: Uh, do both.
Amanda: Well a 19 + 11 is a 30, for acrobatics.
Eric: [chuckling] Okay, nice.
Amanda: And uh, 5+1 for a 6 performance.
Eric: [laughing heartily] Ohhhh, no. Oh geez.
Amanda: So technically proficient, but the soul was not there cause I don’t want to be doing this.
[Brandon & Eric laughing heartily]
Eric: That’s fine. Yeah, you’re riding around, and you execute that kick flip amazingly, you even land on the top rope, and just like bounce off of it. But just like, there’s no soul in it. [chuckling] You definitely, you have a grumpy face on the entire time.
Amanda: Yeah, then I’ll come back up from under the rope, uh, walk back over, and be like,
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): [annoyed] There. Is that enough? Listen, I - this is not my process. I really would love for you to respect how I want to do this and let me go up.
Brandon (as Tracey, as Security): That was extremely good. Well done.
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): Thanks Pete.
Eric (as The Oak): Alright, well I guess - I okay. Just trying to give you some pointers there. I mean, you’re really good at kick flipping but not very good at wrestling, which I mean, does not surprise me. And I…
Amanda (as Inara, as Jocasta): So, that should work out for you then huh?
Eric (as The Oak): Oh, okay. Alright. Okay, fine. Go ahead.
Eric: And then the elevator doors open. At this point, Eugene, the security guard, has run off to start carving his own wooden chair into response for his sister in-love.
Mike: Of course.
Eric: And you can, you can come down unencumbered as well.
Amanda (as Inara): Oh Eugene, I’m surprised to see you again.
Mike (as Twister): Hey, me and that guy just really hit it off.
Amanda (as Inara): Oh, that’s great.
Brandon: Yeah, as Twister comes down, I hold the door open for him to make sure that he can get in.
Eric: The elevator doors close, and the Oak is looking strangely into, uh the elevator…
As the doors close.
[Elevator doors close]
The elevator goes up, up to the lettuce layer. The elevator doors open, and you just see a bank of dressing rooms. All of them just have like a star carved into the door, right now all of them are unmarked.
Amanda (as Inara): Uh, so Twister, do you think that you could try to say like, “Hey! I’m here to fix a sink!” And then figure out which one our friend Kohl is in? She’s the demon looking lady.
Mike (as Twister): Oh! Right! Yeah! I’m rooting for her to win tonight, sure. I can go in…
Amanda (as Inara): Us too!
Mike (as Twister): Oh, good!
Amanda (as Inara): Wow!
Mike (as Twister): Sweet! Wow, we’ll be invested in the same outcome. Yeah, I’ll go through and I can use some of that plumber lingo that I’m used to using on the day-to-day.
Eric: Nice. You can either call out or I’m going to make this available to you, or you can do a History check to see if you remember which one, which one are the deluxe suites. So, it would have the headliners in.
Mike: I’m going to do a History check, just so I have more excuses to roll things. And then if I have to do the other stuff I’ll do the other stuff.
Amanda: You’re getting the hang of it, Shubert.
Eric: That’s how you do it!
That is a 7-1 for a 6!
Eric: Alright, you do not know which one could even possibly be the good ones.
Eric: You’re like, all of these toilets are the same!
Mike: I go into the 4th one.
Eric: Okay. So, you go in the 4th one…
Eric: Knock. The door opens and it’s the guy in the tracksuit. He’ll be like,
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): [annoyed] Yeah?
Mike (as Twister): I heard there was a leak?
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): [confused] No, that wasn’t me.
Mike (as Twister): Oh! I must have the wrong room. Do you know where Kohl’s dressing room is? Kohl called and said that there was a leak.
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): Hmm, uh... Listen, I’m going to need some plumber credentials.
I’m from, you might know from this tracksuit that I’m - I’m very streetwise. So, I would know that, so I need to know that you’re actually a plumber.
Mike (as Twister): I’m a plumber. Ask me any plumbing related question.
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): Alright, so like, let’s say that my cat, went down the toilet, how would I get it out?
Mike (as Twister): You would unscrew the U-bend aspect of it, and then put a tiny piece of catnip on the end and the cat would crawl out. You re-adjust and re-tighten the nut.
Brandon: Nailed it!
Eric: I’m going to let you roll the History check again.
Mike: [laughs] Another 7-1 for a 6!
Eric: Okay, so uh, guy in the tracksuit is like,
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): Yeah, you’re definitely a plumber, um I don’t remember which one they’re in, but the good rooms, which I’M NOT IN, which I HATE, because I should be better…
Mike (as Twister): You should be there man.
Eric (as Tracksuit Man): I don’t know man, I just keep wanting to tell you things like about my life, I don’t know what it is, it’s your face.
Um, the good ones are on either side, they’re the first one or the last one, I don’t know which one they’re in.
Mike: I do the 6th.
Mike: And knock on the door.
Eric: Okay, so on the one all the way on the right?
Eric: Okay. You knock on the door and no one answers.
Mike: Mm… I, uh, open the door.
Eric: Uh, it’s locked.
Mike (as Twister): Aw, bummer dudes, the 6th one is locked. I guess I’ll try the 1st.
Amanda (as Inara): Huh… let me try that one. I have a - I just kinda have a way with doors. But you just go ahead and check that one.
Mike (as Twister): Okay.
Amanda: So, I’m going to walk over and try to pick the lock.
Eric: Okay. Roll Dexterity plus your Proficiency bonus.
Amanda: So, 15 + 7. 22 + 4 is 26.
Eric: Hot damn.
Amanda: I remembered how to be a rogue!
Eric: There you go, so you…take out, how do you take out, I always forget how you pick locks. I mean does she have any good swag?
Amanda: Well Eric, I’ve done it once.
And I lost my tool!
Brandon: But you’ve regained a tool.
Amanda: Yeah, I regained my tool. Yeah, so basically like, it’s a little fold that I have in the side of my pack. So draw it out, head over there, sort of strolling, nonchalantly, kinda just sidle up next to it. And put in one pick, put in the other one, kinda you know jiggle it a little bit. And with my good good roll, it just pops right open.
Eric: Okay. The lock just like, easily pops open. But you also, because you rolled so high, you remember that this is Kohl, and you might want to take a precaution. So, you take your eye down, looking into her room, and she’s not in there, but you see there are what looks like two very large shields laying up against each other. And there’s like large feet sticking out underneath those two shields.
Amanda: I’m going to relock the door and go back to Tracey.
Amanda (as Inara): [whispering] Hey, so, it’s uh, it’s the 6th room.
Brandon (as Tracey): [confused] Okay.
Amanda (as Inara): Kohl has put up some Kohl stuff.
Brandon (as Tracey): Sounds-sounds about right for Kohl.
Amanda (as Inara): I don’t think we should walk in on our own.
Mike: I’m mid-conversation with [begins chuckling] Gordon Lighthammer in the 1st door.
[Brandon joins in laughing heartily]
Answering plumbing questions.
Eric: I wanna invoke your feat again.
Mike: Okay, shoot the shit?
Eric: Yeah, I want you to shoot the shit with him. So, you’re going to roll your Charisma plus your Proficiency which is 3. And then roll it twice.
Amanda: So, how do you deal with a clock?
Mike: Uh, 17…
[Eric whispers damn under his breath]
+3+something else? Or is that?
Eric: No, it’s a 17+3 for a non-natural 20. And then roll again.
Mike: A non-natural 20, and the other one is a 3!
Eric: Damn! Okay, so you-you engage Gordon in a conversation, and Gordon has seen Inara before, so it’s very important that you rolled that well, but he looks at you and is like,
Eric (as Gordon Lighthammer): Yeah! I just really miss my dog, and like, this would be a chance for me to get him back! You know, I just, I just miss him so much. We’ve been through so much together, and I thought we could wrestle my way out, as I wrestle through all of my problems!
Mike (as Twister): Yeah! I always think of my way as plumbing my way out, plumbing my way through my problems. You’ll get there man! I, Lucius was such a great little wrestle dog, I’m sure Lucius will come back into your life, you just gotta keep your head up man!
Eric (as Gordon Lighthammer): I hope so! I think this wrestling match is going to be a really good chance for me. You think I’ll win?
Mike (as Twister): Uh… uh, if you believe in yourself anything is possible.
Eric (as Gordon Lighthammer): Alright, thanks man. Well I’m going to go back to sleeping upside down as I do before all of my matches.
Mike (as Twister): Pretty smart!
Mike: We also do a handshake.
Eric: [chuckles] Nice. Good.
Brandon (as Tracey): Uh, Inara, I have a, I have a dumb idea. Do you want to pick it again?
Amanda (as Inara): Oh yeah. Oh yeah bud, sure.
Eric: Yeah, no, no, no. You just pick it. You’ve I feel like once you do it…
Amanda: I know this lock.
Eric: You’re like yeah, I know this lock very well.
Amanda: I’ve made it with this lock for life, yeah. Uh huh.
Eric: It’s true, we had 6th period lunch. Yeah, we’re good friends.
Brandon: And then, Tracey takes out his Help Horn and slides it in the crack of the door and then through it yells,
Brandon (as Tracey): Galaxatron!
Eric: [sighs] So you say Galaxatron, and the shields come down, and there is like a crude robotic face looking at you, and it says in a very like, monotone voice,
Eric (as Robot): [robotically] Access granted. Welcome back Kohl. You have soda in the fridge.
Brandon (as Tracey): Is it diet soda?
Eric: [chuckling] This-this robot does not have the ability to talk back to you. And you totally disarmed this thing-thing.
Amanda: Before we go in, I’m just going to stick my head out, and gesture toward Twister.
Mike: I go over there after my sweet handshake with Gordon Lighthammer.
Amanda: Who blessedly doesn’t stick his head out the door frame to see where you’re going.
Eric (as Gordon Lighthammer): I’m only going to look this way! See you later!
Brandon: Alright, I’m going to roll a Investigation check and see if I can find our prize.
Amanda: Oh yeah, the mouthpiece.
Brandon: The mouthpiece, thank you.
Brandon: 13+5 for 18.
Eric: Okay, so Kohl’s room looks like a kind of, just a standard array of things that might be in a dressing room. There is a small single bed, there is a desk with mirrors that and lights that rim the mirror. Kohl has put her posters up all over-all over the room.
Brandon: What’s the coolest poster inside the room?
Eric: The coolest poster?
Eric: There’s one of her, like standing on top of a pile of wrestlers and her whole like, gear box in the air, and it says, “CHAMPION. QUEEN OF THE HILL.”
From the Queen of the Hill Match from a few weeks ago. But with an 18, you can see that the vanity has drawers in it that have little keyholes on it.
Brandon (as Tracey): I’m getting a strong suspicion it might be in the vanity Inara.
Amanda (as Inara): I feel like stealing from Kohl is a bad idea. So…
Brandon (as Tracey): It’s not stealing, it’s just like you know, it’s like a friend of a friend, just…
Amanda (as Inara): Taking?
Brandon (as Tracey): Just borrowing, we’ll give it back. We’ll let her know.
[Inara sighs in frustration]
It’s evidence, we’re… we are, bagging and tagging evidence.
Amanda (as Inara): Okay.
Brandon (as Tracey): Like detectives do.
Amanda (as Inara): That’s true. Also, I don’t know where she is. And we can’t wait around until she’s back, because this match can’t happen.
Brandon (as Tracey): Right.
Amanda (as Inara): I mean, we need to run another errand, uh, for the match.
Brandon (as Tracey): OH, HEY TWISTER.
Amanda (as Inara): Um, you know Twister, can you just keep an ear to the door just in case someone’s coming.
Mike (as Twister): On it.
Amanda (as Inara): Okay. Um…
Mike: I literally put my ear against the door.
Amanda: Smart. Good. Yeah, I’m going to try and pick the drawers one by one. First, sort of assessing them, to see if I can sense any trap or anti-theft situation.
Eric: Sure. Yeah, so first do an Investigation check for anti-theft.
Amanda: 9+6 for a 15.
Brandon: Can I go ahead and Detect Magic on them too just in case?
Eric: Sure. Uh, with a 15, yeah, you see that there is a wire that connects the vanity to um a weird like secret box that’s like on the wall.
Amanda: That is built in there or that Kohl put there?
Eric: It seems like it was hastily put in there.
Eric: Hastily installed.
Brandon: Wait, I take back my thing, I’m popping that box open. There’s 100% a battery in there. I want that battery. Give me that battery.
Eric: So, you pop the box open…
Amanda: Tracey said juice…
Eric: That juice! Okay, you pop open the box open and as soon as you do,
[clicking of crossbows]
There are two crossbows that pop out and one focuses on Tracey and the other one focuses on Twister.
Brandon: Mm, good. Now is there a battery in the box?
Eric: There is, yes, you popped it and as that’s happening you popped it open, and there is a battery that is connected to a series of wires and stuff.
Brandon: Chill, chill, good. Well, hm.
[electric wave music begins]
Eric: So, I’m going to roll attack rolls against you guys.
Eric: I’m going to do one against Twister.
I rolled… a 15.
Mike: My armor class is 16, babyyy.
Eric: Oh, it is?
Brandon: What a strong random human we have.
Eric: Oh, hey Mike, this a projectile, and it missed you.
Mike: Oh! I have a thing! I have my ear against the door and I hear the like thrum, and I turn and look, I jump, I grab it, and I scream, [yelling] AMM A DOO, which is the beginning of the John Cena song, and throw it right back...
At the crossbow.
Eric: Nice, alright, I’m going to…
Brandon: Tracey is still a target.
Amanda: Inara is still crouching there.
Eric: Tracey I rolled a 14. Does that hit your AC?
Brandon: That does not, I have a 16.
Eric: Oh no! That one misses you as well.
Mike: [laughing] Yes! So, I dive grab it, and throw it right back ,and I hit… I hit, and I go smell what I’m cooking, right at the crossbow!
Amanda: It’s garlic powder and lots of it!
Eric: Okay, that was extremely dope. Both of the crossbows have broken off of their handles, because that was very Kohl. I will say that Kohl will know that [laughing] somebody was in here. But the trap is currently disabled.
Brandon: Yeah, I’m going to use the handle of my ax to use as a fulcrum to pop the battery out.
Eric: Okay, and now you have another charged battery.
[electronic sound of success]
Brandon: Do – do - do!!!
Eric: There you go!
Brandon: That’s the battery’s doing.
Amanda: I’m just going to shake my head and start to pick the locks of these drawers.
Eric: Yeah, I think once all these traps are disabled, that the drawer on the bottom pops open and it’s like the one, like the big drawer on the bottom of an office desk? And the megaphone with a very odd, very laughing looking like mouthpiece is sitting right for you.
Amanda: I’m going to detach the mouthpiece from the megaphone. And put it in my hip pocket.
Amanda: I’m going to close the drawer behind me, and on the vanity is there any makeup out? Or is there any makeup in the top drawer maybe?
Eric: There is, uh, yeah, she left her makeup kit up there.
Amanda: Okay, so I’m going to put a little bit of eyeshadow on me, and like Amanda, Inara has no idea what eyeshadow is supposed to look like or how to put it on. So, I’m just going to put a little bit of purple on my like crease area, because I saw someone once doing that on a tutorial, when I was like in the Bachelorette House. And just in case Kohl comes in, that’s going to be my cover story on why I was rifling through her drawer. I was just trying to get myself to look like her.
Eric: Alright, as you’re putting your makeup on, Eugene, something beeps in your pocket.
[device boops repeatedly]
And you pull it out, and it’s your beeper, and it says,
Eric (as Beeper): [upbeat electronic voice] Gotta go plumbing!
Eric: And you have a job unfortunately.
Mike (as Twister): Oh guys! I gotta go plumb. But it’s been super chill hanging with you. I’m sorry you didn’t get to eat the food that I prepared. But you know I’m always out tailgating at different events, so if you ever find your way into Jersey Mike’s area. Just let me know, I’ll be out there with the crew. And hey, Jakarta, was that it?
Mike (as Twister): Jocasta, that’s it. Yeah, just I hope the wrestling thing works out. I never got to...
Amanda (as Inara): Thanks man.
Mike (as Twister): But I think you’re going to nail it.
Amanda (as Inara): Thank you, I really appreciate it. And we’ll definitely look you up next time you’re in town.
Mike (as Twister): Yeah, please do.
Mike: And then I do a handshake with both of them at the same time with each hand.
Eric: I think we’ve rolled enough to know it’s flawless.
Mike: And I bounce out of there.
[intense music begins]
Eric: As Eugene walks out to go to his job, you two poke your head out as you watch him leave. And you turn to your right, and you see that The Oak is standing in front of Gordon Lighthammer’s door, the door closes and she’s making her way, towards you.
[intense music stops]
Eric: Join the Party is co-produced by Brandon Grugle, Amanda McLoughlin and me, Eric Silver. Special thanks to our creative consultants, Heddy Hunt, Connor McLoughlin, Julia Schifini, and Mischa Stanton. Our visual design is by Alyson Wakeman, the art mom, and our transcripts are by Nicolle - with two Ls - Siegart.
Amanda: The party doesn't stop here. The day after each episode comes out, we publish the Afterparty, where we sit down to discuss what just happened, learn what could have happened, and answer your questions.
Brandon: You can keep the party going by following @jointhepartypod on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. We’ve also got merch, music from the show, and transcripts for every episode on our website jointhepartypod.com. And you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Eric: For even more Join the Party goodness, check out our Patreon. By becoming a patron, you get access to a wonderful community in our Discord, exclusive merch, character backstories, bloopers and so much more. That’s at patreon.com/jointhepartypod.
Brandon: Another great way to help the show is to recommend Join the Party to a friend. Get them caught up fast by sending them the link to our start page, which contains the beginner episodes for those new to D&D and our plot recaps, at jointhepartypod.com/start.
Amanda: Join the Party is a founding member of Multitude, an audio collective and consultancy. Type “Multitude” into your podcast app to subscribe to the fantastic other shows in our collective, HORSE, Potterless, Spirits, and Waystation. Or find out more about us and access our resources for podcasters at multitude.productions.
Eric: We’ll see you in two weeks. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.