I've cross-posted my bard story here because I think it's funny, and it's as good a first d&d post as any.
So the out-of-game story here is that one of the players (who actually ended up not playing this session, which was super sad but alas) in our normal campaign had this idea that as a celebratory pre-holiday drunk!d&d session, we should all make a bard and play a silly all-bard oneshot. Now, our DM likes to run very overpowered campaigns. Even though we were all going to be level 5 bards, we were allowed to pick whichever races we wanted, templates if we could justify that they’d be funny, and we all got a sorcerer bloodline that applied all the sorcerer benefits to bards. Most importantly, we got virtually infinite items less than 30,000 gold apiece, and we could pick one character-relevant item worth more. Any amount more. Keep in mind, we were level 5.
Let me introduce you to our cast of characters: We had Ichabod (nickname Icky), a lizardfolk who was as polite and pleasant as you could be, and was also basically possessed by a magical extraplanar disease. Like, he basically sweat cancer. And was also a super nice person. We had Jakarta (where the J was pronounced like a Y), a tiefling vampire. On her character description, I have written “card-carrying high femme lesbian, has a voice like the lead singer of Nightwish and the fashion to match.” Then there’s Jeremy Immanuel Monterey III (Jim 3), who we came to know as a collector of occult items, with a personality basically like Dr. Facilier from The Princess And The Frog. And last, we had The Being Formerly Known As Cody (TBFKAC), a semi-undead seductrix and dominatrix (is there a non-gendered term for dominatrix? if so i mean that) whom the vampire (me) looked at once and then internally lamented “oh no, they’re hot.”
Now, we’ve been put into our normal campaign world, but about 400 years before our normal party starts running around. We may all be musicians, but that’s mostly a cover. Really, we were hired to assassinate the king of this nation that’s stubbornly continuing to attack our fledgling empire. And normally, we each work alone. So naturally our first point of order is to agree on a name to call our cover band (that is, our alibi band). We toss out a few ideas, each cornier or edgier than the last, until someone suggests “The Outsiders” (since we are, in fact, all either extraplanar beings, or sold our souls to one (that would be Jim 3)), and everyone sort of pauses and is like, “damn, that’s actually good.” So now we’re The Outsiders.
Arrive at the gates of town, find a locked gate. Guardsman asks us who we are, and we answer in a very grandiose voice, “WEEeeeeEE…. are the illustrious bardic troupe, The Outsiders.” Guardsman doesn’t believe us, we charm our way in easily (because bards). Minor shenanigans occur, TBFKAC seduces some dude for information, Jakarta gets desperately jealous, Icky tries to go make friends with people but is too gross for the NPCs to talk to, Jim 3 gives someone an apple that puts some hapless NPC into an eternal slumber for basically no reason, we try to stay under the radar of the local law enforcement (who wear gloves and creepy masks, which will become relevant later). Finally we decide maybe we should figure out how to go perform at the party for the king’s birthday so we can stab him.
Turns out he’s going to have a Battle of the Bands to decide who gets to perform at his party, where the only rule is that you have to hold your stage. We figure this’ll be no problem. We rustle up a cool banner, summon our instruments, practice some tunes, all that kind of thing. Start the battle. There were four other bands and they all had cool themes and stuff, but it ended up not being terribly relevant. We’re singing, they’re drumming, so on and so forth, and then the drumming band decides to come boot us off our stage.
It’s actually looking like we’re going to have trouble for a bit - we’re mostly running fascination, charm, and compulsion effects, we don’t have that much actual firepower, and they’re basically breathing literal fire at us. Jim 3 goes “DON’T WORRY I’VE GOT THIS” and chucks a cube at them. It smokes mysteriously but otherwise doesn’t seem to do anything. We’re all trying to hold off this other band, all of us are sort of like “WELL, JEREMY?” and Jim 3 keeps going “come on, come on” under his breath. And then, five rounds later, everything changes.
Turns out Jim 3 was carrying around some kind of reusable planar Gate (we were level 5, I tell you), and the DM rolled for the creature that came out of it was this CR 18 shadow demon made out of weapons or something (a purrodaemon, we learned later).
Entire party except Jim 3: oh gods oh what the fuck shit shit shit shit shit
Demon, looking at Jim 3: “Ah, so you’re the whelp that summoned me here. I’m going to have fun in this plane for the next few hours.”
Jim 3: “Go nuts, it’s your party.”
Entire party except Jim 3: ???!?!!?!!!?!!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?
So naturally the demon just starts rampaging over everything. And I mean everything. The other band dies, half the civilians who came to watch the battle just get fucking obliterated, the other bands are like “holy shit” and just go back to cowering on their stage. We’re trying to decide what to do - we want to leave the Gate open so the demon will go back but there’s also a chance more demons are going to pop out every round we leave it open. So we’re just sort of paralyzed with indecision, and then the local law enforcement shows up.
Now, I didn’t mention this before because we didn’t know at the time, but it turns out the local law enforcement are wights. They were supposed to basically be a wall for the party - if we caused too many hijinks, the DM punished us by having the wights unavoidably capture us, and maybe level-drain us to boot. But they’re maybe CR 12 at best. They swoop in to try to stop the demon, and the demon just sort of laughs and swats them aside like they’re flies.
Meanwhile, the party has eventually realized there’s not really anything we can do about the demon if it decides to kill us, so we decide to make ourselves useful by killing another band group. At the end of the fight, most of the band are either dying of bubonic plague (due to Icky), dominated (due to Jakarta), or dead (due to the demon). And finally the demon is done killing everything else and comes for us.
Demon: Well that was a good snack, but how about another offering?
Party (sweating): Uh uh uh, how about we play you a song?
Demon (amused): Alright.
So we play a song with moderate gusto (in the 35 perform range, which is good for us but not stellar).
Demon: I suppose that was good enough for me not to punish you. But I’m not rewarding you either.
Jim 3 (groveling): Oh, your presence is reward enough.
Demon: *goes back through the portal*
Anyway, we did technically win the battle of the bands (there was technically one band left, but they ollied the fuck out when we threatened to do a repeat performance), and we were good enough at lying that we managed to convince law enforcement that one of the other bands summoned the demon. So we got to perform at the king’s party after all!
The king’s party actually had this really weird vibe because it was in his… menagerie? I guess? of sentient non-humans (which most of us were, except Jim 3, who had sold his soul to one), so that was supremely uncomfortable, and if anyone (Icky) had had qualms about killing this guy, we no longer had them. Our stage was basically a cage, too, it was creepy as fuck.
We play some background music, the king asks for something more metal, we oblige, and then finally we come out of our cage (doing just fine) and we start drinking with the king. More shenanigans occur. TBFKAC has started an orgy in the succubus cage, and invited the king (who reluctantly declined). Icky is trying to make friends but, once again, is too icky.
Finally we (well, mostly Icky) start really trying to poison the king. But something’s weird. Eventually we notice that the king’s soon-to-be-wife seems to be acting funny. She keeps making comments like she knows we’re trying to assassinate the king and that she thinks our efforts are cute. We get her alone to talk to her and it turns out that she’s about to use his royal blood in this fancy marriage ritual to attain godhood or something, so could we please wait with our little assassination attempt until that’s finished? We decline. She tries to dominate me, but I’m a vampire and am immune to domination because undead are OP as fuck. I stare her right in the eyes and try to dominate her right back. She rolls a 1 on will.
From there, everything sort of deteriorates, because we were running out of time and some of the players had to leave soon. We had dominated the lady I assume was the real Big Bad, we keep trying to poison the king but the fucker just won’t die. Finally, we sort of say screw it, and just set the man on fire. We’re about to get killed, so we just grab the king’s burning corpse, and then we use that damn cube again to gate to the plane of shadow.
The thing we did not plan for is that when you gate *back*, you are transported to a random spot on the material plane. Our DM says he’ll roll randomly for where we end up. We tensely watch as he rolls d% to decide where on the map we end up. And we somehow end up only five miles south of the city where we started.
So basically, mission fucking accomplished. The four of us decided that this whole gig of being “The Outsiders” was actually pretty cool and maybe was more fun than working alone after all. So we stay a group.
The best part is, all of us were either immortal or had absurdly long lifespans, so it’s likely The Outsiders are still running around in our normal campaign world. I hope we get to meet them someday.