Episode 93: Misery Loves Company
There is only one thing this episode will be remembered for. Laura Bailey and her blueberry cupcake. I was ready for a monster battle. This hag fight has been long teased and threatened since the first episode of this campaign. But what we got was better than any fight that might have gone down. Jester’s shining moment has already been compared to Keyleth’s Feeble Mind against Raishan and Scanlan’s long con life changing level 9 Counterspell. We’ll come back to this moment soon, but first let’s talk about the rest of the episode.
The Nein help Beau process her visit home by doing the responsible adult thing of crashing at the bar. After everyone is sufficiently sobered up the next morning, Jester and Caduceus co-deity game plan their visit to Isharnai the hag.
We get our first real look at the Traveler where the whole party could see his physical form. Fjord even tried to get a peek behind the curtain with a quick Detect Good and Evil but didn’t get much beyond the sense of a hallow spell. The mystery of the Traveler deepens!
The Nein trek through the dangerous wilderness to Isharnai’s hidden hut. Along the way, some horses were lost in an unfortunate run in with caustic geysers. There is also a brief run in with some hungry, vulture like harpies that ended up being our only fight of the session.
Finally after showing the harpies who’s boss, the Nein stumble across the hag’s lair. In true Mercer fashion, the descriptions of Isharnai and her creepy hut were amazingly scary. Why are extra elbows so disconcerting??! One by one, the Nein visit with Isharnai to try and bargain for Nott’s curse.
Fjord takes the politician’s approach by trying to talk away the problem, but that goes about as well as you think. Then an anxious Beau rushes in to throw her life down on the table. Marisha/ Beau were clearly going through the entire range of emotions as the rest of the night played out. Beau was working through her desperately low self esteem, thinking that her life was a fair exchange to break Nott’s curse. Marisha on the other hand was a bit nervously remembering she has no back up character prepared yet, so hopefully someone can come up with a better plan.
Yasha takes a crack at meeting Isharnai’s request for a feast of ‘new misery’ but fails to impress the Hag. Apparently Yasha’s misery is too ripened and rooted for Isharnai’s weird taste, which sets Yasha into “I will kill you and throw your family off a bridge” mode. Luckily, she was able to hold it together, and keep her precious book of memories, long enough to give Nott a crack at the Hag.
Nott’s conversation devolves into her offering to sabotage the stalemate between the Dynasty and the Empire while poisoning new Misery Recruits for Isharnai’s feast. Someone’s a little desperate to get their body back. Thankfully, Jester jumps in to save us all.
Finally! The reason you’re here. Jester’s beautiful moment with the hag. Matt was too caught up in the moment to smell Jester’s pastry trap. And Jester was playing it way too cool over offering her literal hands to Isharnai. I had heard whispers of Jester’s infamous cupcake before watching this session, but even when it came time for Jester’s moment, I still had no idea where she was going or how she could find her way out of this pickle. And yet… she pulls the dust of deliciousness out of the dustiest corner of the bag of holding, tricks Isharnai into eating her soulful offering of divine blueberry cupcake, and hits Isharnai in the face with a 5th level Modif y Memory.
I feel like I had whiplash after watching this scene. I couldn’t process what was happening fast enough. Matt’s emotional face journey was priceless. So was the entire casts’ reactions as they watched in awe of Laura motherf-ing Bailey. No one expected it to work. It shouldn’t have worked. The Traveler is strong in this session and Jester is obviously his favorite disciple. How else can you explain defeating a hag with a blueberry cupcake? It was magical.
There is no way this moment doesn’t come back to bite them in the rear end. Matt already hinted that Isharnai is working through the strange and rather nonsensical conversation she had with Jester. Jester was also rather forcefully insistent that the Nein must get as far away as possible as fast as Caleb can say Fireball. I can’t wait to see how this story plays out over the next few sessions. We haven’t seen the last of Isharnai yet!
Don’t Miss It!
All Work No Play finally returned! Their first episode was everything you want from AWNP. There’s Liam, there’s Sam, there’s wonderful guest star Julie Nathanson. Don’t forget the added danger element of chainsaws and a twist ending and you have a fantastic start to season 2.
C2E2 live show is happening in three weeks! VIP tickets are already gone, but you can get regular tickets here starting February 6th.
In case you missed it, Critical Role has announced that their merchandise is available for sale in Hot Topic. Their standard logo hoodies and a couple of tee shirts have already popped up in stores. You can find the art of @WendyDoodles featured on the Mighty Nein portrait tee!