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Story Locale (Duty in Drak’kal): Tax Office

tax office - 118-Courtyard-Naworth-Castle-q50-1559x1280This two story building is held up by old stone walls, grime, and moss lightly coating the creases of its bricks. There are second story windows unobscured by foliage and dirt, allowing onlookers to have a small glimpse into the elegance of Drak’kal’s finest municipal employees at work. This structure is widely known as the Tax Office and the people who work here are regarded with such names as heavy pockets, bread eaters, and even more offensive titles. The busy bureaucrats gracefully weave in and out of the building, up warped stone steps worn smooth by countless humanoids stampeding to and from this place.

Two grand doors (each 15 feet tall and 10 feet across) mark its entrance, deteriorated from the passage of time, their brass handles polished from the grease and oils of thousands of entrants. The interior of the Tax Office’s first floor is a collection of small but sturdy desks made from a gentle brown wood, lit by flickering candles that gleam off of all of the inkwells on the desks clustered in an arrangement that never seems to line up with one another.

The floors creak as people pass over worn boards, some sinking as deep as 3 inches and causing folks to trip or stumble. Scribbling pens are punctuated by hands slamming down on papers gusting from desks when the wind twirls in, making all of the main floor devoid of warmth (both in temperature and tenor), lined by dark wooden bookcases and shelves shoved up against the walls; the only exception is a small sliver of sunlight that somehow creeps onto the overseer’s desk. One lone staircase leads up to the second floor from the southwest corner of the central room, and when transitioning from the lower level to the upper level the walls significantly improve—they are no longer cluttered with shelves that seem out of place, and every so often one can find a carefully crafted picture.

Clean and grime-free windows allow for sunlight to flow into the sectioned upper level of the Tax Office, illuminating the three large, respected rooms, suites filled with lovely rugs and fireplaces all their own. Each has a large slab of glistening stone held up by ornate legs, desks lightly covered in papers, and lavish quills accompanied by different colored ink wells. Coins lay about as if a gold piece or two is not important, and the cushioned chairs are in stark contrast to the simple wooden seats below. These areas are off-limits for all but the top tier, the heaviest of the heavy pockets.

133-Chained-library-at-Wimborne-Minster-1709x1021The party are able to spend 10 hours a day working here and they must spend the whole day at work with the exception of an hour lunch taken at noon (with a DC 7 Fortitude save, a PC can skip lunch to roll twice on the table below and take the result they like best). Adventurers that work the full day get 2d4+2 gold for their services. Each hour, PCs are able to try to assist with or perform some task to allow them to make or possibly lose gold. The Tax Office only has room for 2 PCs to work at a time each day, and their assistance isn’t required every single day. Below are a list of what tasks can accomplished and obstacles to overcome, which in turn accelerates or halts the gain of riches (roll 1d12 each hour).

  1. Systematize files and folders: DC 15 Knowledge (local) or Intelligence check (+1d2 gold tip from the master accountant; failure by 5 or more loses 1d2 gold on a bet).
  2. Refill inkwells without tripping on sinking floorboards: DC 12 Reflex save (no gain; rolling a natural 1 stains essential files with ink and the PC is banned from the Tax Office for a week).
  3. Wind gusts in through the doorway to scatter papers; DC 15 Reflex save (+1 gold tip from the master accountant for getting folks back to work quickly; failure wastes 2 hours of time).
  4. Translate and edit documents; DC 15 Linguistics check (+2d2 gold; failure earns a tirade from the master accountant).
  5. An annoying colleague keeps interrupting the work day; DC 12 Bluff/Diplomacy/Intimidate (+1 gold apology from the colleague; failure wastes an hour of time).
  6. The somber nature of the Tax Office brings about a nap attack; DC 8 Will save (no gain; failure causes the PC to sleep for 1d4 hours, and each hour there is a cumulative 10% chance of being caught and sent home).
  7. Find basic flaws in tax documents; DC 12 Appraise check (+1d2 gold; on a failure of 10 or more the player loses 1 gold to cover their mistakes).
  8. Retrieve a folder from an off-duty supervisor’s office; DC 11 Wisdom check (no gain; on a failure, the PC is berated by the master accountant and loses 1d2 gold).
  9. An angry citizen storms through the door, screaming profanities and overwhelmed with anger; DC 15 Bluff/Diplomacy/Intimidate check (+1d2 gold bonus from the master accountant; the entire office loses 1d4 hours of work time and if a fight breaks out, the PC is only paid for half of a day and only if this event occurs after lunch).
  10. Solve a hanging tax audit that has sat dormant for years; DC 17 Appraise or DC 18 Intelligence check (+2d2 gold; on a failure the PC wastes 2 hours).
  11. Drak’kal’s decision makers stop by to oversee the operation; DC 18 Appraise or Intelligence check to work gloriously or DC 20 Bluff check to appear to be working hard (+4d2 gold; failure by 10 or more gets the PC fired from the Tax Office immediately, though they may still collect taxes).
  12. Roll twice for a particularly troublesome hour at the job.

tax office - 128-bookcase-q33-1884x1452PCs that make it through an entire work shift at the Tax Office without being at 0 or less gold take their earnings home. Adventurers at less than 0 gold at the end of the day are not invited back to work at the Tax Office again. If the party collectively succeed at 6 events or more during the day and fail no more than 2, increase the dice on the table that reward gold to d4s (instead of d2s).

[Submitted by Tim Snow!]

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