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You all meet in an Inn.” [1]

No, really, but at least this time there’s a reason for it. 🙂

Getting to Know You

The PCs have been selected by their superiors as a relief/investigating force to provide support to Sirith [2]. Their superiors sent them to a tavern in Karinith to meet up, and start establishing themselves as a team whilst marching to Sirith.

The full party roster consists of:

1)      Kalmar, a human paladin of Iomedae’s Order of the Sword;

2)      Yangrit, an Oread fighter, her Earthshaker hammer is a fearsome weapon;

3)      Clora, a Changeling Priestess of Irori (a background story is provided below);

4)      Ferus, a Catfolk Ninja;

5)      Treffen, an Elven Fighter who has yet to manifest his arcane powers; and

6)      Finally, Menander, a Standard Bearer of the Shield

Yangrit and Kalmar will form the front rank, Clora is squishy and will need to be protected, Ferus will provide scouting, Treffen and Menander are currently serving as the rear guard.

The march to Sirith was uneventful [3].

Sirith

Upon arriving at Sirith the party was challenged by Saella, an Aasimar Paladin of Iomedae. It seems that in this new world, there are two orders of Iomedae’s paladins: the Sword and the Shield.

In essence the Sword Paladins (like Kalmar) are the active hunters, and the Shield Paladins (like Saella) are the guardians/defenders of the towns. This is not to be confused with the Cavalier Order of the Shield that Menander belongs to (although they are similar in intent).

The party were allowed inside the walls once they passes Saella’s inspection, which included open use of Detect Evil etc. The Town Council of Sirith is made up of Rassa (an elf), Elyse (a human) and Rax (a Kitsune).

This elected council progressively report to the Small Council responsible for the province, the High Council of Karinith, and the Holy Council of the surviving realm.

The Blighted Fields

The first problem to be dealt with is fields being blighted overnight, and the party turned to investigating this with the assistance of one of the affected farmers.

It was quickly revealed that this was probably coming out of the caves [4] to the east of Sirith.

Naturally the party headed out to investigate this, and heard a rumour of a small flying thing that the farmer had seen flying towards the caves, but was reluctant to discuss. The fields look to have been blighted by an evil druid, possibly something fae.

The party elected to bite on the dangling plot hook [5] by promptly heading to the caves for an inaugural dungeon crawl.

The Caves

The party only made it into the first chamber before things started happening. The small flying thing was confirmed to be a homunculus made to resemble a tiny imp with wings.

There were also a couple of Jinkins that could have been nasty had the party split up and followed them down the tunnels. Fortunately that didn’t happen, and the Jinkins were taken out fairly quickly.

Then the homunculus brought a Galadrix (?) to the party. That was looking nasty since a simple Intimidate check put the Shaken condition on most (if not all) of the party.

Beating one of those would have been a mythic achievement for 1st level characters, but fortunately the party didn’t have to try. This is when Saella showed up to thank the party for being bait [6] and took care of it.

The Briefing

Afterwards Saella emerged from the caves to brief the party. In essence the Big Bad is an unknown mole in the Holy Council, and the homunculus is bound to the mole. Unfortunately the homunculus is extremely good at self-destructing, so it cannot be captured.

The caves lead all the way through the Ring of Fire. They can be sealed temporarily, but will re-open sooner or later. There is another Fae hotspot in the forest to the south.

There are persistent rumours that Saella isn’t a typical Aasimar [7], but something much more. Saella appears to be Iomedae’s personal troubleshooter and the party are now working for her.

Clora’s Story by Jeremy Leask

Jeremy has provided the following backstory for Clora, which leads to some interesting speculations:

Clora has no idea of her changeling origins. Her first memories are of the temple of Irori and of the monks and clerics taking care of her. Karinith, the great city of the elves, is, for all purposes, her home. Yet, for all that the huge city is her home, something pulls at her. The fact that her carers could only tell her that she was left on a doorstep irks her. Who would leave a child with forest green skin and fingers ending in claws on a doorstep, hoping that the residents wouldn’t just kill her? Even if she was likely the daughter of a hag and the more bodies the better?

Upon reaching puberty, she dreamed. Dreamed of being called beyond the mountains, dreamed of meeting her mother, dreamed of power. No matter how she tried to throw herself into her training, she couldn’t ignore the call and did everything to prepare herself for travel. Training herself hard, she became a cleric and got herself sent out. Little did she know what was in store for her.

Commentary

This was a good opening session that quickly, and effectively, established the world and the party. For Caitlin’s first attempt at GMing a campaign this is a strong start, and one that has me looking forward to the rest of the campaign.

The party teamwork is still a little rough, but shook down fairly quickly into something workable.

There were a few technical glitches with not having a battle map to move figures on, but that will be corrected next week.

In terms of storytelling I might have held back the revelation of the mole, or at least the full rank of the mole, until the party had earned a bit more trust/respect from Saella, but that’s a relatively minor point.

The party have also been levelled up, which is perhaps premature given the limited combat faced to date. However, Caitlin wants the party to be capable of facing the tougher foes already scripted in, so this is a necessary evil.

With that in mind, here’s the latest version of Menander, and I’m looking forward to Wednesday’s session.



[1] Yes, there’s a trope for that.


[2] This assignment was previously mentioned in the background post.


[3] i.e. the GM didn’t want to waste time on random encounters.


[4] There are usually caves.


[5] As you do. The reality is that biting on plot hooks is often a necessary prerequisite for an interesting game.


[6] Saella also told the party to run, and this was deemed to be entirely sensible.


[7] Some of the rumours indicate that Saella wasn’t even born an Aasimar..

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