Monday, December 5, 2016

Remembrance

November 14th in the year 720 by Kingdom Reckoning

The city of Ashmont is abuzz with the anticipation of the Festival of Homecoming. The Festival celebrates heroes returning from war and culminates in a grand feast. People journey to the capital to carouse and sing songs of remembrance and for a fortnight the city is alight with bonfires traditionally lit to lead the way home. The Last Great War ended 200 years ago so the people are especially excited. 

The air is cold and crisp as you step out onto the street. Small flakes of snow fall and lend an ethereal quality to the air. There are great bonfires lit up and down the wide boulevard that the people of Ashmont call Heroes Lane and you choose one to approach. As you draw closer, a female bard begins to pluck a lute and sing a song. The tune is familiar but the words are foreign to you. The same can not be said of the people standing around the fire and they immediately join in and shout the chorus; a rousing tale of champions fighting old battles against long-dead foes.

After things settle down you move closer to the fire and enjoy the crackling warmth on your face. The heat is almost overwhelming but after being in the cold for so long it feels good. You find yourself wishing you could have both sides near the fire at the same time but you settle for warming your hands. You look around at the gathered crowd and you pick out some familiar faces and some unknown ones. Everyone seems happy to be there. Someone is passing a small flask of hot cinnamon liquer.

(Now is your chance to introduce your character and perhaps strike up a conversation. Feel free to ask any questions about what you see or who is there.)

34 comments:

  1. Slurry notices the flask of cinnamon liqueur being passed around and immediately confronts the individual wielding the devil's drink.

    "Excuse me," he interrupted. "But a happy day it will be, indeed, when all appetites are controlled, all passions subdued, all matters subjected to temperance. The mind, the all conquering mind, shall live and move the free people of this Kingdom. Surely such a mind-numbing agent as that held forth should surely bring more happiness if it were to fall to the gutter. All hail to the fall of Fury and let reason reign like the King.!"

    Slurry holds out his hand expectantly for the flask.

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    1. A young hooligan with red hair looks down at you incredulously and then tips the flask back, emptying it, then hands it to you with a smirk. "There you go greenskin, don't spend it all in one place!" He and his two friends roar with laughter and then look at you expectantly, they appear more than a little drunk and seem to be more aggressive than the rest of the crowd.

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    2. (Brox approaches the group slowly but takes no other actions)

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    3. "Ah," Slurry responded and snapped his fingers as a rodent scurried from out of his jacket and sat next to him. Let us entertain you for a moment with a story, the moral of which should make you reconsider my position."

      With a quick motion, slurry and is pet rat, Tatters dove in to a story. "I will play the part of the greenskin, obviously," Slurry said with a smile, and my friend Tatters will play the part of the man.

      By the shore one summer's day a man was sitting like a lout,
      Eating and drinking his heart's content was what he was about.
      A great Greenskinned worker passed in his mighty toils,
      He was bringing things back to his kin, his newly-acquired spoils.

      "Why not come and drink with me," said the man in his cups,
      "Instead of working and wasting effort?" betwixt his hiccups.
      "I am helping my kin," he replied, "bringing things anew,"
      Surely you can't expect me to wallow there next to you?"

      "Why bother with them," said the man in slurry speech,
      "I've got lots to drink, and no one to share my beach."
      "Well maybe just one," the greenskinned relented with a sigh
      And joined the man beneath the azure sky.

      And as the man passed out from drink and debeauchery,
      The greenskinned slit his throat and got all his stuff for free.
      Because when its spirits that's the company men will keep,
      Its easy for green Slurry to kill them while they sleep.

      ((Cast Hypnotize on 2d4=5 targets. Will negates, DC 13. Slurry makes the suggestion: Give up drinking alcohol.))

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    4. The ringleader immediately falls silent and stares at you with rapt attention. One of his companions also listens intently while the other looks back and forth from you to them with concern. Daisy also appears to be unaffected. As the spell fades the red headed man's fly wide open and he turns and melts back into the crowd, avoiding all offered drink.

      A large, balding man steps forward and chuckles. "You sure showed them! I'd be careful though, when those boys realize what you've done, they'll be looking for you. The Liberators don't forget slights quickly." He looks you up and down and then offers his hand. "I'm Largent and I own Largent's Mercantile in the 3rd district. If you're looking for work, I could use someone of your persuasion."

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    5. Satisfied with his sermon, Slurry naturally adopted a self-satisfied grin, although he suddenly noticed a sharp pain between two of his ribs.

      Rubbing his side, he looked around suspiciously and noticed a crowd growing over by the tall funny-talker from far away. As Slurry was about to head over and see what the fuss was all about, a large man stepped forward. Slurry listened as the man went on about the drunken oafs, and finished with an offer of work.

      Slurry stopped frozen in his tracks, a little taken aback by the offer. He slowly turned and looked over his left shoulder, but not seeing anyone he slowly turned and looked over his right shoulder. When he realized that there was no one else around him, he knew that the large balding man could only be speaking to him.

      "I could stop by on the morrow," Slurry said estimating how much gold the large man might have on him right now. "Mayhaps I'll bring a few friends along, as well."

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    6. "HAHA! That would please me greatly!" He follows your eyes as you look around yourself, "watch your back and I'll see you in the morning." He strides back toward the fire and claps a few revelers on the back.

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    7. Slurry watched as the large balding man melted back into the crowd of giant menfolk, considering his words carefully. Realizing that he was nowhere near Dmitri or the others that he was speaking to and suffering from a terrible sharp pain in his ribs from some unruly critic of his performance, Slurry took a moment to scan the crowd ((Perception Roll to look for threats, 1d20 +0 = 19)).

      Slurry made his way over and called out loudly for any wandering ears to hear.

      "Dmitri, my large and foreign friend, have you killed anyone since last we spoke?" Not waiting for his friend to answer, he carried on. Immaterial really, I have a new adventure lined up in the morning with lots of potential for righteous slayings." Pausing only long enough to scan about the other gaggle of people around, I was going to suggest that we search the gutters for a few hirelings, but it seems you've already scrapped at barrel's bottom and come up with something. They'll do I suppose."

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    8. You are aware of no threats.

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  2. Brox gathers closer to the flames, wishing once more he was by a forge, feeling the waves of heat and warmth wash over him. Willing away the memory he remembers he has a job to do, and begins slow solemn prayers to Torag, keeping his cadence in time with the chant. When the opening provides itself he gives blessings of Torag to those that pass. Swigs of Liqour help keep him warm inside and add a bit of a slur to his blessings....

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    1. The citizens receive your blessing with thanks, a troop of dwarves especially stop on their pub crawl to stand before you in turn, bowing their heads and making the symbol of the hammer.

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    2. "Blessings of the Forge Father on you all." Brox pulls forth his holy symbol, that of a small anvil, and holds it aloft while he speaks. Finishing with the group he notices a crowd gathering around a Goblin he's seen once or twice before. The crowd's posture seems somewhat menacing, so he begins to walk towards the gathering.

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  3. Dmitrii points at the fire and laughs, looking to those around him to join in his own revelry.

    "Look Comrades, they have made a flame and call it a fire. Where I am coming from the fires are much greater and being full of warmth. Perhaps they did not know they must add wood!"

    He lets out a deep hearty laugh and slaps the back of the goblin Slurry.

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  4. Walking toward the bonfire, Daisy smiles to herself as she jingles the coins in her pouch. She has spent the day gathering mushrooms and selling them to the stalls and inns that are her regular customers. Today was especially prosperous because so many have come into town for the big homecoming.

    She looks around her at the people next to the giant bonfire. Warming her front and then turning to toast her back side she spots her friend Brox blessing the various groups gathered nearby. Not wanting to disturb his prayers she continues to scan the crowd. She has almost decided to head back to her cave outside of town when she spots a new face. It is a small face, about the size of her own, but it’s green. She has seen a few goblins, but never this close up. She stares intently and with great interest.

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    1. "You look like you're studying for a hunt, /Kaleen./"

      ((Kaleen is spoken in Druidic, and is meant as a term of affection. Fun fact! It's actually a Czechoslovakian name, meaning "Flower."))

      With a teasing grin, the rugged Derwyn places a hand on the Gnome's shoulder in friendship. It had been many moons since he'd seen his sister of the wood, and enjoyed attempting to startle her. He strokes his beard in thought for a moment while looking into the flames dancing before him, as if recounting his experiences quickly.

      Taking in the merriment all around him, he nods his head in the direction she's staring.

      "Best not to get on his bad side, it's not every day you see a greenskin not only socializing, but patronizing! I'm certain it has everything to do with his company..." With his free hand he raises it in greeting to Dmitrii, attempting to catch his eye.

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    2. Dimitrii raises his hand and bellows a loud oath in his native tongue. He muscles his way through the crowd, oblivious of the people in his way and extends his arms in a large embrace for Derwyn.

      "Derwyn you scoundral! I have been missing you. I have seen many a great steeds in my travels but nonr to match those of your fathers."

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    3. Daisy doesn’t see her good friend Derwyn. She doesn’t hear him use his pet name for her. She doesn’t even notice when he lays his hand playfully on her shoulder. She only has eyes for the goblin. Unblinkingly, she moves towards him and pokes him in the ribs with her index finger.

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    4. Brox watches this unfold, the words of a prayer coming to his mouth but he restrains them, not wanting to call on Torag for the frivolous or the fruitless... but the words stay present in his minds eye as his eye watches what happens next.

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    5. Derwyn gladly accepts the embrace and returns it as a friend of many moons past. With a chuckle he replies, "Indeed, many would be hard-pressed to match our stable. 'Tis what the Emrys legacy is built upon!"

      He takes a step back and takes a measure of the man standing before him. "It's been many moons since we last recounted tails to each other, my friend. Have your travels proved.... enlightening?" He quirks and eyebrow and nods towards Dimitrii's hand that bears the mark.

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    6. Dmitrii raises his hand,stsring intently at the mark. A rye grin shatters the stoic look on his face. He waves his hand in front of Derwyn and laughs again, a deep and hearty bellow.

      "Quite enlightening indeed. Much more enlightening than in past years," he says and then frowns, looking to the sky at something unseen and watching. He spits on the ground and mutters and oath.
      "That wretched harpy will get her due," he growls

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  5. Kalysong watched the parade of fellow dwarves queue up for blessings from an unseen cleric. Her nature-based discipline requested help from no deity, so it was only with detached curiosity that she watched them bow in thanks and then leave.

    When she finally saw the cleric in question, she was delighted to see Brox, a dwarf she'd known growing up in Bremel. She waved her hands and shouted, "Brox!" Unfortunately, as a dwarf, she was too small to see and there was no voice that could be heard over the festival's din. She called upon her training in patience and knew that she'd catch up to Brox eventually.

    She noticed a bottle of spirits being passed around. "Vile, enslaving horse-juice!" she thought and quickly called up a meditation to ward against temptation. She made a slick dodge away from the bottle's path, ending up on the fringes of the gathering. She climbed onto a barrel to get a better view of the festivities.

    She had the nagging feeling that she was supposed to know someone else, in addition to Brox, here at the bonfire but she couldn't remember who. She adopted her "think-think" pose (arms crossed over her chest with one hand tapping her temple), but to no avail.

    "Oh well, I hope it's someone I like," she thought.

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  6. Seeing the trouble makers head off Brox let's his prayer go from his mind and a smile replace it as he sees Kalysong. Raising himself up as high as he can in the crowd he hollers for her attention. Seeing as that might not work he realizes the prayer Torag has sent him was not intended to cool down fiery youth. "Thank you Forge Father, for you know that the best blades are quenched." Intoning the words and raising his holy symbol, Brox calls to Torag to create water above the flames of the nearest fire. ((Cast create water, 2 Gallons))

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    1. ((Meant as a sort of signal))

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    2. A great puff of smoke and cinders flies into the air and the crowd around the bonfire turns to stare at you. "Hey! Don't be a party pooper, dwarf!" One man yells. But the fire is resilient and soon enough it is crackling again.

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  7. At the crackle of sparks and the sizzle of water on flame Daisy startles and notices a cloud of steam rising from the bonfire. Totally forgetting the goblin, she looks around and for the first time becomes aware her old friend Derwyn. She immediately dashes towards him and leaps into the air. Landing somewhere about his waist she scrabbles up his front and places her hands on either side of his face. Nose to nose with her childhood friend, she squeals, “Squeaky! I’ve missed you! Where have you been?”

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    1. After his prayer is complete Brox hears someone yelling at him for partially dousing the flame, turning to respond he notices Daisy, the rambunctious gnome who has made life in Bremel that much more enjoyable. Not that life in the temple of Torag is not enjoyable, but there is a yearning that Daisy has slowly brought out in Brox to see new things and to experience the adventures he has read about in so many tales. All of these thoughts are brushed aside though as he notes a blur of speed and Daisy's leap upon a Dwarf in the crowd. Fearing that Daisy might have spotted something he has not Brox reaches to his belt and the trusty oaken club that he has meticulously carved into the likeness of the gods... but he stays his hand. Daisy appears to be embracing the Dwarf not attacking him... although with Daisy it is never easy to tell which it might be.

      Brox crosses the distance to the Dwarf and Daisy and notices for the first time another standing with the Dwarf, a tall man of about the height a 6 year-old pine with dark hair and darker features... that is until he smiles. The darkness that weighed upon his features seems to melt away. He approaches much more openly and extends his open palm, "Hail Outlander, I do not believe I have met your clan, but it would seem we have some common friends," he gestures to the gnome and dwarf, "I am Brox, but my friends like Daisy there, call me Ox. I am a craftsman of Torag, heating and forging men, dwarves, and gnomes alike into fine tools." Standing nearly half his height, Brox is now close enough to be looking up at the powerful human, his outstretched hand bearing the sign of peace.

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    3. (Edited because i was a noob and didn't realize the fire was still alive)

      Dmitrii stares in awe at the small gnome which has launched himself onto Derwyn. Furrowing his brow at this odd custom his stupor is broken only by a bearded dwarf approaching him and introducing himself.

      The dwarf's beard was great and would have made even old Yuri envious. Dmitrii nodded in approval as he sized up the dwarf. He liked men with beards. It showed that their decisions in their life had borne some consequences on their face. Not like the faces of the 'pretty boys' in this land who called themselves 'knights'. They pea-cocked with the extravagant embellishments on their armor but likely couldn't command a charge of lancers through a line of sleeping peasant rabble! No, this man was a real man, well dwarf but all the same. It was something this land lacked. The man was a forge master as well. Another suitable quality k an individual. Not everyone could be a Calvary general and noble, Dmitrii was quite fortunate with his lineage, but a man who has honed his skills into an art....yes this man would due. Dmitrii liked this man.

      Rousing himself from his thoughts. Dmitrii will bow in the fashion of Cirth. A bow suitable for the Tsars' Palace. A bow that would make his great father knuckle his fantastic mustaches with pride.

      "Greetings komradde ((friend in his native tongue)), I am Dmitrii Priiaslav Zakhariev Berevoianin. I accept your greetings and extend to you the blessings of Tsar Nikolav Estoriach Priatroas Maastan, may he live forever," Dmitrii will reach for Ox's extended hand and grasp it. Touching it to his forehead, while at the apex of his bow, he will then grasp the hand and pull in Brox into a firm embrace, as was the custom of the calvary. A quip or jab somewhat at the customs of the court. Breaking the embrace he will turn to the recently extinguishing fire and motion to it.
      "I would also being thanking you for trying to put that fire out of its misery. It shamed the name of fire with its meager presence. Unfortunately your magic did not take," Dmitrii said and then pursed his lips while staring at the fire - slowly recovering from its dousing.

      "What brings you to this land Malen'kiy ((native tongue for little ox)). Surely you didn't come here for the great company and roaring fires" he says while motioning to the dispatched drunks and the flames. He roars with laughter and places a hand Ox's shoulder and another on Derwyn's, eyeing the gnome warily.

      "I am liking this! My friends, old and new, all being in one place," he shouts excitedly and looks around at the crowd.
      "I would be wanting to celebrate with drink but the propovedik ((native tongue for preacher)) would likely provide reason for why we should instead be celibate monks," he said and motioned to Slurry with his foot.

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    4. Brox meets the strange embrace of the outsider with as much grace as the bulky dwarf can offer. "I am glad that we meet as friends, for I would not want to face you on the field, surely you have been met with many battles and have been tempered by their fires. As to the drink, there is plenty in the town for the Goblin to admonish that I shall hazard he will not notice your partaking. As for myself, I remain unchanged by the green skin though I do not doubt his skill at oratory. However sincere his desire to remove drink and good cheer from the night I will doubt that even his green tinted silver tongue will win through. That said, I have learnt in my studies that every tool has a purpose and a use and I can see that he has been made with a purpose." Changing from his speaking voice to a booming baritone Brox calls out heartily, "Good sir Goblin what a magnificent performance, it will be one that I shall speak of for some time, and no doubt one that has engendered some reaction among the small folk. Come join our merry band, we set out for adventure and this tale will need its teller. I will also wager that where we are headed there will be many unconverted to hear your pleas." Turning quickly to Daisy, Brox remembers, "If you would like to take your place among the high lords mi'lady," he bends a knee and rolls his shoulder even lower, putting his fists out and balling them tight, the thick cords of muscle in his Dwarves limbs tighenening. ((Brox and Daisy would often play this game as children and now it is a common practice for the Gnome to take her place upon his shoulders and rival the tall folk)

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    5. Dmitrii backs up a few paces and claps his hands; a devilish grin on his face. He looks to Daisy and then back to Brox in anticipation.

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  9. Pleased to note that the dwarf has finished his prayers, (a habit she has never quite understood) Daisy plants a noisy kiss on Derwyn’s forehead, pats his cheeks, and with a quick leap jumps over to land on Brox’s broad shoulders. “Where are we going Broxie?”

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    1. "We are going on an adventure!" Brox turns to the greenskin and says, "Did I hear the man say something about adventure?"

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    2. Dmitrii looks to Derwyn and waves his marked hand.

      "I am looking forward to any opportunity to give the evil harpy her due." he turns to Slurry expectantly.

      "Tell us propovedik. Where are we being going now?"

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