Saturday, April 14, 2012

Play Report #2

It was a small game, with just Fatima the wizard and newcomer Dog the fighter. The night started in the Sneaky Weasel bar and inn, in a rough miner-town neighborhood of Bittersedge. After an unprofitable round of betting on a game the locals called "pin the viper" (from the Vornheim book), the two went outside for a smoke (I just realed that they were maybe assuming that you can't smoke in bars in Bittersedge? You totally can.) and got into a good ol' fashioned bar fight. A couple of drunk dudes mistook Dog's very polite attempts to bum some tobacco as evidence of his status as an elf spy. He protested, but Fatima was ready to fight anyway, and everyone else got involved pretty fast.

Except Dog and another guy, Xennor, the awesomely named militia agent. Turns out that the miners are on strike! Xennor asked Dog to put a major leader of the miners' union, Azanna, out of commission. Dog agreed to do it for 120 gold pieces, despite his union sympathies. My impression was that he hopes to double cross the militia. Meanwhile, Fatima kicked ass in the bar fight.

The next morning they met up with Xennor and followed him to the neighborhood courthouse, where he paid them a third of the fee upfront. They decided to go to the mines, which are northwest of town a little ways. Fatima went to the bakery to get some donuts and whiskey cause it's a strike line and they didn't have coffee.

After talking with a few of the miners in the strike line, they realized that it wasn't just a wage and hour issue- there are major workplace safety concerns. Miners recently broke through a wall into some kind of other cavern, or cavern complex. Soon after, miners went down there and didn't come back. One was heard to shout "I can't stop dancing!" before screaming and (apparently) dying. Dog and Fatima decided that they would go down and investigate, and a couple miners volunteered to guide them.

They found the spot- a large break in the wall led to a cave. They couldn't tell how large it was in the torchlight, and they could see that the floor was covered in water. Dog threw his grappling hook, tied to rope, into the water to test the depth. This disturbed something in the water, which began to ripple. A huge abomination of a monster burst out of the water toward the opening! It was an amoeba shape, reaching out with psudopods partly covered in fish scales, and with a centrally located swordfish beak (mouth? spike?). Fatima cast her "web" spell, which blocked the opening, while Dog optimistically offered the thing honey and told it that they brought gifts. It tried to stab through the web, and they both tried to whack at it. It then started gooily shimmying and blurping, hypnotizing Fatima, Dog, and their two guides. The four of them were forced to dance, unable to attack. The monster reached through the holes in the web and took the two miners by the hand, pulling them close. Meanwhile, Dog tried stuffing honey in his ears and Fatima held up a mirror to the monster in hopes of breaking the trance. The honey worked, and Dog was free.

He quickly rubbed honey in Fatima's ears as well, and they pulled the miners back from the monster. A melee ensued, in which the monster took a bunch of swings and stabs at them while they hit it with a magic missile, a club, burning oil, and then a dart to finish it off. Dog pulled the charred corpse through the hole and noticed a strange rectangular protuberance. He dug into the flesh and pulled out what looked like a jewlery box. He opened it (pointing it away from him just in case) and found a barnacle-encrusted tuning fork. The two were worried about what it might do, so refrained from hitting it for the moment.

They walked up to the mine's entrance, where they were greeted as heroes by the miners. Before the end of the night, they wanted to take the tuning fork to the magical academy in Bittersedge and see what they might have to say about it. They found a scholar named Conwenna Mapnadellek in the music department on the 18th floor of one of the improbably tall towers. She eventually persuaded them to let her try it, after establishing a number of safeguards, including a protective salt circle. Dog reached into the circle and banged the tuning fork, which caused all the knots in the room to undo themselves, chains to break, book bindings to fall apart, and the circle to open. The group reattached their clothes and Dog decided to hold on to this thing- it could come in useful sometime.

And that's where we left it! They're back in the Sneaky Weasel, where we'll start next time.

The rumors that Dog heard (I've created/am in the process of creating a big table of random rumors about the setting to give people some starting points. Some are true, some are not, others I'm not sure of yet):
-A group of merchants swear that they saw an ornate carriage traveling down the road in the moonlight. It was pulled by skeletal horses and there were no passengers.
-The captain of the pirate galleon The Butcher, Perran Rosemor, consults a crystal ball to know where his enemies and targets are.
-There's a halfling town south of Blackdene is becoming known for its artwork- incredibly lifelike paintings that always seem to depict terrified human sailors.

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