Greetings for the north my friends. Pray tell, are you adventurers out of Newcroft or are you riding to their aid?
It’s time for that promised LARP post with added guts a glory. There’s been a couple of night sites in the last month, so we will be documenting games from a players and a monster’s view. So come in and hear the heroic deeds of the adventurers from Newcroft.
Plus: the Bigg Juggs is in trouble and something sinister is afoot.
7th May – Night site
This event was an “open dene” event, which filled me with some dread (not aided by some comments about doom from other players). Turns out an open dene event is where a mission is assigned and the referee plans a series of encounters but it is up to the players to decide their route through the dene and there is usually something interesting for them to find.
The adventurers were summoned to the alchemist’s guild and informed that we were on a very “hush hush guild secrets” sort of mission where we would have to submit to being blindfolded and carried out of the city in covered carriages. When we arrived we were disorientated and confused and generally miffed as to what our mission was – something to do with alchemy you say? Searching for something in the hidden valley where they “farm” it? Ethan, tell us more!
The party members included Mercy Blackstaff, the elven mages Lirrion and Sol and Sol’s new apprentice, a Longstorian priest, the Primate of Rolbor, Ethan Fairbrass and Neville (we think) of the scouts guild.
The party are met, after trying to figure out our location, by two guards who demand to see papers and know our business. They know nothing about what has gone on in the valley as they are only tasked to guard the one gate, though shipments have been slim and the last lot of adventurers had not returned. We thank them and continue on. We encounter no strangers on the road, though Ethan kept quite closed mouth about what we’re supposed to be looking for, until we come to a tumble down tower by the river. Inside are several alchemists bound and gagged and firelight under the bridge. What follows was a confusing tumble of events where the bound figures claim the man under the bridge stole their cargo and tied them up, and he claims that he was stopping them sending barrels down the river. Talk of dark elves (not helped by the appearance of two of our party) ends with the discovery of a note, a signal lantern and a torch which is promptly confiscated. Strange lights burn in the sky and trouble starts when we bring out captive back to the tower, sparking a fight which frays nerves and everyone gets quite angry about – Mercy looses her rag big time and may come to regret it.
The party then try to light the signal lantern and send a new message down stream, hoping to catch the guilty party – though the weather closes in and bring undead in its wake. We then spent a long time running back and forth along the river bank avoiding undead and trying to light the lantern, giving up when the undead prove unending and getting more dangerous. “They have a wraith!”
At the lower bridge the mages declare their is a warding spell of sorts and a box we “found” has the alchemical potion to pass it. Three members of the party drink the potion before more enemies come upon us and in the ensuing chaos drag/carry the others through the wards for Mercy to rouse at the other side. In the confusion Lirrion misplaced his staff. We are attacked by some elderkin on the other side who claim we’re in their territory and we hurry on, harried by elderkin and taunted by dark elves.
We nearly kill a sacred creature of Rolbor, a timid kobold who is asking for help – his elven friend has been caught by the dark elves who wish to sacrifice her to Kharach. The Primate of Rolbor is torn – dark elves and elderkin are known to be tretcherous but he cannot ignore a plea for help from a member of his church. With a heavy heart he decides we must press on and he will suffer the consequences. We press on, though find another way round and hope returns to the party.
The dark elves had indeed captured an elven woman, a Vleyborian who is distasteful to them. A bargin is struck between the leaders of the party that if a suitable sacrifice is offered, the elf can go free – something the party opinion is divided between. Talking at arms length, members of the party hear of a bridge further downstream where the barrels float beneath, a deepening of the river and a reason for the disappearance of the previous party. The dark elves have little love of trespassers in alchemical garb and though they have no part in their deaths, the spiders may have. At this, the scout declares we are near Willowsdeep and are officially in big trouble.
Pressing on, hoping to return to save the elf before dawn, we find the bridge and challenge those present. Although some got away, we uncover some barrels and discover the abandoned cart road their “employer” has been using to shift the goods. It turns out that this is the mission and Ethan pleads with the party to take some barrels with them. During the night the weather had worsened and we were weary and footsore and (to be honest) a bit sick of being kept in the dark. So we refused politely (of course). The kobold begs us to save his friend and ends up volunteering to be a sacrifice, to Mercy’s distress.
The dark elves meet us and demand the exchange. At some point the high priest comes too close to the scout, who kills him. “Blood for blood”. In essence the sacrifice has been made an no one we cared about got hurt. The elves were understandably pissed and we fought them off, tending to their wounds after subduing the ring leaders.
At this point the party timed out and we all went home and got warm and got some sleep. We perhaps did not make best use of the “open dene” event, but the weather was a little disheartening to play in and we spent alot of time faffing around. Maybe next time the weather will hold out and we’ll scour the dene for trinkets and treasure.
28th May – Night site
After the last night site, I was due a monster mission, so here is the monster crew version of the latest night site.
There has been rumours of an army coming to Newcroft, which the Templar Knights of Tottenhill Abbey and the Black Knights from Firebridge have ridden out to investigate. The Black Knights found nothing and did not meet the Templar force before they returned home. Something sinister is riding through the land and all available adventurers and peasants are called to militia duty atop the Newcroft walls. The party are met by the duty sergeant of the guard who informs them of the situation.
At this point a group of cloaked, black masked figures are seen to loiter mysteriously, talk in a generally shifty manner and then run away when the guards stir themselves. Later, a group of travelling players wander up to the gate speaking of a great show, payment in advance and generally acting the fools (hello players, that’s us).
The Crossed Keys players had been paid to wear black masks and appear as an army travelling across the county, a ruse to draw the attention of Newcroft to its own walls rather than beyond to Tottenhill Abbey, where an actual army is gathering in its war against the church of Sidthe. Hello main enemy of the evening – black and white masked worshippers of the dark god of slaughter, Abraxas. The party travels out towards Tottenhill, passing through a players camp where they are regailed by tales of daring do and some such and continue on their way.
Several encounters with Abraxian black masks follow – Abraxians believe in tactics and tactical advantage, pressing and harrying the weaker members of the party and generally being arrogant sods, before the party reach the Abbey, chasing off some masked figures and capturing one of their number. This person refused to talk and was left for the abbey to deal with.
At the abbey they were offered a choice of two missions – to follow the warning of a mad clockmaker and stop the Abraxians from breaking a seal in a nearby Sidthean shrine (the seal binding a particularly nasty demonic power) or to investigate some suspicious behaviour near the abbey wall where the Abraxians were preparing a bomb. Save the future or save the now.
The party decide that this seal is the more dangerous problem (rightly so) and head off towards the gathering forces of the Abraxians. On the way they encounter some of the heavy infantary (a particularly obnoxious band with an enchanted blade) and a party of devotees, where they capture one of the younger members who tries to flee. To save her life she promises to take a message to her master though the party remove her mask and send her limping on her way.
Further along the road they encounter the remaining survivor of the Templar order and defend him from some Abraxians, before sending a runner (wearing the stolen mask) to scout the land. As the monster crew we had no clue what they were doing and so were quite surprised to see a party member come running past, declaring that “we have enemies at the bridge”. We decided to play along to find “Ah no, tretchery” as he turned on us when encountering the party (quite clever really).
After a bit of time faff, the players come upon the sidthean chapel where the temple tender tells them that the shrine has been un-consecrated and she has no clue how to fix it. Seriously, I had no idea.
Then comes the turn of the tide. Investigating the seal, the clockmaker breaks the seal and taking the orb (cue glittery bouncy ball of disco doom) goes totally evil on them and vanishes. This was an impressive bit of timing and luck, for when the glowing technicolour light show of the ball set off by the smashing of the plate ended, the referee turned invisible and the party realised what they had done. The mission was failed, the orb was free and we had an un-consecrated shrine on their hands. Plus a white masked (super hard core dude) was at the door, demanding the guards to step aside. At this moment, the party’s elven scout began to pray to sidthe and I scarpered looking for a referee.
After a bit of posturing the monsters let the party get on with their prayers (with a bit of heckling from our white masked dude) and the elf managed to convince them all to unburden themselves by using weights to balance a small set of scales (Sidthe’s symbol). The shrine is saved (huzzah), the orb is out in the world (boo) and the Abraxians have destroyed the Abbey wall (oh no!!).
And thus another major evil is let loose into the world of Ithron.
31st May – Pub meeting at the “Bigg Juggs”
The society meet every Tuesday at a pub in town to be social and conduct a bit of IC down time. They turn the back room into a mini version of the Bigg Juggs (a major tavern in Newcroft owned by the lady General Catherine Brack-on-hill) and deals are struck and events unfold. Last night we had an incident where the shrine in the tavern was mysteriously destroyed, leading to the evacuation of all townsfolk and Mercy turning to her goddess for aid. A load of other things happened, but these are relevant to my character and my turn out to be important (I really hope not), and Mercy advances to High Guildsman.