19 August 2014

Earthdawn: Adventure Log 30 - Can't We Get Beyond Thunderdome?

This is the thirtieth Adventure Log in an ongoing series about Earthdawn. Introduction and Index.

While the conflict between Thera and Throal is at the forefront, there is another conflict brewing the background. Iopos is moving pieces into position - well, eliminating key pieces to create maximum disorganization on all fronts. Their true goals have always been concealed within larger plots, and what exactly those are is a mystery to the few who have noticed their actions.

Adventure Log – 030 Can't We Get Beyond Thunderdome?

Written By: Ting the Merciless of Urupa

Date: 12 Gahmil –  14 Gahmil, 1508 TH
Group Name: Mismatched Steel

Group Members
Bongani the Scout
Coriolis the Swordmaster
Elmod the Nethermancer
Honeysuckle Sunspray the Windmaster
Ting the Swordmaster


I find Rasp. We have a lovely evening in town fighting in bars and enjoying a nice few rounds of pit fighting.

Next day consists of plotting our moves with the spy(1). We find a consensus and the group separates to start gathering forces.

Shortly after splitting, half the city bursts into flame, and a number of mercenaries start attacking anyone moving. Most of the violence avoids me, and I am told that the attack is to draw out and kill Bleys. So I head to the forge to help... bodyguarding. Everyone is waiting there, minus Honeysuckle. Elmod brought his girlfriend.

Honeysuckle shows up know the location of Antien, and we gather together to head out. Bleys is really irritable and suits up to come with us, but as we wander by Whisperwind, he gets distracted by some magic map(2), and we hire the mercenaries to join us(3). We head up to the enemy camp. On the way, we witness some K'tenshin(4) assholes fire bombing a building and set to stabbing them, and finish our way to the fort they have made.

Bongani throws a firebomb we looted from the t'skrang among some guards in front of the building, though it bounces quickly off the walls and explodes elsewhere. Honeysuckle opens the gate, stabs a few guards, and finds a secret door Antien bolted down.

Bongani leads us through the underground maze bringing us to a warehouse with a stone airship, Antien, and five of her bodyguards. Antien and Coriolis square off, and the rest of us focus on the dwarfs, but these were experienced men and not easy to bring down. Just as we started cleaning up, the hired mercenary band finally shows up with Tarr to help. Everyone left drops weapons.

Shortly afterward, Tarr has a public exhibition with Antien and what was left of her Swordmaster goons to speak their crimes and be dragged off. After a very dramatic moment of Antien crying out how Maester Bleys is in charge of Bartertown, Tarr is hit with an arrow in the throat, where he is revealed to be Maester Bleys(5) and then dissolves into a liquidy flesh puddle(6).(7)


*     *     *
(1) We need to find out who this is and what it means.
(2) This should confirm the rumors we have been hearing, this is The Strategic Projection.
(3) Seven Winds of War
(4) This needs to be verified and go upstairs.
(5) Many questions were answered, but it spawned nearly as many more which will never be answered. Bartertown is a mess.
(6) This stinks like Ishkarat.
(7) Received and edited by Ela Pono

Multiple years in and out of game all came to fruition in this session. For the most part, it was an action packed whirlwind, though the players thought it was going to be more like a caper/black op. They did not realize their opposition had plans of their own and their previous assassination attempt put everything into action.

The firebombing specifically started with Coriolis who was personally firebombed with a note which read, "You are fired." From there, the action started and it was about trying to put out fires (literally and figuratively). What no one had particularly planned for was an opposition which had no interest in actually holding the city in the end. At this point, they just wanted a mess which would force Throal's hand.

Unfortunately, the group had built up contacts and trust within the city to eventually mobilize an effective containment strategy. By which I mean, they got some other people who were much better suited for such a thing to do it while they went to go cause some violence. This was playing to their strengths; it was lamented that the wrecking of the city really should have been there plan at one point.

There were a number of plot points which showed up in addition to the numerous action scenes. Including the presence of K'tenshin within the city acting with Theran agents and the final assassination in a style which they had seen previously in Travar. The reveal of Maester Bleys and Tarr being the same person was foreshadowed enough to have one player guess it a number of sessions ago.

Which brings us to the absolute most important part of the session, Antien Tighe rendered helpless having the following exchange with Tarr:

"Who runs Bartertown?"

"...You know who."

"Say it."

"Maester Bleys, Tarr."

"Say it loud."

"Maester Bleys, Tarr!"

And then he got killed. But it was worth it, just two years to set up that little bit. Completely worth it.