The New Year has brought renewed focus on the campaign. We spent the better part of last year, and maybe more, working through N1 Against the Cult of the Reptile God. This is because we’ve put it in the context of the wider world and explored along more than just the linear path as provided.
At the end of the last session the elvish lads had withstood the assault of the reincarnated Naga as she sought to recover the canopic jar that radiated evil (and may contain parts to the exiled Rakshasa that once ruled Parsantium). It was the dead of winter, and the survivors hunkered down just to survive.
The town of Trobridge (formerly Orlane, but renamed because of the magnificent defence against the river trolls) was divided into two camps. One clustered around the temple. The other around the surviving tavern that was once the centre of the Naga cult.
There was a lot of refreshing of memories and winding up of loose ends. The lads had been there for several months and had built up something of a relationship with the locals and the area. This was a turning point for the characters so I offered them each a chance to retire, or at least indicate the future direction of the campaign. They could choose to hang around here and retire; they could choose to hang around here and base their future adventures from Trobridge – effectively making future adventures wilderness; they could return to Parsantium.
Cassius found he had much in common with the thieves and cut throats over at the Golden Grain. Together they looted the deserted township and partied into the night. His offer was to join them as they carved up the land and made themselves Barons, creating a new state that would offer itself to either Parsantium or Karjolat.
Aerius found that he became the focus of attention by the many orphans and even a dog. They were fascinated by his daily meditations and he found himself by default becoming their teacher. His offer was to settle and lead the community to a better moral future.
Storm found that Ramne the retired wizard was actually a very powerful magic user. Using the younger man’s help Ramne recovered his scrolls and organised the temple’s library. His offer was to become an apprentice and learn some spectacular magic.
Octavius found that he had become close to Misha Devi, the priestess who had been charmed by the Naga but saved by his actions. Together they planned the recovery of the village. By day they laboured to make sure that everyone was fed and that no stone was left unturned to breathe life back into Trobridge. By night they talked by candle light after prayers about their hopes and dreams. One thing led to another, and his offer was to stay, marry, and become a pillar of the renewed community.
That was what they had to consider.
One night something unprecedented happened that was to become known as The Miracle of Trobridge. This is a major world shaking event and will reverberate throughout the land.
As everyone congregated in the main temple space the light changed character. The statue of Merikka (analogue of Demeter), the goddess of agriculture and the harvest, changed and animated to become the living likeness of Helion, Lord of the gods (analogue of Hyperion). The jade statue of the naga was blasted, and then plastered across the walls to become a frieze of the elvish lads’ exploits. The canopic jar was sealed in jade and then welded into the new statue’s base. The elvish boys were again offered what could have been their deepest desires. And then the light faded.
A lot had happened.
To give them time to think I then took them through a one-shot mini-dungeon under the village where the troglodytes must have had their lair. Stirges, rot-grubs, black puddings and ankhegs. Lots of hurt, but everyone survived though perhaps lacking body hair in Cassius’ case (look up when you skulk away from the action, for there may be a black pudding there).
In the end they said their farewells and headed back to Parsantium. It was spring now and they managed to catch a ship. The court case established the facts of the possession and subsequent actions. Despite being reprimanded for the exceedingly high death toll they were rewarded with entrance into the Judiciary: with a badge and everything (+1 on reaction rolls when dealing with anyone who cares about Parsantine authority).
And so N1 finally wrapped up. Whew.
The group had chosen the direction they want the campaign to go: city based, within a legal structure. Let the next adventure begin.