[This is the third in a series of in-character recaps of a DnD session I’m running in attempt to make what is traditionally a super boring part of DnD a much more fun one. It’s following the “Rise of the Sun King” via the eyes of reporter Aubrey “The Quill”. Check out last week’s here, and check back next week for pt. 4! This one was titled “Sir Astrid Remains Confused About the Rapidly Unravelling Situation”, and was a solo campaign following Sir Astrid.]
(ed. note: One might assume from the highly detailed depictions that Aubrey “The Quill” Bohemond was present at the events chronicled, however, this was clearly not the case, as you will read presently. In fact, several of her later documents were provided via second hand descriptions, which were then flushed out via questioning and Aubrey’s intellectual creativity.)
Sir Astrid Busser Cassus had a slightly different take on the events preceeding the first expedition into the forest. While the group of us were going about our seperate ways, he took to extracting information from the Royal Messenger, hearing about the rash of sickness and unexplainable events sweeping across the various settling towns, and a man who apparently had his heart ripped directly out of his chest. While initially dismissed as a freak accident, we later found… connected… murders. I’ll go into that later.
We soon left Boone’s Crater in the hunt for Pod 19, as I’ve written previously. That evening, Hathron heard noises off in the forest, then turned back to the camp to see a woman garbed in black shimmer out of existence, clutching Sir Astrid. From Sir Astrid’s point of view, the two of them turned “invisible”, and she lead him out into the forest, where the two of them watched our fight with the mercenaries. After cursing to herself, the black-garbed woman snuck back into camp and dropped a note which tied the Mercenaries to the Zeta Cartel. As she spirited Sir Astrid away into the forest, she said he would get answers if he followed her, and she introduced herself as Rascal Drane (a fairy) leader of a Resistance movement who was based out of Rascal’s Hideout, a little cave a ways to the north.
They traveled through the night, talking of coal and ivory, and (most notably) the natives. Apparently those Fey-raced Humanoids who call The Island home are mandated by a higher authority to wear ivory in order to prevent chaos from breeding. This natural spawns bands of people who aren’t so keen on cutting away that part of themselves, and Rascal’s Gang is one of these bands. They claim to dedicate themselves to helping those persecuted by these ‘Ivories’. She took him inside their camp, a cave located in a coal-rich pocket beneath a lake, and introduced him to her 11-person crew. Most notably in this crew was a ‘Siphon’ called Leopold (who was out talking to someone referred to as the “Big Guy”), Rascal herself, a flame-haired illusionist named Amber, her second in command Dark Owl, [ed. Barge, the infamous character from the “University Incident”, was here as well], and various others. While there Sir Astrid learned of his own manifested ability (or “knack”, as they called it), the ability to ‘Siphon’ or leech abilities off of others, in a sense. It seemed to be strongest when he was actually touching others. While Rascal said that Leopold would be able to explain the knack best, this unfortunately never came to pass.
Oh! Quite importantly, Rascal’s Gang was also situated around a dome of highly dense coal, which (when one person enters) highly amplifies their abilities and allows those who don’t know precisely what their ‘knack’ is, to discover them. Astrid was forced to prove himself inside ‘The Cairn’, this dome. While his time inside it was explosive and exhausting, he came out alive and was proven worthy to stay with the band. After a few days rest, he was given some gifts and went out on his first (successful) mission with the gang, robbing an armored Ivory caravan.
Upon return, their joy was quickly drained when they found Leopold dead in Rascal’s Hideout, his heart ripped out of his chest. Rascal flew out of the cave in anger, following up their most recent lead on the assassin who was apparently hunting down various people on the island, apparently randomly. They called this mystery murderer “C”, and Dark Owl warned Sir Astrid that Rascal had very particular reasons to get furious about C, and had vanished for days at a time, hunting for him. Dark Owl persuaded Sir Astrid to go after Rascal, and try to keep her from doing anything rash.
He followed her through the night to the only lead Rascal had on C’s whereabouts, an Elvish King who had set up camp in some caves where Rascal had previously hid some time ago. Rascal knew of a secret entrance, but Sir Astrid persuaded her to wait and let him scope it out first. Rascal followed a little ways behind. He walked into the Elvish King’s chambers, to see him lying face down on a four poster bed. After calling out to him, he turned the king over to see his heart pulled out of his chest, and Rascal standing at the entryway, crestfallen. Just as this occured, the others of Pod 54 walked into the room.
Aubrey the Quill, signing off for the afternoon.