Friday, 6 June 2014

Torchbearer AP - Part 3: Town Time in Torlynn

When we last left our adventurers, they had just found their way out of Barrik's Keep and were intent on travelling back to the nearby village of Torlynn. Riley S recapped the previous session during Prologue and removed Hunger and Thirst from Hrolf.

Dramatis Personæ:
  • Fraser ... Morris the Mirthful [Human Magician] An anarchistic arcanist with a big mouth and several opinions.
  • Jason ... Rebo Pepper [Halfling Burgler] A quiet and pleasant little person who seeks loot to feed his love of food.
  • Riley S ... Hrolf Rosensloff [Human Warrior] - A fighter of such short stature he's often mistaken for a dwarf.
  • Stephen ... Joseph [Human Cleric] - A jaded ex-felon who found religion in gaol and became a cleric. Absent.
  • Scotty ... Falgaff Bitterleaf [Elven Ranger] - A curious, knowledge-loving Elf who's a bit of a loner.

Adventure Phase

6. Exiting the Keep our party found that a chill wind had picked up and the snow had started to fall thicker (the result of a Twist last session). The two sets of tracks that led south-westerly, presumably belonging to Joseph and Rebo, were beginning to fade to wind and weather. Twilight was approaching soon and the loss of daylight combined with the snowfall limited visibility. The recently 'rescued' Blingo discarded the burnt out torch he was carrying and Hrolf took point in attempting to lead the party back to Torlynn with a Pathfinder Test; unfortunately despite help from his companions the Exhaustion he was suffering from caused him to lead them astray and they all became lost in the woods.
 7. Traipsing through snowy landscape was weary work, and everyone had to make a Health Test to weather the elements modified by +1 for being lost (and +1 to Morris for having no footwear.). Failure resulted in Hrolf becoming Angry at being cold, wet, and lost whereas Morris became Injured with frostbitten feet.

Camp Phase 

  • With twilight upon the adventures, they decided to make camp in the snowy wilderness and wait out the night and the weather. Instinct drove Falgaff to making a successful Survivalist Test, building a basic shelter from the elements, thus making a Safe Camp. Once inside everyone drank some water to alleviate their Thirst. Morris was the only one with a check, but he gave it to Hrolf, who downed his wineskin and attempted to quell his Anger; unfortunately this just made him drunk and miserable. The remainder of the night was spent shivering till the dawn arrived with a clear sky.

Adventure Phase

  1. Morris tried untrained to get their bearings with a Beginner's Luck Scout Test, to no avail.
  2. Falgaff climbed up a tree and managed to spy the village laying behind yonder hill with a Scout Test. His Remembering Nature enabled him to recall to safe route to the settlement from the lay of the land he had observed overhead.

Torlynn in the throes of a magical winter.

Torlynn (Cursed)

This once-proud alpine town is now dilapidated and decrepit. Many of its homes are vacant, abandoned by their former owners when a foul magic crept upon the region and placed Torlynn under the curse of eternal winter. There are still a few humans living in the town - a group of survivors who are convinced that the town is again destined for greatness.

Torlynn is under a perpetual Minor Inconvenience: Food Shortage that boarders Disaster: Famine for as long as the magical winter continues. The temperature is mild enough during the warmer months to not trigger a Winter Phase, but still cold enough to deter plant growth. It is advised that the GM not roll on the Town Events Table during such curse, but if they wish to do so, a -1 penalty should be applied to the roll to represent the poor state of affairs and any Disaster rolled automatically results in a Famine.

Available Locations

Tavern (the Grinning Goblin), Street, Inn (the Soft Pillow), Homes: (the Burgomaster's [Inn equivalent], Clyde the Merchant's [Flophouse equivalent], Blingo the Carpenter's [Flophouse equivalent], empty buildings [Stables equivalent; squatting has an initial 0 lifestyle cost, but landlords attempt to charge 'rent' if squatters are discovered (An immediate Ob 1 Res Test followed by lifestyle cost of +1) or force them onto the Street. Treat squatting as Hiding Out.]), Temple (Limited Services, Prayers are +1 to the Ob cost), Market (Limited, no food available for purchase), Guild Hall: Guilds Limited to: 
  1. Blacksmiths
  2. Bakers
  3. Butchers
  4. Carpenters
  5. Tanners
  6. Leathercrafters
Locations struckthrough are unavailable during cursed winter.

Alignment: unaffiliated


  • Magicians may not testify before a judge.
  • Purposed: All magicians and elves must wear conical hats. Failure to do so punishable by whipping or a fine (Ob 3 Res Test).

Home Skills: Labourer, Leathercraft, Carpenter
Home Traits: Stubborn, Rough Hands

Additional Notes: 

  • Haggling Obstacle 3
  • A thieves guild, which operated secretly out of warehouse, closed its doors even before the disaster struck. They left some of their items behind, but also left traps to protect these items. Characters making it their business to nose around abandoned buildings may stumble upon this trapped hideout. (Roll once on Loot Table 1 for each trap encountered/bypassed.)

Town Phase

  • The group arrived at Torlynn just as Rebo was leaving the local gaol and some trouble involving Joseph (best not mentioned). After some discussion they decided to hit the market first with their gains in an attempt to procure supplies. The thankful but forgotten Blingo rapidly made off for his own dwelling.
  • Both Morris and Rebo successfully Haggled with the merchants respectively; the group took stock of their resources and had loot appraised:
- Set of Silverware and Plate: Worth 2D.
- Bag of Silver Coins: Worth 1D cash.
 -Platinum Necklace: Worth 4D+1D for being an Interesting Item.
  • After a bit of explanation on how Resource Tests and Treasure Dice work out of game, Hrolf hit upon the Good Idea to find someone to exchange the costly necklace into dividable wealth and met with the Rebo's friend Clyde the Merchant, who then traded several large bags of copper coin of equivalent value for the necklace.
  • The group decided the best way to spend wealth was to give each member 2D worth of treasure, and they would then attempt to establish buyer credibility by purchasing inexpensive Ob 1 items, eventually building up rep to purchase more expensive things with assistance from each other.
  • Falgaff bought a Large Sack and Morris a new Satchel; Hrolf attempted to buy some Wine but failed, the Twist being with Tavern closed, no wine was for available for sale. 
  • With backing from Morris and Falgaff, Rebo purchased a Lantern and as a part two-for-one deal (Hard Bargain) also a Bow set, which he then gave to Falgaff for use.
  • They then tried to buy a couple Flasks of Oil, but ended up in a shouting match with the shopkeep over the price. In the end the flasks were obtained but the three of them were made Angry by the argument.
  • Morris visited a recommended leathercrafter, who sold him a nice, if slightly oversized pair of boots to fit his swollen feet. Having secure footwear again, Morris finally quaffed a Potion of Healing, to remove his frostbite Injury.
  • After all the treasure was spent, the group began to think about accommodations whilst in town. Morris, Falgaff, and Hrolf considered squatting in an abandoned building if Clyde's hospitality had worn out for them. Rebo visited Clyde and managed to convince his friend to open his common room floor again to the group, and Rebo would in turn keep them all well-fed.
  • Once housing was sorted out, Morris decided to further display his distaste in the mayorship of Torlynn by standing a top the burnt out divan and ranting to any locals willing to listen his rhetoric. The resulting Orator Test was unable to sway the meagre crowd much, but it did relieve Morris of his own Anger.
This explains Morris in a nutshell.
  • Whilst that was going on, Falgaff  paid a visit Gustovan the Burgomaster at his residence with intent to vent his own Anger about a perceived situation: he and his original companions were given no search party following their disappearance in the Keep. Gustovan countered that he had no proof that the group led by Elladin Silvercrest (which Falgaff was apart of) hadn't just taken the Burgomasters modest payment and run off with it; additionally no one from Torlynn was experienced let alone willing enough to explore the Keep. Falgaff then accused Gustovan of living in luxury whilst the villagers near starved, which the Burgomaster presented his near empty larder as proof that his own supply went to the most needy. In the end Gustovan offered the elf room and board to make some amends for unwittingly abandoning Falgaff and his compatriots.
  • Spending time with his friend cleared away Rebo's Anger at the local shopkeep, a bath and the Burgomaster's hospitality wiped away Falgaff's own Anger, and but alas even after downing Rebo's wineskin, Hrolf was still miserable and was beginning to gain a small reputation as an Angry drunkard. Everyone rested for the night at their respective accommodations.
  • Falgaff and Morris spent a bit of time going over the recently acquired spell book; Falgaff managed to learn and scribe Supernal Vision and Eldritch Darts in his own book, whereas Morris only learned Eldritch Darts.
  • When they had finished, Hrolf asked the two magic-users to inspect the odd skull containing a candle he recovered from the Keep. Falgaff recalled similar use of such in rituals to contain or summon ones' spirit after death, the candle wick inside being the trigger. Falgaff was very curious to light it and see what would happen, but they decide to do it outside, with thanks from Clyde.
  • All four were present when Falgaff lit the candle within the skull; at first nothing happened, then suddenly the sky grew dark and the ghostly image of a long bearded, hunched wizard appeared before the characters and pompously announced himself as Barrik, master of the unknown and tamer of shadows! All made a Will Test against this terrifying apparition; and (un)fortunately, only Hrolf was driven Afraid by such sorcery. 
Now imagine that with the voice of Red Mantle from Venture Bros.
  • After a brief dialogue with wherein Barrik declared that he sensed an evil presence in his home, and demanded the adventures seek out and remove the source of which is no doubt tied to the cursed winter that has the land under pall. Being a disembodied spirit, Barrik was unable assist the group physically, but was able to impart knowledge of both his Keep as well as some magical teachings to the one who'd carry his spirit; between the elf and the magician, he arbitrarily chose Falgaff to be his vessel.
  • A burst of flame spewed forth from the eye-sockets of the skull and engulfed Falgaff, making him to scream in pain and collapse to the ground looking dead. The sky returned to normal illumination and inspection of the elf revealed he was alive and unharmed. The somewhat loud and grating voice of Barrik echoed inside his head, occasionally imparting wisdom but mostly making inane comments. (Falgaff gained an automatic Pass advancement for his Will for this trouble).
  • Being somewhat early in the day, the group decided to pack up and head back to the keep. Before leaving it was decided that the group would have to catch game to eat since there was no food to be purchased in town and the magic hand-bell only provided so much; Rebo went and acquired some hunting supplies such as snares and the like from market, during which Falgaff paid a visit to Blingo to retrieve the Potion of Healing he had inadvertently ran home with. 
  • Everyone then settled their financial affairs before leaving town: both Morris and Falgaff were forced to pay all they had remaining to the tax on their resources; Rebo still had some resources after he settled his bills; and Hrolf was frugal enough during his stay to build no lifestyle cost of note, which was good because he had no money to pay it with anyway. The party refilled their skins with water, and were on their way!

Adventure Phase

  1. Some distance out of town, Rebo passed the hunting supplies to Hrolf who set them up along a few game trails with the intent of snaring a small animal. A successful Hunter Test meant that before Hrolf had a chance to set up a third snare, his first had caught something; a small hare.
  2. The hare (worth one fresh portion) was given to Rebo, who turn performed a successfully assisted Cook Test and transformed the fresh carcass into three preserved rations.
  3. Again our adventures became lost in the woods looking for Barrik's Keep with a failed Pathfinder Test.
  4. After some small discussion, a successful Pathfinder Test this time by Falgaff led the group to the Keep. They quenched their freshly acquired Thirst with their water-skins.
  5. Stepping into the dimly lit entry way, the party recalled the entrances they had passed through when they were first in the Keep. Morris recalled something said about odd lights being seen in a tower, and Falgaff inquired to the spirit of Barrik in his head if there was another tower in the building aside from the collapsed one seen outside and visited  inside by second group. Barrik said yes and gave Falgaff general directions, which he then relayed to the rest of the party; Morris bemoaned upon recalling that such directions led into the area the White Widow spider had fled when they had driven it off last time they were here. Morris lit and carried the lantern and they proceeded cautiously down the eastern corridor. As they neared the broken tower Morris faintly heard a humming noise ahead; he recalled that it was a sound created by the wind playing over thin stands and it created a lulling supernatural melody that created lethargic feelings to those that heard it. Morris had a Good Idea of stuffing the tallow from the candle inside Barrik's skull in their ears to block the sound, much to Barrik's dismay; he considering that candle part of what remained of his physical form. There was just enough tallow in the candle to sufficiently block the earways of everyone, and they were able to pass the lulling strands unaffected.
  6. The passageway Barrik told them to proceed down was partially blocked by debris; Morris attempted to remove the rubble silently with an untrained Labourer Test, but failed and generated such a racket that it was easily heard even through their wax-filled ears. The group was unnerved at the prospect that something else might've heard that noise.
  7. Proceeding through the now unblocked passageway, they briefly glanced into two entryways on their left; they opened to the dinning room and kitchen they had visited before respectively. Pushing forward they eventually entered a dark square chamber similar to the collapsed tower that seemed to radiate cold even more so than usual in the chilly keep. In the light of the lantern, four broken pine coffins rested upon stone slabs along the far wall of the room. The hairs on the back of our delvers' necks began to stand on end as four dark shapes began to rise from the caskets! Three of them resembled rotten corpses and had jerky, stilted movements, whilst the other moved with a feral-like grace. It's eyes burned with a malevolent intelligence, and a long wicked tongue licked gleaming fangs! In a raspy voice it croaked, "Kill these intruders so I might feast upon their flesh!"

And the session was ended on that cliffhanger! Next game, a Conflict will ensue!

Character Condition Status
  • Falgaff Bitterleaf - No Condition
  • Morris the Mirthful - Exhausted
  • Rebo Pepper - No Condition
  • Hrolf Rosensloff - Angry, Afraid, and Exhausted
  • Joseph - Exhausted [Absent]

Things I forgot: Not much this time I think, mostly it was just us trying to wrap our heads around the broad, general nature of Resources.

Until next time...

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