Thursday, June 22, 2023

Arath Session 10: Another Interlude

 Arath spends a week with the Faun, helping them (he does have some military training, and has been involved in at least one failed siege, so he knows what doesn’t work – and maybe how a successful defense looks from the other side). He consults the Faun on building a wall and strengthening their standing.

Bika, who will not be joining Arath going forward, suggests that they try to ally with some of the tribes of weren. They are simple, but not necessarily evil, and they were afraid of the bugbear and his minions. If they could see the value in working with the Faun instead of against them, they’d be stronger, the area would be safer, and they’d be able to focus on the danger posed by the serpent cult, which is the bigger deal to them.
My gut instinct is to have them work on that in the background for a bit while Arath goes back to the cave in the nearby desert - now that he’s more powerful and has his super skiff - to see what he can do.
I also ask the dice, and they tell me he is allowed to roll the fate bones once per level. Now that he’s level 2, he is allowed another shot at it… not sure if he wants to, but I am down with tempting fate…. And he has luck, so there’s a built-in redo. He has helped tip the scales in one place for life and hope, and this could either win him favor with forces of good, or draw even more enmity from those that would destroy the last vestiges of hope in the desert.

Decisions, decisions…

Heck it to heck. I give the dice a shot. 11 and 7. That’s bad. Luck. Pair of 6s. Quite auspicious!

Interpretation: the forces of law and chaos are striving over Arath’s fate, the for the moment order has dominance. This isn’t wish spell level good (that would a pair of 12s), but I’ll take it. Hmmm. Bonus tag? Dice say no. Special weapon? Nope. A ring? No. A special, unique tag? No. Mmf. Bonus to a trait? No. Bonus to armor? Yes. Is it a suit of armor? Yes.

Arath has a vision. He is to go beyond the door, and meet with the ghost on the other side. He will be given a suit of armor to help him on his journeys.

The dice liked that the best.

Okay. Arath returns to the keep from last time, and (with time) gets the door open. Turns out that this whole southern part was a secret, hidden temple dedicated to Ubek the Wanderer, and when the Gallan Empire was falling and the lush valley was turning to ash, the high priest died here. His ghost remains. Normally, a reaction check would be required, but Ubek has already given Arath his seal of approval. After a bit of a conversation and history lesson (reflected in Arath’s increased mind score already), the ghost bequeaths upon Arath the High Centurion’s Armor. It is probably a suit of enchanted scale mail; yep, the dice say it is. Nice. It is unlikely that it has a special ability beyond being a very good suit of armor; nope. Rolled a 7. That’s it. I will have it give +1 edge when interacting with Gallan armies, but since they have all been dead for a thousand years, that’s not likely to be a very valuable ability. Maybe against the shadelings? I guess I’ll find out. He could go all Aragorn and conscript the souls of the dead for one last fight. I guess the armor opens up a possibility like that…

Arath - Pensive Fighting Man 2 (XP 102)

    Armor 5; Hits 26; Move 60’; Greatsword (6); Sling (1)

    Might 4 (5); Mind 2; Reflex 1

    Fortitude; Luck; Two-handed (+1 edge); Warrior (+1 to hit)

Greatsword 6; Scale Mail 4+1 (Armor of the High Centurion; grants +1 edge with Gallans); Sling 1; Adventurer’s Pack; 7 days rations; Gauntlets of Might +1; Boots of Traveling; Everburning Torch; Decanter of Sustenance (4 people of water per day, healing potion 2x per day); Potion of Levitation; 20’ Levitating Desert Skiff; 240 sp

Okay. Finally, the ghost gives him a commission – a holy cup of Ubek is lost in the desert somewhere, and if Arath can find it and restore it to its place on the altar of Ubek (also lost in the desert), he can restore the desert to its former glory as a lush, fertile valley.

That sounds like the thing that ends the campaign, if I can get there.

Arath also recovers a tattered Old Gallan flag from the temple area storehouse. The Faun are able to treat it with oils to preserve it, and he flies this from the back of his levitating skiff, which he has named the Falconer, since in Old Gallan myth the falcon was the symbol of Ubek.

In the meantime, a cave with spiders and maybe some treasure awaits!

Side note: I am enjoying Arath’s character growth. I love the idea of playing paladins, and I almost made him one at character creation, but then decided to just make him a mercenary who cared only about making some cash… and slowly he is evolving into a paladin. I went back and changed his adjective to pensive. He’s starting to change. I really like that, and I like that the use of adjectives could change over time, which is not an option I had considered, but which works fantastically.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not going to call it out by name, but there's a barbarian-themed rpg that is doing well (to all appearances) on RPGNow. It is doing well largely because the cover is fantastic - because it is AI. The author has not tried to make any secret of this (so props for that), but it's still ... frustrating? No. Sad? Kind of. Because at the end of the day, I know that I created everything from my own imagination and based on the thousands of things I've read and digested on my own. That dude knows on some level that he didn't make that art. It's not really 'his'. He has more money than I do (at least from selling gaming stuff). That's okay. I have something I genuinely created. That is far better.