Fryun Invasion - The Charioteer's Tomb part 1

The PCs: Talon an expat of the Lostrian lands (Tony), Sammy an escapee of an Aldeia dedicated to Nietzschean experimentation (Susan), J4 an android wiped of his memories (Think Ultron with the standards and acumen of Bender) (Ren), and Elliot, a former assassin trying to follow a new path (Tabitha). All of them are starting at Tier 1. 

This campaign was started a year ago, and is still being played.  I did not take specific notes about the conversations just their actions and the results.  If and when I do put conversations or statements in, it’s because they really stood out and the players are still talking about those conversations.  All of the adventures in this campaign are pre-printed, but HEAVILY modified to fit the setting and the system.

This opening adventure started out as The Charioteer's Tomb written by Peter Schwieghofer with Griffon Publishing Studio.

Comments

  • So let’s begin at the beginning:    

     

    The group already having a bit of a reputation as being decent artifact hunters, are hired by Baron Tichronus of Uxphon through his servant Dorial.*  Their job is to assist and provide security for the excavation of a temple dedicated to the Garamurian** Charioteer General Henu-Akeht, in the Aldeia of Sacra.  West from the mouth of the Darkwater Canyon in the CloudCrystal Skyfields. 

    Keeping all of the local workers back, the “Assistants” watched the excavation leader descend into a pit dug out to reveal a set of sealed metal doors.  He took only one worker with him so that he, Professor Mallorp, scholar of the Amber Papacy, could have the privilege and the glory of being the first person through the sealed doors of the crypt.  Upon opening the seal and the doors there was a slight pause followed by a tremendous fireball that forced all of the on lookers to fall back for fear of being burned at the top of the shaft.  Looking down and not hearing anything after the roar of the fireball subsided, the assistants could see the crypt had claimed the life of the archeologist and his dogsbody.  Agitated and worried the locals begin attributing the explosion to a curse on the crypt.

    They decided, after a heated debate, (and Sammy pointed out they would probably not get paid for the gig if they didn’t) to go down the shaft and finish the professor’s work.  With all the local workers, and their foreman Kassem, refusing to be the next ones killed by the crypt, it fell to the new leaders of the digsite to go in and prove there was no curse.  The doors at the bottom of the shaft gave little in the way of evidence for why there was an explosion.  But, they did show the force of it by digging the doors in to the walls of the shaft.   Standing guard at the entrance the group waited until the local workers had retrieved to bodies to continue. 

    The initial passage, though chipped and scarred by the passage of time and scorched by the fireball, still showed many hieroglyphs and pictograms painted upon the surfaces.  Troughs with the remains of long desiccated herbs, flowers, and possibly dung line the walls.  This hallway leads to a large central chamber with a pair of statues and more hieroglyphs.  Lighting and mounting their glowglobes, they discover that drit, dust and debris cover the floor and the painted walls are plaster over metal like the crypt doors.  Sammy, Talon and Elliot start studying the walls of this chamber while J4 sees and decides to investigate a smaller chamber through an open archway just to the south, a small storage room.

    J4 finds racks of ancient archeological artifacts (Not the kind that he wants) ranging from small clay models of chariots to ancient rotted foods.  Tall sealed amphorae, stacked against the wall take his notice and he decides to try an open one of them without breaking it.

    At the same time the study of the walls progresses to the statues at the other end of the room.  Large statues depicting humans in armor are seemingly guarding an archway between them.  The statues are poked and prodded, hit and berated by Sammy, Talon and Elliot but don’t budge from their seats and were subsequently deemed to be window-dressing.  That is until the three of them try to pass between the statues, and the things abruptly stand up.   

    The battle with the statues ensues with abandon, And not exactly in the heroes’ favor.  Talon fed up with having to fight both statues throws a shrapnel detonation at the feet of one of the statues with just enough warning that Sammy and Elliot can get somewhat clear of the blast, dropping the statue.  That’s when Elliot notices that J4 is still trying to get the lid of the amphorae off.  Taking a small pause in fighting she runs over the archway.

     Elliot:  "Hey..Uh we could really use your help out here."

    J4 looks over his shoulder: "You guys seem to have it handled, I’m gonna see what’s in here."

    Elliot:  "Fine, Whatever…"

     Elliot runs back into the fray with the remaining statue.  With Elliot back fighting with the other two, the tide of battle turns against them.  The statue begins flinging the combatants around.  J4 looks over his shoulder again in time to see Talon get seriously hurt. He harumphs, and rolls his optical receptors.  The android temporarily abandons the amphorae and stalks angrily over to the statue pushing the others out of his way. 

     Yelling his battle cry “PUNCHBOT 3000!” J4 throws a devastating haymaker that crushes the statue’s head in one blow.***  “I’m going to back to what I was doing now, before you can guys can screw this up any further”  The android turns on his heel and stalks back to the storage room to restarts his efforts to open the amphorae.

     Furious, Elliot stalks up behind the android pushes him out of the way and in one simple move opens the amphorae, glaring at the android the entire time.****  “There see!”  They both stop upon hearing a soft scuttling noise from the jar.  J4 turns his optics into flashlights and they both look into the jar, just as a small swarm of beetles comes flying out of the amphorae and attacks Elliot and J4. Both scream and begin slapping at each other. 

     Sammy binds Talons ribs and other wounds while they both watch the former assassin and the android exchange insults and slaps in their attempt to rid themselves of the creatures.  Neither move to help. 

  • *     Baron Tichronus and his servant Dorial are NPCs from the Numenera adventure The Devil's Spine.
    **    Gramurians are an ancient empire also featured in The Devil's Spine.
    ***   This was only possible because of the game's first Natural 20 on an already injured construct.  All his previous rolls while he was working on the amphorae were failures.
    ****  This was possible because of the games second natural 20.  I could not have and did not plan this, but I was glad it worked out this way.   
  • edited October 2016

    I like it – a good start and a fun to read write-up. Waiting for Part 2.

     Don’t you just LOVE that feeling when a PC says “I rolled a 20”?

    “Wait! Do not touch the dice! Stand back from the table. Let me look. OH! So you have.”

    Your carefully scripted plot now falls apart. Which just goes to show, you shouldn’t have a carefully scripted plot to start with. Because this sort of thing happens.

    I wrote an outline for Minor and Major events and issued it as a handout – I let the player decide what they want to happen due to the roll; within the guidelines.

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