Casting Runes 6: A Season for All Things – Session 13 Recap

This post continues the exploration and implementation of RuneQuest 6th Edition in a sword and sorcery campaign setting. This was a short session, focused on roleplaying through the fallout of events from the previous one.

 

Check the list of links below for the recaps of the previous sessions, and other related articles on this campaign. Less-detailed video recaps are also available on my YouTube Channel.

 

Session 13 kept the momentum from Session 12 and kept Turged and Wakefield in the role of instigators and leaders. With one goal accomplished, they laid the groundwork for the next, sticking to their intentions with the Patriarch.

 

Problems  & Solutions:

Although this Hangout was affected by what now appears to be a regular occurrence of at least one dropped connections from one player, and one myself, we made good use of the time we had. This session continued the focus on nearly pure roleplay among allies and each other, so once again no new game mechanics were used, nor were there new rulings to report on.

 

Thoughts on Running the Game:

The characters and the atmosphere of the return to the High Temple changed after their high-flying seek and destroy mission against the Aelran Envoy. The switch from reactive play, through the period of acquiring information, has emerged out the other side into proactive play.

The pace they set for themselves will be picking up from here, I believe, as will the danger. The group is taking the fight to Chaos now, and as they seek it out they will encounter resistance, and face hardship.

It feels good to know that they are ready to face it.

Session Thirteen: Decay from Within

This session, like the last, was run on a Saturday afternoon, with two players present. We started with an in-character recap before play, then confirmed the results of that with some brief discussion of the major details which may have gotten confused in the gap since the group last played. This segued back into IC interaction by picking up a thread of conversation with Ystral in the Order of the Horizon compound. 

 

Session Recap:

  • Ystral made it clear that his involvement in an official capacity was constrained by orders and duties, but that if he could help, he would. His orders had him stationed here as a visible sign of the Order’s commitment to battling Chaos, but his duty required him to scour the passes which might serve as a conduit for chaos creatures and servants trying to swell the ranks of the army gathering in the Desert. He would definitely consider the logistics of sparing a squad of men and aerial transport to get them as close to Pumoth Deep as possible. He did, however, let them know that his actions of the day before had been noted and that he would have to deal with that first. Everyone needed sleep and time to sort through the documents they had recovered. Some needed time to process what they had just done.
  • Turged dispatched Myn to carry the recovered map to the Chief Librarian. Ystral included an escort to ensure the prize got where it was going. Wakefield included a request for Vontil, the librarian, to join them that night in a less pretentious inn for some drinks and conversation. While they awaited a response, Ystral went off to justify his actions to the newly arrived, regional commanding officer. Turged used the time to pen some letters of introduction for Horizon members to use in building a working relationship with militia from the Plenthan Deeps. Sleep came for them and they rested under the protection of the Order. In the morning, Ystral was nowhere to be seen.
  • The escorts had returned while they were sleeping with a note of acceptance from Vontil, and directions to a more homey inn, far out among the farms and orchards. Small communities are scattered throughout Temple land, and few of the residents of the Temple itself could be bothered to visit them. Vontil, a former soldier, was apparently not among them.
  • Walking to the inn on a long, hot afternoon under the frozen sun, the two Chosen Ones had a chance to talk through what they wanted to do. They were sensitive to the idea that they were being pulled in so many directions, and that each direction seemed to ask things of them that they did not believe they could perform. They were not leaders, not orators, not generals, not priests… yet, they felt drawn to being a part of each.
  • Vontil arrived at the inn not long after they did. The fare was far below the quality of the first inn the man had suggested, but the ale was good. While they talked, farmers came and went. They talked in small numbers or drank alone,  mostly ignoring the songs and thinly veiled political commentary coming from the musician jammed into one corner of the common room. The singer’s presence and the reaction to his words, suggested a stronger undercurrent of concern among the people than was evident in the cool halls of the Temple. Vontil was excited to being sharing his findings with them, but did not have a great deal of detail for them. As he had noted initially, the missing map had had a small notation near its edge which he believed had spoken of the Tower. He had been right.
  • The man revealed to them that the Tower, properly known to the map-maker as the Tower of the Dawn does change its location via means the annotator seemed to think were obvious to everyone. Fortunately, they thought to include the means to find it each day, depending on season and the location of the sun. Turged and Wakefield immediately connected the frozen nature of the sun with the rise of chaos, and deduced that the Tower must in some way be important to, or a seat of Chaos. Under these conditions, the tower might be frozen in place and so might be affecting the area around it. Either way, the nomads who make it the object of their rites of passage, have raised enough suspicions in the Temple and the Order to warrant a close investigation. The problem they must face now, he told them, was trying to get the Patriarch to back their mission. To do so, he would lose political points at a time when he could least afford it. Trying to choke down the terrible breaded cheese, with copious amounts of brew, conversation turned to more personal topics until it was time to stagger back to the Compound under the piercing bluish-white light of the cruel, frozen sun.
  • Their return to the Compound, found Ystral preparing another raid. When he heard their thoughts on the map, he agreed to force the issue with his commander, and send a unit of men with them – scouts and sorcerers. He, on the other hand, was going to take Turged’s notes and seek out a relationship with Maroth Deep. He wanted to deal with the increased appearances of chaos creatures before they could swell to such numbers as to be too much of a threat.
  • Wakefield and Turged made their way back to the Temple, meeting a tired-looking Myn on the road. As they approached the massive stone building, they could hear the sounds of an angry crowd engaged in passionate discourse, and followed the twisting paths around the open expanse of the temple’s courtyard, until they could observe it unnoticed. What they saw was a growing mass of people on the steps of the Temple, calling for action – growing more and more divisive as their tempers flared. The Fidrans were demanding action against Chaos, and an inquisition to root out traitors in their midst. They could not imagine a world in which their deity could abandon them, nor one in which he could be defeated by Chaos. That they could no longer commune with him had to be a plot directed against his followers. An organized group of older priests, loyal to the Patriarch, stood against them by arguing for the fidelity of all here, but were being drowned out. A vocal contingent of Alirans, newly arrived from the ruins of their fallen city agreed with the Fidrans, and pointed to the frozen sun as proof of the growing might of Chaos. Their numbers were split however, and a minority of Alirans, backed by the Plenthans, maintained that they still had the ears of their deities. The Plenthans were further demanding loyalty to the cause of Order regardless of the state of the temples and their followers.
  • Turged sought out the eyes of his nation’s High Priest and the man excused himself from the press of angry politicians and wolves in priests’ clothing to meet up with him along the edge of the throng. He helped them to understand the divisions in the crowd, and what had brought all of this about in his clear and brief way. Turged assured him that something was being done, and that a mission to take the fight to Chaos was being launched. The man returned to the shouting with renewed vigor.
  • The two made their way to the Patriarch’s chambers and sought an audience. Somewhat coldly, he granted it, dismissing the few advisers still doing their duties. Beckoning them to stand with him by the window, with the crowd below as counterpoint, he listened to their ideas. They urged him to continue the quest across the Sunken Sea, if for no other reason than to confirm that the reptilian spies might have come from there. They also requested that he support them on their mission to the Tower. Vontil had prepared them for the possibility that he would not. He was right. The Patriarch could not openly support their mission, but was willing to redirect some resources their way and to legitimize the mission as a part of his own. It would take finesse, so he hoped that there would not be discussion about it on their part. Unlike the awkward ending to their last meeting with the ancient religious leader, this one ended on a warm note, as he expressed his fears for the nations of law. “The time to act is now,” he said, looking sadly down on the raucous throng below. “But… where are the armies of Law? The armies of chaos are at the gate, where are the armies of Law to stand against them?”  Neither Turged nor Wakefield had an answer for him.

 

Session Fourteen:

The Fourteenth session recap will appear in a few weeks, there have been many delays due to holidays, work, and obligations.

 

Stay tuned~

Weekly Recaps

Comments
2 Responses to “Casting Runes 6: A Season for All Things – Session 13 Recap”
  1. Murderbunny says:

    I’ve been reading the recaps with joy and thoughtfulness and anticipation of the next one, and recently I had a bit of a realization… not quite an epiphany… about a feature in your game world, or rather, the lack of one: women.

    Aside from the reptilian assassins (who, as apparent agents of Chaos, are aberrant creatures), no women have appeared in this story at all: not as pilgrims, guards, priestesses, prophetesses, healers, scholars – none. At least, none with names (come to think of it, there may have been a passing mention of female healers… I don’t recall right now).

    So, this leads me to wonder: are women second-class and isolated citizens in your game world, and why is it that you have made this creative choice? Alternately, is the almost-absence of women in the narrative a creative oversight, possibly the product of an all-male creative group writing what they know?

    • Runeslinger says:

      It is a little sad that it takes a woman to be the first to notice this. All I am free to say right now is that it’s a feature, not a bug. There are other elements, such as location (disaster, desert, temple, player choice) which augment this feature, but our last session (ep 14, and the next) feature Turged’s player as a female acolyte (as has been mentioned).

      Thanks for asking~

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