Keep on the Borderlands Solo – 3

The second session of my solo Labyrinth Lord game of Keep on the Borderlands eneded as Tangrir the Fencer and Rothwood the man-at-arms headed out into the borderlands to find the secret workshop of a necromancer.

Setup

The Party

Tangrir the Fencer (Fighter 1, 36/2025xp): 11-16-9-14-10-6. 7/8 hp. 16 ac (chain+dex). Melee: rapier (+0 dmg, +2 hit). Ranged: bow (+0 dmg, +2 hit). 20 gp 1 sp 11 cp. Inventory (8/10): rapier, bow and quiver (19), bedroll, waterskin, ration (7), 10′ pole, flint, torches (8)

Rothwood (NM 0): 5/5 hp. 12 ac (leather). Melee: club/dagger (+0 dmg, +0 hit), ML 6, MV 30′

Mythic Stuff

Chaos: Average (d10)

NPCs: corrupt priest, castellan, necromancer, captain of the watch (elf), monster raiding parties, rival adventuring party, friendly army officer

Threads: missing merchant, clear the Caves of Chaos, losing control of the countryside, find necromancer’s base, monsters in the Keep

Rumors: Massive dog men live in the higher reaches of the caves (Truth: 4+?)

After the jump, the game begins…

Reminder: You can find links to every one of my solo session game reports on my Campaign Logs page.

Gameplay

Scene 6, cont’d. Hunting for the Necromancer.

Setup: Explore the region around the farmstead
Chaos: Average (d10) — no roll since we just had an interrupt

Tangrir and his new hired man, Rothwood, head out into the borderlands, following the road southwest toward the farmstead. They pass the first day uneventfully [no encounters], and night settles around them as they march out of the woods and into the hill country, where they make camp and Tangrir pays his Rothwood his gold piece. [camp in 06-06, -1 ration, -1 gp].

Hex 07-05

The next morning they rise early and head further into the hills.

Is there an encounter (v. unlikely)? Yes, but… it isn’t related to the quest
d30 Sandbox: Party of 5 NPCs of 2nd level
Does Tangrir hear them first (v. likely)? Yes, and… with plenty of time to hide

Loud voices come echoing up the trail in the late morning. Glancing around, Tangrir and Rothwood are able to retreat from the road and take cover behind dense foliage as a group of five adventurers, dressed in [dirty? No! +event] immaculate traveling clothes and shining armor, come up the trail.

Event: Ambiguous Event (Judge/Dispute)

A sixth traveler follows behind them–Tangrir can see that it is a [m/w] woman, bound at the hands and pulled along by a rope strung to the leader’s saddle horn. Her mouth is gagged and she wears the scarlet sigil of a criminal.

Can they overhear the group’s conversation (50/50)? Yes
Are they working for the Keep (likely)? Yes

[(neutral) hostile – injury – flaws]
“After what this one did the undermine the Keep’s plans, they’ll be aching to have her back in their dungeon,” one of the adventurers says, “and we’ll be swimming in whiskey for a month!”

Not eager to risk his own life for a possible traitor, Tangrir stays hidden until the group passes. After a few minutes, he and Rothwood return to the road and continue on their way.

Hex 08-05

Roll story cubes for travel: binocular – bear – fire – clouds

They travel further northwest into the hills as the sky overhead darkens. It looks like rain, but not for a while yet. The trail brings them past an abandoned campsite, where a trio of jackals are pawing through a ruined tent.

Do the jackals run (likely)? No.

The three dogs, clearly starving, turn and howl when they see the travelers. They charge and leap at the two men, but the men are able to fend them off with their blades, though Tangrir takes a fierce nip on his shin from one of them [one hits, 1 dmg, 6 hp left].

Rothwood swings with his club and pounds one of the beasts on the head, killing it. It screams as it collapses, and the other two yelp and flee into the woods [they fail their morale roll].

Do they find anything useful at the camp (unlikely)? No.

Unfortunately, it seems as if anything of value had already been taken. They pair pass by and continue their search.

Is this where the necromancer’s base is (unlikely)? Yes, but… it’s already been abandoned

They spend the rest of the morning and the early afternoon searching the hill country, but to no avail. Just as they agree to head east, toward the lakeshore, Tangrir spots a crumbling tower rising just above the crest of a distant hillock.

The pair moves into a nearby copse of trees. “Wait here,” Tangrir says. I’ll scout ahead. Come quickly if I yell, otherwise I’ll make a sign when it’s clear for you to come up.” Rothwood agrees quickly.

Tangrir spends a few moments surveying the ridge, though he suspects any sentry would have spotted them along the trail if he were watching. Still, better safe than sorry.

Is anyone keeping watch (unlikely, since we know the necromancer left)? No, so I won’t make a DEX check for sneaking.

Tangrir sticks to the low gullies and soon makes the hill. Lying opposite him, across a low valley, stands a [overthrow/wounds] ruined castle, walls long broken by siege engines and surrounded on all sides by the detritus of an old battlefield. A sole tower still stands above the rubble, rising high about the broken stones.

Once he sees that nothing is moving below, Tangrir waves back at the copse and waits for Rothwood to meet him at the crest.

Does Rothwood know the ruin (unknown, 50/50)? No.

The old soldier makes the Sign of Warding and says a few words.

“You know this place?” Tangrir asks.

Rothwood shakes his head. “I’ve known many like it, and that’s enough. Chaos presses hard against our home.”

Tangrir thinks for a moment how different life is here than in the West, where Chaos is…a distant evil, impersonal. He isn’t sure if that’s better or worse than the petty, daily evil of the streets where he learned to fight.

Chaos: Advances to Out of Control (d8) as they move into the dungeon.

Wrapping Up

Just a quick session this time–that way I can devote my next post to a dungeon crawl. I plan on using Appendix A for the dungeon generator with Mythic and the LL AEC for color/stocking, which will be my first time actually playing a game with it. Hopefully it’ll go well! I’ve already done a handful of rooms but will be interested to see how it turns out.

Treasure and Exp

Jackal, 5 xp

The Party

Tangrir the Fencer (Fighter 1, 41/2025xp): 11-16-9-14-10-6. 6/8 hp. 16 ac (chain+dex). Melee: rapier (+0 dmg, +2 hit). Ranged: bow (+0 dmg, +2 hit). 19 gp 1 sp 11 cp. Inventory (8/10): rapier, bow and quiver (19), bedroll, waterskin, ration (6), 10′ pole, flint, torches (8)

Rothwood (NM 0): 5/5 hp. 12 ac (leather). Melee: club/dagger (+0 dmg, +0 hit), ML 6, MV 30′

Mythic Stuff

Chaos: Out of Control (d8)

NPCs: corrupt priest, castellan, necromancer, captain of the watch (elf), monster raiding parties, rival adventuring party, friendly army officer

Threads: missing merchant, clear the Caves of Chaos, losing control of the countryside, find necromancer’s base, monsters in the Keep

Rumors: Massive dog men live in the higher reaches of the caves (Truth: 4+?)

3 thoughts on “Keep on the Borderlands Solo – 3

    1. Thanks! I am often pleasantly surprised by how seemingly inconsequential rolls can provide unexpected cohesion and depth to the game world.

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