Firuvin is a slayer, a warden dedicated to walking the secret paths and seeking out the things that lurk in the darkness. He is strong, brave, and wise, though he lacks subtlety [3 Iron, 2 Wits, 2 Heart, 1 Shadow, 1 Edge]. Firuvin is bound to the life of the slayer, bound to seek out the darkness that butchered his community and left him an orphan. Not because he seeks revenge–no slayer would be so foolish as to believe such a thing would do any good–but because the world would be a little better with the demon not in it [+Extreme Vow: Slay the beast that killed his family].
Ikram, his master, [+Bond] taught him many things, most notable among them the way to use the scant bounty of the Ironlands for his own benefit [Assets: Alchemist, Herbalist, Slayer].
Firuvin carries little, but he bears the artifacts of the slayer: the sword, shield, and a mortar and pestle for grinding potions.
The story begins in the village of Stonehall [+bond], at the foot of the great eastern mountains. It is a village of hardscrabble farming and powerful raiders. The warriors gather in a low hall, dug deep into the face of the mountain in the manner of the dwarves who once lived in the region.
The road carried Firuvin across the length of the Ironlands, but it had been quiet of late. The slayer had come to know the company of a woman, Lucia, a scout in service of the master of Stonehall, [+Bond]. It had been a long time since he’d had the opportunity to truly enjoy another’s company, and the sensation of it has come back slowly–but it had come back.
Inciting Incident: Lost Caravan.
Lucia went out with a band of warriors more than a fortnight ago. They are now two, nearly three, days late. Vital supplies for the coming winter were expected–as was Firuvin’s first true friend. Both are missing.
The master of the village called his remaining warriors to the hall. He asked which of them would swear a vow to find the missing caravan.
Did the others swear? Likely: 60, yes.
The warriors leaped at the opportunity to prove their worths, to earn their master’s esteem. Firuvin surprised himself. He too stepped up to the dais and grasped the blade of the master’s sword. He looked the withered old man in the eye and swore the iron vow. He would find that caravan. [+Dangerous Vow: Find Lucia’s caravan.]
The rough outline for this Vow is: Reach the vicinity of the caravan. Discover what happened. Recover the crew and cargo, if possible. Return Lucia (and the other stuff) to Stonehall. Each one of these steps will be worth Marking Progress, unless something comes up during the adventure.
The warriors slammed their drinks together in celebration of their new vows. The most eager of them downed the last of their ale and charged out into the night.
Would any want to team up with the slayer? Unlikely: 16, No.
Firuvin soon found himself alone in the hall with the master of Stonehall. The old man peered down his nose at Firuvin. “I thought Slayers cared for nothing but iron and blood and gold.”
Firuvin shrugged as he stood up from the long table. “I’ll be back for the gold if I find your wagon.”
The old man grimaced as Firuvin stepped out into the night. “You always were a strange one,” the master muttered as the door swung closed on the torchlit hall.
Gather Information: 1d+2w+1 (bond with Stonehall) vs 2|3. Strong hit–learn something specific and +2 momentum (now 4).
The other warriors had already vanished into the night. Firuvin instead turned toward town, sought out the house of Segura, the merchant. The man was sleeping, but he roused easily when Firuvin slammed into his door and barged into the quiet house.
Is Segura upset about the intrusion? 50/50: Yes.
The man muttered and grumbled about the intrusion even as he drew out a map of the caravan’s route on a piece of parchment. “They’re just delayed,” he insisted as Firuvin slipped the map into his pouch. “Stonehall men would never allow bandits to take one of my wagons.”
He shuffled Firuvin toward the door and back out into the night.
+Troublesome Obstacle: Journey to Stormbridge
The map showed the caravan crossing into the valley from the village of Stonebridge. Not far, and a good place to start the search. Firuvin returned home to prepare for the trip.
Before leaving, however, there were things to do. Firuvin pulled out his mortar and pestle and lit a fire beneath the pot. It was time to create an elixir for the road.
Secure an Advantage (Distill elixir in the comfort of home, with tools): 1d+2w vs 1|2 (lucky!). Strong hit. +1 on next roll.
(Alchemist) Create an Elixir of Clarity (-1 Supply, 4 left): 6d+2w+1 vs 7|7. Strong hit + match. Gain Elixir of Clarity.
Match: Overwhelm Ability.
Just as Firuvin stepped back out into the street, a rider on a dying horse stumbled into town. As the horse sank to its knees, the rider tumbled off into the dirt. Firuvin ran up to the man.
Was the rider physically wounded? Certain: 17, yes.
He was one of Segura’s riders. Not so capable after all. Firuvin called for help as he tried to query the man about what had happened, but his was already drifting into unconsciousness from his injuries. He would say nothing–not tonight.
Can someone save him? 50/50: 73, yes.
It was not long before the healer came running. Her boys came after her. “Help him up,” she said. Firuvin watched as they carried him off toward their cottage. He wanted to stay, to ask the man what had caused his wounds, but there was no time. The fact that his horse had come from the trail to Stormbridge was enough.
Firuvin took up a torch and set off into the night.
To be continued…