Sunday, May 31, 2009

A Guide to Kheriim's Nicknames

People Kheriim doesn't know get a moniker. She may start using names in time. List will be added to as necessary.

Sigrid - Glowy Lady
Gannen - Quiet King
Freja - Princess
Leif - Prince
Anika - Trouble
Halden - Trouble (Kheriim doesn't know there's two of them yet)
Blank - Damn Pirate
Soern - Scary Mage
Ghalib - Smart Lion
Stavros - Strange
Janan - Likes Fire
Aed - Priest

Kheriim's Notes 1

1 of 6month

Teleporting tickles. This was discovered today while travelling with Kaperi to Xanadu. Magical sensitivity could explain the tickling. Xanadu is large, magical, and made of floating rocks. Magical sensitivity in Xanadu induces headaches. The people of Xanadu eat fish. Fish tastes like death.

There are many human-types here of many sizes. The small ones are Faen. The large one is a giant. There are also lizard people, cat people, monkey people and many other not-people type people like in the books at home. There are many people with many titles. What purpose do these titles hold?

Glowy Lady came with a man. She called him Damn Pirate. He was sent away with Prince. Then there was a boat with Prince and Damn Pirate. Damn Pirate imbibed much alcohol. Alcohol is bad. Prince encouraged him. Prince is bad? Prince must be treated nice, even if Prince is bad.

There was a dinner. There was more fish. There were other dead animals too. Damn Pirate and Scary Mage left through the window. They are very unorthodox. There was a man who came in who talked about Harrid. They eat people just like these people eat animals. The man was Strange. Strange also ate dead animals. Damn Pirate and Scary Mage came back with Trouble and Likes Fire. There was much yelling.

Later, Glowy Lady formed a group with Trouble, Likes Fire, Priest, Strange, and Prince. Kaperi says to go. A magic cup must be found.

Kaperi says to go. To go with these people is scary.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Session 1: In Which Sigrid Holds a Summit, Captain Blank's Ship Catches Fire, and a Quest is Begun

Sigrid's summit begins.
Much boring small talk.
Sigrid meets Verrik representative Kaperi and Kaperi's human companion, Khariim.
Soern is late, but arrives. Aed is off doing apprentice-like stuff. Ghalib was invited as a Litorian representative, and, lacking anything better to do, is preventing the drowning of small children. ("Where are your fathers and why are they not watching you?")
Younger twins (Anika and Halden), Captain Blank, and misc. npcs are surprisingly not around.
This turns out to be because Captain Blank is holding his own party in Xanadu's Pleasure Dome. Sigrid is Not Amused. Particularly when it becomes a public nuisance. She yells at both Captain Blank and Halden, who was apparently "supervising". Halden gets sent to bed without supper, poor kid. Janan tries to introduce himself to Captain Blank, but his claim of kinship is not nearly as interesting as rum.
The official dinner of the summit is interrupted first by Captain Blank's ship being caught on fire, and second by the loud entrance of Stavros Xanthis, representative of the human resistance to Harrids on Skaraven.
Blank and Soern discover that Blank's ship was set on fire by Anika and a young man named Janan. After disturbing Janan and Anika's makeout session, Blank finally finds out that Janan wanted his attention because his dead mother claimed Blank was his father. Blank is Not Amused by Janan's choice of methedology.
Soern tattles on Anika to Sigrid, with much added embellishments--"Completely naked. With explosions." etc.
Sigrid is Not Amused, but plans to deal with this later.
Soern tells Gannen & Sigrid that "something" is wrong with the Heart of Sea, wondered if there were other artifacts like the evil sword that might help.
Sigrid decides to ask the closest scholar of Xanadu library (Ghalib! You're knowledgeable! C'mere!) if he has read anything about similar artifacts.
Ghalib is confused by the question, and by the Emperor & Empress talking to him, but answers to the best of his ability.
From what he's read, there are at least three other artifacts of similar origin, one a cup with powers of healing, killing, and prophecy. (lots of power for one cup) They may also be evil.
Sigrid creates a task force to go forth and investigate the matter.
Blank is sent due to his dubious contacts, Leif to make sure the task force actually investigates, Halden to get him out of trouble (and to make he & Leif get along), Stavros to prove Skaraven's intentions, Kheriim to prove Verrik intentions, Aed to provide magical assistance, and Janan, mainly to get him out of her city and away from her daughter.

"It's like Texas. If Texas were a jungle." -Oddysey, re: Verrik lands

"Do you know how hard it is to ride a horse in a dense jungle?" -Artemis, Kheriim
"Do you know how hard it is to save a horse and ride a cowboy?" -Qwerty, Captain Blank
"...You're not allowed to talk anymore." -Artemis

"I don't know where you've been, but mafia bosses are totally good people." -Qwerty, Captain Blank

"Does she understand the younger kids?"-Maggienotmegan, re: Sigrid not understanding her weird older kids
"Yeah, totally. She used to be a terrorist." -Artemis

"The Verrik are all New Yorkers." -Oddysey
"From Texas?" -Qwerty
"Yes...Wait, I can't condone that." -Oddysey

"Okay, Mister Pirate, what is the greatest danger at sea?" -Artemis, Sigrid
"Kraken." -Qwerty, Captain Blank
"Fire!" -Artemis, Sigrid, re: fire safety

"Is there a problem here?" -Rae, Sigrid
"No, no problem. Just that he's never going to catch himself a velociraptor." -Qwerty, Admiral Axe
"But they have caught velociraptors." -Artemis, Sigrid
"Have they? Or are the velociraptors luring them into a false sense of security?" -Qwerty, Admiral Axe
"Well, I don't know about that. I have seen them riding velociraptors." -Artemis, Sigrid
"And I've seen them being eaten by velociraptors." -Qwerty, Admiral Axe

"Ah, he'd float. He's a witch!" -Foole, re: throwing Captain Blank into the ocean

"You're human. You can eat fish if you like." -Foole, Kaperi
"It tastes funny. Like death." -Artemis, Kheriim

"You're the one who set my boat on fire!" -Qwerty, Captain Blank
"And you're the one who let your boat be set on fire!" -Maggienotmegan, Janan

"We were totally just necking, mom; it's okay." -Oddysey, Anika, re: Soern's assertion that Annika and Janan had been sexing it up on a burning boat

"I scratch your back, you scratch mine, except with no actual scratching of backs, instead we do favors." -Qwerty, Stavros

"Stavros is available for all backscratching that is not actual backscratching. All metaphorical backscratching." -Qwerty, Stavros

"I don't get it." -Saganatsu, Soern
"It's nothing. They're pirates." -Artemis, Sigrid
"It's called innuendo. It's when a remark, seemingly innocent on the surface, is actually a reference of a sexual nature. Or about drugs, or death, other adult topics, but usually sex." -Maggienotmegan, Janan
"...Yeah, that flew right over my head." -Saganatsu, Soern
"Well, you are a biter, aren't you?" -Maggienotmegan, Janan

"Well, hello again." -Maggienotmegan, Janan, looking Halden up and down
"...Janan, meet my son, Halden." -Artemis, Sigrid
"Son? Good to meet you. Like the name. Anyone ever tell you you look very like your sister?"-Maggienotmegan, Janan
"No, really?" -Qwerty, Captain Blank, re: twelfth night twin syndrome

Friday, May 29, 2009

Rumors in Xanadu on the Eve of the Summit

"You heard about that ship, the Merchant's Behest, got just past Mixastomere but hasn't been heard from since? I got a cousin who sighted it, he says no way it was the dragons -- it was whales. Giant, ravenous whales. Whole horde of 'em. Any time you sail that far down south, be careful." Tony Sola, down at the docks

"Have you heard who the giants are bringing? Only Mekhel Raghon -- the most gorgeous man in the Diamond Throne. And he's available, and he's royal. Human royalty doesn't count for much back west, but it does count for something." Mira Trai, host of the most fashionable salon in the Red canton

"The Free Faen aren't coming! Probably the Diamond Throne launched another raid to keep 'em out of it, that's smart politics, that is. Wouldn't want the Harrowdeep resistance muddying up their nice pretty party, now would they?" Fezzy Turnbite, quickling faen and full-time resident of the Seafly Saloon

"Gorzam's got hit hard by scurvy this year, harder than most. It's those damn Diamond Throne ships, blocking the trade. Can't get the rum to put their limes in." Oa-Betash, captain of the Midnight Star

"I overheard Ma last night saying -- well, I shouldn't be telling you this, she'd just I was stirring up trouble, but there's a harrid in the city, just this last week, folks have been citing it all over, sneaking around. Wears a cloak, but you can tell. And you know what it must want, coming to Xanadu." Peter Caslingan, errand boy and son of Loretta Caslingan (who owns the best bakery on Xanadu, he'll have you know)

"You know you haven't seen Gannen in a couple of months, right? Yeah, that's right, nobody's noticed it yet, but they will. See, one of his kids did him in, but they're keeping it secret until they can get the succession cleared up. Wouldn't do any good to have the giants know we're defenseless at a time like this. So don't tell any giants, okay?" Erri Blackstone, bookseller

"One of those delegates, just arrived, they've been marked by the assassins. No, I don't know who, and I don't know why, but they have. Heard it from old Tom, and he doesn't tell lies. No, sir." Xayqua, Verrik blacksmith

"I heard from my Aunt Kell last week, her son Zan's gone missing. Whole bunch of the men in those Chak Itzin settlements have, she says -- you didn't know I was from there? Oh, man, the stories I could tell you." Jayne Teller, glassblower

"You know why the giants are so interested in this summit, huh? Why aren't they aren't just staying home, like they belong? I'll tell ya -- 'cause they're about to declare war. The summit'd be just the place to do it, too. It'd have everyone all distracted-like. The element of surprise. So be ready! Don't let any of them giant bastards get away, when the time comes." Irrian Millhouse, veteran

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cap'n Blank's Posse

At the end of the last campaign, Blank began to focus more on getting more personal with his fighting style, hitting people with his sword and casting offensive spells/witcheries. After the second showdown with Monala (which may or may not have been manipulated a bit by Blank so that he could test out his new techniques), he officially founded The Azzirian Order of Xanadu Battlewitches.

Present day, there are 15 official inductees to the Order, the 4 most powerful (aside from Blank himself) are Blanks most trusted Admirals.

Sebastian Moretti, Admiral of the Southeast
lvl 13 Sea Battlewitch
Favored Weapon: Longbow

Sebastian and his younger brother Antonio are from Gorzam. They are about 20-24 years younger than Blank, but knew well of his exploits in Gorzam, spending much of their youth listenig to stories told by Uncle Grizby.  Sebastian was inspired by Blank to study witchery, and took the obvious focus of Sea Witchery. He is a bit more stable thank Blank, but he often let's loose and you wouldn't know too  much difference between the two. Like the sea itself, Sebastian is often calm, but subject to the occasional bout of rage, especially if it involves  his younger brother (either his young brother being antagonized, or antagonizing someone else).

Sebastian commands the Hora Quan naval forces in the Southeast, specifically Mixastomere's Island, The Island of the Jeweled Trees, and the surrounding waters. His ship is Hades Executioner.

Antonio Moretti, Admiral of the Northwest
lvl 13 Sea Battlewitch, Unfettered.
Favored Weapon: Longsword

The younger, less predictable of the Moretti brothers, led a tougher life in Gorzam. As the brothers grew into their teens, Antonio spent less time with Sebastian, and got involved with the rougher crowds of Gorzam. Later in life, Antonio ran into trouble with drug runners operating in Gorzam-Ao Manasa (around year 10ish), and needed to be bailed out by his older brother. Sebastian was already studying Battlewitchery with Blank, and Antonio just stuck around with them, eventualy rising to equal rank of his brother. Although deep down, the brothers are there for each other, there is a reason Blank assigns them to opposite corners of the Spiral.

Antonio commands the Hora Quan naval forces in the Northwest, specifically the islands of Gorzam, Rellik's Island, Pental, and the surrounding waters. His ship is the Sea Wolf.

Halcyon, Admiral of the Northeast
lvl 13 Wind Battlewitch
Favored Weapon: Rapier

Halcyon is a Verrik. She lived in her native jungles learning wind witchery for the early part of her life. She had a fair bit of wanderlust for a Verrik, and went wherever the wind took her.This wind, being magical wind, brought her to Xanadu. She was intriguied by Blanks order of Battlewitches and eventually joined, becoming a major influence on Battlewitchery. Unlike the Moretti brothers, who spend most of their time on their ships, visiting their islands, ect, she spends much of her time in Xanadu, most often the library or religious district. She's happy to go to where she is needed, but trusts her Captains to take care of most problems. However, due to the intresting nature of both her assigned islands, she spends much more time in the field that she would like to.

Halcyon commands the Hora Quan naval forces in the Northeast, specifically the islands of Zho Dan, Chak Itzin, and the surrounding waters. Her ship is the Gray Ghost.

Ax Horrornight, Admiral of the Southwest
lvl 13 Iron Battlewitch, Warmain
Favored weapon: Greataxe

Ax is a Hadozee, an intelligent Ape from the island of Pele Kor. As a sign of goodwill, the Hadozee sent one of their own to work with the Hora Quan. Being strong, and somewhat magically inclined, Blank decided he wanted him to round out his 3 Admirals, and enlisted him as a Battlewitch. At first, Ax was confused by the whole Witch thing in general, but he decided he liked the magical perks it came with, and so is greatful for the abilities he now commands. 

Ax commands the Hora Quan naval forces in the Southwest, specifically the the peninsular border town of Ao-Manasa, the coast, and the surrounding waters. He deals mostly with the problems of Giants, Ao-manasa's illegal black market, and just general border things between The Diamond Throne, Hora Quan, and the Nine Cities.

Sigrid and Gannen's Kids

Sigrid and Gannen have two sets of male-female twins.

The older set:
Leif - Level 10 Runethane - In charge of Xanadu's magic sector
Freja - Level 11 Greenbond - In charge of Xanadu's religion sector

The younger set:
Anika - Level 8 Ritual Warrior - In charge of Xanadu's trade sector
Halden - Level 7 Unfettered - In charge of Xanadu's entertainment sector

Leif and Freja are exceptionally magically inclined. Sigrid's decided that this could be due to the fact that she spent nearly her entire pregnancy in Xanadu (and with the Heart of the Sea). Whatever the reason, Leif and Freya are the most in tune with the Heart of the Sea (though neither of them has mastered it yet). They've basically been competing to master the Heart for most of their lives. Whoever controls the Heart will be the next ruler. Leif is the oldest, so he's the presumptive heir. This makes Freja a little annoyed (she's only minutes younger), so she works all the harder at controlling the Heart.

Anika and Halden don't really care about the Heart of the Sea so much. They might care if they could pull off some elaborate prank with it, but it's really tough to manipulate, so they lost interest. The younger twins certainly inherited their parent's troublemaking streak. Halden's in trouble with his mother nearly all the time. Anika doesn't get yelled at quite so much. Whether this is because she doesn't cause as much trouble or because she's better at not getting caught is not entirely clear. Lately, Halden's been spending a lot of time with Captain Blank. The younger twins are also both excellent swordsmen with light weapons.

An Introduction to Kheriim

Tenth Level 19-Year-Old Female Human Mage Blade (Unbound)

Kheriim was born 19 years ago to a tribe of humans near the border of the Verrik jungles. She was certainly magical in nature and was brought to the tribal elders. Instead of seeing her unusual magical sensitivity as a gift, they decided she was a soul-less demon, anathema to Rallonoch and a threat to their tribe. She was pronounced "Kheriim", meaning she was to be outcasted forever. Her mother was ordered to abandon her to the jungle.

Instead of doing so, however, her mother secretly brought her to the Verrik, hoping they would save the child and raise her. She was taken in by a community, raised not by individual foster parents, but the community as a whole. The Verrik decided that the title "Kheriim" should not be a disdainful one, but one used with pride and it became the girl's name.

She was indeed unbound from birth, but the Verrik didn't believe her to be evil. Instead they believed her unboundness gave her a clean slate and unique perspective. She grew up fascinated by swords and began doing swordwork with her own unique magical spin. She taught herself the art of the Mage Blade with no formal training.

This excursion to Xanadu is her first time out of the jungle.


Name: Leif
Class: Runethane [Lvl 10]
Race: Human
Age: 20
Gender: Male

Background Info (Public):

Sigrid and Gannen's first kid. Spends much of his time in the library. Not on speaking terms with Halden.

Background Info (Private) (Select to see):

[Intends to inherit Xanadu. If he does so he will boot out Halden and Captain Blank, as they are a disgrace to the proud and dignified empire of the Hora-Quan.]

PS: hope it works

If Qwerty's Cap'n Sparrow, then I'm Captain Kirk! The new, angrier one.

Name: Janan
Class: Unfettered [lvl 10]
Race: Human
Age: 16
Gender: male

Background Info (PUBLIC):

From the city of Khorl (a slightly more civilized and much more Venician Tortuga). Mother worked in a brothel there. Father is most likely Captain Blank-is, according to dead mother.

Background Info (PRIVATE):

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Events of the Past 22 Years

Year 0 is 1759 by the local calendar (not, note, the giant calendar) and 2500 by the old Hora Quan calendar.

Year 0 -- Restart the Heart of the Ocean
Year 1 -- Zho Dan starts to rebuild itself
Year 2 -- First set of twins (Leif and Freya)
-- Ea-Shamar and Dar-Shada get married
Year 3 -- Chak Itzin "materializes," complete with population (no memories)
-- Ice caves discovered beneath Xanadu
Year 4 -- Second set of twins (Annika and Halden)
-- Soern starts a magic academy
Year 5 -- Zho Dan finishes building itself, initiates formal relations with Xanadu
Year 6 -- First Ao-Manasa coup
Year 7 -- Brief war with the giants
Year 8 -- Chak Atzin's jealous god shows up (or at least, makes his presence known)
Year 9 -- Another magic showdown with Monala on the Jeweled Tree Island
Year 10 -- Blank founds Battlewitch Order
Year 11 -- Trade established with the southern cities
Year 12 -- Other Chak Atzin gods show up
Year 13 -- Jeweled Tree Island discovered to be growing
Year 14 -- Second Ao-Manasa coup
Year 15 -- Xanadu forces retake Ao-Manasa
Year 16 -- Soern takes Aed as an apprentice
Year 17 -- Giants disrupt trade with the southern cities
Year 18 -- Rumors start that Paerk is a giant snake
Year 19 -- Ghalib arrives and starts studying at the library
Year 20 -- Several sightings of a strange, unknown dragon
Year 21 -- Border skirmish with the giants
Year 22 -- Sigrid holds her summit

The exact details are still subject to change, but this lays out the broad outlines.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Session 0.0 & 0.5

Session 0.0: Character Creation
Five hours of character creation, and none of us were done. Epic! level is Epic!, but the maths involved is daunting. We did all get our character concepts pretty well hammered out, and finished things up during the following week, with detail work left for the next session.

Session 0.5: Exposition & World Building
The first hour or so was spent tweaking our characters, with equipment, magical items, spells, etc. Important in some respects, but mostly fussy details.
After we decreed our characters ready to play, Oddysey had us participate in some joint world building. She passed out some maps she'd made, which were sketchy but got the point across, and then had us add details to each city / island round-robin style, by passing the sheets around. Some of what we came up with was rather silly (for example, someone invented fire toads, and then that island was lost to fire toad jokes. And velociraptors.) but others were quite interesting: we have one island ruled by the undead (a democracy of the undead) and have many rumors of potential odd goings-on. Also we decided that Captain Blank's hometown of Ghorzam is known for both its fine dining (rats are apparently a delicacy) and their ice skating tournament. This being a pirate town, the favorite event is of course drunk skating.
We also hashed out a fairly general timeline for the Hora Quoran empire following the events of the previous campaign. Our campaign starts in the year 22 after the rise of Xanadu.

apparent theme of the campaign: Drugs & Fire Toads

"I am morally opposed to the dead having the vote." -Karl
"Really it'd only have an effect on voter turnout." -Qwerty
"...It's called voter fraud, [Qwerty]." - Artemis

"She's evil. It doesn't matter!" -maggienotmegan, regarding previous campaign's villain's (Monala's) age

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Just the Facts, Ma'am

Captain Blank [player: Qwerty]
Human, Winter Witch / Winter Battle Witch
Lvl 20: [10 / 10]

Sigrid Tazerin [player: Artemis]
Human, Runechild, Champion of Light & Xanadu
Level 20
Empress of Hora Quan

Kheriin [player: Artemis]
Human, Unbound, Mage Blade
Level 10
Raised by Verriks

Kaperi [player: Karl]
Verrick, Akashic
Level 20
Kheriin's "babysitter"

Aed [player: Karl]
Faen, Magister / Mage Priest
Lvl 10: [6 / 4]
Apprentice to Soern

Soern [player: saganatsu]
Faen, Magister / Evolved Loresong Faen
Lvl 20: [17 / 3]

Leif Tazerin [player: saganatsu]
Human, Runethane
level 10
Eldest son of Sigrid & Gannen

Stavros Xanthis [player: Qwerty]
Human, Unfettered
level 10

Ghalib Ikraam [player: maggienotmegan]
Litorian, Totem Warrior [Lion] / Akashic
lvl 20: [14 / 6]

Janan [player: maggienotmegan]
Human, Unfettered
lvl 10

Ghalib Ikraam: Litorian Librarian

Name: Ghalib Ikraam of the [untranslateable; sounds like a growl] tribe
Class: Totem Warrior [Lion] / Akashic
Race: Litorian
Age: 34
Gender: male
Background Info (PUBLIC):
Has five wives/mates: Nawra, Nyarai, Avani, Rawiya, Sahar. Avani is younger; all others are several years older.
Has fifteen children, unevenly distributed. Notably, has three sons.
Father is chief of tribe, has four mothers, eleven sisters (older & younger), one brother (much younger-not yet 15)
Has been studying lore at Xanadu library for the past three years, heeding the ancestors' call to be an akashic.
Dislikes Rhodin. A lot. Also seems at times somewhat reckless, then at other times exceptionally practical and responsible.

Background Info (PRIVATE):

Notes on Litorian Society

Tribal structure—chief (either gender, more likely female simply due to numbers), council of elders, shaman / loremaster of some sort; then by age & ability. Most important virtues: honesty, responsibility, loyalty

Patrilineal; Polygamy as norm due to high ratio of females to males. Also: adult females go into a “heat” – not uncontrollable, but sex is usually encouraged during these periods due to the greater chance of conception. When not in heat, conception is very rare. (There is an old fathers’ tale of Litorians that children conceived outside of heat are more likely to be boys.)

Males, once adult, make their own tents. This signifies their availability and they are then courted by adult females. If the male agrees to take a female or females as mates, the females move into his tent and provide for him (hunting, etc.).

Considered adult at age 15. May have truename ceremony or other acknowledgement of maturity before then, but 15 is the standard age for a litorian to leave their parents’ tent.
Nomadic—tents, but no horses, or very few. The tribes follow hunting trails but make semi-permanent camps where the males raise children & small crops. Females hunt in packs, faster and more deadly as a group.

Males considered precious because of rarity—a man who fathers sons will have more women wanting him as a mate, like any other good quality.

Children are in effect raised by the whole tribe, and may not even know which of their mothers is their biological mother (although most probably do) and most likely do not care or understand why other races’ children would care.

approx. 150-200 people in tribe at any given time; many leave for a different tribe upon adulthood

Litorian tribes don't put much stock in territoriality; it's impractical to have one person lead-and thus be responsible-for too many people. Each chief is chosen by the tribe's former chief, with the majority agreement of elders and shaman, and trained to take over--who does best in what role, etc. One chief will concede authority to another chief (if tribes are together) due to greater knowledge or experience--generally peacefully, sometimes after a physical calling out. There's no bad blood between tribes; all tribes are considered really one tribe, that of Litoria. Tribes often assist one another after attacks by Rhodin tribes or after illness, natural disasters, etc.

Is This Fair?: The Sequel

Maggie's recaps and meta for the campaign should be cross-posted here, but will also be available at LJ.