Friday, 11 March 2011

Their Fated Travels...Chapter 27 - Nuln The Wiser

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Their Fated Travels…




RPG Party events as told By Robert James Freemantle – recounted and extracted in a minor interpretation from some sessions too of the WHFRP 2nd edition book ‘Forges of Nuln’



Chapter 27

Nuln The Wiser





Extract from the diary of Tobias:

Day 107

We have checked into the Reavers Return Inn, upon arriving at Nuln. Rissandrea has gone about the business she came here for, requesting a meeting with the higher ups of the Shallyan church here. She is being delayed a little though. The problem is that the vhor sub-sect that she belongs to isn’t very recognized around these parts. They’re considered a bit, kooky, so to speak…well to write.

Tordrad at last has some time off from his bodyguard duty and I have noticed that he and the newcomer Anastasia are getting along like a lake frozen over…surely that would be a suitable Kislevite term to use instead of the normal “house on fire”.

Maestro was itching to get at the Engineering College all the way through the trip – and it was an excuse to lose Angelique who probably would have continued following him around. I must admit, that has amused me no end.

The Sister of Sigmar herself has left us and gone about her duties in the city.

The ball isn’t due for a few days yet. We have time to relax. Time to explore. Perhaps…make a little profit on the side…







Extract from the diary of Dieter:

Day 107

Those strange adventurers from the barge are staying at our inn. That is a little concerning, I must say.

What is more concerning is the headaches now. It is all too much for me. I’m feeling like I must soon take to the streets again – to find myself. To find someone who is good for me.





Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 110

Well I must say, studying at the College was perhaps the greatest thrill of my life. I have improved my knowledge in gunpowder and explosives exponentially! I really do need to work harder on my tinkering though! All this travel is not good for that sort of thing. It’s not like I can carry a workshop around with me…although Tordrad is quite strong…but still…no.







Extract from the diary of Rissandrea:

Day 111

What an unusual day yesterday was! Although such weird occurrences are starting to become the norm for us…I fear. I am not even that surprised anymore.

It all started when Maestro went to the shop to buy a hochland long rifle. He said he had received the proper training for its usage at last so he saw no reason to delay on getting one. Then he saw the price tag was high and moaned at us all about it.

I determined that there was something a little off about the shopkeeper though. That something was worrying him to distraction. The more I enquired into it, the more Dieter picked up on my lead and enquired of him too. He became so very defensive at last and I shared my thoughts with the group. That is how it all came to happen next.

Maestro has recently learnt a spell that allows him to converse with birds. He decided that now was a perfect time to explore it and hone it a little more.

The spell, as he explained, doesn’t force the birds to do what you say. It simply allows you to understand them and them you. It is up to you to work out the details of how fruitful such a conversation might be.

Maestro asked the bluebirds in the tree outside of the shop if they had seen anything suspicious happen there lately…





Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 111

But of course, the birds didn’t know what “suspicious” meant. To them, it was the notion of a predator trying to size up their nest perhaps, or the like. So I had to re-word it as something unusual, something they don’t normally see.

They confirmed that there was indeed something out of the ordinary around the shop of late.

I asked them what. They then played the old bartering game. Even birds do it! Is there no one in this world who doesn’t try to rip you off?

I ended up having to hand over my juiciest apple and a punnet of blueberries I had been saving since Altdorf.

Those bluebirds. Don’t be fooled by how pretty they are! The brighter and more colourful the plumage, the bigger a scoundrel in a deal they are. The same system I believe goes for merchants too, in their fine silks with their scandalous prices.

Anyway, I’m getting a bit off track as usual. So the birds told me that some ugly wrong looking humans had been lurking around the shop door at night. The shopkeeper had interacted with them and given them something. Mutants then!





Tordrad’s diary:

Day 111

I not know why the others even pretend wizard not look stupid. Instead they laugh so that he not see. Wizard standing there with fruit in hand, chirping at a tree like bird. All this study and magic, make a man’s head go crazy in time.





Tobias’s diary:

Day 111

Maestro did appear to be missing the point of the birdspeak spell somewhat. It allows you to understand them and them to understand YOU. You don’t have to go tweeting and twittering up at them. In fact, they probably shouldn’t even understand what you’re on about if you do that! It’s just that Maestro is crazy enough to still make them understand. Truly, there is something missing in his faculties.





Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 111

The shopkeeper soon confessed when I bombarded him with the information that nobody should know. He almost looked like he was going to cry. Mutants have been bothering him and getting money from him so that they don’t mess up his business. He explained that he had seen them creep back off to the sewers each time.

Hah, what are those sewerjacks paid for, eh? And which mugs end up roped into going down into the system to root them out? You guessed it diary reader, us. Though the man did agree to give me the hochland long rifle at a massively discounted price, so that wasn’t too bad I suppose.

That Anastasia girl stayed back at the Inn. Good job she did.





Extract from the diary of Dieter:

Day 111

There’s always some element of chaos, anywhere you go. Handy though if you happen to be a miscreant. There’s always someone around to pin it on…





Rissandrea’s diary:

Day 111

As we worked our way around the sewer system, we came across several hewn out areas with makeshift temples to the Chaos God Slaanesh. May Shallya forgive me for writing its name here.

Many of these places contained mutants, that we fought and drove out. Those we captured were cruelly interrogated by Dieter. I’m used to that about him now though. Not that I condone it. Those that died were put to peace by prayer. I refuse to fire my gun at these mutants however. I know for a fact that they are not beyond redemption. Only the highest powers amongst the Shallyan church know how to actually cure them. I am determined to learn how to do this. I simply had to fend the attackers off with my staff, as best I could.

Soon though, a foe that did warrant me opening fire upon appeared. A daemonette: One of the awful daemon soldiers of the aforesaid order. I do not wish to write it twice on the same page, let alone in the same book.

Maestro was dumbfounded with fear staring at it. The pheromones she gave off from her skin did terrible things to the group – it was frightening. Tordrad even stepped forward in a dream like state and dropped his axe! Dieter pulled himself to his senses and clutched his head in pain, bent over double. The worst though was Tobias. He had outright gone up to the creature and lowered his head before her. She was getting ready to use her imposingly grotesque pincer, placed where her hand should be – and from the look of it, it was quite capable of snipping the scholar’s head from his neck in one motion.

I was forced to open fire with redemption. The shot almost looked like it was going to snap Tobias out of his lull. I managed to graze the creature. Perhaps its concentration was broken just enough, but I was not going to take the chance of it. I ran to Tobias and laid a hand on his head while reciting a restorative prayer. I didn’t even know if I was choosing the right one to be honest, but faith is a hard to understand thing anyway – by the nature of itself, you have to simply have to have faith.

We managed to fight her off and even banish her, as the group rose once more to their feet, free of the influence.

This ordeal left Tobias in a terrible changed state. I was unable to help him. For some reason, his mind had blockaded all attempts of help. He seemed shook up and overly scared long after the ordeal had ended. What a shame that he is effected so! Poor Tobias.

We soon encountered the mutant cult leader, Erasmus Teuber. We dealt with him too. It seems the others felt compelled to kill him. Such a brutal waste of life, all of this. Why can’t they just leave us all alone, the evil that inhabits our race? I suppose I answered my own question there though – it is because it inhabits us that it never will.



Soon we started to see fresh body parts floating through the sewer water system.









Extract from the diary of Dieter:

Day 111

Against my better judgement, I followed the group to investigate where the body parts were coming from. I could sense a great evil ahead. There was no way I could leave them stranded to deal with it alone.







Extract from the diary of Tobias:

Day 111

There is…I don’t want to remember much more about the day…





Extract from the diary of Tordrad:

Day 111

We find place where sewer system becomes old abandoned building. Used to be asylum it seemed. Many shambling dead people came. We chop them up so they fall down. They stand once more so that we may further practice our chopping skill.

Soon, weirdo necromancer is seen. He be cause of it all. He be target, yes. I try chopping of him. Chop through his robe and body. Even chop his long beard. Very sharp blade this. He lay down and stay there. Wise choice, this.





Extract from the diary of Dieter:

Day 111

As I examined the dying Necromancer, checking for a pulse, that is of course if he too wasn’t undead, something unexpected happened. Talking of undead, it…the other responded to this place suddenly against my will. It had manifested itself suddenly as black tendrils from my mouth. That meddling pipsqueak Tobias was so shaken up by his ordeal that he was in no order to stick his nose in and spot it. I think the Shallyan saw something of it though, even though I had my back turned to her. My silhouette on the back wall will have given away something of what happened next.

The emerging entity took ahold of the last remnants of the Necromancer’s essence and seemingly fed on them. How dare he do such a thing without my consent! But it also goes to show that he is growing more powerful. Soon I might lose control, where before I thought I had it…I must think of how to maintain the lead in this struggle.







Extract from the diary of Rissandrea:

Day 112

Finally I have made a discovery with Tobias. After a new medical examination I have successfully identified a foreign body inside his skull. A small shard of warpstone is lodged into the bone. I can only imagine that this occurred when the warpstone booby trap triggered, all those months ago in Altdorf when we first met.

This would explain his strange dual behaviour between night and day.

It seems his night self is a repressed personality from his younger years. He apparently used to be a thief and told me that he carries a lot of guilt about the way his behaviour rubbed off on his brother Frederick, who went down the same path as him but was arrested. Apparently it all led to the death of their father. Terrible, truly a shame. He has been holding all of this in for so many years.

This alter-ego is something I have explained to him now and he has had to take my word for it, for even now he has no awareness or memory of what happens to him at night. As far as he knows, he is simply not a very good sleeper anymore.

The piece of warpstone interacts with Morrslieb the chaos moon, for it too shines the same colour as it.

He is incredibly lucky though, if we put this into perspective. Any human who had such a thing embedded in them would have mutated severely by now. The fact that he is a halfling has stood him in good stead, only mutating some parts of his mind – just enough to bring about this secondary personality. I would say he got off lightly. Hopefully this thing won’t mutate him anymore in time, because there is no way I can remove it without killing him.

The ordeal of his meeting with the daemonette was a terrible thing too – and while we were at it, I tackled this with him too.

I have determined that Tobias has suffered a malady of the mind. The soothing prayers of my lady are not enough to heal this mental damage to his already fractured psyche.

He has developed an irrational fear of the dark. To make matters worse, his night time self has been effected too, but instead of that personality fearing the dark, when in that form he fears the light, preferring now to stick to shadows. This entire thing is extraordinarily difficult to fully understand.







Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 113

Well here we go again. This stupid chalice and the further matter of the bound daemon within these items has at last cropped up to trouble us again.







Extract from the diary of Rissandrea:

Day 113

At my behest, the group is following a new lead into the matter of the chalice. We visited one Elsbeth Becker.

There had been a number of murders around the area. We believe that the chalice and the murders are connected in some way. We decided to become more subtle about our investigation…I wonder how long the others can keep that up.

Elsbeth at least gave us a letter of introduction – with which we visited Lord Randolf Vogt’s townhouse to find out what he or his son might know.





Tordrad’s diary:

Day 113

We not trust the son Rolf as he talk to us, I tell this from faces of the others. I wonder if Rolf tell this too. Hah. His father, he is not about for us to talk to.

Maestro though, he just gets more stupid. Thinking bird chirping stunt will help a second time, he asks birds in tree outside of house, while we still talk to the son.

These are blackbirds though, not put up with silly wizard’s nonsense. Understandable really. Next thing we see, outside of window is Maestro run to right, with blackbirds chasing him. Next we see him run right to left back across the window – blackbirds tugging on his robes and hair. Just as wizard think he is safe from birds at last, he turn to look at us and sees bird sitting on his shoulder. Peck his big nose. Serves him right.







Rissandrea’s diary:

Day 113

Tobias has found a secret doorway in the very Inn we’ve been staying at. He was sneaking about tonight as usual, looking for targets of opportunity. One of these days he is going to get arrested, I am sure.

We went in and investigated anyway. There we say a massive abomination laid out on a surgeon’s table.

On a desk in the room was the chalice!

There is something fated about all of these occurrences, or at least that is what Maestro keeps saying. Although I do believe I agree with him now.







Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 113

What a surprise. That we should be holding the very chalice we sought. Too convenient. I smell a big stinky trap! I’m just waiting for it to spring on us. Why can’t somebody else deal with these matters for a change? Why do we have to keep being the heroes? Being a hero is all very well and good while you are alive – you can take benefits from that. But being a hero also exposes you to terrible danger which could pose somewhat of a challenge to the aforementioned staying alive thing.





From the diary of Dieter:

Day 113

I elected to stay behind in the secret cellar room while the others went to look for some city watch help.

While waiting, I readied my scalpel for the footsteps coming down to me. I knew it couldn’t be the group returning so soon. There I saw a man we came to know as Jonas Lang. He requested I give him the chalice. I asked him why I would ever want to do such a thing. He opened shirt to me and all was suddenly clear. A grotesque head protruded from the man’s stomach. The face was a familiar one, I’m afraid to say. It was Claus Liebnitz. The damned man’s spirit was so chaos tainted that it has even managed to infect another man like a parasite. I can relate to how annoying that is…

He confirmed that he wanted the third shard of his master, Xathrodox.

I showed this man the true power of a parasite, overpowering him sufficiently so that I could interrogate him. I do so enjoy a good interrogation. What I don’t enjoy though is being hit around the head from behind while trying to conduct one. I caught a brief glimpse of Rolf Vogt as I passed out I could almost swear that the abomination was standing up of its own accord…alive.





Extract from the diary of Rissandrea:

Day 113

Dieter told us what had happened. When we brought the watch to the location, all evidence of our findings and indeed the chalice itself was gone. Dieter knew that he had no evidence to support Rolf’s guilt so he simply told the watch that he didn’t know who struck him.

What confuses me a little is why the men didn’t dispatch Dieter there and then. Although, strange black marks on the floor, like lashes of black burnt parts coming from where he was laying unconscious might give some clue.





Extract from the diary of Rissandrea:

Day 114

The watch claim to have caught the prolific murderer, who had been taking lives over the last few days.

We went to the watch ourselves to have a chat with the man. Dieter suspected that this man wasn’t the murderer.

I am unsure quite honestly, but I do determine the man to be mentally ill and in need of treatment. I filed a report to the watch stating as much. They gave us the time of day on the matter because of the reputation that precedes us. One of these days that same reputation is going to get us all into trouble.







Extract from the diary of Tordrad:

Day 115

We went to masquerade ball at last. All wearing interesting mask. I wear mask of Lion. This is insult! I demanded bear. They not know what bear is from Kislev word. So I roar to show them. They think this is lion. They would not know difference between a bear and lion if each chewed their arm off at same time even!

Group think ball is great chance to capture Rolf man, suspect in chalice stealing. Truth is, Dieter wants revenge I think. Heh heh. This I like! I like to see Dieter angry for revenge. He is funny small man.



Later, as night goes on, Rolf is spotted. Somehow Dieter finds him in crowd even though he wears mask. He try to assassinate a noble present at ball. Maestro jump from high balcony and cast spell. Lucky for him that it works. Wizard start flying and flapping arms awkwardly, causing a scene. All he needed then was to be squawking like bird like before and truly then I will say this man has gone insane.

Rissandrea in good position with staff, hits Rolf to stomach, winds him. Rolf grabs for her. Big mistake this. Holy girl in flustering panic, swipes again with staff and this time it strike man between legs. Hit him in mother and father button. Great noise he make. Very entertaining, hah hah.

Man’s life we saved turns out to be cousin to Nuln’s Countess. Group are thanked by Emmanuelle. Maestro though, make himself scarce just before she approach us. So like him to be afraid of women. He is not man. He is mouse. Worse still maybe! He is worm. Blackbirds – they overpower him even!









Extract from the diary of Maestro:

Day 116

This Rolf chap was executed this morning. Swift justice in Nuln it seems. It doesn’t help us though, because the authorities wouldn’t listen to us when we said he probably knows something to help the investigation we’re about.

Looks like another lead goes dead for us.

Today the new great cannon was unveiled in the city: The Magnus it was called. I managed to spot something wrong with it, even from my place in the crowd. Well to be more accurate, it was as if it spotted something wrong with me – fate that is. They were going to be test firing the cannon to show what it can do.

I had a sudden involuntary vision of the cannon exploding, killing everyone on the bridge, including the Countess…including me! I piped up rather quickly and pushed my way through the crowd. So very unlike me, unfortunately.

Yes I managed to stop them firing the thing, in the nick of time – then I inspected it and discovered that it had been tampered with! Foul play is further afoot. I used my engineering skills to pinpoint that exact problem.

This of course drew the Countess’s attention to me. Just what I didn’t want. I’d heard the rumours about her…

She invited me to attend her by “appointment” later that day. I had to make an excuse, saying that I had others places to be, to do more “heroic” acts. Hah.





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