Ars Magica, Doomed From The Start

A Bump In The Road

Because many of the players could not make our second session it ended up being focused on Pyrus & his grogs on their way to the Covenant. The grogs themselves were played by the players of Peter von Buren & Vobis.

We started off on the road, Pyrus & his grogs still several days from the covenant. Traveling threw Germany, to the east, they were on a major trade road that would lead them straight to Port Cana…eventually. After a brief introduction explaining where Pyrus was coming from & where they would be passing threw, they noticed a group of people on the road heading towards them from a small town, the town itself still being a few hours away though visible.

The men coming towards them were obviously not normal people, as each road a horse and carried themselves in a stately manner…Pyrus told his grogs to let him do the talking and they met up with the men. There was a large knight wearing heavy armor who preceded the others, carefully scouted out the players wagon and stood between them and the other people on horseback. There was also a nobleman’s son of no particular note. The leader of the group was a investigator for the Holy Roman Empire by the name of Investigator Korneleous, to his side was a sinister looking cowled man referred to only as The Executioner who was apparently an official envoy of the church.

Greetings were formal and mostly involved Korneleous asking Pyrus why they were on the road, what they were doing, what they were transporting, weather they come threw here a lot & if they know of the smuggling troubles on the road. Pyrus was very polite, informed them of everything they asked & even ignored several threatening comments made by the Executioner. Korneleous reigned in the Executioner a few times, mostly when he overstepped the boundaries and flat out claimed that Pyrus and his grogs were smugglers. The investigator was interested in finding out who they were & what they were doing, and while he was extremely suspicious and thought it was quite likely they were the smugglers, he was not accusatory and assured Pryus that he would make sure that his rights were not trampled on…but also that he would be watching him, and would not relent on their duty. With that the 4 men on horses went back to the town, pushing their steeds quicker then the wagon could go.

Before the Executioner left however he circled around their wagon and with a loud smack placed a red bloody handed symbol on the side of it, high near the top where everyone could see, then he road off with the others. The group noticed what he had done and investigated it. The mark looked like it had been made with blood or some other thick red paint, and was in the shape of a hand. Cleaning it off they decided would be problematic, giving the investigators group a reason to think they were interfering with his work, and make the Cowled man even more suspicious. Instead Pyrus ordered the grogs to do an inventory check, and in doing so they found a small bag that had poisonus mushrooms in it. They knew they had to do something with them and the grog played by Vobis suggested replacing them with similar looking but non poisonous mushrooms. Pyrus then did so, making a small handful of them with magic and they continued to the town.

When they got to the small village it was early evening, the grogs bought rooms in the inn and Pyrus slipped inside, avoiding notice mostly, except for the innkeeper who simply made sure he had a key and knew where his room was. The night passed quietly but when he awoke Pyrus noticed his window had been opened, a bag of clothes had been gone threw, and his journal had been moved slightly, and the quill taken. He quickly went to the grogs who met him half way and stated that the wagon had been messed up, one of the wheels had been bit/sawed threw. Rushing down to the barn where it was kept, next to the inn, they found the wagon was pretty much fine…except for a large 1/2 foot wide piece that was simply missing in one of its back wheels. The party argued over what caused it, looking for clues, finding nothing except for the odd saw/tooth liked marks on the wheel.

One of the grogs left to go find a carpenter & see if they could fix the wheel or purchase a new one…and during this time Investigator Korneleous and the rest of his posse showed up. They had more questions about what Pyrus was doing here, thanked him for not trying to flee, but seemed very upset at the wheel. Korneleous felt that the wheel being broken was a feigned excuse to stay in town until their smuggled goods could be picked up, he stated so, and then asked if they could look threw the wagon. Pyrus agreed though asked them to be careful with stuff, the knight who was the one who actually sifted threw everything assured them that he would be very careful. It took nearly 30 minutes of him holding up each object, waiting for acknowledgment from the Executioner, before he found the little bag of mushrooms. At this some of the grogs feigned shock, but Pyrus didn’t really care. Taking the mushrooms the Executioner accused them of being poisonous and trafficking in poison, who knows to what end. Pyrus said that simply wasn’t the case, they are for eating and offered to show him. He then ate several & then at the cowled mans insistence gave more of them to his grogs. Still unhappy the man snatched the mushrooms away and stomped to a nearby cow, shoving several of the things into the creatures mouth as it hungrily ate them…but nothing happened.

Furious now the Executioner accused them of still being smugglers, but quickly shut up when Korneleous told him too. The Investigator thanked the party, said he apologized for the problems but that he was just doing his job. He still suggested that they try their best to get out of town before the evening, and he said he would try to get the carpenter, who ended up not being able to provide them a wheel until tomorrow, to hurry up.

And so ended the session…at least nearly.

Our very last scene is of Pyrus laying in bed, having a suspicion something would try to sneak into his room…so he feigned sleep, simply waiting, and lasted until around 5am before he finally fell asleep (now going to be horribly tired all day tomorrow and suffer from extra botch dice). Moments after he woke up screaming as a tiny winged lizard clamped it’s fanged mouth on his nose.

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