January: The First Chapter of Our Saga

(If you have a character you can use it here. Karl and Pandolfo are good to go. The noblewoman Jerbiton is good to go, but don't do any demony stuff unless you get some more people saying they are up for it. If you want to add a grog, make them up on the fly. Other potential players: if you don't get your act together soon, I'm reopening the game.)

The magi are standing on the roof garden of the covenant's warehouse, during a strangely sunny day in January. The grey clouds and biting winds that usually accompany this time of year have, temporarily, left to trouble the merchants of Visby and Hamburg. Women scurry in the streets, hanging washing, and in the docklands, men strive ot get little pieces of patching and mending done before the breezes return.

The magi are seated at one end of a circular table, with many spare spaces. They have a dish of brined fish fillets, olives ans soft cheese before them, and tankards of a local beer. THey are listening to a redcap, who, as is the wont of his people, is recounting trouble he had on the roads.

"It was barely three days south, by the ruined bridge that is now a ford? I was attacked by a faerie knight, in black armour with crow feathers sprouting from it. When he cut me he said I'd caught an illness, and that when the weather broke, he would ride the roads and spread the plauge through the lands of the human vermin. He was fast: I've fought before, but he was as quick as I've ever seen. I think the crows in the trees were egging him on, or were cheering for him. I know how strange that sounds."

Titius Livius (Karl from Köln got a new name by his mistress once he passed his gauntlet as a marking of his transformation from raw material to a finished product) looks at the redcap with a worried look and starts to speak. Your tale sounds most worrisome redcap but I think that it is wise of us to act upon it as soon as possible. I am no warrior wizard but I fear that if we doesn’t at least search for this knight and find out what we can in order to stop him we will eventually get the blame for his actions. It is after all common amongst the lesser of men to blame us magi when it comes handy. Is there anything else you can tell us about this soon to be menacing knight that can help us?

"He said that humans were a plague on the land. That we were ruining edverything with our steel and prayers, and that he'd not be responsible for thr horrible things we were forcing him to do."

Do you know anything else or anyone who knows about this fiend of a faerie? Weaknesses or other useful information. If we are going to hunt him with our guard’s steel and skill of blade we must be sure that they do what is intended. If you would be kind to escort us to the location I could summon the guards. Are there any suggestions from my fellow magi upon handling this matter?

[The redcap waits for questions and will answer them, but if you want so kick off a thread organising an expedition, go right ahead.]

"I don't stop in that area all that much. The river was higher than usual, and so I thought to camp under the ruined bridge."

I will gather the guards then. Titius Livius rises from the table to go and gather the guards. For Titius matter that is to find the nearest of the guards and giving him the order of rounding up the other guards and make them prepare for a expedition that will leave the following morning. He then returns to the table to spend time in his fellows company.

Theodora seems to have been somewhat distracted. But greets Titus on his return.
A Black knight with a grudge against the dominion indeed we would risk getting the blame for such . I am not aprticularly suited for dealing with such a creature ahving little magic for use against the fay but will join you on your expedition.
Although from what little I know of the fay and the spirits of the wilderness it will probably be best if we can find a measn other than violence to deal with this problem , if we can find the casue of the Fays anger we can perhaps defuse the problem. Perhaps a new church or village has intruded upon a faerie forest .
Before we travel we should see what we can learn of the area around the Bridge

The fay a fricle and must be handled with care, however there is significant risk that we must use force to guard our selves. If we can defeat this malignant being without the shedding of blood then that is a good thing. Redcap could you guide our way in the morning?

And we cut scene to the next morning...

A group of guards (how many do you want?) are waiting in the yard before the warehouse. Are you taking food and other sutff with you, or just buying it en route? Are you marcjing out of town like a gang of thugs on a mission, or doing something a bit more subtle?

If Titius gets to decide the party leaves with all guards except one or two if there is less then four guards then only one is left behind. At least one servant should also accompany the party as Titius don’t cook his own food, if possible he chooses a pretty young woman. The party is sure to be armed with missile weapons as well as melee weapons and take with them what they need in terms of food and drink. Titius Livius doesn’t even think about leaving the city stealthy and when they leave the city the party doesn’t look like a group of thugs on a mission, more like a party of merchants with a heavy guard.

If none of you jump in in the next 3 days, this is how the story goes, OK?

Theodora is largely in agreement with Titus, however she will make sure there is a coach/wagon of some kind for those magi who are not comfortbale with horses. She will also try to keep as much of the weaponry out of sight as possible in the coach/wagon to make the group look less threatening while in the city.

Your group heads south, in the way suggested by the redcap, passing through several small villages. In one little village, the redcap indicates that it is the last before the bridge where the knight was, perhaps two miles away. He wants to know if you are stopping here for the night, if you are going to camp out closer to the bridge, or if you are just going to march on, so that you reach the bridge about half an hour after dark.

I say that we stay here and camp. We need the light of day to fight this being if such is needed. In the morning we search for this fiend. At least that is my suggestion, any objections? The sound in Titius voice tells that he doesn’t count with objections as anything else would be madness.

I agree that is probably best to camp here, it seems likely that a Black Knight would be more powerful by night than by day , although that may not be the case. In any event it would be better to be rested before such an encounter.
One point though Titius I believe the being we seek is most likely one of the fae and so refering to it as a fiend is unwise. Such a decription seems most apt for an infernal creature and I suspect the fae would be most upset if you where to confuse the two.

Of course I knew that a fiend and a fae are two different things. Until this black knight has proven to bee anything else then a problem I could as well refer to it a vermin, it is a problem that might need extermination. When in it’s presence I won’t refer to it as anything less then what it is.

It would be best not to approach this with preconceptions, the Black knight may have been wronged . It could be that his land is being assaulted b others and our best solution would be to aid him. If we were to ask the local mundanes for an opinion they would likely consider us vermin as well so we should not be prejudiced agaisnt this creature until we know the situation.

Both you and I are aware of the shortcomings of the lesser men, but I see your point. We shall visit this knight and resolve the situation in a matter that is most beneficial to us. I can see a point in avoiding combat as at least I need some more preparations before I can handle a fae in combat. We see what we get when we meet that fae.

[I'm letting this run one more day so that Pandolfo or Vispillius can get in on it if they like. After that, we roll.]

Earlier, Vispilius had only one additonal question to ask the Redcap (besides his name)

"You say a 'knight' - was he mounted, or on foot? And this feathered armour- did it seem magical beyond the feathers? Of metal, or of hardened leather? I ask because I had thought that the fae avoided metal when possible..."

Vispilius' looks across the table through his own distinctly faerie eyes, that speak of a similar, if undefined background in himself.


Setting out for the site of the attack, Vispilius had chosen to walk, rather than ride, making some comment about "the challenge of the road" or such, and that marching alongside the guards would go far in the ongoing political battle to keep their respect. He had kept up the pace well enough, but, as with most any after such a long hike, was showing signs of fatigue this late in the day.

"That we should rest here there is no doubt. I have no idea if our sooty troublemaker fairs better in day or night, but I know we would be disadvantaged in the dark. A good night's sleep under a roof, braced by two good hot meals - that is the way to prepare for the unknown.

"And well spoken that we should parley rather than assume the entirety of guilt lies with this creature, Theodora. The heavens know that the fae fair badly at the hands of men and the church - we don't need to add The Order to this vendetta, not if we don't have to.

"The feathers and crows worry me a bit, only that it implies this faerie knight may have the power of flight and tranformation, and that means he could be anywhere by now, even watching us." The mage turns his head, scanning the rustic village's skyline for such birds.

"He might well be concerned only with one locale, as I'd think most creatures are, but we should be as prepared to investigate the sight and begin tracking him down as we are for combat."