The Kingdom of Welandar… Almost Dead Before It Was Born.

Would you like to know where the world I’m using for Game Night came from?  Heh… Yeah, me, too.  All I can say is as a gamer and/or writer, DON’T throw anything away that “speaks” to you in any way.  It might just be worth something to you later…

About 25 years ago, I had an idea to create my own Dungeons & Dragons game world…

By that point I had been gaming for about a decade.  My favorite world to run, regardless of D&D edition, was Mystara.  It was the game world that the OD&D (the original boxed sets) game used.  There was so much great information about the world that had come in the form of a series of books called, “Gazeteers”.  They were published by TSR (the company that put D&D on the map) to support the OD&D game.

I had a great time using and re-using that game world for quite a few different campaigns and gaming groups.  While I was a fan of Forgotten Realms and I had played in a couple of Dragon Lance campaigns, I always circled back to Mystara.  I would work very hard to adapt the game world to whatever edition of D&D I was playing at the time.  From what I could tell, a good time was had by all.

Then I got a bug in my brain.  I wanted to have my own game world.  I wanted to write stories and create adventures in a world created the way I wanted it.  Though I lacked any real skill at doing so, I was motivated and began scribbling out ideas about a whole new fantasy world.

My world was a shotgun blast of different thoughts and notions about a world where magic existed.  Since I’m a “traditionalist”, the basic theme was classic fantasy “swords and sorcery” type stuff.  There were supposed to be dwarves, elves, orcs… the whole gambit of fantasy races.  And that’s how it began and started to evolve.

My progress was very slow.  I would make notes in a notebook whenever an idea popped up.  But I never pushed on it.  I let it remain a back burner thing.

Then I lost my notes.  I have no idea how I lost them.  I had moved a couple of times, so maybe they got lost or thrown away during all the activities involved in moving.  Nonetheless, I had lost my notes.  I don’t know if it was a big loss considering that I never got real sad or angry about it.  In fact, I just didn’t really care.  My ideas for it were just not something to which I had gotten attached. I have no idea why.

I had not lost everything, though.

At some point during my pursuit of a custom world I bought a sketch pad.  At some point after buying that sketch pad, I decided to try my hand at making a map of my world.  I got a hold of some colored pencils and a coffee can lid to use as a stencil for my world map.  I traced around the lid twice to create the two hemispheres.  I then lightly and carefully started drawing land masses.  Then came the colored pencils to add basic biomes to the land masses and color the oceans.

As I did this, the names of the continents came to me… Welandaria, Arcandara, Lucianius and Cantalus.  The world now had some color and terrain and a couple of names.

Then that map sat. I did not get rid of it despite several “opportunities” while cleaning things out.  Without the notes, I wasn’t sure if the map was worth anything to me, but for some reason, I held on to it.

A couple of years ago, I “found” the sketch pad in the back of a shelf underneath a stack of binders and notebooks containing years of accumulated gaming notes.  As soon as I opened the pad and saw that map, my brain sparked.

Again, I have not pushed to build a lot of detail… until recently.  I just would look at that map and then start writing down ideas for stories and characters.  It really didn’t get anywhere… until recently.

Now it’s the world in which my current D&D group plays.  I finally got that home brew game world I wanted.

The color and the depth of the world is certainly growing now.  I’ve created a couple of good maps using a piece of software called Campaign Cartographer.  I have a “few” notes again.  And the best thing I have is a few friends enjoying some adventures there.  I guess it’s my world, but it’s also theirs.  That’s what tabletop RPGs are all about.

Thanks for giving this a read.  Remember.  Inspiration is not something that always comes easily. So, hang on to it when you find it.

As always, if you like what you’ve read here, click the like button.  If you have a question or something you want to say to me or about what you’ve read, please, do so.  I welcome conversation and feedback.

Type to you later 😉

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Game Night. Session 8. I Thought It Went Great ;-)

Here’s a work in progress of the continent where the Kingdom of Welandar is located.

Welandar Snipit

I’ve started, once again, plugging away at getting some more solid background information for this campaign world.  I realized a couple game nights ago that I have been lacking in that area.  This became especially apparent to me when I began really struggling to come up with the next mission/quest for my players.  They’re almost to the point where they will need this to continue.  It’s one thing to have a plot idea, but something completely different to create enough details and generate hooks to get your players involved in that plot idea.

So, I decided to act on own my philosophy; having a good background/setting  makes for creating the story/adventure much easier and helps connect the players and their characters to the world.  Seems pretty obvious, right?  Well… the density of the author sometimes overrides his grasp on the “reality” of the situation.  I have been a dumb-ass and not fleshed out enough of the setting to facilitate reasons/motivations for the characters to take action, whether by my design or their own.  You see?  If there is enough color and depth to the setting, and you have the players “educated” with that information, the characters they have chosen to play can become the “people/heroes” of the world they are supposed to be and act on their own – even with little to no prompting from the DM.  Then all the DM has to do is prepare for their next moves and dole out “consequences” for the actions the characters have taken.  The plot devices also drop in much easier because they will make sense to the players and thus, their characters.

Session 8, to me went pretty great…

Fang, Theren and Bran had split up to conduct some business as soon as they reached Piketon.

Fang and Theren got the cart repairs set up and started asking about where to find Mert.  Fang also made sure to keep an eye and ear out for anything “unusual” in hopes of getting the underlying lay of the land in Piketon.

Bran struck out on his own to find the town blacksmith.  He stopped at a Kingdom outpost on his way to see if there was any information concerning the kingdom and let them know about the patrol that got killed during the journey up here.  Bran found out that the garrison here is very recent.  There was some concern about Krell (orcs) raiding from the north, so with the agreement of Bran Touchwater (the town leader), the kingdom began the process of establishing a permanent kingdom garrison in Piketon.

At the town blacksmith’s business, Bran meets Berault Stormbringer.  Bran explains the situation with the battleaxe he kept from the body of the murdered Dwerg they encountered on the road to Piketon.  Berault recognizes the trademark on the weapon as the Ironstar family.  He explains to Bran that they can be found in Lon-Kar on the other side of the Great Lake.  He even speculates that the return of the axe might earn a reward.

As the evening begins, the group meets up at the Pike’s Tooth Inn – THE inn of Piketon.  They eat there meal and keep their eyes and ears open for any information about Mert and the general goings on in and near Piketon.

Fang leaves the inn shortly after the meal to get some “fresh air”.  He uses his druidic abilities to turn into a “town stray hound dog” so that he may roam freely through the town.  He doesn’t overhear anything overly secretive or sinister, but he hears a conversation about the Krell raiding party that struck a short time back.

After he plays a game of chess with the local “master”, Theren is directed to a small shelf in the common room of the inn that contains some books and scrolls for his entertainment – something else to read besides his special scroll.  During his perusal, he finds a scroll that has various notes and numbers, likely concerning basic town business. What makes it so interesting, though, is that it has a interesting mark written very small in a corner.  The mark is identical to the sigils that are tattooed on their left hands.

While Theren is working on his discovery, Bran decides to join the dice game that is getting quite spirited.  Bran’s skill at this form of gambling turns out to be quite high.  He ultimately “cleans house” going against another traveler with rather deep pockets.  In spite of the high stakes, the game ends amicably and with the traveler’s dignity – if not his coin pouch – intact.

By the time the game reaches its end and Theren discovers the mark on the scroll, Fang returns from his recon.  A short discussion leads to Fang approaching Bran Touchwater, inn proprietor and town leader, about the mark on the scroll.  Touchwater feigns ignorance, but Fang can tell that he knows more and is concerned about the fact that someone recognized the mark.

This closes the evening and the group retires to the room they rented.

The next morning they set out to find Mert whom they were told is about a half day’s walk east from Piketon along the lake shore.

About an hour from where Mert is supposedly located, the group encounters a group of six Krell.  Without any obvious options for sneaking around given the terrain, Theren, Bran and Fang engage the Krell.  The fight gets serious.  The Krell are trained and well-equipped.  Theren, despite his magic, is heavily injured and nearly dies.  Fang and Bran fair a little better, but were not without some scrapes.

Once again, though, they use their capabilities – Bran as a trained soldier, Theren as a warlock with eldritch magic and Fang with the ability to call on animal totems and use healing magic – to good effect and destroy the Krell.  Bran made excellent use of his halberd and his combat abilities to fend of attacks and deliver considerable bodily harm.  Fang’s totem, druidic magic and skill with his scimitar aided the party with buffs, entangling some of the enemy and taking down a couple of Krell.  Theren stood tough against the onslaught of javelins and great-axes and managed to unleash some of the eldritch energies of his patron. One blast, in particular, absolutely obliterated a Krell (turned inside out, smoldering, etc.).  He also gave back some of what he took from the others.

And that is where we ended the session.  The group got a little loot for their troubles. But they didn’t quite make it to Mert and find out what she knows about the sigils tattooed on their hands – which occasionally glow and get warm in certain situations.  Hopefully, she’ll have some idea of what they mean and what is required to get rid of them.

As always, if you like the story, click the like button.  Let me know what you think or ask questions in the comments section.  I’m more than happy to talk about my home-brew world and the players I game with.  If you still want it, I’ll keep it coming as the story unfolds.

And We’re Back! Game Night Session 6

So, Session 6 went off last night.  It was a bit shorter than I had hoped, but things went well.  Some of this might be a bit of recap from my mention of session 5 in a previous post, but there is definitely more.  And I have to go into creative mode again… you’ll see.

Bran, Theren and Fang made tentative friends with the merchant and his son and guards.  They decided to share the camp site in spite of Fang’s best efforts to deter the merchant group from staying with them.  The merchant was not hiding that he thought there was an opportunity to collect a bounty for this murderer that Fang had mentioned.  Again this was in spite of Fang emphatically telling the merchant that there was no bounty.  Fang also didn’t mention the “nature” of this murderer, either… like the fact that Slythis was a possessed goblin that was transforming into something else and becoming more powerful with every kill he/it made.

The evening started out pleasant enough.  Now that there was some mild trust between the two groups, small talk and stories were exchanged over a good meal.

The watches were set as both groups prepared to sleep for the night.  A member of the merchant group (guards and merchant’s son) decided to partner up with a member of our group for each of 3 watch shifts.

The “fun” begins with Theren sensing the presence of the dagger.  He wakes the rest of his group and a chase through the woods begins.

Unfortunately for the members of the two groups, Slythis is very illusive until…

One of the merchant guards wondered a distance off the road into the woods.  A few minutes later, Fang, Theren and Bran track him down and find him scared and bloodied next to a tree.  Theren confirms that the dagger feels close.

They discover that the merchant guard’s wounds were essentially superficial cuts… just enough to make things look bloody, but with no real harm.  Slythis was toying with the guard… to prove his abilities and power???

Then they spot Slythis running through the trees a fair distance from them, and he’s heading back toward the road.

The group get the guard to recover from his scare enough and race back to the camp.  They hope they cut Slythis off and maybe run into him for the fight they have been wanting on.

But no such luck.  Slythis manages to not be found and does not attack the camp.

After things calm a bit, the merchant asks questions, especially after seeing the state of his one guard.  Bran, Fang and Theren decide to “spill the beans”.  Theren uses his newfound telepathic ability to “educate” the merchant with everything the group has learned and experienced concerning Slythis.

After nearly passing out from the shock, the merchant completely understands that Theren, Bran and Fang are truly after this thing for reasons well beyond a simple bounty.  This prompts him to offer his services in the best way he can conceive… pass along information.  Bran instructs the merchant to let the garrison commander in Braiton know what is going on.  The merchant promises to do so and leaves with the rising sun.

This next day is spent planning and preparing for an encounter with Slythis.  The group hopes that the reduced numbers will motivate Slythis to be more bold.  They had come to realize beyond much doubt that he must, in fact, be possessed by an entity that made its home in the dagger.  His behavior has suggested a “dual nature”.  It was the only thing to explain the murderous behavior coupled with the lack of desire for direct confrontation with the group – his true target.  The goblin part would be the sly cunning actions that worked to avoid anything or anyone potentially more powerful… like the group.  The entity in the dagger that calls to Theren and taunts him appears to be the psychotic rage and necromancer part.

Their insight turns out to be spot on.  Before the sun completely sets, a man riding in a small cart pulled by a horse is attacked just up the road from the camp in plain sight, but just out of reach for the group to be of any help.  They watch as the cart is flipped and catches fire from a lantern that was sitting next to the cart driver.  Slythis downs the horse in the “usual manner” – slitting its throat.  He then pounces on the man and kills him in the same way.

The group took what advantage they could despite having to watch the man and horse die from a distance.  They advanced up the road to confront Slythis, and Slythis was all too “happy” to oblige in his enraged and psychotic state.

The fight went quickly.  Bran made good use of his bow and then his halberd once he could close the distance to melee range.  Theren stayed back and used his warlock magic to try and bring down Slythis.  Fang had shape-shifted into a black panther (as a druid, he can do that) and took advantage of the additional four-legged speed and agility of a cat.  He made constant lunges at Slythis, and then finally pounced on Slythis.

Enough of the various attacks hit their marks, and Slythis was slain.  Fang and Bran had some injuries, but none were life-threatening.

As the adrenaline wore off, Slythis’ body was examined.  He was no longer a small grayish-yellow skinned goblin.  Instead he had grown to nearly the size of a human or elf.  He had bony protrusions down his spine and along his arms and legs.  His face had become a thing of true evil.  The skin had been stretched over very pronounced cheek bones.  The jaw hung slack.  The teeth had grown jagged.  Slythis had become something from a nightmare.

Down to business.  Fang looked at the dagger and saw that it was “fused” to Slythis’ hand.  So, he drew his scimitar and lopped off the dead creature’s hand.  Avoiding touching the dagger – out of concern of something similar happening to him, Fang scooped up the severed and and dagger into a sack.

The dagger, itself, is a vile looking thing.  It appears to be made entirely of bone.  It is stained with the dried blood of the many victims Slythis attacked with it.  Its point is sharp, and the edges are jagged.  The handle is too obscured by the hand to see well.  But the closer examination shows that the hand’s skin had truly grown into/onto the handle of the dagger.  Slythis could not have let go of the dagger.  It was like they had merged.

It was also noted that when Fang removed the hand with the dagger, Slythis’ distorted body visibly shrank a little.  It was as if the removal of the dagger removed some of the… vitality??? from Slythis even after death.

So, a thunderstorm rolled through the north Texas area, and we had to cut our session off right there out of concern over losing power.  Session 7 is scheduled for next Sunday.  I will try to post the happenings as quickly as I am able.  I hope you’re still enjoying the “story” as much as I am telling it.

As always, let me know what you think.  Ask questions.  I will answer as much as I can, so long as I am not giving away “spoilers” 😉

Type to you soon…

Race Day! When’s Game Night?

Hey.  Wassup?  I hope shit’s going good 🙂

I guess things are going okay for me.  There are few complaints, I suppose.

Anyway, I decided to “bark” a little bit about the next couple of hobby things going on for me.

First, is my next endurance race.  iRacing is putting on its yearly version of the 24 Hours of Le Mans this coming Saturday (tomorrow, actually), and Delta-V will be in the BMW M8 GTE car.  I know y’all aren’t all that into auto racing, so I’ll keep this short.  I’ve been practicing this week, and I think I’m ready to turn some laps.  The possible problem the team has right now, though, is kind of a lack of team.  As of this moment, there are only 3 of us getting ready to race Saturday.  The other members of the team have been quiet.  There has been no chatter from them about their availability, if any, for some stints throughout the 24-hour time period.

I think we can complete the race with 3 guys, but it’s gonna be tough.  That’s a lot of time in the virtual race car for each of us plus time one of the teammates puts in as support/spotter while another is driving.  I don’t think I’m going to get much sleep Saturday :-/

Second…  the D&D game.

I think this next week I will break my “silence” and question my two estranged players about their situation in relation to returning to the “table” for D&D game night.  If there is no reconciliation between the two, I am going to take steps to acquire a replacement player for at least one of them.  I feel bad that they cannot work things out, but I am no longer going to hold off for them.  The other player and I want to game.

I’ll keep you up to date.

As always, I appreciate questions and/or comments.  Thanks for taking the time to “listen”.

Game Night, Session 4

So, we got a game in a week ago this past Sunday night.  Yay us!  It was a bit unexpected actually.  I was supposed to be doing a 24-hour endurance sim-race from Saturday morning through Sunday morning.  I was not going to be mentally sharp enough to run a D&D session after that.  But my “compatibility” with the car/track combination was… not good. So, I bowed out because I didn’t want to be the reason our race – and others’ races – got ruined due to me falsely believing I could handle being in the race.

That opened up Sunday evening for a game session… yay us 🙂

The group picked up right after the fight with the zombies.  So, they investigate the little pond and the area where the goblin (their stalker) performed the ritual to raise the zombies.

Bran notes that he hit the goblin with an arrow as it ran away.  Some investigation reveals a couple drops of blood.  This proves to the group that their stalker CAN be killed.

There might have been a bit of concern about that…

Some discussion leads to a decision to go back toward Piketon Road and camp the nearest wide spot in the road.  Further discussion about their stalker compels Theren to reveal a bit more about his awareness of the dagger; it has “called” to him when it was close and in a recent dream.

Bran and Fang are starting to learn that there’s more to Theren than they thought…

Theren agrees to play the part of bait at camp that night.  They are hoping that making Theren appear more vulnerable will attract their stalker for a more direct confrontation.

Near dawn – no stalker appearance up to this point – Fang hears something moving through the marsh near them.  They prepare for an encounter that does not come as expected.

A goblin (obviously not their stalker) crawls up on the road.  It is nearly dead.

Fang decides to aid the stricken goblin in hopes of getting some information out of it.

Theren begins to question Kolk (goblin’s name) about Slythis (stalker’s name) since Theren actually speaks goblin.  Kolk was part of the raiding group that killed the travelers that became the zombies for Slythis.  Kolk explains that they did the work for Slythis out of fear of his power – Kolk mentions that the dagger is powerful and that Slythis is not all goblin anymore.

The fact that Slythis is changing and more information about the dagger he carries creates more concern about this enemy.

Kolk further explains that his entire village was killed, and the only reason he survived is because he managed to hide after being severely wounded.  Slythis was in too much of killing rage to notice.  Kolk was crawling toward the road for no other reason than to distance himself from Slythis and the carnage of his village.  But in typical goblin thinking, Kolk decides that going back to the village is now possible with his new, more powerful “friends”.

The group decides that it might be worth following Kolk back to his village.  Kolk’s explanation that his fellow villagers “did not die right” generates concern and curiosity.  So, despite the apprehension of encountering Slythis directly, they trek through the marshes following Kolk back to his village.

Arrival at the tiny goblin village reveals brutal and unusual carnage.  Every goblin in Kolk’s village is dead.  Looking at several of the bodies shows deep cuts across their throats – the way Slythis murders his victims.  Their deaths, however, were not “normal murder”.  The bodies look desiccated.  They all appear as though their life forces were drained away.  Kolk’s explanation holds.  These goblins did not die right…

They all agree that the unusual deaths had something to do with the dagger that Slythis carries.  The evidence – Theren’s “contact” with the dagger, the apparent changes in Slythis and the undeniable powers of the dagger, itself – is blatant and undeniable.  It is also agreed that the dagger, if taken, must be destroyed.

The group helps Kolk clean up the village – they burn the bodies… just in case.  Bran and Fang investigate the village shaman’s hut.  They find a horrific scene.  The shaman had obviously been tortured and disemboweled by Slythis.  The shaman’s body, however, is not desiccated like the other goblin villagers.  The hut, itself, is ransacked.  Every item that even hinted at the shaman being a user of magic had been desecrated by Slythis.  What had not been outright destroyed, had been covered in the shaman’s blood and entrails.

Fang notices a small holy symbol on a totem just outside the hut and grabs it.  He hopes he can take it some place to be “at peace”.

Bran, Fang and Theren had noticed smoke rising from the edge of the forest just up the road from where they had turned to go to Kolk’s village.  They figure it’s a large camp or small hamlet.  With Kolk’s village being in its current state, the group decides to go back to the road and seek out the source of the smoke.

Kolk decides he wants to stay in his village partly because he knows he would not be safe at the roadside hamlet – his raiding part had hit the little hamlet in the past – and partly because he feels compelled to try and repopulate the village if he can.  The group bid him farewell and head back toward the road and the roadside hamlet.  They feel that, at the very least, they now have a contact they can rely on if needs be.

The group travels up the road and leave the marsh lands for forest once again.  They arrive at a small road that leads into the forest a short distance where they find the hamlet – the source of the smoke being a smithy and cooking fires burning at a rather nice inn.

As they investigate the hamlet, they discover Jameson, proprietor of the inn, founder of the hamlet, itself, and undisputed mayor of said hamlet.  He is quite a large fellow, standing at nearly 7 feet tall.  Despite his “padding” from age and slower days, it is obvious he is well-muscled and a strong fighter.  Conversation with him reveals his past as a soldier/mercenary and then ultimately settling here to build and operate his inn.

The hamlet exists for the sole purpose of being a place for travelers along Piketon Road to have a place to stay if and when needed.  The money made from the travelers for services rendered is how the small group of residents sustains itself.  The tiny population includes a stable keeper and wheelwright, a couple of farmers that provide produce and meat for Jameson’s inn and the rest of the hamlet, a blacksmith and a baker.

For a very reasonable fee, the group sets themselves up in the in for a night’s stay, a meal and drink for the evening.  They also hope to get any gossip and information they can from Jameson and any travelers staying the night.

That is where we ended the night.

Kolk, for all intents and purposes a nasty, evil goblin might now be a potential ally and/or source of information about the area if or when the group passes through again.

They also get to spend a night in much nicer surroundings than a roadside camping area.

Fang found a shrine to Nira (goddess of nature) at the edge of town in the forest.  He placed the village holy symbol on the shrine and said a prayer to Nira asking for the return of Nature’s will over the evil that had been done to the goblin village.  Evil or not, as Fang sees things, goblins are part of life in the world and is no better or worse than humans or animals.

I feel like they will make it to Piketon in the next session and begin their search for Mert.  Mert is believed to have some sort of knowledge or insight about the sigil that mysteriously appeared on the left palm of each member of the group a few days ago back in Braiton.

This “distraction” from Slythis may or may not be connected to the reason they are traveling to Piketon for, hopefully, some answers.

I guess we’ll just have to wait and see 😉

Thanks for sticking with me.

Sorry for Being Idle

Business… laziness… not writing a blog when I’m near my computer…

Those are the reasons/excuses for no posts recently.  I’m sorry about that… mostly.  I think y’all get it, though.  I got busy with some things.  I got a little lazy over the past couple of days.  When I was at my computer before that, I was doing other things for better or worse. Who can tell?

I do have game night, session 4 in the pipe. We actually played a week ago this past Sunday.

I have another post about my game world in the works, too.  It’s about the world’s pantheon… and maybe more.  I wanted to put some more depth/color out there for my gamers and my readers.

I also got a “shiny new toy”.  I bought Campaign Cartographer.  For the first time in over 20 years, my hand sketched maps and mind’s eye for this world are finally becoming “real”. I’m making the maps of this world as something that looks like a map out of an actual published campaign… so awesome to me.  Needless to say, there have been some hours sunk into that as I learn the software and make my vision into something others can see (and use, in the case of my gaming group).  I’ll come up with a way for y’all to see it, too, if you want.

Anyway, just wanted to do a “drive-by” blogging to let y’all know that I ain’t quit <grin>. So the suffering will continue 😛

Catch y’all hopefully sooner than later 😉

Game Night, Session 1

Well, it happened.  My group and I kicked off our campaign.  This is the first tabletop RPG I’ve played in more than 5 years.  We are playing Dungeons & Dragons, 5th edition, and the campaign is a home brew idea of mine.  The “working” title of the campaign is, “Gods Save the King”.

As a group we are separated by geography.  Two of us are in Texas (over an hour apart), and two of us are in Missouri.  So, we broke out Discord for voice and text communication, and we are using Fantasy Grounds – a program that is used for what is called a “virtual tabletop”.

Session 1 was essentially character creation.  The 3 players had to put their concepts on “paper” and plug in the D&D system attributes to connect them with the game portion.

Meet:

Fang, half-elven druid

Bran Stormwind, human fighter (soldier)

Theren Galanodel, Nidawi (wood elf) warlock

I’ll be describing the characters in more detail as things progress.

We discussed the general theme – good vs. evil and then I began laying out the first scene.

The PCs (Player Characters) have lived their lives to this point in the town of Braiton.  It is a decent sized farming town about a day’s walk from Welandar City (the kingdom capital).  Up until recently, they have lived “normal” lives in this small town.

The dreams, though, have been haunting at the least… horrifying more and more often.  They all see about the same thing in their dreams: the kingdom of Welandar is destroyed.

By day there has been nothing unusual going on, but the dreams are always there at night now.

Then this morning a royal herald rides into town and begins announcing that the king is dead.  There is essentially no details of why or how.

That evening the group ends up at one of the inns/taverns to listen and discuss the possible ramifications of the king’s death, especially the fact that he had no heir.

As the evening draws to a close, the barkeep/innkeeper distributes a “last call” of ale to the patrons to raise a toast to the king.  Bran and Fang hoist their drinks in salute and down some of the ale.  Theren – the paranoid soul that he is – did the salute, but opted out of taking a drink.

As the group gets a little way from the inn heading toward home, Bran and Fang pass out.  Theren tries to figure out what’s going on, but is brought up short with the point of a blade at the back of his neck.  Being not physically strong and capable of fighting in that way, he allows himself to be subdued.  They are taken to the fort at the edge of town.

Bran and Fang wake up the next morning tied to cots.  As the mental fog of the drug wears off, they notice Theren sitting in the corner of the cell tied and gagged.  They are gagged as well.

While trying to figure out their situation a little better, they each feel a burning sensation in the palm of their left hands.  They have just enough mobility to look and see a sigil tattooed/emblazoned there.

And that ends our first game session.

Thoughts? Comments? Questions?  I will give no spoilers, but I will try and post what happens each game night… if you want me to. 😉