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#319509 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter 5 Ic Thread

Posted by Orcslicer on 29 December 2010 - 11:29 AM in Preacher Corner

"Skalf was of the belief that our destinies were greater than languishing in some cell," added Maeglin, in half response, though he continued to listen to the approaching voices. He wondered what had become of the priest. "There is a saying amongst my people... 'it is wise not to bet against those who can divinate the future'."

"Of course, it is a bit more catchy in Eltharin," he added, ruefully.



#318983 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter 5 Ic Thread

Posted by Orcslicer on 22 December 2010 - 11:10 AM in Preacher Corner

Maeglin left the engineering inspection to Allaen and Gurni; their combined intellect and pomposity would be enough to find a solution in the framework, if one exisited. Instead, the elf turned his blind-honed hearing to the two approaching voices, his suspicion aroused. Odd that a couple of drunks had somehow avoided the guards and accidentally wandered down here...



#318428 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter 5 Ic Thread

Posted by Orcslicer on 16 December 2010 - 02:57 PM in Preacher Corner

Maeglin, staring wistfully through the narrow slits that passed for windows, turned to look across the gloom. His unseeing eyes easily making out the forms of life in the other cell where Julen and the others had been placed.

"In the forests, the tree spirits can come to the heed of those in great need. This is the great folly of men, building from stone and iron," he said, almost dreamily.



#318064 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 13 December 2010 - 08:24 AM in Preacher Corner

The sale of the talisman is an oversight (although irrelevant really, that could have been planted on you too), and regarding the warpstone... well it's in a sealed vial. Stop picking holes, my work here is done. I'm guessing Hyar is going to start a new thread?



#317836 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 10 December 2010 - 04:44 PM in Preacher Corner

Benedict watched coolly as the elf and the dwarf were escorted from the room, expression impassive underneath his masquerade mask. Beneath, his mind was calculating quickly. This group of oddballs was consistently proving to exceed their uses. How much did they know? Who was helping them?

Benedict approached a looking glass positioned above an ornate Drakwald Oak mantelpiece and examined his reflection, fussing with his hair narcissistically as he contemplated. Staring into his own ice blue eyes he found the solution staring back at him, the simple genius of it surprising even himself.

“My lord,” he said, turning to the Graf and indicating the door. “Your adoring public awaits.”
_________________

Maeglin and Gurni, their fanatic minder in tow, began to make their way to the ballroom, unsure exactly what their next move would be. The dwarf remained characteristically impassive and silent, but Maeglin’s expression betrayed the pair’s reeling surprise. The poisoned well trail had led them back into lion’s den, a corrupt Witch Hunter now aware of their presence in the building.

Hasseltein prodded the obese scholar in the back, steering the party down a narrow spiral staircase.

“We wish to investigate the ballroom,” said Maeglin, pausing at the crest of the stairwell.

“As you wish,” growled the fanatic, “but you’ll be using the servants entrances. You aren’t getting into the hall dressed like that.”

Perhaps seeing the wisdom in this point, the elf and dwarf began to descend the stairs.
_________________

Light, aimless chatter drifted through the ballroom as the elite of the north dined, danced and entertained themselves. The swell of string music, the colourful masks, the whirl of dresses upon the dance floor; it was all like something out of a book. Anna found herself lost in the moment, wondering if this is what her life would have been like if Julian, Weiss, Hans and she had all made it to Altdorf as planned.

Facing her, Sir Orderic Langar moved in carefully executed steps, as at ease on the ballroom floor as on the battlefield. A few figures down, Julen was with some pretty young girl from his own native Estilea. Not quite as versed in dances of the empire, but a competent improviser at any rate.

From amongst the crowds, Allaen watched everything with a kind of easy interest, a stem glass of wine in his hand. He ignored the curious glances and looks he received, readily aware of the rarity of elves in the presence of humans.

As the music finished, a polite smattering of applause reverberated around the room, cut harshly short by the blare of a fanfare.

“PRAY SILENCE FOR HIS HIGHNESS THE GRAF.”

In ones and twos, the crowd turned expectantly to face the second floor passageway that overlooked the ballroom and the buzz of conversation faded to silence. Flanked by Teutogen Guard, Deputy High Priest Klaus Leibnitz and an unidentified Sigmarite, Boris Todbringer appeared, smiling and waving. Tall, powerful and wild looking, his expression was moderated considerably by his temperament.

“My honoured lords, ladies and gentlemen,” began the Graf, raising a hand in greeting. “It has been a long six months since I stood in this city last. When we made our stand against the forces of darkness…”

Allaen continued to sip his wine, eyes flicking to the Sigmarite by the Graf, only to find that he had gone. To the Graf’s right, Leibnitz’s bulky frame stood calmly looking over the crowd. He and Allaen’s eyes met for a second as he scanned the crowd.

The Graf’s speech continued in the same vein for a while, speaking of the campaign following the broken armies of Archaon. Of the hard marches and sleepless nights, and of his regret having to leave his beloved city. His praise for Leibnitz and Schutzmann in his stead.

Allaen watched in some mild fascination the human’s political oration. It wasn’t bad, of course, but there were some significant difference to that of the courts in Ulthuan. The political analysts would of course be picking up on some of the more subtle indications and double meanings, the messages to particular lobbying groups, but Allaen saw them as rather clumsy.

“… and now,” said the Graf, “we drink to remember their fallen. To those that have given their lives in the service of Ulric and the City of the White Wolf.” He raised a chalice in toast. “Lest we forget.”

“Lest we forget,” echoed the crowd. Allaen raised his glass to join in, only to be jostled hard by someone passing through the crowd. He turned, a mild frown on his face. He caught a glance of a beaked lacquer mask looking back at him, a flash of blond hair, and the figure was gone.

Urgently, Allaen stepped towards Orderic and the others. “Benedict is here,” he began, but was interrupted by a rolling gasp and a woman’s scream.

As one, the group whirled round. Somewhere, a glass tumbled to the ground and shattered, sending tinkling glass over the marble. The Graf was slumped over the balcony, heaving. A concerned Leibnitz was leaning over him.

“Call for a physician!” he boomed, voice audible over the rising commotion. “And seal the palace. No one is to enter or leave!”
_________________

Gurni was becoming more and more concerned as they descended further down the stairwell. A glance shared with Maeglin confirmed he was not alone. Unable to communicate without being overheard, they were nevertheless thinking the same thing.

“Long way down, this servant’s entrance,” commented Gurni dryly, as the passage levelled out.

“We’re taking a little detour,” replied the fanatic, with a nasty grin.

“Like that is it?” growled Gurni, pulling his trusted mace from his belt and raising it threateningly.

Maeglin, bow already in hand with arrow notched lowered his weapon. “It’s no good Gurni.”

The dwarf was about to reply, when from the shadows a couple of temple guards emerged. The sound of several more clattering down the stairs soon became audible even to the dwarf. “Bugger.”

The pair relinquished their weapons, and marched on, flanked by guards. Both the dwarf and the elf kept looking out for some opportunity to take their captors by surprise. None came.

Hasseltein led them to a network of damp, musty cells somewhere in the bowels of the palace, and with an encouraging prod from the swords of the guards, forced the pair into a cell and slammed the door with a sombre clang.

“Enjoy your stay at the honourable Graf’s hospitality,” growled the fanatic with a feral grin. “Your friends, wherever they are, will soon be joining you.”
_________________

The ballroom had remained sealed now for the best part of an hour. The guests, one by one, being questioned and searched. Orderic and Anna had taken the opportunity to speak to Torsten Hoch when Markus was taken for questioning. They had returned successful, though Orderic was entirely unhappy.

“The man is an ill mannered pig,” he began, “his behaviour towards Anna was lewd and dishonourable, and were it not of paramount importance to keep him happy, I would have challenged him then and there.”

“It would have livened things up, no?” said Julen, lounging against a pillar and wishing he could get out for a smoke.

As though granting his wish, the garden doors opened and a palace guard approached the group. He pointed at Allaen. “You next.”

“May I ask what you expect to find?” said Allaen, politely.

“You may not.”

“It seems a fruitless activity to engage in. Would expect the assassin would have waited around with incriminating evidence? A cynic would argue you were doing this to coerce the public into believing you know what you are doing.”

The guards ignored Allaen, insisting instead on patting him down. Within the robes, one pulled out a bundle; a small scrap of paper and a vial of green sparkling crystals. A kind of grim triumph emerged on the palace guard’s bearded features as he read the scrap. Another found the silver hammer icon given to him by the Temple of Sigmar.

“Those are not mine,” Allaen said, indicating the scrap and the vial.

“Warpstone,” muttered someone from nearby.

“Sigmarite scum,” he said, spitting on Allaen. “You’ll hang for this, and that’s if you’re lucky. Arrest him!”

Markus, overlooking the proceedings, saw an opportunity and took it. “She was with him!” he shouted, waveringly, pointing at Anna. “And those two!”

“Sieze them!”

Julen and Orderic both instinctively reached for the swords, grasping nothing, as, of course, they had not been permitted to bring their swords into the palace.

“Your conclusion is rudimentary, and your logic is questionable to say the least,” said Allaen, a touch of exasperation in his voice. “We were searched on the way in, were we not? If we were responsible for a covert murder attempt, would it really make sense to smuggle incriminating papers? Or to wait around afterwards? May I at least know what the note says?”

The arrival of Deputy High Priest Leibnitz prevented the guard from responding. “Silver tongued words won’t get you out of this, elf,” replied Leibnitz with a scowl, after being informed of the situation. Guards, detain them!”
_________________

The cell door clanged open, and Allaen, Anna, Orderic and Julen were shoved unceremoniously into the room. Gurni looked up from a forlorn looking stool that was buckling quite badly under his weight.

“You took your time,” said Gurni, from the next door cell. “Hope you gave ‘em some trouble,” and, to Allaen, “I hope someone’s told you… that’s a ridiculous hat.”

Even this deep in the palace complex, there were windows letting in slanted shafts of moonlight. Outside, there was the sound of angry mobs in the distance. Word had gotten out that Sigmarites had been responsible for murdering the Graf. That it was Sigmarites poisoning the wells. Even through the scant available light, the orange glow of fires over Middenhiem was beginning to make an impression.

The ashes of Middenhiem had been reignited, the Ulricans were rising up, and there were riots in the streets.



#315046 Ashes Of Middenheim (Ooc Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 12 November 2010 - 06:30 AM in Preacher Corner

Just a note to say... I'm working on it :P



#312883 Ashes Of Middenheim (Ooc Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 26 October 2010 - 07:21 PM in Preacher Corner

Chaps,

It's been a long while since I checked the AoM thread, mostly through work commitments and real life keeping me rather busy. Since this doesn't look like any time soon, I am, with regret, suggesting passing on the baton. I've had a chat with Hyarion, and he's happy to take over from me the GM duties, with me taking on Maeglin's role in his stead.

Hopefully you're happy with this arrangement. Hyar has been an effective lieutenant to my GMing reign for the past few years, always eager to discuss what's been going on, theorise and immerse himself in the WFRP universie. You couldn't find someone with more enthusiasm than him to keep the story going. I'm happy to help him behind the scenes with the occasional bit of advice, but for now, my GM hat will have to be swapped with a PC hat.

Keep on a look out for info. I'm sure Hyarion with prod you when he has notes collected together to get the story rolling again.

Orcy



#300727 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 22 July 2010 - 08:25 PM in Preacher Corner

"I will ignore your slight against me," says Benedict, cooly. "Though that could be reason enough to indict you." He prowls forward, fishing a black lacquer mask from his cloak. "Perhaps I was not clear enough. You either remain with an escort, or I will have no choice but to have you detained. I will not risk the Graf's safety by allowing a couple of loose cannons wandering about."



#300487 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 21 July 2010 - 03:26 PM in Preacher Corner

(To Allaen)

"[There are few places I have not, though the question of how recently depends if we talk of human time spans or not. Outside of the Empire I have served as ambassador to the Ice Queen in Kislev, the lands of Bretonnia, Estilea and Tilea. Quite a considerable spell of my Empire travels was spent in Altdorf, though I have visited most of the major cities. A few centuries ago my travels took me further afield, though of course, few in this room would remember back that far.]"
_______________

Within moments of the girls leaving, Anna begins to explain to Julen the problem with singling out Pascal and somehow convincing him to offer his vote (playing it nice? blackmail? intimidation? bribery?), but before the duellist can get too heavily involved, he hears a squeal of delight from nearby.

"[Julen! It's you! They said that you had moved to the continent in search of adventure!]" the voice comes in excited Estilean, and is accompanied by a passionate bear-hug from a dark haired girl. The behaviour is of course, entirely taboo within polite imperial society, and is accompanied by shakes of the head and tutting from some of the more austere guests nearby. The girl takes off her mask (an exotic gold bird-face), revealing a young face with sparkling brown eyes and a wide smile. "[You have not forgotten me, mi amor?]"

Anna looks on, raising an eyebrow in amusement.

I brought this up a long while ago, but you'll probably need a refresher Paraic - The lady in question is the much courted Cristina Del Monte, daughter of the rather influential Viscount Del Monte. The latter of whom you last saw back in Estilea, chasing you out of the young lady's room in question and out onto the roof with a fire poker. He is not immediately in sight, however.

________________

"One moment, friend elf," says Benedict, holding a gloved hand up as Gurni balls his fists up and moves to follow the Elf with reluctance. "We could use the help, since you know what we are looking for. But you will get around the palace faster if you are accompanied. Take Brother Hasseltein."

Arriving at the doorway like a prowling beast, with his grizzled features and wiry wild hair, the fanatic looks almost out of place in a simple black cassock and belt. He gives a feral grin, and shares a nod with Benedict.

Hasseltein will escort Gurni and Maeglin to wherever they want to go. Until/unless they decide to convince him otherwise, to give him the slip, or otherwise come up with an alternative plan.



#300358 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 20 July 2010 - 07:31 PM in Preacher Corner

The Graf gathers his thoughts for just a moment before replying. "I thank you for your efforts and the measures that you must have taken to reach me. However, the warning you bring was made known to me hours ago."

"In the spirit of cooperation," continues a second voice, stepping out from amongst the darkness of the bookshelves like an apparition. "The Templars have offered their services to personally ensure the wells remain untainted, and the Graf's personal safety is made paramount."

From across the room, Brother Benedict, Templar Witch Hunter of the Order of the White Rose, stares at you with keen glittering eyes. The hint of a smile plays upon his lips, as though daring the elf or the dwarf to say more.
___________

Surprised and crestfallen by the jibe at her expense, Anna quickly recovers her poise as Julen steps in. "Julen! How time flies, it feels like only minutes when were together last, does it not?" Sharing a knowing smile with all three. "Sir Orderic, meet Caballero Mesnadero Julen Guerrero, an old friend, and Allaen Brightstar of the far lands of Ulthuan."

The girls fall quiet, looking to their leader for an appropriate response. It is her turn to look crestfallen. Snubbed by an influential Dukes son and insulted by an elf, for all she knows an influential diplomat, she is unable to come up with anything to say. She curtseys wordlessly and flounces off, her gaggle of followers in her wake.



#300229 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 20 July 2010 - 07:29 AM in Preacher Corner

I'm assuming from the silence that Gurni and Maeglin do not refuse to relinquish their weapons, and hence I'll move on...

The servant leads you off the corridor into a drawing room of sorts, currently empty, but filled with expensive furniture, wolf rugs and plush seating. It is immaculately clean, but looks like it has not been used in a long time.

The servant raps on a set of double doors three times, flanked by two of the kings most loyal guard, the White Wolf knights, and swings open the doors into a large and softly lit library. Books cram the shelves on all the walls, and a adjustable spiral staircase is hooked to the outer wall to allow access to a second gallery of books overlooking the room. In the middle is a large polished table, scattered with papers and documents. Over it, Graf Boris Todbringer stands alone. He to all appearances the leader seen in the portraits dedicated to him. Tall, powerful and wild looking, with dark eyebrows that make him look as though he is permanently frowning. Perhaps he looks a little older, with streaks of white now readily apparent in his wild dark hair.

"Be to the point," he says, not impolitely, but rather curtly.
__________

Elrohir nods. "[Returning ambassador to the Empire. I have resumed my post following the resolution of the war. Before then I have been a representative of Eataine and her people throughout the Old World.]
__________

Avaris, you mean Pascal - you've already got to Torsten (I thought something was off, so I looked back over the posts and the IRC session!), see my reminder:

Reminder: As it's been a while, Pascal is the last man you need to win over. He's a debt collector, one of the biggest in the north. Offers loans, but at extortionate rates and always gets what he wants back. Fairly ruthless sort.


Anyhow...

Pascal you deduce must be one of two men you don't recognise within Markus' party. Either a suave (and fairly handsome) looking man or a very short, beady eyed man who looks on everyone with a mixture of greed and annoyance.
Anna points this out to Orderic, and they remain in circulation and in light conversation observing the merchants for an opening where one will break off. Markus himself appears to be playing a game of cat and mouse of his own, often scanning the crowd as though trying to locate someone.

Orderic and Anna find themselves taking cover among a group of girls, nearby to Allaen. They are quite amiable with the handsome and exotic knight, but treat Anna with barely concealed snobbery.
"Lady Anna, you should see to your girl."
Anna sips her wine meekly and looks puzzled. "My girl?"
The girl nods. "She's not very good." Leaning in, she whispers theatrically. "Your dress... it looks like it was bought in a store." Her companions break out into giggles.

Manufactured situation? What manufactured situation? :P



#300072 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 19 July 2010 - 08:03 AM in Preacher Corner

"[They are a curious race. Impatient; perhaps understandably, given their short life spans. But desipte their physical similarities, I find the diversity of their behaviour fascinating. Greed, corruption, quick roads to power and influence are there, and some certainly take it. But there are others... those who see that their strength is in unity, those who lead not for themselves, but for the good of their people.]" Elrohir paused to sip his wine and scan the room, noting new arrivals once more. "[The first time I came to the Empire, I was in the studentship of my master during the age the humans call 'The time of Magnus the pious'. I saw then humanity united to common purpose. I saw how things fell apart afterwards, and it has been curious to see them unite once more. There is some hope in all of this, I think.]"



#300065 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 19 July 2010 - 07:26 AM in Preacher Corner

"[Good evening brother,]" speaks a voice behind Allaen. "[I am Elrohir Skypeace, ambassador to Eataine and her people.] It is the elf that Allaen made brief eye contact with earlier, tall and fair, as most Asuryans are, holding a glass of wine similar to Allaen's own. To a human, it would almost look like a mirror had been placed before one elf, but Elrohir does not wear a hat.

"[Forgive me, but I believe I have not heard your name at the Graf's court before.]" He smiles, adding; "[I do not entirely believe that is the footman's fault. You should hear the mistakes he makes with my own title, even after six months.]"

_______

The guard, fortunately one who appears he can read, scruitinises the note with a lot more care than previous stops, but eventually seems to conceed it is genuine. After dissappearing briefly to elsewhere in the apartments, he returns with a servant, but obviously quite a senior one.

"The Graf will see you briefly, but you must be relieved of your weapons first," he says, with a tone that brooks no argument.



#299334 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 15 July 2010 - 07:23 AM in Preacher Corner

"Caballero Mesnadero Julen Guerrero, second-in-line to the Seat of Ricohombre Xavier, Duque of Sagavie and Grandée of Estalia." The announcer is almost flawless with this one, as indeed he must be with the wide range of nations that may gather at the Graf's court.

More heads turn. Fewer than Allaen perhaps, but nonetheless there is more female attention. A young male of a foreign aristocracy, appearing without escort? Interest is of course generated, and eyes follow him across the room.
_______________

Circulating the room on his way to and from the buffet table, Allaen picks up on many threads of conversation. It is hard to pick out faces due to the nature of the ball, but he also spots at least another elf in conversation with a group of men. The two make brief eye contact and share a nod.

In terms of rumours or conversation, there are a few useful tit-bits amongst the courtesan chatter...


"I hear the Graf has something spectacular planned for midnight..."
"Did you see that hat? Darling you have to get me one, it must be the latest fashion in Ulthuan!"
"Chaucer and his wife have been bumped from the high table! Have you heard? I wonder who will be taking their place?"
"Did you see that chandelier in the von Hartok room?"
"The war? I just got back. We survive, and where there is survival, there is hope."
_______________

Orderic, any particular plans? Or are you awaiting Allaen to return to you?

As Orderic and Anna move through the room, the hear some of the other announcements...

"Elector Count Aldebrand Ludenholf, Grand Baron of Hochland, Marshal of the Talabec Reach, Defender of the Shrines, Baron of Hergig, with his wife, Lady Irona Ludenholf." (Many eyes turn at this).
"Boyar Alexei Makarev, of Erengrad, with escort."
"Herr Markus Helmut, of Altdorf... (other names, including Raffel Huber, Torsten Hoch and Pascal Fruehauf of Ostland)"

Reminder: As it's been a while, Pascal is the last man you need to win over. He's a debt collector, one of the biggest in the north. Offers loans, but at extortionate rates and always gets what he wants back. Fairly ruthless sort.
_______________

The chef gives a very confused looking glance after Maeglin's parting comment, before returning to bellowing instructions at his staff regarding the food preparations.

Maeglin and Gurni head through the palace as they discuss their plans. Rather aimlessly at first, as it isn't clear how to get anywhere. The place is so thick walled, all is silent, despite the hundreds of guests somewhere in the building. You find yourself several floors up when you reach a guarded corridor.

Barely rounding a corner you find a halberd pointed at each of your throats, held by two steely looking guards.


"HALT! This area is off limits!" shouts one. The dwarf and elf are eyed suspiciously, obviously not dressed as party goers, but not fitting in as servants.



#299160 Ashes Of Middenheim (Ooc Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 14 July 2010 - 12:54 PM in Preacher Corner

Firefly is:
http://en.wikipedia....fly_(TV_series)

But more importantly, it's awesome and has some great quotes...

e.g. Firefly quotes:
http://www.thehallwa...uotes/index.htm



#299152 Ashes Of Middenheim (Ooc Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 14 July 2010 - 12:29 PM in Preacher Corner

A mini competition has been suggested for this segment of the story - the most firefly references to be sneaked in will win a recognition bonus of 25XP. However, the references must:

a) Fit in with the context of the party and AoM,

and

b) No spamming. So a maximum of one quote per post.

First blood goes to Eldy, with his "Shindig" reference :)

(NOTE: Serenity quotes are admissible too, but not comics or series outtakes)



#299148 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 14 July 2010 - 11:29 AM in Preacher Corner

The footman turns neatly and leads the group from an entrance hall to the right hand wing of the palace, from which the sound of conversation and music is drifting.

"Ser Orderic Llangar of Gisoreux and Lady Anna Abendroth," announces the footman in a loud, clear voice. A few interested heads turn throughout the hall, as Orderic and Anna descend a short marble staircase and into the ballroom.

The room is lit by hundreds of lanterns and candles, and though not narrow in width is rather long. The ceiling is high above, and decorated with an artistic mural of some great battle that melds with a winter scene, with wolves leaping to attack, a single white wolf among them. The right wall features tall rectangular windows, gridded by black painted steel, while the left features a long upper gallery, from where many more people look down into the room below and converse. Below the gallery, several open doors lead into other function rooms, with people drifting in and out. At the far end of the hall, the room opens up into a garden.

"Ori-Asur Allaen Lecaion ni Caladaith y Cadaine le Mina-Sarion a Lothern ie Hyisae Vilien," says the footman, doing his level best not to mess up catastrophically.

Considerably more attention is attracted by this announcement, a lot of curious eyes focusing on the arriving elf.

The intonation ends up around 80% right, which isn't bad fare for a human. Clearly this footman is well trained.

The footman turns lastly to Julen. "And you, my lord?"



#299003 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 13 July 2010 - 07:27 PM in Preacher Corner

"I'm a cook!" barks the halfling, tossing a handful of carrots into a boiling saucepan. "Not a babysitter! He could be in the hall or gardens with his guests, he could be with his advisers, he could be in his room getting ready. I'm not even sure he's arrived yet!"

"E's 'ere alright," chips in a kitchen boy. "Harry - stable boy, mate o' mine - saw 'im come with his cavalry before sunset. Low key, like."



#298919 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 13 July 2010 - 02:18 PM in Preacher Corner

Yay, that's almost everyone checked in! Though Gurni, do try to read your companion's post. You and Hyarion just said entirely incompatible things... I had to roll for which one to choose.

The halfling takes Scutzmann's document and glances at it. He clearly can't read, but makes a show of scrutinising the squiggles.

"Security? Search for one of the guards in the floppy silk uniforms." He bustles past, shifting a large pot onto a cast iron stove. "This is a kitchen, only security we get are food tasters..."



#298916 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 13 July 2010 - 02:04 PM in Preacher Corner

OOC: I refuse to post until a grave injustice is corrected. Specifically, that you properly describe Allaen's magnificent hat.


Fix'd :)



#298795 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 12 July 2010 - 08:25 PM in Preacher Corner

It isn't. The masks will make it harder to identify people (get your skill checks ready), but their purpose is for a bit of light-hearted creativity and amusement, rather than to prevent anyone knowing who anyone is. In fact, the more ostentatious the mask, the more likely a correlation to a rich aristocrat.

(also, technically, Anna isn't a lady by title - she's a merchant's daughter and hence not born with royal blood, despite her privileged upbringing... guess we can blame that on Orderic's politeness though ;))



#298787 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 12 July 2010 - 07:19 PM in Preacher Corner

As the ovations continued, Orderic led Anna swiftly but calmly from the opera hall, a jovial Julen in his wake.

“It makes sense to meet Torsten at the palace; as doubtless he will plan to leave straight for the masquerade ball. Safer still to be under the palace roof, as Markus would be less inclined to try something underhand.”

Anna nodded her agreement, looking across to Julen. “What do you think, Julen?”

“Signorita, I think that was a most wonderful reenacment of Drachenfels,” began Julen enthusiastically. “The passion, the bravado… the daring swordsmanship… is… is that Allaen?”

The trio turned to look across the lobby to the doorway, where a robed and refreshed Allaen Brightstar stood surveying his room from underneath a wide brimmed hat. It perched jauntily on his head, a large, arching plume lying almost recumbent under its own weight. The end bobbed irritatingly in front of a footman, who was doing his very best to ignore it. The trio made their way across to him, Anna checking nervously to see if they were being followed.

“There will be time for questions later,” said the elf. “For now, come, I have a coach waiting…”

In this interlude, I’ll assume Allaen fills you in on the generalities of what he has learnt about the well poisoning events, and the threat to the palace. You get to the square of martials quickly, but are stuck in traffic at the entrance for a fair while, and during the wait there is plenty of time for the elf to fill the others in. You pass through the gatehouse when Anna presents the tickets that Richter gave her, and proceed to be dropped off at the entrance.

I believe that at present, Allaen and the others do not know that Maeglin and Gurni got the message (or figured out for themselves) to head to the palace.


Stepping from the coach, the group find themselves at the foot of a long, wide, flight of stairs, leading to the grand entrance to the Graf’s ancestral home. Small groups or individuals stand about in conversation, but in trickles they head upstairs, clutching their masquerade masks . Atop the staircase, a footman stops you.

“How would you like to be announced, my lords and lady?”

“Announced?” asked Anna.

“To the hall, my lady,” explains the man, kindly. “Each guest is announced for the pleasure of the Graf’s court.”

Anna glanced quickly at the others, looking for help or guidance.



#298779 Ashes Of Middenheim Chapter Four (Ic Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 12 July 2010 - 06:52 PM in Preacher Corner

Ok, the world cup is over and it’s high time the AoM bandwagon got moving again. When we left our plucky PCs, all were on their way to the palace, one way or another, attempting to foil a dastardly plot to poison the palace wells, in the midst of the carnival celebrations and while the Graf has returned for a short while to report back to his advisors and gather supplies.

As we continue, I believe you now all are aware that Brother Benedict is in some way involved in the plot, but that publicly accusing him without evidence will be most foolish. Maeglin and Gurni, with dispensation to gain access to the palace from Schutzmann, approach on foot. Orderic, Julen, Anna and Allaen are soon to meet at the Opera house.
Let the story continue…


The banging of drums and the blare of horns faded into a hum of background activity as Maeglin and Gurni made their way towards the palace and away from the throngs of festivities in the Ulricsmund. The pair made an odd sight as companions. A seemingly lithe and blind elf stalking slightly in front of the considerably shorter and bulkier scholar, waddling in his wake. They would certainly have drawn a few questioning glances had there been anyone to make them. But the streets were deserted; the whole of Middenheim had turned out for the festivities near the Great Park and the Ulricsmund.

The silence of the suburbs did not last long. As they crossed the grandeur of the Square of Martials, the city seemed to become a hive of activity once more. Coach after coach rumbled by, horses clopping rhythmically on the glistening cobbles as they continued to deliver a payload of nobility to the inner grounds of the temple. The square itself was a mass of citizens; a large wooden platform erected at one end to provide a stage for entertainers. At that moment the stage was a mask of smoke and aglow with orange torchlight, as some illusionist performed his act.

A gang of street urchins padded past, splashing through puddles and trampling Gurni’s feet.

“Damn it, yer little bastards! Watch where you’re running!” yelled Gurni at their retreating backs.

Maeglin reached instinctively to check whether his purse was still about his person.

A short time later the grand front gate loomed into the night, a train of coaches queuing to be let past as invitations were checked and double checked by flambouyantly dressed palace guards in full ceremonial gear. Only a fool would misjudge these men for their dress, for they stood with calm authority, and above them in the shadows of the walls, lurked still more archers.

Maeglin stopped beside Gurni. "I think, perhaps, that you should do the talking here Gurni. These look like they will require more convincing than I can give. At least we know what to look for this time."

A shroud passed over Gurni's face. "Yes, perhaps. I am wondering if our enemy might be trying to inflame sectarian tensions - in any case, we cannot cover all the wells by ourselves. Someone must be trusted, or we can have the guards simply clank about in threes and hope for the best." He shook his head. "Whatever plans we make, we must assume that they will be compromised the moment we reveal them to anyone. I suggest we simply try to ride out this storm and then gather our resources for a counter-attack on a later date. Keep the guards on their toes, and hopefully the palace should survive unscathed."

"These humans have no need for help with their infighting,” replied Maeglin. “They accomplish that well enough on their own. We should attempt to warn the Graf in case we have been slow in arriving here, but I do not think the wells will be a problem. This is only a single palace; how many could there be? In any case, if they want to affect the most people then we should watch the kitchens first."

Gurni nodded. "That sounds acceptable. Let us be off, then."

The dwarf strode impassively up to the front, cutting into the front of the queue, with Maeglin following warily in his wake. Protesting cries came from a few of the cabbies, but Gurni ignored them and looked the guard square in the eye.

“Watch business,” he said simply, holding out Scutzmann’s letter.

“Take it,” said the palace guard, after scanning the message and verifying it by lamplight. “Are you armed?” he added, frowning.

“I thought that was kind of the point lad.”

The guard continued the staring match with the scholar for a while, but was first to look away and wave the companions through. They passed through the gatehouse, some 20 or 30 feet of solid masonry, with several layers of portcullis, murder holes and other manner of methods for dealing death to any unwelcome force, and emerged into a lush open space. Immaculate lawns, roses and ivy following the curve of the inner wall. Another layer above that, the Graf’s palace towered in all its glory, statues and carvings etched into the hefty stonework. A bastion symbol of the mighty Elector Count’s power and influence.

FYI; I’m assuming you’re both armed, but that you’re not wearing armour, based upon the progressive sequence of events. If you feel this isn’t the case, let me know. You find the kitchen, eventually, as you are stopped by guards at another checkpoint and by a roving patrol before you can get inside the main building through the servants entrance. Clearly security is not lax.

Even from the kitchens, the view from the heavily reinforced windows is spectacular. Aside from the temple, the Graf’s Palace is the tallest structure in Middenheim, and you can see acres of gardens stretching out below, and down to the twinkling lights of the Square of Martials, where the crowds swarm like ants.

You are not left long to dwell on the prettiness of the view, as a stern, flour covered Halfling gives both of you a stern jab in the back.


“Who are you, and what in Ulric’s name are you doing in my kitchen?”

[Intro for Anna et al. soon(ish) to follow...]



#296092 Ashes Of Middenheim (Ooc Thread)

Posted by Orcslicer on 22 June 2010 - 08:51 AM in Preacher Corner

Apologies for the silence. I was going to update today, but seeing as it's not fresh in my mind and I don't have my notes it's probably best to leave it until after I get back from Glastonbury (the 28th June). Might be worthwhile sorting out another RP session on IRC as we tend to zoom through them much faster that way. I'm not sure about my availability yet though - the weekend of the 3/4th July is booked out, and I've got a conference and a power station visit in Ireland to sort the week after. How does Sunday the 11th July look for people? (10pm, as before).

I could do weekdays too, if that isn't a problem for anyone.



#294425 Podhammer 67 Alessio Cavatore On Podhammer

Posted by Orcslicer on 02 June 2010 - 08:04 AM in The Main Fireplace

Hey Jeff,

Sounds awesome... I'm still playing catchup with Podhammer. Now on episode 47. Love the show, heaped praise etc. etc.

:guinesssmilie: