Gaming Stories

A Song of Ice and Fire

A Song of Ice and Fire

Valar Morghulis: All Men Must Die

Histories and Adventures

Summaries are provided by Pat (Danyka) and Jake (Drak) with some embellishments from Audra
(GM)

 

Meet House WestbrookHouse Westbrook:

Location: Shield Islands, coast of the Reach

Liege: Mace Tyrell

Colors: Blue and silver

Standard: Kraken bearing shields

Motto: Get off my lawn

Members:
Danyka Westbrook, firstborn daughter of the noble house

Emberlyn, visiting friend of Danyka, fleeing a forced marriage

Zale Wynch, Ironborn, master of ship

Rajk Haj Qotho, Dothraki, master of horse

Olivan, Brother Char, convert in the service of R’hllor

Maester Tim Odin AKA Toad

Oliver, Septon

Morgyn, hired swordsman who is currently missing on a mission

Targaryen, unknown descendent of the Mad King

Rowena Arryn, oldest child of Jon Arryn and Lysa Tully, runaway and thief

Lord Hendryk Dagenham, trader and beer manufacturer

House statistics:

Defense:   20

Influence:  39

Lands:   16

Law:   30

Population:  38

Power:    33

Wealth:    29

History:

Founded during Aegon’s Conquest, the house rose to nobility through an early Westbrook who served as Grand Maester. Later, Westbrook fortunes fell due to losses from an Iron Island attack and from the poor financial and marital decisions of the 5th Lord Westbrook, grandfather of the present lord.

Resources:

1 unit of warships, trained

1 unit of cavalry, trained

1 unit of infantry, veterans

1 unit of archers, trained

1 port

1 marketplace

1 superior castle

Fortunes:

-2 law

+3 population

+5 fortune for the port

1d6/month fortune for the market

 

The Begining

September 2012

We began “A Song of Ice and Fire” Roleplaying game completing the Journey to King’s Landing story with pre-made characters. This helped us get into the system. Plus it was fun.

We followed this up with “Wedding Knight” another pre-made story, but with our personally created characters. There were some bad feelings at the end of this fiasco and some of the party-goers show up again later in our adventure.

 

The Uninvited Guests

January 5, 2013

It’s the day after the wedding, and House Westbrook is serving a rolling breakfast as guests drag themselves out of bed. Drak begins taking all the wedding guests back to shore. Along the way he does a little business for himself, taking Lord Crakehall aside and offering to return his missing son in exchange for a new warship. The nobleman agrees to this.

Returning to Westbrook Castle, Drak asks Danyka to deliver the guest Zale Wynch, traveling with the Tyrell’s. Danyka persuades Zale to come down to the stables with her to make sure the horses are not loaded onto the ship for the Tyrell party. Rajk wants no part of this and hides, while Drak and Danyka have a quick whispered conversation. Danyka doesn’t know what’s going on but goes along with Drak’s plan – she is no big fan of Zale anyway, and Drak is a loyal and useful citizen of Westbrook.

Drak lures Zale on board the ship and casts off. Apologizing clumsily to Zale, he mollifies the young man by offering him a glass of wine in the cabin. He then brings in the father. At that point Zale recognizes Drak as the young man who swapped places with him.
Zale is angry and his father tells him to keep up the charade. To avoid further trouble, Drak leaves the young man with the entire bottle of wine. Oddly enough, Lord Crakehall agrees to keep his promise of delivering the warship.

Meanwhile Emberlyn is suffering considerable embarrassment as Lord Tyrrell sits with her and her parents at breakfast, and appears eager to get to know her better. Danyka comes over to greet them and is somewhat startled to learn that the Tyrrell party is remaining for an extra month, and Emberlyn’s parents for another week. She manages to cover any dismay with expressions of delight, and makes a mental note to keep a better eye on her father when he’s been drinking, as he was apparently passing out invitations quite liberally.

Lady Arianna beckons Rhonal the steward to join her at breakfast, and makes him a startling offer: Would he come home, if she could arrange it? He is genuinely at a loss, which is not a normal situation for him. He receives the news that his brother has married and had children, and that those who wished to kill him are either dead or dying. Would he return and become Lord Weill? In the end he decides his commitments in his current life are more important.
Danyka sees this conversation from afar, thinks Lady Arianna is trying to steal her steward, and reminds herself that she did give Rhonal some extra gold last night and hopes it was enough.

Drak returns with some less-than-welcome visitors, a recruiting party from the Night’s Watch. Nonetheless it is proper to welcome them and give them a place to stay. Danyka speaks with Tobias, the leader, and finds room for the recruits in the newly empty stables. She also promises to ask around to see if there is anyone who might join the Watch. As Tobias is leaving he encounters Emberlyn. They look oddly familiar to one another, but they only chat for a moment.

Emberlyn’s secret is that she is adopted – her “parents” are really an aunt and uncle, and she knows her father is with the Watch. Wanting to know more, she goes out to the stables, where Rajk is helping the recruiting party set up a camp for the night. He is particularly attentive to the needs of one fellow, Jon Stone, making sure he gets a private area at the end of the stable.
Why? Well, Rajk has recognized Stone as the fellow responsible for forcing him into a life of slavery, and while he has escaped that life and has a respected role in Westbrook, he has not forgotten the wrongs of the past. Emberlyn sees Rajk skulking around but doesn’t think much of it.

Along the way, Danyka has once again turned aside her father’s suggestion of finding her a husband. After all, she suggests, he himself might decide to marry again!

We conclude with Emberlyn (grateful to be rescued from the pressure of her parents and Lord Tyrrell, if only temporarily) and Danyka planning a hunting party. And we all know how well those go in Westeros….

 

The Drama Ensues

January 28, 2013

We begin on the night after the wedding. Most of the guests, including the happy(?) couple, have departed for the mainland. Remaining at House Westbrook, besides the usual residents, are Lord Manning, sick in bed, and his son Darrin; the Hartes, parents of the bride, and their younger daughter; Lord Tyrrell and his steward, Zale Wynch; Lady Arianna; and Lord and Lady Ashford, Emberlyn’s parents.

Oh, and there’s that little matter of the party of Night’s Watch recruiters and conscripts out in the stables. After dinner, Danyka grimly tries to keep young Darrin entertained with chess and even goes so far as to trot out her feminine accomplishment of singing to help her guests pass the evening. Emberlyn escapes to the stable, possibly to stave off death from boredom, possibly for the stated reason of visiting her horse, but really to spy on the Watch party.
Tobias, the green-eyed leader of that group, has been granted the privilege of a room in the castle, but the rest are bedding down in the stables, with one Alladale supervising the motley crew of recruits.

Rajk, who has his own reasons to skulk around the Watch group, is hiding in the shadows. Unknown to one another, he and Emberlyn both overhear young Olaf, a none-too-bright recruit with an odd Dorne-Braavosi accent, asking after a man about five feet tall with a pronounced limp. Both of them recognize that the fellow is probably looking for Rhonal, the steward of House Westbrook. Emberlyn, true to her emotional nature, immediately leaves the stables and races to the castle in search of Rhonal. Rajk, who has his own agenda, simply files the information and continues lurking, waiting for the men to go to sleep. He sees one of them slip out of the stable and go up to the castle, but decides not to follow.

Emberlyn interrupts Rhonal in the library, where he has been teaching his protégé Parry to read. She asks to speak with him alone, and after a moment of searching her face and realizing this is more than just another freakout, he sends Parry away and listens to Emberlyn’s report. He manages to calm her down, assures her he will deal with the situation and they both go to bed. (Not together. That would be weird.)

Danyka is also pursuing sleep. Her last visit of the day was with Drak, who had spent the evening training his crew in some of the arts of warfare (you never know when there might be pirates), and remembers that he needs to be paid for his work on the wedding party. Enriched by a dragon, he is snoozing aboard his ship.

Rajk waits. Eventually, the Night’s Watch party goes to sleep. In the darkness, he approaches Olaf, looking for a weapon he can steal, but the young man has his armaments cuddled up close to him. Strangely, Rajk also finds a garrote, but decides not to use it.

The next man is Alladale, who is one of the two actual brothers, sleeping soundly, but with his hand on the hilt of his sword. Carefully, quietly, Rajk slides the sword away and nudges a shield into its place, so that the man does not waken. He then slides to the back of the stable where Jon Stone sleeps in relative privacy and extreme darkness. Silently, Rajk cuts the man’s throat and leaves the sword beside the body. Fortunately, fingerprint technology is not known to Westeros.

The deed done, Rajk is now belatedly reminded of his duty to the castle and its inhabitants. He knocks on Danyka’s bedroom door, and reports the finding of the garrote. Danyka hastily dresses and belts on her short sword, and together they find Tobias and tell him of the discovery. He assures them he will deal with it and they retire for some much-needed sleep. On her way back to bed, Danyka hears Emberlyn tossing and turning, and stops in to express concern, but the younger woman assures her she’ll be OK.

The next morning, Rhonal wakes early, going about his duties as usual. Emberlyn breakfasts with her parents and the oh-so-sweet Lord Tyrrell. Noting her interest in her horse, he proposes that they all go riding together. The Ashford’s, who are about as subtle as wasabi, quickly invent excuses for Emberlyn to go out alone with her suitor. As the two approach the stables, they notice a commotion and hear shouts:

“Who killed him?”

“Is that your sword?”

“It’s not my sword, you big git!”

Lord Tyrrell quickly protects his delicate flower and pilots Emberlyn back to the castle before she can see anything or discover what’s been going on.

She excuses herself and rather oddly decides to visit the laundry, a part of the castle where the gentry never go. A couple of frightened laundry maids explain that no, there are no men’s clothes in the laundry right now,today is bedding, tomorrow is clothing.

On hearing that a man has been killed in the stables, Danyka wants to go down and see what needs to be done, but her father orders her to remain indoors. Disgruntled, she applies herself to the task of seeing the Hartes off. She visits Lord Manning and receives the excellent news that he will be ready to leave the next day, taking his repellent son with him.

Lord Tyrrell, meanwhile, has taken Emberlyn to the library where she is keeping him engaged in conversation in the hopes of boring him or at least keeping him from making any moves. He orders Zale Wynch to bring refreshments, which gives the kitchen staff a thrill (they are all in love with Zale). Danyka asks the Ashford’s if it is proper that the nobleman should be alone with their daughter, but they shrug it off.

Drak arrives after spending the night on his boat to attempt to get to the bottom of the uproar. Shortly after he arrives, Lord Westbrook takes control by meeting with Tobias to sort the mess. Drak overhears Aladale (whose sword was found near the body) speaking with Olaf. Alladale, whose sword was found next to Jon Stone’s body, and Olaf who is apparently so clueless that he thinks a Night’s Watch recruiting party is a fine reason to travel the country looking for a man with a limp, whose brother Karlis wants him to come home. Drak takes some time to explain some of the facts of life on the Wall to the young man and offers him an alternative of joining a fishing crew. However, Drak managed to get out some details surrounding the limping man Olaf was pursuing. Drak being aware who it would possibly be, alluded to Olaf that he may know of this man.

Emberlyn finally frees herself from Lord Tyrell by urging she must meet with Lady Danyka to prepare for the Big Hunting party in a couple days. After much wandering around and missing one another, Rhonal and Emberlyn finally have a follow-up conversation in which she admits she didn’t see the man who described Rhonal so accurately. There is also a weird conversation in which Emberlyn offers to help with Rhonal and Parry’s laundry. Rhonal isn’t sure what to make of this but is too polite to ask her whether she hit her head on something. Emberlyn then runs into her parents and had a not so comfortable discussion about marriage. Her parents after being tired of hearing the “oh but I have so much to learn staying here” song and dance from their daughter, issued this stern threat:

“You have one year to get yourself straightened out, or we will have you wedded and that will be the end of it.”

Emberlyn is left sour and even gives Danyka the sour treatment, which seemed odd to her.

Before going to seek Danyka, Drak approached Alladale, handed him his dagger and whispered “I believe this answers your question.” (Referring to a previous but abruptly interrupted discussion Alladale attempted to have with Drak. His question being, “You look familiar…”) Alladale tells Drak, “I must speak with you urgently?” Drak explained he is to be expected by Lady Danyka, and that had been much delayed. Alladale then settles on meeting with him in the sept near lunch.

As Rhonal is heading towards the stables, he runs into Drak.

Drak: Somebody’s looking for you.

Rhonal: I KNOW!

Surprisingly, Drak shares with him more details. Like his name, the details with Karlis as well with his reservations about the young man. Rhonal, still going with his gut on finding something off with Drak, had a look Drak knew to be a question of his potential of deception. Drak assures him that no deception in his words and there is nothing in it for Drak so he was willing to share his information.

Leaving Rhonal to question “what is in it for you?”

Drak: “If you think money is what I am are expecting….”

Rhonal: “That is what I thought.”

Drak: “No that will not be needed, but just see if this lad is trustful or not, for I have offered him a place on my ship.”

Drak points out Olaf to Rhonal discreetly. Rhonal confronts Olaf and learns that his brother sent for him to bring him home, and that everything has cleared up. They discuss the potential of departing, but Olaf expressed interest in staying for a little bit.

And there our story hangs …

Emberlyn sour from her talk with her parents, but still trying to figure out how she may be able to get out of this or possibly more…

Rhonal wieghing his options and still running around as normal.

Rajk “making” friends with Olaf, while finding himself satisfied from
the blood that has been spilt.

Olaf considering his next moves as he has found his targeted limping man.

Drak still en route to Danyka, but awaiting an important and long overdue rendezvous.

And Danyka still waiting on Drak, but trying to maintain composure from the morning’s events, the wedding that has past, and her father shutting her out on taking care of things.

 

Who’s Lying Now?

February 17, 2013

Emberlyn spends the day, as usual, in a state of emotional turmoil. The Night’s Watch is formally presented to the household and people of this island, and their recruiting mission is made known. Emberlyn watches them fixedly during this event and as the men turn to their breakfast, a meal that apparently takes all day in House Westbrook, she suddenly finds herself subject to yet another invitation to go riding with Lord Tyrrell, this time promoted by Danyka, who she thought was her friend! She claims illness and goes to her room, where she sulks for a bit until the startling appearance of 13-year-old Eileen Harte.

The younger girl sobs and begs Emberlyn to hide her, for she refuses to go back with her parents for fear of being married off. Befuddled at the sight of drama that exceeds even her own, Emberlyn does nothing as Eileen throws herself beneath the covers of the bed. Emberlyn decides she is probably better off elsewhere during the scene that seems to be inevitable at this point, and sets off for the library, where she grabs a couple of rolls of parchment, some
ink and quills.

Returning to her room, she finds the bed made and no Eileen. Weird. Ultimately, however, it is not her problem, and she settles down to try to forge a ransom note. The idea is that Sir Eaton has returned and taken her hostage. Not quite sure what that would get him, other than a different girl than the one he wanted, but thinking things through is not Emberlyn’s best thing.

Later, Danyka finds her friend and apologizes for throwing her under the bus, I mean “to the wolves,” explaining that Emberlyn had been staring at the Night’s Watch party and Danyka had been afraid the Ashford’s would notice and think their daughter had fallen in love with a man on the Wall, which is just the sort of pointless thing Emberlyn WOULD do, come to think of it. Emberlyn accepts the apology. Rajk arrives and tells her her horse Snow has been injured, and she rushes to the stables and has a total freakout. Rhonal is there and tries to calm her down and offers her the use of his horse, Lewin. She is not very willing to accept even his kindness, but he excuses her rudeness on the grounds of extreme emotional distress.

Rajk has of course committed murder, and now watches somewhat uneasily as Lord Westbrook, Drak and Daynka each start to look into things in their own way. Drak ascertains that the dead Jon Stone was once a slaver. He mentions this and watches Rajk’s reaction, which is to shake his head and say, “Such a man must have made a lot of enemies.” Drak does not push the issue
further, nor do the members of the Westbrook family. Danyka makes a little speech about how valuable Rajk is to the castle, meant to convey the idea that if he had done it she wouldn’t blame him or necessarily even care, but Rajk is a literal sort of fellow and this goes right over his head.

She, Drak and Lord Westbrook have come to pretty much the same conclusion – if Rajk did the murder, he had good reason, and he’s a valued and non-dangerous member of their community, so the Night’s Watchmen will be sent on their way with as much speed as possible and we will try to forget the whole thing. The Silent Sisters take away the body to prepare it for burning, the farm hands dutifully build a pyre in the courtyard, and the household will pay its respects at the burning after dinner.

Because the Hartes are rather preoccupied with their wayward daughter, Rajk reluctantly accompanies the party on board Drak’s boat to help them all get ashore all right, particularly the horses. He spends much of the voyage in a state of extreme digestive distress. On his return he finds a terrible thing – Emberlyn’s horse, Snow, has suffered a sword wound to the leg. He quickly applies healing herbs and bandages, then goes to the house to tell Emberlyn. Who could have done such a thing? Rajk’s love for his horses is sincere, and he is skilled in caring for them, so Snow will probably be better in a week or so, but Emberlyn will have to stay off him (her?) until then.

Drak has been poking around trying to find out who did the murder, and also finds time to meet privately in the sept (a useful meeting place since hardly anyone goes there) with Alladale Wynch, who, it turns out, is actually his father. Alladale warns Drak not to go back to Pike, though he can send a ship to trade there. Drak tries to impress his father with how well he’s doing as an adjunct to House Westbrook. Dad seems to be more concerned for his son’s safety.

Drak also arranges to take Wynch and the other Watch brother, Tobias Emory, to the other side of the island the next day for a recruiting mission.

Rhonal, in between supervising the endless rolling breakfast, the preparation of dinner and a funeral, and the departure of the unruly Hartes, tries and fails to find Lady Arianna for a quick word. He sends a raven privately with a letter. He tries to contain Emberlyn’s epic freakout over her horse. What he does not do is respond publicly in any way to Olaf’s much-reported search for him, or to the murder of a Watch recruit in the stables.

Danyka’s main contribution to the action is to convey the crying Eileen Harte back to her parents after finding her in Emberlyn’s bed. She also offers some good advice – don’t marry her off too soon, maybe send her to school in King’s Landing to help her learn to behave – which I’m fairly certain the Hartes are going to ignore.

She also receives a stern warning from her father that Emberlyn had better accept Lord Tyrrell. She asks what Emberlyn’s other options are – do the Ashford’s have anyone else in mind? Danyka herself may, if certain hints are to be believed, have to face the question of marriage sooner rather than later.

 

Follow the Leader, Go Camping

March 20, 2013

Emberlyn, still flustered, runs around the castle attempting to find out what is going on.

Danyka has not been seen since breakfast. When Emberlyn or Rhonal try to visit her, they are refused access with no explanation. Drak overhears to find this info. Rajk overhears Zale and Jason Smallclothes talking in code. He deciphers that poison has been put into place and the escape route is all set. Then they disappear (apparently) into the woods. He finally reports what he has observed to Drak, who reacts immediately.

Olaf’s location is unknown, possibly joyriding the island….

Emberlyn runs into Drak, literally, in her frantic rushing thru of the castle. Even Drak, far from a well-mannered lord, reminded her that ladies do not run. She was instructed to send Lord Westbrook to Drak so he could update him on the discoveries, but she forgot as she was flustered by Lord Westbrook’s blunt refusal to give her any information about Danyka.

Drak aquires 6 of the castle guards to attempt to apprehend the two Rajk identified. He discovers they are not to be seen and speaks with Aladale to inform him his “son” is to be arrested. Drak and his father squauble over how this happened and revisited the details of Drak’s switcheroo with Zack Crakehall (as all others know as Zale Wynch).

He also shares with Aladale that he was promised a war vessel as reward for reuniting Lord Crakehall with his missing son. Aladle itterates to Drak, “doesn’t it seem odd that there was no rush for Lord Crakehall to have his only heir return.” Drak realized that his 4th addition to his personal fleet will not be delivered afterall.

Drak urges his father to take the watch and search for Zale and his recruit since he is involved. Drak gave the lay out info of the river from the keep leading to a lake that has a river leading to the coast on the other side of the isle, which seems to be the best escape.

Meanwhile, Rhonal, not being too far from the conversation, is able to listen.

Rhonal learns:

  • Danyka is sick, and may have been poisoned. (his own deduction of information).
  • Zale and John are suspected of foul play and are on the loose.
  • Drak’s true identity and that he swapped places with Zack Crakehall many years ago.
    Drak is really Zale Wynch. While who everyone knows as Zale is actually Lord
    Crakehall’s lost son and only heir.
  • The Night’s watch men are put to finding the two missing alledged poisoners.

Since Emberlyn has his horse, Rhonal grabs Parry and heads into the woods to the river and the lake. Emberlyn ends up taking Rhonal’s horse, only to end up following the Night’s Watchmen into the woods.

Rajk unaware of anything more than that the two he spied earlier are gone and the watch, and now Rhonal and Parry, ventured out into the woods. He decides to ride off
as well.

Since Rhonal and Parry are more familiar with the terrain, they get there first and observe the boat. Rhonal has a conversation with the captain and learns the boat belongs to the Crakehall’s and he is awaiting the son to return. So they wait, realizing Lord Westbrook probably doesn’t know about this little sailboat sitting in the lake.

As hunger starts to set in Parry catches a Raccoon. Rajk and Emberlyn join him and Rhonal for lunch. Soon the Night’s Watch join and they prepare to watch for Zale and John and fight, if necessary.

Drak orders two men to go in and search the castle then post at the entrance, not allowing anyone out without consent of Lord Westbrook. He then orders two gaurds to patrol the grounds. Finally takes his two remaining gaurds to the port and sets out for the mouth of the river on the otherside of the island with 2 ships (one galley and a caraval.) His goal is to see if anyone tries to escape that way. He sups on smoked saltfish, not racoon. He has left one ship with a guard at the port.

Night has fallen with some camping and one at sea.

Unknown to our campers and our seafaring hunter everyone who dined at the head table has fallen ill. Lord Tyrell is the sickest. Lord Westbrook has not fallen ill as he had missed lunch.

 

Who’s Left Standing?

March 27, 2013

Emberlyn, Rhonal and Rajk wake up in the woods after camping out with four guys from the Night’s Watch (Tobias, Alladale, and two redshirts). It is not a peaceful awakening – there are seven men bursting through the woods toward them with evil intent. The first one leaps across the campfire and smacks Emberlyn with the flat of his blade, knocking her out. Quick-thinking Rhonal orders Parry to fire his bow at the bad guy. After this, battle is joined in earnest, with the leaders of the opposing party, Jon Smallclothes and Zale Wynch, lurking cravenly in the woods like the cowards they are until Emberlyn (fending off attempts to cure her wounds until the fighting is over) and Rhonal (wounded in his already-not-so-great knee) perceive them and start mowing them down. Rajk takes out Zale after chucking a head of one of his men at him.

Meanwhile, Drak is sailing his boat up toward the lake (do the lake and the rivers have names?), where the Wynch party’s boat is waiting to carry Zale and the gang off the island. (The rest of the gang, we discover later, consists of turncoat servants of Lord Tyrrell.) The moment he is in range, Drak orders a hail of fire arrows on the opposing ship. Most dropped after a volley or two. Drak gave a few a well thrown spear. Its crew manages to get one shot off with a siege weapon. When all seemed clear, Drak and his Castle Guard boarded the ship. The guard captain dies in a short-lived boarding attempt. Drak takes a crossbow bolt to the abdominal, and goes unconscious. His loyal men pulled him back aboard but otherwise it is a slaughter that ends in the sinking of the other ship.

After offing their attackers, the crew by the campfire (helped by Tobias’ apparently miraculous healing powers) searches the bodies of Jon and Zale, finding lots of gold (Rhonal gives most of it to Rajk, who had actually been mostly dead at one point), a really awesome Valyrian bastard sword with a ruby in the hilt (Rajk doesn’t really get that it’s a Targaryen sword, but he knows it’s wicked sharp and he’s happy to make its acquaintance), and letters proving that Lord Crakehall, real father of Zale, had organized the poisoning at Castle Westbrook to assassinate Lord Tyrrell that only Rhonal read. Rhonal sends Parry off hotfoot back to the castle with these papers, a pouch with a residue of powder in it, and orders to deliver the bundle only to Danyka or her father. Emberlyn finds a similar note on Jon Smallclothes, the one she buried an arrow into.

Rajk, Aldale, and Tobias board the ship from the shore to see what is left. Emberlyn takes out the man who fired on Drak, which happened to be the Captain. When Drak regained consciousness and found himself on his ship, he managed to bellow out one command that Rajk heard: “I want a survivor.” Rajk delivers with the one he snuck up on. Torture by burning and finger removal was futile.

Before the ship went down, Rhonal managed to scoop up anything in the desk drawer.

On their walk back to the castle (they only have one horse between them at this point), Emberlyn is overcome with emotion upon realizing that she actually killed two men. Rhonal puts up with this patiently and Rajk is too busy admiring his new sword to listen.Drak, having taken the Night’s Watch crew aboard his ship along with the sole survivor of the enemy ship’s crew – a curiously tough fellow who has so far revealed nothing about his employers, even under torture – and heads further up the river toward the castle. He has not gotten any loot and is pretty unhappy about it.

Meanwhile earlier that morning, Danyka wakes from her sickness… Danyka is not obsessed with breakfast. In fact, that’s the last thing she wants to think about, as she is still not feeling very well. She rises, puts on her dressing gown, and opens the door to find guards outside who wouldn’t let her leave. She asked them to bring her a glass of water instead. They shoo her back inside and tell her to wait for Maester Hamden. When the good maester arrives, he tells her about the poisoning, and asks her to remain in her room, as her father is concerned for her safety. She discovers that her steward and many of the castle’s other inhabitants are missing, and most of her guests are horribly ill.

After a bit she is feeling better, although still somewhat pale. She gets dressed in her riding habit, with her dagger at her waist, and again opens the door, telling the guards she is going to her father. They order her back into the room and bar the door.

Irritated, she paces back and forth for a bit, and notices something she had never noticed before. There’s a draft in the room. And it’s coming from an inside wall. With nothing better to do – there aren’t any books in the room and she doesn’t care for needlework – she starts to investigate. Lo and behold, there’s a secret exit! She is able to escape into the library and down the stairs.

Most of the people she meets are servants – one can imagine that there is a certain amount of extra cleaning and laundry to do given the widespread sickness – and they express pleasure at seeing her restored to health. One of Lord Tyrrell’s servants mentions his master’s illness, and that her father is a) angry and b) up on the battlements. Danyka decides to stay out of his way as long as she can.

She goes to the kitchen, does some investigating and calms the distraught cooks, making sure they know they are not to blame for the poisoning. She also makes a brief visit to the stables, noting which horses are missing and confirming that Emberlyn is apparently with the party who rode off into the woods. Maester Hamden will not let her help nurse the sick, so she finally goes up to the battlements to talk with her father. She is able to persuade him that the troubles at the castle are as much her problem as his own, and joins him in watching for word of what has happened on the rest of the island.

It is Danyka who first spots Parry returning from the woods, and she meets him at the door, receives his message and opens it with her father. It confirms what they already knew, but the question remains of whether Lord Tyrrell’s remaining servants are to be trusted. They now understand that Lord Crakehall is behind all of this and utilized Zale Wynch, Lord Tyrell’s ward as his means.

When the others return, Rhonal goes apart with Danyka and fills in any details not apparent including Drak and Zale’s true identities. They agree that Lord Westbrook does not need to know that part of the story that relates to Drak. Rhonal asked by Lord Westbrook the interesting question that if Zack Crakehall was posing as Zale Wynch, then who/where is the real Zale since
he is familiar with Zale’s purpose of being ward of Highgarden. Rhonal replies that is a question that perhaps someone else would be better at explaining. Emberlyn, unsurprisingly, bursts into tears as the GM hands out lovely gifts of extra health and abilities.

Questions:

  • Why did the Wynch party attack the group by the campfire instead of just sneaking around and getting on their ship?
    • They didn’t know the group was there until they stumbled upon them
    • Perhaps they had a sinking feeling that their escape option will be too hot to handle.
  • What was in the bundle of stuff that Rhonal grabbed off the burning ship moments
    before it sank?

    • papers
    • Locked papers?
  • Will anyone go back to search the other bodies left around the campfire?
    • Rajk already did and got some more gold pieces
    • Lucky little Dothraki
  • Should someone go upstairs and tell the guards outside Danyka’s room that they can leave now?
    • Maybe Danyka will sneak back into her room and save their honor
    • Angrily walk up to them and claim you walked right by them, and they were sleeping on the job
  • Now that he’s rich, will Rajk want to go back to Vaes Dothrak?
    • And cross the water horses will not drink?
    • Is he aware how rich he is?
  • Is Emberlyn’s reputation ruined?
    • I think Emberlyn is going to ruin her reputation all by herself
    • Nah, she’ll keep running into people, swearing and insulting veterans
  • Is the Night’s Watch crew ever going to leave?
    • Soon
    • It’s not like any of them are trying to have a father/son or father/daughter time before they must go freeze their asses off
  • Is it breakfast yet?
    • We missed breakfast fighting off the bad guys
    • Don’t think anyone is much for breakfast
  • So what is Drak’s other boat doing out at the mouth of the river?
    • FISHING!
  • Wasn’t there supposed to be a funeral pier last night?
    • There was, but it wasn’t important to the story
    • Didn’t the burning ship qualify? Won’t Rhelor and the Drowned Gods be pleased, a sinking burning ship, huzza! +4 for Drak’s religion?
    • I don’t believe Drak can get +4, but he may be able to negotiate for something
  • Why hasn’t Danyka questioned the secret passage? Does she not understand the peril this puts her in? Who else knows about it?
  • Please remind the GM she didn’t give out experience yet

 

The Pause Before Battle

March 30, 2013

Part 1: Secrets and Interrogations

The party finally finds it’s way back to Castle Westbrook. Drak takes his prisoner down to the hardly used dungeon. Danyka insists on helping get information from the captive, suggesting a little Westeros good cop/bad cop routine. Drak refused and wished to handle this himself, and prefer the method of bad cop/worse cop. The captive proved to be stubborn and have a high tolerance to pain. REally Drak didn’t care if there was information to be had ornot. The important details were already apparent enough. Use of Basilisk Poison was introduced to the prisoner, a pain that would burn that man’s veins for a long time. Failing to search him, the prisoner attempted to use some throwing daggers, Drak seized them. Said prisoner then attempted to use an equivalent to cyanide to kill him self and was thwarted. Drak grew bored and restless, besides Danyka provided him only an hour to do it his way.

At this time Danyka was with her father being questioned about the whereabouts of the real Zale. Danyka could not hide that she knew something about this. She admitted that Rhonal knew better than she, which was true, but she knew as much as he, but didn’t want to be the one to reveal the secret. Rhonal was to be summoned at once.

Olaf found Lady Danyka and asked for Drak. She was puzzled as to why this recruit was not with his future brothers, but said she was going to see him. She escorted Olaf to meet with Drak.

Danyka came to take over while Drak hung out in the hall. Drak considered his lowly galley sitting doing nothing.

Meanwhile, Emberlyn was trying to collect herself as best she could. She decided upon seeing her parents whom she learned were sick due to the poisoning. Unable to persuade the guards she chose to sulk around hoping they’d give up and just let her in.

Rhonal received a note in reply to his letter he sent to Dorne. He then took the time to research the Crakehalls to find that there has been some bad blood between the Tyrells and the Crakehalls. A conflict that reduced the Crakehall power to what seemed nothing. Having vengeance in the blood, Lord Crakehall attempted to strike covertly. Rhonal also found amongst the paper work from the ship a map with markings. He was unsure what to make of the navigational markings. He decided to bring all the findings to Lord Westbrook, who ironically wanted him.

Lord Westbrook immediately asked him where Zale Wynch was, Rhonal returned to his previous statement that it was not for him to say. Lord Westbrook pressed, but Rhonal tactfully diverted to his findings about the Crakehall’s and the Tyrell’s. Also he shared the map he had limited knowledge on. Being no fool, Lord Westbrook resumed back to Zale. Rhonal tried to leave it at him knowing he is on the island. Lord Westbrook knew there was more, so he asked “who?” Rhonal attempted to avoid it, but it was no use. He said that he was the employment of the house. “Who?” Lord Westbrook demanded. Rhonal replied, “Your master of ship, Drak.” Lord Westbrook requested that Aladale and Drak be brought to him immediately.

Rokj returned to the stables to return to his duties, or rather test out his sword in the yard. “What to do with 300+ Dragons?” he contemplated.

Olaf found Drak in the hall and asked him about his offer on his ship. Drak having more on his mind nearly forgot. Drak questioned him on his motives on coming to the island in the first place. Lies could not be told, Olaf feeling the intimidation of Drak shared that he is an assassin and his target is Rhonal. Drak admitted to him that a person with such skills could prove useful. However, Drak felt he had plenty of blood on his hands and too many people who were looking for him or wanted him dead. Drak urged Olaf that if he was join him, that he would have to give up his assignment and follow his command. Olaf agreed and knew he would not be able to lie to Drak, ever. Next they needed to see the Night’s Watch party or duo at this point. Drak felt more and more uneasy, he knew questions would be asked, perhaps by Lord Tyrell.

Danyka had the dungeon cell with a man to herself. She managed to get his name, something Drak couldn’t care less knowing. She was able to gather some other bits and pieces before he made a second attempt on Cyanide. This time he succeeded. Danyka thought to herself, “ugh, Drak is going to kill me.” She dispatched a guard to give Drak this info. Drak was displeased. It was this time Rhonal came for him and Aladale.

Lord Westbrook asked for Aladale first. Danyka hoped she could take part, but was not allowed. While Drak waited, Rhonal warned him of what Drak had feared, that this was concerning his identity. He told Drak to choose his words wisely. Drak was in a panic, knowing this was it. Was this death, did this mean being some ward, a prisoner, after all the work his has put to make himself as he is. Drak for a moment was considering escaping. He knew he could, the ships he commanded would know nothing before he was away. Rhonal, explained that if he thought of running, he’d be hunted. Drak took the opportunity to share that he was targeted by Olaf but was convinced to stop his assignment to have employment on Drak’s ship. Once again, “what’s in it for you?” was asked. This time Drak really didn’t have an answer, to save face; he suggested he really didn’t want another reason to be hunted than the already stacked list of people looking for him. Aladale came out to embrace his son then left.

To Drak’s surprise, he was asked about the markings on the map. Feeling he was off the hook, he noted the symbols were: Westbrook island was the attack site, obviously, Old Town was a successful meeting place and Iron Island was the location for a failure meeting. Then the moment came where he was asked about his intent here. Drak explained he enjoyed being a simple business man, traveler and sought a purpose. Something he could not achieve as a ward and stated he would have no desire to be a slave to some lord. He looked up to his father being a hand of a king and wanted such purpose one day. Lord Westbrook being satisfied allowed Drak to be free, but Drak questioned, “what about Lord Tyrell?”

“He doesn’t need to know.” It was about this time a loud war horn sounded. Drak forgetting his place for a moment exclaimed he needed to go immediately, that was his ship giving warning of some sort. Lord Westbrook dismissed Drak to attend to his duties.

The rest of the party, startled by the horn, followed Lord Westbrook to the stables where Rhonal, Parry, Danyka, Emberlyn, Rokj and several Castle sentries mounted up and headed to the other side of the island. Drak, Olaf, Tobias and Aladale boarded Drak’s ship. Drak took the time to send his other ship around the island to meet with the Galley, and to supply his ship with 6 tower shields and prepared his men for a defensive tactic. Emberlyn was able to pass along a note to her father and nods were exchanged.

Part 2: Persuaded Pursuit

Everyone met at the river’s mouth on the other side of the island. A meeting was held: Lord Westbrook, Danyka, Emberlyn, Rhonal, Drak and Rokj. There is a ship with Crakehall banners, at a standard non-combative status looming around the island. The major concern was the potential for conflict. Danyka suggested going aboard and try diplomacy while Drak just assumed to board the galley with as many of the soldiers Lord Westbrook brought. Danyka of course won, but Drak insisted on preparing the ship for hostility. Drak and Danyka along with Olaf, and the Night’s Watch duo went out to speak with the ship.

Danyka spoke to the ship’s captain and it was made clear to them that the Crakehall ship they sought unfortunately hit some rocks in the bay and sunk, with only one to survive. The captain acknowledges the news and made haste on sailing in the direction Drak knew to be towards the Iron Islands. Drak prepared to follow, was stopped by Danyka. Drak explained that he knows what the plan is and urged that the ship be followed or else the iron fleet will come crashing on Westbrook Isle. Danyka skeptical asked what the Iron Islands would gain. Drak outlined that if the plan/extraction failed, they’d go to the iron islands to muster a force to either finish the job or retaliate. Danyka attempted to persuade Drak to stand down, but lost. Drak was sure exactly what was at stake. Unfortunately, he didn’t desire to bring Danyka along since it is possible the galley may not stack up against the battleship. Last thing Drak needed was Lady Westbrook’s life at stake. Contemplation of just throwing her in a landing row boat and letting one of his fishing boats pick her up came to mind. No, he didn’t want to push his luck…yet.

Returning to the “war tent” Drak made his position known with the consequences of letting the ship go will enable the Iron Fleet to reign down on the Shield Islands. Most were skeptical this was true, Drak was denied sending a ship to chase the galley to their deaths. Rhonal suggested having Drak gain the influence of some pirates to make it seem a pirate attack was made. Drak agreed that his fishing ships could beat the battleship to Feastfire where he could acquire a couple pirate ships to overwhelm the ship. Drak and Olaf set off.

Part 3: Drak, 65% Pirate?

Several days have passed. They arrived in FeastFire where they decided to make some purchases. As a welcoming gift, Drak bought Olaf the Great Sword he eyed, while Drak stocked up on battle frog spears(3). Where else would you find pirates? A pub. A friendly atmosphere, Olaf attempted to blend in happily downing the crappy ale Drak had a distaste for. He was approached by a captain of a sort. The two exchanged talk while Olaf made fast friends with the crew by joining in several drinking games. Drak produce the idea of overwhelming a ship heading north soon that had potential riches. The captain’s interest was peaked; Drak sealed the deal by providing payment of 150 Dragons just to do this task. If the ship is taken undamaged, the ship would be the pirate crew’s reward too along with nearly everything on the ship. Drak requested to bargain if any armaments happen to be aboard. The attack was as long as the two spoke, before long the ship was overwhelmed with no casualties (aside from the Crakehall crew.) The pirate crew wasted no time raiding the ale, but was kind enough to share a case with Olaf since he made a great impression. The pirate captain collected 200 Dragons (50 more than promised, but Drak didn’t care, the job was done and he still had enough left over to keep). Drak said, “since I am impressed, 200 is fair.” Drak snatched up all the papers in the captain’s quarters where he found the captain murdered. “Mutiny,” Drak gasped. A fancy mahogany Pole-Axe was sitting right by him. The pirate captain didn’t find it all that interesting and allowed Drak to take it as his booty. The two exchanged farewells as they sailed off in different directions.

Meanwhile over the past several days, House Westbrook spent their time preparing defenses. Rokj donated 200 Dragons of his reward from Zale’s body. Danyka decided to sponsor the Dothraki, and declared him to be an anointed knight. Ser Rokj. A ceremony is due? A War Ship is in the works to be made, with Drak promised to be the Captain. Has the moment come that Lord Tyrell is to leave Westbrook Isle? … We’ll see.

 

Drak’s Tales and There’s Nothing Going on at House Westbrook

April 27, 2013

Out at Sea

We find Drak preparing his ships and Olaf enjoying his loot. He scares off a crewman from his stash (lovely way to make friends). Drak goes to his fishing ship, Jacinta’s Kiss, gives a speech praising their loyalty, and rewards them with a hefty 4 dragons each (wow!) He commands the captain to make haste for Westbrook. Drak commands him to deliver the satchel of papers that was found on the conquered ship to Lady Danyka and/or Rhonal only. He provided his former pole axe as a “message or validation” from Drak. Finally, to speak with Lady Danyka and possibly Rhonal with this message: “Drak is 2-3 days behind and will be making a stopping in Crakehall for some cargo”. Drak is confident his ambiguous message will leave them to their own imagination. If Lord Westbrook is in the presence, then say Old Oak instead. Drak stresses to Capt. Jaque the reason is he does not want Lord Westbrook to think his actions are in the name of House Westbrook. These actions are in Drak’s interest and will not bear any sign of House Westbrook. Conflict suits Drak as opposed to peace…Plus he does have some unfinished business.

Drak boards his ship and grabs the attention of his crew on the “Draken’s Due” (a little history: Drak adopted his name from this ship as it was a sign for him being re-born). He gives a speech honoring his true crew for their loyalty and their victories in the Burned Lake and here. He hands out the wonderful reward of 8 Dragons. He then preps his crew for the next devious adventure…To port in CrakeHall. He orders the Crakehall Flag be raised.

Olaf is invited to see Drak, where he asks if he was ready to “earn his place.” Drak elaborates on a plan to stir up rumors and fear in the town of Crakehall. The rumor is that there was an attempt on Lord Tyrell’s life by Lord Crakehall’s son. To do this, Olaf would find strangers at a bar and start speaking of rumors, where Drak knowing his queue, would butt in and deny it is not a rumor, but truth and that Lord Tyrell is indeed dead. Olaf would play the convinced stranger to Drak. Coupled with Drak’s persuasion, the plan would be to get some believers. Plant seeds of doubt, fear and possible distaste for their Lord. Later Drak would add a part two to his visit.

As Drak came into view of the port, he saw ships at the port. Two Warships, and one in construction, near complete. He realized this was his promised ship and this was near the quoted timeframe. Drak provided a final plan breakdown. Drak shares his second goal is the commandeering of his promised ship, after all no one appears on board to prevent such action. Olaf suggested raising a diversion so that he can board the ship with little resistance.

The proposed plan:

First, Olaf will scout for the rowdiest pub then return to share. He will go in, order a drink, await Drak (no longer wearing his purple cloak nor Craken carved bone chest plate) coming in as a stranger to him. Olaf would start sharing the rumor, and Drak would come in to confirm and etc. Then once a seed was planted, they’d find a way to start a brawl, enough to alert sentries from the port to come. The party would slip out; Olaf would make for the ship, sneak on, and Drak then would come with a couple men to man the ship. Finally, he’d wave the pole axe to his other ship to signal departure. Before departing raise the Greyjoy flag Drak gained before. As an added bonus, he ordered a man on Draken’s Due on departure to start sending fire arrows at the other ships to cripple and disrupt any potential followers.

How did that work?

As for the plan, it is nearly executed as Drak had hoped. He sprinkled on an additional rumor that Lord Crakehall paid Greyjoy pirates to siege the city so that sympathy could be gained from the crown. Conveniently he was confronted by a drunk who belts out that he doesn’t believe Drak. Drak remained composed and questioned his question. The drunk swings at him, and Drak is snared into a grapple. What does he do? He headbutts and knocks the drunk out cold (K.O: I). Remember the brawl he needed> Well here it comes. Drak is tossed his pole axe and goes out the front while Olaf goes out the back. Upon leaving, Drak realize his men were left in there. Drak waits to see Olaf and orders him to keep going as planned; Drak declares he is going back in for his men. He attempts to employ the sentries who were alerted, but they asked too many questions. Drak enters alone with his pole axe and sees his men fighting with two others. Drak attempts to divert the two brawlers towards each other so he can get his men disengaged, instead, he faces with one of the brawlers. The brawler tries to attack, but Drak counters with a blunt whack with his pole axe (his first real use of his iconic weapon). Down goes this guy (K.O: II). The other brawler with his back to Drak receives the same fate by surprise (may have a severe concussion). (K.O: III). They all escape safely. Who’d mess with the Pole-Axe wielding psychopath?

Olaf finds one sentry who he easily discards into the water and he boards the ship and begins searching for passengers, and finds a torch below deck. Shortly, Drak and crew come aboard and he has the crew prepare for departure and he goes below deck. Two men were fast asleep in the make-shift bunk. In a joint effort to extinguish the sleepers, they kill them. Drak not being a trained assassin allows his man to give a yell out before dying, but there was no one to hear him scream. Drak prepares the ship to depart and signals the other ship to lower the Crakehall flag and raise the Greyjoy. See Drak was right, well by “in 2-3 days Greyjoy pirates will sack the city”, he meant tonight. The two ships rain a couple arrows to torch ships on his way out. The two warships were lit up (Ships Burned: + II. Total: III) and Drak orders the ships to head for the Iron Islands for show.

Destiny Die: Sudden Joy, this is true…

Jacinta’s Kiss is nearly arriving at Castle Westbrook, with Drak 2-3 days behind with a new ship he paid the Iron Price for.

On Westbrook Island, where nothing is going on….

Danyka, in her vigorous study on her family’s history, found that the Westbrooks were formally loyal to the Crakehall’s many years ago. (So it seems the family setback wasn’t losses from an Iron Island attack, but came with the downfall of the Crakehall’s! Danyka has been lied to!!!) This concerned her and she discussed with Rhonal that perhaps her father could be behind some of the events of the last several weeks. They agreed to its potential and to proceed with caution.

Meanwhile Emberlyn was visiting her healing horse; Snow seemed to be doing quite well. Ser Rajk took time between preparations for the departing Tyrells to inform Emberlyn Snow would need to take a ride to get him/her back into the swing. They agreed to a ride later. It is at this time Ser Rajk noticed a Tyrell horse’s saddle is a tad loose and seems to be done intentionally. He fixes the saddle and makes subtle gestures to provide this info to Danyka and Rhonal while they were seeing the Tyrell’s out.

Finally the Tyrell’s are leaving and safely make it aboard Drak’s Galley: Excelsior. Excelsior returns without any hint of ill, as far as House Westbrook can tell or at this point care, since they are “off our lawn”. Rhonal makes an attempt to see Lord Westbrook and speak openly. Rhonal outright hints that he believes Lord Westbrook and Lord Tyrell don’t get along. Lord Westbrook responds “oh we get along, I just don’t like him”. Rhonal seeming like he is failing his Lord since all his attempts would be thwarting Lord Westbrook and insisted if he had known of Lord Westbrook’s interest, he would have not done as he had.

Lord Westbrook stated “You did exactly as you should. If there were no investigations or efforts to protect Lord Tyrell, House Westbrook would have trouble.”

They concluded their dialog, as he leaves, Lord Westbrook lets out a laugh of “silly man”. Rhonal returns to reading.

Ser Rajk and Emberlyn begin their ride when they discover a very foul stench that they knew was of rotting human. The duo did all they can to avoid puking, but made for where the smell was strongest to investigate. Emberlyn and Ser Rajk arrive to a camp where a man who has been there for a while, (Rajk estimated 2-3 weeks to a month). The man’s throat slashed with no signs of struggle. Notes were found. 95% known info, however this man was here to connect with “Zale”. If plan fails, make for the Iron Islands. They decided to take this discovery back, and burn the body (Ser Rajk’s heritage influence).

What about Parry? Speaking of that guy, he bursts into the library to Rhonal frantic, pale and exhausted. He faints in his arms. He drags him to a room and seeks the Maester. He finally comes out of his passed out state and starts yammering about a shadow creature with fire eyes. Rhonal was very skeptical, but concerned for his cohort. (This is the kind of thing that happens when you say things like “skip my turn, there’s nothing going on at house Westbrook anyway”)

Emberlyn in her Emberlyn way comes running into the library to seek Danyka and urged she needed to come down to the stables to see what they found. They didn’t make it far until they encounter a shadowed figure, with redish eyes. The sight first seemed odd, but when Emberlyn realizes Danyka sees it to, she lets out a castle summoning scream. Rhonal, Lord Westbrook, and Ser Rajk show up. Discussions of this “shadow figure” are exchanged. And who said there was nothing going on at Castle Westbrook? Drak and Olaf can’t have ALL the fun after all.

Emberlyn is freaking out, while Rhonal is slowly losing his composure as the Maester starts showing signs of belief in all of this magic. He shares there had been rumors of a new cult/religion of some Lord of Light, aka Rhlor. Healing Parry was in the mix, while Emberlyn finds a red book on Rhlor and summoning shadow creatures; while Lord Westbrook’s reaction is: “interesting”. Emberlyn discovers horrible scary notions of these shadows as spies and all sorts of creepy things. Danyka takes the time to have cocoa with her to ease her, while Rhonal picks up on the research trail. He discovers another book, and finds a spell to ward off shadows. In the mean time, just reaching out and poking them seems to make them disappear, or screeching.

Rhonal makes headway on warding demons away as Danyka and Emberlyn gossip. Discussing the perfect man, and avoiding suitors. Lady stuff. It turns out that “suitors” are due to arrive in two weeks’ time thanks to Lord Westbrook. Rajk on the other hand is visited by the unwanted guests, though this sort of stuff is very scary for the superstitious Dothraki. Rajk is able to will it out and ignore it and sleep. Danyka and Rhonal have a final interruption of the shadow guest before making it disappear the only known effective way (Shadow Demon sightings: IIII).

 

Hello Suitors

May 11, 2013

There is a ship off Westbrook Island, and it holds the seeds of menace. Yes, the moment two of the castle’s inhabitants have dreaded is at hand: The Onslaught of the Suitors.

By themselves they don’t really look like trouble. Cecil is tall, redheaded and freckled. Chris Falgrim is buck-toothed and short. His brother Thomas is also short but is cursed with breathtaking acne. Together, they represent a whole host of Danyka and Emberlyn’s fears.

Naturally, Danyka is responding by organizing things and Emberlyn is responding by freaking right the hell out. Lord Westbrook suggests they entertain their guests with a tournament, and Danyka leaps into action, asking Emberlyn to manage the entertainments, Rhonal to make sure the castle’s servants and resources are in place to pull off a successful event, and Rajk to prepare tourney grounds and lay in extra stocks of veterinary supplies. Danyka herself will be tournament mistress, organizing the lists and serving as arbiter.

She also forestalls a potential difficulty by asking Rajk, now Ser Rajk, to wear her favor during the tourney. Emberlyn has no such option, but as we shall see, it won’t be a huge difficulty.

Rhonal has made strides in researching how to rid Castle Westbrook of its pesky demonic shadow problem. Trouble is, he needs one ingredient, Arcane Dust, which is nowhere to be found in the immediate area. He’s heard that perhaps it is available from Braavos, but has little time to reveal the results of his investigations to the others.

As these four are meeting to put together the tournament, a messenger arrives from Drak. With a little bit of persuasion, the fellow remembers his instructions and (since Lord Westbrook is not present) passes on the information that Drak is a day or two behind, having had some personal business in Crakehall. This information, too, gets a bit lost in the shuffle as the suitors’ ship is sighted.

Ser Rajk goes down to the docks with a message from Danyka welcoming the young men to Westbrook Island and inviting them to take some wine and refreshments at the castle while their servants are getting the encampments set up. (We didn’t actually say that Danyka sent Rajk to do this, but now that I’m writing it, it makes sense that she would send someone of some status to do this to make the young men feel important. In this case, her sense of what is due to her House trumps her antipathy to being courted.)

Rhonal quickly sets up an attractive table in a corner of the Great Hall with wine, cheese, grapes, and other snacks. There is, perhaps, a lute player in the background. Or not, I used to live with a lute player and those things take for-freaking-ever to tune.

Lord Westbrook formally greets the young men, and introduces Danyka and Emberlyn. Alas, they have just barely gotten started getting to know one another when Emberlyn makes a comment about acne that she thought was under her breath, only it was’t. As Thomas and his friends stare in horror at her rudeness, she realizes what she has done and flees to her bedroom in mortification.

This leaves Danyka to try to rescue a rather awkward social event, which becomes even more awkward when one of the demonic shadow thingies appears in Emberlyn’s room, prompting one of her trademark screams. Just at that moment, Lord Westbrook had been gesturing to a servant who was bringing in a keg of beer, and Chris, who is apparently one of Westeros’ many alcoholics, had
brightened up in a dangerous sort of way. His friend Cecil drags him upstairs with the twin goals of finding out what was wrong and getting him away from the beer.

They are closely followed by Danyka, who calls to her friend to ask what’s wrong. “Uh, nothing, I’m fine,” says Emberlyn unconvincingly. Maester Hamden, summoned by a servant, gets fobbed off with a story about a spider and leaves Emberlyn alone to her previous activity of wishing she was dead. The shadow demon thing had taken off at the sound of the scream like, well, a SOMETHING out of hell.

Back in the Great Hall, Danyka makes labored conversation with the suitors. Cecil reveals that he, like Lord Westbrook, has traveled in Braavos, and Rhonal files this information away for later. Thomas declines the cheese on the grounds that it makes his face break out, which gives Danyka an opportunity to apologize on Emberlyn’s behalf.

Emberlyn returns to the party and makes her own apologies, but it is notable that none of the gentlemen asks her to wear his favor in the tournament. Indeed, they seem to be left with the impression that Danyka is the only pleasant person on the island.

This is strengthened a few minutes later when another shadowy demon thing (or maybe the same one, we can’t really tell them apart, it’s not like they introduce themselves) shows up in the hall. This time Emberlyn manages to stifle the scream and Rhonal makes rather desperate conversation about the interesting effects of light and how it can make things appear that aren’t really there. Surprisingly, the young men fall for this. Well, Chris is really more falling for the beer, and seems as if he might dive head-first into the keg if given the opportunity.

Feeling they have done enough for the dignity of the house and the duties of hospitality, Danyka politely bids the suitors good night. She has also had to endure some rather shy and clumsy flirtation from Thomas, who really isn’t a factor in her world because he’s only 16. Both she and Emberlyn have identified Cecil as the only faintly tolerable husband material in the group.

Meanwhile Drak’s business in Crakehall has resulted in the addition of a warship to his fleet, and we are going to have to build some more docks if he keeps acquiring them at this rate. By taking his smaller ship in tow and sailing the warship back to the island, he is able to arrive considerably earlier than he had planned. Drak and Olaf see a strange ship in the harbor and
while Drak is suspicious, he decides to find out what’s going on before succumbing to his first impulse to drive off the strangers by force.

When they get to shore there is a great deal of activity – unloading horses and gear, setting up encampments – and Olaf decides to approach some washerwomen to get information. This is a mistake as the ladies, Marjorie and Nancy, are all in favor of having a handsome young man in their midst and not at all shy about exactly what they want from him. Drak, seeing his lieutenant paralyzed with embarrassment, decides to eliminate the middleman and go up to the castle himself.

Alas, this is yet another occasion on which Danyka and Drak do not have a chance to converse. He does eventually find her, but by that time Lord Westbrook has roused the men of the household to discover why the sept is glowing bright red. He also orders Danyka back to bed but she makes only the mildest pretense of obeying, and has no time to listen to Drak’s story or answer his questions.

Rhonal discovers that the glow comes from a bowl and pedestal that no one remembers seeing there before. He orders, I mean suggests, that Lord Westbrook have the guards search the sept, and Rhonal and Maester Hamden manhandle the items out of the sept and down to the docks. Drak, following them, reluctantly agrees to take the things out to sea about a league and drop them overboard. After all, what could possibly go wrong?

 

Bring on the Tournament!

May 18, 2013

After getting the Shadow Relic off our lawn, House Westbrook spends the following morning making diligent preparations for the upcoming tourney. Ser Rokj is making sure the stables are set. In addition, he is receiving knightly treatment for his first tourney as a Knighted man. A Dothraki Knight. Lady Danyka and Lady Emberlyn spend their morning making fine preparations when Lord Westbrook comes to help with the plans. By help he plops down a sack of money down and says to not to worry about the expenses, and spend on whatever is needed. The bag contained 4,000 Dragons. Lady Danyka decides not to apply any questions where in 7 Hells this large sum of Dragons came from. Rhenol attends to his steward duties, taking time to make a soufflé that a servant screwed up. Drak or rather Captain Drak as he chooses to declare himself, spends his morning doing some crew management and preparation. With the new ship (far as he knows hidden) needs to be crewed and he select his loyal crew of the Draken’s Due as his officers who he’d take anywhere and everywhere. He has the cargo including his personal gear transported to the new ship and has Olof oversee it.

The action picks up with the arrival of a couple ships carrying potential suitors. Ser Rokj is appointed to receive the guests as they come to port. Ser Rokj would escort them up to be welcomed by Lady Danyka and Lady Emberlyn. After all they must meet their future husbands.

As the gentlemen arrive and are introduced, they each get an attraction score and the ladies then have to resist them. Good times.

Drak is in charge of transport guest who are waiting on the mainland. Drak came upon a waitimg crowd with 2 men that seem to have an issue with each other. Drak had one board while he interacted with the other. Drak discovered the ‘beef’ is a political difference. One being a Tyrell supporter whereas the other a Crakehall supporter. Despite Drak’s opinion he shows no support for either and focuses on those competing. After all, since Drak cannot compete, he has to find a way to make the next few days interesting and possibly profitable. Looking to size up and find one worthy of betting, or supporting if it comes to that. He mingled with the passengers, and ends up getting his eyes on a lovely lady. It is later he discovers his competition may be her brother, or he may be just be super protective.

Guests come and go as the ladies meet and greet time. Emberlyn finds herself gaining interests in a few suitors. Probably would be easier to make a list of suitors she didn’t take an interest in. Per usual, Rhonal is running around making sure the reception of guests is well supplied. However, he is keeping his eyes peeled for shadows popping up. He is unsure if the efforts he has made in removing the ceremonial bowl has successfully removed them.

Eventually Drak’s galley arrives with the last of the guests. Ser Rokj is there to greet them and escorts them up like the rest. He manages to get a guest to take an interest in a “Dothraki Knight”.

He asks “That must be an interesting story”. To which Rajk replies with a grunt.

Drak continues to mingle as they make their way to the castle.

The last of the guest arrive, are greeted and go to the great hall to have a welcoming cocktail party. Drak and Danyka finally cross paths and finally have time to chat. Danyka wastes no time to ask for Drak’s support should she need it to fend off marriage. Drak agrees knowing he’ll have something to benefit one way or another. Drak jumps to business he has had itching to discuss. He expresses his goals to expand his fishing and now shipping empire. Drak requests investment to allow for his expansion goals and once the profits booms, then the House can expect their wealth to increase. Danyka doesn’t indicate how she’d help but asks for 30% of the profit. Drak agreed to this knowing that profits will just be the icing on the cake for his empire and
the house. He follows up the agreement with a salary purposal to provide him and his crew a steady income and then the profits would go into the House’s wealth. Danyka denied the request. Disappointed in the chance of stability, Drak concludes his efforts and accept the construction of a dock and settlement near the mouth of the river (allows for better protection of the access to the Castle’s back door). Drak ends up earning himself a tenantship of this new development. Development will take 9 months. Not quite the iron price, but better than his head on a spike. A dragon was paid for his ventures.

Lord Westbrook mingles with his long time buddy Ser Merick. Rhenol is offered to take a moment to sit with them and enjoy a beer. Ser Merick and Rhenol exchange talk and he learns that Ser Merick served King Robert during the War of the Usurper.

Danyka and Drak change over to the topic of his ventures. Drak shared his success in disabling this ship from making it to it’s destination. He also shared some of his exploits in Crakehall; just the details about spreading rumors and planting seeds of distrust. They were interrupted to see Lord Westbrook. Drak attempts to use his lack of noble presentation and reputation as a means to escape, but it had failed. Lord Westbrook wastes no time and asks about the new ship ported near the island.

Drak responds “It was a promised ship.”

Lord Westbrook doubly remarks: “mmhmm..”

Lord Westbrook expressed to Drak he knows about his adventure, Olof shared it. (and Drak was going to give a bullshit story for Olaf for such an occasion.) To Drak’s surprise, Lord Westbrook was exhilarated over his actions and wanted detail over his mayhem. “Ah, someone appreciates his
fine work and from Lord Westbrook himself,” thought Drak. Drak then became confused as to why such activities would be praised. Lord Westbrook then looked at Lady Danyka, Ser Rokj, Rhenol and Drak and asked them if they’d like to know what is going on. All agree and found a safer place to talk in the famous office. Emberlyn was omitted for good reason, besides at this point she is mingling and consuming quite the amount of wine.

Lord Westbrook shares with the group of his ambitions and explains he remains supportive of his liege lord, but also supports Crakehall’s hatred for the Tyrell’s. However, he wishes to see both houses take each other out if the chance should arise to such a point. So anything to reduce either house is a win which is music to Drak’s ears. Lord Westbrook forecasts that this tourney shall proove interesting especially due to the recent political tension. He wraps up by instructing Rhenol to go get fitted for his wears for the tourney. Drak is expected to be in attendance to the social gatherings. He attempts to bow out due to his status, but this failed. He was instructed to go with Rhenol to improve his appearance. (Not exactly something that Drak finds appealing).

Emberlyn is rescued from mingling and drinking. Lady Danyka oversees getting Emberlyn ‘Westeros Coffee’. Ser Rokj is preparing the prize, Winter, for show.

House Westbrook gains some improvements, including a Guild.

So we have a Tourney on the Horizon with suitors for the ladies, a first time tourney for Ser Rokj, Rhenol keeping eyes peeled for shadows, all while probably running around.

 

Tourney Eve

June 1, 2013

It is the eve of the great tourney at House Westbrook, and while the grounds are buzzing with squires, horses, servants and washerwomen, the combatants and key players are gathered in the Great Hall for a party, with dancing, drinking and socializing. Rajk and Drak are there, both resplendently attired, which is very uncomfortable for them, Rajk because he hates the attention people are paying to “The Dothraki Knight”, and Drak because he cannot carry his beloved poleaxe.

A young man (is it Martin Nightingale?) quizzes Rajk persistently about how he became a knight of House Westbrook. Later, the beautiful Marita, ignoring all the other men who would like to get to know her better, fastens on to Rajk, questions him about his history and flirts with him shamelessly, even dragging him against his will onto the dance floor. (Danyka makes a mental note
to arrange dancing practice for the young men of her House.)

Rajk has an embarrassing moment at the viewing of the prize colt Winter, when his henchman accidentally brings out Ember’s horse Snow. (Rajk makes a mental note to call 1-800-HENCHMAN for a replacement.) He gets a lot of questions about both horses and about the island’s horse-breeding business.

Rhonal is helping serve the guests, and therefore not adequately supervising Parry, who has been outfitted appropriately but is going around sipping out of guests’ discarded drinks. In this activity he encounters Emberlyn who compliments his clothing, and he confuses her by referring to “Olivan”. Eventually she figures out he means Rhonal. Something is up – why on earth is Rhonal using a different name?

Later in the evening, Parry summons Rhonal to the garden shed, where there is not only a shadow being but also a summoning bowl and pedestal and a stranger chanting incantations over them. Rhonal questions the man, who turns out to be a priest of R’hllor who has chosen the shadow demons as an unorthodox (ha!) way to spread his religion. Unwilling to engage in theological debate with a madman, Rhonal departs to consider what to do next.

Emberlyn is naturally taken up with enjoying the company of the young men. At first jealous because Ser Damon is flirting with Danyka, she reluctantly agrees to be Danyka’s “beard” and go with her to meet the handsome knight. Then, while the guests are viewing the horses, Ser Bart starts talking with her and they wind up deep in a conversation that lasts most of the night, ending only when Emberlyn notices the sky start to lighten. She also pledges to let the young man wear her favor in the tourney the next day. Ah, romance. Interestingly, this is probably our first gaming session in which Emberlyn has NOT screamed.

Drak, standing around uncomfortably in his party clothes, is pounced on by Lady Orlanna, who is aggressively pimping out, I mean introducing prospective husbands to, her horse-faced, painfully shy daughter Arinette. Orlanna quickly abandons Drak upon finding out he is not a knight and moves on to other victims. Drak locates Maester Hamden in the crowd and has a brief conversation about hair dye and scar removal. They arrange to meet later. At that meeting, Drak reveals his plan to disguise himself as the late Zale Wynch, aka Zach Crakehall, and compete in the tourney.

Drak also sneaks around to try to overhear the argument that erupts between Ser Adam and Ser Stewart, the two men who had been arguing earlier before their passage on Drak’s boat. Lord Westbrook takes them firmly in hand and orders them to settle their differences on the tourney field, not at a dinner party.

Maester Hamden, who has suddenly come to life and gotten more interesting, takes some time to help Drak out with his disguise. The hair dye will take hours to set – he will be cutting it close in terms of getting to the tourney on time. He declines to help Drak find a nobleman’s costume, as all he has are maester’s robes. (Drak later sets Olaf to searching the new ship to see if any Crakehall’s left clothing behind.) He tells Rhonal he is unaware of any activity on behalf of the Fire God on the island, but says it would be most disruptive if such a thing were to take place.

Danyka, heartened by the news that her father will allow her to choose her own husband, surveys the field and finds herself being courted aggressively by Ser Damon. He’s good at it, too. He lures her up to the battlements (her plans to bring Emberlyn or, failing that, Arinette as shields
fall to pieces), speaks to her of the Westbrook estate and her goals for it, and is disappointed to learn that she has already bestowed her favor for the tourney. Ultimately, she flees before her heart leads her into something she might regret.

And so Castle Westbrook (the river is named Gorham by the way, and we should probably name the lake, too, how about Gray?) falls asleep, with the exciting prospect of a tourney on the morrow!

 

Tournament Day 1

July 6, 2013

Early on the morning of the tourney, Lord Westbrook starts summoning the leading denizens of House Westbrook, one by one, into his study. Emberlyn is offered a chance to compete in disguise in the archery tourney. The others receive encouragement on their plans for the day. Danyka chooses prizes for the sections of the tourney – a priceless ruby for the archers, a second horse, Wild, for the equestrians, a well-wrought shield for the melee and of course Winter for the joust.

Rajk fares well in all three of the day’s events (joust, melee and equestrian) and celebrates after dinner by accepting the fair Marita’s very clear advances, much to the displeasure of her brother, Ser Orton. Drak wins 12 dragons on Rajk’s joust and is very pleased with himself.

Ser Bart, Emberlyn’s flame of the night before, falls victim to Drak in the melee and is somewhat somber and un-loverlike. Bart also makes delicate inquiries of Danyka about both Emberlyn’s and her own marital prospects. Danyka, who remembers him from when he was Lord Westbrook’s squire, refuses to flirt with him on the grounds that doing so would hurt Emberlyn’s feelings.

Olaf meets a nice girl, Jonita, sister to one of the knights. Ser Christopher makes overtures to Danyka but she persuades him to take Arinette, the shy horse-faced girl, in to dinner instead. Danyka is puzzled to note that Ser Damon, who had been very attentive to her earlier, did not renew his suit. This is too bad as her father had been quite pleased at the prospect of “the pirate” as a potential son-in-law.

Trouble breaks out at the dinner when Ser Adam and Ser Stewart renew their political argument. Danyka, Rhonal (who is strangely quiet) and others help calm them down, much to Drak’s disappointment.

Turns out Lord Westbrook is disappointed too. Late in the evening he gathers privately with just his few stalwart household members and explains that he knows there will be war and House Westbrook will be playing a role. It is to his advantage if the pro- and anti-Tyrrell sides spend their energy battling one another instead of looking around for other houses to beat up on!

As they are discussing which houses would be potentially useful allies (with an alliance to be cemented by Danyka’s wedding), a really big, nasty shadow thing shows up, with red eyes. Emberlyn screams. Unlike previous appearances, the scream – painful though it is to the humans in the room – does not dispel the being. Rhonal starts talking to it, and ends up telling the others about the shadow priest of R’hllor that he found in the garden shed. A search of the castle fails to turn up a shadow priest, but Maester Hamden is curiously untroubled by the prospect of a priest of the Red God in their midst.

Yep, not much going on at Castle Westbrook…

 

Tournament Day 2

July 20, 2013

Day 2 of the Tourny and we find our members of House Westbrook enjoy what seems their favorite event, breakfast. Each person takes their time to break their fast and go on with their preparations. Drak needing his scar masking touched up, Ser Rokj strutting around with a spring in his step and Rhonl is missing it seems. Seems he has engaged himself with a red priest named
Simon. Emberlyn spends her morning becoming Peter for Archery. Danyika stops by to lend a hand.

The tourney resumes with the joust and we’ve narrowed the competition down to 4 riders.

The melee proved to heat up as Ser Rokj had the pleasure of meeting up with his last night’s lover’s brother (say that a few times fast). He utilized every chance to rub it in his face as the emotional blows seemed to hurt more than the physical.

Olaf demonstrated he is more than capable in fighting to defeat his opponent.

For the second time, Drak was able to fight as his true nature Zale Wynch (feels good to show off his heritage and arms), but this time he embraces the sea water that flows in his veins to win. (maybe a tad help elsewhere).

During the lunch break, Danyka was relieved to see that Rhenol has appeared. Rhenol was speaking with a red priest. Simon was inquiring on if the nobility would accept Rhelor if the commoners do. Then he requested an audience with Lord Westbrook and Rhenol said he would make the request to Lord Westbrook.

The Archery competition finally began. The competition narrowed after the 4th round. Lord Westbrook seemed to break target after target until the second to last round where it seems he failed to make the target. He was an expected winner by most spectators. The final round went between Thomas (pizza face) and Peter. You could hear the crowd chant Pizza Face, Pizza Face (probably not, maybe just Ser Rokj, Olaf and Drak who seemed to only take interest in the final two rounds. Thomas frantically looks around each round looking for the sweet Emberlyn knowing maybe doing well in her favorite hobby will spark her interest. Alas, he fails to win as he loses to Peter. Lord Westbrook wastes no time to show that all the men managed to lose to a lady. Leaving all the men to fall in shame, except for Drak, Olaf and Ser Rokj to just point and laugh. Emberlyn was awarded a very pretty ruby.

The equestrian competition came to a close as Ser Rokj is crowned the winner, receiving his own horse.

The events of day two came to an end and in its place dinner awaited. Marita marched in with her brother who was still brooding over his loss. Drak somehow had the pick of 3 women; funny the night before he marched alone. Olaf came in with the same gal. Ser Rokj had to come in with someone different. (I forget who Danyka and Emberlyn marched in with.)

Dinner was interrupted with a brawl between Sers Orton and Stewart. Seems the fight was centered on Orton’s rumored perversion. Without any help, Orton was knocked out cold. Drak, still pretending to be Zale was able to provide some “suggestions” (commands) to his men to drag the unconscious Orton out into the stables. As if one interruption was not enough, Lady Orlana gets up and announces a large amount of Dragons, an estate and possibly more if a knight would wed her daughter. Danyka feeling the horrifying embarrassment of the horse-faced daughter. Danyka suggested to Rhenol that perhaps some sleep aid may be needed. Drak over heard this and grinned. Rhenol knew Drak overheard and hands over some sleep aid. Drak employed his sneaky assassin, Olaf to sneak it in while he distracted Lady Orlana. Drak came over to wish her luck in her pursuit and suggested a few eligible bachelors while Olaf managed to sneak the powder into her drink. She purposed why not Zale, since she knew he must have some titles. Drak looking to downgrade himself tried denying his status and reminded her he was a ward of the Tyrell’s and cannot speak for their desire. Rhenol entered the conversation to essentially not help Drak’s cause. Instead, Drak used this opportunity to purpose a drink towards the possible agreement. She took lady sips until Drak insisted he was far from a gentleman so she should down it. Down it she did. She nodded off shortly after.

Meanwhile, Danyka noticed that her father was not to be seen. She decides to search and went to the battlements, where Damon followed. They exchanged gossip, and he mentioned Bart’s interests, which seemed to be for both Emberlyn and Danyka. Damon changed the conversation from gossip to the one called Zale Wynch. He inquired what she knew of him. He seemed rather concerned that Zale, the ward of the Tyrell’s should have been in the escort with Willas Tyrell back to Highgarden. Yet rumor has it the escort had been attacked and Willis may be dead. If this is the case, how is Zale here on the island?

The dinner seemed to be full of surprises because Simon the Red Priest decided to make an appearance. Danyka urged Simon to stop scaring people and stop what he is doing, but since this is a tourney she must allow him to be a guest. Simon mingles as he tries to sway the guests.

 

The Dinner Party Continues

July 27, 2013

The Dinner Party Continued:

Simon mingles around our guests setting up a spectacle to be seen at the South Battlement during the watch. He is being closely but cautiously shadowed by Rhonal.

Ser Rajk, the Lady Slayer, has taken on a new lady friend for the evening. She engages him in some pillow talk, where he tries to pretend to be asleep with his eyes wide open. She becomes interested in Zale Wynch’s business on the Isle as he is a ward of the Tyrells. He shrugs it off, as she inquires about the Lord and Lady of the Isle.

Returning from some sort of tree fort extravaganza, Lord Westbrook and Lady Danyka return through the passage in his bedroom. Lady Danyka is alerted to a noise and in the darkness came a figure lunging at Lord Westbrook. Lady Danyka does all she can by giving a shove, enough to get Lord Westbrook time to knock the lad unconscious.

Olaf and Drak engage themselves in the party, well sort of. Drak still appearing as Zale is being a terrible date. He spends his time people watching. He is dragged to the floor where he continues to do the same. He spies his fishing captain emerging through the door. Knowing this is not his place, he excuses himself to see a privy and escorts him out, all the while being followed. Apparently his date thought he’d need help.

Danyka and Lord Westbrook decide that this failed assassin needs to be questioned: Fetch Rhonal and Drak errr Zale. Rhonal was able to be found, but Drak was outside. Rhonal has Perry go outside to get Drak after Drak’s men identified where he had gone.

Outside Drak discovers he is being followed, but has his captain speak up quickly. Apparently there is a man on the other shore ordering/requesting/demanding to come to the island. The fishermen didn’t get much info but that he is representing the Tyrells. With a smile, Drak orders him to take his personal ship and get him. Also keep a close eye on him. This should prove interesting. At this time Perry does well to address Drak as Zale and gives him the message from Lord Westbrook. Drak decides to let on he knows of his follower and says

“Hey you, yeah I know you are there. You’ll be dancing with Perry while I visit with the Lord.”

Perry has a look of shock on his face. (Something I know Drak will regret, but cannot do much about)

Olaf noticed all the commotion and followed Rhonal up to see if his services could be of use. As it happens, he knows the assassin. This assassin had a parchment that had a description of Rhonal, but also carried one describing Lord Westbrook. Two assignments?

Emberlyn noticing something is going on asked Danyka when she appeared,

“What in seven hells is going on?”

Nonchalantly Danyka admits to the assassin’s attempt, but htat Emberlyn must keep the guests entertained. She took the opportunity to dance with Bart again.

Drak funally came up and was brought upt ot speed. This time Drak was confident that the assassin would not fear death, nor torture. Instead, he offered to be the assassin’s “escape route”. He prepares as the rest prepare him for the dungeon.

The party dies down as the 2nd watch nears. Olaf has someone to meet at the North Battlements. At the Southern Battlements Simon prepares his Lord of Light demonstration of a sort. Rhonal seeks attemdance making note of the others there. Danyka and Emberlyn get a chance to catch up reviewing details of questions being asked about Zale and the household and the assassin’s attempt. Ser Rojk and Olaf spend some time torturing the new guest. They only manage removing a finger nail and a pinkie finger. Emberlyn eagerly waits to have a chance to read a note se received privately.

The guard is left at the door where Drak pays him to play the part of a disposed guard. Drak, cloaked in his purple hood, makes a spectacle of unlocking the bars and offering to get hte man off the island to gain his trust. Knowledge of three different assassins was provided which leaves cause for concern.

Things seem to be getting interesting as we have a Tyrell guest who just arrived so late in the night, an assassin being rescued, questions, notes and a red priest. And we still have the final day of the tournament to go.

 

Tournament Day 3

August 31, 2013

The third day of Castle Westbrook’s tourney is at hand and boy, is it an eventful one. But not, perhaps, as eventful as the
night before!

We begin with Rhonal up on the roof pondering what to do about the Red Priest. Olaf is meeting with a mysterious individual on another part of the battlements. Ser Rojk is sleeping soundly in preparation for an exhausting day of fighting and recovering from his interlude with the fair Ingrid. Drak is in the cellar with the prisoner playing good cop/bad cop and offering to hel the guy escape. Danyka and Emberlyn are in the ballroom watching the servants clean up.

Wait, who is that in the corner of the ballroom playing kissy-face? None other than Inga, Drak’s date and the handsome but clueless Parry, Rhonal’s minion. Concerned, Danyka encourages Emberlyn to try to overhear their conversation, and she manages to hear enough that it’s clear Inga is employing her charms to do some kind of information-gathering on House Westbrook.

Obviously the thing to do is find Rhonal and inform him, but he seems to be gone. Emberlyn retreats to one side and reads her mysterious note (TO HERSELF, meaning her fellow players are still in the dark, dammit). Way to go Emberlyn!

Meanwhile Olaf’s mysterious meeting involves being asked whether he intends to carry out his original job of assassinating Olivan – whom WE know as Rhonal, but there’s no point in spreading that around. Olaf says no and hands back the 10 dragons he was paid to start the job. The other man leaves the battlements through a secret entrance.

Intrigued, Olaf starts exploring to see if he can find the secret. He discovers a hidden staircase in House Westbrook. The first door he comes to opens into Emberlyn’s room. Wait for it……..

…… there is no scream. Emberlyn is not there.

Drak having brought the prisoner some clothes leaves the man alone to put them on and runs upstairs for a moment to make sure the coast is clear for their departure. Danyka wants him to know that his date is making out with a servant. While they’re sorting out their agendas – Drak is also trying to line up a horse for the prisoner – Parry and Inga head out of the ballroom. Parry, in a rare stroke of genius, has remembered a small guest room in the cook’s quarters and figures they will be less likely to be interrupted there than in his
own squalid bedroom.

Seeing this and unable to communcate freely with Drak for fear of alerting Parry and Inga, Danyka quickly asks Emberlyn to fololow the hapless pair and not to let them leave until she can track down Rhonal.

Rhonal, remembering his role in subduing the prisoner earlier, retreats to the basement to see how things are going and finds the man putting on clothes and the guard knocked out (by Drak, for a consideration). Unaware of Drak’s agenda, Rhonal takes matters into his own hands and is about to break the prisoner’s legs when Danyka arrives and tells him to

STOP

(That’s like a regular stop, but with a Persuasion of 5 with a bonus die to intimidate)

Rhonal does stop, doesn’t quite understand Danyka’s non-explanation, but the prisoner (whose name is Steppen Wolf, and is as we will see he might well be “Born to be Wild”) is injured and (understandabley) confused.

“First you hold me prisoner, now you want me to leave, what the hell?” asks Mr. Wolf.

“We don’t like outsiders” Danyka snaps back. After all our motto is “Get Off My Lawn”.

Leaving Rhonal to help the man up the stairs, Danyka goes to wake Ser Rajk because they need a horse to get the prisoner to Drak’s boat. Rajk gets up, gets the horse, and sensibly goes back to bed. This is possibly the only sensible thing done by any of our party, so we should probably take a moment to appreciate it.

Drak and Rhonal are somewhat surprised to hear the injured prisoner complaining that he wants HIS horse. Danyka returns in time to hear Steppen
explain that he has a horse at a hut in the forest near the lake, and he doesn’t want any old horse, he wants that one. While Drak takes charge of the prisoner and the unwanted horse, Danyka quickly changes into her leather armor, gets her own horse and takes off into the woods. By herself. Armed with a bow and a dagger and a forceful personality. Probably should have thought this through a little bit more.

Poor Emberlyn, meanhile, has been standing outside the door to the cook’s guest room, quite unable to miss hearing the sounds of passionate congress between Parry and Inga. She’s trying frantically to think of a way to a) make them stay in the room per Danyka’s instructions, b) explain what she’s doing there at all, or c) kill Danyka. Unfortunately, this means she is compeltely preoccupied when Olaf discovers that the secret staircase leads further down from Emberlyn’s room to, yes, the kitchens. He taps her on the shoulder. Yep, here it comes:

SCREAM

Rhonal comes running, Inga tosses on some clothes and flees while Parry blushes furiously. Olaf tries to explain. Somewhere, Rajk sighs, rolls over and stuffs the pillow into his ear.

Danyka arrives at the hut to find Ingrid and Inga there, waiting for Jonas and Steppen. Who’s Jonas? Apparently the dude who met Olaf on the roof. Danyka confronts them and gets knocked out cold for her troubles. When she revives, Danyka finds the fire out and the Nordic miscreants gone along with their horses. She had had one glimmer of sense and tethered her own horse away from teh camp so she is able to return and sound the alarm about the horse thieves. (For all we know they came by the horses honestly, but it sounds easier than trying to explain. And “Skank Hos!” isn’t really worth trying to rouse the populace for.)

Meanwhile Drak’s prisoner has managed to escape his clutches and reuinte with his companions adding a Westbrook horse to the party’s collection of steeds. Somehow they manage not only to steal a small boat butr also to get all five horses on board. Drak and Danyka are prepared to follow them to do battle, but Lord Westbrook (along with the rest of the castle’s population, even Rajk) arrives and tells them to stop, and tells everyone to go home to bed. He doesn’t give his reasons. He never does.

Danyka hastily announces that the tournament will start at noon to give everyone a chance to get some rest.

Ser Rajk handily wins both the melee and the joust. Drak, in his Zale Wynch persona, wins six more dragons betting on the joust. Just before the final battle, Ser Adam and Ser Stewart get into another fight and pretty soon a huge brawl erupts. Mindful of her father’s orders, Danyka does not try to stop it. The large man who stopped a previous brawl tries to wade in and gets socked in the head for his trouble. SEr Bart chivalrously shields Emberlyn fromt he fray. Nobody shields Danyka and she is rather resentful about it, frankly, even though she is perfectly able to step out of the way on her own. Drak’s efforts to get up a betting pool fail. Finally Lord Westbrook calls a halt and allows Rajk to go on to victory.

There will be trouble about this. House Westbrook called a tournament and then its own people won every event – one of them a girl disguised as a man! And one a Dothraki! But for now, most of the participants are happy to retreat, tend their wounds and prepare to

GET OFF OUR LAWN

 

Rumors of War

September 28, 2013

Nothing much is happening at House Westbrook…

In the woods near Old Oak, Lord Hendryk, a diminutive yet dangerous trader in more-or-less legitimate goods, is camped with his “boys” (including
the mute enforcer Haro) when they are interrupted by a group of four people and five horses, seemingly in a hurry. It is our troop of Nordic spies and horse thieves, Inga, Ingrid, Jonas and Steppen, fleeing the area after their plans for assassinating Lord Westbrook wer foiled. Hendryk stops them and extracts some information about Westbrook Island and its inhabitants, then lets them go on their way with only a little threatening.

As the tourney survivors are partaking of a leisurely breakfast, Lord Westbrook summons various party members – including Ser Cecil, with the barely sober Chris and the sulky Thomas, still stung by Emberlyn’s insult to his face, and Ser Damon, who is hanging around for some reason – to a post-lunch meeting in the Great Hall. Danyka takes a moment to reward Rhonal with five dragons for his excellent work puttin on the tournament. Emberlyn has a long conversation with Ser Bart and bids him a tearful goodbye, although there is a brief awkward moment when her eyes stray to the handsome (and no doubt strutting) Parry wandering past. (Pause for a discussion among the playerson the topic of whether Parry’s recent experience with Inga counts toward his Agility, Knowledge, or Marksmanship.)

Drak and Olaf are preoccupied ferrying most of the tourney participants and spectators to shore, making sure the ardent Tyrell supporters travel separetly from the anti-Tyrell faction. Rajk makes inquiries of Ser Damon about getting a good price for his new shield, but decides not to sell for the moment. Damon is apparently still interested e3nough to inquire of Rajk about Danyka’s personality – she cannot be described as “docile” – but hasn’t actually, you know, spent any time with her for several days. Ser Cecil looks around for a higher class of prostitue than the washer women.

On Drak’s last journey back tot he island, he brings Lord Hendryk, who – after a confrontation with a drunken gate-guard who had the unwisdom to make a short joke – has stopped to spend some time in a tavern, sort of a natural habitat for him. Through the simple expedient of buying a round or two, he discovers that the Old Oak harbormaster is named Sully and the head of the local pirates is Whitey. The natives sound like they’re from South Boston. Knowing Lord Westbrook is going to be busy with his meeting, Drak directs the party to the inn in the fishing village where presumably some beer will be consumed. (In passing we should note that one of Lord Hendryk’s posse, Thomas, disappeared during the night, and only half of his men even remember the guy being there.)

Ser Dominic Blackmont has taken Rhonal aside to ask, basically, wtf. Dominic’s crazy aunt Lara is wasting family money sending assassin after assasin to try to get Rhonal, so far failing each time. Rather than see his already eager inheritance further squandered, Dominic would like to work out a deal that involves fooling Lara into thinking she has succeeded.

Troubled by this, Rhonal seeks out Simon the Red Priest, of all people, and asks whether the flames can show the faces of those who are after him. (Four assassins have been sent, but only two – Olaf and Steppen – have made it to the island.) For a small sacrafice of his own blood, Rhonal gets far more than he bargained for – a vision of four Iron Island warships bearing down on Westbrook Island,

Carrying this news to Lord Westbrook, he finds that our fearless leader is already aware of the threat. Indeed, he has summoned the party plus a few guests to put the castle on a war footing. At first he threatens to send Emberlyn home but then puts her in charge of recruiting and training archers. Danyka nd Rhonal are to make sure there’s plenty of food inthe castle for both horses and people. Rajk is commanding the cavalry and Drak the navy.

Olaf (who by this time was suffering the effects of Benadryl, or maybe Dornish wine) manages to inform Lord Westbrook that Marcus, the visitor from the Tyrells seems to have disappeared. Rajk has discovered that there’s a horse missing from the stables. Could these two things be related?

Captain Dunder is introduced as one of Lord Westbrook’s spies, bringing word of the Ironborn headed our way. Despite the rumors, Lord Tyrell is alive and well and has sent a raven rather pointedly inquiring about why he wasn’t invited to the tournament. Danyka invites the remaining knights – Cecil, Chris, Thomas, Damon, Jarend and Dominic – to put up in the castle.

The House spent considerabel wealth putting on the tournament and will need to recoup its fortunes. Luckily Danyka has some left over from the 400 dragons Lord Westbrook gave her for tournament expenses, and she will use it to bolster the food stores. And beer. Even though Lord Hendryk hasn’t made it to the castle yet, it’s clear we’ll be needing more beer.

 

Dew Drop Inn

November 2, 2013

Rumors of War

House Westbrook is preparing for trouble. Emberlyn and Ser Merek are training Westbrook Island girls as archers. Rhonal and Danyka (slightly disguised as a servant) are going to Old Oak to start buying up all the crops, livestock, booze and cheese they can lay their hands on.Rajk is preparing to outfit extra warhorses. Olaf has been given command of one of Drak’s ships and is proving to be a hands-off leader – indeed, more of a taking-a-nap-while-the-men-swab-the-decks leader.

Hendryk Dagenham and his crew are spending the afternoon in the Dew Drop Inn, Westbrook Island’s best pub, picking up gossip and sampling the local brews. There are rumors about the tournament and about Emberlyn being a forward sort of a girl taking a prize away from the men and even challenging Lord Westbrook in disguise!

Drak starts the afternoon by having a private word with Lord Westbrook, making very thinly veiled threats and asking for his name back, a title and a lordship. Lord Westbrook indicates hs is not unwilling to reward Drak properly, but is not at all amenable to doing so under duress.

An angry and rather tipsy Drak provides Rhonal and Danyka with a bumpy ride to Old Oak, but they manage to arrive safely nonetheless. Danyka has a little fun chatting with the farmers about how strange and incosiderate the nobels are. By the time they return, Drak has managed to find a weapons shop and even obtain four bottles of wildfire, which helps him forget about his snit. They have a much smoother ride home and Drak doesn’t even say much about the inclusion of 20 live sheep in the cargo.

Arising from his slumbers, Olaf breaks up an argument on the dock, moving his ship to accommodate some fishermen, and confronts two men he doesn’t recognize, who are trying to blend in with the dock workers. He tries to give chase but they escape. And where do miscreants go when they escape? To the pub, of course. One disappears in the back where Marguerite (sister of Nancy the washer woman and provider of various painful services) awaits, while the other allows Hendryk to buy him a beer and talk a little business. It seems the pair are here to assassinate a couple of islanders. Olaf is one. Hendryk makes them a deal to allow him to question Olaf before disposing of him.

Emberlyn, returning from the archery field, receives a rave from Ser Bart with a plagiarized love poem. In rather a grim mood, she writes a couple of letters which she thinks will give comfort to their recipients in case she dies in the war. She hears a knock on her bedroom door. It is a laundry maid who clumsily steals teh lettger Emberlyn is writing to Ser Bart. A brief confrontation ends with Emberlyn getting her letter back (the laundry maid swears she didn’t read it becasue she can’t read) and the information that Marcus, the visitor from the Tyrells who arrived at the end of the tournament, had bribed the maid to steal the letter.

Unable to pour out her troubles to Danyka, Emberlyn decides to go in search of Marcus. She knows he was seen at the Dew Drop Inn and she is JUST sensible enough not to go in there by herself. Instead, she rounds up Rajk and Parry to help her. Rajk and Hendryk have a brief conversation and take one another’s measure.

The innkeeper gladly tells her Marcus’s room number, but Parry’s cry of “Free BEer!” doesn’t roust Marcus out of the room. Rajk asks Emberlynn to create a distraction so she stands up on a table and sings “The Bear and the Maiden Fair”. Rajk breaks down the door and tries to corral Marcus,who dives out the window. The three of them give chase (Emberlyn hastily breaking off her song) but Emberlyn is forced to stop when Parry falls down and breaks hisnose. Drak fortunately happens along at the moment and stops Marcus so that Rajk can deliver him to the castle. Drak then proceeds to the inn to invite Hendryk and his men up for dinner and a business meeting.

It’s going to be another interesting social occasion, don’t you think?

 

Friends for Dinner

November 9, 2013

And for Dessert: Planning and Suffering (for some)

Captain Drak and Lord Hendryk Dagenham make their way to dinner until Drak notices Lord Hendryk crawling. Harlow nods as Drak suggests that perhaps he should hold off on meeting Lord Westbrook, not exactly a good first impression situation., Perhaps he will catch a thrilling athletic event in the pub. Capt. Drak takes a moment to swap into his Kraken Doublet to up his appearance, after all, he is no longer an outcast and he figures he ought to class it up a tiny bit. Well, as much as you can with a Pole-Axe slung on the back.

He shares a story about Lady Emberlyn dancing on tables at the pub and him running after Ser Rajk who was chasing someone else. (This is a fun way to get started)

Ser Rajk sits there with a facepalm. Eventually Ser Rajk provides a better story that connected the dots. Rhonal for the first time it seems ploys some entertaining deception as he escorts and shoves the responsible laundry lady into a dungeon cell.

Laundry Lady – Margaret: “Your office is down here?”

Rhonal: “Yep” (shove).

The rest of dinner, surprisingly, nothing major happened. Everyone enjoyed the wonderful mutton and goat cheese. Captain Drak not getting to sit at the big boy table did have an opportunity to swap pirate stories with Captain Dunder. Lady Emberlyn shows off her letter from Ser Bart, only to have Lady Danyka point out its obvious plagiarism.

Emberlyn replies “You’re just jealous”.

Danyka retorts: “Perhaps I am, but at least my suitor is still on this island”.

Emberlyn fumes off and presumably goes to write another letter. She spends the rest of the evening sulking in her room.

Once dinner is concluded, the remainder of the party congregates in the libary; it’s bigger than Lord Westbrook’s office. Lord Westbrook collects a progress report from the various fronts. Rhonal provices the food v. blockade analysis. We have enough food for the island for about a month. He also suggests spreading a rumor that the castle will be hosting a name day party for Lady Danyka where her engagement will be announced. She, of course, is mortified but understands this is a great rumor since there are several ships that have not yet left after the tournament and this will explain their presence as well as the reason the castle is stocking up on food.

Rajk spoke regarding the infantry, Emberlynn on the archery/castle devense and Drak with naval. (Interestingly enough, he does not mention the wildfire) At this time, Lord Westbrook acknowledges Drak as the Lord Commander of teh Westbrfook Fleet. Commander Drak (or is it Lord Commander, or just Lord? oh well) is soothed by the recognition. Rajk then presents the information that was found on Marcus, or now we know as Desmond. Lord Westbrook reads the first page and his eyes got very wide. He does not share the contents of this page, but was clearly alarmed. Well, anyone who knows him well would know this as he rarely shows any emotion. A (very poor, but recognizable) drawing of Rhonal was found but discreetly shown to him. A map was found with Drak identifying that House Hewett (Island south of House Westbrook) was marked as a rendezvous point. Other details were provided as well. Damon (4), Dunder (2) and Chris (2) offer men to help Drak fill his currently empty boat.

Lord Westbrook welcomes anyone (except the ladies) to a questioning party in the dungeons. When they get down there, he questions why the dungeons are so filty and wrinkles his nose at the smell. Clearly he does not spend any time down here. Rajk, Drak and Rhonal proceed. First person was Margaret, but as soon as the cell was opened she attempted to flee. Wrong choice. Rajk responds with a punch to the face, and she was out cold. Guess we’ll have to try the other one. Rhonal speaks with the jailer and arranges her ladies’ punishment is to clean the dirty dungeon tha tLord Westbrook was disgusted by.

Rajk attempted to intimidate Desmond, only somehow failed. About ready to strike, Drak puts a hand on his shoulder and suggests his attempt. Drak does intimadte him but no results.

Desmond: “And WHO are you?”

Drak: “I am Drak.”

Desmond: “That’s a funny name.”

*CRACK* Desmond takes the butt end of the pole-axe right in the nose, breaking it. (This is the second time he has gotten hit with this pole-axe)

Drak: “And now so is your face.” (He’s 22, and I’m sure that would seem like a good come back in Westeros, maybe)

It took some improvised healing from Myrish Fire (heals, but damn it burns like Seven Hells), and poisoned ale before some details start pouring out.

The plan: Ironborn (we later find out that are just pirates using the Greyjoy flag) take the islands but not backed by anyone. House Westbrook first, they are the most threatening (points for us!). The purpose was revealed, to get Olyvan. No one but Drak and Lord Westbrook knows that this is Rhonal. The prisoner is left to enjoy some pain.

MEANWHILE
  • Danyka nd Damon spend the remainder of the evening in the library “chatting”.
  • Hendryk discovers an interesting secret about Lady Danyka before managing to get to his room.
  • Parry has Maester Hamden fix his nose properly so that Emberlynn will appreciate his looks again.

Other non-story related events to report:

  • An opportunity to break down the NPCs/bad guys as well as what information is known to whom
    • I highly suggest this to happen again since it was nice review and with everyone we can go over what secrets are known to whom
  • Awarded 30 XP. Rajk gains the quality of Menacing. Drak loses his outcast flaw/drawback and gains a specialty in Pole-Axe
  • Very good chili was eaten

 

War!

November 23, 2013

What is it good for? Keeping gamers up too late!

War is coming to Westbrook Island! After a pleasant evening of flirting in the library with Ser Damon, Danyka goes to Emberlyn’s room to apologize for her snippy remarks earlier. Emberlyn forgives her and the two are friends and comrades again.

Wrapping up a previous piece of business, Rhonal approaches Lord Westbrook on Simon’s behalf for permission for the priest to open a temple to the Red God on the island. Lord Westbrook agrees provided he is not asked to support it in any way, and that Simon wait to work out the details with him until next week when presumably the armed conflict will be over.

Drak concludes the night’s business by presenting Lord Westbrook and Emberlyn with Superior Bows. Emberlyn is grateful but a little startled (he had found her in her bedroom, fortunately chatting with Danyka, for it wouldn’t do for a properly well-brought-up Westerosi lady to entertain a naval captain alone in her room) and files away a mental note that Drak probably wants something.

At breakfast the next day, while Ser Merek is putting away impressive amounts of bacon, Maester Hamden comes in looking bedraggled and covered in ash. He eats quickly, speaking to no one, and then leaves. Danyka asks Rhonal what is wrong with the maester? Is it possible he’s become a follower of the Red God? Rhonal sees nothing wrong with this but has no information to offer. In the meantime, Nancy the washer woman approaches Rhonal, reporting that Margaret, the laundry maid, a skinny little thing who doesn’t do any business if you know what I mean and I think you do, is missing. The steward says Margaret will not be returning to her duties, but will be discharged as soon as she has finished cleaning the dungeon. Nancy gets permission to hire a new laundry maid from the village.

In the fever of preparations, Danyka still finds time to flirt a little with Damon, taking him with her on an inspection tour of the earthworks surrounding the castle, which results in the installation of a spiked palisade on some of the mounds. Damon also manages to offer marriage to Danyka, who very properly tells him she is minded to accept, but he must first speak with her father. (Of course she already knows Lord Westbrook favors Damon’s suit, but she is punishing her swain just a little for neglecting her for the better part of three days. As it turns out this matter does not move forward any further till after the battle is over, leaving it unclear whether the story of the engagement is true or merely a cover for laying in supplies for a seige.)

Emberly and Ser Merek make plans to go over to Old Oak to recruit archers. Rajk must also grit his teeth and face his fear of water in order to recruit calvary.

Drak agrees to take them, provided there will be no livestock this time. First,though, he has a quick meeting with his lieutenants, including Olaf, whom he wants by his side to take notes on the fleet’s signals and make sure all the ships understand them. Then there is a brief delay as Rajk has gotten on the wrong ship and has to grit his teeth and face his fears all over again. Ser Merek teases Emberlyn a bit about her boyfriend and offers to ask Lord Westbrook to invite Bart back to the castle.

By the simple method of offering coin and beer to the various layabouts, wastrels and ruffians who inhabit Old Oak (many of whom are named Sully), the recruiting party is able to fill its ranks efrfectively, if not elegantly. Emberlyn is frankly frightened by the rough and crude manners of the recruits and hides behind Ser Merek.

Fast Forward

That day and the next pass in a flash thanks to the intense preparations, training and fortification needed to be ready for the ships known to be heading our way. (And also thanks to a touch of GM magic).

The layabouts, wastrels and ruffians have been combined wtih the more experienced House Westbrook troops into some semblance of a fighting force. Drak commands the navy, Rajk the calvary, Emberlyn the archers and Danyka the siege weapons. Olaf guides the infantry with Rhonal taking over after the young man is felled by a rogue Benadryl missle. The steward also spends the early part of the battle manning an outdoor kitchen and providing the troops with food, including a turkey sandwich for Lord Westbrook. Also he is wearing a weird green tabard and shield that no one has seen before. Nobody notices.

The enemy is a tough one. We have somehow gleaned the information that they are no Ironborn, but pirates flying the Greyjoy colors. They fight pretty hard for pirates, though. A squadron of smaller ships comes first, followed by two large ships firing serious siege weaponry – better than anything the island has. Not knowing the direction of the attack (which side of the island would they land or how they would approach the castle?), Lord Westbrook and his team have deployed their forces in all directions, meaning that many of their reserves have a long trip to make when it becomes clear that the attack is coming from just one side.

House Westbrook prevails, but not without serious losses – at least three ships, a siege tower, several holes in the castle wall. There will be casualties to tally, troops to be paid and repairs to make.

Still. We managed to capture one of the large warships, and will no doubt be adapting its technology and expanding it in our own fleet. All of our characters seem to have survived (that we know of). And the enemy? They got off our lawn the hard way – they died. Not a single survivor remains – a disappointment to Danyka who was hoping to learn more about the who and why of the attack.

 

War, Drak’s Report

November 23, 2013

Captains Log: Reporting on Drak’s Wench west of te port. Draken’s Due positioned as a tail. Allyria is due north of my current position with the Dungeroo south. Cecil’s ship is in the lake awaiting any potential backdoor attack. Damon is located near the port as hidden support. The enemy has two ships positioned be3tween Drak’s Wench and the Dungeroo. Two additional ships are in teh distance. It has come to my attention these ships bare no banners, and are not a uniform band of Ironborn Longships.

To start this off with a blaze, I commanded a trebuchet to launch my special surprise. The contents of the projectile emitted a powerful gree flame that surely crippled that ship badly. It was clear the ship was forced to send landing parties. Evidence suggested Rajk’s calvary was up for the task. In the distance I could hear the mast of the other ship snap. Reports indicated Danyka’s siege tower was able to cause this. I sent the Draken’s Due to provide support for the Allyria in the task of capturing a ship due north. This left two ships in the far distance. I issued orders to the Dungeroo to pursue these ships with me.

Moving forward 150 yards, we were suddenly struck by a giant metal bolt. But from where? These distant ships cannot possibly reach us. More than 500 yards. Orders to fall back were provided to the Dungeroo as well as us. We took on another hit. Hoping to draw these ships in for hope of castle wall defenses to provide support. I on the other hand fell back and attempted to flank these ships. Reports came in from Draken’s Due and the Allyria is towing the captured ship back to port. Unfortunately, it seems the Dungeroo was lost. No reports ont he survival of its crew. Meanwhile, I sent a raven to Damon to go ahead and move forward.

Draken’s Due returned to its place by Drak’s Wench. Draken’s due remained unscratched. Suddenly, my ship began taking hit after hit. It became clear any move I mad further damned this ship, so I gave Olaf command of m yWench charged with keeping my officer and warship safe while I take Draken’s Due to engage these monstrous ships. The fleet still needs its Commander. As we headed for the enemy, we be3gan taking damage, but nothing else could be helped. With siege weapons of this magnitude, the castle walls may not be able to handle it. Something I was supposed to prevent. Once Draken’s Due was within siege range, I delcared enough was enough and had the trebuchet send another one of my gifts. A hit wa made but the result was disappointing… a smaller green blaze. Shortly after this attack, my ship, my first ship ever, started taking on water and it began to sink. I acted with haste to escape with as much crew and gear as possible and started to head north.

My Wench was able to pick me back up. Good Olaf saw my ship going down. Details of the battle were proficed when I re-boarded. Damon began his attack on one ship while the other ship was abandoned and landing parties were sent, It seems its siege device has seized.

I spent time in my cabin mourning my lost ship. I suppose nobody would understand what this ship meant to me. It was the ship that started my new life. My crew of officers I have known for years first crewed with me on board Draken’s Due. In addition, it was my officer and I’s primary living quarters. Most, if not all, of my persdonal stuff was brought over to the Wench. Since its acquisition, IK have moved allt he maps and personal effects over. The Wench was to be my flag ship, with the Dreken’s Due as its side kick. I looked over the Whynch gear I used during the tournament, at least I still have this stuff.

To make things worse, an entire ship was lost under my command and I nearly went down with TWO of my ships today. Failure didn’t come easy for me. I’ve never fought in anything of this caliber. Always one or two ships. It was at this time one of my crew members, Ensign Munson, rushed in to report the enemy is down and we are nearing the abandoned ship. I rushed topside to board the ship. The day was ours. I must examine the aftermath.

I had an opportunity to discover the deadly siege device. All metal, and that was not all, so was teh skeleton of the ship. No wonder the ship didn’t burn up! The other ship has been reported as salvageable. It seems the day had been won. I traded 1 demi warship for a full warship, an advance warship and another able to be salvaged. I suppose a fair trade except the price also included some of my pride.

I dismissed Damon and Cecil’s ships to port. After Allyria brought the captured ship to the site wehre the salvageable advanced warship sat, the Allyria was ordered to return to port. I set up a Flotilla with the two captured ships and my Wench surrounding the downed ship. These ships must be triaged for me to determine repairs.

I thanked the Mercy of the Drowned God for sparing my officers. I need them, they are who I can trust and rely on. I sent them ashore to set up the pavillion and living tents for temporary quarters. Then I gave them each 105 Stags to enjoy. Olaf was sent to Castle Westbrook. He was reminded that his payment was not forgotten.

As I stood on the deck of the Wench, I saw the newly acquired Warship and knew Audra’s Mercy seemed to be a good fit. Audra being one of the Drowned God’s siblings. I went to the other side of the ship to stare at the monster of a ship. Moments later I muttered, “Draken’s Revenge.” One of the last few members tgo go ashore spoke up, Sir? Her name is Draken’s Rvenge.

 

The Clean Up

December 28, 2013

This summary is missing

 

Engaged

January 10, 2014

Still recovering from the day’s battle, the people of Westbrook Island are ….. engaged!

Danyka is engaged to be married to Ser Damon in two months’ time. She gives every appearance of happiness, and her father is pleased.

Emberlyn is engaged in a monstrous sulk-fit after finding out that Ser Bart is courting any number of eligible Westerosi heiresses.

Rhonal is engaged in getting drunk. It’s been a long damn day – and about to get longer

Parry is engaged in passing the wine, flirting with Emberlyn and making sure he finishes off any glasses that have been left unattended.

Rajk is engaged in nothing in particular, making his way toward the dining hall.

Olaf and Captain Drak are engaged in pursuing a sneaky individual they have spotted near the castle.

Rajk gets drawn into this pursuit, spotting another dude creeping around the place. Olaf and Drak corner Steppen Wolf in the sept, knocking him out and eventually moving him into the dungeon for safekeeping.

Ser Eaton, the other sneaky dude, makes it into the dining hall and starts to attack Rhonal, of all people. Rhonal tries to brain him with a candlestick, but is restrained by Damon. Ser Cecil tries to counter the attack but dies defending Castle Westbrook’s honor. (Poor Ser Cecil. He probably shouldn’t have worn the red tunic.) Ser Chris is drunk somewhere, having confessed his love to Emberlyn, only to be met with polite refusal.

Sally the new laundry maid tries to fetch a bucket of water to clean up the blood from the floor, but Rhonal and Parry co-opt it after Lord Westbrook orders them to soak their heads and sober up.

Danyka is displeased with her father for ordering her not to pursue the intruders. She is also displeased at these people who are trying to kill her steward. Don’t they know she has a wedding to put on? Honestly

 

March 1, 2014

 

Roll for Buying This Line of BS

Olaf is in the dungeon with his prisoner, Steppen Wolf, who is resisting arrest and is trying to bribe Olaf with outrageous amounts of gold and even the opportunity to be a lord. Steppen claims that when Lord Westbrook is deposed, he (Steppen) will rule Westbrook Island. Steppen also claims that his employer is going to be king of Westeros.

Emberlyn has tried to persuade Danyka that she is all right, and is preparing for bed when a knock sounds on the door. It is Sally, the washer woman who doesn’t do any business if you know what I mean and I think you do. The girl hands Emberlyn a profusely illustrated love letter fromt he late Ser Cecil. Apparently Thomas had found it in Cecil’s things and sent it to Emberlyn via the servant. It’s not really clear, though, whether this effusion was addressed to Emberlyn or Emily. Emily?

Rhonal jgoes to the stables and steals Emberlyn’s horse to head for the Red Priest’s Temple. There’s a prayer meeting going on so he waits till the priest is alone.

Danyka leaves Emberlyn’s room and goes in search of her father. Lord Westbrook is not in his room, though his guards swear he is. Danyka is concerned that there is another secret passage that might connect to her father’s room, and she wants the guards to help her find it, but they won’t. Instead she tries to get help from Rhonal, Rajk, or a half-dressed Emberlyn.

Drak sees something going on in the stables. He questions a guard, Peter, but gets little information.

There are explosions coming out of the maester’s chamber. Olaf notices but doesn’t do anything. No one else pays attention.

Rajk discovers Lord Westbrook in his office with a lot of servants moving in and out. Lord Westbrook reveals the startling news that he needs his household to “get mobile,” and asks Rajk to find Drak and summon up the troops, camping gear, armor and weapons.

Drak tries to tell Rajk about the guy in the stables but Rajk has other things on his mind.

Olaf and Steppen reach an impasse – Olaf won’t let Steppen go, and Steppen won’t reveal his employer’s name.

Danyk and Emberlyn discover a secret passage leading to Lord Westbrook’s room. Danyka recognizes it as the passage where she and her father were attacked a few days earlier. They choose a direction and end up …. In a room they’ve never seen before!

Rhonal is watching the prayer meeting wind up. Simon does a little disappearing act at the end, and winds up behind Rhonal tapping him on the shoulder, which Rhonal does not find funny. Rhonal asks to leave the island with Simon in order to escape his assassins. Simon agrees to disguise Rhonal as a priest, and suggests sending the horse back. Rhonal makes plans to fake his own death. Simon is concerned that Lord Westbrook is also the target of assassins, and they consult the fire god on the subject.

Emberlyn and Danyka find a creepy room full of jars of liquid and documents in a foreign language illustrated with pictures of humans in agony. Then the door shuts on them. Danyka opens it after a couple of tries and no one is there. The girls flee down the hall, down a staircase and wind up in, yes, Lord Westbrook’s office.

“Ahh, just the person I wanted to see”, the Lord tells his daughter. “We are leaving.”

It seems he is organizing an armed party to flee the island before the next attack. Emberlyn has to go back to Ashford for her own safety.

The young ladies go back to their rooms to pack, pledging eternal friendship and setting up a secret distress signal.

Drak has to tell Lord Westbrook that the ships were too badly damaged in the battle to carry the party away the next day as planned. Olaf joins forces with Drak and they overhear some animated coversation from the maester’s chamber. Rajk notices Snow, Emberlyn’s horse, is missing. The maester is simultaneously packing and whining about Lady Danyka. They decide to kill the prisoners, including Steppen and Marcus. Marcus saves them the trouble by being already dead. Drak strangely insists on proclaiming each one to be sentenced to death.

Enjoy the cell ’cause you’re going to hell”, he tells one of them revealing untold depths of lyricallity motivated by slaughter.

The final one, Margery the washer woman is spared.

Emberlyn tries to ask Ser Thomas about the letter but discovers him and Ser Chris in their tent totally naked. She does not scream but is a little freaked out and is easily persuaded to take up her errand in the morning. On the way back she finds Snow and brings him back to the stable.

Rhonal sleeps in the priest’s tent. He dreams of a black dragon.

Danyka turns the kitchen staff out of bed and gets everyone to work putting on an early breakfast, on the theory that whatever we’re doing will be better done on a full stomach. She observes the operation inprogress and makes mental notes in case (as seems reasonable) she herself will soon be involved in putting on large meals for groups. Parry, who was cavorting with a washer woman astutely reports to Danyka that Rhonal is not here. She does not slap him but it’s close.

The ship situation is not as dire as we thought. We have two usable ships, plus Damon’s and the one we captured, which is named Draken’s Revenge.

 

Move ‘Em Out

March 22, 2014

We’re not away yet, but the people of House Westbrook are scrambling to get under way before our attackers return. Along the way, several important pieces of information are known to one or two but not all,

For instance, Olaf has seen Ser Bart’s ship on the horizon, but hasn’t remembered to mention it to anyone. Drak summons him, Morgyn and other trusted members of the ship’s company to a meeting where he organizes supplies and preparations. Morgyn is given command of one ship (the Allyria?). Drak also reveals his true identity as Zale Wynch to this group. Some of the men are concerned about leaving wives and families in danger; Drak makes no promises, but holds out hope of being able to find work for them on the ship.

Morgyn, Olaf, and Drak head up to the castle to talk with ord Westbrook (and perhaps answer a few minor questions like WHERE IN THE SEVEN HELLS ARE WE GOING?). On the way, they meet Dominic Blackmont, holding a charred body which he says is Rhonal, Blackmont asks for immediate passage to the mainland to convey the corpse to the man’s family. Drak authorizes Olaf to take the transport ship for this purpose. Olaf notices that while the body is burned, his clothes aren’t. Blackmont explains that after the terrible lamplighting accident which resulted in Rhonal’s death, he took it upon himself to dress the body in his true garb for conveyance back to his homeland. One hopes that after he gets off the island, Blackmont will invest in a casket or something, because toting around a dead body is kinda gross.

GM NOTE: In truth, Dominic has the body appropriatley boxed. That you’d assume Dominic was carrying it around over his shoulder is hysterical. Dominic was actually using a hand-drawn card to transport the body. Of course all that jostling caused the cover to move a bit.

Morgyn and Drak approach the stables and see a man and a woman riding up, with sounds of female whimpering. Alas, it’s nothing like they might have imagined; Rajk and Emberlyn have merely ridden off in a fruitless search for Rhonal, at the cost of a sprained ankle for Emberlyn when Snow stepped in a rabbit hole. Rajk hands her off to a guard to help her up to the maester.

Oh yeah, Maester Hamden. Danyka leaves the kitchen to investigate booming sounds from upstairs, and discovers the maester attempting to create green fire in his room, which conveniently opens onto the alchemy lab she and Emberlyn had stumbled into the previous evening. He also shows her a potent poison he’s created. Danyka makes a private resolve not to travel on the same ship as this madman.

She is about to leave when Emberlyn is brought in. The maester declares her ankle is not broken but she needs to rest, and gives her some milk of the poppy to ease the pain. Danyka helps her friend to bed, then sets off in search of her father. She proposes that she and Lord Westbrook should travel in different ships to help ensure the future of House Westbrook. Her father agrees. She then makes her way to the docks to ask Ser Damon to make room for herself and Emberlyn in his ship’s company. He gladly agrees.

Oh yeah, Rhonal’s not dead. He has shaved his facial hair and taken on the garb of the Red Priest’s followers, and has chosen a new name for himself. We’ll say it’s “Bob” until he makes up a better one. (He settled on Brother Char). Simon the priest has woken his group at an early hour, telling them to make ready their belongings – which are few, consisting mostly of some ritual gear – for the trip to Braavos. Braavos? How does HE know?

And because this is House Westbrook,

Breakfast is Served

 

The Man in the Chrysanthemum Tabard

April 12, 2014

Danyka, heiress to House Westbrook, has an agenda. Her father has ordered the house to flee Westbrook Island in advance of an expected war. He has also ordered her friend, Emberlyn, to go home to Ashford.

This does not sit well with Danyka, who figures that Emberlyn would be in just as much danger journeying home by herself – we certainly can’t spare any fighting forces to accompany her – as staying with the house. Emberlyn can’t advocate for herself, as she has injured her ankle and been dosed with milk of the poppy. So Danyka decides to take matters into her own hands. She packs some essentials for herself and her friend (not forgetting armor, weapons, money and jewels), and coaxes a guard into helping her bring her unconcious friend aboard the ship of her fiancé, Ser Damon.

Damon has previously given permission for the two ladies to travel with him, and set aside a small cabin for their use. Once Emberlyn is settled, Danyka proceeds with another part of her plan. She finds Damon alone in his cabin and asks him to make love to her. Since she is very persuasive, and approaches the matter from the perspective of her unquenchable desire for him (rather than her wish to get pregnant and ensure the future of House Westbrook), he agrees.

Emberlyn has been asleep, but not inacitve, for her dreams have been most interesting – she saw Danyka getting married, but not to Damon. Hmmmmmm.

Meanwhile there’s a strange ship in the harbor. Danyka had noticed it earlier, informed her father, and sent Margery and Nancy to round up Commander Drak and Ser Rajk at Lord Westbrook’s request. This they did with their usual elegance and finesse.

Rajk overhears a conversation between Drak and Morgyn. When asked if Drak intends on following the ‘green-men’, he hints to Morgyn that he may not be going along with them. As head of security, he allows Morgyn to help himself freely to items from House Westbrook’s armory. Morgyn responds to this by praising Drak’s wisdom – indeed, by sucking up in a way that would seem terribly obvious to everyone but Drak; who appreciates having a shred of respect for a change. They do not see Rajk slipping through the shadows behind them, satisfied with his new information.

Olaf has gotten rather drunk on the mainland (having dispatched the so-called corpes of Rhonal with Ser Dominic off back to Auntie Blackmont to thell the sad story of his “death”). He has also recruited a bunch of sailors named, mostly, Sully and O’Malley. There is a suggestion that some of them might have trouble peeing over the side, if you know what I mean. But they all seem to like beer.

Oh yeah, speaking of Rhonal, he is now known as Brother Maenard (he kept changing his mind as to what he would be called), and is traveling along the shore with Simon and the other fire priests, on their way to win a spot on one of the ships leaving the island. Along the way they spot a … metal something. Something that might possibly be a weapon. A big weapon. Maybe even one of the weapons from the strange ship that had so easily taken down House Westbrook’s siege tower. Was that just yesterday? Anyway, they dig it out of the sand and start dragging it with them in the hope that someone will find it worth something.

Aboard the strange ship, the captain, one Garret Flowers, respledent in his Chrysanthemum Tabard, is talking with his cousin Genestra. She wants to know, somewhat reasonably, why they are sailing toward an island whose inhabitants are clearly expecting a calamity and planning to bug the hell out. He confides in her that he has embarked on this mission to rescue Danyka, to whom he has been secretly betrothed for many years. His cousin is startled by this news – why would the heiress to a minor but noble house agree to ally herself with a bastard adventurer? And does either of them think her noble father would allow this to happen? But Genestra has signed on to heal the wounded in case of conflict, and no matter what, there’s probably going to be some of that.

Emberlyn, waking aboard Damon’s ship, is not unreasonably preplexed by the turn events have taken during her rest, and very nearly screams. She does not, however, and instead leaves the cabin, flags down a sailor, and asks to see Lady Danyka. He leads her to the captain’s cabin, where she finds her friend just waking up, smiling and disheveled. Danyka tries to explain how they came aboard but first has to explain her own premarital adventure. Emberlyn is dubious about the outcome and suggests they find a septa right away. (Not a septum. That’s something different.)

On her way to find Danyka, Emberlyn has glimpsed the strange ship and its captain. She mentions this now and says the dude in the Chrysanthemum Tabard looked familiar. With a sinking heart and a truly unladylike burst of profanity, Danyka realizes it has to be Garrett. She explains to Emberlyn that she had had a brief flirtation with the man during her last year at school in King’s Landing, but denies categorically that they were betrothed or anything.

There’s trouble brewing – but is it out on the docks, or in the captain’s cabin on board the Allyra? And what about Bart’s ship, which apparently is still in the offing?

 

Torn Between Two Fiancé’s

April 12, 2014

Danyka Westbrook begins the day by confessing to her betrothed, Ser Damon, that she is fearful of ending up a penniless vagabond if her father’s plans miscarry. She asks if he wants to draw back from their betrothal. He says no. She then suggests that Emberlyn is right and they should marry at once.

Rajk and Lord Westbrook go in search of Drak and find him with Captain Morgyn. Lord Westbrook, who is displeased with Drak for allowing a strange ship to dock in the harbor without knowing who it is or what they want, sends Morgyn to talk to Ser Bart, whose ship is hovering off the island. Morgyn never manages to do this errand.

Emberlyn and Danyka leave Damon’s ship to try to round up the things they need to put on an impromptu wedding. At the same moment, Lord Westbrook, accompanied by Ser Rajk, Commander Drak and Captain Morgyn, arrives to check out the unknown ship in the harbor. The captain of that ship, Garrett Flowers, steps forward as well, and along come Simon and nine other red priests (one of them the newly renamed Brother Char) carrying a big metal thing.

Lord Westbrook accuses Simon and his troupe of staling the metal thing (it’s apparently a weapon of some kind) and threatens to leave them behind on the island. Emberlyn notices there is something a little familiar about one of the priests but can’t see his face. In any case, she completely forgets that train of thought when Drak lets fall the news that Rhonal is dead.

Upset at the loss of a valued houshold member who is also a friend, Danyka is angry and inclined to blame her priest. Emberlyn’s grief is overwhelming and she weeps. Indeed, she will not stop weeping for the rest of this session.

Meanwhile, Garrett has announced boldly that HE, not Damon, is Danyka’s betrothed and that he has come to take her away from danger. Danyka does not want to deal with this and rushes her friend away to the castle, saying they must tell poor Parry of his master’s death. Emberlyn weeps some more.

Lord Westbrook assigns Drak to deal with Garrett Flowers, and Drak in turn decides that he will offer his assistance to the lovelorn bastard if he can beat Captain Morgyn in a swordfight. The outcome of this wager is postponed until they can take their boat to a suitable fighting ground (which has NOTHING AT ALL to do with the fact that the GM has to roll up stats for Garrett).

Septa Alanna – who is helping Maester Hamden load up his green fire for transport, remind me not to travel on THAT ship – tells Danyka what she needs for the wedding, and Emberlyn goes off to find Parry. In the library, she is reminded of Rhonal and bursts out crying again, then notices a wooden chest similar to the one Alanna described. She tries to look inside but there are many things piled on top of it, and she ends up tangled in a bunch of draperies and the like.

Emberlyn screams for help. Danyka hears her and pulls her out, then delightedly assembles the wedding kit.

Going back downstairs, they find lunch is being served. Lord Westbrook questions Danyka closely about Garrett. Danyka denies any betrothal. Besides, if he had cared so much for her, why had Garrett never written to her? Her father hands her a stack of letters he had been concealing from her. Angrily, she casts them into the fire and affirms her desire to marry Damon that very day.

This, alas, is not to be. In comes Parry, carrying a big tray of food and weeping copiously. Danyka rushes to help with the food while Emberlyn comforts the poor boy with a hug. Kind of a long hug, actually. Really a very affectionate hug.

… and in walk Ser Bart and Ser Damon. Emberlyn releases Parry but refuses to look at Bart. Damon questions Danyka about Garrett and she repeats her story – it was a teenage fling, she hasn’t thought of him in years and she certainly never agreed to marry him. She is firm in her attachment to Damon. However, she does see the wisdom of her father’s decree that there will be no wedding that day, that we must first give Rhonal – or Olivan, as we must now call him – a proper funeral. We also learn of his story, that he murdered his cheating wife by strangling her with their wedding cloak, and took off in disguise to avoid retribution for this act.

***GM note, see Olivan’s bio for the actual story***

Will Emberlyn stop crying long enough to hear out Ser Bart? Will Damon blame Danyka for the festively clad suitor who has so inconveniently wandered into their lives? Will Rhonal, in his new identity as Brother Char, get to attend his own funeral? Will Morgyn win the sword fight? Tune in next time…

 

A House Divided

June 7, 2014

Drak and Morgyn have carried Garrett Flowers, the inconvenient fiancé off to Drak’s ship. There Flowers and Morgyn will fight, and if Flowers prevails, Drak will aid him in acquiring Danyka. (Unseen voice of Danyka: “As if I were a horse, for pity’s sake!”) Olaf, inebriated but not unaware, thinks that Drak is favoring Morgyn and screams at his minions to rustle up a barge so he can go after them in a fit of jealous rage.

In the dining hall, Emberlyn receives a raven with an important message, which she refuses to show to anyone, ESPECIALLY Ser Bart, to whom she is not speaking rather pointedly. Lord Westbrook tells Danyka that her fiancé Damon, the one she wants to marry, is rumored to have engaged in piracy in Braavos. Danyka refuses to call off the engagement, and finally plays her trump card, announcing in front of all and sundry that she may well be carrying Damon’s child. Lord Westbrook calls the guards and packs her off to her room, where after one thwarted escape attempt she begins fashioning her bedclothes into a sturdy rope.

Emberlyn cries at the guards a little and they let her see Danyka briefly. Emberlyn shares the letter the raven brought. Should she show it to Lord Westbrook? Yes, Danyka says. Emberlyn can’t help but notice what her friend is doing, but guards leave her no time to say anything.

Lord Westbrook is by now in his office, sulking, and reacts to Emberlyn’s letter by shouting for Drak to be brought to him at once. This message eventually reaches Olaf, who brings it on board the ship with Drak and Morgyn. Drak ignores it.

Emberlyn writes a nice letter in response to the one she received. She then goes to loiter outside Danyka’s window in case her help is needed. Unbeknownst to her, Rajk has done a lovely job of healing her horse.

Morgyn loses the fight when Flowers calls on his Magic GM Powers. Drak throws an axe and hits Flowers in the hand, wounding him severely. Genestra (remember her?) patches both men up and takes off with Flowers on the barge, shich also carries Raximus (remember him? No? Well he was on Olaf’s boat but never made it to the summary). Honoring their bet, Drak gives Flowers the gift of wildfire and encourages him to set fire to Damon’s ship. (Unseen Voice of Danyka; “Why, you ungrageful little bastard!”)

Meanwhile Brother Char and the red priests are milling about. During a convenient break, Char asks Simon how to summon spirits. Simon is glad to show him, but they need a stone basin with appropriate inscriptions on it. Char makes plans to steal one. The devotees of R’hollor decide they will travel aboard Maester Hamden’s ship so as not to run into Lord Westbrook. Rajk comes along at one point and starts asking questions about the ballista the priests dug up, but fails to recognize Brother Char, who takes the precaution of going for a long walk.

Danyka is about to escape on her homemade rope, and Emberlyn is waiting below to help if needed, when the guards summon Danyka back to her father’s presence. Lucky thing, as it turns out, because she was planning to head for Damon’s ship.

Danyka is able to let Emberlyn know where she’s going and to hide the rope. Lord Westbrook, apparently forgetting his earlier snit, shows her Emberlyn’s letter and asks what she thinks they should do.

“I think it’s time we cut the cord,” she replies.

Drak, of course, has already cut it, taking two of the ships out to sea. Olaf pledges his loyalty and Morgyn reveals that it is time for the Wynch heir to take up his station again.

There is a hideous noise from the harbor, and a cry of fire…

 

Smoke on the Water

June 28, 2014

Green flames are exploding over the Westbrook Island docks, where Ser Damon’s and Ser Bart’s ships are tied up. As Drak (Zale Wynch), Morgyn and Olaf take off over the horizon, they can see (through Drak’s Myrish lens) a truly horrific scene.

Emberlyn sees it too, from the castle grounds, and dispatches a guard to inform Lord Westbrook. The head of the family is in the middle of a conference with his daughter, Danyka. Informed of the fire, they hurry onto whatever horses Ser Rajk can provide, and down toward the harbor. Danyka, fearing for the life of Ser Damon, rushes down to the waterfront and starts trying to help those fleeing the fire. Angrily, Lord Westbrook orders Ser Rajk to get her out of there. He comes up to her unawares, scoops her into those big Dothraki arms and hauls her away. (Danyka: Uh, it’s been lovely, but let’s not do this again, OK?”)

Morgyn keeps urging Drak/Zale onward to “home”. Drak thinks it might be well to stop and see Alladale, aka Dad, first, the idea being to do some adventuring and return home with a fleet of ships rather than just two. Morgyn and Olaf have a fight. Morgyn wins. Somehow Morgyn manages to find quite a number of excuses to celebrate with another ale.

While he’s at it, Morgyn sends two letters by raven to Lord Westbrook. One implicates Danyka in a plot to kill her father; the other is from Morgyn telling Lord Westbrook that Drak had been seriously injured in a fight with Garrett Flowers. These are both lies. Lord Westbrook shows them to his daughter, who of course says they are lies. She realizes, however, that this gesture has planted a seed of distrust, and resolved to stick close to Dad and do what he says for a bit.

Lord Westbrook is also startled to learn that his maester was creating green fire in Castle Westbrook. Danyka explains that there hasn’t been time to tell him – she herself only found out the previous night. Everyone assumes that Maester Hamden’s work is responsible for the fire and explosion. Maester Hamden is nowhere to be found. There is some talk of asking the red priests if they saw anything go down, but no one follows up in the confusion and emotion.

There is little anyone can do for those caught in the fire, for green fire cannot be extinguished by normal means. The next morning, Garrett Flowers and his maester, Genestra, are helping [Allison’s Character] heal the wounded. Many of the bodies, burned beyond recognition, are buried at sea. Among the missing are Ser Damon and Ser Bart. Danyka is grim-faced as she helps tend to the wounded; Emberlyn is a welter of messy emotions, some of them poured out on Parry’s willing shoulder. Aparently she is still bitterly angry at Bart but also incredibly sad that she never got to TELL him she was angry.

In other horrible news, Ser Rajk’s horse has been mauled. He angrily tends the worst of the wounds, then sets off in search of the wrongdoer. Septa Alanna is among the dead, and Lord Westbrook asks Danyka to go to the mainland and find a new one, taking Parry with her as escort. She agrees. Garrett blessedly leaves Danyka alone, perhaps having enough of a clue to realize that now is not the moment to press his suit.

In all the confusion, we still haven’t held Rhonal/Olivan’s funeral. Maybe he’ll get to attend it after all!

GM Note: Here is what happened at the funeral

Oliver goes on for an hour about Rhonal (who he’s never met) and about the Seven and life and death, etc. He then asks if anyone has something to add. After everyone who wants to speak has spoken, Danyka sends them all to the Great Hall. Rajk bumps into Brother Char on his way out but doesn’t recognize him.

The island is no longer in danger.

Drak is being persued.

 

Of Sea and Shore

August 9, 2014

Scroll Up

Zale Wynch, Heir to Ironholt, who most know to be Drak, forms his small fleet (what? Two is a fleet) (*expressed desires to be the strongest fleet in Westeros, this is merely a begining) into House Wynch at Sea. Valuing his two partners, he takes the opportunity to bestow new names and titles for his council. Morgyn, no longer a bastard in Drak’s eyes, becomes Sealord Morgyn Blackiron and Olaf Sandstorm becomes Sealord Olaf Ironsperpent (to reflect some of his Dornish heritage). Drak simply goes with Drak Wynch, to him Zale died when he was 8, and was reborn and raised stronger as Drak. Commodore Drak (as Olaf addresses him) also takes lessons from Morgyn to improve his fighting skills, a la Rocky and Mickey, with comedic results including tripping over a mop handle and chasing a chicken around the deck.

Danyka and Parry head out on the transport ship to Old Oak, intending to do as Lord Westbrook asked and bring home a new Septa. Emberlyn, whose emotional dial is apparently permanently set at 11, bids them farewell tearfully, even though they’re coming right back. The ship sinks beneath them but they manage to swim to shore.

Ser Rajk gets lost in the woods trying to find the person who injured his horse. Lord Westbrook summons a meeting even though the house seems to be missing a lot of people.

Parry and Danyka try to dry out a little on shore and go to the sept to make their inquiries. While waiting in an antechamber, Parry spots a loose stone and finds an ancient scroll behind it. Danyka scolds him for fiddling with it but snags the scroll anyway.

Rajk finds a scroll and 15 dragons in a bag in the woods. The scroll describes an assassination target – Lord Westbrook. He manages to make his way back to the castle.

The Red Priests have been escorted into the castle and kept waiting in the library. Rhonal aka Brother Char finds a scroll informing the recipient where to find money and a description of the target. Lord Westbrook keeps them waiting, but a servant brings beverages, which Rhonal resists.

Lord Westbrook arrives with a couple of armored guards, and questions them about recent events. Simon backs out of the conversation and Rhonal must answer, trying to maintain his disguise and alter his voice to avoid being recognized. Simon then speaks up and bores Lord Westbrook silly until the lord agrees to let him build a temple to the Red God.

Olav is trying to find a ship on the horizon for the fleet to take. He successfully sees nothing. He enjoys the comedy going on down on deck, the crew take advantage and slack off some.

Lord Westbrook has a servant prepare guest rooms for the priests. In the dungeons.

Morgyn and Drak continue training, and Drak refuses to use the poleaxe on Olaf. It’s pretty clear he needed work on agility more than anything since his Poleaxe strikes would have been lethal, had they not been against a Braavosi Water Dancer, who simply steps aside.

Rajk searches for traps, making sure his path back to the castle is clear. He gets back to the castle in time to see the Red Priests heading down to the dungeon. He shakes his head and moves on to inform Lord Westbrook about the assassination attempt, then returns to check on the horse.

Danyka meets the Old Oak Septa’s candidate, a delicious young man named Oliver who appears very pleased with Parry’s appearance. Since beggars can’t be choosers, Danyka hires him on a probationary basis and arranges to bring him to Westbrook Castle that very day.

Morgyn takes post in the Crow’s nest to see if he can spot anything. He successfully sees nothing. Drak was about to retire to his cabin when suddenly, Morgyn spots a something in the waters. Drak identifies it as a Hammerhead Shark, and turns to a crewman and says: “Hand me a harpoon.”

 

Roll Off for Olaf

August 15, 2014

Rajk heads into the castle to report the scroll he found to Lord Westbrook. Finding the lord somewhat dismissive after all, someone is always trying to kill Lord W), he returns to the Castle Westbrook All-Day-All-Night-Breakfast Buffet and grabs a chicken leg and a brew. His meal is disturbed by news that ships are bearing down on the island, and he runs out toward the docks, closely followed by Lord Westbrook.

Emberlyn sees the ships too, and quickly changes into her archery gear, assembling her trained group of islanders and going up to the battlements to fend off invaders. It’s an awesome defense, which will fortunately not be needed. The Red Priests do some chanting in the dungeon. It should be noted they are not locked in there. The room was made up nice and comfortable including a fire.

Meanwhile, back in Old Oak, Danyka is at a bit of a standstill, since her ship has sunk and there are no transports available back to the island. Parry and the new septon, Oliver (seriously NOT to be confused with Olivan, tyvm) are no help as they are making googly eyes at each other. Danyka tries to ignore this piece of information about her house’s staff while looking for a way home. They stop at a tavern to inquire whether any boats might be headed back shortly, and who should walk in but a sailor.

Danyka latches onto him, not for his personal charms but for his unmistakable air of having access to a freaking boat already. He asks her about Drak, and she reveals the defection of her house’s previous Master of Ship. The sailor turns to leave abruptly, and Danyka, unwilling to lose access to something that floats, latches on to him and follows, Parry and Oliver trailing in her wake. They make it to a ship all right – and the nautical gentleman immediately has them locked up in a cabin below decks. Oops.

Back on Westbrook Island, one of the four ships in sight cuts across the path of the other three, pulls up alongside the command ship, has a coversation, then pulls away, sailing for Westbrook Harbor. The other three ships turn around and take off in the direction last known to have been taken by Drak & Co.

The lone ship pulls up to … well, sort of where the docks USED to be. The captain, Nathaniel, brings Danyka, Parry and Oliver to shore, deposits them into Lord Westbrook’s tender care, apologizes for the pirate threat and explains that they were after Drak, so there’s no need to worry. Then he leaves.

Castle Westbrook breathes a sigh of relief, although Emberlyn may be slightly disappointed at not getting to shoot anything. Brother Char in particular breathes a sigh of relief, because Rajk still hasn’t recognized him.

TIME PASSES!

Emberlyn remains at Castle Westbrook. There is no new steward hired, so she and Danyka take over much of the day-to-day castle management. Danyka relies on her friend a bit more as the months progress because … ta-da! … she’s pregnant, from her one and only night with the late Ser Damon.

The Red Priests quickly depart the dungeon for lodgings near the site of the temple they’re building. Brother Char finds a local stonemason to construct a new stone basin to replace the one destroyed in the wildfire eruption.

All the other stray people, like Ser Meryk, go home. Rajk is now master-at-arms, the fishing fleet and the castle defenses are rebuilt, and no one is haunting, threatening, hitting on, or otherwise menacing our small band of survivors.

We end our session the following spring with Danyka well on her way to becoming a mother and Lord Westbrook, Emberlyn and Rajk heading to King’s Landing for a tournament.

Out at Sea

Olaf hands Commander Drak Wynch a harpoon for his first attempt to take down the shark. He fails, but began working on tethering the harpoon to the ship. With Olaf in command and taking Drak’s suggestion, he asks the fishermen to prepare nets and other means to get the shark. He instructs all other crew to make an all stop and ready bows as well.

Morgyn on the other hand keeps his eyes out for ships, particularly merchant ships. He suddenly realizes Drak is probably a tad exhausted and banged up from training. It is probably best to leave fishing to his fishing crew, Morgyn thought to himself. He makes his way down to see Drak and urge him to let the fishermen do their job.

Olaf, watching over the crew, notices 2 of his recruited men fashioning stakes, which is not part of their orders. He decides to confer with Morgyn on this event. He approaches Drak and Morgyn and explains what he saw. Drak gives the OK for Morgyn and Olaf to confront these men while Drak continues fishing. Another miss, but this time he can just reel the line back in. Olaf takes lead speaking with the two suspects, and inquires about the knife. Knive being a typical item crew mates may have. Morgyn speaks up and asks about the stakes being made. They deny any stakes and got back to work quickly. Morgyn finds a floorboard that was loose. Underneath were those stakes, but the makers gone. Other men pointed them below deck. Olaf and Morgyn give chase.

Drak’s 3rd harpoon strikes deep and the shark is killed. The fishermen net the beast up. The crew will eat nice for a good amount of time. Huzzah!

Olaf finds the two stake makers drinking something, then falling over dead. The bodies are brought topside and searched. A letter is found and read out to Drak and Morgyn. Price of 100 Dragons if the Heir to Ironholt is returned home. The letter was signed by Tristifer Botley, second son of Lord Sawane Botley. The very same person who tasked Morgyn with acquiring Drak.

That night the crew dined on shark as well as some good ale. Drak indicates his father would be long gone, since it was over a month ago he dropped him off and course was altered from Feastfire to Ironholt.

Afer a month of sailing, Draken’s Revenge and Drak’s Wynch identify two ships far in the distance behind them. They appear to be giving chase, bearing pirate flags. What could they want? Hired by the Westbrooks to bring Drak back or more hopefuls to bring Drak home for some Gold Dragons. They seem to be gaining, and will catch up after about a week to a week and a half. Unfortunately, there are about 2 to 3 weeks from Ironholt. They will soon face their pursuers. Morgyn, Olaf and Drak prepare themselves for the task….

 

Tavern Non-Brawl

August 22, 2014

Danyka loses 1 Status thanks to her pregnancy. She sends for a new maester, inquiring specifically for someone with experience in childbirth, and works on fixing up the nursery, training the servants, and overseeing repairs to the castle. She sends Parry to the Red Priests on an errand, but Parry takes a detour to stop by the sept and dally with Oliver.

Emberlyn, Ser Rajk and Lord Westbrook, in company with a troop of House Westbrook guards, head over to Old Oak on their way to King’s Landing. Rajk is kind of freaked out by the whole boat thing and kills a fisherman. It’s kind of a nervous habit. Emberlyn is pouting because she’s in a place with shops and all her money is gone. Rajk finally notices Emberlyn’s unhappiness and gives her 10 Dragons. She feels better.

Rajk goes into a tavern and all conversation stops. He orders a beer and sits in a corner. The other patrons whisper about the big, ugly Dothraki. Finally a mousy waitress works up the courage to inquire if he’s really a knight. He growls and she flees in terror.

Emberlyn uses some of her new money to send a raven to her parents telling them she’s going to the tournament in King’s Landing. She then goes to find Rajk in the bar. A drunk guy tries to get in her way and discovers his mistake when Rajk hits him. A brawl could have resulted but Rajk wasn’t in the mood and gives the guy a stag to go away.

Commander Drak prepares for war by issuing cash bonuses to his crew with the promise of more based on performance. They can see the pirate ships bearing down on them and expect to be attacked the next day. Olaf has a plan, Morgyn makes some adjustments to it, Drak decides to go with Olaf’s original.

GM Note: Danyka overheard some rumors about herself as well as cleared out the Maester’s room and found some strange ingredients and a pickled rat. Emberlyn intervened between Rajk and the patron to avoid the fight. She is asked to dance, declines then sits with Rajk. They then head out of the bar. Marjorie followed Parry to the Sept.

 

Divine Intervention

September 20, 2014

On the Road

Emberlyn and Rajk are just leaving the tavern in Old Oak (we should give it a name) (GM Note: “The Tavern” isn’t a name?) when Lord Westbrook comes along and sweeps them back in. The landlord’s son, Jonas, flirts with Emberlyn and drops a mysterious reference to the “excitement” of serving a large party a few months back. Rajk scares away the overly attentive waitress and tries to focus on his meat, but Lord W challenges him to a drinking contest. He tries to cheat, gets caught, and pleads the necessity of maintaining a proper guard over his lord. Lord Westbrook is still miffed and sweeps them all off to mount up and set forth.

Only GM notes are avaialble for 9/20 and follow:

Drak motivates his crew as a ship is seen over the horizon.

Lady Danyka is in the library when a stable servant approaches and takes her to the stable. A foal has been killed and another injured. It will survive if Rajk was here. Danyka orders him to put the best available man on the job. He replies he already has. Back at the caste she sends for Parry, but he’s not back yet. She then sends for the Maester, but he’s not here yet. Then she sends for Oliver.

Olaf motivates his men and sets assignements as the ships move in.

 

Following the Leader

October 11, 2014

Danyka, growing impatient and cranky since none of the people she has sent off to do things came back. Eventually one of the guards she sent to fetch Oliver returns stating that Oliver refuses to come see Danyka and that if she seeks spiritual advice, he can be found in the sept, as it is his place. Furious, Danyka orders the guard to bring one or two others and raise weapons and bring Oliver to her.

“You want me to atack the Septon?” the shocked guard questions.

Danyka realizing perhaps her wording was poor, with these guards anyways and restates her request to have the guards give a forceful request in Danyka’s invite. Perry eventually returns to report one of the Brothers of R’hllor will meet with her. Then Danyka orders Parry off somewhere else. Aside from no one listening to her orders, what is bugging Danyka the most is the Captain of the guard has not arrived by her request and night approaches.

Brother Char, formally known as Rhonal and well formally Olvian too (guess he has about as many identities as Zale at this point), picks through the books in their library. Nothing of interest. He was really hoping for something along the lines of creating shadows. The basin that he had the masons working on still is not ready. He decides to try looking into the flames for some guidance. He sees men at the arms ready for some sort of fight, but could not make out any banners. Then he sees a cloaked figure, who actually turns out to be on the other side of the fire and on the edge of the woods. He approaches him and is greeted by an enthusiastic “Hello!”. Turns out this man is very interested in R’hllor, however seems to be interested in other things, like the castle, the Lord and Lady.

Ser Rajk surveys the ambush site and makes sure guards are posted around Lord Westbrook. Rajk was ablt to find 3 horses tied up to a tree, forgotten it seems. The grass around them is dead. Rajk immediately puts them in his care, and they manage to respond well to the oats they have brought along. These horses will make good breeding horses Rajk has determined. Emberlyn with her bow ready discovers with the rest of the party, that the danger seems to be not present, (insert Audra’s “for now” comment followed by a maniacal laugh). As night approaches, Emberlyn decides to write a letter to Tobias, the man from the
Night’s Watch. Once completed, she tries to have the Master of Ravens deliver it, but he politely acknowledges he has no raven for the wall since they have no need for it on their journey. She will just have to wait until the next town.

Morgyn, Olaf and Drak, after being washed up from their ships after a large sea confilct, manage to find each other, make a small camp and recuperate. Drak spends most of the time thinking quietly. Olaf and Morgyn start discussing the future. Morgyn then demands Lord Wynch to hand over his money. Drak, not saying anything nor lifting his head, tosses his coin pouch in between the three of them. Half of his money made it. Between not carrying it all, and some likely to have sunk as he swam ashore, he had about 34 Dragons. Then Morgyn turns to Olaf and demanded he do the same. Olaf whines, “Do I have to?” Olaf being a rich man had about 200 with him. Morgyn then tosses his 5 Dragons in. 239 Dragons, what can we do with that? Morgyn’s demonstration suggesting that things are not lost, not by a long shot. That money can buy a new ship. But the question is, where do they go? Olaf and Morgyn discuss a little longer, until Olaf asks Drak what he thoughts were. Drak raises his head to say:

It’s true, we lost this battle. We were outnumbered 2-7 by my count. The day was not ours. The Storm God had it out for us, but the Drowned God had our back. (Drak then urged Olaf:) If you didn’t believe in the Drowned God before, hopefully now you do after surviving.

Olaf suggested they were lucky. Either way, Drak then indicated that the beauty is now they are dead. After all What is dead may never die….

This gives them an edge. Believing he must alter his appearance, he shaves both sides of his head making just a long hawk on his head. Then as a symbolic gesture determined to give himself another scar, one for each ‘death’ the heir to Ironholt has endured, Morgyn insists that a Lord shouldnot bear to do this to himself and he does it for him. Olaf does the same and renames himself OsCar for now. They decide their best course of action is to head to Lannisport (north of them) so they can continue for Ironholt as it is Morgyn’s goal, and Drak’s desire.

Danyka, taking matters in her own hands approaches the quarters of the captain of the guard, mind you it is midway into second watch. The guards tell her that he is now sleeping and best not to wake him. She attempted to intimidate them into letting her pass. They may have felt the pressure, but given the choice they choose to uphold the captain’s orders. Finally, the captain comes out after being woken up. Danyka immediately switching to pleasant mode to try and speak with him is greeted with irritation for being woken up. Pleasantness washes away as Danyka angrily insists on having a meeting since she wanted all day and no one seemed to bother with reporting to her. Being so late, they compromise to having one first thing in the morning at breakfast.

Drak, no longer wearing his cloak, follows Morgyn as Olaf takes rear guard. They trudge through the woods hacking away the brush as they go. Eventually they come across tracks that seem to go back and forth from the coast and further inland. Drak notices they have not been used in a while and determines they would be better off being on the coast. Plus, they might find wreckage from one of the ships they took out north of them. They manage to stumble on a camp of a tent or two with a man at guard, sleeping. Taking it cautiously and making use of their assassin, Olaf sneaks toward the sleeping man. Morgyn and Drak on the other hand slowly approach, in case something should happen. Olaf manages to get to the tent and almost to the man before he made a sound awakening the man. Drak and Morgyn pick up their pace to a run to assist him. Olaf struggles with the guy when Drak, concerned, throws an axe at the man. It catches him in the leg and he lets out a yelp as Morgyn lunges his swords into his chest and neck.

“What was that?” says a voice inside the tent.

Morning came and the Lord Westbrook party continues towards King’s Landing to make it for the tournament.

Morning at Castle Westbrook began with the day late desired meeting with Captain Bill. Danyk abruptly starts with an inquiry about not being seen at her request. The captain informs her that his duties are to ensuring the safety of the castle, and the lady of the house and he is extremely busy doing so. He continued to say that so are the guards and they are not here for Danyka to order around like servants. He also highlights that they seem to be avoiding her. Not quite what she wanted to hear, follows-up with the urgent request to be kept in the loop. It seems she is not being informed about anything and this needs to be rectified. Bill agrees to a morning meeting each day with a ‘sure, whatever’. Finally, Danyka suggests that perhaps the guards need to undergo some extra training. Suggesting they are not as aware as they should be. Truth may be, they are aware and smart, but just not eager to follow her orders. Maybe instructed not to.

 

That Must be Quite a Story!

November 8, 2014

On the shore south of Lannisport

Olaf, Drak and Morgyn are sneaking up on some guys camped near the beach. Morgyn has killed one of them and Olaf kills the first one who sticks his head out of the tent. Drak then brings the tent down on top of the other three. Two of them escape and are killed. (Morgyn, who is very quit during this whole episode, is delayed in responding because his sword was stuck in the jaw of the first guy)

Drak cleverly manages to wrap up the last guy in the tent with some rope, immobilizing him but keeping him alive for a little bit of questioning. The guy is named Bill, (There are a lot of Bill’s in Westeros) but don’t bother remembering it. He was hired by one of the other dead guys, Jared, and …. wait. Jared? The name rings a faint bell. Drak and Olaf search Jared’s body and find that he’s Jared Helmsmith, brother of the late Ser Damon and therefore uncle to Danyka’s unborn offspring. Whom he will now never meet, being dead and all.

Among Jared’s effects is a letter from Ser Bart to Emberlyn, a betting slip from the Castle Westbrook tournament, some noble clothing, a Helmsmith family banner, and 50 Gold Dragons. Morgyn takes the gold, Drak (after a brief duel of wills with Olaf) takes the noble clothes and kills Bill.

On the road to Highgarden

Rajk and Emberlyn travel with Lord Westbrook’s party toward Highgarden. Rajk, with only a little prompting from the DM, realizes that the horses they found were Tyrell horses – one of them bearing a shoe put on by Rajk himself during Ser Willas Tyrell’s visit to Westbrook Island. Lord Westbrook suggests they inquire at the next inn.

There are odd things happening at this inn. Very few people are there, but a servant greets them and insists on announcing them. There’s a guard on the stairs and a lurker in the shadows. The barmaid is friendly – “A Dothraki Knight? That must be quite a story!” she says, and Rajk growls at her. (The faint voice of Rhonal can be heard in the mists, encouraging him to collect cash or beer from anyone who wants to hear the story.)

The barmaid denies seeing Lord Tyrell, but it’s clear to the Westbrook party that she’s lying. The lurker comes out of the shadows and nudges the barmaid rather rudely. Emberlyn decides to try to create a distraction by fainting on the guard, but he pushes her to the floor and the ploy fails. The lurker comes back and insists that the three of them go upstairs, where they find Lord Tyrell himself, pale and lying on a bed, with part of a leg missing, but very much alive! (No, the leg was NOT used to make the soup the party had just been eating. Honest.)

On Westbrook Island

Brother Char has another conversation with Talbert, the inquiring R’hollr worshiper, who had looked into the fire the previous night and seen knights marching through grasslands. Talbert turns out to be a younger son of Lord Serry, one of the lords of the other Shield Islands. He asks Char about Zale Wynch, and Char says Zale is dead. (Pause here while group refers to writeup from March 2013!) Despite his lineage, Talbert is dressed like a commoner. He mentions going to the castle to get further answers about Zale.

Char then goes to the village to inquire after his basin. It is ready, and he rents a sturdy wheelbarrow from the stonemason to convey it to the R’hllor temple. On the way back he notices Lord Westbrook’s “treehouse”, the spot where Captain Dunder had previously stayed. Talbert is climbing the ladder into it. Char does a little sneaking around but discovers little
of note.

Danyka goes to the sept to make an offering to the Mother. While in meditation before the altar, she hears… is that moaning? And a screech of pleasure? How odd. A few minutes later, one of the young ladies of the village enters, looking disheveled, and is rather alarmed to find herself chatting with the lady of the castle. She flees before revealing her name. Oliver the septon then enters, and Danyka apologizes for her bitchy behavior and makes an offering of five Dragons to the upkeep of the sept in token of her contrition. Oliver accepts both the apology and an invitation to dinner.

She receives a raven from the High Septon ordering her to treat Oliver properly, and sends one back assuring him that all is well between sept and castle. Oliver comes over for dinner, and they have a pleasant time discussing how awful Joffrey is. Danyka seduces Oliver. It’s rather dull on the island and it’s not like he can make her any MORE pregnant, after all.

They are dressed and saying their farewells when they hear shouts from the stables. Guards have caught an intruder – it’s Talbert, but no one at the castle knows that yet – sneaking in through the horse-gate. They shoo Danyka away and stuff the prisoner into the dungeon, and not the nice cushy one where the Red Priests were housed. It’s missing a door, anyway. Really ought to see to that.

 

The Saucy Septon

November 21, 2014

Oliver follows the guards to the dungeon. He meets Margery, and a business discussion ensues. He then goes to find out who the prisoner is.

Lord Tyrell blames Lord Westbrook for his injuries. Rajk says no one was concerned enough to send a raven. Emberlyn tries to kick Rajk but misses. Lord Tyrell says he was attacked by bandits. Emberlynn actually feels sorry for him. The Westbrook party says they will take Tyrell home.

Drak, Morgyn and Olaf are taken hostage by someone who apparently knows who Drak and Olaf are. Morgyn tries to get out of it but is knocked unconscious. Drak tries to escape. How do they know us? They rolled high. They take the mariners to a cave with a fire and a lot of people. And a makeshift prison. A leader asks questions in Braavosi.

Danyka wakes up with Parry next to her in bed. She screams. The new steward is here. He seems competent. Danyka checks his references. A scream is heard from the dungeons.

Morgyn flirts with an ugly woman and finds out the group is hiding from The Mountain. He tries to get her to persuade the others to free the three.

Rokj buys a cart to convey Lord Tyrell home. He then has an interlude with the barmaid, Sally. In the stable.

Olaf flirts with a teenage girl. She is not impressed.

Morgyn explains “making the eight” to Olaf.

Guard captain takes Oliver to see the prisoner. Oliver notices the prisoner is hot. The prisoner wants to know what happened to Lord Tyrell’s ward.

Emberlyn talks with a spy kid who mentions the Lannisters. She then finds Lord W in the bar with Lord Hendryk and a scary-looking guy.

Lord Hendryk mistakes Emberlynn for the barmaid. He pals around with Lord Westbrook.

Drak cuts Olaf and Morgyn free. Some bargaining over who will help whom.

Danyka meets the prisoner. It’s Talbert. He’s concerned about Zale Wynch and the rumors of dragons. Danyka lets him go.

Rajk is listening as Hendryk tries to sell Westbrook on meth beer.

Short jokes. Emberlyn goes to bed.

 

Possible Joy

December 13, 2014

Oliver gets drunk on bad booze, seduces a good-looking sheep, then becomes wedged in the prify and calls for help in vain.

GM Note, this is what happens when you miss too many gaming sessions.

Morgyn runs off with his Braavosi paramour and she and her friends strap him down and have their way with him.

Lord Westbrook starts his day with beer, bacon and eggs. Hendryk is still drunk and still drinking. Rajk starts packing up the horses and getting ready to go

 

Destined Wealth

January 17, 2015

Emberlynn, in her room at the inn, does not think it’s a good idea to stay there. She hears conversation coming from Lord Willas Tyrell’s room. She overhears her own name mentioned in complimentary terms, along with words like “marriage”. Apparently Lord Tyrell is still interested in marrying Emberlynn and is asking advice from one of his guards on how to woo her. She quietly opens her bedroom door in an effort to hear better. The guard talks him out of showering Emberlynn with clothes and gifts. They discuss the rumors about Ser Bart’s interest in her, and what a jerk Bart is.

Drak is supposed to be running with Olaf and Morgyn. He talks his way out of it, saying he needs agility training more than endurance, but then decides to run with Morgyn instead.

Morgyn is running, although he’s a little achy after his morning orgy. Two of his partners, the young lady and the male guard Myguel, are getting busy in the bushes. He draws his swords to right a wrong, Drak keeps running. Morgyn has to wait a bit because his stealth fails. Relying on deception instead, he tries to convince them he’s back for more kinky fun. They fall for it and Morgyn kills the male. The woman screams. Morgyn walks away.

Rajk hears that they’re staying another night at the ill-fated inn. A couple of locals come in and start getting a little rowdy. Rajk decides to see if he can find out any more in the stables. Just call him Ser Rajk Holmes. The locals were implying that the late Sally was quite negotiable in her affections.

Olaf is pretending he didn’t hear any of the fuss in the bushes. Nothing else interesting happens during the run. On their return, someone approaches Olaf and says “I know what you were hired to do.” The inquisitor, it appears, is a friend of the late Steppen Wolf. Olaf breaks his nose.

Rhonal brings his basin back to the Red Temple. Simon has been showing him how to use it, but still hasn’t revealed the last ingredient needed to summon a shadow. Rhonal needs to practice the ritual before he learns the ingredient. In the fire, he sees Lord Willas alive, and he also sees Emberlynn kissing the one-legged lord. “Seriously, R’hollor?” Then he seses Danyka giving birth, with a strange-looking man helping deliver her; then he sees the same man having sex with Parry.

Oliver escapes from the privy (push, not pull) and goes into the stables to investigate the horse murder. He heals the injured horse and observes that the animal’s wounds appear to come from a poisoned weapon. Phil the horsemaster is dumbfounded by this news. Olver is unhappy this was allowed to happen and goes to find the captain of the guard.

Danyka finishes her embroidery and makes an offering to the Mother. Then she hears Oliver arguing with Phil. She is delighted at the healing of the little foal and names the filly Olivia. (Pause for Amanda to annoy everyone with the Olivia song.) The new maester’s name is Tim Oden but mostly people call him Toad.

Emberlynn goes down to the kitchen to see about cookies., She overhears the female staff gossiping about Lord Tyrell who apparently screams uncontrollably sometimes. They apparently are curious about the sexual possibilities of the Dothraki knight and the two of them apparently spent the previous night tending to Lord Westbrook’s personal needs. They also say the two guys who just arrived are pretty scary and that Sally had been seen hanging around them. Emberlynn enters the kitchen and offers to help. She tried to make bread. Lord Willas sends word that he’d like to see her. Eeep!

Drak delcines to get involved in Olaf’s fistfight and sits down to wait for dinnertime. He realizes that he needs to recut the edge of his knife in order to fix it. Mortyn comes back and sees Drak looking at his knife deep in thought. “You’re now the Lord of Ironholt” he reminds Drak. “We need to make sure you are treated as such.” Morgyn then looks for a pond in which to wash out his, er, defiled parts.

Lord Westbrook comes back into the inn with the landlady and she points out the two yahoos in the bar. Lord W sits down and pretends to drink a beer.

Rajk informs the landlady that her back door has been broken into. He reports the info to Lord Westbrook as well. They briefly discuss the two yahoos, whom the landlady suspects of having killed Sally. The yahoos do seem to be discussing the dead barmaids.

Rhonal, whom I suppose we should now be calling Brother Char, succeeds in summoning a shadow demon but gets startled and loses it right away. The secret is … uh, the GM kinda forgets. It’s obtainable on the island though. Brother Simon and Brother Miles head up to the castle to meet with Lady Danyka.

Oliver is looking for Bill, the guard captain. He goes up on the battlements which seem to be very well guarded. He makes his case for better protection of the stables. Bill informs him about Danyka’s poor judgement and the fact that he, not Danyka, is really in charge.

Danyka asks Oliver to put on his finest clothes. They’re going to pay a visit to Lord Serry and his son Talbert.

 

The Face in the Fire

February 7, 2015

It is dinnertime. Morgyn has been taken on a long mission with the gang. He leaves with six women (three attractive, three not) and five other men. The rest of the bandit gang is attending a religious ritual of some kind and Olaf sees fairies (really) in the fire. Lady Qorgyle’s face suddenly appears in front of him! He realizes that this is the power of R’hollor. He decides to keep attending the nightly rituals in the hopes of learning more. He goes to bed to think about his life choices.

Danyka, abandoned by the unreliable septon, decides to put off her trip to South Island until the next day. She greets Tim “Toad” Oden, thenew maester. He assures her that he has significant experience of childbirth since he has 12 sisters. Danyka dines alone.

A small servant boy asks Emberlynn to visit Lord Willas Tyrell. She goes. Tyrell probes her about Lord Westbrook’s loyalties. She testifies thaqt Lord W is very loyal to the Tyrells and to the crown. (Luckily, no one has told her anything different because she can’t keep a secret). Lord Tyrell wants to talk. Emberlynn is a little creeped out.

Rajk sees the dwarf Hendryk settle in for an evening of drinking and telling dirty stories with the two yahoos in the bar. They are discussing another former barmaid, Gretchen, who apparently needed to be “taught a lesson”. The talk moves to Linda who “couldn’t handle us”. Rajk and Lord Westbrook are taking all this in. They whisper about “the Dothraki” who had Sally before her untimely death, and decide drunkenly to kill Jajk. Rajk walks out into the night.

Drak notices Olaf’s odd reaction at the religious ritual. He didn’t see Morgyn go. One of the other bandits informs Drak that Morgyn is on a mission chosen for his fighting skills. Drak is unhappy with the disappearance of his bodyguard. He is promised some action of his own in a couple of days. The ritual turns into a dance and then an orgy. Drak holds himself aloof.

Brother Char volunteers to cook dinner for teh priests at the Red Temple. He does a wonderful job. Seriously, this is the best food they’ve had in ages. He deflects their appreciation, praising R’hollor for the yummy lamb and racoon dish. He then successfully summons a shadow demon, but cannot speak to or control it and it wanders off. He decides to go shopping in town the next day to hear rumors, to discover who’s having trouble among the smallfolk — in other words, hearts and minds he could win for R’hollor. He obtains information on six families. Cheating spouses, unwanted pregnancies, financial woes, etc.

Lord Westbrook pretends to go to bed. He does not go to bed but remains ready for action.

Olaf wakes up next to a lovely young lady. He screams. Possibly post-traumatic stress from the washerwomen. Her name is Jo and apparently Olaf doesn’t remember going to bed with her. She gets up, gets dressed and leaves. Olaf goes back to bed. He can’t even.

Danyka goes to visit Sough Island. They are clearly better-off than Westbrook Island and they keep her waiting in a parlor for half an hour. Lord Serry listens politely to Danyka’s tale of Talbert’s sneaking onto Westbrook Island and tells her that Lord Tyrell (not Lord Willas, THE Lord Tyrell_ has tasked Talbert with looking after Danyka’s safety. Danyka assures Lord Serry that she’s fine, that Talbert is welcome to visit anytime. Lord Serry invites her to lunch and she accepts.

Emberlynn leaves Lord Willas’s chamber as quickly as she can. She goes to bed unaware of the potential brawl developing downstairs.

Rajk pretends to be drunk and stumbles away from the inn toward the stables. He ducks into a stall and waits. The two yahoos sneak rather drunkenly and clumsily into the stables. Rajk whacks one over the head and knocks him out. The other puts up a fight but finally succumbs and lets Rajk kill him. He ties up the other guy for questioning.

Emberlynn hears this and goes downstairs to investigate. She can see the fight going on. Lord Westbrook helps Rajk tie the surviving yahoo up. Presumably his experiences have sobered him up somewhat. However, he seems to have a Southern accent and a habit of whining. He works for the local nobleman, Lord Whuxisfyse. He whines his confession, gets killed and Rajk and Lord Westbrook dispose of the body while Emberlyn declines to take part. Kids these days. No respect. (The ghost of Rhonal is heard to say “Ladies do not clean up severed heads.”)

Drak wakes up next to a lovely young lady. “We’re trying to make you guys feel welcome!” He grudgingly tells the girl he enjoyed it, then tries to go back to sleep. When she fails to depart, he gets up and gets dressed. Then he relents and offers her another round, which she finds very satisfying. (“Once you go Drak, you never go back.”) He then goes to breakfast and finds Olaf staring at his food. Olaf utterly fails to get Drak’s innuendos, but apparently Olaf’s sword is missing. Olaf is scared and doesn’t want to be here anymore. Olaf confides in him about seeing Lady Qorgyle in the fire.

Brother Char tells Simon he’s eager to convert the rest of the island to the faith of R’hollor. He’d like to do this by solving problems for the six families he learned about.

Rajk lets the innkeeper know what’s happened and says she will not likely have more trouble. She thanks him and goes off to sleep with Lord Westbrook. One of the serving girls offers to help Rajk hease his pain and he promises not to kill her.

 

So, Nice Weather We are Having