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Saturday, 20th August, 2011, 10:57 PM #1
Legacy of the Silver Dragon (S&W, 4th ed)
Five years ago, the ruler and protector of Ascadar, a large town in a valley next to a solitary mountain, disappeared. Eliaesel was a young silver dragon who had lived for centuries in the mountain – an ancient, dead volcano – the caldera at the top from which she would fly. She had lived for centuries, and after a long sleep woke up 300 years ago to discover a small community that was attempting to eke out an existence – founded by a knight named Ascadar. The empire he came from is called “The Empire of Mankind”, and while technically the town that bears his name is part of it still, the Empire’s only involvement is a tax collector every year. While those who lived in the new community were frightened by Eliaesel’s first appearance, she soon convinced them she meant them no harm, and even provided assistance in defending and strengthening the outpost which soon became more prosperous as the lumber from the rare hardwoods in the forest around the valley, and minerals in the foothills were exported back to the Empire.
Eliaesel visited regularly in the form of a silvery skinned humanoid, and listened to complaints and worries of the citizens. She would sit in on the hearings to decide on matters concerning the town. She passed laws, but allowed a ¾ majority vote of the council to overrule any law. She required equal representation on the council by poor and rich, and by each race in the town. These races were mostly halflings and humans, but there were a smattering of elves and even dwarves. Her reasoning was that no group would be discriminated against based on numbers, and it worked. This was due mainly because she proved to be a wise ruler, and the town flourished. Many tried to strike up a personal relationship with her, but she never revealed personal details or became more than a friendly acquaintance to anyone.
Raids by nearby lizardmen communities, and the goblins and giants of the nearby hills, were beaten back with Eliaesel's help. But then she vanished. Those who tried to enter her lair to either determine what had happened, or for more selfish reasons (such as finding her treasure), discovered that a lower portion of the caldera had caved in, and her lair seemed to be buried under hundreds of feet of stone. No other entrance has yet been found that connected to her lair from the outside of the mountain. The town is rapidly giving up hope that she is still alive. Fortunately Ascadar is large enough to defend itself now against smaller raids, and the local humanoid monsters appear to still be wary of the return of the town’s protector. Of late, however, they appear to be becoming more bold.
Larger groups of guards are required to protect the workers who mine the hills and cut lumber, and to follow the caravans that trade with the outside world. Within the town, tensions run high as the council can rarely agree on anything without the guidance of their former protector. There have been calls to put one leader in her position to have the same powers, but no one can agree on who that person should be. The council has decided to call for a vote of the populace within 90 days of the present time, but the politics caused by this have created bitterness among former friends and neighbors as racial tension begins to simmer to the surface. Some Humans, and Halflings to a lesser degree, believe that they should have a greater influence on the direction and governance of Ascadar due to their higher percentage in the population.
The Empire of Man has fallen on hard times, beset from outside and within, and can seemingly provide no help to a town so far from the center, even if taxes are still collected every year. Ascadar’s independence, once something that most of the residents were proud of, now feels more like isolation with threats from all sides.
Caravans need guards, the town's threats need to be scouted, and there are rumors of items in ruins and caverns in the mountain which could be used to protect the town. Within the town itself, factions try to dig up dirt on those who wish to become the leader of the council. There are opportunities aplenty for those who would style themselves a hero... or for those who just wish to change their lot in life and level of income.
0 EMF (Empire of Man Founded): Empire of Man created from loose grouping of human cities.
80 EMF: Ascadar, a legendary adventurer, founds an outpost in a valley in the shadow of a lonely mountain.
98 EMF: Eliaesel makes her first appearance to Ascadar. She quickly becomes its ruler and protector.
163 EMF: Ascadar becomes a full fledged village. At this point Eliaesel creates the council that rules the town to this day.
198 EMF: A discovery of coal and gems in the nearby foothills increases the income into the village, allowing it to increase rapidly in size and wealth, becoming a town within a few years.
221 EMF: The town reaches more or less its present size.
226 EMF: A coordinated assault by Lizardmen on the mines is beaten back by soldiers and Eliaesel.
235 EMF: Goblins, led by a pair of Hill Giants attempts to attack the town itself. Again, they are no match for the town defenses as augmented by the Silver Dragon. Rare raids continue, but never again do the humanoid races attempt anything large.
350 EMF: The Empire of Man has grown decadent and weak. Strife within, and invaders from without, begin to expose its weaknesses. It demands more money from taxes.
395 EMF: Eliaesel vanishes. Attempts to find her reveal only that the caldera at the top of the mountain has collapsed, presumably burying the entrance of her lair.
400 EMF: Present
Events in Ascadar this Year:
Month 1: A heavy snowstorm fills the valley. Colder than any in recent memory, much of the wood cut for export has to be used. Much of the food storage is also depleted as the hunters can’t easily find game to bring down.
Month 2: Fortunately, warmth returns to some extent, and the food stores remain level. The council, not having a strong leader and getting little done during the harder times in the previous month, realize they need to appoint a leader. They decide to hold a vote by the town, and they set the vote for the first day of the seventh month.
Month 3: An early thaw, and the cutting of trees begins again – attempting to make up for the wood burned. A house burns down: the young couple who owned it are never found – presumed burned to ashes in the fire. Tensions start to rise further in the town as people vying to become the leader, or those who would profit from someone specific becoming the leader, spread propaganda that becomes more and more bitter.
Month 4: At the very start of the month, reports of another Lizardmen raid, this time on the workers cutting down trees, come back to the town. The guards were overwhelmed, and only a few returned. There are other woods that can be harvested, and so for now, the effort has switched to them – but this has caused delays. Combined with the events of the first month of the year, the income from exporting lumber this year already appears likely to be significantly less.
Mid-Month 4: The present. Spring is well under way, but the town is restless at best, and at times the tensions feel much higher and ready to break through the surface.
The Town of Ascadar:
Racial Proportion: Human (51%), halfling (30%), dwarf (12%), elf (7%)
Government: Council of members divided equally among the races and wealth levels. ¾ agreement required on any law.
Major Exports: Wood, bows, arrows, coal from the mountain, some gems.
Major Imports: Food, drinks, metal weapons and tools, wool, clothing.
Last edited by gambler1650; Sunday, 21st August, 2011 at 01:42 AM.
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Sunday, 21st August, 2011, 01:49 AM #2
Initial ‘Conversations’ overheard by the player characters.
Time for Roleplay! My suggestion is, whoever wants to can insinuate themselves into any conversation they like, and if the others want to join that specifc conversation or start with a different one, either way works. I'm sort of assuming that your group is friendly enough that you talk about interesting things that could have to do with adventures regularly, so no need to 'hide' conversations unless you want to.
“The Empire’s going to move back in and put higher taxes in place, mark my words. They were scared to do so when SHE was here.”
“Yeah, you heard me. Demon summoning. That’s why old man Corl’s chickens have gone missing.”
An older woman that you really only know as the foster mother of a young woman about your age named Anna, has accosted a member of the militia:
“My Anna was taken two nights ago! I told you! Have you even looked for her?”
The man responds: “Crazy old woman. Everyone knows she was just looking to get away from you. She always talked about going to see the Empire.”
Two men are talking on a corner, animatedly, with a woman looking between them:
Man #1: I tell you, Trenor wouldn’t do anything like that.
Man #2: Yeah, well, I heard he’s planning to poison the water supply, and make it look like one of his rivals had a hand in it..
Man #1: Ridiculous!
“The caravan leaving later this week needs a few more guards, I hear. Not enough able bodied men to go around since Eliaesel vanished.”
“You know that crazy old guy who lives just outside town – calls himself Sal? I hear he’s offering a treasure map of the mountain if someone brings back some herbs for him.
Two men talking outside a local tavern, well after sundown.
"Dwarves and Elves. I tell ya, they think they own the town. Better get used to their place."
"Hey, keep it down..."
"Why? Ain't like the bitch is going to hear us, right?"
“Did you hear? One of those mines broke through into a large cavern – all kinds of tunnels leading off from it.”
“That house that burned down earlier this year? I thought I saw something moving around there last night.”
Last edited by gambler1650; Sunday, 21st August, 2011 at 01:55 AM.
Sunday, 21st August, 2011, 03:45 AM #3
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
fate and considered the man with a somewhat blinking stare instead. As usual, he'd missed part of the conversation -- but then Jorgen, the general store's owner, did tend to ramble on about inconsequential things: crop yields, supply routes, politics... "Demons? Has there been demons?" He hadn't noticed.
Last edited by Binder Fred; Sunday, 21st August, 2011 at 03:48 AM.
So it goes.
Active charactersMemorable games
Sunday, 21st August, 2011, 05:22 AM #4
The black haired man behind the counter snorts and shaking his head, stuffs the large black and white berries into a bag. "Good day, Berta! Won't be laughing when a demon takes over the town." The woman walks slowly to the door favoring her left leg. She gives Antares a sidelong glance once before she lets the door slam behind her.
Then the store owner turns to the young elf. "Ah... Antares, right? Well of COURSE there's demons. Demons are always just waiting for someone to summon em. And with Eliaesel gone, there's some that'll try to replace her with an infernal overlord. What do they teach you in those elf schools?"
Last edited by gambler1650; Sunday, 21st August, 2011 at 05:27 AM.
Sunday, 21st August, 2011, 06:16 PM #5
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
"Er, herbs, you say?" Bosco Bracegirdle removes his short-brimmed flat cap and fits it back down over his mop of brown curls. He abandons the group of giggling girls he was attempting to ingratiate himself with and heads over to the stoop where the two older women are gossiping and leaning on their brooms.“You know that crazy old guy who lives just outside town – calls himself Sal? I hear he’s offering a treasure map of the mountain if someone brings back some herbs for him.
"I'm famous for my herb-collecting. Legendary, in fact. I'm surprised they don't call it 'Boscoing' when they collect herbs. A fake treasure map isn't of much use to me, but it does seem like the neighborly thing to do, helping out an old man with his Boscoing, doesn't it? ... So, er, which way to his hut?"
Sunday, 21st August, 2011, 06:24 PM #6
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
Last edited by Binder Fred; Sunday, 21st August, 2011 at 06:27 PM.
So it goes.
Active charactersMemorable games
Monday, 22nd August, 2011, 05:17 PM #7
Conversation #2: Antares
"Home schooled. Hmmph. I though you elves had fancy schools, like I hear they've tried in the Empire. I mean, we're part of the Empire. But I mean near the center where they have time for such foolishness." Jorgen, pauses in the middle of an exaggerated gesture, "What was you asking? Right. Demons. Well, chickens are disappearing from Corl's coop. Not wild animals, the fence is still good. I know because he was supposed to deliver some eggs, but he only had half what I was supposed to get. I bet I run out by the end of the week...""Nothing," blinks that worthy, "I am homeschooled." He tries again: "Ah. The thing that was meant, master Jorgen, was: has there been demons here," his slow hand-twirl encompasses the rough wooden shelves, the numberless apple bins and, he hopes, the town beyond, "in fair Ascadar?" Interest is beginning to light a slow fire in the green fields of his elven eyes.
Another pause... "Where was I going with this.. C'mon, focus Jorgen.. Right! Demons. There was demons here in the past, so I heard. Ascadar defeated a couple. The man I mean, not the town. And you know demons, where they were once, they want to get back to. And where chickens are missing there'll be demons. Well, where the chickens are taken to for the sacrifices, there'll be demons. Unless Corl is doin' the sacrificing..." He trails off in though, seeming to look right through the elf.
Last edited by gambler1650; Monday, 22nd August, 2011 at 05:36 PM.
Monday, 22nd August, 2011, 05:29 PM #8
Conversation #6: Bosco Bracegirdle
The gaggle of girls has dispersed down the street, but one of the ones who really didn't talk all that much, glances over her shoulder once at the halfling and the two older women.
Erisa snorts again, "You believe that if you want, Daenila, but stuff goes missing. And don't tell me I misplaced it again!"
Daenila shakes her head once, "Young man. Never mind my friend here. Sal's hut is maybe a quarter day's journey to the west of the town. There's a trail, and he's back in a small copse of trees to the left just as the trail ends. Can't see the hut from the trail except in winter, but it's in there."
Last edited by gambler1650; Monday, 22nd August, 2011 at 05:37 PM.
Monday, 22nd August, 2011, 06:44 PM #9
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
Bosco tips his cap to Daenila.
"Much obliged, gracious lady. May your pots always fire perfectly."
He restrains himself from making any remarks to Erisa, but does shoot her an incredibly lewd glance before wandering out to see if he can catch up to the straggler girl.
Tuesday, 23rd August, 2011, 05:05 AM #10
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)