The Devil’s Riddle: Session 3

A soft golden light surrounds the top of Lisandra’s staff. Though the spell is a simple one Lisandra feels the effort of its casting.

The pair move through two sets of double doors before reaching the main central chamber of the abbey.

Rufus takes in his surroundings. The chamber is long and narrow. Pilasters line the walls, with empty torch holders between them. Fluted columns run in twin rows, leading to a raised dais at the far end. But far from being a collapsing dilapidated ruin, the building interior shows none of the ravages of time that the exterior would suggest. This place seems surprisingly well cared for.

More surprising still is the group standing on the dais. Five men dressed in simple peasant garb stand in a circle, with a sixth figure hanging chained between them. The five turn to look at the two intruders, and with a start Rufus realises he has seen these men before; they are the farmers he saw singing in the tavern the previous night.

That is nothing compared to the shock he gets when the figure in chains looks up. It is the bartender from the Devil’s Riddle inn, the man he killed!

The farmers’ faces twist into animalistic snarls of fury as they draw daggers and attack.IMG-20130218-00054

Wasting no time Lisandra sends a blast of force the length of the chamber that knocks one of the farmers from his feet. The remainder race towards them, howling wildly. Rufus takes up a protective position ahead of Lisandra, shielding her from the farmers’ blades and allowing her to unleash further bolts of energy.

With the skill that earned him the title of Blademaster Rufus cuts down two foes in a single manoeuvre. The remaining two farmers continue to press the attack though, exhibiting a ferocity and skill that is quite out of place for such seemingly simple folk. Rufus finds himself blocking one blow only to feel the other dagger plunge into his thigh. Lisandra’s arcane bolt downs that farmer, and Rufus swiftly despatches the other.

Rufus kneels to examine the bodies; they seem to be perfectly ordinary farmers.

They approach the chained bartender, and Lisandra frowns. “Well this is most unexpected. Despite our best efforts it seems we meet again. Would you care to explain how that is possible?”

The bartender gazes up at them with no hint of recognition in his eyes. “What are you talking about?” he asks. “I’ve never seen you two before in my life!”

2 Responses to “The Devil’s Riddle: Session 3”

  1. I want Lisandra, as a caster, to be quite powerful, so my first draft magic rules will try to reflect that. I also want to keep things simple. We’ll see how it works in practice.

    Magic Rules Version 1

    A spell cast equal with a level equal to character level is Easy. For each spell level above the caster level the DC rises by one rank. A spell with a level below character level can be cast automatically, and does not cost an action.

    Roll 1d6 for damage or healing per spell level. It costs one of the D6s to add an additional target. Each D6 costs 1 mana. The mana pool equals starting Hits.

    Alternatively the caster may substitute an effect for a D6, for example Immobilised, Blinded etc.

    Example 1: Lisandra, a 1st level Character, wishes to cast a 3rd level spell at the marauders racing towards them. She must take one of her two actions to make a Hard (7+) difficulty Magic roll. She rolls a 6. Adding +2 for her Magic specialism results in 8, a success. She may use her second action to cast her spell with a pool of 3D6, which costs her 3 of her mana pool of 6. She chooses to cast a twin bolt of force, striking two targets. Adding a second target costs 1D6, which leaves 1D6 to assign to each target.

    Example 2: Lisandra is now Level 2. She wants to cast a 3rd level spell at the ogre attacking Rufus. She must spend her first action making a Medium (4+) difficulty Magic roll. Succeeding she uses her second action to cast an explosive ball of light at the ogre. She chooses to do 2D6 damage, and use substitute the final 1D6 for a blinding effect. The ogre will take a penalty to its next attack.

    Additional Rules

    • Hits heal naturally at the rate of 1 point per extended rest.
    • Mana is restored between encounters, but each encounter or Mana use between encounters (ie healing) reduces the maximum by one. Mana can only be fully restored by an extended rest. A Magic action can be spent to regenerate spent Mana; easy for 1 point, Medium for 2 etc.
    • 5 XP are required each for Level 2. The requirement doubles each level.

  2. Q: Is it ruined? NO
    Q: is there anyone here? YES
    Who? The Answer involves a Surprising Lack of Grandiosity, and might also involve Farmers
    What are they doing? The Answer involves Somewhat Ambiguous Severity, and could affect the thread ‘Wanted for murder’
    Q: Hostile? EXCEPTIONAL YES
    Q: Is the victim the bartender? YES
    Q: Is he dead? NO
    Farmers: A: D8, W: D10, E: D6, H: 5, Dagger (+1)
    Lisandra Mana: 5
    Rufus HP: 7
    XP earned so far: 7
    Q: are farmers human? YES
    Q: Does the bartender know R & L? NO

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