The Sprint Festival is being prepared in Abon. It is a big yearly event, for which the village has been preparing for over a week. For the occasion, many homes have turned into guest houses to welcome the influx of people drawn to Abon. The population is expected to rise by a half, and the local militia has been upgraded to about 60 volunteers. The village is being decorated with crowns of flowers and painted buds.
The apex of the festival is the Communion, a ceremony traditionaly lead by Elstan, during which various gods from the Old World are given tributes, if only by superstition, while some people worship new gods from the Ironlands in secret. For some few, it also marks a milestone in the victory over The Darkness, a whispered evil very few dare to speak about.
This year, Morgan has been given by Elstan the honor to drive an important part of the ceremony. The young man is drinking an ale with some friends, at an improvised bar, bragging about the whole part he’s going to play in the morrow’s celebrations.
He is interrupted by a man, whose face has been marked by the years and is barred by various scars, one of them extending from his right ear lobe to the corner of his lips. Poorly shaved, his beard is a patchwork of hair covering a sun-tanned skin, and he wears an eye patch. He is broad-shouldered and bulky.
The Oracles say that the man is an experienced criminal looking for the resolution of a dispute.
“Cant’ you shut your big mouth, little runt? Keep it quiet and drink your beer, supposing this is ale and not milk that’s in your mug.”
Surprised, Morgan who feels his honor is at stake here, gets close to the man and asks “Who are you to talk this way to the priest presiding tomorrow’s ceremony?
— A priest? Bah, I’ll give you a priest! Look at you! I could milk your nose just by pressing on it. You’re pathetic. Priests, the only thing you do is talk and brat. Want to know, kid? I’ve killed priests by the dozens…”
Morgan instinctively makes a step back, before deciding to get himself together and face the verbal challenge.
“You don’t look like the joyful type. Whoever you are and whatever you’re doing here, I don’t feel like you belong. The spring festival is important and peaceful, and I’m respected enough here to have you shackled in iron with a snap of my fingers. So you better watch your mouth, whoever you are.”
Morgan tries to Secure an advantage, it’s a miss. The obvious price to pay is to Endure Stress (1). It’s a strong hit, so Morgan takes +1 momentum.
“Shackled in iron? Well, I’d like to see that. Who am I? My name is Vigo, and you can tell your Jarl. Run! Go tell your Jarl and her whore of a woman that Vigo is in town, and he’s coming for payday.
— What are you talking about?” Morgan tries not to lose face here and to have Vigo talk more to get information.
Gather Information results on a weak hit.
“You ask a lot of questions young one. Suffice it to know that your Jarl and his whore are not the saints you believe they are. They did nasty things in the past, and let other people pay for their own mistakes. And now, it’s coming back at them. Go! Tell them I’m in town.”
Morgan understands he won’t learn more from him and decides to warn Esra and Wena. He heads to the longhouse.
Ask the Oracle: are Esra and Wena present at the longhouse? The oracle says ‘yes’.
With a frown on his face, Morgan asks for an audience with the both of them.
He is received by Esra alone. The longhouse is filled with villagers and visiters paying their respect to the Jarl, and Wena is busy organizing the security of the village. Morgan reports the presence of Vigo, and the threats and ill-talk the latter made. Esra seemed upset and Morgan tries to learn more, fearing that he may have stained his Jarl’s reputation publicly.
Miss on a Gather Information move. The Oracle says that ‘it is stressful’. Morgan Endures Stress (1) and gains 2 momentum has a result of a strong hit.
Morgan is ill-at-ease and suggests that Vigo should be arrested by Wena. Esra stops him and orders Morgan to take a few men with him and proceed to Vigo’s arrest. Morgan is stressed and worried, not being a guard. The Jarl asks Morgan to ensure that the spring festival rolls out smoothly. Morgan agrees and swears on one of his iron throwing knife.
Swear an Iron Vow results on a miss. He loses 2 momentum.
Taking three volunteers with him, Morgan leaves the longhouse in a confused state as to which role he should embody, as if his Pretender asset was playing against him. Returning to the bar, Vigo is not here anymore. Morgan asks around… his friends, the bartender… he seeks information.
Gather Information with a +1 add, as Morgan shares a bond with the community. It’s a weak hit. +1 momentum.
The bartender reveals that a few minutes after Morgan had left, Vigo was joined by a pretty woman with long, dark hair, and the two of them left shortly after. He’s sure the woman is not one of the villager. Unfortunately, asking around in the street leads to nowhere.
Morgan figures that Vigo or her companion may be guests residing at a nearby guesthouse, and starts knocking at doors.
Being cautious, it is unlikely that Vigo chose to drink in a bar close to the place he’s staying. Asking the Oracle answers negatively.
Morgan’s investigation is unsuccessful. He wonders if, maybe, Vigo is not hiding or staying at one of the Jarl’s political enemy. There is actually a neighborhood known to host a few people discontented by Esra and Wena’s rule. Morgan thus heads towards this neighborhood and tries a more discreet approach to observe the back and forth of suspicious people.
Morgan tries to Secure an Advantage +shadow and miserably fails. Pay the price states that a ‘surprising development complicates your quest’, and the Theme oracle points to ‘decay’.
When Morgan arrives to the neighborhood, there’s the beginning of an arson in a house. The whole population around has started a water chain from the nearby dwell, and Morgan joins it.
Morgan is not aware of Vigo and his ally’s presence. They both notice him and sneak out of the neighborhood, leaving Morgan with a cold tray while he is fighting the fire during a couple of hours.
When the fire is extinguished, Morgan is left demoralized, not knowing where to look for next…
Watch this video (in French) on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cq-aqsP4XBE