Episode 1 – Separate Fates Tied Together

In the Department of Loophole Regulation of Physical and Meta-Physical Laws, Maximoff had just finished his coffee and was about to get back to work when his boss, Nikolas called him to his office. The office was filled with documents and a large suspicious sack. Nikolas told Maximoff that their was a leak in the department and that the information could lead to a Deathlord attacking Lookshy. While this would normally be a smaller problem, a Solar kingdom sprung up under the Bronze Faction’s nose in the city of Rathess lead by a Solar calling himself the King of Heroes. If they were to move in and drive whichever Deathlord struck Lookshy out, one of the strongest Dragon-Blooded cities would be theirs. Nikolas needed Maximoff to gather a team of Exalts who had no ties to any existing power and resolve this matter as quietly as possible. Nikolas had made some preparations already, but he needed Maximoff to bring one final member for the team together directly. He tossed him a dossier containing information and a rather ugly mugshot of the Exalt in question before sending him on his way.

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In Lookshy, a young Dragon-Blooded named Carlos was at home when his mother Juanita came up to him with great news. Carlos’ grandfather Esteban was having his 102nd birthday soon and Carlos was getting sent to Nexus as the family’s representative. Carlos was ecstatic for a chance to get out of Lookshy, but his excitement dropped when he learned that his mother was sending him with a full entourage of bodyguards. Having already packed his belongings, Juanita lead Carlos outside where several armed men stood with horses around a carriage. Carlos was introduced to Bravo and Harlock, the two primary guards hired by Juanita. Carlos tried to argue that he didn’t need this kind of protection, but Juanita is a very doting mother and would not hear him out. Bravo reassured that Carlos would be properly taken care of and negotiated an increase in pay. Reluctantly, Carlos agreed and left with the entourage riding along side the carriage, with Harlock sitting on top and Bravo running along side it.

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Deep within the forests of the East, an Abyssal named Marik maintained a small fortress Manse and with a cult around him. One of his underlings approached him and informed him that one of the watch had caught a spy and wanted to know if you wished to interrogate him. A man in a sack escorted by Maximoff wearing a resplendent destiny entered the room. Marik immediately ordered the spy to be killed and then began to interrogate the body with his Death-Speech Gemstone. He was told of a Abyssals who sought to take over the region and a scouting party’s location. Marik wasn’t about to let any rivals encroach on his goal, so he set out to end them on a skeletal horse with a few members of his cult in tow(one literally being towed).

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Carlos, Bravo, and Harlock had left Lookshy early in the morning and now dusk was approaching. They had gotten pretty far and were now traveling through thick forests. Out of the corner of his eye, Harlock noticed a hail of arrows coming for the carriage. He shouted “Look out!” before shapeshifting into a snapping turtle to protect himself from the arrows. Bravo dove for cover behind a tree while Carlos moved beside the carriage to use it as cover. The driver and other bodyguards were not so quick and were struck by the barrage. With the driver dead and horse mortally wounded, the carriage toppled over. Everyone near it managed to avoid getting hurt, however Marik emerged from the forest atop his undead steed and was knocked to the ground by the oncoming carriage(first botch of the game).

Before anyone had anytime to process what happened, two hellish hounds(Barghests) and two raiders lead by a large man atop his own undead steed descended upon the party. One Barghest moved to check the fallen carriage and the other charged at Maximoff who immediately fled. Marik, very angry about what just happened, began channeling essence into a necromantic spell. Carlos drew his bow and fired an arrow at the Barghest that attacked Maximoff while Bravo lunged at the one by the carriage and killed it. The larger man rode over to Bravo and tried to lodge his ax into his head while another arrow tried to pierce Bravo’s heart. Harlock still in turtle form changed back and leapt over the carriage to throw a bola at the leg’s of the mount of Bravo’s attacker. The horse was entangled and it and its rider were thrown to the ground. At that moment, Marik completed his spell and released undead essence into the ground bellow him. Countless skeletal hands sprung from the ground and grabbed anything and anyone they could.

With all of his attackers pinned by the skeletal hands, Maximoff activated his awareness excellency and shot a blast of hot essence from his eyes at the Barghest that attacked him. The attack burned straight through it and killed it. Marik became startled as to why one of his followers could preform such a feat and Maximoff earned himself a point of paradox for that. With out anyway to defend himself, Bravo was able to tear the man before him into pieces. However, that’s when three more arrows each moving in odd ways struck the party. The first was parried by Bravo using a dexterity excellency, the second struck Marik in the knee, and the third struck Maximoff but only managed to damage his cloths. Carlos fired arrows at one of the raiders that got grabbed, while Marik who has been getting increasingly angry punched the other in the throat with a jagged boney fist killing both of them.

Harlock saw where the arrows were coming from and spied a man in black armor with a shadowy aura on a highland raised above the forest. He activated his Instinct-Driven Beast Movement charm, closed the distance in an instant, and slashed the archer with his hunting knife. Maximoff ran closer to the Abyssal to get a better angle and fired another blast of essence that unfortunately only managed to warm up a portion of his armor. Carlos fired an arrow at him, but it was also in effective. Since there were no more nearby enemies, Marik took this as his chance to interrogate one of the corpses. He learned that they were agents of the Deathlord known as the Forsaken Lion and they were scouting for an upcoming invasion. The mook’s final words pissed off Marik so he crushed his balls before crushing his skull.

The Abyssal was caught off guard by Harlock’s sudden attack, but he composed himself, threw away his bow and drew a sword. His shadowy aura drew and shadows surrounded his blade before he plunged his sword into Harlock. When he withdrew his sword a shadow  of it remained pinning Harlock in place. Upon seeing his ally in trouble, Bravo shapeshifted in a bird and flew over to strike the Abyssal with his talons. Maximoff used this chance to get closer and unleashed an even more powerful blast of essence blowing a hole through the enemy’s shoulder. While still pinned, Harlock tossed his knife into the fresh wound and Carlos fired an arrow that pushed both it and the knife through finishing off the Abyssal.

As the Abyssal fell a large roll of paper dropped from his person and Marik, Maximoff, and Carlos gathered around. Maximoff took a look at the paper concluded that it was a map and nothing else so he left it to Carlos and proceeded to treat Harlock’s wounds. Carlos who was more familiar with the region was able to deduce that it was a map of Lookshy including patrol routes, the route and return point of the raiding party they just encountered and a date. Marik meanwhile sat down in front the dead Abyssal and shouted at him to wake up. After a further interrogation Marik learned didn’t learn much more, but managed to get into a shouting match with him. Maximoff realized that these were who his boss spoke of and revealed himself and his mission.

While the party was discussing what to do next, a man with blue hair and a blood red spear leapt from a tree and snatched the map from Carlos. Bravo tried to stop his escape but was not able to and the party opts to pursue the thief.

Best Moments of the Day:

  • Brigid deciding that Carlos’ family is a telenovella.
  • Mark Reed continuously arguing with corpses who only he could speak to and hear.
  • Jeremy asking if he can run along side the carriage.