S02 — Session 5
1626, Earth Season, Death Week, Freezeday to Waterday
A host of servants
Chettoria Humakti, Great Sword of the Fifth Regiment of Battalion
Yamia Humakti, Initiate of the Shrine of Wilmskirk
A cloud of Ernaldan priestesses
Lonneta Deleaos, networker supreme, and owner of a silver mirror the size of a whole room
Elanka, Blonde lovely who likes beards and poetry
Vadstan, Loyal Husband, and definitely not the man that Elanka thought he was
A Babeester Gor guard whose sister got on Berra’s nerves
A full orchestra of Esrolians (and their delicate instruments)
A small choir of Enlo (and some water barrel drums)
As before, the log will be recounted with extracts from the private poetry collection of Dr Tomm.
The gate opens, and my field lies before me,
Spread out as a coverlet that holds the one I love.
Green weaving, over fertile ground.
The kisses from her mouth are soft.
There is no part of her that I will leave unturned. I love her as land and life.
Such ground I till, with labour of my hands and back.
I steer the course in straight lines, with cunning back and forth
I bite Earth with wood.
I, lavish, sow my seed.
Rejoice, ploughman, aching for your home.
– Venlar III,19
What Really Happened
After Yamia had had time to talk to her father, Mellia took her, along with Berra, to the Temple of Humakt. There the Great Sword (Chief Priest) Chettoria saw Yamia cry over forgetting to bow properly. She identified the problem as damage similar to the madness of a Lune, something both she and Mellia had seen before. Mellia concluded there was Runic damage or disassociation, which Chettoria agreed with, advising Mellia to take her to the Temple of Ernalda and have her various passions roused and tested.
Grandmother called in Xenofos to feed him sticky treats and ask him if he fancied being married. When he said no, she told him she had decided to up the value of Mellia by putting her on the marriage market. As part of this campaign Xenofos was also sent out to the sort of parties where one finds husbands, although this was not mentioned. Varanis, meanwhile, had been told by Mellia’s mother Kirse that she would be taking Mellia around to this sort of party, and also, to do something about her hair. She called for her servants, who were excited to dress her up, and were also excited they would be curling Xenofos’ beard properly, and had a few ideas about the rather wild-looking Humakti Varanis had brought hom. Varanis reminisced about Berra’s blue dress, and told them not to touch her stuff, which they interpreted to mean they could wash her ordinary clothes and not the armour, and promptly took away her padding and her blue silk scarf.
Xenofos bugged out of Varanis’ room while her nails were still drying, and went to check on the horses, because he was hoping as a hanger-on to Mellia he would be in the sorts of groups that went hunting. In an attempt to help the stablemaster he advised the majordomo to put the Enlo in the cellar, which did not hugely impress her. Berra turned up at Varanis’ door to complain about having her things taken away for repair, and was invited to be a guard at a party. She decided to go along.
Mellia took Yamia to the Ernaldans, where they managed to re-kindle her Devotion to Humakt in her, resulting in a polite but deadly Yamia, at least for an hour, and a large bill which Mellia directed towards her House, meaning to pay personally. The Ernaldans advised that Heroquesting was the best way to change such a thing permanently. They then returned to the Temple of Humakt, where Mellia asked Chettoria for help, and Chettoria asked if Mellia wanted the Temple to run a Heroquest for a foreign Initiate. Mellia did, and when asked said she was at the House of Saiciae. Chettoria went to talk to other Swords within the Battalion.
Xenofos had been dressed up in modern fashions which included a declaration he was in a marriage-seeking mood, although this was only mentioned when Varanis noticed the arrangement of his ribbons in House colours. He sighed a bit, but set out to be polite. He knew the calibre of the party they were attending – it was utterly top notch and tended to require favours even to get into the back room, and they were invited through the front door. Mellia entirely missed the party, through being out with Yamia.
A blonde lady, Elanka, made a bee-line for the man next to Xenofos (Vadstan, married man) and whispered something in his ear that made him turn bright red and back off saying he was not that guy. Folorn, she turned to Xenofos instead. He sang a lot of poetry at her. She obviously appreciated it. He sang one of his own compositions, the song of Varanis the Lightbringer.
Varanis heard this at about the time she also heard Berra’s voice raised in argument.1And that is what a fumbled Intrigue sounds like. She went to de-fang Berra first, and with the Humakti in tow, went to stop Xenofos from advertising her. They all stuck around, with Berra practicing her Doom Glare on anyone who tried to scope out Varanis too hard. The blonde woman let Xenofos know she would be at Darayaia’s, as if that meant something.
On their way back, Varanis and Xenofos talked about marriage and what had just happened, and then Berra mentioned she would like to speak to Mellia about Yamia, so they all went to find Mellia, who was with Yamia and Venlar, although Yamia was sleeping. Despite Venlar’s presence they talked about Mellia on the marriage market.
Venlar did not mind, and pointed out this would have the knock-on effect of increasing Saiciae klout by essentially drawing people into a bidding war. The Saiciae were planning, probably with Silor’s consent or even help, to make it seem like they were very important Up North and their daughter was getting carried off because Sartar was so impressed with them.
At this point the Enlo began to sing and play drums, and the whole house was likely to wake up. It turned out that they had indeed been put into a cellar, and they had found some empty barrels and pipes, and were making a lot of beautiful but unearthly noise about how much they loved Mother Darkness. While this was incomprehensible to most, it was also loud.
The group trouped down to see them, only to find that Yamia was already there, and utterly rapt. The Enlo were too loud, however, and had to be interrupted. Uzdok, with a keen mind, demanded three Bolgs each for them to shut up. Varanis paid that.
In the morning, Kirse wanted to see Mellia to ask who on earth was going to pay the bill for a Heroquest for the daughter of their guest Silor. She noted that Grandmother had also paid the bill from the Ernaldan Temple, which she was VERY glad to pay on behalf of her guest. Mellia went to cry on Venlar’s shoulder. Silor was there and Venlar turned out his father to comfort his girl. Silor went off to be himself elsewhere. Meanwhile Grandmother, rather tired, was concerned that Xenofos had been sent a very large number of gifts. She advised him to avoid looking marriageable for the moment, and to have a young lady on his arm to keep the middle-aged matrons at bay. Varanis had to deal with maids complaining about Berra sleeping across her door in the corridor, and the end result was that a bed was made for her across the door inside Varanis’ room.
Mellia asked for an audience with Grandmother, as she had not been summoned, and was brought into the definitely-not-a-throne-room, where Grandmother was doing the full Ty Kora Tek impression. Mellia told her about Xenofos and her suspicious of his addiction, and then added she felt they should be gaining more allies in Sartar. Grandmother noted both of those things and dismissed her.
Xenofos asked Berra to bodyguard him, but after finding out that his threat model was middle-aged women she said that she would be pretending to be his woman. That would be a lie, and she couldn’t. She did suggest Ulerians, but they decided that would be too professional, even though it would not be lying, as it would be a form of companionship that Xenofos was asking for.
“Are you leaving for the stables?” – GM
“Yes.” – Xenofos
“Traitor!” – Varanis
“Cruel.” – Xenofos
“Well, yes.” – GM
“And definitely no Kohl.” – Varanis of Berra
“She might like kohl, it is black.” – Xenofos
“You still have to wear the ribbons.” – House Servant
“There is no way I am winning this argument, is there?” – Xenofos
“Well, you could leave by the window for a life of exile…” – GM
“Did you pick this style?” – Varanis
“No, they were chosen for me.” – Xenofos
“Has grandmother talked to you about marriage?” – Varanis
“Yes…” – Xenofos
“How did that conversation go?” – Varanis
“That sweet old lady is… oh dear.” – Xenofos
“Sweet isn’t a word I would necessarily use for grandmother.” – Varanis
“Mellia, welcome! We’ve all just spent time working out how we can be lovely to you.” – GM
“This is my lying face.” – GM
“You don’t look like you are called Yamia Humakti!” – Great Sword Chettoria
“Jarang’s Daughter, Take this young lady somewhere she will find a backbone.” – Chettoria
“Before this happened she used to run around telling people how she can kill them.” – Mellia
“That is as it should be.” – Chettoria
“Intrigue… 35/10. Nice party.” – Xenofos
“(deer in headlights , oblivious of headlights)” – Xenofos
“Why is a single man hanging out with married men?” – Varanis
“Because he’s afraid of the single women!” – Mellia
“Nowhere else to file him.” – GM
“Rolling on scan to see if I spot you. …. oh honey, I’m sorry.” – Varanis
“Xenofos is being flirted with outrageously.” – Varanis
“I’m not going to recite stuff here. But she’s asking for it. She should know better.” – Xenofos
“Oh, she’s definitely asking for it.” – GM
“To the dark gates of Humakt’s Hall strode Varanis Vingan
To save Prince Kallyr, to bring back spark of Sartar’s Flame…” – Xenofos
“He settles on giving her poetry.” – Varanis
“She manages to stay conscious through the recital.” – GM
“Poor, poor Yamia.” – Varanis
“You want them to create a love of death in Yamia!?!” – Varanis
“I wonder if that counts as sane…” – Xenofos
“For anything more than a temporary fix, you need to go to the Hero Plane.” Priestess
“Oh no.” – Mellia
@@*@@smiles@@*@@ – GM
“Mellia is dashing in circles around Nochet.” – Varanis
“And not at your party!” – GM
“You’re going to owe Grandmother!” – Varanis
“Or Silor will…” – Varanis
“You’re racking up debts….” – Varanis
“And debts of this sort have political implications. But you don’t have a Varanis or Xenofos to warn you. HAHAHAHA.” – Varanis
“Are you asking battalion to arrange this for a foreign Initiate?” – Chettoria
“Yes, please.” – Mellia
“She’s obviously not a cattle raider.” – GM
“I’m not so sure about that.” – Xenofos
“Xenofos. Darlingest cousin of mine. Did you really need to pick that particular song?” – Varanis
“I am so glad I am not at this party.” – Mellia
“Have you put it about that Mellia’s out on the Market?” – Xenofos
“I will get you for this, Xenofos.” – Mellia
“Xenofos, INT x 3, please.” – GM
“91 – Berra is being unusually social.” – Xenofos
“(wonder how Varanis’ value is developing.)” – Xenofos
“X!!!!!!?!” – Varanis
“I thought we were friends.” – Varanis
“”Three bolg each. We quiet.” – Uzdok
“A message on a salvo. uhh… Salver. Salvo. Uh…” – GM
“Message is not a salvo?” – Xenofos
“Message to Mellia: See Me. Mother.” – GM
“OK it was a salvo.” – Xenofos
“Find a girl to put on your arm to fend off all the middle aged women looking for a young fancy thing.” – Grandmother to Xenofos
“Ahahahaha – let’s put Berra in a dress and have her hang on his arm.” – Varanis
“My thought also…” – Xenofos
“Grandmother was delighted to pay that bill. She even laughed when she did it. Not with you. At you.” – Kirse
“For one patient, this is not sensible. You could save many more with these resources.” – Kirse
“So, if we are going to get a dress for Berra we need to get her to the tailor’s as early as possible.” – Xenofos
“Suicide by Humakti!” – GM
- 1And that is what a fumbled Intrigue sounds like.