Game On V: The Last Monday Game


We pick up back in Assiniboine Forest, just after nightfall, in the killing cold, after killing another ogre. Christian and Paul have a heart-to-heart about how Christian’s a FRIGGIN’ GHOUL! While this is going on, Anne spots shapes moving in the shadows, surrounding our heroes.

Paul conjures some light, catching all the wyldfae in their furs, feathers, and beads stalking through the dark winter forest. They freeze for a moment, then Crazy Tomcomes in and extends the invitation of the Bramble King to join him at his court for an audience, as Christian had requested. They agree, and follow the fae company to a mound of brush in the middle of the forest, and through a stone doorway into the Bramble King’s hall. Along the way, Anne warns the others about the dangers of faerie food and drink, and how fae cannot lie or break a promise.

It’s a cross between a faerie mound and a native lodge, with a huge central fire-pit and blankets and tapestries hanging on the wall. There are scores of fae inside, dancing, drinking, and eating, and they all go silent when the characters enter. Crazy Tom announces them to the Bramble King, a two-foot-tall, porcupine-like little man seated on an antler throne on a little dais carried around by a troll. He invites them to sit with him around a sumptuous feast, which none of them touch.

The war council doesn’t go very well. None of the four wish to pledge themselves to serve the Bramble King (except Lucky, but he doesn’t want to swear anything until he hears the reciprocal pledge), and the Bramble King doesn’t seem to want to offer anything unless the oaths are made. He even tempts Anne with a cure for her sister, but she doesn’t trust him enough to bite. Finally, the Bramble King sees that he’s not getting anywhere, calls them all cowards, and vanishes along with his court and hall, leaving our heroes sitting in the snow and dark.

Now they’re pissed.

They retire to Archangel Fireworks to talk about their options and to load up on supplies. They decide that they’re not going to walk away from a battle between the faeries, internal matter or no, and that they really want to show up the Bramble King. So, they go off to First Folio to see if Artemis Black has a copy of the Unseelie Accords and the Covenant of the Consecration of the Two Waters. The Unseelie Accords fill roughly a hundred volumes, too much for them to get through in one night, so they go looking through the Covenant to see if they can find a loophole.

And find it they do. The actions of the Winter Court constitute an external invasion against the Assiniboine Ramble, one of the protected powers of the Consecration of the Two Waters, and the mortal casualties show that the engagement is spilling over onto other protected parties. With the proper invocation and sacrifice, it is possible to gain the blessing of the Two Waters to act as champions and intercede in the matter.

With that idea, everyone goes and gets some money for the sacrifice, warm clothes, and weapons, and they all meet at the Forks, where the Red and Assiniboine Rivers meet. Out on the ice at the confluence, Paul conducts the ritual sacrifice and asks for the blessing of the spirits. He gets it, and uses his Sight to confirm that the Two Waters spirits are pleased.

Then it’s back once more to Assiniboine Forest in the cold and dark, to the closed portal to the Nevernever. Paul tears it open with only minor problems for him and his companions, and they troop through into the stronghold of the Winter Court noble leading the attack. After a desperate run through the snow while being chased by rimehounds, they get to the lodge of the noble, and demand entry. When the doormen are a bit too slow to respond, Christian takes the decision out of their hands, and the door off its hinges.

Inside, after a little conversation, they are faced by a very angry Sidhe noble and his two ogre guardsmen. Things go rapidly to hell, and Lucky winds up putting a bullet through the noble’s forehead with the single shot he manages to get off before his gun stops working*. In the ensuing astonished pause, Christian pops the head off one of the ogres, and Paul demands that the Winter Court leave off its invasion in the name of the spirits of the Two Waters.

With the fae thus cowed, our heroes beat a hasty retreat back to the mortal world and warmth. The cold snap breaks, and each of them receive an amulet from the Bramble King. Three of them reject the gift, but Lucky seeks out the Bramble King and pledges himself to his service**.

And everyone lived happily ever after***.


  • It is incredibly fun to GM conversations with the fae. I made it a game to see how few of their questions I could answer, shifting the topic, responding with questions, and turning to new people to speak to. Throw in a few straight answers to keep ’em guessing, and it’s a hoot.
  • Nothing moves a story forward like a pissed-off PC.

* I believe he spent five Fate Points on that little trick.

**No mechanics on that, because it happened essentially out of game.

***But only because this was the last playtest session.

Game On III: The Second Monday Game


Second session started with me trying to rope Paul Roman into the action. His player wasn’t able to make the first session, so he was coming late to the party. I got to use another of my NPCs, sending Matthew Cross to talk to him. As the Voice of Anubis, Matthew knows a lot of the nasty things Paul has done over the years, and he came and told him that Anubis said that Paul should look into the cold and deaths as a means of balancing the scales while he can.

Paul didn’t like it, but he knows he’s in the hole as far as karma goes, so he trotted off to see Lucky Firth at the Public Safety Building. Lucky’s still having some difficulty buying into the whole mystical thing, so they spent a few minutes bashing their heads together, then Paul left his number with the detective and went off to find things out on his own.

He did this by talking to Crazy Tom, getting roughly the same information the others had got the day before. Then he went off to the Assiniboine Forest to summon the spirit of the forest for information, finding out a little more, and getting very, very cold in the process.

At this point, Christian’s character showed up, so we flashed back to the end of the fight the previous night, where Christian very carefully avoided giving any useful answers about his ghoulish nature. They also scouted around the area of the fight, looking for evidence of where the other group of fae had gone, but came up empty. Finally, they fled the cold back to their vehicles and home.

The next day, Lucky told Anne about Paul, and Christian went back to Crazy Tom to ask for an audience with the Bramble King. Tom reluctantly agreed to take the message to the Bramble King, but made no promises. Anne went to First Folio, looking for some research material, and ran into a gang of wyldfae trying to shake down Artemis Black for magic books to help them in their battles. She chased them off, and spent some time with Denizens of the Nearer Fields, by Salman al Rashid, learning about the vulnerabilities of the fae.

 The trio decided to go back to the forest in order to try and find better signs of the faeries in daylight. They met Paul leaving the forest at that point, and all retired to a Tim Horton’s for some coffee and to share information.

They went back into the forest near dusk and found the place where they’d fought the ogre the night before. Paul used the Sight to scan the area, and found the portal to the Nevernever that the fae had come through. While examining it, right at sunset, he felt a surge of power, and Anne heard the far-off call of hunting horns. Paul quickly conjured a barrier over the portal, and was rewarded with the impacts of several faeries on the far side before an ogre bashed his way through, followed by four Sidhe warriors.

The battle went in favour of our heroes again, with Lucky burning a whole stack of Fate Points on the final few gunshots, Anne laying iron filings across the portal to prevent reinforcements, Paul shutting down the portal’s magic, and Christian keeping the ogre occupied until everyone could focus on it.

And, once again, we leave our heroes in the dark and cold of the Assiniboine Forest after fighting for their lives.

Comments on this session:

  • Combats are getting easier for the players as they learn the ins and outs of the system. They’re expanding their tactics to try new things – for example, Anne drove off the wyldfae at the bookstore with a recording of church bells.
  • Someone with a lot of Fate Points during the climactic scene can really steal the show.
  • The patch rules for Evocation that were sent to the list recently work very nicely in play.
  • Players here in Winnipeg really understand what -50 C means. Just describing the cold to Paul’s player had him almost shivering when he knew he’d be out in Assiniboine Forest for hours working his ritual to summon the forest spirit.

All in all, things are working fairly well. Check back this weekend for the report on the next Friday Game.