March 19th, 215
The player characters begin the scenario in the town of Grontvand, going about their normal duties. Just another normal day. Ingrid Horoldsdottir (Kathy) and another of the hirdmen, Berger Erlandsson, are escorting Valdis Bjornsdottir, the healer's apprentice, back to the town through the Tornede Skov after a day's worth of gathering herbs. As dusk approaches, they emerge from the edge of the wood, relieved to get out of the forest.
Back in Grontvand, Sigrun Evardsdottir (Angela) is being trained by her brother, Eirik, in the ways of sword fighting. Eirik does not take it easy on his sister, wounding her several times with the practice swords, much to the dismay of the hirdman leader, Bjorn Ulfsson. He stops the sparring, and tells Sigrun to go see the healer and get herself fixed up.
Ogir Haralfsson (Nick) is out on the edges of the Tornede Skov with Vigfur Egilsson (Tom), as the two are learning from each other of scoutcraft. The two talk about their pasts and their families, and realise they have more in common with each other than they thought. As they prepare to head back for Grontvand, as dusk approaches, Vigfur spots something moving through the edges of the forest. Several things, in fact. He can't make out what they are exactly, but he tells Ogir.
Dagna Styrsdottir (Joanne) comes out of a trance after having one of her prophetic dreams. Her apprentice, Jordis Hodersdottir (Ellie), is concerned about her, as she screamed out. Dagna says they have no time, and races for the longhouse, Jordis pursuing her as fast as she can. She interrupts the Jarl, Evard Knudsson, in his duties, but says they must talk. As his counsellors listen in, Dagna warns him of "the coming of the wolves", and tells him of her prophetic dream - the town under attack by four-legged creatures, the image of a large wolf, and what she perceived as one of jarl's sons (she couldn't tell which one) being mauled by a pack of wolves. Evard asks her what they should do, but she does not know; the jarl sequesters himself with the three counsellors present, and evaluates how to handle the situation.
Amund Torkelsson (David) is sitting in his hovel, scribing out a new saga of one of the most recent events that occurred in Grontvand. He is interrupted by a visit from Lifa Gyrdsdottir, a young woman with whom he's been having an affair lately, and the Norse girl distracts him from his work on the last stanza of the saga he was working on.
Out on the edges of the Tornede Skov, Ingrid, Berger, and Valdis are continuing on back towards Grontvand when they are attacked by surprise by a creature from the woods. Half-snake, half-bear in shape and form, some 3 metres in length, the three fight savagely, their cries echoing, and attracting the attention of Ogir and Vigfur. The fight is short, but brutal, as the five characters fight for their lives, managing to wound the creature several times and driving it off. As the characters take stock of their situation and wounds, they realise that Valdis Bjornsdottir is grievously injured and seems to be dying. They quickly return with her to Grontvand, and make straight for the healer.
By the time they reach Osk Knutsdottir's (the healer) dwelling, word of the attack has spread through the main community, and several of the major personages go to the healer's home to learn more. Sigrun, being treated by the healer at the time of the group's arrival, has a ringside seat to it all. Ingrid, Berger, Ogir, and Vigfur tell everyone relevant what has happened. The hirdman leader immediately orders a patrol sent out, but he is vetoed by the Jarl, who says better to keep everyone safe until they know what they're dealing with.
Attracted to what's going on at the healer's, Amund arrives just in time to hear of what happened out in the Tornede Skov, and goes to pay a visit to Hulm Bredesson, the old skald of the community. When he tells Hulm what he has learned, the old skald tells him that he knows what it might be. He reminds Amund of a saga called "The Tale of Magni and the Beast". Amund realises that the creature that attacked the characters and grievously wounded Valdis is a Galspole (a "Madcoil"), something that is only a legend, but that appears to be all too real.
Returning to the healer's, Amund finds that they have all gone to the longhouse to debate what to do. He checks in on Valdis, and finds that her condition is grave. Amund races to the longhouse, where he enters to find a heated discussion under way. Ogir and Dagna engage in heated conversation with Vigfur about the creature and whether they should track it down to see if it can provide a cure for the toxin ravaging Valdis's body. Dagna advocates other means, perhaps consulting herbal lore and knowledge of the community, so she is pleased to see Amund arrive when he does.
Amund tells Edvard, his counsellors, and the player characters what he's learned from the old skald, Hulm Bredesson, and that the creature which poisoned Valdis may well be a Madcoil. Osk Knutsdottir says that she remembers some of the old stories about the creature, as does Dagna and Ogir, and that one of the possible cures for the poison is a herb called water's belle, a blue-green plant that grows only in one location in the area near Grontvand - a small glade in the Bladguld Wood. Edvard Knudsson orders Dagna, Ogir, Vigfur, and Amund to make preparations and leave for the glade within the next hour or so. Ingrid tells the Jarl that she intends to go as well, since she feels somewhat to blame for Valdis's condition, and on hearing this, Sigrun tells her father that she intends to go as well. The jarl is somewhat taken aback by this, but agrees to allow his daughter to go. The various characters hurry off to make their preparations to go on the vital mission.
Had a pretty good evening with the Friday night gaming group last night.
The players continued on with the Yggdrasill RPG campaign last night, starting a brand new scenario. One that I've run variants of in pretty much every rpg that I've ever run over the years.
The scenario got off to a good start, but what has impressed me the most with the Friday night players and their characters so far has been the relationships being established. Kathy's hirdman is having a wonderfully interactive relationship with Angela's noble, whom she's pledged to protect, but the two characters are developing a camaraderie and affection for one another that's more than just noble/protector. And their banter has been quite...lovely. Nick's thulr has discovered he's got a good deal in common with Tom's scout and Joanne's volva, so there's a good friendship there, so far - and one that led to some interesting behaviour during the last combat kerfuffle the group had.
Anyway, great gaming session to start the second scenario. Looking forward to next Friday's game session.