John Kahane (jkahane) wrote,
John Kahane

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Saturday Night Airship Pirates One-Shot Adventure

As noted in the previous entry, Friday night's game of the Abney Park's Airship Pirates game was called off for various reasons. However, last night (Saturday), I played a self-contained, one-shot adventure of the game with Kathy and my goddaughter, Ellie. Since this post is quite long, I've put it behind a cut for those who don't want to read about the roleplaying game campaigns that I'm running.

Date: To Be Announced


Lady Emily Harrington-Boothe (Kathy Bauer) - Neovictorian Lady
Caliandra Shade (Ellie Bauer) - Skyfolk Thief and Trouble Magnet

Lady Emily Harrington-Boothe ducks for cover behind the nearest crate, and calls out to find out if Calliandra Shade is all right. Calli says she's fine, but that the two of them are somewhat trapped. As the warehouse goes up in flames, with small explosions going off from time to time, Lady Emily wonders how they'll get out of this mess. She goes over in her mind how she and Calli got into this situation...

[2 Days ago]
Lady Emily and Calliandra say their farewells to Captain Angela Stormfist of the Bountiful Queen, as they are dropped off some three miles walk from the edge of the forest town of Halley's Crest. The two have come to Halley's Crest on a mission to find out what's happened to several crates of machinery parts that vanished off the Bountiful at a port of call, and that one of Richard Sequoia's contacts among the Running Turtle Neodbedouin tribe informed him had appeared in the small town.

The two start to walk to the town in the near distance, when they hear the sounds of an approaching steam truck. The steam truck stops on seeing them, and they manage to hitch a ride with Cale Halley, one of the local engineers from the town, who's returning after checking out some problems at a small farm nearby. Stating that they're visitors dropped off by a small group of Neobedouins, the two characters learn a bit of the town's history and about some of its landmarks. When Calli tells him that they're looking for some machine parts, Cale tells them to talk to Harry Osterhagen, who runs a machine parts facility that the Running Turtle tribe tend to deal with when they need stuff for their vehicles. Arriving in the middle afternoon, Lady Emily and Calliandra book themselves a room at one of the town's inns, The Green Comet, and then wander about the town getting their bearings.

The next morning, Lady Emily heads for Osterhagen's Gears to talk with the owner and see what she can learn, while Calli goes off to see what she can hear with a more "subtle" approach. Lady Emily is unable to talk to Harry Osterhagen, as he's out on a trade deal, but his wife, Torra, tells Lady Emily that they have a few of the machinery parts that she's looking for. Lady Emily learns that the parts were traded to her husband by one Trad Marshall-Jones, a Neovictorian from the nearby Skyloft, New Deseret, who buys and sells various goods (some not exactly legal). She learns that Trad is still in Halley's Crest, and is staying at the Wayward Windship, a bit of a dive as inns go but still quite serviceable. She heads off for the inn.

Meanwhile, Calliandra puts her ears to the ground, and learns that the type of machinery parts she's looking for, "taken from an airship trader", were brought to town by one Trad Marshall-Jones, a bit of a thug and a tough from New Deseret, but with a strong "merchant mercenary" sense about him. She learns that he's got a warehouse where he stores much of his "materials" when he's in town near the mooring docks, close to where many of the Neobedouin tribes stay in Halley's Crest. Before she can head there to check the lay of the land, she's attacked by a couple of thieves, who mistake her for somone preying on their territory. Calli disavows them of this belief, and once both thieves are unconscious, she robs them of their coins!

Lady Emily makes her way to the Wayward Windship, and has to contend with several scummy air sailors who make a pass at her. She finds Trad Marshall-Jones, but he denies having any of the machinery parts that she's looking for and which she knows he sold to Osterhagen's Gears, and he threatens her to stop asking questions about things that he, a legitimate businessman, doesn't know about. She thanks him for his time, slaps one of the impertinent air sailors before she leaves, and heads back to the Green Comet looking for Calliandra. As she nears the inn, she's accosted by a couple of ruffians armed with swords (!!), and defends herself. One of the ruffians reveals that he works for Trad Marshall-Jones, and before she finishes them off, she takes the man's small pass with the Trad-Jones symbol on it.

Calliandra returns to the Green Comet, where she meets up with Lady Emily again, and the two compare notes. They devise a plan that they hope will work, and spend the rest of the day relaxing, enjoying themselves, and generally being comrades and equals. Calli comments they've come a long way since she first encountered Emily and the others. When evening comes, the two ladies set out for the warehouses near the airship mooring facilities.

At the warehouse, Lady Emily and Calli find the place to be unprotected, other than a pair of townfolk serving as guards. Using the pass she took off her attacker, as well as her prodigious charm abilities, Lady Emily talks them into the warehouse. Sure enough, the two find the partially empty crates from the Bountiful in the warehouse, near a large skylight. Calli asks her if they should give the signal for their pick-up, but Lady Emily says they can't just yet. They need one other bit of information. And that's when the warehouse erupts with the sound of exploding glass, as five of Marshall-Jones's mercenaries burst in, led by Trad himself!

Bantering with the two women as the various mercs and the two women vie for a superior position, Trad tells Lady Emily that he knew she was from the Bountiful, as they were warned by a "mutual friend" that Stormfist had sent someone to find the goods that were "acquired" by his people. Lady Emily takes several pot shots at her opponents, and is lucky enough to take two of them down, but it's Calli who has the better luck - she finds a crate of some home-made grenades, with a stamp on them; she doesn't recognise it.

Lady Emily instructs Calli to throw several of the grenades, removing the pins as she throws them, and the enthusiastic youngster does so, saying this should make a good signal for the Bountiful and her recently acquired Guppy, Emily adding that they have to survive until the signal is seen. As the two of the grenades strike ground in the warehouse, they accidentally trigger the supply of demolitions there, and several explosions rip through the warehouse, the building bursting into flames. The badly injured Trad Marshall-Jones, caught on the edge of one of the small blasts, shouts that he will have his revenge, and he and one of his men leap through a large gap in the building's wall, just as the skylight above the two women shatters inward. As two more small explosions wreak havoc in the warehouse remains, Lady Emily and Calli struggle to find some cover...

[The Present]
"Need a lift?" comes a voice from above, and looking up, Lady Emily and Calli see hanging in the air above them, Arthur Quentin-Smythe lowering a rope ladder with Haley Deuce riding shotgun (literally) from the Guppy above the shattered skylight. Grabbing on to Lady Emily, who starts up the rope ladder, Calli and the former Neovictorian Lady rise up into the night sky amidst the smoke and flames of the warehouse.

This has to be one of my favourite game sessions of all-time, and one of my favourite sessions of the Abney Park's Airship Pirates RPG. Both Kathy and Ellie had a terrific time in this session, and really enjoyed the one-shot plot that started in media res. I wrote up a basic set of one-page notes for the adventure hook, planned out a couple of the major adversaries that I figured on using for this one, and made a note or two about some sub-plots based on the small adventure, but otherwise ran it on a wing and a prayer.

There was some really neat stuff that happened in this session that I'm not going to go into (you can read most of it yourself in the game session report above), but it was just soooo much fun to run this. The fact that, as Ellie said, Calli got to *do* stuff on her own for a change, made it all that much more enjoyable for her, I think, and Kathy had a really good time getting to show what Lady Emily can really do.

I don't run one-shots very often, because players for the most part prefer not to play when some of the gamers are missing, but Goddess, are these fun at times. Loved this! :)
Tags: airship pirates play, airship pirates rpg, friday gaming group, one-shot, personal, rpg chat, rpg hut, saturday

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