Kandaja (Donna) - Balam Galacean Thief
Pekkar the Strong (DavidW) - Cimmerian Pirate
Salali (Kendall) - Tamarac Adventurer
1st Du'uzu, Year 506 Meta Kataklysmos (M.K.)
As the natives flee into the woods, the player Heroes overcome their fears to find themselves facing what appears to be a large, sloth-like creature with scythes for arms, that end in sharp, clawed talons. Ever brave, Pekkar the Strong takes the lead, and swings his longsword at the creature and inflicts serious damage. Kandaja the Lean's agility and speed are sorely tested by the sloth creature's natural abilities, but she wields her sword well enough to harm the creature somewhat. Recognising she is out of her depth, Salali uses her spear to repel the creature as best she can, though it manages to get in a strike at her. With both Pekkar and Kandaja somewhat injured, the natives return and aid the Heroes in dispatching the creature.
One of the natives, Lysande, approaches the Heroes and thanks them in Atlantean for their help, and Salali thanks them in turn for coming to their aid. Lysande tells them that he's never seen anyone attack, let alone take down one of the Bripodes, and he tells them that he's willing to divvy up the spoils. Another of the natives, Kariane of Ku, offers her medical services to Pekkar and Kandaja, which they gratefully accept, and she's able to ease some of their suffering from their injuries at the talons of the Bripode. Once the Heroes and their new allies are a safe distance from the battle scene, Lysande tells them that he and his people are tribefolk of Saturnia, some born of that place, others such as Kariane adopted into the tribe. One of the hunters of the tribe, an Asena named Johano, offers each of the Heroes a single, 10-cm. talon from the creature as a memento. Pekkar and Kandaja willingly take the gift, but Salali declines, stating that she didn't earn the item at all.
Pekkar, Kandaja, and Salali join the Saturnian tribefolk in a celebratory meal [that replenishes some of their Hero Points], and are able to learn more about the tribe and the area in which they find themselves. Salali inquires of the tribefolk if they know of the ruins of a city of the First Age,and the wise woman of the tribe, Paila, tells her that Kinjohla is no myth, but it is a terribly dangerous place to seek out. None of the other tribe members will talk about it, but Paila adds that it is said to be cursed. When Kandaja asks, Paila and Lysande confer, and then tell the Heroes that the ruins of Kinjohla lie some ten kilometres to the west of where they currently are, literally on the border of Saturnia and the Black Forest. The Heroes decide that it is getting late, but the tribefolk insist on showing the Heroes hospitality for the rest of the night; while Pekkar wishes to leave, as he doesn't seem to trust these people, he is swayed to remain by Kandaja and Salali.
As the tribefolk settle down for the night, Pekkar is still adamant that there's something "off" about these people, but Kandaja scoffs at this. Salali starts to have a funny feeling in the pit of her stomach, and goes to the edge of the campsite and vomits under the trees. She realises that the Heroes have been poisoned, and rushes back to Pekkar and Kandaja. Pekkar is feeling achy and drugged, but is still functional, but Kandaja appears to be unconscious. One of the tribal warriors, Jarek of Oggia (whom Salali was attracted to during the evening's festivities) approaches, spear drawn, and tells her that the tribe cannot allow them to attempt the trip to Kinjohla; the place is cursed, and those that go there are tainted. She counters that they might not even find the ruins, but Lysande comes forward and says that it has been foreseen that they will find it, and that disaster will result. Jarek moves forward and strikes at her with his spear, but Salali counters his spear attack with one of her own, watched by other members of the tribe, and is able to wound him. Jarek loses his temper, and strikes at her in anger, but she dodges his blow, and manages to move back and protect Pekkar (who is still acting drugged) and the unconscious Kandaja. Lysande tells Jarek to cease his attack, and talks to Salali. The Tamarac adventurer convinces him that they will do their best not to bring harm to the tribe(s) [she uses Zeal, several Hero Points, and a point of Atman to do so], and Lysande calls off the attack. Salali asks him what they had planned to do with her and the other pair of Heroes; he tells her they were going to feed them "to the spirits". The rest of the night passes uneventfully, but Salali and the recovered Pekkar keep an eye on things.
As morning dawns, the player Heroes have still not overcome their newfound suspicions (and fears) of the Lysande-led tribe. Lysande, Jarek, and several of the other tribefolk apologise to the player Heroes once more, but Pekkar isn't willing to accept their words, and tells the tribefolk that he and his two female friends will be leaving the communal area as soon as possible. After cleaning themselves up some and having a morning meal with the tribe, Pekkar, Kandaja, and Salali depart into the early morning mist that lies over the land, heading in the direction indicated by Lysande and Paila in which Kinjohla lies. As the Heroes travel, Salali comments to the others that she wonders what the tribals meant when they said that they were planning to feed the Heroes "to the spirits". Kandaja says that she's just glad that they didn't find out.
Wednesday night's game session of Atlantis: The Second Age was one that was quite enjoyable, and that had a bit of something for everyone in it. The players told me they had a really good time, and that they enjoyed interacting with the Saturnian tribefolk and some of the machinations and character plots that were going on during the course of the game session. Aside from that, Kendall told me that she's been really surprised at how much she likes the game world of Atlantis: The Second Age and its game mechanics, and says that it's a fun system that doesn't "tax your brain too much, but leaves a lot of options and leeway".
I'm looking forward to the next session of this game, and can't wait to continue the Wednesday night Atlantis: The Second Age campaign.