Friday, May 6, 2016

Changeling: The Sweater Unravels

Busy week at work plus gearing up for MarCon equals not having time to do this write-up until now GO!

Last time, the characters captured a Thallain and decided to bring him to Duke Kelodin for interrogation. They called him up and, and Kelodin said to meet at the gym where Parliament had been held. He would get there as soon as he could, but he'd call someone to meet them.

When the motley got there, Baroness Ulsa was waiting for them. To refresh your memory, Ulsa is an Unseelie Scathach sidhe whom Zulkis knew carried out the assassination of a city councilman on behalf of Count Maldiset (the job he had refused, that lost Zulkis his title). When they brought the Thallain in, several of the characters noticed a flicker or recognition from him when he saw Ulsa (that Thallain has a shitty poker face).

Ulsa used Legerdemain to immobilize the Thallain, and talked with the characters a bit. She recommended that they check the perimeter of the building. Thaia, Zulkis, Krysa, and Ambrose split up and walked around the building, while Sander stayed with Ulsa to watch the Thallain captive. Krysa called up her rats and got a bazillion successes on the Guest List cantrip, so the rats circled the building, and then warned her of a breach.

Ambrose, meanwhile, tried using his newly-acquired Chronos Art to look back in time, but botch and stuttered in time a bit, unable to get his equilibrium. The characters converged on a window looking into the gym, and found they had a good view of Sander, Ulsa, and the captive.

Inside, Ulsa was talking with Sander and flipping her daggers around in an impressive but nonchalant fashion. Nothing seemed untoward, but the changelings outside realized someone had cast a cantrip. They found a small trinket on the ground, one of the Treasures stolen from Spruce's repair shop. It had been smashed to pieces - possibly to power a cantrip? Breaking a Treasure release Glamour, after all.

Thaia used Soothsay to get some insight into what had happened, and realized that the cantrip that had been cast here was one that they'd seen earlier that night. Krysa remembered that a doorknob at the theater had been poisoned with the Poison Apple cantrip...but what was the target?

They went inside and discovered that the Thallain was dead...poisoned. Had the ropes been poisoned? Had he been poisoned directly? Duke Kelodin arrived and Baroness Ulsa took responsibility for the captive; she said she shouldn't have tied him up in view of the window. Kelodin dismissed her, and then talked with the motley - he said that he didn't trust Ulsa, but wasn't sure of the angle.

The motley tried to suss it out. Ulsa was working for Maldiset, they knew that. But Maldiset wouldn't benefit from the Thallain trying to start a war between changelings. The characters decided they needed to find out more, so they split up. Krysa and Ambrose set off after Ulsa, using Krysa's rats to track her. Thaia used Soothsay again, zeroing in on whoever cast the Poisoned Apple cantrip. She followed the will-o-wisp, and Zulkis and Sander went with her.

The rats led Krysa to a club with a line out the door; Krysa tried to get in, but the bouncer wasn't interested. Ambrose crept around back and slithered in a window, and hid in the crowd; the noise and lights bothered his senses.

Meanwhile, the other three changelings had made a big circle and approached the club from the other direction. The bouncer pointed at Thaia and told her she could go in (she's a sidhe, remember), and Sander charmed his way in, too. Inside, they saw Ulsa sitting at a table with a changeling...they thought? They didn't recognize his kith. The glowy ball, however, made straight for them (Ambrose had been creeping toward them, too, but the glow-ball kind of tipped Ulsa off).

Ulsa looked up, jumped up on a railing, and fell forward into the crowd. Ambrose tried to catch her, but missed, and she vanished. The other changeling tried to run, but the others caught him. He introduced himself as Fetinus.

He said that he was Thallain, and he and his friends Rista (the now-dead Beastie) and Hyum (the now-dead skinwalker) had been hired by a woman named Hex to work with Ulsa. The aim? Start chaos? Fetinus wasn't exactly sure of the long-term goal, but he said he didn't need one. After all, he said, you folks are all Unseelie. You're just one little push away from us.

He agreed to talk with them if they could get him out of the city; he had no interest in joining his comrades. The characters figured they should take him to Kelodin, and so we ended much as we began - en route to see the duke with a captive Thallain in tow.

But who is Hex? All Fetinus said was that she wasn't Thallain...in fact, he didn't know what she was. She just wanted to "burn it all down."

Next time, the exciting conclusion!