Friday, June 6, 2014

Savage Worlds - Weird Wars Rome - Caesar Ascending - Session 2

August 52 BC, Alesia, Gaul


Adventure Summary:

While the rest of his team took their horses and started to scale Mt. Rea, the Parthian mercenary Xarax followed his fellow sellsword Correus of Gaul into the forests just north of Ateria.  Although Xarax didn't trust Correus, he was very interested in the Gallic mercenary's proof that Gaul would have the upper hand in the coming conflict.  The trail into the forest eventually led to a clearing, and in this vast open area Xarax saw something that made him flee in terror.  The Parthian had left his horse at a stable in Ateria, but even on his own feet he was incredibly fast.  Quickly he sprinted through the forest, leaping over trees and rocks, and careful to dodge branches all while being chased by a creature that shocked the horse-thief to his core.  Several times he could feel the claws of the beast take a swipe at his back, but he was always one step ahead.  Xarax was too terrified to look over his shoulder, and felt that even if he were to pause for the briefest of moments his life would end.  Just before reaching the forest's edge the creature landed a single blow, slashing the flesh of Xarax's arm, but not stopping him from making it to the village.  Whatever the creature was, it chose not to follow the Parthian, who found his horse and left Ateria to warn the rest of his team.  

Meanwhile, just as Paulus, Aurelia, and Manicus set out on the mountain trail a lone rider bearing Roman colors approached.  He said his name was Matityahu ben Sim'on, and that he too was of Legio XIII, a freed slave serving Rome and the Twilight Legion. Matityahu had news that the plain separating Vercingetorix's forces from Caesar's was now a place of conflict, as vanguard forces from Gaul harried the Roman lines.  With this warning, it was advised by Matityahu that they were not to return to the Roman lines via this route, and that further reinforcements would be severely limited.  Keeping this in mind Paulus still pushed towards the team's mission of investigating the rumors and stories of the Lady of the Fang, and followed their Gallic scout Voccio up the trail.  It was a beautiful and scenic trail, but the dark forest floor held shadows that became more and more prominent as the Roman legionaries approached the summit.  Halfway to the top, an exhausted Xarax appeared, galloping on his horse at full speed towards the party.  Out of breath and white with fear, Xarax told his decanus that the forests to the north of Ateria held dark and evil forces.  Their descriptions he could not give, save that there were dozens and dozens, if not hundreds, of creatures but all he saw were their teeth and their eyes.  This too did not dissuade the Decanus Paulus, and he pushed his team further towards their goal.  

Eventually the trail led to the top of Mr. Rea.  The sky above was becoming dark, as early evening surrounded the Roman legionary force.  There was a circle of standing stones and a single pool of water at the summit.  Aurelia quickly recognized this as a druid's site, and as she moved forward to investigate, a Gallic soldier wearing a wolf pelt approached.  Aurelia asked about the Lady of the Fang, and the soldier obliged, leading the Roman priestess to the pool and to a majestic and lithe figure, clad in animal skins.  The woman claimed to be the Lady of the Fang, and seemed undeterred by the presence of the Roman forces at her sacred place.  The spoke of the evils of Rome, and that soon the forces of Caesar would know fear and destruction.  Although surrounded by Decanus Paulus' small unit, the Lady of the Fang majestically walked past the party and into the woods.  

And then the Gallic soldier turned into a massive werewolf.

The enormous beast was nearly eight feet tall, a snarling mass of fur, fang, and muscle.  Slashing at Aurelia with it's claws, it tore into the priestess's flesh.  While the rest of the team began to take formation, six additional Gallic lycanthropes appeared.  These "wolfmen" seemed smaller than the "Wolf of War" but were still dangerous and deadly in their own right.  Paulus called the berserking  legionary Manicus to his side, and the two locked shields and battled the Wolf of War directly.  Although their blades could not sink into flesh initially, a quick word to Mithras and their sword and spear were able to smite any beast.  Their continued attacks would be enough to wound the Wolf of War, but they had to chip away as they were unable to land a single deathblow.  Aurelia called upon Mithras as well, asking for the power to strike fear into the lupine hearts of her adversaries, successfully stalling the beasts wherever possible.  Matityahu showed his skills as a gladiator, locking three of the wolfmen in lethal gladitorial style combat single-handedly through trident and net.  Xarax found the best place to snipe by vaulting off of his beautiful horse onto one of the standing stones, bow and arrows in hand.  

As the battle progressed the party found that while the werewolves were not invulnerable, they were hard as hell to kill.  Only the Mithras-blessed gladius and hasta of Paulus and Manicus were able to injure the Wolf of War, and Matityahu and Xarax's weapons caused limited damage to the wolfmen.  A pair of wolfmen would fall in the battle, but so would a pair of the heroes.  Aurelia and Paulus would both fall to the claws and fangs of the werewolves.  Aurelia would be clawed down by one of the wolfmen who managed to flank the priestess while Paulus was bitten straight through his armor by the giant Wolf of War.  Fearing that two of his teammates were dead, Xarax realized that the current plan wasn't working fast enough.  Even with the trained triari legionary Manicus now fully enraged, Xarax used his wits to figure out this predicament. The Parthian needed to cause massive damage, and cause it all at once, so taking a look at the standing stones behind the Wolf of War Xarax found what he hoped was a weak spot in the stone.  With a carefully launched arrow, he struck the necessary point and the giant stone lurched forward landing on top of the wounded Wolf of War killing it.  The rest of the Wolfmen, fearing for their own lives now that their commander was slain, quickly departed the scene, running into the woods to regroup and get back to their kin.  

It was then that Xarax revealed to the rest of the party that the creatures he saw with Correus were dozens of wolfmen and wolves of war... all waiting to pounce on Caesar's legions!


Quotes:


"All I saw was teeth… and eyes!" - Xarax tells the party what he encountered in the woods north of Ateria Village.

"I can't imagine you could be that important." - Aurelia's big mouth worked well for her in front of the demi-deity the Lady of the Fang.

"Come on, that was a solid hit!" - Brian's trident fails to connect with the wolf man's flesh.  


Cast of Characters:



Paulus Treblanus Epolonius - Decanus, Seasoned
- Agility: d6,  Smarts: d6,  Spirit: d8,  Strength: d8,  Vigor: d6
- Edges:  Rank, Shield Wall, Command, Arcane Background: Cult of Mithras
- Hindrances:  Code of Honor, Loyal, Vow: Twilight Legion
- Skills:  Fighting d8, Throwing d6, Knowledge: Battle d6, Intimidate d6, Faith d6, Survival d4, Stealth d6
- Powers:  Smite, Healing

Manicus Atilus Damaticus- Roman Legionary, Seasoned
- Agility: d6,  Smarts: d6,  Spirit: d6,  Strength: d8,  Vigor: d10
- Edges:  Brawny, Shield Wall, Berserk, Counterattack
- Hindrances:  Touched, Shirker, Death Wish
- Skills:  Fighting d10, Throwing d8, Notice d4, Swimming d4, Climbing d6, Riding d4

Aurelia - Priestess of Mithras, Seasoned
- Agility: d8,  Smarts: d8,  Spirit: d10,  Strength: d4,  Vigor: d6
- Edges:  Arcane Background: Cult of Mithras, Power Points, New Power
- Hindrances: Small, Big Mouth, Loyal (Paulus)
- Skills:  Fighting d6, Shooting d8, Healing d6, Persuasion d8, Riding d6, Faith d10, Language (Gallic) d4
- Powers:  Healing, Fear, Stun

Xarax - Auxilia Horse Thief, Seasoned
- Agility: d10,  Smarts: d8,  Spirit: d4,  Strength: d6,  Vigor: d6
- Edges:  Fleet-Footed, Marksman, Thief
- Hindrances:  Foreigner, Wanted, Delusional
- Skills:  Climbing d6, Notice d6, Riding d8, Shooting d10, Stealth d8, Tracking d6, Lockpicking d6, Fighting d4


Matityahu ben Sim'on - Ex-Gladiator, Seasoned
- Agility: d10,  Smarts: d4,  Spirit: d6,  Strength: d10,  Vigor: d6
- Edges:  Brave, First Strike, Quick
- Hindrances:  Foreigner, Enemy (Apophis the Gladiator), Illiterate
- Skills:  Climbing d6, Fighting d10, Intimidation d6, Riding d6, Streetwise d4, Swimming d4, Throwing d10, Language (Aramaic) d4