What I had in mind for tonight’s Blades in the Dark score was a break in to a heavily protected mansion, with enchantments and spirits guarding it, in order to meet with an old recluse who might be willing to provide them with information.
Instead, the players came up with a cunning plan which was actually sensible and had a high chance of working. Which meant they avoided all the screaming and running and the XP that came with that, but got what they wanted with a minimum of fuss and danger. It’s a nice change, since normally things are the other way round.
We resolved the Entanglements from the previous score, and got Usual Suspects, so Saya’s rival Petra, a clerk in city administration was pulled in for questioning. This gained them some Heat (being a rival, she wasn’t too unwilling to provide dirt on them), and possibly might complicate things if they tried to get information from city hall this session.
Skarlett returned from wherever she had been the last few weeks, with a smile on her face and looking rather spaced out after overindulging her vice.
Previously, having realised that they had made enemies with a vampire, they had sought help from Lord Scurlock who had given them the name of a vampire hunter in the city – an Alfred Urdelath. Unfortunately, Urdelath was somewhat of a recluse and they would need to force a meeting in some way if they wanted his aid.
Gathering information before hand turned up that he was an academic with an interest in occult antiquities. He hadn’t left his house for years, but had a couple of servants who did – a young woman in her twenties and a much older gentleman. His house, though in the nicer part of Brightstone, had the ground floor windows bricked up, and the first floor were boarded up. Higher floors had accessible windows on balconies, but Tamasis could sense that there were enchantments on the place to ward against spirits. She did catch sight of the woman, who had an odd aura about her.
Whilst they contemplated breaking in to meet with him, Rue came up with the idea to write a letter to him and try and arrange a meeting.
Now that they knew what they wanted to do, we did downtime. Rue spent a downtime action to do some research into the sort of topics he had been consulting with the Academy on, and put together some blueprints for a vampire hunting weapon, whilst the others did some training and heat reduction.
For the letter writing, I allowed the crew to work together on their Downtime action, treating it as a group action – so everyone rolled their own dice, and the highest was the result. Which was fortunate, because Skarlett with 1 dice got a 4, and Rue with 4 dice managed to roll 2, 2, 1, 1. But they got a moderate success, so I decided that their letter would be received reasonably well, and a meeting at Doskvol Academy would be arranged.
The crew decided for a social approach, which seemed sensible, and got a 5 on their engagement check, beginning the score relaxing in a study and chatting to an old man who introduced himself as Gerald Urdelath, the brother of the vampire hunter they were seeking. Definitely a more civilised start to things compared to previous scores.
Alfred as retired from vampire hunting these days, and mostly observed, but they got a decent enough sway to convince Gerald that they were interesting enough to spend some time on.
Whilst they chatted, Gerald seemed to be taking notes, but Tamasis realised that he was actually sketching the crew. He also seemed to get bored, though hid it very politely, whenever Rue started talking about the blueprints for her designs.
He agreed that possibly the crew could be helped, but they would need to provide a favour first. They had already mentioned that the reason they had vampire problems was due to having acquired items from him without permission, so Gerald felt that they would be ideally suited to this task.
Nadya Vostik is one of the new rich in Nightmarket who has a collection of antiquities, including something known as a soul marked blade (I haven’t decided exactly what this means yet), which is particularly good against vampires. She normally keeps these locked up in a very secure vault, but is planning on displaying them at a party of the rich and influential in the near future.
If the crew could obtain this particular item, and bring it to Alfred, then he will be willing to lend some aid. But that will be a different score.
With the score completed, they got XP and managed to avoid both Heat and Reputation because they went down the ultra-subtle route. For Entanglements they got Gang Trouble again, which rolling on my new charts got a result of their gang getting into a fight with the Lost. Spid tried to discipline them, but not very successfully so the gang is now a bit less happy with things.
Next week should be the score for the party at Nadya Vostik’s.