Cairnholm ep.7 – Storm the Building

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‘Dib’s third and final session, for now.

It’s about 8, and the sun has just dipped down beyond the horizon, when the party spots a group of five thugs leave the safehouse. Llalrii has already cased the building and reported that every entrance other than the front door has been boarded over. It seems the only course of action is a frontal assault.

The group waits a few minutes before bursting out of their stakeout position and charging across the road. Pal takes the lead and shoulders the door, easily knocking it off it’s hinges and into the room. Randall is the next to enter and catches three mail-bound soldiers in the middle of a card game. As they draw weapons Randall opens fire with his handcannon, the bullet ricocheting off their armour but causing one man to stagger.

Alexis charges in and puts one of the men down with a volley of pistol fire. Bringing up the rear, Llalrii chills the air in the room slowing the other two. One of them nods to the other, who races away from the intruders towards an upward staircase. Finally regaining his composure Pal swings and crushes the brave soldier who stayed behind as the rest of the party dashes up the stairs.

Another group of thugs ambushes the group as they ascend but between Pal’s mighty swings and Alexis’ constant gunfire the whole party manages to reach the second floor. Randall’s darting rapier doesn’t hit home even with a flurry of attacks but it leaves an opening for Alexis to perforate a second thug with bullets and Pal to hammer one ‘into the ground like a tent peg.’ Llalrii takes a blow to the head which disrupts his chilling aura for a moment and he takes his revenge with a brutal swing of his Nyss claymore.

With the noise of the fight dying down a muffled cry and be heard from a back room. Running over to the door Llalrii sees O’Hare and Zee bound and gagged with one final, terrified soldier holding a knife to the Captain’s throat. The rest of the crew move into the doorway and attempt to intimidate the man into dropping the knife. It seems that he fears his employers more than the four heavily armed mercenaries however. After a short exchange Randall grows frustrated and fires his handcannon at the man, hitting him in the shoulder and knocking the blade across the room.

O’Hare and Zee and soon unbound and the captured thug reveals that he is of such low station that he doesn’t know anything. The crew let him go and decide that if they want to catch someone of import they may need to go crash the big meeting that was supposed to happen across town. O’Hare picks up a discarded sword on the way downstairs. As soon as they get out the door a bolt of arcane energy slams into the building inches from Pal’s head and a wall of flame springs up across the street. In the flickering light the mercenary band looks to O’Hare for direction and he signals to follow him.

The captain leads the others on a circuitous route around one of the adjacent buildings in an attempt to get closer to whoever threw the arcane bolt. Rounding one corner finds him standing face to face with an angry ogrun who swings a Caspian battleblade. In the dark of the alleyway three more figures step forward. One of them is the mercenary leader that Randall had hired for the distraction and the other two are recognised as the soldiers who left the safe house earlier. One wields a sword and spiked shield while the other seems to be preparing to cast a spell. It seems the whole thing was a set up.

The sounds of swords on steel and gunfire ring out in the night once more as O’Hare and Randall square off against the Ogrun. Running around them to engage the leaders Llalrii strikes his claymore against the spiked shield a few times before eventually slipping past the thugs defences to drive the blade home. Alexis keeps the Merc leader busy while a disarmed Zee fires a few arcane bolts back at the enemy Arcanist who flees into the night.

Pal backs up Alexis against the Merc leader but his “incapacitating” blow to the head with a large hammer somehow manages to crush his skull… Woops. No one’s going to be questioning that guy. With the others taken care of, the party is able to surround the Ogrun and finish him off.

A quick survey of the area reveals a bloody trail leading off in the direction that the Arcanist ran. Feeling good about the current ‘shock and awe’ tactics the party races off after him. Through the slums they travel, down several twisting alleyways, until they find themselves entering the wealthy part of town. The party stops when the blood trail continues through a iron gate into the front door of a walled off manor.

O’Hare takes a quick peek ahead and reports two guards are just inside. Comically, the party decides to jump the fence on the other side of the compound, an endeavour that gets Llalrii and Alexis bruised up, before immediatly resuming their frontal assault and taking out the guards anyway. Even with an itchy trigger finger the first guard misses a charging O’Hare and moments later he and Pal have put them down for good.

Inside the party finds themselves in a well appointed and very normal house. A spatter of blood on the grand staircase however draws them upstairs where they find their man. Reaching the second floor the party catches a whiff of flowers before another wall of flame springs up to cover an open doorway. Llalrii recoils from it as O’Hare, Randall and Pal leap through. O’Hare rolls as he lands and brings his repeater pistol up to fire. Before them stands the wounded arcanist and a man with snow-white hair. BANG! The first shot catches the arcanist in the chest and he is thrown violently back against the wall. O’Hare thumbs the hammer, rotating another bullet into position. He aims at the man’s leg. BANG! Blood and bone fly out from his kneecap as he topples to one side. The scent of flowers is immediately replaced by the foul stench of decay.

Even as Randall races forwards to grab him by the shoulders the white-haired man’s face curls into a grin before it begins to melt from his skull. Randall shakes him and cries, “Who are you?!” But the body crumples and the arms snap free. Soon all they are left with is a dead thrall, green runes covering it’s twisted torso.

A clanking noise can be heard outside and Llalrii looks out the window, reporting that the city watch has surrounded the building. With the thrall’s body in hand the party marches straight out and throws it into the street. Randall calls out to the guardsmen, “The demon in your midst has been vanquished!”

The watch sergeant from the night before approaches the party and thanks them for their efforts. Apparently they had been watching the house for a while but were afraid to move as they thought there was more going on than simple organised crime. As a warcaster himself the sergeant notices that there is a focuser in the party and offers a decommissioned warjack chassis as reward for their work. Alexis’ eyes light up and she readily accepts. The sergeant also hands over a small sack of gold.

With their first real reward now in hand the party marches down the street, victorious. Pal holds the sack of gold over his head with two hands as they all chant, “Sack of Gold! Sack of Gold!” And it was then, drunk on battle and coin, that they called themselves The Goldsacks, and vowed to only ever charge clients in sacks of gold.


Thus ended Dib’s foray into DMing and a good time was had by all. I finished the session off by picking up the story.

The Goldsacks arrive back in Cairnholm in the early afternoon of the next day and part ways with Randall at the gates. On the way back to their headquarters above the food hall O’Hare overhears some excited townsfolk talking about someone called the Redstone Rangers. Dib is waiting for them when they arrive and hands O’Hare a letter. He also retells the story of how the Redstone Rangers prevented a train robbery and saved a bunch of Havelock Rail and Supply employees and how their name has traveled quickly around Cairnholm.

O’Hare doesn’t hear the end of the story however as he examines the letter. It’s seal depicts a skull with a bayonet through it over a cygnus. It is the emblem of the gravediggers, his old Trencher unit.

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