The Arioniad – Scenes 21-22

I have resisted my usual urge to meddle with the rules manfully, but now I’m starting to give in to it. I want the adventure to go faster, so I am going to count each clue achieved twice for purposes of advancing the story. So, our next Story Advancing Scene is 1d6 (6) + Rep (4) + clues solved (doubled, so now 8 rather than 4) = 18. Find an object.

Is the Big Bad here? 1d6 vs 1: 6, definitely not. Daytime? 1d6 vs 3: 3, so yes. Difficulty: lower of 2d6, no modifiers: 1, 3 so 1. Arion rolls 2d6 vs Rep (4): 4, 5 = pass 1d6. Object rolls 2d6 vs 1: 3, 3 = pass 0d6. I consult the Search For Thing Table (p. 35) and discover Arion finds the object, but suffers Complications.

Our heroes enter a clearing and pause for breath. Arion gently lowers Coriander to the ground, checks her for injury, and gives her some water from a canteen.

Here I roll 2d6 vs 3 (Coriander’s Rep) on the Recovery Test (p. 55). It took me quite a while to find that in the rules, so take note of the page number. 2, 6 = pass 1d6. It says “Wounded characters recover all lost Rep except one.” Well, Coriander was hit by a Mk 1 fist, so she didn’t lose any Rep. We’ll call that recovered, then. No, I don’t know where the canteen came from either, it just seemed like he should have one.

Coriander stirs, and sits up, holding her head.

“Hold still,” says Arion, looking at her bruises. And probably her bumps as well. “Can you walk?” he asks. She nods, and taking his hand, rises to her feet.

“Where are we going?” asks Dmitri.

“This way,” says Arion, moving off.

“True, but not helpful,” Dmitri points out. Coriander leans close to him and says, under her breath, “No, he doesn’t have a clue where he’s going. But one way is as good as another, we need to keep moving or they’ll find us.”

“I heard that,” Arion calls back over one shoulder. The others hurry to catch up.

After a while, the group comes upon a statue of a cat, half-buried and covered in vines.

“Is that what the giant cats look like?” asks Dmitri.

“Yes,” says Coriander. “Except they’re usually more giant. But, it’s a good likeness.”

I now move to Solving the Clue (p. 35). Difficulty: Lower of 2d6, no modifiers: 2, 3 so 2. Arion now rolls 3d6 (4 for his Rep, less 1 for complications) vs 3: 3, 6, 6 = pass 1d6. The object rolls 2d6 vs 3: 3, 4 = pass 1d6. Since both passed the same number of dice, Arion rolls 1d6 vs Star Power (2): 6, so he cannot figure out the meaning of the clue.

Arion pulls off vines, pokes and prods in an attempt to find some sort of concealed compartment or secret lever, looks at the markings chiselled into the stone, and at length stands back and mops his brow.

“Just as I thought,” he says. “I have no idea what this means. Coriander, you live here; do you know anything about statues like this?”

“No,” she admits. “Not that will help us, anyway.”

The trio move off, deeper into the jungle.

Might as well roll for the next story advancing scene: 1d6 (3) + Rep (4) + clues solved (4 x 2 = 8): 15. Find an object again. But first there is another travel scene; to a lost world in a tramp steamer, no encounter. The tramp steamer has no passengers, but a crew of 11. That’s too complicated for me tonight, so…

Emerging into yet another clearing, Arion and company behold a Free Trader starship, landed hard enough to buckle the undercarriage, but not actually crashed, and partly overgrown with vegetation.

“Anyone home?” calls Arion. There is no reply, so he moves forwards towards the port side cargo hatch, which has burst open with the force of the landing.

Coriander concentrates for a moment. “There’s no-one here,” she calls. The three squeeze inside, and examine their surroundings. A dozen or so skeletons in Gimirri uniforms are tossed around inside like broken dolls. Obsolete weapons litter the deck. There are ancient bloodstains, and deep gouges in the walls where something with very big claws took a dislike to the occupants.

“Looks like this is not the first time someone tried to capture a Dinobastis,” Arion says. “Maybe I get can this thing flying again; that’d beat walking through this jungle.” He taps a nearby instrument panel. “Lights, so the power plant must still be good.” He disappears towards the flight deck.

Cut to an exterior shot, of the ship powering up, struggling against the vines which have begun to cover it, and eventually lifting off. It staggers through the air, with a pronounced list to starboard, and small pieces falling off it as it goes.


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