Airships and Arcanists
Welcome to our new Campaign!
DnD 5th Edition, Steampunk Fantasy in the land of Aeranos.
What is it? It’s steampunk Aeranos. Airships, shard pistols, fireballs and dragons, floating islands and pirate kings. Ship graveyards in the Ether. Mechanized golems and arcanicraft races. Magic vs. technology. Gods vs. mortals. Ancient, magical civilizations transformed by dirty industry and the tycoons that run it. Wyld Syvani shardslingers. Rebel druids. Angry fey. Durin mines belching black clouds from the deeps. Mad Dinari tinkers, wonderful gadgets, demons at the fringes.
More to the point, I’m trying my hand at a truly sandbox style roleplaying experience. We’re going to concentrate on Travel turns, random events, and costs to keep the ships flying. I’ll be borrowing from all kinds of existing material, and probably cobbling together my own rules as well. Let the chips fall where they may. It’s an experiment. Fingers crossed it goes well.
Calder Balathor (Active Player)
Tiefling Engineer/Gunslinger, Male.
Current Captain by democratic election, Calder is highly intelligent, but sometimes reclusive when working on a new project. He has loyalty to his friends and crew, but rarely anyone else.
Cawyn Briarwood (Active Player)
Durin Druid, Male.
A follower of the Old Gods, the first ways. A keeper of the balance in an increasingly unbalanced world. And an Aeronaut to boot.
Corwyn Lys (Retired Player
Neran Cleric of The Summoner, Male.
Corwyn Lys is a mid-20's male, blonde haired blue eyed around 5'10" with a medium build. He's a cleric of The Summoner, but doesn't appear to be especially interested in proselytizing.
Grimms (Inactive Player)
Neran Warlock of Ye Olde One, Male.
An outlander raised by Hill Giants who worships the benevolent tentacled Old One from Beyond the Ether. Grimms is an odd Aeronaut for an odd world.
Harrick (Active Player)
Orokan Fighter, Male.
Harrick has been an aeronaut for a few years now, with some seagoing experience beforehand - the oroka has been a solid warrior-type on deck with weapon and shield. He's a little light on the whole "mercy" thing, but does have a loyalty to his fellow ship and crewmates.
Session 1 - "The Maven's Cry"
Octalym 23, 572fk
Current Money: 0
Ship State: NA
The Deorian capital. The City of Princes. An old, sprawling and beautiful medieval metropolis, overlaid with the trappings of modern arcanic industry. Great, Skytowers, moored with zeppelins and airships of all sizes, festooned with flags of many nations and needle-like communications crystals. In the cobbled and shadowed streets below are a mixture of horse drawn carriages and hand-carts, with the occasional hovering arc sled or arcanicraft.
And pedestrians; workers, soldiers, scholars and business types, in plaid, tweed, rags, leather and silk, going about their daily business, in robes, armor, waistcoats and top hats. Urchins on the corners, peddlers hawking their wares, the heavy tread of steam golems. And over it all, the smoke, steam and vapors of a hundred factories mixing with the fog off the great Eiryl River.
Having been drawn from various locations to the Deorian Capital of Milum, our intrepid adventurers sit in the well appointed, if sterile waiting room of The Law Office of Prof. E. Oxley Dudfield Esq. executor of the Captain’s will. Some are acquaintances, having served briefly together on one of Captain Fathak's fleet vessels. They are all here as the result of the following letter.
As an esteemed colleague of Captain Fathak D’Burgeourin, you are invited to attend a special reading of an amendment to the good captain’s Last Will and Testament. While attendance is not required, certain provisions of the will are of a time sensitive nature, and your presence is strongly recommended.
Octalym 23rd, 572FK
The Law Office of Prof. E. Oxley Dudfield Esq., Suite B
Trinity Downs Aeronautical College of Commerce and Engineering
They wait a brief while in mostly companionable silence.
After a half candle or so, a richly dressed human with short, curling blond hair and a finely polished walking cane enters. He is flanked by two men in business jackets and bowlers. In a cultured, easy going voice, he introduces himself as Master Barnabus Valmont, a one-time colleague of Captain Fathak’s.
Over a mostly one sided conversation, he reveals that he is a chief party in the Captain’s Will, though he doesn’t know what the particulars of this meeting are about. The party reveals that they know little about it either. Grimms takes the opportunity to hand Valmont a little hand drawn pamphlet explaining the virtues of the Great Cthulu. The businessman accepts it graciously.
Eventually they are saved from awkward small talk by the entrance of the mysterious Mr. El, a grizzled old human aeronaut in a fine sailor’s coat and battered top hat. It’s immediately apparent that there is unspoken animosity between he and Valmont. Mr. El pops into the office to hurry along the executor and they are led into the offices shortly after.
Professor Dudfield turns out to be a Dinari (gnome) in a finely tailored business vest and a solicitor’s mantle. After introductions, he informs Valmont that his presence is not “technically” allowed at the reading. Valmont asks the party if they mind, and they allow him to stay.
Adjusting his spectacles, Dudfield proceeds to open the papers and read:
When the reading is over, Dudfield explains that he has details on the accounts and amounts in the noted bank accounts, but asks that Valmont leave the room before proceeding. Valmont does so with a smile, only delaying long enough to mention that he is glad to have met them, and that he will be available if they need any help in the coming decisions.
When they are alone, the Professor reveals that each party has inherited 6000 gold - a none too small sum. He also tells them that the Maven’s Cry is currently docked nearby. Mr. El suggests they take a look at the vessel before coming to any decisions. Grimm seems enthusiastic to start flying. The others assume a more cautious optimism.
On the way across the campus to the ship tower, Mr. El is asked about his relationship with Valmont. He explains that he knows only a little about the man. He claims that Fathak and Valmont were once close friends and business partners, but their relationship seemed strained in later years. Since then, Valmont had little openly to do with the Captain. When the Captain died last year, it was revealed that Valmont was one Fathak’s key creditors through various intermediary companies. Most of his contracts and vessels have fallen into Valmont’s hands now, which seems downright suspicious to Mr. El.
They find the ship to be old and well seasoned, but in fair condition. They meet the ship’s current Boatswain, a Durin named Bratun Darge and the First Mate, Perry Hargate Booth, who show them around the ship. After a semi-thorough inspection, Calder pronounces the Maven a fine vessel.
Over drinks in the captain’s mess, Mr. El describes the business life of a ship like the Maven’s Cry, and tells them if they take her on, they’ll be starting with practically no reserve funds. He’s quite frank about everything, and promises that he will help with procuring contracts, for a negligible sum.
He goes over the expenses, noting crew pay, dock fees, and taxes.
Docking Fees: 50-150 per day in port.
Bank Payment: 750 gold per month
Maintenance and Stock: Crew of 20 (3000 per month)
Crew Pay: 10 gold per month plus shares.
Share Dispensation (after expenses)
Captain and First Officers (PCs): 5 Shares each (all after expenses)
Boatswain and First Mate: 1 Share +1/2 Share for peril
Deck Crew: 1/2 Share, +1/2 Share for Peril)
Deck Crew: 1/2 Share, +1/2 Share for Peril)
Then you all look at the current contracts available:
Book Run (shipping)
Milum, Deoria to Torelan, Manawyn
Pickup Date: By Oct 30, 572
Delivery Date: Dec 20, 572
Master Varic Nornin needs two crates of highly valuable texts shipped to Lady Iarrora Syljyr, Tower of Lions.
Payment: 2000 gold upon delivery.
Spice Protection (Escort)
Milum, Deoria to Drystan, Fom
Pickup Date: By Oct 29, 572
Delivery Date: Expected Arrival Dec 1, 572
Ora R. Chauntaclor of Highwind Shipping needs a light gun escort capable of high altitude flight for a zeppelin convoy of Spice and Silk.
Payment: 3000 gold upon delivery.
Ice Swamp Extraction (Rescue)
Milum, Deoria to Marfach Murk, Fom
Start Date: By Oct 30, 572
Delivery Date: Unspecified.
Pastor Ezekiel Vernell needs Bishop Foyle Doyle retrieved from a Missionary Camp in Marfach Murk.
Payment: 6000 gold upon delivery. (3000 for information)
That’s it for the first session. Join us next time for some actual adventuring.
Onward and Upward Aeronauts!