You are either not logged in or not registered with our community. Click here to register.
 
December 09, 2016, 05:26:01 PM

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Click here if you are having problems.
Default Wide Screen Beige Lilac Rainbow Black & Blue October Send us your theme!

Hark!  The Herald!
Holiday Issue 2016

Wiki Blogs Dicebot

Author Topic: Changeling: the Lost  (Read 1066 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline ladia2287Topic starter

Changeling: the Lost
« on: January 26, 2015, 03:30:46 PM »
The year is 1987. The Freehold has, for twelve years, been ruled with an almost tyrannical hand by the Courts of the Four Directions. Seasonally-inclined Changelings have been frequently bullied and harassed, and even attacked on occasion. The four ruling Monarchs, all Directional courtiers, are disinterested in these problems and for the most part simply turn a blind eye.

That is, until an event occurs which even they cannot ignore. In the space of a week, almost all the Seasonal courtiers of the city are murdered. Those extreme few who survive have pointed the blame squarely at a motley made up mostly of South and East courtiers, who vehemently deny the accusation.

Your character is an outsider, sent by another Freehold to help sort out the mess. What will you find?

This game is set in a fictional city in Europe. You may choose any Court, but may not have mantle higher than three. Court Goodwill will have no effect as you are a stranger in the city.

Base Character Creation dots only. I am intending to run this as a predominantly Freeform game, but there will be some rolls from time to time.

Please post your sheets below.

Offline Zeth

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2015, 09:44:45 AM »
Posting interest. But I won't play by myself.

Offline eternaldarkness

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2015, 04:53:27 PM »
I'm interested as well. I haven't really had a chance to play much C:tL and it looks fun.

Offline Marie Reynolds

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2015, 08:29:24 PM »
This Sounds interesting and I would love to play in this game. Are there any entitlements going to be allowed or disallowed.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2015, 10:55:57 PM »
Expressing interest.

EDIT: Second question - since we are all at 0XP, that means we should plan on making characters who are fresh out of the Hedge and new to Lost society?
« Last Edit: February 01, 2015, 11:01:01 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline ladia2287Topic starter

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2015, 04:20:18 PM »
@Marie Reynolds: I'm not automatically disallowing any entitlements, but I will need to be convinced that your character has well and truly earned them, and any mechanical requirements still need to be met.

@TheGlyphstone: New-ish, but not necessarily fresh out. Certainly not out of Arcadia more than two or three years.

Offline Zeth

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2015, 04:40:38 PM »
I think he means do we get any starting Exp?

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2015, 04:48:08 PM »
I think he means do we get any starting Exp?

No, that was stating in the OP, 0 XP. Thus I asked, because by the book, 0 XP is weeks, maybe a month or two out of the hedge - having learned nothing, developed nothing, or gained nothing since you became a changeling - 2+ years seems a bit long, honestly, even if we were all playing reclusive Hedge hermits. For example, entitlements might be allowed but without any starting XP it is impossible to meet the mechanical entry requirements for any of them that I'm familiar with (which honestly isnt many, but id be surprised if more than one or two can be met with creation dots). The book recommends 'Established Freebooters' to have 35 XP - more than 'Fresh From The Hedge' at 0, but less than "Veteran Motley" at 70.

It's just something that bugs a part of my brain when the given fluff/setting for a game doesn't match the written rules (hence my years-long running duel with D&D). Knowing which way was intended, or at least why, would help a lot and get my brain-juice flowing again.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2015, 04:54:19 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline eternaldarkness

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2015, 05:58:40 PM »
Withdrawing interest. I have enough 'starting from scratch' games, including another NWoD, and don't want any more.

Offline ladia2287Topic starter

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2015, 06:22:32 PM »
Okay, the 0xp is purely for simplicity, and to guard against excessive cheese for cheese's own sake. The fact is, you can make an established character with creation dots only (I've done it myself). What I'm saying is that if you don't want to make a freshly-escaped character, they should still be relatively new.

What will happen is that (hopefully) characters will earn certain dots during play, depending on how they go about doing things. I may also award extra free dots at creation, based on your backstory (this will be at my discretion).

Hope that clarifies things a bit better.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2015, 06:58:50 PM »
Okay, if it is just for simplicity's sake, I can get behind that.

Offline GunmetalDreamer

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2015, 02:17:21 PM »
I'd be down for this if it's still recruiting.  I'm not super-deep into Changeling, but I've read the core book and some of Masque of Winter so I followed the pitch well enough.

I'll probably pitch a Summer Court Beast.  Either someone who lost a friend when the local Summer Court went down, or someone who wants to figure out the perpetrator before the Summer rolls around and the Court back home decides to take their frustrations out on the directional courts for their "lack of vigilance" (not saying it'd be a steam roll, mind you, but that she prefers to avoid changelings killing changelings as a policy).

Mechanically speaking, are we using God Machine?  I've got the free .pdf, but I haven't really flipped through it yet.

Offline ladia2287Topic starter

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2015, 02:58:50 PM »
I'd be down for this if it's still recruiting.  I'm not super-deep into Changeling, but I've read the core book and some of Masque of Winter so I followed the pitch well enough.

I'll probably pitch a Summer Court Beast.  Either someone who lost a friend when the local Summer Court went down, or someone who wants to figure out the perpetrator before the Summer rolls around and the Court back home decides to take their frustrations out on the directional courts for their "lack of vigilance" (not saying it'd be a steam roll, mind you, but that she prefers to avoid changelings killing changelings as a policy).

Mechanically speaking, are we using God Machine?  I've got the free .pdf, but I haven't really flipped through it yet.

Not using God Machine, just plain ol' NWOD. And yeah, still recruiting :)

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2015, 03:26:16 PM »
So I'm leaning towards skimming off some of the themes from one of my other Changeling characters and making a character who escaped from a deranged Fey circus/carnival, complete with cannibal Ogre clowns as the guards/security force. I want to play an physical-oriented acrobat, someone forced to conduct death-defying aerial stunts and feats of agility, but I can't decide whether Beast Windwing, Beast Steepscrambler, or maybe something else would be the best choice.

Offline Rajah

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2015, 05:47:49 PM »
"I can sell you anything your heart desires. Sounds great, right? Yeah? You know what my heart desires? A world without any fucking pricetags. Get out of here, go home to your family. Whatever you think you're looking for, it's not for sale."

Name: Tristan Moore
Concept: Disillusioned djinni merchant-of-wonders
Seeming: Ogre
Kiths: Troll | Artist
Court: Spring

Virtue: Charity (Ruthlessness, if Second Edition)
Vice: Envy (Kindness, if Second Edition)

Attributes: Intelligence 2, Wits 3, Resolve 2 | Strength 4, Dexterity 2, Stamina 2 | Presence 2, Manipulation 2, Composure 2
Skills: Crafts 4 (Gardening) | Athletics 3, Brawl 4, Larceny 3, Survival 1 | Empathy 4 (Oneiromancy), Persuasion 3 (Deals)
Merits: Dual Kith 3, Hollow (Size) 1

Contracts: Artifice 3, Fleeting Spring 2
Mantle: Spring 1
Wyrd: 2

Once upon a time, there was a writer of grand ambition and bountiful desire, with a keen understanding of the heart (and what it took to bargain yet another extension or advance from increasingly unaccommodating publishers) and absolutely no talent whatsoever in his chosen medium. He dreamed vividly, but could not reproduce his imagination, and soon enough the many proud boasts he had impressed upon his fellows became torments that compelled an endless string of arguments, bar-fights, and increasing isolation. He found solace in his gardening, the gift he DID possess, though he could no more conceive of giving up his intended profession to deal in things so unadventurous they were actually rooted than he could of cutting off his own arm. To be a tradesman like his father - unbearably crude, almost as grotesque as those low-minded swindlers who dealt in the ephemera of New Age mysticism and the interpretation of dreams. No, his was the noble path, the path above hands or heart or mind - the soul's road belonged to the writer, and the writer alone.

So his credit suffered, both fiscal and social, and his parents threw him out and let his garden go to rot, and he fell to drinking and roughness, and the world wore on him - but he never gave up.

One day, he happened across a young woman selling flowers by the corner, and was immediately captivated - not by her beauty, though it was certainly great, but by the beauty of the central flower upon offer. It was a lotus, a thing rare in Europe and certainly unheard of in a street vendor's flower cart, and its scent filled his head with ideas that seemed to flash and crack like a thunderstorm. Ideas that, he perceived at once, could be written. He asked its price, his voice coming to him as if from a faraway land. "Irony, indignity, and adversity," she said, and he remembers quite clearly his response: "Oh, is that all? Well I've no shortage of those already. Why I'd call it a bargain." He thought it was a joke, because he hadn't been looking at her eyes. No one ever looked at her eyes. There were other things, formalities, informalities, the tryst and the merry chase along a lonely lover's lane, all overshadowed by the intoxicating scent of the lotus. For a night, Tristan imagined that his hard times had at last come to an end.

You can probably imagine the rest.

The djinni that returned from Arcadia is blue-skinned and gold-eyed, with a shining white grin and prominent fangs etched in flowing, vaguely Arabic calligraphy. His right arm - cut away by his own hand - has been replaced with a clockwork prosthetic made of verdigrised bronze and blood-red glass, sunk into his flesh with a cruel array of silver screws. His breath, blood, and sweat partially sublimate into dark clouds within which multicolored lightning flashes through the forms of fantasies and nightmares. His Keeper was the Empress of Unbidden Lasciviousness, a thousand-eyed cobra with a woman made from diamonds as her tongue, and her realm - the Gardens of Desperate Wonder - was a ruined desert metropolis half-overtaken by jungle, wherein everyone was fed a lotus that inspired endless desire. Each captive had been given pieces of the things they needed, and chosen because they contained pieces of the things others would covet. The only way to survive was trade, compromise, and sacrifice; the only way to thrive was improvisation, manipulation, and violence. He bartered his body, made a business of bullying. He sold his dreams and his storytelling - and his pride, when he saw how little such shoddy goods were worth - and invested in making others' dreams come true. He became a tradesman like his father, and swindled the unwary with ephemera and false hope.

Eventually, Tristan sold his strong right arm for a kiss and a key, the combination of which he used to unlocked the heart of the Gardens (and its familiar Flowering guard), a dust-choked conservatory housing a singular lotus that brought satisfaction and thus freedom from the Empress' spell. Though the ancient treasures that fed its soil were as sharp and cruel as Thorns, he forced a path forward to reach the blossom - and found himself home...well, almost.

His fetch is a writer of little ambition, penning East-inspired novels glorifying asceticism and honest living. They are all wonderful successes. He's married the Flowering who bought Tristan's soul, and like Tristan shares a love of gardening, though nearly everything he touches is certain to wither and die - save nettles and roses and anything else that stings or tears, plants that follow the fetch like weeds on the wind. Tristan's left him alone, too bound up in lingering horrors to fight the impostor for his stolen life. His Hollow is the central courtyard of a crumbling castle, an overgrown pleasure garden dominated by a vast weeping willow whose roots form a one-room cottage-pavilion. The castle itself is controlled by ghost-like hobgoblins who animate heaps of silverware, books, and the occasional suit of armor, but they've proven indifferent to Tristan's occupation. Its sole entrance - up through one of the corner fountains of the courtyard - is through the bottom of a small meditation pool at the back of the dingy office he's opened since his return, where he offers dream therapy and interpretation to such clientele as are attracted to his prices and not repelled by his absence of certification.

Mechanically speaking, are we using God Machine?  I've got the free .pdf, but I haven't really flipped through it yet.

It's officially Second Edition now!
« Last Edit: February 25, 2015, 04:21:14 PM by Rajah »

Offline GunmetalDreamer

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2015, 09:38:24 PM »
I want to play an physical-oriented acrobat, someone forced to conduct death-defying aerial stunts and feats of agility, but I can't decide whether Beast Windwing, Beast Steepscrambler, or maybe something else would be the best choice.

Generally for something like that, I'd suggest a Fairest Juggler (9 Again on Expression or Socialize rolls involving Agility and adds one to their Dodge total).  Not that I'm complaining at the possibility of having another Beast around, mind you, I'd just expect something more like a lion for taming, or an elephant, or maybe a crocodile for someone to wrestle in a tank of water.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2015, 09:42:29 PM »
Generally for something like that, I'd suggest a Fairest Juggler (9 Again on Expression or Socialize rolls involving Agility and adds one to their Dodge total).  Not that I'm complaining at the possibility of having another Beast around, mind you, I'd just expect something more like a lion for taming, or an elephant, or maybe a crocodile for someone to wrestle in a tank of water.

I'd been thinking something closer to a monkey, actually. But a Juggler actually sounds pretty workable - what book are they from? It didn't pop up on the list of kiths I had to reference.

Offline Rajah

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2015, 09:55:04 PM »
I'd been thinking something closer to a monkey, actually. But a Juggler actually sounds pretty workable - what book are they from? It didn't pop up on the list of kiths I had to reference.

They mean Dancer, from Core.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2015, 09:57:40 PM »
They mean Dancer, from Core.

Ah, that's why I overlooked it. I wanted someone/something that was crafted to perform aerial stunts or feats of agility, rather than just performances of athletic grace.

Though now that you mention it, a Beast Lion could also work out. Or, if we just want a straight-up bruiser, an Ogre strongman. The inspiration character for this theme was a Fairest Larcenist who worked the games-row as a carny, running crooked games, so I'm trying to do a non-Fairest concept.


EDIT: And the more I think of it, I think I'd like to try out the Ogre. a Render could have been made to perform feats of strength, both the 'lift a really heavy object' kind and the 'break something really thick/heavy bare-handed' kind.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2015, 10:07:51 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline GunmetalDreamer

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2015, 10:04:19 PM »
They mean Dancer, from Core.

Darn it.  I looked right at it and wrote the wrong word.  I blame the illustration.

Offline Zeth

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2015, 11:18:24 PM »
I got to go buy the book. They still got Trolls in the new version?

Offline Rajah

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2015, 11:40:43 PM »
If you mean Changeling: the Lost Second Edition, it's still in open development, which you can check out on the Onyx Path blogs.

If you mean Changeling: the Lost in relation to Changeling: the Dreaming, there is basically no similarity and it's best to think of Lost as an entirely different game, the way that Werewolf and Vampire are different games from each other. It's that different. Lost is about once-human survivors of fairytale horror stories, who have come home broken and scarred, with pieces missing and pieces added and no place that is truly their own.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2015, 11:49:53 PM by Rajah »

Offline ladia2287Topic starter

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2015, 01:14:52 AM »
"I can sell you anything your heart desires. Sounds great, right? Yeah? You know what my heart desires? A world without any fucking pricetags. Get out of here, go home to your family. Whatever you think you're looking for, it's not for sale."

Name: Tristan Moore
Concept: Disillusioned djinni merchant-of-wonders
Seeming: Ogre
Kiths: Troll | Artist
Court: Spring

Virtue: Charity (Ruthlessness, if Second Edition)
Vice: Envy (Kindness, if Second Edition)

Attributes: Intelligence 2, Wits 3, Resolve | Strength 4, Dexterity 2, Stamina 2 | Presence 2, Manipulation 2, Composure 2
Skills: Crafts 4 (Gardening) | Athletics 3, Brawl 4 (Boxing), Larceny 3, Survival 1 | Empathy 4 (Oneiromancy), Persuasion 3 (Deals)
Merits: Dual Kith 3, Hollow (Size) 1

Contracts: Artifice 3, Fleeting Spring 2
Wyrd: 2

Once upon a time, there was a writer of grand ambition and bountiful desire, with a keen understanding of the heart (and what it took to bargain yet another extension or advance from increasingly unaccommodating publishers) and absolutely no talent whatsoever in his chosen medium. He dreamed vividly, but could not reproduce his imagination, and soon enough the many proud boasts he had impressed upon his fellows became torments that compelled an endless string of arguments, bar-fights, and increasing isolation. He found solace in his gardening, the gift he DID possess, though he could no more conceive of giving up his intended profession to deal in things so unadventurous they were actually rooted than he could of cutting off his own arm. To be a tradesman like his father - unbearably crude, almost as grotesque as those low-minded swindlers who dealt in the ephemera of New Age mysticism and the interpretation of dreams. No, his was the noble path, the path above hands or heart or mind - the soul's road belonged to the writer, and the writer alone.

So his credit suffered, both fiscal and social, and his parents threw him out and let his garden go to rot, and he fell to drinking and roughness, and the world wore on him - but he never gave up.

One day, he happened across a young woman selling flowers by the corner, and was immediately captivated - not by her beauty, though it was certainly great, but by the beauty of the central flower upon offer. It was a lotus, a thing rare in Europe and certainly unheard of in a street vendor's flower cart, and its scent filled his head with ideas that seemed to flash and crack like a thunderstorm. Ideas that, he perceived at once, could be written. He asked its price, his voice coming to him as if from a faraway land. "Irony, indignity, and adversity," she said, and he remembers quite clearly his response: "Oh, is that all? Well I've no shortage of those already. Why I'd call it a bargain." He thought it was a joke, because he hadn't been looking at her eyes. No one ever looked at her eyes. There were other things, formalities, informalities, the tryst and the merry chase along a lonely lover's lane, all overshadowed by the intoxicating scent of the lotus. For a night, Tristan imagined that his hard times had at last come to an end.

You can probably imagine the rest.

The djinni that returned from Arcadia is blue-skinned and gold-eyed, with a shining white grin and prominent fangs etched in flowing, vaguely Arabic calligraphy. His right arm - cut away by his own hand - has been replaced with a clockwork prosthetic made of verdigrised bronze and blood-red glass, sunk into his flesh with a cruel array of silver screws. His breath, blood, and sweat partially sublimate into dark clouds within which multicolored lightning flashes through the forms of fantasies and nightmares. His Keeper was the Empress of Unbidden Lasciviousness, a thousand-eyed cobra with a woman made from diamonds as her tongue, and her realm - the Gardens of Desperate Wonder - was a ruined desert metropolis half-overtaken by jungle, wherein everyone was fed a lotus that inspired endless desire. Each captive had been given pieces of the things they needed, and chosen because they contained pieces of the things others would covet. The only way to survive was trade, compromise, and sacrifice; the only way to thrive was improvisation, manipulation, and violence. He bartered his body, made a business of bullying. He sold his dreams and his storytelling - and his pride, when he saw how little such shoddy goods were worth - and invested in making others' dreams come true. He became a tradesman like his father, and swindled the unwary with ephemera and false hope.

Eventually, Tristan sold his strong right arm for a kiss and a key, the combination of which he used to unlocked the heart of the Gardens (and its familiar Flowering guard), a dust-choked conservatory housing a singular lotus that brought satisfaction and thus freedom from the Empress' spell. Though the ancient treasures that fed its soil were as sharp and cruel as Thorns, he forced a path forward to reach the blossom - and found himself home...well, almost.

His fetch is a writer of little ambition, penning East-inspired novels glorifying asceticism and honest living. They are all wonderful successes. He's married the Flowering who bought Tristan's soul, and like Tristan shares a love of gardening, though nearly everything he touches is certain to wither and die - save nettles and roses and anything else that stings or tears, plants that follow the fetch like weeds on the wind. Tristan's left him alone, too bound up in lingering horrors to fight the impostor for his stolen life. His Hollow is the central courtyard of a crumbling castle, an overgrown pleasure garden dominated by a vast weeping willow whose roots form a one-room cottage-pavilion. The castle itself is controlled by ghost-like hobgoblins who animate heaps of silverware, books, and the occasional suit of armor, but they've proven indifferent to Tristan's occupation. Its sole entrance - up through one of the corner fountains of the courtyard - is through the bottom of a small meditation pool at the back of the dingy office he's opened since his return, where he offers dream therapy and interpretation to such clientele as are attracted to his prices and not repelled by his absence of certification.

It's officially Second Edition now!

Hey Rajah, thanks for posting your sheet. I'll go through the text later; I'm just going over the mechanics and I notice you don't list Resolve, or Mantle.

Offline Rajah

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2015, 01:28:10 AM »
Sorry about that. Resolve 2, and Mantle (Spring) 1.

Offline GunmetalDreamer

Re: Changeling: the Lost
« Reply #24 on: February 11, 2015, 12:28:11 PM »
Sorry for the delay, had to take my brother to the dentist rather suddenly.  I fear it doesn't flow as well as Rajah's, and I keep second guessing myself on my point expenditures, but here's my first take on the character.

Name:  Samantha Trowel
Concept:  Deputy from a Foreign Freehold.
Seeming:  Beast
Kith:  Clear Eyes (scent based)
Court:  Summer

Virtue:  Justice
Vice:  Pride

Attributes:  Intelligence 2, Wits 3, Resolve 3  |  Strength 3, Dexterity 2, Stamina 2  |  Presence 2, Manipulation 2, Composure 2

Skills:  Investigation 2 (Crime Scenes), Medicine 1 , Politics 1 (Seasonal Courts) |  Athletics 2, Brawl 3, Firearms 1, Larceny 2, Stealth 2, Survival 1  |  Animal Ken (Dogs) 1, Intimidation (Interrogation) 2, Persuasion 1, Socialize 1, Streetwise 2

Merits: Mantle (Summer) 2, Brawling Dodge 1, Kung Fu 2, Contacts 1 (Police), New Identity 2

Contracts
:  Eternal Summer 3, Fang and Talon (Dogs) 1, Darkness 1

Wyrd: 1

Appearance:
Samantha's mask is that of an awkwardly lanky young woman in her early twenties, thin enough to give the impression that she doesn't eat enough, but with a wiry build that keeps her from seeming weak.  Her shoulder length hair is a shade of tawny brown, brushed straight but left unstyled, and she has warm brown eyes that seem a bit too long.  Even on two legs, Samantha never really shook the habit of chewing on things, and it's not uncommon to see her working a lolipop or jawbreaker around in her mouth in her idle moments.

Samantha's mein is a bit more pronounced.  Mixed along with her shoulder length hair is a pair of long dog's ears of the same color which perk and shift as she hears things that catch her attention.  Her body is covered with a short coat of light fur which gives her body the same tawny color as her hair, and the palms and soles of her feet sport rough black pads

Samantha can usually be found wearing the livery of the Summer Court, favoring athletic wear in vivid shades of red or yellow when on her own time, or a worn denim jacket with patches sewn into it displaying crossed swords under a golden sun over a t-shirt for a local metal band.  When on official Court business, however, she cleans up fairly well in a pressed brown pants suit and tie, a golden stickpin featuring a stern sun the only nod to her affiliation.

Background:
Samantha was an eight year old girl when she was taken.  A happy girl, but she knew that something was wrong.  Her parents were fighting more and more, and when people knocked on the front door her mother would usher her into her room.  One day, during one of these visits, the door to her room openned to reveal a tall, broad shouldered man in a heavy coat who ushered a girl her age into the room.  Bored, the two girls played together to help pass the hours.  When the time came for the man to leave, however, it was Samantha's hand he took, and when she protested she saw the girl she'd been playing with waving to her from the center of her room.  The girl who now wore her face, and spoke in her voice when she said she hoped they'd be able to play again.

For Samantha, Arcadia was a dark and ominous little hamlet of narrow, twisting cobblestone roads ever lit by orange lamps viewed through dirty windows.  Jutting up from the center of the town was a dark stone keep, the hold of her master, and the place where her kennel was kept.  She remembers blustery, cold nights where she clung to the huddled forms of the master's hounds for warmth, grubbing for the food tossed in the cage along with them ... she really couldn't tell you exactly when she went from sharing their lot in life to being one of them ... sometimes she remembers the first time she was let out of the cage to be familiarized with the city on two legs, and other times on four.

As best she's been able to determine, speaking with others who were familiar with her realm, Samantha was in the realm of the Sheriff of Sootstone, an imposing creature of authority with a history of snatching errant children who dare to sneak out of the house on moonless nights.  Most become Darklings, forever trying to slip away in the night under the watch of feckless guards only to be run down by the Sheriff and his baying hounds again and again, though others who lack the wit are subjected to harsh punishments that far outstrip the severity of their misstep.  No one knows exactly why Samantha's own story is so different ... but she suspects it is because she was not stolen, but paid for in exchange for some contract.

It was on the hunt for one of those errant children that Samantha's opportunity came for escape.  It was just another night under the crooked moon, her breath came in great clouds as she bayed along with the pack, the great plodding steps of her keeper following in their wake as they strained under their leash.  They'd gone beyond the city walls, into the great open expanse where no one could hide from the light of the moon before one could reach the trees that marked the edge of the Hedge.  Samantha caught a glimpse of a leg sliding through a narrow break in the bushes, an excited howl on her lips, she'd jumped forward with all her might, frustrated by the slow pace of the man holding her leash ... and in a moment of perverse fortune, the leather strap broke against the brass ring set in her harness, setting her free.  Earth churned under her claws as she rushed ahead of the group, ignoring the call of her Master, lost in the chase as she was, and she crashed heedlessly back into the Hedge.

Samantha wasn't really aware of what she'd done until she'd pounced her prey, teeth digging into her arm and dragging her to the ground as the taste of hot blood ran over her tongue.  Over the smell of blood, however, over the sound of wailing and tears, she caught a wiff of something else.  Something she hadn't smelt in what felt like an eternity.  Chocolate cake, something she'd not tasted since her last birthday.  Curiosity and confusion caused her to let the other girl go, padding after the half-remembered smell as she slowly raised up onto her hind legs.  Strangely enough, while Samantha had followed her prey into the Hedge, it was the same woman who followed her back into the mortal realm.

They emerged from under an arched trellis in the back yard of a reasonably well-off family, toys scattered in the groomed grass as a window openned into kitchen where the smell of baking desert wafted out enticingly.  Stumbling out into the real world was a bit of a shock, for while her former quarry was still very much a child, Samantha herself seemed to have aged into her late teens during her stay in Arcadia.

For the first few weeks, the two had only each other to rely on.  The younger girl, who eventually introduced herself as Jennifer Locke, was accustomed to skulking around the streets at night and scrounging what she needed to get by.  Samantha, then, played the role of the protective elder sister, using her strength against the more predatory elements of society, sniffing out safe places to bed down for the night, and keeping watch long into the night.  In time, they ran across another Changeling and were brought into the Freehold.

Samantha fell in with the Summer Court, which she's accepted as a kind of replacement family.  Between the fact that she'd never completed her primary education and her lousy ability to keep track of time, Samantha had trouble making it out in the human world.  Instead, she wound up "apprenticed" to the Sheriff of her Freehold, helping him with his Private Investigator work at times, acting as the enforcement arm of the Kings' will at others, and generally keeping the peace among Freeholders.  It was in this capacity that she eventually ran down her Fetch, and discovered that in this world only two years had passed, meaning that her replacement was still a child.  Once the worst of their initial paranoia had worn off, Jennifer made arrangements to move to another city (since she'd been following Samantha, Jennifer actually came out rather far from home) to see if she might be able to reclaim her own life.  The two kept in touch, but it was apparent that their lives were drawing them in different directions.

With the sudden death of the Seasonal Courts in Campaign City, however, the letters from Jennifer came to an abrupt halt.  The Summer Court in Samantha's city is roiling with slow boil at the news.  Some think that the Directional Courts decided to finally force out the rival to their power structure in the city, whereas others think that their self-interest was exploited by Loyalists to launch a massive coup against the Lost.  The last Summer King preferred to keep as cordial a relationship with the Directional Courts as possible, but there's some talk that one of his rivals might ride a wave of reactionary anger into the position of rulership with the turning of the seasons.  Samantha stepped up to investigate things at the foreign Freehold, reasoning that as a Deputy she had enough authority to represent the Seasonal Courts' interests, but was disposable enough not to impact their own Freehold's operations.  It is true that she wants to see Justice for the Changelings lost, however Samantha's true reason for volunteering is a vain hope that her old friend is still alive.  She always had been good at hiding.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2015, 09:51:26 PM by GunmetalDreamer »