Saturday, 7 June 2014

Episode 14 - The Enemy Within - Visions in Wittgendorf

The heroes would soon visit the unpleasant town of Wittgendorf.
This is an actual play recording of Death on the Reik, a chapter in Games Workshop's classic campaign The Enemy Within.

Download Episode from Google Drive (28MB)  

Heroes present were Esmerelda the Shallayan initiate, Herdan the vampire hunter, Joten the dwarf veteran, Walter the halfling agitator, Solomon the halfling smuggler and Magnus the dwarven prospector.

We left the heroes standing victorious over the corpse of Etelka, a witch they had hunted for some time before stumbling across her path at Kemperbad's Cat and Fiddle inn. Before her death Etelka had revealed some of her plans to Herdan. She had intended to travel to Castle Wittgenstein where she believed the Wittgenstein family held a meteorite of corrupting chaos magic.

Key Points from Episode 14

(0:52) The party discussed how best to deal with Etelka's apprentice Urnst. The scrawny mage had surrendered rather than suffer his mistresses fate. The group bound and gagged the wretch and turned him over to the watch to interrogate. The watch, who had been on hand at Etelka's arrest, helped the group loot Etelka's still warm body and in the process kept half her wealth for themselves. Much coin was liberated and Etelka's dangerous artifacts turned over to the Sigmarite priests for burning.

(4:20) At the watch house Urnst was interrogated under the supervision of a cheerful Joten and a squeamish Solomon. Meanwhile Walter mixed with the gawking crowd and spread word that the Champion of Kemperbad had slain a witch. The mob were suitably impressed by the actions of their local hero. Before becoming a broken blubbering mess Urnst revealed that Etelka belonged to the Red Crown Cult, that he intended to betray Etelka and that they had intended to visit Castle Wittgenstein in pursuit of a sizable chunk of warpstone; a meteorite that had devastated the Barren Hills many years ago. In the end Urnst's cover story moved from undercover sanctioned wizard to independent hedge wizard on a mission of vengeance against Etelka. While Joten and Solomon believed the cultist, his motivation didn't matter as he was destined to burn in the fires of Sigmar regardless.

(10:25) Haggling ensued and Etelka's jewelry and perfume collection was sold off. Once again the party were rich. Magnus donated a generous 10 crowns to the Temple of Shallya to finance the rebuilding of their temple at Grissenwald. Esmerelda one-upped the dwarf by donating 100 crowns to the same cause. The warriors kitted themselves out in plate mail and Solomon pondered upgrading their boat with a deck sweeping blunderbuss.

(12:03) The group discussed the note that had been left pinned to their door the night prior. This note was intended for Herdan's body double Kastor Leiberung. Herdan became understandably worried that Purple Hand cultists were watching him and insisted they leave town. 

(17:45) Solomon invested his wealth in cargo. In order to trade he purchased a 'legitimate' traders licence from his criminal contacts under the name Axle Schnitzel. He would have to use this false name when conducting business. The halfling smuggler went on to buy discount lumber that he planned to sell in the ship building town of Grissenwald. [The trading rules proved a complex time sink which I thankfully edited out of the podcast.] In the end 10 trade units of wood was purchased at the bargain price of 160 gold crowns.

(22:28) The group talked about leaving Kemperbad in a hurry but instead spent time shopping, haggling and taking on lumber. As this dragged on Herdan was constantly looking over their shoulder in case the Purple Hand struck. Walter re-assured the group that they had plenty of time before the cultists came calling as the warning note had given them at least a week to deliver a large sum of gold to Middenheim. Finally they set sail. Favourable winds meant it wasn't long before they arrived at the miserable town of Wittgendorf.

(24:30) Their ships crew were promised a bonus to assuage their fears of approaching the infamous Wittgendorf. They chose not to use the towns docks, instead they anchored out of sight. The group made their way through the forest towards the town and on the way noticed a foul corruption had gripped the land. Trees were twisted and overgrown with fungi while bloated beetles and grubs swarmed across the forest floor.
Lady Magritte Von Wittgenstein loves harassing peasants.
(30:34) The group hid on the outskirts of Wittgendorf and kept watch. Some distance off Solomon spotted an noblewoman atop a horse, surrounded by heavily armoured guards. She seemed to be conversing with a mob of ragged peasants. Given the distance they could hear only indistinct shouting before witnessing a villager struck down and hauled off in the direction of the castle.
(35:17) The group decided to explore the abandoned temple to Sigmar on the village edge. They did so stealthily with Solomon sneaking in and then throwing a rope through a back window so his companions could clamber in. The temple was rundown its floor scattered with bones, rats, rubble, ashes and detritus. Miraculously the altar room remained undefiled.

(41:38) Walter read the classic script illuminating the domed ceiling of the altar room. It told the tale of the founding of the temple, for it was here that there had been a key battle between the armies of Sigmar and the forces of Chaos. On this site a Templar of Sigmar, Siegfried Von Kesselring, had slain a Chaos Warlord, an act that shattered a chaotic horde. Alas in victory the Templar had been fatally wounded and upon passing, Siegfried was buried, along with his blade Barakul, in the crypts of this very temple.
Walter read the passage and received a vision from Sigmar.
(43:20) Walter read aloud a passage concerning the dwarves relationship with Sigmar and as he did so the statue of Sigmar that stood watch over the altar spoke to him. Only the halfling could hear Sigmar's words. The god asked if Walter would be ready to stand against chaos when the time came. The young agitator answered in the affirmative and was bade to find the source of chaos that afflicted Sigmar's lands. The halfling had received a vision from Sigmar!
Sigfried Von Kesselring. Templar of Sigmar.
(51:30) The heroes ventured into the temples crypts. The crypts themselves had been smashed open and, judging by the bones on the ground, their contents devoured. A glow visible only to Walter led the halfling to a niche marking the final resting place of Von Kesselring. Former grave warden Herdan said a prayer to Morr as the tomb was cracked open and Von Kesselring exhumed. Joten reverently took the long sword Barakul from the Templar's bony hands. The dwarf swore to put it to good use against Sigmar's foes.

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