Encounter at Farside - Around Town
rating: 0+x

By HoratioAtTheBridge

Around Town

The players will most likely get a chance to interact with the townsfolk when Herren orders them to take the townsfolk to safety. They can also serve as a source of aid if Herren orders the player characters not to investigate further, especially if he has the Realm soldier characters disciplined.

NPCs

In addition to Ever-Blooming Lotus, who has a position of authority as Blind Cao's spokesperson, five other NPCs make up the leadership of the town. Blue Sky Jeva is the innkeeper and general store owner. The town's unofficial mayor is a rich farmer named Red Ox. Eagle Talon is a member of the town's Hunter's Guild, which provides law enforcement and security as well as food whenever a Realm garrison isn't in town. The leader of the Hunter's Guild is Winding Trail. Finally, Mai Dragon Coil, the town's blacksmith, and her husband Pine Needle, a carpenter and handyman, provide much of the town's industry. Presume each character has a Resolve and Guile of 3.

Blue Sky Jeva

Blue Sky Jeva is a happy-go lucky middle aged woman who knows everybody in the town. She knows all the soldiers, too, from their time at the inn, and is a natural go-between if the players start looking for someone to talk to. She can provide introductions to anyone they'd care to meet as well as stockpiles of any supplies they may need. She witnessed everything that happened between the party and Herren, and she has a budding Tie of respect to the party for their efforts on behalf of the town. Her intimacies are as follows:

Defining Principles: One Good Turn Begets Another
Defining Ties:
Major Principles:
Major Ties: Farside Inn (Pride in Ownership)
Minor Principles: Love of Gossip, Hates Ingratitude
Minor Ties: Citizens of Farside (Friends & Neighbors), the Party (Respect for Efforts on Behalf of the Town), Pine Needles (Gratitude for Keeping the Inn in One Piece)

Red Ox

Red Ox was a massive man in his youth and there's still a fair amount of muscle under his fat. He did a turn as a merchant caravan guard in his youth, which gave him enough money to come home and greatly upgrade the family farm when his father died. He's diligently worked the farm to produce more wealth, but now mostly lives on the effort of a few tenant farmers. His breadth of experience and wealth make him a natural person for folks to turn to when they need help, and he's the one who sent the message to Greyfalls about the Fae. He figured that the town could take well enough care of itself, but they couldn't spare anyone to go into the woods to hunt down the raiders. He's been rather annoyed at Nellens Herren for laying about and not working harder to fix the problem. Red Ox can rally the whole town to support whatever project the player's might want to launch if they can demonstrate that they're more competent than Herren. His intimacies follow:

Defining Principles:
Defining Ties: Friends, Family, Employees, and Neighbors (Patriarchal Love)
Major Principles: Hard Work Breeds Success
Major Ties:
Minor Principles: Hates Laziness, Love for Simple Pleasures of Food, a Pipe, and a Nap in the Hammock
Minor Ties: Nellens Herren (Annoyance)

Winding Trail

Winding Trail knows every inch of the 40 miles surrounding Farside and not a thing about the world beyond that. He's a stern, tough leader and an outstanding teacher of the subjects where he is knowledgeable. He's personally trained most of the hunters in Farside, including Eagle Talon. He can rally the Hunter's Guild to support the player's plans, but it perhaps even more valuable for his knowledge of the surrounding terrain. He is able to lead even a small army through hidden ways to just about anywhere near Farside, setting them up for a perfect ambush. Alternatively he can lead the group through rapid paths to get to a location quickly. He's not inventive enough to suggest doing so on his own, however.

Defining Principles:
Defining Ties: Farside (Love)
Major Principles: Not Very Imaginative
Major Ties: The Hunter's Guild (Pride in Students)
Minor Principles: Everything You Need is Right Here
Minor Ties: Strangers (Distrust), Blue Sky Jeva (Unproclaimed Love)

Mai Dragon Coil

Mai Dragon Coil is a solid slab of muscle. Most of her trade is in keeping farm equipment in good repair, but she shoes horses for merchants passing through towns and makes weapons for the Hunter's Guild. She has a craftsman's eye for well-made work, which attracted her to her husband Pine Needles. The time is too short for her to create any new weapons for the fight, but she does have a few mostly finished items back at the forge that she could hand out if needed. Her intimacies follow:

Defining Principles: Love for Well-Made Work
Defining Ties:
Major Principles:
Major Ties: Pine Needles (Love)
Minor Principles:
Minor Ties: Forge Kitty (Affection), Blue Sky Jeva (Jealous Distrust)

Pine Needles

Pine Needles is a quiet man who speaks mostly through his work. He wouldn't consider himself a anything special, but his work shows the skill of a master craftsman. His green hair and nut-brown skin show the blood of the Far East flows through his veins. Like Mia, time is likely too short for him to craft anything to help with the fight, though he could help put together some surprisingly sturdy barricades. His intimacies follow:

Defining Principles: A Job Worth Doing is Worth Doing Well
Defining Ties:
Major Principles: Doesn't Talk Much
Major Ties: Mia Dragon Coil (Love)
Minor Principles:
Minor Ties: The Realm Soldiers (Don't Have Much Use for Them)

Blind Cao - Use the Dog of the Black Earth QC for this character

The party may also wish to speak with Blind Cao. A successful roll on Appearance + Performance is necessary to perform the prayer to get him to manifest, but Ever-Blooming Lotus has done this on many occasions. Blind Cao takes the form of an ancient, dusty grey pig with milky eyes. He is somewhat concerned about the Fae but is sanguine in his assurance that the town will continue to thrive. He may, if convinced that the situation is dire enough, bestow a blessing on the players. This upgrades their armor to provide artifact stats for the rest of the day, which provides Hardness. Alternatively, he could provide +3 soak to a battlegroup made up of the townsfolk. He does not have the strength to manifest himself very far beyond his caves, but will fight hard to defend anyone taking shelter there. His intimacies follow:

Defining Principles:
Defining Ties: Truffles and Acorns (Delicious)
Major Principles:
Major Ties: Ever-Blooming Lotus (Affection)
Minor Principles:
Minor Ties: The People of Farside (Appreciation for Worship), The Fae (Concern)

Development

The players may quickly notice that the town is fairly self-sufficient and more than capable of defending itself. They might decide to try to raise a militia from the townsfolk. It should be noted, however, that the town called the Realm to deal with the Fae for a reason. First, the townsfolk are uncertain about how bad the problem is and don't want to risk getting wiped out. Second, they know that even if they do handle this problem on their own it will likely inflict enough casualties to cause a huge burden on their town. They are quite conservative when it comes to their safety. This bias against risk will have to be overcome in order to win their aid. Estimate the risk to the townsfolk and require supporting intimacies of sufficient level to justify the risk. Simple aid such as supplies or maps might require only a Minor intimacy, while risking their lives requires at least a Defining Intimacy. Note that "fight or your town will be destroyed" qualifies as a Defining Intimacy if it comes to that, but this requires evidence that the town will indeed be destroyed as well as a Performance (Orate) or Presence (with -3 penalty for addressing a crowd, if applicable) check that overcomes the town's Resolve of 2. Even then some townsfolk might lack Defining Intimacies toward the town and would prefer to flee.

If the entire town is rallied to fight, they form a Magnitude 3, Discipline 0 unit using the Bandit QC statistics. If only the Hunter's Guild participates in combat, they fight as Medium Infantry with Magnitude 2 and Discipline 1. Help that is available from the notable people in the town is listed under their descriptions below. The average citizen has a Resolve of 2, a Guile of 1, and is capable of providing directions, a small amount of supplies, or introductions to other people in the game. A list of possible townsfolk names follows:

Polished River Stone, Sunset Cloud, Guileless Hung, Beautiful Qiao, Elder Sister Min, Younger Sister Mao, Treasured Bao, Old Man Wen, Karl (his parents are immigrants)

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