Salt and Sand - The Wyld Hunt
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By HoratioAtTheBridge

The Wyld Hunt

The climax of the adventure is a confrontation with the Wyld Hunt led by Peleps Deled and backed by both Houses Mnemon and Sessus. This is a mobile quick-strike force currently afloat in a fleet led by Mnemon Cayla. She has spies spread throughout the South, and sufficient magic to get the fleet to the Circle's location within a week of finding them. Mnemon Cayla also leaned on local leaders, including the Tri Kahn, to get them to hold the Circle in place long enough for her forces to attack them. The Tri Kahn has reluctantly agreed, and he's directed Yusuf bin-Fouad, who's had contact with the Circle before, to ensure that they do not leave the city as well as to direct them to the ambush. Linna Iselsi is monitoring this effort, both collecting the information gathered by her spy network as well as holding the knife to Yusuf's ribs to ensure that he carries out his part of the plan. See Sand and Salt: Yusuf bin-Fouad for details of how he carries this out.


Peleps Deled - For this adventure, add the following intimacies:

Minor Tie: Mnemon Cayla (Frustration at Inadequate Faith), Sessus Tyrlion (Joy in Tormenting)

Mnemon Cayla - Use the Elder Dragonblooded QC for this character

Mnemon Cayla is one of Mnemon's granddaughters, and a powerful, experienced Earth Aspected Dragonblooded in her own right. She runs House Mnemon's affairs in the South and has ambitions to take permanent control of the Southern satrapies when Mnemon assumes her rightful place on the Scarlett Throne. She's a wily strategist, with plans within plans to ensure that no matter how a situation turns out, she stands to benefit from it.

Defining Principles: And I Will Rule the South
Defining Ties:
Major Principles: Mnemon Will Take the Throne, Always Have Another Angle
Major Ties: House Mnemon (Devotion)
Minor Principles:
Minor Ties: The Immaculate Faith (Lip Service), House Sessus (Convenient Tools), Peleps Deled (Respect for a Dangerous Tool), Linna Iselsi (Companion in Cynicism), The Player Circle (Aggravation for Past Crimes)

Tactics: Cayla is a cautious commander, using her troops as sword and shield. She uses the command action each turn, supplementing it with Thousand Ton Hammer Smash. Once an opponent is crashed, she will throw in Ringing Anvil Onslaught and a full excellency. Once her troops have been reduced to less than 3 magnitude, she will flurry a Rally action supplemented with a full excellency along with her command action. She is cautious using her excellency each round, trying to conserve motes. She will gladly let an opponent spend all of their motes on defensive excellencies, then will begin throwing fully boosted attacks with each action to finish them off. She becomes more profligate if her troops are scattered and she must enter combat personally. She will use her full range of powers then, trying to destroy her opponent with an expression of overwhelming might. Cayla stays behind her troops, forcing enemies to spend initiative to close with her or to use ranged weapons. She has a prodigious soak, so will generally rely on her armor to deflect attacks. Enemies with large or piercing weapons gain her attention, and she uses excellencies to parry those attacks with her goremaul.

Sessus Tyrlion - Use the Young Dragon-Blooded QC for this character

Sessus Tyrlion is his House's sacrifice in this Wyld Hunt, and he knows it. The House doesn't really want to lose troops fighting Anathema, but needed to send someone to satisfy an alliance with Mnemon. Tyrlion was seen as a reasonable risk - though no Dragon-Blooded is truly expendable, the loss of a junior officer from a minor branch of the family would do the least harm to the House's cause. And if he survives, the glory and experience he gains could be a valuable asset.

Defining Principles: I Want To Go Home
Defining Ties: Peleps Deled (Terror),
Major Principles: My House Has Abandoned Me
Major Ties: Anathema (Fear), House Sessus (Fear of Failing Them)
Minor Principles: Peleps Deled is a Bully and I Hate Him
Minor Ties: His Parents (Resentment at Abandonment), Mnemon Cayla (Cautious Optimisim She Will Bring Me Through This), His Palatial Estate in An Teng (Fond Memories of Safety)

Tactics: Tyrlion preserves all of his essence for defense, spending a full excellency each round to boost his Parry DV. If attacked with a decisive attack, he also spends a Willpower out of panic. If, however, he finds himself with 11+ Initiative, he suddenly feels a burst of confidence. He spends a full excellency on his attack and supplements it with both Stoking Bonfire Style. If he actually manages to achieve an iconic anima, he expends it in Raging Firestorm Blade for a withering attack to boost his Initiative. If, however, he is later crashed or injured, he completely loses confidence and begins to look for a way to retreat. This causes a rout check for his men.

The Realm Troops - Size 3, Drill 1, Might 0 Battle Group, use the Medium Infantry QC.

The troops in the Wyld Hunt are drawn from House Mnemon's and House Sessus's satrap garrisons, a fact that has not escaped Cayla's notice. She is somewhat frustrated at this display of irresolution on House Sessus's part, but she comforts herself in that she managed to bring half as many of her own troops as were contributed by her opponents.

These troops have one of the following intimacies which can be used to justify the expenditure of a Willpower to resist an intimidation check that might force them to leave the battlefield. If they do spend a willpower against such an effort, however, increase the difficulty of subsequent rout checks by 1:

Principles: Soldier's Duty
Ties: House (Loyalty), Comrades (Loyalty), Homeland (Love)

The Ambush - Plan A

If all goes according to plan, the players will be brought to a feast by Uncle Yusuf with no arms or armor. Peleps Deled and Mnemon Cayla will be waiting for them there along with a talon of soldiers (Size 1 unit) and Linna hidden in the balcony. With the PCs grouped together, Deled's initial strike should be especially devestating, and Linna should be able to crash one opponent immediately. The soldiers will hack at all of the PCs under Cayla's command. If the players have any confidence that they can prevail, they should feel completely outmatched when Sessus Tyrlion and the rest of the Size 3 Imperial unit arrives at their initiative count on the second round. If any PCs manage to escape the building, Abd al-Malik spots them and leads his Size 1 personal guard on a wild chase to ride them down. If none have done so by the third round but fighting is continuing, al-Malik can no longer restrain himself and rides into the building.

Grant the Player Circle one last Read Intentions roll to detect Yusuf's nervousness, or an Awareness roll (Difficulty 3) to spot a soldier hidden in the servant's wing. Any PCs who succeed, or are otherwise expecting a fight, only suffer the -2 penalty to DVs for being surprised by the attack. Otherwise, they suffer the full penalties of an ambush and receive no DV against the first attack of the fight. Reduce this penalty by one step (-2 penalty to no penalty, no DV to -2 penalty) against opponents who act after them on the first round (presumably they've caught on to what's going on). Be sure to have Yusuf invite the PCs to at least a couple of feasts before this where nothing unusual happens so that they don't feel that this particular feast is strange.

The Ambush - Plan B

Mnemon Cayla is a wily commander and will not stick to this original plan if she has reason to believe that the PCs are on to her plot (such as if Linna stops reporting, or she receives words from her spies that Yusuf has spilled the beans). Instead, she will have her spies open a gate at night so that she can bring her troops to a market where the PCs regularly travel or to the docks. Roll her Command Troops (with full excellency, but at -3 successes for attempting to hide a Size 3 unit) opposed by the player's Perception + Awareness pools to pull off the ambush. Player characters cannot be on full alert at all times, so those who fail are ambushed. Those who succeed are merely surprised and suffer the -2 DV penalty. Again, these penalties are mitigated against opponents who act after the player character. Mitigate them one step further if the players have information about the timing and nature of the attack as they will be on heightened alert. Note that in this case Tyrlion and the full Size 3 unit attack on the first turn, and it is not to be expected that Peleps Deled will catch the full party in his opening blow. At best he will catch three of them. Abd al-Malik will intervene on the second round. If Linna is actually present, she joins the openning barrage with a flurry of an attack and re-establish stealth. Be sure to play up the chaos as goods are thrown everywhere and civilians run down the side streets while soldiers pour out from houses, kiosks, and alleyways. If it amuses you, let Peleps Deled initiate the attack by pretending to be a harmless old woman tending a stall, responding to a PC request for assistance with a "I'll be happy to help you…BECOME FREE OF THE DEMON THAT HAS POSSESSED YOU!"


The confrontation with the Wyld Hunt is the end of the adventure, but might be the beginning of a longer campaign. The party has at the very least narrowly slipped away from Mnemon Cayla's grasp, and she's not going to be able to sustain her coalition with House Sessus and the Wyld Hunt past this failure. The Realm Civil War will heat up in the South as the other Houses sense weakness and move in. At the best, the party has killed the head of Mnemon's activities in the South as well as the Realm's premier Anathema hunter. This tips things decisively in House Sessus's favor and they will begin to make bold moves across the South.

It should be noted that the Storyteller should not put NPCs into combat that they are not prepared to be dead by the end of the combat, so if Mnemon Cayla or Peleps Deled are to be features of the future campaign then at the least the Storyteller should construct plausible avenues for their escape. They might run once crashed or injured, or when their troops are reduced below Size 2. They might have Sorcery prepared to whisk them away, or reinforcements in place to intervene and cover their retreat. al-Malik is a good source for a last minute rescue, and if he is dead then another member of his clan (perhaps motivated by revenge) can provide this support. al-Malik and Sara Almas would also be good targets for Abyssal Exaltation if particularly ill-used by the party.

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