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Loose Ends - Spencer McGhin PDF Print E-mail
Written by Spencer   
Monday, 21 July 2014 17:02

As recounted by young Weston Grimalt, son of Barnhaldt Grimalt, Justicar of the Third Watch, Rosado

Moonlight pierced through the cracks of the floorboards in the intake room of the old Templar outpost, its rays stagnant and permeated with dust as old as the building itself. Beneath the old timbers, the young boy Weston’s breathing was quick and shallow as he moved his head this way and that in a futile attempt to get a good look at the recent arrivals. He knew he probably shouldn’t have been here, but he loved the thrill of spying on the comings and goings of the local Watch. So help him, he’d be a Templar himself someday. The captives were clad in dusty street leathers and unarmed, and they wavered unsteadily as though either drunk or long on the road, or perhaps a bit of both. They were bound with the thick hempen ropes the Templar patrols packed as part of their required outfit; being two days rations, an extra weapon of their chosen path, traveling papers and a change of clothing. One was female; some sort of Strange One at first glance, with short cropped hair and a small stream of blood trickling slowly from her smallish nose. She wavered, yet something in her measured, quiet steps and precise movements said nothing but ingrained danger. The other appeared to be an Elderkin of some sort; perhaps a Chillsworn from the Fingers, based upon the flecks of sparkling blue betraying themselves from underneath the raised hood of his tattered cloak. Strange…what was wrong with his arm? It seemed to be made of ice, yet a viscous red liquid oozed outward and around the ice like some broken, frozen scab. Barnhaldt stood behind them, holding both by their bonds and proceeded to force them up to the Jailor’s desk.

            “State their crime Barnhaldt,” recited the Jailer, going through the motions of his station that had consumed his many years on Memora.

“Inciting a riot and attempting to bribe a Justicar, sir,” replied the Templar.

“Throw them in number 7 and leave their belongings with Carver in the back,” said the Jailer without so much as looking up from his ledger.

“Yes, sir,” said the Templar.

And then time stopped, or at least that’s the way Weston remembered it. Still in their bonds, their hands behind their backs, the two prisoners shared a brief glance.  Without so much as a whisper, the two leapt up and flipped backwards, landing softly behind Barnhaldt, their hands now in front of them. As the Elderkin broke off towards the Jailer, the woman did a sort of cartwheel, wrapping her ropes around the right wrist of the Templar and taking him with her. Crashing down hard on the wooden floor, Barnhaldt let out a brief cry of pain before reaching for his Templar blade.  The woman brought her left foot down hard upon his neck and dug in with the balls of her foot, making an audible grinding sound as she broke his neck.

The Elderkin made a mad rush towards the desk, which was separated by 20 feet and a small flight of stairs. One step, two steps and on the third the man leapt, his legs curling up behind him and then straight out towards the old Jailer whose face was a combination of shock and contempt. The Elderkin flew through the air with a preternatural grace and came down with his legs outstretched to land on the shoulders of the Jailer who was sitting hunched over at his small desk chair.

“Could you make any more noise?“ spat the woman in a dialect Weston had never heard before.

Satisfied that he had incapacitated the Jailer, the Elderkin scooped up the large intake ledger with his booted feet and swung around to face the woman.

“Perhaps I should let you do all the work next time?” replied the man, his voice sharp with a dour sarcasm. “Besides, he’s here, or at least he was. Take a look for yourself.”

At this, the Elderkin retracted his lower legs, dropping the large book onto the floor with a loud thud that made Weston gasp in his subterranean hiding place. The short-haired woman walked over to where the man had dropped the book, loosening her ropes as she did so. She climbed the stairs while at the same time slowly drawing something from the inside of her fitted jacket. Looking just past the Elderkin she raised the stiletto knife she now gripped in her right hand and sunk it into the back of the old Jailer. The woman with short hair then turned around and hunkered down to examine the large ledger, running a lithe finger down the list of names that populated the aged parchment.

“What in the Abyss did you do that for?” asked the man.

“Loose ends,” replied the woman.

“The man was about dead in his chair as it was,” shot back the man, “gaahhh, just prove me right and let’s get out of here.”

“Yes, it seems as though he was moved to HQ weeks ago,” replied the woman. “But I guess you were just going to tell me that later weren’t you?”

“By the Orisons, would you look at this arm, the damned thing is starting to bleed again. And you know what the worst part is? It doesn’t even hurt!” exclaimed the man, obviously trying to deviate from the current topic. “What kind of Infernal piss is that? I should have never done that damned bonding. Thing is always acting up now.”

The woman looked up from the ledger, a devious smirk contorting her soft features.

“Let’s go,” commanded the woman. “We got what we came for and we should have been gone like yesterday. To be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if they’ve already sprung him.”

“Well aren’t you going to untie me first?” requested the Elderkin.

Weston couldn’t help it. The commotion had kicked up the unmitigated dust of the place that was currently teasing his nostrils. His sneeze cut through the uneasy silence of the small room and the man and woman ceased their chatter immediately. They simultaneously snapped their heads towards the spot on the floor from which the curious sound had emanated. They looked at each other, shrugged and then the woman made her way slowly towards the origin of the disturbance. Weston recoiled and did all he could to shrink down into his hole. The woman got down on one knee and crammed her fingers into a gap between two of the floors rotted planks. Pulling up, she grunted as one of the boards cracked and gave way to her efforts. The woman let go a small cry as there, curled into some impossibly small shape, was a young Crowned by who could have been no more than nine. The man and woman looked at each other. The man started to smile and then broke into a small fit of soft laughter.

“Leave him, “ he said.

“Are you stupid? He’s seen us!” replied the woman.

“Yeah, him and half this sector,” said the man, exasperated.

“Fine.”

            The man and woman both turned and started to make their egress.

            “Wait,” said the short-haired woman.

She reached into the pocket of her jacket and pulled out a dusty, stained and worn piece of burgundy fabric. She shook it out to reveal its true form. A hooded cowl. Taking it in both hands, she reached down into the boy’s hiding place and fitted it begrudgingly over his small head. The boy simply huddled there and stared at the woman, his face a product of some combination of fear, bewilderment and shock.

            “It looks good on him, don’t you think?” whispered the woman, as she stood up and faced the Elderkin, “just work on your hiding kid.”

            She trotted back to the man and the two took exited the outpost, into the night from which they had come.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 16:38
 
A Moment of Inspiration PDF Print E-mail
Written by Travis Melton   
Thursday, 13 February 2014 20:51

Autumn Sai returned to her work bench and began cleaning each of her tools. The gems were difficult to cut tonight. Many flaws caused her to discard more than she wanted.

The warm firelight caused them all to sparkle and glow. In her presence, this phenomenon seemed amplified. As she moved her fingers over their rough edges, her mind entered a sharp focus and soft clarity; one that was no doubt as a result of her unwavering exultation of the Artisan.

Autumn wrapped up the tools and put them away. She closed the box of gems after briefly admiring her work for another moment and turned to stoke the fire.

 

A soft but rapid knock at the door heralded the arrival of one of her pupils.

 

 

 

Last Updated on Friday, 14 February 2014 16:08
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State of the Game Address PDF Print E-mail
Written by Second Dawn Staff   
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 14:16

 The former Secretary of State of Connecticut, Pauline R Kezer once said: “Continuity gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights.” This is a quote that resonates with us, the caretakers of Second Dawn. Our goal is always to provide the means for you, the player, to have the best experience possible when choosing to become part of the dynamic stories being told. Part of this mandate involves not resting on our laurels and always striving to innovate and iterate. Our foundation, or roots if you will, are very strong and stable and allow us to keep moving forward in our goals and reach for those new heights. 2013 was an excellent year and at the end of it, we saw our highest attendance numbers. We want to keep that momentum rolling, and on that note, we have quite a few great changes in store for 2014 that we want to share with you. So without further preamble…

1.      A New Combat/Interaction/Class System: Part of innovation and design is always looking at what you have created, objectively, and seeing what you could have done better. As we grew, it became apparent to us that our combat system and methods of communication bogged down the more people who participated in a combat engagement. This “lag”, if you will, happened to everyone involved, including marshals who were there to help mediate the results of the engagement. Basically, there was too much to keep up with in a combat.. Knowing that this would not get easier with more growth, we decided to overhaul the combat system, and make it simpler for all involved, but keep some of the great flavor that has come before. With these changes we have:

         Overhauled the Class System

         Overhauled the Item System

         Simplified the Combat Numbers to a much lower scale

         Overhauled the Effects System, and removed redundancy

         Made fundamental changes to Combat for Player Safety

We want to thank everyone, including a number of staffers and players, for their contributions to the system and its many changes.

For 2014, our current rules staff is…

Mark Faubion – Rules Admin

                                     Saleem Halibi – Head of Rules

                                     Jay Lastinger

                                     Chris Dodson

                                     Tim Frank

                                     Mckell McIntyre    

2.      The Starting of a New Campaign (complete with a New Campaign Committee!): The Age of Mystery ended, and the Age of Revelation has begun. Players will either be from the Age of Mystery, 300 years earlier, or from the Age of Revelation. Many events have taken place since the last time these lands were graced with your presence. Please refer to the new “Beta” rulebook, to see a timeline of these events.

           Without further ado, the 2014 Entertainment Committee:

 

Mckell McIntyre – EC Director

  

Returning EC: The Faces you Already Know and Love

Greg Tomaselli

Brandy Balderas

Angel Balderas

Mike Millar

Travis Melton

Farah McIntyre

Melanie Blake

 

New EC: The New Ones You Will Grow to Love

Alana Melton

Ben Bell

Shane Bizell

Grace Hegwood

Spencer McGhin

Glenn Heath

Thomas Marshbanks

3.      Changes to the Entertainment Model:

In addition to the great storytelling you have come to expect from the Second Dawn Entertainers, we are also introducing a new system where your story will be more directly driven by your faction's actions. Post-event, we want you to elect the next action your organization or order will take. We are referring to this as the “macro-action-que”, which allows members of your faction to truly drive the story. There will also be a “micro-action-que” system on Saturday afternoons, set up to address, smaller/less world spanning needs, handle logistics requests, and also feed into the new “Estate System” when it is released.

4.      Creation of a Stronger In-Play Economic Model, complete with Currency

Based on player feedback about items, reagent availability, and difficulty of use, we have created a new economic system that incorporates new materials, currency, and item crafting processes to allow players a new wealth and gear experience. This system emphasizes ongoing value, usefulness, customization, and ease of creation. It will allow players to develop items that are both functional and cool for their characters. Characters over time will discover special augmentation recipes of various types that will allow them to customize their equipment to suit their needs and style. Special ceremonies and lost arts can be found that will allow players to convert their items into new forms, for a price, so that they can build and grow their tools, just as their character grows.  The new estate system when made available will allow players and their friends to use their wealth from both the previous age and the current age to interact meaningfully with the world and develop their influence as they desire. Keep an eye out for the many new colorful loot phys reps, as they all have value, and everyone can find a use for them.

5.      Changes to our Out of Play Pricing Model

New Pricing for 2014: We try really hard to be responsive to our players, and several have indicated that they would be interested in some additional options to our pricing. We worked out quite a few options to try to be more flexible and a special bonus rate for first time players. This is on a trial basis, and based on the response then we are likely to make it permanent. 
 
  

For your convenience, Pre-registration can now be sent via Paypal to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

2014 Pricing...

 

No-Preregistration, with food:     $65

Saturday full day play with Food $45

 

Friday night play, with food: 20

 

           Saturday day play, with food: 20 (ends at 5pm, does not include feast)

 

           Saturday night play, with food: 25 (begins at 5pm, includes feast)

 

           First time larper, with food: 45

 

            Starter package (@1/3 max level), includes registration and food: 90

 

Preregistration, with food: 60

 

            Preregistration, without food: 50

         

Wheww, as you can see, we have been busy. There are a ton of changes, and too many changes at once can seem overwhelming, we know! Fortunately, the roots of what makes Second Dawn great are still in place. There will still be great story to interact with for your character. There are still the same Admin helping to administrate the game and keep it running smoothly, so your concerns are always in play and not out of play. There is still a great community of friends and comrades, waiting to take up arms to defeat the enemies of this new story!

All of the changes made are aimed at making this a great, fun game to play. We didn’t want rules becoming the primary focus, just the vehicle in which your character can accomplish heroic deeds (or dastardly, if you are into that!). We want to provide you that immersive experience you seek and all of our changes are done with that goal in mind. So come out and try what we have revamped. We look forward to embarking on this new chapter with you!!

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 January 2014 14:19
 
Your Dream Opens a way through the Rift... PDF Print E-mail
Written by Second Dawn Staff   
Thursday, 16 January 2014 13:31

The great wooden door to the Pickled Kraken swung slowly open, the light from the Dreamwalker’s staff illuminating the pallid faces of the tavern’s inhabitants as it broke the threshold. Great gusts of Grimfrost’s frigid air rushed in, outlining the skulking frame of the new guest and causing what little light there was in the place to nearly extinguish.

Marcus paced back and forth behind the invisible wall that marked one of the many terrible and blasphemous defenses between himself and the meddling heroes of the caravan that, he admitted, had gotten too close for comfort. He gazed out over the field watching as they ran this way and that, futilely attempting to deconstruct the colossal obstructions he had laid in their path. The calendar was to be his; of this he had no doubt.

Al’Hazred Tar’El took his rest at a corner table of the Kraken, resting his moon crested staff against a wooden wall. He unhooked the ancient scroll case from his large traveling belt and upended it, spilling its contents out onto the rough-hewn table. The Saurian brought his hand down on the table, slow and deliberate, slowing a small, clear vial of greenish powder in its trajectory off of the table. He would have to get more and soon. He did hate trying to hire a Fuguewalker, especially for the despicable task that was tracking down more of his treasured powder. Rosado was such a trite and loathsome place after all, its burgeoning substance trade and recent inundation of tourists being the least of its many problems.

Who was this? Ahhh, yes! Ecko. That blasted Saurian had done quite a number on him during the Festival of Embercrown. How convenient it was that he was now so close, although for what he had in mind, this fact was of little consequence. Marcus reached into his coat, extracting a small green-gold effigy that bore a striking resemblance to the Saurian Dreamwalker and began to raise it aloft. Ecko and the others directed their gaze towards the Infernal Engineer, grim and terrible revelation overtaking their already fatigued frames.

Haz, as he was known to most, raised the small bottle to his nostrils, breathing deeply of the malodourous concoction. In no time at all, the ephemeral vapors would consume his consciousness and he would depart the Primal and turn the key on the gnarled, tarnished gold gates of the Dream. The vaporous tendrils began to slowly creep out of the bottle and take hold of the vagabond Saurian. And then, like a bolt of primordial lightning out of deepest Everbreath, all went black.

Diabolic, violent blue flame emanated from the Vile One’s narrow, outstretched fingertips and began to engulf the Saurian effigy. Ecko, in the midst of invoking Grimfrost’s wrath to strike down some Infernal adversary, fell to the frozen earth, writhing in an agony not of the Primal. Others could only look on in terror and anguish as they knew one of their own was surely being enveloped in the insidious metaphysical flame of the Infernal. And in one mad torrent it came. A cerebral storm descended upon the one called Ecko; amidst the indelible suffering there formed a bridge of soft blue light and at its end a gnarled gate of burnished gold.

Amidst the darkness there formed a bridge of autumnal golden splendor. Haz had been here before, but when? And who was that approaching on the bridge opposite him? There were others in the Dream; in fact, novice walkers were encouraged to accept the assistance of their Drealmer, or Dream Familiar. However, it had been many, many years since Haz had required the use of his Drealmer, and so this indeed, must be something else…or someone else.

Amidst the darkness there formed a bridge of steely blue ice. Ecko had been here before, but when? And who was that approaching on the bridge opposite him? There were others in the Dream; in fact, novice walkers were encouraged to accept the assistance of their Drealmer, or Dream Familiar. However, Ecko had yet to meet his Drealmer, and so this indeed, must be something else…or someone else.

The two Saurians approached the great Dream gate from two different realities, from two different times; Memora’s ferrymen guiding her inhabitants across a vast temporal river that wound its way through infinite existence. As the Saurians placed their scaly hands upon the rusted handles of the gate they were blown back as though by some colossal force. Looking up, they both could see the ancient gate was now open. They regarded each other quizzically, and yet a subconscious familiarity pervaded each. They both rose, collecting their belongings; Haz batting the dust from his rust colored robe and Ecko wiping the frost from his grey tunic. Over Ecko’s shoulder, Haz could see the pale blue glow of what he knew to be Ecko’s tether to the Primal beginning to turn a brackish red. Odd…who was that coming through? And why did their weapons seem so…primitive? First a lumbering Deepbeard, a regal male and female Saurian, a Tuatha, and then a hardy Ukronos; all looked singularly perplexed by their surroundings and yet they walked resolutely through the burnished gates. More and more came; what at first could have been seen as an odd anomaly was now a torrential astra-temporal occurrence. One that Al’Hazred’s peers would surely never believe. Did they know they were walking 300 years into the future?

 

 

 

 

 
New Stories... PDF Print E-mail
Written by Admin Admin   
Thursday, 21 November 2013 09:42

The Epilogue & Excavation

The Tribunal

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 December 2013 16:52
 

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