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Summary[]

Sasha is chased through the streets of London, Hamid gambles, and Zolf hires Bertie to join his mercenary band. The four of them collide in an alleyway, where they help defend Sasha from the men chasing her.

Synopsis[]

Our adventures start in the skies above London with its shining brass roofs. The city looks raised, the River Thames flowing into, and then under, the massive city, before coming out the other side.  The city itself is clean and smog-free, unusual for a city this size. An overground, elegant monorail runs into the city from the south-east. Lightning sparks out of the back as it goes. The streets are filled with well-dressed, clean people. There doesn’t seem to be any litter anywhere, and no people wandering around begging. A large crowd (about 100 people, if not more) is gathering at some gates in front of a tall and narrow townhouse, as further down the street in an alley, Sasha stands, waiting. She wears dark, fitted clothes and sticks to the shadows.

Sasha notices she's being followed; it’s not completely obvious, but there is a tall, plainly dressed man who has a clear line of sight on her. She attempts to evade him by heading toward the crowd outside the townhouse, and is sure not to look behind her but checks reflections that she passes to keep an eye on him. He is definitely following her, but doesn’t seem to be closing in on her, just keeping pace. She secretly begins to pull out her disguise kit so that she can get away from the man, prepping to use it when she gets to the crowd.

Before making it to the crowd, she discovers she is being followed by another man; he’s smaller and lean, and borders on looking shabby. She makes it to the crowd and begins to move through it quickly. There are a few guards out in front of the townhouse, but the crowd itself seems enthusiastic. The townhouse itself is tall and white, and is clearly a very expensive house; the crowd are all craning to get a look, and some people are selling stuff outside the house.

While attempting to make herself look older by rubbing grey into her hair and adding a hat, she gets the powder out, bumps into a child, and the powder explodes into the air in a puff. The signal makes her presence known to the men.

Meanwhile, it pans to a cheaper part of town. It’s still not dingy, but there are more pubs and less shops, and seems to be where the merchants frequent. Above a music venue, Zolf sits. There is a small window into a very small space, with a table and some chairs. Zolf is a blond dwarf with a double-braided beard, left peg leg and wearing a driftwood carving of a dolphin. Figgis sits in one corner of the room; he’s wielding a broadsword and wearing a desert-colored trenchcoat, and clearly seems to be subservient to Zolf. A 16-year-old is trying - and failing - to convince the two that he can join their mercenary group; he attempts a handstand, fails, and then asks if he can join up, without a sword. Zolf doesn’t accept him as a mercenary, and tells the kid to go to school and then maybe come back in five years. The kid seems disappointed, but then goes to leave. As he opens the door, he collides with Sir Bertrand MacGuffingham, who is 6'5" and beefy, wearing extremely ostentatious falcon-adorned armour.

A pencil drawn of Hamid, a halfling man with curly chin-length hair. He wears a dark vest over a white long-sleeved button-down shirt. He is sitting at a table on which three cards and two stacks of gambling chips are laid out. With one hand, he drops two more chips on the table. His other hand runs through his hair as he looks down at the table with a sad, pensive expression.

Hamid gambles. Art by @bits.draws on Instagram. Used with permission.

Across the city, Hamid sits at a roulette table behind a stack of chips. The casino itself is incredibly opulent. He is a good-looking halfling with golden brown skin, dark brown eyes and is well-groomed in his tailored suit. A crowd surrounds him, and he has a large pile of chips sat in front of him. The croupier is frowning slightly as he watches Hamid and the other player. An elderly gentleman goes all in (five chips) on red, encouraging Hamid to do the same. The croupier gives him a knowing glance, and Hamid considers for a moment. He plays with his stack of chips and then flips a few in the air, pocketing them, and placing the rest on red.

Sasha is still being followed, and, panicked, she begins to look around the crowd to spot a way out. There are some quieter streets that she could go down, and she chooses to go straight through the crowd. She begins to weave through the crowd, heading toward a group of drunken revelers, moving quickly through the different groups of people. She’s pulled into a dance, but uses the momentum to get further away from her tails. However, she finds another man similarly dressed to the others following her.

Bertie introduces himself to Zolf and Figgis, shaking both of their hands roughly. He’s incredibly bombastic, and then sits down. Zolf asks why he wants to be a mercenary, and Bertie says for money and glory. Zolf asks how he would be a good member of the team, and attempts to display his suitability and sword prowess by attacking a table, only cleaving a leg off it in the process. Bertie tells them to imagine if that table was an orc, and how it would have fallen over. The two mercenaries agree that Bertie will do and explain that they are going to do some crowd control for Lord Edison's event.

Back at the casino, called Charlemagne's, Hamid and the older gentleman are waiting on the results of the roulette wheel - which lands on black. The croupier pulls all the chips over to his side and apologises to Hamid, asking if he would like to place another bet. Hamid sighs, staring at the table, and then heads toward the exit. He cashes in his remaining three chips and leaves, exiting into a large flow of people who are streaming toward a thronging mass. He decides to follow them, going along with the crowd.

Art of the four protagonists of RQG after the first fight. They are in an alley, seen at an angle from the ground up. In the foreground is a black boot of someone offscreen. Closest is Sasha, a white human woman with short black hair, dressed in black clothing with knife belts. She is holding a knife in each hand with a scared expression. Behind her is Zolf, a white dwarf man with blond hair and a beard, wearing a brown coat. He is kneeling down, holding a partially offscreen trident with one hand and curing an unconscious figure on the ground. Bertie, a white human man in fancy golden armour, stands proudly over the figure, holding a huge sword behind his back. Another figure in a hood is further back in the alley, staring in terror at the scene. At the very back of the alley is Hamid, a brown halfling man with brown hair, wearing a formal shirt and vest. He looks intimidated. Big Ben can be seen in the background.

Sasha, Bertie, and Zolf take on the attackers in the alleyway, while Hamid attempts to distract the crowd. Art by @actualpanacea on tumblr. Used with permission.

Meanwhile, the men are still following Sasha as she tries to flee down a side street, running straight into a wall of metal that ends up being Bertie. Bertie greets her, but Sasha instead slips between his legs to put Bertie in between herself and the men following her, who have made it to the mouth of the alleyway. Zolf recognises what’s going on and notices Sasha, while Bertie is left completely confused as she slips behind him. She starts to back up slowly. Zolf comes up and asks if there is a problem, to which the men say that there isn’t. Sasha recognises one of the men as someone she used to work with, who is currently going by the name Thompson. He’s not the scariest person in the world, but he’s big and scary enough, and Sasha doesn’t want to get caught by him. Bertie starts to speak with them, and Zolf goes up to Sasha and quietly asks if they have a problem.

Sasha tells him that they do, and Zolf asks what it is. She explains that she didn’t want to work with them anymore, but that they disagreed with her leaving. The men call after her to tell her to come with them, and Zolf considers the situation and then tells her to leave it to him. He calls out for them to keep it moving, as he, Bertie, and Figgis are meant to be controlling the flow of the crowd and these two are blocking the way. He quietly tells Sasha to stay by him as he continues trying to get them to move. Neither of the men move and start to get even closer as Sasha clearly gets more worried.

Bertie, meanwhile, starts to attempt to move the two of them out of the alleyway, and then headbutts Thompson in the face, and the party enters combat. After attacking Thompson, the two other men who were pursuing Sasha come onto the scene. They attempt to harm Bertie, but can barely bypass his armour. The crowd is cheering the entire time, and guards are attempting to fight through the crowd to see what’s going on.  

The party easily finish off the other two men who have appeared, and Zolf starts to stabilise them.  is when Hamid arrives, spotting Bertie. He attempts to distract a now-interested large crowd, conjuring red paint from his sleeves to pretend like this is all a staged promotional fight for a local shop.

Quotes[]

Alex: "We start... in the skies above London."
―Alex, opening the podcast.

Guy: "Uh, if it’s any consolation, I thought you’d leave with nothing, so... that’s a plus. That’s four pluses! Four pluses for you."
Hamid: "Thank you. I suppose... things could always be worse."
Guy: "Oh, yes. I mean, you could leave right now and actually if you were to place one more bet you could win on one of the larger tables, eh? But you wouldn’t know ‘cause you’d’ve left."
Hamid: "No. No, it, it’s time, it’s time to... to do something else."
Guy: "Oh, all right. All right, well. You have a lovely day, and remember that Charlemagne’s is always open for those who like to have a little bit of a tickle on the cards."
Hamid: "Thank you. Hopefully I won’t be seeing you for quite some time."
Guy: "Why does everyone always say that when they’re losing, eh? I don’t know."
Hamid: "Right. I...huh. I wonder what...happens now."
Bryn: "I wander off down the street."
―Hamid, after cashing in his few remaining tokens at the casino.

Zolf: "Do we have a problem here, gents?"
Gent: "No problem. No problem, I don’t see a problem. Hey. Oi, Thompson. Thompson. Do we have a problem?"
Thompson: "No. No problems."
Bertie: "Excellent! If there are no problems, lovely to meet you. Hello. I’m Sir Bertrand “Bertie” MacGuffingham."
Gent: "Oh, hello. Uh...I’d shake your hand, but I’ve just eaten...food."
―Bertie, intimidating the men chasing Sasha.

Zolf: "What’s going on?"
Sasha: "Yes. Yes, we do have a problem."
Zolf: "Right. What’s the problem?"
Sasha: "Uh, well these...I used to work for these guys, and I, I don’t want to be engaged in, uh, in, in their line of business anymore and they, they uh, they disagreed with my change in employment status."
Gent: "Now, come on, Sasha. We’ve uh, we’ve all got places to be. You know?"
Zolf: "(To Sasha) Leave this to me. (Loudly) Sorry, gents, we’ve been hired to keep the crowd controlled. We gotta, you’re obstructing the flow of traffic. Figgis, Bertie, if you wouldn’t mind moving these gentlemen out of the way to uh, stop restricting a public byway. (To Sasha) Stay by me."
―Zolf defending Sasha.

Bertie: "Good afternoon, bloody little poor people!"
―Bertie introduces himself.

Dice rolls and Mechanics[]

  • Sasha makes a Perception check to notice she is being followed: 13
  • Sasha makes a Perception check to keep an eye on the man following her: 14
  • Sasha makes a Disguise check: natural 1
  • Sasha makes a Perception check: 14
  • Sasha makes an Acrobatics check: natural 20, total of 27
  • Bertie attacks a table, attack roll: 7
  • Sasha makes an Acrobatic check: 19
  • Zolf makes a Perception check: 13
  • Bertie makes a Perception check: 3
  • Hamid rolls a Bluff check to try and convince the crowd: 12

Combat Breakdown[]

Initiative: Figgis, Sasha (13), Ruffians, Bertie (10), Hamid (8), Zolf (2) 

Surprise round

  • Bertie: Headbutts Thompson, rolls a natural 20 and confirms the crit for a total of 12 damage. Thompson is knocked unconscious.

Round 1

  • Figgis: Steps into the shadows.
  • Sasha: Leaps off the wall of the alleyway, stabbing Stompy in the side with her wrist-knives, hitting twice with a 17 and 14 for attack, and rolling 4 and 7 damage. Stompy falls to the ground, unconscious. 
  • Ruffians: The other two men who were pursuing Sasha charge into the alley.
  • Bertie: Draws his greatsword, moves 10ft, and attacks the men but misses with a 12. 
  • Sasha: Considers leaving, but decides to help the people who just saved her, dashing 15ft to behind a crate.
  • Hamid: Travelling through the crowd, Hamid sees a smaller crowd off to one side. Approaching the crowd he sees Bertie in the fight. He heads through the crowd, although Bertie rolls an 8 for perception and doesn't seem to notice. 
  • Zolf: Casts stabilize on Thompson.

Round 2

  • Figgis: Sasha sees Figgis hitting the lock on a door.
  • Ruffians: One of Sasha's pursuers draws a short sword and strikes Bertie, who is totally protected by his armour. The other man hits Bertie as well, dealing 4 damage.
  • Bertie: Swings at the man who hit him with an 18 attack roll, lightly wounding him for 7 damage. 
  • Sasha: Leaps over the crate she hid behind, attacking the man behind it, missing with an 11 and a 2 with both knives. 
  • Hamid: Continues watching the battle.
  • Zolf: Drags Thompson to the side and props him up against a wall.

Round 3

  • Figgis: Remains in the shadows.
  • Ruffians: Both attack Bertie but fail to hit him.
  • Sasha: Stabs one of the men with an 18 attack, dealing 5 non-lethal damage and then misses with a 2 for the other attack.
  • Hamid: Does nothing.
  • Zolf: Runs down the alley as the enemies attack Bertie, failing to do anything. 

Round 4

  • Figgis: Does something out of sight.
  • Ruffians: Both attack and miss Bertie.
  • Bertie: The crowd start cheering Sasha, which Bertie takes offence to, attacking one of the men. He hits with a 16 and deals 13 damage, downing one of them.
  • Sasha: Attacks the ruffians but misses with an 8 and a natural 1, rolling a 14 to successfully not hurt herself with the fumble.
  • Hamid: Casts prestidigitation to spray fake blood and turns to the crowd, claiming "Come to Bertie & Botts for all your blood-based jokes!", but only gets 14 on his Bluff check and fails to sway the majority of the crowd.
  • Zolf: Casts ray of frost at the remaining man, hitting with a 16 to deal 3 cold damage. The man falls unconscious.

Plot Notes[]

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