Actual Play – King Baldric! (7/25/2012)

GM: Shaun Hayworth
Players: Sean Nittner, Kristin Hayworth, Justin Dhiel, Andrew Eckhart
System: Burning Wheel
Setting: Burning Theorsa

So yeah… that happened.

We opened up the game as Moya and Baldric, some what sheepishly entered Duke Roderick’s hall. The duke was there, his eyes filled with rage, and staring balefully at Aziz (the once and future king, er not). “Baldric. Moya. Good, you have arrived. The king has just informed me of something. You must talk him out of this foolishness.”

Only Baldric had already agreed to this foolishness (the night before when Aziz beat him soundly in a Duel of Wits… fuck, why do I always script feint). And in telling his father that not only did he know, but also supported Aziz’s choice, he turned the dial from “steaming mad” to “boiling over with wrath”. “You knew about this? This is folly!” He raged.

We were all playing it pretty cool though still. Baldric pointed out that people don’t listen to what is right, they listen to what they believe. Moya was rightfully the commander of the troops but they didn’t accept her. Kentigern has no claim to the throne, but people accept him. It isn’t fair, but it’s the truth. The king needs to be someone the people will respect and more importantly, someone with the will to claim the throne. Aziz might win them over if he truly wanted to be their king, but he doesn’t and because of that he’s doomed to fail. And so are all of us if we try to put him on the throne.

And then something I didn’t expect to happen, happened. It was a single versus test. My ugly truth vs. my dad’s intimidation. His stakes were “If you support this folly, then you need to accept the crown”.  Mine were “uhhhh…. uuhhh…but… you’re the next in the line of succession for the crown…” Guess who won? He slapped that crown right out of Aziz’s hands and it rolled slowly and landed with a thud at Baldric feet.

It was Moya who acted first, grabbing the crown and holding it up. “This is your, my king.”  FUUUUUUUUUCK!

Introducing father Mikhael (played by Andrew Eckhart)

Meanwhile other things, awesome things, were happening down below. Father Mikhael had been summoned by the Duke to render doctrinal judgement on the priest Father Menden. The priests talked for a time in the dungeon, Mikhael was polite and brief. He calmly left to tell the duke, which later turned to telling the king, that the heretic needed to burn at the stake.

Yay, my first job as king was to try and protect a heretical priest. The outward reason was that he might have useful information. The true one was that once you start burning one person who uses magic in a way you don’t like, it doesn’t take much until you decide to burn others *cough*Moya*cough* for the same thing.

And again Baldric lost that DoW as well. Looks the the priest is going to burn…

Or not

While the men stayed in the Duke’s hall to discuss strategy (and what a bad strategy it is) Moya made haste to the dungeons…. where she found Mended awaiting his judgment. “Look, I just want your spellbook already. Give it to me and I’ll get you free.” Yay, I love misguided beliefs. Moya believes so entirely that faith is bullshit, she assumes that a man who can turn into a raven and invade the minds of others MUST be a wizard and therefore he MUST have a spell book.

I’ll tell you what this guy can do for sure… and that is lie his ass off. He did so, and convinced Moya that yes there was a spell book and if she got him out of here alive she could have it.

You know that guy in Monty Python: Search for the Holy Grail who pushes a cart and yells “Bring out your dead! Bring out your dead!” She took him to that guy! And I swear, I was amazed that nobody said “I’m not quite dead” because that is exactly what Mr. traumatic wound, never properly tended to was… not “quite” dead. But it was good enough for the worker, and he put Mended on the cart leaving the keep!

Next up: ships from Kashkyr, sending soldiers to their doom for an impossible feint, and summoning a dragon, oh MY!

Thoughts on this game

Wow. I can’t argue, being forced to take the crown is very cool. Especially when it means Baldric may very well have to face his own brother (who he loves) in battle to claim it.

Balls, I’m never going to have Oratory or Strategy trained in time. Beginners lucking whenever I can, but I’m still a long ways off.

I just love the impossible mess we’ve created. There is no way to cleanly unravel this. If we take the throne, we all find out Moya is Baldric’s half sister. If we don’t everything we’ve fought for is lost. If we take the throne, we’ll destroy Aeric’s dreams, but knowing the hot head, he’ll probably challenge Baldric to duel, and killing his own brother will break Balric heart. We’ve gone to far to turn back now, but there is no answer that won’t end in pain and suffering. I FUCKING LOVE THIS GAME.