“Tales of Asecia” is a short story (or a start of something more, who knows…) set into the world of Asecia I wrote some time ago. Perhaps it helps to set the mood for what I have in mind with my campaign setting in the making.
It was raining again. But even the heavy rain couldn’t clean up the smog-filled air in Cerynia’s industrial district. The streets were filled with tired workers of all ages who slowly made their way to their homes. Their individuality was robbed by the dirt, oil and grease on their faces and clothes. Since it was late autumn, sun was already down and only the white-blue light of the magic powered streetlamps shone upon the wet cobblestone street. Tycho Starkweather was working his way through the crowded side-walk. It was obvious that the adventurer didn’t belong here. The most obvious sign was the heavy leather coat he was wearing that was clearly of Tovenari design and the rifle he carried in a scabbard on his back. If the wide-brimmed hat and the bad lighting hadn’t concealed his features his looks would have been another indication of him being foreign to these parts. With his right hand he pulled a golden pocketwatch from his coat. It was almost eight o’clock. His informant had asked him to meet at a local tavern this evening. This was most unusual, so Tycho had made sure he was well-armed. Cerynia’s industrial district was a dangerous place especially if you were an agent for the Principality.
The tavern was a small brick house near one of the major Cerynian factories. When Tycho arrived there were a few workers sitting at the tables, playing cards, talking about their work or drinking. The common room was filled with the stench of sweat, beer and tobacco. But the room was pretty well lit by the warm light of gas lamps and the fireplace provided a comfortable warmth. Behind the bar a large muscular man was standing, chatting with some patron about the latest sports events. While heading for the bar, Tycho searched the room with his eyes. Still no sign of his informant. “Excuse me, gov’ner. We allow no guns in ‘ere”, the tavern’s owner said to him. Only now Starkweather noticed that the man’s right eye was blind and that his face was scarred. He had obviously been the victim of a knife fight or one of the many industrial accidents. Without a word Tycho produced a scroll from his pocket and showed him to the one-eyed man. “Oh, I didn’t know you had a permit of the mayor. No offense, gov’ner. ‘Ave a seat and take a beer on the ‘ouse!” the man exclaimed. “Thanks, good man”, Tycho replied and sat down.
He had almost emptied the pint of beer when suddenly the door swung open and three men with a grim demeanor entered. They were all heavily built and were wearing blue workers clothes and heavy boots. And all of them were armed with heavy clubs. “Starkweather, this is your last beer. Drink up and come with us”, one of them cried out. With a sneer he added “If you don’t I will have to crush that pretty face of yours.”
His companions were laughing out when he said that, obviously enjoying the idea. Slowly Tycho turned his head towards the ruffians. “If I were you, I wouldn’t make any claims I could not fulfill” he said slowly. The three men came slowly closer, clubs in hand. The tavern’s patrons were retreating from the intruders and the owner hid behind his bar mumbling something like “please don’t break anything”.
Without further warning the leader of the ruffians swung his club trying to hit Starkweather. But the man in the leather coat dodged his attack with incredible speed. And before the three could react he already held one of them at the throat and lifted him up from the ground. With astonishment the bullies watched as their friend was thrown through the common room as if he were a mere puppet. Then the speaker of the group realized that Starkweather must be one of the mages, one of the few people gifted with the talents of magic. And now they saw the white-blueish flame-like aura around him, as he concentrated for his next spell. “Please don’t!” the first ruffian cried out, throwing his weapon to the ground, “We surrender. We were just doing what the boss told us.” Tycho’s aura slowly faded and he approached the two men. “Tell your boss, that I am tired of his games. Now help your friend up and take him to a healer.”
He then sat down on his stool again and emptied his glass. “Could you pour me another pint, good man?” he asked the barkeeper.
And while the ruffians were fleeing with their hurt companion, Starkweather’s informant finally arrived. “It’s good to see you again” he said, as the beautiful young lady entered the room…
(To be continued …?)
I have to admit it’s not easy to write prose in a language you are not 100% fluent in, but I hope you enjoyed it nevertheless.