*** Spoiler Alert – if you intend playing the WFRP Starter there may be spoilers below ***

5th Ulriczeit 2511 (Marktag) – Riot, ‘Arrest’ and ‘joining’ the Watch

A pig flew through the air, having been flung by someone unsighted. It narrowly missed Salundra (read the second installment of Salundra’s journal) and its squeals added a high pitched note to the general cacophony in Marktplatz. Everywhere people were brawling, but quite what had sparked the fracas was unclear. The party found themselves in the middle of it all, Ferdinand and Salundra towards the eastern side of the platz; Gunnar more centrally located.

A chant began to rise from the noise… “Altdorfers Out! Altdorfers Out!” its simple refrain. Gunnar was best located to determine its source. Anton, the agitator and vandal of the Sisters’ Bakery, had returned, attracted by the tumult in Marktplatz. Seizing on the chaos he initiated the chanting…

Gunnar saw this as his opportunity to take down the rabble rouser. His initial attempts to push through the brawling crowd resulted in little forward movement, but he soon began to push and intimidate people out of his path. Anton was so caught up in the moment he failed to spot the Slayer bearing down on him. Gunnar swung a fist, initially only glancing the agitator, and going unnoticed, Anton seemingly entranced by the occasion. The follow-up blow couldn’t be ignored however. Gunnar seized Anton by the shirt, dragged him downwards and head butted him senseless. Gunnar dropped the unconscious man at his feet, planted his axe on the ground and bellowed. The sight of the bloodied agitator and the dangerous looking dwarf was enough to quell the riot in the south-western quadrant of the Marktplatz. As the crowd began to disperse, across the platz he spotted something more disturbing, another prone man, but this one was not going to get up again, a bolt having pierced his left eye…

Meanwhile, Salundra had attempted to join Gunnar, only to be confronted by a ridiculously tall man wearing a long, quite garish coat. Giggling maniacally he swung a fist at her, catching her knee badly and dropping her to the ground. She noticed his ridiculously stumpy as he walked away. When she regained her feet she noticed a woman, in a large blue hat decorated with faded yellow feathers, observing them.

Ferdinand checked on the sisters, Om and Nom. They were hiding under their cart, but were unharmed, though most of their baked wares were scattered and trampled on the ground. Ferdinand learned that this isn’t the first such incident in the Marktplatz. A shrill scream cut through the din, drawing his attention to an incident on the eastern edge of the platz; two woman were being attacked by three knife-wielding ruffians. Ferdinand strode towards them, striking one down with the flat edge of his scythe. The others attacked, but the unexpected appearance of a bald-headed, scythe-wielding man in a grey cloak unnerved them and they fled. One of the women had wounds on her hands and Ferdinand tended to them. She said her name was Zelda and she was in the employ of the Karstadt-Stampf household, tasked with chaperoning Jocelin, the family’s youngest, through the city. A black and gold armband hinted that she was indeed in the employ of the Karstadts.

The sharp crack of a pistol sounded across the platz, stunning most brawler. “You are all under arrest!”. The pistol was held aloft by the woman in the large hat, who turned out to be Watch Captain Andrea Pfeffer. Salundra knew of her and of the long military lineage of her Middenland family. Watch were closing in from all sides the of platz, seizing brawlers. When confronted the party refused to be disarmed. Watch Captain Pfeffer insisted the party come with the Watch to the Barracks in the Precinct, an area of Ubersreik north of the river, but conceded that they weren’t under arrest. Before the rest of the Watch had arrived, she noticed them protecting the Halfling sisters, saving the older woman and girl and neutralising Anton Grimski. That said, they were at the centre of riot, so she couldn’t simply let them go on their way. In another concession, she allowed them to keep their weapons. During the escorted march to the Watch Barracks Salundra, spotted the ‘tall man’ realising he was three Halflings stacked, obviously part of whatever troupe had been in the Marktplatz.

It took a little time before Captain Pfeffer could see the party. She offered them a role with the Watch, more like loosely affiliated consultants than actual Watch members, an offer that would afford a lot of freedom. She wanted capable people to help the Watch, hopefully wearing Watch armbands to help improve the reputation and effectiveness of the Watch’s activity in the Teubrücke area. She needed help as most of Watch were third-rate Altdorf soldiers, having replaced the original Watch when the Jungfreuds were displaced. After a brief discussion, the party said they were willing to help and were introduced to Sergeant Rudi Klumpenkulg, a jovial original member of the Watch, and he led them away. He suggested they meet in the Raspy Raven, another inn on the Docks that evening.

The party split up, Salundra and Ferdinand returning to the Red Moon Inn, to recompose themselves, Salundra in particular was quite disheveled and really quite sore following the fighting. Gunnar returned to the platz to look for clues, but all he found was a scene of industrious tidying, a few slipped pfennigs and a printed sheet of paper (Salundra later reads it for him: “Maler is CORRUPT. Altdorfers OUT. Bring back the JUNGFREUDS!”). The site where the other body had fallen showed where a large pool of blood had tried into the ground. Gunnar deduced where the crossbow bow may have been shot from, but the trail ran cold there.

Salundra and Ferdinand wanted to check on the sisters, unsure if they had been arrested. The bumped into Gunnar on the way and were all glad to see the sisters safe and well in their bakery, the oven back up and running and the vandalism repaired. Om and Nom have promised them pastries and pies whenever they happen to be passing by.

The party begin to make their way towards the Raspy Raven, but are stopped in the Markplatz by a striking woman wearing red and black robes and a barrister’s wig. She has come from the Temple of Verena, having spotted the conspicuous party. She introduces herself as Osanna Winandus and offers the thanks of her clients, the Karstadt-Stampfs, for saving Jocelin. She informs the party that Zelda is being well cared for and that should they need any legal assistance she is on hand (her office is at the east end of the Merchant’s Quarter). She also thanks them for the generous donation the Karstadt’s made to the Cult of Verena following the just intervention to save their daughter.

That evening they meet Rudi, who voices his distrust of the Altdorfers and promises to show the party the the ropes and walk them through the Docks the next day. The idea of doing a walkthrough that night is quickly brushed aside by the temptation of a few drinks…

6th Ulriczeit 2511 (Backertag) – A Tour of the Docklands

After a well deserved night’s rest, the party meet Rudi in the mid morning at the Raspy Raven. He shows them the ins and outs of the Docks, describing the different activities in the area and pointing out scenes where some of the more infamous incidents had occurred. While on tour Gunnar spots a pickpocket, but they quickly realise Watch are in the area (Rudi is uniformed and Salundra is wearing a blue and gold armband) and begin to back away. A less observant accomplice tries to steal from Salundra, but lightning fast reflexes seize the urchin’s wrist, who they let away with a warning, having confiscated their ill-gotten takings. Rudi keeps the purse with the promise to fund lunch and dinner should it not be claimed.

In the late afternoon, they come upon an incident on the Docks, with a merchant being roughed up by a gang of men. Rudi approaches, seeming to know the ring leader and he cautions the party to leave things alone, not wanting to get embroiled in Dockers’ Guild ‘business’.

After a busy day touring the docks, they eat in the Red Moon Inn and Rudi retires home early.

Two young boys enter the inn, one of whom the party recognise as the Halfling boy who waited for Aloysius’s arrival with the message from the sisters. He points out the party to the other boy and leaves. Salundra approaches the boy, who seems to be about twelve years old. He introduces himself as Eugen Pechvogel and asks for help… his dad has gone missing.

… and we’ll pick things up from there the next time.

Until next time,