21st Ulriczeit 2511

Dear M,
It was only a few hours of sleep, but it was enough for me to continue my retelling of a most strange evening. I was hoping the sleep might help put the events into some order, but I fear they will spill onto the page as a bit of a jumble. Anyway… I will continue in the lamp light and hopefully this will all make some sense to you.

There were some curious guests that I did not recognise, and am sorry to say I missed being introduced – the party was becoming quite busy now. A young man in a ‘leaf suit’ laughed jovially with another man in a long grey robe, a long grey scarf and a broad-brimmed hat. The latter looked like a caricature of a wizard. I was about to introduce myself when two of the town’s religious leaders arrived, Fr. GE and Sis. CH representing the Cults of Sigmar and Shallya respectively. Their arrival wouldn’t normally merit mention, but what happened next was quite shocking… and not a little funny. I thought I glimpsed the man in the long grey robes flick his fingers and then the next thing the cloths of Sigmar’s and Shallya’s representatives had switched places! Poor Fr. GE… his companions clothing was much too tight for him. The entrance hall erupted in laughter… more nervous than mirtheous (if there were such a word). EvH moved quickly to escort them to rooms upstairs where they might change.

I sought out T13 and we engaged in a few hands of Scarlet Empress, at her suggestion. A little incautious given the company, but I thought I’d ingratiate myself to her. I gleamed the following: GMU was there to strengthen the link between the houses; I should talk to the guest in the large stag mask (Lord SvS no less!) and T13 is not a great player of cards. I connected with her again later after some rather disturbing events, but I’ll get to that.

Oh! Did I mention the Knights Panther bodyguard accompanying the General? There was something strange about them.

I decided to act on T13’s advice and was on my way to speak to Lord SvS when I spotted him slip something into EvH’s glass as they spoke. I made haste to them and with a grandeous and faux-clumsy gesture struck the glass from EvH’s hand. I think they bought it as an accident and EvH, the gracious host (at least he still was at this stage!) accepted the blame for the accident. I spoke with Lord SvS while EvH instructed servants to clean the mess. I gleamed little from him – he bragged of his hunting prowess, indeed it seems to have been the source of his deer head mask. He struck me as a noble seeking fortune and this event was an opportunity to establish his standing. My mind returned to the pretty maid… no, not because she was pretty, but because she was the last person to serve Baron RA before he ‘drunkenly’ collapsed. I was just about to talk to her when the servants started to gather everyone in the dining room for a musical interlude.

Somehow EvH had gotten the Hilliard Ensemble back together (I think it’s over 10 years since they last performed together). Their a cappella rendition of Bonne Maid of Altdorf, typically a song with more humble associations, was sublime. Everyone was enraptured. A violin accompaniment joined them, and they continued with Old Lady I Know on the Hill and then a rapturous performance of Sigmar’s Victory. Quite amazing… but I digress.

I noticed the ‘leaf suit’ man ‘try-it-on’ with the Shallya priestess, but she was having none of it. The dwarfen Slayer stepped in and escorted her back to the music and away from the lecherous ‘leaf man’.

I spoke with the servant, Netta is her name, though Baron dG kept interrupting seeking more cheese and wine. She had nothing to report other than the drink was the first one Baron RA had had that evening. I tried to recall if Lord SvS had been near RA when he fell ‘ill’, but I’m not sure.

I decided to be brave and take the opportunity to speak with GMU… she was being accosted by ‘leaf man’. He was trying his luck with every young woman there it seems. I decided to interject myself, but he was quite insistent that he and GMU and he had a ‘connection’. He gesticulated wildly as he spoke and struck her, I believe accidentally. I leaped to action and deftly managed to steer, hop, skip and glide her from hitting the floor. We arrived at the large plinth that had a huge stuffed boar. However, all was not well. GMU’s eyes glazed over and she collapsed. This looked like more than the result of an accidental slap! I was about to call for help when… and please bear with me for what follows is ludicrous… the BOAR CAME ALIVE! Yes, you read correctly. It jumped from the plinth and barrelled through the crowd.

The uproar was thunderous – my attempts to get help for GMU stymied. I decided to try to distract it, but I had little to hand. I lit a couple of alcoholic drinks and tried to hit the beast with them. The first struck a nearby noble… setting him alight, albeit briefly… I’m sure his eyebrows will regrow quickly. The second glass flew beautifully, striking the boar. Unfortunately the flaming liquid spilled down my arm before the glass left my hand, setting my right arm aflame! I patted it out quickly and witnessed some true heroics. The dwarf ran at the beast, yelled “You can’t outrun me, bacon!”, and jumped to slide under it, his axe tearing it apart. It disappeared in that instant only to reappear beside me on the plinth. Of note, the Knights Panther did not intervene at any stage. I hastily patted out the flames and went to find T13, to get help for GMU. I did notice Netta and a man in a plague doctor mask quickly readjusting their clothes at the top of the stairs!

T13 bellowed for the doctor, Dr. OK, and he – the man in the plague doctor mask – came quickly down the stairs. A brief assessment and he stated she looked like she’d be poisoned, Black Lotus most likely. He said he needed his bag from home and called for a horse. As he made to exit a woman carrying what looked to be a child appeared at the front door claiming she needed to speak to EvH now! EvH was not receptive, but I caught the word ‘son’ in amongst their ‘discussion’. The soldier woman, who is in the party with the dwarf and mage, appeared and defused the situation, though she gave EvH the dirtiest of looks. Actually, I saw the soldier talking to HK-S earlier – I wonder what that was about? I decided I’d try to stick close to the man in the long grey cloak (who turned out to be the mage CE!) to ensure no more magical mishaps occurred.

It was about then I noticed the smoke… yes, yes… another odd thing occurring at this party. EvH’s event had become quite the comedy of errors. It was coming from the kitchens. I did not hesitate and ran towards the smoking room, as the servants and staff fled past me. In the kitchen, I saw a shape moving, scattering something on the food. It had a tail! I sent a shot from my sling in its direction, missing narrowly, but the sound of the shot hitting something metal disturbed it. It turned to me, its face that of a giant rat! We’ve all heard those rumours… they are true. The purple clad mage appeared as did the dwarf, the former distorting the ratman with a magical dart of some form, the latter attempting to cleave the abomination in two with is giant axe. He missed narrowly and the creature leapt through a window. The Slayer sought to follow, but the agility of the creature was more than he could replicate. We saw to the disposal of the food and the chimney was unblocked, for this was the source of the smoke.

EvH and his staff tried to reignite (poor choice of word maybe) the party, but it was faltering. I overheard Baron RA, who had recovered from his ‘illness’, talking sharply to EvH. Something about inability to host a simple party and ‘not being able to cover up his problems’. EvH seemed to be very much out of favour with RA.

I went to ask after GMU, for the doctor had returned and was tending to her in an upper room. T13 spoke with me and said they may have just caught it in time. She thanked me and suggested I come speak to her and GMU in a week or so – an important contact made there. I was making my way down the stairs when a dream came from the back garden. I hastened to investigate and was one of the first to arrive in the garden. There, lying on the ground in a pool of blood, was the ‘leaf man’. I later learned he was Lord FPf. EvH arrived on the scene and was quite exasperated at this stage. He called the guards and Cpt. Pf appeared. I’m sure that as thorough an investigation as possible will ensue.

The guests were all starting to leave at this stage, even though it was relatively early. As I was working my way out, I saw the soldier/adventurer return with the woman and child. EvH seemed both deflated and reconciled with the fact that his political aspirations have been dealt a fatal blow. At least he can fall back on being a family man again!

Yours etc.,


P.S. A note will follow by a different method to demystify my name abbreviations, though you may have worked out most of them by the time it gets to you should it be delayed!

Who’s who?

  • EvH – Lord Erich von Holzenauer
  • GMU – Gravin Maria-Ulrike von Liebwitz of Ambosstein
  • T13 – Mercinellin Thorncobble XIII
  • vB – Lord Heinrich von Bruner
  • Lady G – Lady Galina Hohengolfrid
  • vF – Baron Heinrich von Falkenhayn
  • EM – Burgomeister Ernst Maler
  • MA – Lord Maximillian Aschaffenberg
  • RA – Baron Rickard Aschaffenberg
  • SvS – Lord Siegfried von Saponatheim
  • dG – Jean-Luc de Cadent, Baron de Grenouille
  • Fr. GE – Gunther Emming
  • Sis. CH – Celestine Hoch
  • Dr. OK – Doktor Otto Krupp
  • HK-S – ‘Lady’ Hellen Karstadt-Stampf
  • FPf – Lord Florian Pfiefraucher
  • Cpt. Pf – Captain Andrea Pfeffer
  • SB – Sigismunda Bloombury!