Monday, July 17, 2017

The Colony - Turn 28 - Corpse Town

The party is still exploring the countryside, and they've stumbled across an abandoned village.

Start Date: August 4, late morning
Start Status: Village Visit
Start Location: Hex 39,25

Adventuring: Rennard, Jinx, Mendel, Aaron, Maarek, Xon
At the Tulip: Adrienne, Brigg, Hagan, Kessel, Smoke, Zenobe

The Turn

After carefully watching the village for an hour, the party concludes that it is either empty or full of night-walking undead (but probably the former). They move forward in an open formation, using scrubby trees and brush as cover when they can. Rennard, Mendel, and Maarek form a loose front rank. Xon, Jinx, and Aaron trail a bit with missile weapons ready. [The GM is amused that all the healers are up front].

As they get closer, they also get a better look at the figures outside the palisade. It's clear they're some sort of scarecrow rather than living creatures, but no one is prepared for skinned human corpses surrounded by heaps of dead flies and carrion birds. There are three of the things spaced along the south side of the palisade, all facing outward. They seem dried out but curiously preserved, aside from the lack of skin. "Even their eyes are intact," mutters Xon, keeping watch as Aaron loses his breakfast behind a bush.

"Maarek, I hate to ask this, but do you... recognize anyone?" Mendel asks.

Maarek shakes his head. "I'm not sure I could from this, but my father is quite tall and my mother has clear blue eyes. None of these look right."

"We should leave them and check inside," says Jinx, nervously rubbing his blunderbuss. The others agree and everyone moves through a gap in the palisade. The gate was secured, but the wall itself has fallen in several places.

The buildings are odd. The walls are made of dry set cut stone and exceedingly well made. The doors are tall and narrow, 8 feet tall but less than 2 wide, and the windows are set high up on the walls. The ceilings are also quite high, 9 feet or more. The smaller buildings were clearly homes. They've been cleaned out, but the party finds scattered signs of habitation: shards of glossy white pottery, an odd-sized broken chair, and a very long bed. All the furniture is made of wood and seems quite thin and delicate. The larger building was some sort of meeting hall or common lodge. A stone ramp leads up to the wide entry, which has no doors. It contains a single room with a central fire pit surrounded by long tables and benches.

The doors on all the smaller buildings face inward toward a central open area in front of the larger structure, which is flanked by a small stone-lined well. Though it is overgrown now, Xon digs around with his boot and uncovers quite a bit of colored gravel. "Some kind of decoration maybe?"

"It looks like this place has been abandoned for a long time," says Aaron, "but it's nowhere near as old as the obelisk room in the lizard cave."

"I'd say 10 years or so. The area around the palisade was cleared, and the trees out there are all pretty small," adds Rennard.

"One thing's for sure. Whoever lived here wasn't human," says Jinx. "Where did they go, and why did they leave?"

"Maybe the colonists drove them out, or they caught the plague," suggests Maarek.

Aaron shrugs. "No real way to know, but there's not much left here. I think they left and had time to prepare for the trip. We checked every building and didn't find anything of value." He looks through a gap in the fence to the figures standing watch outside. "What about... them?"

"I hate to leave them standing out there, there were people, after all, but the piles of insects and birds make me nervous. I'm not sure we should handle them," says Mendel.

"Just a moment. Let me check something." Aaron goes back out to the bodies and looks them over intently. "As I suspected. There's magic at work here. A faint enchantment still lingers over these remains. I agree, we should not touch them without some form of protection."

"We've spent a lot of time here," says Xon. "We should move on. I don't want to be anywhere near this place when we camp tonight." He glances up at the thickening clouds, "especially in the rain."

The others agree, and the group heads northwest into the more open terrain there. Thick and tall grass suggests this may be good farmland, although there is little in the way of water here. They catch sight of herds of antelope in the distance, their trampled trails providing an easy passage through the dense growth. As evening approaches, the party turns northeast, toward the distant coast. As Xon predicted, a light rain starts to fall around sunset, making for a wet camp.

August 5

The rain stops during the night, and next morning is hot and muggy. The party continues northeast, crossing more grassland. There are a few rocky hills here, and the party notices humanoid shapes watching them from atop one of these hills. They throw themselves to the ground and peer through the thick grass. The figures are still there and unmoving. "More staked out corpses?" asks Rennard.

"We should go see." Mendel leads the group up the shallow slope to where three more preserved corpses on long poles rise above the tall grass. They are identical to those in the village, right down to the piles of dead carrion birds and flies.

"I get the feeling someone doesn't want us here," mutters Jinx.


I think we'll stop here so you guys can consider your plan in light of these developments.

End Date: August 5, late morning
End Status: Corpsecrow?
End Location: Hex 39,24

I've changed up the map format a bit. The dimmed areas represent places that the group has seen from a distance or heard about. The brighter areas are places they've visited/explored.


  1. Do you ever welcome new players, out of curiosity?

    1. I do, for example Brigg/Mendel's player is new to the group this game. However, everyone in the group is either a personal friend or a friend of a friend. I've been gaming with some of these people for more than 30 years.

  2. That definitely helps with the chemistry.


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