Tales of New Camelot

Dragonfall over the Shard

A showdown between Fae, Dragons and Vampires

CONTEXT/RATIONALE: This was intended to be the concluding part of a plot arc that kicked off with a Dauntain scheme to awaken and bind the ‘Dragon of the Thames’ (Temys) and brought the dragon’s spirit back to earth. This is described in The story so far, concerning a centuries-old feud between dragons, one of whom (Tempeste, dragon of the sky) was manipulating both changelings and vampires. The storyline had been rather distracted by a changing roster of players and it felt like Nick/Gawaine had been possessed for too long now, reduced to the status of a sort of all-powerful NPC. So, time to wrap things up!

Sir Gawaine the Troll, possessed by the River Dragon Temys and almost completely burned-out on Bedlam, has ascended to the bubble realm above the Shard and started remoulding it to his insane will. In the Autumn World, a lightning storm brews over London. The four knights sent by Gallehault to accompany Gawaine are trapped in the realm with him. Fergus Ironsides, exploring the Shard, has broken into Mistral Enterprises and met Josselyn Collier, the intern who is clearly the “afanc” into which a dragon-spirit can be housed.

Meanwhile in Picadilly, Dinadan is returning to Cameliard, but encounters Lancelot at a zebra crossing, leading to violence. The two head into a nightclub called the Chapel Perilous where Lancelot is meeting a maiden he is sworn to serve. Dodinel the Savage is already dancing with the girl, Thora Drake. Dodinal uses a Wayfare cantrip to send Lancelot flying into the rafters but violence is prevented by the arrival of Gawaine’s phoenix, summoning them all to the Shard.

Dinadan and Dodinel get reacquainted as they jog to the River but as they cross Waterloo Bridge the Siege Perilous opens a Trod for them through to the ruins of Camelot itself. After a brief debate, they choose this new quest and disappear into the Mists.

Back at the Shard, Fergus Ironsides is captured by Tempeste‘s goons and interrogated. When he is eventually released he uses his Soothsay powes to bring Josselyn together with her twin, Finlay Douglas who works the crane outside the tower. The two hit it off, but everything is interrupted by the arrival of Lancelot who cuts a bloody swathe through the tower. Sir Florence, one of Galahaut’s knights, has escaped from the dragon’s realm and is also fighting Tempeste’s ghouls. Tempeste confronts Lancelot and unwisely uses her Delusion Cantrip to look like Guinevere, triggering a psychotic episode that flips the troubled warrior back to his Unseelie persona. Fergus and Finlay escape the bloodshed by crawling into the ventilation ducts.

By now it is nightfall and the vampires have arrived: Sidney Reilly has awoken his grandsire Alexandyr Oblomov to investigate his suspicions about Boris Savinkov, the elder in charge of Clan Ventrue’s operations in the Shard. Alexandyr draws on his memories of the spirits of medieval Rus to identify Faerie magic and feeds on the wounded Florence to become enchanted.

Lancelot takes Tempeste’s tattered body back to the dragon’s realm to confront the other dragon possessing Gawaine. He uses his spear, charged with the electrical dragon breath, to strike Temys down from on high, causing the dragon’s spirit to leave Gawaine. Gawaine nearly falls to his death but is saved by the Sidhe knight Allymere. Alexandyr honours his ancient pact with Baba Yaga by calling the dragon’s spirit into himself, before he and Lancelot both fall out of the realm and into the Dreaming. Gawaine is mad with Bedlam but Reilly brings the dying Tempeste to Finlay and Fergus. Inspired by Fergus, Finlay allows the sky-dragon to enter into him. In gratitude, the dragon cures Gawaine of his Bedlam.

The Shard is being evacuated because of the storm and Thora Drake is waiting outside with Gawaine’s chauffeur Tark. Reilly bids them farewell before returning to the tower to search for his Sire and the transformed Alexandyr.

EVALUATION: Well, that didn’t go quite as planned, did it? Some times I should rein in my enthusiasm for improv and just tell the story. Instead of the promised changelings-vs-vampires smack down, two PCs wander off into the Near Dreaming and poor old Nick ends up sitting almost the whole game out in dragon mode. The battles in the Shard all happen offstage and the players are left wondering just how much their presence ended up mattering. On a positive note, the opportunity to play the vampire NPCs was enthusiastically seized by Alec and Ray, a wider sense of the interactions in the World of Darkness was created and Alexandyr (a vampire elder introduced in the old Torchlight campaign) received an eerie apotheosis and promises to become a memorable Big Bad. The roleplaying point went to Alec for Dodinel/Alexandyr; Wisdom points went to Alex for Fergus & Ray for Dinadan/Reilly.



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