SCENE ONE

[NPC Focus – Guide / Love; Chaos Factor (5)]

Ext. Saint Vevryn’s Canton. Street. Night.

Sen Daernan and Goran Falcroft are one the way back from a job. Goran did a second story solo job on a villa in the upper city. Sen was with him, helping out as a lookout and the two boys are on their way back to the lower city to drop the haul off with Sair Courqan. Goran has a pouch full of jewels and is in great spirits. Unfortunately, unbeknownst to him, the jewels are all fake.

It’s a few hours of solid walking from the upper city back to one of Courqan’s offices in Saint Vevryn’s Canton. The boys luckily attract no undue attention from the city guard as they flit from ally to ally down the great stair and across Saint Deouph’s Canton. Goran is in high spirits and wants to stop at the Wayward Son to meet his current lover. Although he has serious reservations and think they should see Sair Courqan as soon as possible, Sen has some nerves and thinks that the detour would do him good.

The streets are very quiet and there’s nothing to delay the boys on the way to the bar. They arrive shortly before midnight without incident.

+1 CP (1), Chaos Factor -1 (4), Add NPC: “Love Interest for Goran” (Jules Grasçon)

SCENE TWO – INTERRUPT SCENE

[NPC Action – Activity / Home; Chaos Factor (4)]

INT. SAIR COURQAN’S OFFICE. NIGHT.

Sair Courqan has heard though certain channels that the boys traveled to the upper city in the late afternoon. He takes his lieutenant Aryn Karyos to the orphanage. There he encounters Father Balon.

The two men square off verbally, but using some shrewd diplomacy Father Balon tells Sair Courqan truthfully that Sen isn’t there. Although he also successfully embellishes by claiming that Sen hasn’t been there in a few days. Father Balon also manages to convince Courqan to lay aside immediate vengance to wait for more details about exactly what the boys were doing in the upper city.

Sair Courqan suspects Balon is hiding something, but can’t prove it so he turns to leave. Before he goes, he levels a stern warning to Balon that should Sen and Goran return, they should be sent to him immediately.

SAIR COURQAN
I have warned they about freelancing, especially in the upper city. Should I find that my warnings were not heated, the consequences could be severe.

Aryn Karyos levels a menacing eye towards Father Balon as Sair Courqan hurries down the street. Suspecting where the boys might end up after they return from the Upper City, Sair Courquan takes Aryn with him to the Wayward Son.

+1 CP (2), Chaos Factor +1 (5), Add NPC: “Sair Courqan’s Lieutenant” (Aryn Karyos)

SCENE THREE

[Introduce New NPC – Oppose / Friendship; Chaos Factor (5)]

INT. WAYWARD SON. NIGHT.

Sen and Goran arrive at the Wayward Son. Aylia is there and Sen immediately heads over to sit with her. Goran sees Jules and when they embrace, it appears that they genuinely love each other.

It is immediately clear to everyone in the room that Aylia is completely smitten with Sen. But, like most teenage boys would be, Sen is complete clueless about the whole situation. In fact, he appears to be casting a somewhat attentive eye at Goran’s young friend.

The Jules grabs ale for Goran and Sen and the four youths sit together at a table. The conversation turns almost immediately from small-talk to the reports of a successful trip to the Upper City. Aylia looks worried and reminds the boys that Courqan had expressly forbidden them from taking outside jobs. Goran is brushing off her fears with a casual reassurance when Sair Courqan and Aryn enter the bar.

All conversation at the table stops as everyone turns to meet the new arrivals. As the men approach the table where Sen, Goran, Aylia and Jules are sitting, it becomes clear to everyone that this is serious business. Courqan is armed (illegally) with a rapier, which is quite above his social standing. And, Aryn is armed with a carved, but worn, darkwood walking stick. While they’re not menacing or overtly looking for trouble, and Aryn isn’t likely to fight the boys, they do have the appearance of a seriously dangerous pair.

SAIR COURQAN
I heard you boys went upstairs tonight.

GORAN
Did you?

SAIR COURQAN
I did. I would seriously hope that you boys weren’t freelancing up there. I’ve warned you about that.

GORAN
We were actually coming to see you.

SAIR COURQAN
Oh, yeah? It doesn’t look like it. It looks to me like you’re canoodling with your girlfriends.

GORAN
It’s a long walk Courqan, we wanted to take a load off before we came by your place.

SAIR COURQAN (clearly angrier)
Well, I’m here now. What did you guys want to talk about?

GORAN (nervously grabbing his bag)
We brought you this.

SAIR COURQAN (snatching the bag from Goran)
What this?
(he looks inside)
What the hell is this?

GORAN
We–

SAIR COURQAN (holding up his hand)
No, don’t answer!
(glaring at Sen)
Sen, what were the two of you thinking? How many times have I told you to NEVER go freelancing?!? Especially not upstairs!

SEN
I was a good tip Courqan. Look at the haul.

SAIR COURQAN
A good tip that you didn’t bring to me.
(to Aylia)
Were you with them?

AYLIA
No Sair.

(Courqan looks through the bag. And then rubs and hand across his forhead.)

SAIR COURQAN
You two are idiots. These are fake.
(he throws the bag down on the table and points a threatening finger at Goran)
I want to see both of you at first light tomorrow. You’re going to owe me for this.

Courqan turns smartly on his heels and storms out of the bar without another word.

Aryn places his staff on the table and leans over.

ARYN KARYOS
I like you Goran. I really do. But, this… this was incredibly stupid. And Sen, I thought you were smarter than this. Listen, both of you, Courqan is not the kind of person you cross. And, I don’t want to hurt either of you, but if you do anything like this again, I might have to. It won’t be easy for me, but if Courqan asks me to… (he shrugs)
We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Aryn picks up his staff and turns to go.

ARYN (serious)
I’ll see you two tomorrow.

+1 CP (3), Chaos Factor +1 (6), Add Thread: “Meet with Sair Courqan”, Close Thread: “Bring Jewels Back”

SCENE FOUR (INTERRUPT SCENE)

[Move Towards Thread (1) – Ambush Magic; Chaos Factor (6)]

EXT. HODA’S SHOP. NIGHT.

Uncle Hoda lives and works in a narrow four-story structure sandwiched between two warehouses just north of The Narrows. He has a small dock just big enough for a river boat. Hoda is an alchemist of no small skill, although in truth his talents lie more to the herbalist side of alchemy than the mystical. He is also an agent for Salmera University, meaning that he finds students of promise, performs espionage and serves as a tutor.

After Sait Courqan’s visit, there was little point in staying at the Wayward Son. Sen’s mood became dark and sullen and despite Aylia’s attempts to console him, his demeanor doesn’t change. When they left the bar, Sen explained to Aylia that he wanted to talk to Uncle Hoda to get some advice. He says that he knows that he screwed up with the trip to the upper city and completely jeopardized his position with Courqan, but he doesn’t know what to do to fix things. He hopes that Uncle Hoda can help him figure it out.

When they get to Hoda’s shop (and apartments), Aylia lays a hand on Sen’s arm and offers to wait for him. He says that she doesn’t have to and she responds by saying that she wants to.

Sen and Aylia enter Hoda’s through a back door in an ally and find themselves in a darkened kitchen. Aylia decides to fix herself some food and tells Sen that she’ll wait while he goes to look for Hoda. Sen finds him in his upstairs office, but he’s not alone.

Sitting in a soft high-backed chair is a tall, thin, pale man with dark hair tied back in a neat queue. As Sen enters the room, the two men are sitting quietly, not talking. Uncle Hoda is at his desk trimming a miniature tree. The stranger is reading a sheaf of parchment with his legs crossed.

When Sen entered the room without knocking and both men looked up. The stranger removes his spectacles and tucks them inside his cloak. Hoda puts his knife down, leads back and folds his hands over his ample belly.

Sen stops and hastily begins to excuse himself, explaining that he didn’t know that Hoda had company. Hoda waves a hand in his direction, tells him not to worry and urges him to pull up a chair. Sen refuses and begins to back out of the room saying that he’ll come back in the morning. The stranger however insists that Sen join them.

Sen sits reluctantly and Uncle Hoda introduces the stranger as Cyese, agent of Salmera University. Sen greets him shyly and Cyese leans back in his chair with a calm smile on his face.

Hoda explains that he had actually wanted to introduce the two of them and that he is of the opinion that the University might have an interest in Sen. Sen, naturally, is skeptical, but waits as Cyese explains that Hoda has told him that Sen might have some talent. And he says that if that is the case, the University would in fact have some interest in him.

Sen shakes his head and states again that he doesn’t have any special talents

CYESE
Do you see things?

SEN
What things?

CYESE
If you concentrate, can you see more clearly?

SEN (hesitating)
Yes.

UNCLE HODA
Sen, what you’ve described is indicative of someone who has the raw talent necessary to become a theurgist.

SEN
But I don’t…

CYESE
You may not see it, but from what Hoda has told me about you, I think it is clear that you are a prime candidate for further studies.

SEN
I’m not sure you’re right. I don’t have any special abilities, I just notice more, have better vision.

Cyese appear to be ready to make one more entreaty, but frowns and shuts his mouth. He quickly adopts a passive expression and calmly extends an invitation for Sen to visit the University. Sen uses the opportunity to thank Cyese and Hoda and before either man can protest, he excuses himself.

+1 CP (4), Chaos Factor +1 (7), Add Thread: “Visit Salmera University”, Close Thread: “Meet with Cyese”, Add NPC: “Cyese the Silent”

SCENE FIVE

[Introduce New NPC – Oppress / Status Quo; Chaos Factor (7)]

EXT. FATHER BALON’S ORPHANAGE. NIGHT.

Sen has just bid goodnight to Aylia and is preparing to sneak into the back of the orphanage. As he starts to scale the gate, there’s a cough from a shadow and a middle-aged man, clad in overlapping boiled

leather and chain, bearded with hard eyes and steps into view. He has a shortsword on his hip and a rattan cane in his hand.

He calls Sen Daernan by name and when Sen flinches, he smiles.

STRANGER
Yes, I know who you are. I also know who you work for. What I want to know is what exactly you were doing tonight.

SEN
Who are you?

STRANGER
I’m not sure that’s exactly relevant right now.

SEN
Then why should I tell you anything?

STRANGER
I would think that the fact that I’m very curious about what put Sair Courqan into such a foul mood would give you all the impetus you need to start talking. As would the fact that apparently either you or your friend Goran had something to do with it. Do you think you might have something to say for yourself?

SEN
No. It’s late and I have to get inside. I don’t think we have anything to discuss with each other.

The man steps quickly towards Sen who reaches for his dagger.

STRANGER
There’s no need for that. I want you to get a better look at me so you can see how serious I am. Can you see my face?

Sen nods.

STRANGER
Good. I’m a Sargent in the Ward Guard.
(he flashes a torque and knotted cord, the symbols of his office)
I’m very interested in Sair Courqan. I know you work for him. I know he’s pissed off. And I know that you most likely did business with Cyese d’Sutieque tonight. I just want to put all of the pieces

together.

SEN
Sargent, I have nothing to say to you. I wish you the best of luck with your investigation. Good night.

Sen turns and starts to climb the gate.

SARGENT
Sen, I’m watching you. Don’t take the fall for someone who wouldn’t take one for you.

Sen enters the orphanage quietly and once he’s behind closed doors and out of view, he puts his head back and breaths a massive sigh of relief.

+1 CP (5), Chaos Factor -1 (6), Add Thread: “Avoid the Attention of the Law”, Add NPC: “Sargent Kal Arlisson”

SCENE SIX

[PC Positive – Bestow / Home; Chaos Factor (6)]

INT. UNCLE HODA’S HOME. PRE-DAWN.

Uncle Hoda and Sen are sharing a large and well-varied breakfast. Hoda seems very happy to see Sen and is telling him not to worry about the previous night. He says that it wasn’t fair of him to ambush Sen with Cyese and that he understand if it’s all a bit sudden. However, Uncle Hoda reiterates that while Sen should take as much time as he needs, he should seriously consider Cyese’s offer.

Sen explains that he has somewhat bigger things on his mind and relates the entire Courqan situation as well as his late night visit with the watch sargent. Uncle Hoda is naturally concerned and wants to know what he can do.

Sen says that he doesn’t think that there is anything Hoda can do directly, but that he would love to have some advice. He then proceeds to lay it all on the table: he wants out of the stolen goods business, or at least out of Goran’s way since he’s beginning to suspect that Goran is going to get himself in serious trouble.

Uncle Hoda can’t help but agree. And, after Sen explains that he and Goran have be at Sair Courqan’s in an little while to deal with the fallout from the botched heist in the upper city, Hoda makes him an offer:

Because Father Balon shouldn’t have to be placed in the middle of this and the orphanage might not be safe, Sen should move into the apartments above the herbalist’s shop. But, Hoda says that he’ll only allow it if Sen agrees to meet with Cyese at the University and only if he’s serious about getting away from Courqan and Goran. Hoda explains very clearly that he won’t stand for any appearances from either the law or the criminal element in the middle of the night at his place of business.

Sen is, with good reason, happy, but he’s also apprehensive about breaking from Sair Courqan’s crew. Uncle Hoda offers what help he can, but Sen explains that he needs to do it on his own.

Sen departs, telling Hoda that if everything goes well he’ll leave the orphanage as soon as possible.

+1 CP (6), Sen buys +1 skill level (3 CP left), Chaos Factor -1 (5), Add Thread: “Move out of orphanage and into Uncle Hoda’s Place”

SCENE SEVEN

[See notes for Mythic scene setup; Chaos Factor (5)]

EXT. SAIR COURQAN’S OFFICE. STREET. DAY.

The door to Sair Courqan’s office smashes open and Sen storms into the street. His face is flushed and he’s walking quickly. Goran comes through the door with as much or more violence and closes the gap to Sen. He grabs Sen’s sleeve and spins him around.

Sen turns to face Goran and doesn’t even have time to realize what’s going on before Goran almost knocks him to the ground with a vicious haymaker. Sen recovers quickly and adopts a fighting stance. He tells Goran that he doesn’t want to fight, he just wants to get out and aims a cautious jab at Goran. The punch misses and Sen begins to circle Goran trying to get tactical positioning.

Goran smiles and says that Courqan doesn’t really care one way or the other, but that Sen clearly needs to be made an example of. He punches Sen again, this time a straight right to the bridge of the nose which draws blood. Sen grits his teeth and tells Goran that he doesn’t want to fight, he just wants to leave. He clearly realizes that he’s going to have to fight, so he aims another inconsequential punch and continues circling.

Goran just shrugs and hits Sen again, this time with a left to the side of the face. Sen’s looking in pretty bad shape and decides to cut his losses. He suddenly turns and takes off running. Goran reaches out to grab him, but misses and then takes off after him.

Goran’s bigger and stronger than Sen, but Sen is lithe and blessed with a natural endurance. Sen also has the benefit of greater area knowledge than Goran. The combination serves him well and he escapes, leaving a winded Goran behind.

+1 CP (4, 7 total), Sen buys +1 base attack (1 CP left), Chaos Factor +1 (6), Add Thread: “Escape Courqan’s Vengeance”, Close Threads: “Quit the Gang” and “Meet with Sair Courqan”

SCENE EIGHT

[PC Positive – Return / Possessions; Chaos Factor (6)]

INT. ORPHANAGE. DAY.

Sen is stuffing all his worldly possessions into a sack. His nose has stopped bleeding, but his face is beginning to swell and it is very clear that he’ll have significant bruising. He doesn’t own much, so the packing goes quickly.

On his way out, Father Balon catches him and questions him. In a fit of emotional fragility brought on by the events of the previous night and the current morning, Sen breaks down and tells him the whole story.

Balon, empathetic clergy that he is, ministers to Sen as best he can. He explains that he understands what Sen has to do and says that he wants Sen to understand that he is always welcome. He also offers Sen any help that he can provide, although he knows that it won’t be much.

Sen composes himself and thanks Balon warmly. They share a hug and Sen bolts from the orphanage.

+1 CP (2, 8 total), Chaos Factor +1 (7)

SCENE NINE

[Ambiguous – Carelessness / Wishes; Chaos Factor (7)]

EXT. FALCROFT RESIDENCE. ROOF. DAY.

Sen is bruised, bloodied and exhausted. He’s stopped for a breather on the roof of where Aylia’s family’s home. The strain of the late night, his encounter with Goran and the impending wrath of a major criminal player in the ward and canton is beginning to take its toll on Sen. There is plenty of stress visible in his face. In addition to his immediate concerns, he’s involved in some sort of university recruitment scheme that he doesn’t understand and can’t spare a thought to consider.

Sen runs his hands through his hair, careful to avoid the bruising on his face and takes a few deep breaths. He’s well and truly twisted and he looks the part.

Aylia is home, but she’s getting ready to head out. She’s armed with knives and is wearing form fitting padded armor under loose clothes. She’s looping her swagger stick to her belt when Sen drops through the window.

As quickly as possible, Sen lays out the situation and explains to Aylia that he’s going to have to disappear for a while. Before he can finish his statement or say goodbye, Aylia cuts him off.

AYLIA
I’m going with you.

SEN
NO–

AYLIA (holding up a hand)
No. I knew you were going to leave Courqan, I just had a feeling. I was going to meet you as soon as the meeting was over, but Goran told me this morning that Courqan has sent word that the meeting was later.

SEN
You can’t come, Goran–

AYLIA
You need me more than him. You need me more than my family. I’m going with you wherever you go.

SEN
I don’t know where I’m going, I don’t know what I’m going to do. Everything’s a mess and I need to deal with it. I have to do this alone.

Aylia starts shaking her head and grabs Sen.

AYLIA
Stop. You’re being an idiot. You don’t realize it, but you need me. And, I need you. I can’t let you just walk away. Sen, we’re going to deal with this together. I’m coming with you and you can’t stop me from following you.

SEN (pushing her way)
No. I’ve already had my ass kicked by your brother once and I know I’m going to get it again from Courqan. I don’t need to give Goran another reason to come after me. You can’t come, he won’t understand, your family won’t understand. I don’t want to end up dead and I don’t want you to get hurt.

AYLIA
You of all people should know I can handle myself. I’m coming whether you like it or not. Give me a moment to grab a few things.

SEN
Aylia…

She shoots him a look as she starts to gather a small pile of personal belongings. Sen shakes his head and leans against the window sill. His shoulders carry the posture of a defeated man.

+1 CP (3, 9 total), Chaos Factor +1 (8)