Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim.   Posted by Game Master.Group: 0
Game Master
 GM, 216 posts
Mon 3 Oct 2022
at 20:42
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim


Middenheim is a revelation, the largest city any of you have ever seen. Four great stone causeways lead up the granite mountain that is the Fauschlag or Ulricsberg to the high walled citadel that covers the entire plateau at the summit. It is said that Middenheim has never fallen to force and looking up at the mighty fortress-city, still bearing the scars of the latest siege you can well believe it.

The Untergard refugees travel up the nearest causeway to the southernmost of the city gates. You notice other groups of tired looking civilians ahead of you ranging from individuals to refugee bands a dozen or more score. Many look wounded or hungry and most carrying possessions on their backs or pulled in cats. Clearly the people of Untergard are not alone in seeking safety in the City of the White Wolf.

Surprisingly the harried looking clerk at the causeway gate and his troop of halberdiers in blue and white hurries your group through. You suspect he might have made more of a fuss but the steely glare of Captain Schiller finishes any note of complaint or Sigmar help you a request for a bribe and he waves you on.

Inside the gate Untergarders quickly find they have been assigned rather cramped and squalid accommodations in the crowded Southgate-Ostwald district. Evidently these houses belonged to people who died in the siege (or who fled Middenheim before the siege began) and are soon the sight of arguments, fistfights and bawling children. You scarcely have time to think before you are sought out by Captain Schiller.

"Thank you for your help in getting here. We took our losses and I mourn them but we should have fared worse without you. Untergard shall be reclaimed in time gentleman and I shall look after our people but I release you from any further obligations. Ulric watch over you my friends."

The Captain's face is full of grim determination as he continues, "I'd advise you to find a suitable inn if you can soon. The houses we've been given here are cramped even now and I suspect there will be more refugees to come. But first I think you should return the Icon to the Temple of Sigmar. Father Dietrich was relying on you to do this for him. The Temple is The Freiburg district to the North East of the city. Here you better take this map."

Captain Schiller hands you a detailed map of the city.



OOC: See 'Game Map'.

It is late afternoon and you are technically free to do what you wish, whether to go to the temple, look for better accommodations, talk with NPCs or just explore!

Harkrin 'Klinka'
 player, 97 posts
 Dwarf
 Ex-Convict
Tue 4 Oct 2022
at 07:36
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Good to be behind safe walls of a city for a change." Klinka said with a stretch and a hint of a smile on his face. As you approached the city, he felt more confident and you saw him watching with interest the architecture of the causeways, guardhouses and walls themselves.

He nodded to Captain Schiller, hoping people of Untergard will find safety in this place.

"I think we should follow Captain's advice and find a decent inn to eat, drink and rest. Then we can explore the place." he suggested.
Lukas Kohl
 player, 135 posts
 Human, Charcoal Burner
 Wounds 2 / 10
Tue 4 Oct 2022
at 20:03
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Lukas was exceptionally surprised, and relieved to have entered the city unmolested.  He was almost certain that they would be turned away, made to pay an exorbitant fee or even just generally made to feel unwelcome when they reached Middenheim.  That wasn't really the case here.  Despite the battered stone and signs of war, the causeway as they entered the giant walled mountain was the most majestic sight he had ever seen!  It must have taken the pinnacle of ingenuity to build a city like this and now, in awe of the City of the White Wolf he truly believed it was impregnable.

Inside the walls though he could see all was not well.  Clearly those living nearest to the walls had abandoned their homes, either to make way for defenders or following the ruthless bombardment of Chaotic siege engines.  The area was overcrowded and in disarray but it was true - the Graf had provided safety of sorts.  As he helped his former neighbours settle to their new home it would have been the easiest thing in the world to stay with them and start anew, but Captain Schiller had handed a map to his new friends and bade them farewell.  What was it to be Lukas?  Starting again or looking for more adventure?

He remembered Pieter, Gunther and Luciana and their quest for the magic sword.  He looked at the wizard, the halfling, the dwarf and the man from the North.  There promised adventure - and a likely early death.  He knew which way he was going...

"Let's find an inn and have a good rest and a bit of food.  Can anyone see one on this map?"  He stared intently, but he couldn't read and tried to make sense out of the symbols.

(OOC:  The Drowned Rat looks close and sounds like just the sort of place we'd be welcome in.  Shall we try there?)
Fyodor Fyodoreski
 player, 110 posts
 SB: 3, TB:3 Armor:1
 W:10/10
Tue 4 Oct 2022
at 21:11
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The large warrior slung his arquebus over his shoulder as the caravan entered the great city of Middenheim. This was the first time in many weeks both his weapons were carried on his back and he wasnt on the highest alert.

He was more than happy when he heard conversation about an inn and a place to rest. He didnt have much coin but hoped there was enough for a few days under a roof in a bed for some sort. With a big smile and a "DA!" he agreed to Lukas suggestion.
Pieter Marik
 player, 108 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Tue 4 Oct 2022
at 21:14
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Dust and shit and the unwashed masses. With these markers came unwelcome memories, pressinng in on Pieter like the flies and babble of the masses of displaced and war-torn refuges apparent to him as they entered Middenheim. Inwardly, he laughed: the City of the White Wolf? Perhaps more the city of the flea-bitten cur. His lips curled, but he smothered the betraying gesture and sought out Luitpold and his family once they had passed the gates, close enough to claim his fee for safe passage. Winding their way to the hovels the folk of Untergard had been housed in, his sharp eyes sought sign of profit or warning

But perhaps there was also opportunity, and he let Captain Schiller prattle on or a few moments, before taking hold of the map - ostensibly to hold for his fellows. At Harkrin and Lukas' suggestions, he nodded - wisely he hoped - and added his pfenning's worth, "We need to see Herr Hause to his house. Perhaps he might recommend somewhere... or his Guild put us up for a day or two as recompense for our valour? If not, at least put in a word for us..."
Harkrin 'Klinka'
 player, 98 posts
 Dwarf
 Ex-Convict
Wed 5 Oct 2022
at 17:17
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Herr House to his house?" Klinka scratched his burnt beard trying to figure out what Pieter meant. "Who is Herr House anyway?"

OOC: Klinka wasn't paying too much attention to people we met... To him all people look and act the same. Even I had to go back to the previous thread to check who was Herr Hause;-)
Pieter Marik
 player, 109 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Wed 5 Oct 2022
at 21:07
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Pieter chuckled, somewhat more darkly then perhaps he had prior to these recent days, but explained nonetheless, "A silversmith, from the village we passed through. With the daughter. Bringing him here puts us in their favour, perhaps"
Game Master
 GM, 222 posts
Wed 5 Oct 2022
at 22:24
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
As you disscuss where to go and what to do Edgar speaks up. The Halfling messenger has been quiet since the confrontation, obviously lost in thought.

"I reckon we must part ways my friends," he says, offering a small hand to each of you, even the scarred dwarf and the rude Ostermarker. "I still have a job that calls me and I'll have to be on the road with Nibbles again. I hope our paths cross again some day. See to it that Father Dietrich's icon get delivered to the temple."

He turns and departs, wistfully.

Jocelin watches him go then speaks up in turn. "I've decided I better stay with the Untergard refugees for a while. They've lost Granny Moescher and I think I can help them, maybe not exactly how she did but I do have some knowdlege of my own. Good day gentlemen. It has been a pleasure and a privilege."

So saying the wizardess too takes her leave.
Pieter Marik
 player, 111 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Thu 6 Oct 2022
at 08:50
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Taking the preferred hand from Edgar, Pieter muttered a farewell, “clear roads and a full belly”. His nod to Jocelyn was both more muted and more polite, wary of the Winds of Magic she called after his encounter with the Queen of the Wood
Game Master
 GM, 222 posts
Thu 6 Oct 2022
at 12:35
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
You soon discover that the 'Southgate-Ostwald District' of Middenheim is really two quite distinct quarters. To the east of the Southgate itself lies the Southgate quarter with it's humble but clean houses and clean looking streets. It doesn't look rich by any means - indeed Lukas had seen several larger houses in Untergard which had been a prosperous small town - but it did look respectably working class from a distance.

Of course you have only seen it from a distance since the Untergarders had been settled across the Ostwaldstrasse - the wide main street leading from the gate - into Ostwald. If Southgate looked working class Ostwald looked class. This quarter was a warren of small yet cramped buildings and shops squashed together, dirty sloped alleyways that seemed to run off in all directions and more people than most of you had seen in your entire lives. Men (fewer and often old or showing the signs of war), women (more and usually trying to sell you something including on at least one corner themselves) and whole armies of children, crying, laughing and playing.

The sound was overpowering, the smell was overpowering. And yet for all the obvious signs of grief and poverty and violence - narrow faced, glazed eyed women in widow's black, beggars in rags and shady characters on every street - it was also intrinsically exciting. This was the big city where opportunity lay beyond a thousand doors or so they had said back in Untergard...




OOC: Where to first do you want to check out the Drowned Rat and see about accommodations and food (and maybe listen for rumours) or look for Luitpold House Hause and bring him to his hause house?

Also who is currently carrying the icon of Sigmar?

This message was last updated by the GM at 12:35, Thu 06 Oct 2022.

Pieter Marik
 player, 112 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Thu 6 Oct 2022
at 22:54
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Pieter spoke softly, his eyes flicking subtlely to some of the more obvious gang scrawls, "Remember not everyone in the city will seek the best for the Untegardians. There is plenty of opportunity here, but peril too"

"Watch your purses", he continued, before dismissing the signs, "Let us ind the inn, and decide our path from their"

If no-one else is carrying the icon, Pieter will
Harkrin 'Klinka'
 player, 100 posts
 Dwarf
 Ex-Convict
Fri 7 Oct 2022
at 06:55
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Drowned Rat, eh?" Klinka muttered. "Let's check this place, hopefully it is less awful than its name. Mr House's hause will have to wait."
Fyodor Fyodoreski
 player, 111 posts
 SB: 3, TB:3 Armor:1
 W:10/10
Fri 7 Oct 2022
at 15:40
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Fyodor chuckled as they entered into the Ostwald district. This was his kind of place and reminded him of parts of Kislev, the great city of his homeland.

He grinned "Rat drown. We drown." he says as he makes a gesture of drinking.
Lukas Kohl
 player, 137 posts
 Human, Charcoal Burner
 Wounds 2 / 10
Fri 7 Oct 2022
at 20:50
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Pieter's words made Lukas feel very wary in the big city.  All of a sudden he felt all hours on them and was convinced the children running in and out of the alleyways were certain to rob them.

"A drink first, yes," he agreed.  Although it would be good to get warm food and a decent ale inside him he was mindful they had Father Dietrich's relic on them and he wouldn't feel safe in the eyes of Sigmar until they had returned it to where it belonged.  They could also get that Herr Hause home safe too, although now they were in the city he wondered why he hadn't just wandered off home now.
Game Master
 GM, 224 posts
Sat 8 Oct 2022
at 13:10
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The Drowned Rat turns out to be easy to find even in the maze that is the Ostwald. A tired looking watchman trying to deal with an arguing husband and wife points the way and after only two or three wrong turns you find yourselves in front of a tall but shabby half timber building with smudged windows and a thatch roof. Swinging above the doorway is an old wooden sign with a crude painting of a rat in a bucket.

From within the establishment you can hear gales of raucous laughter.

Stepping through the threshold you are greeted by a blast of a scent that makes even the streets outside smell like wildflowers - a rolling wave of ale fumes and body odour mixed with cheap perfume. As your eyes adjust to the darkness you see every eye in the tavern has turned in your direction.



There are about a dozen or so patrons, mostly human though you do see a couple of sly looking halflings playing dice at a corner table. The clientele all seem rough sorts; labourers, doxies and men whose exact job probably warrants the attention of the Watch. Not all of the gazes are hostile exactly, especially when the beholders note your weapons and tough appearance, but you definitely feel you've attracted attention.

The barkeep, a great stout man with a paunch an ogre would envy and sweat stained red hair plastered to his head hails you in a strong Middenheim accent: "Ev'n strangers, what can I get you?"
Pieter Marik
 player, 113 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Sat 8 Oct 2022
at 14:21
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Pieter took in the rough crowd and stepped across the threshold, directing his attention to the barkeep though his fingers made a hand sign of welcome he hoped the other clientele would recognise, “Ale, and a quiet chat, friend?”
Harkrin 'Klinka'
 player, 101 posts
 Dwarf
 Ex-Convict
Sat 8 Oct 2022
at 17:26
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Ale. And perhaps something to eat. Something that doesn't have any parts of rat in it." Klinka added, looking around and nodding to the halflings in the corner. Perhaps this place was not so bad for an ex-convict to get a feeling of what's going on it the city's darker alleys.
Lukas Kohl
 player, 138 posts
 Human, Charcoal Burner
 Wounds 2 / 10
Sat 8 Oct 2022
at 18:15
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"The rat's the best bit!" laughed Lukas, trying to hide that he was at least a little intimidated by the rough looking types and the buxom women currently eying the group up.  He glanced over at Pieter and wondered if he was signalling something to the innkeeper that was beyond the rest of them.  He resolved to keep a close eye on his purse and also that he would avoid gaming with the halflings - it was a big assumption thinking they would all be like Edgar.

"Ale and food," Lukas agreed, accidentally catching the eye of a painted, yet tired looking woman and smiling back.  It possibly looked more like the grimace of a fool...
Fyodor Fyodoreski
 player, 112 posts
 SB: 3, TB:3 Armor:1
 W:10/10
Sun 9 Oct 2022
at 00:23
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The big Kislev didnt care about the attention he attracted. Closing in on 2m he was always a few heads taller than most patrons at the inns he had visited in his life. With a satisfying grunt he joined the others at the bar. He removed his large halberd and leaned it against the bar, making sure that anyone who would think about messing with his group of friends, would most likely be impaled by the weapon.

He pointed at Lukas and indicated he wanted the same order.
Game Master
 GM, 226 posts
Sun 9 Oct 2022
at 12:26
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The barmkeep nods. "Four ales then and the house stew. Just the pie, rat is extra." He laughs at his wit, then leans in closer to speak with Pieter. "Eight pfennings for the ales, four for the pies, two more for the quiet chat stranger."

Fyodor's ostentatious handling of his halberd causes a stir amongst the other patrons but nobody makes a move to confront you.

Klinka finds his nod returned by the halflings. They turn to each other and whisper something in a conversation too low to here, then gesture at an empty stool at their table, obviously inviting the dwarf to join the game.

Lukas finds himself winked at by the doxy. She strolls over to greet him. Up close it was hard to tell how old she was beneath the makeup - she could have been twenty and had a very hard life or she could have been forty and aging like Bretonnian wine. "Afternoon soldier boy," she purrs, studying Lukas's many fresh bandages, before turning a pair of blue eyes surrounded by thick eyelashes to Lukas's face. "You 'ave been in the wars 'avent you?"

One of the local patrons - a spindly looking man with a scrubby beard - gives a half-drunken laugh as the wench paws Lukas: "Your eyes are going Gretchen! 'E looks as poor as as he does 'omely!"


OOC: Gossip Test for Pieter (assuming he pays!)

Anyone else who wants to try for Gossip can do so but you be prepared to pay 2p to buy a drink for whomever you are asking!

You can find a table to sit out in the corner of the tavern.

Harkrin 'Klinka'
 player, 103 posts
 Dwarf
 Ex-Convict
Sun 9 Oct 2022
at 12:40
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Two more ales for my friends." Klinka said, then collected three tankards and a bowl of stew. "I'll join you later, fellas, after I check news with my halfling friends." he said and strolled to the corner table occupied by the shady non-humans.

"Greetings. Name's Klinka. I'm new in town. But not particularly inexperienced with the law." he said, sitting down and using some of his Prison Cant to convey the message. "Been a rather troubling march to get here. Might as well hear what's going on around. Humans trouble you a lot?"

No joy!

OOC: 14:38, Today: Harkrin 'Klinka' rolled 76 using 1d100.  Gossip (Fel 21).

Lukas Kohl
 player, 140 posts
 Human, Charcoal Burner
 Wounds 3 / 10
Sun 9 Oct 2022
at 15:24
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
"Yes, I have been in the thick of it.  I've seen things you wouldn't believe out there beyond these walls," replied Lukas to the woman, who to be honest scared him a little with her outwardly show of affection.  "A drink for Gretchen too," Lukas added, sliding a few pennies on the bar top.  He gulped wondering if he needed the drink more than she did.  "Led a party of townsfolk to the safety of the walls.  Fought mutants, beastmen, witches too."  He instantly felt guilty bringing the death of his friend into proceedings so changed subject.  "You know, even saw elves in the forest.  Now they were something else..."

Lukas realised he was bragging rather clumsily when all he really wanted to be was polite and to try and gently escape the attentions of Gretchen.

"Lot of strangers in the city these days.  Bet you've a tale to tell about them passing through." he suggested hoping to steer the topic of conversation away from the tender loving care and bedside manner Gretchen may provide.

(OOC:  No luck! 16:13, Today: Lukas Kohl rolled 36 using 1d100.  Gossip Test (Fel 24).)
Pieter Marik
 player, 115 posts
 Ostermarker Outlaw
Sun 9 Oct 2022
at 21:10
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
Grudgingly paying over the coin for everyone, Pieter was sparse with his words with the barkeep - perhaps too sparse, "New to Middenheim, wanting a roof and some introductions ... having seen the scacity in the city"

22:03, Today: Pieter Marik rolled 85 using 1d100.  Gossip (Fel, 27).
Game Master
 GM, 228 posts
Mon 10 Oct 2022
at 22:09
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The ale is dark and bitter and clearly not of the best quality, but then it has been a long journey through the wilds and it is still ale. Likewise the stew is far from the best but it is edible and warm and Klinka at least has had worse in gaol and down the mines.

(It also seems reassuringly rodent free.)

Unfortunately your conversational skills leave something to be desired. The barkeep shrugs and takes Pieter's coins in one grubby hand, swiping them off the counter. "Not sure I knows many folks around here stranger. Anyone in particular you'd like to be introduced to? As for rooms you'd be wanting an inn and I'm just a tavern keep. Course, a brass or two might shake up the old cobwebs there..."

The barmaid, passing by with a tray of ales rolls her eyes. "Don't try shaking down this one Johann, he looks tough. Look he has two swords."

The barkeep - apparently 'Johann' - sends an angry glare at the backside of his barmaid before turning his attention back to Pieter.

Over at the halflings table Klinka is having a little better luck. The two halflings look surprised at the dwarfs presumption but are grateful for the ale and they share a glance with each other when Klinka uses a little convict slang. A scruffy looking male and female they are so alike in age and appearance that they can only be brother and sister.

"Afternoon Klinka," the female says. "Thanks for the ale! Not many dwarfs come in here."

"Aye!" says her brother, "I thought you folks preferred your own taverns rather than manling ale? Well Middenheim treats us well enough I suppose. 'Course things are topsy turvy right now with the Graf and his army gone north to kick the barbarians back to Norsca so who knows what the morning with bring?"

The sister nods and grins. "What's your story Klinka? You aren't <i>just a pretty face right?"</i>

Over at Lukas's post Gretchen looks briefly interested when Lukas mentions Elves but it is clear her interest is rapidly waning as she starts glancing over at the silent but impressive figure of Fyodor. "Uh huh, that's great... who's your foreign friend?"
Fyodor Fyodoreski
 player, 114 posts
 SB: 3, TB:3 Armor:1
 W:10/10
Mon 10 Oct 2022
at 23:35
Paths of the Damned - Chapter One: Ashes of Middenheim
The first mug of ale goes down in 6 seconds flat. He wipes his mouth and beard in one stroke before waving mug at the innkeeper for another round.
He then lazily turns around and leaning against the bar he takes in the full scene of the inn.

As the innkeeper brings the second mug Fyodor grabs it and cheers with Lukas "Da!War hero! Stopped bridge charge with body! Very brave. You like?" the big warrior explained to Gretchen.


He takes a big swig from the mug "Tell me city news, I tell you me."


OOC:  16:37, Today: Fyodor Fyodoreski rolled 5 using 1d100.  Fel - 32.

This message was last edited by the player at 23:37, Mon 10 Oct 2022.