Campaign of the Month: December 2020

House Jasper

Who's driving this thing anyway?

Despite my best efforts, here we stand on the deck of the Rambis, with Captain Jardon at the helm. As it is now only House Jasper aboard, and I am without others to spy on or scheme with, I find myself suddenly out of my depths and lost on how to best spend my time. I spend most of my days at sea twiddling my thumbs quietly, and doing my best to hold my tongue as Darron and Jardon flip the map upside down and rightside up again. I wonder optimistically if we may be accidentally heading back to Westeros after all, at the hands of these two. At one point, Sweet Thomas narrowly saves us from a grisly run in with the craggy shoreline, and it takes me half a day to catch my breath after the fright the event gave me. Stranded in Essos…I can hardly imagine a worse way to go.

After two weeks, the Captain and first Mate seem convinced we've found our destination and suggest we go ashore. I urge a scouting party to go ahead first, heeding Lord Ronnel's request to keep his heir safe. Tito and Darron eagerly agree to go ashore, for which I thank them for their courage, though when Dolins pipes up that he'll join their party, I can't help but stare off, blinking silently into the distance. My anger towards the bard and his aggressive attack on my position and value to the house in front of its nobility still runs deep, and I can't say I would be terribly disappointed if the duplicitous scout did not make it back.

The Rambis creaks throughout the night as we wait for the search party to return, and I am sick with longing for the safety of Snownook. The whole reason I came to House Jasper was to avoid this constant worry and fear for my life. How ever did I end up back in this cycle, and more importantly, how can I get out of it?

Ser Darron’s Journal XI

Calalia the schemer…

Calalia the two-faced…

Calalia the deceitful, dishonest, treacherous, self-serving social climber…

…or, at least that’s what I thought before we became acquainted with each other on the Broke Blade. Turns out that she’s a proper sensible lass who loves a good game of King’s Goblet!!

Beers and Commandeers

Upon our return to the ship, I find Darron at the bow, happily breathing in the sea air with arms outstretched. We discuss his sense of adventure, but also that ultimately that the journey hasn't brought much more than boredom so far. I propose a drinking game with House Jasper to pass the time, and casually mention that I've heard whispers of the crew bring unhappy with boat conditions and pay. I note that this is typical chatter of kitchen hands and hand maids, and that I hope to confirm it is also typical talk on a ship. He waves me off, and expresses utter apathy, for which I am grateful, and we gather the others for a night of debauchery.

All members of House Jasper happily join in on a game of King's Goblet, and as the night goes on, they all get quite drunk, passing out and stumbling around. I pretend to drink, holding the tankard to my mouth, but only taking tiny sips. After Dolins goes to bed, and poor Thomas falls apart completely, I excuse myself to the deck 'for fresh air'  and rush to find Mark Farman and Bolose. Disappointingly, they share that they've already tried to speak with the Captain (and are therefore unable to take advantage of my skills in persuasion), and were unsuccessful in their efforts. They plan on executing their plans tonight, as the captain is already asleep. I confirm that the members of House Jasper will be safe in the mutiny, and scurry back to the bunk house, where the remainders of the house have drunkenly clambered into bed.

I can hardly sleep that night, anticipating the news that we will be heading home, however the morning brings a very different fate. While Farman and Bolose were able to successfully murder the captain, they are headed for Slavers Bay instead of Westeros. Jardon gets heated about getting his gold dragons back, and I practically can't believe my ears. So much so that it isn't until I've convinced the Jasparians the come up with a strategy in the bunkhouse that I fully comprehend that the mutineers are not following our plan of heading west. I convince Jardon and Darron to stay behind when I go confront Farman, but I begrudgingly accept Teddy's "help" and am therefore only able to bargain for a return to Volantis, rather than my true desires of Westeros.

Farman and his crew drop us off at the docks of Volantis with all of our supplies, and returning 50 GD to sweet Jardon. I shake my co-conspirator's hand, and wish Farman, Bolose and the crew safe passages. He gives me a wink, and we share a silent gratitude for the part we each played in taking us all a step farther away from Valyria. While he sails safely for Slaver's Bay, my heart sinks into the Summer Sea, knowing that my fate remains pointed towards the south.

A Brewing Mutiny

Dolins, Teddy, Jardon, an exceptionally quiet Darron and I set sail for Valyria with our captain and his first mate, who warn us of pirates and other dangers on the sea between Westeros and Volantis. Teddy suggests a surprisingly good idea of disguising us all in ash to look as though we have greyscale, and the ship hoists a grey sail to indicate the boat is afflicted.

Passing the Stone Steps, the captain's prediction comes to fruition, and a pirate ship approaches quickly. Despite the pirate's threats, I welcome him aboard, hissing, and invite him to come see our greyscale for himself, up close and personal. "Perhaps we can be neighbors in our new home!" I taunt, and the ship sails away without bloodshed.

Following my successful deception, and demonstrating my leadership in maintaining the safety of the crew, I take some time to listen into the boats whisperings. A young man name Plank confesses to me through resentful grumbles that he and the others feel we are on a death mission, and points me towards the First Mate and the Quartermaster.  Mate Mark Farman Quartermaster Bolose are found speaking in low tones, and reluctantly share that if it comes to choosing between their lives and their captain's orders to dock on Valyria, they're far more committed to their own beating hearts. I gladly commiserate, and agree to use my powers of persuasion to work with the crew to turn the boat around.

When we dock in Volantis, the Jasper men make their way into town to stock up on further supplies, and I tell them that I'm pursuing my duties as Mistress of Whispers, and will be listening for whispers in Essos and amongst the crew. Not a lie…but not the whole truth, which is that I'm following one very specific and dangerous whisper from the crew in particular. Bolose, Farman, Plank, and about a dozen other men congregate in the shadows of the city to discuss the plan. They agree to try words first, but are committed to violence if our persuasion is unsuccessful. I convince the men that, no matter what happens, it would be in their best interest to ensure the safety of the Jasper party, for if Teddy is hurt, the sailors will spend the rest of their sorry lives looking over their shoulders for the revenge of a powerful Westerosi lord. All agree, and we return to the ship with hopes of bringing it home.

To No Avail.

During my time in King's Landing, I take advantage of the city's rich wealth of goods, and collect some silks, scents, a lock picking kit, and some other goods. When the opportunity arises, I take the chance to make my case to Lord Ronnel, and urge him to reconsider his support for his son's ambitious but reckless mission for the sake of the future of House Jasper. He hears my concerns, and agrees to consider them.

Over the next few days, I join Teddy and Dolins in the library, them looking at maps of Essos, and me digging for dirt on the other noble houses of Westeros. Eventually, Lord Ronnel calls us to his table, and admits that he is struggling with his thoughts about the journey. Teddy gushes about his excitement for the riches the journey could bring, and Dolins expresses his shared enthusiasm for the prospect, both of them openly and naively ignoring the potential risks. Frustrated, I remind them that while the payoff would be enormous, none of it matters if we don't make it back, as no one has since The Doom. It is then that Dolins implies it is my duty to follow Teddy's orders, no matter the content, and that my advice opposes my loyalty to the Jaspers. I am incensed. "My dear bard, you surprise me. I resent your implication that it my best practice as an advisor to this noble house to follow blindly. I am concerned to hear that this is clearly how you believe you can best serve House Jasper." Dolins' eyes narrow, and I can practically see his blood boil under his skin.

The young lordling continues to dream aloud about the riches and status having a dragon's egg would bring to the house when the bard can no longer hold in his frustration. Dolins', out of character, insults my maturity and the value of my counsel, and suggests that my opposition may result in the removal of my promotion and new title. In horror, I turn to Lord Ronnel; "My lord-do you see what this mission is doing to the members of our house? Before we've even left the docks? Clearly our kind bard has been driven mad by greed and ambition, and I will hear no more of this disrespect!" Feeling my voice choking up and frustration overcoming me, I spin around, throw my hands in the air, and push through the door into the hallway. 

My pleas ultimately fall on deaf ears, and Teddy once again receives his father's blessing, though Lord Ronnel calls me back to express his gratitude for my voice of reason, and asks that I continue to speak up for the sake of the Lordling's safe return. I agree, and will make it my mission to ensure the continuation of House Jasper no matter what we find across the Narrow Seas-my ascent is dependent on it. 

We make arrangements for transport and I quietly resign myself from financially supporting this suicide mission. I'm probably going to lose my life-I'm not going to lose all my cash too! All the while, I hold onto Dolins' words and disrespect, and wonder if I will be able to continue to trust this goody-two-shoes I once held in high, though annoyed, regard.

Bold Ideas from Bold Lordlings

Days after the nuptials of Robert Baratheon and Cersei Lannister, I find myself in a tavern in the company of the our house's warriors, as well as the bard and lordling. We swap stories over ale, the celebratory spirit still in the air. Dolins ends our storytelling with a tale of rumors of dragon eggs in Old Valyria, which causes the ears of my mates to perk up. Teddy, in particular, pursues this topic heavily, and suggests we leave for the abandoned city to get an egg for ourselves. I protest this proposal, noting that no one who's traveled there has returned, including a Lannister lad, and that the civilization there was overtaken by The Doom. No one in my party seems to register or care about my concerns, and they carry on their mad idea with visions of gold dragons dancing in their eyes.

When I grow sick of listening to their arrogant brainstorming, I leave and find Ser Denys enjoying an ale himself in another room. He tells me of his difficulties in the melee, but otherwise seems jolly and content to be in King's Landing. When I ask him about what he knows about Joanna Coldwater, originally from House Lynderly, he grows flustered and flushed, and tried to tell me he barely knows her. After some cajoling, my suspicions are confirmed; he confesses that he broke his knightly vows, he and Joanna shared intimate relations. I think him for his honesty, and put this whisper in my back pocket for a rainy day.

A great weekend away from the idiots......
Oh and some lady from Goldengrove we were supposed to fetch....

What a wonderful and relaxing weekend I had on the Arbor. Eddin, my elder half-brother, was able to take a couple of days off from the family business to do some fishing off the coast. Eddin had noted how Bodrin had been working long hours at night, and thought he might be meeting with some shadier people late at night. I assured him, it was probably nothing and he was just tired from working so hard. Bodrin was probably just getting some late night "tail", that's all, or more likely obsessing over the ledger. Sibling quarrells aside, it was nice to spend time with family, at least for a little while….at the very least it was nice to not have to hear another fucking "one-eye joke". 

Speaking of those idiots, I knew I had to meet up with them in Goldengrove to retrieve our other ward, but had no idea I would be stepping into shit at the gate. I arrive and am immediately greeted by a bunch of guards, who upon seeing the cat sigil on my armor, see to spitting in my presence. How rude…..if I weren't on house business and Carsen hadn't come slithering out the castle doors, I might slit both their throats. 

Carsen, as well as the Maester and the ugliest version of Darren I have yet seen, proceeds to tell me the lady we are supposed to retrieve is headed off to Uplands to be wed to some Lord Mulledroad. What a stupid name….there's no way the lady would want to marry into such a stupid sounding family. 

Better still, I think this would be a good chance to prove to Lord Ronnel that I should still be master at arms, and not baby barron. A quick aside, worst disguise ever, any brain-dead farmer from the reach would still be able to tell that it was Darren Brewlan. I would say it took a few years off his look, but at the expense of his masculinity…..bahahahahaha

Anyways, we weren't able to secure the Lady, which foiled my plan to get into the Lord's good graces. Even though we were able to steal potatoes from these blokes before, we couldn't best the guards in combat. Carsen's fault, we would've had them if he hadn't given up……

Ser Darron's Journal X

From the Southern lowlands, to the Vale’s heights.
Ser Darron beats, all other knights.
He grabs his lance, they wet their pants.
Ser Darron’s the greatest knight there is.

At Robert’s tourney, he sent men flying.
Ser Lyn Corbray, was sent home crying.
The Blackfish fought, but t’was for naught. 
‘Cause Darron’s the greatest knight there is.

Sangor Claygin, met with brutality.
Though Sangor won, it was just a technicality.
Darron would’ve won, if he had felt like it.
Ser Darron’s the greatest knight there is.

Yep. That’s the song I proposed to the bard I met in the tavern yesterday. I wouldn’t be too surprised if people start hearing that little diddy around town pretty soon. He said that for five silver he’d touch up the lyrics a bit and spread my reputation far and wide! Ho Ho!

This maester is headed on an adventure!!


Our house is back together right outside of the Vale. We head together and enter King's Landing. Lord Jasper puts us up in an inn and I hear Teddy is off to buy a shadowcat! Why haven't I thought of this?? Instead of an army of dogs, I could have had a fierce army of shadowcats… I feel so silly not having seen this great plan before!

I make my way over ot the library of the Red Keep. It is huge, filled with more books than I've seen in a while and seems to be very well kept. Not a dust bunny in sight! I begin reading an interesting book called the <u>Book of Lost Books</u> when a gray old man startles me by asking what I think of the book. I turn around and see he is dressed as an archmaester. I feel I recognize him but am still a bit startled and cannot quite place him yet. I introduce myself and wait for him to return the courtesy but he does not. He rather asks me again what I think of the book. I tell him I have not gotten far yet but am so far intrigued. He states that he thinks the maesters in the citadel are old and stuck in their ways. I ask what he thinks should be changed and he says that we should all focus more on the things we cannot pick up or touch and should focus on the knowledge he has seen in Esos. I express interest in such things and he asks me to join in the conclave at noon in the Maidenvault. I let him know I will be there!

A bit after noon, I am seated in the back. I can see the archmaesters arranged in a circle in the middle of the room. I recognize him now! He is Marwyn the Mage! How silly I was before to have not recognized him. I know that he has been given this title either in honor or jest, depending on who uses it. He is arguing about the children above the wall and states he has seen things in his travels to Esos that would leave everyone questioning. He states there are things beyond our comprehension and we shouldn't stop questioning. The other maesters argue back that he is alone in this and seem put off by his discussion.

He calls out to me within the chamber. I try to hide in the back for a moment but see he could use my help. I stand up and walk to the front and address both he and Grandmaester Pycell. I state that I agree that there may be knowledge in the old ways that we can draw from. Marwyn asks that if I could go back to the citadel and study, what would I like to study? I stumble a bit over my words in my answer but state I would like to study under Marwyn. There is then discussion about how this topic is not worth any of their time and how this should be discussed back at the citadel. I then take my seat again.

Once the conclave has concluded, Marwyn approaches me and is aghast at how things were conducted. He invites me to the citadel to study under him and in his library and I gladly accept. This is something I have been hoping to be able to do for some time! I have done some thinking on this and although I will miss my companions, especially Dolins, I believe increasing my knowledge of the magical arts could really only benefit both myself and House Jasper. I will miss my adventures but hopefully, under the wise teaching of Marwyn, this education will not take that long. After this wedding celebration, I will be off to study! And learn me some magic!

The idiots head off on a chase


As we are leaving Goldengrove, we catch up with Jardon who has finally made it back to our group! We explain what is going on and I suggest that we all head home. Barron/Darron backs me up and agrees to get out of there fast. Carsen of course argues with us. So we settle that Darron and I will head back home, Jardon and Carsen can gallivant off like idiots to try and capture this ward.

Once we decide, the lord of Goldengrove comes out and yells to his guards to shut the gates! I make it almost all the way there on Gonzo. Barron's mule got through first and fastest surprisingly. After a few moments, we all make it through, but just barely.

Barron/Darron and I head back home after splitting with Jardon and Carsen head south to chase after the ward. On the road, we see Ser Perrin and a boy! Perrin states that Teddy sent him on this journey and I recognize the boy as Danny, the boy from the inn that we had retrieved and he was given sanctuary in Snownook. He is now going to be returned to his father, The Duke, in oldtown. We chat with them for a bit, they warn us about some farmers coming to blows on the road ahead, and then we part ways.