Chasing the Sunset & mutiny

Chasing the Sunset is a West Marches-style exploration game using Fellowship 2nd Edition‘s Horizon rules.

The fellowship: Dryden of Conwall the Collector/Hunter, Averiela the Elf/Elven Elite, Lucia the Brave the Heir/Halfling Sheriff, Edna Crusher-Harcourt the Ogre

Last time, the Fellowship secured passage south on a ship provided by the Sea Viper. They don’t want to spread the influence of this obviously shady ruler, and they don’t want to reveal the secret lands of the Elves, so they plan to hijack the ship once underway.

Preparing the ship for its voyage takes a while, so Edna uses Infinite Windows to visit her other friends.  When the ship is ready to launch, Dryden uses Edna’s Friendship Bracelet to open a portal to her. She’s sitting in a fancy mansion.

Edna: Oh, good to see you! I’m afraid I can’t get away right now.

She closes the window. Lucia and Dryden recognize the mansion as Lady Evelynn’s. They’ve been there before and it didn’t go well. What exactly Edna mean by “can’t get away?”

The Fellowship shuffles crew assignments around since Edna and her Companions are no longer available.

Lucia takes Doctor position: Luna Penumbra’s max crew increased by 4

Long Journey from Vieport to Sapphire Islands. Each player introduces one scene

Scene one: the passenger list

Robin: We can’t leave without all our passengers. Where is Edna?

Lucia Detect Evil on Robin. Not Evil.

Lucia: Edna and Ol’ Jardiner come and go as they please. They are free spirits and always manage to find us. Ol’ Jardiner is a wizard, you know.

Lucia Talk Sense (+Grace, trick Robin by not mentioning Infinite Windows) 7-9

Robin agrees to leave and let Edna join them en route, but she wants Ol’ Jardiner to explain how exactly he manages such a feat.

The Luna Penumbra deploys its sails, which pop into existence like opening new windows on a computer. It lifts out of the water and floats into the air

Luna Penumbra Leaves Port: gain +2 crew for Captain, Doctor, Quartermaster. Crew = 8/8

Scene two: the Sirens

The ship sails south over the ocean overnight. The next day, the lookout spots some Mermaids down on the surface. As the ship approaches, everyone hears their beautiful song. That beautiful, enticing song. The crew wants to bring the boat down to the Sirens.

Dryden: Lucia, what here is evil?

Lucia Detect Evil: the Sirens

Dryden: I thought so. There’s a weird pitch in the song. It’s trying to sound good.

Dryden Strange Curios are Useful

Dryden lights a match and tosses something overboard. A second later, the object explodes into geometric shapes with a very loud noise.  Dryden invents these fireworks to drop from his Flying Disk, but the Luna Penumbra is also a suitable platform.

Dryden Keep Them Busy 6-

The loud bang does not distract the crew from bringing the ship down towards the surface, but it did go off near Lucia, temporarily deafening her!

Lucia damages Sense

Lucia: Dryden, leave the Pilot station!

Dryden abandons Pilot position. Without a Pilot, the ship can’t move.

The Luna Penumbra stops about a hundred feet above the water. The crew is still determined to reach the Sirens below. One of the crew transforms into a rainbow bridge, spiraling down to the water, and the rest of the crew hurry down. Robin follows them, yelling orders to return to their posts.

The Fellowship did plan to hijack the Luna Penumbra, and Robin did just abandon the Captain role by leaving the ship to chase her crew. Isn’t this exactly what they wanted? Lucia can’t bear to leave them all to some horrible fate.

Dryden: We can’t leave them! Drive the Sirens away!

Averiela rolls her eyes.

Averiela: We accomplished our goals. Let’s take the ship and run.

Dryden: This is how Ursela got all those critters in her cave!

Lucia takes Captain role.

Leaving Doctor role reduces Crew to 4/4

Lucia assigns Will to Gunner role.

Luna Penumbra Finish Them (+Cannon) advantage: attacking from above at range 7-9

Will aims the ship’s cannons down and fires on the Sirens, who are concentraing on their song and the crew, who are so close to the surface!

Group of Sirens damages Siren Song

They’re hit! They stop singing and the crew realize the folly of their actions. The crew and Robin turn around and run back up the rainbow bridge. The Sirens pursue. Will no longer has a clear shot.  Averiela and Lucia hurl arrows and throwing knives to cover the crew’s retreat

Averiela spends 1 Ammo from Bow

Lucia spends 1 Throwing Knife

Averiela Keep Them Busy +hope, Lucia’s assistance 10+

The Sirens must slow to dodge the hail of projectiles, and the crew safely returns to the Luna Penumbra. The Lantern creating the bridge turns it off with the Sirens halfway up!

Luna Penumbra Finish Them (+Crew) advantage: Keep Them Busy 6-

The rainbow bridge dissolves under the Sirens tails and they fall, but they gracefully pivot and dive safely into their watery home. The crew is shaken by their close call.

Crew reduced to 2/4

Scene three: The mutiny

Robin returns to the ship to see Lucia in the Captain’s role.

Robin: I knew it! The mutiny, just as they planned!

She flees down from the bridge to her cabin.

Dryden tries to grab her with his ranged rope.

Dryden Keep Them Busy 6-

She escapes down the stairs, and the rest of the crew advances on the Fellowship.

  • Group of Lantern Peacekeepers
    • Group: can affect two characters at once
    • Little Light: Gauntlet Form: When the peacekeeper hits you with their
      gauntlet, you become immobilized in a cage of light.
      Civic Duty: The peacekeeper has proper protocol to follow. They will not
      act without reason, and will act to disable all aggressors when possible.

Lucia: Robin didn’t give me a change to give the Captain’s post back! We had to take over to save you from the Sirens.

Lucia Talk Sense (+Sense, plan to talk it out with Robin) 10+

The crew thinks that’s reasonable. They’ll wait for Robin to return and everything will be explained. While they wait, Lucia chats with the crew

Lucia Speak Softly 6- ask 3 questions, 1 false answer, 1 unhelpful answer

  • What was your job in Vieport?
    • The crew are all marines. They usually don’t operate a ship, although they’ve spent enough time around sailors to know a little.
  • Tell me about this trip.
    • They were told from the start that this wasn’t a normal trip, so the ship didn’t use its normal crew. They were warned that the Fellowship would attempt a mutiny, so they were surprised that the Fellowship saved them from the Sirens. That’s partly why they agree to let Lucia talk to Robin instead of just arresting them all now.
  • What do you want?
    • This mission is important to the Sea Viper, so succeeding will bring the marines glory!

Luna Penumbra Smuggling Compartments: only the Captain knows where they are and they hold secret items.

Robin was prepared for this mutiny. The fools discussed their plans in the Sea Viper’s palace. He offered them hospitality and they conspired against him! They weren’t even smart enough to know they were being observed in their rooms. Fortunately, she has just what she needs to deal with them in the Smuggling Compartment in the Captain’s Quarters.

  • Robin becomes a Hidden Figure
    • Ambush Tactics: Groups led by the hidden figure can launch an attack
      from ambush as a Hard Cut. The hidden figure can never be seen or heard
      while they are lying in wait.
    • Coward: This stat is always damaged first. After this stat is damaged, the
      hidden figure will attempt to flee the scene.
    • Master Plan: The figure always comes with a hidden trap (Fake Firewall).
      This trap is always set up in such a way as to protect the figure.

Robin appears behind the crew and orders them to grab Lucia!

Robin Ambush Tactics: Groups led by her can attack as a Hard Cut

Group of Lantern Peacekeepers Gauntlet Form: immobilize target in cage of light

GM note: Maybe the group should have immobilized two characters. Taking tow of the three player characters out of the fight immediately seemed scary though. I’m too nice.  There’s a fun story even if the whole Fellowship is captured. This isn’t an OSR game where everyone dies and the story is over.

Before anyone can react, Lucia is immobilized in a cage of light.  Averiela draws her bow and fires at Robin, pinning her down.

Averiela Keep Them Busy 10+

Dryden Prank Weapon gives 10+ on Keep Them Busy

Dryden’s Prank Weapon is a mirage with substance. It looks like a rubber banana, but when he throws it on the deck, it explodes into a cloud of mist that forms itself into the shapes of ghostly Sirens! Half the Peacekeepers are holding Lucia and half of distracted by the ghost Sirens, so Dryden has an advantage!

Dryden Queen of the Wild All Beasts are his Companions

Dryden calls on all the nearby beasts for a show of power.  Fish leap from the ocean, and seabirds gather and land on his outstretched arms.

Dryden: Behold my power! You can’t defeat us. You should join us instead!

Dryden Finish Them (+Wisdom, show the error of their ways) 7-9

Group of Lantern Peacekeepers damages Gauntlet Form

GM note: Somehow Lucia makes another Finish Them move. What was her Advantage? Dryden used up the Prank Weapon’s distraction with his Finish Them move.

Lucia: We’re your friends. We used the cannons to rescue you from the Sirens!

Lucia Finish Them (+Wisdom, show the error of their ways) 7-9

Group of Lantern Peacekeepers damages Civic Duty

Group of Lantern Peacekeepers disbands into 2 undamaged Lantern Peacekeepers.

The Marines are confused. They were prepared to fight ruthless pirates, but these strangers seem nice and are making a lot of sense. Most of the Marines stand down to see how this plays out, but two are still loyal to Robin.  They rush Lucia and Averiela.

Lucia Get Away 7-9 avoid harm

Lucia leaps from the bridge into the ship’s rigging, abandoning the Captain’s post.

Averiela draws the Titanium Sword she took from Thaumatown’s Robotics Facility and slashes a nearby barrel of water. The water inside splashes up and she runs up the waterdrops to safety.

Averiela Perfect Grace: Run on anything. Hope to Get Away

Averiela Get Away (+hope) 10+ avoid harm, take Dryden along

Dryden is sort of hovering, held by a flock of sea birds. Averiela grabs his cape as she passes and drags him along. All three are in the rigging of the Luna Penumbra’s masts, looking down on the bridge.

Robin Master Plan activate a hidden Trap

  • Fake Firewall This threat is Secret.
    • False Heat: Anyone who gets close to the fire feels its intense heat. Even those who are normally immune to flames will find it uncomfortably hot, and even painful to touch (this is a hint that it is not real flame). This pain is not real, but only those with Hope can muster the strength to pass through.
    • Disbelief: If someone becomes convinced that the flames are fake, they may attempt to Overcome the fire and walk through it anyway. But the pain is immense, and they will roll with Despair. Once someone makes it through by this method, damage this stat.

A dome of intense flame surrounds the bridge, separating Robin and the two loyal Marines from the Fellowship and the rest of the crew. Robin controls the Captain’s post now, and unless the Fellowship can figure out a way through the flames, they can’t contest her command. They inspect the flames. Intense heat radiates out from them, but the flames themselves stay exactly in place, not spreading across the deck, nor igniting any nearby objects.

Dryden pretends that this latest setback is too much for him and dramatically flings himself overboard.

Dryden Flying Disk: fly for the rest of the scene

Once below the ship, Dryden catches himself with his Flying Disk. He has heard of giant Sea Serpents that spray water, which may be able to put out the fire. Years ago he tried to meet hte eldest Sea Serpent, but he was not worthy.

Lucia Yes, My Liege: order any civilized folk, including followers of those who show you Royal Treatment

Back on deck, Lucia realizes that she’s royalty, and can give orders to the Lantern marines who are outside the done. They don’t have bodies of flesh and blood like the Fellowship, so maybe they interact with fire differently. Lucia asks if they are able to pass through the fire. The Lanterns give it a try.

Lantern: It’s hot! So hot!

They flinch away from the dome of fire.

Hovering below the ship, surrounded by a swarm of seagull, Dryden pulls waterproof fireworks from behind his cape and drops them into the ocean. Sound travels better underwater, so these firecrackers will summon Sea Serpents from a great distance. The Sea Serpents are wardens of the ocean. Sirens have to sing in the air, because if they sang underwater, the Sea Serpents would hear them and drive them away.

Dryden Queen of the Wild: Spout Lore about local Beasts.

Dryden rises up, surrounded by birds, to dramatically appear on deck! The crew and Lucia switch from staring at the Firewall to staring at him.

Dryden: No fighting? Uhh, Ba-caw?

Dryden lands on deck and instructs the birds to sit on the rigging, just not directly above anyone in the Fellowship.

Dryden: Are you guys cool?

Lantern: No, the fire is extremely hot!

Robin and Lucia are at an impasse. Lucia can’t get to the bridge to take control, but Robin doesn’t have a pilot, and can’t do much confined inside her firewall. Dryden wonders if he could drop Infinite Windows onto the bridge to cut a hole in the dome of flame. He imagines fire and a square chunk of deck suddenly appearing in Lady Evelynn’s manor. Infinite Windows can’t move while a window is open, so that won’t work.

After some time, the flames from the Firewall burn as bright and hot as ever, but have not consumed the bridge or spread even an inch from their perfect dome shape.  A Sea Serpent approaches from the west. Dryden leaps overboard with his Flying Disk to meet it. The Sirens lurking below flee as their natural enemy approaches.

Dryden: Don’t chase the Sirens!

Dryden Queen of the Wild All Beasts are his Companions

The Sea Serpent lets them flee. Although the Sea Serpent is impressively large, it is not large enough to reach the Luna Penumbra, floating a hundred feet above the water. Dryden would land the ship, but the Pilot’s position is on the bridge, inside the firewall. Averiela goes below deck to take the Engineer’s position. From there she can turn of the anti-grav drives that keep the ship in the air, ideally in a safe and controlled manner. Dryden orders the seabirds to grab the rigging with their feet and flap upwards to slow the Luna Penumbra’s descent (like James and the Giant Peach).

Dryden spends a stat from Seabirds to give Averiela Hope

Averiela Hull Holding 10+ avoid harm

Averiela disables anti-grav fields one by one. The Luna Penumbra starts falling. The birds flap upwards. The sails tilt up to act as parachutes. The impact with the water does not cause any damage.

Sea Serpent spends Water Blast

At Drydne’s command, the Sea Serpent fires its water blast at the dome of fire. Mist and steam cover the back half of the ship, obscuring everything. The Fellowship waits for the mist to clear.

Luna Penumbra Escape Pods; Each pod can hold 4 people and gives a 10+ to Get Away

THUMP! A loud noise from the stern, and an escape pod speeds away to the north. The escape pod is shaped like a seed. Two wings unfold, shaped like a Maple Seed, and spin quickly to propel Robin and her loyal Lantern Peacekeepers back towards Vieport.

The mist clears and the dome of fire burns as brightly as before. It’s completely unchanged by the Sea Serpent’s water blast.

Dryden: Thank you, great serpent. Hunt well!

The Sea Serpent dives into the water to pursue the Sirens.

Since Robin abandoned the ship, and all the remaining crew members obey Lucia, Lucia is clearly the Captain now.

Luna Penumbra Smuggling Compartments: the Captain knows where they are.

Lucia is able to identify the dome of Flame as a Fake Firewall. The water blast didn’t extinguish the flames because they were not real. That’s why they didn’t spread or consume the deck. Dryden noticed that the flames behaved oddly, but thought that they were magical flames. Lucia deactivates the trap. There’s a trapdoor between the bridge and the captain’s cabin below. There’s a compartment in the cabin where the Captain can store secret items, but Robin took hers with her when she left.

Forward, near the cannons, Lucia opens a hidden panel in the floor and finds a large bomb with a long, slow-burning fuse! Dryden cuts the fuse. On the floor of the bomb compartment are two short bits of fuse. One end is burned and the other end is the original end of the fuse, not burned or cut. The Fellowship wonders what this means. Clearly a booby trap of some kind. if they had not discovvered it, the bomb would have gone off some time in the night and triggered the cannons and their ammunition as well. But why the short bits of fuse? Did someone cut the fuse like Dryden, then re-light it later?

GM note: The Long Journey has one more scene, but we had to end the session there. We’ll pick up next time with one final complication as they arrive at the Sapphire Islands, home of former character Gleador!


  • Did we learn something new about the world and its people? YES, the Sirens.
  • Did anyone find what they are searching for? YES, this mission supports Averiela’s goal to hatch a Dragon egg.
  • Did we thoroughly explore a new location? No, the Ship itself doesn’t count.

Two boons

  • Level up: Averiela, Luna Penumbra
  • Level up: Dryden, Edna