PrinceCon 18 : Curse of the Green Star

Director: Matt Zinno
Theme Masters: James Maysonett and Alex Reutter

The PCs were banished from the surface of the world, and only by recovering the Wards of the Gods could they return.

Player Theme Pack

This is the tale of the world, my friends…

The old man beckons you with a skeletal finger. As you approach, he begins his story.

Long, long ago, in this very land, there were indeed heroes and dragons, ladies fair waiting to be rescued, pillaging raiders of orcs and goblins, and everything else one finds in the Tales of Old….

All that is gone now.

Religion was once strong; the gods were powerful, and could work great miracles. Even mortals wielded considerable magical power.

Now it is illegal to believe in the gods.

The stories tell that when there were dragons and orcs and goblins, the heroes would go to do battle with them, and win glory for the names of their families. After ages of these battles, always narrowly balanced between heroes and monsters, the orcs were dealt a serious blow and soon vanished from our world. The records say all the orcs were killed, and the goblins and other creatures soon followed. Even the mighty dragons and other fantastic beasts became endangered species. Some were put in zoos; others went elsewhere, and none can say where they may be now.

With all their natural enemies gone, the heroes turned to social reform. A government promoting peace between the three major races (humans, elves, and dwarves) was formed, with provisions for allowing the perrin free reign of the oceans and hobbits to peacefully coexist with any of the other races. The land was divided between the elves, who lived in the west, the humans, who lived in the east, and the dwarves, who lived in the north. An island, located in the ocean and central to the world, became the seat of the new government, which would be run by the humans, elves, and dwarves. Thus the Bureaucracy was born.

With the world ordered thus, the people had little worry for their own survival, and seemed to no longer have any need for the gods. The temples to Leo were hit hardest by the lack of conflict between the races, and even the more peaceful gods suffered from declining patronage at their places of worship. There were those who spread rumors that the gods actually did not exist, and atheism flourished. In desperation, at the last Pantheistic Diet, the high priests of each diety agreed to lock up and hide the secrets of their gods in preparation for the day when they would be needed again. None can say what became of these wards of power. Worship of the gods continued after that, but only sparsely.

For hundreds of years, peace reigned in the Bureaucracy as the gods’ power declined. There followed a movement for the establishment of a Potentate within the Bureaucracy. Even though the Potentate was to be largely a figurehead, existing mainly to give the government a stable leadership and keep matters running smoothly, there was staunch opposition to it from the families of the heroes who founded the Bureaucracy. However, they were ignored and the first Potentate was elected.

Thirty years of peace and the first Potentate passed until the Dragon Purge. The last few dragons supposedly died of “natural” causes in the zoos, even though some weren’t even a single millennium in age. Questions were raised, fingers were pointed, and an investigation headed by the new Potentate ensued. Many of the established families – good, upstanding families of the heroes long past – were brought up on charges of treason. Rather than shake the government apart, those with posts in the Bureaucracy resigned. They eventually disappeared from society and the Bureaucracy became more and more detached from the people. The Potentate abolished popular elections, becoming Potentate-for-Life.

Things soon went from bad to worse. The Potentate proclaimed that the High Wizard’s Guild had discovered that the presence of hobbits was harmful to society. The hobbits were accused of spreading via their foot hairs a disease deadly to humans, elves and dwarves. Thus labelled as pestilent and inferior to other races, the hobbits were gathered into detention centers and wiped clean from the face of the world. No one knows exactly what was done with them.

Some years after the Hobbit Purge, the Red Tape Police appeared. Though mainstream religion had died out several human generations before, there still existed a few scattered clerics who preached the word of their deities, and some listened to them. These were branded as conspirators against the government, and the Red Tape Police were sent to root them out…

The old man’s voice trails off as two inches of a guard’s steel blade emerges from his chest. But you know the rest of the story all too well. You are one of the so-called conspirators, and when the Red Tape came amongst the elves, dwarves, and humans, you fled to the perrin, who housed you in their floating cities and joined you in opposition to the government. For five long years you hid amongst the perrin.

You were on one of these floating cities when the Red Tape attacked it in force, killed nearly all the residents, and subdued you adventurers and brought you to trial. It is at your trial for “crimes against the state” that you currently stand, and the verdict is about to be delivered….

Your reverie is broken as rough hands take hold of you. Only dimly are you aware of figures in the courtroom, and you wonder if your food has been drugged. The shadowy figure of the judge is speaking:

For your crimes against the State, I sentence you to eternal banishment from the Realm…. Place the Green Star Curse upon them.

You hear murmuring noises from the others in the courtroom, until the baleful presence of a malevolent green star makes itself felt over your head. Dimly, you wonder how it can affect you here inside the courtroom, but before you have more time to think, you feel your body dissociate and you lapse into unconsciousness….