Monday, 15 April 2013

Ebon Eaves: Prelude

+Annette expressed an interest in playing an RPG with more than one player, since our Blood Hunter and Maid games have always been one-on-one. We recruited +Paul as a second player, and decided on tremulus - a game of Lovecraftian horror based on the Apocalypse World engine. I recently got a copy of the pre-release PDF from the Kickstarter, although I'm expecting a softcover book in the next few months.
  • +Paul plays Father Aaron, a Devout. He is a Presbyterian priest, sent to Ebon Eaves for being difficult and asking too many questions. He wears formal vestments, has an open face with bright eyes, and is of slim build.
  • +Annette plays Amy Hearst, a Librarian. She's recently come to the town of Ebon Eaves to open a new library. She wears formal garments, has an open face with clever eyes, and has a lithe frame.

I decided to use the "Playset" of Ebon Eaves that comes with the book. A Playset presents the players with two sets of seven questions (in this instance, about Local Colour and Town Lore), each of which requires three "yes" answers. This provides two sets of codes to cross-reference with a paragraph of information for the players, and a paragraph of secret information for the Keeper (GM). Each set of seven questions has 35 possible combinations.

For this iteration of Ebon Eaves, the players chose that the locals display strange behaviour, and it's an old town with a tragic past. In addition, there has been a history of ghost sightings, rumours of dark rituals, and there are several old or ruined buildings in or about the town. That led to the following player-facing information:

Ebon Eaves is a little known enclave located far off the beaten track. About fifty years ago, a lot of folks underwent secret government experiments. It made national headlines about five years ago, though the details of exactly what was done remain a mystery. In light of world events, the news faded rapidly. The residents settled for an undisclosed amount, but few have to work, though many carry on as they always have.

The old parts of Ebon Eaves are fashioned in a very classical Greek tradition. The Manley Manor stands apart. It seems to be far older and sits cozily but abandoned on the far edge of town near a dairy farm owned by Mayor Thad Wilson. Johnny, Thad’s youngest son, has claimed to have seen the spirit of old Manley moving through the house in the dead of night. No one paid him any mind until the house’s lights began flickering on and off three weeks ago, even though the power was cut off long ago. People now give the place a wide berth.

I spent a week or so building the basic outline of the town, and working up some dark and nefarious plots based on the secret Keeper information related to the above information, tying the two separate storylines (or "threads") into an interconnected cat's cradle of conspiracy waiting to be uncovered.

I decided that this Ebon Eaves was located in the foothills of Vermont, and that the game would start in the late Summer of 1923.

>>> Chapter I

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