It's a nice day to start again
We recently launched our Patreon, and one of the tier rewards is the ability for our Patrons to sponsor the next Side Quest. They pick the game system, the theme, and get to name a character or two. We create a Side Quest around their idea, and now everyone gets to enjoy this free Chronicles of Darkness adventure! Plus, Patrons receive a downloadable version of all our Side Quests.
For our third Patron sponsored Side Quest, we received this theme request: “A Chronicles of Darkness Side Quest set during a wedding between a were and a mage.”
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Helpful Reference Material
It’s an occasion for the ages, the union of two star-crossed lovers – Rhiannon Rigby, a werewolf of the Storm Lords tribe and Daxion Creed, a mage of the Free Council. The group is attending the wedding at Creed’s estate to commemorate the occasion, but outside forces believe the joining of a werewolf and mage will upset the balance of power between the rival forces. Lawrence Harding, a sleepwalking ally to Daxion, is working with the Twilight Circle to sabotage the wedding. In exchange for his compliance, the Twilight Circle agreed to train Lawrence in the secret arts. The mages gave Lawrence a simple task. He must hide an artifact near the ceremony to prevent the marriage from happening. Unbeknownst to Lawrence, the artifact summons mindless rats, both living and dead, to swarm the grounds and kill everyone involved…including Lawrence.
Life was rarely easy for Rhiannon. As a member of the Bone Shadow tribe, she grew up isolated in the wilds with her mentor learning about the animal and spirit world. In time, Rhiannon rejoined her pack mates and began a formal education to better blend with human society. During a tribal ritual with her friend Sandra, a stranger, Daxion Creed, unwittingly intruded upon their ceremony. He quickly surprised them with his knowledge of the werewolves’ customs and managed to intrigue them enough to prevent an attack. After that, Rhiannon and Daxion quickly fell in love and began traveling the world together to bring peace to troubled spirits. Rhiannon is 6’1” with long, auburn hair that she keeps in a braid behind her head. She has the physique of an athlete and tanned skin. Her wedding dress is a satin sleeveless gown with a minimal lace train.
Daxion grew up wealthy, living on an inheritance from deceased parents. His awakening happened while traveling abroad, shocking him to the core. Abandoning his life of leisure, Daxion dedicated himself to learning all he could while becoming a better person in the process. Acts of selflessness led him to an Uratha tribe gathering, where he met Rhiannon. The two became inseparable, and both traveled to learn and explore their heritage. Daxion is 5’9” with short, shaggy black hair and a matching beard, a slim build, and darker complexion. He favors nicer slacks and shoes paired with button-up shirts, but today he is dressed to the nines with a bespoke pinstripe suit.
Lawrence grew up believing he was meant for something better. The Harding family and the Creeds were close back in the day; Lawrence and Daxion were near inseparable. After Daxion’s parents died, Lawrence lost connection with his old friend for many years and sought his own path in the world. Always feeling out of place, Lawrence searched and studied into the unknown. Lawrence eventually stumbled upon the Twilight Circle, who kept him at arm’s length. Years later, Daxion reconnected with his old friend and introduced him to his girlfriend, Rhiannon. Daxion shared his knowledge of magic with Lawrence but declined to teach him how to access it. The Twilight Circle contacted Lawrence as he reached his lowest point and offered a path to power: hide an artifact within the Creed estate during the wedding and gain unimaginable power. Lawrence desperately did as he was instructed while maintaining his original task of officiant for the wedding. He is 6’1” with shoulder-length blonde hair, a clean face, and dark eyes. Today he wears a formal suit and a leather satchel in which he carried the artifact.
The Twilight Circle
A small organization of mages and other entities who work behind the scenes to keep supernatural forces from uniting and overthrowing mankind. The group recently learned of the marriage between a werewolf and mage and were quick to intercept using Lawrence as a willing pawn. An intermediary gave Lawrence an artifact that will animate and control all rats within a few miles upon activation.
Most of the small crowd joining the wedding are friends of Daxion and Rhiannon. They include:
- Katie Joelson: Rhiannon’s friend and maid of honor. Mortal.
- Angie and Steve Tiersten: Family friends who treat Daxion like a son. Mortals.
- Sandra Farris: Rhiannon’s tribe mate. Werewolf.
- Travis Worrel: Daxion’s best man, often goes out on motorcycle rides. Mortal.
Scene 1 - The Arrival
It’s the big day! Dressed to the nines, the player group arrives on time (or at least near it) to the Creed estate near sunset. The family home sits on 200 acres on the outside of town. The closest establishment is the old church and graveyard just down the road. There are less than 5 cars parked outside the single-story ranch house. A few trees stand around the property, as much of the Creed-owned land is set for cattle.
Lawrence is outside with Daxion and Travis, casually chatting among themselves, while Rhiannon, Katie, Sandra, Angie, and Steve prepare inside. Introductions are made all around, and it’s not long before the ceremony begins. Anyone that attempts an Empathy check on Lawrence reveals the following:
Dramatic Failure: Lawrence notices your intrusive expression, but continues to be cordial. However, further Social skill checks involving Lawrence roll with a -1.
Failure: Your character uncovers no useful information.
Success: Despite the casual affair, Lawrence’s eyes occasionally dart towards the house, expectantly.
Exceptional Success: In addition to his eyes, you also notice the leather bag at his side that he unconsciously moves his hand over if anyone gets too close.
Inside, Rhiannon is attended by Katie and Sandra while Angie and Steve prepare food in the kitchen. The open floor of the ranch home is gorgeous, but it appears as though no one lives here. There are few personal effects around the house – small framed pictures of Daxion as a child with his parents and some cattle memorabilia, including a cavalry saber mounted above the mantle. Rhiannon greets the group and makes small talk, explaining how she and Daxion met at a concert rather than a spirit ritual out in the woods.
Scene 2 - The Wedding
Lawrence asks the group to take their places out back at the gazebo. Behind the house, a simple wedding arrangement is set with 10 chairs facing the gazebo and the rolling estate hills beyond. Members of the party take their sides while Daxion and Travis join Lawrence at the foot of the gazebo stairs. Lawrence begins a light homily, and the wedding unfolds as usual. Rhiannon steps out from the house, radiant and smiling. Daxion can barely contain a smile himself.
As Rhiannon approaches the gazebo, small furry shapes move quickly across the ground. The first one noticed seems like a trick of the eyes but quickly more rodents begin approaching the backyard. Katie notices and screams aloud, interrupting the ceremony as a massive horde of rats swarm from the underbrush.
Scene 3 - The Reception
Someone shouts for everyone to run inside. A tidal wave of rats, both living and dead, surge forwards and engulf one random NPC. If not helped, they are dragged down and consumed. The rest of the party enters the house and begins barricading the doors to stem the rat swarm. Observant players might notice Lawrence whispering to himself: “This wasn’t meant to happen.”
Neither Daxion nor Rhiannon will use their powers in front of mortals unless in direct mortal danger. The rats continue to trickle in through vents to harass everyone involved. The only weapons readily available are a few kitchen knives and the old cavalry saber upon the mantle. Inventive characters can use a combination of household products and a lighter to produce a makeshift torch or molotov to keep the swarm at bay.
The swarm is unrelenting, and killing one group of rats merely gives the party time to breathe before the next attack. Both Daxion and Rhiannon do what they can, but eventually Rhiannon notices Lawrence’s fear for what it is and confronts him. Lawrence breaks down and profusely apologizes to both of them, explaining that he was given an artifact to hide within the house. He directs the party to Daxion’s old room where the two shared a secret hiding spot under the floorboard in the closet.
More rats pour into the home as everyone races to Daxion’s bedroom. Lawrence quickly retrieves the artifact — a softly humming brass cube that fits in the palm of his hand. He tries to crush it but it is unyielding. Anyone with a high supernatural strength may attempt to crush it, otherwise the artifact can only be destroyed if bathed in the blood of a sacrifice willfully given (Lawrence or a player character with a 4 or higher in Occult can understand the language on the side). If Lawrence is still alive, he volunteers to sacrifice himself. Once done, the rats flee the home, leaving corpses and gnawed leavings behind.
Daxion and Rhiannon thank the party, depending on the actions they took during the attack. Both offer assistance in the future if asked but also may drop a request to help them deal with the Twilight Circle.
M1. Entry and Living Room
Despite the opulence and space, there is very little personal effects within these rooms. Scant few pictures hang on the walls, and the furniture almost appears decorative rather than functional. If asked, Daxion reveals that he hasn’t lived here in years, and mostly rents out the space for photoshoots. A cavalry saber hangs on the mantle above the fireplace.
The Creed house features a modern kitchen with granite countertops. Platters of food are laid out on the kitchen island. A spacious pantry is stocked with non-perishable foods, but only enough to last a week.
M3. Daxion’s Bedroom and closet
Daxion’s bedroom is the only room that still has a little bit of personality left within. Posters of athletes and musicians hang on the walls and an out-of-date personal computer sits at a desk built for a teenager. Clothes fit for a teen fill the closet, while a small pile of clothes obscure a loose wood panel on the floor.
The Creed family spent quite a bit of money building this deck, and it’s quality has maintained over the years via minimal use. A simple patio set rests beyond the kitchen windows and overlooks the gazebo in the backyard.
It’s a bathroom. There’s nothing overtly special about it.
This cavernous laundry room is fitted with copious folding tables and cabinets. An expensive washer and dryer machine set sits against the wall. The lower cabinets hold multiple types of cleaners and chemicals.
The study of Daxion’s father lies unused with curtains drawn and dust coverings placed over the desk and large standing floor globe. The door leading to this room is locked, but Daxion has the key. The globe hides two bottles of expensive liquor. Anyone searching within the closet will find a locked gun safe containing one hunting rifle with 30 rounds. The key is located within an upper drawer of the study’s desk.
M8. Master Bedroom, bath and closet
The bedroom of Daxion’s parents, left exactly as it was since the day they died. The door leading to this room is locked, but Daxion has the key. Folded clothes sit upon a dresser while his mother’s jewelry is on display at her desk. A slight scent of mothballs permeates the space. A gargantuan master bathroom and closet reside nearby — neither has been used in years.
Tribe: Bone Shadows
Mental Attributes: Intelligence 3, Wits 2, Resolve 3
Physical Attributes: Strength 5 (6/8/7/5), Dexterity 3 (3/4/5/5), Stamina 3 (4/5/5/4)
Social Attributes: Presence 4, Manipulation 2 (1/2/0/2), Composure 1
Mental Skills: Investigation 2, Politics 1, Occult 1, Science (Biology) 2
Physical Skills: Athletics 3, Brawl 2, Stealth 1, Survival 4, Weaponry (staves) 2
Social Skills: Animal Ken 3, Empathy 3, Intimidation 1, Socialize 1
Merits: Allies (Local Pack Alphas) 2, Languages (First Tongue) 1, Resources 1
Primal Urge: 2, Relentless 1, Tolerance for Biology 1
Essence Max/Per Turn: 11/1
Health: 8 (10/12/11/8)
Initiative: 4 (4/5/6/6}
Defense: 5 (all forms)
Speed: 13 (14/17/20/18)
Renown: Honor 3, Wisdom 4
Gifts: Sense Malice (•), Crushing Blow (•), Mighty Bound (••), Ward Versus humans (••), Aura of Truce (•••)
Order: Free Council
Mental Attributes: Intelligence 3, Wits 3, Resolve 4
Physical Attributes: Strength 2, Dexterity 2, Stamina 3
Social Attributes: Presence 3, Manipulation 1, Composure 5
Mental Skills: Academics 1, Crafts (motorcycle repair) 2, Occult 2
Physical Skills: Brawl 1, Drive (motorcycle) 3, Survival 3
Social Skills: Animal Ken 2, Expression 3, Persuasion 2, Socialize 3
Merits: High Speech 1, Indomitable 2, Occultation 2, Resources 4
Arcana: Fate 1, Life 3, Prime 2, Spirit 3
Rotes: Fate — Winds of Chance (•); Life –Transfer Base Features (Life ••), Healing Heart (Life •••); Prime — Supernal Vision (Prime •); Spirit — Ephemeral Shield (Spirit ••), Control Spirit (Spirit •••).
Mana/per turn: 12/3
Mental Attributes: Intelligence 4, Wits 3, Resolve 2
Physical Attributes: Strength 2, Dexterity 2, Stamina 3
Social Attributes: Presence 2, Manipulation 4, Composure 3
Mental Skills: Academics (Local History) 2, Investigation 3, Medicine 2, Occult 4,
Physical Skills: Athletics 1, Brawl 2, Drive 2, Firearms 3
Social Skills: Persuasion 4, Subterfuge 4, Socialize 1
Merits: Allies (Twilight Circle) 1, Closed book 2, Patient 1, Resources 1, Sleepwalker 4
Undead Rat Swarms
Best At (7 dice): Sniffing out humans, dragging
you down by sheer weight of numbers, burrowing.
Worst At (1 Die): Acting alone, using doorknobs.
Aspiration: To swarm living creatures in obedience to the artifact
Grapple – 0B Melee, 7 (in group), 1 (alone)
Bite – 1L Melee, 7 (in group), 1 (alone)
Banes: Fire, lots of cats
Dread Powers: Hunter’s Senses (human flesh),
Natural Weapons •, Surprise Entrance, Toxic •
We hope you enjoyed this free Chronicles of Darkness adventure! From here it’s up to you to decide if you want to create a deeper story arc involving Rhiannon and Daxion, the Twilight Circle, or anything else you enjoyed about this encounter. We would love to know if you use this Side Quest, so please drop a comment here on the blog, on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Discord to let us know how it went! If you want a printable PDF version of this Side Quest, it is available (along with our other Side Quests, maps, and more fun things) exclusively on Patreon. Lastly, if you enjoyed this adventure, consider checking out our longer campaigns and map packets on our Shop page or grab a free map on our Side Quests page.
Happy Side Questing!