A close relative of the PCs, a key NPC employee of theirs, or perhaps even one of the PCs who has not made the gaming session has gone missing on a world with a very low Law Level. The subject has fallen foul of gang customs and is being held in a highly secure location in the city of Torgan. Unfortunately, several gangs in the area are essentially at war with other and internecine conflict is ongoing and brutal.
Contacting any relatives of the subject is a bad idea as that will draw them into conflict with the gang, called The Barony of Torgany, run by two shadowy figures known as the Baron and the Baron. (If the two need to be distinguished, it has become the practice of gang members to refer to the first with a two fingered stroke of the chin representing his goatee and the second via a stroke of the cheek representing his sideburns). Two distant relatives of the imprisoned character, the Grendel brothers, are members of a gang that is in alliance with the Barony but are not involved in the current situation. They could potentially be allies, however, if they could be contacted.
The PCs arrive in the city on Day 185 of the present year, a day of festivity, feasting and fireworks. They have had a lengthy wait for the owner of the cargo they’ve shipped in an ancient stone and wooden house deep in the swamps close to the city of Ruie. Now they realize the cargo owner is the heir of the Barony gang and is intent on killing the imprisoned character as part of a plan to replace the elderly Baron and Baron. After a tense encounter, the PCs now know where the prisoner is being held (a villa in Rue nee Curios – a leafy old-fashioned street known for its antiques dealers) and that he or she may be killed imminently. The PCs have access to a safehouse in the city that is unknown to any of the gangs.
The Grey Messengers:
On a world where there are few laws and few government institutions of any kind regulating life, some basic functions of ordinary living would be difficult. A swift, secure and stable postal service is one such function. On this world the solution is an organization known as the Grey Messengers. They are trusted, impartial and ask no questions. They carry messages, packages and data; go anywhere; see everything; see nothing. They work for payment or payment in kind if they need a service of some sort. They may be any age, gender, or species.
They are also known for their ability to procure equipment of any kind, legal or illegal, and possibly of any tech level – for a price of course. They ask no questions and will deny any involvement of illegality.
The PCs can decide to rescue the character as they see fit. The Law Level is low enough that the authorities will be uninterested in petty squabbles amongst lowlifes. Any rescue attempt could be surreptitious, or it could be an ‘all guns blazing’ type of affair. Either way, it will be against a backdrop of inter-gang conflict that could prove deadly if the PCs are caught in the crossfire or between the blade thrusts. Not to mention the Barons’ (cloned? vat grown? surrogate?) offspring attempting a coup of their own. The Referee may wish to prepare plans of the villa and its extensive garden and basement.
The PCs may be able to infiltrate the villa as workmen – a Formidable task, or as gang members a Very Difficult task only if they can get some kind of introduction – perhaps via the Grendel brothers. There may be the possibility of posing as antiques dealers, or the PCs could have some scheme of their own. Almost certainly any plans they make will be thwarted or aided by either an attack by the Barons’ heir or a rival gang or both happening simultaneously. They may find the Day 185 celebrations an additional cover which they can use to their advantage. Chaos should be the order of the day with no one quite sure who is who or what side they’re on. If they choose to involve the Grey Messengers, they will need to do this with subtlety as the Messengers cannot be seen to be taking sides.
This scenario could be run as a humorous farce or a deadly serious fracas. Either way, unless the PCs have managed things particularly cleverly, they will have made an enemy of the Barony of Torgany – unless, for example, they’ve played a hand in saving not just the imprisoned character, but the Barons from the heir that plots against them. In which case, they may have a powerful ally for future visits in a place where local contacts are all important to smooth trade.