Monday, January 14, 2013

The Fateful Decision

One of the games I am lucky enough to be in is a bi-monthly Dresden Files game where I am playing a changeling of the Winter Court variety. The game has been going well and I've rather enjoyed the character, who they are, and how things have been playing out. At present though, the character seems to quickly coming up on a fateful decision and I wanted to take today to talk about that.

The Decision
Changelings in the Dresden Universe are caught between two worlds. On the one hand is the mortal world, normal humanity and all the mundane normal human things. No powers, no gifts, just skills, guts, and the freedom to make  all of your own decisions. On the other hand though is the fae world. Power, immortality, magic, but rules. Rules enough to mean you can't fight against your nature. You can't strive to be more than you are because you are what you are. The decision then comes in which do you choose? Do you go full mortal and give up your ties to the supernatural? Do you go full fae and leave your humanity behind? Or do you stay as you are caught between both worlds but able to also dabble in both? Oh, as an added kicker, going Full Fae means that the character is no longer eligible to be a PC. They can still show up, but they are no longer a main player in the show.

The Decision...Under A Different Light
What I like about the Changeling character in Dresden is that the core story to the character is right there in that decision. Where do you belong? What does your humanity mean to you? What do your powers mean to you? These are all wonderful questions for a story - and especially a game - to be asking and making a person ask. Think about the decision to go mortal. Is there someone in your playgroup who would give up magical powers for something? and if so, what? Which character too? If you can't answer that question, then maybe - just maybe (seriously, not sarcasm) you want to consider it as an angle to challenge your PCs on.

This is a question about belonging, power, and ambition. Power is obvious. the Fae has power and the mortal does not. But what about the others?

Colin's Decision
Colin, if you didn't guess, is the name of my character. He is rapidly approaching this decision as the GM is running us through the current story arc. The current arc is focused on the coyotes in the city (Boston) who have a PC representative in Sparks. They're shapeshifters but still coyotes and live amongst the homeless in the city. The antagonist for the arc? Werewolves. particularly Russian werewolves that are a part of the Vory. The Werewolves want to wipe out the Coyotes. Sparks wants to make a stand and defend his people's home. His people? They want to run and avoid the fight.

Now, in the beginning this fight started when a new group of coyotes showed up, one got in trouble with werewolves, and Sparks jumped in to help the coyote. Hoping to distract the werewolves colin began a Glamour to make it sound like dozens, if not hundreds, of Coyotes were in the area cheering on "Warlord Sparks." The glamour worked, but not in the way Colin hoped (does it ever?) the werewolves now thing there is organized resistance to them headed by Sparks. Lines have been drawn in the sand. Sparks just wants to stop bullies and keep his people's home in Boston. Colin though, Colin sees something else. He sees a chance for a story, a legend, and that is what he is working towards.

The story? Well, the story of Warlord Sparks. the Coyotes are a people far from living the good life. They get pushed around. They are the down trodden. The Werewolves are big, mean, powerful, and some of them (the cursed) are nigh on unkillable. It is easy to see them as the big unstoppable force. The story needs a hero to stand against them. For Colin, Sparks is that Hero. The other PCs are the Hero's companions (it's normal for the hero to have companions from different walks of life.)

The problem? Well, the more Colin works towards this story the more obsessed with the tale he is becoming. It feels right - manipulating events into the tale that is - and it feels good to be pushing things into place from the shadows and helping on the fringes. It feels right, like home, and as that calls to him his fae nature is taking over.

The Outcome?
I've been discussing it with the GM, but it really feels like Colin is going to end up going full fae with the end of this arc. Either he is successful, Sparks becomes the hero and the werewolves are defeated (he has already gotten Sparks a weapon capable of beating even a cursed werewolf) and with the tale being completed he steps into his full fae heritage with the story being his intro. Alternatively, Sparks loses but Colin can still be successful. The tale becomes a tragedy, perfect for a cold Winter night, and he becomes Fae. There is likely outcomes that could keep him from going just yet, but I am not sure what those things are. If anyone can find them though, it'll likely be my playgroup.

Either way though I don't mind. It is a good ending to the story. Natural and fitting for the game and the character. What more could I ask for?

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