Thursday, September 15, 2005

The Adventures of Felix Mephisto, Gentleman: Prologue

Well we finally got ourselves organised so that Donald could get his turn at the GM's table Sunday. He ran Flashing Blades in its original 1984 edition. Written by Mark Pettigrew, FB was published by Fantasy Games Unlimited (FGU), the company responsible for, among other things, Aftermath and Bushido- 2 rpgs of which I have particulary fond memories; and Chivalry and Sorcery- a game I never played (for which much of what I've heard makes me thankful).

I've played this PC a couple of times before with Donald. But it was so long ago that all I can remember is some scrolls we had to deliever and my decision not to help out what looked like a damsel in distress because I didn't want to risk splitting the party in a game where all the other players were pretty much unknown quantities to me as roleplayers.

Oh yes, and Felix's decision to pull his pistol and open fire on some Italian border guards because no Papists were going to lay hands on a Hugenot gentleman. Y'see, PC's in FB all have some kind of secret, and Felix's is that he is a fanatical Hugenot. Which is not the most comfortable of religious persuasions to follow in 17th century catholic France at just about the time that Cromwell and his Puritain roundheads are running riot across in England.

Colourful stuff, eh?

Felix himself is a gentleman of some real charm, fair phsyique and fortune, and evident dimness. He has a passing knowledge of banking, can stay on a horse if he doesn't get too showy, and is unlikey to choose the wrong fork at a banquet, or to commit some other similarly devestating trivial social gaffe. He is a Fellow of the Club of St. George.

All in all, promising material for, well, for being some crass nobleman's smooth-talking henchman or somesuch really. Unless, that is, he chooses to apply himself and get some serious learning. Fat chance would seem to be the current state of play.

I mean, there he was, just sitting in his club, when he received a visit from his acquaintance, the good Baron Jean-Claude Tourne (pron. Tourn-ey: don't know how to do accents above e's yet)- played by Tony- on what turned out to a mission of some delicacy. Game as he is, Felix soon found himself joining the good Baron, and one Piedro Van Horstmann- played by Andy- on a secret mission on behalf of the Constable General of France.

So secret in fact, that I can say no more about it here. Sufficeth to say that Felix learned some lessons about the care and feeding of a good flunkey (not his own sadly), and might soon realise the perils and pitfalls of being just a wee bit too clever by half for one so ultimately slow on the uptake.

This session was great fun. Donald hadn't GM'ed FB since the last time I played Felix, several years ago, and was naturally a bit nervous. But he did a fine job of sitting back and letting the 3 of us enjoy getting into ever more flowerly language as we got to grips with our coarse version of 17th century life in Paris (my own model was the inimitable movie The Three Musketeers- the classic 1980's version starring, among others, Oliver Reed and Spike Milligan). He was also able to steer us back on course when we got utterly lost in our investigations, mostly I fear because I was having too much fun being Felix.

Good fun and many belly laughs were had by all. More soon I hope.

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