AP: Windmill Hill

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AP: Windmill Hill
« on: October 01, 2010, 12:57:47 PM »
This shall be the thread for the game I'm running.

Barbecue, the Hardholder of Windmill Hill, played by Vincent
Burroughs the Brainer, played by Evan
October the Skinner, played by Kat
Hooch the Chopper, played by Jim

The hardhold is a fortified camp on the ridge of a mountain range, somewhere along the AT. There's a windmill that works, providing power for a manufactory that turns out pots and pans and other metal-goods. There are big stamping machines left from the mountain-top removal/strip mine operation down a bit from here, and in the first few years of the holding, when it was ALL little ragged tents and lean-tos, there were several really nasty accidents in the machines, while folks were figuring out how to use them, and folks got maimed.

There are several other windmills along the ridge; a handful are busted, most of them never got stood up, and one of them is working, but it invariably turns when the wind is not blowing, stops when it is, and faces the wrong way regardless. All but that last are good scrounge-grounds.

The windmills are (were) built in sections. If you are lucky, or have enough friends, or are mean enough to have claimed one of the three sections that were close-by when folks got here, you've got a totally weather-proof home! They have welded-on backs and fronts, with doors cut in and little vents for windows/airflow. Kind of like a trailer. The bottom floors are a few feet up, to make a wide level place, but with 15 feet of height, you can even get a short second floor in there no problem. Some folks keep their dogs in the 'below' space, some have root cellars or chickens or who knows what-all. Some of the tubes have blow-torched patterns along the sides, spirals and dots and distorted plants. One is covered with birds in flight. There's a tailor and his family who have two treadle sewing machines set up in the front of their tube, and the upper loft is full of different colors of industrial tarp. Lots of clothes in the holding are bright blue, and the seams are flat-felled on the outside, like inside out jeans, so it doesn't scratch. If you find a tarp, you get good trade with him; the rest have to work something out.

If you're not a tuber, you have a lean-to or tent. Barbeque rates the old ranger's 15x20 cabin, with it's nice wood cook-stove set into the stone fireplace and thick glass windows with shutters and a sturdy door that locks. It's set back by some big old trees, looks like it's grown out of the rock, and a handful of additions, lean-tos, porches and such have been jammed on over the decades prior. The latest modification is that the outside walls have been reinforced with metal sheeting brought up from below, and in a real pinch, it'll hold about 30 people for a bit - which is roughly half the holding. There's a half-story loft over half the main space, for sleeping and storage.

The fish aren't safe to eat unless you are so desperate there's no other option, and there's no songbirds anymore, but there are plenty of dogs and goatsheep and things called chickens that might actually be more turkey or goose or duck, but it's all chicken now. You can hunt, a bit, and every hunter worth anything has a tale about spotting Old Red-eye, the huge wild boar that roams the lower hillsides. Regular woodpig, that's a good meal for a good many, rabbit and squirrel of course, and deer sometimes, bear rarely.

Hooch and his gang berth in hammocks slung over their ATVs in The Garage - a wide, squat building that started out life as a picnic pavilion. You can tell who's up in rank, 'cause they bunk closer to the middle, farther from the elements. Probies rate the windiest outside corner. Weather's not so cold as it once was, so with a good sleeping bag any biker worth a crap can deal with the winter, and all you need in summer's a mosquito net.

There are plank bridges leading from the ridge off into several of the bigger trees, including October's home and place of business. Somehow, she's got an old school bus up there, all grown over with vines so you can hardly tell it's a buss, especially with the seats all out and the bed in the back. There's a Sun room and Moon room, and she's planning a Sultan's room, full of lanterns. She and her two 'ladies' have private quarters in the Tower when they are not entertaining customers or tending the herb garden.

Burroughs has claimed the top of the windmill as his own. The bats and the rats keep him company, and the rotating top gives him a lovely panoramic view. He's also able to keep an eye on the gears up there, when he's not watching the brain-web spread out beneath him like a little starry sky. Sometimes the wind whispers to him in his sleep.

What has gone before, from various viewpoints:

Plot summary from Burroughs POV:
* Hooch is checking over his bikes when confronted by Burroughs, who
suggests he can pry some information about a cache/stash of goods
hidden in the mines from one of Hooch's gang members, with the
ulterior motive of learning more about his past.  Hooch's greed gets
the better of him and he agrees for his gang to do a brief séance with
* October is visited by the customer  Dremmer, who aggressively
demands sexual favors in exchange for a ring he found.  When October
refuses, Dremmer attempts to force himself on her.  October calms him
down with her "motherly" instincts and, upon discovering that the ring
was actually of value, eventually sleeps with him.
* Barbecue is overseeing the metal shop when a worker (Silver) gets his finger mangled in a machine.  This was on account of a
ring the worker was given by someone who meant to sabotage the
workshop.  After wrestling the screaming worker and severing the
remaining bit of finger so the worker does not lose his whole hand,
Barbecue goes to visit October for counsel on the matter.
* When Barbecue arrives, October shows him in for tea, only to
discover Burroughs having already invited himself in, suggesting a
peculiar attachment to her.  He leaves, and they communicate.  One of
October's girls (Dusk) later informs her that there are some
items missing from the jewelry box. A thief must be afoot!
* Burroughs conducts the séance, though one of Hooch's gang members
(Jackbacka) leaves the circle and runs.  Hooch intimidates
him back in.  Burroughs discovers that the gang member Bullet
grew up nearby and was one of the miners with Burroughs when he went
down into the mine that fateful day his head exploded.  Burroughs
suggests Hooch should take his gang down into the mine with him to
uncover that stash, and Hooch reckons he'll need to have Burroughs
followed in order to find out just what exactly he's up to.

Stuff from Hooch the Chopper:
The 'cuz who tried to ditch the seance was Jackabacka.

Hooch's gang ride on ATVs, the 3- and 4-wheel vehicles I showed in those videos. They congregate under an old picnic pavilion that's now called 'the Garage'. Each 'cuz has their own hammock stung in the rafters over their bike, with position closer to the center indicating rough hierarchy within the gang. You're responsible for your own bike at all times, including being able to right it and fix it if you get in a jam out on the Trail.

There's 14 riders in the gang (called the Trailjacks) right now, with half a dozen or so named so far:

NOTE: All the gang members are late teens/early 20s, none certainly older than 25, most look younger than they probably are due to poor nutrition and disease. Hooch is likely somewhere in the 18-21 range.

Jackabacka was the one who tried to ditch the seance.
Baby  is a similarly-to-Hooch ambiguously-sexed late teen who has the job description "Reminds Hooch of Home".
Tinker is a clearly male kid, tall and rangy with huge hands, who is the idiot savant of working on the gangs' bikes. He speaks in a fast-talking, slang-laden local accent so thick he's barely understandable, and is generally always working on bikes whenever he's not actually out riding.
Stinky is an obvious boy of maybe 15 or 16, and is the least trusted member of the gang because he's the newest, having just 'Run the Course' a month or so ago.
T-Bone is the best  in the group at finding stuff, she's a squat, thick, girl in her early 20s, and she translates Burroughs fancy talk into plain talk for Hooch, and Tinker's cant into plain speech Barbecue and others can understand.
Bullet is another ambiguously-sexed kid, a little older, average height and skinny, called that because of 'his' funny-shaped head, probably early 20s, who is a native of the area and was apparently present when Burroughs had his exploding-head incident.

The gang is outfitted in scrounged logging and mining gear, lots of flannel, demin, canvas coveralls, stuff like that. They all wear mining helmets with the lamps attached to see in the dark, instead of using headlights on their ATVs. They're armed mostly with hatchets, sledges, and other mining and logging equipment. Maybe one or two shotguns and a couple of poorly-maintained, scrounged hunting rifles. Hooch himself carries around a well-made carbon-steel hatchet that has been sharpened religiously over the years and has had its rubber grip replaced with a duct-tape facsimile.

We also established that someone had tried to Run the Course last time along with Stinky, but flipped their bike and was left to to die under it overnight. I can't recall that name off the top of my head.

(Run the Course: If you want to be a Trailjack, you need to birng your own ATV, which you then use to Run the Course, a nasty obstacle course the gang sets up with help from some of the 'Holders. If you can run it in under the time that Hooch sets, you're in. If you can't do it fast enough, you ain't. If you flip your bike or hurt yourself, you have to keep gong and no one's allowed to help you until you get yourself off the Course., no exceptions. The Hold comes out for these Runs, they're a sort of little festival with betting and a celebration if anyone gets in and they get the Two- Bits (Shave and a Haircut))

The Trailjacks seem to refer to Miss O's place as the 'Moolinor', and all of them call Barbecue 'Big B' and Burroughs 'Crazy B'.

Unless I'm mistaken, we (the Trailjacks) have also gotten word that Miss O is currently looking for stuff to make fancy lanterns out of.



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Re: AP: Windmill Hill
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2010, 08:14:01 PM »
Hey Margolotte,
I love the setting portrayed in the first section (prior to the POV)!
Just a few newby Qx...

What was the mechanical(s) driver behind the fiction? Was it by always saying what the principles demand and primarily by asking provocative questions and building on the answers? How / when did the group record (or not) all this lovely detail?

And the POV descriptions / story - Was this the result of a first session following the characters around? If so, its fooking brillant! Would you mind in the next installment adding a note to what principles, moves (both player and MC) were used in each 'scene'? I really like the way your group interfaces narratively with the ruleset and it would be over-the-top helpful if I could grab a glimpse of the play at the table behind the story. Cheers!

Scintillating AP by the way. Love it.