Musings of a Mercenary. Part 1 – The Question.

Hey folks, Harry here, or John Q., as you probably don’t know me from the PP forums. I’ve been playing Warmachine for about 5 years now, and one of the things that got me immersed in the game quickly was the richness of the Iron Kingdoms as a setting. Anthony and I have been friends for near on twenty years now, and have gamed together for most of that time, so when he mentioned his idea for an IKRPG game based around a mercenary company I was instantly interested.The idea of these little narrative write ups is to give an insight into how the game is developing from my character, Jannyth Carhannon’s side, alongside Anthony’s own articles from the GMs point of view. Hope you enjoy!

I like to think that if there isn’t a point near the start of a job where you stop and ask yourself ‘Jannyth, what in Morrow’s name have you gotten yourself into?’, then you’re doing it wrong. Maybe that’s just me trying to rationalise the ridiculousness of some of the decisions I make. Sometimes I catch Fysan staring at me, and I’d swear the mute bastard heard the question. He’s answering it for me, only I can’t hear him.

The question gets asked a lot more on jobs like this. The jobs where I leave the majority of the company behind on a simple garrison gig and only take the… specialists. The ones I know I can trust to get the job done. Fysan, Elise, Sergei, Bert, Stefan and now, hopefully,  Clara.

Fysan comes with me on every job I take. He’s my right hand man. Hell, he’s my right hand. Indispensible. But frankly, he unnerves some of the regular members of the company. If I died tomorrow he’d seem like the obvious choice to take over as commander. He knows more about the practicalities of how this company runs than I do. He’d seem like the obvious choice.
But he isn’t.

Elise’s involvement is imperative on a job like this. The contacts she has scattered across western Immoren are needed for any smuggling job. She’s more adept at finding and tapping the vein of a city’s social class than anyone I’ve ever met. And she’s a beautiful woman. Beautiful women can open doors that aged, battle-worn men like me simply can’t.

Sergei is a Khadoran native, his knowledge of the country and the landscape is invaluable on a job like this, so long as his fake papers hold up to scrutiny. And they should, they cost enough. He’s also one of the best shots I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been shot at a lot.

Bert is muscle. He’s the giant, hulking trollblood who stands to my left when I wanna dissuade someone from swinging a punch. He’s loyal, reliable and doesn’t ask too many questions. I’ve seen him brush off sights that would make even my stomach churn with a smile and a shrug.

Stefan is a pirate. The handsomest pirate on all of Caen, if you were to believe his own, humble opinion. A swordsman without equal, a sailor beyond compare. A warcaster so powerful Phinneus Shae himself kicked him, and his ‘jack Lugnut, off his boat because he felt threatened. And a heavy drinker. I can only confirm one of those things to be true. I can also confirm one of them to be completely false, but a reputation is a good thing to have.

And finally Clara. The newest member of the Right Honourable Men of Merin. A fresh-faced recent graduate of The Royal Cygnaran University and the daughter of a dear friend. She’s got a clever head on her shoulders, and I think she has a bright future ahead of her, so long as she can put some steel in her stomach. A smuggling run should be a good way for her to find her feet.

So here we are in Korsk. The others are off introducing Clara to the concept of the mischief quota. The quota is the means by which we maintain our public reputation as typical Ordic mercenaries. They’re off breaking stools over backs while I sit here facing Barshai, a notorious Kayazy high up, and a man who is clearly insane. Sometimes I find myself longing for the old days. Slogging through mud in the drab green the Ordic army, barely two coins to rub together. Getting drunk and swinging an axe and being a hero. Using the stripes on my shoulder to convince red-faced girls I was worth lifting their skirts for.

Sometimes, but not often. For all the complications, this gig is usually worth having to deal with even the craziest of crime-bosses. And this one definitely is crazy. I mean, listen to the words coming out of his mouth. ‘Transport Sechenka into Cygnar’, ‘Rendezvous with mechanik there’, and ‘He will perform the necessary procedures.’

Now don’t get me wrong, smuggling someone into Cygnar is nothing special. I could do it in my sleep. Shit, I could ask Stefan to do it in his sleep and it would still be done, though there’d likely be a few more empty bottles along the way. No, this job gets interesting when you get into the details. See, Sechenka is a warjack. Juggernaut chassis. The mechanik in question is going to be fitting her with a new, top-of-the-line cortex.

Even now you think, ‘hey, this isn’t so bad’. It’s smuggling, this is our bread-and-butter. Even something as big and as politically dangerous as a Juggernaut chassis warjack shouldn’t present too many problems. Not after the right palms have been lined with the right coins and the proper amount of care is taken.

But you have to keep asking questions, finding details. When you have a group of people whose lives are depending on your ability to make judgement calls, you have to keep asking.

Sechenka is Barshai’s dead ‘daughter’. He, and Aksana, her still-living warcaster sister, seem to believe that this ‘jack contains Sechenka’s spirit. So they’re insane, clearly, but they’re rich. The deal is that Aksana comes with us, to oversee the successful completion of the job. Well, fine, that’s nothing too unusual either. The tight leather, icy demeanour and the intimidating effect they create might be an issue. Last thing I need is tension boiling over. But so long as she keeps the coin flowing when needed and doesn’t interfere with how I lead my people it should be fine.

So… Smuggling a Khadoran warjack belonging to a known criminal over national borders during a period of officially agreed cease fire, while being accompanied by the aforementioned criminal’s personal assassin. Add to this the ever-present complications of going back into Ord, where we’re not officially welcome any more, even if it is just The Fingers, and this job adds up to more than just some simple smuggling run.

Jannyth, what in Morrow’s name have you gotten yourself into?
If you’re not asking yourself the question, you’re doing it wrong.

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2 thoughts on “Musings of a Mercenary. Part 1 – The Question.

  1. Very interesting! I remember Anthony writing about that warjack/warcaster combo in one of his earlier articles, sounds fun!

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