Jan. 30th, 1626
[[:Cardinal Richelieu]] meets with Kethis, Francois Sansnom, Salvo Volant and Jean-Marie Dieu-Donné. Each is already a member of The Cardinal’s Guards but due to their special talents they have been chosen to be the Cardinal’s personal bodyguard.
He informs them that a special ritual was brought to his attention that will bind them to him in a very special and magical way.
GM NOTE: The ritual is borrowed extensively if not outrightly copied from the ritual found in Dave Dunken’s excelent book “The Guilded Chain”. If you like swashbuckling fantasy mixed with some magic you will be well served.
The ritual involves many formulas and incantations but it is bascially resumed in that the Cardinal (the protectee) stabs each of the candidates (protectors) in the heart with their own blades. This binds them magically and gives the protectors some individual powers.
After a few days settling in the Cardinal dispatches them to Northern France where a village has been writing to him almost daily about a haunted mansion. He tells the group that they are to keep this on the down low. Should it be known that the supernatural does exist and that the Cardinal gives it credance it would not go well for his political and religious career.
The 4 men investigated the house and found it to be a hideout for a local group of smugglers. The smugglers promoted the house’s reputation by lighting lights in the windows at night, making strange noises whenever anyone got close etc.
The group dispatched the local smugglers and explored the rest of the house. In one barricaded room guarded by annimated skeletons was the descicated body of an alchemist. The room was full do dusty tomes and other parafenalia. The men rebarricated the door and placed dire warnings outside to keep the locals away.
In one of the subterranean caverns used by the smugglers they found some of the loot. One strange item of note was and empty coffin with earth in it.
On the return trip to Paris the group stopped at The Golden Apple a stopover inn on the main road back to Paris. There they encountered some of the Royal Musketeers. A fight quickly ensued with the Musketeers being shown the way out in a less than gentlemanly fashion.