Centicles' Legion

The Legion of Centicles Part III
Centicles' Legion at 20th Level

Bree Gallagher the Leprechaun Witch, Cosma the Athasian Half-Giant Sorceress, Qhari-dej the Thri-kreen Ninja, Ranathen the Greyhawkian Half-Giant Savage Bard, and Veit Torunn the Dwarven Transmuter return from acting on Centicles’ behalf in their home regions on Winter Solstice Eve to discover that the usual bussle of activity at the Legion’s Headquarters is missing. When they go to report to Jul they quickly realize that an illusion of his receiving a report from a legionaire covers up severe burn damage throughout the room. When they go to the barn where they return their sleighs and reindeer, they discover that the place is a trap, with animated snowmen lying in ambush.

Fearing the worst, the legionaires head to the living quarters to see if anyone is there. They discover ambush after ambush from ice knights. Finally, they make their way up to the second story living quarters of Centicles himself, only to find someone else sitting in the chair by the fireplace. Calling himself Abominable, their oldtime foe Lord Snough brags that once he has finished crushing Centicles and his legion, no one will be able to stop him from ruling the world. A quick scry on Centicles reveals that he is busy fighting for his life against a collossal snowman with his team of nine reindeer.

The legionaires defeat Abominable despite his vast array of psionic powers, but lose Veit in the process. Centicles returns home, and the few remaining legionaires begin the long process of clean up, thankful to the gods for their survival.


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Transcript of Public Pardon
as prepared by Solas Kiev

Thank you for coming, my fellow citizens. As you know, two days ago Master Centicles mysteriously escaped our jail facilities and broke into every household of the world yet again on the night before the Winter Solstice. It is obvious that this town alone cannot contain the mystical might of such an elemental…dare we say?...near-deific creature. So, as you all know, the town council spent all day yesterday debating what to do in regards to this…Man?...especially in regards to future Winter’s Eve visits.

It was not an easy decision to make. Yet, I will have you know that the decision was reached unanimously. We took into account that, despite what he did for other villages, at least in this town he chose to err on the side of right. He may have broken into our homes as he has done on so many previous years, but this time he showed his wisdom and compassion. He gave the whole village gifts, and yet he gave the whole village coal. (Lord Snough gestures behind him.) And we will take this new lesson, this gift of fairness and good intentions, and make it a monument. This tree will stand in the square forevermore to remind us all that we all deserve toys, yet all deserve coal.

No one of us is better than the rest. No one of us is good, yet the other evil. What one villager might consider evil, his neighbor might consider good. It is not up to us, or this…Person?...known as Centicles to judge one another. And so, with this lesson in mind, we the town council grant Master Centicles a full and complete pardon for all his crimes, past and present. And we hope that this spirit of good will will continue for future generations. I for one am certain that he will remember his short time in prison and remember the lessons he learned, and which he then shared with us all. Thank you.


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Ranathen Missletoe's mission report to Centicles

To: The Most Honourable Centicles, He-Who-Is-Many-and-More, Master of the Legion

From: Ranathen Missletoe, most humble bard errant and proud Legionnaire (related by headquarters clerk, as I cannot write!)

This will be my record of events of the Solstice. I do not claim to speak for my missionmates, but forgive the odd aggrandizement, for such is the habit of those in my sometime profession to take tales and make them grander.

I am a simple man. I came to your Legion from the wastes and a people steeped in savagery, but I am wholly devoted to the Cause and great mission you have set forth.

In our latest mission, I took it upon myself to disobey convention and refused to distribute coal to the children of Snough Village. I did willfully and intentionally pressure my comrades to do the same, with the result that even the most naughty of naughties in Snough Village (namely the eponymous Lord Snough) received a Gift instead of coal. This is fact.

The reason I did this was twofold: One, Lord Snough’s enmity toward you and our organization as a whole stems from a large collection of coal lumps, and events have escalated in an alarming fashion from his childhood to dominate the lives of the people of Snough Village. Second, I believe drastic measures (ie, a miracle) were necessary to bring a resolution to the evil that has befallen that benighted village.

I do not make apologies for my actions but beg forgiveness all the same. My fate as a humble Legionnaire is, as ever, in your noble hands.

Sincerely,

RANATHEN MISSLETOE, THE NOT-SO-LITTLE DRUMMER BOY


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The Legion of Centicles Part II
Centicles' Legion at 12th Level

Jul assembled four experienced legionaires in the briefing room for a special mission: Bree Gallagher the Leprechaun Witch, Cosma the Athasian Half-Giant Sorceress, Ranathen the Greyhawkian Half-Giant Savage Bard, and Veit Torunn the Dwarven Transmuter. Their mission was simple: rescue their fellow legionaire, Sam the Human Wizard of Snough Town, and complete his Winter Solstice mission.

In the ten years since the team had last seen the community, Snough Village had grown into Snough Town. More houses had been added to the outskirts of the town, the constabulary had expanded both outward and upward, and the town square’s tree had grown taller and its branches wider. New costumes decorated the town’s snowmen, honoring a new set of village members.

Perhaps the strangest change was that this year Sam, in his guise as Centicles, was arrested in the general store while a child on his lap was making gift requests. While it was obviously demoralizing for the townspeople when “Centicles” was charged with breaking and entering, invasion of privacy, and libel, it was worse when the sentence was announced to be a public execution at the moment of the Winter Solstice.

So the four legionaires decided split up and do some investigation the day before. Mr. Travers, owner of the general store, confirmed the information they had. He also admitted to joining the town council since last they met, and that it was Lord Snough of Snough Manor who had insisted that the council issue a warrant out for Centicles’ arrest.

Meanwhile, some of their number also visited the constabulary. The cell where Veit had spent 18 months over eight years before was now being used as storage. The some of the legionaires managed to get a tour of the facilities, discovering that Sam was being held in a second story cell atop an armoury which had been added in the years since they had last visited. Outside his cell were two ice statues of plate armored soldiers weilding a greatsword held high over its head ready to strike. The room radiated a cold which seemed to keep the carved ice from melting despite the warmth of the partially cloudy day outside.

Finally, they also visited Snough Manor on the hillside overlooking the town. Ice statues similar to those outside Sam’s cell guarded the courtyard, while another moved on its own to open the portcullis for the savage’s arrival. Inside he was greeted by the young Master Snough, who introduced himself as the new Lord of Snough Manor. Doctor Snough, for he was now the town’s most learned man, was happy to discuss the current situation. He related the case of his childhood, where every year he was given a lump of coal while children in the village often receieved gifts. In the main hall of the manor was a display case, where each lump of coal was mounted on a plaque indicating the age at which he had earned it. Only a few were missing, never recovered from the attacks he had made ten years before. Due to the perceived unfairness of it all, he had secured a position on the town council in order to make Centicles pay for the years of shame. They were unable to convince the lord to free “Centicles.” In fact, the doctor even hinted at working on the construction of a colossal snowman, capable of conquering neighboring villages in the province.

Regrouping, the legionaires departed town having decided to wait for nightfall before continuing. Discussing the situation, they made the choice to give gifts to all households and give coal to none. This, they hoped, would appease the Doctor Snough. While some of the legionaires were going to deliver the gifts to the town, others were going to deliver gifts to Snough Manor, and still others were going to free Sam from the prison. They fully expected that the snowmen in the town square as well as the ice sculptures outside Sam’s cell would be animated against them.

They had few awake townsfolk to deal with, and made their way from the inn on the outside of town toward the town square, delivering gifts to everyone. The trip to Snough Manaor was as lucky, leaving Snough’s unearned gifts in the courtyard—surrounded by ice sculptures which never moved. Meanwhile, the attempt to free Sam did not go as well. The snowmen kept some of the legionaires busy, until a well placed ice wall was set up to protect the local buildings from the fire used to melt the snowmen.

The ice sculptures did indeed attempt to keep Sam hostage. They were tough, tougher than any single legionaire could handle. As the others completed their missions of gift giving, they made their way toward the constabulary. Eventually, they found it easier to sneak him out using passwall than to try to go through the ice sculptures.


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The Legion of Centicles Part I
Centicles' Legion at 04th Level

Jul assembled four young legionaires in the briefing room for a special mission: Bree Gallagher the Leprechaun Witch, Cosma the Athasian Half-Giant Sorceress, Ranathen the Greyhawkian Half-Giant Savage Bard, and Veit Torunn the Dwarven Transmuter. Their mission was simple: outfit themselves as Centicles’ helpers and assist their fellow legionaire, Sam the Human Wizard of Snough Village.

In the days previous to the mission, while Sam was playing the part of Centicles for patrons of the village’s general store, good little boys and girls were being pelted by snowballs filled with charcoal. While none of the missiles were lethal, it was causing parents to be hesitant in taking their children to see Centicles. Sam had not been able to be in two places at once, so someone was needed to be his eyes and ears while he was in the store.

The four youths were eagar for the challenge, and spurned the offer of additional gear from the legion’s quartermaster. Taking nought but their own personal gear and their costumes as Centicles’ aides, they met with Sam and the general store owner, Mr. Travers, before the store opened. After becoming familiar with the lay of the store and surrounding area, they chose to split up. Two would stay at the general store while two others would wander the town asking questions.

The small village offered little in the way of clues. The general store was on one end of the town square. Opposite it was the town tailor. Adjacent to it was the constabulary and diagonal from it the town observatory and watchtower. After the general store and tailor shop were residences. In the center of the square was a large deciduous tree and several snowmen, all dressed in human clothing.

The town guardsman was very welcoming, if not bright. He offered the legionaires some bitter gruel for breakfast while he readied himself for work. When they noted that one of the snowmen looked like him, he was the one who explained the town tradition of modeling the village square snowmen after residents. It was an honor to be picked for this year, and he was proud.

The tailor was also honored, when they noted that he too was dressed similar to one of the snowmen in the square. He was new to the village, and so he appreciated the honor bestowed on him.

While awaiting customers at the general store, some of the legionaires talked with Mr. Travers. He was the one who informed them that this was the first year that Master Snough of Snough Hall had crafted the snowmen, an honor which the Snough family hadn’t granted the village in a long time, despite the 400 years of unbroken tradition.

Eventually a family did come to visit the general store. After the parents finished shopping and the child sat on Sam’s lap to tell him what he wanted for Winter Solstice, they left. The legionaires had positioned themselves so as to try to catch anyone throwing snowballs, but the child was still hit. As the snowball came from the direction of the village square, they checked the tailor’s shop, his upstairs apartment, and his building’s roof for clues. Scrambling around the rest of the village square they found nothing. So they awaited another family.

Another family did come. The father traded goods with Mr. Travers, the wife picked up some goods, and the children gave their requests to “Centicles.” The legionaires once again were determined to catch the culprit, and this time when one of the children was hit upon exiting the store, they swarmed the village square.

Eventually Veit wrestled a teenage male to the ground. When he escaped Veit’s grasp, the others surrounded him. He wasn’t very cooperative, amazed that the legionaires didn’t know who he was (the same Master Snough who had created this year’s snowmen). Eventually he animated the snowmen in the village square to attack the legionaires. The young heir was subdued when Veit stabbed him in the gut with a dagger. Astounded that they would go to such lengths to stop him, he called off the snowmen and promised to no longer torment the good childen of the village. Viet was arrested and served 18 months in the village’s jail.


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Campaign Introduction
Welcome to Centicles' Legion

Every child in the world knows that they are judged every Winter Solstice for their deeds of the past year. The elderly human Centicles then sneaks into their houses to fill their stockings with either coal for the wicked or gifts for the good. That is why between the time of the Third Harvest and the Winter Solstice children the world over go to their local general store to sit on Centicles’ lap to tell him of their good deeds and of the gifts they wish for in exchange.

How does this intercessor of the gods complete such a mighty task? Centicles is legion. His hand-picked surrogates are trained, out-fitted with disguises, and sent to every general store in the world to act as he would: to be his eyes, ears, and mouth to the children of the world. They send their reports back to him, help manage the fey factories, and fill their suppliants’ stockings during the night before the Winter Solstice.

However, there are those who despise the good will of the season. Every child knows the tales of such villains as Grintch, Jaquephrost, and Skrouge. What they don’t know is that when such villains try to interfere with the work of Centicles, he sends out his best agents to neutralize these threats.


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