When I see D&D Stories, the stories usually involve tales of wonder or sorrow. To me, the story can usually be akin to a badass character/party who pulled off an enormous feat that would be nearly impossible otherwise. The story can be about the memorable roleplaying of a character and how it left an impact on that party, be it for better or for worse. The story can be about a campaign where the loss of a character pulled on the heartstrings of everyone around them, or about a person who was dealt a bad hand in their party, or, the stories I find get the most praise, are those where a character, a party, or a DM is screwed and laughed at, and, whether it is through an elaborate plan or sheer luck, they end up on top, justice is served, and those who were screwed are given vengence.
This story is not very similar to any of them. Roughly years ago, I played my first campaign- Dark Heresy, a Warhammer game- with a mutual friend and two others I came to respect. Firstly, I know the name of the site is “All Things DND”, so I’m sorry to say this is a Warhammer story. However, in my opinion, an RPG is an RPG, but I’ll try to explain things as best I can. My mutual friend at the time, Geoff, asked if I could play as we were at one of the after-clubs in my high school. I was given a week to come up with my character. For Dark Heresy, all characters are either human or xenos (alien), but all the characters in this story are human. Additionally, exp doesn’t just show how long you have to another class- it can be used to buy traits, stat boosts, and skill boosts. While they do level you up when you get to a certain point, this addition is noteworthy for this story for one reason- with the first 400 exp I got, I spent it on a trait called Fate Eater. Fate Eater was a random effect whenever I killed a character with a name- a boss, mini boss, NPC, etc. It could give stat boosts, mutations, additional backgrounds, and other things.
Another thing- the classes here are very similar to DND classes, but some have subclasses depending on your background. For example, you could be a cleric from a certain planet, ans depending on your requirements, you could become a similar, but entirely different, class. This comes up because I am a scum from the Forge Worlds, which only gives me one subclass- Lathemaster. My character, originally intended to be a sneaky rogue-like character, became a strong, tough, fairly grizzled blacksmith of sorts- making weapons and armor, upgrading and selling them, trading, and, for his starting equipment, a metal arm. I called him Rivawa (Ree-vah-wah) Scorns.
The other players were my mutual friend, a psyker (just think Wiz/Sor for the time being) whose name I forget, and Matt, an assassin (more a ranged fighter over the rogue subclass) named Wilma Fingerdo. We were in High School, whatever whatever. The DM, Brian, was a fairly good DM and told very good stories with very good actions. The first mission we had involved essentially a heist of alien tech, which we had to infiltrate and grab the stuff before the place was raided by the Imperium, which we were all members of. Matt goes into overwatch, I, still trying to be sneaky, use a mini blowtorch in my inventory to get into the vault and grab as much shot as I can, while the mutual friend tries to take out the guards. I came to learn that Psykers became useless people with psychic powers from this moment alone. He tried to summon his dagger, failed, summoned a mini hurricane and passed out. Matt, seeing all of this, took the shot at the guard with an explosive round. The guard’s head burst like a watermelon and, flying around in that room, was burinf bits of brain matter. Fortunately, this brain matter didn’t come into contact with our mutual friend or the explosive barrels also in the room. Meanwhile, I grabbed the stuff and was about to high-tail it into the woods for safety when the Imperium showed up. I raises my hands, said I was in the Imperium, got shot, and knocked unconscious. And that was the first mission.
There are a few more stories I could tell, but they don’t relate to the main stoey as much. Only one piece of info needs to be told- during this huge campaign that took a few IRL months for the PCs, Fate Eater worked its magic twice and one of these was an additional background, which made my character the son of a wealthy family. As Prince Rivawa Scorns was born, my roleplaying skills were increasing as well. School was ending, however, so we went to our local gaming shop- The Portal- to play our game in their back room. The plan was to play through the summer and move in to the next school year. I also played football so I would have to leave some sessions early, but for the most part, we played fairly regularly two days a week.
One day, our mutual friend broke the news that he would be DMing the next campaign. This scared me because for months, as we walked home, he brought up the idea of using one of the books he had, which was compatable with Dark Heresy, and turning us into maids for this wealthy bastard. However, the campaign began and it wasn’t that at all. Instead, he simply told us all to put our inventory on a piece of paper and give it to him for safekeeping. We were starting out with rags, nothing more. Additionally, Brian became a Tech Priest (think an Artificer) and joined Matt and I in the fray.
A few sessions came and went and we had gotten our best armor yet, along each of us getting unique weapons for us to use. However, the most important thing- a new player came to that session. I remember walking into the back room and seeing an unfamiliar, yet gorgeous face. A face I believed, at the time, was too good for a place like that. She was the mutual friend’s ex, but they were still on good terms. I began to talk to her and discovered this was her first RPG as well, and that she was excited for it. She, like us, was a nerd and we welcomed her with open arms. She was playing a Cleric (healing, yeah) named Lady. She didn’t name it (it was named after her dog), but mutual friend did. When she was dropped in, our PCs were in the middle of a fight, and out of the corner of our eye, her character- NAKED- was ducking behind cover and dodging bullets. We at least were spawned in with rags- not much but they’re still clothes. I felt bad for her, and I made a move to protect her character, bringing her up to our level. I used Rivawa’s affluence to get her the same type lf armor we had, as well as a decent weapon she could use while not healing us.
A few sessions came and went with some story happening, whatever whatever. Nothing important happened until the last session of this campaign. She came in a little late and the only available spot was next to me, which she took. Mutual friend was making fun of her, on top of, to me, not being fair to her character from across the table. I wanted to make things better and give her a good session, and I told mutual friend to shut up so we could start back up. We were opening back up into a little investigation spot, wanderinf the city of the planet we were on as its final days were coming. Suddenly, Rivawa bumped into someone who recognized him- a daughter of one of his family’s rivals, the Patrious House, who began to badger him, as they would. I blew it off in character with an insult or two and we continued about our adventure, which found us at a party celebrating this end-of-days.
My immediate move is towards the bar to offer Lady a drink, which she politely declined. However, even if she didn’t want one, I still wanted to show off in-character, so I ordered the strongest drink they had, knowing my character had a trait that would prevent my character from getting drunk. Mutual friend says he pulls out this 20,000 year old aged moonshine, still asked me to roll, and I rolled fairly well, no poisining or blindness for me. However, that’s when the barkeep said, “that’ll be 10 billion.” We didn’t have anywhere near 1,000, much less 10 billion. However, Rivawa, ever cooly, says to “put it on the tab of the Patrious House.” Everyone at the table was smiling and laughing, including her- which was what mattered most to me.
Later, there was a fight encountering robots, where she killed one of them, and I, as a response, gave her a quick hug. The session ended mid-fight because I had to go to football. A week later, I had a vacation, so no one else showed up. It turns out that it was the last session we ever had playing Dark Heresy, and the last moments of Rivawa and Lady were sharing drinks at a bar, conning a rich rival family, and fighting those that wished to stop them. Together. A few weeks passed, and I doubted I would ever see her again. Until….
About a month and a half after the last session, I came home distraught. Practice was awful and the coaches yelled at me. I was yelled at by my father for not doing the work around the house. I was upset, angry, and wanted to break down. It could’ve been the worst day of my life. That’s when I got a text from an unknown ID. It was from the girl. She had gone through our mutual friend to get my phone number and we began to talk. I learned how she actually liked me. Thought I was funny, good at the role playing, attractive, and wanted to get to know me more. We talked deep into the night and the more I talked with her, the more I fell in love with her.
Two months after that, we went on our first date, and I made such an impression on her father that, from what she said, he couldn’t do anything except talk about how polite I was the whole car-ride home. Two months after that, we were officially dating. Things became steady after that- we dated for two and a half more years and then I thought it right to propose to her. She said yes, and I gave her the ring at the same place where we first met- at the Portal.
We haven’t played an RPG since that last session, but while we are still looking for a campaign for us to be a part of, to us, the story of Rivawa and Lady hasn’t ended yet. We still reminisce to those first days of us meeting each other- our first meeting, our fights, me taking care of her and trying to be fair to her character, and that last session. To us, since Rivawa and Lady never died, they are still alive- living off the Scorns Family riches, somewhere nice, where no harm can come between them and their love. Like us.