Arc 1: This is Nuts! Plot in Ora | World Anvil
BUILD YOUR OWN WORLD Like what you see? Become the Master of your own Universe!

Remove these ads. Join the Worldbuilders Guild

Arc 1: This is Nuts!

Your adventure begins in the Sea Harbor of Saltor, a bustling hub for sailors of all origins and many professions. Over you, the Tower-District shoots hundreds of meters into the air, and you can see the numerous bridges and tunnels connecting the tower in various levels of comfort and safety. As you take in this daybreak's view, a fresh, salty breeze tingles your noses, and you can hear the first captains and crews shouting greetings and orders to each other.
After a few minutes of orientation in this lively and colorful space, you (Arvo) feel something tug on your backpack.

Plot points/Scenes

Prequel: The Monkey Chase

As The Adventuring Party collects themselves and are looking for work, Arvo has an item of theirs stolen from their backpack - a little arcane tracker of their own making. The thief is none other than the little Squirrel Monkey Littleman, who has no ill intentions and just likes to hold shiny things. As Arvo notices his lost item, he and the party are likely to follow or stop the thief, who would start running through the crowd until he finds his owner on his large fishing boat.  

Introduction: The Captain and his Boat

Meanwhile, Littleman's owner, the Captain Andreas Bearclaws - a burly human man in his early 60s -, is searching for some additional muscle for a contracted mission by Erika Rosenhand: He is supposed to gather 10 pounds of Nanut from the Western cliffs of Berset. While his boat Alima can take the trip without issue, the cliffs themselves are dangerous territory no matter what.    As Andreas sees the party chase after Littleman - or finds Littleman in their clutches - he notices their travel attire and lack of orientation, excuses himself for Littleman's behavior, and offers them a dayjob as his crew. He promises a place to stay as well as food and drink for at least a week after the job is done, as well as a share of Erika's payment, which comes in the form of minor alchemical tinctures.   Once Alima and her crew are out on the sea, the party has an opportunity to get to know the rest of Bearclaws' crew. Most of them are sailors by trade and work for Bearclaws on a day-job basis. The notable exception is his partner and first mate Maged - a human man of similar age but less muscle than Andreas. Including the party, there is a total of 12 crew on the boat.  

Challenge: The Harvest of Fruit

Once the boat has reached the Western cliffside of Berset and the Nanut-vines come into view, the boat anchors down roughly 50 meters from shore - too dangerous and unpredictable are the waves against a cliff face for the entire boat to get near it. While most of the crew is tasked with keeping the boat in place as best as possible, the party is shown a chest full of rope and a wooden dinghy that they are free to do with as they choose, as long as they gather 10 pound of ripe Nanuts - the ones that are only core and no flesh - and bring them savely to Alima.   The cliff side - an 80 meters high piece of rock protruding straight from the waves - is already an imposing sight. And they become even more unsettling once the party has found the individual Nanuts: The apricot-sized fruits are barely visible from Alima's safe distance. That said, the party's first challenge will be to find a reliable way of acquiring the Nanut necessary, without rocking against the cliff face. If they get too close, they might cause their dinghy - and eventually themselves - to slowly get smashed into pieces.  

Klimax: A Challenger Approaches

As the party is returning to Alima, they will notice that they are not the only ones interested in the Nanut's sweet nectar: A swarm of seagulls is trying to steal their prescious fruit, and they must stop them before they reach the nuts. Each individual seagull is easily dispatched, but these are many, and with each passing second they steal another nanut.   The seagulls can be intimidated or persuaded to leave by any number of magical and mundane means; the challenge is to do so quickly. Alternatively, the party might want to cover up their stockpile, which if succesful would also cause the seagulls to eventually give up on their thievery. They might also try to just reach Alima as quickly as possible before losing too many Nanuts, in which case they will most likely return to the cliff and grab some extra Nanuts - unless they grabbed some extra to begin with.   Once the Nanuts are savely stored within Alima's storage, the crew makes their way back to Saltor without  

Resolution: The Payment

Once Alima is back on shore and the crew splits back up - collecting their various agreed-upon pieces of payment - the party is given the guest-chamber within Alima's underdeck as a resting place for the next couple of days. Andreas and Maged prove to be decent hosts, although their cooking skills and palette leaves room for improvement. A night passes, before the party is asked to accompany them to Erika Rosenhand's laboratory in the University District of Saltor.   Erika herself is a surprisingly kind and open-minded individual considering her status. She accepts the Nanuts, and pays for them in the form of multiple healing salves and Edible Breath. The party would be given four of each as part of their contract, but can decide to get more of one than the other at an exchange rate of 1:1.   Once the payment is done, Erika observes the party leaving...
Andreas Bearclaws by Kelban, made with Heroforge
Plot type
Story Arc
Related Locations

Alternative Paths

The party might not follow the plot hooks laid out for them, or might try to circumvent some of the challenges. These are some options for me as the game master:  

Monkey Chase

If the party wants to dispatch of the monkey violently, gently remind them that they are in a lively and crowded area, and an attack on a seemingly innocent monkey could draw a lot of negative attention. If they insist to do so anyway, facing the consequences of that decision would be an entirely different story arc...  

The Captain and his Boat

The party might decide to not agree to the captain's terms. If they try to haggle, Andreas will give in quickly: He has been looking for additional crew for three days, and the rest of his crew is getting on his nerves. If the party's demands are higher than the captain can meet, they will have to find someone else to work for. Make finding work with better conditions - or in other words: highly illegal work - a quest on its own.  

The Challengers

The party might find ways to circumvent approaching the Nanuts via dinghy, and thus prevent the seagulls from taking their stockpile. In that case, the seagulls will try to attack the boat directly, where the party has help from 8 more able-bodied crew and the seagulls will be frightened off within splitseconds.
I might have a job for them later. But not yet.
— Erika Rosenhand

Remove these ads. Join the Worldbuilders Guild

Cover image: Default Header Ora by Kelban


Please Login in order to comment!
7 Dec, 2021 12:26

Quite a good sheet to guide a DM session. Detailed, Leaving spaces for party tomfoolery and in general well written. ^^

Creator, artist and writer of the science fantasy world Kingsmaker.   Check out my Summercamp page.~
7 Dec, 2021 17:41

Thank you so much! ^^

10 Jan, 2022 13:42

Hi,   nice idea. Are there additional hurdles like apes up there throwing with stuff? Snakes hidden in the trees? Loose rocks in the wall with scorpions behind them?  

  • "Once the Nanuts are savely stored within Alima's storage, the crew makes their way back to Saltor without" ... looks like there is part of the sentence missing.
  • maybe it's just me, but I do not understand the part "but can decide to get more of one than the other at an exchange rate of 1:1"