14th March 2020
It's a Saturday night and we're at Matakishi's for some RPG goodness.
Tonight, we will be continuing with the 'Clockwork & Chivalry' campaign 'Kingdom & Commonwealth'.
Due to the ongoing threat of the Covid-19 virus, this would be the last time we met up in person for a while.
Anyway! On to the game.
Several months had passed since our last meeting with Sir Reginald.
We had received an invitation to Oxford to meet with Sir Reginald and a 'Henry Ireton'.
Oxford was heavily guarded and a Royalist town. Luckily, we had been furnished with the required papers to enter the city.
So we found ourselves at a pub charmingly named 'The Splattered Receptacle'. It was a fairly busy place. We noticed a band of armed men here - possibly soldiers? The were also some 'rowdy rural types' and 'subdued students'.
We were taken upstairs for our meeting with the two men. We were surprised to find that they had been accompanied by a lady?
Henry Ireton introduced himself and explained that he was taking a great risk coming here. Even though the wintry weather we had endured in our previous endeavour had long faded away, the atmosphere in the room had become decidedly frosty.
Ireton explained that both Sir Reginald and he were strongly anti-war and wanted to prevent this situation from getting worse.
Sir Reginald then asked all of us to take an oath, we agreed and did so. Then Henry Ireton introduced us to the lady.
'Hilaria Edgecombe' was her name. Hilaria explained had served as a 'lady-in-waiting' to a 'Lady Elizabeth Hopton'.
Three years ago, Lady Hopton had been in the town of 'Penwith' whilst travelling Cornwall. Hilaria told that Lady Hopton had been cursed by a witch. A witch called 'Magi Friggi'. Lady Hopton had spent some time wasting away until she died.
Hilaria showed us a 'Poppit'? Something made and used by witches.
Ireton then went on to explain that he suspected that something was spreading from Cornwall. Ireton believes it is magic of some sort - but not alchemy.
Ireton wants use to investigate.
Finally, Ireton warns us that Cornwall is held by Royalists and we will need to proceed to carefully.
As the conversation concluded, we heard -and felt- an explosion, the room was blasted and we were thrown to the floor.
We picked ourselves up and assessed the situation, the room was burning and Hilaria was dead!
We looked downstairs, the entire area was littered with bodies and billowing smoke from a fire somewhere. This was no way out, we would choke to death before we could blindly scrabble our way out.
We tried the windows, it looked like a way out. But before we could do anything, we spotted what could only be described as 'a manical woman in a conical hat who cursed us'!
Sir Reginald is abruptly set alight as flames from the fire flicked out and caught him. Fire did not normally behave like this! Something had affected it, magic of some sort?
Ursula used her own witchcraft to counter this 'fire-magic' and we managed to save Sir Reginald.
Then we all managed to escape. Henry Ireton made his farewells and fled Oxford.
We conducted a brief investigation of events and witnesses told us that they saw the farmers burst into flame!
There was little for us go to on here.
Sir Reginald invited us to his home.
It is decided that we must find the root of what is spreading and head to the sea town.
Sir Reginald provided us with a guide to help us in our task, his name is Kit.
Before leaving for Cornwall, we conducted some research on the region.
Cornwall is ruled by three witches, who apparently draw their power from dark sacrificial magic.
Kit told us the whole of Cornwall is under their spell!
The journey to Cornwall took a week. Just before entering Cornwall, we spent the night at an inn called 'The Royal'.
The next day we entered Cornwall, at some point during the day we crossed a bridge guarded by soldiers. The paid us no attention, but they saluted Ursula!
As we travelled through Cornwall, we came across many isolated hamlets and solitary churches.
Late one day we reached a castle, we inquired withing.
It is ruled by a man called 'Hopkins'. He invited us in for a meal.
During the meal Hopkins attempted to have us put into his dungeon. We resisted and a battle ensued. We dispatched Hopkins and dealt with his guards or took them prisoner. A few moments later, more guards charged in and we dealt with them.
We decided to take the initiative and stormed the remaining guards. There numbers had been whittled down, so we managed to clear out the last soldiers. The castle was ours.
We took the time to free the prisoners that Hopkins had incarcerated.
We rested for a couple of days to recuperate and in that time some Royalist guards arrived.
They were surprised to see us here, but they were not unhappy to see that Hopkins was gone.
The leader of the guards was called 'Penrose'. We charged him and his men with guarding our castle in our absence.
We asked Penrose and his men if they anything about the three witches.
The told of three wise-women who were sisters and lived in Penzance.
We decided it would be a good idea to go Penzance and 'speak' with them.
29th February 2020
Not only is it Saturday night at Matakishi's, it's the 29th February - and that doesn't happen too often (OK yes - it happens once every 4 years, but still...).
Regardless of the date, it's time to continue Matakishi's Clockwork & Chivalry campaign.
Location: Hutingdonshire & Cambridgeshire; Cromwellian country!
We have arrived at Cambridge.
Unfortunately, we have to pay to enter the city. Once inside it is easy to find an inn.
Then we set off to the 'East Association'. We found it without any incident or mishap. Then find the fellow 'Crenshaw' and present him with the letter we were asked to deliver.
When the letter is handed over, a furtive look crossed Crenshaw's face and we were quickly ushered out.
This of course, immediately made us suspicious! We decided to clandestinely watch the East Association.
Throughout the day, we watched people come and go, but there was no sign of Crenshaw. In the afternoon a note was delivered by a boy, 'Peter the urchin'.
The note read: 'Meet me at 8pm at the garden behind Claire Hall, near the Old Bridge'.
We asked Peter who gave him the note, but Peter said it was a man and that was all he knew.
We continued watching the East Association.
At five o'clock everyone leaves for church - including Crenshaw.
Services concluded at seven-fifteen. Once again we followed. Crenshaw led us to a roomy looking house. Crenshaw's home?
We still had time, so we raced to meet the mysterious author of the note. When we arrived, we found a group of soldiers gathered round a body. It was 'Harry Spikes', a junior clerk from the East Association.
We realised that it was likely that Harry Spikes was being watched and whoever saw him give the note to Peter was responsible to Harry's death.
Then we realised it was likely that we were being followed too. We may have led them straight to Crenshaw's home.
We raced back to Crenshaw's house to find a figure dressed in black scaling the outside of the building!
Ursula uses her magic to blast the climber who crashes down to the ground.
We unmask the figure and identify her as Catherine Perkinson - daughter if Sir Reginald Perkinson.
We learn that Lady Silver can be found at the Sydney Sussex College, she had been working with someone there.
The next morning we went to the Sydney Sussex College.
When we arrived, we were greeted by a loud and raucous noise.
There was a confrontation underway between the college students and apprentices who were yelling at one another. There was meant to be a talk between the two conflicting groups - but it looked like matters were about to escalate.
As we were watching this confrontation and considering what action to pursue next; when a 'mech-suit' burst through the walls of the college in a shower of rubble.
Within the mech-suit we could see a dead body hanging limply! As the suit lumbered around, we realised that it had been seriously damaged in some way or another. We could see the suit twisting and turning in a most unnatural way possible. It tore the body within apart in the most horrifying and grisly manner imaginable before grinding to a halt.
We pushed our ways through the now screaming crowds and after some effort we reached the gory remains. We saw that still gripped in one bloody hand, was a book!
Without anyone noticing we took it and then later read it. We learnt it was a journal and within, we discovered the following:
The man in the mech-suit had been 'Richard Mincehold'. He had been working with 'Lady Silver', also known as 'Lady Arebella Blackwood'.
Mincehole had been working on a 'clockwork mole drill'! He was having trouble generating the power required to drive such a contraption. Lady Blackwood had suggesting marrying the power of alchemy with the science of clockwork machinery! Mincehole considered this an aberration.
Finally, the journal talked about Mincehole visiting a secret installation operated by Lady Blackwood. It was located at Wandleburg Ring in the Gogmagoghills. When Mincehole was there, he had seen that they were packing up to leave.
In his last entry, Mincehole talks about how much of a threat that Lady Blackwood was...
Richard Mincehole's last entry had been grimly prescient. We had no doubt that Lady Blackwood was responsible for his demise.
Nevertheless, we now knew where the next part of our hunt for Lady Cecilia would lead us - and we had scant time to spare.
Our journey to the Gogmagog hills was without incident and after we some searching we found Wandleburg Ring.
It was a snowy clearing surrounded by trees, with an ancient old hill fort at it's centre. There was also a windmill and a warehouse in the clearing. They both seemed in good working condition. No doubt the windmill was used to 'wind-up' clockwork machines and we saw that the warehouse was guarded by two soldiers. This was the facility that Mincehole had written of.
From our hidden vantage point, we decided to wait and see what happened.
At noon, the two soldiers went into the warehouse. No replacement guards or anyone emerged.
We headed to the warehouse, inside we found it entirely empty - except for a lever? We threw the lever and the floor began to descend!
The floor descended to a gloomy underground cave. There were two here, Ursula used her magic to disable them. Examining our new surroundings, we heard two women arguing close by from one of the tunnels.
We then realised that there were people approaching from that tunnel, it was a woman being marched by two more soldiers. It had to be Lady Cecilia!
We waited for them to enter the cave and took them by surprise. We managed to take the two guards prisoner with no resistance. We had found our quarry - Lady Cecilia.
We were now faced with a decision. Now that we had fulfilled over objective, should we leave with her, or investigate further.
It was decided that we should investigate further and explore the tunnel from which the three had emerged into this cave.
The tunnel led to another cave. As we were arriving we saw Lady Blackwood on the far side. As she hastily fled into yet another tunnel, the ground beneath us split open!
What could only be described as 'mud zombie-things' emerged and menacingly advanced on us.
Between Ursula's magic and the pistols of Abraham and I, we managed to dispatch the ungodly things. (We would later learn that they were resurrected ancient Celtic warriors and this network of caves was a burial site!)
We tried to follow Lady Blackwood, but she had made good her escape. Another time perhaps?
We returned to the mechanical floor and ascended to the surface. Upon exiting the warehouse, we came across Parliamentarian forces advancing on Wandlebury Ring. They were led by Sir Reginald.
We exchanged greetings, Lady Cecilia was returned to her family and we were thanked for our efforts.
It was time for some well earned relaxation. Our task had been completed.
15th February 2020
Saturday night is here and we're at Matakishi's for Saturday night RPGs.
Tonight we will be continuing Clockwork & Chivalry as ran by Matakishi.
Location: Whittlewood Forest.
We left the forest behind.
We journeyed northwards and on to 'Guilesburgh', said to be the last settlement before the 'Tainted Lands' that surround Naseby.
Upon reaching Guilesburgh we entered an establishment charmingly named 'The Strangled Kitten Inn'. The inn is managed by one Theo Bobbs.
As we were relaxing, we couldn't help but notice several 'ladies of the night' around the inn. We learned their 'madame' is named Verity! We chose not to engage in their 'services'.
A little later there was a commotion and half a dozen boisterous Parliamentarians entered the inn. Without any delay they were taken upstairs to make use of the aforementioned 'services'.
Soon an officer entered, no doubt looking for his men. As he is gathering them, we hear a scream! A girl's scream to be precise. A girl comes out on to the landing and claims. "They killed my father, she stole my things.". The girl points at Verity.
Abraham moved to investigate the situation, but was blocked by Carlos the bouncer.
Although we were stymied, we were not deterred and decided to investigate further. We spoke with Theo about the situation and he confided to us that he believes that the girl's father was murdered by one of the prostitutes.
Morning came and we examined the body. The man had been stabbed, from the front no less.
But beyond that we discovered black fibres of cloth under his fingernails. It may well have been that the killer was wearing black - such as a black cloak.
We also saw bloody footprints in the room. They were the footprints of a small person, possibly a woman?
Next, we spoke with the daughter, Christabel aged 12.
We asked her what she knew, her answers were peculiar to say the least. She spoke of being in a dream-like state and of a woman whispering to her father.
This not prove to be of much use.
Our investigation had borne little fruit and best part of the day had been spent, we saw little advantage of taking to the road today and would spend a second evening at The Strangled Kitten.
Evening came and 2 men entered the premises. One announced himself as Justice Cameron and stated he was here to investigate the murder.
A little later the same officer and six soldiers returned. Under order from Justice Cameron, they took verity into custody and left.
We had never been convinced of the guilt of Verity and found this turn of events not to our satisfaction. We decided to follow them.
Outside, Ursula cast a spell of subtle witchcraft upon them, but the Justice realised what occurred and ordered the soldiers to attack.
We drove them off, once again Ursula's magic did the trick! Next we questioned Justice Cameron. He told us that his orders had come from an mysterious individual in black.
This was at least the third time that this person had interfered with us.
Morning came and we embarked on the final leg of our journey to Naseby.
We had decided to take Christabel with us. Her father was dead, we knew nothing of her mother and we refused to leave the child in the care of Verity. We had no doubt the fate that would await the girl if left under the supervision of Verity.
Soon we found ourselves in 'The Tainted Lands'. The full savagery of the civil war had taken it's toll here. The aftermath of magic and alchemy had twisted this place. Seemingly Uninhabited, unsettling and bleak, the plant life was strange and the environment even more so. When it rained, the precipitation fizzled and irritated the skin.
Later we saw people, there were perhaps ten of them. We saw they were deformed. Missing limbs, some even had gills. We could see that they were rotting away. Such was the price this place took from the flesh. Who knows why they were here, but then who knows what would befall them elsewhere.
Taking pity, we gave them whatever food we could spare.
We pressed onwards and late in the day arrived at a settlement called Thurnsby. It looked deserted and ruined, yet another casualty of this war.
It was at this time we began to hear many bestial, wolfish howls, we had no doubt that whatever was voicing that howling was coming straight at us.
A quick assessment of Thurnsby told us that the inn, whilst half ruined would provide us with a defensible room or two.
We retreated into these areas and lit torches, waiting in the dark.
In the dimness of the failing daylight we saw wolves approach.
This was however, not to be our chief threat. We; in our preoccupation with the wolves, had neglected to secure the inn's cellar.
It was from there, in the now darkening day that strange man-like creatures burst forth, surprising us.
Before we could react, they were among us, but we fought back! Abraham and I held our ground in the melee and Ursula blasted them with witchcraft, setting them ablaze.
The fire did for them and had the good fortune of driving the wolves away. At least for now anyway.
Even though it was dark and cold, we made the decision to push on through the night to reach Naseby and leave this dismal and cursed land behind us.
It was past dawn, a pale sun had risen into a dull and wintry sky as we arrived at Naseby.
We were not surprised to find that Naseby looked deserted. Whilst pondering our next move we heard the ringing of church bells.
Making our way to the village church, we found and introduced ourselves to 'Reverend John Possitt', something about the reverend was unsettling. The reverend invited us in for his service. He seemed entirely untroubled by the abandoned village around him, perhaps he was slightly mad. As we spoke to him he seemed to become agitated, we gave him some food and he calmed down.
We proceeded to ask the reverend if he knew anything about Lady Cecilia Perkinson. He told us that Lady Cecilia had been here and during that time a message was delivered by a messenger cloaked in black and wearing a silver mask, the reverend believed the messenger was a woman.
The messenger told Lady Cecilia, that 'she must go and see to her sons'? This was strange, we had been told that her sons were dead?
There was precious little more to be learned from the reverend. We departed and headed north west to the battlefield It was a desolate and depressing sight.
We spied two riders approaching across the bleak, cold landscape. They were young men garbed as dragoon captains. They introduced themselves as Henry and William Perkinson; they were the sons of Sir Reginald and Lady Cecilia!
We were instantly suspicious of them. We looked closely at them and even in the weak sunlight, we saw that they cast no shadows. They could only be ghosts!
The pair of them told us that we must head for 'Clypston'. Then after they were out of our sight for a moment, vanished. We were now alone on the battlefield.
We journeyed on and Solby, another empty settlement. There were however tents here and soldiers - and a captain.
The captain agreed to buy the alchemist's caravan and cogs that we had salvaged and acquired during our journey.
The captain then introduced us to Ashton and Hilary Hewitt.
We spent some time speaking with the Hewitts and eventually the conversation came to the woman in black with a silver mask. As luck would have it, they said that they had been at a dinner she had also attended.
The Hewitts told us she was known as 'Lady Silver' or 'Lady Blackwood' and that she served Prince Rupert.
Before continuing our journey, we are given a note to deliver to a man named 'Crenshaw' who works at The East Association.
With that, we set out for Cambridge.
8th February 2020
Saturday is here and we're at Matakishi's for some role playing goodness.
We are continuing on with the next session of Clockwork & Chivalry.
Location; on the road.
We were continuing our journey when through the cold and the snow. We encountered a Parliamentary baggage train heading towards us.
We gave way and allowed them to pass. As they were doing so, a cannon slipped off it's wagon and crushes a horse.
The Parliamentarians had decided to put the horse down. But Ursula interceded and used her witchcraft to heal the animal.
We continued on and then encountered some soldiers, possibly deserters. They saw us coming and moved to block the road, forcing us to stop.
The soldiers demanded payment to let us pass and we immediately refused. Before they had the chance to threaten us, we threatened them!
It looked like a fight was about to kick off and just before it did, Lord Percy 'Dasher' and his 'Gallopers' rushed on to the scene and attacked the soldiers and slew them all.
After thanking 'Dasher', we pressed on. Later in the day we arrived at the village of Croughton.
Looking around the village we saw that the villagers were being entertained by a 'dancing bear'.
Looking further, we noticed that a pair of thieves plying their trade. Perhaps the bear is more of a distraction than entertainment?
We accosted the two thieves and they tried to flee, the bear handler - realising the act was up also tried to flee. However it seems the bear was not happy with his handler and struck the fleeing man down.
Meanwhile we managed to capture the two others.
Ursula used her 'affinity' to tame the bear, whom we named 'Terrance' and we handed the thieves over to the villagers, who will know how to deal with them.
Next our journey took us to Sizeham.
Before we arrived, we heard screaming from a closeby manor house, the door was open, which was unusual.
There appeared to be a group at the manor, they appeared to be attacking the manor house and menacing the occupants.
We ran to help and drove them off.
We spoke with Lady Louise Rundle, she gave us a letter to give to her husband.
By evening we had reached Sizeham and went into the local inn, pleasantly named 'The Hangman's Paunch' and we booked rooms from the owner Edith Shrewt.
Morning came and we were approached by an elderly man. He warned us that 'Roundheads' intend to burn Althorp manor to the ground and kill the children within.
We realised that we need to get to Althorp manor and quickly! We enlisted the aid of one 'Jed Frame', a woodsman/forester, he led us through Whittlewood Forest and we arrived at Althorp House.
We met with Lady Catherine and spoke with her. She refused to leave the house in the face of an assault.
As we are conversing with her, we hear 4 'mechanical horses' with eight riders arrive, behind them are more soldiers.
Whilst in the house, we heard the soldiers being ordered to kill everyone inside!
Now was not the time to discuss matters with Lady Catherine. We grabbed the Lady and her children and fled for the woods.
Earlier we had spoken with some of the locals and learned that there was a Leveller/Digger camp somewhere in the woods. Luckily for us, Jed Frame knew and led us there.
The inhabitants of the settlement were most unhappy to see us, they feared that soldiers would follow us and head for their camp. This did seem quite likely.
We prepared for the oncoming attack.
When they arrived, we attacked and managed to temporarily drive them back. In the lull we took the opportunity to return to Althorp house. In our flight from the house we were forced to abandon our caravan so now we collected it.
We then agreed to escort Lady Catherine to a place where she could find transport somewhere safe.
We headed out and exited Whittlewood Forest at it's northern perimeter. As we departed, we passed a campsite guarded by 2 Roundheads, no doubt this is the camp of the soldiers who are currently in the forest.
We spoke with the two remaining guards. They tell use that they had been sent here with orders to burn the manor house down. They also told us that they are led by a 'Captain Adam Frame' (Possibly related to Jed Frame?).
We left the camp behind and as we did so, we spotted a black-robbed individual watching us from the edge of the forest.
1st February 2020
February and Saturday have come around again, it's the evening and we're at Matakishi's for RPGing.
The Clockwork & Chivalry campaign kicks off tonight.
Location: Oxford, Christmas Eve, 1645.
It was cold, it was wintry and snow covered everything. This did not deter the crowds from gathering to watch the fireworks display tonight.
Ursula, Abraham and I had found ourselves in 'The Jolly Magpie', the tavern is crowded and filled to capacity.
We were sitting and nursing our drinks when we witnessed a fracas breakout between some Levellers and Royalist.
Being no fan of the Royalists, Abraham stood up and waded in with the intention of aiding the Levellers. The fight was eventually quelled and we were all ejected from the tavern, regardless of our involvement or not.
We had planned to stay in The Jolly Magpie until our meeting with a certain 'Sir Reginald Perkinson', but now we decided to explore the Christmas fair.
We came across a street play, a comedy depicting events from the civil war.
After this we head to the fireworks display to meet with Sir Reginald. Whilst we are watching the display, Sir Reginald invites us to his house tomorrow.
During the latter part of the display we noticed a giant humanoid shape in the bonfire itself - a salamander!
Suddenly we saw a puritan preacher leap forward and break the seal, freeing the salamander.
The salamander escapes and began to flee!
Without delay, Sir Reginald gives us each a 'philosopher's stone' and explains that we must surround the elemental whilst brandishing the stones. When this is done, then Sir Reginald will able to deal with it. Finally, Sir Reginald tells us that he thinks that someone has given the salamander instructions of some kind to go to a particular place.
We tried to anticipate where the salamander was going and took a short cut in order to cut it off. But then; ambush! We're ambushed, our attackers rake us with gunfire and I stopped a shot in the arm and it nearly downs me! We respond and counter-attack, Ursula's witchcraft made short work of most of them and Abraham and I dealt with what remained.
During the altercation we noticed a black hooded stranger watching us, but they disappeared before we could move towards them.
We then continued with our pursuit and managed to surround the elemental and Sir Reginald used his alchemy to banish the creature.
The next day was Christmas Day! We headed to Sir Reginald's home, when we arrived we found that his sister was also present.
Sir Reginald went on to explain why he wanted us here. He explained that he was at the 'Battle of Naseby', it was during this fight that he lost both sons and his wife Cecilia.
Much to his surprise, Sir Reginald discovered that his wife might still live!
Sir Reginald then explained that he wanted us to investigate the supposed disappearance of Cecilia.
He went on to tell us that if she's not at Naseby, then she might be at Cambridge.
Sir Reginald also wanted us to deliver a letter on his behalf. The letter meant for the mother of a dead friend of his! The address is; Althorp House, Whittlewood forest.
The next day we exited Oxford and upon our leaving we were accosted by some town guards. They searched us, complaining about the activities of smugglers. once out of Oxford we headed towards Naseby.
During the morning we spotted a band of horsemen, they were Parliamentarians and they rushed past us along the road?
During the afternoon a fox hunt crossed the road in front of us. Later in the day we encountered the hunt again, the hunt leader had been seriously injured. We decided to stop for the day and see if we could help. Luckily for the huntsman, Ursula's witchcraft proved helpful.
The next day, the hunt leader gifted Abraham a riding horse in thanks.
We continued on with our journey.
The next day we encountered gypsies fleeing Parliamentarians. Later on it began to snow and soon it started to get dark. Ahead we spotted circling crows, it did not bode well and we found a body.
It was the remains of a cavalier, he had been stabbed in the heart through the back. He must have died several days ago, but it was hard to tell in that bitter cold.
We searched his remains and found a ring with the initials 'J.S.'. Abraham took the ring and hoped to return it to a family member. Afterwards we buried the body.
The next day we woke to find that snow had blanketed everything. We set off but the going was slow in the awful conditions.
We had few encounters during this day, the harsh weather kept many people off the road. We did pass a ragged couple however, they stopped us and asked for food & clothing. We helped them as best we could.
Later in the day a mounted Royalist patrol comes up behind us and we are surrounded.
They were led by 'Lord Percy Carsdale' with his 'Gallopers'. Lord Percy introduced himself as 'Dasher'. Then he questioned us about our actions and movements over the last few days. He was searching for a spy and also looking for 'John Seddon'.
The initials on the ring we had taken from the body matched the name John Seddon. So Abraham explained the situation to Dasher and handed over the ring.
After matters with Dashers had been dealt with we continued on.
We soon entered North Hampshire and were drawing closer to Whittlewood forest.
25th January 2020
Saturday gaming continued. Day became night as we headed over to Matakishi's on Saturday for some gaming fun with the 2nd RPG of the day.
We will be playing an RPG called Clockwork & Chivalry. Clockwork & Chivalry uses a rule set called Renaissance. Renaissance is in itself a descendant from the Basic Roleplaying (Or BRP.) RPG published by Chasoium.
In case your wondering: Renaissance is 'skill based' system that uses percentages. Although character stats such as Strength and Intelligence are based on rolling 'd6s' very similar to D&D.
Since this is session zero, we will be generating characters this session. Clockwork & Chivalry utilises a rule that creates bonds between the player characters.
Our 3 heroes are:
Ursula Ramsey: A secretive witch.
Abraham Culpeper: A stalwart soldier.
Arturo Fluke: A hardworking merchant.
Arturo was a son of the affluent Fluke family and Abraham had been adopted by them. One day when the two of them were on the road to High Wycombe, they stumbled upon a lynching of some sort.
They saw that a young woman was in the process of being burnt at the stake! Seeing the injustice, the pair of them took matters into their own hands, drove the mob away and rescued the young woman.
The young woman introduced herself as Ursula. Once Ursula was freed, to the astonishment of Abraham and Arturo, she immediately used witchcraft to heal her burns. Ursula really was a witch!
Concerned for Ursula's welfare, Abraham and Arturo brought her back to the Fluke estate. There Ursula found gainful employment.
Matters were fine for a time, but this did not last. Ursula was witnessed using her witchcraft in the estate and this raised great concerns. Abraham and Arturo had hidden this secret from everybody and they tried to protect Ursula. When it came out that they had lied about her, Arturo was disinherited from the Fluke family.
Arturo had no choice but to leave the estate and make a living off his wits. Ursula, feeling guilty for events was determined to have him reinstated to the Fluke family and chose to accompany him to do so. Abraham, being a long time friend also chose to leave the estate and travel with his companions.
Their journey had bought them to Oxford.
I play, I paint.