First off, there are some Last Sons spoilers that would come up in the first two or three sessions.

Several weeks ago, I started up a Last Sons campaign and one of the characters has had probably the worst 24 hours I’ve ever seen a character experience.

His name was Sam “Red Dog” Reese, and he was a Union deserter turned bounty hunter heading to Deadwood, figuring it was a place that he could escape from the Union Army. Moreover, his commanding officer, Col. Brannon was an Enemy (Major) out hunting him down. As a GM, I put on a huge grin and let him play it.

After being ambushed by Sam Bass (the players captured him and planned to turn him in for a reward), the stagecoach driver got a raise on his Repair roll and finished the repairs in two hours, so I put them a bit ahead of schedule of what the PPC says and they arrived at Deadwood shortly before noon. But in the distance, they spotted an entire sea of blue figures swiftly marching towards Deadwood.

Sam started panicking and decided that the best thing to do was to hide himself in the hotel. So he looked at the map of Deadwood I’d printed out and decided to book a room at the Grand Central Hotel and hid in the room. After a while, he heard a ruckus downstairs and figured he’d check it out. Not only did he see a whole bunch of blue uniforms, but General Custer himself walked into his newly chosen headquarters for his occupation Deadwood. I totally didn’t make that up, the player chose to go to the hotel that The Last Sons said that Custer decided to make his headquarters!

So Sam jumped out the window to avoid being spotted by some people who knew him. At one point though, he did make eye contact with someone in his regiment. He hoped that he wouldn’t report to Col. Brannon.

After meeting with Charlie Bull and laying down for sleep at his house, there was a knock on the door from someone claiming to be an old friend of Sam’s. Charlie Bull told them they hadn’t seen him and turned them away. The posse decided to go out and investigate and got ambushed by a bunch of men from Sam’s old regiment. Colonel Brannon himself wasn’t there. After a midnight duel and a lot of bloodshed in the streets, the posse decided they needed to leave town ASAP before any additional soldiers found Sam.

They went for a few hours into the Black Hills that night and weathered out the storm under a rock crag near some of the pole-men hung up by the Sioux Indians as warnings towards those who violated the mining rules. Sam, unable to sleep, had first watch. During the night he thought that he saw one of the polemen moved. Figuring it wasn’t anything worth waking up his companions for, he went down to investigate. When he got up next to it, the poleman came to life and lashed a rope around his neck before he could scream. He nearly was hanged to death, but with a lucky shot was able to shoot the rope.

The gunshot woke up his Huckster companion, but the third companion (with the Heavy Sleeper Hindrance) was sound asleep. After several rounds of combat against the poleman, it grabbed Sam and attempted to hang him again when one of the players played an adventure card having help from an outside source come to help. So I had a bunch of Union soldiers chasing Sam arrive on the scene.

The Huckster risked firing into melee…and got a Critical Failure, shooting Sam straight in the gut with a raise. Unable to soak his wounds, Sam took three of them and the next round was hanged to death by the pole man. The Union soldiers saw that Sam was dead and headed back to Deadwood to report to Col. Brannon.

But that’s not the end. I fanned out the remaining cards in the action deck and, with just one card to draw, he drew the Joker! So after the party buried poor Sam, he woke up buried alive and discovered that he was a dead man walkin’.

So over the course of 24 hours, Sam, who fled to Deadwood to avoid the Union Army:

  • Arrived at the one city that Custer’s entire force decided to annex on the day it was happening
  • Booked a hotel room at the place Custer decided to use for his headquarters
  • Was spotted by members of his former regiment and had to kill them to keep them from turning him in
  • Had to leave town in the middle of the night during a downpour
  • Got ambushed by a poleman alone
  • Had members of his regiment show up in the middle of his distress
  • Got shotgunned (with a raise) by his commrade
  • Got hanged to death
  • Was buried alive and ultimately became a dead man

I’m sure this will be one of those stories we’ll talk about for years, but man was it a crazy experience! Never have I seen a character have such a horrendous day, all from choices that unwittingly led to trouble!