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d20 Modern Adventures 01/13/2004

By Stan!

Sages and philosophers often note that the end of any endeavor is simultaneously the beginning of another. How fitting, then, that the word "resolution" can refer to both endings and beginnings. Some use this word to talk about the conclusion of a period of time, such as the end of a calendar year. Others use it to discuss plans for what lies ahead, such as the personal goals people often set for themselves at the start of a new year.

This principle of duality is starkly evident in any court of law. A hearing or trial is the conclusion of a particular series of events, and the verdict determines whether closure has been achieved or renewed reflection is necessary. At the same time, the trial is the beginning of the defendant's new life as a convicted felon or a free person.

Resolutions, the final adventure in Stan!'s continuing Heartless campaign for the d20 Modern Roleplaying Game, puts the heroes in a courtroom for the trial of Audrey Petersen, who stands accused of complicity in several homicides and crimes resulting in millions of dollars of property damage. But will they have the resolution to ensure that justice is served? This adventure is designed for 13th-level characters.

Preview the Adventure

Nicholas St. Andrew, the charismatic leader of the Children of Chaos cult, is dead. But Audrey Petersen, suspected of being his accomplice in a string of murders and mayhem, is very much alive and on trial for her crimes.

Because Audrey is a wealthy socialite who counts many reporters, local politicians, and even members of Department-7 among her friends, dozens of people have been talking to the press on her behalf. All these prominent citizens have said that they are willing to appear as character witnesses for her, and some have even been obliquely criticizing the work the authorities did in arresting her.

Many legitimate reporters are already calling Audrey's trial "the trial of the year," and some of the more hyperbolic tabloids have referred to it as "the trial of the decade" or even "of the new century." In the days leading up to the trial, key witnesses must deal with reporters calling them at all hours of the night and day, camping outside their homes, and trying desperately to get a photo or quote to sell to their editors.

Was Audrey really St. Andrew's willing accomplice -- a power-mad, remorseless killer with no social conscience? Or was she yet another of his brainwashed dupes? Only Audrey knows for sure. But whatever happens, she intends to walk out of the courtroom a free woman - no matter what it takes.

About the Author

Stan! has been publishing fiction, cartoons, and games professionally since 1982. He has served as a graphic designer and line editor for West End Games, an editor and designer for TSR, Inc., and an author, senior designer, and creative director for Wizards of the Coast, Inc. Stan! is currently the Creative Vice President for The Game Mechanics, Inc. His recent projects include the d20 Modern Menace Manual for Wizards of the Coast plus Modern Magic, volume 1 for The Game Mechanics. In what he laughingly refers to as his spare time, Stan! writes and illustrates the Bolt & Quiver and Table Talk comic strips.

Stan! lives in Renton, WA, where he eats nothing but meat and cheese. Visit him online.

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