Act 2 Plot
During Act 2, the teams followed along as the hero on their quest Westward! As they accomplished tasks, and completed puzzles they unlocked more of the story which was broken across the two days of the event.
|You (The Player) - Coming from a small town in Ohio, you attempt to seek adventure in your life by trekking out to Blue Yonder, Washington, where a new community has been established by the Mountains and Streams Interregional Group. Coming from a family of shopkeepers, most of this wilderness and hard labor is new for you—but you’ve been keen to take to it.|
|US Marshal Daniel Jacobson – The US Marshal whose identity you accidently assume after stealing his horse to get to Blue Yonder. In a town trying to get help taking down Dastardly Davey, you end up in a brawl with Jacobson—him none too happy about you hurting his reputation. After some amount of reconciliation in a jail cell, the two of you decide to team up to take down the ne'er-do-well.|
|Kenneth Reeves (and family) - A father and his kind family that asks your character to join their caravan to the Blue Yonder settlement. After a run in with the notorious Dastardly Davey, Kenneth sustained a broken leg and, with most of their supplies taken or destroyed, he and his family remained at the ranch of a kind couple who took them in after the affair.|
|Dastardly Davey - A ruthless and notorious criminal plaguing the Washington Trail and beyond. Many have been trying to bring him and his gang to justice after a string of various crimes. If the deed’s illegal, he’s probably done it. A bit snarky, but not one to be messed with.|
Last Time On... Westward (Act 1)
After hearing about a wondrous community in Blue Yonder, Washington, you've set out to leave your humdrum hometown and towards a life of adventure and unknown.
However, after your parents found your savings for the trip, you were left in a less than ideal state. Feeling like time was running out, you drowned your sorrows in alcohol. In a very drunken state, you ended up stealing a horse from a newcomer and hightailing it out of town.
And now, sober, unsure of your exact location, and seemingly in a good state to make the trip, you have decided to venture to Blue Yonder.
What exactly will you find on the trip out?
Will you make it to Blue Yonder?
Let's find out in.... Westward (Act 2)!
As one might expect after a night of drunken decisions, your clothes are not in the best of shape—stains, spills, rips, and tears litter your outfit.
Not really becoming of an adventurer, you think to yourself, but manageable. Nothing too dreadful to speak of.
However, just as you finish assessing your state, and in what one might consider karmic retribution for your past misdeeds, you fall off "your" horse as it attempts to navigate a tricky hole in the road. While you do not seem injured, you did land directly into a nearby mud puddle.
"Yeah, I probably deserved that...," you mumble into the ground. After wrangling the horse—you should really give it a name or something—and brushing off all the dirt you can, you realize you are definitely no longer in a manageable state.
Well no time like the present for a quick rest stop.
Looking around in the bags attached to the horse, you are unable to find any spare clothing, and you aren't sure about your ability to pull off a series of blankets as high fashion. You reach a satchel that you don't recognize as one of your own. Nicely secured to the horse, you reckon that this belonged to the person you stole the horse from.
I shouldn't open it, you instinctually think. Another part of your brain replies, You already stole a horse, I doubt the guy is really going to care that much more that you stole a shirt.
Sighing deeply, as the angel on your shoulder has lost out once again, you open the satchel.
Inside you find an assortment of items: a series of worn-out papers (Wanted Posters?) ... a notebook... a box of flint and steel... clothing... bingo! You glimpse a sleeve and tug the entirety of the outfit out of the satchel and...
Oh no no no.
Unfurling the jacket, your eyes are fixated on a shining badge affixed to the upper right: A star emblazoned with the words "United States Marshal." You drop the uniform as if it was a red-hot cattle brand. You have never felt this doomed.
That's got to be treason or something. Stealing from a U.S. Marshal? Your brain goes blank with panic, wondering if other U.S. Marshals would recognize the horse and what would happen if you were caught.
You feel desperate. At the end of your rope. In the same way that you felt after seeing your parents with all your savings. In the same way you felt after you discovered that you had stolen a horse and run out of town.
You silently bend down, pick back up the uniform and dust it off. It looks just your size.
I'll keep my head down, get to Blue Yonder, give the horse away to some nice old lady, and never do a bad thing ever again, you think to yourself. I just need to get to Blue Yonder.
(After meeting with a group of hooligans and solving their puzzle.)
Satisfied with your responses, the group offers you a chance to join them, reckoning that having "the law" on their side would make their activities a lot easier.
"I think you should just be lucky I don't turn you over to local authorities about your headgear," you comment, realizing that a band of shady characters really wouldn't help you blend in. The group scowls and waves you off.
"Yer no fun," Catherine cackles out as the group shies away, looking for a new person to bother.
You breathe a sigh of relief; at least someone believes your charade.
"That was impressive," you hear from a voice behind you. You about jump out of your skin at the noise.
"You okay there, friend?" the voice says, concerned. "Didn't mean ta frighten ya. Just observing how you law types handle folks—wouldn't know if I would've figured out the culprit myself." You look to see the man belonging to the voice; a jovial man, who seems to be sizing you up with a quiet curiosity.
"Uh.. Thanks," you manage to respond. The man reaches out his hand and introduces himself as Kenneth Reeves.
"Well see... there's actually another reason I am talking to you," Kenneth admits. He then explains how his family, like many others, are planning on making the trip on the Washington Trail in hopes of a better life. "But ya see, my wife and kids are nervous about the trek—thinkin' they're gonna be ambushed by bandits soon as we get out of town." He lightly chuckles, not entirely unconvinced of the notion either. "Now this might seem a bit of a farfetched proposition, but I believe Blue Yonder is gonna be somethin' great, ya see?" You nod along with him, his idealism appealing to your own hopes. Kenneth continues, "And I know you Marshals roam around so I was wonderin' if you might join our caravan on the journey. I know it must be outside your purview, but it would mean a great deal to my family. And, hey, if those bandits do show up, that must be helpful for yer profession."
You shouldn't do this. You aren't a U. S. Marshal. Your inner voice reminds you. Just say no and move on.
You glimpse over at his family, looking at you intently. Their small boy clutches at his mother's skirt, looking at you like some sort of a hero.
They seem like a nice family. I could bring them a sense of peace. I mean, isn't there safety in numbers?
Nothing would go wrong.
"That sounds like a good deal. I happen to be heading to Blue Yonder myself," you answer, smiling. Kenneth and his family look ecstatic.
And that's how you found yourself as the muscle for the Reeves family's journey west.
While you've faced the occasional obstacle, travelling with the Reeves family has been pleasant. As you initially suspected, the entire family is nice to a fault. They've even convinced you to pick up a few other stragglers on the trail to join your caravan.
You've gotten to know them too, during the long ride west. Kenneth is a farmer, hoping to branch out on his own after working under someone else for several decades. He's also incredibly passionate about the job; He could spend hours upon hours regaling you with different farming techniques, soil types, and crop planting patterns. His wife, Marsha, was less talkative than Kenneth in the beginning, but you are starting to believe that a majority of people are less talkative than Kenneth. As you spent more time with Marsha, you found out that she comes from a family of inventors and that she has a passion for science. Along with Kenneth, Marsha hopes that coming out west wil let them experiment and create farming techniques that no one has ever seen before. Their kids, Georgia and Abraham, are equally inquisitive, always asking for stories about your various exploits and, against their parents' wishes, staying up past their bedtime to look at the stars. When you catch them counting constellations, you always promise not to tell on them.
In return, you've told them stories about your hometown and your family.
"I don't think they were very happy that I... chose this life," you tell them as you started the next leg of your trip. "I'm afraid they'll probably never speak to me again."
"Nonsense," Marsha replied, "They're your folks and yer their kin. They may not approve, but I'll bet you anythin' that they'll always love you."
"You think?" Hope shines through your voice and Marsha nods wisely. As you ride alongside the back of the wagon on your horse, your mind drifts back to your hometown. You reckon you ought to be about halfway to Blue Yonder by now.
The caravan comes to an abrupt stop in front of you and you hear a bit of a ruckus starting up ahead—a confrontation even. You start to head towards the front of the caravan to see what is going on.
"Y'all best get back if you know what's good for ya. See… we've got a U.S. Marshal in our caravan who's just raring to take down criminals like yerselves," Kenneth boasts, and your heart sinks a bit.
"Oh, is that so...?" The man questions with a chuckle, coming into the spotlight. You recognize him from one of the Wanted posters in the Marshal's satchel—Dastardly Davey.
His ledger of crimes could span the entire Washington Trail. Even so, you stumble out into view, hoping that the uniform and badge might make his crew worried enough to find an easier target.
But Davey just laughs at your sight. You see Kenneth's face drop.
"That kid? Sorry to say, but they ain't no deputy, let alone no Marshal." Davey brushes off the spit that erupted from his laugh. "I appreciate the joke though, so I'll make this right quick, see?" With a wave of his revolver, his posse starts ransacking the caravan of its contents.
Cries of protest erupt from your caravan and you see some of the members struggling against the bandits to varying results. You spot Kenneth gathering up the entirety of his family, trying to keep them safe from the bandits. And all the while, you see Dastardly Davey laughing heartily at the affair. Your blood boils. He has no right to do this to these people. These are nice people. You notice that Davey is not surrounded by his gang, open and exposed. I may not be a real Marshal, but, heck, I can sure try to do the right thing.
You kick your heels against the side of your horse, urging her to gallop as fast as she can. With her speed and diligence, you manage to rush Davey, catching him unaware and scaring his horse. He falls as the horse bucks him hastily off. With a violent thump, the whole crowd turns silent. You take this opportunity to continue fighting back and jump off your horse, running to pin Dastardly Davey against the ground. You get a good punch on his face before his goons drag you off him. You fight against their grasp, but his men outnumber and outpower you.
"Well see here, 'hero,'" Davey's voice growls out, wiping his now bloodied face. "Now you've just made this a lot more difficult for everyone. Get rid of them."
A sharp pain shoots through your skull and the world turns black.
There was darkness. Darkness… and then warmth. You wondered briefly if you were dead… but then, after what feels like an eternity, you open your eyes. You find yourself in a bed, inside what looks like a small room. A small fire crackles nearby. You feel like you are back in your house and should be hearing your parents moving about downstairs. 'Was this all just a dream?' you hazily think to yourself, but then a dull ache in your head brings clarity.
Davey. The Bandits. Kenneth and his family.
You shoot straight up, and the rush of blood almost makes you pass out. Fumbling about with the covers, you start to hear the door nearby open. You get out of bed only to fall to the ground, your legs too stiff with disuse.
"Oh my goodness," you hear a voice exclaim. "August! August, come quickly. The poor dear finally woke up." A pair of hands guides you back into the bed.
'Finally? How long have I've been out?' Your mind is still clearing up. "What's going on?" you croak out. Looking up, you see an unfamiliar woman tending now to your head, which seems to be wrapped in bandages.
"You've been out for some time. We were worried you might never wake up," the woman responds.
A man—you presume him to be the August the woman was shouting for—rushes into the room. He takes a look at you, almost as if you were a walking ghost, and wordlessly hands you a cup of water. You drink heartily.
"August here was tending the chickens outside when a rider-less horse came running through our ranch. When he went to go investigate who might've lost this horse, he came across y'all's caravan."
"Was a sorry sight," August huffs out, "the wagons were done burnt right down. Not much left."
"We brought back all we could from the mess." The woman sighs, "but it seems like some of your group didn't quite make it."
Your heart drops. "D-did a man named Kenneth Reeves and his family…. make it? I mean… are they here? Are they okay?"
The woman and the man look at each other, then at you. They smile and nod.
The couple—Daisy and August Putnam—let you see Kenneth after eating and resting some more. There is an amount of anxiety about seeing him, but also you thank the stars that he and his family are still alive. You find Kenneth outside, tending to the Putnams' modest farm. When he notices your presence, his face lights up. As he comes over to talk, you notice his arm in a sling. You frown to yourself and he engulfs you in a one-armed hug.
"Y-you're not… mad? I frankly wouldn't blame you if you hated me."
"Now, why would I hate you?"
"I pretended to be a Marshal. I made everything with Davey worse. I—"
"Hey," Kenneth cuts in, uncharacteristically serious. "You tried to do what was right—You tried to stop Davey from terrorizing all of us. Now, I don't reckon to know what led you to pretend to be a Marshal, but… I feel like deep down I knew you wasn't a Marshal or nothin'. We just needed that courage to go down the Trail and… you were that courage to us."
"Is… is your family okay?"
"Couple bumps and bruises," he motions to his arm. "Nothin' we can't manage though."
"What are you going to do now?" You want to change the "you" to "we," but you think you've already done enough damage to this family, no matter what Kenneth says to the contrary.
"Well," Kenneth breathes out, "Davey and his goons took just about everything in terms of supplies. Luckily, Daisy and August will let us stay here and contribute until we can get back on our feet. And then… hopefully Blue Yonder."
"Yeah, even still. I still want that future fer us and I'm not just gonna let a bully like Davey ruin that fer my family." Kenneth takes a look at you, in the same quiet contemplative way as when you first met.
"I may not be a Marshal… but I'm going to take down Davey." Kenneth shakes his head slightly.
"Mmm… can't say I'm surprised, but I also know that it would be a fool's errand to try to talk you out of this." He leads you back to the house, into a room his family is currently all staying in.
"When fightin' with one of Davey's goons, I was able to grab this from 'em. I think it leads to their hideout or somethin'." He hands you four pieces of paper—which look to be part of a singular map. "They got a bit torn up in the tousle, but I figure if anyone could figure 'em out, it'd be you."
"Thanks Kenneth." You smile a bit.
"Good luck… just please don't be stupid about this, yeah?"
Alone once again and reunited with your (but not your) horse, you head off to the nearest town to recruit help to take down Dastardly Davey once and for all.
Coho Canyon was more or less a bust. You were only able to get a few supplies and couldn't get anyone to really join your crusade against Dastardly Davey. They all said that going after that madman was "nothin' but trouble, you hear?" The only thing you were able to find out was a town name—Terra Flora. A barkeep pointed to a landmark on the map you had and remarked that it was near Terra Flora, several towns over.
So on the road you went. And, finally, here you are—in Terra Flora.
You go to the sheriff of the town. At this point, your U.S. Marshal uniform was looking a little less regal and a little more derelict. The Trail hasn't been kind to you or your clothing. You make sure the badge is on prominent display when you talk to the sheriff. You tell him your information about Dastardly Davey, about how he needs to be brought to justice.
"Terra Flora is a completely safe and peaceful town," the Sheriff scoffed. "No need for me to worry about a hooligan like Davey."
"But don't you want to make sure other towns are safe and peaceful?"
"Do you see me as the Sheriff of other towns? I do not think so. I believe that's yer jurisdiction, if I'm not mistaken."
"I… uh… well…" You stammer out. "Us Marshals are going to need all the help we can get."
"If you want manpower, get a couple of ruffians from the saloon. Now if'n you'll excuse me, I gotta town to keep safe and peaceful." The Sheriff waves you out.
'It's like no one has respect for fake U.S. Marshals,' you sardonically think as you leave.
At the Sheriff's half-serious request, you head to the saloon. If you can't go about this process the right way… then you'll go about it in the less right way. Anything to take down Davey. Stepping into the saloon, you indeed find a myriad of sketchy individuals—reminding you very much of Johnny and his crew in Southbridge.
Unsure of how to approach such rough and tough individuals, you slink to the bar for some liquid courage.
'Though we all know how that turned out last time…'
"You! Yer the no-good punk who dun stole my horse." You feel the presence of someone behind you.
"I'm sure you must be mistaken…" you start. As you quickly turn around, you find yourself face to face with a similarly sized individual in a U.S. Marshal uniform.
You feel yourself pulled up by the front of your collar and lifted a few inches off the ground.
"I'm sure we can talk about this," you choke out before you are thrown into an adjacent table of folks playing a game of poker. Cards, chips, and glasses scatter about in explosive chaos.
And then a bar fight breaks out.
At the end of the whole mess, you end up in a jail cell with the real U.S. Marshal. The Sheriff, tutting against your disrespect in his town, nabbed both of your jackets and badges ... and your map, still in the pocket of your jacket.
The real U.S. Marshal is cussing the Sheriff out with a myriad of words you weren't even aware were cuss words. However, interspersed between the expletives, you were able to catch the Marshal's name, Daniel Jacobson.
You just watch Daniel as he wears himself out shouting, glad that the attention isn't on you. And you are thankful that a broken lip and a sore back is the worst that happened to you in that brawl. The Sheriff, annoyed with the peanut gallery, temporarily leaves and Daniel slumps against the wall, scowling at you.
"Great, 'm stuck alone with the rotten, low-life—"
"I get it, okay!? I stole your horse. I stole your badge. I'm terrible."
Unhappy with the quick admission, he crosses his arms. "Least we both agree on that."
"I'm sorry I…" you take a deep breath. "I didn't mean for all of this to happen. And now I'm just trying to do something right to make up for the mess I made."
"'N by doing what, huh? Save sum orphans from a flamin' buildin' er somethin'?" he replies, curiosity piqued behind layers of sarcasm.
"I was…" You feel a bit embarrassed saying it out loud in front of him, but you continue. "I was going to take down Dastardly Davey." The awkward silence makes you keep talking. "He uh…. He hurt some friends of mine—good people—and it was because of me and I…. I want to make sure he can't do something like that again."
Daniel goes still with silence. You see him turn his head to the ground.
"Davey, huh?" the man's voice turned hoarse with emotion. "That son of a muskrat took somethin' precious away from me… I've been huntin' him fer years." He wipes a stray tear from his face and turns to make eye contact with you, a piercing feeling attached to his stare. "What makes you so certain a little cretin such as yerself could take him down?"
"I have a map to his hideout? I-I thought if I could get enough people—"
"You have a map?" You nod blankly.
"Well ya might not be such a simpleton after all… where is it?"
You point morosely towards the Sheriff's bulletin board, where he has now hung up the pieces of the map in a mocking art display.
Daniel curses to himself. "Got a memory like a darn goldfish, but if ya can reckon out where we need to go, we might just be able to take ol' Davey down."
"You'll help me take down Dastardly Davey?"
"Now get this right, kid. Yer helpin' me take down Davey," Daniel remarks. "Just figure out the map and I'll figure out a way fer us to get out of here before next June."
Peeking through the bars you can juuuust barely make out the small quarters of paper. There's no way you're getting it back, but maybe you can reason what the map initially looked like.
Daniel comes through with a plan of escape just as you have the map sorted out in your head. You sneak out and start heading where your mind map points you to go. Consistently, the path lines up perfectly with what you remember. It seems you are on the right track! Now to go track down Dastardly Davey!
After navigating several miles of treacherous terrain, you reach the end of your mind map.
"I dun see nothin', kid," Daniel notes, grumpily.
"It should be here, I swear," you note, walking closer to the spot you remember the 'X' being. After miscalculating a step, you discover a slight slope in the ground and take a tumble. Recovering your footing, you now notice a peculiar looking cave entrance. You wave Daniel over.
"This is it!" you excitedly whisper.
"Lookie there," Daniel points, as he slowly moves you both behind cover. "Davey's men. I'd know the look of 'em anywhere. He's gotta be here with this much of his crew around." You notice that there are several men guarding the entrance.
"There must be even more inside."
"We done gotta be sneaky about this, yeah?" You and Daniel nod at each other and begin to formulate a plan.
As you and Daniel reach the center of Dastardly Davey's hideout, you find yourselves on a wooden balcony overlooking a grand cavern. Looking below, you see Davey pacing back and forth, talking with some of his posse. Seeing Davey again brings up anxious memories for you. The two of you duck behind a series of wooden crates and barrels.
"'m tellin' ya, boss. There's sum'one in here with us," one of the goons remarks desperately to Davey.
"Then double the men patrolling the caves!" Davey snaps back, "There are more of us than 'em. We'll smoke this rat out eventually." His gang disperses in different directions, leaving just Davey in the room.
"Now's our chance," Daniel whispers to you. As he attempts to stand up to confront Davey, you drag him back down.
"We gotta play this smart—we didn't get this far by brute force and we won't finally take down Davey by going in guns-ablazin'." You've been here before and you're not interested in repeating the past.
"Then what is your grand plan, huh?"
Your eyes shoot around, looking at all you had available to work with. Traveling along the Washington Trail has made you resourceful and this was just another chance to use that skill. You spot a pile of rope and a plan forms in your mind.
"Just distract Davey and get him around... there," you point to a spot on the wooden floor in front of you.
"All right kid," Daniel responds, "but one wrong move and I'm going back to my plan." Daniel takes out his pistol and spins the chamber with a flourish.
As Daniel grandstands and goads Davey into coming up to the balcony, you scramble around for the rope, dodging a stray bullet or two. You manage to tie a few knots and throw the rope over a ceiling pillar when you hear a pained yell from Daniel.
"I told you I'd never let you take me. I know all the tricks, and I've got more up my sleeve," Davey taunts Daniel and he makes his way up to the overhang where you two were. As he goes to try to finish off U.S. Marshal Jacobson, he spots you, a glint of familiarity tinting his gaze.
"You must be that rat I've been hearin' about. Didn't finish ya off in Terra Firm, but I won't make that mistake again."
He raises his revolver, pointing it in your direction.
"Any last words?"
You notice Daniel off to the side, clenching the side of his arm and leaning near some barrels. You catch his eye and see a flicker of a smile on his lips as he finally realizes your plan.
"I knew that you were quick on your feet, but I knew I would eventually be able to get one step ahead of you," you say.
With that, Daniel shoves a nearby barrel over the edge of the balcony, pulling along the rope you attached. Davey jumps backward away from the whipping rope, and right into the loose lasso on the floor. With a jerk, he's pulled off his feet and inverted in the air, his pistol clattering harmlessly to the side.
Daniel groans as he lifts himself to his feet and walks over to you.
"And that's why quick wits will always beat out quick feet, I reckon'."
The door bursts open and some distinctively uniformed people file in, guns drawn.
"Are you kiddin' me?!" Daniel barks, "I said be here by six knots till high noon! It's got to be at least nine shakes of a bison's head past by now. If it weren't for this cowpoke here, I'd be up a creek without a paddle. But it ain't no matter now, get this dirty ol' son of a gun outta here!"
With Dastardly Davey taken into custody, you finish the trip you set out on and make it to Blue Yonder, with the escort of one U.S. Marshal Jacobson.
"I gotta hand it to ya, I did not expect to end up here side-by-side with a city-slicker like yerself riding atop my horse, and not be wantin' to kill ya. You've really proven yourself out here, I reckon your folks'll be proud of whatcha done."
Daniel claps a hand against your back in a show of pride.
"I think I'm getting the hang of this whole here Marshal thing," you comment. "What else do I need to do to get your job?"
"Slow down there. Partner gets lucky with one bounty, thinks they're all ace-high. I think we ought ta start you out with something a little smaller first. I just so happen to know the new sheriff in Blue Yonder is looking fer a new dep-you-tee! A little less responsibility, a bit more yer speed. It don't pay much, but it's comf'terble livin'. We'll see how things go from there."
The two of you smile and head into Blue Yonder.
As I sit here writing this letter to you, I can't help but be astonished with what this trip turned into. My dreams of unmatched rewards, gritty friendship on the trail, and excitement at every turn... Your warnings of terrible hardship, danger at every corner, and unsavory characters... Well, let's just say I think we were both a little right.
You recount the entirety of your adventure, documenting every twist and turn, every success and failure, every up and down. You write into the night, continuing until long after the others have made their way to bed. The stub of the candle begins to sputter just as you finish your last few words.
Finally being able to relax these past few days has made me realize just how much I truly miss you. Us westerners are always welcoming towards newcomers, and nothing would please me more than having you here with me. I hope that you'll choose to give it a chance, and that you can use what I've enclosed here to make your journey out here a little more comfortable than mine.
As you sign your letter to your parents, enclosing some of your reward money from Davey's capture, you ready supplies to go back to the Reeves's and help them finally make it to Blue Yonder... just like you.
You sigh contentedly at that thought.
You've made it westward.