A tan leather tote with two dice bags, a miniature vault, a pencil case, two notebooks, and three 5th Edition D&D books.
I find myself on the brink – a lot has changed since the last post on this blog, when I introduced a new character that I would play, on and off, until I could no longer find it in myself to play with that particular group. For a number of reasons, almost entirely (but not completely) unrelated to D&D, my husband and I have been divorced for a little over 18 months at this point, and the D&D group that I used to be part of went with him in the divorce.
Of course, there’s always been the online campaigns – Dar na Theria and the City of Fangs haven’t gone anywhere, and I still play D&D with them every weekend. But virtual D&D is never quite the same as sitting around a table, playing the game with actual dice, ideally becoming lifelong friends with the folks that you explore pretend worlds and slay imaginary dragons with.
For many reasons, it’s been hard to put myself out there, to try to find new friends to play this game I love with. But in the intervening time, I’ve discovered something new. Critical Role came into my life in January 2017, at the recommendation of a friend, and I was a devoted fan by the end of the first live episode I watched. With rapt attention, I watched through the end of Campaign 1, said my goodbyes to Vox Machina, purchased some fanart to decorate my new apartment with, and have avidly followed the adventure of the Mighty Nein so far as they adventure in Wildemount.
I am, in short, a critter – and a fairly devoted one at that.
And critters are pretty wonderful people. Through a group of them where I had the opportunity to make some new friends, I ran into J, who plays in a long-running campaign that meets about 30 minutes away from where I live. (That’s fairly close by Houston standards.) They’d reached level 20, defeated Orcus, and were taking a short break before starting over again at level 1, and they were looking for new players. J and I struck up a casual friendship on Facebook, and I’ve been invited to join the table for a trial run.
Being that it’s a level 1, 5E campaign, I’ve got two characters created, just in case the lethality of low-level D&D becomes a problem, but of course, I play clerics, so it’s slightly more likely that someone else will die. Still, I’m reusing bits and pieces of other Annas, and I’ll be introducing both characters over the next weeks as I perfect their stories. We’ll be playing in the Forgotten Realms, which is a new campaign setting for me (I’ve played almost exclusively in homebrew D&D), so that’s fun. How I can have played D&D this long and know so little about Faerun is pretty impressive.
And so I begin again.
Two level 1 characters. Scouring the internet for the perfect character portraits. Picking spells and setting up stats (point buy). It’s fun, and exciting, and nervous. If it doesn’t work out, I can always try again, but for now, I’m just going to try to ride the tide of anticipation.
We shall see how this goes.