Assembly

Et In Arcadia Ego, Part 3
Fight Night

3 XP, 4 Vitriol

Lily drops off the throng, and they filter into the venue, a sub-basement beneath Caesar’s Palace. E was directed into a locker room, where he saw the other fighters, all of whom largely kept to themselves. The Stranger and Phil went to the ring, where they fell in with a group of bettors:

  • L.C Burton, a boisterous Texan oilman
  • Dr. Leo Jepsen, a research scientist for a company called Zosimos Kinetics
  • Lin You, a wholesaler who’s new to La Riña, and very excitable
  • Chelsea Orlando, a wealthy woman who takes no pains to hide her cruel enjoyment of the spectacle

Stefan Acevedo, lieutenant to the organizer Parilla, emcees the event. He lines up the prizefighters, introduces them, and parades them for the crowd. Bets start flying back and forth, and in a few minutes, the first match begins. The first loser was quivering mess before the bell rang, and a bloody pulp after. Chelsea identifies him as a “one of ours”, a bettor who got in over his head.

Then E’s match came up, and he fought against Quentin, a young and athletic frat boy, who manages to beat the Promethean by “points” alone. Fortunately, E and Phil bet against him, and win big on the wager.

Then, a match between two clear derelicts goes savage, and the winner, “Basement Vic”, tears a chunk of flesh from his opponent’s neck, leaving him bleeding on the floor. Vic runs wild into the staging areas, while Lilith re-emerges to collect the defeated victim. Blood is spurting everywhere, and she drags the patient out of sight.

Abuzz with the chaos of the last fight, bets start trading in the last match of the night, a brawl between yet another frat reject, and a heavily tattooed gangbanger named Gilberto. Phil notices that Gilberto’s tats match those of the “waitstaff”, and that he must be one of Parilla’s own. The bets heavily favor the Arlequino.

Then the flush of an Azothic Radiance is felt sharply, suddenly. A man with an impeccable air waltzes into the room. His disfigurement is a thin coat of a glassy varnish over his skin, but it’s not enough to hide his striking looks. He greets the throng, unsurprised to see them, tells them he’s here to see “an old friend”. He then whispers a warning: the fight is fixed, and Gilberto will throw it. HE then wanders off to another table, only to be trailed by the nicely dressed gangsters. Soon, Parilla himself makes an appearance, and an argument breaks out. The crowd starts turning ugly, as whispers of Malverde’s revelation start to spread, as well as Disquiet sharpening and spreading.

And there’s a creeping sense that Malverde is not alone: the increased Radiance is more than Malverde emits alone.

Finally, sensing a dangerous shift, one of the men challenges the other, the fight replacing the promised fix. Parilla and Malverde, as it dawns on the throng, prepare to duke it out. Bets again are placed. The bell rings, and Parilla throws a hard right into Malverde’s face, spiderwebbing the veneer on his cheek. Malverde staggers back, laughs, and launches himself into Parilla’s stomach. He wraps his arms around the jefe, and suddenly, everything begins to spark and arc. Lights flicker and fail for a few seconds, and when the Transmutation ceases, Parilla lies dead and smoking on the floor.

Confusion ensues. The Arlequinos confront Malverde as he leaves the ring, but the Created points to Acevedo as their new leader, who reluctantly stays their retribution. Some understanding must exist between the two, because Malverde departs, accompanied by two of the ‘bangers. E tries to follow, but is confronted by the Promethean’s tail. E then returns to the locker room, where he finds Acevedo doling out both prize and hush money. The fighters are then led out to the garage, by the same way Malverde left. Only E notices, but the blood of the slain fighter leads out this way, meaning this was where Lily had taken the wounded. When he does not find her or her van, and instead finds huge divots of concrete knocked out of the wall, he starts to worry.

He rejoins E in the lobby, while Phil reposes with his book. Worried, E calls Lily’s cellphone, only to have it answered by a gruff mail voice. Paraphrased, it goes a bit like this:
“What do you want with Lily?”

“I’m following up some loose ends.”

“They’re tied.” Click.

E takes this to mean that she’s dead, but the Stranger insists that she’s alive, and even if she isn’t, they owe her some attempt at rescue. They go to fetch Phil, only to find him gone, with only his unattended Book of Mormon to mark that he was ever there…

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Et In Arcadia Ego, Part 2
Creative Thuggery

2 XP, 2 Vitriol

Lily offered her scheme: a fixed bout in an underground fighting ring called La Riña. The prize money was a paltry $5000, good money for those down on their luck, but hardly anything that could put the Prometheans on solid financial ground. But with a fighter in the ring, and a ringer among the high rollers, a much more substantial sum was possible.

“Lots of moving parts here. We need a fighter, to get in the ring and throw the match if needed. We need a bettor, because that’s where the money is. We need to get me in as clean-up, so our fighter gets out safely. Finally, and foremost, we need seed money, or this has no chance of succeeding.”

E volunteered himself as fighter, remembering vaguely some back-alley fights he could never have been in. The role of bettor was left undecided, since it was by invitation only, and perhaps the trickiest part to plan for. The “body guy” was pushed to the back burner as E and Phil decided a well-chosen robbery could cover the cash issue. The Stranger was uneasy with the plan, and went off to earn cash the best way he knew how.

The robbery was a cinch. Lily lured a well-to-do older gentleman back to his hotel room, and Phil and E burst in and knocked him out. Ransacking the suite netted nearly $2000 in cash, after Lily’s fence paid up.

That finished, and the throng reassembled, they turned their attention to the “body guy”, a janitor named Harrison Crane. The mark was likely attending a sports bar called the Line, as he did most nights. The Stranger had a flash of insight: he knew how to make chloroform. He sent out his throngmates to smurf him some bleach and acetone, and they retired to an overpass’s shadows to brew it up. The Stranger’s memory for the details were hazier than he knew, and after two failed attempts, his failure got the best of him, and Torment seized him. Sensing a milestone, E dissolved his friend’s inhibitions via Transmutation, causing the Stranger to lash out violently and mindlessly, taking the two of them tumbling down a slope. Frustrated, Stranger stormed off, while Phil and E discussed their next move.

Next game suggested dates: 7/15 or 7/22? Venue TBD

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Et In Arcadia Ego, Part 1

Recap: the throng ditched the Centimani, to an encounter with a bunch of gangbangers gathered around their car, all up in their face about their visit to the YMCA lair. Following a discussion of where to go to next, the throng settled on Vegas to try and find Malverde (Vegas is the northern terminus of Malverde’s smuggling route). Upon arrival, the throng established a pattern of panhandling and museum visits: Stranger tried the strip, while E and Phil hit the Crime Museum for more Malverde enlightenment (someone can hopefully remember to me exactly what info was relayed?). Stranger was approached by a female Promethean, who identified herself as Lily, and tried to run a panhandling scam. Failing that, the throng reunited and met with Lily, who learned that they were of Assembly like her. She told them to meet her at the Arcadian the next day, and she’d work out a scam for some extra cash. I think the throng was looking at trying to get some weapons beforehand, due to some lingering doubts about her sincerity.

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The Hell Out of Dodge
The Other Prologue

Rewards: 4 experience, 2 Vitriol

Flashback
The Stranger lies asleep in an abandoned RV, deep in the Sonoran desert. He dreams of his rebirth, becoming conscious while struggling for air. His brain races for concepts like air, swim, surface, and he kicks and thrashes against and away from all resistances. But unlike his true awakening, he remains lucid, and the panic that defined that moment fades away, and he drifts weightless in the depths, and realizes he can breathe underwater.
Down below him, a light flickers. First, it’s just a pale green glow, but it resolves itself into a brilliant orange, no, gold, as it rises from the deep. The Stranger sees it, a centipede-like shape, coiling lazily towards him. Every flickering of the light fills him with a sensation of icy wind, and he becomes aware of every rift and stitch in his body. Suddenly, he can no longer breathe, and his lungs are filled with choking water, and the panic returns, and the surface is too far away. A delicate tendril touches his foot, and the Stranger wakes up.

The Elpis
“Phil” sees a clearing in the woods. A single, gnarled tree rises from its center. Around it are splayed dead bodies like points on a compass. A humanlike figure shines out of the darkness, growing to stand a hundred feet tall. It spreads its six wings, and thrusts its spear into the tree, splitting it. It casts a shadow to the Southwest, but does that mean the source of light is the other way?

Flashback
Two flames call to each other across the weirdness of Roswell. Two Prometheans meet, bonding in their fight against the mockeries.

Flashback
E wakes up in a tent, half torn. At his feet, a body lies under a strip of the tent’s fabric, as though in a funeral shroud. Words are written in blood: “I am E-”, interrupted by the exposed night sky. There is something unsettlingly familiar about the body, as though E is watching himself from the outside. Then again, there is something unsettlingly unfamiliar about E’s body. It feels incomplete, distant, and temporary.
There’s a great deal of noise about. Shafts of light shine down from on high, raking across the other tents and lean-tos surrounding E. A rolling crescendo of thunder abounds. E sees a handful of other bodies, but these are upright, like him, and they hurry about. Two come for him…

Tonight
“Are you ready?” asks the Woodsman. He takes the hand of the newly awakened Osiran, and pulls him and his Tammuz companion through the town. Fire and thunder rage, light flashes. The trio dart through the shanties of the old mining camp, only to stop dumbfounded when they see the creature: ten stories tall, six wings, a burning sword cutting through everything. Three faces gaze passively out of its head, surveying the destruction it wreaks. The three Prometheans duck its gaze and sword and finally disappear into the woods.
Elsewhere, Phil and the Stranger look upon the scene. True, it is out of Phil’s vision, but it is not the same. The bodies lie in disarray, and there is no towering angel to greet them. Phil sees the hospital bracelets on each corpse’s wrist: these are patients from the army psychiatric hospital at White Sands. Six men, two women, with the gaunt features of the institutionalized. The Stranger sees dried blood on the tree, and a curious gouge exposing the wood beneath its bark.
E and his companions try to keep ahead of whatever doom is falling upon Assembly, but they run afoul of a patrol. As the bullets fly, the three drop to the ground. The Woodsman crawls into the brush, axe in hand, hoping to surprise the soldiers. E slowly climbs to his feet, behind cover, and with a sense of their impurities, he fractures their resolve. The Woodsman gets the drop on the soldiers, and the two whelps escape into the brush.
The roar of the battle is inescapable now, and Phil and the Stranger discuss making themselves scarce, when two living bodies come tumbling out of the undergrowth. They flicker with the animation of the Principle. A quick Measure is taken, but time is fleeting, and the four leave in some haste…

More to follow…

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Chapter Three, Part 3

Fallout (7 xp, 6 Vitriol to Woden, 3 to Aglaia & Toby)

  • The throng followed Kerry to his apartment, then to his ex-wife’s, where an altercation ensued. Taking advantage of the chaos, Aglaia snuck in and stole the remaining anchor of Malcolm, provoking gunfire from Jodi, which in turn led to Kerry’s bodyguards firing on her. Whatever force driving the animosity towards the councilman turned one of his bodyguards against him, and Kerry fled the scene in his car. Woden and Aglaia trailed him to the motel, where they and Toby subdued him.
  • Following ‘Plan A’, Woden dragged Kerry to his burnt-out office, while Aglaia and Toby waited for a sign to attempt ‘Plan B’. Calling upon Gugnir’s spirit, he imbued the anchor, a fishing rod, with spearness, and ran Kerry through. The rod burst into flame, and a burst rippled out from the snap, outside and into the environs of Whetstone and beyond. Slumping under the weight of his transgression, Woden stared dumbly at the burning corpse, as Aglaia, fearing the worst, enacted Plan B and threw incendiaries at the office. When the flames caught Woden, he broke from his stupor and fled the building.
  • As they fled the town under the darkness of the night and the storm, they saw the radio tower alight with flames. Perhaps lightning had struck it, perhaps another fortean event had occurred. Stopping to gaze upon the fire, and wondering if they should continue fleeing, the throng spotted the body of Dr. Cal Rowan, and went to help her, only to be attacked by insects and plant-creatures. A vicious struggle followed, but the throng fought off the creatures, only to see that they were the stragglers from an army of monsters marching upon the lights of Whetstone.
  • Kerry Proctor-Garrison is dead. Jodi Proctor-Garrison was subdued with minor injuries, while the bodyguard who tackled her was treated for gunshot wounds, and his cohort Chuck Stone was arrested for attempted murder. All three have alibis in the Proctor-Garrison murder, but nonetheless are suspected as accomplices to the real murderer(s), who are believed to be the same individuals involved in numerous attacks across the Southwest.
  • The city of Whetstone was besieged by supernatural creatures, which tore apart the school and nearby homes, killed five people and injured 26, between the plant-creatures and their accompanying swarms. Media reports described the incident as a freakishly high incidence of typical storm accidents, which also upset an apiary serving many of the town’s farms. About $5 million in damages are reported.
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I Can't Remember Your Face
Chapter Three, Part One

After a month of tracking down false leads as to the whereabouts of the dastard Samson, the throng found itself in Arizona once more. The Charger overheated after many long hours on the road, worn down by the Wasteland effect, and broke down in an appendix of a town called Whetstone. Pulling into a gas station meant for freight trucks, they were greeted by the night mechanic, who directed them to the Motel 6 for the night, where they let two rooms. Ever restless, Woden set about carving runes into stone, while Toby and Aglaia explored the grounds, running into a gaggle of soil scientists. Aglaia easily ingratiated herself and Toby with them, and joined them for dinner and drinks once they wrapped up their work.

Dr. Callista “Cal” Rowan explained their purpose in Whetstone: they were looking to build a test plantation locally for an agricorp called Lightner Fertilizer. While they had the support of a local councilman in the newly incorporated city, a strong coalition of environmentalists, landowners, and farmers were holding up approval. Frustrated, Rowan’s team had set up a very small and secret test farm on a friendly local’s land, and was starting to run soil tests. Aglaia asked if they might need workers, and an excited Rowan promised to get some funds for recompense.

Walking back to the motel, Toby and Aglaia spotted a strange silhouette at a nearby intersection. A woman clad in a bathrobe walked dreamily through the streetlights, carrying a shotgun. Concerned, Aglaia swept up behind her and yanked the weapon from her hands. Surprised, the woman asked her if she “was going to finish the job” before collapsing, emerging painfully from her fugue. Aglaia and Toby helped her to her home, where she promptly said goodnight and retired to sleep. With their worries not ebbing, they lurked a while longer, to see that the woman, Jodie Garrison-Proctor, did not walk out into the night again. At one point, Toby thought he saw movement again in the house, as did Aglaia, but there was no way to be sure.

A new day dawned, and the throng awoke energized. Aglaia filled Woden in on the details, and suggested he come and see her, while Toby went to check on the car. Jodie greeted them, where she explained, with some reluctance that she had been having dreams of her dead son Malcolm telling her to kill her ex-husband Kerry. They had divorced not long after Malcolm’s death at the hands of a drunk driver. Both had thrown themselves into work as a means of dealing with their grief; she had taken on more clients for her accounting business, and he began to spend all his waking hours on his responsibilities as an elected councilman for the town of Whetstone. Too soon, Jodie dismissed Woden and Aglaia in expectation of another appointment.

Woden suspected a ghost, and returned to the hotel to forge new charms. Aglaia asked around town, trying to pry out ghost stories from the locals, but the only “significant” death in the town’s history was that of Malcolm. Some older folks talked about a film in the 1950’s that was shot in the area, “Day of the Thing”, but that pretty much served as the only historical event anyone could really place.

It was gleaned that Malcolm had been slain while walking home from school after football practice, and Aglaia and Woden trekked out along the road to the school, where they found a memorial marker. No ghostly energies could be determined, but a group of passing students answered the Prometheans’ questions. They discovered that Malcolm’s mother wasn’t the only one having restless nights: his girlfriend Anna Frey was also rumored to be under the weather, though she was supposed to lead a prayer service on that spot the next day, the one-year anniversary of his death. A trip up to the school and the judicious use of transmutations gathered Anna’s residential information, to which Aglaia and Woden soon ventured.

Huginn returned from a brief sortie, identifying (obtusely) a football helmet as the likely anchor for Malcolm’s ghost. Aglaia darted in to steal it while Woden’s familiar distracted the Freys as they sunned themselves in the backyard. Successful, they returned to the motel, where Woden examined the helmet, finding the lingering essence of Malcolm’s spirit. He then donned the helmet and…

Spear in hand, he stalked into the office of Kerry Proctor, who stood motionless. Woden drove the head of Gugnir into Proctor’s chest, slaying him.

awoke face down on the floor, his head and hair smoking from intense heat inside the helmet. His spirit companions gibbered that the ghost had appeared when put on the helmet, and touched him, sending Woden into convulsions. The Ulgan walked out to meet his waiting companions, and told them to gather supplies: they were taking the helmet to the desert to destroy it.

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Chapter Three Prologue

Ext. police station. DANNY BOYD, frantic and slightly disheveled, runs up to OFFICER SMITH, who is smoking a cigarette on the steps.

DANNY BOYD
“Officer Smith, you have to come help! It’s Susie! There’s something wrong with her!”

OFFICER SMITH
“What? Hold up there, kid, what’s going on?”

DANNY BOYD
“It’s Susie! I mean, she looks like Susie, but she’s acting strange, like she’s not herself. She was walking up by the old Gallagher place, and she said she didn’t know who I was! We’ve been going steady since sophomore year!”

OFFICER SMITH
“Now calm down, kid, this doesn’t sound like a job for a cop. Maybe you did something to make her mad. My old lady acts crazy when she’s mad at me, even when I didn’t do nothing.”

DANNY BOYD
“But Officer Smith, I asked her what was wrong, and she didn’t say anything. Then her eyes started glowing with a weird white light, and my car caught on fire! I almost had a heart attack!”

OFFICER SMITH
“Well, jeez, kid, my wife never did that! I bet it has something to do with those strange lights people have been seeing in the mountains lately. I thought it was just the full moon, but it sounds like something much more sinister. Get in the car, kid, and we’ll get to the bottom of this, and how!”

-Day of the Thing, original script, 1956

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Second Session
Mmmm... entrails.

This was our second session so I wrote up a brief summary below. Please reply to this post with any player specific details.

Players: Aglaia, Woden

Experience: Aglaia (? xp, ? vitriol), Woden (3 xp, 3 vitriol)

Events:

  • Attacked by Pandorans.
  • Stole a truck.
  • Finished the introduction.
  • Got a job at a meat packing plant.
  • First stages of wasteland are starting.
  • Woden has trippy visions about a mine.
  • Aglaia starts looking through galleries.
  • Attacked by other workers. (May have killed one.)
  • Forced to leave the plant.
  • Received contact information for working in the mines.

Items Gained:

  • Pickup
  • Shotgun (12-Gauge Pump)
  • Box of Shells
  • Money from working.
  • Chisel & Hammer
  • Extension Cord
  • New scars

Next Planned Session: 7/3/2011 6PM – 10PM

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First Session
What on earth are we?

This was our first session so I wrote up a brief summary below. Please reply to this post with any player specific details.

Players: Aglaia, Woden

Experience: Aglaia (2 xp, 2 vitriol), Woden (2 xp, 2 vitriol)

Events:

  • Brought to the town “Assembly”. Roughly 20 Prometheans make up the town.
  • Town attacked by what appeared to be helicopters and napalm. Likely came from the local military base.
  • Aglaia, Woden, and Slab were told to run for their lives, taking a trail over the mountains.
  • Followed the trail, crossed a gully and weathered a rainstorm. Once over the mountains the characters ran into a desert and continued on to find a road.
  • Came upon a truck stop. Stopped to get something to eat and be among people.
  • Another promethean, Chaney, came hurriedly into the restaurant and sat down to eat with us.
  • Players learned about what prometheans are, pandorans, refinements, and general survival tips.
  • Players set out following their new aquaintance, intending to steal a car for safer traveling.
  • Allusions that there will likely be a fight of some sort at the start of the next session. (Pandorans?)

Items Gained:

  • Duffle Bag
  • Papers
  • 2 Key Rings
  • Revolver for Aglaia (.38?)
  • Picture Album for Aglaia
  • $100 for Aglaia, less cost of food.
  • Buck Knife for Woden
  • Flashlight for Slab
  • Centimanus Token (Eye) for Woden

Next Planned Session: 6/5/2011 6PM – 10PM

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