Wednesday, October 26, 2016


A question: what kind of content do you want this blog to continue with? More play reports? More weird locations and gross shit? No content at all?

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

I'll Give Her The Nose But I'm Keeping The Money

Seventh session, short but sweet.

People of Interest:
Dom Poe, a strong and cruel brute.
Aria Noir, a tiny thief who wants to take over the world.
Alice Lepidoptera, a runaway princess of some faroff jungle monarchy.
Sariell Akilo, an extremely fashionable recluse.

People Met:
Brady Katz, a friendly ginger bartender.
Father Felux, a blind priest with melancholia.
Sister Miche, an absolutely huge French muscle nun.
Jackson De La Sangue, smug and loud leader of Cobra House.
Jenny Bones, noseless and unlucky leader of Viper House.
Zitia Chrime, tall, long haired woman who is being followed.

One wooden lockbox, containing:
A picture of Jenny Bones and the mysterious assailant, her brother, dated five years ago
A latex nose
Pearl earrings and a pearl necklace
Two notes saying "I'm sorry", "It's okay."
Files on Zitia Chrime and Fernando Du Sade
Donation records to the Heterodox Church of St. Felicissumus, mostly from Deep.
Lots of stolen money
Really cool fashion!

Alice's propriety.

In the midnight streets of Croixsing, Dom returned to the motel the party originally rented out, only to see that the proprietress and a cop were both discussing the matter of a room's questionable payment. Dom was asked if he had met Hypatia Muldoon yet, to which he replied no, to which she told him she would be kicking them all out if the issue wasn't resolved by tomorrow. He went to sleep anyway since he wasn't the one who paid.

Aria returned to the church and fell asleep on a pew, curled up in her clothes. The day turned to Friday, and at six in the morning the church bells began to ring.

Sariell was the first to awake, going to his usual seat in the church to pray for his fashion.
Alice woke up next, going to the belltower where Sister Miche was ringing all three by herself: a rope in each hand and swinging the third to every unused hand. It visibly took strength and concentration, so Alice decided to wait.
Aria woke up next and harassed Sariell about his faith, then broke off to go sleep in his bed.
Dom continued to sleep.

When the Sister was finished with her bell-ringing, she was surprised to see Alice just standing there. Alice complimented her on the sound quality and learned that it happened every day at six in the morning, noon, and six at night. Supposedly to bring people in for Mass, but obviously there hadn't been anyone who wanted to come in the past five years.
Alice then asked if Miche knew about the 'highest rooftops', because the group was looking into a kidnapping; the Sister was confused, then tense, then hurriedly left after letting slip that the church's bellower was in fact the highest point in Croixsing. Sariell had come by then, and commented that this was the first time he had ever seen Miche do her bell-ringing and then immediately leave the tower. Alice thought she was concealing some information.

They two made a plan wanting to get a better viewpoint of the belltower, scoped out a small locked building in the churchly courtyard with a sloped roof and a roof access hatch, and Alice decided to improvise a gripping hook from some rope and her arrows. First she would need some rope, and asked Sariell to accompany her—since he was established to be the one who kept her out of trouble—while she goes to the wharf. They go there, and on their way they encounter Dom, who had abandoned the motel and advised them to do the same.

Aria woke up once more, rifled through Sariell's things, found nothing, and went off to wander around the church's back rooms until she ran into Father Felux at the chapel's podium, muttering to himself. When they talked his voice sounded much better since he had cough drops, and Aria promised she won't threaten anyone else in a house of God. A sudden loud noise, echoing throughout the whole building, startled the priest momentarily. Aria then went off to take a shower, found there was some blood on her clothes.

At the wharf, the group scoped out a swimmer, a sailor, and a fishing person on the docks with a few boats moored. Dom suggested they steal some rope, Alice denied this vehemently and instead went off to make friends with the fishing person. That same person had a very wide-brimmed hat that hid most of their face, shiny teeth, and a strong southern accent.

Alice managed her small-talk friendliness incredibly well, and got the woman with the large hat to ramble extensively about her own life while getting the rope they wanted. She told that she only fished and sailed in the morning, worked at a clinic all night, and felt she would never run out of energy even though she was around eighty, having worked three decades in collections.
Specifically, Viper House.
The woman knew Jenny Bones, Orrin Valdecar, and Zitia Chrime all from her past, was pleased that Alice and co. had an interest in working there, and mused about how much safer the business had gotten. Collections, back in her day, were very much more like bounty hunting than accounting. The woman said her name was Sal'anglii Chancre, and would be very pleased if they four could meet again.

Now with rope, Alice and co. returned to the church to wait for Aria and enact their plan.
While they waited, Sariell talked with Felux some more: the priest seemed more melancholic than usual, distracted, expressed he felt like a useless figurehead. They talked about the status of other religious buildings in the city, Felux revealed the church doesn't get much support from the Vatican, but there are some other big structures for Judaism and Islam. When specifically asked about the tiny wharf-side chapel and if it had a name, Felux said even if it did have a name everyone would have scrubbed it from record; in his thirty years of religiosity, Felux had heard many rumors about esoteric ritual from that place. Nothing verifiable, but certainly a lot of rumors.
Felux then asked Sariell if he had seen Sister Francesca, or any of the other clergy who were supposed to be showing up for an event on Sunday. Sariell admitted it slipped his mind since he really didn't go anywhere save his room and his pew, but he would tell Felux or Miche if anything happens or anyone showed up.

Due to a mistake in order, Aria had long since left her shower and wandered around more, passing by Miche at least three times and pursuing the sister into whatever room she kept disappearing into; it turned out to be a storage room for communion wine and the eucharist. Aria was disappointed.

Alice and Sariell then went to the courtyard building to test out her improvised grappling hook, and it stuck itself into the wooden room frame pretty deeply. However, Alice was not strong enough to lift herself up the rope. Sariell, on the other hand, executed a perfect parkour climb up the building and landed solidly. He went into the roof hatch, through rooms apparently for records, and unlocked the door for the others.
Alice set up an attic stakeout, Dom and Aria went to go get food, and Sariell glanced through some records to see that they were all donations to the church. On a personal hunch, he looked for the name of Deep, and found three whole pages of donations from the man—uniformly huge donations, seven thousand to fifteen thousand a month, with little addenda for what the money was intended for. In recent months the donations had dropped to just hundreds of dollars, or even nothing at all. As well, he found a donation of fifty-thousand dollars from thirty years ago, sourced from Felux himself.

Suspicious of why all this money was going to a single church, Sariell went to the roof and joined Alice in the stakeout. The day went on, but a few hours in small migrations of birds thickened into a mass of sparrows, crows, magpies, rooks, pigeons, all which landed on the belltower's roof as one. Alice wanted to get both closer and a better view of the city, so she shot another rope-arrow across rooftops to the church and made a sort of high wire.
Unfortunately she fell quite painfully, and decided to stay on her own roof. Sariell did his parkour again and made it. This attracted the attention of the birds, who all began to stare at him as one.

Aria and Dom returned with food. Alice threw a roof tile to distract said birds from her friend, which scattered some but also had them land around the princess to also stare at her, watching her face. As if studying it. Dom joined Sariell and scoped out that someone else was standing on Viper House's roof: someone bald and noseless, looking around as if expecting company, then sitting down with head in hands.

Alice, freaked out, began murdering the birds with her bow, one by one. This did not scatter them, and they continued to examine her face as they died.

Feeling like nothing was getting done, and motivated by Jenny Bones' sadness, Dom resolved to do the second nice thing he had ever done in the past week and return Jenny's stolen prosthetic nose. Sariell followed, but slipped on the low-quality high wire and fell hard.
Hard enough to put him into a dying state.

Aria rushed in with her stolen medical kit and stabilized her friend, but didn't patch him up fully. Sister Miche, alarmed by a scream, rushed out to see what was the matter; she took in the high-wire, the birds on the belltower, the blood and corpses of the birds on the ground, and Sariell all in turn. There was an accusation of why they all wanted to know about rooftops, if it was some new kind of sport, if Sariell needed an ambulance. He said no, and said he would call if he got worse, which was just sufficient enough to make the sister go back inside.

The session ended with Aria helping Sariell limp to Sal'anglii's clinic, Dom going off to return Jenny's nose, and Alice hiding in the attic continuing her stakeout.

Monday, October 10, 2016

It's What We Do

Sixth session. A mess.

People of Interest:
Dom Poe, a strong and cruel brute.
Aria Noir, a tiny thief who wants to take over the world.
Alice Lepidoptera, a runaway princess of some faroff jungle monarchy.
Sariell, an extremely fashionable recluse.

People Met:
Brady Katz, a friendly ginger bartender.
Father Felux, a blind priest with terrible laryngitis.
Sister Miche, an absolutely huge French muscle nun.
Jackson De La Sangue, smug and loud leader of Cobra House.
Zitia Chrime, tall, long haired woman who knows something.

One wooden lockbox, containing:
A picture of Jenny Bones and the mysterious assailant, dated five years ago.
A latex nose.
Pearl earrings and a pearl necklace
Two notes saying "I'm sorry", "It's okay."
Files on Zitia Chrime and Fernando Du Sade.
Really cool fashion!

Anything like a coherent plot.

Jumping ahead slightly: Dom, Sariell, and Alice have been driven some distance away from the dense core neighborhoods of Croixsing while being collectively held at gunpoint, and Aria had fled the alleyway where she had stabbed a man for information after taking his phone.

Dom tried to unlock the car door to escape, prompting Zitia to ask whether or not they had contacted he for a reason; Dom ignored this and then successfully rolled out of the car onto a dim coastal highway without being hit by other vehicles. The party fractured even further, Alice tried to pick up the thread of conversation while Sariell made himself comfortable in the blanket-lined back seat.
They talked some, still with a revolver between them. Zitia asked why they knew about Viper House and her in the first place, why they knew about the people on rooftops following her around, and why they had contacted her. In short order some things were cleared up:

  • Alice had been kidnapped by the same mysterious assailant that had also broken into Zitia's apartment some years back. This assailant was confirmed to be Jenny Bones' brother, Zallen, by the footwear he had and the picture Alice had seen.
  • Zallen and at least one other had also been following Zitia around at the time, and for the past five years the woman had been living in her car to keep them off her trail, and was relieved that someone took her worry seriously.
  • Zitia only felt safe at her workplace with Mr. Deep, who evidently never left the house and could possibly be an addict.
  • Zallen also likely had been at Viper House in the first place to kidnap the secretary, though Zitia could not say why and was ashamed that she did not think other people could have been followed as well. She couldn't see a reason or connection, though, beyond herself being a narcoleptic and the secretary being a possible insomniac and the fact they worked at the same company. 
  • The secretary's name is actually Orrin Valdecar, and is maybe in a relationship with Jenny. 
While this was going on, Dom decided to hitchhike back to the party's motel while being as charismatic as possible; he was very successful, and got the attention of a very glitzy sports car with a very handsome man with thick eyelashes and a braided beard inside. The man offered a ride back to the Ward of The Sleeping Fish, because coincidentally he was also going there for some late-night work.
They had some awkward small talk.

Back in the city, Aria attempted to discretely clean the phone she stole of fingerprints and toss it into the wharf; this didn't go entirely unnoticed, and she attempted to make up for this by rushing back to Cobra House to petition her new boss for legal protection in exchange for information about the Slow Asp.

She saw Dom and Jackson emerge from the same car just outside the collections building, the former heading back to their motel to sleep and the latter surprised to see her so late in the evening. Aria informed him she had something that would interest him, and he was very quick to point out there was probably a catch. They two went into his office to discuss the Slow Asp case and how it could be connected to a film called "Slothful Snake" being shown at a tiny waterside church. Aria also said she found this out after she stabbed a guy and maybe killed him.
Jackson was both skeptical and smug, not wanting to follow a lead that might just be an indie film festival, and a little annoyed Aria had gone through his papers and had taken the most pricey-looking one. He explained an agent would only get a commission of the total value—a total value that was an unspoken sixty-thousand dollars, rather than the ten-thousand down payment.

When Aria mentioned that her hunch was legit because of all the secrecy, the possible code names, and the fact the dude she stabbed said he would get Mr. Deep to vouch for him, Jackson told her Deep was a bad man with weird taste in collecting stuff. The Slow Asp had been something that everyone wanted, and collecting on it to stick it to Deep would be exactly the kind of thing Jackson would want for personal gratification. Aria got the case and limited legal protection on the condition she succeed in getting the Asp. Otherwise, murder charges up the ass.

Dom woke up from a short sleep and wanted to go get a drink at the Yellow Sign; on his way down the proprietor asked if he was with "Hypatia Muldoon's" group because her credit card company had called about a few recent purchases. Dom lied he would tell her, and left quickly.

Sariell and Alice wrapped up their drive with Zitia on a calmer note, with the promise either would call each other if anything happened. Zitia promised she would look into placed called "rooftops" and thanked them for believing her. She dropped them off at a train station in the suburb of Yellow Watch, and aside from Alice being a little more cautious about followers they were back on their way home.

Dom went to the Yellow Sign and started talking to his new coworker, a bartender named Ung-Mora Cthulaga who remembered Dom not order drinks two days ago. It was college night and bad decisions were being made.
Aria went to the bar after her ordeal with Jackson, followed by Sariell and Alice. They convened, sort of shared information, bugged Dom as to why he bailed on them, bugged Aria on why she left in the first place, bought drinks and stole cash from people.

Then, out of nowhere, Dom stood up and said he would fight people for money. This got the whole party kicked out with no safe place to go, until Sariell suggest they go back to the church with Father Felux. He and Alice did so after unsuccessfully trying to move Dom, while Dom ended up fighting a guy while Aria ran crooked bets with the intention of stealing all the money.

Dom nearly got knocked out and beat the guy's face in, then stumbled off half-aware of things while an ambulance was called. Aria tried to patch up the other guy, but fled into alleys and back streets while sirens whined in the small hours of the night.

Two party members scattered and unsafe, two sleeping comfortably in creaky church beds.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Why Oh Why

Elsewhere, something happens.

In a dim and stony chamber, one Jagharun Jahard awakens on one of five stone slabs in a mysterious room. There are tables of clay jars and trash to one side, a stone archway with a severed forearm to another, a padlocked wooden door to another, and two sleeping figures beside him. First thing the Cleric does is draw an eye in the dust, to sanctify his deity.

He takes a mace from the severed forearm and tries to smash the wooden door's padlock, fails, then goes to wake up the other people in the room. The first, a large man with long hair named Ragnar Wraithraiser, wakes up and immediately starts screaming at Jagharun to see if he knows what's going on. The second, a tiny cloaked woman named Luna Voile Grace, is confused by basically everything while she searches for useful tools on the tables of junk. She finds a scalpel and some suturing supplies.

Ragnar takes the initiative—and Jagharun's mace—and successfully smashes the door open. Previously there had been some wet, dragging sounds from behind said door and the thing making them was finally revealed: a fucked up dog-human chimera too thin to stand, with hands and no feet and no eyes, crawling around. Ragnar stomps on its skull to kill it. Luna is alarmed. Jagharun smashes some pots in frustration, and finds each are filled with a honey-mixed-with-sweat-smelling concoction.

They go into the next space, a hallway with scarred and rotting floorboards. Ragnar clumsily steps through a weak spot in the floor and shows that the hallway is suspended above an abyss; fortunately he climbs back up. The other two consider jumping the gap before just shimmying on some support beams.

They come across a locked door, this time without an obvious padlock, and Jagharun kicks it in so effectively it comes right off the hinges in one piece. Ragnar then claims the door as his own.

Inside is a poorly-lit, L-shaped space. The floor is absolutely covered in crunching solid things, ankle-deep. Luna examines one: it turns out to be a fucked up combination of grasshopper, mantis, and spider with a distorted human face. All of them are long-dead and dried to the core. Along the walls of the room are lanterns, the whole party gets one while Luna and Ragnar go closer to a set of six long desks and six matching metal cylinders attached to the ceiling. Jagharun instead goes to the room's darker part and hears gentle, soft breathing.

The party reconvenes behind the Cleric as Ragnar throws a chair towards the breathing's source; this only causes said source to drift closer. It turns out to be a person, or at least a person at first: their neck and head are set too high on their shoulders, which are too broad, and their chest is too swollen, and their arms hang too low and too thin. The floating human skin drifts around, and Ragnar borrows the mace once again to smash it. It tears and bursts and coveres Ragnar and Luna in honey-with-sweat-smelling fog.

Further into that corner of the lab reveals a circular frame would, if fastened, have a person stand with arms outstretched in a Y-shape.

Luna wonders what the fuck Ragnar is doing. Jagharun plays spin-the-mace to determine with new doorway they should collectively go into; it turns out that of the two he selects a locked one, but Luna insists they at least see what the other has to offer before they break more doors. They go into a pitch-black semicircular hall and end up breaking the first door off its hinges anyway.

Inside is a sort of waiting room with some papers on a table; these papers are dry and reveal the space they are in was used for research projects, however someone has scrawled 'keep it locked' on the top page. Ragnar uses them and some wooden fragments to make a fire for their lamps, ignoring their message. Luna wonders what the fuck Ragnar is doing.

After getting much better lighting, the party sees that another hollow skin is floating above them. Ragnar throws his door at it and gets the whole party covered in more reeking smog. They see the waiting room leads to a T-intersection, left to the other half of the semicircular space, right to a locked door.

Another dog-chimaera is in the semicircular space; Ragnar stomps its head in too. Sick and worried, the party goes back to the room they woke up in to check out the stone arch they promised to look at before, where Luna burns her only safe cast of magic missile to destroy it. It sort of works.

Then Luna decides, with Ragnar's backup, to re-explore the lab lined with dead chimerical bugs while  Jagharun communes with his deity, the strange Eye That Watches, to reveal secrets of the room.
First, Luna goes along the desks and reads of their research: studying the influence of a new gaseous element, or element made gasseous, and how it interacts with living flesh to create hosts for new organs. She takes this research.
Second, Jagharun completes his communion but rolls just poorly enough on his Test of Faith* to have some unintended visions: he is struck with a second sight that shows afterimages of inhabited labs and researchers bringing his, Luna's, and Ragnar's unconscious bodies onto the slabs, followed by a mass panic and fleeing of the space. One person gets their arm caught in the sliding track of the arch's stone door, then the vision disintegrates into a sense of falling, limbs dissolving, eyes slipping into an abyss that is the pupil of the Eyes That Watches.

Ragnar and Luna find Jagharun unsconscious, weeping.

They wake him and escape confinement. The corpse of the armless researcher, very rotted, greets them. They loot it for knives and rings and an armethyst-lens and move on.

Past two arches marked 'main reception', the party enters the largest room yet: a hall with a vaulted ceiling and filled with bags, furniture, and supplies abandoned in a hurry. At another exit stand four skeletons, watching the party.

Jagharun rushes said skeletons and intimates combat. In short, Ragnar does the most damage to silver-wire-wrapped skeletons, Luna overecerts herself magically and develops thick pustule growths like a beehive on her right arm, and Jagharun heals himself in times of danger but in doing so releases a thing like a fleshy pyramid with twelve wings and a single eye.

Luna loots the skeletons of their silver and Jagharun communes with The Eye That Watches to understand the appareition's purpose; he gets a very strongly-worded response: 'It is me.' He then starts wearing the apparition like a hat, and that was that.

*Using Logan Knight's rules for Clerics here.