Sunday, March 9, 2014

Casting Lots - Part I - Game Session 5

Angelique Ashur, Jonathan Valerius Baksheesh, Maynard “Alex” Hamilton, Franklin Kasseal, & Sergei Romanova
June, 18th, 2001, 5:30 pm (Chicago Time)
48.5 Hours Since Kidnapping
The Keep On The Edge Of Forever, Dreamlands

…following the noise the PCs heard outside the rush back to the Wall and see a small army of wraiths1 (over three dozen) dressed in Vietnam-era U.S. Army fatigues making their toward the PCs. The wraiths fire off a few shots, but take up positions behind the rubble and broken columns in front of the Wall. With almost telepathic efficiency, the PCs move outward. Jestinius, Angelique, and Alex make their way to the shattered ley-station2 and between flinging fire, lightning and ice, they manage to get it working (a miracle, in and of itself). Sergei and Jonathan make their way onto the battlefield and begin turning the wraith soldiers into piles of dust and clothing. Franklin stays back to guard the entrance.
            Though they battle the wraiths to a standstill, a UH-1 (a “Huey”) helicopter comes seemingly out of nowhere and begins to pepper the PCs with a seemingly inexhaustible supply of bullets from the mounted mini-guns. Sergei bursts into a group of the wraiths and with hellish speed distracts, destroys, or dismembers huge swaths of the enemy before disappearing from sight. Jestinius deflects the bullets with a hastily thrown together force field, while Angelique draws from the ley line, the station is tapped into and exerts her TK to grab the hello, flip it over, and then use it like a lawnmower to cut apart the wraiths bunched up on the battlefield. Finally, she uses her pyrokinesis to cause the gas tank to explode spilling burning fuel over the occupants and pilot, though the co-pilot bails out in time. Jonathan and Alex keep the wraiths from getting to Jestinius or Angelique, even when the wraiths keep reforming. After a wraith is burnt to ash from a hastily thrown bolt of lightning from Jestinius Alex snatches up the creature’s knife which it stabbed him with (though most of the force of the blow was offset by his “Frozen Armor” spell. Surprisingly, Alex cuts down three attacking wraiths – the blade of his new knife literally cutting through the weapons of his foes and then into them rendering them into dust. When he downs the third wraith the metal on the blade peals away revealing a glassy underneath as the weapon glows with an inner pale light. Surprisingly, Alex has somehow bonded to a dormant auric weapon (the iconic weapon of a Dreamknight) and bent it to his will3. The wraiths put up a fight for a couple more seconds before Angelique realizes that the co-pilot is the one controlling and reanimating them. She makes her way across the field and then begins to perform last rites to lay the spirit to rest. She sees her previous past life being forced to abandon the leader of the wraiths and his men behind and how somehow he, and his people ended up in the Wastelands after he died. She promises to set things right, and he turns to dust before her. With the other’s helps she gathers the dog tags of the fallen soldiers along with their remains so that she can give them a proper burial later. With a moment of insight from Asher the Bunny she realizes that the words “Seek Shelter” weren’t  warning – but directions. The Shelter Hills to the south of the Wall aren’t all that far away, and the travel is made even shorter when Jestinius conjures a gate. Franklin heads back him via another conjured gate to check in on things.


Angelique Ashur, Jonathan Valerius Baksheesh, Maynard “Alex” Hamilton, & Sergei Romanova
June, 8th, 2001, 6:00 pm (Chicago Time)
49 Hours Since Kidnapping
The Shelter Hills, Dreamlands

Following a route into the hills, Angel quickly comes across a door hidden in the stone of the hillside. After a few minutes, it opens and reveals a hidden city built into the stone itself. The wounded knights, younglings, and other people that Angelique saw her past self lead away left the Keep and ended up founding a hidden home (which they call Bastion) away from their enemies. More than that, over ninety percept of the population have Sandman training to some degree, and half of that are full on Dreamknights. The leader, Dominic, explains that when they left the Keep, they were led to their current location by a radiant being that glowed impossibly bright. The being led them into the caves and bid them to live there and train until the Avatar’s return. As it disappeared, the side of the mountain glowed and disappeared from view. Dominic, who had been but a child then, found he could see through the illusion and walked into the caves. He had been chosen to lead them. Worried, he also recounts how nearly a yearago something from the Outside The Wall slipped through. It was definitely a Sleeper or one of their agents, and whatever it was fast and escaped several of the warriors they sent out to deal with it. Dominic is sure that it escaped into the Waking World, but they gathered some of its ichor-like blood and put it in a Finder4, which he then gives to her. Before the PCs leave, Dominic tells them that they are all welcome to return and gives them special keystones that will allow them to open the walls to Bastion. The PCs then return to the station as things begin to grow clearer…after all, the Black Sun had formed almost a year ago…

Angelique Ashur, Jonathan Valerius Baksheesh, Maynard “Alex” Hamilton, & Sergei Romanova
June, 18th, 2001, 6:30 pm
49.5 Hours Since Kidnapping
3510 South Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60653

 
1 Wraiths are undead creatures created when a living being Harrows too much life force from other living beings causing them to become addicted to the rush of consuming that energy. Eventually, they are unable to heal any other way, then they die and are reborn as intelligent undead creatures with a thirst for life energy. What’s worse, anyone who Harrows or otherwise drains them of energy risks suffering from the same spiritual “infection” that drives the wraith, condemning the would-be Harrower to the wraith’s fate.
2 Ley stations are one of the great strengths of the Wall. Each station is tied into a network of artificially created ley-lines that allow those who use them (usually a concert of seven) to tap into that energy to power the users' abilities or operate the defenses of the wall (including the Light Towers).
3 The auric weapon is the iconic weapon of the Dreamknights. Appearing to be made of glass, the weapon glows with a pale inner light and allows a knight to safely Harrow a target since he’s channeling the energy through an inanimate object first which acts as a kind of “filter.” Moreover, an auric weapon grows more powerful and gains different abilities with the more souls it consumes. When a knight dies, he is typically buried with his weapon and has it shattered in a ceremony where it melts into the order’s Well of Souls where new generations of knights can retrieve it in the making of their own auric weapon. Rarely, an auric will be passed onto another knight whom it will bond with. This typically requires some sort of sympathetic link (blood, bond, etc.) or for the new bearer to have a very flexible psyche.
4 Finders are small handheld globes filled with clockwork machinery and special crystals that can attune themselves to specific people, places, or things. Within them, they have a small area where a sympathetic link is created within the material placed within it. From then on, the finder can be used as a compass to locate or otherwise find (thus their name) whatever they are linked to.

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