The Night-Dimmed Day – Part I – Game Session 4

July 2nd 2000, Sunday

Gelar Ohanzee & Hachiko Koga (Part I)

9:00 pm

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

Gelar and Hachiko are both briefed by Commander Islington. [Neither of the players for these characters showed up and were thus moved into the ‘background’ for this game session]

Sergei Romanova (Part I)

9:00 pm

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

Having managed to keep his presence secret and steal (then clone) a keycard to the rest of the base Sergei goes about memorizing the layout and familiarizing himself with the people there all the while staying completely unnoticed.

Angelique Ashur, Jonathan Valerius Baxtalo, & Alex Hamilton (Part I)

10:00 pm

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

After everyone is interviewed by Dr. Victor Halusko (the project leader), he pulls aside Angelique and Alex to ask if they will interview some of the project’s staff. Halusko’s reasoning being that neither of them could have turned the machine on. Adding to this fact that Angelique is a literal mind reader and Alex is a trained investigator and Halusko is quite sure they can find the person who cut the machine on. Narrowing the possible subjects down to a mere 25 another couple of hours of interrogations and listening to their thoughts eventually reveals the culprit: Senior Project Technician Timothy White. Trying to escape he begins to transform into something vaguely resembling a human being1 but is soon caught by Alex who throws a set of handcuffs at White’s ankle which then wrap around a nearby water pipe trapping him. After he is caught Angelique tries to read his mind but when she does she instead hears words to some language she doesn’t understand. Telepathically contacting Jestinius, she repeats the phrase but he stops he before she can finish telling her to stay where she is. Moments later he appears with sword drawn and a detachment of marines in tow, one armed with a flamethrower. Halusko (who came along with the marines) orders White to be separated from everyone else. White is then strapped down to a gurney and shipped off to a cell despite Alex and Angelique’s protests.

Sergei Romanova (Part II)

11:00 pm

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

Having watched the whole affair with White take place Sergei decided to ‘guard’ the room the prisoner was kept in not trusting the guards already posted outside the door. As if to confirm his suspicions less than twenty minutes after White has been locked someone opens the door to the room and puts three bullets in the restrained prisoner killing him. Sergei reacts, drawing and sheathing his ninja-to in a single smooth action dismembering the shooter from the mid-arm down. The shooter lets out a scream and runs away with the near-invisible ninja following quickly behind in pursuit. Sergei’s knowledge of the base allows him to twist the killer around eventually trapping the shooter in a dead end. Once trapped Sergei is shocked to learn it is Stormy-Lynn “Sam” Samson (Alex’s on-again, off-again significant other). Blood dripping from her severed limb she smiles telling him that he knows something he doesn’t. Edging closer Sergei draws his swords until she screams again attracting the attention of the guards who begin shooting at Sergei (note: remember he wasn’t officially allowed on the base) who they think has attacked Sam. Before making a break for it Sergei realizes that Sam isn’t even human, she’s a Doppelganger2. Armed with this knowledge he heads back to find Angelique and informs both her and Alex as to what has happened.

Angelique Ashur, Jonathan Valerius Baxtalo, Alex Hamilton, & Sergei Romanova (Part I)

11:20 pm

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

Since Jonathan has been monitoring the camera feeds from the base he’s the first to notice some sort of combat happening in the hallway. Informing Alex and Angelique of what has happened they make their way to the infirmary where Sam is. Sergei on the other hand plays a hunch and ‘broadcasts’ his thoughts loud enough so that Angelique can hear them with her telepathic abilities. Angelique and Alex then decide that it would be best if Alex approached Sam as if nothing were wrong and then subdue her. After getting close enough to the unsuspecting Doppelganger Alex manages to restrain her before she can do any more harm. Jestinius then takes her away to be held in a separate cell until they can figure out when the Sam-Doppelganger made the switch with her ‘real’ self. Angelique suddenly has a vision of the base and the island they are on being attacked by creatures from the Dreamlands, steering the vision she finds what they are going after: a piece of the machine is on the north side of the island. Informing Jestinius he tells her to follow her vision while he organizes the rest of the base for the upcoming ‘surprise’ attack. Getting her little group together they raid a nearby armory and head to the north side of the island with Jonathan driving at breakneck speed over rough terrain (and with a horse laying down in the back of the jeep to boot!). Once on the north side of the island they come across a steep incline that results in a jagged cliff face. In the side of a small hill rests something glowing faintly blue in the dark. In the distance several wamps can be seen as can a huge elephantine like flying creature3 with a human figure on its back. Marie sets up the sniper rifle she snagged from the armory while the rest head down the hill to keep the wamps away from the device. The fighting is fierce with more foes being summoned by the mysterious flying figure, including several guggies, and even a couple of adult tatou. Although Alex’s horse is killed by a tatou he manages to maneuver himself in front of the vicious armored creature and kill it with several well-aimed shots from his automatic rifle. Angelique again casts a spell to increase the amount of injury inflicted by her allies making the fight much easier. Surprisingly, Marie acts as over-watch taking down all three guggies with three separate well-aimed shots showing why she has won dozens of medals in competitive shooting events. Marie even manages to take down the large flying beast which gives the rest of her allies time to dig out the piece of the machine so they can return to the base. Alex’s horse, somehow still alive but dying is spelled to keep it in a form of stasis till they can get back. Once there Angelique tries to save the faithful animal but finds the wounds to grievous even for magical healing. Unable to take the loss she decides instead to perform a necromantic ritual and bind the spirit of the animal. She gets Jonathan (who is quite artistic) to create a focusing object for her. Jonathan retrieves a large black stone from the nearby beach and begins to carve a statue of a horse in the exact likeness of the fallen animal. Angelique then binds the spirit into the statue with the help of Jestinius (who, while not liking the idea of using necromancy, goes along with the request) and Alex (who supplies most of the necessary energy for the spell). Letting the spell ‘sink’ in, Angelique tells Alex to keep it near him and to give the horse a name but not to tell anyone as this will act as a command word to summon it. Alex, decides to name the horse Minninnewah, a Cheyenne word meaning ‘whirlwind’. Jestinius then casts a huge warding spell to cover the entirety of the island to prevent another attack and give them some breathing room while they study the piece of the machine they retrieved.

July 3rd 2000, Monday

2:00 am

Undisclosed Island in Michigan Lake

1 The creature Timothy White began to transform into is known as a ghoul, a cannibalistic monstrosity that was once a human being. Most ghouls live solely in the Dreamlands  but can exist outside of them as they have a dual-planar nature. Ghouls are usually the result of a curse by a powerful mage, the willful and knowing act of repeated cannibalism, or birth; though some are created by willing individuals performing blasphemous rites that change them to their very core.

2 Doppelgangers are the result of a psychic parasite known as a didymi worm. The creatures are widespread and it is thought that 6 in 10 persons in the world are infected with them. The larval form of the didymi physically attaches itself to its host from the Dreamlands (the other planes might be possibly if humans can visit them and the didymi also lives there). From that point on the creature remains with the host ‘sipping’ from their life-force, while this isn’t harmful to the host those who have been parasitized cannot develop any supernatural gifts. At (or during) puberty the worm detaches and goes off to lay its eggs and then cocoon itself. From this cocoon a exact duplicate of the person the worm was attached to emerges. Experts are fairly baffled by this behavior as the duplicate serves no purpose whatsoever in the didymi worms’s lifecycle. It is thought that the worm somehow filters whatever energy it needs to breed and then stores the rest of this psychic residue. When it dies this residue somehow coalescences and turns into a Doppelganger. Most Doppelgangers are barely self-ware (treat as IQ 7 with the Slave Mentality disadvantage) and whatever they are told by others. Thus Dreamlords find them perfect (and abundant) slaves. For some Doppelgangers the shock of being ‘born’ causes it to become fully self-aware. These self-aware duplicates have full memories of their other selves with abilities that are comparable as well. Most of the time they ended up serving a Dreamlord as well but are given far more leeway than their less-intelligent kin. Because it is possible for Doppelganger’s to cross over to the real world or for the Doppelganer’s counterpart to wander the Dreamlands there is a chance that both beings could be on the same plane of reality. When this happens both beings experience Psychoentropic Cascade Syndrome, an illness that can become fatal. In layman’s terms, two beings who ‘harmonize’ on the same psychic frequency cannot cohabitate on the same plane of existence, resulting in madness then death.  The first symptoms don’t become apparent until after seventy-two hours have passed and then both subjects begin to hallucinate, hear voices, etc. becomes weaker both physically and metaphysically until either one of them dies (usually killed by the other and almost always resulting in a Harrowing) or leaves the current plane both are occupying.

3 This creature is a shan’tac a large winged predator that vaguely resembles a horrific cross between a horse, an elephant, and a bat. ‘Domesticated’ versions often serve as mounts to powerful sorcerers or psychics.

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