Saturday, March 29, 2014

The War Beneath Heaven S02 E09 - Falling from Grace





















Thanks to
+Kalalification Playing Jack Striker
+Panic Slark Playing Archie Griffith
+Lee Fairweather Playing Sam Morpheus
+Ken Kthulhu Playing Fish
+Ffej Lednam  Playing Eeshu

  1. This happens a few days before the explosion on the mountain. Thomas asks fish to check on Jakub and Merle. He finds them hanging out in this Anime Megastore, being run by two mercenaries Jack and Archie. Sam is their doctor friend who they are trying to get to appreciate anime. They get him to try out Boku no Pico (nsfw). They all know each other in various jobs and contracts. Constanz is there pushing Jakub's wheel chair. 
  2. Fish is no diplomat and asks Merle how they are doing. Merle is ok with Fish, but kinda hates the company now that its entertaining lowlifes and people with no moral character. He doesn't like working with gangsters, the russian mob (vampires), and all the questionable people HSS has gone to bed with. Even at great personal expense they break up with Thomas and Osman. Fish doesnt give a shit, and just plans to report these guys are in "ok". The doctor, Sam, notices Jakub is not doing well. 
  3. Jakub is friends with Jack, and he's like asking to borrow some anime. He doesnt get to practice anymore being crippled and stuck in a wheel chair. He looks to pitiable, so Jack lends him some stuff against Archie's wishes. Sam tries to talk about Jakubs health, and Constanz gets defensive. 
  4. When Jakub fails to text and follow up, Jack gets worried and checks him out. He brings everyone else along. They find him in seedy apartment building with vagabonds sleeping n the hallway. When they get to the door, they here a scuffle. Jack breaks down the door, at which point Merle is struggling with an Intruder in whispy black shadows covering him. He shoots only to be shot back, two shots at his concealed vest and one at his foot for maximum damage. He manages to stay up. 
  5. Everyone else tries to check on whats going on, Archie just goes straight for the the impoverished mercenaries valuables while there is a struggling for their life. Merle is already bleeding and he asks them to protect Jakub, before the assailant does something that causes him to bleed all over and gush. Fish and constanz protect Jakub who has turned gray and green. After taking out merle, the assailant escapes. Merle is recovered a bit, but has a weak pulse, Sam was expert in helping him. 
  6. They try to get out after getting the wounded up and propping them out of the building. Some locals are preventing them to use the elevator and they can't climb 8 flights down. When Archie props his guns at them, the locals all bring their hands up - they are large and intimidating, but only carry improvised weapons and knives. Archie empties a Saiga-12's whole mag into  the elevator with shots spraying everywhere and leaving the locals into a bloody pulpy mess. When they reach the ground floor, Panic. Locals take phone pics and they all scramble. There are 3 dead bodies covering the service elevator floor with guts and human meat. Sam is aghast and is swearing at Archie. Fish doesn't mind. They get away but shots were being fired at them, Fish makes a clean get away. 
  7. They arrive and the go to the safe house clinic. Jeni receives them and seems to be the only one in charge. She does like Archie immediately, she asks Fish what happens and fish won't tell her about the gunning down of some locals. She can tell if something important is being withheld, she presses but fish does not give her any more information and endorses the people with them. She does not trust them, especially Constanz (where they had an argument and it got very lively). They use the clinic to fix everyone. Sam gives a powerful opiate to Jack to kill the pain, it appears to work very well. Explosions erupt. 
  8. Eeshu props himself out of the land slide, he sees the swarm stay on the top of the mountain. He is less harmed than speedy who looks really beat up and half buried. Speedy makes him drive and they try to drive back. He manages to drive poorly scratching and banging other cars. They don't give a shit, and speedy just gives them all the finger. They are trying to get back to HQ, they can see the fire. Its all burning. Fortunately they are not too far away. 
  9. Explosions were happening around the building. Pillars of smoke covering it all in many angles, the building is veiled in smoke. The cant see whats happening. The drones that are launched get destroyed. Archie sees whats causing it but it sounds impossible to others, fish and Jeni don't seem to be surprised. They can't see whats causing it. They go up to the reinforced command centers, Jeni is hesitant to bring in Constanz but everyone else endorses her. Sam stays down to help examine Jakub and Merle.  
  10. When they finally get to the rooftop, they see it in the outline of smoke that is hollowed out because of its shape. Much time was lost as fear and panic overcame them, the dragon was flying rounds and trying to find reinforced wall to shoot at, but chooses to occupy itself with the prey. 
  11. Eeshu arrives carrying speedy. He notices Sergei through his veil as Dimitri gets off the terrifying beast ridden. He passes him off to Jeni who is helped by Sam. Eeshu joins the group upstairs 
  12. They fire at it, doing very little to damage it but something seems to get hit. They empty a couple of magazines. The dragon is at a distance and when close enough, an RPG bursts from burning smoke. They all take cover and the dragon closes in,  fish throws a plastic explosive and it knocks the dragon and its rider. The dragon let his rider slide down to the rooftop instead of falling off it into the dizzying heights. Its perched in the edge of the building where it will engage them.  
  13. Eeshu manages to pass them a back of armaments. Fish dives toward a pit in front of the dragon and falls to the lower floor. The dragon launches of at them, destroying the cover of Jack. Archie fires, Fish fires APDS shots from his shotgun, and Eeshu throws the last plastic Dimitri carried. It pushed the dragon back. When the team started shooting at the fallen rider, they can see blood pooling. It takes the rider and leaves. Many get to shoot at the rider and the dragon, the creature casts a powerful spell engulfing the entire area in thick black smoke. Archie puts on his gas mask and tries to scrounge for valuables. Sergei charges from his nightmare at the dragon, and leaps to impale it. 
  14. The team manages to recover, some are wounded - Eeshu from the Land slide 4hp, Fish from the fall 5hp, and Jack still had a sprain in his foot. Most are tired, 2FP or so, some even more tired. Pulling back, they returned to a control center which has on emergency lights and bodies on the floor. Jakub can be seen standing over one of them, his body gray and green. Merle aims a gun at them.   (end scene)
Notes.
  • I realize in the report ALOT happens. I don't know if people notice it in a 4-5 hour game. That's why I do the reports I guess, a lot do happen and they make for more directions for me to pull the story based on what the players are up to. 
  • I do admit that I'm a bit affected by cold blooded killings, but I gotta let them do it. I won't stop PCs from doing that, Sociopathy is part of the game but the world does have its consequences. If you want to get away with a lot of carnage, take a page from the play book of the more famous sociopaths. Of course 3rd world police response times suck and there happens to be panic and fire in some other place tying up the cops. Although note that in an age with cell phone cameras, more discretion is needed when killing people. 
    • GURPS mysteries is an awesome read, it talks about how killing affects even non-sociopaths (even out of duty, self defense and survival). I don't want to oversimplify or dehumanize sociopathy and playing them or characters who has to work with them is one of the main interests I find in running games.
      I wonder if the characters will let their humanity fall away and is sociopathy the best strategy to dealing with high threat situations? Note that I allow high functioning sociopaths get away with murder, if they can, not just out of drama and internal conflict but to see how the players react to it and if they can internalize or immerse. Some games are known to reward Sociopathy by killing PCs loved ones and other important things to the PC (bold to emphasize an observation that will get me in trouble). The "coping" mechanism is making someone who has nothing else to live for but money, and power. (would players like to Internalize people who are sociopaths? or keep the character at arms length?)
Notes. 
  • Something was opened up when the mountain was demolished? 
  • Who was the dragon, and why such a blatant attack? How is the press going to spin this, and how is it going to affect the HSS-Dao Joint venture. What does Cheng-Dao need to do to get everything under control, what will he not stoop to gain power and respect among the other Mage Elites. 
  • Thomas and Osman appear to be unable to control the situation. Clearly burn out, but much more as they deal with Dylan and Cheng more than the regular team. Good friends leaving does not help, Merle and Jakub, and Tasha being unable to deal with them as well. 
  • Speedy is wounded (again) and the Two Mages are pre-occupied with Cheng's machinations. 
  • How will the collateral damage affect the people in the Heights? 
  • What will happen if the Police will go after the ones who murdered the guys in the elevator? Does that implicate everyone who was there? Will HSS get caught up with the police and not just their supernatural enemies? 
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