Monday, December 26, 2005


I have Thursday off, and would like to maybe do some gaming during the day before our weekly game. Anyone else have the day off and want to join?

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Board Game Wednesday

Looks like board gaming on Wednesday. How about we do it at Critical Hit games?

Everybody sound off if they are coming, and what games you want to play. I vote for "Game of Thrones."

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Critical Hits Games

As Tim & Shawn already know we have a new game shop in Coralville! Critical Hits games is located behind Peking Buffet. It has lots of game tables out front and a back room for private gaming as well. Just think Gaming, Beer, & Buffet all within stumbling distance of each other. They are already starting a Blood Bowl League, Magic tournaments, 40K, and Yu Gi Oh!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Rest of December?

What is everyone's schedule like for the rest of December? What Thursday's will people need to miss?

Saturday, December 03, 2005

We should look at doing this in the future...

So, I was poking about on the Unknown Armies site when I saw that John Tynes and Kennith Hite were involved in this new project called Behemoth3
which includes something called Otherworld Excursions

This is described as a hosted tour around the city involved, with dinner and a game GM'ed by the excursion leader.

The one for Ken Hite (who was the writer of Suppressed Transmission, and a writer on the new GURPS Horror is in Chicago which would be close enough for us to go and spend a day.
It is a little pricey ($175/person) but would be a cool little excursion.

Hit the sites, see what you think...

Monday, November 28, 2005

Castle Fudgeenstein

I have decided to go with the "Fudge" card system for Castle Faulkenstein. The system will work as follows.

Everyone will bring their own deck of standard unmodified(Shawn) 52 card poker deck.

We will stick with the skill system from the book. (suits and levels will remain the same)

During an action the player will flip the top 4 cards from his deck your base level will be your skill level.

In suit=plus
Off suit same color= minus
Off suit Off color = blank
Joker counts as +2 and is considered In suit

Levels off success will remain from the book as follows
Fumble = 3 below challenged drop. in other words if you need a excellent result an average or below would be a fumble.
failure= -1 to -2
Standard success = tie or +1 result
Full success = +2 to +3 result
High success = +4 result

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Normans, Saxons, and Celts, oh my!

The website for the new version of Britannia is up.

Check it out.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Castle Falkenstien

Doing some thinking about Castle Falkenstien. First off, it's a really fun world. "Steampunk" is something I've always wanted to play in.

Let's face it: The card mechanics are terrible. Even if we did a "patch" with the card values, it still puts the game in a context where it pays to ask for all kinds of little draws in order to build a good hand for the important stuff. I know that Brian has stated that he wants to stay away from dice because dice are shunned in the background. I want to urge Brian to forget about that. It's not important, and would not be nearly as distracting to the telling of the story as the current card mechanics are.


I'm speaking for Nigel here, but I'm pretty sure he could "FUDGE" it without a lot of difficulty. I've seen a lot of Nigel's work with FUDGE, and he can easily build a combat system that is as complex or simple as you want it to be. Not only that, but the current stats and character creation would slip easily into FUDGE. Of course I've just volunteered Nigel for some work here, so I suppose he should really weigh in here first. :)

Otherwise, I could "Savage" it fairly easily also. I think FUDGE is a better fit, but SW could do a decent job, and we are all pretty familiar with it.

There are other solutions I can think of, but none of them could be easily implimented in the middle of story as easily as those listed above.

Comments? Questions? Stock tips?


The only person who has given me his order for Shawn is Tim...if anyone else wants stuff (Nigel? Shawn? Matt?) you should let me know ASAP or tell me you don't want anything at all, so that way I can call Shawn Monday and let him know. I'm personally getting Realms of Sorcery, some Champs books, and some Vampire cards.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Beware the Fury

The Fury of Dracula Website is up and running. The Rulebook is posted. Enjoy.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Gaming Schedule

Sorry Matt about you not getting the game off message for last Thursday.
This week gaming will be on for Monday Nov 14.
The following week is Thanksgiving weekend. I was not sure if everyone will be able to make it that week or not. Let me know what plans are. We will make an official decision at gaming

Thursday, November 03, 2005

A little wrap up

So...assuming you'll have some down time in Middenheim, what are your characters planning on doing?

I have a general idea for most of you, but I'd love it if y'all left a comment here saying what you were up to.

The only person really bound to anything would be young Volkrad, who has (temporarily, anyway) become an indentured servant of the Collegium Theologica.

I'm not saying you'll have a chance to complete all of your plans, depending on what they are, but I'd like to know your respective intentions.

Final Entry

We wer not shur what to do. I thot we shud go to the tempull of Ulric rite away but we desided to go back to the pallas first. This ment we had to sneek past the watch again and bribe the gards to let us back in. Hummins seem to be easily bribed with munny. Anyway, it all ended up just like I suspected in the first plase. We went to the tempull of Ulric. But first we had to talk to Ranalf and also the preests of Sigmar, AND our old frend the captin of the gards. He gave us a new warant and sent us out by ourselves wich seemed a little odd but he said it would take too long for him to gather up the wach.
It shur didn’t take Liebnits very long to gather up the watch. We ran into a patrol on our way to the temple and they started shooting at us on site! One of the poor mercenaries who joined us was shot strate throu the head and killed. Before they could kill the rest of us, the humans managed to convince the gards we were not in fact assassins sent to kill Liebnits but fully authorized watchmen. And Ulfrad bullied the commander to give us a watchman to replace the mercenary they had killed. He was not real happy about that.
Then wen we got to the temple there were two more watch detachments who wanted to kill us, but we also talked them out of it before they did so. But the temple door was barred so we had to find another way in. Which fell to me, because nobody else seems to know basic things like climbing stuff and being sneaky. We tied up our blankets to make a rope (maybe we should invest in some real rope?) and I climbed up to a window and sneaked in and helped everybody else up. Then we went down the hall and entered the main chamber of the temple.
Two templars were garding the entry, and five more were surrounding Liebnitz. He was over towards the middle of the room by the “sacred flame”. I was having a very bad day, I can say. I think the fact that I had not rested or eaten in nearly two days was beginning to take its toll on me because my aim was off horribly, and even when I did hit I struck only glancing blows. Those templars were tuff, with their plate armor. The two of them held off our entire group while Liebnitz took a knife and cut the throats of all the other Templars! He was doing this for a good reason thou, because the blood of the sacrifices seemed to be making the skull more powerful. All the blood flowed into the skull no matter where in the room the blood spilled.
Finally we managed to kill the two gards at the cost of our other mercenary and some dearly wounded comrades. It was too late to stop Liebnitz, however. A horrible demon of Khorne burst forth, mortally wounding Liebnitz and swooping to attack us. First Conrad, then Ulrad went down, their flesh shredded and bleeding to death. The dwarf faced the demon alone, fending off its attacks but unable to strike a telling blow in return. I fired my final arrow and…barely scratched it. Ranalf was dragging the dying bodies of my comrades past me, and I…I don’t know. I just acted without thinking. Foolishly I dropped my bow and charged the demon with my sword. It grinned evilly as my blow glanced off it’s hideous hide. I realized that I was a stupid, suicidal elf and that it was certainly going to tear out my guts with it’s next blow.
Fortunately for me, that blow never came. After trying and failing many times to get his spell just right, Volkrad finally cast his magic arrow spell perfectly. It tore into the demon and shattered its earthly form, casting it back to the pit of chaos from wich it sprung. I breathed a sih of relief.
Liebnitz gave some maniacal speech before he died about other artifacts and summoning a big evil of some kind, but it sounded crazy to me. The guy is dead, he wont be summoning anything with any more artifacts. He got what he deserved.
Now I am writing this many days later. The city officials were very grateful for our help, but they didn’t want us telling anyone about it to avoid a panic. Which is fine with me, I doubt anyone would buy it anyway. Volkrad has had more time to work with me on my writing and I really think it’s coming along nicely. Humans spell stuff strangely though. I mean, they use all these extra letters and don’t always spell it how it sounds. Oh well.
We did get to go shopping. The city even gave us a few things in gratitude. I bought myself a new set of very nice clothing. The old set I burned. After the sewers and being showered in blood by the evil fountain, not to mention that of the murderous bartender, I was not going to wear those clothes any more. The stains and smell just would not come all the way out.
Ulfrad and Conrad both got jobs working for the Graf, or at least his law enforcement. Ulfrad is now officially a watchman, and Conrad is training to become a Road Warden. Volkrad has his money to get his license, but he has to work at the Collegium Library for a while to pay off the debt he has incurred for a certain grimoire they have lent him. I have no idea what the dwarf is planning to do. I suppose he’ll go back to his people or something.
Me, I don’t know what to do. I guess I have to stick around Conrad for a while, at least until he pays me back the money I lent him to buy his pistols. It was actually quite a lot of money, at least that’s what I am told. I don’t really care that much about it, but Ulfrad insisted that it was important that all debts be settled. I guess I will need it if I stick around the Empire. I just can’t bring myself to think about going home. I want to, but…
So, I’ll hang around here for a while. I’ll see Volkrad and Ulfrad occasionally, since they will be here as well. Conrad will probably have to go out and patrol the roads sometimes, and maybe I will go with him. After all, if he gets killed he can’t pay me back, right? Other than that…who knows what will be in store for me, now that it looks like my new friends will go their separate ways?

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Journal of impending doom

So much happind its almost hard for me to put it down in one entree. We had no tim to rest that hole day. We went in to the sellar and shur enuff there was a kaos tempull hidden in a seekrit plase underneath. There was a cupple of mewtants garding it, but thay wer not to much trubble. The reel surprise was that we found a prizzener down there! He was held in a cage but we cudn’t find the kee so I went to look for it upstares. I didn’t find it but I did find a weerd room that was upside down and I also finded a box full of gold coyns. Wich is good cuz hummins make you give them munney for almost everything. You cant have enuff of the stuff.
We had to brake the prizzener out of the cage, but it was fine. He saw the hole combat with the wich hunter aganst the cultists. He wood make a fine witnes, so we took him to the tempull of sigmar. But the trial had alreddy started! We had to go to the trial rite away, and it was hard becuz they were blocking all the entrees. The dorf tride to talk his way in but nobuddy like dorfs so he faled. But then konrad talked his way in becuz people like konrad. But there was a huge crowd and it was verry hard to get too the front were the trial was. Sumbuddy even tride to steel Ulfrads purse, and blame it on me! But I caut the person befor the hummins coud blame me and putt me on trial too.
Even when we got to the front, we cudnt get thru with our witnes, so I had to throw a rok at the preest to get his atenshun. But I missed and hit another person hu didn’t no us, and he got mad and tride to get me in trubble with the gard. But we convinsed him to ask the hi preest about us, and even tho he didn’t beeleeve me, the hi preest sad yes he did no us. So we tolled him about the witness and he was shur that he coud get the wich hunter off with the evidence.
He was verry smart and did a grate job at the trial! He was gonna get the hunter off for shur. But bad evil Leebnits pulled out the Icon that had been stolen by the skavin, and showed it to have a mark of kaos on the bak! We wer like, NO WAY! He must totally be in leeg with the skavin! There was almost a riot, and all of us had to be taken to the pallas for saftee. We thot we wood at leest get a good nites sleep and sum food, but it was not to be. Rannalf came to us that nite and brot us the chest with the skul in it, and sed we shoud take it to the professer to lern how to destroy it. He clamed to be on our side, not Leebnits. But we had to sneek to the colledge, becuz there was a cerfew. I helpt all the noisy peepull to make it there fine, and we found the gard we new, and he let us in. But when we found the professer and opened the chest, the skul wasnt in it. It was our witnesses hed!!! That meens that Leebnits still has the skul and he is going to do verry bad things with it!

Monday, October 24, 2005

Free Game

Just letting everyone know that White Wolf has made their World of Darkness core rulebook available as a free download. I think it's a good rule set, and I'd be happy to bore you to death telling you why if you ask! :)

You can get it here.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Medieval Economy

Since bringing up the question of Income and Costs last night, I started thinking more about how to solve the dilemma. Then I figured, why not check into the real world "equivalent" of the Warhammer economy and see if I can make some comparisons? As it turned out, this was pretty easy to do as I found a web page where someone had already compiled a list of goods and services as well as some wage scales for the medieval western european economy. Even better, the prices can be EXACTLY matched up, as a Pound was equal to 20 shillings, and a shilling was equal to 12 pence, which is the same as the Warhammer Crown-Shilling-Penny conversion.
As I had suspected, the income levels were not NEARLY as out of whack as the price levels. Here is a partial list of what I found:

Real World ... Warhammer Price

Warhorse: up to 80 Pounds... 300-500 GC
High Grade Riding Horse: 10 Pounds... 80 GC (for average level horse)
Draft Horse: 10-20 Shillings ...25+ GC
Cow: 10 shillings... 10 GC
Ox: 13 shillings 1 pence ...30 GC!
Cottage: 2 Pounds... 270 GC!!!
House with Courtyard: 90 Pounds... 2400-21,600 GC. Gasp.
Full mail suit: 5 Pounds ...150 GC
Complete set of knight's armor: 16 Pounds, 6s, 8p... 400 GC
Cheap sword: 6 shillings ...5 GC
PAIR of flintlock pistols: 2 pounds, 5 shillings... 400 GC
Flintlock carbine (firearm): 1 pound, 2 shillings... 300 GC
Ironbound cart: 4 shillings... 50 GC

Now, as to wages...

Man-at-arms, squire (mercenary): 1 shillings/day... 17p/day (about 1.4 shillings)
Laborer: 2 pounds/year ...9 GC/year
Master Craftsman: 3-6 pence/day ...20p/day
Baron (lesser noble): 200-500+ Pounds/year... 250-500 GC/year
Earl (greater noble?): 400-11,000 Pounds/year... 1000+ GC/year

As you can see, the wage scale is closer between RL and WH than the price scale is. The basic peasant-level income is a little less then a third of the warhammer world income level, but the prices are anywhere from 10-100+ TIMES their real world equivalent. And the noble income levels are actually pretty close together.
I don't know what Matt might want to do about this discrepancy, but an easy fix might be just to drop a zero off of every price. I could also print out the full list I have and using it as a guide, Matt could reprice everything according to a guesstimated scale of his own devising. I would also be willing to volunteer to do this, as I think I can figure out a way to scale the various tables in the OWA to make them seem more realistic.
The fact that the Hochland Long Rifle costs 450 GC is particularly outrageous to me, as it is supposed to be a hunter's weapon but no hunter would ever see that much money in his LIFETIME. That's what really got me thinking about this, and the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the economy of the Old World seemed busted. Especially since it's supposed to be a post-war economy, and historically speaking weapons and other war material have been particularly cheap and readily available in the years directly following a major conflict.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Journal, Continued

So me and dorf goes bak insid too tel everbuddy bowt the toodoo. I figger with al the pannik I mite be in trubble frum hummins, so we deside I wil sta and gard the prizner wile they goes and find owt wats hapening. So they goes, and I wate. I duno zackly wat hapin wile they gon, but latter in prizin they tel me they tride to sav a litel gurl frum a mob. A litel mew tant gurl. Did I menchun they tel me in PRIZIN!!!??? I got rested cose the dorf wuz mad I wusnt rested with them. See the citi gard rested them fore spirin with kayos, wich they wusnt butt anewa they thot so. butt then Leebnits the hi preest and sum nites cam cross them and sed they wood tak cussody. So wut do dorf do? He leeds them rite to or nu SEEKRIT LARE we sed we wood not tel nobuddy bowt. So then they rest me too and tak us all too sells unner the tempull of ullrik and leev us. Leebnits sa: U hav owtlivved yor yusfullness! He gonta kil us, and cuz dorf cant stand that I wood hav livved, he mad shur I was gonta di too. I nu dorfs hayted kin, butt not that much! I cud hav rescewed them, butt I wuz beehin bars. I deesided the dorf wud not git me killed! So I cam up with a plan too excape bi using Volkrad’s majick.
Fore wons, the abillitee of dorfs too piss peepull off cam in handy! The plan worked…sort of. We got the gard down too or sell, butt faled to lur him clos enuf fore Volkrad too tuch and putt him too sleep. He allmos wakked awa, butt then dorf wuz his yooshuall self and sed sumthin too relly piss the gard off. So the gard cam ovver and grabed dorf’s hed and slammed it aganst the sell barrs. Wen he did that, Volkrad used his majick to putt the gard sleep bi tuching his hand. And dorf wuz not hert cuz dorfs have rilly hard heds. I reeched thru and grabed kis and unlokked door. Lukky not enuf tim had past fore them too do sumthing with or stuff and it wuz stil in the gard room so we got it and left.
We went too the tempull of Sigmar wer ther wuz a crowd of peepull otside wantin to hang the wichhunters. We went in thru bak. We tokked to the preest and figgered that Leebnits is tring to deestoi the church of Sigmar and or cawz a civil war. So we think he is cultist, mabe of corn wich is bad cuz he has the scull. Wichhunters wer gonna bee putt on trile fore been kultis, and if they giltee fownd, sigmar dun in Middenhime, possbull civil war follo. So we sa we find proof they not giltee. Preest tel us serch this pub wer won of them fownd a seekrit tempull of kaos under in seller.
We go to pub, butt cant get in to seller. Tender sa no, and barr ful of peepull, citi gards and merks. We tri disstrack tender, but he cach me sneekin bi and tri too bash mi hed with a clubb! I wuz skared so I got mi sord owt and stabed the tender too deth. Then al hek brok loos, and evvrbuddy wuz fiting. Konrad shot peepull, volkrad majiked peepull, olfrad hakked peepull, and I arroed peepull. I think even dorf kilt sumbuddy. Sumhow we won even tho we wuz way owtnummered, tho we got hert and konrad got nokked owt. Too merks gav up and now we hav to figger wat too do with them. The hummins sa I ternd a barr fite into a blud bath bi draring mi sord, butt wat waz I sposed too do? He tride to bash mi hed in! I dont unnerstan hummins and ther rulz sumtims. Wy is a fite in a barr difernt then a fite othir plases? In Loren we dont draw wepins on eech other butt if yu do, yu ar liklee too get kilt.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Who I'm Worshipping

To answer this question for Ulfred, I need to give a little background, so bear with me.

It is my (Nigel's, not Ulfred's) belief that man is made in the image of God, and God is a creator. When we create imaginary worlds, we can only do so because we are of this image (J.R.R. Tolkien would tell you the same). As such, while I do believe that a person can imagine a world in which they don't see Jesus Christ, I don't believe that he is really absent from any world anyone imagines. If I didn't believe this, I would have no reason to play RPGs.

You no doubt believe differently, but that is all by the way as far as Ulfred is concerned. He worships Jesus Christ. He worships Jesus because only in Jesus can he find someone who accounts for both the love in the world (it is His love), and the pain in the world (it is our choice, but He chose to suffer it with us on the cross). Ulfred's knowledge of the deeper questions of theology is a little hard to measure, since I am under the impression that there is no such thing as a Bible in Warhammerland, but prayer and the Holy Spirit have done well for those with no other recourse before.

He does not openly dislike other deities, because they are no competition for Jesus in terms of power. He would obviously not want to support a diety who plotted evil.

If this is not sufficient to earn me the XP mentioned, I would be glad to expand upon it, although I acknowledge that it doesn't give much of a handle for the GM as far as plot, as Ulfred wouldn't fall for a GM created "Jesus", knowing the voice of the Real Thing.

I haven't brought this stuff up before, because I didn't think you guys cared about it, but XP are XP, and you did ask.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Free Beer

Now that I have your attention, remember no Warhammer next week. Shawn and I will be attending the Fun, Sun, and Vomiting LARP in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. I've saved a lot of XP to pump up my Alchohol Tolerance Stat.

Of course, you are all free to indulge in another activity that gaming night, subject to the laws of your state.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


Shawn's wedding has caused him to have to bail for Wednesday. Matt says he will not run. However, Y'all can get together to play other things, as usual.

Friday, September 30, 2005

This coming Wednesday...

Looking over stuff for the next session, it strikes me that I'll need at least four live bodies there to do what I need to do.

Therefore, if for some reason anyone can't make it on Wednesday, I won't be running.

Like I said last night, I'm looking at two more sessions - maybe three, depending on the breaks. So, that could mean I'd be done on the 20th. Or the 27th, if we don't play this week. Or Nov. 3, if we don't play this week or the Thursday before ICON. Or...this is making me tired. So tired.

Just so the world knows.

One last bit - I sent out that question about religious affiliation. Anyone wanting points for that should have it answered in some form for me before I'm done running this arc.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

More Journal

Nu day

We wint too the tempull of Ullrick too git or reewerd. It wuz a terbul reewerd. Not gus the munny. Wich suked. We wuz allmos kilt bi a mew tant. I allmos ternd intoo a mew tant! The preest gav us wine too drink butt odo done drink wine he drink wattir. I wont wattir too, nevvir drink wine wen not with kin. Butt wattir wuz poysend! Sumwon putt warpston in the wel. Odo drink the wattir and begin too konnvuls…I wuz bowt too drink too butt Odo flaylled his arms and noked mi glas out of mi hand. And his arms ternd intoo testiculls! He ternd intoo a horybull mew tant with fangs and bigg testiculls, and he ataked mi and the uthirs with his testiculls, trid too kil uss! We had too kil porr odo. I cud hav did too if I had dranken the wattir! I wil nevvir evvir drink humin drinks orr eet humin fud agin. I wil onli eet wut I hunt and gather miself. Cant truss humins.
I don unnerstan it. Wi do thay fite eechuthir? Thay sel thimselvs too kayoss, it don make no sens. Hummins put warpston in the wel! Not beestmen or skayvin. I no this cuz we tokked too mani peepull bowt it. We tokked too the hi preest of the tempull and he tolled us too gard the wels from kulltis. We tokked to the wich huntirs, and thay sed thay wood help us gard the wels. Thay al seem to think a hummin person wakked in oft the street and put poysen in the wel.
We cant gard al the wels tho, so we deesid to split up. Wel, thay deesid. I sed that if I want to weekin the citi for atak, I wood poysen the citi gard furst. Then hu wood fite the mew tants? Thay wood be the mew tants! So I sed we gard wel kloset too the mane gars hows. Conrad wan too git coch and rid rown too eech wel on putroll, butt I say it is too reski, wut if we mis the bad gies went hay cum? I sed I wood sta rite at the saym wel al nite. Conrad, he tri to rint a coch, butt thay laf at him. He cant aford too bie a coch, so he wan to bie a kart, butt no hors. So then he gos to a staybull too rint a hors! I sed he wuz crayzee, wy wood yu bie a kart and rint a hors? Wut wood we do with the kart affer? He deesid I am rite, and he and the dorf wil putroll wile me and volkrad and ulfrad stay at the wel.
Of cors I am rite, cuz affer midnite, sum crayzee hummin tride too dropp a bag of warpston in the wel. Lukky the dorf wuz happin bi at the tim. I shooted an arro in too the kulltis hand and make him dropp the bag, then the dorf takkld him and ulfrad nokked him owt.
We serch him and kweston him and find a mapp too his seekrit lare. Then the dorf terns him ovver too the citi gard and the bag too the wich hunters wich I sed mabe bad ide cuz wut if they is lires and ar seekrit kulltis too?
Butt I hav no say, I follo mapp bak too the lare wich is in a werehows abanned. I skowt it, no sine of peepull. Wen rest of groop git there, we go in and serch more and find stare to seekrit lare. There is a tunel and peepull with krosbos shooted at us, but I shooted won and ulfrad and conrad kilt the othir. Butt there wuz mor, and they boss wuz a bad wizzerd hu tride to kill us with bad majik. I shooted him too, we all kilt the bad gies. Sept won, we keep fore trile. We find evvidens of the bad kult down there.
Affer that, me and dorf sed we go tel gards and wich huntirs abot it, and go to runn oft. Butt wen we git owtsid, peepull ar pannikt in the street.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Listen up!

Nigel has had a death in the family, and will not be able to make the game on Thursday. I am unable to be in person, but can be in contact via IM. It's up to Matt if he wants to run his game or not.

Either way, the front door will be locked at Nigel's but the first person can go around to the side door and let everyone in.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Aeryn's journal, continued

neway ther wuz rum wit stachew n scellitins inn it n i fite scellitins wit mi sord i nivr achally fited ne1 fer reel wit mi sowrd b4 i wuz nit sceerd tha wuz onli bownz it wuz kina funn to fite em butt thez not lik beestmann hu r verri scerri we kilt them ez n fin rum wit ol bussed rmore n weppons n rum wit pul of blud n a cawfin inn it bad blud herty lik b4 sew i sez bild brij owt of rmore n stuff sew no step in herty blud butt meen dorf sez dum ida butt me bild newa n it work butt ha ha dorf haf too goe hulp ohpin lid cuz it wa hevi we fine bras scul in der n tayk it but dum dorf tayk bad sord 2 i sez leev it butt he tayk i dono y
wee wayt till nite sew mabe beestmann not si us runn oft n it wurkd it mi ida

nu da

volekrad. red. mi journal. an he sa. i ned 2 yus, mor pung too ay shun. so. i wil tri. 2 yus mor. an he also korekt, mi gramma. so i wil tri 2 rite beter,
i am worri abut, thiss jurnee, wut gon hapin wen we dun? r we, stik toogedder. i done no wut 2 doo tha mi onli. frends. i theenk
O MI SAYKRED OAK! i jus, git sceerd bi scul! dam theng wus. sittin on, log beesid mi, furs i thot it wus joek but i waykd up conrad n he freek owt 2! it wus, in his pak burred! i hat this, jobb. mus git midnhim kwik.

Nu da

Volekrad sa I yus 2 much pung too ay shun n not nuff kaapeetolls. I is jus gladd him liv! Dum scul start skreeeemin yesserda wil wee rid n it sumn hord of beestmann 2 cil us. Wee thenk we so smart we amboosh thim, but they wa 2 manni! I hat hat hat beestmann, they is wurs theng in wurled. I shut thim wit mi bo but it no cil them. They 2 tuff n I sa olfrad tak on 3 n he gott hirt reel bad, I thot he ded. No wa we cud beet them if olfrad ded. That sekkon tim i se him go down fitn beestman, this tim I thenk he rilly ded so I git scarrd n I runn oft. I wus inn tree wit scul so I grab it n gump don n runn. I for shur al frends ded. I thenk mabe if I git scul 2 midnhim mabe leest I kan mayk they sahkreefice wurth it. But sum1 rid up hine mi n showt at mi. furs I thenk him kayos warrir but him haf wich hunner simbal rown nec. He sa frends liv! He sa his frends savved thim, an eevin heel olfrad! I so hapi. I not alon. I reejown thim n they not eevin mad I runn oft. Olfrad sed it wus brayv of mi but I thenk he jus sa that to mayk mi fel betr. He is nise lik that. Wee mus git him nu rmore, mabe dorf can trad hammr he fine for rmor. Olfrad ned it reel bad. He bee lucci so far, but he cant bee lucci allas, sumda he git cild. Also conrad ned a pisstole cuz his shutter is 2 hard 2 yus in klos corters. We wurk on dat mabe, we has rived at midnhim.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

I'm worshipping who?!?

That's the question I have for you.

I'm not asking you to answer 10 questions, I'm asking you to answer one (in several parts). Again, XP will be given.

The question is this...

Who does your character worship, and why? Does he worship only one primary deity, or several deities? If he worships several, which one does he rely on in times of trouble? Are there any deities which your character openly dislikes?

Note that answering this question does not mean you're on the fast track to becoming a priest or anything. Your character doesn't have to be particularly religious. I'm just curious as to what religious affiliations are in the party.

As for the offer of bonus XP for answering the Ten Questions from the book, if I don't see those by tomorrow from anyone else, I'm going to split the points between Tim and Brad.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Brownie points from GM?

Aeryn’s Personal Journal

i aksd vowkrad if him wood touch me 2 rite n red he sed sher n him giv me paypur sed pracks ritin so i am rite JOURNAL so if i di maeb famli no wat hapnd but ritin hardr thin luks i tri tho
met vowkrad n Conrad n ofrad (al hum nam nd in rad) inn undagart n meen dorf 2 y dorfs meen? nevr met 1 b4 but fowks rite dorfs meen n steenci dorf allas wan fite but nevr cil notn muts atac us inn udagart n ofrad sayv da but git hut ofrad allas git hut reel bad inn fites 2 brayv 2 run i gis but git he cil sumda
newa beestmin wir cum 2 ton so we had 2 leef i sed wood skut ahed 4 dayngir but nevr san e but grane moshurad runn oft at nite we fund hir but kinfowk fund furst n sed wich but ofrad tockd em owt o it he is grayt hum hiro i wand 2 go wi kin but i 2 scart them aks wer me yoonit is so i leef
gon 2 midnhem but on wa sigmar prest fatr ditrchrad di n giv ofrad ikn cus he mowst hiro n tayk 2 midnhem teple but shud lestn 2 kinfowk cus them rite grane WUS wich n runn oft agin 2 sumn deemn but we cil hir dorf tri fite agin but ofrad n conrad cil wulvs n me n vowkrad cil grane but he and ofrad git chewd up lik ofrad allas dus
newa we git 2 midnhem n yuk siti no lik hum siti but haf help ofrad or him git cild so i go inn n him giv prest ikn n prest git asss sassn asasas cild bi mistry so we sa we fin ciler cilr cil dorf 2 stowl map n cil hum gard n stowl buk bad corn majik n cil wich huntr ordo fidellis gerhardrad crom n o ya them wus scavn n stowl ikn 2 but we trac em in sewr yuk steenc wurs thn dorf but we fin affr mani tri I cil gard but hums noysi so otter scavn atac us dorf lik 2 pla wit krosbo but him nevr hit achly him nevr hit wit hamer edder newa ofrad agin cil mani scavn n agin almos git cild but tho wund reel bad downt runn lucci me n vowkrad cil scavn poysnr b4 him poysn conrad dorf kep a scavn bizzy how we lous bird war?
we no fin ikn or buk or map so vowkrad sa him thenk humi culltis in leeg wit scavn
we innvi envess insiga chek otter prests at teple no luc but ulrek prest tel ofrad dreem corn bras scul mayk dayngr so we sa we go 2 wer prest sas n we du n on wa I aks vowkrad touch me ritn n redn I wan lern mor speeks langs ned 2 red
wen git 2 plas BIG beesman wit BIG horns gard scairi mund I shout him hed tice but cors ofrad cild it n dorf hu sed i cowrt no tuch big beesman but him sond horn n sumn mor beesman n we runn inn mund n hid der blod monsers in mund tri cil us n evn tho ofrad bad hert stil no runn i ned git him betr armr or he di but we win lucci then blud fontin rum wit seecrit dor n blud verry scariy n herty but dorf cal me cowrt so i fin dor n git hert bi blud it sukd but cant let dorf no i am afeerd but him rite i am cowrt i tri not be tho but wish i cud go bac hom but cant

The previous post is brought to you and the GM in hopes of earning some brownie points from the GM. I plan to keep giving a log of the game, and while I don't want xp exactly, I was hoping to eventually earn the opportunity to aquire certain items in the future for my efforts. First, however, I would like to earn the read/write skill for keeping a log for this run. The main reason for that is I would like to write the log in character, but I would like to eventually make it LEGIBLE and READABLE so if the gm okays it I will gradually improve the writing style until it doesn't hurt to write and read it. :)

Hooligan's Log

Here is the last installment of Matt's log. I think it's been long enough that I can safely split the remaining xp between he and Tim, nobody else is submitting. I'll still take submissions for the final bonus (some kind of reward for the overall log of the year award) but hurry for those too. Matt and Tim have pretty much got the hammerlock on all the goodies this arc.

Ooze apparently killed the security guard on duty inside the fake tank after escaping from his containment unit – sure hope it didn’t happen after Vanguard tried to cut the phone lines. We also learned that the legitimate employees here and Allied Chemical in general didn’t seem to know about the research going on – in fact, many memos had been sent up the chain asking why the facility hadn’t been decommissioned, as it was obsolete and inefficient.

On our way out of the tank, we heard the sirens, and it was no surprise to this son of the Tartan when we came face to face with P.A.R.T. I went quietly. Again, it occurred to me that we had broken laws, and perhaps weren’t such good guys. The team took a very Machiavellian view, letting the ends justify the means. Lucky for them, P.A.R.T. went with it, and let us go. (So – next time that I let the ends justify the means, will the team back ME up? Oh fuck no. Flea will seem shocked at my actions, Vanguard will spew mumbo jumbo about what we “can” and “can’t” do, Trauma will insist that I need to be rehabilitated, and Mason will…probably take my side. I’m liking this Mason guy more and more.)

The reason they let us go was that Justin Grisham showed up and claimed to know none of us. Needless to say, yours truly was burning a little bit under the collar…I mean, this guy did try to kill me…but I stayed quiet while other members of the team snapped at him. We soon learned an interesting little tidbit – Justin has a twin named Raymond who runs Allied Chemical and Grisham Industries. (Mental note – stop going out of your way to trash anything emblazoned with the name GRISHAM, Hooligan.) He gave us a ride back to the SkyBox and even offered to sponsor us as a superhero group, something he apparently did for the New Guardians as well. Sponsorship would be nice. He seemed like a decent enough chap, and put us on a month long probationary period before he formally sponsored us. He also told us he wanted to be the first to know if we ran into his wayward brother. Seemed like a fair deal to me.

We went back to discussing a group name, and after several not-so-wonderful ideas were put forth, I suggested a patriotic name to deflect some of the post 9/11 criticism we’re sure to endure. Much to my surprise, the group agreed! (Side note – HOLY F’ING SHITE! They…LISTENED to me! Just waiting for the other three Horsemen of the Apocalypse…) We finally settled on the name Freedom League. I think it has a ring to it, actually. We did well with this one.

Other interesting tidbits which happened in the last few days…

- I went down to the jail with Tripleforte and Mason to have a talk with Lodestone and Proton. Got there just in time to see Lodestone being freed by a group calling themselves “IMAGE”. It’s an acronym. I don’t give two shits what it means. Something about Mutants fighting for themselves. Can’t wait for the Mutant v Human war. It’ll be a hoot.

- The group is still pissed about the fact that I killed some skinhead scum. I wonder very much what their attitudes would be had THEY lost anyone close to them. The next time the death of my wife is trivialized or compared in scope to the deaths of a bunch of racist scum, someone is stepping outside with me. An ass will be kicked and kicked hard.

- Mason got into Marshall Endicott’s compound and found out three very interesting things…

1. Howard Fitzwater, Jr. is in league with the neo-Nazis.
2. The Neo-Nazis have brought in a fella named Blade to kill Mason.
3. Blade is supposed to kill me next.

This can only go well! We discussed having Mason “die.” I offered up the thought that maybe Mason’s redneck persona could “kill” me to shoot him up the ladder a bit. Apparently, Endicott doesn’t call the shots – there’s a big guy above him. Now we know where to throw our line in the water, at least. When I get my hands on these bastards…man.

All of this was brought to a halt by a personal appearance we had to make for Durante, who is still trying to get his radio show off the ground. We (WE?!? When did I agree?!?) agreed to make an appearance at the opening of Omega World, which is a theme park based on the superhero drama “To Save the World.” Things were wrong from the start – before we even got through the gates, we saw a large carousel in the entrance concourse spinning out of control. Flea tried to jump through the wildly spinning animals, and was rewarded by being smacked across the park. Trauma put a stop to it with his gigantism, and we got the people off. Mason meanwhile wandered to the Bullet Train, the world’s fastest roller coaster, and found that the ride was out of control. A recorded message said that if the speed of the cars fell under 120 mph, a bomb would go off, but with the cars continually picking up speed, the ride was about to shake itself apart. Vanguard and Flea took the task of getting into the cars and finding the bomb while Tripleforte and I scampered to the next ride, Adamantine Mountain. As we were running in, we heard a vicious explosion behind us, and saw that something had gone horribly wrong. This being the first time I’ve ever been confronted with an innocents body count, I wasn’t in the best frame of mind, but Morgan and I pressed on into the ride. We saw a girl tied up by the wrists dangling over the tracks while a maniacal teddy bear (WHAT THE FUCK?!?) hacked at the rope with a knife. Worse still, as we ran towards her a cage descended from the ceiling and trapped us good. I didn’t let this stop me, unleashing a soccer ball which turned the teddy bear into a ball of fluff. The only obvious way out was a large red button on the wall inside the cell which was labeled “PUSH TO OPEN CELL DOOR.” I knew it couldn’t be good, but after a few frantic moments of trying to find a different way out, I whacked the button – and the door swung open! Of course, it also freed a bunch of maniacal toys from another cell, all of them bent on killing the girl. I took a running start, jumped the tracks, grabbed the girl in midair, and yanked her to safety on the other side of the tracks, after which Tripleforte and I finished off the very painful process of destroying the toys.

Of course there was no rest for the weary, as a trip to the Knights of the Realm ride revealed a bunch of robotic knights and a hooded executioner about to behead another young lady. A recorded voice told us we’d have to bravely fight the knights to save the damsel – which we did in a good damned hurry. The executioner skedaddled, but had no useful information to give us.

The voice seemed very familiar to all of us – the Idiot King. This can ONLY get better.

We tried the JFO Tower, reasoning it would give the Idiot King a good perch from which to watch our progress, but struck out. We spotted him ducking into Hecate’s Hall of Mirrors and gave chase.

I’m not sure what all happened inside. We split up early on. I came to a dead end, turned around after hearing the sound of glass breaking, and found myself trapped in my dead end by an ominous looking cloud of gas. Eventually it cleared up and I wandered out. It seemed that other team members came out a little worse for wear. (Who knew that the Idiot King would anticipate we’d break the mirrors? Sometimes I wonder how my teammates made it out of primary school. Good Christ.)

We then managed to stumble into the Idiot King’s control room, and the fight was on – for most of the group. I zotted the Idiot King good with a soccer ball, but was quickly double teamed for my efforts and knocked into next week. When I woke up, I learned that the Idiot King had been apprehended thanks to the timely reappearance of Samuel Mason. Good for us – more than 30 dead, but the King is in custody. (Why?!? What possible use does his continued existence have for society? He spends two separate existences – he’s either a drooling vegetable leeching resources from society, or a dangerous master criminal killing innocents for sport. Why not put him down?!? The rest of the team seems eontent to let the system take care of these super baddies, and in most cases I can give in to their wishes, but in this guy’s case, I just don’t see it. The system can’t cope. How many more people have to die before someone puts this guy out of our misery?)

No time to mope, of course, because now Holocaust – the same mutant who slapped Executive Sanction out of the way and attacked the Pentagon – has given the people building the new City Center an ultimatum: stop construction on the building within 48 hours and tear it down, or he’ll do it for them. Personally, I think the thing is an eyesore and a drain on taxpayer resources, but I have a general objection to freelance demolition.

We started pondering what we could do, when we could do it, and how we’d go about it – and this is when my frustration began to grow.

We had an incredibly sensitive and dangerous situation on our hands. This will be our first time out as the superhero team defending Los Angeles, and we’d be fighting a mutant who single-handedly fought the U.S. government’s hand-picked superhero team to a standstill. You would think, given the circumstances, that the team would be entirely focused on the task at hand.

They weren’t.
Tripleforte was still moping about people dying at the theme park. He was too busy worrying about his stupid tattoo and his wacko friends. He was too worried about getting Mason in touch with the “right” people. Apparently, none of this could wait until our defining moment as a superhero team had passed.

Mason was too worried about trying to turn the building into pudding. Too worried about his golden girl. Apparently, she couldn’t wait until our defining moment as a superhero team had passed.

Trauma invited Black Diamond, a freaking supervillain, to the base so he could take her out for coffee. Apparently, that too couldn’t wait until our defining moment as a superhero team had passed.

Vanguard had to attend council meetings at city hall. Maybe, just maybe, the time might have been at hand for him to beg off and take an active role in planning the defense of the center? Apparently, his city council meetings were more important than preparing for our defining moment as a superhero team.

Flea? I have no complaints about the Flea. That poor little guy did nothing but plot strategy. He obviously wants this scrape with Holocaust to go well. Sometimes his methods and morals grate on me, but for this day, the Flea was my freaking hero. He understands that sometimes the team needs to set all individual problems aside and focus on one situation or one goal – as a TEAM. He gets it. I wish everyone else understood as clearly as we understand. Maybe it’s the fact he played basketball. Maybe it’s because of my footy experience. Whatever the reason, we seem to understand team play, and we’ve got to get the rest of the team on the ball.

Luckily, we didn’t need to let anyone know we’d be defending the CCB, because the L.A. Times headline the next day told the world we’d beat Holocaust. None of us talked to the paper. Turns out one of the idiot partners went and blabbed to the media about our upcoming exploits.

Tripleforte went to a press conference to discuss the impending attack (I refused. Fuck the CCB.) The party largely skipped it – the gist of the thing being that we were expected to defeat Holocaust and save the building.

My part in the plan was to taunt Holocaust into attacking me. (Wait a minute – I volunteered for what?!? It may be time to cut back on the Belhaven…) It worked like a charm, except for the fact that no taunting was necessary. He and his comrades came in all guns a-blazin’, and it wasn’t long before yours truly was knocked off the building and then tornadoed a couple of times for good measure. Amazingly, when I awoke, the building was still standing and the baddies were gone. Mind you, it wasn’t in great shape, and there were a couple of Sentinels laying destroyed around the building, but we were alive and praise rained down upon us from every corner of the city.

We also managed to trace the computer to which video footage of us fighting various baddies was being sent. It was some sort of warehouse, and we rolled into action. The group debated the best way to gain admittance to the building (disregarding my “JUST DRIVE THROUGH THE FREAKING GARAGE DOOR!” suggestion) until finally Trauma simply ripped a regular door off its hinges. It was alarmed. Maybe next time, I’ll get to check for that first?

We got into a vicious rolling fight with a bunch of machine-gun-wielding mooks, but they were little match for yours truly or the rest of the team. We found a staircase in back. Flea went down first and we immediately lost radio contact with him. The rest of us went in quick succession, and the next thing I knew I was standing in a big metal box. I was able to make out a door on one side and some monkey bars on the ceiling before the floor gave out from underneath me. I jumped up to the bars and took a look down into the water which appeared under me – water teeming with piranhas. I hung on as long as I could looking for a solution until finally, in desperation, I broke one of the light casings and tried sending electricity through the walls of my cell. It didn’t work, but the wire was actually long enough to stretch to the water. On contact, it fried the poor little fishies and all I had left to do was find an exit.

I soon met up with my fellow Freedom Leaguers and we found the control room in the center, where we met Interface. It seems Interface was the one who leaked the files on 9/11 to Silhouette, and as a result Doctor Destroyer was…displeased? Yeah, that’s the word. Displeased. Interface was now a strange mix of cyborg monster and manic depressive human. He was freaking tough to take down, but take him down we did. He didn’t count on us all breaking out of our individual traps and setting upon him like we did. Apparently, way back in the “bomb in the park” scenario, the pitiful explosion and gas cloud was really meant to cover us in radioactive dust, making us that much easier to track. Sadly (HA!) for Interface, Vanguard was trying to open the gates at the time and wasn’t covered in the dust. He had little intel on the councilman, and as a result had no idea what to expect from him.

So the Freedom League found itself triumphant again. Needless to say, I think all of the team members were surprised to find out who our nemesis was – at least I was fooled.

Now, as to those Nazi sons of bitches out at Endicott’s compound…

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Just a Reminder...

I won't be there tonight until 7, and don't be shocked if that turns into 7:15. Just thought I'd drop one last reminder.

Carry on.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Ten Questions or Sucking up for Free XP

I noticed the "10 questions" section in the rulebook, so I thought I'd answer them for Volkrad. I'd encourage others to do the same.

Where are you from?
I'm from Grimminhagen, a medium size town in Middenland, not to far from where the story begins.

What is your family like?
I have a very close family. I have one older sister. My father is a laborer, putting food on our table any way he can. My mother is an expert gardener. They always protected me, even when they knew I was "different."

What is your social class?
As you may have guessed, peasant.

What did you do before you became and adventurer?
When I was old enough, I helped my father work. We hauled charcoal, worked in fields, etc. My "gift" was discovered the Celetial Wizard Faustus, who took my to Altdorf to become and apprentice. When I was ready to get my license, I went back home to find work. I did whatever I could, including using my new skill at writing and mathematics whenever possible.

Why did you become an adventurer?
I saved up enough money to get my journeymen's license. I got on a coach for Altdorf, but we ran into some soldiers who "requisitioned" the coach and most of my money for the war effort. I've been stuck in Untergard ever since, trying to think of a way to get enough money to become a journeyman. Adventuring seems like the easiest way.

How religious are you?
Very. I hold Verena dearest to my heart, but I respect all the gods. I pray to Sigmar to protect the empire from the hoards of Chaos. The gods guide my actions and decisions, and their plans and wishes can be read in the stars.

Who are your best friends?
I highly respect Faustus of course. He was kind and set me on the right path. My best friend from childhood was Gottolf, the son of a well-to-do Burgher. His father didn't like him hanging around with me, but he stuck by me.

What are your prized possessions?
My mother gave me some dried flowers from her garden, that I keep in a book.

Who are you loyal to?
The colleges of magic. I'm always on the lookout for dangerous hedge mages and others with the "gift" who need to be shown the right path. The winds of magic are too dangerous for the untrained. Of course, my family.

Who do you love/hate?
My respect for soldiers has certainly been shaken.
The only person I hate is a witch hunter. He tormented my family when I was growing up. Accusing me of witchery whenever he could. Even after my apprenticeship, he would not leave me alone. I understand the need to be vigilant, but I have followed all the rules, and do not use the winds for frivolous purpose.
I've never had much time for relationships with women, although I'm starting to worry that I'm getting to advanced in age to find a bride. I've sacrificed so much for my craft.

Monday, August 22, 2005


This Thursay had officially been declared a grill-out day. Bring your favorite dead animal flesh for charring.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Mutants and Mayhem

Vanguard mission log:

The mutant known as Holocaust broadcasted on TV that he will destroy the new City Center building if construction is not stopped. Holocaust is a superpowerful mutant who attacked the Pentagon on 9/11. The government's superteam was only barely able to drive him away before he destroyed the whole Pentagon.

The people who are putting up the City Center seemed very interested in having us appear in a press conference before the time Holocaust gave as an ultimatum. We were staring at what could be a first shot in an all out mutant/human war, and they wanted good press! This seemed very suspicious. Mason was able to discover that the City Center is to house the new offices of the Institute for Human advancement. I should have seen that one coming.

I wasn't sure that this had anything to do with whoever keeps recording us, but I prepared to trace the camera signal, and we called in a favor to have a hacker trace the internet signal for us. I came up with a simple plan, and I thought were as prepared as we could be. I didn't know just how unprepared we were for the amazing raw power that Holocaust contains.

We set up our ambush. Holocaust arrived with two other mutants, Zephyr and Stormfront. They swooped down on us from above. I didn't even survive holocaust first blast. The amount of power was staggering, my shields couldn't barely dampen it. My recollection of the fight is naturally sparse, but I was told that everyone was involved in a desperate struggle. My teammates once again prove there mettle when things look grim. By the time I regained my feet, two Genocide Minutemen Robots were on the scene. (I think the Institute for Human Advancement is even more sinister than I thought) They murdered Stormfront in cold blood. They were not able to take out Holocaust however, and he started to tear down the building. I called him out and tried to stop him. He wanted to engage me in some kind of debate about me betraying mutants, but frankly, I was in no mood for banter. I managed to shore up the building before he blasted me into unconsciousness again.

When I woke up, I remembered the cameras. I spotted a flying camera platform speeding away. I managed to capture it. We were able to trace the signal back to it's source.

Finally, we will be able to get to the bottom of this nonsense.

At the location, we fight our way through a bunch of thugs. After dispatching them, we enter the facility. We trip some kind of trap, and are all teleported into separate Deathtraps. In my chamber, there are two vents that lower and raise the air pressure quickly. I realize that in not too long, I'll probably die from the Bends. I managed to use my powers to break the compressor, stopping my immediate danger.

Meanwhile, the rest of the team is dealing with their own chambers. The Flea manages to escape first, but is overwhelmed by our "host."

I notice that the power in the facility is fluctuating. I opened up the lights in my chamber, and crosswire them, causing a shortout. Our cells open and we managed to meet up in the hallways. We regrouped and go to meet our enemy.

Our enemy calls himself Interface. He's more machine than man. He tells us that Dr. Destroyer held him responsible for the failure of 9/11, and punished him. He's been studying us in order to take his revenge.

The fight was on. Interface had studied us well, and had lots of power, but he couldn't match our resolve. In the end, he lost and the Freedom League stood victorious.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

My Failure Part II

Part II
Adrian Vandleur, the most powerful member of a whole magic family according to Toad is currently laying low in Scotland. He as taken the form of a teenage boy so that he does not draw much attention to himself & seems happy to remain hidden. At least that’s what we found out when we came knocking on his door. So the plan was in order to get the information we needed about the Churnibog Demon, we would have to convince "young" Adrian to come back & see Toad. So our plan was to pretend to be American tourist whose car broke down in the middle of nowhere. In order to make this seem even more convincing Mason took the battery to my cell phone so they it would seem that we needed to walk to get other assistance. We arrived about a ½ mile outside of the castle Vandeleur was staying. Mason flattened the tire & we hiked the rest of the way to the castle. Mason & Trauma fought like cats & dogs the whole way there. The strange thing about our little team here is we seem to work well together despite ourselves. Perhaps the infighting gives us some insight that would normally be lost to us. I’m just gonna sit back & let them fight it out cause well……it seems to be working out..
We arrived at the castle & were greeted by a doorman. Perhaps that’s what I need is a doorman to keep an eye on things when I’m not at home. It might save on unwanted visitors anyway. We told the man of our plight. He let us in & summoned young Adrian to come with him to fix the tire. Mason, while on the way back to the car let a few hints out of the bag & soon Mr. Vandleur sent his doorman back to the castle. He proceeded to question us about why we were, really, here & we filled him in on the Toad situation. He was not happy. In fact, he was prepared to kill us; outright when he recognized me as the one some have been calling the chosen one. I still don’t understand this chosen one stuff. In fact, I’m starting to get a little fed up with it. Everyone in the magic community either wants me dead or to test my metal to see if I’m good enough in their eyes to be the chosen one. I got a tattoo slapped on me & now I am supposed to be some kind of miracle. The Society of the Silver Sunrise wants me dead. Kane decided after what I would call an unfair test wanted me dead. Harrington after I walked away from his tests & manipulations wants me dead. Now, Adrian Vandelur had decided to fight me to the death. He wants to kill my friends too. It’s a good thing for them I got charm. I convinced Vandelur that we would fight. If I win, we walk & he goes with us to see Toad. If I lose, he kills me & brain wipes the other two. I hope he is a trustworthy sort. So after a few volleys with my magic (I wasn’t even gonna try my ego blast. He’s a magician. He has to have some mental defense) I realized the fight was going nowhere. He was whittling away at my defenses & I was going to lose this fight. So, learning from the Hooligan how to impress a Scotsman. I turned up my strength & got into & out & out brawl with Vandelur. After knocking, him down a few times, he finally decided to give up.
Vandelur agreed to meet us in china town in a few days while we worked on getting information from someone Mason knew called Facet. Yet another afflicted individual who was absolutely off his rocker. If I’m learning the right lesson here the tattoo of mine is slowly going to take over & drive me nuts? So, I have that going for me…. Facet was our connection to the Gem of Amora. It seems that this group called the Triad somehow got superpowers from fragments of the Gem of Amora placed in each of their hands. They were currently on a job for Facet in Monte Carlo. Something about a big diamond shipment? We made a deal with Facet that we intended to break later I found. I’m not sure if I like the idea of that but since Mason & Trauma seemed insistent upon it. I didn’t have much choice but to agree. We were supposed to let them steal the diamonds for facet & then take the triad down. As I predicted this was going to turn bad for us later. A lesson I learned the hard way dealing with Harrington. So we arrived in Monte Carlo & the hotel where the robbery was to occur. We managed through speaking with the hotel concierge that the diamonds were in the safe & that only she & one other hotel employee, who was not in at the hotel at the time, had the combination. So as long as we kept her safe. We would be fine. This did not work out as planned. I arranged a date with her using my unnatural charm & appeal to yet again to my advantage. I then set out to look for Triad. They had to be in the hotel somewhere. Unfortunately, we left the wrong person guarding the front. Trauma didn’t recognize the Triad until they were leading my date away with a little mind control of their own. Fortunately, Trauma was loud when he started the fight. I wondered why he didn’t call me for back up. However, Trauma works in mysterious & strange ways I don’t understand much of the time. By the time Mason & I arrived, Trauma was about had. From out of nowhere, something right hooked me in the jaw. One Two……. Hey, where’s their third guy? I quickly conjured up my lights of Luiathon to make out friend fully visible. Mason began pumping bullets into the big guy. Eventually between the 3 of us we managed to take them down. Between my healing & Traumas strength we managed to pull the gems out of their hands without killing them. We have the Gems/Gem of Amora. Score one for our team.

Monday, August 08, 2005


Just a reminder that we are on Wednesday this week.

Also, I want to ask if we could go on Wednesday next week also? Sound off if that works for you or not.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

My Failure part 1

I have failed everyone. It is apparent now that my bad choices are having negative impacts on the people I care about as well as the innocents who get in their way. I look down at the two latest victims of my failure, the grounds keeper & headman at the Ramirez estate, I cannot help but feel shame. In addition, Anita who I do care about. Tied up to watch these acts of evil committed on those closets to her. The very potion that was to help her plight that she toiled over gone. My bad call to get involved with her. I put her in extreme danger. How could I let this happen? Nicademus……..It all started with Nicademus.
I don’t know if it is potential that Mason sees in me or if it’s that I’m a loose cannon in his eyes, but Mason has decided to take me under his wing so to speak. He is a very well educated man that has insight into magic & the occult. He is well studied I guess it’s because of his passion for writing. Anyway, Trauma spoke with him about helping cure the affliction Nicodemus suffered with. It was killing him & his Hippocratic oath did not allow Trauma to just let this happen if he could help. Therefore, Mason brought me in to help him with his research. I think I was more of a distraction to his work then his help but it was a nice gesture to let me in on this. What we found disturbed me on many levels. We found that Nicodemus suffered the way he did because he took the fast path to learning magic. I don’t know what all this entails but it caused him to suffer from a sickness that is slowly killing him. I have to wonder if I was on my way down that path before the Jerhima Gabriel intervened on my behalf. With all that is going on now, I wonder if he was too late. "We" did a bit more research & discovered another who suffered from this same affliction. Anita Ramirez who had transformed herself into gold in order to save her life actually lived nearby. Mason, Trauma and I decided to pay her a visit. For some reason mason was obsessed with getting her an expensive gift to win her over. Not sure why. Does he underestimate my ability to woo a girl or what? Anyway, after a brief visit with her I had a date. Mason was down a gold Tiara & Trauma was confused about what we needed to do. Through her studies we learned of a cure & we needed to fetch the following ingredient to make it work. The Heartsblood of the Churnibog Demon, The Gem of Amora, & the Ashes of a Vampire. Mason & Trauma went on their way as I had my way with Anitia. Never slept with a solid gold woman before. I think Mason was a little miffed about what he missed. He seemed a little grumpy when he had to pick me up at her place the next day. We had work to do though & were off. It was at this time that I started to receive calls from Edgar Winter. It seemed at first that all he wanted was to prank me. So shortly after running away with my refrigerator. We arrived at the home of one Mr. Toad. His man, is very good at what he does. He was not going to let us in. Even my charm was met with a blank look.. Finally, after many negotiations we were let in. However, we had to address Mr. Toad in writing. Eventually we spoke with Toad. He decided that in order for him to help us locate & get the Heartsblood from the Churnibog we would have to travel to Scotland & visit his uncle & convince him to return with us to give Toad the chance to be cured. Everyone I run into seems to be afflicted with something. What are we getting ourselves into?
More to come later

Losing Season


We need to face up to the fact that we have been getting creamed on the floor lately. You can blame the match-ups, or the schedule, or the quality of the food we get on the road if you want to, but winners don't focus on blame, they focus on game.

Over our last five matches we're 1-4, and that's not going to get us into the Tournament. We had a promising lead against the Vampires, but then blew it when we let their lead scorer get loose. In the park against Grond and the Mercs, we never even got our head into the game. Then we lost to Foxbat -- let me say that again, FOXBAT --who's the joke of the league. We won out at the Terminal, but we played like we were in high school, so those characters must have been even bigger losers than we are. OmegaWorld....

I'm not going to give you a cutesy sports metaphor about OmegaWorld. I just don't feel like it with over 30 people dead.

These games are for keeps, and we can't even play like they were just basketball.

When I was a junior in high school, I played for a season under the worst coach I've ever had. It was one of the more depressing experiences I've had in my life. His name was Mr. Nonie, and thanks to his "leadership" we had a near-winless season, in spite of some major talent on the team. I transfered.

That was the coach's fault, but what's happing to us is our fault. We play like we belong on Mr. Nonie's team.

The new season starts today. We need teamwork, we need drill, and we need a solid playbook. At the end of the season, we don't want Dick Vitale saying we belong on his "Foxbat's Favorites" team.

We all need to work on the playbook. I have some preliminary thoughts, but I don't know you guys' powers as well as you know them yourself. Let's think about this, and see what we can put together.

Preliminary Thoughts...

The first thing is, we're pretty much always on defense. That's just the way it is in the superhero game. We play a kind of bastard form of the man-to-man defense, and that's it. Sometimes we would be better off in a zone, or in a box-and-four. When we do play man-to-man, we need to arrange batter matchups.

Some players are hard to hit: If it's 'cause they're small, then I matchup well. Otherwise Triple Forte with his mental powers or Hooligan with his accuracy are good choices. Or do you do some kind of area effect, Vanguard? At least you could wrap them up in your force wall. Who would be best? It should be their default role.

Some players are hard to hurt: My punch can be telliing, and I have my Flea Bite as well. Trauma's also a heavy hitter, and again TF's mental powers can be good. And of course Hooligan's "Head-butt of Justice" combined with his uncanny ability to observe a player's weak spot, makes him a natural. Again, who's best?

Some players hit too hard: But nobody is going to throw them out of the game for intentional fouling, unless it's us. I dodge pretty good. Vanguard, does your force field give you the highest defense on the team? If it does, given your slower speed, you would be the best person to go one-on-one with the heavy hitters, keeping them tangled up while someone else on the team goes for the ball. Hooligan often seems to end up with this role, and it's not working for him or the team.

Hooligan would shine on the fast break, when the other team has the ball and is driving for the basket ahead of us. He's fast, and could get there to slow them down and throw off their shot until the rest of us catch up.

Another good role for Hooligan would be floor fights -- finishing off the cripples who are down but not out. I'm not good for that. I hate hitting a man when he's down (with my strength I could hurt somebody), and usually my tiny fist would be more useful somewhere else anyway. Hooligan's speed would allow him to get a quick blow off against a downed foe without throwing off his game.

But those are both incidental to his main role: Point Guard. He's the best player we've got for keeping his eye on who might be in trouble, and getting there with a little extra whallop. His speed and flexibility should allow him to add whatever might be needed at a given point, and so he should hang back from the cliches and keep himself available. This means that the power forwards have to drive for the basket and draw the other team, so Hooligan can shoot a three-pointer, or get the ball to whoever is open.

I've kind of focused on Hooligan a little bit. I suppose it's because I'm naturally drawn to critiquing a sports motif.

But these are just examples. We need to put our heads together, and work up a playbook. And then we need to stick to it. In the last combat, the Idiot King made a fast break for the door, and Vanguard called for backup, but nobody came. I was the last man for that job, because I can't manuever in confined spaces and still deal out any damage, but I was elected by default, and was pretty useless when it came right down to it.

Basketball is a science, and it demands 110%. The superhero game is the same, only more so. We need default roles in fight, we need contingencies for villains with different goals and motivations, and we need to work the playbook until it becomes second nature. We need all this if we want a winning season, and we want a winning season.

Anyway, that's how I feel about it.

The Flea

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Bitter Justice

Vanguard mission log continued

We managed to foil some more sabotage attempts by the Idiot King. Flea thought he spotted him going into the house of mirrors. We pursued, and we almost were taken out by another of the Idiot King's deathtraps. I managed to use my powers to help me "see" the area around me. I think I haven't realized the full potiential that my powers have. I'll have to spend some time in the training room and see what else I can do.

Finally, we managed to find the Idiot King and his minions. He had a motley crew with him:

Zig-Zag-able to stretch and form his body in fantastic ways
Firefly-a shrinker who flies
Oddball-not sure what he is
Balthazar-seemed to be able to wield magic
Cryogen-able to manipulate temperature

We fought hard in the confined space of the Idiot King's control room. I convinced Zig-Zag that he was working for a homicidal maniac and he left. I didn't exactly want him to get away, but I needed to even the odds and it was the Idiot King I really wanted to catch.

I got knocked down, and Cryogen and the Idiot King escaped the control room and tried to flee. We gave chase. At just the right moment, Mason appeared from the crowd and got the drop on the Idiot King.

As I looked down at the prone form of the Idiot King, I tried to conjure up the anger I thought I'd have when we caught him. I thought of all those innocent people who died to served this maniac's plans. I imagined at this moment I would have to talk myself out of reaching down with my powers and crushing his windpipe. But I didn't need to. I realized that the Idiot King only wins if we let him change us. Just like the terrorists on 9-11, if you change, they win. Sure, I wanted revenge for all those people, but revenge has a way of eating you from the inside. Anyway, the Idiot King is such a sad individual, pity is my natural emotion more than burning hatred.

I guess I'll just have to settle for bitter justice.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Warhammer character stuff

I've been trying to figure out the best way to start everyone's character career-wise, making sure that the party contained whatever the group felt they needed while still keeping some of the randomness I've grown to love.

I saw someone on line talking about his system, where he allowed everyone in the party to make two career rolls.

The party then pooled all of their rolls together, and everyone had the full list from which to pick a career. He said there were a few moments of confusion because different rolls mean different things to different races, but overall he said it went well. For example, it's possible as a party you might roll 07, 22, 24, 52, 64, 67, 77, 79, 88, and 94. Tim then decides that it's HIGH TIME he played a Halfling Vagabond, which requires a roll between 91-94. So 94 gets scratched off the list and the process continues...

I'm thinking about trying this to see what happens. Anyone see any potential drawbacks? I'd probably be willing, if people were concerned about making sure certain careers were options on the board, to allow you to call one of the rolls - for instance, if you wanted to make sure there was an apprentice wizard in the party, you could make one regular roll and then just announce a second roll of an 03, which would allow either an elf or a human to start as a wizard.

At any rate, I've got 3+ weeks to tinker and come up with a system I like. Any input would be most appreciated.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Helping Shawn Move

Ok, I am about to pull the computer apart for the move which means that I am not going to have access for a bit.

But, I am asking for the obvious help on the 30th in carrying the heavy shit out of my house and into Rachael's garage for the 2 days that it will need to stay there before being moved into my new place on August.

On Saturday the 30th I will need help for about 3 hours (as long as we have the fucking truck *Fuck UHaul*) in the afternoon, at approx. 3 PM, to take the heavy/large stuff out of the house.

Nigel, you are exempt.

Everyone else, help would be greatly appreciated.

Back to the log.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Introducing: The Freedom League!

Vanguard mission log:

We were detained by the L.A.P.D's P.A.R.T. squad. I let them know the situation. The owner of Allied Chemicals showed up. At first we thought it was Justin Grishom, but it turns out to be his twin brother Raymond Grishom. He said he didn't know about the lab below the Terminal. He says some of his employees were recently assassinated by a paranormal with sonic powers. After some more discussion and presentation of evidence, he gets us released. He has one condition: that we contact him if we run into his brother again.

Mr. Grishom gave us a ride home. We were discussing the groups name and such, and he told us that he used to sponsor the New Guardians. We discussed him becoming our sponsor as well, and I think we will try it for a while. I've been providing a lot of the capital for the group, but it might be better to lesson my profile so it isn't as easy to trace it back.

We talked about names. It was a little heated, but I think we settled on one. We shall now be known as The Freedom League! I think it has a nice ring to it.

Mason and Forte went to the interrogate prisoners from the park bombing. When they arrived the power was out. A group who announced themselves as "Image" broke out Lodestone. They left a manifesto. They claim to be a group of mutants who "will now allow mutants to be subject to the laws of humans." This is exactly what I don't need. I believe in rights for mutants, but I don't intend for them to be above the law. I understand that desperate times will drive people to desperate measures, but I fear a confrontation is in our future.

Forte wanted us to make an appearance at "Omegaworld," a superhero themed amusement park. We didn't even get in the door when screams start coming from the carousel. It started spinning faster and faster, threatening to throw people off in all directions. With some good teamwork we manage to get everyone off. Next, a ride called "Bullet Train" starts going incredibly fast. There was a message that said if the train was stopped, it would blow up a bomb. I left Mason and the rest down at the control room, while Flea and I went up to the train. We searched for the bomb but could not find it. I was thrown off the train. When I managed to return, Flea asked me to move some people out of the train car. There was a massive explosion...

I didn't know how I managed to survive, but I was told it was through the quick thinking of Trauma. Everyone on board was killed. I haven't had time for this tragedy to sink in yet. When I have time for reflection I'm sure it will be painful. Right now, I just want to get the bastard responsible.

The group headed over to another ride. Inside we hear a familiar voice: The Idiot King. I should have known a scheme this demented would be his. We fight off some robotic knights, but no sign of Idiot King.

To be continued

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Seeing Stars

Vanguard mission log:

Assault on the Terminal.

We sent Flea in to do recon, but we lost radio contact with him, so we drove through the front gates and attacked. Had to fight some mercs known as the Raiders.

Bullet: highly trained normal with high tech weapons
Starseer: wired looking guy with laser-like powers, maybe an Alien
Big John: Giant fighter
The Exterminator: Half man Half machine with high tech weapons

Things didn't start out so good. I got blinded by a grenade and then something hit me, I'm not sure what. When I woke up, I expected to see us getting defeated. I don't mean that arrogantly, it's just that things didn't look very good when I went down. Turns out, Flea showed up, and the rest of the team hung together well. Trauma was taken out, but Hooligan and Tripleforte were still slugging. Tripleforte seems to be a lot more resilient than he looks. I had a hard time fighting Big John, but with teamwork we prevailed. I look at this as a great victory, because we were able to pull together and overcome adversity.

We investigated the Terminal. No good clues found in the complex. Then Tripleforte discovered a fake tank that lead to an underground facility. We spread out and searched it. There was a lot of high tech equipment, but we really couldn't make much out of it. Next thing we know, Trauma is calling out. I get there and some Thing is strangling him. It looked like a man shaped blob of evil pudding. Meanwhile, other team members were dealing with a metal woman known as Chrome. We managed to overcome both enemies, but not before Trauma was strangled and I got a broken arm when Tripleforte came flying in and crashed into me. I wasn't expecting it, and wasn't able to deflect the blow.

We managed to find out a good amount of information.

[see supplemental entries]

Diplomacy segues into Warhammer

I don't know if any of you are Diplomacy players or not, but if you are... acquaintence of mine is heading off to law school at the beginning of August. He owns Diplomacy, but has never played, because it requires people willing to give up several hours to play.

We'll be playing on July 29th, which I'm pretty sure is a Friday. If the 29th is in fact not a Friday, we're playing on the Friday closest to July 29th. Probably starting about 6 pm.

If you both want to play and are able to play on that particular evening, let me know, otherwise, go on with your lives as if nothing has happened.

To my second point, I plan on running Warhammer Real Soon Now(tm). I have a few questions for you...

A) Those of you who have the book (which may be all of you) - have you read the intro adventure in the back? It leads pretty well into the Paths of the Damned stuff, so I'd like to use that to start. However, if anyone has gone through it, I could whip something else up instead to lead you down the path to grim and perilous adventure.

B) The Plundered Vaults book has some short one-offs, which I will probably use at some point. Three of them are reprinted from WFRP v1. Two of them appeared in White Dwarf, while one comes straight from The Restless Dead. I'm not sure what you ran in the past, Shawn, so if any of this rings a bell, let me know.

C) Are you all interested in rolling your characters up completely randomly, or making characters with a starting career and character concept already in mind? Me myself, I prefer to do it completely randomly, but not so much that I'd refuse the other method.

I think that's it. Hopefully. For now.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Some other game stuff I wanted to get to

Nigel: The Flea wanted to talk to Memorysmith or someone else at Project: Lifeline about the whole vampires and mutants thing. It is suggested to you that Dr. Helena Amory, the head of the department of Metahuman Studies at UCLA would be a good person to ask. She is an expert in superhuman genetics and mutant biology, and has been helpful to them in the past. Another possibility is Dr. Philadelphia Ryan, the head of the Horizon Institute which deals with the unique medical and psychological problems of superhumans.

Shawn: You wanted to ask the same questions from a different angle, and wanted to ask Ebonfire about it. While Brian may not recall her, his character will certainly recall Lynda Crighton, the owner of the Nightengale Bookery, an occult bookstore that has a number of mystical texts as well as selling various anti-monster paraphenalia including stakes such. She seemed to be pretty knowledgeable about occult matters, and even forgave him for trying to stab her to death (she seemed to understand how it happened). Ebonfire is just not that knowledgeable about the lore as you would want your advocate to be; and while you yourself are probably the best expert you know on things occultish you wanted another expert witness to back you up and she might just fit the bill.

Brian: You wanted to ask about getting your own radio show. This is possible. However, the station is not entirely sure that the format would have the appeal needed. They want you to generate some publicity buzz before you go on the air. To that end, they have you meet with producer Ron St. John, who makes the tv show "To Save the World", and superhero soap opera. An amusement park is opening up soon with a "To Save the World" theme, and he thinks you can both help each other. Having a real superhero team there will generate buzz for the opening, and you can use the occasion to announce your show thus gaining the attention of all the fans and media folks. However, until they are sure the format works, they are going to have you do a 1/2 hour segment at the end of the "Ragin Gail Kelso" show; she is a popular personality who is pretty much the opposite of Fitzwater (the reason you chose this station in the first place).

Finally, you all were waiting to hear back from Ebonfire about the Vampire situation. He and Moonsilver have been working on it, but they know very little about LA being mainly New Yorkers. So, they hired a private detective, an Abel Giantino, a tall man in his early 50's with light brown hair and hazel eyes, very much with an aura of confidence and competence. He has certain knowledge of the seamier side of LA, and tells you what his investigations have turned up:

Lucia Pacciola is the daughter of Dominic Pacciola, who was consiglieri for the Scatucci mafia family until he was killed by the Shadowfists. To all appearances she was not involved in any of her fathers activities; she seemed to want nothing to do with the mafia. She got a degree in law, and while in college she met Dr. Alexander Thomas, a professor of egyptology whom she began a relationship with. Giantino suspects that she may have been turned into a vampire by Dr. Thomas; there is evidence to suggest he was a vampire. He was arrested on charges of assault and burned up in his cell when morning came along. He was in some way associated with the New Guardians; he lived in their house. He and Lucia had some kind of falling out after an incident involving an assasination by Demise of a Morelli family underboss at "Pappa Caccitore's" may have been the night he turned her into a vampire. At least, she never saw him or spoke to him again after that.

For reasons unknown, she seemed to change her mind about being involved with the family business, especially after her father was killed by Synapse. It is likely she began turning other members of the Scatucci family into vampires, it made them completely immune to the powers of Synapse and Demise as well as made them more able to fight back. She became the nominal head of the family and was able to keep control of many Scatucci enterprises, such as waste disposal, dockworkers, certain unions, smuggling, and a small territory near the waterfront.

Things he knows about connected to her operation:

Phil Mariani: chief steward of the tile layers and workers union.
Los Angeles Flower Market: In Venice Beach, run by Michael "Tulips" DeAngelo, the flower market is basically held hostage by the mob.
Viva Italiana: Restaurant is half owned by Mickey "Numbers" Tosconi, a caporegima in the Scatuccis. Other half is owned by Charles Harmon, who is likely mobbed up as well.
Andy Polevski: Assistant harbormaster, I'm pretty sure he is "friends" with several Scatucci associates.
Councilman Joseph Ruggiero: no proof, but word on the street is he's mobbed up and will take bribes from just about anyone.
Club 20: Recently purchased in the last few years by Anthony "Drummer Boy" Lambesti, a Scatucci captain, this club seems to be a source of ecstasy and other like drugs.
The Fish Market: The president of the association is Aldo "the Fish" Cardinale, a high ranking caporegima, and is totally corrupted by mob influence. (ask if you want details)

Info from Chrome's Brain, and other aftermath

I didn't have time last night to fill Brian in on what he got out of reading Chrome's mind or wrap things up as much as I wanted to, so I figured that I would just go ahead and post it here. It will probably be more complete and easily recalled this way anyhow. In fact, there was some other information that some players had requested to get that I had planned on getting to last night, but the fight went longer than I thought it would. I may post some more stuff after this one just to keep things rolling, I want to try to get done in the next four weeks. Anyway:

Dr. Kimberly Chase, or Chrome, is working in this secret lab for several different reasons. She is not on the payroll of Allied Chemicals. She agreed to work on something called Project: Helios in exchange for having this lab set up for her and all the materials she would need, plus a steady supply of heavy-metal salts and minerals which she needs to ingest to live; stuff the company can supply easily with little notice. Project: Helios is trying to create some kind of an "ultra-plasma" substance which can channel and control tremendous amounts of heat. This substance has already been created and tested, although it has so far proved to be unstable and vulnerable to low temperatures, and she is working on a way to fix these problems. The test involved was the "accident" at the chemical plant that turned Maria Spiros into Phosphorous. It was not an accident at all but a deliberate test to see what effect it would have if a human was exposed to it. Chrome does not know who actually arranged the accident, but she suspects it was a man she knows only as Photon, a superhuman for whom Project: Helios is being developed. Chrome used to work at the Horizon Inst. before she became a criminal, and she has been trying to set up a system here in the lab to contain Phosphorous like the one they have there; she has been planning to kidnap her from the Horizon Inst. and bring her here to conduct tests on her.

She has had contact with Photon only a few times, she does not know why he has the ability to pull strings at Allied Chemicals the way he does. She does know that only a very few employees know about her, her lab, and her project; mostly the upper management (including the President, Terrence Martins) and a few select employees like the 4 security specialists who rotate shifts guarding the lab while she works. She theorizes that either Photon is one of those people in disguise (though she doubts it, she has seen Photon with many of them at the same time), he has some kind of blackmail power over Martins (or threats to harm him/family?), or he has some kind of other deal worked out with Martins.

Why is she doing this? Because she also is allowed to use the lab to work on her own projects. The mutations she triggered in herself by injecting herself with Alloy's blood have not stopped; she continues to mutate and is worried that she may develop the same disease that killed Alloy. She has been kidnapping people and bringing them to this lab to perform experiments on them designed to further her theories on inducing paranormal abilities, as well as find a way to understand her own. Most of her subjects are now dead, but one experiment in trying to create a regenerative serum resulted in the creation of Ooze, who she is keeping alive until she can figure out a way to refine it. He is quite mad from the transformation, but does not seem to be aware of his madness. She plans to eliminate him when she has learned all she can from him. She believes him to be safely contained in one of the tubes in the auxiliary lab.

Okay, I think that's about it for what can be gotten from her brain, if you have any further questions go ahead and ask.

As far as other things you discover while searching the place, Ooze seems to have killed the security guard on duty and stashed him in the generator room. Power to his containment vessel was temporarily interrupted very recently, allowing him to escape before the backup generator took over. Perhaps it was when Vanguard cut the relay box outside.

From the stuff that Vanguard went through in the administrative building, none of the employees that work at the Terminal know about the lab. All business is legitimate although sometimes the chemical deliveries are wrong or come at odd times. The manager has sent several memos recommending that the place be decomissioned and a more modern and efficient facility replace it; these memos have been ignored.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Mall Crazy

Vanguard Mission Log:

The base nears completion. The base computer is still in Beta testing phase and is not ready for full time duty just yet. Dammit, of course the pure mahogany conference table with the 14 karat gold inlay is on backorder. It will be nice to have a real conference table for a change, not that the Prof's house isn't cozy...

I spent some time going out on the talk show circuit. Did all the locals, (Good Morning L.A., City File, and This Week), hoping to get a national spot on NPR, maybe Diane Rehm? I'm really trying to get across that this insurance issue is really about privacy. On the other hand, I can't appear to be putting paranormal's concerns above the general public. Damn, this is a dangerous political road to follow.

I called a meeting at the new base in order to figure out the "group's" next move. There was a lot of interest in the vampire woman who knows all about us. I assured everyone that I am very concerned about it as well. We just don't have any leads right now. I convinced everyone (some still grumbling) to help me check out the Terminal. It's not as urgent a problem, but at least we know where the target is. We started making plans when the Prof noticed some commotion at the New Urbana Galleria, a fancy new shopping mall. We headed down there.

We arrived at the mall to find...Nothing. Nothing seemed to be happening. We split up and pretty soon we run into a certified 24k looney: Foxbat. Sure, all criminal "masterminds" are messed up, but this guy needed help, he was trying to steal a big fake diamond! He had a "centipede mobile and a cast of wierdos:

Agent X, Agent 1, and Agent Orange. No I'm not making this up.
Exoskeleton Man.
harmonious Fist
and some chick called Charlie.

We started in on trying to reel these guys in when G.R.A.B shows up! (Cheshire Cat, Black Diamond, Bluejay, and Hummingbird.) These guys are thieves, but at least they seem to try and not hurt anyone while they are doing it.

Now it's total chaos. You can't tell the players without a program. I get a chance to talk to Hummingbird, and I find out that they thought the diamond was real too. Something strange is going on.

Well, we manage to capture some of the wierdos and G.R.A.B bugs out. I didn't know where Mason and Tripleforte were during the fight. Turns out, Mason found a bunch of wireless camera around the mall. 'Forte turns up naked in a store, I'm still not sure about that one.

I took the cameras back to the base to examine in our new electronics lab. I have to admit I'm a little rusty in the lab these days, I guess that happens when you turn into an executive. I was able to determine that my company makes these cameras. Well, nice to see our stuff stands up to rough field conditions. I'll try to find a way to trace the cameras, but I suspect it'll just lead to some kind of internet connection, as the cameras have a fairly short range.

Who is recording us, and why?

Mason's Diary, pt. 1

Because of possible legal concerns, I have decided to document my daily activities in hopes of providing a written record of my mental state, my investigative activities and perhaps some clues for the police or other investigators in the event of my demise.

My name is Samuel Mason, I am a writer.

Since July of 2001, I have found myself involved with a group of “heroes.”
I use the quotations because they sometimes are less like Time Magazine presents them and more like a large dysfunctional family. Very caring, but very opinionated and not always in agreement.

Since having helped them in some small way in a Canadian manner, I have found they sometimes desperately need my skills, if not my opinion.

Since 9/11 and the information we found then, I have felt drawn to this group by the secrets we have in common. They have a wonderful view upon such a strange and fantastic world, I suspect that the inspiration will be worth some of the danger…but I digress.

Having been present at the riot/altercation between the white supremacist supers White Lightning and Carnivore against the African American super Brother Hood & the Forty Knights street gang, I decided that it would be a good idea to try and help resolve the situation by infiltrating the supremacist group lead by Marshall Endicott. To this end I have taken a job within a “racially friendly” trucking company as a union delivery driver, Michael Wilkinson.

Michael was born 12/15/1973 in Oklahoma City, OK and until moving to Los Angeles 11 months ago had never excelled at any thing in his life. He was an average student from a slightly broken home; mother re-married when he was 12, went out for football but hardly played.
His introduction to the “life-style” was as the result of his father, who had always exhibited a low-grade racism because of various affirmative action programs which always seemed to go against him at the local Bandag plant. When Mike’s mother re-married one of the plant managers who supported the programs, his dislike of Mike’s father combined with his father’s opinion of the manager pushed his rebellious teenage mind towards a dislike of change and anything ‘different.’
Mike drifted from one labor job to another until one night…

He was playing Texas Hold-‘Em in his local watering hole when everything happened. Sitting across from him was what he thought was a normal human, maybe Mexican or one of those freakish mulatto types whose mothers didn’t have enough sense to stay within their own race. Thoughts like those must have been the reason why he had a headache all night ‘cause the place wasn’t as smoky as other nights.

He was sitting on 4th street with 2 pair, thinking about his bet.
The chink had bet heavy off the deal, probably holding Big Slick, and hadn’t slowed down. Everyone else had dropped out either pre-flop or after, but Mike suited 9-8 had reaped the benefits of the flop of K-9-8. But the chink had kept up the betting, as if his hand was made. Since there wasn’t a flush on the board, the best that Mike could see was 4 to a possible straight, or a K-9 pair, but betting a K-9 as heavy as that from the deal would have been dumb. This has to be a bluff, he thought.
4th Street showed a 4th suit on the board with a deuce attached. The chink bet and re-raised up to the table limit. Mike considered the likelihood of K-9 being down in front of the chink. He had played big all night long, but had cashed in each time.
His luck can’t run forever and he can’t be playing anything on this hand, Mike finally decided, calling.
The River turned up another 8. Full house.
Mike bet, re-raised, and called to the limit. After he flipped the boat, the chink flipped his cards and started raking in the pot.
Mike remembers seeing all the cowboys on the table, between the board and the chink’s hole cards. He remembers being pissed off for having not seen the additional king on the board and having missed played so badly, but then he remembers Bill Carlson asking the chink what he thought he was doing?
Bill had arrived late and had been watching the game until a seat opened up, but right then he was looking over the table asking why a full house was beat by 3 of a kind?
Mike re-looked at the cards and saw three kings.
The table exploded with activity.
Several people grabbed at the chink, a couple of people moved around behind him to block his exit, the bar tender Mattie grabbed a shotgun from behind the bar and pointed it at the group, Mike grabbed for the chips as the chink flipped it up in the air, scattering cards and chips everywhere.
A scuffle happened, people tried hitting other people, several people brought down the chink, Mattie fired the shotgun at the crowd, sending a couple of people down, Mike pulled out his knife.
People holding the chink were hit from behind by others in the bar, Mattie re-loaded the shotgun, Mike stepped towards the fray, arm extended towards the chink.
Mike turned his head as he felt his shoulder grabbed from behind by Bill when someone bumped into his extended arm.
Bill’s face went white as Mike tried to figure out why he had turned him and the noise of the fight ground to a halt.
When Mike turned around, his knife was sticking from the chink’s chest and the man was grabbing at it, trying to remove it by its blood-slicked handle.
Then the chink’s head exploded.
Everyone in the bar turned towards the door as the green clad armored form standing there holstered its weapon. The markings on the armor looked military in nature, with a G evident on the chest. The figure turned and walked out of the bar in total silence.
Bill helped him out to his car where he threw up repeatedly. Mike decided at that time to leave the state and hasn’t been back since.
He believes that he might be wanted in questioning for the murder of the man.
Since that time, he has heard of the organization by the name of Genocide who is working against the mutant threat and strongly believes that the chink was a mutant. Mike now ranks mutants worse than any non-whites than he ever interacted with and is sometimes quite vocal about it.

This of course is the cover story that I have built for the cronies about Michael Wilkinson. Based partially in fact as a note, their having been an incident in Oklahoma City about a year ago fitting the outline of the story. Mike wasn’t really present, nor is he wanted in questioning.
Enough for today. I will begin the real documentation tomorrow.

April 7th 2002:
Trauma (aptly named) is staying over nights at my house in order to monitor my behavior more closely. After the tragedy involving the break-in and attack by those kids I welcome the observation. Despite his questionable morals and judgment making facilities, he is quite an able EMT. I figure as long as we can stay away from conversations about philosophy, rehabilitation, the criminal justice system, the Hooligan, Canada and almost every other topic in existence, things will go smoothly.
I suspect that he will be talking me into researching Nicodemus’s problem more, in which case I will attempt to get him to get me unrestricted access to the man. His history of how he came to this disease will be invaluable to finding a possible cure, let alone getting eyewitness information as to the manner of life within the country he was born.

April 8th 2002:
A list of potential questions:
When did he first notice the disease?
What form did it initially take?
When did he notice it getting worse?
What are the symptoms? When do they get worse?
What has he tried to alleviate the symptoms, what has worked, what hasn’t?
He went into a suspended animation, what method was used for that?
What were the expected conditions for his sleeping body during the suspension?
Were they the same as he expected when he arose?
Are there others whom he has known with this disease?

April 9th 2002:
Well, yesterday was a good starting point.
The compiled story of the questions above: After he had started studying the principles of alchemy on his own is when he discovered the symptoms. As time went on he found the symptoms getting worse. He really hasn’t ever found anything that has alleviated the symptoms. After a certain point he placed himself within the suspended animation in order to let time pass. There weren’t any surprises about the suspension. He hasn’t heard of anyone else having suffered from this disease, but then he hadn’t thought to look.
I am noticing that he isn’t as sharp a tack as we originally thought…I was able to get him speaking about his home country and conditions of the time without any problem. He also made several admissions as to why he initially went into alchemy… I will be checking on those over the next few days. Meeting with the studio and Durante tomorrow, hope that goes well.

April 10th 2002:
Studio execs are such arrogant pricks. I don’t quite see how Durante deals with them as often as he does. Of course he would tell me that he isn’t a movie star, he is a jazz musician.
I can handle the changes to the script, I can handle the changes to the story, I can even handle the changes to the timeline, but making a serious meeting about changing my name in the credits? This was not worth my time away from researching the Nicodemus problem.
At least the movie is still going forward, that much is making me happy. This way Shadowdancer won’t be looking to revenge himself against Durante or myself anytime soon. Perhaps if the movie gets put straight to video, or gets locked away for a long time we should watch for problems against the movie studio execs, but that shouldn’t happen.
I got a few of the materials Nicodemus recommended for me to review… almost a primer of information for alchemy. Perhaps I, with my other knowledge, I can get to the root of the problem.

April 12th 2002:
It happened again, but this time not in the house.
I don’t know really if I want to weep or be happy that it happened.
Yesterday, Mike was at the local bar again, spending time with the Endicott people winding down after work.
In walks White Lightning, to a hail of cheers and applause. I stand up, make some noises myself, trying to figure out how to get closer to him in order to determine where he is staying or when he will be available for detainment for the police.
He walks over to the bar in a crowd when Seth, the bartender, suddenly shoots him twice in the chest and once in the head.
The crowd scatters, guns are drawn, tables are upended, and windows crash in.
Seth strips off his latex mask revealing a masked figure underneath, I believe his name is The Crusader. Standing up by the windows are several other “costumed” figures, all drawing guns and starting to shoot people who are moving towards The Crusader.
I duck back down and keep covered, while his posse of friends covers his escape from the bar.
After they left several of us got up and went after them, looking for a bit of payback for White Lightning.
The bulk of us went east after the group in the distance, but I knew that had to be a ruse, so I turned and headed west quietly and carefully.
Then I heard the click behind me.
I slowly turned around and found Gunslinger with “the drop” on me. He said something witty as I was trying to explain what was really going on…and prepared to shoot.
Then everything went black.
When I woke up, Gunslinger was lying in the alley, dead. No marks, no blood, nothing.
I heard the other group returning, so I did the only thing I could think of, I shot his body three times. Once in the hand, once in the chest and once in the head.

I am a hero to the group. I took down one of the people who helped kill White Lightning. I suspect this will get me closer into the Endicott inner circle and the compound.
I feel so sick. I took another life again and I can’t control it. I will work another couple of days on the job and then take some extended vacation… I don’t think the managers will complain. I’m the hero because I am a murderer.
I really want these people to cease.
I am going to go crawl around a bottle of Glenmoraige. Trauma can wonder.

April 18th 2002:
At least the last several days have been productive.
I found the books that Nicodemus recommended, read them and then researched in some other texts. I think that I have an idea.
As the song goes, “there are two paths you can go by…” Fast and slow.
The fast path, which Nicodemus took, seems to have a strong disadvantage to it. It seems to force a flaw into the practitioner. There are many documented cases of this type of effect entering into the system of a practitioner within the literature and tomes.
With a couple of exceptions they all seem to be fatal. I am following up on the exceptions in the next couple of days.
The other path, slower, seems related to the Rosicrucian belief system and is presided over by the Order of the Rosey Cross. I will see what Nicodemus has to say about that when I meet with him next.
Trauma was at least been observant enough to comment on my heavy drinking the other night as being unusual and watched me carefully as I recovered from the hangover and have been researching for the last couple of days.
His observance however is overshadowed by his idiocy when it comes to this project. He admittedly doesn’t know the first steps to take in order to help Nicodemus, yet made this promise to him that we would work towards finding a cure before he dies. When I try to work on the cure and get his assistance, he refuses to understand the basic concepts of the process and wears his ignorance as a badge of honor.
Then, his obvious intent in helping Nicodemus being as a rehabilitation tool, he degrades and treats the patient without the simplest forms of respect. He constantly mispronounces his name in a derogatory fashion which belies his obvious distain for the patient/prisoner. This from a person who indicates that he has respect for the Hippocratic Oath!
I suspect that I need to point out to him that the line about “I will use my power to help the sick to the best of my ability and judgment; I will abstain from harming or wrongdoing any man by it.” refers to more than just his ability to grow, shrink and heal, but also his voice, actions and manner. By treating this man with no respect at all, he does him wrong and prosecutes harm against him.
I suspect that there is no reason to cause my blood pressure the increase as the finer points of this argument will be lost on the dunderhead.
Regardless, I will stay the course since he has promised us to the cause. Perhaps Vanguard will be able to speak to him about promising these types of things in the future.

April 19th 2002:
What started him on the path of alchemy?
Was he approached by anyone with interest in teaching him?
Did he seek out anyone to teach him?
Why did he study by himself?
How fast was his rise in power?
Since the symptoms seemed to have increased across time, were they really increasing along a gradient with his power rather than time?
Has he ever heard of the Order of the Rosey Cross?
Is he familiar with the Rosicrucian’s teachings?
Has he heard of the following names: Angelico of Venice, Isabella Del Oro, Vjerkond Struamactson, and Kiief Harksen?

April 20th 2002:
I have no idea how Nicodemus ever learned how to perform alchemy, he can’t read Greek. Heck, he is hardly literate at Latin, let along some of the more esoteric dialects of Italian needed to make simple transformations. He almost earns the sobriquet that Trauma puts on him, but he has been alive for almost 6 centuries because of his will to live, so I guess I can’t call him too dumb.
He did recognize a couple of the others who had died of similar causes, but the others he didn’t know of. I guess there isn’t really an alchemist’s network of sharing secrets in existence today, let alone then.
Kind of a guarded profession with a decent amount of industrial espionage. Hmmm, I think there is a story idea in there somewhere…
It seems as if he moved quite quickly along the rise to power. He knew of the Rosicrucians, and although he had sought out a teacher with them, they seem to have rejected him in some manner…perhaps they have some way to resolve this problem, or their method of teaching the skill sidesteps the problem involved. Shame I don’t know any one who is a member.

April 22nd 2002:
Research research research.
Isabella Del Oro, born in the late 1670’s, lived in the Los Angeles area, was reputedly killed by the Church in 1715 when accused of consorting with demons and devils on the property that she owned. Strong probability that she was an alchemist and might have been made of gold? (Alchemical accident?)
The good people that rose up and killed her never found the body, assuming that it was spirited away by her malefactors, er benefactors in this case. They burned the hacienda to the ground.
I have a location of the property, I will see what happened to it from there… she seems to be a good lead for possibly having made any progress on this disease.

April 24th 2002:
Went back to work at the route yesterday, everyone has great things to say to me for how I handled myself at the bar a few weeks ago. I suspect that sometime in the future I will need a great deal of therapy as the result of this. This is not the thing which people should be lauded and rewarded for. They should be punished and made to sit in a small box for a very long time. The only solace that I have allowed myself in this is that I am not certain what happened in the blackness. It is quite likely that I killed him, it is almost the only explanation, but I have only tenuous proof.
Proof that it has happened two times to me, but no proof that it was me acting either time.

That aside, I have found something interesting about the property I am researching.

It seems that the property sat empty for about 50 years before it was purchased by a Mexican woman, who paid with newly minted gold coins. When she died, unwed and childless, the property was left to a niece of hers who traveled a long distance to claim it.
The niece, who died unwed and childless, also left it to a niece… and so on and so on until the most recent niece, Anita Ramirez, claimed the land from her aunt’s estate about 20 years ago.

So, Durante and I are going to go have a meeting with Mrs. Ramirez on the pretense of enlightening the woman as to the interesting history of her familial home. We will be asking her if she wouldn’t mind us poking around the grounds looking for a hidden tunnel or room which might not have been noticed.
However, I suspect that we will be speaking with Isabella herself, in which case I need to bring a proper gift for her. Perhaps Shadowdancer will use his good taste in jewelry to direct me towards something I can afford and can present to her.

April 25th 2002:
I have to remind myself on a regular basis that Shadowdancer is a thief. He does indeed have good taste in jewelry, but he is a thief.
Luckily I have something I forgot about. The Stone.
After calling the property and arranging a meeting with Ms. Ramirez we went shopping.
Durante indicated that her name was present within the High Society pages at local art gallery openings and fashion shows, sometimes with a date, sometimes not, never the same man.
After wandering around Rodeo Drive for a bit, looking at various pieces of art made with precious metals and jewels, we found a delicate gold crown with metal veil which gave the proper implication of the gift and receiver.
The solid gold version of it would have set me a back a bit, but we were able to find a sterling silver version for ¼ of the price which I adjusted into gold.
Then Durante, Trauma and I went to the hacienda.
She seems to have a man-servant around the house. He met us at the door, took our gift and bade us wait in the foyer for his mistress’s pleasure.
After a few minutes he led us into a library where she was seated with the box on her lap. A pleasant woman, stunning with her dress and face, which it should have been since it wasn’t real… when I concentrated on her after sitting down I could tell that it was a projection.
We danced around the topic for a bit, Trauma being blissfully silent during the verbal fencing, when I took the leap by speaking in Spanish and addressing her by her real name. I was quite quick to tell her that we were not fortune hunters in any way, but if we could follow the trail, others could. I offered to help her with that oversight and then, switching back to English, asked her to relate some details of her history. She talked a little about how the peasants were easily frightened by things they didn’t understand and snorted derisively with the suggestion that she was consorting with devils or demons in the household.
We spoke of Nicodemus, whom she had heard of, and his malady asking if she had perhaps studied this problem and if she would have any pointers to give.
She indicated that she had actually found an elixir that might heal him, having a similar problem herself, but she was unable to avail herself to it. She then dropped the projection of flesh and blood and showed herself in her “natural” state.
She is quite gorgeous, being made of solid gold. Her features are quite rounded and pleasant to view, as opposed to angular or hammered.
I began to ask a few questions about her continued existence, since she obviously is not able to, or in need of ingesting solid food. She indicated that she has another concoction that she imbibes, through the use of alchemy which requires a certain amount of prepared gold. She gestured towards the veil and crown indicating that they were beautiful, but that she would likely melt it down in order to continue her existence. I suggested that I had access to a Philosopher’s Stone and could make her some other gold so that she wouldn’t have to destroy the gift.
She then started asking me about the Stone and what could be done. It seems that the cure she has for the disease would work on her if she was more human that she is. She believes that the Stone could change her body back into flesh if I was a little more skilled with its usage.
A deal was then struck that we would acquire the ingredients for the elixir and she would make multiple draughts of it, for herself and Nicodemus if I would agree to use the stone to transmute her back into human, once I had gained the skill.
Before agreeing to the terms, I asked her a few of the questions I had asked of Nicodemus. Why she had decided on alchemy, had she found a teacher or learned on her own, had she heard of the Rosicrucians,
She gave us a mystical shopping list, most of which she indicated that she would be able to obtain (Virgin’s tears, Bat Wing, etc.) but three ingredients that were unique.
Vampire Dust (A destroyed vampire)
The Gem of Amora
The heartsblood of the Chernibogg demon
Well, it sounds like an interesting list. Tomorrow I will start figuring out what it is all about.

Of course I will have to pick up Durante from Anita’s house, in the morning. *sigh*