Small Change

Few Alternatives
Story 5 - Session 7

With two days to recuperate from their… excursion with Warlord, all gather at Vikky’s place for a regular round table discussion.

Al, hoping to give Gabriel a frame of reference for the likes of sapes they had to deal with and will have to deal with again, and how much firepower the group has to work with, offers for him to ‘pry’ her mind and watch the fight with Spiralnebel’s task force. Carmen offers camping as an alternative; Vikky has some spells she hasn’t been able to fully try out herself anyway, and it she claims it will be a good opportunity for all of them to know each other’s boundaries and capabilities. Any further plans for a camping trip will wait until after they deal with Warlord’s addresses.

Vincent brings up the spiraling layout of the Boneyard train cars, making a reference to a tower defense game. While it’s wholly unclear who set up the train cars (perhaps the German?), there’s a fair chance the spiral was arranged to help keep zombies from within getting outside. Possibly. Nixie and Vikky make a note to try to learn if She Who Lives In Her Name, the ‘patron’ of the Boneyard graffiti, likes spirals.

Sophia reports on the address Warlord shared with them. Rhino’s top brass live in the top floor of a fortress-like office building. The security is tight; the easiest way to get into the building (taking into account the number of people they’d have to work through to get to Rhino’s heads) is through the ceiling. There is a basement with street access — probably for their wares — and the top floor suite has a safe room.

The plan amounts to Sophia and Vikky flying rope up to the top of the building so that the rest can climb up stealthily. Once on top, they will blast a hole through the ceiling so they can all drop in from above and hit Rhino before they can react. Once they’re done, they’ll take the rope back down and disperse.

However, Al protests, asking if there are any alternatives to killing Rhino’s heads. Is there any chance of driving Rhino out of the city without killing the leaders – and possibly having to kill anyone who steps up to take their place? The short answer is there are very few effective, peaceful means of erasing the syndicates that won’t take months or years to enact – at least, that anyone in the group can dream up currently.

The final answer is left to Nixie’s divination: do they hit hard or is there a separate option they’re unaware of?


Date

Wednesday, September 4th, 2167

Moon

Waxing Quarter

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 388 XP

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Gabriel and the Mind Prying Trailer
Story 5 - Session 6

With perhaps surprisingly little fuss, Warlord and his gang are escorted into the truck trailer and driven off the quarry to a more secluded location. The goods he brought are shortly picked up by Sophia’s girls.

Inside the truck, Gabriel gets things underway as Carmen binds the men up. He attempts, and fails, to persuade Warlord to tell them the address of where they could find Rhino’s two leaders. Warlord, naturally, refuses, requiring Gabe to most unpleasantly invade his mind. The neosape doesn’t take well to it, but Gabe isn’t able to pry anything out. Gabe moves on to the next grunt down the line with similar results.

After an hour’s break, Gabe returns with the news that he could simply shatter Warlord’s mind to get what he wants, but he’d rather not. Carmen fails to convince their captive it will be better to just tell them and not have to go through this mental torment. Nixie, as Crow, is able to convince him, however — an invisible little bird of common sense and compassion, as it were. He recites a few addresses.

Before he and his men can be safely released, however, Gabe subjects each and every one of them to a binding oath: they cannot speak of or otherwise communicate what they have experienced this evening. Afterwards, they are sent on their way, and the team disperses with their new information.

Side note: Vincent mentions for Nixie to ask him about the traincars in the Boneyard.


Date

Monday, September 2nd, 2167

Moon

Waxing Quarter

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 384 XP

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Warlording at the Quarry
Story 5 - Session 5

Tonight’s the night to kidnap Warlord Stephens. Vincent has procured a trailer truck. Gabriel has procured chains, locks, and a folding chair. Everyone meets up at least an hour before the meeting to iron out any last questions. When Warlord’s men are brought up, it’s determined that they should take them into custody alongside Warlord; there are risks of the men telling Rhino what happened, but there’s the option of Gabe’s supernatural oaths to keep them mum. After Sophia receives an update on the meeting’s location – the old quarry, as it were – they set off.

On the way there, Sophia receives an update from her girls: Warlord has arrived half an hour earlier than expected… and with heavy back up: at least three, very tall men with intimidating guns. She ducks into the back to tell the rest that they’ll need to hit the ground running when they arrive.

As the trailer truck rolls in, Sophia’s girls fall back from the scene. Vincent’s first out of the truck, and subsequently the first target on Warlord’s shit list. Battle breaks. It doesn’t last long. The three big brutes are picked off while Warlord retreats to his car, though any attempt to escape is foiled by popped tires. He orders his men to hold and asks what the group wants of him. Though he doesn’t want his men involved, with an admission that they really don’t have a choice, Warlord agrees for him and his men to come with them.


Date

Monday, September 2nd, 2167

Moon

Waxing Quarter

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Challenge Award | 2 XP
Total | 6 XP
Running Total | 380 XP

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Progress and Plotting
Story 5 - Session 4

A few days pass. Sophia calls the group together to share information she’s learned. Vincent has nothing to report on the DA’s safety beyond how boring it is. Nixie announces she’s learned that the German is an older white male with white hair who completed a one man raid on Volcano; it’s undetermined if this was before or after their own raid.

Borphia shares:

  1. The girl gang in Dublinsky park will watch over the Boneyard for them.
  2. Sophia found Boris the Spider at the Pink Flamingo and followed him back to his apartment. When she searched the room, she found nothing of consequence.
  3. One of Rhino’s higher-ups, Arthur “Warlord” Stephens, completes his arms dealing, at least in part, at Dublinsky park. Sophia’s girl gang is open to the idea of arranging a deal with him.

Sophia shares an idea where they draw Arthur out for a deal, stage a fake attack and allow one of her forms, Tanisha, to ‘save the day’ so as to increase her appeal to Rhino. Gabriel suggests that, if they get their hands on Arthur, he can simply read his mind to extract relevant information. Getting Arthur drunk is offered as an option to make this easier for Gabe, and the Dance Squad is fleetingly considered as assistance.

Ultimately, Nixie asks the powers that be and determines their best bet for getting information on Rhino’s upper management is to kidnap Arthur, let Gabe plunge his mind, then have him swear a supernatural oath to prevent him from blabbing about the ordeal to anyone else. They’ll need to obtain a trailer truck and some fire-resistant restraints for the fire aspect before they kidnap him, but Sophia confirms that her girls will arrange the deal, and lets the group know they have until September 2nd to get everything they need together.


Date

Wednesday, August 28th, 2167

Moon

Waxing Crescent

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 374 XP

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Anomaly
Story 5 - Session 3

After a brief interlude for Viktoriya’s birthday, Gabriel sends out the request to meet and discuss their plans for the syndicates.

One thing he mentions is Boris the Spider and the Oculus syndicate he’s apparently associated with. While its own crime syndicate, Oculus has no real foot hold in Thunder City (though that may change, given the vacancies left by Lightning, King and Volcano) and, more importantly, gave birth to Spiralnebel. Boris is Spiralnebel’s eyes and ears in Thunder City; Gabriel suggests that they tail or kidnap him to keep an eye on the organization’s movement throughout the city.

Nixie presents some confusing and concerning information: she’s tried to look into the happenings at the Boneyard but hasn’t received any concrete answer. Apparently, there are certain anomalies in the city – beings outside of Nixie’s web of knowledge: demons, undead, and most bafflingly, the “Fair Folk”. Any one of these uncommon but strange, dangerous beings could be the cause for the Boneyard’s zombies, but there’s not reliable way to track or find the culprit.

Nixie also announces that one anomaly present in Thunder City is planning on murdering the DA, and urges that she should be closely watched. Additionally, she learned that the German is also an anomaly.

With several things to keep tabs on the team (watching over the DA, babysitting the Boneyard, learning more about Rhino, and tracking down Boris the Spider) splits to take care of business.


Date

Sunday, August 25th, 2167

Moon

New Moon

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 370 XP

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Z-Zombies
Story 5 - Session 2

Continuing onward into the Boneyard, things become… strange. The area around the caboose – which Nixie has mentioned before is a gateway to the Shadowlands – has been completely rearranged. Train cars have been moved into a huge spiral. At the eye sits the caboose and a number of strange, metal statues. No one is seemingly around, but the question is obvious: who moved all the train cars?

Speculation is cut short by noises coming from the caboose. The team moves into position, ready to take down whatever Al releases from the caboose door (which has been ‘unlocked’ since their last visit there). Out stumbles… what can only be described as a zombie. Luckily, it, and the small horde of undead coming out from within the caboose, are put down easily into a pile of mush.

They all wonder: where did the zombies come from? Did they come from the Shadowlands, or were they put in the caboose before for safe keeping? Is it a disease or an act of necromancy? Nixie puts everyone under quarantine, but there are some protests in leaving the pile of dead zombies where they lay. Luckily, the friendly neighborhood Sidereal figures out with a quick phone call that the zombies are only lepers under the influence of necromancy, and that the bodies can be safely disposed of with fire.

Clearly, the Boneyard has become a bigger problem now, but there are no answers to all their questions yet…


Date

Thursday, August 22nd, 2167

Moon

Waning Gibbous

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 366 XP

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Back to the Boneyard
Story 5 - Session 1

Two weeks pass, half by choice and half by necessity – to let the heat die down after the collective murder of a Spiralnebel task force and to monitor any news that comes in about the syndicates. The group reconvenes to start the planning process for their next step in clearing Thunder City of its crime overlords.

Smolphia reports a few things:

  1. Rhino is aware of “The German,” a person one of the Spiralnebel agents told their associates to look out for before their grand fought broke out. Supposedly, this white male and his entourage are responsible for King Syndicate’s retreat from Thunder City. Rhino believes this man is neosapient – quite possibly Solar, his entourage normal.
  2. Sophia has made arrangements with a small-time gang in North TC to keep their ears out for any information. They’ve reported a rumor that the Boneyard Boys are now lead by a neosapient young boy.
  3. She is also working – incognito – with Rhino, to gain insight from within the organization.

It’s suggested that a visit to the Boneyard may be in order again. Nixie re-voices her concerns about the Blood Dawn disaster and expresses desire to ‘weed’ the place entirely. Demons, the shadowlands, the caboose, the strange disappearance/death of the young boy from before, and any possibility of making ‘citizens arrests’ instead of exactly vigilante justice on the Boneyard Boys all come up in conversation with little conclusion.

At the very least, Nixie stresses how important it will be to keep watch on the Boneyard, despite the potential strain that may cause on whoever participates in the watch. Cameras are considered as a possible option, though the technological and monetary limits of such will need to be considered more fully first.

However, a distinction on what the best course may be cannot be made until they have a look at the Boneyard again, so to the Boneyard they go.

When they arrive, they quickly notice strange, fresh graffiti all over the place: “Large, geometrically perfect circles painted in white. Their interiors have been hand-painted rather than sprayed, filled with dividing lines that make them look almost like pie charts, filled with mathematical formulae.” Vikky identifies them as demonic drawings related to something called ‘She Who Lives In Her Name.’ Sophia identifies that the Boneyard Boys were likely not the perpetrators, as they’re attempting to clean the markings off themselves.

Vincent abruptly approaches the two cleaning boys and brings them back to the group at gun-point. The two say they have no idea who made them – they’ve never see ‘tags’ like them before, and they started showing up a few days ago. That seems to be the limit of their usual information, and they’re released back to their cleaning.


Date

Thursday, August 22nd, 2167

Moon

Waning Gibbous

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
Total | 4 XP
Running Total | 362 XP

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And Then There Was One
Story 4 - Session 19

Come 2AM, it’s high time the worn and battered (but no longer glowing) group leaves their barn cover. There’s some discussion of if it’s safe to return back home, about whether it’s more suspicious to come back or stay away. Ultimately, everyone takes off for their respective homes after Vincent drives them back – with Sophia as exception, who stays behind to see if she can land a hit on Sir Comstock while they still might have the opportunity to. (Though she stays quite late into the day, she never gets the opportunity.)

Once (most) everyone has had the chance to relax and recuperate, they all meet up again at Vincent’s manse come 9PM that evening. Gabriel and Book join them. The former explains that their work with Spiralnebel has greatly affected the political landscape of Thunder City. Overnight, both King and Lightning started to pull up their roots and head out of town, leaving Rhino the only syndicate left in town. While this is something to celebrate, several of the group voice some concern about this. What will it mean for their progress here on out?

They can expect the smaller gangs in town may rise up (not that they’re much of an issue to take care of at this point) and Rhino might take full advantage of the sudden vacuum of power. Spiralnebel undoubtedly knows it has a serious problem at hand, though how it will accomplish dealing with said problem is far less certain. Overall, Gabriel thinks the work might be a bit tougher going forward, but not impossible.

As it turns out, King syndicate was playing as bait for Spiralnebel, as they suspected Sir Comstock would be the next hit. Lightning was informed of their Spiralnebel cleanup via a King member, Roach, who Sophia identifies as the man who sold her the information regarding the top King brass.

Cheveyo comes up during conversation, and Sophia admits that the connection she’s been tapping into to watch him hasn’t worked the past two days; it’s alive, but she gets nothing out of it. Prompted to try again now, she does so, and is able to reach into the connection this time. She says she doesn’t witness much else beyond Cheveyo telling one of his men that he urgently needs to know ‘why’, and to get the information even if they have to kidnap one of the random muscle. She mentions the names he addressed, Tenerence Love and Slickback. It’s fleetingly debated about if they should inform Cheveyo about Spiralnebel, but decide to leave him on his own for now — pending further investigation regarding his work with demon tongues.

Conversely, Nixie brings up warning Chief Irons about what happened, explaining the sudden departure of King and Lightning and what this might bring to Thunder City as a result. Carmen suggests that this might also be a good chance to introduce themselves as a group to Thunder City. Sophia suggests that the group take a week off to let the dust settle, and that Nixie and Carmen (and anyone else who’s interested) prep the message to show the team in the interim while she and whoever else look into digging up dirt on Rhino. They make the plan to regroup in a week or so to share their respective information.

One syndicate remains between them and freeing Thunder City…

(End of Story)


Date

Thursday, August 8th, 2167

Moon

Waxing Gibbous

XP

Session Award | 4 XP
End of Story Award | 2 XP
Total | 6 XP
Running Total | 358 XP

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Five Down but the Threat Remains
Story 4 - Session 18

The battle thunders on, both parties starting to reach the peak of their limits. In a single instance of gunfire hell, Vincent executes Carlos, the Air aspect after he likewise rains lightening hell on Al. Carmen takes a good chunk out of Gregor, the Earth aspect, and knocks him prone; Sophia picks him off soon after. The Scarred Woman, now alone against six neosapiens, tears into Carmen like a hellcat, but Al and Vikky end her with a punch and flock of icy hornets combo.

They’ve done it. They’ve all survived. All of them glow to various extents, bearing their true colors to the country night sky. They have no time to dawdle, though. They briefly debate interrogating Gregor, but lacking the time, Sophia simply executes him instead. They gather all the artifacts off the bodies and retreat to a barn to wait out their glow and recuperate some of the damage they suffered. Marc, not Nixie, is present now. Sophia mentions wanting to take a shot at Comstock the same evening before it gets harder to hit him, pending his hearing about the five Spiralnebel members’ deaths.

It was a true test of their strength and resolve. Does it get harder or easier from here?


Date

Wednesday, August 7th, 2167

Moon

Waxing Gibbous

XP

Session Award | 12 XP
Challenge Award | 2 XP
Total | 14 XP
Running Total | 352 XP

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Spiralnebel Showdown
Story 4 - Sessions 16 & 17

The fight continues. Thanks to a phoenix spell Vikky summoned, the Wood-aspect (and their car) are relatively quickly disposed of. Carmen and Al have their hands full with the Fire-aspect, while Nixie/Crow dodges the aggressive onslaught from the Water and Earth-aspects.

The fight’s dynamic shifts when the Water-aspect lands her hit on the flighty Nixie, stripping her of essence; Carmen leaves the Fire-aspect to Al, who subsequently ends the woman’s existence in a bloody heap (to Vikky’s likely chagrin), so that she can draw the attention of both Water and Earth-aspects and guard her fragile ward. Sophia’s attacks on the Water-aspect go unfruitful. Against the protests of his teammates, the Air-aspect “releases his power limitations,” becoming a whirlwind of chakram and lightning. Most everyone is illuminating the sky with their animas.


Date

Wednesday, August 7th, 2167

Moon

Waxing Gibbous

XP

Session Award | 0 XP
3-Die Stunt Award | 2 XP (Lao & Kate)
Total | 2 XP
Running Total | 338 XP

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