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  1. Spot was nervous. Daphne wasn't much calmer. In all their travels together in Hell, they'd never experienced something as unsettling and offputting as this... this... thing. Spot turned his head and wacked his nose against the clear stone again; in agitation, he spread his wings and thumped them against the top of the thing. Daphne tried to comfort him, but when she reached for him, the thing turned, and she was rocked into Spot's side. He snarled at her, and she snarled back; for a moment, it looked dangerous, but the hellhound backed down and laid on the seat again. She hadn't been afraid when they'd gotten in it, back at the building where she'd met them. Even the growling and the shaking hadn't bothered her. But the moving... it made her sick to her stomach, like the time she'd eaten the wrong thing in a daemon. And from the whuffing noises Spot was making, he wasn't much happier. Daphne glanced around nervously; this otto-mha-bill was moving way too fast, and she couldn't see why or how to stop it. It seemed inheriently dangerous, and other otto-mha-bills raced by it, right next to it! It was horrifying to the young primative. There was a vague memory of her actually enjoying riding in something like this, but that was buried under her fear and panic. "Marion...!" she whimpered, as Spot clambered to his feet, swinging his head around again.
  2. Superscience - Superscience can be created by true science or as a result of paranormal/magical energies being imbued into the device or substance in question. Advancements brought about by pure science are referred to as Super Science while Advancements created by magic and ALL Innovations are Enchanted items and require Occult Ability Mastery to create (but do not require any other ability Mastery) - Gadgets enchanted with a Knack will have a number of Inspiration equal to its rating+2 and can regenerate 1 point per every three hours. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Occult Skill Doug looked at the Wizard’s nose and did his best not to glance at the man’s eyes at all, something about “windows to the soul” was all Doug knew but that was more than enough to keep him from meeting the other’s stare. - Science can only tell a person so much, as a discipline it is unable to deal with the supernatural. Psychic powers, divine abilities, vampires and werewolves are all phenomenon that science cannot explain. A strong knowledge of the occult will allow a character to identify these phenomenons and determine their origins, weaknesses, strengths, and natures. * Poor: You are aware that magic and the supernatural exist but your knowledge is limited. ** Average: Can tell a werewolf from a vampire and a psychic from a witch. *** Good: You can tell the difference between species of vampires on site and can identify well-known enchantments and magical items. **** Exceptional: You are well versed in the subtleties of the supernatural world and can anticipate major magical events. ***** Superb: Wizards come to you for information. Specialties: Daemons, Psychic phenomenon, Were-wolves, Ghosts, Vampires, Divine powers, enchanted items.
  3. The late October wind blew, cold and steady, through the cloudless night sky. The meager heat of the day quickly blew away turning to an unseasonable chill. Above, the moon was new and the Milky Way stretched low across the sky in a glowing band of misty stars. On the grounds of the Arkham Estate the wind whipped dry leaves into dervishes and scattered them across the wide grassy lawns. Leaves tumbled under, over, and around the myriad of cars parked in the drive and on the lawns. A chauffer hunched deeper into his coat and took a final drag from the stub of a cigarette before dropping to the ground and stamping it out. He turned to the door of the carriage house and exhaled. The smoke, caught in the bluster, curled and swirled away toward the great manor house that rose like some man built mountain from the dark green grass and shrubbery. Within the great manor house the Arkham Historical Society met. Dozens of members from what seemed all walks of life had gathered together. The earlier general meeting had given way to private face-to-face discussions between members and small groups conducting research or experiments. Members sat in lounges to discuss the meaning of ancient texts and debated the proper translation of long dead languages over billards. Others bartered and dealt in artifacts looted from cultures the world over; a clay tablet covered with cuneiform writing was exchanged for a scroll of some sort of leather with texts in Chinese while supposedly mystic gems were traded for the key alleged to open a doorway beneath the Sphinx of Egypt. All of this and more as the members of the Arkham Society moved through the mansion in eddies and currents as complex as any ocean’s. In the basement a group of men and women gathered around a series of intricately formed circles. The ceiling was vaulted, supported by massive pillars that served as a challenge to the structure of the circle, and yet the members compensated, carefully completing the needed structures around the columns. The central circle, inscribed within a hexagram, was inlaid directly into the concrete floor and formed of poured gold and silver; it shone in the flickering candlelight appearing to almost glow with a pale orange fire. Around the center at the vertices of the hexagram were six additional circles drawn in chalk, bone dust, blood, quicksilver, water and fire. Several members continued to work on the outer circles, completing symbols of arcane power and mystic strength; the all-seeing eye here, a pentacle there, symbols of the classic elements and more were carefully drawn to complete the circles. The last of the circles was completed, painted out in a thick flammable jelly that would burn for hours, and the leader of the group clapped his hands together once to call attention. As the last few conversations died out he looked around the room, pausing on each member of the team as well as the few spectators that had gathered to watch this latest experiment. He smiled warmly at his daughter, little Daphne, sitting at a desk in the corner her legs swinging above the floor as she watched the proceedings with great interest. Professor Howard Walton waited for silence to descend before he spoke. “Ladies and gentlemen I thank you all for coming here this evening. I would like to especially thank Mr. Lovecraft for his generous funding, as usual, for the specialty materials needed for this experiment.” He paused allowing for polite applause before continuing, “Also, a special thank you to Ms. Marion Abel, for her unexpected help in determining the last of the symbols needed for the circle of elemental fire. And lastly, to Ms. Catori for her help in the proper ritual sacrifice of the falcon for the circle of air.” Walton paused once more as polite applause rippled through the room before quieting down once more. “If you will all bear with us for a few moments more we are nearly ready to begin. I remind you all,” he said looking pointedly at his child, “To please be quiet during the ritual to avoid breaking the concentration of those involved. In the meantime please find a place to be comfortable and get ready to see what we hope will be a successful experiment.” ***** Above two men quietly sat and sipped fine cognac in one corner of the smoking room. Plush carpeting and supple well cared for leather furniture muffled the other conversations and the fireplace nearby fairly oozed comfortable warmth into the room. Others sat in wingback chairs, reading through tomes both arcane and mundane. Others smoked from pipes or cigars, enjoying the rich flavors of the finest tobaccos. The first man leaned forward finally setting the drink down on an antique table. Charles Fitzroy studied the younger man across from him with intense dark eyes. “Count Rakozi,” he began, his pronunciation and accent impeccable, “I am sorry that I cannot offer you further information regarding your sister. It is my deepest regret that we do not know to where she disappeared.” Fitzroy leaned back in his chair, his fingers steepled together and peered over them at Count Janos Rakozi. “We will of course support any of your efforts to locate her.” ***** In Boston the small ballroom at the Copley Plaza Hotel was occupied by the Aeon Society for Gentlemen, a group which despite its name was fully one quarter women, and which filled the room to less than half capacity. The deep red carpet and wall hangings contrasted pleasantly with the cream painted walls. The room was pleasantly warm untouched by the wind that howled outside, funneled between the buildings into a gale. The evening was getting late and Richard Slate, the local chapter head, had one last order of business to discuss. Benjamin Abel and Archibald Bannister both wondered just what that last order of business was given that he had taken them aside to discuss it privately. “Mr. Able, Mr. Bannister I need to ask a favor of you.” He checked his pocket watch, a fancy gold affair engraved with the Aeon Society’s symbol. “In just about half an hour a Russian man will be disembarking from a steam liner. Mr. Nikolai Strakovski has an artifact that he is carrying to the States to be researched. He asked for assistance in locating the proper scientists from the Aeon Society. I would consider it a personal favor if you could see him off his ship and back to this hotel.” ***** The wind blew hard off the harbor and onto Rowe’s Wharf. It carried with it the salty smell of the ocean. As it blew past Mia Foster’s face it stole what little heat there was from the air and chilled her to the bone. She turned away and pulled her coat tighter around her trying to shrink down into the warm fur lined collar. The wind was intermittent and it would take only a moment for the gust to die down. She checked the camera hanging around her neck and then checked the sky. Dark, clear, and devoid of anything more than stars it provided little additional light. The ships lights and the lights on the wharf would have to be enough. Mia opened the aperture on her camera all the way and looked for a location to help her hold it steady. Mia grabbed her camera and peeked out around the corner of the building. She snapped pictures of the crew offloading cargo, some in boxes and some simply wrapped in tarps and canvases. A contact had told her that this ship would be here, and that they were allegedly shipping looted antiquities from the Middle East. Mia hoped to get photos of the objects being off loaded from the ship. Photos meant proof and proof meant a story, and a story was something Mia was more than a little interested in. As much as being published and being paid interested Mia the story itself interested her more. The click of the shutter and the sound of the gears as Mia advanced the film somehow made something in her mind click. If these objects were looted from tombs and temples they would not offload at a wharf as public as this would they?
  4. Hi, do any of you have any suggestions on where I might be able to find the original storyteller edition of Adventure!? I live in Denmark but have no problem ordering online or paying shipping costs from other countries.
  5. Once I've given you the go ahead post whatever public information the other PCs would know about your character here. This thread will be permanent whereas the Character Creation thread will get deleted once the game starts.
  6. Adventure!: Dark Tidings I’m well aware of what you’ve heard kid. Dr. Hammersmith was experimenting with extracting energy from the universe directly, or that he had tapped into a new form of electromagnetic energy, or that he had discovered a massively efficient power generation device… Truth is that’s all bull, Hammersmith was a madman and those people he had gathered to his mansion that day had no idea what they were going to witness. Most of them are dead now, by design or accident nobody knows for sure. Nobody saw Hammermsith die, and frankly that worries me. I wasn’t there but I know what did happen. See sometime after that day I started hearing things… I got the chance to meet Maxwell Mercer a while back, shortly after the accident. With the right questions I was able to steer the conversation back to Hammersmith. Seems that the nature of his experiment was less “Science” and more “occult”. Mercer does believe that the doctor was intending to tap into a new power source. “Ley lines” he called them, invisible rivers of energy crisscrossing the planet. Spiritual energy, the stuff that psychics and magicians allegedly tap into. The stuff of daemons and nightmares. Do I believe that Hammersmith tapped into the psychic or mystical energy of the planet? Well I would be lying if I said no, after the day of his accident I started hearing things, I told you that. What I didn’t tell you was that I was hearing thoughts from other people. Mercer didn’t speak his thoughts to me, I was able to read his mind. I’m scared now. There are people out there that have become empowered by the energies released by the “Incident”. Some are people like you or I, determined to use their powers for the good of mankind, others have touched something dark, daemonic and turned to amassing power or satiating their own dark desires, while out in the darkness beings long dormant have been awakened…The Hammersmith Incident may have ushered in a new tomorrow, or it may have been Dark Tidings of the days ahead, only time will tell.
  7. All, This thread will be here for you to post ideas for new Knacks and discuss them with the other players and myself.
  8. As I said before I am looking for 4-6 players. Character cration is as in the the books. My only change to the rules are as follows: 1) A character cannot have ability mastery in more than one of the following at character creation: Engineering, Medicine, Science, and Occult. You can gain ability master in the other three with experience after the game has begun. 2) The "Occult" Skill has been added under Intelligence. (see the "Game Details" thread for more information) 3) Occult Ability Mastery is needed to create Innovations of any kind.
  9. Father Patrick O'Mally - Divinely Inspired Patick Seamus O'Mally was born to a working class family in South Boston (Southie). As a child his parents did their best to keep young "Paddy" out of trouble and instill him with a good education but Paddy was a born trouble maker. Getting into fights, mischief, and worse Paddy was a grade “A” juvenile delinquent. When the Great War started in Europe Paddy saw the writing on the wall. He knew that the only way a guy like him could get out of going “over there” would be to join the Church. Amazingly that proved to be one of the best choices in his life. While he had always been a fighter and a trouble maker he did have a strong belief in God and knowledge in his religion as instilled by his parents. He flourished and soon was a full Priest. He requested and was given duty at the parish he grew up in St. Mark’s. When the Hammersmith Incident changed the world Father Paddy, as people now called him, had been at mid-morning prayer. He was instantly filled with divine power and a sense of purpose greater than any other he had felt before. He spoke to the Bishop about his newfound power and was referred to the Knights of the Cross. He still serves as a parish priest in his old neighborhood, but when the need arises he and others of his order go out into the night and battle the forces of darkness.
  10. Hey folks. Last year I attemped to launch an Adventure! game with a little supernatural twist. At the time the site was getting less traffic and I wasn't able to drum up enough players to keep the game alive. You can visit the archive HERE ... I'm willing to try again, due in no small part to the rapid expansion of the site lately and by the return of a dear old freind of mine, Dr. Henry Jones Jr. That said I'd like to hear from people who would be interested in playing. The rule book is available HERE for $12 if you don't have it. I'll be using much of the material I produced for Dark Tidings for this game as well, including some of the character creation changes (altered rules and new skills and organizations). Let me know if you want in or if you have any questions.
  11. This is really just for fun, since I don't really plan to ever implement this into a game. Anyway, I've been toying with the idea of Martial Arts, as presented in the Expanded Personal Combat Systems section of the Trinity Player's Guide. The idea that I came up with was that someone with Ability Mastery (Brawl, Martial Arts, and/or Melee) could potentially eschew any other specialties in order to take a 'super style' to reflect some sort of legendary training, a la Batman or Remo Williams. Such a style would require all 3 specialty slots, of course, but would have some sort of corresponding benefits (which I can't be bothered to work out at this time). Might be unbalancing or whatever, but it still makes me grin to think of a Branch 9 operative busting out some Sinanju on a bunch of filthy ninjas. ::ninja I'd be interested to hear feedback on this (obviously), but I'm new here so be nice. ::happy
  12. Hey folks, I thought that I had seen someone's Knack for someone who changes form - a la Mr. Hyde or lycanthropy. But, I don't seem to be seeing it. If there's one written, I'd appriciate a pointer, otherwise I'll just write it up myself. I have a storyline coming up for my Adventure! tabletop group that will involve a werewolf.
  13. I’m going to try and hand out xp to you guys once a month (I haven’t set a particular day yet, but I’m thinking I’ll just try to get it out on the first of every month). You’ll be getting xp for all the usual sorts of things that STs hand out xp for in a PbP game (quality and quantity of posts, amazing results on dice rolls, major plot developments that your character was central in moving forward, good character interaction, etc), but I’m going to be using a different system for handing out the xp than what is normally used. The xp will be divided up into four separate categories: General Experience, Trait Experience, Background Experience, and Inspired Experience. Each of these experience types will be useable for very specific areas of your character sheet (as listed below), with the exception of General Experience, which can be used exactly like normal xp is used in any other game. Experience Types: Trait Experience: is useable for raising/buying Attributes, Abilities, and Specialties for Abilities. Players will likely receive more Trait Experience each month than any of the other categories, though this won’t necessarily be the case all the time. Trait Experience points will be awarded for regular, and noteworthy, use of Attribute and Ability dice pools in a given month. “Noteworthy” does not necessarily mean “successful”; your character could fail in a noteworthy manner as well, and it’ll still count. When you use the experience gained to buy a dot in an Attribute or Ability, I will expect you to spend it on a Trait that was actually put to use recently (though it doesn’t have to be the trait that was used the most, I just don’t want to see someone’s Appearance suddenly going up two dots when they haven’t made a single Appearance-based roll in the past month of IC-time or something). Background Experience: is useable for raising/buying Backgrounds and Background Enhancements. Players will likely receive fewer of these points on average than any of the others, as opportunities to develop, or raise, backgrounds will probably not be very common. This will be awarded on a case by case basis, as appropriate. As an example, especially good interaction between a PC and an NPC might net that PC’s player some Background Experience so that they can buy themselves an Ally or Contact (or maybe even a Nemesis). As with the Trait Experience above, Background Experience should be spent with an eye towards what is appropriate for your character at a given time. Note that you don’t have to spend experience points right when I award them, so while I may have given you 2 BEs for exceptional interaction with an NPC two months ago, if you decide to save your points until you have enough to buy the fourth dot in your Sanctum background instead (and provided there isn’t some IC reason why a fourth dot isn’t really feasible), I won’t stop you. Inspired Experience: is useable for raising Inspiration, Temporary Inspiration, buying Knacks, and raising Willpower. Inspired Experience will be awarded for clever use of knacks, facets, and Inspiration points, as well as for noteworthy uses of the character’s Willpower dice pool/points. This will be one of the more difficult categories to score high in, but I do want you guys to be able to develop your Inspired traits as well as your normal ones, so I’ll keep a careful lookout for opportunities to award Inspired points to each of you. What is, or is not, an appropriate use of Inspired Experience points at any given time will be handled on a case by case basis. In general though, I’m going to give you guys as much freedom as possible when purchasing knacks, raising Inspiration, etc. General Experience: is useable for anything that regular xp can be used for. Players will almost always be awarded at least one point of General Experience point each month, though the exact amount will likely vary each time. General Experience is the most flexible of all the experience types, and can be used to purchase dots in any part of the char sheet. Firstly, you can add General Experience to the experience you’ve saved up in any of the other three categories to purchase things you might not otherwise be able to afford. So if you’ve managed to save up 6 points of Inspired Experience during the last two months, and you’ve also managed to save up another 6 points of General Experience, you can add the two together for a total of 12xp and buy yourself a Level 2 knack. Second, you could use the 6 points of General Experience to purchase dots in a category that you don’t currently have any xp in at all. Or third, you could just keep saving. I will award General Experience points for such things as outstanding posts, and post regularity. I will also award General Experience anytime I think a player deserves experience for something, but can’t decide which of the other categories to put it in. ::wink The reason I’m doing things this way is because, as I’ve stated in the General Forums before, I don’t like the incredibly slow rate at which players generally accrue xp in a normal PbP game. But at the same time, I can understand why STs are leery of just handing out gobs of xp every month or so, because it presents the temptation of buying up lots of high-powered goodies in only a few weeks, or even days, of IC-time. On the other hand, I myself am constantly frustrated by how hard it is to raise base Attributes and Abilities, or Backgrounds for my PCs. When I realize that buying that fourth dot of Perception, and a third dot of Awareness is going to cost me a full 16 xp, it’s just depressing. Especially in an Aberrant setting, where I could buy the first two dots of Mega-Perception for less. I end up sacrificing IC-Realism for Dice Pool efficiency. Not good. So I’ve come up with this new system for handing out xp. Splitting up the xp like this gives players the opportunity to raise all those mundane traits and backgrounds that normally get ignored once play begins. At the same time it avoids the temptation to players (at least, it’d be a temptation to me) of using all those gobs and gobs of xp to raise your Inspiration to 6 and buy up all those level 2 and 3 knacks you couldn’t afford at CharGen, all in the IC-equivalent of two weeks! Obviously, this is a never-before-tried system (so far as I know), so expect me to be feeling things out for the next couple of months or so. If I do decide to make any changes to the above system I will notify all of you immediately, but I’m not really expecting that to happen. My goal in creating this system is to give you guys regular, concrete rewards for the investment you put into your characters and this game. My hope is that being able to see your characters regularly grow and change in small ways, and occasionally in big ways as well, will keep them fresh and interesting in your minds, and greatly increase your overall sense of satisfaction and enjoyment in playing.
  14. Much to my surprise, my Adventure!rs decided that the very best way to travel across Siberia would be to buy their very own slightly used ex-Soviet dirigible. They've already begun their plans to turn it into a mobile headquarters, which means that we need to go beyond the few abstract statistics about passenger capacity in the Adventure! core book. I need floorplans, measurements, and cross-sections of the gondola, passenger areas, and cargo areas of what the book calls a "small dirigible" (like the Hindenburg) so we can figure out how they can remodel their new toy. Can anybody point me towards Web sites or books that have what I need?
  15. November 11th, 1924 -Milledgeville, Ga. United States She ran as if she were being chased by the devil himself; maybe she was! She had been taking some laundry down to the creek when she heard curious noises by the barn. She put down her clothes by the river and moved towards the invasive sounds. She only saw it for a second, but that was enough. It had fur like a beast, but stood upright like a man. As if it new when she came around the bend, it turned to face her with eyes that glowed yellow and surreal. She didn't think, she ran. Never looking back to check for the pursuit until now, the young womans pace began to slow. She had been running for what seemed like hours, no chance it kept up the pursuit. I should never have gone looking for it. IT IT...what was IT? Her memory of the moment crept back into her head as she peeked around trees into the approaching dark of dusk. Back the way she came was clear, no animals, certainly no monsters. She decided perhaps her eyes were playing tricks on her, she headed home. She took four steps before she realized that she was on her side in the mud and the air was gone from her lungs. What happened? Panicked she tried to cry out but she couldn't...hear heart began to beat so fast it tryed to burst from her chest. Then she saw it again. It loomed over her as she had remembered. Tall, hairy, yellow eyes that betrayed a strange intellect. Please. Please I have a baby. These thoughts were lost on the way to her mouth. Nothing came out. She had time enough for a single tear to fall from her left eye, before the creature moved in and grabbed her stunned body...carrying it off into the night.
  16. Well it done hath happened. I've had a terrible bug to play some adventure and have decided to throw something together. The story will be a global adventure, it will be roughly based on story arcs that have been predetermined. Each story arch has a time table and they all mature on their own independent of the others. So the longer it goes in the arc you're in, the further along the other stories will progress as well. This doesn't mean that you have to rush through an arc...but do realize that life doth go on around you all. Similar to the "In search of Inspiration" game run by Blue Ninja, I would prefer you all discuss character before attempting one, so you don't double up. I'll have you know, I have a desk job and will be responding to posts frequently and keep the game going as fast as you all can...Muahah! Imagine if you are invited ( or will be shortly ) to a private gathering of Talent. A group / agency recruiting from the best of the best. IDA, Aeon, Branch 9, even the Contedorri (if it exists ? ) will be welcome. The purpose of this new gathering is dealing with strange encounters. Perhaps a version of the Men in Black...who knows. Small town terrorized. Babies and grown men alike turn up missing...locals report a "BEASTMAN" Big town gangsters growing and growing with reckless abandon. Policemen have stated that known "button Men" have been shot dead...only to turn up later. This is but a glimpse...for a closer look inquire below.
  17. Foreword CHAPTER ONE IT is the spring of 1924 and all over the globe instances of mysterious disappearances have been on the increase for the past eighteen months. Unknown to humanity unearthly telluric mists have been appearing, seemingly at random, and transporting unwary souls across the vastness of the cosmos to an alien world known as Tellus. MEANWHILE, on Tellus, the Tyrian forces of the evil Emperor K’reed the Conqueror, ruthless overlord of the planet’s many kingdoms, have been overjoyed to find new and exotic slave stock in the form of recently arrived humans. Under the surface of a society inured to constant conflict and oppression a few quiet murmurs begin to be uttered as those all too rare individuals brave enough to contemplate opposition to the Emperor’s reign of tyranny start to wonder how the arrival of this new race of beings may upset the balance of power. IN the Emperor’s palace thoughts also turn towards the mystery of the humans as the awesome Imperial City, held aloft by mighty atomic furnaces and the amazing power of telluric crystals, slowly approaches a lonely outpost of the Empire – an outpost which has recently found itself of interest to the Emperor due to claims that it has acquired human slaves of particular value. In her lavish private apartments Princess K’ora, daughter of Emperor K’reed and heir apparent to the throne of Tellus, finds anticipation of the novelty which a genuine Earthman may bring the most exciting event in many long months…
  18. Don't know about you guys, but I'm quivering with anticip...................ation!!! :fencing: Looks very interesting ::cool JC
  19. I found the Adventure system about 6 months ago, and I decided to run my own game of it for me and a few of my friends (I quite enjoy the super science section). Theres a couple of things I would like some input on, one of the players says he would like phasing (walking through walls) as an ability. I'm not so good with the whole write up thing, but it would be a level 3 dynamic knack and to use it you would have to hold your breath, traveling through denser/heavier substances would be harder, and you could only phase out a small amount of stuff with you (limited basically to the stuff your wearing). To many limitations? To little? Also if your using super science to create a drug/chemical to give you a knack for a temporary amount of time would the R&D time be shortened or stay the same? Thanks for any advice
  20. Ok folks - there's at least three of you out there who want to see the very start of the continuum. You can get my Adventure! Excel character sheet right here, work it just like my Aberrant one - basic stats and bonus points in black, Inspiration in blue. You may spend a total of 15 experience points, which you should mark in red. You may use any of the Merits and Flaws that I posted in my very recent thread. I just noticed that I have on there Concept instead of Origen; please make sure you count the free background dot you receive for your Origen as per the A! rules. Please include a fairly comprehensive background on your characters, why they have the backgrounds/abilities that they do, how they gained Inspiration, etc. The more details you give me, the better I can focus the adventures you're going to have. Now, I will allow characters who became Inspired as a direct result of being present at the Hammersmith Event, but that requires one of the following: 1) Influence of at least 3 dots, 2) Engineering or Science Mastery, 3) Allies or Mentor of at least four dots. All of you must put at least one background dot into Backing (Aeon Society), but you are not allowed to spend more than four dots this way. Whoever puts the most into this particular Backing will be the PC 'in charge' of the group. Purchasing an Ability Mastery will let you re-roll 10s on the Ability dice for a roll (much in the same way Qualities do for Attributes), on top of giving you that extra 6th dot. Please, please, please discuss your characters amongst yourselves. I'd prefer to have little to no overlap in primary abilities for characters. (IE, I don't want a whole party of Engineering Masters, or Brawl/Martial Arts masters, etc. One person with Mastery, and other people with lower levels of the same skill is fine.) Take it away folks; you'll know when it's time to show up in the IC thread.
  21. from the journals of Whitley Styles - I was sitting in that very comfortable chair in the downstairs salon, reading over a copy of Dracula, when Maxwell dropped a paper into my lap. "Look that over, Whit, tell me what you think." Regretfully, I set aside my book (quite a masterwork of fiction) and looked at the list. It was names, all written down in small, orderly handwriting, with a few phrases about the people involved to spark my memory. "I think that'll be a good start. A damn good start for my Aeon society." He picked up the poker, toying with it for something to do with his hands. After all, no one in his right mind would start a fire in June in Chicago. The list of names was quite impressive - that Dr. Primoris, Dixon, Jake Stefokowski, Annabelle Newfield, Safari Jack, they were just the top of the paper. Nearly fifty names, some of them famous, most of them not, all of them a credit to the organization. "It looks like an excellent crowd, Max, but what if they don't all show up?" He just laughed though, setting the poker back down and making an exaggerated claw out of his hand. "I've been penning notes onto all of the invitations, racking my brain to think of just the right thing to get all of them here. Three more days, and we'll see. Maybe not all of them will show, Whitley, but I'd wager a dollar that almost all of them will." I smiled, setting aside the paper and picking Dracula back up. "We'll see, Max, we'll see. I think you're a bit too eager to give away your money." He just laughed some more, heading for the front hallway and the door. "I'll see you tomorrow, my boy - I have a great number of errands to run to make sure this comes off smoothly."
  22. Ivan Kowalski's footsteps sounded out on the brick and cobblestone streets. The usual sharp clap was muted into a wet smack by the wet sheen over everything. His footsteps were punctuated occasionally by a splash as he ran through a puddle. The rain came down light and easy, as it had since early the day before, a steady late spring damp drizzle. He thought back to what he had seen just a few minutes earlier, a horror unlike anything he had ever dreamed. He and Father Patrick "Paddy" O'Mally had gone to check up on Mr. Smythe, one of the poorer members of the parish. Father Paddy claimed that he wanted to bring the man some soup and make sure that all was well but something struck Ivan as odd. Perhaps it was the ornate cross that Paddy had worn around his neck, or perhaps it was the chosen time of their visit, Priests were not well known for making simple house calls near to midnight. Whatever reason the Father had for the visit their timing was ideal, or the furthest thing from ideal, it depends on your view. The Father had knocked twice before checking the door handle and finding it unlocked. Ivan and Paddy had entered to find poor Mr. Smythe prone on the floor of his small home covered in what appeared to be his own blood. Father Patrick's crucifix suddenly burst alight with the kind of pure white glow Ivan dreamed would surrounded blessed Mary. Something screamed, or screeched rather, a sound like nails on a blackboard. The light illuminated a gaunt corpse-like figure crouched in the shadows behind the body of Mr. Smythe. Father Patrick has reacted faster that Ivan had seen him move before, faster than men half of the priest’s age. He shoved Ivan back from the door, pushing the crock of soup out of the stunned Pole’s hands accidentally. Before the crock could burst open on the stone door step Patrick had his crucifix in hand and his other wrapped around a small bottle, the kind that he used to carry holy water and holy oil when he needed to visit the sick. The crock hit the stone step with a crack and shattered, spraying its contents outward in a burp of hot broth and vegetables. “Run Ivan! For all that is good and holy, flee!” Patrick cried before charging the abomination. Ivan had stood stock still and watched as the two danced about; moving faster than any two beings had sane right to do. Ivan knew that Paddy had been blessed with Divine power to fight the creatures of darkness but he had never seen what the older man could do until now. “Ivan! Run!” Patrick cried again, snapping the big man from his reverie, “Your strength can do nothing against this foul creature!” And so Ivan ran; fled into the night and rain. Now he began to slow. His hands trembled slightly and Ivan realized that he was scared, though he had heard of the creatures that the Knights of the Cross fought against he had never seen one until tonight. Ivan looked about him, he was standing across from a pub and though he seldom drank he suddenly felt the need for one. He entered the pub and found it to be pleasantly crowded with patrons. He made his way to the bar and fished out some money from his pocket. Looking at the small amount he ordered a beer and settled his frame onto a stool. On the stage a black man strummed out a bluesy tune on a jet black guitar his fingers dancing nimbly over the strings. Ivan looked about him and gave a start; the man down the bar from him had some sort of small animal perched on his shoulder, a little dog of some sort. ***** After a long day performing in the park near the park street T station Leland Wulfenbach, the Sidewalk Illusionist, has retired to a small pub in Southie to drink and forget his worries. Even in the day time it is becoming hard to shake the feeling that time are getting worse. People look less freindly and the children he sees are less healthy. Leland does what he can but he cannot shake the feeling that a pall has come over the world. He sits in the bar, Murphy's, and drinks, his little fox Heydrich sitting on his shoulder. The night is slow and he sits alone listening to the sad music of a black guitarist as he drinks. Sometime after midnight a huge man comes into the bar and gulps down a pint as though it were a shot. He orders a second and pulls out a rosary, praying over it. The man looks scared, and for a man that size to be scared he must have seen somethnig very, very scary Leland thinks. ***** Henry "Crossroads" Johnson walks into the smokey bar and speaks to the owner, the man tells him to set up in the corner and do his thing. Free drinks and $2 an hour to play for the night. Henry takes a chair and moves it over into the corner and takes his black guitar out of its case. He takes a few moments to tune it, the strigs letting out a harsh sound untill he warms the instrument up and gets it tuned. He begins to play and glances at his watch, 7 pm, it'll be a long night but that's not anything he isn't used to. Hours later and it's half past midnight when a large man comes in out of the rain. He looks scared and immediately downs a beer in one go before pulling a rosary, of all things, out of his coat and praying right there at the bar. Down the bar from the large man Henry notices for the first time a tall skinny man with a fox perched on his shoulder.
  23. It was early afternoon and the crowds were light at the Four Points Inn and Tavern. Nubile slave girls of all races swerved gracefully between the tables, making sure to keep the patrons well stocked with the best food, drink… and company… the establishment could offer. D’drazzir R’vanni, the Inn’s roguish Feline proprietor, purred quietly as his Obsidian masseuse (one of his wisest purchases, if he did say so himself) worked the kinks out of the tense muscles along his spine: no one appreciated the effort which went in to running the finest drinking hall in four kingdoms. Now the lunchtime crowds were drifting away, and the evening drinkers were yet to arrive – and D’drazzir did so hate these little periods where his profits started to dip. Still, it gave him the opportunity to try out the new storyteller who’d inquired about working at the Inn, without much risk of alienating his regulars if the robed stranger proved to be an uninspired bore. Settling back into the stacked silk cushions of his private alcove D’drazzir waved the Ophidian girl away and turned his attentions across the main room to where the storyteller was standing in preparation for regaling the small crowd with one of his tales… 'The Basilisk Rebellion and The Massacre at the Dar-Ajum Rocks,' announced the storyteller. D’drazzir rolled his eyes and gestured for his masseuse to return – personally he preferred tales with a little more sensual content, besides, this was one story he already knew well… still, a glance around the room told him that the patrons seemed intrigued, and at the end of the day that was what mattered. Closing his eyes D’drazzir once more purred as skilled hands returned to kneading his back, and the storyteller’s words filled the hall… 'In the one-hundred and second year of the reign of our Glorious and Immortal Emperor K’reed, a rebellion sprang up in the Kajin-da-Um Desert. Though it started with the Green Belly Tribe, it quickly spread from there until almost the entire desert was aflame with talk of secession, even open war. The most militant arm of this rebellion was led by one Miun-Sho, better known as “Jade Fang”, who had by that time become the leader of the Green Bellies. Because the rebellion began with the Green Bellies, and because of their shocking number of early victories over Imperial sorties sent to deal with them, it soon earned the title of “The Basilisk Rebellion”.' 'The Emperor called upon the aid of the King of Sornia (a distant cousin of the Emperor’s who’s kingdom was directly north of the Kajin-da-Um) bestowing upon him the honor of crushing the rebellion there. King Lerrus Ontin dispatched all three of his own legions, along with two Imperial legions placed under his command for the sole purpose of wiping out the Basilisks. In addition he hired the services of the feared, some might say loathed (but nonetheless respected) Obsidian Legion, comprised of four-thousand two-hundred of the finest Stoneman warriors.' 'Now, as many of you will undoubtedly know, the Saurian Tribes of the deep Central Deserts are notoriously hard to keep track of. This makes any attempt at accurately recording their numbers, locations, or settlements an exercise in utmost futility. This, combined with poor intelligence and a deplorable lack of understanding regarding the conditions of the desert directly south of his kingdom, lead King Ontin to the decision that a full frontal attack would be best. Thus he led his legions directly into the Kajin-da-Um with the goal of crushing any resistance they met.' 'Meanwhile, the Basilisks had expanded their ranks until they numbered an estimated hundred and fifty thousand or more fighting Saurians, all of whom were natives of the desert they were fighting in, and who were led by the admittedly brilliant Jade Fang. Observing the foolhardy movements of the Imperial Forces, Jade Fang sent nearly half his forces north to circle around the Imperials and trail them from behind while he led his remaining forces in a series of daring “hit and run” raids, luring the Imperial forces further south. Meanwhile, the Basilisk forces to the north trailed in ghostly silence, ambushing any supply convoys or messengers that attempted to leave or reach King Ontin’s forces. Frustrated at his forces’ inability to meet the enemy head on, and harried by the steady loss of supplies and constant raiding by the desert nomads, King Ontin lead his forces in a headlong rush deep into the equatorial regions… and to their ultimate doom.' 'So it came to pass that by the time the Imperial Forces under King Ontin had reached the place of their final battle, over eight thousand of his own forces, and over three thousand of the Imperial legionnaires had been lost from a combination of desert heat, sandstorms, Basilisk raiding parties, and lack of supplies. The Stonemen of the Obsidian Legion, tough even by the standards of their own race, and hailing from the massive shield volcano known locally as “Black Mountain”, were much better suited to the hardships of the desert and thus they lost only slightly more than nine hundred soldiers on the march. This left just over thirteen thousand infantrymen to fight in the final battle, mostly comprised of the surviving Imperial and Obsidian legionnaires.' 'Eventually, Jade Fang managed to lure Ontin and his surviving troops into the Dar-Kazum valley, and it was there that he sprung his trap. Now, the Dar-Kazum is surrounded on all sides by the Dar-Ajum Rocks: sheer and impassable, even for Stonemen or Felines. The Dar-Ajum surrounded the Dar-Kazum valley on all sides - save for a deceptively narrow pass at the northern end, and another at the southeast end of the valley. Once the Imperial forces had been successfully lured inside the valley, the northern Basilisk forces descended upon them from behind, in ambush, whilst the southern forces held the lower pass, thus pinning the weary Imperials between two lethal fronts. The “battle” that ensued was, according to reports, nothing short of a massacre.' 'Almost ten thousand of the Imperial forces were slaughtered in the first day of fighting, and another two thousand on the second. By the third day only the First and Third Companies from the seventh Imperial Battalion, the second and fifth Obsidian Regiments, and a platoon of men comprised mostly of the King’s personal guard and King Ontin himself, were left alive. In a last ditch effort of daring and sheer desperation these final eight hundred and fifty one warriors fought their way back to the northern pass of the Dar-Ajum Rocks, with both of the Imperial Companies and the fifth Obsidian Regiment leading the charge, and the second Obsidian Regiment bringing up the rear.' 'At the base of the northern pass, the Imperials were held up by the remnants of the northern Basilisk forces still within the pass itself, and the second regiment was forced to bear the combined assault of the surviving Basilisk forces until the pass was cleared. Once the pass was cleared the Imperial Companies and the fifth Regiment were able to move quickly, escorting the King and his platoon of guards, but the second Regiment, still guarding the rear, was held up and could only give ground slowly. The decision was made to sacrifice the second Regiment so that the rest could escape. Miraculously, the Imperial Companies and King Ontin’s Sornian forces managed to escape into the desert, and eventually reported back at the Imperial City. The fifth Obsidian Regiment escorted the Imperials until it was certain that they were (reasonably) safe, and then circled back to aid their fellow legionnaires… they were not heard from again until the Second Imperial Division and Battle Fleet was sent in to deal with the rebellion once and for all.'
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