Another session of Victoriana, to finish up the current mission.
We continue into the forest. We can hear what sounds like screaming in the distance, as well as loud hooting noises.
Edwin Ingram stumbles on Lord Gavin's unconscious body. Lord Gavin had not come with us on our trip, so it seems unusual to see him now.
Sidney kicks Lord Gavin, and he wakes up. He complains he doesn't remember anything, but then claims he was on parliament business when he was sent by Adeen. He came by boat, and he shows us a ticket that says luxury liner on it. He's not sure how he got to this exact location though.
The screaming in the distance suddenly goes silent.
We continue down the path. Eventually, it leads us to a rope bridge, with a small little creature wearing a jester outfit. He waves to us.
We talk to him briefly, and he says if we go on the bridge, he'll collapse it. It's fun, he says. That is, unless we answer a riddle...
To open me you need the key
Speak the three to set me free
One is what will help you see
Two is felt in reverie
When in your thoughts, they're all you see
Three is you, and also me
We give the correct answer: "I love you". Jess is very good at riddles, and she figured it out pretty quickly. The creature lets us cross.
We continue down the path, until we reach a cozy cottage.
Light shines from it, and several Swedish citizens are sitting outside. We find that one of them, a middle aged woman, speaks English, so we talk to her for a little bit.
There's a monster out there, she tells us, one with a beak and wings. This place is sanctuary though, provided by a benefactor who is inside making Tea. Dan suddenly remembers he has Tea steeping in the other room.
We go inside the house, and a unclothed figure is making tea. He seems obviously fey in origin, with pointy ears, glorious golden hair, fur on his lower half and cloven feat. One one wall hangs a scythe.
He greets us quite warmly, as it seems he enjoys having visitors. We ask about the area, and he tells us there's no port, no ships here. The world out there is shifting, and there is a dark creature lurking.
After some prompting, he also tells his name, Hollon. He had a neighbor, a short guy with a big blue hat. They didn't get along great, as his neighbor's home was disgustingly picturesque. He's gone now, and doesn't know whose neighbor his former neighbor is now.
Hollon offers us supplies, which we gratefully accept. I thank him, and he wishes his luck. Don't get killed he tells us. We can hear some monstrous hooting in the distance.
We continue down the path, stopping at a large mound. The mound is large, and full of bones and other matter. This looks like something out of an owl, but it's much too large to be from any ordinary owl. This must be one massively oversized owl.
We continue down the path. Ahead of us, we see an ogre and a gnome. They're looking around into the forest, and don't see us immediately until we try to approach them.
They greet us, and tell us they saw a midget with a riddle, but they bashed his skull in. We tell them there is an owl lurking about, and we should be careful.
With the addition of two more members, we continue down the path.
We reach a fork in the path. A ghostly woman, wearing old leather armor, Celtic in nature, is sitting on a rock at the fork. At first, she ignores us, but she eventually tells us her name, Carmen.
I recognize the name from my research. She was a warrior witch, a sorcerer from Athens who invaded Ireland. This was from a long time ago, around 600 BC. She had three sons, Dub, Dother, and Dian.
She says this is her home now, and while she knows what are down the paths, she isn't interested in telling us. She does tell us she saw something that passed this way, and it took the left path, but it doesn't matter which path it took, as it will end up right.
We take the right path. Right means correct, right?
We continue down the path. Off in the distance, to the left, we can hear some hooting.
We pass two ghosts which are fighting each other. They're both wearing old celtic armor, and one is using a sword, and the other is using magic. The one is the sword yells something that sounds like a Gaelic warcry.
We step around the two warriors, as they fight on and off the path.
We continue down the path.
I glance to my left, and see a huge owl rush towards us. I yell out, and my gun having already been out, turn to shoot at it.
The owl rips the gnome and ogre who are accompanying us to pieces almost immediately. The rest of us unload many shots into it, causing fist sized holes to appear.
The owl stares at us, and then shrinks down to the human form of a cronish woman. It seems to be a Native American shapeshifter.
It croaks out that there is more danger here than her. The sons will kill us.Carmen's sons? The woman crumples.
We continue down the path, which leads into a cave. Inside the cave, we find a pool, with two chests.
One of the chests has some celtic runes, which I am able to identify as saying "Rats". The other has a crystal padlock.
Edwin tries pushing the chests around, but they are much too heavy. He opens the runed box, and two rats jump out, which we quickly dispatch.
Sidney picks open the crystal padlock, and Edwin opens it up to find a bag.
We examine the contents of the bag to find several interesting items inside.
The first item is a note, which warns of Rats in the other chess. There's also a key, which appears to go to the padlock.
The next item is a long dirk, about a foot in length, cover in runes. The pommel is made of smooth black Obsidian. It adds 2 extra dice damage.
Next is a pair of silver bracelets, with triskelion runes etched top and bottom. Edwin puts them on. Increases damage done to demons, but...
Father Amorth finds the next item interesting, as it's necklace made of desiccated vines, with five bleached finger bones. It appears to protect the wearer from taking the full negative effects from using necromancy. Halving the corruption value, infact
The final item, is a leather bound journal, but it appears to be blank. Sidney takes it, and feels the nature of it. She sees several celtic men pouring runes into it.
Having examined the chests, we look around the cave, and see a door. We approach it.
Father Amorth tries to melt the door away, but nothing happens, so Sidney knocks on it. The door opens, revealing a long tunnel.
At the end of the tunnel, is another stone door. Edwin knocks, and voice sounds out.
"Who's there?" "Edwin Ingram" "Edwin Ingram who?" "Edwin Ingram...uh..the lead wall."
The door remains shut. Perhaps Edwin himself isn't a good enough joke, so he tries again.
"Who's there?" "Who" "Who who?" "Oh god, it's the giant owl. *runs away*" Everyone laughs.
The door opens, revealing another room.
A girl and a boy, about 10 years old, are locked in a cage, and they look at us.
Sidney sees the supernatural, and realizes that they are not small children, but instead very large demons wreathed in fire. Edwin can't let this stand, so he shoots the female "child" in the neck with all barrels of his gun, severing her neck.
They step out of their disguises, and rip open the cage. One of them charges Sidney, swiping at her with a giant clawed hand, severely wounding her.
I run towards the near door, while the rest of my party run towards the far door. I make it through, and I shut the door behind me, and run down the hallway.
I reach the end of the hallway, and stop, listening and waiting. I hear shots fired, screaming, and what sounds like doors being destroyed. My companions are surely dead. I flee.
Father Amorth, Lord Gavin, Sidney and Edwin have all managed to make it through the far door, although Edwin and Father Amorth has also taken hits. Father Amorth turns to shut the door, but then Lord Gavin hits one of the hinges of the doors, jamming it open.
Lord Gavin's face changes suddenly, revealing that of the grinning changeling we had seen before in London and in Somnium. The grinning changeling giggles to itself. The demons charge past the changeling, oblivious to its presence.
Sidney surveys this room. There's a door, a clock, and a lever. Sidney pulls the lever, and the clock starts counting down. Father Amorth, Sidney and Edwin flee through the door, and it shuts behind them. Ahead, stairs lead up, and the three start running up it.
The door suddenly opens behind them, revealing the grinning Changeling's face, shortly before it turns back into Lord Gavin's face.
Father Amorth and Edwin aren't able to make it up the stairs, as their wounds are too great. Sidney isn't doing very well either, but manages to make it to the top, where the sense of otherworldliness melts away. Just outside, Adeen is standing, as if waiting. Miss Hambledon sent her to provide quick passage back to England, but Adeen isn't equipped to deal with Demons.
I use a scripting die to make the demons hate Ben's changeling.
The demons come through the door, and viciously attack the changeling, ripping it to shreds. Lord Gavin's face is gone, leaving the changelings, but it isn't grinning anymore.
Father Amorth recovers and is able to make it up the stairs to the portal, but Edwin isn't so lucky. The demons, having finished the changeling off, rip Edwin to shreds.
Sidney limps through the portal, and Father Amorth follows.
Hollon is initially suspicious of me when I return to his safe haven, saying I smell of demons, but after I tell him what I saw, and that I am the only one to escape. He says he knows about those demons, and his neighbor had sealed them away long ago.
I stay at the refuge for several weeks, until Sampson and Gregory arrive with Lucy in tow. Lucy is troubled and not living in the now. I talk to them, and I am informed that some of my party escaped.
They also tell me about their organization, with the promise that the details never reach anyone outside of my close companions, which I agree to. They are called the Men of Letters, and their goal is to protect the world from magical threats. They're not associated with the Guild, and Guild isn't really aware of the Men of Letters existence.
I ask about the Kinder von Ušumgallu, and they say that it's a group headed by a business tycoon called Prescott, and they had hired Lucy to do some research on immortality. Lucy only managed to make a breakthrough after she plundered an Indian burial mound. They promise that they will be contacting me directly in the future, and will send an address so I can get in contact.
They create a portal, and within two short days, I am back in my flat in London, with Lucy now under my watchful eye.
The portal takes me directly into my flat, and my brother is unperturbed by it. He asks me to get some Brandy, as we're out and the servants think he has gotten quite enough. I'm not amused, and am even less amused when he mentions a gambling debt.
I send a message to Edward West (about his sister), and to Father Amorth (to inform him of my good health). Edward West arrives, and I put his sister into his care. He gives me the other two pounds for the case.
Father Amorth arrives later, and I give him the two pounds, saying to make sure Sidney gets her pound, as the late Edwin Ingram and I had already taken our share. I tell him about the Men of Letters, and he informs me of the manner of Edwin's passing.
Edwin Ingram's shop is left to Freddie, who is quite distraught, and he swears an oath of revenge.
I receive a letter with an address, and it has an L. This appears to be from the Men of Letters Does the symbol match their tatoos?
Lord Gavin decides to host a party honoring Edwin, and I feel this is a bit suspicious, but I go anyway. Father Amorth doesn't decides to stay away. Sidney is interested in the free meal, I think.
Lord Gavin's fiance is there, and she isn't happy when she is asked to leave when Adeen and Duchess Hambledon arrive on business.
In Ireland there is a cave, and in that cave, a tomb, and in that tomb, an item of power. Duchess Hambledon has contacts that have led her to believe that this item would help fight against the darkness growing that threatens to overcome this world. Over one hundred thousand years ago, the pale lady awoke, and others sleep as well, and one threatens to awaken soon. Be careful though, as there are other Fey that may be involved, and they likely won't be friendly.
Also, there's competition. Skippo Mundus (who I recall had conquered Greece) is known to be searching for this item too. There's a mysterious nature about him, and this lends even more urgency to recovering this item. As such, Duchess Hambledon has procured a zeppelin to take us, as soon as we are ready. She also has someone who owes her a very large debt, who will be accompanying us Jeff's new character.
She provides me with ten pounds as a discretionary fund, and I tell her that I will talk to Father Amorth, and that we will need two or three days to prepare.
TODO: Research Skippo Mundus, Fey of Ireland, um, what else?