The Bold and The Determined

Campaign Session 4
Obsidian Blade, Part 4 - The Conclusion

This session happened February 6, 2010.

Channel 12 News at 10:00 PM

Authorities are investigating an apparent gang fight involving a vehicle at the corner of Stratford and Lowell roads. The bodies of several members of an alleged street gang were found crushed under an overturned Ford Econoline van. The police will not confirm the rumor that some sort of metahuman actually picked up and threw the van onto the alleged gang members. One officer, asking not to be identified, said “Look – it’s Monastery Hill. They claim to see all sorts of strange things here.”

The Real Story

The Determined

The following activities pick up immediately after Issue 3.

We open with Dart surrounded by the toughest members of the Green Street Tigers, led by Sying Wu, Dart’s rival from the Storm Dragon Dojo. Sying Wu has just called out Dart for being weak and causing the death of their master. Wu also indicated that the Green Street Tigers are here to witness Dart’s defeat and to deal with Dart’s “Red-headed girlfriend.

Brick, who is red-headed but NOT Dart’s girlfriend in any way, was at the corner across the street and this lit her short fuse. She drew down on Wu, but missed (missing Dart also, but that really wasn’t high on Brick’s list of concerns). Wu ordered the Tigers to “kill her” and the fight was on.

Bruiser announced his presence by ripping up a mailbox and throwing it thirty meters to flatten one of the Tigers. The Priest, taking a clue from Crazy Elmont (a homeless person The Priest had been talking with), noticed that something strange was happening down at the brownstone The Determined were ostensibly staking out. He ran across to Bruiser to re-direct Bruiser to the brownstone.

The plan completely changed when the Green Street Tigers encircled Brick and brutally pummeled her into unconsciousness with their baseball bats.

Enraged at seeing someone beaten like that (let alone one of his few friends), Bruiser ran to a nearby van, lifted it up, and started slamming it down on the Tigers. The Priest fired a flash grenade shell from his shotgun at the Tigers, blinding most of them. Bruiser expended his rage on the Tigers, repeatedly smashing the Tigers with the van while The Priest picked off those Tigers Bruiser could not reach with beanbag slugs from his shotgun. Few Tigers survived this combined assault.

While this was happening, Dart and Wu fought a lightning fast Kung Fu duel. At first neither could land a blow, but when Wu came in for a crucial strike, his street fighting instincts allowed him to avoid being hit by Dart’s counter-strike and land a heavy blow. Dart was able to quickly recover from the stunning effect of the blow, but was never able to turn the tide back in his favor. Wu landed two additional heavy blows and Dart went down. After shouting epithets at Dart in Cantonese (and deciding the angry freak hefting the van was best left alone), Wu and the three remaining Tigers left the scene.

Bruiser, his anger expended once the Tigers were down or fled, provided first aid to Brick, bringing her back to consciousness. Brick’s body quickly shrugged of the effects of the beating she had taken, by which time Dart had also recovered from his beating.

In the meantime, The Priest returned to investigate the group’s original goal, the brownstone down the street, from which he now heard screaming. As he arrived at the building and readied a solid slug in his shotgun to blow off the door latch, three members of DEMON barreled out of the building, apparently fleeing for their lives. The trio of Bruiser, Brick, and Dart arrived and Dart quickly subdued two of the DEMON Brothers. Before he could knock-out the third, a monster leapt from the interior of the brownstone and shredded the DEMON Brother. The blood-spattered monster (Cotzbalam) snarled at The Determined. Clearly DEMON had accidentally released something they could not control.

During the rough fight that followed, Dart was injured by the beast. Bruiser incidentally discovered it had a vulnerability to sacred attacks when Bruiser dumped gasoline on it that immediately lit from a sacred fire shot The Priest had fired earlier. This overwhelmed the beast and it fell unconscious. Bruiser dragged its unconscious form into The Priest’s sacred fire, hoping to destroy it. Oddly, while the short-lived flames kept the beast unconscious, the beast did not burn, nor was The Priest able to banish it.

Dart entered the brownstone looking for…anything, really. What he found in the basement was a destroyed ritual space, bodies torn asunder, and a rent in the air that led…elsewhere. After some discussion and surmising that the rent lead to Xibalba (the Mayan Underworld), The Determined threw the monster back through the rent, along with the dismembered bodies of the DEMON Brothers and as much of the ritual material as they could. This was more than Dart’s stomach could take, and, after several minutes heaving, Dart left the basement.

The Priest contacted Brother Timmons at the Monastery of Saint George the Martyr, reporting what they had found. A small group arrived from the monastery and made preparations to watch over the rent for the week it would take to seal and keep anything from coming through. They seemed to be very knowledgeable and competent on the subject and assured The Determined they were up to the task. The Determined decided to take the monks at their word and discretely left, wanting to avoid any official attention.

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Campaign Session 3
Obsidian Blade, Part 3

The December session changed to a boardgaming session as a player critical for half the adventure was not available. This happened January 9, 2010. The same player was unable to make, but by concentrating solely on The Determined, we were able to play.

Channel 12 News at 10:00 PM

As reported yesterday, the Kreeger Museum, a private, non-profit art museum located in the former residence of David and Carmen Kreeger was robbed in a daring daylight attack. The only item reported stolen was Copan Stela #23, which shows the court of King Jaguar Mirror who ruled Copan from 504 to 544 AD. It was one of the few Pre-Colombian pieces the museum owns and was collected by the Kreegers for the mural. Washington, D.C. police are still investigating and have made no public comments beyond confirming the stela was stolen.

In a breaking story, the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore was attacked this evening, just after closing for the day. Witnesses heard gunfire and the museum’s alarm system activate and called the Baltimore Police Department. Baltimore PD have confirmed an attempted theft at the Walters Art Museum that was interrupted by the museum’s curator, Mister Johnathan Stibbons. Exactly what happened after that, no one is saying, other than the thieves were stopped and none of the items in the museum’s possession were damaged or taken. Some damage was reported in the staff areas of the museum, but again, no specifics were given. A member of the museum staff, speaking under terms of anonymity, told Channel 12 that the museum curator was meeting with a private party when the attempted theft was discovered. The suspects were wearing robes and hoods and appeared to be members of a cult.

Three days ago, an obsidian blade was stolen from the Capitol City Museum of History. Again, by cultists of some sorts.

This is the third high profile museum robbery in as many days by cultists. They appear to be targeting items of Mayan origin. Museums across the Mid-Atlantic states are now increasing their security and closing any displays of Mayan artifacts. Where will these cultists strike next? Stay tuned as Channel 12 continues to follow the story.

The Real Story

The Determined

The following activities took place March 5, 2009, three days after the attempted theft of the obsidian blade at the Capitol City Museum of History.

As promised, Bishop Compagnoni provided an introduction with the curator of the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Mr. Johnathan Stibbons. The Priest, Brick, and Dart were able to travel to Baltimore to make the meeting. At the museum, the three were escorted up to the fourth floor to meet Mr. Stibbons and explain the nature of their meeting.

Mr. Stibbons was frankly unbelieving that anyone would attempt to steal the Grolier Codex while it was being restored at the museum, nor did he believe they would be able to get past the museums security. He was escorting the group back into the restoration area when a small shelving unit crashed into the wall in front of him.

Dart immediately sprung into action, darting into the room past the very surprised Mr. Stibbons, scoping out the situation, shouting a taunt, and then exiting the room, pulling Mr. Stibbons out of the doorway and back to safety. Brick and The Priest took positions flanking the door, automatic pistol and holy shotgun drawn, respectively. When two goons in DEMON robes stepped into the doorway to find out what was going on, Dart knocked them down and The Priest and Brick took them out. The robbers knocked over heavy worktables for cover and waited for whoever was out there to enter the room. The heroes obliged.

In the ensuing fight, the heroes gained an early upper hand as Dart and Brick took out the flunkies while The Priest laid out some holy shotgun mojo on the man later identified as Brother Snake. While the flunkies went down easy, Brother Snake literally laughed at all attacks thrown at him while attempting to mentally dominate the heroes.

At first it didn’t work, but eventually Brother Snake tried on the right person, ordering Brick to shoot Dart. Brick’s hatred of gang-bangers for killing the only boy she ever loved boiled to the surface and she gladly started shooting at Dart, the ex-gang member. Dart attempted to break the effect by fleeing the room, thinking if Brick had no target, the mind control would drop. Didn’t work out that way. Brick pursued Dart into the other room, gun in one hand and anger in her heart. Everything Dart did to keep her from shooting him only triggered more of her psychological triggers.

Deciding that what he was doing wasn’t working, he charged back into the restoration area to take down Brother Snake. Brother Snake instead mind controlled Dart and ordered him to attack The Priest, who had been whittling away at Brother Snake’s defenses. This worked just long enough for Dart to lay out The Priest. Then Dart turned on Brother Snake, eventually taking the cultist out with a rapid fire series of punches, before Brick finally shot Dart down. This allowed Brick just enough mental control to not finish Dart off.

During the aftermath, The Priest was revived and banished the demon possessing Brother Snake, eliminating most of the cultist’s powers. One of the researchers was fascinated by The Priest’s use of an old New York Subway Token as the focus for the ritual, the rest were happy to scramble out of there to safety. Mr. Stibbons smoothed things over with the police and promised to contact the owners of the Grolier Codex with The Priest’s warning that it was still a target.

Deciding that the only way to stop this threat was to take the fight to DEMON, the three heroes started working their contacts and hitting the pavement, looking for where DEMON operating. They followed the clues to the northwest corner Monastery Hill neighborhood of Capitol City. Seeking better knowledge about the insular neighborhood, investigation into the neighborhood newsletter led the heroes to the Monastery of Saint George the Martyr, built on the site of the old Carmelite Monastery. The receiving monk recognized The Priest and was interested in what brought him to the monastery. After some discussion in a side courtyard, the heroes learned a bit about some unusual findings in the neighborhood. Children had found a pile of painted plaster with Mayan images on the plaster fragments. The location of this finding was very near a building Brick had identified as interesting by hacking various databases online. The monks were clearly upset about someone attempting to open a gate inside the bounds of Monastery Hill and agreed to supply the group with charms against evil for the duration of their investigations.

The Determined started scouting out the brownstone in the northwest corner of the Monastery Hill neighborhood. It sits four lots in from the corner and has a bad reputation with the street people in the area, who avoid that entire block as a result. Brick was observing the area in disguise at a small street café while The Priest questioned the street folk on an adjacent block.

At the same time, Dart was scoping out the narrow alley behind the buildings. He realized he was being followed and started looking for a place to loose his tail once he left the alley, only to be facing over 10 members of the Green Street Tigers and Sying Wu, the only other survivor of the Storm Dragon Dojo and who blamed Dart for the death of their Sifu. Sying Wu called out Dart on the street. Dart chided Sying Wu for needing help. Sying Wu retorted, “They are not here for you. They are here for your red-headed girlfriend.”

Needless to say, this got Brick’s attention and ire. She quickly maneuvered into a better approach and prepared to assist Dart in his Kung Fu Showdown!

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No game in November

Due to the GM wanting time to work on a writing project, there will be no game in November. There may be one in December if we can avoid company holiday parties.

Thank you for reading!

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Campaign Session 2
Obsidian Blade, Part 2/I Pspy

This game session happened October 12. The dates listed below are in-game dates.

Channel 12 News at 10:00 PM

Murder suspect arrested in Monastery Hill. Nolan James Deatly, a junior majoring in Ancient History at Capitol City University, has arrested by the police and linked to a series of unusual slayings in the Monastery Hill area over a period of three weeks. Sources close to the investigation claim that the bodies were found weirdly desiccated, as if all the moisture were drawn from them. It is assumed that Deatly was attempting to obscure the timing of his crimes through the use of a desiccating agent of some sort. Capitol City Police are being very tight-lipped as to how Deatly allegedly performed his crimes and how he was caught.

Sparkler out on bail. Sparkler was charged with a felony count or armed robbery and several counts of reckless endangerment in relation to the incident at Imperial Brokers on Monday. She pled “not guilty” and was released on $600,000 bail after her arraignment at the Capitol City Courts. Sparkler is being represented by Tammera Pfenning of the legal firm Castillo and Bransom. Pfenning claims that her client is the victim of racial profiling by costumed vigilantes and that there is no real evidence tying her client to the crime.

Pfenning is referring to new super-group SABRE, funded by Max Power, owner and CEO of Futuretech Systems. On Tuesday, Futuretech Systems spokesman Chance Morway released a statement that they were assisting the police in investigating the robbery at Imperial Brokers, a private financial corporation. The CCPD confirmed this and stated that the CCPD was questioning the captured robbers looking for leads to the three that escaped with over $9 million in bearer bonds. SABRE involved in some unusual goings on at the Capitol City Hilton. Today the entire team, along with a SABRE tactical squad arrived at the Capitol City Hilton in a stretch limo flanked by two white SUVs. After White Shade asked directions at the front desk, the team stormed off to one of the smaller conference rooms, the Colorado Room. No one is certain what happened inside, but SABRE was there for 30 minutes and members of the tactical support team retrieved some equipment from the SUVs and took it into the Colorado Room.

Hotel staff, speaking anonymously, informed Channel 12 that the room was reserved for a Kent Strycker and apparently a meeting of some sort took place. After SABRE left the Hilton, the pastry and fruit trays were almost completely empty. Security footage shows a man entering the conference room 23 minutes before SABRE arrived, but no one can recall seeing him leave. SABRE spokesman Chance Morway was unavailable for comment.

The Real Story

The Determined

The following activities took place March 3, 2009, the day after the robbery at the Capitol City Museum of History.

Dart, getting some food, coffee, and space to go over what happened at the Museum, noticed he was being followed by some guys in green jackets – gang jackets of some sort. Then he noticed some more gangers ahead of him. Not really looking for a fight, Dart tried to dodge them by ducking down a side alley, only to discover it had three more of the green-jacketed gangers waiting for him. Before he could reverse course, the five gangers on the street stepped up and sealed of his escape to the street.

Dart immediately used his two-way radio to call for back up and got Brick. Brick was not enthusiastic about showing up until she heard one of the gangers taunt Dart about “calling home to mommy”. She got on her motorbike and scrambled while Dart decided the best defense was a good offense and started the fight. Things were going his way until he discovered: 1) the back end of the alley was blocked by a chain-link fence and 2) stopping in the middle of your opponents was a bad idea. He went down under a hail of baseball bats and chains.

Luckily for Dart, Brick arrived on her motorbike and spotted where the trouble was. She rode her bike down the alley, whacking four gangers in a row with her rock-hard fists, knocking them out or to their knees. She then parked and dismounted the motorbike in one smooth action, taking a fighting stance and announcing to the rest of the gangers, “This is where you run away.”

Deciding that attacking one guy by himself was entirely different that attacking a guy backed up by a hard-core crazy woman, the guys in the green jackets fled for the hills. Brick was able to spot the tiger stitched onto the backs of their jackets as they fled, but the symbol meant nothing to her then. She called her contact on the CCPD and suggested a patrol car or two show up at the alley to arrest four guys who attempted an assault. She described the jackets they were wearing and her police contact identified them as belonging to the Green Street Tigers, a gang in the Bennsville-Middletown area. He said he would send some patrol cars to pick the gangers up.

Brick then took Dart to the nearest clinic for some medical attention. While they were taking Dart in, Brick pulled a Batman and disappeared before anyone thought to ask her for identification. Dart woke up in the clinic after being taped up and receiving some stitches. He could hear an attendant talking on the phone to the police, reporting the incident, so he palmed some anti-pain meds, grabbed his jacket, and snuck out the back before anyone could come back to check on him. He made his way back to the basement at St. Martin’s Mug where the group hung out and passed out on the couch to recover more from the beating and contemplate the wisdom of paying better attention to one’s surroundings.

Meanwhile, Brick met up with a good friend and former roommate from New York City at a coffee shop near the University. Brick’s friend, Kunoichi, was in town working a job with the Atlantean War Swarm, a hacker group Brick was once a member of. Ku (as Brick called her) wasn’t interested in talking business, she just wanted to get together and chat with he best friend. The two made small talk for 30 minutes, catching up without compromising secrets, before they both had to go.

When Brick returned to the basement of St. Martin’s Mug, she found Dart asleep on the couch and Bruiser sipping a beer and keeping watch over Dart. Brick just finished updating Bruiser about Dart’s run in with the Green Street Tigers when The Priest showed up.

The Priest had just finished a clandestine meeting with Bishop Compagnoni, where he was asked to deal with an old problem. The Priest had fought and put down a demon two years ago named Nath-pha. The Catholic Church had done its level best to eliminate all records of how to summon Nath-pha since then, but someone had found a way. The previous night Nath-pha had finally been confirmed as the killer behind a series of murders in the Monastery Hill neighborhood over the last three weeks. Bishop Compagnoni requested The Priest put down Nath-pha again, but without killing the host that was inside, and to do so soon before Nath-pha re-gained too much power. The Priest reluctantly agreed. Back at the basement of St. Martin’s Mug, The Priest asked the others to assist him against Nath-pha. All agreed, even Dart, who was bruising up nicely.

The group went over a dossier of material Bishop Compagnoni had given The Priest and selected a likely place to stake out, using Brick as bait. Their planning paid off and they were able to stop Nath-pha. Turned out that while Nath-pha had a vulnerability to holy attacks, simple brute force also worked against it. Bruiser caught Nath-pha in a bear hug and slowly crushed the demon into unconsciousness. This broke the hold Nath-pha had on its host and Nath-pha’s form oozed off the host, leaving Bruiser holding an unconscious male college student. At which point Bruiser asked The Priest, “Do you have some sort of holy Sham-wow to mop this up?”

Afterwards:
The college student, Nolan Deatly, was turned over to Bishop Compagnoni, who turned him over to the police. The Priest’s mystic book dealer contact came up with the location of the Codex and Stela associated with the Obsidian Blade, and Bishop Compagnoni was able to arrange a meeting with the curator of the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, where the Grolier Codex is undergoing restoration work. The Priest asks Ray (the book dealer) to ask around for someone who could create a duplicate version of Copan Stella 23 that could be swapped out for the original. Ray was dubious, but willing to discreetly ask around.

SABRE

The following activities took place March 6, 2009, four days after the robbery at Imperial Brokers.

Chance Morway, PR representative for SABRE, approached White Shadow and asked her to sit in on a meeting in an hour with some potential investors, represented by Kent Strycker, at the Capitol City Hilton for him as he needed to be elsewhere assisting Max. Somewhat puzzled by the lack of information and short warning, she decided to do a little asking around. She contacted her mother, Tasha Albin, the head of Albin Images, a very successful PR firm and where White Shade interned. Her mother had never heard of Kent Strycker before and suggested Margo (White Shade) ask Max for more details. This seemed like a good idea, so White Shade contacted Max.

Max was in a meeting with Detective Alana Petrey from the CCPD, ostensibly about the robbery at Imperial Brokers, but all the detective’s questions were about SABRE and Max. With some relief, Max excused himself from the meeting and let his lawyer (Janice Obradovich) continue with the meting. After White Shade explained the situation, Max was puzzled. If there were any potential investors, Chance should have brought that information to him and this was the first he’d heard of it. He contacted Chance and asked some pointed questions. Based on Chances disjointed answers, max suspected something was up with Chance. Max asked White Shade to go talk to Chance and see if his mind had been altered. Max also contacted Fletcher, his second-in-command, and asked that a tactical team with stun weapons go over to Chance’s office and wait to see if anything untoward happened.

White Shade talked with Chance in his office and determined that someone had implanted a suggestion in Chance’s mind to set up the meeting between White Shade and this Kent Strycker person. She reported this to Max who had Fletcher start multiple lines of investigation. Max and White Shade both now wanted very much to meet with Mr. Strycker. They assembled the rest of SABRE and one of the tactical teams and headed to the Capitol City Hilton.

(Along the way, they discovered that White Shade now has a paparazzi. Max is having the paparazzi investigated and lightly harassed.)

At the Hilton, White Shade received directions to the Colorado Room, which was reserved in the name of Kent Strycker. She also determined that the staff had been mentally “woogied” that everything was OK with the reservation.

When the team brazenly stepped into the conference room, they found a very surprised Kent Strycker waiting. Kent attempted to conversationally stall Max while holding a telepathic conversation with White Shade. He seemed interested in whether or not White Shade was happy being with SABRE, but didn’t get very far in either conversation before it became obvious that Max was going to be a problem. Apologizing verbally to Max for the waste of time and telepathically promising to White Shade that he’d “be in contact later to finish their conversation,” Kent Strycker turned invisible.

Max immediately posted members of the tactical team at the doors and started working out how to make Kent visible again. Margo scanned the room mentally and realized Kent was invisible mentally as well, something she was not able to do. The team heard a noise at the back of the room that was the back door being opened and used while the guard there stepped back into place. Max charged through the door into the service corridor, only to get a flash of light to the face from an invisible attacker – a mostly harmless flash of light as it turned out. White Shade followed, but after a few tense seconds it became obvious that Mr. Strycker had fled the scene.

The team secured the room and Max had it swept for listening devices (the equipment pulled for the SUVs) before contacting Fletcher and making arrangements to contact PRIMUS for anti-psionic assistance. During this time, Mars made ample use of the snacks the hotel staff had set out. After his conversation with General Hawkins at PRIMUS, Max had the team pack up to leave. White Shade’s paparazzi had shown up at the Hilton by this point and White Shade scanned his surface thoughts to determine if he was associated with Kent Strycker. His thoughts were full of a desire to get shots of SABRE’s “hottie in white” to sell to the tabloids. It was very obvious that the paparazzi was not associated with Kent Strycker at all.

Afterwards
Max had several lines of investigation going and is waiting on results. He received the preliminary results of the investigation on the blaster captured at Imperial Brokers, but it was inconclusive as to where the blaster could have been manufactured.

White Shade removed the suggestion from Chance’s mind and he will be cleared to return to work on Monday.

Sentinel had a short meeting to fill out a “mid-air collision report” with a representative of the FAA over the way Sentinel knocked Sparkler out of the air at Imperial Brokers.

Mars had some fans show up at SABRE headquarters looking for his autograph. He was too happy to oblige his fans, providing signatures and a stack of color glossies for their friends and families.

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Campaign Session 1
First Steps

News Report at 10:00 PM

New supergroup SABRE foiled a robbery of a private bank by Sparkler and hired henchmen mid-afternoon today. While Sparkler was captured, three of her men escaped with ~$9 million in bearer bonds. Additionally, nearly $900,000.00 was lost when the bank robbers dumped nearly all the cash in the bank off the 10th floor balcony to crowds on the streets below. The CCPD believe the money drop was a distraction designed to obscure the thieves’ escape plan. The potential rioting the money drop could have caused was avoided by the efforts of Max Powers (of Futuretech Systems and leader of SABRE).

In similar news, The Capitol City Museum of History may have been the sight of a conflict between two violent cults. Approximately 30 minutes before the Museum was scheduled to close, violence broke out in the Meso-American exhibit hall. Two Museum employees and one of the cultists died during the altercation. The CCPD announced the arrest of four cultists at the scene, but have not provided any information about who was actually involved. It was later found that the Museum’s digital footage had been tampered with and identification of the second group of cultists is at a standstill.

The Real Story

SABRE

Alerted by Max Power’s second-in-command, Fletcher Davis, to a robbery in progress of the Imperial Brokers private bank in Downtown by Sparkler, SABRE debuted to the Public. With the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Special Unit One in Baltimore, there was an excellent opportunity for SABRE to capture Sparkler and establish their reputation.

As SABRE was arriving, the CCPD chopper circling the building was shot and started to crash land. Sentinel and Mars were able to work together and set the damaged helicopter down safely.

White Shade arrived at the bank first and was nearly knocked cross-eyed by Sparkler’s initial attack. Mars quickly joined the fight on the 10th floor balcony of the building, and nearly as quickly was shot off the building by two henchmen with blaster assault rifles. Other than leaving a Mars-sized crater in the cement, Mars was unhurt. He was in the perfect position to catch the falling Sentinel, who was stunned by an autofire fireworks attack from Sparkler and fell to the ground. Shaking clear his head, Sentinel regained his senses in time for Mars to throw him back towards the 10th floor, regaining flight stability at the level of the 8th floor. With the two heroes on the ground and White Shade no where to be seen (she was covering the far side of the building where two henchmen were dumping literally millions of dollars in cash to the streets below), Sparkler decided it was time to leave. She and the two hirelings there shouldered backpacks full of bearer bonds and donned gliderwings. Sparkler left first and was immediately pursued by Mars and Sentinel.

Meanwhile, White Shade had used her mental powers to convince one of the remaining henchmen to go back in for more cash to drop. He and his cohort went back inside, allowing her to land and follow. Inside the bank she used a mental entangle to paralyze one of them. The other had moved out of her view, so she blocked the perception of her from sight (invisibility only versus people she is aware of) and pursued the remaining henchman. She found him just in time to see him finish donning a gliderwing and leap over the balcony. She made a last ditch attempt to mind control him, but did not get the desired effect.

By this point, Mars and Sentinel captured the blinded Sparkler (from a flash attack by Sentinel). They saw the three henchmen escaping with via gliderwings, but were too far away to capture them before they landed and escaped.

Max Power had arrived with a SABRE Response Team and was able to disperse the crowd grabbing the falling money. The crowd left with full pockets, but what could have been full on riots were averted. Max then proceeded up the emergency stairs to the 7th floor where the CCPD were hacking away at a hardened foam that was blocking the top three flights of stairs. There he was able to mix up a solvent to clear the stairs in minutes instead of hours, allowing those on the 8th and 9th floors to evacuate.

Afterwards:
Max had his people work with the CCPD to collect evidence, including tracking down the serial numbers of many of the missing bearer bonds (a number of which belonged to Max’s company, Futuretech Systems). Most of the equipment used in the robbery were commercially available. The gliderwings are high-end sporting equipment (which investigation showed were paid for in cash), the foaming agent is used by airports to slow landing aircraft in distress (stolen from the Warren G. Harding International Airport two days earlier), and the elevator cables were cut with commercial cable cutters (also purchased with cash). The blaster assault rifles were another matter. Max had materials experts in his employ assist the police in examining the captured blaster assault rifle. They had no identifying marks whatsoever.

Max and Sentinel are researching what materials would be necessary to manufacture the blaster rifles. They plan on using this information to track down potential manufacturing sites of these highly illegal weapons. Max is also interested in getting Micronetics (a nanotech research firm) to perform R&D on a better solvent, one that can be programmed to a specific substance. He will offer to fund the research and claim only partial ownership of the research results.

The Determined

Tipped off at nearly the last minute that DEMON was targeting the Capitol City Museum of History (CCMoH) for a theft, The Determined headed to the Museum to stop DEMON. The Priest identified the Meso-American exhibit, “Ceremony – 4000 Years of Religion”, as the likely target. He purchased tickets for all four team members and they headed up to the 3rd floor to see the exhibit.

Brick moved through the exhibit quickly, looking for trouble and identifying the security set up. The Priest moved through a bit slower, checking the items on display for auras indicating supernatural possession. Dart and Bruiser used the available headsets to view the displays. Shortly after Brick completed her initial pass through the exhibit, five robed and hooded individuals stepped through a concealed door from the employees section of the building. The security guard in the room questioned their appearance. He was told they were an inventory crew and it was OK for them to be there. The hairs on the back of The Priest’s neck rose, indicating magic was in use. Viewing the speaker through his Guisemann Lenses, The Priest saw that the man was possessed by a demon, granting infernal power. He relayed this information to the rest of the team via headset communicator.

While the team was trying to decide if now was the time for action, two of the robed men advanced on one of the displayed and smashed it open. This upset the guard again, and he nearly shook off the magics affecting him. He was killed by a blast from a wand by one of the robed figures for his troubles, killing the guard instantly. This blatant use of deadly magic was all the Determined needed and they sprung to the attack.

In the ensuing fight, Dart was seriously wounded, took down many of the goons with his martial arts, and was eventually mind controlled to attack Bruiser to minimal effect. The possessed man used the unholy magics at his disposal to make life painful for Bruiser. Brick lost her temper with the last goon standing when he took a hostage and shot the goon twice and the hostage once (not necessarily in that order). After the goon killed the hostage, Dart ran by the goon and martial threw him into a display case, killing the goon and ending the fight.

Afterwards:
The Priest and Brick emptied the goons pockets and took their magical implements, including an obsidian knife the goons had lifted from the display case they broke open. The team left the building via the emergency stairs with the last of the bystanders. Outside they quickly left the area.

Brick remotely hacked the CCMoH security systems and altered their digital tapes to obscure the ID of the Determined, but leave the rest clear to see. She also obscured her electronic tracks to make it difficult to trace the intrusion back to her (-2 to track back for investigators). The Priest’s occult bookstore owner contact, Ray, successfully ID’d the Obsidian Blade and the two other items DEMON will need to complete the ritual to contact the Mayan Lords of Death through a book written by the Portuguese scholar Calado in the late 1600’s. The first item is the Grolier Codex, which is currently on loan in Baltimore. The other item is a stela from Copan mentioned in Calado’s book. Ray is trying to track down the stela as it “disappeared” in the late 1800’s, which usually indicates it was stolen and sold to a private collector. The Priest also contacts the Bishop to inform him what was going on. Finally, The Priest made photocopies of the wallet contents of the goons and sent the originals to his contact on the CCPD.

Brick contacted Uncle Vin, a long time friend and “person who knows people”, to track down an art forger to create an exact replica of the Obsidian Blade. The plan is to return the duplicate and hide the original someplace safe to keep it out of DEMON’s hands. Brick also heard through the CC underground that VIPER stole equipment necessary to create/duplicate very high end security passes. That theft happened at exactly the same time as the private bank job earlier in the day. She made note of the information, not having any other use for it.

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Countdown to Campaign - 1 Week
Recent Timeline - Public Knowledge

1999 – March
The Guardian Incident happens in California. Due to the massive amount of press involved and the nascent Internet, PRIMUS is unable to contain the story and it becomes a major news story globally.
1999 – April
Jayme Penna declares in a press conference that she is secretly Guardians girlfriend and pregnant with his child. Guardian makes no comment other than to deny ever meeting Ms. Penna. The story makes all the gossip magazines.
1999 – May
Lord Synthetic kills Jayme Penna when she appears on the Today show as revenge for his defeat by Guardian. The New York City Coroner is able to run a paternity test on the dead fetus and prove the true father of the child was Jayme’s on-again, off-again boyfriend, Dale Brogan.
Both Dale and Guardian appear in a press conference denouncing Lord Synthetic as a vile coward. Lord Synthetic of course attacks and Guardian is again able to capture him.
1999 – August
Lord Synthetic escapes from the James A. Thomas Maximum Security Facility on Riker’s Island, despite extensive measures taken to prevent such a thing from happening.
1999 – November
Margo Albin becomes Miss Teen Maryland
2001
Lord Synthetic attempts to sieze control of the Florida Keys. He is stopped by Guardian and a team of local superheroes he assembled. Lord Synthetic escapes jail within two months of being captured.
2002 – April
Brick and Trent are shot in an altercation with a street gang. Brick survives, trent does not. Brick leaves town the night after the funeral.
2002 – June
Margo Albin becomes Miss Capitol City
2003
Lord Synthetic seizes control of Hoover Dam and demands $5 billion dollars or he will destroy the dam and all of its power generating capacity. Once again he is stopped by Guardian and a team of superheroes from the nearby states.
After extensive preparations to keep Lord Synthetic imprisoned, he escapes four months later with outside help.
2004
Rumors of mysterious “Gene Cops” arise in several major metropolitan areas in the Americas. The stories all claim that a number of people are “arrested” and taken away, never to be heard from again. All inquiries with all levels of law enforcement draw blanks.
2004 – March
Maryland forms the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Special Unit One – the first government-sponsored team of superheroes.
2004 – June
Lord Synthetic attacks the island of Anguilla with an army of Synthwarriors and several other supervillains assisting, seizing control of the island. He declares the island an independent nation with himself as head of state. The British are not amused.
2004 – July
The British consult with Guardian. Later in the month Anguilla is retaken by British SAS troopers along with several British superheroes. Lord Synthetic is sent to a British maximum security prison where “he will be kept locked up tight, unlike in American prisons.”
2004 – August
Lord Synthetic escapes from prison and Britain. As a side effect of his actions, 75% of the other prisoners in the same facility are also freed and British authorities spend the next two years actively hunting them all down.
2004 – August
Margo Albin becomes Miss Maryland 2004
2005
Cape-KRAKEN War happens.
2005 – April
PRIMUS is dragged into the light by a concerted effort by the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, and the DIA, all of whom are unhappy about being repeatedly targeted by lawsuits and Congressional inquiries (not to mention loss of black book funding). PRIMUS narrowly avoids being dissolved and prosecuted for criminal acts of oppression. The agency is demilitarized and reorganized as part of the Department of Justice. The public is barely appeased and the agency is hit with a flurry of Freedom of Information Act information requests.
2005 – May
First VIPER attack televised. Speculation about the involvement of Lord Synthetic runs high until PRIMUS releases data showing VIPER has been active in the United States for nearly 10 years.
2005 – July
Brick leaves NYC when the hack group she was with (the Atlantean War Swarm) starts to go violent and perform actual terror activities.
2005 – August
Margo Albin becomes Miss Maryland 2005
2005 – October
Lara Malone is arrested when the evidence siezed at the end of the Cape-KRAKEN War shows the Malone Investment Group has been funding major criminal enterprises for KRAKEN and engaging in insider trading and industrial espionage through Malone Investment Solutions, reaping tremendous profits in the process.
2006 – January
Margo Albin becomes Miss America 2006. Almost immediately, rumors start spreading that Margo is a mutant and/or used some sort of mind powers on the judges.
2006 – April
After months of slander and false charges, Margo decides to step down as Miss America, convinced she can do more good elsewhere. Once again, almost immediately the rumors disappear. Quiet speculation starts to surface that the smear job against Margo was done on behalf of Jessica Jackson, Miss Virginia and First Runner-up, who inherited the crown when Margo stepped down. As Jessica’s father is Senator Lee Jackson of Virginia, a powerful man in Washington D.C., these rumors stay quiet.
2007
Debate on creating a new facility designed to specifically contain supervillains starts in various committees in Congress. It has become apparent that regular prisons are not able to hold all supervillains.
2008
Rumors of mysterious “Gene Cops” resurface. Gene Cops seem to be targeting known and potential metahumans. They are stopped in a few cases. Afterwards, police have no records of the incidents and all collected evidence disappeared.
2009 – February
Brick arrives in Capitol City and starts making contacts. She eventually falls in with a determined group seeking to fight the criminal organizations ruling Capitol City behind the scenes.
2009 – March
Campaign starts.

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Coundown to Campaign - 5 Weeks
Metahuman History

The starting date for the campaign has been set for September 12. It will likely be a short role-playing session as we finalize everyone’s characters, including backstory links, prior to actual play.

This entry will also be included in the wiki with additional information as it becomes necessary.

The Guardian Incident

The Guardian Incident is the first recognized, public appearance of a metahuman in history. Prior to this event, rumors had circulated about those who could do things normal people could not, but most were believed to be urban myths or tabloid fodder. However, due to the highly publicized nature of this event, the truth could not be denied.

In fact, the Guardian Incident is the appearance of the first two recognized metahumans.

At what was supposed to be a minor public appearance at a children’s hospital, California Governor Gray Davis, his entourage, and many children were seized by a group of people armed with high-tech weaponry and lead by a man calling himself Lord Synthetic. Lord Synthetic demanded $10 billion be transferred to a Swiss account and that he be granted sole domain over the Channel Islands off the California coast.

The event immediately made the national news. The initial assault by LA SWAT against Lord Synthetic was blocked from broadcast. Lord Synthetic and his Synth-Troopers used their superior fire-power, including Lord Synthetic’s ability to throw bolts of energy from his hands, to drive back and kill the SWAT teams involved. This part of the action was broadcast live to the world, which reacted with shock to what it saw. Immediately, Los Angeles was the target destination for US special forces units and the world press.

During the following week, Lord Synthetic repeated his demands and personally blasted any military unit that he felt was getting too close. This led to the US government getting desperate for options that would not also kill all the hostages. On the eighth day, Lord Synthetic decided to remind the US government what was at stake. He dragged the governor to the fountain area in front of the hospital where the world press could clearly see what was happening and prepared to execute the governor.

Lord Synthetic was interrupted by a glowing man who flew out of the sky under his own power and slugged Lord Synthetic across the courtyard. The glowing man pointed the governor to some waiting troops in the door of a nearby building and then turned to fight Lord Synthetic. The governor escaped during the ensuing fight, during which Lord Synthetic called in his Synth-Troopers. The glowing man shrugged off shots that easily killed members of SWAT and Special Forces. The beams from Lord Synthetic’s hands took a toll, but the glowing man fought on in full view of the world.

Eventually, the glowing man won the fight, defeating Lord Synthetic in front of the world press. Elite troops from the US military had snuck in and secured the rest of the hostages, taking advantage of the unexpected distraction presented by the fight.

In a short statement to the press afterwards, the glowing man said “My name isn’t important, I’m just a guardian.” He was immediately labeled “Guardian” by the press and the rest is now history.

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Countdown to Campaign - ~6 weeks

As we were not able to run the Pathfinder game today (missing player), we did work on the Champions game. Here is what we have now:

The Bold:
The White Shade – one-time Miss America, forced to return her crown due to allegations of using “mental powers” in order to win (Mentalist)
“Mars” Gordon – pro-wrestler turned superhero (Brick)
Flux – early hero suffering from amnesia and power malfunction (Blaster)
? – dotcom millionaire and team founder (Trained Normal)
? – (Undecided)
? – (Undecided)

The Determined:
Brick – gang-hater with strong gun-fu skills (Brick)
Dart – ex-ganger, seeks the “Gene Cops” who killed his sufi (Martial Artist/Speedster)
The Priest – ex-communicated monster hunter with a holy shotgun (Blaster)
? – (Undecided)
? – (Undecided)
? – (Undecided)

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Countdown to Campaign - ~7 Weeks

Some thoughts on the villains and villain agencies.

The whole villain schtick is not fully developed yet. High tech weaponry is not as wide-spread as a standard superhero campaign/comic book. Bad guys operate on a more local scale. VIPER cells have finite resources and threaten cities, not nations (except maybe Lichtenstein or some of the smaller microstates, but never Singapore). The mad scientists are aiming to conquer the world in one fell swoop.

I don’t plan on making the villains common criminals, even when they’re robbing a bank. If they’re there in broad daylight, there’s a reason and it usually has to do with picking a fight with a “superhero”. If nasty things happen, they’ll probably happen off-stage and for a specific story reason, never randomly.

Rivalries will happen on both sides. Goodguys can fall, but badguys can be redeemed. There will be cases of mistaken identity.

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Countdown to Campaign - Two Months

The campaign is in the planning stage. I have yet to set points for character creation (although I know one group will be 100+ points more than the other) and some other basic stuff. I am currently thinking about legalities.

The campaign is set in Maryland where, 3-5 years before the campaign starts, the State of Maryland started an official team of heroes to work towards the betterment of the citizens of Maryland. The team was the Maryland Department of Natural Resources – Special Unit 1. With minimal direct guidance and a matching budget (read: tiny), Special Unit 1 became involved in a variety situations that were beyond the ability of standard law enforcement. They gradually worked out a set of protocols for arresting super-powered criminals and officially dealing with the unusual situations they faced.

Over time, it became obvious that Special Unit 1 could not be everywhere, even in a relatively small state like Maryland, and the Maryland Congress would not increase the budget (in fact, much of the team equipment was purchased or developed by members of the team using their own resources). To allow for more “superheroes” to be active, but to avoid absolute chaos, Maryland decided to start issuing licenses to superheroes who registered with the state.

Up until this point, defense lawyers hired by criminals stopped by masked superheroes without extensive video footage could easily get the charges dropped when the heroes would not remove their masks in the courtroom. Able to create a reasonable doubt as to who, exactly, was giving witness, most juries would not convict. Special Unit 1 was exempt from this as the State of Maryland vouched for their identity without revealing it, using similar laws in use for undercover police officers. The handful of times the heroes un-masked in court, family and friends immediately became targets of the criminals being prosecuted. By requiring heroes to register with the state, the state could vouch for them in court, allowing credible eye-witness testimony to be given without family and friends becoming targets.

The data is currently kept in facilities designed by members of Special Unit 1 and maintained by bonded staff. Even so, not all heroes register as there is a certain skepticism about the security of the information in an age where even the Defense Department is not completely safe. Those heroes who are not registered have started using the CrimeTippers program to report the location of captured villains and supporting evidence. Court cases using this information has been a mixed success as not all juries are willing to accept it.

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