Chapter 30: Atlantis
The game continued from Chapter 29: Lima.
A Dim-Remembered Story of the Old Time Entombed
game session #169
played on May 18, 2015
Caleb found Noname altered with white goo and a meaner personality and worked to restore him. Nannuraluk learned that Melchitt the cat was in fact Shaka of the Zulu nation. Gao and Rose were inducted as members of The Circle and learned magic from Elise and Theresa. Deke brokered a deal with a distillery to trade hot sauce for whiskey. Van Helsing pressed them to resume the investigation. They traveled to Baltimore, finding the ruins of Moldavia from their first adventure months earlier, condemned by the city and locked. While Deke robbed the gallery of its paintings, Elise summoned the once-freed spirit of Prospero, who promised to tell them more about his cousin Vlad Tepes, who became the vampire Dracula, if they would get rid of whatever Red Death augmentation was currently happening in the house that was tormenting him. They found another Elise hiding, claiming to have been kidnapped by a furry flying man and locked in a cage here by a scientist. In the laboratory, they freed Elise's abducted parents and reunited them with the "real" Elise. They overwhelmed the scientist Dr. Caligari and questioned him about when he attacked them in his Vancouver lab. He said that the deadly reaction there would only have happened if a changeling had been in the room, and they realized their mistake: Unbeknownst to them at the time, Nannuraluk was a changeling, and the Elise that had been traveling with them all this time was in fact the real Elise. The other Elise's eyes turned red and she began to transform.
Caleb for resetting Noname
Deke for resetting Noname
game session #170
played on August 3, 2015
The fake Elise transformed into a large spider, its legs protruding from her still-human back, until the group defeated her. Elise focused on calming her parents' horror while Nannuraluk questioned Dr. Caligari about his experiments. Caligari revealed a bit of Dracula's plans (Dracula was working with Dr. Moreau and the invisible thief Pao Tcheou), but he refused to say more, since Dracula had once entrusted his manservant Mortimer Toombs with his secrets and then executed him for revealing one to his enemies. The group decided to interrogate Toombs's spirit to learn of Dracula's weaknesses, but first they questioned the ghost Prospero, who told of Dracula's turbulent youth and conversion to evil. In exchange for service to the Red Death, he had received land in Ravenloft and the title of Count Strahd von Zarovich, and he had sealed his soul in a phylactery: A simple copper amulet, likely the same one that Gao had traded away in Tokyo. While Nannuraluk and Deke escorted Caligari to the Vault in Paris to imprison him and research changelings (and for Deke to make a side trip to the Moulin Rouge), Elise and Gao took Elise's parents to a safe house in New York, and paid a visit to Gao's old friend Franklin Jackson, a grocer who used to look after the homeless child.
Elise for protecting Elise's significant others during battle
Nann for advocating for humane treatment for Dr. Caligari
Fire and Vice
game session #171
played on August 17, 2015
Cultists burned Franklin's grocery in an attempt to apprehend Gao, but were easily defeated and interrogated about a coming purification of Earth. Nannuraluk had a philosophical conversation with a rabbi living in the Vault. Deke hired a prostitute but found her murdered and his money stolen; his aggressive complaining got him a refund but made him an enemy of the Thieves Guild. Edgar spoke of envisioning the group as carnival workers. Deke dreamt of being choked by his nemesis Freddie Sykes; he awoke to Noname strangling him until Shesh fought off the robot and damaged it. The group went to Lady Sumuru's pagoda in Tokyo hoping to retrieve the copper amulet, but found it ransacked and its occupants dead of a vampire strike. The ghost of Qiu Jin explained that Dracula found the amulet and said he would remove it from Earth for safekeeping.
Gao for role-playing during Gao's talks with Franklin
Requiescat in Pace
game session #172
played on September 7, 2015
During her time away, Sagesse introduced Phineas to her parents, who immediately pressured the couple to marry, to Gilbert's irritation. They rejoined the group, who explored Tokyo looking in vain for more information. They went to Hong Kong and summoned the ghost of Dracula's manservant Mortimer Toombs, who revealed that Dracula had a second mole within the group, and that he had tossed into the Atlantic Ocean a glowing weapon called the Sunsword that was capable of slaying Dracula. From his description, it sounded due south of Bermuda. Van Helsing said that he had an acquaintance who could get the group to the ocean floor safely, and departed to Southampton to make contact, promising to meet the group at the Vault the next morning. When they arrived, the facility was attacked, as Frankenstein pounded down the front door and Dracula taunted them on the camera outside, saying that he was there to kill them before they could acquire the Sunsword. They evacuated two dozen Vault personnel into the Manor and then entered themselves, intending to come back out in Paris, but the house suddenly disappeared around them, leaving them floating in a vacuum, the same way that they had once found the Crimson Castle destroyed. With people dying around them, the group scrambled to think of a way to safety. Elise cast a spell to recreate the Manor from scratch around them, but all of their possessions stored in the original Manor were gone, and there were no doors to Earth. Worse, many had died in the void, including Edgar, Franklin, and Phineas. They talked about how to get out of this dimension and used the spellbook to travel to the Crimson Casino, finding Caleb playing cards there. They reasoned that if Deke could get them thrown out by security, this should deposit them back on Earth, close to wherever they were last.
Deke for defeating Frankenstein
Elise for devising a way to escape the void
Gao for pointing out the risk in questioning Sumuru's neighbors
There I Recognize No Master
game session #173
played on September 21, 2015
After Elise consoled the surviving La Lumière agents, the group exited through the Crimson Casino's front doors and found themselves on the streets of Paris. Deke battled an invisible enemy spying on them. They entered the Vault and found it destroyed: The books burned to ash, the lower levels flooded, the technology ruined, the doorways armed with painful traps, and the Oracle stolen. The surviving agents decided to return to Paris and go into hiding. Worried about Mycroft Holmes, the group hired a boat to take them across the English Channel. They received a magic pigeon from Van Helsing, who asked them to meet him in Southampton instead, so they sent their own pigeon to Mycroft, warning him to hide. Deke scanned everyone's memories with their permission, trying in vain to discover the mole. They reunited with Van Helsing and scanned his memories to be safe. He took them out on the water where they were met by Captain Nemo in a small watercraft. Upon their agreement to help him find a ghost ship called the Flying Dutchman, Nemo agreed to help them find the Sunsword. he took them down underwater to Nautilus, his personal submarine.
Deke for the idea to scan memories looking for Dracula's mole
Elise for consoling La Lumière agents in shock and grief
Voyage of the Damned
game session #174
played on September 28, 2015
Caleb lingered on the grounds of his dead lover's estate, trying to make sense of his sudden love and loss, before rejoining the group. Deke noticed that his wallet had been stolen and began plotting revenge against the Parisian thieves. Aboard Nautilus, the group was given a tour and introduced to the crew, and Van Helsing told his life story to put them at ease about trusting him. At a shipwreck, a ghost directed them to the Flying Dutchman, but warned not to seek it, for seeing it meant certain death. The group steered Nautilus into the eye of a hurricane, where they encountered the ghostly ship in a red fog, and Elise faded away, her spirit joining the crew since she had once drunk from the Fountain of Youth that was bound to this vessel. Nannuraluk blessed the Flying Dutchman, disintegrating the ship and freeing the souls trapped aboard, while Elise performed an exorcism and slew the captain. Nemo was very pleased with their work and agreed to take them anywhere in the world whenever they needed passage, starting with finding the Sunsword.
Nann for freeing the sailors by blessing the Flying Dutchman
game session #175
played on October 19, 2015
While searching the ocean floor, Nautilus began listing and spinning, and the group found themselves sucked into a whirlpool. They awakened in an underwater city that they presumed to be Atlantis, surrounded by squid-like beings that communicated with telepathic imagery. The queen, Dashura, seemed to promise them a treasure from their collection of human artifacts, which contained the Sunsword, but first they would have to help hunt a might beast with eyes as big as buildings. To test their mettle, the squids subjected the group to a series of one-on-one death matches in an arena that revived them after each fight. Caleb eventually stabbed Van Helsing to death in a slow fight. Sailor Steve Costigan beat Rose unconscious. Deke shot sailor Corto Maltese to death after toying with him. Shesh quickly mauled sailor Billy Budd. Gao knocked out sailor Jack Drisoll with a single punch. Elise found Nemo to a surprisingly well-equipped fighter, but his gadgets were no match for her. Nannuraluk outwitted Theresa's illusions and mauled her. In the second round, Caleb quickly beat up Costigan, while Deke's powerful rifle overwhelmed Shesh's defenses. Willing herself to hurt a child, Elise knocked Gao unconscious by telekinetically flinging a boulder at her. The group steeled themselves for more fights.
Caleb for reacting peacefully to the Atlantian searching him
Elise for defeating Gao in the arena
A Fire in the Belly
game session #176
played on November 2, 2015
Continuing their battles in the immortal arena, Deke rejected Caleb's offer of wine and shot him dead. Nannuraluk was crushed underneath Elise's boulder. When it came time for Deke and Elise to duel, neither one could land a hit on the other: The two expert combatants kept dodging one another's blows, until eventually a large squid gladiator entered the ring to battle them both. Elise tried to use nitroglycerin against it but blew herself up. Deke shot the creature dead and was celebrated as the champion. Their wounds healed by the enchanted arena, the group agreed to hunt the monstrous whale known on the seas as Moby Dick. They found it when its eye opened behind Elise in the water. Deke and Elise were swallowed whole and found shipwrecks and a wooden puppet in its belly. They set off a homemade bomb and escaped to the Manor, while Caleb and Nannuraluk tried in vain to get the Atlantians away from the exploding whale. The group's victory was celebrated with a feast and the right to claim a treasure. Deke selected the Sunsword and, with Dashura's blessing, a few gold coins.
Deke for defeating Caleb in the arena
Deke for defeating the Atlantian champion in the arena
Elise for defeating Nannuraluk in the arena
Nann for seeking a non-lethal alternative to hunting Moby Dick
game session #177
played on November 23, 2015
As she cleaned up bodies at the Manor, Sagesse discovered that Phineas had purchased an engagement ring for her. Gilbert tried again to romance her, only to be spurned, causing him to become angry. They rejoined the group and headed for London together to meet Mycroft Holmes. He left them a letter: He wrote that La Lumière was disbanded after Dracula's destruction of the Vault, as its agents now had to go into hiding, but he implored the group to slay Dracula and continue saving the world from other threats. To reach Dracula in the dimension Ravenloft, the group knew that they needed help from a wandering gypsy named Bronwyn Cutitari. Theresa could locate anyone in the world, but they had to sail to Boston to get her spell components. On the way, the group asked Deke to continue scanning their minds seeking Dracula's mole. Sagesse, Caleb, and Theresa all provided minor revelations, but the mole was discovered to be Gilbert: A transfusion of Sagesse's blood in the Crimson Castle had made him a vampire, and Dracula had promised him Sagesse's love in exchange for giving up the group's secrets, including the spellbook that allowed Dracula to destroy the Manor. Sensing that he was discovered, Gilbert ran to the back of Nautilus, evading the group's attempts to stop him, and threw his own body into the engine to in an attempt to kill the group. Nautilus nearly sunk, but the group's teamwork salvaged the ship. They buried Gilbert at the Manor and gave overdue eulogies for each of the recently departed. In Boston, Caleb discovered that newspapers were proclaiming him a murderer of Michelle LeDuece and international authorities sought his arrest. Theresa's neighbors set an ambush for her: Hundreds of vampires descended on her apartment from every direction, trying to steal the Sunsword, but the group got away safely. Theresa's magic provided the letters to spell Bronwyn's location, if the group could arrange them.
Gao for a thoughtful eulogy of Franklin Jackson
Sagesse for role-playing Sagesse's outrage at the vampires
The game continued in Chapter 31: Barovia.