Chapter 29: Lima
The game continued from Chapter 28: Sica Hollow.
Répondez s'il vous plaît
game session #160
played on January 12, 2015
"Help me sister" continued to appear everywhere. The group visited Nannuraluk's village and found it destroyed by a vampire attack. After a ritual burial for the dead, they walked north and found Nannuraluk's nieces abducted by qalupaliks. A battle ensued on (and in) a frozen lake. The group collectively fought off the fish-like monsters and rescued the girls, who were sent to live in a nearby village. Following Nanook's map, they dug under a tree and discovered a corpse of Nannuraluk with a soul-transference charm in his hand, leading to speculation that he must have died in the bear attack and his spirit transferred into a changeling. In Paris, a courier delivered a box of candy to Gao with a letter in Japanese, that Gao read with special glasses: It was an invitation to Tokyo, to trade her cursed copper amulet for Melchitt. Gao warned the group about a vision of Frankenstein trying to beat down the Vault door. Over a screen, Mycroft Holmes ordered a lockdown of La Lumière's facilities and gave the group a new assignment: Travel to Lima to slay a centuries-old necromancer called Coetlicrota the Undying, a being who personified death itself, and rescue old ally Theresa O'Neill in the process.
Nann role-playing Nannuraluk's confusion and frustration
Help Me Sister
game session #161
played on January 19, 2015
Gao disappeared in the Vault to research on her own. Nannuraluk subjected himself to tests and was told he was a "masque of the Red Death," a changeling permanently stuck in human form with his own free will, that the Red Death might try to control later. The group researched Coetlicrota and discovered a number of facts: She once served an Incan king who was slaughtered by a conquistador, and gained her near-immortality when the Red Death granted her wish to get revenge on Europeans. She was surrounded by a "strench of death" that could poison, stun, or even kill someone who breathed it. Her lair inside a step pyramid was the source of her power and full of the same stench, but she could be lured out of it. She could mentally control any zombie in her vicinity and compel it to tell her its secrets, and she was believed to have an army of these zombies in the jungle. The group discussed ways to arm themselves with holy water and other blessed effects. Caleb suggested getting Melchitt from Tokyo first, as the cat had been able to resurrect the dead in the past. It was decided that simply sealing Coetlicrota inside the temple or dismantling it would be insufficient; they had to face her and destroy her directly.
Caleb for pointing out the benefits of having Melchitt before facing Coetlicrota
The Lady, or the Tiger?
game session #162
played on January 26, 2015
Gao informed the group that, according to her research, Sumuru was a rich collector of supernatural artifacts. Gant discovered that the copper amulet belonged to a vampire lord in Ravenloft, but they decided to trade it to Sumuru anyway. The next morning, the group went to Hong Kong, where Caleb earned the group passage on a boat to Tokyo, and Deke ran into an old acquaintance at a brothel. In Japan, they found Sumuru's estate, full of exotic animals, and inside a pagoda, some relics that they had seen before in their adventures. Sumuru invited Gao to stay and be well taken care of in her collection, but the girl opted to trade the amulet for Melchitt, who protested rejoining Gao as soon as his metal collar was removed. The cat was eventually calmed with alcohol and agreed to go. Elise negotiated an agreement that they could return in the future to make more trades.
Elise for striking a deal with Sumuru for future trades
Gant for discovering the copper amulet's connection to Ravenloft
game session #163
played on February 9, 2015
After days of flirting, Sagesse found Phineas suddenly uninterested in her and moving out. He claimed to know that she was a man, and had a mental image of her nude that way, but she demonstrated (without disrobing) that she was all woman. They spent several days at his estate in London, until vampires attacked, but the monsters soon ran away upon realizing that Sagesse was off-limits because "she has a special purpose." Sagesse confronted Deke and Gilbert about manipulating Phineas's mind, and Gilbert professed his love for Sagesse, but she assured him that he was still just a child and she couldn't see him that way, although she loved him in another sense. He became depressed, and admitted to bringing a piece of the burnt tree that contained Freddie Sykes to the Manor. Deke and Caleb tried to build a gas mask to avoid Coetlicrota's poisonous cloud, and ultimately managed one that would work for a few moments at a time. The group booked passage from Vancouver on a passenger ship sailing to Lima. At a stop in San Francisco, Elise slew a vampire watching the ship from shore. While patrolling the ship's corridors that night, Elise detected six more vampires in a storage bay, and gathered the group to attack them.
Deke for developing gas masks for the group
Sagesse for role-playing
game session #164
played on February 23, 2015
Sneaking about in the shadows, the group crept into the cargo bay and slew the first sleeping vampire they fonud, but awakened a dozen of the shrieking monsters. A bloody fight quickly unfolded, during which Nannuraluk's leg was ripped from his body, and Caleb was struck so hard that he was knocked out of stone form and back into flesh. Rose's daybreak spell kept the vampires at bay long enough for the group to whittle their numbers and heal, but two escaped in the form of fog and bats and were not seen again. Sailing past stops in Tijuana and Panama, the ship eventually docked in Lima, where Caleb attracted close scrutiny for his close resemblance (sans beard) to conquistador Francisco Pizarro. They found that La Lumière had no contact established in the area, but it was suggested that they pay (or coerce) locals for information on finding Coetlicrota the Undying's lair in the jungle further inland.
Gao for the idea to bless the grave dirt
Nann for providing light and defensive support during battle
Place of Death
game session #165
played on April 6, 2015
Caleb slipped into a disguise to avoid unwanted attention. The group hired a driver to take them into the mountains, but he warned of the area being dangerous. They stopped for the night at a logging village, where Deke caused trouble by telepathically making the locals dance for his amusement. The group executed a zombie scout who was watching them. Sagesse encountered a friendly savage who called himself Tarzan, who agreed to show them the way to certain places in the jungle. Caleb, Elise, and Gao found a cabin in the woods where research journals documented the anthropological studies of Eric and Jan Sheppard, her death from malaria, and his slow descent into cannibalistic madness. They were met by a zombie at the door. Meanwhile, Deke and Sagesse found themselves set upon by a swarm of pygmy headhunters.
Terribilis est locus iste
game session #166
played on April 13, 2015
Deke and Sagesse used their formidable powers of persuasion to convince the headhunters to leave without a fight. Caleb and Elise overpowered the zombie of Eric Sheppard and put it out of its misery. Their driver was frightened by a zombie, and they gave their blessing for him to return to civilization. Deke sank into quicksand and needed help to free himself. Caleb survived an attack of piranha. They arrived at the ziggurat at nightfall, and decided to wait until morning. Tarzan stayed on watch, but disappeared during the night, having apparently fought off zombie attackers. Caleb dressed in a costume as Francisco Pizarro. They discussed leveling the building completely as a lost cause, but Gilbert had a psychic epiphany that there were multiple important people trapped inside. Sending Rose and Phineas back to the Manor for their own safety, the four present heroes (Caleb, Deke, Elise, and Sagesse) dug through the stone and emerged inside a shrine to a sun god, using their powers to avoid breathing. Zombies began charging into the room en masse, but Elise sealed the door and they fought off the first wave of attackers. Caleb smashed a stone statue and found a conquistador's long-dead corpse inside.
Caleb for giving the zombie of Eric Sheppard a merciful death
Elise for freeing Deke from the quicksand
game session #167
played on April 27, 2015
Rose convinced Gao and Nannuraluk to leave the Manor to help the others. The group found their first path blocked impossibly, so they tried going outside, where more zombies attacked them. Deke made telepathic contact with Theresa deep inside the ziggurat and learned her location. The group burrowed to her and found vampire hunter Abraham Van Helsing trapped with her. The zombie horde again impeded their progress inside. When Coetlicrota took Van Helsing to a ritual sacrifice chamber, the group forced their way inside and killed her. But they had barely freed Van Helsing when she rose up and attacked a second time, this time requiring them to blast the room apart with dynamite, burying her under a pile of rubble. The ghost of Francisco Pizarro told them that only a weapon made of pure Incan gold could slay her, and there was a forge nearby at Machu Picchu. Van Helsing revealed his reason for being here: Coetlicrota was in possession of a circlet that could block all mental contact, a shield that he hoped would be effective against Dracula.
Deke for establishing mental contact with Theresa O'Neill
game session #168
played on May 4, 2015
Van Helsing accepted Caleb's assurance that a "group full of vampires and changelings" could be trusted. He explained that he was on a quest to find information and relics that would enable him to destroy Dracula, and the group was eager to work with him, but first they had to destroy Coetlicrota. In the mountains above Peru, they found the ancient city of Machu Picchu and forged a golden spearhead as a horde of hundreds of zombies surrounded them. Grave elementals rose from the earth itself to join the fight. The group used explosives and other means of destruction, but the horde quickly overtook them. Nannuraluk spotted Coetlicrota on a ridge and helped Elise deliver the deathblow with the golden spearpoint, returning the zombies to death. In her lair, they found a circlet that prevented all mind control, a useful protection from Dracula. Van Helsing said that learning more about Dracula's life as Vlad Tepes before he became Earth's first vampire might yield something useful, and Elise remembered that she had once met the ghost of his cousin, in the mansion in Baltimore where the adventure first began. They knew where they had to go next, but first they wanted to take a few days off to rest.
Caleb for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
Deke for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
Elise for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
Gao for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
Nann for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
Sagesse for destroying Coetlicrota the Undying
The game continued in Chapter 30: Atlantis.