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Author Topic: [BNW] Chapter 3: The City on the Edge of Time  (Read 50720 times)

April 11, 2012, 12:24:53 PM
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The City sleeps - fitfully, like a gin-soaked has-been out in the rain, or a gent whose lady has been out all night, and he gets the feeling she's gone for good.

Its been raining, but then again, its always raining.  It keeps the smoke down and the smell of human and other things bearable.

The Wardens have been out all night, their great flapping wings making noise that drown out the catcalls, the noisy taxis, and that jazz, until they soar again out of sight, heading back to the Spire and the City Above - someplace nobody like you is ever welcome.

The angels and demons were at it again, yesterday - fifteen elves got wasted over on 32nd Street when a Alu, one of the Faceless Ones, opened up on them with a Tommy gun.  Paper said they were colluding with the Wardens, getting ready for a push to take down one of the Sin Traders on New Fourth Street.

John Smith:
   You've been in the City for about a month, and there just aren't any thin places you can step through to leave.  It's like the whole world is sealed up in a little Mason Jar, and you are just a bug in a house about to get fumigated.  There's a war brewing - everyone is talking about it, from the lamiaks who tend the diner down the street to the oni who pick up trash on Saturday morning.  All the folk who live in the Lower City are just wondering when it'll run over.

You've run into a fellow named Isaac a couple of times - human, real bumpkin type, even has a couple of swords still on his back - seems likes he's another world jumper, but you can't quite be sure.  He's always looking over his shoulder, like something is following him...and in the City, you never can't be sure there ain't.

The two of you eat in the same pub most nights, though you don't see him often during the day - he's probably doing as you do, looking for a thin place to slip between and get the hell of the City before it blows...

You're out walking around, probably not the wisest course of action on a Friday night, but what the hell, better to see if there is someplace you can slip through before things go totally south.  You're minding you own business, as its wise to in the City, especially these days, when a bright flash of light pops off before your eyes, and half a dozen or so newbies are standing there, trying to get themselves killed by the homicidal fae who drive the damn taxis in this town.  None of the fresh meat notice you, but they do get pegged by one of the urchins, good kid, a goblin by the name of Charlie, Just Charlie.  The thing is, they seemed to come through one of teh thin places, but you can be sure you haven't felt one there, and there sure as hell isn't one now - maybe they can be your ticket outta here.


*      *      *


There is a brilliant flash of light, and the team stumbles out into a dark and raining city street.  There is a honk and a squeal of tires, and a dark taxicab zips by them, the driver shouting imprecations.



Everyone takes a moment to get their bearings - this transition felt different, like trying to run in huge jar of molasses, while something was hurrying you forward.

The buildings reach up into the dingy sky, the brick and steel of their facades dark and glistening in the rain.  The streetlights are electric, but look like they could fail at any time.  Distant jazz or swing music can be heard, along with strained laughter and the clink of glasses.



As the group stands there, a young child, its head covered by a battered fedora, comes up to Suriya.

Got some change, miss? it coughs, holding out a scaly hand.  Suriya starts in surprise as it tilts its hat back to reveal a green face, its long nose and huge ears almost comical in appearance.  His face turns from hope to disgust in a quick moment, and he sighs. I hears ya, gobo kid, onna th street - up to no good, I hears ya, he says, and he starts to trudge away dejectedly.

Hold up there, young man, Suriya snaps, and he whips around, eager and hopeful.

Were new to this city, and we need a place to stay.  No games, young man, she says sternly, putting her hand on her sword to show him she means business.  His reaction, though, startles her a bit more than his appearance.  He yelps, and stumbles backwards, holding up his hands placatingly.  I aint never done nothin, Your Wardenness, I dinnae know! he almost wails, cringing.

Suriya turns back to the others with a puzzled expression, shrugs, and turns back around.  I am not a Warden, but I am an Officer of the Law, so get up, and stop sniveling.  As I said, we need a place to stay for a little while.

His demeanor changes rapidly once again, from cowering to beaming at the group, urging them along.  Sure, course I knows a pip where ya ken doss, he says, his rough red hair poking out from under the dull grey fedora.



*         *          *

Meanwhile, in another part of the City, none too far away...

The two Oni thugs, their memory knives gleaming, stood over the unconscious barbarian, getting ready to evicerate all the good memories out of him, probably to sell to one of the Sin Traders down on New Fourth Street.

Hey, godling, your kind aint wanted here, one calls out to Raven, his memory knife stabbing forward as punctuation.  You aint got no Wardens here, an I dont think that th Morrigan would like you steppin on her territory, see? the other one adds sneeringly, its high, nasal voice grating. Heroes die, man, nothing to see, citizen.  It hurls the last word like an insult.

The barbarian groaned, and the Oni looked a little nervous, waving their knives menacingly towards Raven.  Beat it, we mean it! the first one said.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 09:32:09 PM by cortex ghost »
"Honestly, I swear to drunk I'm not God."
"Does this smell like chloroform to you?"
"Nothing in the Verse can stop me."


April 14, 2012, 02:37:30 PM
Reply #1
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Only a second after they had arrived Leon was already getting strange feelings. For one thing, their first friend was a tiny green child with red hair and a dusty hat. For another, it seemed he changed moods with greater frequency and severity than even the Mason did. Leon wore his sword close and kept his hand on an unclasped gun belt. He didn't want things getting ugly, which in this town seemed like it was commonplace.

Just on the spur of curiosity, Leon asked of their new friend "Pardon me young one, I've an inquiry. I've never seen anything like you. What exactly are you?"
PbP Campaign history
AitD: Elliot and Alice Jeru
BNW: Leon Artest
Successfully concluded campaigns
TGB: Aquila Golan
"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." -Ronald Reagan


April 14, 2012, 06:27:49 PM
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Maj. Samatha Carter
  US Air Force pilot, astrophysicist
    P-90, Beretta 9 mm, Kara kesh
      9/12 PP 5 AP

On arriving at the new location, Samantha quickly surveys the tall buildings and the dingy night air. There is an odor there; strange tinge of something most foul, but otherwise not quite unpleasant. She watches as the transaction between Suriya and the ... what? Gobblin? ... takes place. Then a gust of dusty wind touches her elbow and she clutches the grip on her P-90 for comfort.
-Mac


GM: BumpInTheBlack
Player: D:LH, SAHC, BNW


April 14, 2012, 08:26:10 PM
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The Mason
Redhead in a Shimmering Dress
~ Amnesiac
~ Memorable
~ Strange Luck
The Mason sidestepped as the honking taxi veered around the group.  After her blood pressure receded, she took a moment to get her bearings.  She'd been through worse... transitions... before, but a moment was still needed to adjust to the new surroundings.  New temperature, new smells, new air pressure, new gravity.

She made a series of small hops.  "Seems normal enough."

The conversation between Suriya and the green short person snagged her attention and she raised an eyebrow at the reactions of the native.  With a gentle nudge to Leon's rib with her elbow she whispered, "Take note.  He speaks of the Wardens as authority figures, but treats them with fear instead of respect.  My preliminary guess is dystopia."

The Mason eyed the buildings and took in the various forms of technology.  "I sense ambition.  Yes.  Ambition and broken backs."

At the green individual's urging them, The Mason began to follow.
"Curiosity Beckons."
"Saving the day never seems to count if you can't save everyone..."


April 15, 2012, 12:40:40 AM
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John Smith
PP: 3/6

Watching the newcomers, John grunts to himself. Even for a group of multiverse-travelers, this is an odd assemblage. Curiousity piqued, both by their own peculiarity and the chance to skip out of The City, he begins to follow them; trying to stay close enough to overhear their speech yet far enough away to not be overly noticeable. A bit of care is, in this city, more than called for.


Quote
Stealth and Perception rolls, in case they're needed.
Stealth: 6
http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3468904/
Perception: 12
http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3468905/


April 15, 2012, 02:07:27 PM
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Isaac Crass - Last of the Ferro'Khin
Twin long blades.
5/12 pp


Voices.  Two voices.  The two men who had approached.  Isaac tightened the muscles in his arms, being careful not to move.  They hadn't bound him.  They were arguing with some other that he could not hear.  They hadn't chased him like they had meant his life, but threw some bauble, and it had never occurred to Isaac that it could have been more than a simple scrap of paper.  Laying still, but cursing his own stupidity, Isaac opens one eye a hair, to peer through his lashes at the two men standing over him.  They're looking away, at some other toward the end of the alley, but Isaac's vision is still too blurred to see him.

The strange knives in his attackers lend to what he expects their plans are, or were if fate saw fit to favor him again.  Heroes die...  Isaac thinks to himself.  But I was never a hero.

Roll perception + tactics on how likely they are to notice Isaac's movement.
d6+d10=  15  http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3469720/

Roll covert + stealth +1 plot point to reach up and grab the handles inside Isaac's collar (if he can get away with it) d6 + d12 = 15 http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3469726/
« Last Edit: April 15, 2012, 09:06:17 PM by cortex ghost »
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle."


April 15, 2012, 09:22:30 PM
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Just on the spur of curiosity, Leon asked of their new friend "Pardon me young one, I've an inquiry. I've never seen anything like you. What exactly are you?"

The young person rolls his eyes at Leon's question.  "Gobbo, mate - meany greenies, long nose don't give it away?" he sighs in exasperation at Leon's blank look. "Goblin, mate.  Ain't you nevver seen one?"  At Leon's negative indication, he sighs again.  "Cor, soon you'll be pullin' me other."  He looks at Suriya and nods with an air of comraderie. "Rube."

As the exchange between the goblin and Leon takes place, Suriya looks out over the street and sidles up to Samantha.  "Interesting place, reminds me of New York City - or possibly Vancouver," she mentions casually, sliding her gun out of her holster.  "We're here barely five minutes, and already being followed."


Quote
Alertness+Perception: 1d10+1d6=12


*       *       *

The Oni make no indication of noticing Isaac's movement, as they both stare menacingly at the elf standing at the end of the alley.

Alertness+Perception: 10, 11
« Last Edit: May 22, 2012, 12:24:42 PM by cortex ghost »
"Honestly, I swear to drunk I'm not God."
"Does this smell like chloroform to you?"
"Nothing in the Verse can stop me."


April 15, 2012, 09:32:07 PM
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The Mason
Redhead in a Shimmering Dress
~ Amnesiac
~ Memorable
~ Strange Luck
sliding her gun out of his holster.  "We're here barely five minutes, and already being followed."
The Mason walks along, "So soon?  Must be our charming personalities."  She makes no effort to look around, but clenches her left hand.  "Hope it's not too serious.  We don't have Ichabod around anymore to eat people."  The comment was spoken in perhaps a slightly more whimsical tone than might have been considered appropriate for the horrors they'd witnessed less than an hour before.
"Curiosity Beckons."
"Saving the day never seems to count if you can't save everyone..."


April 15, 2012, 09:43:05 PM
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Perception 1d8 : 3, total 3
Rolled 1d6 : 2, total 2
   Grand Total=5


Maj. Samatha Carter
  US Air Force pilot, astrophysicist
    P-90, Beretta 9 mm, Kara kesh
      9/12 PP 5 AP

Samantha allows a smirk to reach her lips as The Mason makes her quip. "A bit more greasy than the New York I'm familiar with, but yes. The crazy taxis and strange men in raincoats... "
-Mac


GM: BumpInTheBlack
Player: D:LH, SAHC, BNW


April 16, 2012, 12:24:45 PM
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Isaac Crass - Last of the Ferro'Khin
Twin long blades.
Police baton, up a sleeve.
5/12 pp

Doing his best to not attract the attention of the brigands, Isaac grips the leather handles, and slowly pulls his swords from their sheaths.

[Out of character:  After consulting the rules a bit, I think I rolled that incorrectly.  It should have been Agi + Stealth.  If GM agrees, take the second roll.]

Quote
Covert + Stealth again.
1d6 + 1d10 = 6  http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3471122/   Dang.  An exchange of stabbing may occur.
[/color]

Quote
Agility + Stealth
1d12 + 1d10 = 14  http://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/3475263/ 
« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 04:02:58 PM by Wanderer »
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle."


April 16, 2012, 04:14:36 PM
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Leon didn't know what to say, he could only shake his head and smile. This place was stranger still than the last universe. He couldn't even be sure that he wasn't dreaming right now.

On second thought, scratch that thought. "I still feel tired." he observed to himself "Aw well. This looks like the kind of place wherefear reigns. I'll hold myself over on adrenaline for now."

"Come to think of it, this reminds me of the time that I landed on the planet Alpha Rogus. Large planet, meant expressly for housing people, the whole planet is basically one gigantic city. The upper and mid-range cities are okay, but the under-hive is dark and grimy and the people there are more creature than man, according to rumor."
PbP Campaign history
AitD: Elliot and Alice Jeru
BNW: Leon Artest
Successfully concluded campaigns
TGB: Aquila Golan
"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." -Ronald Reagan


April 16, 2012, 07:18:03 PM
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Monroe senses a number of other sentients, more than he would think possible crowded into such a small volume, especially given the desolation of the rainy street.  Several seem interested in the group, but there is too much...interference for Monroe to really pick anyone out of crowd.

  At Leon's comment, the goblin boy laughs, "Heh, ain't is much diff'nt here...Aight, here we go!" as he waves the group towards a building, the first floor lit up and raucous with jazz and swing music, voices raised in a general hubbub.  At Suriya's extremely skeptical look, the boy says enthusiastically, "No, is just the pub, missus, hotel is topside an' around back, ok?"



He leads them around to a side entrance, where the din is not quite as loud, and the small door opens into an elegant, if faded, hotel lobby.  Two goblins are playing cards with a short, lizard like creature, its flicking tongue and darting golden eyes showing it to be full of nervous energy. 



« Last Edit: April 16, 2012, 09:15:47 PM by cortex ghost »
Writer: The Only Good Bug...


April 17, 2012, 03:02:10 AM
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Instinctively, Leon's hand tensed on the handle of his pistol when he noticed the lizard. Something about that forked tongue flicking out and smelling the air made his spine shake ever so slightly. Unpleasant memories from far off blew through the wind inside his mind. Leon shook his head and thought very sternly to himself.

Steady yourself, captain. This is another plane of existence, after all. he took his hand off his weapon You don't even know anyone here.

Come to think of it, Leon had remembered hearing about a theory of parallel bodies between the universes. And yet, since he had started his journey, he hadn't seen a soul who resembled in any way a single person he had ever met. And while, granted, his first outing was in a sparsely populated countryside which quickly turned into a fight against faceless spirits, he began to wonder if he would.

Well... Except her. he thought, his mind turning to a certain blonde-maned secret agent.
PbP Campaign history
AitD: Elliot and Alice Jeru
BNW: Leon Artest
Successfully concluded campaigns
TGB: Aquila Golan
"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." -Ronald Reagan


April 17, 2012, 09:43:01 AM
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The Mason
Redhead in a Shimmering Dress
~ Amnesiac
~ Memorable
~ Strange Luck
The Mason considered her surroundings and felt it pertinent to query the obvious.  "Has anyone ruminated on the quandary of remuneration?"

She also looked around for Aeyn, for she suspected that his penchant for frivolous imbibing of alcohol would likely have more severe consequences in this place.
"Curiosity Beckons."
"Saving the day never seems to count if you can't save everyone..."


April 17, 2012, 12:43:37 PM
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"You're going to have to run that one by me again there, Miss Mason." Leon looked slightly confused "I don't believe any such word exists in my dictionary."
PbP Campaign history
AitD: Elliot and Alice Jeru
BNW: Leon Artest
Successfully concluded campaigns
TGB: Aquila Golan
"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." -Ronald Reagan