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By Cerri in RPG Records: In the footsteps of our AncestorsIn the dimly lit shadows of the Winn-Dixie carpark, the Crows gather around the boot of Ivan’s car. A staked 'Green Station Wagon Driver/SMS guy' in the boot.
Real whispers? Mouths? It is more visible than audible. Finger to his lips, a partial gesture to back up, an indication to new trio. "Follow him, you’ll find Carl."
Ivan locks the passenger doors of his car and backs up. All but Real melt into the shadows.
Real quietly pops the boot and, biting his wrist, hisses softly as he smears a small amount of blood across the captive’s lips. "Quick, get out of here while you can. Tell Carl he owes me." and removes the stake. The vampire, looking confused, hungry and hunted tumbles out of the boot. Dragging himself up he hesitates, not sure if it’s safe to run or not. Realising he has no choice, he lurches to the outer edges of the car park where he is overcome by the beast and reduces a nearby vagrant to a pallid husk. As his hunger abates, he staggers back overwhelmed with grief and shame at his actions. Now as scared of himself as he was of his captors, he races from the scene towards the intertown bus stop. Activating celerity Ivan and Lucinda race silently after him, his goal soon becoming clear.
Knowing he would be unable to keep up, Hanzo chooses to remain with Ivan's locked car, but the other crows do not reemerge from the shadows. Ivan, returning for his car, collects Hanzo and heads for the highway.
As Lucinda watched, their quarry attempted (unsuccessfully) to tidy up a little then board the bus. Desperate to stall them for as long as she could, she too boards but plays dumb about the fare. When pressed she spills ample coins over the floor in a last-ditch attempt to gain more time. The frustrated bus driver closes the door and drives on with them both while Lucinda, blocking the doorway, collects the spilt coins. In the light GSWD easily recognized her. Unwilling to risk breaching the masquerade, he slips off the bus as soon as it crosses the river to more neutral turf, through its rear exit. Lucida is still 'collecting spilt coins' and arguing with the driver when he alights. seeing this she hurriedly pays her fare, declaring “She must be let off this bus immediately!” the driver gladly deposits her at the next stop – a block up the road, Lucinda rushes back, anxious to find him.
Ivan and Hanzo turned onto the highway to see the bus pulling away from the stop with both GSWD and Lucinda clearly visible through it's well-lit windows. Without hesitating, Ivan accelerates hard deftly catching up to and trailing the bus. Seeing the bus pullover and their target exit, Hanzo slips out and into the shadows to quickly follow, leaving Ivan to find and recover Lucinda. He cuts through between dark office buildings towards Bayfront Park. Queueing for the Miami Beach bus with GSWD, Hanzo takes the opportunity to furtively touch the Vampire and attempt to call the dagon.
After waiting in Ivan’s car for about 15 minutes Ivan and Lucinda realise neither of them have Hanzo’s phone number (or even last name). They have no way of contacting him. Hoping the Crows have a solution, Ivan texts Real with an updated location and informs him that Hanzo is currently trailing their quarry.
Hanzo tails GSWD all the way to a nightclub opposite Lummos park in Miami Beach. Still hiding in the shadows, Hanzo follows GSWD into the club where he finally sights Carl sitting in a far corner booth with a couple of women.
Hanzo texts Ruth (the only number he has) with Carl’s location. Real forwards it onto Ivan and Lucinda, who drive straight over -thankfully this early in the morning the drive can be managed in about 10 minutes…Ivan bored of waiting manages a comfortable 9. Hanzo sees Lucinda and Ivan appear at the door to the club.
It was obscenely rich and decadent. Red leather and neon with laser lights slicing through the air dancing with the heaving crowd and thumping bass. Bottle girls leaning over private tables stripping every last dollar off their clients.
Scanning the crowd they locked eyes with GSWD who immediately informed Carl of their arrival. Ivan melts into the crowd as Carl highlights them to the bouncers at the door. Three bouncers swiftly block Lucinda path, requiring her to leave. Even as she protested they picked her up and removed her -face first onto the concrete outside. Lucinda recovers, activates celerity and fires two shots at the backs of the departing bouncers. The sound triggers chaos and panic on the streets, Lucinda doesn't notice -she watches them quickly heal from the hit in as the third bouncer turns and sends her back to the ground with a right hook. The bouncers return to the innards of the club while Lucinda lays there in shock and disbelief. She needed better ammo.
Hanzo, still concentrating on calling Dagon notices Ivan maneuvering around towards GSWD and Carl. Carl sees the bouncers return and stands; wavering slightly. Running with, and now from, the Sabbat was taking its toll. Almost bemused, he led the group over to the far side of the bar.
Hanzo triggers the call (with no noticeable effect) then slips over the bar in front of them and into the delivery room beyond. Ivan follows the foursome but is blocked again by a bouncer…maybe a personal security detail? Ivan dominates the bouncer saying that Carl’s life is in danger. The bouncer follows after Carl determined to save him, Ivan follows after the bouncer.
Lucinda stands up, brushes herself off ignoring the stares of scared but curious bystanders and their phones. She walks around the side of the building looking for another way in and spies a roller door.
Carl, then 'GSWD' and the two women, walk past Hanzo. As Carl presses the button to open the roller door, Hanzo uses quietus. The surrounding area goes silent like someone pressed a ‘mute’ button, just as the bouncer shoots the garage door mechanics to stop Carl from walking into danger. Ivan rushes in for the attack, shooting for the knee as Carl climbs under the door.
'GSWD' grapples Ivan while the women run off silently screaming in terror. Sinking his teeth into 'GSWD' Ivan barely gets three blood points before he is shaken off. Lucinda fires her shotgun encountering a repeated ammo fail (These bullets are useless?!) as Carl runs past her toward the main road. Ivan rolls under the door after Carl, dodging 'GSWD’s fresh attempt to maul him. Tully and Hanzo follow.
Lucinda chases Carl to the street where he lunges at her before attempting to escape in a car. Hanzo spits/vomits 2 litres of tainted blood on them sapping both Carl and Lucinda’s stamina. Lucinda once again fires -this time her shotgun leaves permanent damage on Carl.
Hanzo climbs to the roof.
Ivan shoots at the vehicle (and with an amazing all crits roll) causing a cigarette lighter to explode. With the car being rapidly engulfed in flames and his arm alight, Carl frenzies and runs. So does everyone else, just as the police arrive.
Hearing the arrival of the police, Ivan turns and stares transfixed. It was beautiful. The fire, the chaos, the burning, the flashing lights. Gaining control, he walks towards the police. Playing victim, he indicates there are four persons of interest back around the corner. As they look where Ivan points, Lucinda celerities out and drags the now toporus flaming Carl around the corner. She barely makes it around the corner before dropping him as the panic takes over. A block further on she regains control and feeds.
While one of the police moves towards Ivan to investigate, the other turns to call reinforcements. Ivan grabs the adventurous one, feeding and racing around the corner. Now freshly fed and confronted with Carl he rips the still burning arm off the corpse and, taking the rest, goes to find a car. Collecting a now fed Lucinda and a still silent Hanzo, Ivan texts Real ‘We have him’ Real replies ‘meet at Bishops’. It’s nearly Three am. Four hours remaining until sunrise.
By Cerri in RPG Records: In the footsteps of our AncestorsWhen they get inside Carl is nowhere to be seen. Lucinda doesn’t pass on that she has met with her contact, just that ‘he’s not here yet’. Filling in time Ivan and (a rematerialised) Hanzo go to the bar. Ivan orders Vodka and Hanzo orders Saki -inviting another bout of ridicule from Ivan. The heavily pierced hipster barkeep watches the show with amusement. Ivan eventually convinces Hanzo to order vodka and the shots are placed in front of them. Ivan promptly downs his, immediately projectile vomiting it over the bar. Hanzo not to be outdone follows suit expending willpower to hold it down while he bolts to the bathroom to wretch in privacy. Ivan curses the barman for serving cheap Japanese vodka.
As Hanzo returns they both spot Carl entering the club through the fire escape. Lucinda, who was alternating between watching the door and keeping an eye on Ivan and Hanzo…well, mainly Hanzo, suddenly realized that Carl was walking with Hanzo back to Ivan.
Ivan turns on all his charm and calls out ‘Carl, come here the boss sent me…’ He proceeds to escort Carl out of the front door towards his car talking about needing to move him for his safety. Lucinda collects Hanzo and they head back to the Crows with their prize.
Ivan navigates Carl into the front passenger seat and races off ahead -Lucinda is barely able to keep him in sight -Thankfully Hanzo has some idea of where they are going. As Ivan slides into the driveway he high beams the front windows.
Tyrone walks out the front to see what’s going on and Ivan says “here’s Tyrone he’ll help”. At the mention of Tyrone’s name Carl busts out of the car, Tyrone opens fire shooting wildly in their general direction. Ivan jumps out, trying to tackle Carl who escapes only to be cleaned up by Lucinda as she skids her car to a stop on top of him. Tyrone quickly jams a piece of wood through Carl's chest as Hanzo deftly removed its shoes. Ivan carries the now immobilised body into the house. Tyrone messages the others and they quickly arrive. Equally quickly Sunshine stamps, pouts and states that Carl is not Carl. Real studies Carl for a moment and agrees. This is not Carl.
Real sends Sunshine out to get a snack while he and Tyrone bind Not Carl and hang him by his feet. Ivan, Hanzo and Lucinda watch in morbid fascination as Sunshine skips back through the front door bare minutes later leading some helpful soul to their death. What comes next could be called art. Carefully measured drops of blood are administered to Not Carl and, as they watch, the stake is removed. He regains coherency, writhing in pain as he is decimated by fear of something they couldn’t see. He is interrogated, drained to frenzy, staked and revived as Real examines the far corners of his brain. The scope of that power, that control, is mind-blowing. Unfortunately, they don’t find out much, aside from this being a 'flesh crafted' 'dominated' double (you mean we can do this stuff???!!!) but Real can now composite an image of what Carl looks like now.
Ivan asks if they could change their appearances to look like Not Carl and Sunshine says proudly ‘Tyrone could’. While the discussion passes around who Tyrone could make look like Carl (or Not Carl) Ivan asks -Why doesn’t Tyrone do it? This leads to a very basic discussion of Viniculum, how it binds and connects the pack, protects pack members from being 'blood bound' and how it wears off after a while, but that a while would be too late -Carl will have betrayed us and we are unable at this point to retrieve him.
Ivan is hungry and allowed to finish off Not Carl -safer than keeping him around. Ivan, not sated after draining the remaining three bloodpoints from not Carl succeeding in a battle of wills against his victim and sucked a point of potence out of the now decayed corpse. Lucinda searches the remains, finding a phone and a wallet. After checking out the message history of the phone she messaged the only contact with ‘help they’ve got me’ and the location. The pack immediately runs. Real presses a small slip of paper into Ivan’s hand
and says ‘Run, hide, if you are in trouble Bishop may help’ Hanzo turns to Ruth for guidance Ruth says ‘I don’t care if you run and hide or don’t run and hide, JUST HIDE’. No one offers any advice to Lucinda.
Everyone piles out the front door, The pack clear off, Ivan and Lucinda (in Ivan’s car) drive a few driveways down and park. Hanzo climbs a tree. 10 minutes later three battered sedans pull up in the driveway and 12 men storm the empty house. Suddenly a gunshot rings out, nothing, then two more and then no more. Muzzle flashes can be seen sporadically through the windows for a few moments longer then nothing. Hanzo creeps up and peers carefully into the lounge room through a chink in the curtain. Bodies of the intruders litter the floor, he can count 7. Edging around the house he eventually accounts for every intruder and discovers Ruth casually sitting on the back step.
It is totally silent, Hanzo tries to speak but no sound comes out. He asks Ruth (in charades) what she’s doing there, she answers, waiting. He goes inside and snacks on a nearby body -it tasted much better than his previous shame ridden feed -and has a quick look around collecting phones and wallets as he goes. They all seem to be severely incapacitated near dead, some unmarked, others slashed open their own blood pooling around them.
Hanzo removed the cards from the phones and he goes back out to ‘speak’ with Ruth and ask her why she doesn’t call the bishop. She repeatedly tells him they’ve got to find Carl first. Eventually, Hanzo understands and, dropping what he thinks are the SIMs in the letterbox, walks over to Ivan and Lucinda gives them the phones and tells them it’s all clear but they have to find Carl. That done, he returns to invest some time in learning what has just happened with Ruth, he had apparently underestimated her.
While Ivan drives to the address on Not Carl’s license, Lucinda quickly hacks into the phones noting that the ringleaders were all messaged by the same number as the one Not Carl had been in contact with. They get to the house (about 20 min drive) and pull into the driveway. Ivan notices external security cameras and approaches out of their line of sight to learn more about the security system. It appears to be a back-to-base system with the phone number printed on the sticker. Ivan is determined to locate and remove footage of his car so he calls the security company to find out where their offices are. He calls in regards to property and is asked for the account password, not knowing it, he says he wants to speak about his account. He is told to call back during office hours and should they send a car past the premises? Ivan said no and hung up. (they sent a car on password fail) Ivan and Lucinda celerity sneak back to the car and reverse into the driveway across the road. Within a few minutes, a security car crawls along the street. it loops the area three times before Lucinda and Ivan decide to bail.
It wasn't long before the back of Lucinda’s neck started to prickle and Ivan, doubling back a few times, agreed. They were definitely being followed. Ivan ducked and weaved trying to push their hunters but not lose them. The persistent car amongst the collection was a dark green station wagon. A short game of cat and mouse turned into chicken when Ivan took a photo of the car and sent it to the driver. Lucinda saw him receive (and react) to the text, confirming what they suspected. SMS person was the same as Green Station wagon Driver. Ivan swung a U-turn accelerating at the station wagon, deliberately swiping into it as it flinched. The driver tried to escape but Lucinda and Ivan ran/shot him down. Using the staking process they had observed earlier on Not Carl they put the Driver in Ivan’s boot and set the station wagon to careen off into a nearby house. The return to their house in search of Hanzo.
Hanzo’s experience with Ruth: Managing the house
Ruth stands and turns to go back into the house, indicating for Hanzo to follow. She goes to a cupboard in the laundry and fishes out a couple of rolls of duct tape. Tossing one to him she fishes a pencil out of her apron and uses it to stake and tape the nearest intruder. She taped down both eyes, across the mouth, bound wrists and ankles taping the stake in around the chest. Gesturing for him to proceed with the others she stands back to observe / correct. When everyone is taped up she retrieves clingwrap sealing one up nice n tight again, indicating for him to do the rest. She then stacks them in the back of her jeep under a tarp. Ruth is critical of Hanzo's work demanding perfection and focus.
After, she writes the law of protection in the dirt for Hanzo to contemplate
When Ivan and Lucinda return they find Hanzo and Ruth. Ruth on seeing the contents of Ivan’s boot contacts the others and arranges to meet at a nearby supermarket carpark. Ruth drives her jeep, Ivan, Lucinda and Hanzo follow in Ivan’s car. It is now 0130
By Cerri in RPG Records: In the footsteps of our AncestorsOn waking, Ivan, Hanzo and Lucinda are informed that they need to recover a particular vampire named ‘Carl’ who is betraying the pack and all Sabbat. Time is short, survival depends on it. Real (Retro Classic) gives the characters an old photo of Carl. He is short and stocky. He has long black hair and a moustache, he is the missing vampire from the night before. It is noted that it will be better for them to destroy Carl than to let him get away. Sunshine (stonefish child) cheerfully calls after them ‘failure is not an option'
Lucinda makes a few calls, and leaning on her contacts, arranges to meet at a potential sighting of ‘Carl’.
Splitting between two cars, Ivan and Hanzo follow Lucinda’s dual cab, spotlight touting, rednecks wet dream of a ute.
A short way into the ride, Hanzo decides he wants a feed first. He convinces Ivan to pull over next to a local park that has a few 'young people' drinking from a paper bag covered bottle. Not wanting to feed in public, they decide to use the house next to the park. Ivan walks around and carefully supports Hanzo stepping out of the car. Using their newly acquired disciplines to manipulate their prey, Hanzo plays the weak elderly gentleman inviting the young people in for a drink with him and they walk up to the house next to the park. Three take him up on it. Two go ahead with Ivan and one walks with Hanzo. As they walk up the front path, Lucinda realizes they’re not behind her and chucks a u'ie and returns.
The house is owned by an old Italian couple it is filled with memories, iconography and knicknacks. The wife is at the stove in the kitchen cooking bolognese, the husband is watching something on the telly with the volume quite loud.
On walking through the front door with the first two, Ivan bangs their heads together then drags them into the bathroom for a feed. While he is feeding Hanzo walks in (casting quietus as he crosses the threshold) with the remaining youth who sees Ivan feeding and draws a weapon. Lucinda appears behind Hanzo shooting the underage drinker with her shotgun. The old man who lived there emerges to get batteries for his hearing aide and Lucinda fells him with her celerity attack and reloads. Hanzo, now presented with an oozing feast frenzies. Ivan emerges from the bathroom and indicates back towards the bathroom for Lucinda. Shaking his head at Hanzo’s mess he proceeds down the hall to the kitchen. Seeing the crucifix Ivan steps back, Lucinda doesn't. She continues forward firing her shotgun twice at the wife and returns to her car (passing Hanzo, who, having come to his senses, is now in the bathroom showering.). Ivan shakes his head and goes into ‘damage control’ mode. Summoning his willpower he crosses the room, skirting the crucifix. Reaching the stove he turns it off, startled by severity of his response to flame. Ivan turns the gas back on puts a few household items into the microwave and runs. Hanzo, feeling an Impending Sense Of Doom leaps out of the shower, grabs a (floral) bathrobe from behind the door and races from the house.
The gas-filled kitchen ignites as the three drive off. The fire affected them all more than they cared to admit.
The rest of the drive was filled with 'settle petal' and 'once and flor-al' puns. Ivan would not leaf it alone. Lucida parks out the front of 'Heart' nightclub. Swinging down from the cab she goes straight to the bouncer (her contact) at the front door while Ivan supervised Hanzo.
Hanzo was approaching some random. Dressed like a pop gansta, dripping with bling, he was wearing an electric blue velvet suit. Having had it pointed out to him for the last 20 minutes that 'he would not be allowed through the front door wearing only a women's floral bathrobe' he was determined to buy something appropriate.
Lucinda glances back over her shoulder at them, sighs and discretely catches up with her contact. Apparently, the guy in the photo has been there the last two nights. He is not here yet. She decides to wait inside.
After a bit of negotiating Hanzo hands Ivan $500 to exchange for the suit jacket and trousers. Ivan pockets $400 and completes the exchange.
Hanzo returns to Ivan's car to dress then they follow Lucinda into the club. Hanzo obfuscates and sneaks inside as he still has no shirt or shoes.
By Cerri in RPG Records: In the footsteps of our Ancestors
The three player characters in this story are Hanzo, Lucinda and Ivan.
9th generation vampire
of Assamite blood
Retired, personal quest
I live in Key Biscayne, Miami. I am 64. When I was 29 my family was brutally murdered. It was then I found out my father had had a dark secret. He had worked with the Yakuza and fled from them to America with a large sum of wealth. He trained as an elite assassin specializing in daggers, to which I possess a family heirloom of a dagger made from silver, bound together with bamboo. Many years have passed and I am still to discover the truth around my family's death.
Quite well off, Hanzo owns a minimalist well appointed home in Key Biscayne
Merits & Flaws selected:
Prey exclusion: children Vengeance: Hanzo is obsessed with Avenging his family's murder. The need for vengeance can only be overcome temporarily with the expenditure of willpower points Concentration Danger Sense
12th generation vampire
of Brujah blood
Apparent age: 30’s
Loner / Bravo
Bail bondsman / bounty hunter she hires herself out to the highest bidder
She has two major contacts, one on the club scene and one at DMV. She has a Home-Office/Condo in Coconut Grove and a secret ally
Merits & Flaws selected:
Repulsed by garlic Police ties Deep sleeper Amnesia Absent-minded -in order to remember anything other than her name or haven she needs to roll wits or use willpower.
Ivan the Russian
11th generation vampire
of Torreador blood
Apparent age 30ish
Ivan the Russian is an incredible driver (think car chase scenes from Bourne movies), he is a wheelman for the Russian mob
Strongly religious in that stereotypical eastern European mob kinda way
Ivan has contacts at the Marina and Commercial Docks and 'Ivan the Russian' is a recognised local solution, his services are generally contracted at Porky's
Merits & Flaws selected:
Repelled by crosses Repulsed by garlic unbondable
After the players have created their human characters, they find themselves standing in Pinewood Cemetery. Part of a group of ten scared individuals unable to move staring at the empty graves in front of them.
Nico (recently returned from armed service)
Maria (psychology major spring break leftover)
Ivan (Russian wheelman)
Scott (Computer systems administrator)
Lucinda (bail bondsman)
Zafar (Boat operator)
Hanzo (elderly Japanese gentleman)
Leslie (Wastewater treatment plant and system operator)
The ten of you are huddled together in Pinewood Cemetery surrounded and immobilized by your 5 captors. An odd collection of people surrounded by an even odder collection of captors. An anglo man radiating impeccable retro classic style in jeans and a white t-shirt. A 9yo blonde haired blue eyed girl who seemed to have beige coloured spikes sprouting out of her limbs like a stonefish, a young shirtless, Hispanic man covered in tattoos, in the moonlight they look like they're moving. A young lean waitress ( an absolute stunner) with pale skin and raven black hair, A stocky man in a black 70's suit wearing sunglasses shoulder length hair and a moustache.
Terrified by what should be farcical, you just stand there noticing stupid details, looking at the empty graves and listening to the sing-song sound of the little girl’s chanting waiting for the inevitable.
The little girl chants
'Bound in your misconceptions.
We gift you with a glimpse of self,
Starved, beaten and weak.
We gift you with the taste of power,
Empty and disillusioned.
We gift you with raw passion
Will you squander it or rise?'
The pack then descends on the 10 and drinks until the victims are left bloodless. Each pack member bites their own wrists and pours a few drops into the mortal's mouths. The Sabbat do not let the recruits regain consciousness. They bash them over the head with a shovel and throw them into graves. By the time the victims regain consciousness, they are buried six feet under.
A lust for blood drives the now-buried recruits, who must claw their way back to the surface. The potent vitae in their systems puts them in a state of what can best be called semi-consciousness, where hallucinations bombard them.
These hallucinations cause them to remember their lives in very twisted and evil ways. The violent nature of these hallucinations induces violent action in the real world. This helps them break free of the coffins holding them and dig their way out. The more they succumb to the hallucinations, the more Humanity they will lose, but the easier it becomes to dig out of the ground. Those who do not make it out of the earth that first night will never make it. They will remain half-conscious and starving for a full day, after which they will fade in and out of torpor for eternity, growing madder and madder.
Once a recruit emerges from the ground, he meets a Sabbat grave watcher who promptly knocks him out again.
When you awaken, you find yourself in a dark chamber with two other recruits and 4 of your captors. Your head is pounding and reeling all at once. Your mind screaming in unidentified hunger
The little girl spoke
"Caine said, 'A life without Power will not be worth living.'
He wept blood.
He caught the tears in a cup and drank them.
And the darkness was lifted like a veil.
He Awakened. So shall you be awakened through Caine’s gifts."
The four True Sabbat mix a portion of their own blood into a chalice while the girl chants.
"We observe the rites
We act with honour strength and unity
Always for the Pack,
Always for the Sabbat
Always for Freedom"
The smell is intoxicating, it consumes your thoughts. You need to taste it.
They each sip from the chalice and pass it around for you each to drink.
After all have drunk from the cup, you are led away and given human victims to drink.
After this first Vaulderie, you are all given a brief rundown of your condition and a very basic introduction to a range of new abilities.
Hanzo appears to manifest Celerity, Obfuscate and Quietus.
Ivan Auspex, Celerity and Presence.
Lucinda demonstrates Celerity, Potence, and to the Sabbat's surprise, Presence. Sent to sleep away the daylight hours you drift off to heated discussion.
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