Session 3 Summary
Last time we left the heroes, they were lounging around their newly powered base. Eventually, Arctus prodded yet again: "You know, we really haven't even done anything yet. All we've done is sort of clean up an old warehouse and murder some gang members. This isn't much of a revolution."
Hale agreed, "We need to get the word out."
Wort spoke up, "If we raid a government building, that would really send a message."
Arctus replied, "Didn't you just finish raiding some other place a day or two ago? I'd like to avoid more violence if possible. And besides, if we just go up and attack the government, we're going to look like terrorists." Arctus thought for a second and added, "Which, I guess, we kind of are."
Hale concurred, "Yeah. Let's get the word out before we attack anything."
At this point, Karne walked up and said, "You know, we just found all that cash from the hideout. I have some old connections that might be able to get us some supplies from the black market
. It's kind of shady, but we're going to need equipment one way or another."
Bertis could not deny the appeal of more gear and voted for the black market trip. Qirk also thought it sounded like a good idea, much to Arctus's dismay. Arctus angrily stated, "I will not deal with black market scum."
Karne responded, "Hey, old man! Easy on that. Not all of those people are scum. Some are, but not all."
"I don't care. I'll go with you, but I'm not dealing with them."
Karne headed out to meet with some contacts and set up the meeting. Meanwhile, Qirk fixed the item from the factory with the parts he had scavenged from the apartments. The result was a pair of flamethrower gauntlets
. However, he didn't quite get them fixed properly and they were somewhat unreliable as a result.
The heroes prepared for the trip and set out. Karne remembered the accumulator trip and what he had overheard about the trip through gangland and said, "You know, you guys always seem to get into trouble when you travel through the streets. Why don't we try something different this time?"
"What, you mean fly?" Bertis suggested sarcastically.
"Not exactly. I don't know how to do that."
Hale said as a matter of fact, "Then it's got to be the sewers
"Yeah, that's what I was thinking. I know the way through them. Don't ask me how."
The Lucan Sewer System
The heroes decided it might be a good idea and headed down into the gross, smelly sewers. Despite the general nastiness, the sewers gave the heroes the privacy they desired. As they walked, Karne began, "So have you guys ever heard of the legend of the fishmen
Hale answered, "'Fishmen'? No. This sounds good."
Karne continued, "Yeah. Supposedly there are fishmen that live down here in the sewers. They are human-sized and hunt people and animals - they swallow them whole.
Bertis remembered something he had heard about before and asked, "Are you sure they aren't closer to frogs than fish?"
"Maybe. I can't remember. Oh well, I'm sure it's just a legend, anyway."
The party continued to walk through the sewers and Bertis decided to kick a poor rat into the nasty water. He shouted "What was that!?" and pointed at the splash. Karne jolted and Bertis chuckled. A few minutes later, Bertis actually did see some rippling in the water with his low-light vision. He shouted, "There's something out there!"
Karne responded, "Oh, no you don't. I'm not falling for that again."
"No," Bertis protested, "This time it's different. There really was something there."
"I know your tricks. It won't work this time."
Frustrated, Bertis shot some lightning into the water and the rippling inensified briefly before disappearing. Karne exclaimed, "What the hork is wrong with you!?"
"I told you, there's something out there."
The party continued walking, and Bertis soon saw the rippling again. Rather than try to argue again, Bertis just stayed silent and waited. Eventually, the party came to an open room filled with nasty water, although the heroes stayed on the narrow ledges. Finally everyone saw the rippling in the water, and there was a lot of it all over the room. "I told you," Bertis sneered. The heroes debated whether or not to try to sneak by. They noticed a can, a piece of pizza, a cat, and a sparkly object all along the ledge. All of these looked like they could cause noise. Hale, being the fearless initiator of combat, attempted to sneak along the ledge first. He made a large amount of noise and, to no one's surprise, fishmen all splashed out of the nasty sewer water and attacked. There was a large group of disposable-looking fishmen and one elderly shaman-looking one in the back. Qirk jumped into the water to maneuever around the ledge, and the fishmen went into a frenzy and surrounded him. Somehow, Qirk got very lucky and was barely even hurt by the assault. The shaman conjured a cloud of poisonous gas around the heroes, but only Wort began choking and coughing. Utilizing their powers that hit areas, the heroes blasted the fishmen out of the water, and Hale used his new haft extender on his spear and stabbed the shaman to death without having to leave the ledge. Unfortunately, more fishmen splashed out of the water and swarmed the heroes. The heroes fought off the second swarm quite easily, and then there was a much larger splash and rumbling. A giant tentacled sewer monster emerged and attacked all the heroes at once with its many tentacles. Bertis attempted to back away to cast spells on it, but the monster's reach was quite threatening and Bertis was nearly taken down. The monster furiously attacked repeatedly with all of its tentacles, and Arctus had run out of healing abilities. In addition, Qirk checked his bag and saw that he was out of healing poitions. Things looked grim for the heroes, but Hale utilized his "Villain's Menace Technique" and stabbed the monster until it roared and sank back into the water. The heroes barely stumbled out of the sewers, but not before beheading the terrible monster and checking its stomach (gross!). Qirk found "about two trash bags full of people" and a magical headband, which had managed to stay clean.
The heroes eventually arrived at the meeting spot a little late. The leader of the black market crew remarked, "You guys look like you just came back from a war."
"We ran into some trouble earlier," Karne explained.
"Anyway," the crew leader went on, "It was a lot of work to meet you here. I think we deserve some compensation."
Hale was in no mood for this tomfoolery and responded, "Whatever you went through cannot possibly compare to what we had to deal with." He plunked down the head of the sewer monster and the crew was obviously impressed.
The leader said, "I don't want to know what that thing is, but you guys can clearly handle yourselves. Take a look at the gear."
The heroes purchased some items with the money they stole fair and square from the gang hideout. Afterwards, the leader said, "Pleasure doing business with you in these dark times."
Qirk thought for a second and said, "Speaking of that... we're about to start a revolution."
"A revolution? Who are you guys, anyway?"
Qirk was about to respond and then realized the heroes' terrorist group did not have a name. "I can tell you're well organized," the crew leader snickered as the heroes brainstormed. After some ideas were thrown around, the heroes decided to call themselves "Cataclysm"
. The crew leader said, "Alright, Cataclysm. I think you guys are headed in the right direction with this revolution. I'll send a man down every week to see if you guys need any more gear. Talk to you later." The heroes departed with a new shady connection in their shady network. On the way back, the heroes stuck to the streets. "Whose idea was it to go through the sewers, anyway?" Bertis demanded.
"Look, I thought the fishman thing was just a story," Karne answered.
The heroes continued walking down the street and Hale noticed someone attempting to tail them, albeit poorly. He broke off from the group and walked towards the strange man. The man doubled back, but Hale caught up with him: "What are you doing?"
"N-nothing," the man stammered, "I'm just minding my own business."
"What's your name?"
At this point, Qirk noticed and headed over. He and Fonkin immediately recognized
each other and Fonkin attempted to turn and run. Qirk grabbed him and poor Fonkin fainted. The heroes stood over him, deciding what to do. "This was the guy that followed us before," Qirk stated, "Let's make sure he doesn't do it again."
Arctus lamented, "You are all hooligans. I will not have any part of this." and walked off. Bertis placed the head of the sewer monster on top of Fonkin and hid.
Karne said, "Man, I don't know. That is cold as ice."
Wort, on the other hand, eagerly said, "This is gonna be hilarious."
The wretched Fonkin eventually recovered, only to find the severed monster head on top of him. The screams were audible even to Arctus who had left the scene. Wort rolled on the ground laughing. "Okay," Karne admitted, "That was worth it."
Spread the Word
The "heroes" returned to base, and Arctus scolded them: "I don't even want to know what you did to that poor man. Just tell me you didn't kill him."
Hale answered, "We didn't kill him. I just don't think we'll see him again."
"You guys are a bunch of troublemakers. He hadn't done anything at all to us."
"If you saw us walking down the street, what would you think we were?"
"Just a bunch of normal people."
"Exactly. We've seen him following us twice. He's up to something."
Wort disagreed, "But I've seen him. He tries to be sneaky, but he's terrible. No spy would be that bad."
Qirk conjectured, "Maybe it's a front. He could be acting."
Karne joked, "Then he's a professional, because he is dead-on."
"Regardless," Hale stated, "I doubt we'll see him again after tonight."
The heroes hung around the base for a while and recovered. Qirk produced some very appealing posters with a logo and text that boldly stated "Who is Cataclysm?" Eventually, Arctus reminded the heroes, "We still need to spread the word about this. If we don't, we're just a bunch of terrorists."
"Okay, but how?" Bertis wondered.
"There's a transmission tower downtown. We can go over there and use it to transmit our voices to the masses. The only problem is that ever since Tulstor came into power, the tower has been run by the government. We need to find some way in."
Wort had the answer: "We'll just sneak in from the second floor and kill everyone."
Karne said, "I think we should just go in the front door and run them all out of there."
Arctus disagreed, "We could try and do this peacefully."
After some deliberation, the heroes decided that the best plan would be to disguise themselves as a cleaning crew and bluff their way in. Arctus then remembered, "The transmission tower is downtown. That means we are going to have to take a ride on the Mag-train. And that means security checkpoints. None of you have outstanding warrants, correct?"
There was a chorus of nos, except for Wort, who muttered, "Well, you know. Not really."
Qirk eagerly responded, "Good, then we shouldn't have a problem."
"Yeah, it should be fine. Probably."
Bertis, continuing his role as the antagonist, said, "You can just stay in a different train car than us. And if something happens, we'll pretend we don't know you. And when you go to jail, then we won't break you out because you can just sneak out, right?"
"Okay. Hey, wait a minute! I'm still a part of this. Okay, fine. So I have an outstanding warrant
. But it was total crap and the guy deserved what he got. And I think he even lived."
"What a surprise," Arctus said sarcastically.
It was decided that Bertis would disguise Wort's face so that the Mag-train's security system would not detect him. The heroes boarded the Mag-train and took stock of the civilians in the same car. There was a man reading a newspaper, a man sleeping underneath a coat, and another man hunched in a corner, rocking back and forth. Qirk approached the man reading the paper and showed him one of the posters: "Hey. Have you seen this before?"
The man answered, "No. Who is Cataclysm?"
"Exactly. Watch out for us. There are going to be big changes within the week." Puzzled, the man agreed to do so.
After some time, Arctus warned, "We're coming up on the checkpoint." Wort was visibly worried. As the Mag-train passed through, the scanner swept down over the passengers. Suddenly alarms went off and the lights in the mag-train turned red. Wort shouted, "I thought you said this disguise would work!" Over the mag-train's speakers, a message played: "Security violation. Controlled substance detected." Qirk quickly remembered the alcohol he had grabbed earlier and tossed the bottle over by the rocking man. Lucan police quickly entered the train car through the roof hatch and yelled for everyone to get on the floor. The party complied, although Wort was sweating intensely. The police saw the bottle by the man in the corner and grabbed him. The man made a noise like an animal and kicked and screamed. The police shouted, "We've got a runeback
over here!" The man was beaten and dragged out of the train and the police departed. The mag-train started back up, and Wort breathed a sigh of relief, though his disguise had been totally ruined. Arctus furiously demanded, "Why did you bring that on here!?"
"Qirk answered, "I didn't know that was a 'controlled substance'!"
"You can't bring anything like that onto the mag-train."
The Transmission Tower
The heroes quickly got off the mag-train and headed over to the transmission tower. Along the way, Qirk placed his posters over top of the posters of Tulstor that lined the streets. Upon arriving, the heroes entered the front door and pretended to be a cleaning crew. Bertis approached the man behind the desk and said, "We're Ralph's Cleaning. We're here to clean up the bathrooms."
The person looked through his books and said, "Let's see. Ralph's Cleaning? You guys aren't supposed to be here until tomorrow."
"We had a cancellation."
"Alright then. Head on back. You know where it is." The heroes passed a police officer and headed up to the second floor. Qirk immediately began opening doors in search of the restroom. He opened doors to several offices with confused people before a nearby police officer asked him what he was doing. "I'm here to clean the bathroom."
"Well you're on the wrong side of the hall. Have you done this before? Are you really a cleaning crew?"
"Just stay out of this, man." Qirk obviously did not realize that threatening cops is one of the worst things to do in a delicate situation.
"You have 5 seconds to get lost before I arrest you." The cop flipped on his stun baton. Qirk did not budge, and the cop whacked him with the baton. Sensing that Qirk had gotten himself into trouble, Hale approached and surrounded the cop. Despite the cop's immense resolve, Hale was able to intimidate and distract him for a second so that Qirk was able to hit him over the head and knock him out. Qirk then proceeded to punch the cop several times before Hale pulled him off. The thug-like heroes continued upstairs, but not before Wort said, "Hey! I want to loot these offices."
Hale said, "Wait until we're on our way out. We don't want to risk alerting anyone else before we send out this message." Wort grudgingly complied.
The heroes approached the recording booth and saw an operator inside. Wort picked the lock on the door and Qirk ordered the man to get off the air. After some threats were made, the heroes tied the man up and got on the air. Qirk then delivered the message:
"People of the lower city. We are Cataclysm. Are you tired of things? Do you think life could be better? When the Cataclysm strikes, there will be no more drugs, no more oppression, no more ID scans, no more walls around this city. There will never again be two tiers in the city. Everyone will shop at the same shops. Tomorrow, one piece of the government will fall. Look for the reports. It will be a sign of the coming Cataclysm. Thank you all for listening and good night."
Arctus remarked, "Not bad." With the message out, the heroes departed from the transmission tower and headed home. Along the way, Wort said, "So I found something in one of those offices. Check this out." He flashed a shiny golden watch to the heroes proudly. Seeing as Wort was an NPC, the heroes felt obligated to take the watch from him. Hale began recounting a story: "Back during my apprenticeship, the artisan I was training under made a set of cursed items - necklaces, belts, and such. When the wearer put them on, they would very slowly constrict. The wearer wouldn't even notice for days or even weeks." Wort got visibly paler. Hale continued, "The items were of excellent quality and couldn't be broken. Eventually, the wearer would notice and attempt to take the thing off. But that only made it grow tighter. Finally, the thing would constrict tightly enough that the wearer would no longer be able to use the affected body part. It's pretty terrible, actually."
Karne noticed what was going on and said, "Did they make any watches like that?"
"I don't think so, but then again, I didn't see all the pieces that were made like that."
Wort finally shouted "I can't take it anymore! This thing is cursed!" and hurled the watch at Hale. Satisfied, the heroes returned home.
After resting for a bit, there was a knock on the door, followed by a zap and someone shouting "Argh!" Hale remembered he had electrified the doors and found a young man waiting outside, dressed in armor. He introduced himself: "Greetings. I am known as Bogard. I have heard of your deeds and would like to lend you any assistance that I can. I believe that I can be of use. I am an able combatant and have been said to be quite inspiring to allies in times of danger."
"Bertis asked, "How did you find us?"
"I merely followed you back
here after you left the transmission tower."
Hale suddenly realized the heroes had simply waltzed out and returned. "We need to talk about policies," he muttered.
Wort stated, "I don't trust this guy."
"Let's at least give him a chance," Arctus said.
The heroes agreed and welcomed a new recruit to their forces. With seven members, the heroes are now a sizeable group. They will need as many people as they can get for the coming assault.