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DarkMatter D20: Drunk Southern Girls with Guns ... UPDATED - 8/18/05!

What would you like to see in the DarkMatter campaign?

  • Cthulhu, baby

    Votes: 65 23.6%
  • More anal probing!

    Votes: 65 23.6%
  • Rather less anal probing, thank you.

    Votes: 33 12.0%
  • Deeper Conspiracy theory stuff

    Votes: 84 30.4%
  • More traditional monster/horror tone

    Votes: 29 10.5%

  • Total voters
    276

jonrog1

First Post
RAW RECRUITS: Pt.2

The party arrived at the Desmond house at around three in the afternoon. A bright blue California sky shone over a Brady Bunch neighborhood. Which was appropriate, as Andy and Ross spent the entire drive arguing which Brady girl was prettier, Jan or Marsha. Stephen voted for Sam the Butcher.

It was an odd ride.

Peter Desmond welcomed them into his home eagerly. He was the very picture of suburban cop, and his wife Susan a perfect suburban Mom. Jo noticed a few twitches, though, and tight lines indicating that Susan wasn't getting too much sleep, and maybe helping herself to the "special pills" a little too often. Eliza glommed right onto the "pretty lady" Jo, which for some reason made Jo nervous, but she put up with the attention.

"Want to come to my room and see my pretty dollies?" Eliza asked innocently.

"Why, sure ..." smiled Jo, thumbing off the safety of her gun beneath her leather jacket...

(DM's Note: Already suspicious of a toddler, Jo nearly shot the little girl on sight. Would have been a bit awkward running the adventure after that...)

Desmond told them about the moving objects as the camera equipment was set up. Ross played director, while Andy kept his shoulder cam running the entire time. The incidents had been going on a year, and Susan had witnessed the first ones. After a while, they didn't seem keyed to any particular family member. At one point a heavy dinner table levitated straight up and dropped, smashing its legs.

Jerry, and his friend Nick arrived home. Jerry was the football team quarterback, Nick his thick-headed but loyal blocker. "Are you the Hoffman guys? This is so cool!" Jerry was ecstatic. "I never thought you'd come out here!"

Jerry and Peter gushed, describing the poltergeist incidents and Jerry's all-star quarterback career while Susan made hot chocolate. Stephen, Ross, Andy and Jo huddled up for a moment. "Is it me, or are they ... disturbingly normal?" whispered Jo.

"Aliens," whispered Andy back. "They don't know human families are supposed to be dysfunctional."

"They want our vital fluids," muttered Ross.

"I'm flattered," said Stephen. They all stared at him. "What? I am."

They were discussing whether to continue with this charade or attempt to, Scooby-do-like, tear the faces off the Desmond family when a red-headed woman came in.

"Oh, dudes, this is Ms. Jernigan, the coolest teacher we have at McKinley High."

"Amanda Jernigan." Amanda shook all their hands, pleasant and forthright. But when Ross said "Hoffman Institute", her face tightened.

"Problem?" asked Jo.

"No, no, just a bit of a skeptic, that's all. Well, Jerry, I swung by to drop off your history book, you left it behind." Amanda handed over the text, then with another odd look at the party exited through the front door.

"I hope something happens while you're heere," said Peter Desmond. Stephen caught Susan blinking rapidly, tensing at her pot of boiling water.

Jerry's face suddenly fell. "Uh oh, here comes Coach." Everyone turned to see a heavyset, white-haired man in a football jacket outside the picture window. He was just about to knock at the door.

"Man, he looks pissed," said Nick. "I hope --"

Nick didn't get to finish the sentence.

Because that's when the furniture lifted off the floor.

All of it.

Andy turned as the now levitating pot of boiling water flew at his face --

-- and Johanna flew by in the other direction.
 

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jonrog1

First Post
Now, now, Jo is a proper Southern girl, not a redneck. Redneckage density is why she came to LA.

She's a delicate little flower of a thing,really, who just happens to be able to drink the rest of us under the table and has a mean right hook. So be nice.
 


jonrog1

First Post
RAW RECRUITS: PT. 3

... Andy ducked as the boiling water splashed over the wall by his head. "Damn!" he thought. "That could have caused 1d6 of damage!"

(DM's NOTE: That is not a game joke. Andy's mind works like that. He's hard-wired for D&D.)

Johanna thudded into the wall, slid to the floor next to a now-screaming Eliza. Jo's constant stream of imaginative invectives told the others she was all right. Ross tried to calm Susan Desmond, but in a flash she attacked him, beating his chest with her fists. Jerry, his Dad and Nick ducked as lamps went flying, chairs spun in mid-air. Stephen barely dodged as the coffee table soared past -- and CRASHED through the front window!

An instant later, the very second Eliza's screams stopped, the floating furniture hit the floor. Quickly checking for casualties, the group found only one -- Jerry and Nick's high-school football Coach was unconscious, winged by the flying coffee table.

The Hoffman agents took control. An ambulance took the Coach. Neighbors were shooed away with the story of an "earthquake tremor" and how the Desmond's house had a floating foundation. Soon, the group could begin its exhaustive, logical investigation of the situation.

"It's the little girl," said Jo. "She's a channel for the evil spirits, we've all seen the movies. We need to kill her, now."

"Perhaps we should start by reviewing the ... reviewing the ..." Stephen paused. "Where did you get the vodka?"

"I brought an emergency bottle." Jo took a swig, stuffed the bottle back into a camera bag. "What? I don't have a problem. Shut up."

Stephen and Andy decided to review the tape from Andy's shoulder-cam back in the van. Jo would talk to little Eliza. Ross would chat up Peter Desmond, Jerry and Nick, who were all sitting in the kitchen. Susan Desmond had collapsed immediately after the incident, and was resting in her bedroom.

Eliza was a bit discomfited by the "pretty lady" standing in the corner of her room, staring at her. And why did Eliza have to sit in a chair with her hands on her lap? Jo did manage to discover that Eliza felt uncomfortable around Jerry, her older brother -- but that seemed to be picked up from the tension between Jerry and his Stepmom Susan.

Ross talked football with the men. Ross was from Texas -- football chat came easy. It turned out that the Coach had been riding Jerry, the quarterback, hard. The Coach's lead-footed son was second string, and if not for Jerry would be QB. Jerry was slated to start in the big game that night, starting in just a few hours.

"I've got a big math test, so I was thinking of bailing," explained Jerry. "Coach heard, and even though he hates me, it gave him an excuse to come over and chew me out."

Along the way Ross subtly discovered that Jerry knew nothing of his pyschotic birth mother, and that Peter believed she was either dead or living in an alley somewhere.

In the Van, Stephen and Andy reviewed the video. "Furniture flying ... Eliza and Susan both freaking out in different ways..." Andy muttered. It was like a tornado was inside the house.

"STOP!" Stephen's eagle eyes had picked out something. "Rewind. There. See that vase flying through the air?"

"Heading right for Jerry Desmond's head," said Andy. He then hit play frame-by-frame. The vase zoomed at the back of the teenage boy's head --

-- and dropped to the floor a moment before braining him.

"The poltergeist is focused on Jerry," said Stephen.

"But why did it manifest at night, in front of Susan, the mother? And did you notice the Coach was wearing a Masonic ring? Ah-ha!" Andy was triumphant. He didn't quite know why, but for conspiracy buffs, the presence of Freemasonry is a gift from the gods.

Stephen glanced back at the tape. "Holy crap. Get the others in here RIGHT NOW!" Andy summoned them, and when Jo and Ross arrived, Stephen led them through an earlier loop in tape. "Here, just before all hell breaks loose. What is that?"

"Black SUV parked on the opposite corner." Ross squinted. "Some woman with red hair is getting in -- didn't that teacher have red hair?"

"But she just lives across the street -- that's a BOOM MIKE!" Andy circled the frozen frame on the screen with a marker.

"No, no, like a boom mike but not one, and definitely pointed at the house by the driver of the SUV ..." Jo leaned forward as, on the tape, the poltergeist incident began. "I can just make out the driver ... dark glasses. Pale. dark suit ... a hat..."

They all turned at the metallic THUNK as Andy slammed backward against the wall of the van. He'd jerked back instinctively when he realized what was on film. Without warning he palmed his gun, threw open the van doors, scanned the streets. "Not here anymore, they've moved on!"

"What? What's with the freaking out?" yelled Stephen.

"Dark hats and suits, pale, dark glasses, black car!" Andy waited for them to guess, then finished it. "We just met the MEN IN BLACK!"
 

Welverin

First Post
Yeah! An update!

jonrog1 said:

"It's the little girl," said Jo. "She's a channel for the evil spirits, we've all seen the movies. We need to kill her, now."


I love this line. She'd make a good dwarf.

"I brought an emergency bottle." Jo took a swig, stuffed the bottle back into a camera bag. "What? I don't have a problem. Shut up."

This ones pretty good too.
 






jonrog1

First Post
Funny you should mention the kender. In our D&D arc Jo delighted in tormenting us with a kender. And "torment" is exactly the right word.

Simply imitating a high-pitched flute sound at our table (the sound of the approaching sprite) will initiate a series of initiative rolls and brutal attacks.

And just when you thought Dragonlance was dead and we were through with them forever, they go and license it out.

Ugh.
 

Horacio

LostInBrittany
Supporter
jonrog1 said:
Funny you should mention the kender. In our D&D arc Jo delighted in tormenting us with a kender. And "torment" is exactly the right word.

Simply imitating a high-pitched flute sound at our table (the sound of the approaching sprite) will initiate a series of initiative rolls and brutal attacks.

And just when you thought Dragonlance was dead and we were through with them forever, they go and license it out.

Ugh.

I was sure!

Jo acts like a wild kender. I was sure her player was a kender loving one...

Yes, now you will have official 3e kenders to pester your games forever. Mwahahahahahaha!!!! :D
 


jonrog1

First Post
RAW RECRUITS PT. 4

Jo leaned against the open van door as Andy scanned the streets. "Men in Black? Who are they?"

"They ... they ... well if you know who a Man in Black is, he's not a Man in Black!" Andy was losing a little ground here.

"And they were in an SUV," pointed out Stephen. "Not the most sinister of vehicles."

"Maybe they're the Soccer Moms in Black..." said Ross.

"All right, all right." Andy slid his gun back up against the small of his back. "But the fact remains -- that teacher got into an SUV, the SUV aimed something at the Cleaver House over there, and bingo whammo bad mojo. We need to search that house."

The group headed back into the Desmond Home. Peter Desmond was making sure his wife Susan was all right, so he quickly aquiesced to a search. The party scored first in the basement. Stephen opened the fusebox, did a double-take. "That's not made for amps and volts."

He drew out a strange, glittering cylinder, a thumb-sized weird mix of crystals and circuitry. "Guesses, thoughts, wild-ass hunches?"

"Psychic booster circuit." They all turned to stare at Jo. "What? While you guys were boning up on demons and first aid, I was working with some of the psychic research guys. That looks like circuitry used to boost psychic energy."

"There's wiring leading from that breaker into the wall ..." Ross tugged at it with the point from the carbon-steel hunting knife he kept under his jacket. "It runs into the walls."

"So wait, what's it boosting -- some ghost's psychic abilities, or one of the members of the house?" asked Stephen.

They debated for a while -- several of them noted that the phenomena had manifested when Susan was alone at first, but then the flying vase/Jerry footage was brought up. As they went upstairs, Andy called the Hoffman Institute and requested a background check on the teacher, Amanda Jernigan.

Stephen saw Jerry sprawled on the coach, strangely exhausted. With a nod to the others, he broke away to see what he could pry from the boy.

Quickly the rest of the group uncovered wires leading along baseboard heaters, near outlets, and a few smaller psychic-boosters in the rest of the house. As they entered Jerry's room, Stephen had finally gotten the boy to a trusting place.

(DM's Note: How often do you get to crack open the Diplomacy table in the DM's Guide? Mock it not in Dark*Matter...)

"So, you think you now what this is all about?" Stephen asked sympathetically.

"I ... I think I do." Jerry looked around to make sure no one could hear him. "I think the stuff's focused on me." With a gulp, he went further. "No, I ... I think I'm making it happen."

In Jerry's room, Ross peeled back the binding on a history book to reveal a wafer of more circuitry. Jo ID'd it as psychic booster material. "But how'd it get in the schoolbook?" asked Andy. But he and the other two Investigators answered simultaneously: "The teacher."

Stephen stepped in. "Jerry's sure he's making this happen --"

"With some help." Ross opened up the bottom of a football trophy, matched the circuitry within to more found in some academic awards. "Jerry said he was forgetting things at school, and that Jernigan woman brought them over. She packed them with some extra loving."

Andy checked on how far the Hoffman Institute had gotten on ID'ing the teacher. Her surface records seemed fine. Ross suddenly thought of using Peter Desmond to run the woman's fingerprints -- after all, they had her prints on all the books she'd brought over.

With a quick bit of charm and bluster, they got Peter Desmond to run the prints. Unfortunately, it would take a few hours to get results, if any. That's when the group hit a new wrinkle. It was time for Jerry to leave for his football game. Peter was going to the game, and Susan and Eliza were staying behind. Susan was "resting" in the bedroom. Resting heavily. Vulnerable family members smelled like trouble.

Jo and Ross convinced Peter Desmond to let them stay behind. With Susan out of sorts, it made sense for someone to watch over her and Eliza in case any more phenomena occurred. Stephen and Andy would take video cameras and go to the football game to get "coverage." The van would stay behind with Ross and Jo.

After synchronizing watches for no other reason than it was so frikkin' cool they went their separate ways.

AT THE HOUSE: Ross and Jo searched the premises again, but found nothing new. The crotchety neighbor lady across the street was Amanda Jernigan's landlord, but other than mentioning the presence of the SUV's -- which she assumed were drug dealers -- she was no help.

AT THE GAME: Stephen and Andy dutifully filmed Jerry running up and down the field. "Human interest stuff," Stephen told the father. As Andy panned around the stands, he zoomed in on Amanda Jernigan, sitting with students. She looked back at him through the lens. She seemed annoyed to see Hoffman Institute people present. Almost alarmed. But in a second she was making chit-chat again and cheering.

Andy kept panning ... stopped. Zoomed. In a blur he was up and moving. Stephen quickly fell into step behind him. "What, what did you see --"

"Remember to bring your gun?" Andy pointed.

Two men. Six-and-a-half feet tall. Black suits, black topcoats, hollowed out thin features with sallow skin. Sunglasses at eight o'clock at night. Fedoras.

"Those would be ..."

"Men-in-f&%$*ing-Black." Andy and Stephen cut left to flank the mysterious strangers when --

"AHHHHHH!" Stephen jumped as Peter Desmond grabbed his shoulder. "Don't DO that!"

Peter Desmond was deadly pale. "You've got to come with me..."

"Little busy here ..." Andy looked up. The Men in Black were in motion. They stood, began to drift off in the crowd.

"No, you don't understand. The fingerprints. Amanda Jernigan --" Desmond looked as if he were about to collapse. "They came back with a positive ID ... they belong to Heidi Rammock! Amanda Jernigan is Jerry's missing biological mother!"
 




Welverin

First Post
jonrog1 said:
RAW RECRUITS PT. 4
Two men. Six-and-a-half feet tall. Black suits, black topcoats, hollowed out thin features with sallow skin. Sunglasses at eight o'clock at night. Fedoras.

"Those would be ..."

"Men-in-f&%$*ing-Black."
[/B]

Or the Blues Brothers.
 


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