View Full Version : Journal The Town of Lost Pines: An NWOD Journal

2016-01-16, 01:58 AM
Welcome, readers, to a tale of danger, excitement, and just a hint (or rather, a healthy portion) of the supernatural. I hope you enjoy your stay…
The Setup: So, due to the…large nature of our role-playing group (more of a small club at this point), I decided to let six players join me on a trip through danger and darkness in White Wolf Publishing’s NWOD system. For those of you unfamiliar, it is a d10 modern setting…but with werewolves, mages, vampires, and other things stalking the streets. Coteries of blood-suckers stalk backstreet alleys, the howls you hear in the forest may not be just a regular wolf, and that street performer may actually be levitating off the ground.

Due to the diverse nature of our players, the group fell out like this: three werewolves (all in the same pack), 2 vampires (who are suspicious of everything, most of all each other and the NPC vampires), and one solitary mage who specializes in controlling the flow of Time. Now, some of you may question the wisdom of this set-up, but due to the unique nature of the people I play with (we do a lot of PvP, for instance), there will be less problems than one might think.

Now, the city where the game takes place is a little town up in the mountains of Idaho called Lost Pines. Fictional (to my knowledge) and not terribly large, though large enough to accommodate a good number of local amenities such as a small general hospital, a good-sized public library, and, a little ways out of town, a penitentiary, where the local vampire prince (think ‘lord of a city’) makes his home. There is also a small theme park and a logging outpost a little ways down the mountain.

And now, the players.

The Mage:
Harold, a forty year old man who lost his wife and son five years ago due to being in the wrong place at the wrong time. After contemplating that and coming to the conclusion that time was wrong, he awoke.

The Vampires
Nadi: A former chemist who was a leader in the field. (Seriously, the player sunk max points into science with a specialty in chemistry.) On the run from a failed coup in another city against the Prince there. She also blew up his refinery. He was ticked. There is a bounty on her head, for those who pay attention to such things.

(Player 3): Did not show up to the first session due to unavoidable commitments. Will be fun to see what he has though.

And…the Werewolves.
Lucas: A werewolf shaman who is good at interpreting the spirits, but doesn’t have great respect with them yet. Also runs a local ‘clinic’, which hands out medicinal weed.

Alexa: The stealth-wolf. She owns the car. She’s also the practical one and has the flaw ‘anthropocentric’, which means she doesn’t like transforming.
And then…Ursa:

A big, dumb idiot who punches hard and makes traps. Likes trolling their totem (patron) spirit, Fox-who-Treads-on-Leaves, who is designed after a kitsune. I’ve told him it was a bad idea. So far, she’s taken to using her telekinesis to reach across from the Shadow into the Material world just to pick objects up and smack him on the back of the head with them. And that’s just the first session.

The scenario: The town of Lost Pines is an isolated community currently caught in a struggle between the Mayor and his group of Mages who hide under the cover of the ‘Friday Night Book Club’ and meet at the local library versus the vampire prince who runs the local police and some of the smaller gangs on the outskirts of the city. Also, all the werewolves except for the three player characters have disappeared overnight from the city. They left only a note which read ‘Get out…….the Professor’ and was torn in half. Also, their shaman is noticing a lot of powerful spirits running around as the barrier between the Spirit World and the Material World gets weaker and weaker.

The Intro:
The time is short, and soon will come,
When all shall see what has been done.
One man’s act shattered time and space
Escaped death, tore Fate’s woven lace.
Blood follows him, hounds at his heels.
Yet when he their hungry jaws feels,
The world is once more set askew.
Beware, traveler, lest you
Be caught up in the beating trance
Of the Clockwork Heart’s last dance.

So the first session kicks off with Nadi’s arrival in town. She’s using a power called Obfuscate, which is basically invisibility, but fails the check to spot a man in a long, brown trenchcoat also on the bus that seems to see her regardless.
First thing she does is walk into a bar and make friends. Strikes a deal with a local drug dealer/user to be his new source and seduces a gang member. With a drop of vampiric blood and a point of Willpower, she has her first ghoul. Then she robs a hospital, while invisible, of all the things she needs to set up a chemistry lab and bags of blood so she doesn’t have to go hunt down people in the night. It’ll keep her going for a little while, but not for too long… Upon arriving back, she receives a letter left on her doorstep that reads something like:

I hope you are doing well! I was told that you were arriving in town and was hoping that we could become friends! I am Gregory, Gregory the Great! I do hope you enjoy your stay here and will find it very productive!
Gregory the Great

She ignores it and sends Mike, her ghoul, to rob the other clinic in town, where the werewolves are. He tries to break in, but they run him off, so she goes to sleep for the day and plans to rob them tomorrow.
After that, we switch to the werewolves. They are contacted by Leaves, the Fox-Spirit, who is very unhappy that her obedient tribe of werewolves is gone and demands they discover what happened. Ursa ticks her off, reminding her why she mostly ignored these guys up till now. She makes a contract with them and leaves quickly.

Some local gang members bring in a dead man who’d had most of his blood drained (by the Doctor, a terrifying NPC whose strength lies not in his stats but in his ruthlessness and lack of morals) and his lungs/throat collapsed (from the Witchcat, a creature that once belonged to a necromancer, now dead.) They take him back and Alexa goes with Ursa to investigate the local priest so that he can give the guy last rites. They also learn that the priest is the only person who escaped the penitentiary and now raves to anyone who will listen about ‘the dead that walk’. They quickly phone Lucas, just in time to warn him before the zombie that he has in his clinic reanimates. He restrains it on a gurney and slides it into the freezer room for later investigation.

After that, a woman who works in the local orphanage brings in a twelve-year-old kid named Rafael, who had a cut on his head that needed stitches. Lucas had an interest in him because he’d noticed on a previous visit that the boy had a heart that almost didn’t beat at all, yet still seemed fine, and alive, otherwise. So this time, he convinces the lady from the orphanage to leave the kid overnight for observation, in case he has a concussion. Rafael asks for a burger and anime, of which he chooses Naruto to watch. When Lucas tries to x-ray his head (and, more importantly, his heart), the kid refuses.

Now to the Mages. The Mayor and leader of the circle calls them all together because a magical artifact was stolen from him the night before. It is, as he describes it, a sort of flamethrower that doesn’t have a tank. On the bottom, the word ‘Numa’ is inscribed, which one of the other mages theorizes might be a very poor spelling of the Greek word ‘pneuma’, which translates as ‘breath’. They, including Harold, reject that as stupid. The mayor tasks the circle with tracking down the stolen item and they disperse. Harold, with nothing to contribute, goes back to the shop where he makes and sells watches and jewelry.
The priest shows up at the werewolves’ clinic, drives a stake through the zombie’s head, sprinkles holy water on it and leaves. They dispose of the body quickly and efficiently. (They actually hand it over to a mage, who has invented a mold that consumes dead flesh as a way to deter vampires from breaking into his shop. He feeds the corpse to the mold.)

Night comes. The day crew goes to sleep and Nadi awakens. She interrogates Mike about the local gangs and comes across some interesting information. The mayor has sanctioned the three largest gangs to be the ‘Neighborhood Watch’ and protect the good, upstanding citizens from the abuse of power by the police and their chief. The best fighters of the lot are in with a group run by Old Smokey, who got the nickname due to his cigarette addiction. In order to get this guy’s attention, she makes the equivalent of C4, blows up a rival gang that was not a member of the Neighborhood Watch, then sneaks into their leader’s house and dumps acid on him. She loses some Morality points for that, though avoids a derangement with some lucky rolling. Mike, the ghoul, is wounded in the explosion, however, but she sends him with the gang-leader’s head to Old Smokey as a ‘you’re welcome’ gift. Unfortunately, to his mind, it’s more of a ‘Well gee, I don’t want this person around me. Better put out a hit on whoever this was.’ Also, a grey cat (the Witchcat) was spotted near the house heading toward one of the dying but still alive men.
Nadi then goes to steal more blood from the clinic, but wakes up Rafael. He lets her in, but as she goes to take the blood-bags, they move away from her like Tantalus chasing food and water. Rafael appears right behind her and tells her not to steal, but she manages to convince him that it is better this way than the alternative. Freaked out by the kid with telekinesis, she leaves. Then, she makes drugs and finds another letter on her doorstep from Gregory.

I notice that, in the short time you’ve been here, you’ve been…up to certain things. You blew up a house with thirty people in it, murdered someone in cold blood, drained another and left him to die, and now you’re making drugs. I believe you can be better, if you’d only try. Remember! We’re watching.
Gregory the Great

The next morning, Harold is sent by the mages to investigate someone they suspect of being the thief. He’d visited Harold yesterday badly burned and had gone to the hospital. So, using his powers over time, Harold tracks him through the past with only minor mishaps.
At the werewolves’ clinic, everything goes downhill fast. The shaman, prompted by Leaves, looks at Rafael through the eyes of the spirit world and is almost blinded by the power emanating from him. He discovers that the kid is actually a powerful spirit who can take human form. Also, he seems to have some sort of amnesia. With regards to being a spirit, he forgets what he knows, forgets what he said a minute ago, and things like that, but with regards to being a human he perfectly recalls everything. They are very confused.

Meanwhile, another werewolf named Alex Chorster they do not know comes and proposes they help him steal the ‘Clockwork Pieces’, items which grant unlimited spiritual power to those who collect them all, from around town and shows them the first piece that he’s already stolen: the Clockwork Breath, a flamethrower with the inscription ‘Numa’ on the bottom. He too speculates that someone must not have known Greek very well. They refuse his offer for now, due to their fear of the Mayor and the Police uniting to track them down (didn’t expect them to accept anyway), and Alex says to come meet him at the old campground outside of town if they change their minds.

Due to some deduction and well-placed questions to Rafael, the werewolves deduce that Rafael’s heart is one of the pieces that Alex is after (and the locations of the others, because those places are where he says his ‘family’ lives) and resolve to adopt him. I had to contain my wicked glee from showing at this point. But first, they must go to the campground and attempt to dissuade their kin from his wayward course. Meanwhile, through a combination of role-playing and covert spell-casting, Harold tracks the thief (Alex) to the clinic and peers into the past to listen in on their conversation. He goes to gather the mages so that they can do an all-out blitz and recover the stolen artifact. As dusk falls that day, they shall all converge on the old campground and we shall see who is victorious.

It’s a good thing everyone made very talk and discussion oriented characters this time, or else this would end in certain doom for someone!

All in all, everyone had fun and they are all now paranoid. :smallsmile: Questions? Comments? Advice? (I need it. Never GMed a game like this before.) Sessions happen every weekend, so expect weekly updates.