Dresden Files New Haven

Planting Seeds

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Sam sprawled on a ‘new to him’ couch which replaced the ratty futon mattress that he used to have propped against the wall. He gazed down at a 3-ring binder full of printed photos of Jim Claxons books. Books which had cost them all very dearly and at the moment were next to worthless.

Jim had been a detective in New Haven and he seem to get assigned all the ‘weird’ cases because he had a way of making the ‘weird’ disappear from the paperwork. He was also a mentor to Detective Teddy who was starting to pick up the slack on some of those cases. Most importantly Jim was somehow connected to the weird side of things anyway and maybe even a mentor to Greg Werther who was, get this, an ACTUAL wizard.

To make matters weirder, Jim had been killed months ago and his body dumped in a pond in an attempt to make it look like a suicide… but both Detective T and Greg swear they had seen and talked with him after that. Heck Jim was still getting wedding invitations from the weird side for months after his death. If Jims body hadn’t been found when a dam was removed and the pond drained the crime may have gone un-noticed for years. Even so the police report casually brushed it off as an over-worked cop who committed suicide.

So apparently Jim’s investigations had uncovered a lot of secrets along the way. If there is one thing New Haven likes is its secrets. Jims notebooks and the rest of Jims property had been moved into a storage unit on the east side. We made an attempt to get the book secretly but EVERYONE was watching the place and apparently it was booby-trapped. Eventually it came down to an auction of all things. Some vampires, some women in suits, some fey from both summer and winter and the rest of us rabble. If it wasn’t for a mutual suicide pact, I doubt that this would have worked but the rabble pooled their resources and came up with the winning bid in exchange for everyone getting access to the secrets. Secrets are powerful only when no one knows them. If everyone knows them and everyone knows that everyone knows then they aren’t really a secret any more.

Even winning the bid had costs. It’s not like college drop-outs are swimming in cash to out-bid vampires. Sam had gotten a ‘loan’ from Mikhail Chernabog. Not just a thug but also Russian Mafia, gun and drug runner and a stone-cold killer. Oh Mikhail was also a were-rat just like his sister Malvina Chernabog. Do NOT EVER refer to them as Micky and Minnie Mouse to their face. The ‘loan’ was an advance to cover the next crop because of course Sam didn’t have enough in his current stash to cover his debt. Only sharing a copy of Jim Claxons notes after the fact had kept Mikhail and Malvina from taking the money out of his body by selling his organs. The fall harvest would help but the rock ledge where he grew his product may be unreachable to anyone but a shape-shifter or someone rappelling from a helicopter but the ledge wasn’t very large and would really only cover interest. Winter would be even worse. Might be time to sell some of Jims other stuff (hey, no one else gave a damn after the books) and buy some grow-lights or something.

Which brings us back to Jims book. The book of secrets that in itself was still a secret because Jim had written the entire thing in code. The rest of the day after the auction had been spent with Jack Storm Photographing every page, emailing it to a kinko’s and printing 17 copies then everyone counting pages, making sure they were legible and none were missing. Everyone who could handle the tech had a digital copy as well. Then we ransacked all his other furniture and paperwork looking for a cypher or a decoder. If there was a secret to unlocking the secrets Jim Claxton took it to his grave. At the end the book was carefully brought back to the New Haven Green which is something called ‘Neutral Ground’ and after everyone who helped pay for it confirmed that it was the original, buried. It won’t keep someone from digging it up but it will make it obvious that it has been dug up. And honestly, it’s probably easier to steel a printed copy or hack a computer to get a copy. Sam personally knew of at least 6 backups out in the cloud or on thumb-drives hidden places already.

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Here is the thing about codes. Humans think in words made from letters and tend to write codes that rearrange letters but keep spaces and punctuation. It’s just easier to think about. The more secure the process, the more tedious. Human minds can barely handle a code where letters are written 3 characters to the right without a lot of practice. Cracking a code that a human can do in their head is trivial. Another human can do it with paper, pencil and a little time. It wasn’t until the Germans invented the Enigma machine that humans developed computers to crack codes faster than a human brain could. Computers are master code breakers because the first thing they have to do is decrypt a bunch of human thought characters into 1’s and 0’s. Then they have to translate those 1’s and 0’s into instruction sets, perform the instructions, take the results and translate those 1’s and 0’s back to characters. Cracking Jim’s code should be easy enough with enough computing power and the right seed words to look for. They cracked Enigma by looking for combinations that translated 6-character words into ‘Hitler’ because his name was in almost every transmission.

Sam may have drop-out of college but not because he couldn’t pass his CSE classes, but because he couldn’t focus on programing languages and network protocols while learning to run like a wolf and fly like an eagle… But this was different. This was hunting. There was prey to catch at the end. He WANTED to crack this code. Hungry for it. Hungry like tracking the scent trail of a wounded deer for days.

Sam needed 2 things. First he needed a lot more computing power. He could get that with the last of Mikhails and Malvinas money. If he was going to owe them anyway there wasn’t much point in paying the debt down early, right? Second he needed to understand what Jim was looking at and writing about. Without seed words to detect for he would never know when he found the right translation. He knew who could help with that.

The pre-dawn hours found Sam sitting in front of “Mikes Caffeine Addiction” waiting for it to open. He stood up when the wizard approached. “Mr. Werther. I need you to teach me about the weird stuff in the world.”

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Good Bye, Mr. Claxton. Part 1
Claxton's Style Pandora's Box

From Greg Whether’s mind.

I’ve always been interested in these new Ford Taurus, but too afraid of getting too close with all the electronics in them. This one looks like it has been run over by a bear with the hood smashed in and the light bar hanging off the roof down to the trunk. Seeing this new car from the back seat of the cruiser was not how I wanted this experience. And just to make matters worse, I opened up my third eye on the two officers in the front seat. BAD IDEA……..at least I am not in cuffs….yet.

But let me back up a couple days. My friend and mentor, Jim Claxton, is dead. Jim visited me about two months ago to tell me he had to depart and wouldn’t tell me much more. Asked that I look after Teddy and told me an address that would give me some answers I was looking for. They found his body in a shallow pond and say he died about a year ago. Who the *( have I been talking to this past year?? And they are saying it was suicide?? WTF!

Detective Teddy came to visit me that afternoon as I was closing up at work. Like myself, he has a lot of questions. He explained that no one else had seen Jim in the past year at the precinct except himself.

All this made me question whether we had been mentally altered or was everyone else? I did what I don’t like to do, too many bad things can happen and I may not escape, I opened my third eye to look at Teddy. He looked like a Detective fighting against the waves and looking about to drown, but nothing had altered him. Thank goodness. And here is why I don’t like opening the third eye, before I could close it some boy with a hairy monster almost tagging along or chasing him came into view. It was disturbing and quite abrupt. I started loosing myself and control. Too much all at once. I regained myself and was able to reel myself in while closing the eye with Sam and Teddy asking me if I was okay. Sam had walked into my sight. He was not mentally harmed either.

Teddy, Sam, and I went to the morgue to do some more investigation regarding Detective Claxton. Detective Teddy was able to charm his way in and Sam decided to stealthily turn into a cat to find his way. After we looked at the body, Sam tried his way onto the computer to find the reports and hit the print button, twice.

Side note. Sam has the hots for Miranda. He has been on 3 dates already with her and it appears to be going slow, like pumping him for information without the actual pumping part if you know what I mean. I told him to be careful and try to figure out why she is so interested in Detective Claxton.

I had Sam and Teddy stay behind me while I opened the third eye again on the corpse. I really don’t like doing this especially more than once a year let along in a day. Anyhoo, the corpse was definitely dead and whoever it is or actually was a Wizard.

The next day after work I went on my own to talk with Captain Bill Westman about Claxton at the police station. He was a welcoming man and spoke briefly about the late Detective Claxton. I needed to know. Questions need answers and was everyone else changed to think Claxton was gone. I opened my third eye again and although he had not bee mentally attacked, the black tendrils eradiating from him and trying to consume me was terrifying. This man was not the nice man he was pretending to be and definitely was in the connecting of the supernatural. It made me sick, literally. He had the EMT and couple others come out to check me out.

For some reason I feel I need to save the Captain from this sickness.

I had my answer. Detective James Claxton has been dead for the past year and I do not know why this “Ghost” picked Teddy and I for his contacts to this world.

On my way out of the police station I ran intoJanette and Jack. I don’t know what it is about this Jack Storm, but I always think of that Jack Frost when I see his name. And now every time I read Rainbow Magic series books to my niece it is in Jack’s voice for Jack Frost. Downright eerie. We went to Detective Teddy’s office to find him and sat down to chat.

Janette has a strong aversion to me using cell phones and telling me to be nice. Jack Storm didn’t seem to mind me using his phone. Jack is a writer and currently writes blogs online from what I understand. He thought our conversation should be blogged about hence why I wanted to borrow his phone. Janette had other ways of convincing him.

I can’t wait for this electronic do-hicky phase to pass. It is nothing, but a fad.

There was a lot of dust on Jim’s desk. Nobody had been there in a long time. Janette and Teddy found an interesting piece of paper with both our names on it and quite a few others. Janette and Jack had visited Jim’s apartment and met with the landlord. The landlord had put Jim’s stuff into storage rental and called Jack while we were talking that an auction was set for Saturday in East Haven.

I invited everyone down to the coffee shop for a coffee on me. When we got there we found Sam making his way over covered in mud from the pond where Claxton met his demise. We agreed that everything points that Detective Claxton was murdered and thrown in the pond with weights on him. It was pretty obvious and why the morgue report did not reflect that and said suicide was not clear.

Maybe it wasn’t my best idea to go to the Storage Unit this late. I thought they would still be open and I was rather frustrated they were not. In my frustration I let a bit flow which was the demise of the entry box’s electronics. Sam made like a bat for the office and slipped through the mail box slot and tried hacking his way in the computer after nibbling on the camera cords as a rat.

Jack Storm did not like this situation and kept on the street corner as a look out. Somehow I couldn’t tell anything, but he saw two shapes appear in the front office with Sam. That is when Sam decided a bear in the office would be less conspicuous?

I ran up to the office to bang my spoon on the wall as the bear tore at one of the guys. The other fellow turned around and there was no mistaken a vampire hollow stare back at me. He was less than impressed. I needed to help Sam so I let loose on the front door to give him an easy exit.

Sam was having none of it. He had a hold of the arm of that rotting meat stick and jammed it through the burning door frame. The vamp was now injured and on fire. The vampire turned to mist to escape and I thought I had the one in the office trapped for questioning. I seem to be wrong a lot lately.

The second vampire turned to mist and disappeared too. And we could hear sirens coming in the distance. I turned to Sam and told him to escape in bear form and I made my way back to the gate.

As Sam ran down the road as a Kodiak Bear, he decided to charge the police car skidding to a stop and ran right over it. Janette disappeared as the cops were questioning me and Jack was already long gone. These two cops didn’t seem to be too happy with me. I didn’t run their car over so don’t know why they were so crap bent on bringing me in for questioning.

Last weekend Mom stopped by the coffee shop for a short visit. She was awesome as always and even started poking fun at the cash register (lack of) and no wifi. As she left she said, “So much like your grandfather…” She smiled, but I couldn’t tell if she was proud or sad.

Mom wasn’t going to be happy with me, but it appeared time to use the family’s lawyers. That was until I opened my third eye on the officers………… I started watching the area and looking for activity on the street. Time to make this electronic fad to my benefit.

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Sharps and Flats:
The Blog of Dr. Daniel Blossom, D.S.M.

Sharps and Flats:
The Blog of Dr. Daniel Blossom, D.S.M.

Taking New Haven by Storm
Posted on August 9th 2016 by realmagicmaestro

Well, hello there all you Bro-ssoms and Blossomistas! I’m so very glad to be bringing you another fantastic story from the life of, well, me! Remember to share this post with everyone you know who is in the know who can actually use digital technology. Thanks!

Anyhoo, I was just so honored, so incredibly, deeply honored to be part of the recent production of The Tempest that was put on at the Schubert. Good gracious, what a show, what a night! Oh, it was amazing, simply amazing, to be Executive Assistant Artistic Director for this production, and to work with the legendary Prospero on his final show. Truly, the only thing more impressive than his theatrical skill is his magical prowess! Such a pleasure. Really, the first thing I want to do is thank Prospero for giving me the chance to assist him. Though he is, of course, New Haven’s best local director, he condescended to allow me to take charge of, well, the bulk of the show. Yes, it really was amazing to have so much responsibility for such an incredible play. Why, one could almost say that Prospero told me which port was our destination, but it was my job to actually navigate the ship there, to sail our happy little barque through the waters of excellence to the shores of perfection.

But, though I was effectively captain, what’s a captain without his crew? And what a crew of actors and actresses we had! I’m sure you all read Jack’s review of the show (for a notoriously hard-to-please critic, his words were just so complimentary, don’t you think?), so I will spare you a rehash of all that, but I just want to point out some of my favorite moments that happened, both on stage and behind the scenes.

First, I am so grateful to our security team. Officer Theodore Jones might be a grizzly on his beat, but he’s a Teddy with his friends! Such a lovely man. He was Prospero’s personal security detail, and he was taken aback when he found a young man wandering through the theater with a powerful magic sword. But there was nothing to worry about, because that young man was none other than Scott Walker, of the famous Walker family! There first meeting was a bit… tense, but I was able to smooth things over with some honeyed words and a reminder that they were both here in common purpose. Officer Jones continued to serve as Prospero’s shadow, while young Master Walker ranged about the theater keeping closed what needed to be closed, if you catch my meaning. Yes, Walker ranged all over… he was quite the… ranger! See what I did there? Ha! Anyway, he bought a bunch of knick-knacks and hung them everywhere, supposedly to keep nasty things out, but I think it was because he secretly thought my vision for the set design was… insufficient. I didn’t tell him at the time, but, well, let’s just say he’s a better guardian of this reality than he is an artistic director and leave it at that.

Moving on, I want to focus on one of the best casting decisions I have ever made – one of the best casting decisions any director has ever made, truly – and talk about my dear friend Sam being chosen for the role of the monstrous, misshapen, deformed, wretched, hideous, corrupt, and ugly little scoundrel, Caliban. It was perfect casting! Sam, who in real life is actually occasionally pleasant, relished the role, as it really brought his natural talents to the fore. He was able to bring out his animal side and run wild on stage. Strangely enough, just like the character he played, he tried to make some magic happen with Prospero’s daughter, Miranda, but, just like in the show, he was rejected. Honestly, I think it is for the best; she’s just not his type. He needs a different kind of female altogether!

Greg Werther, local artisan coffee-monger, gave a solid performance on stage, though, understandably, he was outshined by some of our other actors, namely Prospero himself, but I don’t want to focus on his mediocre acting. Rather, I’d like to talk about his special relationship with Prospero. Immediately, I could see that Greg just so deeply admired the man. It was not unlike seeing a school-girl make moon-eyes at a visiting movie star (I have a picture of my great-grandmother fawning over Derek Swanson, acclaimed actor of Hollywood’s golden age, that reminds me of the way Greg gazed at Prospero). Greg would excitedly seek time to ask Prospero a question, and then turn as red as a tomato and look away as he received his answer. He’d go off and examine the different magical foci Prospero had set up, hoping he could glean some shred of wisdom from a master of the craft; he may even have snuck into Prospero’s room just to get a souvenir from his new magical mentor! At least, that’s what Sam told me. I don’t know if Greg actually learned anything from Prospero, but I know he will never forget his brief time as Prospero’s protégé.

I suppose I should mention Ariel, who played Ariel. He was pretty flighty, though I will say he had a fair singing voice. He just vanished at the end of the show, but not before spiriting away a copy of A Midsummer Night’s Dream that Prospero had been keeping. He may have been causing mischief during our rehearsals, but I’m sure nothing bad will come of his actions!

Speaking of missing manuscripts, there was a special guest who showed up near opening night who caused plenty of excitement among everyone in the cast. Warden Metzger, the protector of all New England, came to check up on our production, and not because he was a fan of the theater! It seemed like he and Prospero were… acquainted. Metzger wanted to make sure there was nothing untoward happening during the show, and, well, it was a good thing he came, because, somehow, the shade of the witch Sycorax was released in the final moments of the show!

This was a moment of real pride for me, because I was able to see the cast, my friends, really come together when we were in quite a pickle. Greg’s spoon erupted with brilliant fire that scourged Sycorax’s ectoplasmic form, engulfing her in a sorcerous conflagration. Sam’s bestial side burst forth, and he raked and slashed with claws infused with totemic might. Scott hewed Sycorax with his family sword, darting across the stage like a steel wind. And Teddy! Teddy was incredible! Somehow, using his razor-intellect and detective skills, he found exactly which one of Scott’s knick-knacks would cause Sycorax to dissipate if she touched it, and he hurled it with brutal strength into her phantasmal visage.

Then, all that was left for me was to proclaim, boldly, passionately, like a lion about the feast upon his prey, the final lines of the show. The audience erupted with applause at Sycorax’s defeat, and the thunder of their praise ended her brief appearance on stage.

Now, there is something serious I need to address, and that is the rumor that Prospero and his daughter Miranda have some kind of problem with each other. I actually had a long conversation with Miranda, who deep down really is a sweetheart, and I can tell you that there is no reason for anyone to gossip about these two. All families have their ups and downs, and I am sure that every father and daughter can think of a time when they were frustrated with each other. Suffice it to say that they are both people, same as everyone else, and they should be allowed to work through whatever they might need to work through in private. Respect their privacy. Don’t talk about them. Please stop the rumor-mill. Just. Stop. It.

Also, just in case you forgot, make sure you share this post with all your friends! Thanks!

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Wherther Tales (Child's Play Part 3)
Outta Gas

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It was close to 3am when I walked up to Ikea. The building had an eerie aura about it even though there we signs of people working inside readying for the next day. Even though the Never Never was in another plane it still made the area stink with ugliness.

I was tired from researching through the night regarding the Goblin King and the absorption of information made him feel even more tired. I did a quick check to make sure my watch, coffee cup and lattle were on me before getting closer. No idea what I may find walking into to.

I walked up to the front of the store to be surprised and happy to meet Janette, Daniel, and Teddy walking out to greet him with some other person named Jack Storm and Anya Romanakov. Unfortunately it appeared Sam had gotten into some trouble with the law without Teddy there to bail him out.

Our rag tag group of hero’s had stopped the Goblin King before I even arrived! I breathed a sigh of relief until they brought out my worst fears. We were correct that some vampires are involved and he had the children. Teddy’s partner had gone to the location of the bus which unfortunately was owned by the vampire…… Dante Bates…..

This gentleman, Jack Storm, evidently comes from some money because a limo pulled up to take us to the Bus. Jack also appeared concerned since he noted I would not look him in the eyes when we shook hands. I sat as far back in the limo as I could hoping to render this beautiful machine into an unmoving piece of metal. Anya, she’s a wizard and understood perfectly and sat next to me. Too much dang electronics in the world.

That is when the Detective Teddy’s incoming call from his partners phone ID. He gave me a look when in began crackling while he listened. It was Dante Bates calling from his partner’s phone! I was having trouble controlling myself. The static got worse and Teddy stepped out of the Limo since we were parked. Teddy’s partner was being tortured from what was told and Dante had the children.

At this point Daniel and Jack had the idea of getting water guns and go to the a certain church for holy water. Daniel had a key to the church…….We went to Jack’s dorm to grab water guns and water balloons then off to the church for holy water. The Limo Driver was none too happy with us.

Having gotten “supplies”, we went to the location of the bus sitting outside a home in eastern New Haven. The house was dark and dawn was upon us. Jannette and I took to inspecting the bus while Teddy and Jack went to the front door of the house simultaneously Anya and Daniel went to the back of the house.

As Jannette and I approached the bus we both saw movement of some kind inside the bus. Jannette motioned to me she was going to the back of the bus while I went to the front entrance. I was greeted by a mischievous kid that I told his parents were worried about him and although this may be fun it was time to go home. I also asked if we could play a game. He told me matter in factly that he wants to play forever and doesn’t want to go home so no.

Does anyone else hear that alarm? I did. That forever part rung a bell for me. Why does it always have to be vampires?

I brought the squirt gun up on him quickly and let it loose. That little runt moved so fast and laughed the whole time. At this point in time I am beginning to worry about Jannette and what she is going to find at the back of the bus. The runt moved so fast I couldn’t see him in the dark bus and thought I heard something on the roof. Never heard him sneak up behind me until he said “Gotcha!” grabbed my arm and bit me.

Have you even been bitten by a vampire and got to enjoy the venom? Trust me when i see you should not take the opportunity up if it ever presents itself.

He had such a grip on my right arm that for all intents and purposed I couldn’t more. I reached for my lattle and with a quick “bAH” the inside of the bus was on fire and the puppy vampire let me go. He didn’t like me anymore and even mentioned it as he charged me again. This time as if reflex I used my watch charm as a shield which brought the mini-vampire off his feet cursing and spitting at me. I exited the bus while I held the mini-vamp there.

I let the little monster loose hoping he would find his peace within the bus, but he charged me again outside. I pointed my lattle at him again and let loose another “bAH!” turning the miniature monster into a candle. As his fake persona melted away revealing the vampire within I brought the squirt gun up on him that made his final demise. It continued to melt until it was just a puddle. I did not wait to watch it melt but rushed to the back of the bus to find Jannette trying to fight a quick moving girl.

Jannette and I worked as a team to set this vampire on fire while she ended its miserable existence with the squirt gun.

We turned to the house as the daylight began to break.

Inside the house we found the rest of the team. They had not found Teddy’s partner nor the missing children, but the vampires had exited to the basement with the incoming daylight. Teddy and others had already taken the make shift curtains down.

We went down the stairs to a horrible sight. Teddy’s partner being bled out to tempt the children into drinking it while already changed children watched. Dante laughed at us manically.

Anya let loose with an air attack on Dante trying to hold him in position, but he was strong. I went for the windows fumbling through the venom in my blood trying to get the curtains removed. Dante saw what i was trying to do and went to attack me. I was feeling weak, tired, and not much left in the tank when I tried to burn his smug face off. He moved faster than my eye could follow. The next thing I knew I was flying across the room into the wall and Dante was coming in fast. I don’t know how, but somehow I knew I had to move my face. Dante’s fist made the concrete wall explode into dust where my head had just been.

Jannette and Daniel broke water pipes free and mixed the holy water in from the water balloons to contaminate the blood on the floor. In turn the children were not tempted any longer.

Between the bite and taking a beating, I don’t remember much more. I just wanted to burn that smug face off Dante……..

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Children of the Night
GM Notes

Casefile: Child’s Play (part 3 of 3)

Jack, Sam, Janette, Teddy, Sara Roberts, her brother John Roberts, and Anya Romanakov all exited the Ikea Labyrinth together. Greg met you at the entrance, having lost track of time while doing research and only just then showing up. Daniel and Orsina exited shortly thereafter. She was still very upset over the party’s cancellation and left Daniel to “play with his friends.” They were quickly filled in about Dante Bates and his cadre of Red Court children.

We hand-waved Sam being arrested again and taken away to justify his absence. Teddy didn’t stop it but could have easily cleared it up the next game, so it’s ultimately a non-entity.

Everyone got into the limo that Jack arranged to have and made two stops on the way to the house where Teddy figured Dante would be. (I forget if Sara and John were dropped-off somewhere as a third stop or kept comfortable in the limo) Together you all went to Jack’s college dorms and loaded up on super soaker water guns, then went to Daniel’s church where you tapped into their font of holy water. Sufficiently loaded up, you all made your way to the abandoned house as dawn slowly approached, knowing that Dante intended to leave before dawn. The bus was still there, as was the police car for Teddy’s new partner, Brandon Sagat. The officer was nowhere in sight.

Upon arrival everyone split into three groups: Greg and Janette checked out the bus parked on the street, Jack and Teddy went to the front door, and Daniel and Anya snuck around the back. Greg and Janette both encountered two vampire children who played games with them around the bus until the bus got lit on fire and the two were melted into sludge with a judicious application of holy water.

Teddy and Jack had their own vampire kid troubles once they entered the house. Daniel asked if Anya could use magic on him to make him stronger, and she did a quick ritual to enhance his speed and strength. Like the Kool-Aid man Daniel then bust through the wall and helped Teddy and Jack liquify their vampire opponents. Janette and Greg came into the house as well and they all were called down to the basement by the familiar voice of Dante. Some taunts and verbal jabs were tossed about and Daniel began singing in his enhanced, powerful voice in order to throw them off below.

Anya led the way and everyone else followed. At the bottom of the stairs they witnessed Brandon tied up and suspended upside-down from the ceiling. He was cut in several places and bleeding out into a puddle on the floor. Around him, chained to the floor, were the three missing children: Jimmy Turner, Kaylee Smith, and Andy Johnson. A few other child vampires were goading them into drinking the blood, which they were obviously craving and inching towards, struggling against their bonds to reach. Dante stood away from them a bit and welcomed everyone – then a fierce melee broke out.

Greg and Anya both used magic on the scene. Everyone else readied their holy water super soakers and began trying to fight the vampires. Dante proved to be a lot tougher than the kids. Jack’s quick thinking caused a spray of water-turned-holy to shower all the kids, which helped the three infected resist the urge for blood and snapped them back to their senses. The child vampires didn’t last long. Dante’s overconfidence put him in a precarious position and caused his face to be burnt and half-melted by a stream of holy water.

Seeing the situation had gone wildly out of control, and that his plan was completely shattered, Dante did the sensible thing and ran like a little bitch. Brandon was cut down and his wounds addressed – he should make it, though recovery will take a little while. You rescued the three children but were faced with a problem that we now need to address: These three kids are Red Court Infected. The police and fire department are on their way (due to the bus having been set on fire by magical flamed and becoming completely engulfed).

Janette took the three kids somewhere private and safe for the time being. Teddy dealt with the cops once they arrived. Some Lore rolls resulted in the Order of St. Giles being contacted, and the infected kids were turned over them. The Fellowship contact, a tattooed man named Matt Harper, took them with him. It’s unknown what Sam said to Jimmy’s parents, or if he even said anything at all.

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Goblin King Part 2
Sam's Notes

Casefile: Child’s Play (part 2 of 3)

Sam (Sheamus Alestair McClure)
Baxter left but a kid (well, ok College Junior, same age as Sam) named Jack Storm showed up. He’s a student reporter and real fast on the camera… but a bit light on exposure to the weird side. As the resident most weird Sam decided to try to spook him out of coming but he seems to be a keeper. Sam then got arrested for driving naked and Detective Jones has some explaining to do around the precinct of why a known pot-head has him on speed-dial.

Jack arranged for a limo, Janette was rocking a ballgown with combat boots, Officer Jones has a suit that covers his service pistol and Sam has a formal tux w/ kilt in family tartan. Group went to Ikea, got lost in the maze and in frustration Janette ‘insulted’ the host into providing a guide through the labyrinth. We got past the talking door by Janette fast-talking it into believing that ‘the bearer’ and his guests were invited (Go Oxford Comma!)

Sarah (missing older daughter who Janette knew) was on the throne next to Jareth the Goblin King. Janette managed to talk to her and she was just about stoned. Jack bought Janette some extra time by distracting the Goblin King. Det Jones has a rain-date for a future dinner (at her place?) with Allyson Wraith. Sam talked up and shared a joint with Jared the Goblin Prince who is pissed about the wedding… BECAUSE… Jareth has been pursuing a girl (any girl) named Sarah who will give him her brother (who was turned into a goblin) and once they marry (at dawn) Jareth will step down and Jared will have to be king and that’s the end of the playboy lifestyle for him.

So, chaos ensues. We accuse Dante Bates, red court vamp, of kidnapping children and trying to frame it on the Goblin King. Dante starts monologueing about how we were clueless and he was going to use the kids to start building an army to take out the White Council (which alerted the 3 Wizard apprentices in attendance) Jareth put the responsibility of dealing with the insult to the guest laws on his son Jared as a test of his ability to be a future king. Jared pretty much said ‘Screw you and you dumb rules!’ and stormed out. Janette pointed out that if the wedding went through Jareth would be giving the kingdom to someone not competent to handle it. She also pointed out that Sarah had ‘kidnapped’ her brother, not been asked to care for him so she had authority to give the king her brother as a wedding gift. He was NOT happy with us.

Jareth ended the engagement and the party which immediately meant that guest rights were terminated. We chased Dante into Ikea but he is ‘inhumanly fast’ and even as an ‘inhumanly fast’ deer Sam failed to navigate the labyrinth and catch up with him. Janette, Jack and Teddy bring the 2 kids out into the labyrinth, finds Sam demands another guide and the group head to the Limo…

…Then we called it for the night. Presumably Daniel could have left with the group. I think Orsina was decidedly pissed at the group as well for breaking up the party… but there were so many people pissed at us by that point I stopped keeping track. Greg Werther could have lost track of time doing research and be trying to catch up to us at Ikea with vitally important information. Presumably the next game includes a confrontation with Dante and maybe others (have the kids been turned yet? Can kids even be turned? Where is the bus? The same impound lot as my Subie?)

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The Goblin King's Ball
GM Notes

Casefile: Child’s Play (part 2 of 3)

Thank you guys very much for what I felt was a truly epic game. You blew my mind last night with the decisions you made and how they shook out. I think it’s safe to say you literally ended up having the complete opposite of what I intended. Instead of Jareth as an ally, you pissed him off and he’s sulking. Instead of just a casual introduction to the three ex-apprentices, you have (at least one of) them backing you up for the final confrontation. Instead of just meeting Dante you guys cornered him and forced him to flee to survive.

Back to that first thing though: I never in a million years thought you guys would find a way to convince the Goblin King to give up his child bride. The Sara that he has spent so long desperately trying to keep was finally in his grasp, and in fact was the whole reason for the celebration. My head is still spinning from all the things you guys verbally threw at him to make him release her and her brother. With her released the party ended and the hospitality ended as well, which led to a short altercation as Dante fled and Sam tried to follow through the labyrinth.

Here’s the “who’s who” of the ball, as far as you guys were introduced to, and what you can know of them (as per the various "reveals) by the end of the party:

  • Orsina, promiscuous Fae. She’s very overprotective of Daniel and his performances, running interference when she can to remove or eliminate potential distractions. She was not happy the Ball ended early and Daniel’s performance was cut short.
  • Jareth, the Goblin King. It was pointed out to him that his enthralled bride-to-be Sara (who was the missing teen Janette knew) had no right to offer him the child which she “stole” from her family, thus everything after that (her trial through the Labrynth and loss of the contest resulting in her becoming his bride) was invalid. With remorse, regret, and resentment, he released her and her brother, then ended the Ball and told everyone to leave before skulking off.
  • Jared, the son of the Goblin King. At first the group accused him and his father of kidnapping all the missing children, which insulted him. Then it was considered that he and his father were being “framed,” which also insulted him but in a different way. He doesn’t agree with much about his father’s rules and way of life, and though he has respect for the accords once his father tried to put him in the limelight to uphold them, in front of everyone, he refused to play the part of obedient child, walking away from the assemblage and leaving the opening Dante needed to escape.
  • Dante Bates, a Red Court vampire who was tricked into clearly admitting he kidnapped the other three missing children in order to turn them into vampires. He proudly boasted that he intended to use these “child soldiers” to deliver a powerful blow to the White Council. He indicated he was responsible for two missing children in Bridgeport about a week earlier, too. Before things went south he intended to leave New Haven by the morning. After fleeing the party there’s no telling what he plans now.
  • April Showers & May Flowers, the Sidhe ladies representing the Summer Court.
  • Jack Frost, the Winter Court general representing the Winter Court.
  • Robert Renfield, the President of Yale.
  • Dr. Ansel Lumburg, a mysterious hooded figure always near/with Robert, who was revealed at the very end to clearly be a Black Court vampire.
  • Anya Romanakov, a White Council wizard who was one of three apprentices to Greyson Wardclyff, a Warden active in New Haven until about 10 years ago.
  • Rodrick Hogan, a White Council wizard who was one of three apprentices to Greyson Wardclyff, a Warden active in New Haven until about 10 years ago.
  • Samiel Nygen, a White Council wizard who was one of three apprentices to Greyson Wardclyff, a Warden active in New Haven until about 10 years ago.
  • Oscar, the bum who lives on the New Haven Green. He shared a nice dance with Janette.
  • Miranda, the manager of Toad’s Place.
  • Oswald Canterbury, the librarian from the Institute Library, also the ugliest man alive.
  • Allyson Raith, a White Court vampire who took a particular liking to Teddy. He resisted her repeated attempts to seduce him but when she invited him to her place he took a “rain check” on that.
  • NumNum, a faerie who really likes Pepe’s pizza.
  • Suggams, a faerie who really likes Modern’s pizza.
  • Peppino, a fareie who really likes Sally’s pizza.
  • Sanchez, a faerie who really likes Bar’s pizza.
  • James Hillhouse, a ghost who in life was responsible for planting the Elm trees in New Haven. His body is buried in Grove St cemetery.
  • Martha Townsend, a ghost who was the first person to be interred in Grove St cemetery.
  • Theophilus Eaton, a ghost who in life was the first mayor of New Haven. His body is buried in Grove St cemetery.
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Mysteries in May
GM Notes

Child’s Play (Part 1 of 3)

Pre-game tagline: It’s now May, and the city of New Haven has mostly recovered from the torrential rains and supernatural thunderstorms which ended as suddenly as they began two months ago. Since then Spring has gone into full bloom and everything has been relatively peaceful. You’ve settled back into the familiar groove of day-to-day events. You probably have no reason to suspect this day would be any different than any other day has been these last two months…

  • Characters: Greg, Baxter, Janette, Sam, and Ted
  • Detective Claxton hasn’t been around at the precinct lately, and the night before he showed up to drop some info on Greg then left, saying he needed to “move on”. The apartment at that address provoked more questions than answers.
  • At least five children are missing: Sara and John Roberts, Jimmy Turner, Kaylee Smith, and Andrew Johnson. There are Amber alerts for only the last three.
    • Sara and John went missing, and Sam could smell the lingering presence of creatures of the Never-Never.
    • Jimmy Turner’s disappearance site held the smell of different creatures – not human, but not fey. The same or similar smell was around the one dead body which Sam sniffed out.
    • Nothing is known about Kaylee or Andrew.
  • At least four dead bodies have turned up, all with their throats ripped out and their bodies nearly bloodless. This was indicative of a Red Court presence.
  • Jareth, the Goblin King, is holding a ball/gala in a few hours which Daniel will be performing at, and many notable presences in New Haven have been invited to attend. He wishes to show off his new bride-to-be.
  • Orsina kept fielding the group’s calls to Daniel. She was cryptic but was also eager to make deals with those she talked with who indicated they wanted something.
  • Who is Dante Bates, and why does he have such a suspicious school bus registered to him?
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After the Storm
An ending...

Jeanette wrapped her arms around the shoulder of her upset friend, Mary. The news that her good for nothing, borderline abusive, ex-boyfriend Jake had left town without so much as a “Goodbye” had not gone over well. “That asshole!” Mary uttered contemptuously. “I mean, I guess I shouldn’t expect anything from him, it isn’t like he was ever that thoughtful except when it came to himself, but still!”

“Perhaps it is for the best, you know?” Jeanette tried to offer. She had neglected to tell Mary that part of the reason Jake had been so keen to skip town is that Jeanette had informed him that if he did not do so, that not only would he be brought up on charges of grave-robbing, trafficking antiquities, and other assorted legal actions, but that there was also a very good chance that she’d arrange to have a few guys give him a solid beating just on the general principle of the matter. Mary didn’t need to really know that part. She casually rubbed a hand across Mary’s back. “He really was trouble, and it is only a matter of time before he either got that trouble brought down on himself, or worse yet, both of you.”

“That’s it!” Mary said suddenly, bolting upright. “It must have been something with one of his deals or his schemes. He must have needed to beat town in a hurry, and that is why he didn’t bother to look me up or give me a call. He really was just trying to keep me safe! He does care!”

Janette waved her arms fruitlessly as her friend gushed, trying to interject. “That isn’t really what I meant Mary. I meant that he is no good for you. You said it your…”

Janette was cut off as Mary wrapped her arms around the smaller woman in a bear hug, almost squeezing the breath from her body. Nothing could deflate her delusional enthusiasm as she let out a laugh. “No Jeanette, you are right, if I had gotten involved I could have gotten hurt and Jake knew that! He does care about me, and I just have to wait patiently. I’m sure I’ll hear from him once things have cooled off a bit and that he’ll make it up to me next time he’s in town. God, here I was about to write him off, but, you are right, he’s just a big protective teddy bear at heart! Thank you Jeanette!”

Before Janette could get a word off in reply the other woman spun away and practically danced out of the room, leaving Janette sitting alone on the cot. Staring at the empty doorway in amazement Janette let out a long sigh. She smirked as she cocked her head slightly to the side. “You know. Some people don’t really want to take good advice no matter how much you want them to just be safe and happy.” A smirk crept across her lips, “Yes, yes… I know you have it much worse, but unlike you I don’t get the long view of knowing how it all turns out.”

Lifting up her legs spinning on her butt to lay out on the couch with a plop Jeanette stared up at cracked and faded ceiling, fingers steepled behind her neck as her head rested on the threadbare pillowcase covering a well flattened pillow. “Yeah, I know, price of free will and all that… wait.. are you saying you DON’T have free will?” Her eyes narrow in an annoyed look, “Are you changing the subject on me? Really? Oh my god… is that a reference from ‘A Few Good Men’? Do you realize how old that movie is?” Barely containing a chuckle she rolls her eyes to no one. “Yes, 14 years isn’t that long to YOU, but in movie terms that’s ancient history, you really need to get some updated references.” The unspoken and unheard response causes Janette’s face to crack into a smile as radiant as the dawn after a long stormy night and her laughter echoes down into the hallway like the peel of distant church bells fading off into the starry and cloudless night.

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Flight of the Thunderbird (Part 2)

The thunderstorms were caused by a raging Thunderbird, angry that a gift he provided to an old friend was stolen (the grave robbery). The homeless man in Judges Cave is the Thunderbird in Human form. Kyle White is the grave robber and he sold the item to Strange Ways. Oscar is informed Miranda had nothing to do with the Thunderbird and he drops his accusation, but not his animosity.

The item is returned to the grave, Kyle is run out of town, and the Thunderbird provides a feather to both Sara White and Teddy for their aid to him.

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