Under New Management
Rather than plunging an entire city block into darkness, our Guardian of the Veil decided that maybe it would be better to simply make it look like the transformer to the building with the Dojo had blown, and only knock out that building and the streetlight outside. This was less hilarious, but on the whole a far more sound plan. The power goes out, the classes have to be cut short, and students are helped out of the building. Argus (invisible), and Marissa (an Acanthus child – easy to miss in the darkness) manage to stay inside while the others are herded to the street. The Dojo Masters go back inside (they live upstairs) and shut things down for the night.
Argus and Marissa unlock the front door, but now there is a Ward in place to prevent people from entering the building. Argus and Marissa are already inside, but the people outside are having a hard time getting back in! Neils and Molly try as hard as they can to take the Ward down, while Aenaiyah gets frustrated and stalks to the fire escape trying to break into a window.
Fortunately I had planned for just such an occurrence! As such, so did the Dojo Masters. You see, they put some Fate magic on those windows, such that if someone should break their windows deliberately, the shards of glass will “fall” in such a way as to skewer the person who broke the window. Aenaiyah does wind up getting in, but she leaves a few Hit Points behind when she does.
Eventually however, the Ward comes crashing down, the Mages break into the gym, and a massive fight ensues. I had hoped that they would wind up fighting entire classes of students. I hadn’t fully statted this out, but I did have “average dice pools” for each class based upon the level of the class. Let me tell you, I made the kids’ class kick ass because I found that idea amusing. Sadly for me the students were driven out. Stupid Mages!
Happily for me the Flesh Intruders in the basement weren’t! You see, when someone takes these special classes they wind up Abyssally Tainted. The instructors didn’t know this, they only knew that a Spirit had helped them devise the moves, and when they did the moves they felt great! The students… not so much great. In fact, if the students take the classes long enough they become so very tainted that if their organs are transplanted into another person, those organs wind up taking over the “host” they were transplanted into and THAT person becomes a Flesh Intruded thing that sprouts tentacles and gets multiple attacks per round! (Have I mentioned how much I love “Intruders: Encounters with the Abyss” yet?) If a person is tainted enough, then up to 5 of their organs can take over hosts – and so not only did the poor police officer who had his lung transplanted become a tentacled thing… up to four other people did too! The Dojo Masters, not being quite sure what to do about this, wound up tracking down and locking up the others in their basement.
Enter the Mages.
I had the option to include up to four, but decided on two since one had been a pretty tough fight. The first one was guarding the basement door, and despite the fact that Argus was invisible it could sense him. Argus was going to shoot first and ask questions later, until I pointed out that there was no reason for him to believe this was anything but an ordinary human person and that would require a Wisdom role. Of course, once the “poor defenseless human guarding the basement door” rammed a tentacle through Argus’s chest all bets were off and bullets began to fly!
In the end, one Mage held a gun to the unconscious Busy Bea and threatened to blow her brains out if her Father didn’t stand down (he was far less concerned about Wisdom loss than his compatriots), Argus and Marissa nearly almost got killed by the Flesh Intruders (if Nokoni hadn’t healed them I’d have been rid of both of them!), and the Mages learned that Flesh Intruders are tough! ( I may have to revisit this monster… )
Could I have told the Mages that they had to come up with a way to heal the students at the gym? Yes, I could have. The thing is, that sort of thing is a bit above their experience level. While I generally prefer to have the PCs take care of things in the campaign world, this is one of those times when it made sense to let them call in the big guns of the Consilium. They had the Dojo, they had all the Dojo’s records, and the people were still showing up for their classes. As a result, and after some discussion with the PCs, it was decided that the Adamantine Arrow would take over the space, figure out how to undo the damage, and take care of the innocent students of the Dojo. The Dojo’s Masters were placed in Consilium prison to be interrogated by the mages at a later date.
…or not… as I found out that apparently Mage Players don’t generally feel the need to talk to people who have a clue what’s going on. Ahhhh… but that is a tale for next week!