Last Tales of the Broken

The Broken Interlude Two
Now for the News You Deserve!

“Hello and we’re back- This is CIN News, up to date and never late!”

The pretty black haired anchor smiled a smile full of too white teeth, while people pretended to mill around behind her. To give you that ‘real newsroom feel.’

“I’m Agatha Mackenzie and here is the latest news from around the world.

“Red Death has now claimed over 50 million victims. World disease experts have reported that the disease can be traced back to a canine carrier virus. Since Red Death first emerged in the United States, it is suggested that resurgence of Wolf populations in the last decade probably led to the rise of the Red Death. Virulogists caution that since it can be carried by Canids, action should be taken to reduce the risks of further outbreaks.

“The President has sent out a executive order authorizing the large scale hunting and execution of all wolves within the borders of the US, and the United Nations is believed to put out similiar orders later this week.”

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Ludwig's Interlude 1

Not here. Don’t look for me. If I see any of you before I come back, I will break you.
-Ludwig

This note was left on Ludwig’s hammer, the day following the duel to decide the fate of Raven’s messenger, in his room at the MacPherson house. Leaving his hammer behind is not only unusual, in the fact that it is always with him, but also a sign that he will return.

The sky in Seattle carries an oppressive sort of weight to it, with the influence of the Wyrm beginning to fall over the city like a curtain on the stage of humanity’s last show. The air felt heavy, and the usually bustling metropolis seemed eerily quiet.

Now called “Rages-Truth” by the Sept, Ludwig walks towards the only place he ever is when not with his pack: the homeless shelter he was brought to when Lynne Miller found him wandering, looking for the truth of the world after he had brutally slain his family…or “jailers”, as he called them. Contemplating the meaning of this new “deed name”, he found himself walking a bit slower than usual, taking in the city around him. Many of the people around him gave off an air of anxiety – with good reason. Countless numbers were already infected with the Red Death, and those who had not already succumbed to the blight were spreading this unnatural disease to those around them.

If the foreshadowing given by the spirit Ludwig encountered in the Umbra wasn’t true, it didn’t matter to him: the evidence was quite clear that this was going to spread far, and many people were going to lose their lives. Not convinced of Pisses-Gold’s defense of the Sept’s lack of response to this epidemic, Ludwig realized that rather than allowing the rage to overcome his ability to reason and deal with the situation where others refused to, that he needed to assess things for himself: he needed to be out with humanity, to see for himself just how dire the situation was. But most of all, for him, he needed to be sure that Lynne was alright.

Navigating the streets purely by instinct while he thought, Ludwig soon found himself at the door of the shelter. As he walked into the lobby, he took pause to notice what seemed like a huge increase in the number of people in the shelter. These people were definitely suffering and impoverished, but none of them seemed to show signs of the blight yet. As he made his way to the front desk, the receptionist – a middle-aged woman of reddish-blonde hair – greeted him on sight.

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“Hi there Ludwig! Haven’t seen you in a while! How are you?”

Ludwig replied, “It has been a bit, Beth…sorry about that. I am doing well. Do you know where Lynne is?”

“Of course, dear”, Beth chimed. “She’s in the kitchen helping out with dinner. We have a pretty large crowd today!”

Beth could see what was obvious, but rather than worrying, she was just happy to be there helping these people. She, like so many others volunteering their time at this shelter, was dedicated and eager to help those less fortunate.

“Ok. I’m going to go back there and help out as well. Thanks Beth – it is good to see you.”

Beth smiled. “It’s always so wonderful to see you too, Ludwig! Take care darling.”

As he made his way towards the dining room, it was obvious that the shelter was not going to be able to house all of these people. But Ludwig knew that his friend would do everything she could to take care of each and every person who walked through the doors.

Walking into the dining room, Ludwig immediately caught sight of a beautiful young woman – a tall and slender, yet shapely woman in her mid-twenties, straight red hair falling halfway down her back. As she served the home-cooked meal she had prepared to the four people at the table she stood beside, she looked up, and her emerald eyes lit up in joy.

“Lugwig!”, she chirped, as she set her serving dish and utensils aside, and bolted across the room, throwing her arms around Ludwig’s shoulders and nearly squeezing the life out of him in her embrace.

With a slight, uncharacteristic smile, he wrapped one arm around the woman’s waist, and laid his other hand on the back of her head.

“Hey there, Lynne. I’m back.”

Ludwig earns 1 XP for this- GM

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The Broken Interlude One
Cull the Herd

A thousand half-rat, half-human Ratkin crowded in the empty sewer tunnel, torches and barrels alight with burning garbage. Chattering and chittering echoed- chitchitchitchitchit.

It stank. None were clean, every single Ratkin buzzed with excitement.

In the center of their assembled mass, a dead Metis Werewolf hung, covered with flies, its eyes ripped out.

Obscenities were spray-painted all over the Black Spiral Dancer’s body.
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A gaunt Ratkin stood up in front of the trophy. A patchy beard hung down his chin, his body covered in tattooes, each a image taken from the book of revelation, star wars and just plain taunts.

“Shut UP you fucks!”

The chitchitchittering stopped. Heads bowed low, and the many Ratkin snapped claws in unity. Click, click, click.

“We all heard the SCREAMS, didn’t we?!” The Ratkin mob leader screamed each syllable out. The other Ratkin screamed in reply, a thousand different replies.

“Didn’t we, you fucks!?” Again, the thousand replied. This time, louder.

Mother Rat screamed, you rat fucks! Its time! Chaos blesses us! Tell me whadda think we should DO?! WHATS MY NAME? WHATS all our NAMES!?”

“Plague! Death! Plague! CULLS THE HERD!

“That’s right!” King Culls-the-Herd pulled out a human forearm, covered in Red Death postules. “Gaia gives us the Red Death! Take to every inch of this shiteating town, you ratfucks! Cull Seattle! SAY MY NAME!”

And the thousand ratkin chanted and chanted and screamed and roared: “Culls-The-Herd! Culls-The-Herd! CULLS-THE-HERD! CULLS-THE-HERD! CULLS-THE-HERD!”

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Chapter Three: Family
Bonds are Born in Fire and Silver

Our Pack wakes up, greeted by Father Pisses-Gold‘s son, a kinfolk named “Connie” Conrad Pearce. Connie doesn’t seem too bright, has trouble understanding everything asked of him, but is still embraced by most of the pack as a brother in arms.

We learn where most of the Pack sleeps when they stay at the MacPherson House. Pisses-Gold and Little Sister prepare the pack their breakfast, and some discussion begins.

Ludwig Rages-Truth broods up in his room, still thinking on the duel that is coming later in the day.

Screwdriver, on the other hand, tells Connie to bring his breakfast up. He doesn’t want to go out of where he sleeps, the bathroom.

Of course, Helen and Doctor Johnathan Mercy-Bringer come down together. Slays-Names begins to think on how to best determine what exactly Little Sister is, and how much of a threat she might be. The others, however, focus on enjoying breakfast.

Breakfast is interrupted by a knock on the front door…

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Homeless allies of Helen have arrived, and they are very sick, with red pustules all over their bodies. Helen and the Doc get to work, trying to figure out what it is, and how to stop it. The Doc quickly realizes this disease is brand new, and clearly is a very dangerous variant on the Black Death, a “Red Death.” Helen tries to determine if there is some sort of spiritual undercurrent to this disease.

Worse, though, is that Red Death appears to be virulent enough to even sicken a Garou. Both Helen and the Doc try to do their best, and employ Connie to gather needed drugs and medicine. Connie quickly hotwires a car and drives out to get the goods- only after leaving a dumpster on its side in the front yard of the MacPherson House.

Meanwhile, Slays-Names steps sideways, intending to find a local spirit and get a read on Little Sister. Instead, he finds that a cluster of newly born banes are festering all over the umbral reflection of the front yard. He sends Raven off to get Ludwig. After Ludwig arrives, the two of them quickly dispatch the young banes.

It becomes clear to Slays-Names that these banes are a result of the diseased Homeless, and that this Red Death spawned them. Not a good sign for things to come. So, he instead decides to take a look into it as well as Little Sister. He brings Ludwig along with him, and journeys to a nearby umbral locale with ties to Luna.

A local Lune (moon-spirit), a crescent moon half-asleep during this full moon, greets Slays-Names. After an offer of chiminage, the Lune asks Slays-Names what he wants to know:

“This new disease, this ‘Red Death’, how far does it reach? How many are sick with it?”

The Lune departs, promising to return as soon as it learns the answer. Meanwhile, Ludwig asks Slays-Names a few questions on the umbra, learning what he can of the ancestral homelands of the Get of Fenris.

The Lune returns, and informs Slays-Names that the Red Death will:

“By tomorrow, it will have spread to every City and Place of Man on Gaia. Rorg stirs now, because of it, Malfeas rises and the Weaver spins quicker and quicker.”

Slays-Names asks about Little Sister as well, and learns that she is “Child of Dragon.”

Mac pherson house

Meanwhile, Ashlar finds himself alone with Pisses-Gold and Little Sister. Pisses-Gold tells him that Little Sister now wishes to stay with the Broken, and that she has a service to perform for them. The Prophecy of the Last Klaive cannot be told by any Elder of the Sept to anyone except another Elder…

…But since Little Sister is a Mokole, one of those who acts as the “Memory of Gaia”, she can channel one of her ancestors that heard that prophecy when Stag originally gave it to the founders of the Sept back in 1805.

So, as a loophole, Little Sister can tell the Pack the prophecy, which Pisses-Gold is certain they need to hear. They are interrupted when Doc and Helen come in.

“Pisses-Gold, do you know the Rite of Cleansing? We think we might need it.”

Pisses-Gold frowns for a moment, and gets up. “Of course I do! Come outside, all of you, you might learn something.”

Pisses-Gold then performs the Rite of Cleansing on all of the Homeless allies of Helen, using a Bone Gnawer variant of the rite that is quite heavy on the absinthe. Sad for Connie, who before leaving had been enjoying quite a bit of the stuff.

Once cleansed, the Doc and Helen are fairly certain the meds Connie is retrieving will help them recover as best as possible.

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Well, eventually everyone gets back together and the Pack discusses what to do. The Red Death is spreading throughout the entire world, and do they need to do something?

Ludwig demands that they take some sort of action, especially turning on Father Pisses-Gold.

Ashlar suggests coming up with a plan before doing anything.

Pisses-Gold turns things over to Slays-Names, instead deciding to go inform the Sept Leader Kataryna Deathless about whats happening.

Before Slays-Names can say or do anything, Ludwig leaves, with the Doc behind. They are going to try and get the Elders to do something or so help them…

At Fong’s, they find Kataryna, but she is only willing to talk to the Doc, as both of them are Silver Fangs. Ludwig learns from Pisses-Gold what Kataryna thinks of the Red Death- a way to help cull humanity down. She sees no reason to try and interfere with it. Pisses-Gold is angry with this as well, especially with Kataryna sending the Wendigo off to fight the Black Spiral Dancers.

Kataryna asks Doc what he thinks she should do about the current situation; Doctor Johnathan doesn’t feel that he has anything useful to advise. She informs him that he and his pack are to immediately show so that they can conduct the duel “and all this shit with the Wereraven done and over. We need to be working on more important things.”

So Doctor Johnathan reports back to the rest of the Pack. Meanwhile, Ludwig goes down into the Caern in order to find Duncan, his mentor, and ask him about whats going on. Ludwig, it seems, has a issue with this whole situation.

Ludwig confronts Duncan, and causes his mentor to hesitate about the duel. Duncan has been setting up the Heart of the Caern for the duel for the life of the Wereraven. Duncan at first is excited for the fight, but his talk with Ludwig seems to lower his excitement some.

The pack comes into the Caern, as does the rest of the Sept. And they begin the ceremonial trial by combat to decide the fate of the wereraven.

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Unbeknowst to the Sept, Slays-Names lets Ellie go- she asks him:

“Anything you wish for those in Spokane to know?”

He replies: “The betrayers are close, we are close, to getting them.”

“Long live Clan MacPherson,” Ellie exclaims, before shifting into Raven form and flying away…

Once together, the Sept announces its champion: “Ludwig.”
And for the raven, the Broken have their own Ahroun step forward, Mercy-Bringer. This shocks the Silver Fangs of the Sept, causing them to reconsider.

The two agree to fight in Crinos, in the waist deep water on the rocks of the Heart of the Caern.

They wait for Stag to announce the start of the duel…

Mercy-Bringer moves first, using a gift to cause his hair to move in a breeze, then he shifts immediately into Crinos.
Ludwig shifts into Crinos, and tries to kick Mercy-Bringer in the face.

Connie tries to stop the fight, but a angry Duncan holds him in place- Slays-Names joins Stag and

Raven in the Umbra, watching the fight from the otherside. He holds Ludwig’s hammer and Klaive- and the Klaive seems to ‘like’ Slays-Names’ presence. Like it was familiar and approved of him.

The fight continues, back and forth, until Ludwig knocks Mercy-Bringer over. But Mercy-Bringer refuses to surrender- so Ludwig instead bares his throat and turns his barely controlled fury on the Sept-(paraphrasing):

“You dare let packmates fight? This is OUR territory: raven and all his children are OUR territory respect that! I surrender because it should never have gotten this fucking far!”

And as those words echo, the chapter closes with our Pack earning a tiny bit more respect from their Sept, for now.

XP Rewards

End of the story, so bonus XP this time!

Name XP Renown
Ashlar 7 Cunning 1
Slays-Names 7 Wisdom 1
Helen 7 Purity 1
Connie 7 NONE
Ludwig 8 Voted Reward! Honor 1
Mercy-Bringer 7 Glory 1
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Chapter Two: Weaverish Dreams
The Pack is Thicker than Blood

Moon Phase: Full Moon
Ellie O’Neil gives a warning direct from Helios and Phoenix himself:

They are coming! The next sign is upon us! The Machine Awakes and Malfeas is set to make war upon the Pattern Web.

Slays-Names works to free Ellie from the Wendigo, insulting them and escalating the situation to try and get Ellie out of the situation.
Oaksong calls for some sort of “compromise.” Kataryna the Deathless calls for the Elders to confer with her privately for a moment.
The Sept Leader instead states: "We cannot take her Wyrm-Taint lightly. She will leave before the Moot begins. As for verifying her message, we will hold her in custody until we are certain she can believed.
“Tomorrow night, this Wereraven will have the chance to defend herself in a Trial by Combat. That night, we will let Gaia decide whose claim is stronger. Duncan? You will choose who will represent the Sept and face this Wereraven.”

Meanwhile, Ludwig Rages-Truth, Claire and Screwdriver are walking the umbra, still escorting Little Sister back to the Sept. The umbra here is flat, foggy and the occasional puddle of water litters the ground.
Off in the distance, a wave of water flows toward the four of them. Screwdriver, protective as ever, takes Claire and Little Sister with him, side stepping immediately back into the material world. They arrive a hundred feet in the air. Screwdriver, however, acts quick, using his Catfeet gift to slow their fall.
Ludwig doesn’t back down though. Even though Screwdriver fleeing pisses him off, Ludwig confronts the wave that inbound at him. The comes to a stop in front of Ludwig, and forms into the body of a fifteen foot tall woman, her body made of water, sea foam and seaweed.
The Spirit, clearly some sort of ocean spirit, gives a bunch of signing and motions- some sort of message- to Ludwig, and shows him a image of Slays-Names. He leaves confused, deciding to relay this to Slays-Names, and figure out what to do from there.

Doctor Johnathan “Mercy Bringer” Roth and Helen sneaked out to go get some Tacos, that’s what they remember last when they wake up in cages, in a lab. Mercy-Bringer wakes first, recognizing the drugs in his system, resisting them with his best concentration.
Its fully stocked lab, with many man-sized cages, beds, IV drips, and steel mirrors installed in the walls.
“And here we have our latest subjects.”
Three scientists enter and ignore most of what Mercy-Bringer says. The lead scientist, a Dr. Lawrence, explains that they are “victims” of the Genetic Lycanthropic Syndrome (GSL), and that their organization, DNA inc, is devoted to curing victims such as themselves.
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Back at the Sept, Slays-Names and Ashlar take Ellie out of the Sept. The rain outside Fong’s had stopped, and Slays gets ready to plan how to find the rest of their pack.
That’s when Screwdriver, a la Mary Poppins, drops down from the sky with the injured Claire and Little Sister.
A moment later, Ludwig materializes as well, but he winds up crashing into the top of a tree. He climbs down, rejoining the Pack. He tells Slays what Song-of-the-Ocean told him. Slays and Ashlar decipher the spirit’s meaning:
Song-of-the-Ocean knows where Helen and Mercy-Bringer are.
Screwdriver uses his pack awareness gift to give Slays a direction to head in. They move out, leaving Little Sister to Father Pisses-Gold and let Claire and Ellie recover back at the MacPherson House.

Slays and the Pack look for their missing packmates. They come to a pier near downtown Seattle that Song-of-the-Ocean had shown Ludwig. They step sideways into the umbra, and find themselves standing atop a few rocks poking out of the ocean, next to the deep webs of downtown Seattle’s Penumbral reflection.
Song-of-the-Ocean appears, and informs Slays of how Mercy-Bringer and Helen were captured by odd men and taken to the new DNA lab building nearby. As Mercy-Bringer and Helen escape, the rest of the pack helps them get away from endless hordes of Pattern Spiders descending down on them.

The Broken, now reunited, get back to the Moot at the Cave of Howling Storms. During the end of the Moot, we learn a couple of things: Ludwig has been invited by Duncan Thrashes-Eyes fight for the Sept against Ellie. At Raven’s suggestion, Mercy-Bringer volunteers to fight for Ellie, as her Champion.

And Ludwig lets them know that he is fighting for the Sept, well thinking about it…

XP & Renown Rewards

Slays-Names: 5 XP Earned
Screwdriver: 5 XP Earned
Ludwig: 4 XP Earned
Ashlar Green: 5 XP Earned Voted Winner!
Doc Johnathan: 4 XP Earned
Helen: 3 XP Earned
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Chapter One: Bloody Tunnels
Guess who came to dinner?

Last Tales of the Broken: Chapter ONE
Moon Phase: Full Moon (Ahroun take a -1 penalty on rolls to resist frenzy).

Our pack have been split into two groups, one back at the Sept, while the other went to meet an ally of Father Pisses-Gold (Bone Gnawer Sept Elder). Technically three, since the location of some other members remains unclear/unknown.

GM’s Commentary

This was our very first session.
Idea was, I needed to keep people
from getting bored quickly. So
I split ’em up. That simple.

Its based on an idea I got from
John Wick and his book
Playing
Dirty. One of his ideas, to me,
is the idea of player collaboration,
which I’m fairly certain he’s inter-
preting on somebody’s idea and so
forth. Core idea: One person can
write and think up a decent adventure
/module. Two can do better, three
can do even better. So, the more
people collaborating ideas, the
better the end result is. Part of
this involves giving PCs NPCs to
play- a chance for a player to be
in a scene, a combat, what-have-you
without ever being ‘left bored.’

Problem with this session was, like
many of my NPC attempts in the past,
I bungled part of the delivery- at
least one Player kinda got stuck with
a noncombatant, the environment was
kind of stale and oh, I felt like
editing out some of the more disgusting
ideas thrown around. I learned my
lesson, give PCs
active, useful
NPCs to play. Critical to the play.

The missing members of the Pack
are Helen and Dr. Johnathan. What
happened to them will probably be
covered in the next session put up
here. I hope to come back at some
point and better flesh out some details
here and there… but for the most part,
this is accurate. Prophecy is about
to rear its ugly mug, and steer our
story toward its horrible, terrible
conclusions.

-Josh, August 29, 2012

At the MacPherson House, Ashlar and Slays-Names get ready for the evening’s moot at the Caern. Everyone else in the Pack is missing, and they set about trying to find them. Slays-Names gets in contact with some Wereravens, finding out that some of his pack went south to North Bend. Ashlar, meanwhile, headed to Fong’s Bar And Deli to try and ask Pisses-Gold directly about what happened.

Screwdriver, Ludwig and Claire arrive at a Taco Time, which according to Screwdriver, is where they needed to meet this ally of Pisses-Gold. They lie their way into the Taco Time, just as a Biker Gang (The Sons of the Dragon) show up. The leader of the Bikers picks a fight with Ludwig; it doesn’t end well when Ludwig frenzies and eviscerates the man into three large pieces. Claire talks him down, and the three of them try to get out there.

Slays-Names meets Ellie O’Neill, a Corax who has a very important message to deliever to the entire Sept. Slays-Names, with more intention on trying to find his packmates, heads to Fong’s to find Pisses-Gold. Ellie informs him that she heard from another Corax that a pack of Werewolves was heading south, toward North Bend. At Fong’s, Slays-Names and Ashlar decide to go down into the Caern to try and find Pisses-Gold. They find him, and learn where their packmates are and why.

Back at the Taco Time, the others meet Pisses-Gold’s ally, a teen african-american girl, named “Little Sister” who “has an important task” to perform at the Sept. She is to replace someone she calls Big Brother, who apparently was unable to come. A Fianna drops her off, unable to escort her back to the Caern “because some of your Mates have issues with my Tribe.” They hurry for a colvert, stepping sideways and moving into the Tunnels Under Seattle.

Slays-Names and Ashlar use Raven to get an idea of the progress of the others, just as the Sept gathers en masse at Fong’s. They, along with Pisses-Gold, chat among the others, despite harassment from some of the Elders (especially Duncan). Never-Tires, Wendigo Elder, also arrives.

Then things get a bit bloody.

The Wendigo pack, The Screamers, show up with at least one of their pack covered in Balefire wounds. Duncan turns on Ellie, recognizing how convenient it was for her to arrive just as this happens. The Sept heads for the Caern, deciding to wait for the Sept Leader before making a decision. Oaksong suggests putting Ellie in chains to be safe.

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Claire, Screwdriver, and Ludwig escort Little Sister through the Tunnels, coming to a locale in the Seattle Umbra called the Rock Forest. Black Spiral Dancers ambush them, trying to lure Ludwig to return home with them. But the BSD are mostly Metis cannon fodder, too insane to keep from flying into frenzy. They handle them, but not without some serious injury and scars to some of their number.

At the Cave of Howling Storms, Ashlar and Slays-Names witness Kataryna’s arrival. Through verbal and physical abuse, they make Ashlar use his Sense Wyrm gift on the Wereraven. He senses strong Wyrm-taint on Ellie, but that doesn’t necessarily make her corrupted- an item she carries could have the taint.

So, the Sept strips her naked and begins to interrogate her. Starting to grow enraged, Slays-Names intervenes and tries to get her to say her message, to explain why she had come. He even bites someone’s hand to give her the chance to talk.

And we end the chapter just before Ellie is going to share her message, just beginning with the phrase- “They are coming!”

Characters Introduced
To be filled later…

XP & Renown Rewards

Slays-Names: 5 XP Earned Honor
Screwdriver: 5 XP Earned Glory
Ludwig: 5 XP Earned Glory
Ashlar Green: 3 XP Earned Wisdom
Claire Grimes: 4 XP Earned Glory
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