Dry Heat

Small Medium at Large Pt 3
No Sir, Nihilism is Not Practical.

The ensuing fight was vicious and almost entirely one-sided:

  • Billy managed to kill the smushed stranger with nihilism. He acquired ghost of Dylan Nardo, who is not very pleased to be there.
  • Icky takes a shot in the arm, but also manages to get the two remaining soldiers to metaphorically shit their pants.
  • Rory completely annihilates the remaining adult child soldier’s knee, and leaves both the former child soldier and the actual child soldier with belly wounds.
  • Annette gets pulled to cover by the wounded Icky.
  • Greg manages to taser the former child soldier into unconsciousness.
  • Petra attempts to escape, but fails.
  • The child soldier chooses to shoot himself in the head rather than by captured.

Post-combat, with the sounds of sirens in the distance, Annette drives off in a panic, before realizing that she shouldn’t abandon the group, and drives back.

While Boo loads up Greg’s van with the unconscious soldier, Icky and Greg go to investigate the apartment quickly, knowing they won’t be able to return. They find the following:

  • There are no photos of Petra’s family in the apartment.
  • There are a number of rare books.
  • There are a number of rare statuettes.
  • There is a box of glowing rings.
  • There’s a note detailing Petra’s plans.
  • Petra’s email password.
  • Petra’s journal.
  • Petra’s cellphone.

Icky grabs the cellphone, passport, the oldest looking book, and the journal, and convinces Greg to take the box of glowing rings. Annette joins in the search, drawn by her curiosity. Annette is very interesting in the books and grabs the following:

  • A book detailing the family history of the vampire courts.
  • A french copy of Harry Potter.
  • A children’s book of spellcasting.
  • An obscure German copy of cures for hemmoroids.
  • A strange old book written in blood.

The group realizes they can no longer return to their homes, and decide to meet at an Indian burial ground in the Superstition Mountains, but not before a quick shwarma break for pie on the way.

There, they read Petra’s journal, interrogate Petra, and torture the stranger (threatening to waterboard him with pee pants, Leo stepping on his nonexistent knee, roughing him up) into giving them information. They learn the following:

  • Petra is a member of the Unknown Children, a world-wide cult that attempts to collect the world’s information.
  • The assassins were sent after her for a number of possible reasons: she was trying leave the cult, she was stealing artifacts and selling them, they were on rough terms.
  • Petra and John Bucket lead the rebel faction of the Unknown Children. They try to sneak fellow deserters out of the cult whenever possible. They know very few names/phone numbers of the others involved, by design, so the information can’t be tortured out of them.
  • Petra was trying to leave the country by using her own network – the cult wants her dead.
  • Originally, Petra wanted to leave the country with Candi, which is why she was stealing and selling artifacts.
  • Petra made the glowing coin she sold to Jeff Goldblum – it is not actually powerful.
  • Jeff Goldblum thinks the coin he has contains a fallen angel – and the ability to shape shift, heal wounds, and other such power.
  • The Unknown Children are actually looking for a coin like this – the Lost Dutchman brought this coin to the state, and then died here. They’re investigating thrift stores, mines, caves, mountains, any leads they could possibly have to find this coin.
  • The Unknown Children have three locations: the Enforcement Building, downtown, the marketing/administrative building in central Phoenix, and the main branch up in North Phoenix.
  • The Unknown Children have a tattoo to mark them. 6911610156926521002-account_id_1.jpg
  • The rebel faction has safehouses across the city, and a vet that they take their wounded to.

Post interrogation/torture session, they decide to follow Petra’s suggestion and contact Bucket for a safehouse, and head to the vet to patch up the wounded.

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Small Medium at Large Pt 2
Outlaws don't get credit cards.

After breaking Cora down, the group questions her involvement in the Sybil/Candi situation. The group learns the following:

  • Jeff Goldblum acquired some kind of glowing coin that he thought would make him very powerful.
  • Jeff Goldblum was showing off the coin with Oz to Cora when Candi burst into the room.
  • Candi ran, and Jeff Goldblum ordered Oz to shoot her.
  • Cora sold the Alaskan Bush Co to Jeff Goldblum when she found photos of her daughter, Elliot, on her doorstep.
  • Elliot Price goes to ASU, lives with roommates, and works at the water treatment plant. She is also who they will go after first, if Cora gets out of line.
  • Jeff Goldblum is a member of the White Court vampires.
  • Jeff Goldblum and his men cannot touch Cora, because her skin burns them.
  • Some men in suits have been showing up to the Alaskan Bush Co, flirting with the strippers. The strippers follow them, and come back with something missing. Some don’t come back at all.
  • The cops knew it was Sybil because of the surveillance videos.
  • A direct assault on Jeff Goldblum is probably not a good idea, because he is one of the more powerful men in the city.

Billy proceeds to wig Cora out with his nihilism. Cora turns to drinking to deal with this, with Rory, Icky, and Annette joining her, letting the rest of the group explore the strip club.

Annette sneaks away to grab a piece of the carpet that has Candi’s blood still on it, before returning to drink more.

The group explores, with Billy finding a “I’m sorry” present from Candi to Petra in the office. Annette asks Cora for some spit to potentially make an anti-white court relic. Cora obliges.

Greg is worries about the fact the the group left a potential criminal just hanging out in one of the group member’s homes. The group agrees to go back to the graveyard to check in on Sybil.

When they arrive at the graveyard, they find Leo and Boo on the way up to see Sybil. Billy accosts them, threatening them with his phallic-rake, asking what they’re doing there. Sybil calms things down explaining that he also hired Leo and Boo to investigate his current team of investigators and his case, since he hadn’t heard from them.

Additionally, the group discovers that Sybil has been sprucing up the graveyard, by buying snacks, electronics, and clothes on Amazon Prime and having them delivered. The group has a spirited discussion with the dwarf, remove his access to his amazon account. Eventually, Icky convinces him that all hope is not lost.

During this commotion, Annette manages to fall into a grave, and needs to be pulled out via phallic-rake by Billy.

They decide to move the dwarf, since the current location has been compromised. They set up a room under Annette’s name at a Motel 8. On the ride over, they find out the dwarf doesn’t believe vampires exist.

At the motel, Leo, Greg and Annette compare notes on vampires. Candi is insistent that her gift is returned to Petra.The group splits for the night. Most of the group decides to reconvene in Scottsdale the next night, but Billy wants to make sure Petra gets her gift back to placate Candi.

The next day, Icky contacts her contacts. She finds out of the 6 strippers that have for sure gone missing, 3 came from the Alaskan Bush Company, and 3 came from Scottsdale.

Annette researches creating an anti-white court charm.

Greg creates an episode of his radio show, telling the city about White Court Vampires.

Billy, meanwhile, had spent the night on the street. In the morning, he managed to scrounge up enough money to get breakfast from a vending machine. Boo happens to stumble upon him, and the two have a touching day filled with icecream, fun, and a tandem bicycle on the way to Petra’s house.

Once they arrive though, Billy realizes that something is not right – Petra is blindfolded, and her hands are tied, and she’s being led down the stairs to her apartment by two strangers – one of which is a child soldier, the other a former child soldier.

A car is left running in the parking lot, doors open and another stranger, another former child soldier, is smoking a cigarette near the rear door.

Boo sends out a text to the group, asking them to get their asses to the scene. Billy meanwhile decides to sabotage the running van. He lets the air out of the tires.

The group slowly arrives on the scene: ((OOC: the gm is a monster and doesn’t quite remember what order this happened in. All this happened, more or less))

  • Leo arrives and moves towards the back of the apartment.
  • Rory arrives and decides to smush the stranger standing by the van with his truck. Billy rolls out of the way. The stranger is not so lucky.
  • Annette arrives on the scene and is oblivious to literally everything.
  • Icky arrives and tries to convince the strangers to stand down.
  • Greg discovers that the strangers are wearing “Unknown Children” shirts, and blocks the exit to the building with his van.

Everyone readies themselves for a brutal fight.

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Small Medium at Large Pt 1
The Gang's All (Almost) Here

The gang meets Sybil Troph, a self-professed dwarf medium wearing a large, rather obnoxious hat, at Palo Verde lounge. Sybil is telling the story of his past several nights:

I’m woken up in the middle of the night to find Candi at the foot of my bed, bloody and crying. When I ask her what’s going on, I figure it out for myself. Candi can’t talk. She’s dead. And then she grabs my hand, and I’m thrown into a vision: the sign for the Alaskan Bush Co, a hallway, and then I’m running as fast as I can, out of breath, panicking and then two thuds and nothing. When the vision ends, my doorbell rings, and there’s cops at my door, arresting for the murder of Candi Sparks. They said they found my gun and fingerprints in a trash can at the Alaskan Bush Co, but I don’t even own a gun. They try to take me to jail, but I slips out of the handcuffs, convince the station’s poltergeist to have a tantrum, and take off running during the confusion. I reach out to all of my connections, in the hopes that someone I know can find who really killed Candi, and why I’m being framed.

Greg Noory is interviewing Sybil for his radio show. Billy Pilgrim is at his usual haunt. Ikafus Ziggy was called by Sybil. Annette Koehler was drawn to the conversation, and Rory Finnegan was just drinking and eavesdropping. Boo Shwazee was bartending.

The group questions Sybil, receiving the following information:

  • Candi was dating Petra
  • Candi worked at the Alaskan Bush Company.
  • Candi owed $1000 of money to her boss, Cora Bennett, for drinking the Alaskan Bush Company’s alcohol with Sybil.
  • A bouncer had an altercation with Sybil.
  • Petra was pissed at Sybil and Candi for drinking away that money, but eventually forgave Sybil.
  • Sybil and Candi had been friends for years.
  • Sybil couldn’t think of anyone specific that would want to hurt him or Candi.

Sybil asked for their help, in any way possible. Billy offers to hide Sybil in the house that is on his graveyard’s land. Sybil agrees.

The group (with Sybil, minus Boo because the group forgot him) decided to pay a visit to Petra, by driving in Greg’s skeezy Journalist Van. Greg’s van is very questionably able to drive, but manages to make it to Petra’s in one go.

When they arrive at Petra’s apartment parking lot, Candi has made an appearance, apparently by following Sybil. Billy is the only one who has seen her, so he lightly questions her. She can only answer yes and no questions. Billy learns the following:

  • Sybil and Petra were not present at Candi’s murder.
  • Cora was present at Candi’s murder.

Candi also gives Billy an enhanced version of the vision she gave Sybil:

The sign for the Alaskan Bush Co, a hallway, and a first person experience – running as fast as you can, out of breath, panic, panic, and then two thuds and nothing…. and then a male voice: “Got ’er, boss,” followed by a faint female voice: “Oh, god no…"

Candi then decides to follow Billy around from now on.

When they arrive at Petra’s door, Sybil points out that Petra still probably thinks he’s responsible for Candi’s murder. The group agrees and sends him back to the van. The rest of the group decide on a tactic, and then eventually decide that Ikafus should be the one to go and attempt to interview Petra. The rest of the group back away, and Annette hangs out in the van with Sybil.

Ikafus convinces Petra to let her in the house by pretending to be a private investigator. Petra doesn’t quite believe her at first, but eventually lets her in the house.

In conversation, Ikafus learns the following:

  • Petra thinks that Sybil was the murderer.
  • There is no one suspicious around the apartment.
  • Petra works for [[Unknown Children Inc.]] as a marketing manager.
  • Strippers have been going missing, and at least a couple have gone missing from Alaskan Bush Co.

When asked for contact information, Ikafus gives Petra a fake number.

The group head back to the bar to get their actual cars and temporarily split up. The Skeez-mobile gets a check engine light, and the exhaust starts looking funny on the way.

The group decide to visit the Alaskan Bush Co. They do not exchange numbers. Rory speeds straight to the Alaskan Bush Co without waiting to find out anyone else’s plans. Billy takes Sybil back to the graveyard first. Greg and Annette ride together in her car. Ikafus goes home to change her clothes, face, and do a little research first, deciding to meet everyone at a more strip-clubby time (10pm).

Rory and Billy arrive first. They find a closed strip club, as it was the site of a murder scene earlier that day, however, lights are on inside, and they can hear someone moving. After a quick examination, Rory finds a locked front door. Billy, not thinking about how it would look, proceeds to shout and pound on the door. Surprisingly, no one answers him. Rory takes manners into his own hands, and tries to kick down the door, but only manages to dent the metal.

Greg and Annette arrive as this is happening, and the group has a frank discussion about what in the hell is going on. Annette decides to loudly and with much pomp and circumstance check to see if the noise is attracting unwanted attention. She doesn’t think it is.

Candi thinks this is hilarious. Billy asks if she knows of any other entrances, and she points them towards the back of the building, where a door to the kitchen is open.

The group heads in. Greg does a quick check and finds that there’s a further door. They leave Billy as a watchdog, and head further inside.

While this is going on, Ikafus is asking her network of contacts for any further information on the missing strippers. She gets enough information to piece together the following:

  • About 6 strippers have gone missing.
  • There’s another concentration of the missing strippers in Scottsdale
  • The police are trying to keep the investigation on the down-low, as strippers aren’t known to be people that sit tight in one spot for long. Just because they haven’t checked into work, doesn’t mean they’re dead or kidnapped.

With that, she heads to the club. She has a brief conversation with Billy, who doesn’t recognize her due to her changed face. She convinces him to let her in.

Inside, she finds Greg, Annette, and Rory confronting a terrified woman wielding a butcher knife. Somehow, Greg manages to convince her to trust him, by telling her that he’s “from the internet”. She lowers the knife, and the team, with Ikafus and Billy, start to try and wear her down into telling them the truth about Candi. The team also realizes that for some reason, she believes she can’t get involved.

Eventually, terrified, disarmed, and accused, Cora breaks down and cries. She’s ready to talk.

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