Game Summary for 2/22/09, a somewhat abbreviated due to the presence of Rock Band
The Party (Idariel 7, Twonkey, Josepi, and Stan McStan ) made its way back from the SludgeWorks, with their captured Zombot-ratipede corpse and a bunch of the Thaumivorous Ghost-Moths that they had discovered. They boarded the platform and were being winched back up to level 1, when they noticed a bunch of commotion in the Web, with G-Nome couriers racing back and forth on their rocket-skates. This triggered their paranoia pretty badly, as they became convinced they were about to be ambushed, but they made it back to Barbis Boltbiter’s Adventure Emporium (No Adventure Too Dangerous! No Fee Too Big!) safely. After collecting their fee for investigating the Zombot Infestation, they began discussing cashing in on the Moths with Barbis. As a Dwarf of honor, he insisted that they would have to negotiate with the owner of the Sludge Works, Lord Shadrach (one of the few non-Elf, non-Dwarf Lords of Infrastructure). Somewhat surprisingly, the party saw his point. Before they got too far, however, one of Barbis’ nephews burst in with the news that a huge black blimp had docked at the Zep (the zeppelin docks), bearing the Psychopomp of Anathem, and there was going to be a procession.
The Psychopomp of Anathem is the ruler of the city of Anathem, a city that New Ark City had been at war with up until recently (a few game sessions ago) where they practiced the forbidden arts of Necrotech. Josepi announced that there was no way he would buy that there was no connection between the Zombots they’d been encountering and the situation with Anathem. The party decided to go check out the procession.
They used their connections to find a second floor window above an apothecary from which they could watch the procession route from the Zep to the Palace of Instrumentality, where the Lord of Infrastructure meet. The parade route was packed with people, trying to get a glimpse of the mysterious Psychopomp.
First came the music, a Heavy Metal dirge. Then came the marching guards, seven-foot-tall cadaverous humanoids in tattered gray cloaks, indistinguishable save for the slight variations in the black patterns on their ivory masks, rifles over their shoulders. Following them was the Psychopomps float, drawn by a pair of Zombie Mammoths. Occupying the rear of the float was a steam calliope, from which the music wailed. In the center of the float, supported on iron bars, was the Psychopomp itself…a grey metal sphere, 10 feet in diameter, bound in loops of darker metal. Nobody knows whether it is a machine intelligence, a sentient artifact, or is there something else, something organic, encased inside.
Kneeling around the Psychopomp were pairs of figures, one set each of the Precursor races, Human, Elf, Dwarf, Gnome, Orc, Dryad and Satyr…all attractive and richly dressed in elaborate robes and jewels, several wearing crowns, and all chained by their necks to the Psychopomp’s float. Their eyelids have been sewed shut.
Behind the Psychopomp’s float, row after row of iron-collared human soldiers bearing spears.
Just then, as the party was discussing “Why aren’t we at war with these guys any more?” a small figure skidded from one of the cables that make up the web, and tumbled to the street in front of the stamping feet of the Zombie Mammoths. It was a G-Nome girl, with small goat-horns and little cupid wings, who had slipped as she was racing by….
Stan McStan started desperately slapping together a robot, knowing that there was no way he could finish in time. Twonky contemplated jumping from the window, only to conclude that he would crush more people than rescuing the kid would save. Idariel and Josepi stared helplessly.
The mammoth’s foot descended, then stopped in mid-air. Kneeling beneath the foot, holding it up with one hand, was a figure completely swathed in bandages, wearing a red, hooded cloak. The other mammoth, being just a zombie, obliviously tried to continue forward, and the float started to swerve. The Corpse Guards turned, raising their enormous rifles. The figure scooped up the G-Nome girl and darted from beneath the foot, the mammoth stumbling then continuing onward. Red-cloak deposited the girl at the side of the road, just at the edge of the crowd, as the Guard leveled their rifles.
By this point Stan had snapped together a hawkbot, and sent it winging towards the scene, with instructions to interpose itself between the riflemen and Red-cloak (and the crowd), international incident be damned. Before the riflemen actually opened fire, there was a sonic boom, glass rattling and cracking in most of the nearby windows and the rifleman were knocked from their feet…the first row of riflemen’s weapons all snapped in half, and Red-cloak was gone.
Stan recalled his hawkbot before (he hoped) it could be observed by any of the Psychopomp’s minions. It was at this point that he noticed some wetness on his upper lip… his nose was bleeding. Nobody else suffered this (they all made their vigor rolls), and he shook his fist at the Psychopomp and muttered something about “Keep out of my head!” Eventually, after a bunch of men in the livery of the Lords of Infrastructure showed up and had earnest discussions with the Psychopomp’s servants, the procession straightened itself out and made its way out of sight towards the Palace of Instrumentality.
The rest of the session was spent discussing what the Red-cloaked figure could possibly have been, whether they should try and find the G-nome girl, who they saw had been grabbed up by her mother, why the sudden peace with Anathem, and what the connection might be between the zombots and the Psychopomp.