Seventh Session – We figure out a member of another local crew, the Wraiths, has been dumping ritually carved Hollow bodies around the city. We decide to mess with them. We find out too late that they are a group of PCs themselves. A standoff on a neon-lit boardwalk ensues!
So we go hunting for whoever’s been dumping ritually defiled soulless bodies around the city for probable demon worship related reasons, like you do, and gathered intel points at Carriless Firm, from some gang called the Wraiths. Other members include the Whisper named Rune, who we hear is a lotus-head and can summon a demonic dog, “The Lesson,” an enforcer, and their leader is some mysterious Spider woman.
We decide the best chink in the armor is the lotus-head, so we find a local lotus den she frequents and set up an ambush. We’re down two PCs due to absence but figure the three of us can take one NPC, though in this world anything demonic is super tough. We and 10 goons bust in and catch her smoking it up. Her demon-dog is no joke and comes pretty close to eviscerating us but Reis manages to get a gun to her head and capture her; the dog teleports out through the shadows. The plan had been to just kill her but Reis called an audible when he realized she was hot (that’s how he makes a lot of his decisions), and I convince the others based on “we can get intel” and “she’s a bargaining chip” and other retroactive justifications.
But her demon dog can teleport through shadows and got away so we anticipate rapid payback. We take her out to some abandoned entertainment pier that had a lot of electroplasmic lights so we can keep her in total light, tied to a chair. Reis spends a lot of time trying to turn her, arguing that her group doesn’t care about her and they’re doing crazy demon worship and she doesn’t need that. But she doesn’t break.
And then the Wraiths attack! Carriless Firm, a little guy, and The Lesson, a huge guy, show up and carve their way quickly through our gang members out front – Carriless is deflecting bullets with his cane and The Lesson sends people flying when he hits them. They are both ultra bad ass to a concerning degree. Hasten Doom tries to go after Firm and they both end up going over the edge of the pier into the dark waters below, and here in demon-haunted Duskvol that’s a lot worse than just falling into water normally. Doom drags Firm under the water with him and drowns.
Marto tries to shoot The Lesson but their leader, Cattaby, is uber stealthy and gets the drop on him – he escapes being run through by also going down into the drink. In no time something hideous with black scales brushes by him.
Reis is all that’s left from the Gambler’s Orphans and it’s not looking good. The demon hound shows up but he sets off a massive flash with the electroplasmic lights rigged to an anti-demon charm and the demon dog is gone! Then The Lesson comes ripping through the door and… falls through the boards Reis had weakened into the water. I was working double overtime coming up with schemes upon schemes trying to stay alive.
Finally it’s one on one – Reis with a gun to Rune’s head versus Cattaby, the Wraith leader, with the others possibly returning at any moment. I just *knew* she was going to betray Rune and shoot her so we couldn’t use her as a bargaining chip, so I had a plan to let that happen but protect Rune, and then certainly Rune would join us… I had the whole reverse-double-cross planned out. But Cattaby actually was trying to ransom her back, and it seemed like they actually were tight with each other. I was mildly flummoxed by this. So Reis ended up negotiating her release for some ransom and a promise to get Carriless to quit the demon shit. The Lesson showed up and carried Rune off and no one killed me. Reis recovers Hasten Doom, half drowned, from the beach along with our banged up gang members and scrams; Marto came straggling in later. We spend the rest of the session licking our wounds.
This was a real nail-biter, just the three of us and it turns out this other gang was actually some legit PC group from an actual play Paul follows. That made us even more concerned in retrospect, we didn’t know we were screwing with legit PCs, no wonder they were hardcore.
This is where this game system really shines – we had a really long complicated fight with another group, with combat and negotiation and all sorts of stuff going on, and in the end there weren’t actually any losses on either side but we were 100% sure there were going to be and better than even money was on it being us. This was the best session of the campaign for sure.