Friday, April 27th, 2007
Gwendolyn (Tammy) and Alex (NPC) go in search of the groundskeeper, Douglas Parsons. Everyone that they ask says that he's working somewhere on the adventure park grounds. Eventually, they go back to the office and ask there about him. They're told that Doug is a bit of a loner, sets his own work schedule, but that he's very good at what he does. However, he's rarely ever at the office. Gwen sees a note on Parsons's bulletin board saying he's going to be working on the fences this day. There's lot of fences at the adventure park.
As Gwen and Alex leave the office, they come upon the returning Jennifer (NPC). She tells them that she went and "exercised her initiative", and then briefs them on what she's been up to. She answers several of Gwen and Alex's questions about what she's learned - the men weren't wearing uniforms, just jackets with the symbol; she doesn't know if the men had guns; the bullets in the two dead anurognathus were from rifles. She doesn't know how Douglas Parsons got the two dead creatures to Dr. Lakeson, nor does she know where Abigail was when she was attacked, but presumes she was with Jeremy and April.
Gwen calls Sergeant Denby on her mobile about the strange badge that Parsons had mentioned, and he mentions the possibility of it having been a Cenovus badge; they were a military group in the 1970s, but have not been seen since. Alex calls his contacts and learns of the association of the symbol with the Chronos Society. They were founded by John Dee in the 1600s, and currently are the chief shareholders of the Coriolis Works mega-corporation, which has many diverse interests. [When Gwen mentions both Chronus and Coriolis after hearing the names from Alex on the phone to Denby, it triggers several electronic flags.]
The characters become concerned about Tim (SteveR), who's been absent for several hours now. Gwen calls Tim on her mobile phone, and finds there is interference on the phone line. He tells her that he and Jose are lost in the Gallowsbank Wood. Jennifer asks her to ask Tim if he or Jose have GPS on their phones, but neither do. She loses the connection to Tim altogether. Gwen calls Sergeant Denby on the walkie-talkie and he sends Corporal Jacobs and two other SAS soldiers to find and retrieve Tim. Denby tells Gwen that Jacobs had seen Tim in the field earlier.
Jacobs and his two SAS soldiers, Davis and Thompson, find Tim and Jose after a bit of searching and following some of their tracks. Davis treats Tim [healing him of 3 damage, including 0 Strength]. However, he can't treat Jose, as he finds nothing wrong with the man, and suspects mental trauma. Tim tells Jacobs about Jose's "incident" ten years earlier. Thompson, who went scouting, returns to report that the Dukeshouse Wood adventure camp lies just over the next ridge, about 2 klicks from where they are. Tim has a feeling that something is not quite right, but can't put his finger on it. Seeing Jose's condition, Jacobs asks Tim what he wants them to do. Tim tells Jacobs that he and his men will help haul the travois with Jose on it back to the adventure camp. With Davis and Thompson doing the heavy lifting, they set out.
Tim and Corporal Jacobs, with Davis and Thompson pulling along Jose, emerge from the woods at Dukeshouse Wood. Gwen is the first to spot them, but then many people start to converge on them. A crowd gathers. Looking around, Gwen sees the hang glider bird way up, and accidentally mentions it loudly to Jennifer and Alex. Alex saves her bacon with the people gathered around by explaining it as some of the hang gliders. As people mill about, one of the camp counselors goes and gets Wendy Johnson (the camp owner and manager).
Wendy arrives and demands explanations of what's happened. While she has Doctor Lakeson take Jose Rosario to the infirmary, she doesn't believe Tim's story for a minute, and says they're not done with this matter. She turns her attention to Jacobs and the SAS, who tell her they were out on manoeuvers and just responded to Tim's distress calls. Jacobs and his men head back out to the forest in the ddirection of Halfmile Wood. [He reports back to Denby about what has occurred.]
Jennifer reminds the rest of the characters that the survival and orienteering hike is set to go in about 25 minutes. Tim attracts a small crowd of counselors and parents both, who follow him and listen in, preventing the four characters from actually discussing relevant matters. Gwen spots the hang glider bird [pteranodon] again and is surprised when it vanishes mid-air at a spot between Halfmile, Cock, and Dukeshouse Woods. Gwen, Alex, and Jennifer want to know Tim's plans, and he says he's healthy enough after Dr. Lakeson's treatment that he can go on the survival hike. He wants to find the Anomaly. Fortunately for the group, the followers have started to disband as the characters return to their dorm building, so no one overhears them.
Around 12 noon, the player characters and Alex and Jennifer arrive to join up with the orienteering and survival hike. The hike is being led by two counselors, Georgia Reed and Andrew Hardy, and there are fifteen (15) children (including April and Gwenny). Georgia addresses the group and says that the player characters will get the full experience, but will be lugging adult backpacks (around 25 kilos) and Gwen is volunteered to assist with the duties of a counselor in the instructional element of the hike as she was formerly a tour guide. She is immediately recognised by one of the children, 12-year old Vanessa Wandley, from the "exciting" Nottingham Bridges tour, as she and her family were part of that tour.
The hike begins, as the counselors, children, and the player characters set out. The children are carrying full packs of their own. There are spruce, birch, oak, and ash trees among others, and the trail is well-worn and visible. Little Gwenny is carrying a bow, and one of the children, 11-year-old Andrew Kenner, questions why she has it. He's told that she's got competence with the bow, and that she's being tested somewhat with it during this hike, shooting arrows at targets and the like. Once into the Dukeshouse Wood, the forest canopy engulfs the group.
The group stops after 1/2 an hour to take a quick break and allow the children to rest. The noise the children make flushes the birds present out of the trees. Gwen gives the children their first lesson on trees, identifying spruce trees. Gwen makes a new friend in Millicent Harper, "Milly" to her friends, and she and the girl split a beef jerky. Continuing on the group eventually reaches the first of three water stations, a rounded section of the trail with a well bordered with stone on all sides. The party stops, and while resting, Gwen notices a splash of blood at the base of the well on the east side. Examinining the blood surreptitiously, Gwen thinks it is some two days old.
As per the plan, I continued to run the Primeval RPG campaign on Tammy and spross for the Sunday, and the game went remarkably well.
There wasn't a good deal of action in this one at all, as the player characters were dealing with some of the ramifications of things from last session, and getting a few truths and their consequences into perspective. This was the second session in a row where a bit of troupe play was the order of the day, with the players splitting up and playing some of the non-player characters when their own characters were not involved in the sequences. Otherwise, the players had a good gaming session of it, other than spross having a bit of difficulty with his character motivation/personality, as is sometimes usual these days.
Next week should be an interesting session as there will be a modicum of action, methinks. :)