Peter Granger (SteveR) - Artist (Painter)
Aislinn Drohan (Tammy) - Auction House Providencer
Brian Hartigan (GM/NPC) - Courier Deliveryman
March 12th, 2014 (Wednesday)
The player envoys meet up at the Mad Musher around 5:00 pm. Brian Hartigan arrives some 15 minutes late, as his discussion with various folks in Whitney ran a bit over. The player characters and Brian update each other on what they've learned, although Brian and Aislinn Drohan take Peter Granger to task for wasting his time and afternoon. The player characters take out the map of the Seven Steps trail that Aislinn acquired, and identify the spot on the map where Steve Mason's body was found, some 10 kilometers from the East Gate. They discuss how they plan to get to the location, and Brian raises the possibility of getting BrianM/Stig to take them, but Aislinn says that while he's willing to help them, he's not going to give them more than information.
The server, Hailey, shows up and sees the map before Aislinn can put it away. Aislinn spins the cover story to Hailey and does a good job of it, but Hailey's not buying it. In the end, Aislinn, Brian, and Peter tell her that they're amateur bigfoot hunters. "I *knew* it!" says Hailey. She agrees to take the player characters and Brian up to the Seven Steps trail that night to see if it was indeed a bigfoot that killed Steve Mason.
At about 9:30 pm, Hailey pulls up to the Mad Musher in her forest green, Jeep Cherokee, with the Hodkins Tours logo stamped on the side of the vehicle. They arrive at the East Gate checkpoint, and Hailey gets them through with a story about going to check out one of the cabins on the trail. Since the tour season starts soon, it's not a total lie. As she drives, Hailey mentions the hunting rifle she has in the back of the jeep. They arrive at the edge of the Seven Steps trail, and Hailey tells them that the spot they're looking for lies some 2 kilometers west of where they are on the trail. Emerging from the car, the player characters and Brian find it's a chilly night (-6oC), dark, and somewhat windy.
The player characters are able to convince Hailey to stay with the jeep, and then using flashlights, make their way along the rugged trail, Brian and Aislinn struggling somewhat. Brian and Aislinn are somewhat out of breath when they reach the 1-klick mark, and the former comments that they are out of shape, as they huff and puff their way to the area near where they believe that Steve Mason was killed. They find the area where Mason was killed, and while searching the area, Aislinn falls into a 20-foot deep pit, though she's not badly hurt, merely skinning an arm. She realises that it's a natural pit, not one dug by a shovel. Peter and Brian search for a dead branch that they can use to get her out with; however, the branch breaks, and Aislinn falls back into the pit (taking no damage, other than to her pride). The two men go and search for another branch. Peter smells a charnel odour, and he and Brian go in that direction to see what's causing it. They see bone-stripped rotting flesh, with maggots and insects all over it. [Peter fails the Revulsion check, and takes Minor Trauma, but Brian is fine.] Yelling from the pit, Aislinn wants to know what they've found, but Brian won't tell her, and when Peter's recovered, the two of them go searching for a branch. In the pit, Aislinn is engulfed in dark, black mist that cuts off all light. The mist clears, and she sees scrawled on the "wall" of the pit
FLEE, FLEE NOW OR DIE
Brian and Peter find a large, stout branch, and haul Aislinn out of the pit. She tells the two men what she saw, but both see nothing remaining of them in the pit.
Aislinn goes with Brian to see what they'd found earlier, and he gestures at the charnel heap. Aislinn gags [suffering Minor trauma], and staggers away. The three characters discuss what to do next. Aislinn hears a sound, and spinning in that direction, spots a low slung shadowy figure moving through the forest. She leads Brian and Peter to where she saw it and they check out the tracks. They see the prints of a small animal, but Peter points out that the front paw prints are small and human-like. The paw prints all but disappear, and all but Brian forget about the business since Aislinn saw the shadowy figure in the woods. [2 Dark Tokens flip to Light, the creatures are now aware of the player characters, 1 Dark Token added.] Peter is confused, but he plays a hunch; he uses the Disrupt ability from his Art on Aislinn, and she remembers what happened for just a few seconds. She repeats out loud what she remembers. The player characters discuss what sort of creature is out there, and realise that they've left Hailey out there. Peter agrees to go back to Hailey, while Aislinn and Brian will make their own way back.
Brian and Aislinn go in search of any other tracks and clues they can find, but after a while Brian admits to Aislinn they are lost. Their flashlights begin to flicker and go crazy, as does Aislinn's phone, and the characters are well and truly lost this time. Aislinn blindly grabs a candle and a pack of matches from her pack, and the two have light once more. They are able to follow their own footsteps back to the Seven Steps trail once more, and decide to wait where they are.
Peter labours along and makes his way back to the jeep, but there is no sign of Hailey. He circles the jeep, and finds Hailey unconscious on the ground, after being clipped hard on the head. The small black bear that is responsible snorts, but Peter is able to frighten it away. He manages to get Hailey into the jeep and revive her with smelling salts, but she is only partially conscious. She tells him what happened, and says that it's unusual as the black bears don't come this close to the east side of Algonquin Park in the off season.
Leaving Hailey resting in the jeep, Peter returns to the trail, and retrieves the aggrieved Brian and Aislinn, and tells them of the bear attack. The three agree they have to go and get medical attention for Hailey. With directions from Aislinn and Peter, Brian drives the jeep back to the East Gate, and a different guard questions them. Hailey is taken inside to the first aid clinic. Brian is able to deflect the questions about what they were doing in the Park so late by implying that Trident Industries would withdraw from potentially booking their company retreat there.
After they call the Mad Musher, PeterM/Stig arrives to give the characters a ride back to the hotel, and he chews them out for their thoughtlessness and reckless behaviour before asking what they've learned. Brian defers to Stig, whom he recognises from visual and written files he's read at SAVE HQ in Ottawa. They shush the still shocked Aislinn's blabbering, and BrianM/Stig warns the characters that the Sheriff's going to be on the warpath, and that the Native Indian contingent won't be happy with Hailey being injured. He says that Hailey will be taken with dispatch to the local doctor in Whitney, Doc Pondpoole, and that he'll tell Max, her boyfriend, what happened. The characters arrive back at the Mad Musher, and head to their rooms to get cleaned up and get some rest.
Yesterday afternoon's session of the Chill 3rd Edition RPG campaign was pretty good, and the players got to engage in some good roleplaying, have a harrowing trip into the Park at night, and face some danger along the way. The players had a pretty good time of it in this session, and both spross and Tammy seemed to enjoy themselves immensely. The former was actually pretty decent during the session, though there were times when he didn't say much.
Overall, I though the game session of Chill 3rd Edition was pretty good, and am looking forward to next week's session and some of the fall-out from this past Sunday.