Melanie Franconi (KathyB) - Cat Burglar/Thief
Wendy Saltman (Angela) - Courier
Sandra Mitchell (Ellie) - Librarian/Dabbler
Lucas Wells (Mark) - Realm Runner
Andar/Andrew Quilling (Peter) - Transformed (Living Land) Athlete
April 5th, 2017
The player characters and the survivors set out on their day’s travels, Andar leading the way once more. Steve Hardiman walks with Sophie Kang, as it’s been decided that the girl will not be allowed to roam off on her own again and endanger the group. The group discover that they have gone through too much of their food, despite the FEMA packs they had found earlier, and it’s decided that they’ll have to live off the land. The survivors defer to the Storm Knights in regards to the hunting, though Jake Wilson and Emma Johnson, who’d accompanied Lucas Wells on an earlier foraging expedition, decide to stick it out with the Storm Knights. Lucas takes William Freeman and Jake Wilson to hunt for food, while Andar and Emma Johnson team up as the second group. While hunting, Andar spots what appear to be edeinos tracks, and tells Johnson that they must get back to the rest of the “tribe” as quickly as possible with whatever they can gather. He doesn’t notice that the young woman is attracted to him despite his rough edges. Lucas and the others are successful at hunting down some game, four squirrel-like creatures with scales, and also head back to the rest of the Storm Knights and the survivors.
The other Storm Knights, Melanie Franconi, Wendy Saltman and Sandra Mitchell, discuss their situation. Both Wendy and Sandra know that they have some unusual abilities, ever since the change in Reality happened, but neither understands what’s happened to them. They liken their abilities to miracles and magic, but still have doubts. A rabbi, Abraham Marsberg, overhears them and offers his opinion. Some of the laws of physics have changed to suit them now, and they need to be confident of their abilities, learn to use them, but also...have faith. The group continues to travel, and come upon some strange shapes in the roots of the vast trees that now occupy the area. Melanie goes over to one of them, brushing away some of the debris. She realizes that she’s found a rusted out SUV of some sort. Moving some more of the plants and roots out of the way, she makes her way into the SUV, hoping to find something of interest. She emerges triumphantly with a sealed in plastic first aid kit and a set of five (5) flares in a small rusted box. Several of the others decide to search for things as well, but find no other vehicles or anything of note. Wendy does manage to barely avoid being struck by a large, fist-size black spider on one of the plants.
The hunters return with what they’ve managed to acquire food-wise, and the Storm Knights and the survivors are cheered up by this. Andar tells them of the edeinos tracks that he spotted, and the survivors are eager to move on and avoid the lizard-men. After some time, the Storm Knights and several of the survivors point out that there is mist starting to obscure their way. [Angela/Wendy played the Deep Mist Cosm card.] After an hour’s travel, the mist deepening and thickening, the Storm Knights and the survivors stop. They can barely see each other, let alone the way ahead. It is only with luck [and a Possibility or two] that Andar and Lucas are able to keep the group of characters together. After doing a head count, the Storm Knights realize that they’ve lost eight of the survivors during this time, and it is with worry that the survivors decide to stay in this spot, while the Storm Knights search for the missing characters. Sandra tells Andar and Lucas that she wants to help find the missing survivors. They scoff at her, but the librarian tells them that she can help. And in the end, she is proven correct [with the use of a Possibility and Drama card, getting an Outstanding success]. The group are dismayed to find that Jose Vasquez and two of the other survivors have fallen into what is a well-made, concealed pit some 3 metres deep. Using some jungle vines found by Andar, the Storm Knights manage to bring the survivors up, none of whom are seriously injured (fortunately). The Storm Knights and the subdued survivors return to the other survivors.
The group questions whether to continue on for the day in the mist, but are surprised when it recedes over the next hour or so, though Lucas says that they’ve lost travelling time. Lucas and Andar lead the way, and the Storm Knights and the survivors continue on their travels. Wendy sees that May Armitage is very depressed, and decides to walk with her for a while. May tells her that she still blames herself for what happened to that “lovely young man”, but Wendy says that David Harrington knew what the risks were coming out into the jungle, and he took his chances just like everyone else. May adds that she’s not a young woman, and she’s not sure that she’ll be able to complete the trip to Philadelphia. Wendy tells her that she’ll be looking after her, and says that Lucas and Andar will make sure that everyone reaches Philly safely. The old woman gives her a pitying look, but then smiles forlornly. Wendy watches as she hobbles back to stand next to Sophie Kang and Andar. The rest of the day’s travel passes uneventfully, with the various characters and Storm Knights being bedazzled, fearful, and awed, respectively by some of the wonders of the plant world they see during their travels. Andar is just bewildered at their reaction, though he too is awed at some of the marvels of Lanala.
The next morning dawns bright and clear, but the temperature is already high and the humidity makes all of the characters uncomfortable. Some two hours after setting out, the Storm Knights are stopped in their tracks by Sandra, who tells them she hears the sound of screaming and possibly fighting coming from off to their left. The survivors tell them to go and check out what’s happening, they can take care of themselves. Lucas is doubtful, but Sandra leads the group off in the direction of what she heard. They are almost caught in an ambush by ten edeinos, but are saved by Lucas’s sharp senses [he plays the Awareness card]. Andar and Lucas are attacked by three edeinos each, while one of the lizard-men goes after Melanie, Wendy, and Sandra. Andar makes quick work of two of his opponents, but Lucas is hurt somewhat [2 Wounds, 4 Shock] though he manages to take down two of the edeinos that attack him as well. Sandra is able to attack her opponent with a spell, hurling a rock at it that seems to knock the edeinos out cold. In desperate need, Wendy is able to repel her edeinos foe, sending him flying into the nearest tree. He falls to the ground, inert. [She achieved an Outstanding success on the miracle roll!] Melanie gives as good as she gets with her spear, and her edeinos falls. Both Andar and Lucas finish off their two remaining edeinos, and watch as Melanie hurls her spear and impales the lone, fleeing edeinos [she rolls a 44, including spending a Possibility and a Hero card!]. They both congratulate her on her “superb athletic skill”, and Melanie blushes with the praise. The group quickly heads in the direction that the edeinos came from.
They come upon a small group of boys, some six in all, hiding nearby in the trees. While two of them have obviously transformed, and are now wearing loincloths and carrying spears, the other four are obviously boy scouts. The oldest boy, Michael (one of the transformed), is their leader and he says that while the group has survived on its own so far, they would like someone older, an adult, to take charge. Michael defers to Andar, but the other four Core Earth boys defer to Lucas, much to his chagrin. Michael says that they were on a camping trip with Michael’s father when the Maelstrom bridge fell, so they were well-prepared. When they met a group of edeinos first, Michael’s father gave the boys time to flee. They had set up a rendezvous point, and even though Michael knows deep down that his father is dead, he wants to go to the rendezvous location just to be sure. The Storm Knights lead the boy scouts to the other survivors, where they are greeted warmly, even those who have transformed.
When it is learned that the rendezvous point with his father was not out of their way to Philadelphia too much, Lucas agrees that the survivors can go a bit out of their way. Later, when the group stops for a meal and a bit of a rest, Lucas tries to talk to Michael about his father and what happened, but gets nowhere. He talks to Wendy and Sandra, to see if they can get the boy to talk to them. It is Andar who makes the breakthrough during their talking together as the group travels. He tells the young man that while he may want to go to the rendezvous point, he has a responsibility to the other boys, his tribe, to get them to safety. However, if Michael truly wants to go to the rendezvous, Andar understands and will persuade the others to let him go with the boy(s). Melanie becomes chatty with one of the boys, Sanders, while they walk, chewing on a sweet root that Andar found for them. She learns the truth of what happened during the attack, and realizes that Michael’s father is indeed dead. She tells Lucas and the others what she’s learned, and they go and confront Michael. He is chatting with Sophie, and when the Storm Knights come up to him, they go very quiet. Michael acquiesces to Sandra and Lucas’s appeals not to go to the rendezvous point. The survivors need to get to Philadelphia as quickly as they can. Melanie doesn’t buy Michael’s giving in so quickly, and vows to keep an eye on him.
The day’s travels have been exhausting for everyone concerned, and the Storm Knights call a halt to the around sunset as the skies open up and it starts to rain. Once the group sets up camp for the night, the Storm Knights review the day’s events and make their plans for the next day. That night, Michael and the boy scouts attempt to sneak out of the camp to go to the rendezvous point with him, but they are stopped by Melanie (who was alert for this action on his part), and along with Lucas are able to convince him for the moment not to do this. He’d be endangering the other boys, and surely he doesn’t want that? They appear to have convinced him - for now. On waking the next morning, the Storm Knights discover that one of their items has been destroyed by the Living Land [Ellie as Sandra played the Law of Decay Cosm card]. Melanie’s lock picking set, Wendy’s mobile phone, Sandra’s laptop computer, Lucas’s mobile phone and Andar’s small cube of family photos are all destroyed by the world Laws of the Living Land. The rain continues to fall…
The Storm Knights are woken up in the middle of the night. They’re not sure what, but something feels...wrong. It takes them some time, but Lucas finally realizes what’s going on when he hears something threatening - the sound is that of an approaching flash flood! And it’s very close. Andar and Lucas realize they need a route to safety and some high ground where they can be safe. The Storm Knights rouse the survivors, who are very grumpy, but quickly start to panic somewhat. Lucas tells Andar to scout around a bit and see what he can find in terms of high ground, and the other Storm Knights go about calming the survivors of New York and the boy scouts down. Andar returns and tells Lucas and the others what he has found; he indicates there is a good deal of danger involved. Melanie tells the survivors that they need to calm down and pack their belongings as quickly as possible, and she, Sandra, and Wendy get the survivors organized and ready to leave. Andar leads the way towards where they must go, the whole time the sound of the flash flood getting closer and closer. The group reaches the base of a sheer cliff, and when Andar tells them they must climb it, most of the survivors balk. The Storm Knights have to help themselves and the survivors and boy scouts go up the cliff, but fortunately two of the boys have climbing rope with them as well. It takes a heroic effort on the part of all the Storm Knights to get themselves and the survivors and boy scouts up the cliff face. [There was a good play of several Destiny cards, as well as the use of Possibilities, and there were a couple of moments where the safety of the group, and notably Andar, was in jeopardy.] At last, The Storm Knights and the survivors lie panting and soaked by the rain at the top of the cliff face, as they watch the torrential flash flood flow past where they were moments ago...
Friday night's game session of Torg Eternity was a lot of fun, and I had a pretty good time of it, enjoying how the players and their characters dealt with the New York survivors and the perils of the Living Land. The players had a good time of things, and commented afterwards that the Destiny cards seemed to be in motion most of the night. Kathy wasn't fond of the play of the Law of Decay Cosm card towards the end of the session, but she enjoyed the sense of danger in the final sequence of climbing the cliff face, and admitted that she was worried the characters would be trapped in the flash flood due to needing to rescue all the New York survivors first. Peter told me afterwards that he liked the sense of danger the Dramatic Skill Resolution rules bring to the game, but hadn't experienced anything like that in his old days of gaming. The group had a good time of it, but I was exhausted when the session was done.
That said, I'm really looking forward to next Friday night's game session of Torg Eternity, and can't wait to see what the player characters get up to! :)