Glassworks

"Glassworks: the Devil's Den" Session 8

Costly victory

Fellow role-players, here are Jason’s and Gene’s notes for Session 3.8 of the “Glassworks: the Devil’s Den” superhero scenario, which Brian W. hosted in Newton, Mass., on Monday, 9 June 2014:

“The Eighth Legion,” Player Characters for Jason E.R.’s Glassworks: the Devil’s Den” superhero scenario, using Icons (previously DarkPages and the Cortex: Marvel Heroic Roleplaying game), as of late spring 2014:

  • “Tim Gray/DarkStorm” [Bruce K.]-male metahuman, experimented upon by the government, amnesiac weapons designer for Oryx Industries, armored vigilante, and team leader at subway base
  • “Rain Tomotowa/Thunderbird” [Sara F.]-female Native American, exiled demigod able to change into a giant eagle, onetime park ranger now working in a pet shop
  • Matthew Shanks / Merlin [Josh C.]-male incubus sorcerer and occultist with an ancient family legacy; member of Hamilton’s mystical Conclave
  • “Samuel Adams Jackson/ The Stranger [Beruk A.]-male human Buffalo Soldier released from Purgatory, time-displaced bounty hunter with dark force manipulation and shadowy steed Gabriel (from Gene’s Mutants & Masterminds: “Drake’s Port” and Josh’s Dresden Files: “Dallas” scenarios)
  • “Erwin Schrodinger/ Erwin72 [Brian W.]-male replicant, law enforcer from an alternate timeline with the ability to tap alternate dimensions
  • Empty Spoon [Rich C.G.]-male metahuman, Tibetan refugee with mystical air control (apologies to Avatar: the Last Airbender/Legend of Korra) and speed, seeking revenge for the destruction of his monastery
  • “Adriana Novak/ Phantasm [Brian S.]-female metahuman, former magician’s assistant turned permanently invisible; used the power of illusions to commit crimes but trying to turn over a new leaf

“3 to 5 February 2014:” The “Eighth Legion” had defeated Frank Zorn’s metahuman followers and thwarted his plans to destroy the universe and remake it in his image, but the insane mastermind had escaped. The superheroes bring their prisoners and those rescued from the Atlantean redoubt back to the mainland through Merlin’s library, a pocket dimension.

The Cloaked Quarrel says that retrieving the “quintum” chip, which reclusive Zorn had programmed as part of his scheme, should still be top priority. The Stranger notes that the black hole (actually a reverse singularity) that swallowed Shadow Queen and Inferna is still growing and draining his powers.

Erwin72 says that saving the multiverse is more important than any one person or plane of existence. The group realizes that Merlin’s library can be used with the quintum chip and Zorn’s device it had smashed previously. Sacrificing that dimension should be sufficient to prevent the black hole from destroying the world.

Thunderbird talks with her mentor, shaman Kittaguka, who is stuck in dragon form in Matthew’s library. She tearily asks her fellow shapeshifter if she’s willing to die for the greater good.

The dragon says yes and explains that the quintum chip is already powered with magical energy drawn from her. In addition, Kittaguka’s cintomanni (dragon pearl) can be used for the “fire children” — souls currently stored in the bodies of six notable Hamiltonians sharing the birth date of Feb. 27, 1933.

Merlin meditates to purge himself of Zorn’s mind-controlling candies. DarkStorm and Cloaked Quarrel deliver supervillains Palmetto, Rasayana, and two Devil Dolls into custody. The armored avenger also brings his girlfriend (and onetime Devil Doll) Maggie Orex, and her father, industrialist James Orex, to Oryx Industries for further care.

Empty Spoon talks to the “anchors” in the “fire children” and asks Kunzang Tenzin at the House of Joy for help. The mystic refers him to Metion the Wind Lord, who agrees to enter the Astral Plane to guide the soul transfer to the cintomanni. Metion also says that Zorn used his empowered hands to take over Hamilton’s 200-year-old Red and Blue Society.

Phantasm looks for a particular text in Merlin’s library, and she grabs imp Grizzal Greedyguts as everyone but Kittaguka packs to evacuate the pocket dimension.

The Cloaked Quarrel and Phantasm then go to interrogate Palmetto and Rasayana. The young archer agrees to have his sometime nemesis transferred to the general prison population in return for information about Zorn’s whereabouts.

The cockroach-themed villain mentions that the criminal mastermind met with another German at the Regency Hotel. Kyle realizes that this is probably Ernest Guttner, a “Zorniac” or fan of Zorn’s video games. Mistress of illusions Phantasm gets confirmation from Rasayana, who also admits to working for the Galati crime family in Hamilton, Del.

The Stranger tries to create a mirror to sense the black hole. Cloaked Quarrel refers Sam to “The Amazing Mr. Fantastic” [Brian W.], an aged former colleague with knowledge of shadow dimensions.

DarkStorm returns to Oryx Industries in his civilian identity of Tim Gray. Erwin sends a duplicate to accompany him. They talk their way to the head of research and development, where they ask for help piecing Zorn’s device back together.

Tim and Erwin learn that Oryx has been studying “umbral matter” for some time. They also find out that a talented hacker is downloading the files for the Galvanatron, a dimension-traveling robot.

Thunderbird stays with Kittaguka for as long as possible, and Merlin struggles to pack as many books as he can. Metion hails Empty Spoon as a “wind brother” and mentions that Nephos has taken on the Newts as crew of the Atlantean biomechanical submarine Pa-ka-na.

Erwin72 sends an incarnation to the childhood home of Franz Keidel, a.k.a. Frank Zorn, as the rest of the legionnaires drive toward the Regency Hotel. Agent Schrodinger spots Guttner inside and calls on his companions, who fly to the scene.

They burst into the abandoned house and find that Zorn has somehow teleported Guttner away. However, they find an old printout: a video game proposal titled “Devil’s Den II: Lord of Atlantis,” which demonstrates how Zorn used his precognitive and programming abilities in preparing his nefarious plot.

DarkStorm calls onetime ally “Daedalus” [Beruk], who stops the hacking and examines Oryx’s plans and the scanned notes from the Keidel house. He observes that the Galvanatron eventually become Maxwell’s Demon, a villain the Eighth Legion fought in Erwin’s parallel world. Zorn is most likely trying to build a new device around his quintum chip.

The superhero squad goes to the Regency Hotel, where it finds the surviving local police shooting at what appear to be Devil Dolls, young women wrapped in bandages, inside. Phantasm determines that they are illusions, and Cloaked Quarrel asks the officers to stand down and let him pass.

Thunderbird changes into a giant eagle and flies to the roof. DarkStorm joins her via jetpack. Erwin72 splits into multiple forms to accompany the others inside. The Stranger’s elevator suddenly halts at the tenth floor, and the mystical gunslinger jumps out before the car falls, its cable melted and severed.

The invisible Phantasm must similarly scramble out of her elevator on the seventh story before it also plunges. Erwin takes the service entrance and stairs, and Cloaked Quarrel and Empty Spoon take a service elevator to the fourteenth floor, where police believe Zorn to be.

The costumed crime fighters look up the elevator shaft and they see Zorn and Guttner climbing. Cloaked Quarrel and DarkStorm prepare to go after them. Thunderbird disables a waiting Oryx Industries helicopter on the roof, and Erwin disperses to cover the exits.

Empty Spoon sends an air burst up the shaft, knocking Guttner off the rungs. DarkStorm tries to catch the Zorniac, but he suffers a head injury on the way down and dies. Zorn encases himself in a force field and slowly descends.

The Cloaked Quarrel fires a stunning bolt, but it has little effect on Zorn’s shield. Phantasm retrieves more papers and video game components from Guttner and catches a ride with Empty Spoon down to the hotel’s lobby.

Erwin72 and the police back away from Zorn, whose hands are glowing red and blue. The Stranger communicates with the Amazing Mr. Fantastic on how to use the quintum chip and Zorn’s devices to prevent the destruction of the multiverse.

Thunderbird prepares to drop the helicopter on Zorn, but DarkStorm puts his all into a mighty blow and knocks out the evil mastermind! His force field goes down.

Erwin takes the quintum chip to be placed in the device reconstructed by Oryx scientists. Empty Spoon flies up to get Thunderbird to leave the helicopter on the roof.

Cloaked Quarrel and DarkStorm personally restrain Zorn and take him to the metahuman prison hidden beneath the Korean War memorial in downtown Hamilton. The Eighth Legion regroups at its trashed base of operations in an abandoned subway station.

Merlin, Phantasm, and Grizzal remove as many books as they can from the pocket dimension. Kittaguka gives up her cintomanni for the “fire children.” Metion joins in on the ritual to transfer the souls to the gem.

DarkStorm and Daedalus bring the rebuilt and reprogrammed quintum device from Oryx Industries, and the Stranger and the Amazing Mr. Fantastic control a shadow portal, using Merlin’s library to seal the dimensional rift.

Epilogue

Sometime after the case of Zorn and the Devil Dolls, the Eighth Legion continues its never-ending struggle against crime and chaos in Hamilton, Del. Other superheroes (and supervillains) eventually return to the city.

The Cloaked Quarrel gives blogger Conchita Melendez an exclusive on the team’s recent struggles in return for her help getting in touch with past associates. Unfortunately, his nemesis Palmetto escapes The Stranger finds that he can again manipulate shadows.

Erwin72 resigns himself to staying in a more primitive but less-doomed world. Mournful Rain and Kyle take Kittaguka’s cintomanni to the secret dragon graveyard. Merlin’s heir Matthew begins the long task of rebuilding the mystical Conclave.

Tim returns to Oryx Industries to talk about restructuring the company’s leadership and research, and Empty Spoon has avenged his fellow monks and acquired a wind brother. Adriana considers returning to her former, seemingly simpler life of larceny.

The Cloaked Quarrel, DarkStorm, and friends vow to build a new base and keep fighting the good fight….

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GeneD5

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