Chilling Heat, part 5

A ragged man stood there in the doorway. By the look of his messy hair and bristle, one could’ve taken him just a random bum who had just wandered in. But there was something that didn’t fit. His eyes were too sharp, his gruff voice had a hint of something untangible and when he walked in and towards the bed, a silent tinkle accompanied him.

I think it’s plausible to say that it can be quite disturbing if one hasn’t seen a fleshworker in action before. And that’s propably how it felt like, to see that odd man moulding Derek’s hand like it was Plasticine. And in a few minutes that felt like agonizing hours, he was done. Excluding the trails of blood on Derek’s hand, his arm looked like as if nothing had happened.


I don’t remember whether he bargained with them before or after he did his “thing.” Either way, it was an opressing situation for Megan and Osmon, as they really didn’t have other options. Derek was slowly bleeding to death and they propably had no time to take him to anywhere else.

Soon afterwards, as Derek came to, they left the clinic and met with the odd man outside. He bargained with them, giving some cryptic clues and as a payback demanded a certain knife Richard had had. (Consequently it was exactly the same “thing” Derek’s mentor had sent him to get.) He also described it roughly so now they knew what to look for. After getting them to agree to the bargain, he adviced that they should get rid off the unspeakable servant on the loose (that monstrous ox in the woods, in part 4), and how that might be achieved. You can say that they weren’t happy to hear that only the master can really wound the creature.

Back at the farm, characters getting seriously desperate. Finally someone proposed if they could use Dick’s bodyparts as weapons or at least his teeth as ammunition. Megan wasn’t amused, to say the least. Off to bed they went, to wake up to the already familiar hopelessness. Derek or Osmon heard some quiet, yet heavy scuttling under the floor during the night, but though he was just having a dream.

Megan prepares some breakfast with Sam while Derek and Osmon get to work, digging up Dick’s corpse and starting to pull of his teeth. Yummy. Their masterplan was to fill some shotgun shells with teeth instead of pellets. Doesn’t sound very effective, but at least it was a very creative approach from them. And it just fit the mood perfectly.

It was still a tad surprising thet they didn’t try to whip up some makeshift spears out of the bigger bones or something like that. At some point the Sheriff appeared again, looking for Dick. It was then that the characters got an idea, and decided to use the Sheriff and his Deputy as aids in their horrifying task. They told that Dick had gone hiking and hadn’t returned, and that they were planning to go look for him. Of course this got the Sheriff’s attention, and while a bit lazy, he still took situations like this seriously.

Off to the woods to face the horrid beast. They split into two teams, the Sheriff in the first and the Deputy in the second, so they could stay in contact with their walkie-talkies. I don’t remember which character was with whom, but that’s not crucial anyway. At some point, while keeping the camera on Team Sherifff, something happened to Team Deputy. There were Deputy’s incoherent screams in the radio and they [Team Sheriff] heard shots being fired. At this point I yet didn’t say anything to the player whose character had been with the Deputy (it might have been Derek, now that I think of it), and just followed Team Sheriff as they hurried through the thickets.

Finally they found Derek unharmed (he had managed to claw his way up a tree) who then told the Sheriff that a wild, possibly rabid ox had charged out of nowhere. The Deputy had tried to stop it with his sidearm, to no avail. Now the Deputy was nowhere to be found, and Derek hadn’t seen what happened. He actually had tried to use his magick against it, but it just didn’t cut it. While heroically protecting his sorry ass, the Deputy had gotten stuck on the ox’s horn and was dragged away.

The Sheriff decided that he had to get more men, as the situation certainly seemed more dangerous than presumed. He allowed the characters to keep on looking (for some reason I can’t recollect), and left for his car to organize a hunting party.

After following the hoofprints for awhile, Derek came up to a small clearing (they had spread a little, walking in line). Oddly, the hoofprints vanished. The clearing seemed unoccupied, so he headed warily onwards. And then, as he had almost crossed the clearing, he heard snorting just right behind him. Freezing on that spot, a few heartbeats later he dared to turn around, just to find himself staring right into the eyes of that otherworldly beast.

On Derek’s sides, Osmon and Megan heard the noises, too. Fighting their urge to flee, they turned their steps towards Derek.

But it was strange. The beast just stood there, with no sign of malice or frenzy they’d witnessed before. It seemed to be just… ruminating. Osmon decided to take advantage of what seemed like a one-time chance, and let his shotgun, loaded with teeth, do the talking.

And nothing. Maybe just a minor scratch. And any second now, all hell might break loose.

Still nothing. I think it was Derek or Megan who decided to approach it, and talk to it. And basically s/he just said: “Could you go away?” And then the thing just melted into a big puddle of really black goo. Were the characters (and players) dumbstruck? You can bet on it. After that they just returned to the farm, for they still had to find that one certain knife.

As a sidenote, I didn’t, and don’t have any proper writeup for that artifact. But it’s a tool of great use to a fleshworker, as it doubles the charge gain when used. Slice off your ear with it? Double the juice! (Well okay, maybe it shouldn’t work with major charges.)

They delivered the knife to the strange man on the town, even though Derek was not happy about it. They decided to wrap things up a bit on the farm, before parting ways. Derek, while napping in the living room, heard that scuttling mentioned earlier. Megan and Osmon agreed to hearing it too, so they decided to check the basement. Armed with flashlight and more conventional weapons, they slowly descended the creaky stairs.

Black spiderlike… things shunned away from the lights, and Derek froze on the sight of the Tenebrae (his Fear Trigger). And just to get the ultimate mindfuck out of it, they found Richard’s dead body. Osmon stormed right up the stairs, past Derek and with out stopping, behind the barn. He began to open the grave, just to find Richard’s remains, just the way they left ’em.

Inside, Derek picked himself up and investigated what had upset Osmon that much. I definitely looked just like Dick, only a bit differently decomposed. But this one was missing it’s left eye. He also noticed that the fingertips were all messed up, like he had been scraping them against something hard and rough. And on the wall noticed a frail message, written in blood:

“I’M SORRY MEG
I LOVE YOU”

The next day, they left. Osmon hitched a ride from the truck stop, Derek went on his own and Megan left with Sam. Megan stopped at the gas station to get some refill, and suddenly she heard a horrfyingly familiar voice. Turning around, she saw her husband before her, holding a shotgun. Aimed at her. She tried to ran for her own gun, but there was just the loud bang, and after that, only darkness and cold.

We all were quiet for a moment, as this was playing on the background.

Bang bang, he shot me down
Bang bang, I hit the ground
Bang bang, that awful sound
Bang bang, my baby shot me down…

Soon, the final post (finally!) with some conclusions, thoughts and explanations.


Currently playing: Nancy Sinatra – Bang Bang

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