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Meeting the First Bargainer

Page history last edited by Jason Ford 4 months, 4 weeks ago


The Mysterious Mauling at Hotel Tolling

Rescue at Selva Verde Ranch

The Hades Casino

Vegas Continued  



Meeting the First Bargainer


After scrubbing the RV through a couple of do-it-yourself car washes, our heroes got to listen in on a conference call between Vivian (who rushed back to the house upon hearing news of the break-in) and the pit bosses at the Hades Casino:



  •  Viv: “All right, from the beginning, what did you see?”
  •  Beto: “A scruffy coyote and a racoon came up from the basement.  They were both wearing backpacks.  I gave chase.  The coyote peed on the hallway as it ran.  I think I clipped the racoon.  I chased them to the exterior fence, then lost them.”


  •  Viv: “And what did you see?”
  •  Cam: “I saw you, and heard your voice, just like usual.”  
  •  Viv: “On the security cameras?”
  •  Cam: “Yes.”
  •  Viv: “Wisp was out of the safe, so they must have opened it.  Nothing is missing though.  They must have fled once they though wisp would reveal their presence.”
  •  Viv: “Hmm.  Emil, that event at the casino last week, you said one of them had a glamour on?”
  •  Emil: “Yes indeed.  I could just barely spot that there was a glamour on the short one, I couldn’t see beneath it.  The other two didn’t.  Neither did that dog that peed on Randy’s leg.”
  •  Viv: “Was it scruffy-looking?”
  •  Randy: “Yep.  Might be the same creature.”
  •  Viv: “Figure they spotted you, even though you were invisible?”
  •  Randy: “Yep, not much doubt.”


  •  Viv: “They must have used a glamour to mimic my appearance and voice.  Emil, relocate to the house – I’m afraid you’re going to be on security duty here from now on.”
  •  Emil: “Lazlo, could you tell if someone had a glamour on them?”
  •  Lazlo: “Sure, but my range almost nil, I’d have to touch them.  You want I should wander the streets of Vegas bumping into people, hoping to get lucky?”
  •  Stan: “Hell, you’d fit right in, that’s half the population – more on weekends and holidays.”


  •  Peter: “So, who do you think they were?”
  •  Randy: “What if it was Coyote, I mean the real Trickster god?”
  •  Emil: “If it is, we’re in big trouble.  We might have to relocate – Monte Carlo anyone?”
  •  Viv: “Not Monte Carlo – the bloody vampires rule it…  I doubt the true Coyote would be scared off by wisp and Beto with an astray.  No, it must be someone or something else.”
  •  Lazlo: “Maybe a were-coyote?”
  •  Viv: “With a were-racoon for company?  Were’s don’t mix, not that I’ve ever heard or known.”
  •  Stan: “How about a skin-dancer and her familiar?”
  •  Viv: “That’s more promising.  Could explain the glamour too.  The guy could be anything though, hired muscle, who knows what.”
  •  Emil: “Well, can we bring in any recruits?  If we’ve got a war coming, the more soldiers the better.”
  •  Viv: “None are ready yet.  And our last prospect was a disaster.  Idiot’s already got himself arrested, and I felt the minotaur phase out.”
  •  Emil: “Someone managed to kill the minotaur?”
  •  Viv: “Probably some poor cops, with a story nobody will ever believe.  He’d only fed on the one victim – not strong enough yet to withstand ordinary gunfire.”
  •  Emil: “Poor slob.”


  •  Viv: “Tucholka’s spectre is almost strong enough for me to sever the bond to her and bring into the fold.  One more killing should do it.”
  •  Lazlo: “So she isn’t a recruit?”
  •  Viv: “Not even close.  She was calling to cancel our deal as soon as she bumped off her husband.”
  •  Lazlo: “What about the others?”
  •  Viv: “Daly and Ipcriss are certainly enthusiastic enough – we’ll see how they develop.  I think Bauer may have gone insane.  Once she’s fully invested, I’ll yank the chain.  And I’ll be ready to empower another prospect in a week or so.  The serpent ring, I think should be next.  Try to find me somebody smarter than Bert Tolling this time.”
  •  Lazlo: “I’ll do my best.”


Choopy was very pleased to be compared with (or mistaken for) a God.  


Concerned that their targets might flee the country, they put Vivian and the Pit Bosses on the "Don't leave the country" list, and asked HQ to prepare to close all their bank accounts.  The field team discussed their next move, deciding to investigate Kathy Tucholka.  They called HQ for a tech team to take over surveillance, and record all the goings-on at the house.  The back-up tech team took a day to arrive and set up, taking us to June 12.  HQ took the list of names (there are many people with each of those names) and is looking for unusual deaths and other unusual events near the locations of all of the residences of the people with those names.  Finding the Kathy Tucholka whose husband died in the last two years proved a simple matter.  She lives at 232 Duffy Lane, Michigan City, IN, with her two children: Shannon (age 13) and Kurt (age 16).  They were able to get a copy of her drivers' license photo.



She lives in an upper-class part of town, with a golf course very near to her back yard, and very close to Lake Michigan.  While considering a cross-country road trip, Choopy expressed a desire for Kool-Aid Pickles.  A cargo flight to Wright-Patterson was decided.  Nic coined a new acronym, "Tracking Terror By Burmese Bat Hound," or "TTBBBH".  Catchy!  


The plan: Disguised as Acme Home Cleaners, with a free trial to demonstrate their marvelous new cleaning technology.  Neat-0 was in AI heaven.  Choopy and Crunch scouted the yard and environs, while a Glamoured Nic, Gordon and Neat-0 cleaned and examined the house.  They found a blood spot on the top of an armoire in the master bedroom, noting that the carpet was newer than the rest of the house, and that the bed was new.  


After the whole of the house was absolutely spotless, our heroes revealed themselves.  "We hear that you have doubts about your deal with Mistress Vivian," said Nic.  Terrified, Kathy denied.  Gordon played Good Cop; Nic played Bad Cop; Choopy strolled in with a glass of water, playing Weird K-9 Cop; and Neat-0 made a cup of tea for her, playing Friendly Vending Machine Near the Interrogation Room.  Kathy broke down and told her story - her husband Murphy abused her horribly, and as he was a rich and powerful man, she felt she had no way out.  


She took Vivian's deal, gaining a ring with the ability to call a spectre to slay the person she chose.  After it killed Murphy, she learned that it would remain, and if she didn't target another person each month, it would kill her.  She has to see the person to call it up.  Otherwise, she says, she'd just send it out to kill America's Most Wanted, or target Mafia bosses.  It would show up to kill other things, like a bird, but would still demand a person to kill each month.


The ring:


Gordon called on his spirit guides, with Turtle volunteering to assist him.  Our heroes went to a pet shop, purchasing a dozen rats (for bait), and a dozen cute box turtles (released near the golf-course's water hazards).  They chose an empty gravel quarry, placed the box of rats (with 7 spirit loops), in the middle of a pentagram, and called up the spectre.  Crunch tore into it with 20 50-cal silver bullets from the RV's turret gun, nearly destroying it.  What followed was curiously Keystone Cops, as the spectre repeatedly moved into the RV, swung at Crunch, rolled a 90+ for a miss, and was left behind as the RV drove on.  Eventually, Gordon rolled an impale with a silver bullet, slaying the creature (coincidently just as Choopy also stuck a fist-full-of-silver into it).


Fighting a semi-transparent monster in a gravel pit.  Very BBC production values.


They took Kathy into custody.


Who's Next

I've Got A Little List

The Hammanals! or, On the Road to Mykonos



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