OOC: Discussion: The Stories We Share.   Posted by Control.Group: 0
Control
 GM, 149 posts
Fri 5 May 2017
at 08:11
OOC: The Stories We Share
In prior games--DFRPG games--I'd used the mechanism of a single shared story to define how the PCs all came to know each other.  This game will be no different.

While I'm putting the elements together for the first conflict, I think we could benefit from workshopping a story together.  Here's my opening.  The only thing I want out of this is for the story to end in either a wedding-proposal or a death, so that I can start the game off with a wedding or funeral reception...


Nurse Abigail was fit to quit after her third week caring for Willa's husband, Doug.  For weeks, She'd been followed by an enormous black dog... always at the periphery of her vision.   Once they'd moved to Doug & Willa's Medina home, the dog took up residence on the front law--in plain sight, never moving, never wavering.  But it was missing the night a sallow-looking man with greasy hair and big, bulging eyes threatened to kill all the men in Abigail's life.  The only thing that could forestall this was if Abigail turned over the Twigjack.  Neither she nor Willa even knew what a twigjack was.   Then Willa woke one morning to find a creature that couldn't--shouldn't--exist curled up at the foot of her bed.  It was a tiny little thing, no bigger than a housecat.  It looked like it was made of tree-bark... but it breathed, and made cute little noises... Things kind of went sideways from there.


Open to your contribution...  Let's make this up!

This message was last edited by the GM at 23:49, Fri 05 May 2017.

Gordon
 Wizard of Oz, 54 posts
 Psychiatrist/Psychomancer
 White Counsel Wizard
Fri 5 May 2017
at 23:40
OOC: The Stories We Share
So, the threat towards Abigail freaked her out enough that she confided in former work friends about the unusual circumstances.  So a friend of a friend of a friend gives her Gordon's card.  After a few rounds of the three of them telling him what is going on with-out sounding too crazy.  Once they are on the same page and that they were not crazy ("You are not crazy.  That is my professional assessment.   Oh... you have a twigjack squatting.... wait... tell me about the man again."), Gordon decides that while he can handle a twigjack issue, but the rest would be a little beyond his "scope of practice."  Since, there may be a practitioner targeting mortals, he decides to go right to the big guns.

He did what anyone does when confronted with a possible criminal....get the cops.  He calls for a Warden.

He also figures if there is monster that needs to be hunted.....call some monster hunters.

----
I am just trying to get us into the same space.  I really didn't want to go first but my weekends can get weird and I didn't want to miss anything.

This message was last edited by the GM at 23:56, Fri 05 May 2017.

Control
 GM, 152 posts
Fri 5 May 2017
at 23:55
OOC: The Stories We Share
I'm thinking that a Twigjack is a primal fae embodiment of the everliving forest.   Some are good and cute and nice;  others not so much, just like all other species and individuals...  However, when they manifest in an urban setting, their presence will not-so-slowly transform the area into a veritable woodlands.  They are rare, difficult to contain.  Me, I rather envision a variation on Baby Groot.

This is a thematic creature I enjoy playing with a lot. But it's never been codified one way or the other, so there's no fear of stepping on toes.

This might justify Marcus and The Marshall having some knowledge of it.  Or at least it's theme and nature.

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:30, Sat 06 May 2017.

Luke
 Malvoran Virgin, 26 posts
Sun 7 May 2017
at 20:51
OOC: The Stories We Share
Luke would not know what a Twigjack is. Hearing that one might be a problem, he'd check up with his friends in the Hunters' network for information on twigjacks and black dogs.
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 25 posts
Sun 7 May 2017
at 21:22
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Luke:
Luke would not know what a Twigjack is. Hearing that one might be a problem, he'd check up with his friends in the Hunters' network for information on twigjacks and black dogs.


The Marshal's likely knowledgeable on both, to greater or lesser extent as Control deems acceptable. Hrmmm. Maybe that redundant ASPECT I have should be swapped out to encompass something to regarding experience/knowledge of Denizens/Constituents of The Accords. I'll need to think on that.

CONTROL - is the Black-Dog/Sallow-Looking-Man defined beyond what's presented here, or a nebulous NPC we could flesh out?
Control
 GM, 161 posts
Sun 7 May 2017
at 23:13
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
I have ideas, but nothing is yet defined.

Hm... Black Dog is a common metaphor for depression...
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 27 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 02:31
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
In COLD DAYS Harry faces some Fae Hounds, which he refers to as little cousins of Black Dogs... and that having faced a Black Dog was an experience that he had no desire to ever repeat.

In folklore they're akin to Ghosthounds/Hellhounds...

http://dresdenfiles.wikia.com/wiki/Fae_hound

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_dog_(ghost)

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellhound

I was thinking it might be fun if this guy might be someone/something that The Marshal and Agnes, and maybe Luke, worked together to run out of town before (or the servant of some such person that we'd recognize as a much bigger problem). So, if word hit the streets that XXXX (the Black Dog / Sallow Man) was back in town... Or one of us happened to stumble onto him somehow, it'd make for a solid impetuous to rally.
Control
 GM, 163 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 02:38
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Remember that everything reported was reported by mortals not clued-in.

Also, Fomor are often described as:
quote:
By the appearance in Aftermath, Fomors are man-shaped of medium height, sallow skin, greasy black hair and an extremely wide mouth. They have dark, watery, bulging eyes, small sunken noses, long scrawny limbs, and very, very wide hands. They also have flaps of skin on their neck that they breathe air from. They look like a vicious frog, earning them the sobriquet "Frog Men".


But it's open.  Your call what you guys want to do with it.
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 28 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 02:48
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Maybe the Fomor chased off The Black Dog then? Or OUR removal of the Black Dog inadvertantly opened the door for the Fomor... or lead them TO the Twigjack. Maybe the Black Dog was it's previous guardian, but we mistook him as a malignant presence and dealt with it accordingly. Now the mantle of guardianship has fallen to another...

Just thoughts. I'm ever bendy.
Control
 GM, 164 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 02:56
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
I'm not going to make those calls.

I'm looking for you guys to help make up the story.

If something sings oh-my-god this-is-awesome, I'll speak up.
Gordon
 Wizard of Oz, 60 posts
 Psychiatrist/Psychomancer
 White Counsel Wizard
Mon 8 May 2017
at 05:37
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Gordon would not be convinced the guy was a Fomor, since the reporters are not clued in, his initial interpretation is that it was a Practitioner using the Twigjack for something.  For power or he summoned it and it escaped or something....which I think may be a violation of the fourth law.  Which is why he called for a Warden.

I think, once we figure out what it the Twigjack is and what is going on with it, it should be a simple manner to send it back or do something appropriate with it (Transplant it to a park or something).  Or....the Twigjack got bonded to the nurse for some reason....it wouldn't take a lot.  Especially if it was fleeing a magician or a Fomor.  All it would need is an excuse... she picked up some litter that got caught in some bushes or removed a flier stapled to a tree (could have been because she didn't like the message on the brochure, but it doesn't matter.  She removed something akin to iron from a tree the Twigjack was using).  And....BOOM!  The nurse now has a familiar of sorts.

Gordon would be more than happy to research the situation and put up wards around the place.  Going toe-to-toe with another practitioner or a Fomor he would leave to the professionals.  He's better at support or back-up in those situations.

I like the idea of the Black Dog being drawn to the place.  Maybe because of all the stress/despair of taking care of Willa's husband is drawing it in.  Or her husband is of significant celtic ancestry and his current condition of being in-between summoned it to be a protector until his situation is resolved.  They all work.

I like the idea of removing the the dog allowed for other things to come in.  Either because it was a benevolent spirit or it was because it was a predator...which would keep other predators at bay (this is mine. get your own).

The situation has at least three situations going on....Twigjack, Dog, and scary man.  Plus whatever else is going on (her husband was attacked by a Fomor).  This could all be from different sources that just line up or could be al related or paired or any combination.  Magic doesn't make things easier....
Marcus
 Guardian of Gates, 23 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 08:22
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Since Black Dogs are associated with death having it linger for Willa's husband works, so too does it being there for a Twigjack. The notion of the nurse ending up with it seems to fit but perhaps it's not entirely an accident. If the entity is associated with trees she has a fondness for that recently perished (so many ways for it to have happened that need not be supernatural) it might be that the Twigjack attached itself to a familiar form to try to move elsewhere, like burrs adhering to animal fur.
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 29 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 23:03
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
MY PROPOSAL

I like the idea of the Twigjack escaping the Fomor. Maybe he sensed the nearby Black Dog in it's panic and sought it out as a guardian... but on arrival discovered a better match in the nurse... bonding to the nurse-- choosing her as it's new nurturing guardian. I would think that Gordon would easily assess that the bond is not harmful, but that it's definitely magical in nature and affords HER just as much protection as it itself garners. A sympathetic symbiotic magic of sorts, that at this point MIGHT cause harm to unravel.

The Black Dog was watching over Willa's father, in accordance to the old ways he believed in, and has become an additional layer of protection for the Twigjack.

The Fomor lured the Black Dog away, unable to defeat it, and placed it in the cross-hairs of The Marshal, Luke, and Agnes who inadvertantly killed it-- tricked into thinking it was an Animagus they'd once banished from the city some years back. Upon discovering the manipulation, the trio began hunting the Fomor to exact vengeance and/or thwart it's plan.

On a personal note, however things unfolded from there-- Silas contacts the closest thing to a patron of the Black Dogs in the region (or offers prayer/message to their God/Goddess/Whatever), and swears to uphold the vigil until another Black Dog relieves him... or the man dies... as repayment for his mistake.
Control
 GM, 168 posts
Mon 8 May 2017
at 23:52
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
The man in a coma is Doug, Willa's husband (not her father)...

The events in this story is what prompts Willa to move Doug to a 24-hour care in a suite at the Four Seasons (downtown, near the waterfront).  She spends much of her time there while repairs to the house are underway.   He can, of course, still have been a believer in "the old ways"...  Perhaps he made the classic deal with a devil (a la Supernatural) and that's how he ended up with Willa...

I like the idea that Abigail becomes bonded with the Twigjack... for whatever that ends up meaning.

Who do you folks think would be a likely patron for the Black Dog?
Agnes
 Warden, 51 posts
Tue 9 May 2017
at 02:08
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share

The Fremont Troll (http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/fremont-troll) might make a suitable patron for the dog.   The dog was one of his creatures that helps him keep an eye on the city.

I rather like the idea of the Troll's dog went missing, and he sent the Twigjack to find it but..it's not terribly reliable.  And Abigail is such a good gardener.

Why did the Fomor target Doug in the first place?  Does he have something they want?
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 30 posts
Tue 9 May 2017
at 03:16
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Agnes:
The Fremont Troll (http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/fremont-troll) might make a suitable patron for the dog.   The dog was one of his creatures that helps him keep an eye on the city.

I rather like the idea of the Troll's dog went missing, and he sent the Twigjack to find it but..it's not terribly reliable.  And Abigail is such a good gardener.

Why did the Fomor target Doug in the first place?  Does he have something they want?



The details are for US as a group to decide-- my suggestion has the Fomor targeting the Twigjack. The Dog doing it's "Black Dog" duties regarding Doug.

Just my proposals though, nothing's in stone without a consensus
Agnes
 Warden, 52 posts
Tue 9 May 2017
at 10:29
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
In reply to The Marshal (msg # 16):

I like the idea of the Fomor trying to get the twig jack.  But I guess I wouldn't mind following a semi-hallucinatory dog around to find out about future missions?   Or does Agnes need a weirdly convenient pet? :)

I wouldn't mind generating some ideas about why Doug was attacked in the first place.
Gordon
 Wizard of Oz, 64 posts
 Psychiatrist/Psychomancer
 White Counsel Wizard
Tue 9 May 2017
at 17:08
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
I think Control had him get attacked to get Wila in the game as a new mover and shaker.  Finding out what hurt her husband and to protect her interests (and maybe revenge).

I like the idea that maybe he was more into the supernatural than she was (maybe he was protecting her.  Not form anything specific but much like Harry did in the early books.  He kept people safe by keeping them out of it).  Maybe he did have dealings with some supernatural.  So, it could be as simple as when the Fomor moved in because of the power vacuum, he was on the list as possible stumbling blocks to taking the city.  He lacked the personal power and the connections to protect himself (being just clued-in).  So, he went down in the first assaults Fomor made on the city.

If I remember correctly, the books indicated that Seattle was hit hard by the Fomor when the Red Court fell.
The Marshal
 Gunslinger of Oz, 31 posts
Tue 9 May 2017
at 18:39
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
^^I like this.

Another thought: Maybe the Black Dog is actually a courtesy from a higher power for Doug's sacrifice? Much like the Carpenter's have Archangels watching the house, for his "service" as a "priest/follower" of a Celtic God/Power they sent to Dog to ease/safeguard his passing?
Gordon
 Wizard of Oz, 65 posts
 Psychiatrist/Psychomancer
 White Counsel Wizard
Tue 9 May 2017
at 21:27
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
ooooo..... yes.  I like that.
Control
 GM, 177 posts
Wed 10 May 2017
at 04:28
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share


I like the idea that it was sitting vigil, expecting Doug to die.  Perhaps the Fomor are actually extending Doug's life.  converting him into a servitor of sorts...  And this process has interfered with the natural progression of things that was supposed to happen.

I've used the black dog before...  A Hound of Morrigan... she had three:  Rhue, Rhemors and Rhegrette.  If she's coming into it, this will definitely impact The Marshal's ties with Duchess Haibrella.  This one won't have been Rhue.   Perhaps Rhegrette...
Gordon
 Wizard of Oz, 66 posts
 Psychiatrist/Psychomancer
 White Counsel Wizard
Thu 11 May 2017
at 04:50
Re: OOC: The Stories We Share
Well...this isn't getting complicated at all.

I LOVE IT!