Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast.   Posted by The Keeper of Secrets.Group: 0
Jrodimus
 player, 380 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Sun 19 Apr 2020
at 05:14
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
After catching his breath, Mike crept up to join Clarke. He peered out into the pools of water, the water reflected the lights onto the wall casting an eerie shimmering across the strange shapes and symbols.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 505 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sun 19 Apr 2020
at 08:36
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 112):

Clarke felt his blood run cold as the realization came to him: they were performing a summoning ritual.

Although he couldn't tell what they were summoning, it was obviously some form of evil. Human sacrifices meant that they were using their life-forces to bring.... something into this world.
Jrodimus
 player, 381 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Sun 3 May 2020
at 13:48
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 114):

Mike quietly slid the rifle from around his shoulder, made sure a round was chambered and took aim at the man who he assumed to be the ring leader. He took a deep breath, and squeezed the trigger.

22:47, Today: Jrodimus rolled 66 using 1d100.  firearms. Fail.

The shot echoed through the chamber, but as the smoke cleared, Mike saw that he missed.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 506 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sun 3 May 2020
at 13:54
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 115):

As the shot rings out in the cavern the cultists seem to almost scream out in agony. As one they turn towards the now revealed Mike. The leader raises his staff and his off hand moves in a strange jerking fashion as if communicating to the rest of the cult. They rush towards the party, some unsheathing blades while other raise scum stained hands with jagged and broken nails.
Jrodimus
 player, 382 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Sun 3 May 2020
at 22:21
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
Mike fired another round at the ring leader as his cohorts approached them.

07:20, Today: Jrodimus rolled 65 using 1d100.  firearms. Fail.

Again the shot went wide. He cursed under his breath through clenched teeth.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 339 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Wed 6 May 2020
at 15:05
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 117):

Clarke followed Mike's lead and let a bullet fly toward the leader of the cultists. Despite the sudden turmoil, his aim was keen and his shot true.

Firearms: Pass, Damage 4

The bullet struck the cult leader and Clarke smiled for the first time during the night. Dark oblivion and death awaited him and he was ready.

He began to strafe for his second shot.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 507 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 7 May 2020
at 08:24
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 118):

The bullet strikes the cult leader with a dull thud causing him to jerk slightly with the impact. As the cultist race towards the party he raises his staff slightly before slamming it back to the ground, causing a strange clang to echo in the cavern. The cultists instantly come to a halt, rigid and stiff. One of them turns towards their leader, hands gesticulating rapidly. Judging by the long slender fingers it seems to be a women. The sharp jerking motions of her hands clearly display her anger.

"Enough daughter... It is them."

The cultist reluctantly part leaving a clear aisle.

"A bullet isn't a traditional greeting but times have changed I suppose." He touches the wound and lets out a slight hiss. "In the stories heroes like you supposed to give a warning of some kind. A 'stop vile fiend, justice has arrived'!"

His voice while strangely quiet fills the room. The rest of the cult stands motionless aside from the occasional hand movement, an obvious form of communication.

Anticipation fills the air.
Jrodimus
 player, 383 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Fri 8 May 2020
at 05:36
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
Mike felt the stone in it's case in his ruck sack start to vibrate against his back. He kept his rifle trained on the man speaking. "Heroes...more like executioners," he muttered, "For what trouble you and your little club here have caused us, I'm not feeling particularly heroic at the moment." His finger rested in the trigger well, ready to squeeze.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 340 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Mon 8 Jun 2020
at 22:25
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 120):

"And what, pray tell, would you care to share with us?" Clarke asked the cult leader, uncertain about the relationship between the man and the woman. Perhaps, as he had feared, this cult was not the devil incarnate. Rather, it was a man's religious harem. A man who used the unknown to bend women to his will so he could have his way with them.

These type of cults were as common as murders in penny dreadfuls. Groups with rare magical power were few and far between. Clarke felt the world warp and reality slipping away from him. Lara and Zoe hovered in his peripheral.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 341 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Wed 17 Jun 2020
at 15:57
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
As the pause stretched longer and longer, Zoe ran a finger along Clarke's neck. It felt as if the entire universe had stopped. Although he attempted to ignore her, her ponderous movement found its way around to the front of his vision. For the first time, bar his dreams, she stood in front of him with only her hair and the universe to keep her warm. Her curves and form shone in the flickering light with youthful abandon, and he found himself longing for another world. He longed for a fair universe. A universe that was kind to the downtrodden and beaten. A world without mud.

"All of this can be yours," she said, stepping closer. "Blood and sweat, pleasure and pain -- all of it. We can mingle until the heavens explode in us." Her hand rubbed his crotch. "All you have to do is take the stone from Mike. Take it and give yourself to the reality beyond our senses." When he did not respond, Zoe hissed. "TAKE IT YOU UNGRATEFUL MAN! TAKE IT AND LET US SHOW YOU THE TRUE PATH!"
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 508 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sun 28 Jun 2020
at 03:04
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 122):

While the cult leader doesn't advance towards the party his pacing continues as he weaves between his followers, at times pausing to adjust a cowl here or push back a lock of hair there. While you can place anything wrong about the man, besides hosting a religious cult in the middle of a bog, there is something... palpably wrong, something you can feel pressing on the world around the man. The shadows of his hood obscure his face, the torch light glinting off his eyes.

"Why do you run?" While the question seems to be asked to the ethers, it is clearly pointed towards you. "One who has escaped the despair and chaos of the world yet feels himself drawn back into the mud. The other who has never really left, who has constructed a world around him to shelter his mind for the realities of what he has done, what he has seen." He holds out his hands and the sleeves of the robe fall back for your first glimpse of the man's skin. On his left hand his fingers seem to be fused into uneven chunks with a thin yet growing webbing spread between them. The other, rather then display smooth pale skin can only be described as the underside of a ship, jagged and rough.

"Here you are fighting your fate... And you don't even know why..."
Jrodimus
 player, 384 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Wed 1 Jul 2020
at 14:57
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 123):

Mike kept his grip on the rifle steady, still trained on the cult leader. It would be so easy to squeeze the trigger. To snuff out yet another life just as easily as all the rest. But something in the man's words and tone made him hesitate.

"And what do you know of us and our fate, you sonofabitch?"
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 509 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sat 4 Jul 2020
at 15:26
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 124):

"You, of course, are part of the sacrifice your friend made." The cult leader seems unfazed by the rifle pointed towards him. "The Taker doesn't accept meaningless offers. Many think they can simply give a small token. But a sacrifice must be..." He waves his deformed hands around as if searching for the word. "Complete. He cares little if it is volunteered or coerced."
trahernwithglasses
 player, 342 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Sat 4 Jul 2020
at 17:50
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 125):

Clarke immediately grasped the meaning behind the cult leader's words. They were the ultimate sacrifice. Jack, ever the selfish rich boy, had doomed them in his salvation fantasy. It was fitting they would be used and tossed aside in his last and final action.

Staring at the cult leader, Clarke tried to remember anything he could from the vast tomes he had read. Perhaps locked deep in his mind was some solution to this riddle. There was something "off" about the man. Something deeply unnatural and if Clarke could determine what it was then ... well ... he could die laughing.

Roll for Occult: 38 - Pass
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 510 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sun 5 Jul 2020
at 03:08
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 126):

While Clarke is unable to fathom what unholy rites had been conducted upon the man, he knew that he was most likely vulnerable to magic as it played a continued role in his transformation into this unholy abomination. The cultist had made some sort of Faustian bargain and was slowly gaining the aspects of his abysmal patron.
Jrodimus
 player, 385 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Sun 12 Jul 2020
at 10:59
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 127):

"Here's your sacrifice," Mike mumbled as he squeezed the trigger.

19:55, Today: Jrodimus rolled 26 using 1d100.  firearms. Very near miss.


He scrambled to find cover as soon as the bullet explodes from the chamber as he slings the rifle and pulls out his revolver.

Should have gone to a damn rifle range.

This message was last edited by the player at 11:00, Sun 12 July 2020.

trahernwithglasses
 player, 343 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Mon 28 Dec 2020
at 14:35
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 128):

Clarke stared long and hard at the group around him and the way they had been assembled. The man was transforming. Transforming into the dark regions of the world. There had to be a counter, a chant, a way of stopping the progression.

He tried to recall the sounds he had heard from before and deduce the spell's earlier patterns.

Roll for intelligence (93): fail

Nothing immediate sprang to mind.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 511 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Wed 30 Dec 2020
at 13:58
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 129):

"Come now, you must see the futility in resisting," cried the cult leader. "You are lost and alone. Give in to his embrace and end the meaninglessness of existence."

His unwebbed-hand flashes through a series of gestures and the milling cultists around him suddenly spring into action, returning to their places around the pool, resuming the ritual.

The air in the cavern filled with a humming vibration that slowly increases in intensity.

Slowly the leader stalks towards you. "Surrender now and I will end it for you quickly. Struggle... and be obliterated."
Jrodimus
 player, 386 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 7
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Wed 30 Dec 2020
at 14:17
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 130):

Seeing the cultists resume their ritual and not immediately attacking he or Clarke, Mike guessed that they needed to be stopped before the leader's transformation was complete. He takes aim at one of them and squeezes the trigger of his grandfather's revolver again.

23:15, Today: Jrodimus rolled 23 using 1d100.  firearms. Hit.
Damage: 23:15, Today: Jrodimus rolled 1 using 1d8.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 344 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Thu 31 Dec 2020
at 12:42
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 131):

Clarke looked at the unblinking metal in his hand. It held the weight of death. There was no flame nor light able to penetrate it. In the end, it was a lump of the unending void. The substance life began from and ended at.

While listening to the mumbled chants rising and falling throughout the room, Clarke lifted his pistol and targeted the nearest cultist. He squeezed the trigger gently.

Shoot cultist: 85, fail

The gunpowder sputtered and the bullet flopped out of the novel. It landed in the dirt a few paces from where he was. A sign of how his life had burned all the fire in his soul.

"Cross the bridge," Zoe whispered to him, her voice serpentine. "Cross it and we'll welcome you home."
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 512 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Sat 2 Jan 2021
at 10:00
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 131):

While Mike's bullet flew try, it had little impact on the cultist who jerked at the impact but didn't stop their incantation. Instead, they placed pressure on it with one hand to staunch the bleeding.

But this allowed the cult leader to close the distance, wielding his staff in both hands. Once within range, he swings the large staff towards Mike...

(Attack, succeed: damage 2)

Landing a solid blow in his solar plexus, nearly knocking the wind from his.

The water in the pool begins to roil...

This message was last edited by the GM at 10:01, Sat 02 Jan 2021.

Jrodimus
 player, 387 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 5
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Sat 2 Jan 2021
at 13:30
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
With the wind nearly knocked out of him, Mike stumbled away from the cult leader raising his revolver towards the now more immediate threat and firing.

22:29, Today: Jrodimus rolled 89 using 1d100.  firearms. Miss

The shot went wide, and Mike kept backing away trying to keep his distance from the man.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 345 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 8
 Max Sanity: 75 Sanity: 27
Wed 6 Jan 2021
at 13:02
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 134):

As Clarke reloaded his pistol, he listened to the sound of the chanting and mumbling from the priests. Snippets of an ancient text tugged vaguely at his memory. The words seemed to turn tangible and dance around in the air in front of him. He could see the sounds twisting, weaving, heaving and burning as they combined into something darker, deeper and more lucid.

Roll: Intelligence - 28

BUT, then, there was light. And the characters transformed into a phrase he could use. A phrase so pure that it called to him and purged his sins. He reached out and touched it -- the statement blazing brightly into his mind.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 513 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Wed 3 Feb 2021
at 02:09
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 135):

Clarke
As the light burst into form in Clarke's mind, he was nearly overwhelmed by its complexity. He instantly understood that such an undertaking would shred what was left of his mind.

But more chilling, Clarke finally understood the true nature of the spell. They were summoning... him...

Mike
As another shot missed, Mike resisted the urge to examine the barrel of his gun to see if it was crooked somehow.

"I understand now how Jack lost his way. He thought he had sacrificed his humanity to the Taker. But it seems a fragment of it remained in his memories of your friendship. But it is over now. With your death, his sacrifice will be complete," says the cult leader.

Strangely he doesn't push his advantage, as if he is waiting for something.
Jrodimus
 player, 388 posts
 Max HP: 13 Hit Points: 5
 Max Sanity: 70 Sanity: 29
Tue 16 Feb 2021
at 15:07
Tuesday, June 24th 1924: Into the Belly of the Beast
Is Jack dead or alive? Mike thought to himself. The cultist leader's words stirred a longing to know the truth within him. So many years had passed, yet he couldn't forget old friendships so easily. Blood was thicker than water, but in Europe there was so much blood it was hard to tell the difference any longer.

He knew that the cultist was probably baiting for time at the same time he knew that these were probably his last breaths on earth. Still, he took the bait.

"What happened to Jack?" He asked, his revolver still aimed toward the cultist.