Graham Snow.   Posted by Editor-in-Chief.Group: 0
Graham Snow
 player, 35 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Tue 25 Oct 2022
at 12:28
Graham Snow
"Love, you say?" Graham considers the possibilities. The Gulf isn't trying to kill Bill. He grins. Maybe the Gulf is in love with him and wants to be with him. Very interesting.

"Thank you so much, Captain Debas. You've given me a much different way to look at this. When I leave this place, I'll find a much better offering for you."

Graham says goodbye to the Captain and rushes back to Bill.

"Bill! The Gulf doesn't hate you! It's in love with you! What the hell did you do to make the Gulf fall in love with you?"

OOC: At the end of this adventure, Graham will look for a better offering for Captain Debas. I know, we haven't gotten there yet.
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2231 posts
Wed 26 Oct 2022
at 02:47
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 68):

There's a long moment of silence.

"What tha fuck are you talkin' about?"
Graham Snow
 player, 36 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Wed 26 Oct 2022
at 18:53
Graham Snow
"That's what my source says."

Graham is quiet for a moment. "I know curses. There's a heavy one on my family, goes back generations. It's killed every single member of my extended family except for me, a niece, and a nephew. I've been travelling around, learning as much as I can about curses." Graham reflects on the situation. He still doesn't know which of his ancestors was the reason for the curse, or why they were cursed, or even what magic tradition the curse came from.

"This storm doesn't smell of hate. It smells of love."
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2235 posts
Fri 28 Oct 2022
at 03:09
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 70):

"It smells of love."

Another long pause.

"Look.  I get that you're freaked out by everything goin' on.  And sorry you got wrapped up in it and all. But you're not gonna trick me outta my shotgun if that's what you're after here."
Graham Snow
 player, 37 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Sun 30 Oct 2022
at 01:20
Graham Snow
"Come on, dude. I don't want your fucking shotgun. This storm is in love with you, my friend. It wants to be with you, and it probably doesn't even think about the fact that it's drowning you."

Graham sighs and rubs his temple. What is he saying? Can a body of water even think? It's probably acting on instinct, some kind of primal attraction. "You must have made quite an impression on the Gulf to make it come all the way up here. Listen, I'm going to go back to that lounge. You think it over, okay? I can help you, probably."

Walking back to the lounge, Graham sinks down on a chair and tries to think. It's late, and he's tired, but he often does his best thinking at 3 in the morning. Bill had said his family had all been killed by water, but Captain Debas said the storm smelled of love. What might be going on here? Maybe Ponce de Leon got it on with the Gulf back in the day, and Bill's a descendent of the very Gulf of Mexico itself.

OOC: Try to think if he's ever heard of some part of nature falling in love with a human before. Or how to convince a storm that a human isn't interested in it. Or if Captain Debas would really go for some Ho Hos.
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2246 posts
Mon 31 Oct 2022
at 02:44
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 72):

"This isn't the time ta get stoned man..."

Doesn't sound like Bill is buying into it.

You flip through your mental Wikipedia, trying to think of a precedent...

What knowledge skill might you have that you think would best suit this kind of lore roll?

Thanks

Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2250 posts
Tue 1 Nov 2022
at 02:54
Graham Snow
In reply to Editor-in-Chief (msg # 73):

I figured it'd be Occultism.

I'll make the rolls, but you get to call the skill unless otherwise noted.

Thanks


There are all kinds of stories in mythology about people loved by forces of nature.  Usually though the "nature" is some kind of god or mystical creature.  Not an entire body of water.

In most of the stories you can recall, the "nature" wants to take the beloved back with them.  Which might be why there's all this rain.  Since Mohammed isn't going to the mountain in Bill's case, the mountain seems to be going to Mohammed.

In all the tales you can recall, the "nature" acts like a jealous lover.  Maybe the key here isn't thinking of it as a supernatural entity but a...what?..Stalker?
Graham Snow
 player, 38 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Thu 3 Nov 2022
at 05:59
Graham Snow
Graham sits, deep in thought. Surely there's some kind of ritual he could invoke to make the ocean leave Bill alone, but for the life of him, he can't think of anything. How would he get rid of a stalker? Scare it away? Call the cops? Confront it? How the hell do you make the ocean back off?

Let's see. What did Moana do? The ocean seemed to love her. If only real life were as easy as a Disney movie.

But wait. Bill said his whole family has died by drowning. So it's not just Bill, then. The Gulf has been in love with Bill's family for generations.

Graham growls in frustration. Why does he always seem to land in these kinds of situations?
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2260 posts
Fri 4 Nov 2022
at 01:01
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 75):

You're on the right track with your comment about Bill's family.

Do you have anything that would let you talk to the Gulf ritual wise?  You can try DreamWalk.
 The Dream World isn't too far from the Spirit World after all.  Or maybe try dreamwalking into Bill's dreams.  He may know more than he thinks he does.

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:09, Fri 04 Nov.

Graham Snow
 player, 39 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Sat 5 Nov 2022
at 03:31
Graham Snow
There is still so much Graham doesn't know about the unseen world. That storm out there right now, that's a physical manifestation, but there are deeper forces at work that Graham has only just begun to get to know. If it had been a supernatural force that took the form of an animal, Graham has an idea of how to deal with that. But an angry force of wind and water?

There's Captain Debas, of course, but Graham already called on him once, and he doesn't want to become annoying to the loa.

Maybe he should just start singing songs from Moana.

"I've been staring at the edge of the water
'long as I can remember
never really knowing why..."


OOC: I could call on Captain Debas again, but he's already given Graham some advice. I'll put points into learning other paths when I get the chance.
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2266 posts
Mon 7 Nov 2022
at 04:14
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 77):

Oh jeez.  I think I was looking at the wrong draft of Graham because I thought you had put points in the Path of Dreams.  Sorry about that.

The problem is the rolls I've been getting for you have been awful.

I can make the following recommendations:

1) Try to reason with Bill again. I would suggest you make the Diplomacy rolls yourself.  Like I said-I've really been bombing your rolls.  You need more info as you said.

2) You can try to Call up Debas again.  Again, roll yourself as my rolls have stunk here.

3) You might be able to get inside the room after knocking Bill out.  You do have Slumber, right?

4) There is one other solution, though it's not a nice one.  The storm wants Bill, right?  Then you serve him up.  You have a Lust ritual too, right?

Those are the ideas I can come up with off the top of my head.  This is just the intro story and meant to give Graham a test drive.  So don't sweat it too much.  We can find a way through.

This message was last edited by the GM at 04:15, Mon 07 Nov.

Graham Snow
 player, 40 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Fri 11 Nov 2022
at 04:43
Graham Snow
Sitting on the couch, Graham finds himself nodding off. Swearing, he stands and starts pacing back and forth. He toys with the idea of trying to make Bill fall in love with the Gulf, but he knows that this would lead to Bill's death. As much as Graham is tempted, he knows he needs a good reason to intentionally bring harm to a person.

He decides to try reason again with Bill. He walks back toward the door labelled PRIVATE.

"Hey, man, this is serious! You have to open your mind! There are things in this world greater than you or me, and they don't always make a lot of sense. That storm out there is in love with you!"
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2285 posts
Sun 13 Nov 2022
at 04:07
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 79):

As you head towards Bill's room, you can see out the door outside.  The water level has risen to where it would be at about chest level.  It's weird.  That much water should be enough to burst the windows.  At the very least, force the doors to swing open. But it isn't.  The doors are staying shut.  The windows are steady.  Either Bill built this place to survive being submersed or the flood is very well mannered, not entering when it hasn't been invited.

As you plead once more with Bill, there's a silence.  Then, surprisingly, the sound of deadbolts clicking.

Bill's door opens up.  He comes out, albeit shotgun first.  But he comes out.

Keeping you covered with the shotgun, he glances quickly towards the flood waters.  Clicking his tongue, he glares back at you.

"You keep talkin' shit.  How can a storm love me?  What does that even mean?"

Bill's obviously not buying into anything yet.  But...

There's a look in his eyes.  He's desperate.  He seems to want to believe you might give him an answer.
Graham Snow
 player, 41 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Tue 15 Nov 2022
at 00:45
Graham Snow
"How much do you know about mythology, Bill?" Truthfully, Graham's expertise is more in the realm of the here and now, not the distant past, but he figures it's worth a shot. "Look at that water. That much pressure ought to be smashing in all the glass in this shop, but the storm is staying outside. That's different, isn't it?"

Graham keeps his hands where Bill can see them, palms down. Nothing in this hand. Nothing up my sleeve. "Did you ever read that book, The Giving Tree? It was all about a tree that loved a boy so much that it gave him every part of it. Douglas Adams heard about a story of a man who was actually a rain god, and the rain followed him wherever he went. He was so intrigued by the story that he included it in one of his novels."

He folds his arms and looks out at the shop, at the level of the water, how it seems to keep its distance. "You yourself said your ancestor did something to piss off the Gulf. What if the Gulf isn't mad, though? Maybe it fell in love instead. Maybe it sees in you your ancestor, and it just wants to be with you. But it's being real polite about it. It's basically knocking on your front door, asking if you can come outside."

"But it's water. It doesn't have a brain like you and me, and it probably doesn't know it's been killing you and your kin all these years. You have that diving suit out there. That would protect you from the water. Dude, it just wants to be with you, and it travelled all the way up into Tennessee to find you."

"What's that old saying? 'The sea is a sailor's mistress'? But she can be a cruel mistress, can't she? Maybe not even realizing it."
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2293 posts
Tue 15 Nov 2022
at 02:38
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 81):

Nice

Bill listens, his mouth going from a scowl to a frown to a sort of wavy line of desperation.

He slowly lowers the shotgun.

"Well how does that make sense?  How does any a' this shit make sense?"

He glances towards the doors.

"You sayin' I should jus' put on that divin' suit and...what?  Head out?  See what it's got in store for me?"
Graham Snow
 player, 42 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Wed 16 Nov 2022
at 03:28
Graham Snow
Graham shrugs. "You said it yourself, Bill. You see your family as cursed. Mine is, too. I know curses are real. But this here, this isn't a curse. It's like that, but nicer, I think."

He considers the older man seriously. "I'm not sure what will happen if you put on that diving suit and go out there in the storm. The Gulf wants to be near you, and it's killed your family members. If it does feel love for you, though, I don't think it meant to kill your family."

"Tell me what you heard about the Gulf and Ponce De Leon. Anything you can think of. You said he cheated on a deal he made. Do you have any idea what the deal was?"
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2299 posts
Wed 16 Nov 2022
at 22:58
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 83):

He sighs and nods for you to follow him.  He leads you behind the previously locked door.

He's set up a little studio type apartment back here.  Cramped even for one guy, it's uncomfortably cozy for the both of you.  He points for you to sit on the single bed, which is the only thing to really sit on here, and goes to a small closet.  He rummages inside and comes back with an old rusty strongbox about 2'x2'.

The lid squeals as he pushes it open.

Inside is a necklace and a sheet of old yellowed paper, preserved by lamination.

The necklace looks like it should be in a museum.  The thong is a long string of tough, knotty leather.  There are various small bones and shells hung from it.

The paper looks to be something someone insane would scribble.  There are words.  You guess they would be in Spanish maybe?  Portuguese?  And then there are symbols written over it.  Splashed over it more like.  Whoever painted the symbols on did so haphazardly.

Which skills would you like to use on what?

Thanks

Graham Snow
 player, 43 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Fri 18 Nov 2022
at 01:07
Graham Snow
"Do you know the story behind these?" Graham looks curiously at the necklace and the aged sheet of paper. Perhaps they mean nothing, or perhaps they hold the clues Graham needs to understand this situation more fully.

He first gently holds the necklace and then the laminated sheet of paper. Next, he examines the paper to see if he recognizes the scrawlings. Finally, he takes pictures of both the necklace and the paper.

"I'll see what I can find out about these two online. If I come up empty, I can ask a friend for some help."
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2307 posts
Fri 18 Nov 2022
at 04:03
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 85):

The words on the paper are Spanish, though archaic.  Parts of it are illegible, mostly because the symbols cover it.  But if it's legit...

I, Ponce de Leon, swear on my

Something.  Something.  More something.

...pledge my seed ever until...

More something.

...the fount runs dry...

You get a hit on a couple of the symbols.  Timucuan.  The symbols are from an old Native American tribe called the Timucua.

From what you can tell on Google, they relate to the words Oath and Water maybe?

While you are not as familiar with the symbols, you know a magical circle when you see one.  And that's what the symbols are drawn as.  Ritual magic.  Binding by the smell of it.  Some kind of pact.
Graham Snow
 player, 44 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Sat 19 Nov 2022
at 13:54
Graham Snow
”Huh. Interesting. Graham considers the results of his searches. ”Yeah, there definitely was some pact made here. By Ponce de Leon, no less. Shit, Bill, these artifacts belong in a museum.”

Graham frowns. ”Definitely ritual magic here. The problem is that I can’t figure out everything this says. ‘I, Ponce de Leon, swear on my…pledge my seed (that’s you and your kin, Bill) ever until…the fount runs dry (maybe until there’s none of your family left?).’”

”Hm. A couple of these symbols. ‘Oath’ and ‘water.’ This must be the contract or whatever de Leon made with the Gulf. Let me see what my guy thinks about these.”

Graham walks back into the main shop with the two relics. He places them in the middle of the cornmeal pattern he has drawn on the floor. Then he looks around for anything better than microwaved burritos.

He prays again. ”Saints and angels above, don’t let this storm destroy us. Shelter us that we may continue to do good in this world. Guard our steps and guide our thoughts.”

Clearing his throat, he starts to sing again.

”Take this pink ribbon off my eyes
I'm exposed, and it's no big surprise
Don't you think I know exactly where I stand?
This world is forcing me to hold your hand….”


OOC: Call on Captain Debas again. Show him the necklace and the paper. Ask him what he thinks the “Oath” and “Water” might mean and if there’s a way to satisfy this pact without Bill dying.
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2313 posts
Sun 20 Nov 2022
at 04:38
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 87):

The Captain is quiet for a spell Get it?.  When he does speak, it's with a bit of reluctance.

"Dis is some heavy foolishness.  That's all you need ta know about it.

"There's two ways I can see you takin' here.

"The smart way.  And the way that'd be good for all a' us would be if you took this fool by the neck an' drag him outside.  Let the water take him.

"Dere's another way.  Let me teach you.  Remember this: water ain't wise.  It's heavy an' powerful an' of much need.  But it can't think too far ahead.  First clear channel it sees, water gonna rush in an' fill it up.  Don't matter if there's a better channel down the way.  That ain't how water thinks.

"So water can be fooled.  If you give this water somethin' that smells of that fool you wanna protect, then it'll take it instead.  It's gotta be somethin' that really stinks of 'im.  That suit outside would work.  But if you could give it his blood or his voice, that'd be even better.  The more it is like him, the faster the water will claim it instead.  You dig?"


So either shove Bill outside or gussy up the diving suit and try to fool the water into thinking it's Bill.

The suit is outside right now.  So you'd have to bring it inside to get it ready.  Which means you either have to open up the front door, dash outside through the water, grab the suit, and haul it back in.

You don't know if the water had covered the roof yet.  If it hasn't, you might be able to get up there and see if there's a way to fish the suit out from above.  It would require some solid line and manpower.  That suit is heavy.  But it could be done.

If you can think of another way, that might work too.

Questions?

Graham Snow
 player, 45 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Thu 1 Dec 2022
at 23:30
Graham Snow
Graham considers just trying to convince Bill to go out into the storm. But humans weren't built for breathing underwater, and Bill doesn't seem to be a bad sort, though he did lock Graham out in the face of the Gulf.

Racing back to Bill's room, Graham says, "We do have one shot. We can try to trick the Gulf into thinking your diving suit out there is you, but it's not going to be easy."

"Do you have any rope and an anchor we could use to pull it up onto the roof? It's going to need to smell and sound like you, too. I'm thinking we stuff it with your sheets or clothes. Do you have a Bluetooth speaker, or maybe a phone you don't mind sacrificing to keep you alive?"
Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2342 posts
Fri 2 Dec 2022
at 01:06
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 89):

Bill seems confused at first.  "My suit..? Uh.  I got rope yeah.  Some line I use ta tie down stuff with."

It turns out he has an anchor as well.  It's a small one, like for use with a boat. But it should do the job.

There's a ladder up to the ceiling in the back store room.  Above is a hatch, latched shut.  It should lead up onto the roof.

You just need to open the hatch and...see if tons of water start pouring down on you.

Any other prep before we pop that hatch and see what the roof looks like?
Graham Snow
 player, 46 posts
 Modern-day shaman
 A deadly family curse
Wed 7 Dec 2022
at 03:22
Graham Snow
"Can you help me tie this rope to the anchor? You stay down here, out of the storm, but when I call, help me pull on the rope to lift your suit up and into the shop."

"Let's see what it looks like up there," Graham says. He prays silently that the storm will not simply flood in once he raises the hatch.

OOC: Graham will tie the rope on the anchor with Bill's help. The plan is for Bill to stay below with the tail end of the rope and be ready to pull when Graham gives him the signal.

Once the anchor is tied to the rope, Graham will open the hatch and climb out onto the roof.

Editor-in-Chief
 GM, 2363 posts
Fri 9 Dec 2022
at 02:17
Graham Snow
In reply to Graham Snow (msg # 91):

You lift the hatch...and DIE!!

No.  Not really.  The rain lashes at your face and soaks what little bit of your shirt that had dried out.  But the waters haven't yet covered the roof.  Looking over the side, the water must be about five feet deep.  You can see the trucks out in the parking lot.  They look like artificial islands in the middle of a dark lake.

You drop the anchor over the side.  After a few swings, you manage to latch onto the suit.  Yelling for Bill to heave ho, the two of you begin to work for it.

It. Is. Freakin'. Heavy.

Go ahead and make me a STR check.  You'll pull the suit up.  I just need to see how long it will take you.

The suit starts to come up over the top of the roof.  You grab it and pull hard, swinging it over the top.

The suit suddenly starts to get dragged backwards.  In a flash of lightning you can see some of that kelp has grabbed the left leg of the suit and is pulling it backwards, trying to pull it back into the water.