Blameless In Your Ways

Ruth's Prelude - Game Session 0

Ruth Keonie was too old for this sort of thing. Forty-two and well beyond her college partying days, Ruth stood shivering in line for the nightclub called The Church. It was busy tonight, despite the cold, with the entry line creeping halfway around the block. The swell of the crowd was all noise and very little movement. Girlish squeals and loud conversations mixed with the dull thrum of the music and the sound of cars whizzing down the street.

Img 6259Nervous, she wasn’t sure the bouncer would give her the okay. She was much older than some of these club girls and despite spending $300 on her outfit and doing up her hair as sexily as possible, she knew most women here had youth, ponytails and libidinous appetite on their side. The kind of thing dickish bouncers approved of.

But she was determined to get in there, one way or another. She’d followed her sister’s ‘killer’, Matthew, for months now, getting to know his hang-outs and a few of his contacts and allies. This was her only means of cornering him and, if she was lucky, getting a better idea of what had made her sister so ill. If she had to charge her way past the bouncer or bribe him with $100, it didn’t matter. Laying eyes on Matthew was the most important thing right now.

But she was fortunate. As she and a group of three girls inched to the front of the line, a drunken club rat was arguing with being thrown out by one of the other bouncers. The door man was moderately distracted, his focus spread between the group of girls Ruth stood near and the belligerent jack-ass threatening to call the cops. Ruth got a pass and, after flashing her ID, slid into The Church like an unseen ghost.

Once inside, past coat check and cigarette machines, Ruth’s senses were blasted by the rich thump of the beat and the lightshow streaking from the DJ’s table. She slowly made her way, through drunken barflies and beefcake men, towards the bar… figuring a drink in hand would help her blend in and maybe make her feel less nervous. For five minutes she waved her arm, trying to snare the bartender’s attention. Once she had it, she barked out an order for Bloody Mary and after paying 7 bucks for what was mostly vodka, an old stick of celery and a little bit of mix, sidled back into the crowd.

41Looking up, she noticed the balcony ‘pews’ of the club and the stairs from the main dance floor leading up to them. That had to be where the big spenders were. And if anyone bespoke flash and money, it was Matthew. She slipped through the bouncing mass to the bottom of the stairs leading up.

“Look… I’m just waiting for my girl, all right. I have fucking tickets” said a bald, slightly chubby gentlemen in his late 40s arguing with a bouncer.

“I certainly hope you do, sir” the bouncer sternly reminded him, his arms folded. “This section is for VIPs only. If you have a way in, I suggest you find your date and go to it. Hovering around this area is likely to get you asked to fuck off. Sir.”

The bouncer was a tall, extremely cut black man with a tattoo on his shaved head and a small scar on his chin. Ruth knew a golden opportunity when she saw one. Carefully, she sidled up to the 40 year old, delicately grabbed the gentleman’s arm and coyly whispered into his ear, “Need an escort?”

He looked up, more than a little surprised. And immediately smiled. “I do” he said. “I’m supposed to be waiting for someone. But she’s late, as always. Her loss, right?” He patted her hand on his arm. “Let’s get to know each other” he told her predatorily, reaching into his breast pocket and dealing out two tickets to the bouncer. “As I said… I was invited” he smugly announced and the pair of them paused as the bouncer unhooked the velvet rope, allowing them up the stairs.

He was a paunchy, sweaty little man. Ruth knew at first glance that the sooner she ditched him, the better off she’d be. But for now, it was best to tolerate his company and see how far it would get her. He complimented her dress and while he admitted she was older than most of the girls here (thanks), he much preferred older woman in bed. Because they knew what they were doing.

No damn wonder his date was so tardy.

P507600 denver the churchCresting the stairs, Ruth immediately noticed the difference in the balcony area. The bar stools and couches weren’t worn and haggard, like the thrift shop pickups that decked the first floor. And the people that mingled around here, laughing and sipping at their glasses, clearly weren’t the kind to wait in line outside. This was a pool of moneyed professionals and powerful interests, all having a good time on someone else’s dime.

It didn’t take her long to find Matthew among the throng, chatting up some brunette in a slinky dress. He lead the girl away from the crowd and Ruth, anxious to dump her escort, followed suit.

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Wherein Introductions Are Made

Characters: Flynn, Elijah, Ruth, Mr. Allison

Noah Sutton, tasked with searching out some kind of help for Ruth, rings up a few contacts. He first tries to get in touch with Conrad, which fails. He then calls Mickey Sheehan and manages to talk with the old scrapper. Mickey vouches for a man named Flynn, who has a particularly virulent hatred of vampires, a solid reputation as a bodyguard and “all the physical brutality of a speeding semi”. Flynn was also patched up by AfterOurs several months ago and owes the clinic a bit of a favor. Noah negotiates a price with Mickey and soon has Flynn scheduled to meet Ruth at 1 a.m. that evening. Flynn at first couldn’t care less when Mickey brings it to him. Until he hears that a vampire is involved.

Noah then cashes in a rare voucher from a friend. “Call this number and ask for Mr. Allison. He’s a powerhouse hunter, if a little twitchy and a little discursive. But he’s the man to call if you need a solid power hitter in a pinch.” Noah calls and offers Mr. Allison a substantial fee if he’s able to join Flynn at the restaurant at 1 a.m.

Mr. Allison barely hesitates with a yes.

Noah, on a whim, decides to try one last contact. A friend he hasn’t seen in 12 years. He leaves a voicemail on a particular answering machine, hoping it’ll arrive to the man he knows as Ezra. An hour later, Elijah gets a call from his old friend and business associate, Ignacio. Would he be interested in a minor job for an old cell compatriot? Elijah ponders it for several minutes before requesting that all interaction with Noah (the details of the location, any other hunters expected there) be handled by Ignacio, who will then pass it on to Elijah. Ignacio couriers the necessary details and a pre-paid bus ticket for Elijah to arrive at Market Street Station.

Ruth receives a call Noah that same afternoon. He tells her he’s managed to gather a backup unit and that she should be expect two gentlemen to meet her outside Osterio Marco at 1 a.m….“a large bruiser type and a twitchy nebbish type. Both of whom come highly recommended”. Ruth is very satisfied with the news and grateful to Noah for the assist.

The afternoon passes into late evening. An hour before the agreed upon meetup, Mr. Allison arrives. Soon after, Flynn and Elijah, who encounter each over (Elijah asks Flynn for a cigarette. Despite the one hanging on his ear, Flynn tells him point-blank and rather dickishly “I don’t smoke”). Ruth, hoping Mr. Allison and Flynn are her two escorts, introduces herself and begins a conversation with the two men. She tells them, as gently as possible, that her main goal tonight is to collect a blood sample from a particular vampire. Her hope is that the three men can help her if things take a drastic turn for the worse. Flynn is fine with this as long as he’s given half a chance to “fuck the bloodsucker up”. Ruth has no qualms with that.

AlleyAs they have an hour until the schedule meetup, they decide to sit down at a Brazilian restaurant next door and strategize. Flynn asks Mr. Allison and Elijah what experience they have, both of whom make it clear they’ve been at this a long time (Elijah by merely suggesting it, Mr. Allison by field-stripping his Glock in the middle of the restaurant, which garners a lot of attention from the restaurant patrons). They decide to ambush Matthew before he enters Osterio Marco. Exiting the restaurant and with the appointment very close, the group moves into pre-decided positions in the parking lot & alley behind the restaurant.

At two minute to 2am, Matthew’s BMW arrives. Matthew emerges from the car with two vampires in tow, Blake and Jeremiah. Unaware of the other hunters lying in wait, he questions Ruth as to why she wanted to talk. “Is it about what I did to your sister?” he asks, smiling. Ruth’s pose as her sister is blown. When Ruth begins walking away from Matthew, wary of his aggression, Matthew seizes her arm and attempts to drag her into his car. “C’mon now.. I thought you wanted to talk. Let’s go find some place more hospitable for a chat.”

The other Hunters spring into action. Elijah kicks it all off by firing his revolver at Jeremiah, who manages to get several clawed swipes in before falling down. Flynn begins beating on Matthew as Mr. Allison fires on Blake.

VampattackRuth, after Mr. Allison shoots at Matthew, manages to get away from the vampire’s clutches and scrambles towards her car. Blake wastes no time in pursuing her into the parking lot. Matthew slices Flynn up a little bit before turning his attention to Mr. Allison. Flynn, a little frustrated that his fists aren’t having any desired effect, continues to hammer Matthew with blows as the vampire stalks his new target.

Elijah opens up his pistol into Jeremiah, which brings him down temporarily… long enough for Elijah to draw his double-edge boot knife and begin sawing at the bloodsucker’s throat. “You’re a feisty one” he murmurs. Mr Allison fires several rounds at Matthew before rushing into the restaurant side door, looking for a cutting instrument. He finds a rather large butcher knife and throws it to Flynn to attack Matthew with.

But Flynn soon has other plans.

Ruth, with Blake hot on her heels, manages to get into her car’s glovebox and grab her .38 special. Flynn, hearing her yells for help, rushes to her but not before catching the knife thrown by Mr Allison. Elijah manages to separate Jeremiah’s head from his neck, blood covering him, before he turns and sees a yuppie couple staring at him in horror. He smiles and presents his prize to them. “Do you have a cigarette?” he asks them nonchalantly.

Almost immediately Elijah hears sirens. “COPS!” he screams at the top of his lungs and suddenly the conflict has changed. Matthew and Blake, their faces covered in blood but no wounds, ease out of the alley, with Matthew promising Flynn “Better luck next time, little snack”. Ruth manages to collect her needed blood sample from the trunk of a car before hurrying behind the wheel of her own. Elijah sheathes his boot knife and jumps into her car as Ruth turns the engine over. Flynn gets into the passenger side. Cop lights

Mr Allison sneaks back into the restaurant kitchen, demands a kitchen uniform from a worker by gunpoint, grabs a towel to wrap his gun in and then quickly changes, exiting out the front. He manages to escape the cops and dispose of his gun in a dumpster a few blocks away. Once clear of the area, he calls a cab and has it drive him to another bus station.

The adrenalin fading from them now and the pain of their wounds starting to sink in, Ruth, Flynn and Elijah manage to drive out of the alerted area and head back to the AfterOurs clinic. Mr Allison is following in kind, though an hour late due to the bus.

Eventually they all make it back. Ruth manages to sneak them in the back door without notice and starts tending to everyone’s wounds. Satisfied she got what she needed and seeing no reason to continue niceties, she retires for the night. Elijah finds Noah in his office, who is surprised to see his old hunter friend in the flesh. Noah asks if Elijah is back in the field. Elijah evades the question and instead asks for a cigarette. Noah promises him a cigarette in exchange for a promise not to smoke in the clinic and for an honest answer to the question. Elijah concedes that he might be interested in getting back in the game. Cigarette and lighter in hand, he leaves Noah to his paperwork and asks him to call the next time another hunt lines up. And then lights up right in the hall.

Mr Allison runs into Ruth as she’s leaving the clinic. He is glad to see that she’s safe but asks where he can find Noah Sutton. She directs him to Noah’s office.

Mr Allison finds Noah still working on administrative paperwork. He enters the office and rudely asks for his money. Noah then hands him a manilla envelope with the agreed upon amount inside, telling him that his reputation is well earned. Satisfied, Mr Allison exits, telling Noah that he’s available for the same price anytime Noah wants.

Flynn encounters Elijah in the clinic lobby. Unfamiliar with vampires and certain that Elijah knew what he was doing tonight, he asks Elijah how he knew to behead one so quickly. “Been at it a long time, son” Elijah tells him, blowing smoke in the bruiser’s face. Flynn smiles. “How about I buy you breakfast some time, old man.” And the two leave the clinic as the dimmest of daylight breaks through the sky.

Cue Dick Dale’s Tidal Wave.

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Blackmoon Farm

Characters: Sebastian, Flynn, Shachar, Elijah, Fae, Conrad, Ruth, Jericho

  • Noah organizes Ruth, Flynn, Elijah and Shachar to check out Blackmoon Farm.
  • Conrad is called directly by Annie’s father, John Singleton, in hopes Conrad will check the place out. John agrees to pick up Conrad at the Boulder Homeless Shelter and take him to Blackmoon.
  • Jericho is staying at the shelter and when Conrad arrives, loaded with gear, Jericho asks if he can join Conrad.
  • Once everyone arrives at the farm, John briefs the group on the situation.
  • The group splits up outside the farm, with Conrad and Jericho (2nd group) scouting the perimeter and then entering through the back of the farm.
    Farmmap* The 1st group enters Blackmoon and immediately encounter Desi Wright, who is shot off her bike by Calvin Potter. Ruth tends to Desi (a truck quickly arrives for Desi with Noah in tow) and then joins the others. Calvin continually takes potshots until the group finds shelter. Elijah shouts at Calvin from afar, challenging him. A young boy runs into the Red Barn and the group follows.
  • The 1st group enters the Red Barn and encounter Marsha Keswick. She tries to convince them to go to the Hen House to pick up medical supplies (Elijah doesn’t trust her and draws his gun on her) then leads them to the Silo.
  • They are briefly locked in the Silo (it’s Marsha!) until they find a way out and enter the Stables. Blood-stained graffiti covers the stables “I HEAR WASHINGTON’S WHISPERS” or “GOD WANTS US TO COME HOME”. There they find Theodora Brown and Annie Singleton, caring for the wounded. Annie fills them in on what’s happened with Calvin, the cult, the maze in the basement of the Colonial House, the whole story.
  • The 1st Group then goes looking for Marsha at the Hen House. When they arrive, they encounter Conrad and Jericho in a confrontation with Marsha Keswick and Dr. Prekovsky. Elijah shoots the Doctor’s hand and Jericho tackles Marsha. Flynn then knocks out the Doctor cold and carries the doctor with him as a human shield, in case Calvin shoots at them. Shachar rushes back to the Stables and intimidates Annie into coming with them.
  • The entire group now enters the Colonial House. More graffiti on the house: I HEAR THE WHISPERED TRUTH or THE SOUL SPARK IS IN THE HEAD. The groups is besieged by visions, heavenly visions. Jericho especially falls to his knees and begins praising the Lord. Jones town 300x201
  • They find Calvin barricaded in his room on the 2nd floor. Elijah continues to taunt and argue with Calvin. Calvin then feigns his own suicide and when Flynn and Elijah bust through his room, they discover that he’s fled out the window and is actually do a flanking maneuver, running back into the house through the front door and down into the basement.
  • Annie then takes the group through the stone maze where they confront Calvin. Calvin is clutching the head of James Washington and activates some kind of thunderclap they can hear from outside. Elijah attempts to kill Calvin by shooting him but the bullets are soon ejected by Calvin’s body. Flynn hammers the shit out of Calvin, causing him to drop the head. Elijah takes it to engulf it with hellfire and is beset with intense heavenly visions, secrets of redemption, intimate promises to remove the taint of the devil and the Red Lady from his life. He begins to weep.
  • Shachar plunges her dagger into the head and it immediately starts to melt/rot. With the head soon destroyed, Calvin is a broken man, decrying that they don’t know what they’ve done.
  • With Annie’s help, they soon exit the basement maze and discover that the thunderclap rose up an army of the dead, the now collapsed bodies of which are scattered all in front of the house.
  • At this point, the police arrive (two squad cars)
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BlackMoon Aftermath/ Sewer Billy
In which our hunters encounter their first Reanimated

Characters: Sebastian, Flynn, Shachar, Elijah, Fae

  • In the aftermath of Blackmoon Farm, the hunters stagger out of the main house, holding Calvin Potter prisoner.
  • They witness the arrival of several police squad cars. Police officers, with their weapons trained on the hunters, force everyone down on the ground and after everyone’s identity is accessed, proceed to question John Singleton, Annie Singleton, the hunters and even Calvin Potter.
  • Each hunter is questioned by Detective Franklin Kim. Unfortunately their stories are extremely full of holes when it comes to their identities or their residences (Elijah gives the detective his alias ‘Ezra Williams’ and tells him that he lives at Flynn’s. When Det. Kim asks Flynn about living with ‘Mr. Ezra Williams’, Flynn responds with ‘who?’
  • After an hour or more of questions, they are told that their weapons are being seized as possible evidence associated to the cult tragedy but that they are free to leave.
  • They all return home.
  • The following day, those in the Boulder area experience issues with their plumbing. Toilets overflowing with brown muck, sinks spraying water, etc. Mickey asks Flynn to make a trip to McGuckin’s to buy a plumber’s snake while Shachar makes a trip into town for plumbing tools as well. She gets a call from Elijah, who wants to have lunch with her and talk with her about Blackmoon Farm.
  • Flynn drives over to McGuckin’s and before entering, sees three people beating the hell out of a dirty, homeless man. He confronts the three thugs and after breaking the jaws of two of them, is stabbed by the third before they all flee. When he turns to check on the homeless guy, he finds that the man has disappeared.
  • Sebastian gets a call from Jaime Webb, who reports to him that someone from Ashwood Abbey has been killed investigating the city sewers for a purported ‘mud monster’. He asks that Sebastian check it out.
  • Fae, while doing some reading at the Boulder Library and driving to get some coffee, sees police cars outside the Arapahoe bridge over Boulder Creek. She lurks around, waiting to see if they leave the crime scene.
  • Shachar and Elijah arrive at McGuckin’s and encounter Flynn bleeding. Shachar tries to staunch the bleeding as best she can. When Flynn explains the story, Elijah searches the area and manages to find a small trail of muddy handprints just outside the sewer drain.
  • Sebastian calls Flynn, asking for assistance in checking out the death of the Ashwood Abbey member. Putting it all together, Flynn is convinced that the water problems, the hunter death and the homeless guy are absolutely tied and starts to round everyone up to check out the city sewer tunnels.
  • They gather up lights and simple weapons and, with Fae as their scout notifying them when the police finally leave the crime scene, gather together just outside a major storm drain. The group then enters. Fae downs a Hunting Sight of the Asp elixir, in the hopes she’ll be able to locate and see their target quickly.
  • Walbrook webFollowing the tunnels, the group finds a skeletal-thin man peering through a storm drain at the movie theater box office across the street. When he hears him, he immediately flees. They give pursuit and finally corner him at a service ladder. The man screams at them to just leave him alone. But the group wants to know if he killed someone recently. “He was trying to kill me first” the man replies. When asked, he tells them his name is Billy and that he just wants to be left alone. When they ask him if he’s responsible for affecting the water supply, he acknowledges that he is but admits that he can’t control. “I woke up this way one day. That’s all I know” he tells them. The group empathis willing to offer him help, if he needs it.
  • Elijah, for some unknown reason, finds his minimal disgust with the man to be too much and angrily draws his pistol. The homeless man attacks the group with tendrils of slime, sewage and mud. Shachar and Sebastian try to interfere with Elijah and Flynn offers Billy a way out of the sewers, to somewhere safe. Fae then intervenes, calmly telling Billy that they will not kill him, as long as he doesn’t hurt anyone else.
  • Billy finally acquiesces to Fae’s offer. Fae and Shachar then lead the creature out of the sewers and into Shachar’s truck. Elijah and Flynn leave together and Sebastian returns to wash himself thoroughly of the filth from this adventure. Fae and Shachar escort him to a place where he might find peace and calm, on Shachar’s large acreage farm.
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Annie Singleton's Home
The cell is tasked with protecting Annie Singleton

Characters: Shachar, Elijah, Mr. Allison, Ruth, Fae

  • Noah contacts Elijah, Shachar, Ruth, Flynn, Sebastian and Fae. He tells them to meet him at the AfterOurs Clinic one Saturday afternoon as he has important news for them.
  • Once there, he tells them that he’s getting pressure from his board members and from investigative journalists, to the point where he’s concerned with being connected to the group. “It’s time the cell stood up on its own legs” he says. He introduces Natalie Eaton, a cell leader from Ft. Collins who works as a consultant, getting cells to work better in the field.
  • Natalie immediately makes a bit of a rough impression. She’s a coarse, ball-busting sort of hunter and breaks no pause giving the cell shit for ending up in the media over Blackmoon Farm.
    Pregnant woman window 3
  • Conrad gets a call from Annie Singleton. She suspects that she’s been followed the past few nights. And has decided to stay at her parent’s house. But her parents are not there. “Please come by, Conrad. I’m scared they’re watching me from a car across the street and I don’t know who else to trust” she begs him. Conrad makes his way to her.
  • Once there, Conrad notices that there are police cars around the Singleton house, with Annie on the front lawn talking to one of them. Conrad approaches and Annie vouches for him, telling him the full story as the policeman walks away: A strange group of men and a woman have been following her the past few days. When one of them approached her, she ran from her car to the house and immediately called the police. Then she called Conrad.
  • Conrad comforts her and tells her that with the police here, she should be fine. Annie clutches his hand and asks if he will stay with her for the night. Conrad nods quietly.
  • Shachar, in the meeting, grows increasingly resistant and combative with Natalie. She sees no reason why she should be there. She doesn’t know Noah that well. She’s not entirely sure she wants to be a hunter. And she sure as hell has no patience for the boot camp hard-ass that is Natalie Eaton. When Natalie tries to challenge her, Shachar storms off in a rage.
  • Elijah tries to follow her out and get her to return but Shachar is too frustrated and fed up.
  • Noah apologizes when Elijah returns but Elijah figures Shachar will come back to them eventually. Noah then offers up his final piece of business to the group. He would like to donate their first safehouse to them. When asked where and what it is, Noah tells them “It’s not quite ready yet. I’m only now finalizing the purchase and I’m not 100% certain it will go through. But I should have something more solid about it in about two weeks time.”
  • Conrad and Annie are conversing in the Singleton living room when Conrad, looking out the front window, notices the uniformed policemen respond to their radios. They nod as if acknowledging orders, then get in their cars and drive off, leaving the place completely unprotected. Conrad gets a bit nervous and calls his Union rep, Cesar.
  • After a few more questions, Noah’s gathering begins to adjourn. That is until Natalie Eaton gets a call from one of her contacts, someone who has been shadowing one of the cell’s members, Conrad. She tells the group that she has reason to believe that Conrad and the Singleton girl, Annie, might be in extreme danger. If they’re up for it as a team, now would be a perfect mission for her to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses in the field. Everyone (Elijah, Ruth and Fae) but Sebastian and Flynn agrees to this. They all pile into Natalie’s SUV and race to the Singleton home.
  • The cell makes it there in record time, still with no sign of the cops. The air ripe with impending disaster, Conrad fills them all in, telling them that he believes they mean to capture or kill Annie, though he has no idea who or what ‘they’ are.
  • Suddenly, Conrad, Elijah, Natalie and Ruth notice that three cars are pulling up to the Singleton home. Six men in suits get out and approach the house. Elijah, for whatever reason, is aggressively suspicious and opens fire on them before they can enter. The six men immediately take cover and either spread out or return fire.
  • Conrad takes Annie down into the house’s basement for safety. Elijah manages to shot one of the men down. Ruth, concerned with the house’s back door, monitors it and the backyard. Natalie enlists Fae’s help looking for other weapons in the house. With little in the kitchen except knives, Fae suggests haphazard Molotov cocktails of high proof liquor. Conrad joins Elijah in keeping the front door covered.
  • Dusk begins to fall upon the house. Another car parks in front and two other men emerge. Elijah barely hears the new arrivals discussing with the men shooting in the front yard. The two new men then begin to creep around the back.
  • Fae and Natalie begin cobbling together Molotov cocktails in the basement, keeping an eye on Annie. Someone begins pounding on the outside basement door, trying to get in. Conrad leaves Elijah to it and seeks out Annie in the basement to make sure she’s safe.
  • Elijah shoots another man down after taking a few shots to his thigh and his shoulder.
  • Ruth notices a familiar face trying to creep in through the backyard: Matthew Borgia. She fires at him to scare him off but notices that he simply runs to the side of the house again.
  • Elijah takes down another gunman who snuck in through the kitchen.
  • Matthew tries to break in through the basement and manages to bust the outside basement door open. “Give me the woman and the child within her!” he yells “or we will drink from your broken bodies before the night is done!” Conrad lobs a Molotov cocktail which does set one of the men on fire. Matthew is seen fleeing from the fire and the basement.
  • Car explosionWith most of his men taken out, Matthew beats a hasty retreat, scurrying past the backyard to his car. Elijah catches up with him and after several shots which blow out the car’s tires, manages to nail one in the car’s gas tank, setting the vehicle ablaze. Matthew, trapped inside, screams angrily as the car explodes, killing him.
  • Ruth, knowing full well that all these gunshots and explosions will bring the real cops down on them, gathers everyone up (Annie included) and gets them into Natalie’s SUV.
  • Fleeing from Boulder, they are offered temporary sanctuary by Natalie at her safehouse in Ft. Collins. Annie, terrified beyond belief, clings to Conrad. Conrad, determined to know WHY Matthew was after her child, asks her what is so special about her pregnancy. Still shocked and barely lucid from the attack on her home, mumbles “Angels” before clutching Conrad and breaking into sobs.
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The Hospital from Hell

Characters: Sebastian, Flynn, Shachar, Elijah, Mr. Allison

  • It’s been three weeks since the cell killed Matthew Borgia and managed to safeguard Annie Singleton. Convinced that the larger storm is over, each cell member has now settled back into their normal routine. Few supernaturals have popped up on the radar and the group hasn’t really met together in that near month’s time.
  • Flynn comes home to the gym, to find the place quiet and barren. On the kitchen counter, he discovers an envelope sealed with wax. The letter within reads: Flynn, I have your mentor. Come to St. Christopher’s Hospital conference room at 10:00pm. If you do not, his blood and flesh are forfeit. Do not fuck with me on this.
  • Elijah is at home when someone knocks on his door. He grabs his gun and opens it, finding only a small envelope on his doorstep. Opening the letter he reads: Elijah, I know about the Red Lady. I know what she holds over you. I know how to free you from her. And from your curse. Meet me at St. Christopher’s Hospital conference room, 10 00pm. Bring no one. Tell no one. Or I won’t be there to help you. He’s familiar with the condemned hospital. And more than a little curious how this person knows about the Red Lady.
  • Sebastian stops by his manse after checking in on A Cut Above. Grimes brings him a letter that showed up that morning. Sebastian breaks the wax seal on it and reads: Sebastian, i know what you are. And what you do. i’ve known for years. All this time I’ve seen you when you thought you weren’t being seen. Hee hee. You’re so nasty. These pictures should prove to you i’m not lying. i could tell the world. I could anytime I want. But i won’t. My silence, though, has a price. Bring $50,000 to St. Christopher’s Hospital conference room, ten p.m.. Bring no one. Tell no one. Or your secret, and all the dirty little things you’ve done, will be out. Sebastian’s paranoia is now fully triggered.
  • Mr. Allison, back from a recent mercenary job, returns to his anonymous apartment and discovers someone has placed a letter on his doorstep as well. Mr. Allison, I pray this is a secure means of contacting you. I’ve been following your exploits for some time. And believe that I can help. If you have ever wanted to be free of the monster in your skin, come find me. St. Christopher’s Hospital conference room, 10:00pm. Tell no one, lest they discover the beast within you.
  • Shachar is in Nederland, handling an emergency paramedic call and delivering a patient to the ER. As she’s chatting with her co-worker, a Nederland cop she recognizes tells her he just got a radio call about her house. That there’s something wrong. Shachar, panicked, bolts off to her truck and races home. As she approaches her neighborhood, she notices a thin plume of smoke and as she gets closer to home, sees her entire house up in flames.
  • She quickly skids in front of the fire trucks and darts towards the house, screaming for her dogs and her memories. It takes two firemen to keep her from the blaze. Fighting until she exhausts herself, she pulls back crying, aghast at it all. A fireman approaches her and after talking with her about the fire, assures her that they will try to find her dogs and her fireproof safe. Over the fireman’s shoulder, she sees Sewer Billy hiding in the woods, beckoning her to meet him away from everyone else. She steps away just long enough to talk to him. Sewer Billy’s face is a jigsaw puzzle of bruises and cuts. He tells her that some men came to her house and beat the shit out of him. And then told him to deliver a letter to her. The letter reads: You have interfered in my affairs. And have consorted with the wrong people. Bad choices, little devil-child. Bad, bad, bad. But that’s okay. I believe in second chances. Come to St. Christopher’s Hospital conference room at 10:00pm and beg for my apology. Or I will destroy everything you own, one piece at a time. Come alone, and do not be late.
  • Distraught, Shachar contacts Elijah. Before she even has a chance to speak, he asks her if she got a letter from a sadistic stranger. She replies in the affirmative and Elijah asks her to come pick him up, that they’ll meet this sonuvabitch early. She tells him she will just as soon as she’s sure her dogs and her fireproof safe have survived the inferno.
    Hospital* Elijah then calls Flynn and asks him the same question of Shachar. “A letter too” Flynn tells him. Elijah tells him to gather up as many of their group as he can and to meet at the hospital. Mr. Allison, Ruth, Conrad and Fae are unable to be found.
  • Eventually the group meets outside the abandoned St. Christopher hospital in North Boulder. There they discover Mr. Allison, already ahead of them. Knowing full well this is a trap, they manage to break into the front lobby and find the place littered with dust, trash and abandoned and broken furniture. Among the debris and garbage they find another letter, this one addressed to Ruth. Worried she might have arrived earlier and been captured or killed, they begin to explore the hospital.
  • They come upon the hospital chapel, a small room that, while inaccessible due to debris, is in remarkably good condition compared to the rest of the hospital.
  • Sebastian, at the back of the troop, turns around to see if anyone is following them. The moment he turns back around, the group is gone and he is alone in the hall.
  • Flynn takes point and begins scoping out the hospital’s various halls. As he turns a corner, with the group right behind him, he immediately notices their conversations silenced. Going back around the corner to find them, he finds they’ve completely disappeared. And the farther back he goes to the original starting point, the more he realizes he’s alone in the hospital.
  • The group notices, when it turns the same corner Flynn did, that Flynn has disappeared. No sight or sound of him. The panic rising, they go back towards the main lobby, in an attempt to scope out a different path. Occasionally they hear whispers or disembodied speech.
  • Sebastian, alone in the hall, comes upon a large mirror. And immediately notices he’s lost his hair. Freaking out, he begins to frantically search for a way out. But there are mirrors no matter where he goes.
  • Flynn, also, begins to visited by horrors. For a moment he thinks he hears the voice of his abusive father. But when he raises his fists to attack, he finds that his arms end in nubs. That his hands are gone. Fear begins to overwhelm him.
  • Mr. Allison, fed up with this nonsense, takes a stretch of rope out of his backpack and sees to it that everyone left in the group (himself, Shachar and Elijah) tie it around their waist. Now secured to each other, the three of them manage to make it past the chapel and down the hall where Sebastian and Flynn disappeared. With Elijah at the front, they continue on to the flight of stairs at the end of the floor and continue up to the next floor. Elijah opens the door to the second floor and passes through the threshold. Suddenly the door slams between Elijah & the group. In an instant, Shachar and Mr Allison are tied to rope that melds into the wall of what seems to be the 1st floor, with no sight of Elijah. Shachar, sick of all of this, cuts herself loose and tries to escape the hospital, with Mr. Allison right behind her.
  • Elijah, now left alone on the 2nd floor, sees red petals strewn about his path and crimson sheets flapping along doorways. He can smell brimstone in his nostrils and in his heart he knows that the Red Lady, the familiar source of his worst impulses, is nearby. He seeks her out, determined to know if she’s responsible for this madness. In a room that is more boudoir than hospital room, he sees her, urging him forward. He fights the urge to surrender to her and loses.
  • Shachar manages to get outside the hospital and is sorely tempted to just leave. But Mr. Allison insists they go back, that they can’t just leave their team members inside. Shachar begins to boil with rage, remembering what the author of the letters has done to her home, to her life. She begins to manifest fire around her, red eyes blazing and horns curling from her forehead. Invigorated with anger, she storms back inside with Mr Allison behind her, determined to bring the whole fucking place down if she has to.
  • Flynn, meanwhile, notices that the sounds of his father’s cruel voice thin the closer he stands to the hospital chapel. Determined to get inside but having no hands, he begins kicking and headbutting the wall, trying to break an opening.
    Bassingbourn church font
  • Sebastian, oddly enough, hears this and comes running to the chapel. Finding Flynn busting his way into it, Sebastian offers assistance. Immediately on gaining entrance to it, Flynn finds his hands have returned and that his father’s voice is completely silenced. Inside, the place is pretty austere. A small stone fount stands behind only a good eight pews. But the water is free of any dirt, dust or material. Sebastian notices that the disembodied whispers have also stopped within the chapel.
  • Elijah, lured in by the Red Lady’s flirtations, begins to fight it even more ferociously. Until he pushes himself off of her and discovers that he’s on the first floor of the hospital, hearing Flynn beating a wall. He gathers himself up and apprehensively makes his way there, discovering Flynn’s entrance and Sebastian there with him. He attempts to enter but finds himself nauseous and repulsed. The voices and visions are certainly gone. But he has no interest in joining them within the chapel itself.
  • Shachar and Mr Allison too now approach the gathered group. Flynn wonders if the holy water in the fount has a counteracting effect upon ‘whatever this place does to people’ and begins dousing his head with the water, then filling up two gold goblets with it. Sebastian fills his water canister with it. Mr Allison does as well. The Lucifuge prefer to stay outside in the hall.
  • Armed now with what they hope is a viable weapon against the architect of this madness, the group trudges up the stairs together, with little to no interference, until they do make it to the 2nd floor. There, at the far end of that floor, Elijah manages to see two blurry figures through broken hall windows.
  • They surge into the conference room and find a woman who looks almost exactly like Ruth, holding a knife to Ruth’s throat. Barely blinking an eye, the woman cuts Ruth from ear to ear and proclaims herself the rightful vengeance of Matthew Borgia and all the other vampires the cell has killed. She tells the cell that she is Ruth’s sister, Rachel, and that she’s the reason Ruth became a hematologist in the first place. She then dramatically mocks her sister’s bleeding out. Flynn wastes no time and attacks Rachel, pummeling her with his stone-tough fists while she laughs. She swipes Flynn away like a toy and is immediately shot at by Elijah. Stumbling back, she takes only moments to heal the wounds.
  • Sebastian jumps on top of a table and sprays her with holy water. She immediately reacts, repulsed by it and Flynn takes the opportunity to grab Rachel by one arm. He yells out “Stake this motherfucker!” and Mr Allison grabs Rachel’s other arm. Hissing and disoriented, Rachel attempts to fight back. But Shachar, handed a piece of long sharp wood, knows exactly where to strike and pierces Rachel’s heart with the haphazard stake, putting her immediately into torpor. Their adversary is completely comatose.
  • “Guys!” Sebastian yells out and they all turn from Rachel to see flies pouring into the room in a massive swarm, spilling out of vents and windows and covering Ruth’s lifeless body from head to toe. Slowly Ruth’s body begins to stand. “We are legion” it proclaims. “Beg and your death will be brief” it shouts before throwing Sebastian across the room.
  • Swarm demonElijah attempts to fire upon the fly-swarmed corpse, his bullets merely being spat out by the writhing, wriggling mass. Flynn uses one of the goblets of holy water, splattering the creature with what may as well have been battery acid. Shachar goes on the offensive, stabbing it every time the holy water scatters the flies and bares Ruth’s form. It staggers back, profoundly shocked that they’ve discovered this power. Sebastian, a bit bloody and busted up, opens his water container and douses Ruth’s entire body with its contents. The demon screams and Mr. Allison takes his chance to remove Ruth’s head from her shoulders.
  • With a wet rip, it is done and the flies scatter from their swarm. They have defeated a demon and its vampire agent. They are battered, exhausted and mentally worn down. But they have won.
  • The ceiling above them begins to rattle and fly upwards into the sky. They look above and see a large swirling storm, the ceiling and parts of the walls shooting up into its eye. They rush to get out, Flynn taking Rachel’s staked body “for later” and Mr. Allison taking Ruth’s head in his holy water-soaked shirt.
  • They quickly dash down the halls and into the main stairwell as pieces of the hospital begin to snap apart and ascend into the sky’s swirling mass. With seconds to spare, they emerge from the hospital lobby and back out into the outside to see most of the building disappear into the air, with only the chapel left behind.
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The Aegis Kai Doru Heist

Characters: Flynn, Elijah, Conrad

  • Three weeks have passed since the incident at St. Christopher Hospital. Flynn and Elijah have been in discussion during that time, strategizing how better the cell might arm itself against vampires. And, given the past events, against demons. They simply do not have the right equipment to hit back at the supernatural effectively. Thankfully they aren’t alone in the pursuit of this solution.
  • At Mickey’s Gym, Mickey Sheehan and Cesar Contadino are having drinks with a very old friend. An old hunter friend named Nicodemus Hall. As the shots stack up and the beer bottles get killed, Nicodemus begins complaining about his days in Aegis Kai Doru, a hunter compact especially known for its collection of holy and powerful relics. Nicodemus half mutters that he wishes someone would just take some of that shit from Aegis Kai Doru and actually do something with it. Mickey, struck by the idea, calls up Flynn and invites him to have drinks with them. Cesar, seeing where this is going, gives Conrad a call and invites him to same.
  • The lads show up to see Mickey, Cesar and Nicodemus three sheets to the wind. Mickey insists that Nic tell the boys what he told them. Nicodemus then tells the story; that a shipment of relics, meant for Aegis Kai Doru vaults, is be transported from Denver to Ft. Collins two days from today. And that he believes a hunter cell, that would actually use the equipment, would benefit from having—and exploiting—that information.
  • The next day, more than a little hungover, Flynn, Mickey, Elijah and Conrad begin to formulate a plan of attack. Per Nicodemus’s intel, they know that the Aegis Kai Doru will be driving two armored cars up Interstate 25, stopping only for fuel at a designated gas station at I-25 and County Road 44.
  • Conrad figures they can stun and stow away the gas station attendant and that he can pose as the attendant in their stead. That will allow them a lookout and contact (Conrad will update them both via phone texts) so that Elijah and Flynn can subdue and incapacitate the armored car drivers and their likely passengers. They will then drive the two armored cars away from the gas station, recover the cargo and either dump the cars at a distance or stow the cargo in Flynn’s truck.
  • They use the 48 hours before implementation to gather necessary gear: balaclavas, dual use stun guns (range and proximity — two charges apiece), zip ties, rubber gloves, flak jackets…and for the nastiest weapon in their arsenal… water balloons, bleach and ammonia to make concentrated chloramine gas. Cache 2561610304
  • The deadline for readiness soon passes. The three of them, in Flynn’s truck, drive up to the designated gas station. A teenager or male in his early twenties is manning the counter, which is protected by plexiglass and a small exchange slot. Flynn and Conrad enter the store, attempting to look like two separate customers.
  • Conrad asks the attendant if he can help him find the Mountain Dew he’s looking for. The attendant, wearing a name tag with RICHARD sprawled across it in bold letters, doesn’t leave his counter. He merely gestures to the back. Conrad, still insisting that he can’t find it, manages to get Richard out from behind the counter. Before he can blink, Flynn has tased him and they managed to gag and bind him before putting him in a storage closet far in the back. Conrad takes his position behind the counter while Flynn and Elijah leave, driving a half mile away from the site to wait.
  • An hour ticks by and the arrival armored cars is growing imminent. With only 30 minutes to go, Conrad notices a police car pull up into the store parking lot. Nervous, he smiles at the cop as he enters. The officer grabs some potato chips and a soda and then, noticing that Conrad isn’t the usual guy he sees behind the counter, asks Conrad if he’s new. Conrad answers that yes, he only finished training a day ago but they assigned him to take over Richard’s shift today. The cop then asks Conrad if he thinks the town baseball team has a shot at the nationals. Conrad agrees and the cop smiles, thanks Conrad and then leaves with his soda and chips.
  • Conrad sees the cop talking on his radio and grows increasingly nervous the cop knows something. He quickly informs Flynn and Elijah who tell him to just wait and see. Conrad, not wanting to gamble, decides to use his own phone to call in a major four car accident 2 miles north of the gas station’s location. When the operator asks for his information, he hangs up.
  • The cop, predictably, answers a call on his radio, puts his hat on and charges out of the gas station with lights and sirens blaring. Now with the cop hopefully occupied, Conrad sits back, a little more at ease.
  • 20 minutes later, the schedule time rolls up. And with it, two armored cars. Conrad immediately texts Flynn and Elijah and they gun it back towards the station. Flynn slows down just outside of the station parking lot and pulls up slowly and methodically to one of the pumps. Two men have emerged from each armored car, likely the drivers doing the filling. Their passengers also exit the cabs. Flynn wastes no time and tases the closest Aegis Kai Doru against near him. Elijah flanks the other car and fires his range taser darts at the passenger. Conrad quickly moves past Flynn and attempt to take out the secondary car.
  • Eventually they manage to get all four Aegis Kai Doru personnel tased and ziptied. They then cautiously approach and open the cargo area of each car. Inside they briefly manage to see a man shackled by wrist and ankle, with cases of cargo sitting behind him. Conrad quickly throws his chloramine balloons into the cargo area of one car, then does it to the other. Flynn orders them to begin taking off from the gas station location, in case the police officer returns. They agree to rendezvous on a westbound road headed to Berthoud, a town north of Longmont.
    Wwface* Conrad, headed to the rendezvous point, immediately feels his car bounce violently. He stops for just a moment and listens. Without warning, a huge clawed hand tears through the back of the cab, shredding the metal completely. Conrad, scared out of his wits, scrambles to get out. It’s a monstrous beast, a hairy creature with claws almost as long as its hand. He quickly reaches for the stash of chloramine balloons and, with his other arm covering his mouth, lobs several of them into the cab and at the new gaping hole. Eventually the violence stops and Flynn & Elijah park behind him.
  • Convinced that the Aegis Kai Doru are using werewolves to guard their treasure, Conrad insists they take the cases now and leave the trucks behind. Flynn agrees and the three of them carefully manage to get all eight cases of relics out of the armored cars and into Flynn’s flatbed. They take off for Boulder and Mickey’s Gym.
  • Once at Mickey’s Gym, they start opening some of the cases. Elijah notices that each case is marked with an Enochian rune and vocalizes his fear that the cases may be trackable. Conrad decides to empty each case and then loads the cases into Flynn’s truck again. He drives to The Hill outside CU Boulder and dumps each case in front of various fraternity houses, returning once it’s done to help Flynn and Elijah take the eight cases to Elijah’s cabin in the mountains.
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The Sacrificial Manse
In which an inhuman discovery is made

Characters: Conrad, Fae, Sebastian

  • Late one Sunday afternoon Conrad gets a call from his Union Rep, Cesar Contadino. Cesar tells Conrad he has a small mission he’d like him to take up, in exchange for previous Union support and equipment. Cesar’s been hearing rumors that there might be something up with the hairstylist and hunter known as Sebastian Grendulsun… something particularly devious if the rumors are to be believed. He asks if Conrad would be kind as to shadow Grendulsun that evening. Conrad reluctantly agrees. About 01
  • Conrad then spends most of the evening hanging around Pearl Street, biding his time until he knows Sebastian’s hair salon, A Cut Above, closes. While there, he runs into Diederik Michaelis, an author and hunter of the supernatural that Conrad has more than a passing admiration for. He puts two and two together that the 19 year old girl with Mr. Michaelis is his daughter AND the girl Conrad encountered very briefly at Blackmoon Farm. Exploiting a golden opportunity, Mr. Michaelis is anxious to see Fae learn the ropes in the hunting world and suggests Fae tag along with Conrad on his next assignment. Conrad, looking to get in the professor’s good graces, tells him that he’s tracking someone that afternoon as a matter of fact and that Fae is welcome to join him. Fae’s father has no reservations about this and, leaving Fae with Conrad, takes Fae’s younger brother off to get a haircut at A Cut Above.
  • Late afternoon eventually falls and with it come the exiting salon employees for the day. They say their goodbyes and head off to the cars, leaving Sebastian upstairs to finish paperwork. While Fae and Conrad are struggling to chit chat, a terrified young boy around 8 years old runs for his life and bumps into Conrad. “Get them away from me! Please mister!” he yells and darts into A Cut Above’s backdoor.
  • Sebastian is startled by the noise and descends from the upstairs office to see what’s going on.
  • A few minutes later two men in suits approach the back alley, asking Conrad if he’s seen anyone fitting the boy’s description. Conrad says he hasn’t and asks what it’s about. The gentlemen tell him that the boy is part of a school field trip and has wandered off. “We just want to get him back to the bus as soon as possible”. Conrad, curious that school chaperones are dressed like Wall Street traders, asks if they have a card. They hand him one and he tells them between cigarette drags that if he sees the kid, he’ll call their number immediately. The men leave.
  • Once they’re sure the men are out of earshot, Fae and Conrad then sneak into A Cut Above. Sebastian confronts them all with the overhead lights and the boy panics, trying to escape. Fae manages to calm him down long enough to ask him what he’s running from. To which the boy replies “They have my sister! They were going to kill me and I had to get away! Please help me! They have my sister!” before breaking into sobs. Fae comforts him and asks him his name: Randall, he tells her between tears.
  • Fae, having worked with Sebastian before in the Sewer Billy incident and at Blackmoon Farm, introduces Conrad to him. The three agree that they need Randall’s help locating where his sister is being held.
  • Sebastian offers to drive and, after closing the shop, takes them through some of the posher neighborhoods off Mapleton Ave. Eventually Randall nails down the house, a large two story manse with an extremely high privacy fence.
  • Sebastian parks the car and while Fae stays with Randall, he and Conrad approach the house and knock. A man in a shirt and tie answers, asking what they want. Conrad says that he’s a private investigator, looking into the disappearance of a missing child. The man curtly responds that there are no children in his house, that it’s shared only by him and his roommates and abruptly closes the door.
  • Unable to get the man to answer the door again, Sebastian and Conrad creep about the house, looking for a sneakier way in. They eventually find a window on the side of the house and manage to pry it open. Scoping out the rooms and avoiding what seems to be people inside the house, Conrad and Sebastian find a bedroom with what looks like heavy foot traffic to its closet. Unfortunately their movement has alerted two individuals to their presence.
  • Two men enter the bedroom and a fight begins. Sebastian manages to down and cut the throat of one of them while Conrad manages to shoot the other. While Conrad goes off to check on any further obstacles, Sebastian quickly checks to see if there’s a secret passage to this closet. And sure enough there is.
    Dungeon
  • He descends down a now revealed stairwell into a stone basement area that stinks of urine, feces and blood. Lit with dim light, he manages to make out 2 cages where eight children, most of them wasted and thin, are being kept. Sebastian asks if any of them know a Randall and one girl, older than most those with her, exclaims “Yes! That’s my little brother. I’m Mary.”
  • Fae meanwhile has heard gunshots and tells Randall to stay in the car while she investigates. She approaches the front door but is threatened by a man with a gun to get into the house. She attempts to disarm but fails and after he threatens to shoot her if she doesn’t do what he says, she complies.
  • Conrad meanwhile has shot and killed another armed man in the house. He manages to sneak out of sight of the fourth man, who has Fae by gunpoint. Then flanks him such that as Fae passes by the doorway Conrad is up against, the fourth man’s back is exposed to Conrad. He yells for Fae to duck and shoots the man point blank in the back of the skull, killing him instantly.
  • Sebastian meanwhile has gathered the children together and made a mental note of what looks to be a blood caked altar not far from their cages. He shepherds them all up the stairs and out the window he and Conrad entered from. Conrad and Fae soon join them.
  • Mary and Randall are reunited and the children are driven to Sebastian’s place, where they will stay until their parents are located. Fae offers to stay with Sebastian until the children are returned to their homes. Conrad contacts Cesar and fills him in on the complete story. Cesar tells Conrad the Union will do its best to clean up all evidence but that it will come at a price.
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Drag Light Chapel and Some Pyromania

Characters: Sebastian, Flynn, Fae, Shachar, Elijah

Two weeks after the Aegis Kai Doru heist, Noah requests everyone’s presence at the After Ours Clinic. Conrad is unfortunately unreachable but Sebastian, Flynn, Elijah, Shachar and Fae show up. Flynn takes the opportunity to ask Noah if Rachel, the vampire they secured from the demonic hospital about a month back, is still being kept in the After Our morgue. She most definitely is, Noah tells him.

Once everyone is assembled in the hospital conference room, Noah proceeds to tell them that he unfortunately must begin severing contact from the cell, as questions are being raised in hunter circles and among local law enforcement that Noah would rather not have any answers to. His connection to the cell is starting to threaten his clinic’s non-hunter funding and he needs those donors to keep the place running. And any suspicions that he might be involved with a vigilante group that’s been making headlines lately is something he’d just as soon avoid.

He does however have a parting gift for everyone: the safehouse he promised them all when Natalie Eaton was meant to evaluate them. “It’s a site that should be very familiar to you, Elijah. It took me a lot of maneuvering through the real estate market and a couple of cashed-in favors… but I managed to purchase the Drag Light Chapel property from our old Gatekeepers days.” He then hands the keys to Elijah and tells them to abuse the place in good health.

Desert chapel buildingThe cell drives pretty far east out of Boulder, along Independence Road until Elijah finally leads them to a tiny, barely existent road. Down the hidden path and amidst very tall grass, they find what looks like an abandoned concrete house. Only on closer inspection do they see the chapel… sporting flying buttresses, high arches and— despite the graffiti—still proudly displaying its large stained glass window.

Pulling up to the west side of the chapel, everyone piles out and take a hard look at their new home. Elijah unlocks the main door, and after briefly inspecting the main entrance, invites the rest of them in. Inside they find broken pews, dust and dirt and the very old remnants of what might’ve been squatters. Shachar manages to find a secret hiding spot within the chapel’s main altar and Flynn & Fae locate descending stairs and a large enough basement area for storage and/or training. Back on the main floor, Elijah locates one of the two offices he used to stay in during the Gatekeeper days.

Mr. Allison soon pays a visit, bringing Ruby’s head, brining in formaldehyde. Giving the head to Flynn, he then discreetly asks Shachar for a private moment of her time. Away from prying ears, he tells Shachar that while he was in possession of Ruby’s head, he was beset for several nights with nightmares involving a red-haired man and herself. “With fire all around you both” he tells her. “I don’t know what it means, exactly. But it had something major to do with you.” Shachar, sure that it was her brother in Mr. Allison’s dream, seems uncertain as to what this means. But thanks Mr. Allison just the same. He nods and wishes them all good luck in the new digs.

Once everyone has a good lay of the land and has settled in a little, plans are made for cleaning up the place.

After four or five hours of clearing debris and sweeping out garbage, the gang is exhausted. Flynn though insists that Ruby’s sister, Rachel, be recovered from Noah’s morgue and brought to Drag Light, as well as the stash of relics and goods taken from the Aegis Kai Doru heist. Soon they’ve coordinated with Mickey Sheehan to have the heist crates delivered and with Noah to have Rachel brought to the main door.

Flynn manages to get both Elijah and Sebastian to chain and restrain Rachel to the chapel altar before he pulls the wooden stake from out of her heart. Immediately the vampire gasps and tries to jerk up. Flynn climbs on top of her and, with his trench knife from the heist, proceeds to batter her repeatedly about the head, pausing only to ask her where her master is. Rachel, covered in blood, begins to laugh and threaten the whole group. Flynn shrugs and continues hammering her face. When that doesn’t achieve the results he wants, he begins pulling out fingernails. Rachel finally submits and tells them, almost gloating, that their nest is in Denver at the nightclub called The Church. And that none of them will ever leave it alive. Flynn manages to land several more brutal hits before slamming the stake back into Rachel’s chest.

Bloodletting stake1Elijah, unswayed by Rachel’s threats, starts asking the cell for a plan of attack. Flynn and Shachar agree that the best bet is to scope the place out first before storming in. Fae volunteers that she can make a gasoline-kerosene mixture for a low flashpoint, super-fast fuel for burning the place down with. Flynn agrees that Fae’s weapon is their best best, as long as it’s ignited after innocent civilians have been terrified out of the place. The group manages to scavenge just enough gasoline and lamp kerosene for Fae to make a gallon jug’s worth of fuel. Fae retires to the basement to start the mixture and after a couple more hours, emerges with it complete. The gang locks up Drag Light Chapel and heads towards the Denver nightclub to kill all vampires.

They arrive close to 10pm or 11. Flynn decides that he and Fae will go inside while Elijah and Shachar opt to stay in the parking lot. (Continued in ‘The Inferno’)

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Of Caverns, Confessions and Butchers

Characters: Fae, Conrad, Mr. Allison, and introducing Philip

One week before Drag Light Chapel and Some Pyromania and two weeks after the events of The Sacrificial Manse, Conrad is contacted by Cesar Contadino and told that two hunters have gone missing in the mountains outside of Chautauqua Park, presumably near Gregory Canyon. Cesar asks Conrad to investigate, recommending he bring the Ascending One girl he worked with last time. When Conrad grumpily wonders out loud that apparently two people is just enough of a army to get killed, Cesar acquiesces and tells him that he’ll provide a formidable back-up to Conrad’s task. “Gather up the girl” he says “and I’ll have someone meet you at the bottom of the nearest trail into the canyon.” “Just someone?” Conrad asks. “Just shut up and be there by noon, Conrad” Cesar snaps before hanging up the phone. Conrad chuckles and puts on some pants.

Conrad shows up at Michaelis Rare Books looking for Fae. She happily agrees to join him. She takes Conrad on her motorcyle to the nearest hiking path into the canyon. As they arrive, they notice the canyon still has a decent spread of snow on it and at the base of the path, a single figure waiting for them. There, standing outside his car, is Mr. Allison, who Fae recognizes as helpful during the vampire raid on Annie Singleton’s house. Dismounting from the bike, Conrad smirks at the idea of one guy for backup. Shaking hands with Conrad and reading the skepticism on his face, Mr. Allison informs them that he’s been hired purely in a support capacity and promises he won’t interfere with the task at hand. Conrad shrugs, slightly dubious, and begins trekking up the path.

They make their way, slowly but surely, through the path and eventually reach a point at which the worn gravel veers off from Gregory Canyon, heading further south. As they leave the trail and hike through the unmarked mountain terrain, they soon notice the tattered and cut police tape marking off the area where the two hunter bodies were found. Conrad decides this is a good time to put his rifle together and after a few deft movements, has it fully assembled and ready. Through his scope, he manages to see what looks to be a very small cave entrance several meters up the side of the mountain. Getting there looks damn difficult… that is until he thinks he makes out a few outcroppings that, in the wrong light or looking up from below, would almost seem to melt into the mountain’s wall. He shoulders his rifle and tells the other to follow him.

After a few cautious hops and even more careful steps, the three of them manage to make it up the side of the mountain and finally stop right at the mouth of the small cave. Flashlights on, they trudge in.

The cave is very small and narrow at first, most of it navigated through low ceilings and tight walls… until, suddenly and without any natural evolution, the ceiling slopes up to normal human height. The walls gape wider, almost allowing two people to move through them side-to-side. The darkness, though, grows thicker the deeper they venture, almost threatening to swallow their lights whole.

Apprehension mounts. Immediately, as if answer to their paranoia, the three of them hears very fast footfalls, growing louder and louder.

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