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Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

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  • [3e IC] Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

    The break-in, as the mayor explained to you, happened at three in the morning on Monday. An unknown thief (or thieves) entered the Native American Cultural Center, stole a priceless Native American artifact, and vanished without a trace of evidence. The police were called within the hour, and arrived almost immediately. It's now six at night, the police having taken over half a day to come up empty-handed and inform the mayor. The mayor in turn immediately offered the case to your team, the Emerald Tower.

    The cultural center is already surrounded by makeshift stages, tents, and stalls, the blaring electric guitars and deep bass of three different bands resounding across the open field reserved for the Sound and Fury music festival. Underscoring the music is the constant buzz of the crowds, the tantalizing scents of the food vendors, and the raw heat of hundreds of bodies in one spot. The path to the cultural center itself is almost disconcertingly empty, the festival-goers far more interested in the flashy bands than the museum's stuffy exhibits.

    The cultural center staff were quick to usher you in, an aging security guard giving you a very skeptical look-over before hastily leading you away from the reception desk. You are treated to a view of several exhibits on Native American history and culture during the long walk while a museum security guard leads you from the front of the museum to the back of the second story, pausing in front of a door labeled J. Salinas. "Professor Salinas, your so-called heroes are here." the guard spits as he shoves opens the heavy oaken door to the old man's office and immediately leaves. The door swings opens with a loud creak and a rush of air thick with the smell of old books as the middle age man behind the desk within looks up and beckons you in. "Ah, the Emerald Tower! Welcome, welcome! Please excuse Albert, he's been in a bad mood ever since one of our night guards failed to show up last night, then the theft just made things worse."

    "The thieves didn't take much", he explains, "but the star piece of our exhibit, a statue called the Fire of the Sun and Moon, was stolen last night. The police came through and investigated the scene, but it felt like all they did was poke at the glass case and fast-forward through the security camera footage", the professor sighs. "I'm sure they'll get to the bottom of this eventually, but we need that statue back for the exhibition. Please, if there's anything I can do to help your investigation let me or a guard know. We really must have the statue back before the big concert here on Friday."

  • #2
    Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

    (OOC: Hero Point: 1 Condition: Alert.)

    Despite the seriousness of the situation, Neutron was secretly pleased that the center was rather empty while the Sound and Fury festival was going on outside and the team's arrival to the crime scene went unnoticed. The last thing he needed tonight was publicity from rabid fans demanding more selfies of him. His agent would disagree but thankfully she was not here and he recently closed a deal to voice act in his own animated series on Netflix so more self promotion was not on the agenda.

    The price of fame, i guess.

    He saw that Miss Titan had already arrived, fashionably early of course but it was no big deal. Neutron nodded in polite greeting to her and merely stood where he was and addressed Salinas.

    "We will do what we can to retrieve this statue, Professor Salinas." Neutron said in his deep voice. "I can understand your urgency on this matter but i must ask though, did the ECPD found any signs of forced entry at all and was anything else, no matter how minor, stolen as well? It would indicate that the thief or thieves knew specifically what they were after."
    Last edited by Shadow Mask; 3rd July 2018, 08:09 PM. Reason: Fixing the time warp.

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    • #3
      Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

      Miss Titan
      HP:1
      Condition:Normal

      Originally posted by Nunya B View Post
      "The thieves didn't take much", he explains, "but the star piece of our exhibit, a statue called the Fire of the Sun and Moon, was stolen last night. The police came through and investigated the scene, but it felt like all they did was poke at the glass case and fast-forward through the security camera footage", the professor sighs. "I'm sure they'll get to the bottom of this eventually, but we need that statue back for the exhibition. Please, if there's anything I can do to help your investigation let me or a guard know. We really must have the statue back before the big concert here on Friday."
      Heather extends her hand to greet the middle-aged professor and with a warm smile says, "Hello, Dr. Salinas, I'm very sorry to hear about the stolen statue. I'm Miss Titan of the Emerald Tower as you already know. My colleagues will be here shortly to observe the crime scene. If you don't mind, I'd like to look around for just a few minutes until they arrive. I'll save the security footage for when my team can jointly view it. Lot's of eyes are better than one pair. Is there anything else I should know before I begin my walk-through?"

      Miss Titan moves slowly about the room. She is not trained with the keen eye of a professional investigator and feels out of her element. I can't wait for the others to show. I'm feeling a little overwhelmed.


      I'll include a perception roll. I realize it's not as good as an investigation roll under these circumstances, but it's all I've got. Here it is: Cultural Center Perception Roll #1: 1D20+6 = [6]+6 = 12
      Lol...I was typing this as Neutron posted. Oh well.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

        Brimstone, the Devil Spawn
        Hero Points: 1
        Condition: Normal.


        Brimstone's figure was concealed in the voluminous folds of a thick woolen great coat purchased from the Angie's Army Surplus down by the Pier, underneath was a worn Emerald City Community College hoodie, the hood was drawn up and capped with a battered Osprey's ball cap. Despite his outer wear, it still didn't conceal his smoldering eyes, the smoke curling up past the brim of the hat.

        Rivera had convinced him to join the Tower and while their sponsors, at first, hesitant to include such a polarizing figure in their team, he had proven himself to them, and his teammates. If anything his demonic resilience made him the favorite punching bag of some of Emerald City's biggest villains. Whatever, what were they going to do, break his nose, and damage his boyish good looks?

        He withdrew a crumpled pack of Marlboro's, tapped one out, and held the pack out to Roseann, he crooked a toothy grin. "Sometimes you gotta go with your gut, I got $50 on the missing guard being involved. Maybe we go talk to him, while the respectables," he looked at Neutron, Titan & Scarlet, "schmooze the Professor and get the low down."

        He inhaled deeply, and as he did, the tip of the dangling cigarette flared to life with an eerie green flame.

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        • #5
          Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

          From the corner of his eye, Neutron saw "Brim" lit a cigarette with an aspect of his otherworldly (Neutron was not totally comfortable with the term demonic) powers and suppressed the urge to do a facepalm. Was he merely showing off? Neutron seriously doubted it. For as long as he had known him, Brim had more integrity, although of a rough around the edges sort, in his clawed pinky than most people have in their whole bodies.

          Still they have a job to do though the investigation into the stolen statue might become difficult. Despite his power, Neutron was not a detective and felt he would cause more harm than good but he saw no reason to let Salinas find out about his inexperience.

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          • #6
            Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

            Gamemaster

            Originally posted by Supernaturalist View Post
            Heather extends her hand to greet the middle-aged professor and with a warm smile says, "Hello, Dr. Salinas, I'm very sorry to hear about the stolen statue. I'm Miss Titan of the Emerald Tower as you already know. My colleagues will be here shortly to observe the crime scene. If you don't mind, I'd like to look around for just a few minutes until they arrive. I'll save the security footage for when my team can jointly view it. Lot's of eyes are better than one pair. Is there anything else I should know before I begin my walk-through?"
            "It's a pleasure, Miss Titan" the professor smiles and returns a firm handshake, "and you're certainly welcome to look around. The exhibit with the Fire of the Sun and Moon is on the second floor right by the main stairway. Our night guard for that wing, a young Hekawi man named John, was missing last night so we don't have any clue what happened. It's got our chief watchman quite irate, the boy's skipped work before and this is the last straw."
            The exhibit is filled with glass cases with Hekawi artifacts ring the gallery and at the center a large empty glass case stands by a pair of plaques. A nearby photograph of the statue's excavation on Angel Island shows two dirt-covered men holding a gold and bone statue of two bird-like humanoids lifting a golden sun above themselves.

            Originally posted by Shadow Mask View Post
            "We will do what we can to retrieve this statue, Professor Salinas." Neutron said in his deep voice. "I can understand your urgency on this matter but i must ask though, did the ECPD found any signs of forced entry at all and was anything else, no matter how minor, stolen as well? It would indicate that the thief or thieves knew specifically what they were after."
            "Oh, of course, of course" the professor replies, "but they didn't find a thing. All the doors and windows were shut tight and locked, our security system claims nothing opened that shouldn't have, and all the cameras showed was the statue vanishing. I've had our curators doing inventory, and nothing else seems to have been stolen at all."

            Originally posted by Ghost of Krypton View Post
            "Sometimes you gotta go with your gut, I got $50 on the missing guard being involved. Maybe we go talk to him, while the respectables," he looked at Neutron, Titan & Scarlet, "schmooze the Professor and get the low down."
            "Ah", Salinas cuts in, "if you're looking for John Deer, he's room thirty-seventy in the Big Oak apartments just to the west of here. He was out when the police checked, but he might be back by now."



            Originally posted by Plaque
            The Fire of the Sun and Moon is unique for being native Hekawi art dating back to the 18th century while also incorporating Spanish text, making it easily the first example of colonial influence on native art. The native Hekawi and Spanish both translate to the same poem:
            In timeless time, let black blood rest
            Our peoples held in corrupted nest, sleeping
            through forgotten days
            Paths all turned to trackless ways, feathers
            falling from their wing
            Though winters never turn to spring, man and
            beast must both lend eye
            Standing vigil for the sky.
            Originally posted by Plaque
            The Fire of the Sun and Moon appears related to a story told by Hekawi elders:
            “In the time of our father’s father, allfather Armunatas and his wife Faloshenka the river mother looked down to see man and beast in their earthly domain, living in harmony. Pleased, the gods decided to share their knowledge by sending a child as an emissary, and came together where the mountains met the river in an emerald valley. But they quarreled over what gift to share, and whether they were best deserved by man or beast. In the end, they sent two brothers, each half-man and half-beast, and each bringing a gift: Nimuatu the Kestrel shared strength from the earth ruled by his father, and his brother Maquami the Owl carried all the knowledge gathered along the entire length of the river by his mother. Given freedom to seek out the deserving, the brothers brought strength and wisdom to the Hekawi and all the clans of the hills, and carried the peoples’ thanks back to their parents in the heavens. Only one place was forbidden to the brothers, the island domain of another god where the allfather had caged a hungry creature of darkness. But a blackbird came to the brothers and whispered that they were children of the gods—were they not welcome in any god’s home? Emboldened, but fearful of their parents’ wrath, the brothers drew clouds across the sky to hide them as they journeyed to the forbidden island…and were never seen again. The clouds created by the brothers still hang heavy in the sky of the valley. It is said the rain is the tears of their mother weeping for her missing children and the thunder is their wrathful father planning his punishment his sons’ return. Thus do the Hekawi know that the strength and wisdom of the people is a gift from the gods, and to be wary of the blackbird’s caw, a warning against pride and forbidden places.”


            OOC: I'll be treating the Perception checks at the crime scene as a Team Check so if somebody gets the same (or lower) result you did but notices something you didn't, that's what's going on.
            As a side note, nobody in the party has Investigation or Technology. This won't make solving the theft impossible.

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            • #7
              Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

              Morningstar

              HP: 1
              Status: Normal

              Morningstar gingerly accepted a cigarette, though she wasn't quite sure what she was going to do with it. Smoking had been her mother's habit more than hers, and asking Brimstone for a light seemed - she glanced at the sickly green glow at the end of his cigar - ...unhealthy. Still, she got the sentiment.

              She liked Brimstone. It was sort of nice not being the only one who was a little...out of place in a superhero group. She'd been feeling more than a bit disoriented and out of her element for the past month since she'd joined the team. For christ's sake, less than a year ago she'd been squatting in an abandoned trailer eating shoplifted instant noodles. Now here she was in a respectable-looking historian guy's office, preparing to investigate a crime alongside motherfucking Neutron. It was too weird, almost surreal. Going to track down a security guard with a demon-man felt...well, not less weird, but a more familiar sort of weird, at least.

              Morningstar settled on twirling the cigarette in her gauntleted fingers as the others talked for the time being. "Going to talk to this guy sounds like a solid plan, yeah. A security guard going missing right before the heist is a weird coincidence, even if he has skipped work before. And...you said he was Hekawi, too? Hm." She frowns for a moment, considering something. "We should see if we can find him at his apartment. Or some sign of where he went, anyway." She turns and walks out the door, headed towards the museum exit.

              As she passed by the empty exhibit case, however, she stopped and glanced around. "Mm...guess it can't hurt to give this place a quick look." She doubted she'd be able to see anything that the guards and Miss Titan hadn't already spotted. But then again, she wasn't relying solely on sight.

              She'll be making a Perception check, using her normal senses to check out the area, as well as her Vibration Sense power to feel for anything unusual in the wall, floor or ceiling directly around the case.
              http://roll.coyotecode.net/lookup.php?rollid=209790 1D20+8 = [16]+8 = 24
              Last edited by melonLord; 4th July 2018, 05:37 PM.

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              • #8
                Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                Gamemaster

                Originally posted by melonLord View Post
                As she passed by the empty exhibit case, however, she stopped and glanced around. "Mm...guess it can't hurt to give this place a quick look." She doubted she'd be able to see anything that the guards and Miss Titan hadn't already spotted. But then again, she wasn't relying solely on sight.
                Small symbols drawn in soot on the wall under the security camera catch Morningstar's eye, and her vibration sense detects tiny pockets of water trapped under the edges of the glass case.



                OOC: Expertise: Magic checks may be made regarding the soot symbols. DC starts at 11, but results as high as 25 will yield additional information. This will be handled as a team check.

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                • #9
                  Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                  Brimstone, the Devil Spawn
                  Hero Points: 1
                  Condition: Normal.


                  Gerry grinned a feral smile, Rose knew him well enough to know it's meaning, however, given his misshapen jaw most would feel threatened by his horrific fangs. He watched as she moved towards where Ms Titan was inspecting the display case, he took a long stride shrugging his bone encrusted shoulders, "I knew a Hekami shaman," a low rumble, perhaps a laugh, "least he claimed he was once he was a couple pints in, lived in the Maze under Emerald City." He furrowed his brow as he noted where his partner was looking, soot, small figures. Pictographs, cave drawings, were as old as man, however, he knew, more than most the power that those runes could hold.

                  OOC: Helping out my girl Morningstar with identifying the soot runes she found. Expertise: Magic check to identify Soot Runes at crime scene.: 1D20+10 = [13]+10 = 23.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                    Miss Titan
                    HP:1
                    Condition: Normal


                    Heather looks up from the glass case to see her comrades surveying the room. Lloyd (a.k.a. Neutron) is standing closest to her; and like Heather is mostly engaged in quiet observation. I wonder if he's noticed something I haven't. "Lloyd, I hope you're having more insights than me." She says with a smile.

                    She looks past Neutron to see Roseanne and Brimstone chatting on the other side of the room. It's not surprising to Heather that the two "edgy" metas are conversing among themselves. What have those two have deduced so far I wonder?

                    Heather notices that Scarlet stands alone near the entrance quiet as a mouse, hands clasped together in front of her, eyes scanning the room. Is she praying? We may need some given there's not a CSI professional among us.

                    Heather waits a few more minutes, giving her colleagues time to digest the crime scene a bit longer. Eventually, she raises her voice, "Ok team, Dr Salinas has a security recording ready for us to see. I'd like us all to watch it together. The more perspectives the better." She then turns to the professor. "We're ready when you are, doctor."


                    OOC: I'm not rushing anyone. We can move on to the security video when everyone is finished scrutinizing the room.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                      After speaking a bit more with Salinas, Neutron excused himself to aid in the investigation. He watched the others milling around the display cases and focusing their attention on the one which once held the Fire of the Sun and Moon. He went over to take a closer look. While he lacked the proper experiences of the local police, Neutron knew he had to try to help at least.

                      OOC: Neutron is going to use his Teamwork Advantage to assist in the Team Check:Teamwork Advantage: 1D20+5 = [7]+5 = 12

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                      • #12
                        Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                        Scarlet
                        HP:1
                        Condition: Normal


                        Hands clasped, Evie stood off to the side, nervously scanning the room. This was her first real job, and she wanted to seem useful, but she was the only one on the team who didn't have some sort of super-sense.

                        ... or maybe she did?

                        She glanced around, trying to decide on some sort of authority figure, and settled on Neutron. Tugging him aside, she whispered "Do you want me to try using my power on the case? I might be able to find any hidden damage there." After debating internally for a moment what to mention, she added "...it could be risky though."
                        Last edited by MugaSofer; 5th July 2018, 04:26 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                          Neutron considered Scarlet's suggestion for a moment before answering. He had debated using his energy sense ability to discover what type of energies within the electromagnetic spectrum might have been used if at all but given the time since the robbery had occurred, there would not be enough latent residual energy for him to pick up much less identify.

                          He kept an close eye on Morningstar though. While Brimstone and the others has proven themselves time and again, she was still the wild card. Neutron was one of those who was against the idea of her being included on the team at first but relented after several long talks with the judge who sentenced her. Neutron did understand the need for redemption and she seemed very sincere. So far Morningstar had become quite an effective and honorable crimefighter but Neutron still found himself sometimes on edge when dealing with her.

                          "Risky? How so, Scarlet? If its dangerous to you, i'd advise against it but i will stand by your decision if you want to go on ahead."
                          Last edited by Shadow Mask; 7th July 2018, 11:31 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                            Gamemaster

                            Originally posted by Supernaturalist View Post
                            Eventually, she raises her voice, "Ok team, Dr Salinas has a security recording ready for us to see. I'd like us all to watch it together. The more perspectives the better." She then turns to the professor. "We're ready when you are, doctor."
                            The camera footage, presented via laptop, is remarkably unhelpful for detective work. The camera was mounted in the hallway away from the exhibit, but the angle that allowed it to survey the entire exhibit left it barely able to see the hallway beneath it. The tiny grey-scale feed is too small and too far away from the exhibit to make out details, but it does at least show that nobody was in the room at 2:45. The branches outside can barely be seen moving as a greyish blur and as the feed approaches 2:50, a security guard's distinctive cap marches by at the very bottom of the feed. Minutes pass with nothing moving, then the Fire of the Sun and Moon's case is suddenly empty.

                            Originally posted by Ghost of Krypton View Post
                            "I knew a Hekami shaman," a low rumble, perhaps a laugh, "least he claimed he was once he was a couple pints in, lived in the Maze under Emerald City." He furrowed his brow as he noted where his partner was looking, soot, small figures. Pictographs, cave drawings, were as old as man, however, he knew, more than most the power that those runes could hold.
                            A moment's study is enough for Brimstone to recognize the symbols as a misshapen version Hekawi magic that blinds the senses, locking the eyes and ears into a single instant stretched into eternity. Further examination reveals that the runes are not wrongly scribed, but instead a variation designed to alter the senses of the unliving. A simple hand-gesture and ritual word would have been enough to loop the camera's footage for as long as was needed to carry out the crime. The shaman Brimstone had met had also claimed of fatal weaknesses in the magic, that the eye-sign at the heart of the symbol had vision of its own that was trapped by the magic as well.
                            Brimstone carefully scrapes a little soot off the wall and draws the same eye-sign on his own eyelid. The instant he finishes, his eyelids fly open as a wizened Hekawi man lifts their finger from his eye. The Hekawi elder gently swings a staff covered in massive feathers from side to side as his lips move silently and he runs his soot-black fingers across Brimstone's face. After minutes of careful work, the old man nods and hands a feather from his staff to someone else, someone standing off to Brimstone's left. A moment later the vision ends, leaving Brimstone weary as the soot on his eyelid vanishes into a puff of smoke.
                            Last edited by Nunya B; 7th July 2018, 06:14 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Ghost Town: First Frights (IC)

                              Brimstone, the Devil Spawn
                              Hero Points: 1
                              Condition: Fatigued.


                              As he traced the arcane sigil, he considered the past. It had been almost three years since his death ... his return. He'd devoted that time to hunting down the Brotherhood of the Yellow Sign, his own nature and the nature of his adversaries had opened his eyes to the truth that the occult, sorcery, magic, it was real. Gerald had learned a smattering of these rites from various practitioners, and studied what signs and sigils he could find, and at times learned from shaman and wise men. As with Robert Trapper, drunk and homeless, but gifted with knowledge of the magics and rites of the Hekawi peoples.

                              He shook his head to clear the vision, pointed to the soot sigils on the wall, "A rune meant to cloud or obscure one's senses," he looked over his shoulder, pointing towards the security camera, "in this case the cameras." Another pause as he shook off the fatigue from his vision, "Skilled, practised. Magic doesn't mesh with technology too well, so whoever did this has some finesse, or a ton of experience." He recalled his vision, trying to deduce if he was observing what had happened, or if he'd been observed by the wizened shaman.

                              "There were two, the practitioner who inscribed the runes, and another, a young man, who assisted. A staff, black feathers." He considered the ingredients that would be required, "Likely carried the soot in a medicine bag, we could probably forensics the hell out of the soot, discover what kind of tree it came from, locate where that type of tree grows, but this ain't CSI, that's not gonna happen over the commercial break." He stood up, "Let's take another look around, now that we got an idea of what we're looking for, see if we can find anything else, then go talk to our boy Deer."

                              OOC: I'll eat the Fatigue for now, precious few HP's. One last Perception check and I'm inclined to speak with John Deer, the missing security guard. Perception Check for final survey of the Crime Scene: 1D20+10 = [12]+10 = 22
                              . Not bad!

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