The characters spend most of the day trapped inside by their vampiric taint, being a little standoffish (‘no we don’t have any more water’), putting loot away, and listening to their neighbors cleaning up storm damage while their neighbors kids play cricket in the quiet street.
It is a quiet day. At least two hours longer than days under the old sun it gets quiet warm and is a little weird as the black sun overtakes the huge red moon in the sky. The characters make plans to drive out to the Samford safe house to retrieve Stix and Isobella’s surviving men.
Toward’s evening Charlotte awakens in a derailed train carriage under Toowong tower. Surrounded by death the aspect of leaves stumbles northwest toward the other awakened through the ruins of toowong until her path is blocked by flooding near the Cat and Fiddle.
While she stands staring at the waters the Belinda brings up Mind’s Reach and the characters voices echo in Charlotte’s head. They’re driving down to pick her up, having sensed her awakening the same way she sensed their presence. However the earlier earthquake seems to have caused a land slip on the south side of the Bardon / Paddington ridge cutting the direct road between Bardon and Toowong. The characters detour along the ridge top toward the city and cut south through Paddinton to find a way around (they should actually have got stuck at more flooding in the valley south of Paddington but maybe they forded it?).
Meanwhile Charlotte and a zombie face off in the gloaming light at water’s edge. Spirit Sense tells her the staring figure isn’t human. It’s threatening demeanor causes her Malevolence to rise. It is the zombie who breaks away. Charlotte chases it down, and (after some experimentation) breaks open its head. The essence rising from the decaying corpse looks tasty.
As the other characters pull up across the water they spot Charlotte kneeling atop the corpse, arms streaked with green as she Devours the tattered remains of its soul. Unfortunately though it goes wrong when she tries to absorb one of the fragments flowing through her into the Tree. Instead the zombie wriggler latches onto her soul, infecting her!
Returning via their detour Evan keeps his eyes ( Spirit Sight) out for victi… ahem… trouble. He spots a couple of vampires racing into a house. A scream comes from within as the awakened pass. They stop and race up the front stairs after the vamps, (Saul throwing Charlotte an uzi and spare clip on the way).
In the back kitchen the leader of a trio of ragged clothed vampires holds a woman up by the throat while a child shrieks and crawls away behind her. The awakened attack. The vampires seem confident at first, trying to grab and bite the newcomers. The leader even takes the time to finish off the woman in his grip before turning on the attackers.
Things go bad very quickly for them however as they get blasted, shot, and sprayed with bullets, cut with knives, and out muscled by those they did manage to grab. Evan catches some stray led from Charlotte’s wild uzi spray, but that seems to be par for the course now for first uses of those guns.
When the weakest of the vamps tries to flee, Belinda and Saul run him down in the back yard and commence Devouring his soul. Charlotte and Evan Devour the leader inside, while Anthony interrogates the vampire he’s holding pinned to the floor.
It seems the trio were squatters from milton turned to vampirism during the long night by ganger types and told to go sick and cause carnage. He didn’t seem to recognize Anthony’s mention of the Dark Priest, but may have clicked on a mention of “a tall pale woman” ( sorry I thought you were describing Marie, in my defense Ulyana is almost three meters tall and completely bald ). Finishing his questions Anthony Devours the vamp.
Unfortunately the human woman has died from her wounds during the fight. Essence leaks upward from her corpse. Belinda picks up the child, who is screaming for his mother, and takes him to another room while Anthony devours the woman’s soul.
While Belinda distracts the child packing some clothes for him etc Saul rummages around looking for mementos the tyke might like to remind him of his former life. He finds some family photos (mother, father, sister, boy) and [something else that I can’t remember]. Belinda and Anthony grab all the non-perishable food from the kitchen cupboards and the characters bail, taking the child out with them to the Belinda’s four wheel drive.
Except that Evan is in the back yard investigating the garden shed. Something is repeatedly lurching against the shed door from the inside. His hand is on the latch to open it when he hears the groaning of several (many?) approaching zombies in the neighboring yards. He retreats to the car and the character’s make like a tree.
Here we end the session.
The Tree is 23/30th of the way to level 3. It has 5 raw essence and 78 essence worth of soul fragments. Err yes those vamps were bloated, double yield sorry, musta been from the long night of rampaging (I used the wrong stat sheet). That many fragments will be enough to pop level three next midnight…
Antony is Anticipatory, with third (almost fourth) stage vampiric taint.
Belinda is Restive, with second stage vampiric taint.
Charlotte is Anticipatory, with second stage vampiric taint and a touch of will depletion.
Evan is Rash, with third stage vampiric taint and some bullet holes.
Saul is Rash, with third (almost fourth) stage vampiric taint and heavily depleted will.
oh yes remind me to be that we’ve pretty much been ignoring the consequences temptation state far too much
Thanks for reading :)