[Mage: the Awakening Actual Play] Endangered Species Episode 5

Posted: April 15, 2012 by pointyman2000 in Actual Play, Articles, Mage: the Awakening, Roleplaying Games, World of Darkness

Yesterday’s game was something of a catch-up session for two players who weren’t able to make it in the past few games, who were thankfully working on the same plotline. This was a decidedly short session, but sufficient to wrap up the plot hooks that they’d been investigating in the first story arc of the campaign. The player characters present for today’s session were Mikaboshi (played by Paulo), Melon Pan (played by Mappy) and Amaya (played by Silver Countess).

The session begins in the Consilium, during Mikaboshi’s report on what they’d discovered with regards to Yasha, the young Free Council mage who murdered his own cabal-mate. Given the information gleaned by Reimu‘s Postcognition spell, they’d discovered that Yasha had an accomplice, a strange sycophant that goes by the name of Mister Lao. Whoever this person was, seemed to know a great deal about mages, but didn’t exhibit any particular powers of his own.

The other mages were obviously bothered by this situation, seeing as one of their own was so quickly affected by such a person. Emma-O insisted that it would be better off to just erase Yasha’s personality and memories from his mind, and reconstructing a new one in it’s place to ensure his loyalty. While Mikaboshi saw no problem with such a solution, the Shaka Foundation objected against such a cruel solution. Amaya stepped in at this point and spoke that the boy need not be killed or mind-wiped at the moment. The important part was that they stop whoever it was that caused Yasha to fall into this situation. Vajra, Yasha’s mentor vouched to restrain his apprentice using any and all means, while the situation was resolved. Only after the cause of the problem was settled will the Consilium decide on Yasha’s fate.

Melon Pan receives a call from one of his contacts from the Police Department, who informs him that they found a facial match. Mister Lao apparently operates a small pawnshop in the middle of one of the seedier neighborhoods in Tokyo. Rather than waste time, the team decides to move in and get more information on Mister Lao. Tenjin, Amaya‘s brother objects to Amaya’s involvement in the investigation, but Amaya tells him that this is her job as a member of the Guardians of the Veil.

Tenjin begrudgingly let’s her go, and the team proceeds to stake out the Pawnshop. For the first few moments nothing seemed to be out of place in the pawnshop. Amaya’s Spirit Sight showed her that many of the items had spirits that were remarkably close to rousing. Rather than wait, she entered the Pawnshop and spoke to Mister Lao. The old man showed no signs of being anything, but upon her mentioning that she felt that the items in the pawnshop had some kind of sentience in them she felt something change.

All three mages present at the time felt an overbearing and overwhelming presence scrutinize them for but a split-second. The presence passed, and Amaya saw a grotesque spirit in the shape of a man, but with a body composed of many eyes appear in her Spirit Sight. It regarded her, unaware that she could see it, as it reached out and plucked Mister Lao’s soul, wrapping it in strange binding threads as it stepped into Mister Lao’s body.

“Tell me then, little girl, what if I told you that you have a powerful ability?”

Amaya deflected the answers, trying to keep herself appearing ignorant, and largely willing. She needed to get the thing to fall complacent, before she stepped out of the store, telling the proprietor that she intended to come back.

The team regrouped, and compared notes. Whatever that spirit was, it was linked to something else… and they were determined to find out what it might be. Thankfully Melon Pan’s Mysterium background came through for them here as he was able to determine that the feeling they all experienced during that soul-transfer that happened to Mister Lao was reminiscent to the resonance of the more powerful spells of the Seers of the Throne.

They decided to spring an ambush of sorts. The next time that the Soul-transfer would take place, Melon Pan would trace the spell back to its originating source, and Mikaboshi and members of the Negoro-Gumi cabal would then stage an attack. They returned after a few days to lend credence to it, and Amaya walked in as the bait, carrying one of the items she’d bought the last time they visited, having used her Spirit Arcanum to rouse its spirit. She came in to ask Mister Lao about it, and waited for the soul-transfer to take place.

The moment the eye-spirit appeared, Melon Pan ran his trace, and sent Mikaboshi and the Negoro-Gumi to their destination, a small, nondescript house in a wealthy Tokyo neighborhood. The strike team arrived and carved through the wards of the place, forcing themselves into the home while Mikaboshi observed from the safety of a car. The moment that one of the Seers appeared in the balcony to fight, Mikaboshi decided to take the initiative, and used his command over Matter to tear the concrete underneath the Seer open and slam it shut the moment that the Seer fell through, killing the Seer instantly.

With the Seers involved in the rite disrupted, the spirit lost its hold on Mister Lao, and was banished back from whatever dark recesses of reality it was from. Amaya left the pawnshop then to meet with the others and discuss what had happened.

With the evidence that the Spirit could have been influencing Yasha through Mister Lao, the Consilium found that an execution would have been too severe. Instead, a compromise was arranged. Yasha would have a Fate spell on him, linked to a powerful Mind spell. Should he ever willingly betray the Consilium, his personality and memories would be erased entirely. Yasha accepted his sentence, and the spell was carried out.

The team won the admiration and gratitude of the Shaka Foundation for their actions, in resolving the Seer matter, they were able to spare the Shaka Foundation a greater loss of face, and Yasha was spared from execution. It would seem that the new Cabal was beginning to make a name for themselves, and the other Cabals were finally starting to take notice.

—-

This closes off the first set of storylines for the Endangered Species campaign. Finally the players are all technically part of the same Cabal (one that has yet to be named) and have a place in Awakened Society. They’re making friends and enemies left and right, and the stage is set for even more interesting situations that will test their resolve from enemies both from within the Consilium and even beyond the fringes of reality as they know it.

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Comments
  1. Hikkikomori says:

    I still vote for Kabuki Krewe or The Party.

    Nice work with the Earthbending, Mikaboshi! Getting a hang of your abilities will be a great advantage now that P2k is throwing Seers at us.

  2. Why is everyone so scared of Seers? Sure they’re scary, but no more scary than the boogeyman we all hang out with in the Consilium.

    • Hikkikomori says:

      Personally, it’s because Seers are not just Mages. But Mages with divine support.

      So even if we are able to kill some of them, that might actually be a part of Their plan.

    • sheimaruen says:

      because they are all pawns of the exarchs. also… Dreams…

      • Hikkikomori says:

        Exactly.

        And the only reason that the Concillium stands a chance is because each Seer faction is competing with one another. So its a god’s will stymying another god’s machinations. And the Concillium inadvertenty capitalizes on this and just acts between the cracks.

        A good analogy, I think, would be COBRA. Solid organization with sheer unlimited resources, but their top executives have their own plans which doesn’t coincide with the others. But if Comm. Cobra, Destro, Serpentor, and The Baroness (incompetent planning aside, and replaced with Divine Insight) ever actually worked together, I don’t think G.I. Joe wouldn have even stood a chance.

        • Hikkikomori says:

          I think this is what he meant — which is surprisingly, shockingly, apt. O_O

          Sweet dreams are made of this
          Who am I to disagree
          I travel the world and the seven seas
          Everybody’s looking for something
          Some of them want to use you
          Some of them want to get used by you
          Some of them want to abuse you
          Some of them want to be abused.

          • Yes, I’m more than aware of the Seer’s “beautiful nightmare and voices of God in dreams.” I still don’t see why I need to shit my panties when I hear “Seer.”

            They’re as much dangerous as any of other Mages from the Diamond Orders who might just end up hating you enough to want you dead (if you’re lucky).

          • Hikkikomori says:

            Hehe. The dreams mean and do nothing. Its just their god’s cellphone.

            But the part of you shitting your underwear is already part of their plan once Seers come into play. There is no longer ‘Free Will’ when Seers are in the equation. Everything is already part of their plan. Even messing up their plan is part of their plan. Everything you do, and will be doing, has already been accounted for and will only contribute to their goals. You’re right that the Seers themselves are useless, its the Exarchs that we should be worried about. That’s why its important to pit the Seers against each other because it takes another god to mess up a god’s plan.

            (And that’s why there are 2 Seer Factions in our current game. Or else, Japan wouldn’t have stood a chance. haha)

            And the fact that P2K tends to water down opponents also reduces their actual threat level. hahaha.

  3. I think at this point it’s easy to mistake the Exarchs for being omniscient, and omnipotent. The fact of the matter is that they’re so far removed from the comings and goings of the fallen world that they won’t be there to micromanage everything. Add the fact that they tend to delegate a lot to the Seers (a contentious lot in and of themselves) and you get the famous fighting chance that the Diamond Orders have.

    So, to put it simply. Exarchs themselves are bad news. Thankfully they’ve got their hands full, and you guys will only have to deal with their lackeys, which are only about as bad as your Diamond Order mage with a few extra toys. Still decent odds as far as the world of darkness is concerned. 😀

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