The Flood

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My Eyes Have Pierced the Veil
I'm beginning to fear I may be going mad...

I've begun to be reckless when using Hoyle's tricks in pursuit of my goals... I really did think that there would never be consequences to my little exercises, but now I'm really starting to wonder.

Something went wrong while I was preparing for the trip to the Isle of Ghost's Tears, and I haven't been quite the same since. It was the first time I ever lost a hand to my inner demon. Sure, it was demoralizing, but other than a bit of migraine, I didn't think there was any other consequences, so I didn't pay it no never-mind.

I couldn't have been more wrong. Ever since then, I've felt the demon's presence worming around inside my brain, revealing things to me that I'm pretty sure weren't ever meant to be revealed. Sure, sometimes it's been helpful, and once it nearly got me killed, but for the most part it's been just downright unsettling.

When the captain Pennington-Smythe commissioned dropped our group on the Isle of Ghost's Tears, we encountered what appeared to be an crazy old chinese man on the beach, holding discourse with a crow. The old man definitely gave me the willies. We didn't find anything terribly useful out of him, though, so we explored the rest of the island.

As it turned out, the rest of the island was infested with ghosts, led by the spirit of a jilted Chinese girl who died in the Quake. After some few altercations with the spirits, we found an entrance to a cave with the Seal we were after. I volunteered to climb down the cliffside by rope to survey our prospects.

I must confess, I ran into some trouble and nearly fell down to the crashing rocks below, but I called on my demon as I normally do to bolster my strength. That, I believe, is where it all went wrong. The demon responded to my call, but he was mocking this time, rather than meek. I did manage to get back up to safety, but that's when I started to see things differently.

As I looked at my companions, I felt certain now that none of them were the shapeshifters that have been hunting us on-and-off. Perhaps my earlier hunches about Eddie, Inego, and the batty Chinese fellow on the beach were just pre-cursors to the vision I had now been granted.

Sadly, in addition to granting me some comfort about my allies, the demon has chosen to reveal the true horrors of the world to me, perhaps in an effort to drive me insane.

The old man, for instance, turned out to be a hideous creature and devourer of souls. What's worse is that he knew that he had been revealed. I fear that my demon may have had a hand in that, too. The old man launched himself at me, attempting to devour my soul, and it was only through Willie's enthusiastic attacks and Joe's cunning that we managed to vanquish him.

What's more, the destruction of the devourer of souls had a calming effect on the spirits of the island, allowing us to claim the seal.

After arriving back at Shan Fan, we took pains to inter the monster we killed properly with Sister Lucille, an acquaintance of my companions. We're off now to the Devil's Post Piles, but I can't stop seeing the truth behind the fiction of the world.
Session: Isle of Ghost's Tears - Sunday, Feb 26 2012 from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM
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Hither and Yon
We've just spent the last eight days scurrying back and forth around Shan Fan...

After we got back to the Necessity Alliance, Born-in-a-Bowl led us on some kind of spirit journey... I don't particularly like to recall the details of what I saw, but at least we've discovered how to destroy the Servitor that has taken Rev. Grimme's shape. Apparently we need to kill all thirteen of Grimme's disciples within hours of eachother (otherwise they'll come back, and as my luck would have it, probably worse than ever!)

But nevermind the bad news, the good news is that for some mystical reason or another the thirteen need to convene once a year on the anniversary or their heinous crimes - August 22. Also, there are some spirits bound to the earth in seals shaped like lightning bolts that would be more than happy to help us kill them all.

The nevermind the good news, the bad news is that these spirits are scattered all over the West, require blood sacrifices, and will most likely take us out with Grimme's posse.

We found Willie waiting for us back at the Alliance, so we took him with us to Shan Fan and tell Lacy everything we've found out.

When we found Lacy, Sam Hellman and Roger Pennington-Smythe were with him too, at the Rising Sun Hotel. After cleaning up and taking care of my laundry, our connections in the Explorer's Society told us about four seals (Wailing Hole, Ise of Ghost Tears, and Devil's Pile)in the area of Shan Fan alone! This is terrific news, as we only need seven to be able to deal with Grimme.

Getting the first seal, in the Wailing Hole (which Joe and Molly had already visited for some reason) was ridiculously easy. We were basically in-and-out. Hopefully our luck will hold as we head for the Isle of Ghost Tears next....
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I'm a Good Judge of Character, So Why Doesn't Anyone Listen to Me?
Well, turns out I was right about that Eyes-Like-Fire, fella', just wrong about the shallow grave. By that I mean the hole he tried to bury us in was a pretty deep cave, all full of creepy.

Eyes did a good job of splitting our group up, with me, Molly, Joe, Sho-ta-he, and his new girlfriend going one way; Wei Shou, Inego, Charlie, Willie, and George going another. I was sure I'd never see them again, and - sadly - I almost wish that were the case.

We ran into Wei Shou again soon enough, but the poor bastard was nearly dead on his feet, poisoned and bleeding severely. Not too far away from that we found George and Charlie, in some kind of Unholy Injun' sacrifice performed by the head of the Rattlesnake clan.

Well, full o' righteous rage, we struck down that evil sorceror, and we were about to do the same to that backstabbin' Eyes-Like-Fire, when Sho-ta-he intervened on his behalf. Out of respect for my friend who saved my life in that cave, I didn't kill him, but I wasn't about to take the sights of my iron off him, neither.

Anyway, we rescued that Injun princess - or whatever she is - and the crazy savage decided to reward us with a finger - severed from her own hand! This severed finger supposedly can crawl around on its own and guide us to Sees-Far-Ahead's remains, which are necessary to figure out how to kill Rev. Grimme. And believe me, though it sickened me to see it, it was true enough.

After our encounter, I have to ask myself, where was the rest of the Rattlesnake clan? It bothers me that there might be another group of hostiles haunting my dreams from now on.

The group, with Eyes and a wounded Wei-Shou in tow, returned safely to the Indian mesa. Sadly, because time is of the essence, we left Wei-Shou behind, trusting that Sho-ta-he's friend would nurse him back to health.

We then left the Indian lands, and made it to the local trading post, where we ran into Inego. At least, it seemed like Inego. I tried to warn everybody that he was acting odd, and that we should leave him behind at the first opportunity, but of course nobody listens. They didn't listen to me about Eddie, or Eyes-Like-Fire, either.

Born-in-a-Bowl's finger guided us to a Guardian Angel-run graveyard, and I have to say it was just about the creepiest graveyard I've ever seen. It was nestled in Jehosaphat canyon, and was surrounded by high fence and cannons - cannons, I might add, which faced inwards.

After a few days of recuperation and reconnaisance, the group led a daring midnight raid of the graveyard - we overtook one cannonade while creating a diversion to attract the fire from the other cannons.

Things got pretty hairy in there, too. Joe and Inego covered the backs of me, Sho-ta-he, Weemawe, and Molly; and of course that's when Inego turned into a crazy monster, but Joseph ended up giving him what-for anyhow. The rest of us found Sees-Far-Ahead's skull, but we also uncovered some other of the dear-departed that objected strongly to us liberating his fellow...

Now, with our objective in hand, we're making off to the Necessity Alliance again to see what's next.
Session: Jumpin’ Jehosaphat! - Sunday, Jan 29 2012 from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM
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I Got a Bad Feeling about This
I had a bad feeling when Lacy sent me that telegram asking me to go to Perdition; and not just for the obvious reason. Lacy didn't mention anything about pay, so I figured it must have had something to do with the Stranger.

That kind of figuring always did get me in trouble.

Even though Lacy didn't have anything about the Stranger, I figured I may as well chip in with that Sam Hellman fellow he said needed help finding.

I wanted to set out on the trail right away, but Lacy said I should wait for a half dozen or so of his friends. (Like I need the help!)

Sure enough, they started trickling in, first a likable Injun fellow named Chayote, or something along those lines... Then came a whole gaggle off the trail lookin' like they hadn't eaten for the better part of a month. George, Charley, and Inigo all seemed more or less alright if non-descript, but the others were some of the oddest characters I've ever met.

Joe seems pretty decent - for a damn yankee - and a sure-fine fellow to have my back in a fight.

Wei Shou was pretty quiet, but he seemed capable. I'm sure he'll open up and have more to say in the future.

Of all of them, only Molly gives me the shivers. She doesn't sleep at night, and that just don't seem right. Plus her little gadgets set my teeth on edge whenever I get too close. That, and the fact that Molly loves to reminisce about how such-and-such trinket "blew up that one time" makes me wonder how much asset outweighs liability...

After getting to known one another, Lacy dropped the bomb on me again. Turns out his buddy Sam isn't so much "lost" as "imprisoned on an impenetrable fortress of a hostile nation". No wonder he wanted me to have so much back up.

On the bright side, Lacy arranged for a backdoor on to that fortress island - the Rock. He was also nice enough to arrange for a diversion out front and map of the cells. I'll say this for Lacy: At least he tries giving a fella a fightin' chance when he sends him out on a suicide mission.

Well, things started off pretty smoothly. Captain Reginald took us out at the dead of moonlit night (I'll get back to last bit later.) The night was pretty calm, and we managed to get a loose sewer drain grating. That led us back through the power generator room. Joe made quick work of the one guard left on the cell block, garnering quite of respect from me through his finesse. But, of the nine people in through room, I was the only one who though about checking the guard's pockets for keys.

In the cell block, we found four poor souls and a corpse. We couldn't do much for the corpse, but living included (another) Charley, Hogleg Job, Eddie, and Sam Hellman. Joe recognized Charley as an old acquaintance, and poor ol' Job had his hand cut off rendering him more-or-less helpless, so we let the two of them and Sam out right away.

That Eddie was a different story. Somethin' about him gave me the heebee-jeebies, and I didn't feel any compunctions abot letting everyone know how I felt. That strange Molly girl seemed set on chatting him up, though; I think she might have been angling for a date. Soon enough, the rest of the group over-ruled me and we set Eddie loose (I'll get back to that last bit later).

Well, with time to spare, the group made its way back to Capt. Reginald, creating plenty of distractions and diversions for anyone who might have thought about following us.

That should have been the end of things, and with a clean getaway, too, but... Remember that moonlit night? Remember Eddie? Yeah, turns out he was a werewolf. I told everybody I had a bad hunch about him. And of course, he picks the moment the boat hit land to go on a murderin' spree.

I, bein' the only sensible one, ran like the hounds of Hell were after me, seein' as how they were. Or at least one of them was. By the time I glanced back over my shoulder, I realized those big damn fools decided to stay and slug it out with dogbreath.

Well, I might be sensible, but nobody's gonna call me yellow! And, seein' as how nothing anybody else was doing had much of an effect of that critter, I figured I'd lend a hand. Sure enough, boy, howdy, I blew that bastard away, too. A lesser man might mention again how much of a bad feeling ol' Eddie gave him.

After giving Eddie his last rites, and a "proper" burial, the entourage headed back to Perdition to give a full accounting to Lacy.

Turns out poor ol' Sam was writing an article on Rev. Grimm. Also turn out Grimm has some strange dietary restrictions, which includes eating people. I used to wonder where Grimm came up with all that food to feed a whole city every Sunday. Ignorance sure is bliss.

Of course, things get worse, too. Grimm also happens to be some kind Satan-powered unholy wrecking machine. And there seems to be just one person who knows how to kill him: Some Injun named Sees-Far-Ahead. Of course, this Sees-Far-Ahead person must not be able to see TOO far ahead, because he went and fell right off the map. So, we're going to go looking for his protege, Born-in-a-Bowl, instead.

Fortunately, this Born-in-a-Bowl is an acquaintance Cha-te-yo (or whatever his name is). After having a few words with Lacy about compensation, the gang set off to find Cho-ha-te's clan. The route there was rough-ridin', but more-or-less unenventful.

After we got there, though, things seemed to be... "off". Cha-hey-ya didn't seem to get the reception he wanted, and went off to confer privately with the local Chief in their own globbledy-gook language for a few hours.

Cha-to-ha came out eventually, with a fellow whose unholy-glowing eyes make my skin crawl whenever he looks at me. For the record, I'd like to say how much of a bad feeling I've got about this guy. Anyway, they're telling me right now to break camp and get ready to ride. Turns out Born-in-a-Bowl was kidnapped by the Rattlesnake Clan, and this Glowing-Eyes fellow is gonna lead us to her. That, or to a shallow grave in the middle of nowhere...
Session: Welcome to the Rock! - Sunday, Dec 11 2011 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Epic × 2!
It's all wrong...
I've always known that Science can build some terrible weapons, but never have I been more convinced that's not its proper use.

The flying machines, the trains without rails, and the automotons looked so - so dazzling and amazing when I first saw them. Then they dropped bombs, or opened fire. So many bodies... and the smell...

Maybe when the rail wars are over the Wierd Science community can finally settle down and start inventing useful things again. Like machines to help build bridges and roads for the steam wagons. Or a better way to put up signage in the maze. I've only been on two boat rides, and the captain keeps getting lost. (On a side note, the Maze Dragon was extremely interesting. Well worth the trip.)

Better yet - science needs to find a way to grow filling food in the Maze. Maybe there is too much ghost rock in the soil, but whatever the problem, the taste of everything is off here. Even the meat. Perhaps the cows and pigs are affected by the weak crops...

The town of Progress was enjoyable. Necessity is the mother of invention, and there is much needed out here on the coast. I'm tempted to come back, but for now we are on the road to Shannonsburg, to catch another train. It'll be a long horse ride, and then a long train ride to Shan Fan. I'm glad to be away from Lost Angels and the war.
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