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Chicago By Night, A Chronicle Write Up

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  • Chicago By Night, A Chronicle Write Up

    I have started my Chicago by Night chronicle. The story starts in 1989 with the Coterie's preludes. I am adapting the published adventures for Chicago, as well as mixing in some of my own ideas. The goal is to eventually make it to modern nights and the new v5 products. This thread with be a loosely detailed record of the events that transpire. Side note, despite being set in the 90s, I am using the v5 rules.

    The Coterie
    The Coterie are all citizens of Gary, at least for now. All three were Embraced in the second half of 1989 and are the 12th Generation. All will be attending Modius' NYE party as depicted in Baptism by Fire.


    Session 0, Preludes

    Carl, Toreador

    Carl is a professional gamer and game designer. He used prize money from his professional gaming to start a small game studio. Their most recent game, Mega Shrimp, was a surprise hit and has sold over a million copies. Carl used the profits to develop an arcade named the Pixel Palace, with the game studio in the offices above it. Carl decided to share his wealth with the person that always believed in him growing up, his Grandma Schwartz. She has owned and ran her own small bookstore for over 40 years. In her late 70s, now, Carl offers to pay for her move to a nearby retirement community. She accepts his offer and decides to sell her bookstore, Between the Lines.

    Carl was approached by a man named Micah who expressed interest in investing in Carl's company. Micah is actually a Toreador who is obsessed with inventions, seeing them as true and pure art. He believes video games will be a very profitable art form and is seeking to get his claws into it via Carl. Micah flattered Carl with praise of his genius and talent. Then he offered Carl a chance to take all of time to perfect his art. Carl accepted the Embrace from Micah, however, almost immediately after becoming Kindred, Micah began treating Carl more like a servant. By explaining you must drink from a vampire 3 times, having your blood drained on the final time, in order to create a new vampire, Micah has tricked Carl into Blood Binding himself to him. Micah approaches Carl in mid December of 1989 and tells him they will be attending a New Year's Eve Party at the mansion of the Prince of Gary, Modius. On Christmas Eve, Micah goes missing. Neither Carl, nor any of his other associates know where he has went or why he left.

    Carl has Ghouled his business partner Roger and uses him to run the day to day operations of his business. He has also cultivated a Herd from among the more attractive 20 something females that frequent the Pixel Palace.


    Siobhan (Pronounced: Shuh von), Gangrel

    Siobhan is an Irish Immigrant, her parents moving to Gary when she was a child. When she turned 21 she purchased a local bar and turned it into an Irish Pub. Less than a year later, a dark haired woman named Raven approached Siobhan. She told Siobhan she had cancer, much to Siobhan's surprise, and that when she was out of other options, Raven would return. After being officially diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, Siobhan refused treatment, as doctors said it would only prolong the inevitable. Once she had given up hope of any recovery, Raven returned. Offering to save her from certain death, Siobhan accepted the Embrace from Raven.

    Siobhan chose to Ghoul her bartender Ian, after finding him bleeding to death in the bar one night before open. After healing, Ian revealed he was attacked and robbed outside of the bar by some thugs. Siobhan has leaned to use her Animalism to create a familiar, and has Ghouled a crow she calls Tim and made it her pet.

    Siobhan refuses to take blood by force. To this end, she has developed a Herd among the small Blood Doll scene in Gary. A local club called the Nail caters to these goth, proto emo, self cutters. Siobhan easily finds several young men more than willing to share blood with, those she is careful never to let them feed from her.


    Ophelia, Gangrel

    Ophelia's parents died over a year ago in a car crash. Lost and confused, she dropped out of Purdue after only 1 semester and returned home to Gary. Using the life insurance money her parents left her, she purchased a local bookstore she frequents named, Between the Lines. The owner, Mrs. Schwartz, had decided to retire after decades of running the store.

    Shortly after purchasing the bookstore, Ophelia was attacked by a mugger while getting into her car. She was able to mace him and escape, but not before suffering a nasty cut to her arm. She reported the incident to the police, but was unable to get a good look at her attacker. A couple of months later, on Halloween, Ophelia and her friends went to perform a Wiccan ritual in the wooded area of a nearby park. Once Ophelia's friends had left, she was again attacked by what she believes to be the same stranger. Fleeing through the woods, she tripped and was impaled on a broken tree branch. Left for dead by her pursuer, she would have certainly bled out, had a mysterious woman not intervened. Ophelia awoke hours later, near a dead deer carcass and covered in blood. She wearily stumbled her way home. The next night, a woman calling herself Raven explained to Ophelia what had happened, and that she had made her a Vampire in order to save her from death.

    Ophelia has Ghouled her best friend, Clara. Clara now lives in Ophelia's old apartment, above the book store. Ophelia meanwhile, has secured a new sun proof haven in the basement of the book store. Clara runs the store during the day, while also keeping watch over Ophelia. Ophelia has developed her Animalism enough to create a familiar. She has Ghouled an owl she named Sage as her familiar.

    Ophelia prefers to feed from the terminally ill. She sees herself as an Angel of Mercy, offering some comfort to those in their final days or even hours, and if she should accidentally help one slip into the next world, then their soul is finally at peace. To help in her feeding, she has began bribing an old acquaintance named Chuck. Chuck is an orderly at the local hospital. Ophelia slips him cash once or twice a week to leave a door unlocked or wedged open. Chuck doesn't know what Ophelia does once inside, but assumes she is an addict. So far no one has noticed anything missing or unusual, so Chuck keeps his mouth shut and continues to take the bribes.


    In early December, Raven brought Ophelia and Siobhan together, introducing them for the first time. She informed her two new Childer that she would be leaving the city soon, as her business was concluded. Before she left, she instructed the girls they needed to attend a New Year's Eve party held by a Modius, the Prince of Gary. She instructed them to be courteous to Modius, but that he was also sort of a joke. With that she left Gary.

  • #2
    Session 1, Forged in Steel
    December 31st, 1989

    The first session more or less was completely devoted to Modius' NYE party. The Coterie all attended as requested.

    The party was held in the once opulent, but now teetering on dilapidated, mansion of Modius, vampire Prince of Gary, Indiana. They met the Kindred of Gary, including Modius and his soft spoken companion, Allicia. I chose to have Allicia not be mute, as in the source material, if just to make her easier to interact with. I also changed Michael, who was originally presented as a mentally handicapped person. I changed him to a small child of about ten years of age. This helps preserve his innocence but avoids the pitfall or portraying him in an insensitive manor. Michael stayed near Allicia most of the night, leading the Coterie to believe she is his "Vampire Mama".

    Ophelia delighted Michael by consenting to play a game of hide and seek in the mansion. While pursuing Michael, Ophelia caught a brief glimpse of an adult male she did not recognize. Unsure of who he was or his intentions, she returned to the party proper.

    Modius asked Carl why his Sire, Micah, was not in attendance. Carl revealed that no one had seen Micah for a week. When Modius' asked the girls who their Sire was, they both replied, Raven. Modius seemed annoyed and muttered something about "not agreeing to two of them", however he did not pursue the matter further.

    The Coterie also met the Nosferatu, Danov, who briefly spoke of Golconda. Another guest named Lucian found Danov's suggestion of Kindred "redemption" to be quite amusing. However, when Lucian mentioned serving under Caeser, Carl took immediate note and now believes Lucian to be very old and, presumably, powerful.

    The Coterie met another Kindred named Santiago. This handsome, smooth talking, Latino vampire seemed quite smitten with Siobhan. She returned his interest and the two of them spent much of the night in chat.

    Shortly before midnight, the party was crashed by Dante and his gang. Dante casually insulted Modius multiple times, much to the Coterie's surprise, as they had been told to respect Modius, at the least. Dante then introduces his new Childe, Evelyn, to Modius. Modius is at first furious about this unsanctioned Embrace, but ultimately, he barks a lot, but shows no bite. Eventually, after he calms himself, he accepts Evelyn.

    Not long after midnight, the final guest of the evening arrives. Modius immediately begins falling over himself to cater to this woman, Annabelle Triabelle, openly fawning over her. Annabelle presents herself as the Herald of Prince Lodin of Chicago. Lodin has issued a decree that any Neonates that wish to be welcomed in the Camarilla must present themselves to Lodin, regardless of what Modius says or does. This decree sends Modius into a near frenzy level of rage. Only the combined efforts of Annabelle and Allicia eventually calm him. Adding fuel to the fire is Dante, who berates Modius for losing his last vestige of power. Annabelle is quickly able to silence Dante by reminding him that Lodin's decree applies to Dante's new pet, Evelyn. This immediately quiets Dante, who declares, "this party is dead", and then makes a quick exit.

    When asked how to find Lodin, Annabelle informs the Coterie that he doesn't have a permanent place that he holds court, and they must track him down. She suggests starting at the Succubus Club, a known Kindred hotspot. When asked why she couldn't put them in touch with Lodin directly, Annabelle explained that it would be good for these Gary neonates to get a taste of Kindred life in Chicago.

    The party fizzles out not long after Dante and his crew make their exit. As Siobhan and Ophelia leave together, they spot an unknown car that had been parked near their vehicle speed off into the night. As Carl leaves Modius' mansion, he spots a flash of light on a nearby roof top. Investigating, Carl finds only a half smoked, hand rolled cigarette left on the roof top.

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    • #3
      This is awesome. Thanks for sharing!


      Author of Cthulhu Armageddon, I was a Teenage Weredeer, Straight Outta Fangton, Lucifer's Star, and the Supervillainy Saga.

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      • #4
        Awesome write up!

        We played CbN over 20 years ago - i feel very old now XD. But had a similiar set up at Modius Manor.


        Gamelines: Requiem, Lost, Awakening, Trinity Continuum: Aeon, some V5.
        Likes cheesecake (quark-based)

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        • #5
          Thanks guys. More to come, we are actually a bit further than this, I'm just behind on my write ups.

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          • #6
            Session 2, The London Job
            June 18th, 1981

            This session consisted of a Flashback. The Players took the roles of human criminals. These criminals were hired by a man named Roarke to steal a book from an auction in London. The group consisted of Natasha (played by Siobhan), the group's muscle; Amber (played by Ophelia), the honeypot; Derek (played by Carl), the driver; and Julian (NPC), the criminal.

            The auction was disguised as a black tie gala, with many wealthy patrons in attendance.
            Natasha and Julian climbed rooftops to make it to the building where the auction was being held, repelling through a skylight to reach the room where the book was being held. At the same time, Amber was working the crowd inside of the auction. Her job was to be the eyes on the floor and make sure to give the group a heads up if anything went awry. Meanwhile, Derek was waiting at the getaway car, where he had to deal with a pair of suspicious London officers.

            The group successfully heisted the book, but were followed back to their hideout by a group of thugs under the employ of a man named Heath Quinn. Quinn had intended to purchase the book from the auction, but was aware there would be an attempt to steal it. After a brief gun fight at the hideout, Quinn's men are driven away, and the crew is able to deliver the book to Roarke and receive their payment.

            Unknown to each other, each member of the group had a secret mission. Natasha had intended to steal the book and/or the payment and leave the crew out to dry, she decided to abandon this plan once the shoot out began. Amber had been hired before the heist by Heath Quinn. Quinn had learned about the plot to steal the book, and hired Amber to double cross the group and make sure he acquired the book. For failing in her task, Quinn shot Amber and left her for dead. Derek had been approached before the heist by a man claiming to represent Roarke's boss. After the heist, Derek was to kill Roarke. Derek successfully carried out his mission, shooting Roarke twice in the back as he entered his home.

            Roarke was a Ghoul under the employ of Prince Lodin. Lodin was in London on a visit to his clan mate, Queen Anne. While in London, Lodin learned a Ventrue rival of his was attempting to acquire a specific book. Lodin decided to acquire the book himself, for no other reason than to keep it from his rivals hands. Lodin ordered Derek to kill Roarke after the book was acquired, as Roarke was the only person that could definitively tie Lodin to the book's theft. Heath Quinn is a Ghoul under the employ of Lodin's Ventrue rival, and was tasked with retrieving this book for his master.

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            • #7
              Session 3, Baptism By Fire
              January 1st, 1990

              The Coterie arrives at the Succubus Club in search of leads to Lodin. Carl spots a group of frat boys giving a patron a hard time. The frat boys are hurling homophobic slurs at a patron seated in a booth with 2 other gentlemen. Carl uses his Disciplines to defuse the situation and send the frat boys away. The patron introduces himself to the group as Sir Henry Johnson, a Toreador. As thanks for their help, Sir directs them to another bar known as the Cave, owned by one Horace Turnbull. Sir Henry suggests that Horace can get in touch with Lodin.

              The Coterie is also approached by a large man with a mohawk and leather jacket. He introduces himself as Gengis and tells the Coterie that if they don't want to become pawns in the machine, to come to a meeting in a few hours at an abandoned brewery.

              While exploring the club, Ophelia runs into her mortal friend Kelly. Kelly was the third member of Ophelia's Wicca coven along with Clara, Ophelia's Ghoul. Ophelia has not seen Kelly since her Embrace and does her best to avoid the girl, eventually disappearing into the crowd to escape her. Before leaving the club, Ophelia is approached by a woman named Emily Williams. She gets Ophelia's number and says she will call her soon.

              The Coterie arrives at the Cave. After a brief wait, they are taken to Horace's office where they find him embroiled in a game of chess with a rough looking biker. The biker is Tyrus of the Wolf Pack, in town for a few days. Horace agrees to make a phone call for the Coterie and afterwards, tells them to go to the Museum of History to find Lodin. Horace makes sure to impart upon the Coterie that they now owe him a minor boon. He then tells them to get the fuck out of his office.

              With a few hours before their meeting with Lodin, the Coterie discusses the Anarach meeting Gengis invited them to attend. Ultimately Carl decides to not attend, but Opheila and Siobhan decide to go. Carl drops the girls off near the brewery and then parks nearby, keeping a look out.

              At the meeting the girls see the majority of Chicago's Anarchs for the first time. They briefly interacted with a few in attendance, including Dooley and Anita Wainright, Maldavis, and Damien. Shortly after the girls arrived, Dante arrives with his posse in tow, including his new Childe, Evelyn. Ophelia and Siobhan are quite surprised when the loud mouth Dante seems to be one of the voices that the attendees listen to intently, the other being Maldavis. After watching Dante and Maldavis argue for about 20 minutes the girls came to a few conclusions. First was that there was a lot of talk about how to do things. Dante favored a scorched earth policy of literally burning down the Camarilla. Maldavis cautioned a more tactile approach, gathering info and studying weaknesses. But despite all this talk about how to do things, no one ever actually discussed what they should do. There was no clear course of action. The second thing was noticed by Siobhan. Gengis, who invited them to the meeting, seemed to be enthusiastically agreeing... with whoever was winning the argument in that moment, and seemed to have absolutely nothing to add of any value.

              Before more than an hour had passed, Carl watched outside as a van pulled up in front of the brewery. Several men exited, some carrying gas cans, some with molotov cocktails. They seemed to be led by a large white man in a cowboy hat. The men poured gas on and all around the brewery. After a few minutes, the man in the cowboy hat steps forward and begins yelling towards the brewery. By this point, Carl had snuck close enough to hear what was being yelled.

              Inside the brewery, the meeting is interrupted by the sound of a voice from outside. "I know you're in there. You got 'til the count of five to tell me where Lorraine is. One... Two..."
              Looking out the window, Damien calls out to the group that the Sheriff has arrived and his men have molotovs. Ophelia and Siobhan have no idea who Sheriff or Lorraine are and are thouroughly confused. As the look around they realize no one else here has any clue what's going on either.

              "Five... Okay, have it your way." Booms the voice. Seconds later several crashing sounds can be heard against the outside of the building. Moments later flames began to lick and kiss the building. Panic ensues inside. Kindred began fleeing for their lives, some near frenzy. Dante and his crew almost stampede the girls under foot in their haste. Maldavis helps them up and leads them out of the building. Though they escape with their unlives, Siobhan is badly burned on her arm.

              Outside, as soon as Carl saw the men light the molotovs he ran back to his car and used his Zack Morris style 90's brick cellphone to call 911 and report an arson in progress. He then drove to the meeting point where he picked up the waiting girls and quietly left the area as the fire trucks began to arrive.

              By the time the Coterie left the area of the burning brewery and then got Siobhans arm bandaged and covered, it was nearly time for their appointment with the Prince. Heading to the Museum, they were surprised to find it's doors unlocked and several cars in the parking garage. Upon entering they were met by Edward Neally, Seneschal to Prince Lodin. Edward informed the Coterie that the Prince was expecting them and they could go in as soon as he was done with his current appointment. Moments later the Coterie saw Dante's new Childe Evelyn coming out into the lobby and quickly making her exit. Edward led the Coterie to meet Lodin.

              Lodin questioned the Coterie on their Clans, Sires, if they knew the Traditions, etc. The meeting was interrupted by a somewhat familiar face. A man in a cowboy hat came in and told Lodin they had found the "stray" they were looking for. Lodin instructed Sheriff to bring the stray to him. Moments later Sheriff and two of his men escort another individual to Lodin. This is Malcolm, a 13th Generation Gangrel described in the Core Vampire book as an example character creation. Lodin asks Malcolm why he hasn't presented himself, as requested. Malcolm replies that he is a cop and has crimes to solve, and no time for this vampire politics bullshit. This response appears insufficient to Lodin as he orders Sheriff to savagely beat Malcom in front of the Coterie. It only takes a few seconds for Malcolm to become a bloody pile of flesh on the floor. Lodin orders him removed, but tells Malcolm to remember this mercy. Next time he defies Lodin, he meets the sun.

              At this point, Lodin apologizes to the Coterie for the interruption and offers them a deal. A Kindred in the city has gone missing. Her name is Lorraine and Lodin wants the Coterie to investigate her disappearance. If they are able to find her, what happened to her, or even any shred of evidence to help the investigation, they will be given freedom to make Haven and hunt in Chicago as well as be welcomed into Camarilla society there. Seeing little other choice, the Coterie reluctantly agrees. Lodin gives the Coterie an envelope. Inside is a single photo of Lorraine along with the address of her last known location. Included are instructions to burn this entire file after the info was committed to memory.

              The Coterie is escorted from Lodin's office by Sheriff. He tells them to meet him at Buckingham Fountain tomorrow night before dawn for a progress report. As he tells them this, he suspiciously eyes Siobhan's bandaged arm.

              The Coterie returns to Gary to their Havens to rest, knowing full well the beating of Malcolm was a message about what it means to defy Lodin. The message was received.
              Last edited by Delkus; 02-04-2021, 09:28 AM.

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              • #8
                Session 4, Ashes to Ashes
                January 2nd, 1990

                The Coterie begins their evening by heading to the address given to them by Lodin. They find themselves at a small suburban home, west of Chicago proper. Here they are greeted by a Ghoul named Natasha, that the Players(not characters) recognized from the Flashback story. Natasha has been expecting them and leads them into the house.

                The first thing Natasha shows the Coterie is the dead body of another Ghoul, Derek. Derek was Lorraine's personal bodyguard. He appears to have been shot twice at close range with a hand gun. Continued investigation reveals the feeds to the security cameras were cut sometime early last evening, shortly before Lorraine disappeared.

                Inside a desk drawer, the Coterie finds a false bottom. Underneath, in a hidden compartment, they find a stash of psychedelic drugs, including peyote, lsd, and mushrooms. The closet is found to contain both women and men's clothing. The men's clothing looks remarkably similar to the suit Lodin was wearing when the Coterie met him.

                Only one item seems to have been taken. A small glass display case has been shattered and lies empty. After asking Natasha about it's contents, the Coterie learns it contained an old book that she actually helped "acquire" about 10 years ago.

                Underneath the bed Siobhan finds a single clue that Lodin's men missed. Wedged between the bed frame and the wall was a matchbook for someplace called Lucky's Pool Hall. With few other leads, the Coterie decided to head to Lucky's to investigate.

                Upon arriving at Lucky's, the Coterie is surprised to find the place roped off by police and a large crowd gathered outside. Upon investigating, they quickly learn the police have raided the bar and made several arrests, including Lucky himself.

                The Coterie notices a reporter, apparently the first on the scene, trying to find a way past an officer and into the crime scene. As they watch the situation, a man identifying himself as Special Agent Shepard of the FBI, emerges from the bar and begins talking to the reporter, who seems to recognize him. After a brief exchange, Agent Shepard gets in his car and leaves.

                Carl approaches the reporter and learns his name is Scottie Cartwright and that he works for a local tabloid called the Tell It All. After using a combination of Dominate and Presence, Carl is able to learn some details from Scottie. The police raided Lucky's because several suspected patrons and employees were linked to gang activity. After raiding the place, the cops realized what they had found was more akin to a cult than a gang. References to sacrifices, blood, and rituals as well as several strange items, including vials containing what appeared to be blood, were all discovered in the basement. Agent Shepard was then called in due to his familiarity with "strange occurrences".

                Deciding to follow the trail, the Coterie heads to the local police precinct. Ophelia waited outside while Carl and Siobhan went in to try and find more clues. After a brief wait, they were able to speak to a Detective Duncan, the officer in charge of the case. Through some mental manipulation, Carl learned that among the items found was two vials of blood. These vials weren't in the precinct however, as they had been signed over to Agent Shepard. He had them sent directly to a Dr. Standdown at his lab in the city.

                The Coterie heads to the lab of Dr. Standdown. After he opens the door to his lab, Carl dominates Dr. Standdown to invite them inside. Once inside the Coterie found a scientific lab containing all sorts of "specimens". Chupacabra fur, Sasquatch footprint, Werewolf tooth, and more items lined shelves, contained in labeled and sorted jars.

                Carl talks to the doctor under the guise of looking for their missing friend. Carl explains that they were led to believe the doctor might have seen her, which is a complete fabrication. While Carl distracts the doctor, the girls find the 2 vials of blood. They realize that if they steal the vials, they will easily be linked to the crime, then have to potentially kill the doctor to cover their tracks. So instead Siobhan opens a window. The Coterie then quickly make their exit, Carl apologizes for bothering the doctor at this late hour with their incorrect information.

                A few moments later, as Dr. Standdown goes back to work, a crow and an owl swoop in through his open window. Each one snatches a vial of blood in it's talons, then flies back out the window and into the night. The doctor can only stand silently in complete awe.

                The Coterie has time for one last stop before their early morning meeting with the Sheriff. Carl uses his Zach Morris style cell phone and calls the number on the business card given to him by Scottie Cartwright. Carl tells Scottie he wants to meet and Scottie invites him to the Tell It All offices.

                The Coterie meets with Scottie and Carl tells him he has information Scottie might be interested in having. He will trade that info to Scottie if Scottie can find any more leads about this supposed cult arrested at Lucky's, as Carl believes they are connected to his missing friend. Scottie agrees to this deal and tells Carl he will call him if he finds anything.

                The Coterie then heads to Buckingham fountain for their meeting with Sheriff. Before they reach the fountain, they are approached by a young black man that the girls recognize from the anarch meeting as Damien. Damien tells them that he believes they have been set up. That no one expects them to find Lorraine and that when they fail, Lodin will most likely frame them for her disappearance to save face, as having a Kindred disappear and the mystery remain unsolved would look very bad for the Prince. With that warning, Damien exits.

                A brief time later, Sheriff arrives. Asking for an update, Carl decides to divulge everything. He tells Sheriff about Lucky's, the cult, and even hands over both vials of blood, which the Coterie did confirm was Kindred via a tiny taste test.

                January 3rd, 1990

                After the meeting, the Coterie all returned home and slept. Upon waking the next evening, Carl found he had a message from Scottie Cartwright. The message was an address and a note to meet there after dark.

                The Coterie gathers and drives to the address, which lies on the northern outskirts of Chicago. Here the city is left behind and scattered homes dot the landscape. Fields, farm, and trees make the area feel more rural than urban. Here they find a mailbox with the address given by Scottie. A short distance away, they find a car parked on the side of the road.

                The Coterie heads into the woods near the car and a short distance away find Scottie hidden among the trees with his camera. Scottie is on a ridge looking over a basin, a sort of natural amphitheater in the rocky area below. Scottie tells the Coterie that a land deed was among the items confiscated by police at Lucky's Pool Hall. A deed for this property. The Chicago PD are waiting for a search warrant to inspect the place, and should be here by morning.

                Inside this basin was a group of people. Their outlines visible in the torchlight. About a dozen or more by their count, all seemed to be dancing and singing. A short while after they began watching, the Coterie watches as a man emerges from what appears to be a small cave entrance in the basin. He is leading what appears to be a goat or ram on a leash. One of the people takes a bowl and holds it up to the goat. The creature appears to consume whatever is within the bowl. A moment later the ram begins to prance and leap about. It's leash is cut and it runs off into the night. The group of people fall silent and tense. A moment later the one that led the ram out from the cave yells out, "hunt". As he does, the majority of the group yells and charges off into the night, the same direction the ram ran.

                The figure disappears back into the cave entrance, leaving only 2 more people visible in the basin. At this time the Coterie begins sneaking towards the basement. Unfortunately Scottie has slipped away while the Coterie were distracted. Scottie has mad it almost to the bottom of the basin, but has now been spotted. The two figures head towards him. the Coterie rushes to his aid and after a quick scuffle, subdue the two men.

                Carl uses his Dominate to subtly convince one of the men to lead them into the tunnel. Upon entering the cave the group find several chambers and passageways. Led by Torch Boy, as he was dubbed, to a chamber deeper inside. Torch Boy explained to the group that this is where Master Roarke resides. On a large stone slab in this chamber the Coterie found Lorraine, tied down to the slab, a stake protruding from her chest.

                A loud click broke the moment of quiet and the Coterie all turn to see Scottie snapping pictures. Ophelia grabs his camera away and smashes it onto the stone floor. Scottie turns and flees the area, now thinking these people are related to his grand conspiracy somehow.

                As the Coterie moved to free Lorraine, they heard a loud scratching sound. suddenly rats emerged from the cracks and dark corners of the chamber, hundreds of them. They swarmed over Lorraine, gnawing and biting at her body. At this time a man emerges from the shadows. He grabs Carl, slashing and clawing at him, fangs bared. He yells at Carl, telling him his revenge won't be denied.

                As Carl engages the Kindred, the girls continue to attempt to free Loraine. Sobhan uses her Animalism to try and slow the rats onslaught. Meanwhile Ophelia continued to slash at the ropes and bindings with her knife. Grabbing a torch Carl manages to push the Kindred back and then tries to stake his opponent. He manages to drive the stake into his foes chest, but not deep enough to stake him. He does however pin him to the wall, as long as he doesn't move himself.

                This gives the girls enough time to free Lorraine and begin to flee the chamber with her. The Kindred screams out in anger as Carl keeps him held in place. Suddenly his form shrinks as he turns into a bat and flies down a tunnel. Carl takes the opportunity to catch up to the girls.

                As the Coterie heads to the exit, they find a man standing in their path. A Native American man dressed in full tribal garb. He thanks the Coterie for answering his Master's call. He then tells them to follow him. They find themselves strangely unable to resist and thus follow. They are led to a chamber in the caves that houses a large stone slab, similar to the one Lorraine was restraIned upon. Walking over to the stone and, with seemingly little effort, sliding it aside, the man revealed a stone stairway leading down. As they walked down, the man tells the Coterie this place is no longer safe and that the Black Queen's minions will arrive soon.

                At the bottom of the stairs was a large chamber, lit only by the torch this man carried. Strange and seemingly very old carvings and paintings lined the walls. Many of them depicting a large white wolf. In the center of this room rest another stone slab, this one decorated and adorned with artwork and relics. Upon it lie a single form. It looked like an unwrapped mummy, withered and desiccated. The flesh tight and shrunken on the bones.

                The man spoke to the body. "Master, they are here." After a pause, the man turns to the Coterie and spoke. "My Master thanks you for your service."

                The Coterie all opened their eyes. They were sitting in Carl's car in a parking lot in Chicago. Lorraine's comatose, but unstaked body was leaning against the door in the back seat. They had no memory over anything after the man spoke to them. A quick gathering of clues revealed it was the "next night" and they had lost an entire day, with no idea of what they did, where they went, or where they rested during the day. Otherwise however, they seemed to be fine.

                The Coterie contacted Edward Neally and told him they had an update on the Lorraine situation. Upon arriving at the agreed time and place, Neally was stunned to learn that the Coterie had found Lorraine, though she appeared to be torpid. Neally took possession of Lorraine and led the Coterie to speak to Lodin.

                Lodin seemed both surprised and relieved that the Coterie had succeeded. They explained the events to him in detail, leaving out the last part about the strange man and the mummified body. Lodin seemed particularly upset when the Coterie mentioned the name Roarke that they heard from the Torch Boy. Lodin granted the Coterie full hunting rights and even permission to seek out a Haven in the city if they chose. He also chided the present Sheriff for allowing a group of Neonates to do his job for him. This did not sit well with the Sheriff.

                Lodin then offered his ring for each of the Coterie to kiss. Carl and Siobhan showed their fealty. Ophelia however was confused when Lodin presented his hand to her and chose to grab the tips of his two fingers and give him a very dainty hand shake.

                The Coterie all return to Gary and their Havens.

                At the end of each story, we have an Epilogue, where I remind the players that in the World of Darkness nothing is ever as it seems, and yet everything is connected.
                The scene is Special Agent Shepard of the FBI speaking to Dr. Standdown. Shepard listens as Standdown describes a crow and an owl flying into his lab and taking the blood samples. Shepard then asks Standdown to tell him more about the visitors he had right before this happened.

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                • #9
                  Some notes about this story.

                  I made a few changes to the published Ashes by Ashes story. I changed the kidnapping victim from Lodin to Lorraine. Even with my also changing Roarke from a Ghoul to a Gangrel, I found the idea of a single person staking and capturing the Prince to be a little too easy. His Neonate Childe however, felt like fair game.

                  I also removed the encounter with Ballard via helicopters and a shootout at dawn. That all felt very pushy and forced. In fact, Ballard appears nowhere in my story as Lodin isn't missing, so there's no use for him really.

                  No Harry Houdini vampire.

                  Removed the Ghoulie Man scene. Roarke is a vampire in my version, thus no need to get blood from other Licks.

                  Made Michael Standdown a medical doctor and not a Hunter. There's plenty of hunters, they need a scientist every now and again.

                  No vial of 4th gen blood that insta blood bonds you... gross.

                  Meanwhile, behind the scenes... a few years ago Maldavis made a bid for power against Lodin. During this time, Nicolai of clan Tremere had discovered the resting place of Menele's body (CBN 1st edition, page 156) but Menele called upon his retainer Roarke to move his body and guard it. Roarke took the body to the caves in this story and guarded it for over 2 years. During this time, Nicolai resumed his search for the body.

                  Recently Roarke decided to enact some measure of revenge on Lodin for ordering his death all those years ago. To this end, he kidnapped Lorraine, Lodin's new pet. What Roarke didn't realize was the idea to kidnap Lorraine was actually Menele's. Menele sought to test Helena's pawn Lodin. He was curious if Lorraine could be used as a way to weaken or even somehow remove Lodin from the board. Thus by having her kidnapped he hoped to test Lodin's response and judge how far he would go to get the girl back.

                  What Menele didn't know was that Nicolai was very close to tracking his location via Roarke's blood cult. It was the kidnapping of Lorraine that give him his final clues he needed, and he tracked them to Lucky's Poll Hall. Before Nicolai could make a move, Helena used her mental control of the boy wizard to stay his hand. Little did Nicolai know his search for Menele had been completely orchestrated by Helena's invisible hand. Helena then used the Police to raid the cult and ultimately find and destroy Menele's body. In a last ditch effort to escape, Menele used the Coterie to move his torpid body before the Police could descend upon him. Then the Methuselah wiped the Coterie's memories of where they went and what they had done that night.

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