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Changeling: Malibu Dream House (Actual Play)

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  • So, you could say we're coming up on Two Weddings and a (potential) Funeral? Sounds about right.

    That said, I'm surprised that both sides were as open about their abilities as they were, not to mention that Vampire society seems a little less spooky than it's presented in the books. I guess that little reduction in the overall intersplat paranoia level is just part of your general genre tendency for shifting WoD from Horror to Dark Fantasy (or Paranormal Romance arguably for this campaign). Plus, I guess a city with only a little Covenant presence would be a little less monstrous. Or I'm too cynical about WoD vamps.

    A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"


    • My games are more Urban Fantasy and Supernatural Romance than horror, really. They actually said very little about their society per se; they pooh-poohed most weaknesses, noted their masquerade (which they were able to guess the Changelings had too) and made vampires sound fairly benign. Both are Carthians, too.

      Not saying they were being puppetmasters, just that they made vampires sound like something Changelings did not need to worry about without outright lying about anything. Who knows what Faeries can do?

      Onyx Path Moderator
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      This is my mod voice. This is my goth voice.
      [Geist: Balance of Shadows ][ Vampire: The Conspiracy of Hrad Černá Hora ][ Scion: Bohemian Front][Changeling: Malibu Dream House] [Demon: Night Train Detective Agency] [WoD: The Golden Eagle]


      • I rather like how diplomatic both sides were. Neither the Vampires nor the Changelings were too forthcoming yet they explained some of the general facts about their respective sides; they were friendly but not overtly so; they established they have their own masquerades but also that their respective feedings weren't lethal. It was a good first meeting (well, discussion) of the respective factions.

        Also, I've been looking back at the previous posts here, somewhere near the start. It's really surprising not only at how things changed, but at how long certain elements have been in the story. I suppose that's the beauty of having Actual Plays around - you get a history to look back on, rather than just a memory. It's really cool.

        Also, Baroness, I see you've gotten certain images hosted elsewhere. Congratulations.


        • Yeah, It's a reason I reward people for journals. To me, the record of the game is important both short and long term.

          And yeah and I went ahead and at least got the currently running games some pics back up. Plan to with Demon, CoD, and Vampire too

          Onyx Path Moderator
          Forum Rules
          This is my mod voice. This is my goth voice.
          [Geist: Balance of Shadows ][ Vampire: The Conspiracy of Hrad Černá Hora ][ Scion: Bohemian Front][Changeling: Malibu Dream House] [Demon: Night Train Detective Agency] [WoD: The Golden Eagle]


          • It’s been about three weeks. Two weddings and a trip to Arcadia are bearing down on us, as well as bachelorette parties, a test, and a honeymoon. Nerves are building as the big days ahead, as a visitor arrives even as these are on our heroes minds.

            Session CI

            Lorelei’s Diary

            And once again I have let the journaling slide for a bit. I promise myself that I’m not going to forget, and then one thing comes up, and another, and another, and before you know it two and a half weeks have gone by with nary a single entry. I mean, I have been really busy lately, what with helping to plan two weddings and a bachelorette party, a honeymoon, a rescue mission, and daily training in… well, just about everything, to make sure that I’m as prepared as I can be for the Pilgrims’ test next week.

            That’s right, Marguerite and Julia’s big day is just two days away! The bachelorette parties are tomorrow night, and I meet with Jimmy and Peg the following Monday for my final exam with the Pilgrims (so, y’know, even if things go poorly in the test itself, at least I’ll have movie night to look forward to). And four days after that are the bachelorette parties for me and D. And the day after that I’m getting married… a word which I can’t seem to say aloud lately without stammering. Then there’s the honeymoon. And when we get back from that… Arcadia. And then college.

            So yeah, the foreseeable future is pretty packed.

            The last two and a half weeks have been pretty quiet, aside from the wedding preparations and the fact that the four of us are all slowly going crazy with a strange combination of stress and bliss. Julia seems to be okay for the most part; she’s walking around with her head in the clouds, clearly over the moon about her impending nuptials. Marguerite has been remarkably quiet and reserved (for her). It’s not like she’s having second thoughts or anything like that; it’s more like the full weight of what she’s about to do is finally starting to hit her. The two of them have been spending their nights separately for close to a week now. I guess it’s to build the anticipation or something.

            D and I have not been so restrained (though I haven’t asked if she wants to abstain for a week before the wedding like they are yet). D’s sort of in the same boat as Marguerite as far as pre-wedding jitters go… she’s happy but nervous as all get-out, though she’s better at hiding it (so far). As for me, well… I’d like to think I’m handling it all pretty well, mostly focusing on my friends’ wedding, and my party planning duties, and my Pilgrim training. It still hits me occasionally, and I’ll laugh or shudder suddenly in the middle of an unrelated thought. God knows what I’ll do after Monday, when I don’t have anything else to distract me anymore.

            Let’s see, other than that… well Calamity’s relationship with Becky seems to be progressing nicely, and she’s as happy as I’ve ever seen her… which is far preferable to the destructive spiral of depression she’d been in for the previous four months. Jacob and Luna are still chugging along, and their relationship seems as stable as ever. I’ve continued my training in unarmed combat, and have picked up the basics of knife fighting from Jacob and Calamity as well, though I doubt I’ll ever be as good as either of them… they make it all seem so effortless. I’ve also had Andromeda teach me the basics of computer applications, so that I don’t feel quite so at sea in this brave new world.

            Things picked up again at last night’s show, and not necessarily in a good way. I only had one solo number, so I decided to dress the part and pretty much stay in that outfit for the entire night. I pulled my hair back tightly, applied dark lipstick and eye shadow, and slipped into a sheath dress I like to call “the Grinch’s Heart,” because it’s black and at least two sizes too small. Needless to say, I had to be careful how I sat for the rest of the evening.

            Anyway, once I’d slinked my way through Robert Palmer’s “Addicted To Love,” I started working the crowd. Joan and Andromeda were there, and both asked me how I was doing. I was forced to admit that the closer we get to W-Day the more of a nervous wreck I’ve become, and they offered to help me deal with the stress in some creative ways. I seriously considered their offer, but in the end I took a rain check so that I could spend the evening with D.

            Joan and Andromeda have both promised to be at Julia’s bachelorette party tomorrow night, though in Joan’s case I had to spend a few minutes reassuring her that it was unlikely to devolve into orgiastic shenanigans. I’d be worried that Julia’s shindig might be stealing potential guests from Marguerite’s, but I’m pretty sure D’s not planning a gala event in any case… last I heard she was just going to take Marguerite through the mirrors to a Paris gay bar and get her laid. Good for her!

            So I bade a reluctant farewell to my bestest friends-with-benefits, and began to circulate the crowd again. There was one new face; an attractive changeling lady with icy characteristics but an obvious Spring Court mantle. She was rocking a low-cut red dress, and I’d noticed her looking at me earlier, so I decided to introduce myself.

            “Welcome to the Dream House,” I said as I took the proffered seat at her table, “I’m Lorelei.”

            “Siobhan,” she replied with a small smile and a handshake. (Pronounced shuh-VAHN, by the way… I had to look up how to spell it). “I’m new to the area, and I’d heard that this was a good place to meet local changelings. Well, this and one other place… but I’m not much of a club dancer,” she admitted.

            “Oh, you should check out the Rose & Thorn sometime anyway,” I said. “Flores runs a great club. Lots of atmosphere, and a wonderful place to pick up some glamour. So what brings you to Malibu?”

            “I have been sent from the Court of Fallen Stars as an ambassador,” she said without pausing. “We heard that you already have such emissaries from the Court of Fallen Angels and the Court of the Dragon, so we thought it prudent to send one of our own.”

            It took all of my considerable self-control to avoid a sitcom-worthy spit take. The Court of Fallen Stars. Hollywood. Dammit.

            We made small talk for a few minutes until I could reasonably excuse myself without being rude. I’m not sure what sort of changeling she is, exactly… I’d wager there’s some snowskin in her, like Jacob, but there was something birdlike about her as well. It mostly manifested in the way she moved her head when she was intent on something… sort of quick and jerky, cocking it to one side and looking at the object of her interest from odd angles. I found myself making a conscious effort not to emulate her once I noticed it.

            One thing that she said made me perk up and take notice… she planned to visit the reigning monarch the next day. I made a beeline for Calamity once I’d extricated myself from her table, just to make sure she knew about all of this. She had already spoken with Siobhan herself, and assured me that Becky was already aware of the Hollywood girl’s intentions to visit Jolie the following morning. Between the two of us, we then made the rounds to discreetly inform the rest of the motley.

            I told D first, and she offered to give Gloria a call to see if her girlfriend knew anything about the newcomer. I headed across the room to the bar to let Jacob and Luna know what was going on (Calamity handled Julia and Marguerite), but almost as soon as I got there, I saw D turn even paler and nearly drop her phone. I hurried back to her side to ask what was wrong, and got there just as she was hanging up.

            “That was Gloria,” she said once she’d calmed herself a little. “She’s met Siobhan, though they didn’t travel in the same circles. Said she always seemed nice enough, but maybe a little odd. And…”

            “What?” I asked.

            “She didn’t know if it was an official position… it’s not one we have in this Freehold, anyway. She said that it was common knowledge that if you did something to piss off the Spring Court, they’d sic Siobhan on you. She’s very good at stalking people, apparently, and when she catches them, she…”

            What? I asked again.

            “She eats their eyes,” D finished quietly.

            It’s a good thing I didn’t have a drink, or nothing would have stopped me from spitting that time. “Eww,” I said instead.

            “I know, right?” D replied.

            I hastened to give Calamity this new information, and she called Becky again, so it’s a good bet the monarchs knew about it shortly thereafter. Calamity seemed certain that they’d assign someone to watch Siobhan carefully… someone like Molly. That made me feel a bit better about the situation.

            I mean, seriously, who sends the fucking Corinthian as a peace ambassador?

            Anyway, things wound down after that, and people began to pair off as the crowds dwindled. D and I ended up inviting Julia to share our bed last night, and nobody had any complaints about those arrangements. D got up first to head to therapy with Jacob and Calamity, with me rising second to train with them when they got back. Julia remained luxuriating in our bed until Sex Breakfast was on the table (I made pancakes).

            Turns out that Hannah had spent the night with Calamity, and she joined us for the now-famous Sex Breakfast… though she may have been a bit disappointed, as the banter seemed unusually tame compared to our typical conversations. We started talking about Europe (and Marguerite’s impending trip there), which led to one of the strangest discussions of Lichtenstein the world has ever known. Julia mentioned that when she was younger, she had thought Lichtenstein was ruled by a lich, and how disappointed she was when she found out that this wasn’t so. I opined that this would be counter to the laws of nature, and Julia said that she scoffed at such laws, and insouciantly asked if I was going to call the Nature Cops on her. After a bit more discussion, we decided that if the Nature Cops do exist, Luna would be their official representative to the Malibu-Santa Monica area.

            Like I said: weird.

            After our guests had left for the day, we received another unexpected visitor. Boss Lowjack swung by the Dream House with Gloria and Tamara in tow. He wanted to debrief us on Siobhan and share information. The Hollywood emissary met with Princess Jolie this morning, and the meeting seemed to go well. Based on information Gloria volunteered, it seems like Siobhan might even be on the level… she’s well-liked enough to be good at the ambassadorial gig, but not well-connected enough to get out of it. Nobody had yet read her desires or fears or anything (I kicked myself at that; if only I’d thought to do that when we met the previous night!), but she doesn’t seem to be consciously hiding anything.

            Of course, with Hollywood that doesn’t necessarily mean anything. She’s probably got hidden programming somewhere in that attractive blonde head of hers. Hell, it seems like they program just about everyone in that Freehold, even people they have no intention of sending to the Lady by the Sea, like Gloria. And even if she is exactly what she seems to be… well, Hollywood will still have a spy and a contact within our Freehold now. As Calamity pointed out, even normal legitimate ambassadors are essentially spies when you get right down to it. And if Siobhan sets up shop here permanently, then Hollywood will have a foothold, or a beachhead, or… some other vaguely anatomical metaphor meaning a way to get inside our defenses.

            I’m worried about this, but I don’t think there’s any way we can stop it. Denying Siobhan the right to settle here as an open ambassador would be seen as an insult, and acting preemptively to stop her from hurting anyone would be tantamount to an act of war. Never mind the fact that they’ve sent spies, assassins, and monsters against us repeatedly… this time it looks like they’re trying to establish legitimate political relations with us, and the Lady by the Sea won’t be the first party to act aggressively in this situation.

            Oh, one other thing I should probably mention. One of Lowjack’s spies (probably Molly, I guess) went through Siobhan’s room carefully to make sure she wasn’t bringing weapons or other dangerous contraband into the Freehold. She didn’t find anything overtly hazardous, but she did find several suspicious vials of fluid. A sample was taken and given to Oleander, who determined that it was sugar water laced with a highly addictive chemical developed by the CIA for interrogations. The chemical has no other adverse effects, but the physical and mental dependency becomes almost insurmountable after only a few doses, at which point the addict will do almost anything to get another hit.

            It’s possible that Siobhan intends to use this on someone in the Freehold to coerce their cooperation with whatever nefarious scheme she might have in mind. Lowjack warned us all to be cautious, and told us that if we suddenly felt a strong desire for more of whatever we were eating or drinking we should report to the Winter Court clinic for detox. One dose should only result in a few days’ worth of headaches. But it seems more likely that Siobhan herself is hooked on the stuff, and the Court of Fallen Stars is using it to ensure her loyalty. If so, they’ve got her on a very short leash, and we’ll need to watch her even more closely. Oleander’s trying to synthesize something that will help the drug’s victims, but it’s a slow process and she can’t promise anything yet.

            So post-breakfast conversation was a bit heavy, to say the least. When Lowjack and Tamara took their leave, Gloria opted to stay to spend time with the motley. She asked how I was doing at one point, and I replied with what has become my standard answer to that question of late, that I was “tense and frantic.” She asked if there was anything she could do to help, and seemed genuinely concerned. When I replied that I just had to work through it, she suggested that I might enjoy a back massage, and said with some pride that she was pretty good at them.

            I glanced at D, who nodded and urged me to take her up on her offer. “You won’t be sorry,” she said with a smirk.

            “Okay,” I said, “you’re on.” And then something else occurred to me. “Actually, there is something else you might be able to help me with, if you don’t mind,” I said.

            “What is it?” Gloria asked.

            “Well, I don’t want to put you out, but if you’re not doing anything tomorrow afternoon I could really use some help setting up for Julia’s bachelorette party,” I admitted. The bride-to-be herself had promised to make herself scarce during the preparations so as not to ruin the surprise, and D and Marguerite were going to be off in Paris. I tend to plan big, so I could use every extra set of hands I could get. Particularly strong Summer Court hands like Gloria’s.

            She was happy to offer her assistance once she understood what I was asking, and made arrangements to stop by the Dream House around one o’clock. Then she, D and I retired to my bedroom. I slipped my robe off my shoulders (a simple act which is always somewhat complicated by my wings) and asked where she wanted me. She gave me an appreciative glance – nothing overtly sexual, just acknowledging my body as aesthetically pleasing, I think – and then nodded toward the bed. I lay down on my stomach, and she got to work.

            Oh my God that woman has magical hands. I mean, I don’t have a whole lot of experience with giving or receiving massages, but I’d imagine that she’s at least of professional caliber. Everything... the weddings, the parties, the tests, the show, it all seemed to melt away while I lay there quietly humming and moaning to myself as she worked out all of the kinks. She stayed with me for about an hour, after which time I think I could have fallen asleep if I wanted to. I was so relaxed that my body felt like a thick liquid, and when I stood up to thank her, my legs were a little unsteady.

            D is a lucky woman. I shared this opinion once Gloria had taken her leave, and D confided in me that Gloria had shared the same opinion regarding me (err… that D is a lucky woman because she has me as a girlfriend, that is). I arched an eyebrow at this, and D kind of rolled her eyes and then began to elaborate. Gloria appreciates that I am a beautiful woman (blush), but she is more sexually attracted to women who are more aggressive and “masculine.” Still and all, she’s said privately to D on more than one occasion that she might sleep with me “if she was drunk enough.”

            I let the conversation drop after that. I mean, it bears thinking about… as I’ve said before, Gloria’s very attractive and a super-nice girl to boot, and I’d be lying if I said I’d never considered the possibilities. But she’s a friend, and I don’t want to screw up that friendship for a night of unbridled passion. And she’s D’s girlfriend… the only one of D’s girlfriends who is not also my girlfriend. I don’t know if that’s important to my love or not, but if it is, I don’t want to take it away from her. So I guess my motto in this situation will be “proceed with caution.”

            The show is only a couple of hours away, and it’s our last show for the next few days (we’ve closed the venue over the weekend for a couple of “private functions,” namely the bachelorette party and the reception), so I suppose I’d better prepare to give it my all. Not that I don’t always give it my all, but you know what I mean. Plus, if I focus really-extra-super-hard on tonight’s show, then I don’t have to think about… other things.

            Lorelei Grace

            Calamity’s Little Black Book

            Thursday, June 4th
            Nine years, eighteen days
            Days without stabbing: 20

            So The Court of Fallen Stars has sent us a new monster, this one apparently likes to eat eyes. Oh, and the twist is that she’s here as an “ambassador” since they apparently figured out that we have official envoys from The Court of Dragons and the Night and Day courts of LA. Which does mean there is no diplomatic way to turn her away but really at this point why are we even pretending to be diplomatic? I mean, they sent the gorram mindfucker and it was only by dumb luck that no one fucking died. Personally, I think we should send their envoy back to them in a box… (better yet, just her eyes…)

            Though to be fair (yeah, I know, foreign territory for this little monster) Siobhan is pretty and well mannered enough. And according to Gloria (who also cued us in on her role as official eye eater for the Spring Court) she’s important enough to speak for them but not important enough to get out of this gig. So, technically expendable enough that she won’t be missed if we murder the fuck out of her for what her Freehold has done. And not honestly in a position to be the one calling the shots. Also, almost assuredly under programming and addicted to some CIA developed super addictive drug that serves no purpose besides addicting you and making you suffer terrible withdrawal. So… yeah more of a victim of their fuckery than one deserving to be harmed. Which means we’ve got a monkey-fighting spy here in our Monday to Friday freehold. Upside, apparently Tommy’s enough of a nuisance for them to risk sending her to her death to try to convince us to recall him.

            So yeah, not a problem that can be solved with stabbing. However, Oleander is working to see if she can duplicate the drug so perhaps it is a problem that can be solved with hugs and friendship. Wouldn’t THAT learn them for sending her? Okay, sarcasm aside, if our theories are correct she does deserve to be freed from their control (not to mention that I wouldn’t exactly mind giving her some special hugs) so this plan does have merit. The ones that do deserve it are, yet again, out of reach. Seriously, the monarchs of Hollywood really need to die the slowest and most painful of deaths.

            But it’s all out of my bloody little hands at this point anyway. She showed up here last night to get a feel for the freehold and we let the powers that be know. Today she’s at Glamour Springs playing diplomat. Unless she directly harms me or mine I’m not going to do anything to her without word from Lowjack or Charlotte and if it does come to murder I suspect someone else will get to have all the fun. Dahlia or Hannah most likely.

            And speaking of Hannah, apparently she was under the impression that I only enjoyed sex with women that submitted. Which… makes me wonder what she thinks about my thing with Beautiful. Though I suppose it’s not exactly a secret how Becky’s wired so she wouldn’t have to be into it the rest of the time. Still… It bears looking into. I won’t have anyone thinking ill of my dragon because she’s with me.

            Beyond that, it was a very carnally satisfying night. Hannah is quite talented with her hands and after some of the things she did with Contracts of Animation I may have to talk to Andromeda about learning that myself. We might dally again at some point since we both found the experience deeply (and frequently) satisfying. However, I fear the comradery of sex breakfast may have been a little lost on little miss murder. At any rate, I should make her a dream at some point. And Dahlia has made it clear she certainly would not object to me making her another one. Pity the two of them don’t hit it off better, I bet the three of us could really paint the town red if we had a girl’s night out.

            Ah well, I suspect it’s for the best that’s unlikely to ever happen. And I do have Julia’s bachelorette party tomorrow, which I doubt will be overly bacchanalian (despite rumors of Dark Kimberly jumping out a cake again.) Alas, I don’t foresee myself getting to lick icing off her this time either. Another thing that is most likely for the best. Maybe I should speak to Annika about sharing her pet… or perhaps it would be better if I didn’t. She might say yes.

            And then this weekend is the kickoff to wedding week. I’ll be glad when it’s over. I love my motley mates and I am pleased that the quad is so stupidly in love and I want them to be happy but this whole thing is making everyone even crazier than usual and the combination of saccharine lovey dovey with hair pulling stress (often simultaneously) is wearing my ass out. That and people keep dropping hints about Becky and I. I mean, yeah, we’re in a relationship. We are, I suppose, girlfriends. It is most certainly about more than just sex. There are very real and very complicated feels tangled up in it like a ball of yard that’s been molested by kittens. But we don’t have to host a grand parade and pageant to prove to anyone how we feel about each other do we? I mean… unless we wanted to do it because we wanted to and not because it’s expected of us. And fuck, but yeah every now and then I remember how much this whole madness used to be like one of my ultimate dreams. But I also used to have an obsession with sunrises and Lisa Frank stationary.

            I don’t know. I don’t even know that Becky would want to be tied down like that. I mean she seemed ready enough to let go when I was spiraling down after Gawain left. I love her, I do. But I look at Lori and D or Marguerite and Julia and I can’t help but think of how lost and devastated they’d be without the other. It scares me to think of being as lost and broken as I felt when he left again. And it scares me to know that there are people that could devastate me like that. And it scares me that I spent so much time alone that I’d rather risk going through that hell again that than go back to it. And that makes me wonder if I’m as in love with Becky as I think or if maybe I’m just so fucking terrified of being alone or so in love with the idea of not being alone.

            Fuck, too much thinking. I need to shake this off and get ready for tonight’s show. Hell, maybe rabid dingoes will attack or something and let me just forget about everything for a few glorious minutes. Maybe that’s my whole problem. It’s been way too fucking long since I had a real fight. I seriously need to bleed or draw blood.

            But not at the wedding. I will NOT fuck up the wedding.

            Jacob’s Journal.

            It’s been a few weeks of the same old stuff, but tonight things got interesting again. The night started out like usual. Hailey and Molly were at the bar with me and Luna. We were people watching and noticed Lori talking to Andromeda and Joan. Especially Andromeda interacting with Lori. They were being really cute. Andromeda nipped Lori on the nose and Hailey got all fed up. She was tired of Andromeda being the accepted one. She was saying that everyone liked Andromeda and shunned her, even though it was Andromeda that abused Hailey in Arcadia. Hailey said that what Andromeda did to her was actually worse than what her Keeper did to her while she was there. I wasn’t exactly sure what to say to her. She wasn’t wrong. There are a good number of people in the Freehold that treat Hailey worse than they do Andromeda. I tried to reassure her that she had friends and to focus on that. She couldn’t change what was going on with Andromeda, but she could pay more attention to the positive things in her own life rather than focusing on what she was missing. I don’t know how much I got through to her with that, but her complaints petered out after a little bit. I think she was internalizing her griping after that, but I tried to do what I could for her. She has been a regular at the bar for a while now and we’ve talked on many occasions. She’s not a bad person, and I want her to see that. I guess we’ll see what the future brings. Maybe she took my words to heart.

            After all of that is when things got more interesting. Calamity came over to the bar and said that she needed to talk to me. So, we went to the end of the bar with Luna and she explained what was going on. Apparently, there is a new person in town from Hollywood. Her name is Siobhan and from a glance I could tell that she’s a snowskin and possibly a beast. She had twitchy head movements, like a bird. In any case, she is apparently here to act as an ambassador of peace. She wants to make sure that we are on the same page as Hollywood is about keeping up the peace that we have. Or supposedly have. They have sent a number of critters our way trying to fuck with people’s heads or dreams. The Hedge beast they sent did some serious damage to Desiree and led to another person getting poisoned. Those don’t seem like the acts of a group that wants peace with us. Our assumption is that she’s here to spy on us. Gloria also knew something about Siobhan. She said that Siobhan is an enforcer of sorts for the Spring Court. If anyone truly angers the Court she stalks after them and then cuts out their eyes and eats them. Yeah, that’s messed up. Then that poor shmuck has to get back into the Spring Court’s good graces again to get their eyes healed. Talk about a twisted arrangement.
            Tommy and Vik have been in Hollywood for a while now and we’re pretty sure that they know about Tommy. I think he’s been doing little things here and there to mess with them, but nothing on the level of what they’ve done to us. I don’t believe that they know about Vik. He’s good at being unnoticed when he wants to. Hopefully Vik can get us some valuable information on the Hollywood Freehold. He’s our own spy over there. Tommy is as well, but they are aware of him so he can only get so much accurate intel. I’m aware that it’s a pot and kettle situation. We are kind of annoyed that they sent a spy into our Freehold, fulling knowing that we have our own spy in theirs. To be fair though, they started messing with us before Vik and Tommy were sent. I think they realize how close we are to taking the fight to them and they’re trying to get on our good side now and make peace. If things escalate I don’t know who will come out the better for it. I expressed my concern that Hollywood might try something while we were gone, but Luna pointed out that the Freehold is hardly vulnerable without us. That and Madame Spidertoes has apparently been in a “mood” lately. If Hollywood tries anything and Madame Spidertoes retaliates I almost feel bad for the attackers. Almost.

            **** **** ****

            Therapy came and went. Sullivan expressed concern once again about me going back to Arcadia. I mentioned it a little while ago, since I’ll be missing who knows how many sessions while we’re gone. He didn’t seem to think that it would be healthy for me to go back to the place that messed me up in the first place. He knows why we’re going and where. It’s not like I’m going back to the Lady’s realm or anything. I’m not saying that it won’t be dangerous, but we need to get Lori’s friends out of there. Hopefully they won’t be too far gone. Arcadia can take its toll on your mind. It changes the way you think and not necessarily for the better. Some people get used to the confinement and accept it. They don’t know how to function as a free person any more. Desiree had that problem to some extent after she got back. She needed to have a “master” until she could find a better, healthier, way to deal with freedom. Hopefully Missy and Jane will be able to accept their freedom and find a better life in ‘the world.’ I think Lori is hoping that they might decide to stay in the Freehold. I have no idea if they’ll want to stay or go back to their home. We don’t know if they’ll be able to go home. I should probably mention that to Lori. She can do a search for Missy and Jane in ‘the world’ and figure out if they have fetches and if so where they are. It might be good to have that knowledge before we get them back so we’ll be able to answer the inevitable questions that they’re going to have.

            After that was breakfast. We had Hannah and White Maria there as guests. Hannah stayed with Calamity and I’m not sure who Maria stayed with. Hannah was a bit of a surprise, but I think she is fascinating to Calamity so it was only a matter of time before they hooked up. Lori made pancakes for everyone and I made the coffee. From there things got silly. There was talk of Canada, Belgium and Lichtenstein. Julia apparently as a child thought that a Lich ruled Lichtenstein. Like I said, silly. Then we got to talking about Nature’s laws and if there are Nature cops to enforce those laws. We kind of came to the conclusion that Luna is something of a Nature cop. She keeps the forests around here free of poachers and safe to travel in.

            A little while after our guests left Lowjack gave me a call and said that he was going to swing by with Tamara and Gloria for an update on certain things. I said that was fine and informed the group what was going on. When he arrived we all convened in the common room and got to talking. Last night Molly was sent to follow and investigate Siobhan. This is what she found out. Siobhan had a small pistol, possibly a garter or ankle pistol, and several small bottles of and unknown liquid. Molly took a sample and it was sent to Oleander to analyze. Her investigation also turned up that Siobhan is connected to dangerous people in Hollywood, but is not too highly placed. She has enough reputation and power to be sent as an envoy, but isn’t so high up on their totem pole that she would be overly missed if she didn’t come back. They took a risk sending an ambassador to our Freehold and they know that. Unless she tries something she’s safe, but Hollywood might not know that. We know that they are a little more morally flexible than we are here, and will dip to do things that we won’t. Or at least, what we haven’t yet. If they push us too far I’m not sure how the Monarchs will react. There were also concerns about Siobhan having programming of some sort, like the other ones, or even an incubus hidden in her dreams to pass along. I think the Monarchs are going to have Soon Hee take a look and see how sane Siobhan is while we can utilize her powers to do so.

            Lowjack suspects that Hollywood sent Siobhan to go about having Tommy removed from their Freehold. He has been making trouble for them every time they do something to us and is hiding in an inconvenient place for them to go looking for him. The pipes under the city. He is protected by steam and hot water pipes that can keep people away from him.

            While we were talking Oleander called Tamara with an update on what that liquid was in Siobhan’s room. It turns out that it is sugar water laced with a special chemical. I can’t pronounce the name let alone spell it, but it is highly addictive. Its sole purpose in existing is to physically and psychologically addict people to it. It is likely that this is the leash that they are using on Siobhan to keep her loyal to them and doing what they want her to do. Makes me wonder what kinds of things they are going to ask her to do if they need that kind of leverage over her. This substance is also not lethal, so Siobhan shouldn’t be harmed by it unless she stops taking it. Then she’ll go through a withdrawal that just sounds unpleasant.

            After Lowjack left Gloria mentioned that Siobhan used to be friends with Desiree in the past and that she might be interested in checking up on her old friend while she’s in town. We don’t know for certain if Siobhan has plans along those lines or not, but I can tell you without asking that she won’t see Desiree. They won’t let her. Desiree is on shaky enough ground as it is. She doesn’t need someone from her past making an entrance just now. With all this talk about Hollywood we all agreed that we were happy that none of us ended up in the Court of Fallen Stars. I’m not sure how the others chose this Freehold, or if they just came out of the Hedge near here. I followed the trail that led me to my sister, so I was going to end up here regardless. I am happy that Elena chose to go to school here though. I’m not certain that a place like Hollywood would have been good for my darker impulses. I’m fairly certain that if I hadn’t found such good friends and s supportive environment I might have gone back to Arcadia with Rook or used my skills for the wrong sorts of activities. I’m not perfect now, I know that. I’m far from it, but I’m a better person now than I used to be. I was cold and manipulative when I was Rime. As I’ve mentioned many times I do miss certain aspects of my life as Rime, but now that my conscience has been thawed out I remember what is right and wrong. I try to do the right thing, but I know I fall short more often than I should. I guess I’m still morally grey but at least I’m not as bad as I used to be. So, in all finding my self in the Lady by the Sea freehold has been a good thing for me. Diane gave me a nudge in the right direction and my friends have helped me in continuing that path here.

            End Session CI

            Session was fun. Siobhan is a Beast, and eats eyes directly without cutting them out.

            Couple comments came up not recorded I wanted to record.

            When the eye eating of Siobhan came up, Julia responded with “How Unreasonable.” Off the cuff and I thought it was funny.

            Hannah was telling a story when Calamity arrived. She was talking about rather than killing a guy, she put a grenade in his girlfriend’s mouth and rigged it so the boyfriend opening the door set it off. Hence Calamity hugging her and offering to be picked up by her. Calamity is a bit messed up.

            White Maria stayed with Insincere Marguerite.

            Bachelorette parties next time. Then we have a wedding. See you then.

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            • Quick note, no Bachelorette party. There was an exciting show (with new record roll) and then a whole crazy love drama and we did not get to them. They will start the next one. Still a fun session I look forward to sharing in two weeks.

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              • Um. Wow. Hannah's story is incredibly messed up. Can you say guilt by association and ludicrous gibs? I mean, that's some supervillain/Hostel-level shit right there (disclaimer: have never seen Hostel). Also, had to look back to see who Hannah was. Says a lot about Changeling paranoia and the tone of this campaign that I could totally forget about someone trying to kill another person and getting off scot-free (not complaining, just commenting, it honestly just might be my memory). Speaking of moral high ground, I feel like it's only due to

                Question time: Anything going on with our kawaii ditzy catgirl that just isn't coming up? And speaking of her, is her really buying into the story of her Durance reflected in a lower Clarity level?
                What's your plan if a PC dies or is captured in Arcadia? Will the player take over an NPC (considering there's now an unusual amount of NPCs in the motley) or have to roll up a new character? What exactly is Tommy doing in Hollywood? Mechanical sabotage? Stealing shit? Targeted Leg-breaking? Mooching on their glamour sources?

                A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"


                • Hannah is pretty much a sociopath. She is intended to be scary. One recurring theme in MDH is there are people on this side of Arcadia that are scarier/more twisted/more evil than the loyalists are. (though not the Gentry, that would go against the grain a bit). Hannah is part of that scheme. Most of the Lady by the Sea members are good people. Some of them (for instance, Hannah, Lucian, Darke, Bright) are not without being Loyalists and more evil than any loyalist who has appeared, and others are not outright evil but capable of horrors because they feel they do what must be done (Joan, Lowjack, Dahlia, Oleander) and sometimes err on the side of violence. An then there are a few almost indistinguishable from Gentry themselves (Spidertoes, Tommy Rawhead) but are fairly benign to the local fey.

                  Carla should be coming back up soon, but probably when things resume post Arcadia trip. Part of the reason I had the time jump was I am trying to get to and through the weddings, honeymoon, and Arcadia so that can be done and we can sit down and get really entrenched in a lot of interesting things forming a tapestry of events again. So probably not much from Carla short term, but will happen.

                  My off the cuff answer is I am hoping no one dies or is trapped in Arcadia. My longer answer is that would be something to discuss with the player. I do generally keep an ongoing plan for how to deal with Calamity dying, not because I want her to (I don't) but given her aggression and reckless fighting style the only reason she is alive is combat is so rare. Her player has back up characters.

                  Tommy came up in conversation Sunday night OOC, I will paraphrase

                  "The trainer of the hedge beast is dead, by the way. He got dragged into a storm drain, and was not seen again till several hours later he was ejected in bloody chunks from the backfiring toilet of one of the monarchs. The position for hedge beast trainer has not been refilled."

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                  • Ok, so terrorist campaign on an already unstable Freehold. This will only lead to good things for our heroes and the local mortals. *munches popcorn expectantly behind a padlocked cold iron door with a plate-glass window, with iron sword at the ready*

                    Once again, not complaining, as this is the Chronicles of Darkness, but Lorelei is really deluding herself if she thinks her Freehold has its hands clean. Though at least they're trying to clean up their act lately on the "brainwashing and coercion" thing.
                    Last edited by Master Aquatosic; 02-13-2018, 08:44 PM.

                    A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"


                    • Master Aquatosic - You're not wrong. Lori was not privy to the specifics of Tommy's activities in Hollywood, and to an extent that's deliberate on her part. Despite her own protestations, she's not stupid... she just prefers not to think about certain things. As a case in point, deep down inside she knows that Calamity killed someone for Lucian Torrez recently, but if she doesn't confirm it by asking, then she can pretend it never happened. She is fairly naive when it comes to power-plays of this sort, and is honestly happier that way. I suspect that if she ever actually pursues the Spring Crown, she's in for something of a rude awakening when it comes to how the Freehold actually runs... and may soon come to understand why Jolie is so desperate to get rid of the title!