Fire In The Sky

Light over the Sierras, Part III

In the aftermath of the battle with the grays, the PCs called Nunez and reported that they had taken one casualty and captured four gray corpses. He sent in a black helicopter to pick up the bodies as well as the artifact recovered from the bottom of the well and take them back to a secure facility. Aboard the helicopter was none other than Jared Silverstein, who had been called in by Nunez to treat the wounded, particularly Brian Gall, who took his leave to go to the hospital for his grievous injuries, being replaced on the team by Silverstein. The group loaded the gray corpses and the artifact into the chopper and then caught a ride back to Scotia.

In the morning they were awakened by another news broadcast announcing that the California Paranormal Investigators and their leader, Brandon Hall, had uncovered a badly burned body in the woods west of Scotia. Notably, they were quite a bit afield of the empty wilderness the PCs had tried to steer them towards. Hall said to the interviewer “If the men in black tell us to go south, we’re heading north!” The PCs discussed the incident briefly and settled on a strategy of allowing the CPI to go wherever they wanted. Ned Icecave summed up the group attitude as “If they want to get murdered by aliens, that’s their business.”

A transfer also arrived in the form of Lance Boone, Rowan Boone’s son who had been called in to collect his father’s body and to help finish his father’s last mission. Lance explained that he was an Assistant U.S. Attorney who had been dealing with Delta Green for a long while, although he had never gotten as deep in as his father. He immediately tried to take charge of the investigation, demonstrating an aggressive streak unseen in his father. This did not go over well with Ned Icecave and Mark Hart, although Malcolm Reading was unusually diplomatic, attempting to resolve the group’s differences. Nevertheless, the group spent the remainder of their time bickering over what to do next. They finally decided to request some additional equipment from Nunez and venture back into the woods east of Scotia, but that was where the group adjourned for the night.

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Light over the Sierras, Part II

At the beginning of their second day in Scotia, Brian Gall noticed on the news that an organization called the California Paranormal Investigators had arrived in Scotia and announced that they would be investigating the disappearances and strange sightings in the woods. To avoid threats to their cover, the PCs had Malcolm Reading contact the CPI’s lead investigator Brandon Hall and give him a false tip that something strange had been sighted far to the south of where the loggers had disappeared. The ruse worked and Hall and his camera crew headed off into the woods to the southeast, leaving the group with free run of the area of the disappearances.

Having exhausted their leads in the town of Scotia itself, the PCs decided to take their two rented SUVs and begin exploring the woods east of Scotia, where the loggers had last been seen before they disappeared. Unfortunately due to Peter’s absence the group was without Mark Hart, but nonetheless they took the SUVS and drove out to the site of one of the Scotia Water Reclamation District’s well drilling operations.

At the site they found plenty of abandoned well-drilling equipment, but seemingly no clues until Malcolm Reading thought to look down the well, where he spotted a faint greenish light. After some efforts, the group was able to lower a bucket on a rope down the hole and fish up the source of the light, a sphere made of a strange black metal, with a single translucent hole that emitted a faint green light. The group spent some time examining the sphere, but was unable to determine much about its properties, so they decided to move on to the next well.

Unfortunately, darkness had begun to fall, so the PCs decided to rest for the night. They decided that it would be safest if everyone slept in one SUV and they left the sphere in the other empty vehicle. They then set a night’s watch and went to sleep.

Brian Gall was the first to spot the strange lights emerging from the woods and moving slowly towards their cars. He immediately roused the others. For a tense moment the observed the lights, which seemed to move slowly closer but made no other hostile action. Finally, unwilling to wait to see what the lights did, the PCs decided to send Malcolm Reading and Rowan Boone to go get the other SUV, secure the alien sphere, and then flee from the lights at top speed. Brian Gall and Ned Icecave would cover them until they got to the car.

However as soon as they emerged from the SUV, Reading and Boone came under fire by strange unidentified projectiles from the lights. To make matters worse, several gray aliens emerged from the bushes and began to fire energy weapons, concentrating most of their fire on the SUV with the sphere inside, apparently trying to render it inoperable. While Reading raced for the SUV and started it up, Boone, Gall and Icecave opened fire, injuring two of the aliens and destroying one of the lights.

The aliens soon returned fire, and tragically Rowan Boone took a direct hit from one of their energy weapons, killing him instantly. Reeling from the loss of their friend, the group decided to retreat as soon as possible. Malcolm Reading started up the second SUV and gunned the engine, still under heavy fire from the alien weapons, which were trained mostly on the SUV’s engine block. Unfortunately he hit a tree and lost control of the vehicle, which swerved through the forest and skidded to a stop when it collided with another tree. Somehow, he was only lightly injured in the crash, and the SUV remained barely operable.

Meanwhile Brian Gall and Ned Icecave were still taking heavy fire themselves. Icecave made an executive decision, telling Gall to cover him from the passenger’s seat as he started the other SUV and sped straight towards the aliens! Swerving recklessly around trees, he ran over two of them in a single pass, killing them before turning the vehicle on another. The startled grays were only able to inflict light damage on the vehicle with their weapons before Icecave had ran over a third, and the fourth fled into the woods. Nonplussed, Ned Icecave turned the vehicle about and scanned the woods using the high beams. After a bit of looking, he was able to locate the final alien and run him down.

The group hastily gathered up two Plasma Pistols, the others having been destroyed when the aliens were run over, as well as the body of Rowan Boone, and promptly adjourned for the night.

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Light Over the Sierras, Part I

The second mission began with the PCs each getting a written invitation from Nunez on Department of Homeland Security stationary, directing them to meet him at a New York city office building for a special assignment. He signs it as “Christopher Nunez, Director, Office of Special Inquiry.” The group found the address to be a nondescript office building, across the street from the Weiss Federal Building, but the elevator had a strange numerical keypad set up inside. Upon entering the passcode supplied by Nunez, the elevator shuddered into motion, descending down deep beneath the surface of the city.

When it came to a halt, the PCs found themselves in an underground office building, with desks and filing cabinets arranged in a semi-circle around a large screen. Nunez was waiting for them. He explained that the characters were now members of Cell K of Delta Green, and that this office, built as an underground evacuation center during the Cold War, would be their base of operations. On paper, they would be members of the FBI Office of Special Inquiry, but in reality they would answer to Nunez directly, and above him, to the heads of Delta Green – the anonymous members of the mysterious Cell A. He gave them a brief history of Delta Green, and then began briefing them on the specifics of their first official mission.

He explained that loggers had been disappearing in the forests around Scotia, California. He added that Delta Green had received reliable information that the disappearances might be paranormal in nature, but further investigation was needed. He instructed the group to find out the cause of the disappearances, and if it was a threat to national security, neutralize it.

The PCs embarked immediately, and arrived in town about ten hours later, driving up California’s Highway 101 and off a ramp onto main street. They found Scotia to be a sleepy town, with most of its economy centered around the logging industry. The Pacific Lumber Company had set up a large mill in town in the 1950s. The mill and its attached log pool took up one side of main street, with numerous small businesses, the visitor’s center, and city hall on the other. An old wooden carving of Smokey the Bear holding a sign that says “Dry Conditions! Forest Fire Warning – High” stood on one side of the road.

The group immediately began laying the groundwork for their investigation. Rowan Boone contacted the local EPA branch and got the PCs issued IDs as EPA inspectors under the pretense that they would be investigating the Pacific Lumber Company sites for logging permit violations. Brian Gall did some digging and discovered that the Scotia Water Reclamation district had also been in the area on a well-digging project, and that a couple of their employees had gone missing as well. They had recalled everyone and put the well-drilling on hold, even being so hasty as to abandon some of their drilling equipment in the field.

Rowan Boone and Brian Gall went to visit a representative of Pacific Lumber Company, a PR Director named Sara Winston, who told them that the logging company was taking the disappearances seriously, but that sometimes their loggers went out into the woods on multi-day assignments, and that they might just have become lost in the woods. She said they wanted to be careful that the incident was not blown out of proportion and that logging activity was not suspended by the feds over nothing. She did divulge a List of Missing Loggers, however.

Meanwhile, Mark Hart and Malcolm Reading went to investigate the homes of several of the missing loggers themselves. While some of them had family members who would talk to the agents, some of the loggers had lived alone and left no way to get inside of their houses. Eager to look for clues, Hart and Reading decided to break into several of the residences. While their search was fruitful in a sense – they uncovered one of the loggers’ phones, which contained a picture of something he had spotted in the woods, their break-in attracted the unwanted attention of the Scotia PD. They ended up getting arrested and had to call Nunez to bail them out, alienating most of the Scotia police in the process, who viewed the PCs as arrogant, overzealous FBI agents. Brian Gall went down to the station himself to try to do damage control, but only succeeded in making the situation worse. The PCs reputation was only slightly salvaged by the later intervention of Rowan Boone, who managed to speak with the chief of police and calm him down somewhat. However, much of the damage could not be undone, and the majority of the Scotia police force now views the characters with suspicion and contempt. At that point, the group adjourned for the evening.

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Shepard's Creek, Part III

The game opened with the group being airlifted away from the chapel in the woods by Nunez’s black helicopter. With him was Jared Silverstein, who offered the group medical treatment, and informed them that Brian Gall would be in quarantine a little longer than expected. Something about him having a close encounter with an alien insect…

Reading promptly got up in Nunez’s face because he viewed the burning of the chapel as reckless destruction of evidence, while Nunez viewed it as sterilizing a potentially infested area to prevent anyone else from coming in contact with it. A brief argument ensued, while in the background Matt was carefully deciphering The Pearl of Great Price, and discovered that it contained instructions to cast three spells: “Calling the Outer Darkness,” “Call Reeya,” and “Presence of the Reeya.” Ned Icecave began studying the spell “Bringing Down the Outer Darkness,” but it will take him two weeks of study to fully learn it.

Nunez then explained that he was part of a top-secret Federal organization tasked with protecting the world from paranormal threats. He said that he had been brought in to the Shepard’s Creek investigation to determine if there was paranormal activity going on or not, and that he needed the PC’s help to take out the remaining cultists before they had a chance to escape or summon another Shepard. In exchange, he said that he would recruit the PCs into his organization if they made it out alive.

The group returned to police headquarters, where they immediately began looking into the identity of Jamie Waldron, who is mentioned in the Pearl’s margins as one of the chosen ones. A scan of government records revealed him to be a 12-year-old boy who was still residing at the address mentioned in the Pearl. Mark Hart and Malcolm Reading headed over to the house immediately to investigate, while the rest stayed back.

They discovered that the house was locked up, with the shades drawn, and all the windows were thoroughly covered with black paint. Suspicious, they called for the rest of the group, prompting Ned Icecave and Jared Silverstein to come as backup, while Rowan Boone remained behind, fearing that his injuries were too great for another potentially dangerous situation.

Making their way inside, the group was swiftly ambushed by shotgun-wielding cultists from all sides. Worse still, they discovered that certain rooms of the house were filled with a supernatural darkness that was impenetrable to all forms of light. As they battled the cultists in the darkness, they heard arcane sounds from upstairs, and the house shifted and shook beneath the weight of unknown forces. When it seemed things couldn’t get any worse, alien spiders poured out of the upper level of the house, attacking the PCs from out of the darkness. Malcolm Reading was paralyzed by their venom, but was saved by Jared Silverstein, who dragged him out of the darkness, fought back the alien insects, and administered a strong dose of anti-venom, which brought him back to consciousness. Meanwhile, Mark Hart and Ned Icecave made their way slowly and carefully in through the back, where they discovered Jamie Waldron’s parents, both dead and missing parts of their brains.

When they had cleared the first floor, the group headed upstairs, where they were attacked by more spiders and cultists. While the others fought to clear the cultists out room by room Mark Hart discovered a trapdoor leading into the attic. Venturing up, he discovered the cult leader, Angela Rhodes, standing over Jamie Waldron, standing over him and chanting a ritual. Hart attacked her immediately, scoring a critical hit and killed her instantly, ending the ritual and allowing the rest of the group to make short work of the remaining cultists.

Jared Silverstein wanted to examine Jamie Waldron quickly to determine how far the Shepard infesting his body had progressed. He discovered a pearly growth on the back of the boy’s neck, about the size of a golf ball, and with a writhing organism visible within. Working quickly, he prepped the boy for operation, lancing and cutting away the growth and carefully removing the insect parts wrapped around the boy’s spinal cord. Although the boy’s heart stopped mid-operation, Silverstein was able to shock it back into operation and finish the operation, which appears to have been successful. Waldron left the operating table alive and apparently no longer infested, albeit with some nerve damage. The PCs turned him over to the Department of Children and Family Services, as his parents had both been killed by the cult. Thus ended the mission.

Malcolm Reading, Mark Hart, and Ned Icecave received 1000 XP each. Rowan Boone received 500 XP because he sat the last battle out. Brian Gall received 500 XP because he was in quarantine for the last battle. Jared Silverstein received 500 XP because he was part of the last battle only.

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Shepard's Creek Part II
March 10, 2014

The game began with the PCs standing victorious, having escaped from being locked in a storm cellar with a steadily growing kerosene fire as well as a gunfight with two unknown assailants. Rowan Boone and Malcolm Reading checked the bodies, finding cell phones as well as driver’s licenses sufficient to ID them as Louis Guest and Mark Anderson. Meanwhile, Brian Gall ran the property records and determined that Guest was the owner of the house and storm cellar in question. The group radioed for backup immediately and received it, in the form several squad cars full of police, an ambulance for their burn wounds, and a fire truck to put out the kerosene fire.

Mark and Malcolm checked the house for traps and, upon finding none, cleared it for the rest of the group to go inside to investigate. Within, they found an old desktop computer as well as a safe hidden under a table. While Ned Icecave and Malcolm brought the computer back to police headquarters for investigation, Brian suddenly developed an interest in the house’s history, and ran off to the library to check the property records, newspaper reports, and CODIS database.

He determined that four months ago, Louis Guest’s daughter Lindsay Guest had died under suspicious circumstances. The official cause of death was labeled an allergic reaction caused by an unknown insect bite, but upon interviewing the examining doctor, it became clear that this was unlike any ordinary insect bite – it caused the girl to vomit blood, her skin and blood turned a green-yellow color, and when she died a legion of insects burst forth from her skin.

Meanwhile, Icecave scanned the hard drive and was able to hack into Guest’s email, where he discovered that Guest had been emailing back and forth with a man named Eric Holm. The two spoke of a chapel in the woods, a mysterious leader known only as A, and someone named Jamie who was to be the host for a new Shepard who was even greater than the current one. Guest also admonished Holm for “trying to get two of them like that” but said “Let’s see if A forgives you before we go to the hospital.”

A search of Eric Holm’s records revealed that he had checked himself into Silverton Hospital, about two hours away, just two days ago.Boone called the doctor who examined Lindsay Guest and convinced him to examine Holm as well, and told him to call if anything unusual happened. He also placed a sheriff to guard Holm’s room to prevent him from escaping or being killed. At this point it was late in the day, and the group broke for a rest.

Boone got a call at 3 AM saying that Holm was in critical condition and no one knew how much longer he might last. Not wanting to risk a fatigue penalty, the rest of the group decided to wait until morning, but Brian chose to head over to Silverton Hospital right away. He got there just in time to witness Holm’s last moments – with the sticker man ranting about how “she said it was a gift,” and vomiting blood before having his skin split open and a torrent of insects burst forth. Brian got the doctors to clear out of the room and then to evacuate the hospital, but before he could leave, the CDC quarantined the entire hospital, trapping Brian on the grounds.

The rest of the group woke up to find out that someone had reported an abandoned car alongside the road. The went to investigate, and found three sets of footprints leading into Shepard’s Creek, and then later a body wrapped in a tarp and weighted down with stones, which turned out to be the vehicle’s owner. He had the same characteristic wounds that all victims of the Shepard’s Creek killer had. Finding nothing else of note, Icecave found out when they got back to the police station that he was finally able to get the GPS data from Louis Guest and Mark Anderson’s cellphones. Analyzing it, he was able to pinpoint where he believed the chapel would be, and with the rest of the group in tow, as well as a squad of police for backup, they drove out to investigate.

The spot in the woods was indeed an old, seemingly-deserted chapel. The group went in cautiously, with half going in the front and half going in the back. They were ambushed in short order by two armed cultists on the second floor. Mark Hart went to gun down the cultists, but on the way he discovered Derek Hollins, the child he had chased down in the woods, hidden behind some boxes. Hollins charged, his physical form warping and twisting to reveal a massive, spider-like creature, and he, Hart and Boone engaged in a mortal struggle. Hart was able to tear free of the creature’s claws after taking a middling wound, but Boone was pinned down and almost eviscerated by the creature’s chitinous legs. Thanks only to a lucky critical hit from Malcolm, the spider demon was killed just in time for Mark Hart to race in to save Boone from death, stabilizing him at -9 hit points.

At this time, Sergeant Nunez landed in a black helicopter, backed up by a squad of men in hazmat suits, armed with flamethrowers. He ordered the group into the helicopter, and then had his men incinerate the entire chapel, with the body of the spider demon inside. Fortunately, due to the last minute quick thinking of Ned Icecave, the group was able to retrieve an ancient book, The Pearl of Great Price, from beneath the lectern. As they flew off in the chopper, the chapel burning in the background, the session was adjourned.

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Shepard's Creek, Part I

A serial killer has been stalking the woods and back roads of a small town in upstate New York. Nicknamed “the Shepard” by the locals, his calling card is to cut away a part of his victim’s skull and remove the entire frontal lobe of their brain, dumping the rest of the body in the creek for which he is named. The local police investigation has made no progress at all, leading experts to be called in from all over the country, including:

Rowan Boone, a brilliant, well-connected investigator from Nashville Tennessee, whose penetrating insight is almost as unfathomable as his southern drawl. Brian Gall, a gifted FBI criminal profiler with a checkered past and an unsteady hand. Mark Hart, a US Marshal with a dead-eye, an iron-will, and the skills to apprehend, but not necessarily locate, any fugitive. Malcolm Reading, a cunning, tough-as-nails NYPD investigator who puts the “bad” in cop. And Ned Icecave, once a rogue hacker, he was coerced into joining the FBI when his past caught up with him, turning in his black hat for a nice shady gray.

The first mission opened with the PCs arriving in the small, upstate New York town of Shepard’s Creek just in time for a morning briefing. Sergeant Christopher Nunez explained the details surrounding the six victims who have been located so far, as well as what evidence has been ascertained about the Shepard’s modus operandi. At the conclusion of the briefing, Rowan assembled the other characters into an investigations team. After consulting, they agreed to split up, with one group going to question a local drunk who claimed to have seen something in the woods on the night of the latest killing, and another group going to investigate the crime scene itself.

Hart and Reading headed over to the crime scene, a black SUV pulled over to the road. Both the driver’s and passenger’s side doors were found lying open, and a body was found next to the passenger’s side. Reading was quickly able to locate a faint set of footprints leading away from the vehicle, belonging to at least three individuals, which the local police investigators had missed. They headed off into the woods to follow the tracks.

Meanwhile, Boone, Icecave and Gall went to question Jim Dawes, the town drunkard. He claimed to have seen three men in the woods, two of them carrying guns and chasing the third. He agreed to lead the group to the place where he saw them after a little persuading from Boone, threatening to arrest Dawes on a warrant that was still open for his arrest which Gall had discovered earlier.

They followed Dawes into the woods, where they met up with the rest of the group, who had followed the tracks to the same place. After a brief investigation and questioning of Dawes, Investigator Reading was able to locate the body of a hispanic male, lying dead in the brush with a hunting rifle bullet in his back. Just then, the group heard a twig snap, and discovered a young boy in a camp outfit with long black hair watching them from a distance. He fled when sighted, but the PCs gave chase, and Hart was able to run him down rather easily. The boy identified himself as Derek Hollins, and said he had seen where the two men with guns had gone.

The PCs released him from Hart’s handcuffs and had him lead them back to a house in the woods. Derek said the men had entered the house’s storm cellar, which stood adjacent to a portable generator and several drums of fuel. The PCs let Derek go, and descended into the storm cellar, but as soon as they did they heard a clanging sound as someone rolled several drums of kerosene down the stairs! They split open on the hard packed floor, and a hand t tossed a lit cigarette lighter down into the puddle, igniting a blaze. Someone then locked the storm cellar doors, trapping the PCs in the burning cellar. While Hart and Icecave leaped over the flames and began try to force the doors open, Gall, afraid that he would not survive the jump, backed further and further into a corner as the flames spread, becoming so desperate as to consider spreading the jars of preserved fruits and vegetables on the basement shelves as a makeshift barrier against the flames. Finally, he bit the bullet and jumped, rolling a natural 20 and avoiding death by immolation. At least, this time.

Hart and Icecave had forced the doors open at this point, and they emerged to find two men with guns waiting for them. A brief shootout ensued, but the gunmen were outnumbered and outclassed by Hart and Boone, who shot both without being scathed themselves. The group agreed to adjourn the mission at this point.

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Welcome to your campaign!
A blog for your campaign

Wondering how to get started? Here are a few tips:

1. Invite your players

Invite them with either their email address or their Obsidian Portal username.

2. Edit your home page

Make a few changes to the home page and give people an idea of what your campaign is about. That will let people know you’re serious and not just playing with the system.

3. Choose a theme

If you want to set a specific mood for your campaign, we have several backgrounds to choose from. Accentuate it by creating a top banner image.

4. Create some NPCs

Characters form the core of every campaign, so take a few minutes to list out the major NPCs in your campaign.

A quick tip: The “+” icon in the top right of every section is how to add a new item, whether it’s a new character or adventure log post, or anything else.

5. Write your first Adventure Log post

The adventure log is where you list the sessions and adventures your party has been on, but for now, we suggest doing a very light “story so far” post. Just give a brief overview of what the party has done up to this point. After each future session, create a new post detailing that night’s adventures.

One final tip: Don’t stress about making your Obsidian Portal campaign look perfect. Instead, just make it work for you and your group. If everyone is having fun, then you’re using Obsidian Portal exactly as it was designed, even if your adventure log isn’t always up to date or your characters don’t all have portrait pictures.

That’s it! The rest is up to your and your players.

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