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About Grumblefloof

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    Doesn't Care For Most Things
  • Birthday 04/15/1981

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  1. When Wadjet spoke, the man in white's head jerked up toward her, and he hissed. When Lady Horus burst through the door into the back alley, he reflexively turned toward her, and hissed again. Both of them got a clear view of his face, at least the parts not obscure by his mask. Inside Doctor Thorne's office, his eyes appeared dark, but normal. Now, the whole of each eyeball was completely black. Twin obsidian orbs glared wildly back and forth at them, open so wide they threatened to pop out of his skull. The veins bulging down the underside of his jaw were also black. His mouth looked too big for his face, taking up the entire bottom half of his head, and it seemed to contain an impossible number of teeth, including canines that had grown to three times their normal length, as had the tongue that absent-mindedly licked a stray trickle of blood from his chin. When the shock of their intrusion passed, he slumped back down, covering his face with hands that seemed too big, fingers that seemed too long, now that attention had been drawn to them. He whispered through his hands. "Don't...don't look. Please don't look." His body dissolved into a plume of fog, which flew into the air and across the Bedlam skyline. Once the man in white and his massive cape were no longer present to obscure them, Lady Horus and Wadjet could see where his fingers had dug holes into the solid asphalt. ... Later, near Snacktastic, he touched down and coalesced back into his solid human form beside the other assembled vigilantes. "No. Covering fire might make it easier for the rest of us to sneak in, but it could also exacerbate an already tenuous situation. You start shooting people, and they'll panic, even it's not with real bullets. Hard to tell the difference when you're on the front line and your blood's already up."
  2. Even though DRINK I'm dealing with probably BLOOD the two foremost occult authorities in the city, maybe IN MY HAND IT'S RIGHT THERE IN MY HAND if I can reach back into my scientific training and phrase things as...rationally as possible, they won't have to stop and think about it long enough to consider the horrible implications. "The candy factory is a risk, not a certainty. So far, I've observed the...'entropic aura' affect fresh food, and living plants and cultures. Fruits and vegetables, bread, milk, cheese, wine, those sorts of things. But crates of processed sugar and food coloring, packed with preservatives...that might be immune to the effect." The man in white glanced back and forth at the back door where Lady Horus had made an entrance worthy of the stage, and the Pyrex bottle he clutched in his hand and had tried to keep hidden behind the folds of his cape. "Excuse me for a moment..." he muttered before darting outside, moving fast enough to leave a white streak across the eyes of his observers. There was an audible WHOOSH from the displacement of air, but the pounding of his boots across the floor didn't make any noise at all. Once outside, he broke the top of the bottle off, lacking the patience even to unscrew the cap. His lips clamped down around the broken lid, but he didn't notice the shards carving gashes into the inside of his mouth as he guzzled down the blood. His tongue, now elongated to three times its normal length, was too busy frantically licking the inside of the bottle dry, scooping up even the tiniest drops of blood. His whole body shuddered, and he let loose a noise like a purr that gradually turned into a growl, both from the mouth of a hungry tiger. The others could hear it echo through the wall. As soon as he pulled the broken bottle from his lips, the cuts inside his mouth healed, the flesh knitting itself back together in a second. He fell to his knees for a few moments as the euphoria faded. He looked down at the two pieces of the bottle in his hands, growled again, and hurled them against the outer wall, with enough force to shatter the break-resistant glass. He closed his eyes tightly and pinched the bridge of his nose between his fingers. Monster...you're a disgusting monster...
  3. Mister Strix takes a Move Action to leap over to a spot between the car and the other heroes, and a Standard Action to Ready a Charge against the driver. Initiative & Condition Summary 23: Mister Strix (2HP) 17: Arrowhawk (2HP, Bruised 3, Injured 2, Dazed, Prone) 16: The Tattered Man (1HP, Bruised, Injured, Prone) 05: Police Officer Arrowhawk is up.
  4. I don't want the GMPC to steal a hero moment from either of you, so I'm going to disregard him winning Initiative. Strix's Toughness save (DC24): 25. Ecal, it didn't actually change the results of your rolls, but you forgot Arrowhawk still has a Bruise from her brawl with Strix. TK, The Tattered Man doesn't actually have the Interpose feat, so it'll cost him his Hero Point to gain it temporarily for one round. I'd normally throw the Hero Point from my Fiat to Arrowhawk, since she got beaten up the most, but that would leave her and Tattered Man at 3 and 0, so I'll toss it back to him. Initiative & Condition Summary 23: Mister Strix (2HP) 17: Arrowhawk (2HP, Bruised 3, Injured 2, Dazed, Prone) 16: The Tattered Man (1HP, Bruised, Injured, Prone) 05: Police Officer
  5. Mister Strix turned to the homeless woman first. He was barely able to ask "Are you O-" before he saw her scramble to her feet and start running down the street. Good enough. Then he turned back toward the police cruiser. He crouched down, then leaped into the air, his powerful legs propelling him up over the parked car. His boots landed squarely between the front of the car and the stretch of asphalt where the bodies of Arrowhawk and The Tattered Man were splayed out. You want them? First you go through me. He let out a tiger's growl that echoed down the street. "Get out of the car."
  6. GM Arrowhawk and The Tattered Man both reacted to the oncoming headlights by darting toward them, rather than away, a testament to their mutual courage. Arrowhawk dove into a somersault and tackled the homeless woman out of the path of the car as she came up, while The Tattered Man simply shielded them both with his own body. The police cruiser hit The Tattered Man, driving him into Arrowhawk, and then both of them through the front wall of the abandoned store. The Tattered Man took the brunt of the impact from the car, but Arrowhawk's body shielded him from the worst of the collision with the wall. The police cruiser screeched to a halt on the street a few car lengths away from the store. The sudden stop hurled both The Tattered Man and Arrowhawk to the pavement, not far from the corpse of Mike Donaghy. Mister Strix, more startled by the sudden appearance of the car, was slower to leap into action than either of the other assembled vigilantes. The corner of the car's front bumper clipped him and sent him spinning away, thwarting his attempt to dive into its path. He remained standing inside the ruined storefront. The bright headlights and the flashing lights on top of the car made it difficult to see more than a silhouette of the person behind the wheel of the police cruiser.
  7. GM The figure in the shadows dropped something as they darted up out of their hiding place. It made a series of high-pitched CLINK! noises as it hit the ground and rolled toward Arrowhawk's feet. A bottle of whiskey. Something to provide the illusion of warmth on a cold night. When the homeless woman ran up to the door, Arrowhawk could see that she was covered in at least four layers of torn flannel shirts, and that the blonde hair trailing down from under her knit cap hadn't been washed or even brushed in months at least. She had dark bags under her eyes, but those eyes were stretched wide in terror. "Y-y-y-you g-g-g-otta help me! I s-s-saw 'im! And h-h-he saw me! He saw me seein' 'im! He killed those guys, and he drove his car right through their car, right through the wall, up the side of a building! I know what yer thinkin', but I swear, it's not the booze! That smile! He SMILED at me!" Her rant was cut short by the roar of an engine and flash of light as a police cruiser passed through the opposite wall of the abandoned store as though it weren't there. It sped directly toward the front door, the homeless woman, and Arrowhawk.
  8. I'm using GM Fiat to deny everyone Notice checks and declare an automatic surprise round for the cop. Once the surprise round resolves, I'll give the Hero Point to whichever PC is most directly and negatively affected by the results. The police cruiser is doing a full-speed Slam attack against the homeless woman. Accelerated move is +4 damage base, +5 for Speed 5 = Damage 9, DC24 Toughness save. The car itself has to save against 1/2 damage, rounded down, or Damage 4, DC19 Toughness. Police Cruiser's Toughness save: 19. The car passes. Whoever the car hits is also going to get slammed into (and through) the interior store wall. None of you are strong enough to stop the car in its tracks. The wall is Toughness 3. That's going to be less than anyone's Knockback result, so let's just assume that'll be another DC18 Toughness save. Police Cruiser's Toughness save: 29. At this point, the boards blocking the front door and window to the abandoned store are mostly gone, so everyone has freedom of movement. The car will hit the homeless woman, unless one of the heroes gets her out of the way. You each have 3 options: Option 1: Do nothing. 100% safety, at least for this round. Option 2: Anyone who has the Interpose feat (or who's willing to burn a Hero Point as a reaction to get it for a round) can use it to tackle her out of the way and take the hit themselves. If you do that, then make a DC24 Toughness save for the initial impact, then another DC18 Toughness save for when the car knocks you against the inside of the store wall. It's Toughness 3. Option 3: You can also try to knock the homeless woman out of the car's path while also moving fast enough to avoid getting hit yourself. This will require a DC20 Reflex save. If you fail the save, then you knock her out of the way, but you get hit. If you fail by 5+, then you and she both get hit. If multiple people want to try to intervene, then roll Initiative against each other. Highest Init wins and gets to her first. Everyone else who tries still suffers any negative effects. Mister Strix will try to intervene. Initiative: 28. Natural 20. No. I'll use GM Fiat to give him a Hero Point and force him to re-roll. Re-roll: 23. Still higher than I'd like, but oh well. Mister Strix gets a Hero Point.
  9. When the knocking stopped and the people outside walked away, Mister Strix relaxed. He'd have breathed a sigh of relief if he'd had any breath to hold. He tensed right back up again when he heard the glass shatter in the alley behind the house. Not customers, then. Opportunists. Of course. This is Bedlam City, after all. He crept up the stairs to the second floor, where he dissolved himself into a cloud of mist and slipped through the crack under the door to the study. None of the people climbing through the broken window spotted him as he coalesced back into solid undead flesh. They don't look like hardened criminals, just young punks. I can just scare them. I don't have to hurt them. "You broke into the wrong house, Children." Between the blinks of the foursome's eyes, a man in white appeared in the shadows on the far side of the study. An unsettling echo reverberated under his deep voice as he spoke. He had the darkest eyes any of them had ever seen, and his skin was so pale, it was difficult to tell where it ended and his cowl began. "There is nothing here worth stealing. Here, there is only death." He grasped the lining of his massive cape with both hands and lifted it into the air, like the spread of a massive raptor's wings. He looked like a photo-negative version of the original Raven. "Leave, now, while you still can. While I still allow it."
  10. A couple people made the Will save against Strix's Concealment, but none of them also beat his Stealth with their Notice, so no one knows he's there until he reveals himself. The Notice checks did reveal other stuff, though, described in the GM post. Search check: 16. OK, once people start Searching in earnest, I'll use the highest result from among the PCs as the "real" skill check, and all the others as Aid checks. Grimalkin got 34, so she's the lead. Temperance, Sekhmet, and Strix all cleared DC10, so they each add +2. None of them cleared 20 to add another +1. That's a final Search result of DC40.
  11. GM The first thing that struck Freedom foursome as they pulled themselves up through the window was that it was colder inside the house than outside. And 11-o-clock on a fall night in Bedlam wasn't exactly warm. Once they got inside, Grimalkin and Sekhmet both picked up on a few scents that were both, to put it mildly, unpleasant and out of place. The increasingly familiar mix of saltwater and saliva that greeted them at Silbermans was present here as well, though it was duller, more faint here than it had been there. They also both smelled blood, human or something similar, also faint, and a couple different types of mold or mildew, one significantly stronger than the other. Temperance, meanwhile, felt a slight charge in the air, and smelled a faint hint of ozone, similar to the air after a lightning strike. There weren't any spirits here, nor had there been. But some sort of passage between dimensions had taken place, more than once, and it had left traces similar to those left by spirits who travel between their native worlds and this mortal plane. Something from another place had been coming and going, and the scars in the fabric of this universe from the holes they'd torn open to do it were nearby, still raw and tender. The room they had climbed into was designed as a bedroom when this house had been built as a family residence, but it had long ago been converted into a study. The furniture was all solid oak, the color of fresh-roasted coffee beans. Half the room was dominated by an antique roll-top desk. Every inch of surface space on the desk was covered with old open books and hand-written notes. Bookshelves lined two of the walls, while a third was given over to a cork-board. Several newsprint clippings and photocopies of the like were pinned to the board. The articles came from both sides of the Atlantic, and ranged from just a few years ago to the early 1800s. Together, the books, clippings, and notes combined to paint a picture of how the occupant had been spending his time. He'd been making a detailed study of a volume of Scivias from the same series as the tome which had been stolen from the Silbermans vault, the same series as the book that had sold at auction. The same Latin morality plays written on the faded parchment taken from the Greek merchant's journal that had described his doomed voyage. The same faded ink embedded in those pages listed the same lyrics and musical notes for the same impossible songs the sirens had used to summon the leviathans who'd broken the Greek's mind. There was an obvious deterioration in the quality of the penmanship of the notes over time, as the writing degenerated from flowery to frantic, and the notes grew steadily less coherent. Those trends continued as the author had abandoned pen and paper in favor of clawing snippets of text directly into the wall and the hardwood floor. A close inspection revealed tiny spots of blood and chunks of human fingernail embedded in some of the writing. SING THE SONGS EYES DON'T SING THE SONGS HE SEES THEY WANT TO BE SUNG HIS EYES BLEEDING EYES HE WATCHES TEN-THOUSAND EYES HE RISES HE RISES HE RISES
  12. The man in white reached out and touched the text with his index finger. "Is that a direct message to us? Is this some sort of automatic reaction built in to this curse?" He looked up and around. "Or are we being watched?" He stepped back, crossed his arms, and absent-mindedly stroked his sharp chin while his black eyes squinted at the map. "The city government offices seem like the most 'important' site that's been affected so far. But that almost makes it too obvious. And with City Hall still closed, they're spread out all over town. We could spend weeks tracking down every rented office that each individual department and commission's working out of." After a moment of silent contemplation, he turned to face the others. "With the strike, the Hardwick Candy factory will have the least amount of human activity and the most lax security of any of these sites. If it's the source, then whoever did this might have even specifically engineered the strike to avoid scrutiny." Whoever the man in white was, despite having only operated in Bedlam for the last few months, his reference to the factory's original owners betrayed an intimate familiarity with the city's history. The candy company hadn't borne Lucius Hardwick's name since the 1990s. "There's 'collateral damage' to consider. If I show up there, then they can probably say 'Goodbye' to most of the ingredients they currently have in stock, and I don't have any way of reimbursing them. That kind of loss could hit the workers' livelihoods even harder than the strike." He allowed himself a smirk. "On the other hand, safety and sanitation's so bad over there, overhauling their inventory could be considered a public health measure."
  13. I'll need Notice checks and Will saves from everyone once they get inside the house. I'll also need Search checks from anyone who's going to actively snoop.