Campaign of the Month: May 2021

Baghdad on the Bayou

Under the Sea

The Crescent City Cavaliers, Episode 4

December 2011
It has been another month and it is Dec. 20th. The holidays are in full swing. David and Betty have traveled to Kentucky to spend Christmas with his family and Christmas preparations are keeping everyone else busy. However, it is just not the holidays occupying the Cavalier’s time, Luther has gotten leads that the Professor might be lying low and healing his wounds in the 9th ward of the city and has become acquainted with the 9th Ward Watch and helping them in their turf war with the supernatural – especially ghouls.

The group decided that it was time to reconvene at the bakery and discuss what had been happening the last few weeks. As he was leaving the 9th Ward Luther was attacked by a pair of ghouls and managed to hold them off until The Watch arrived and chased them off. Vic was ambushed by a pair of goat-like Fae that attacked him with machine guns. When he went to his Court for help they informed him that they are Summer Fae and they have no knowledge as to why they might be here in town at the height of Winter’s power. Vic believes them and goes to the bakery.

Beaumont went to check on the Montague’s after Kylee was rescued only to find that Kelly, her mother had been missing for almost 2 weeks. It appears she just up and left, so the police are not investigating it as a missing persons case. They say it looks like she abandoned her family and left. Meanwhile, when Gideon came out to his motorcycle and there was note attached to it. ‘We have her. If you want her back in one piece give us the sword. If you don’t you will get her back in pieces.’

As they meet and discuss the recent events, they initially believe that the note is referring to Kelly Montague. Beaumont casts a tracking spell that does not get any results, either she is far away or on another plane of existence, like the Nevernever. He casts a spell on the note, which they realize used blood for the ink. The spell leads them to an abandoned slaughterhouse in the industrial district. They enter and follow Beaumont to the ‘killing room’ where the actual slaughtering took place. On the far wall they find an inverted pentagram drawn in blood. Because of the tracking spell they assume the blood on the wall is the same as the blood in the note. Beaumont senses this is a ‘soft spot’ in the boundary between the mortal world and the Nevernever. Because of the nature of this location, he realizes it would be easy to open a portal here.

Gideon divinely intuits that not just the Nevernever is on the other side, but that this would most likely lead to the Downbelow and leaves to retrieve his bike from outside. If they are going to Hell he is going to ride his bike. While outside he is approached by a jolly older Cajun gentleman, broad shoulders, but pleasantly overweight. He has a shorter beard and hair. His eyes are “clean, winter sky blue”. He wears a red and green striped shirt with the sleeves rolled up and denim overalls with a cuff rolled up at the bottom, and a wide brimmed straw hat. He is very amiable, and always is quick to laugh with a huge belly laugh. With 8 alligators, 1 of which is white. He speaks to Gideon as if he knows him and asks him to take him to his friends – they have things to discuss.

Once inside, he introduces himself as Papa Noel, the Cajun version of Father Christmas or Santa Claus, and tells them he needs their help. He has obligations and cannot act on his own at this time of year. As he talks his image begins to shift – almost like a double exposure – with another image over that of Papa Noel. The second image is of a huge bear of a man, this is Kris Kringle. He has broad shoulders, forearms nearly as large as his upper arms, a thick neck, a barrel chest and a huge frame. Kringle’s hair is short, white, “shining clean”, his beard, long, white, and cascading over his chest like a fluffy wave. His eyes are “clean, winter sky blue”. He has ancient scars of white lines on his hands and face. He wears a coat of mail, and an open overcoat of a rich red, trimmed in white fur and held by a black leather belt. Tucked into his belt were a pair of white-fur-trimmed black leather gloves, and a huge sword hanging from it. He has a jovial laugh and looks like he enjoys a good battle every few years to keep his life engaged.

He asked them to gather evidence that the Fomor were behind the Deep Water Horizon disaster that effectively made the Gulf of Mexico a no man’s land. As he continues a third image is imposed over the others when his face catches the shadows just right and it looks like he has a patch over one eye. This is Donner Vaderrung, CEO of Monoc Securities and Odin. This image is not as imposing as Kringle, though he appears to be a man in good shape in his early fifties. Lean and spare like a long-distance runner only with heavy shoulders and arms. His hair is long, a bit shaggy, and the color of a “thundercloud”. His one eye is ice blue with a patch over the other eye that bears a vertical scar running from above the eyebrow, through the space where the eye would be, ending at mid-cheek. His laugh is hearty, “like Santa Claus must have had when he was a young man and playing football.”

He describes the covert war that his organization has been fighting against the Fomor, but now they have stepped up hostile incursion he realizes that he needs allies. As the CCC tries to report on their encounters with the Formor. Odin acknowledges their effort and explains that is why he came to them. He is pleased with what they have done, but more needs to be accomplished.

He knows that the Fomor caused the disaster but that ‘thought and memory’ only go so far. He needs evidence to take to the other supernatural nations and gain allies in the fight. When asked how they would get there Kringle gives them a jingle bell and tells them to contact Njord, the god of the oceans and seas for help getting there. When they take the jingle bell it changes appearance into a token of a circle bisected by a line – the symbol of Monoc Securities.

He warns them of the Gruffs outside and disappears. They soon discover the Gruffs are outside the slaughterhouse waiting to ambush them. As they take positions to fight back, Beaumont goes out to negotiate with them, hoping to call them off, or at least get him a reprieve until after Christmas. The Gruffs relent to give him 24 hours to finish business with Odin.

They leave to summon Njord and take an hour to prepare after finding a deserted beach along Lake Pontchartrain. As part of his preparation Luther purchased some Surströmming, fermented herring, in hopes of appeasing the god after he was summoned. When summoned he appeared as a 20+ foot tall figure out of the water. Asking who dared summon him, everyone points to Beaumont. Luther presents his gift and the god shrinks to human size and accepts the offering. After being offered Odin’s token, he gives them a Viking longship crewed by Eiherjaren and Rikard Baldurson. It becomes clear that the two gods are working together and there is no animosity between them or the group.

Gideon asks to bring his bike and Rikard rolls his eyes and tells him to get his ‘ass’ on board (Gideon has named his motorcycle ‘Donkey’). They load up and the ship makes the 41-mile voyage out to the wreckage site in a few hours – powered by something more than sails and oars. On the way Luther notices that the crew not only have traditional Viking weapons, but also modern weapons such as machine guns, explosives, grenades, and such. He spends the trip trading gun tips with several Einherjaren. Also, Rikard tells them that he and the Einherjaren will not be able to help them search the wreckage. They are under orders not to leave the ship and must protect it with everything they have.

When they arrive at site of the wreckage, the ship dives below the surface and is encased it an air bubble. As they descend and it gets darker and darker the crew start up generators and plug in halogen spotlights and other lights to see by. As they come to the wreckage on the ocean floor, Gideon looks expectantly from his bike to Rikard. Rikard tells them that they thought he would want to take his bike out. He hands Gideon a leather cord that has a tile with an Old Norse rune inscribed on it and tells him to tie it in his bike and it will momentarily make his bike be able to travel underwater. As C3 looks around at the ship they notice the same rune inscribed at points around the ship.

Rikard and the crew break open a new cask of mead and fill up cups for the group of heroes, telling them that this mead will let them breathe under water. Gideon does not drink but does fill up his flask and revs Donkey and rides off the ship and onto the ocean floor surrounded by a bubble of air like the ship. The rest of the group drinks and within moments cannot breathe air anymore, but instead grow gills to breathe water (and gains the Aquatic power). Rikard tells them they have 1 hour until it wears off. Luther’s last words as he drops his guns to the deck are, ‘Don’t touch Gloria.’ The group jump out into the ocean. The last thing they see as they leave the ship is a horde of Fomor creations coming toward the ship, and Sven calls out ‘They are coming! Prepare to repel!’ The Einherjaren respond with, ‘Until Vallhalla!’

They start exploring the wreckage and Gideon keeps a lookout for what might slip by and rides his bike around the wreckage. In the bridge Beaumont quickly realizes that even after a year on the bottom of the ocean floor there is still residual entropy magic here that has hexed all of the technology. Odin was right, it was no accident. As they make their way to the door leading to the passage to the drill control room, they notice it is covered in acidic pockmarks. This brings back memories of the acid guns the Fomor Servitors used when fighting the group before.

As they enter the drill control room they find more evidence of hexing and even find one monitor that has an image burnt into the screen at the time it was hexed showing Fomor standing over 3 bodies lying in a magic circle on the bottom of the ocean floor. The details are blurry but clear enough to identify a Fomor to those clued in enough. The group takes the monitor so they have some proof for Monoc and Odin. Gideon spots a group of creatures flanking the ship.

Now they have some evidence the group is split on weather to return to the ship or continue searching the outer areas of an engine thruster and the monument to those that died. They decide to investigate the broken engine and then head back as their time is running out. When they reach the engine and begin investigating, they find the remains or at least 2 – maybe 3 bodies in the remnants of a magic circle. It appears the that the engine just happened to land on the circle when the wreckage sank. The remains and circle are mostly jammed in and under the thruster. Beaumont grabs a skull as they leave.

On their way back to the ship they pass close to the monument area and are attacked by 2 gorilla sharks and an octokong, in addition to a Fomor Sorcerer. Luther attacks with his knife and holds his own pretty well, but the sorcerer takes offense at being stabbed with a knife and casts a black orb of entropic energy at him. However, fate intervenes and it misses Luther hitting the monument. Destroying it. During the battle they fight the octokong and sorcerer – wounding him enough to have him retreat and leave his creatures to attack the party.

About that time Gideon rides in to help them fight the octokong. However, Vic is wounded again and chooses discretion over valor and heads back to the boat with the computer monitor. The rest stay to try and fight, but it devolves into a stalemate and the rest of the group decide to go back to the boat. On the way Beaumont breaks off a piece of coral from the fields around the monument and brings it with him. He also notices several giant mutated jellyfish floating above the fields of coral. When they return, they see several Eiherjaren wounded or dead. He knows that they will awaken in Valhalla the next morning, and they make their escape.

As they make their way back to New Orleans in the early morning of December 21st, they say farewell to the ship of undead warriors and go to seek healing and then to the bakery. Papa Noel comes to collect the evidence and Beaumont convinces him to stay and have a beignet and meet his mother. He thanks them for the evidence and for a moment transforms to Odin and inducts them into ‘The Wolves of Odin’, also known as the ‘Ulfhednar’ – Odin’s chosen warriors. He also bestows each with an Old Norse byname and the title of drengr. From hence forth they shall be known as Beaumont the Seiðrmaðr, Vic the Skelmir, Gideon the Heilagr-hermadr, and Luther the Brunninn-hermadr. He also gifts them a coin with Odin’s Monoc symbol on one side and a wolfs head on the other, telling them that it a boon of Odin, good for a one-time use.

The next morning Gideon discovers another note on his bike, this time with a small box. The note reads, ‘Just so you know we are serious.’ The box contains a severed human finger with a promise ring on it – the promise ring that Gideon gave Penelope.

Even though they have been to the bottom of the ocean floor and have communed with Norse gods, there is still much to do. Vic has to deal with the Gruffs and Gideon has to rescue Penelope from Hell. Oh and they have to be back in time for Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve.


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