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The Dragon of Life

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[Jul. 30th, 2011|08:18 pm]
The Dragon of Life
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The game begins with the faithful transcriber suggesting they STOP making the horrible terrible uncouth jokes lest his livejournal be peppered with neo-Nazi propaganda. This clearly fails.

DM: You’re killing time before your hunt.
Glass: That’s right, I’m a Mokole. (pausing, then jacking his voice up an octave for his IC voice) “That’s right, I’m a Mokole! Vocal cords shifted!”
Janelle: Oh god.
John: “You a whaaaaaaaaat?”
Glass: “I mean I’m an average human guy.”
Janelle: “I still saw you turn into that dragon.”
Glass: “You didn’t see a thing. The stress was getting to you, we discussed this.”
Janelle: “Not to my satisfaction.”
DM: You hear a knock on your door.
Glass: I resist the urge to scuttle under the bed.
DM: You hear a rapping, rapping on your chamber door.
Janelle: I am the WRONG changing breed for that.
Sayid: This is at what time?
DM: It just hit midnight.
Glass: “Your hunt is ready, ya gonna make things dead-y”, ugh, never rap again.
DM: You recognize him as one of the bellhops but he’s kinda dressed differently now, got the camouflage paint on, his entire outfit screams ‘mercenary elite’.
John: “Ha! I see you!”
DM: He seems a little bulkier than he was before mostly because his clothes are a lot tighter, he was wearing baggy shirts before. He seems a lot tougher than a guy you saw hours before as just another random bellhop. “Your hunt…is ready. We will take you to the grounds, point you in the right direction, and give you the tools you need to slay this prey. You asked… special prey. You will learn more about it when we get to the fields. When you are ready, meet me at the entrance.

MORE Resident Evil jokes! Also more torturing the transcriber jokes! The group heads down, past the waitress who is trying to ignore them, to the bellhop and another mercenary. This one has bandoliers of silver and gold bullets along with a custom rifle. The two mercenaries flank the group and they proceed onwards, to meet with the rest of the group. One of the other members has several large wooden stakes.

DM: …I didn’t have a Vampire book, are basic rules of vampires… ‘cuz I’m going by what I know of vampires…

The leader shows up in a trenchcoat, body armor, and toting explosives. He is also wearing a medallion necklace.

Janelle: We are so screwed.
Glass: No, this is how we’d be so screwed. “Wow, these guys are so neat!” (makes poke-with-a-stick gesture)
Sayid: “Don’t poke them.”
Glass: (deep voice) “Why are you doing this to me.”
DM: “My people have informed me you’ve already paid up. Good. Since you’ve paid, I can inform you of your prey. We’ll provide you with the weapons necessary. You’ll be hunting two werewolves we found. Yes, you asked for particular ‘unique’ prey, I’ve given it to you.”
Sayid: (skeptically) “Werewolves?”
DM: “Yes.”
John: “Pshaw.”
Glass: “Did you actually pronounce the P?!”
John: “Yes.”
DM: He hands you a map. On this map you see the starting area and a circled-off area surrounded by other camps.
Glass: “You must use THESE to capture them.” Pokeballs.

The other hunters are only there to ensure the prey stays on the tracks, and make sure the group can catch up with them. With two hunters, they set off in the indicated direction. The group rolls Perception + Alertness, but only a couple manage to hear the faint whistling. Glass hums to indicate he heard nothing; John is easily distracted by it, and also hears nothing. Five or ten minutes pass, and the group picks up the pace. The DM calls for Perception + Spot, then recants. Many successes are rolled.

DM: Ahead of you, you see too… not big, most of you have probably seen, or not seen, werewolves in your time. These seem rather small for werewolves.
Sayid: “Excuse me, are these the werewolves we’re supposed to be hunting?”
DM: “They’re trying to hide themselves. Trust me, push ‘em in a corner and… well. I don’t want to spoil the surprise. Part of the hunting experience.”
Sayid: “There’s not even a full moon out! You expect me to believe these are werewolves?”
DM: He sorta looks at you, just points. “Those are the things you paid for. You better kill it or else ya won’t – I don’t care if you kill ‘em or not, we got you your prey, hunt them or don’t hunt them.” He tosses you a bag. ”That’s what you’re gonna need to kill it.”
Sayid: “You think your dirty socks can stop me?!”
DM: In the bag you find two standard Barettas, several clips – the bullets inside the clips, as far as you can tell, are a mixture of tempered silver and steel, designed to puncture thick armor.
Glass: How many bullets are there?
DM: Like I said, they’re in clips… (muttering math to himself)
Glass: You have no Gnosis left, that silver just blew it all away.

The two hunters fade into the darkness to watch the hunt. The two wolves growl at the party. Glass uses his Gift ‘Talk’ to speak Garou for the scene. He and Sayid hear the werewolves speaking.

DM: “How’re we going to get out of this? Those hunters… these people, they’re different from the others. How do they know?” “I don’t know. These ones in front of us, they’re different. They smell odd. I don’t like it. They’re not from here. They’re like those other hunters, the ones who killed our friends.
Sayid: (mimes firing a shot into the air)
Glass: You shot the moon! YOU FOOL!
John: Meanwhile, a Corax. “Aaaawk!” (miming a bird crashing.)
Glass: A dog pops up and laughs at you when you miss.

The DM interrupts a minute of Duck Hunt mockery to prod the characters on. Sayid fires a round at them, trying to miss non-obviously. The werewolves freeze.

Sayid: “That’s not what I was expecting…”
John: “Here, let me help you with your aim!”
Glass: “Let me show you how to this… the John way!” (mimes hurling the gun)

The wolves bolt and the ‘chase’ is on. Sayid elects to go guns akimbo to squander the bullets more quickly.

DM: You listen to the guards around you, you hear audible face-slaps. “Good thing they pay up front…”

Two hunters drop down in front of the wolves to chase them back into the hunt area. Sayid decided to ‘miss’. He rolls both the shot and Subterfuge to disguise his intent. He successfully tags a hunter in the shoulder.

DM: He stops, glares at you. The other one kinds laughs. “Dumbass got in the way of a bullet.” He gets up surprisingly quick for a guy who got shot in the shoulder.

The group speculates on what sort of evil creature this is. Vampire monk is brought up for like the millionth time. The hunters don’t seem to believe it was intentional, fortunately. Sayid continues to waste bullets like there’s no tomorrow, then attempt to fake-shoot another one again. He grazes a wolf and nails a hunter in the neck.

DM : This one is the other one that took the time to laugh. He falls to the ground. Doesn’t move. The other hunters… everyone else is shocked. The other stop, sort of look at you.
Sayid: “Did you see it, the wolf attacked him!”
DM: The other people nearby stop for a moment, kinda surprised what just happened. This guy did a brilliant fuckup, so to speak. One pulls a syringe out his vest, pulls off the cap, slamming it into his back. Plunging it. You watch in sort of amazement as all the blood nearby starts to go back, his neck seals up, and the guy starts to get back to his feet.
Glass: Let us know when we all have to roll frenzy checks for overt evil.

John botches his rage roll, and is calm; only Glass even really has a chance at 5 rage, but only rolls three successes. The wolves have seen through Sayid’s ruse.

DM: They at this point jumped and sort of ran behind the guy who’s pretending to shoot him.
John: Aww crap, that means we gotta fight.
Sayid: What are they saying?
DM: “I don’t know what’s going on, buddy, but you seem like you know your shit so we’re going over here!” …I had this huge plan, but I’m not gonna do it because you always RUIN IT!
Glass: What do I ruin?!
DM: You always ruin my slow claps! You ruin it, I do this, and you ruin it! You ruin my slow claps and I’m not gonna do it! You ruin it every time I do it!
John: Because you do it a lot!
Glass: It’s so damn cliché!
DM: I KNOW, but it WORKS! All of the guards at this point have begun to work their way out.
Glass: I’m still poking the guy who was shot.
DM: He’s gotten up.
Glass: (continues to make a poking gesture)
DM: He swipes the stick away. “You know, I was hoping this would just be another hunt, and you would just be another group of people looking for something exciting. But of course, it wasn’t that. Of course, the buyer came in and told me what was happening, and of course…” The robed figure, necklace now spinning, out of control--
Sayid: (gunshot noise)
DM: You’re shooting the robed figure?
Sayid: No, I’m shooting the amulet!
Glass: I liked mine better. (makes poking gesture)
DM: You’re not gonna poke it with a stick. The amulet slaps the stick aside.
Glass: “He’s vulnerable to sticks!” I stake the amulet by accident, it dies!

Sayid’s shot shatters the amulet, to everyone’s surprise. The robed figure shrugs it off.

DM: “Enough of these games, we don’t need the amulet to figure out who you are –
Sayid: (gunshot)
Glass: Interrupt his dramatic speech!
DM: You’ve already done that!
Glass: Shouldn’t you be slow-clapping right about now?
DM: No, I’m not going that any more!

He orders his hunters to kill them and walks off. Sayid whips out a freaking Harmony Flute and plays it, pacifying all the hunters! The battle is over without a shot fired.

DM: “Ha! Most impressive! I thought I’d actually have to come in and save you, but that seemed to disable these hunters quite well.”
Sayid: “Ah ha! Kurt – was it Kurt? Kurt Burton.”
DM: “These two werewolves you have here are from a local tribe – well, I wouldn’t say local, they’re from a hundred miles away, how they got separated I’m not sure.”
Sayid: So these are Wendigos? I’m just trying to figure this out here… why were they such pussies? They hate the white man, they shoulda been all Crinos, trying to tear their limbs off…
DM: You can use Intelligence + Investigation to figure out why that is.

The hunters basically scatter, their will to fight gone with the playing of the Harmony Flute. The players determine that these two are lupus werewolves. Glass attempts to poke them with a stick. Somehow, they have been trapped in their breed forms, apparently by injections that have not healed. Sayid elects to speak with them, shocking the others, but he’s given up on hiding after using a fetish.

DM: “You speak our language, how is that?!”
Sayid: “I speak many languages.”
Glass: (gasping)
John: “What’s wrong with you?”
Glass: “I’m pretending to listen.”
DM: “You are not human.”
Glass: “What he said! Oh my!”
Sayid: “No. I am like you.”
Glass: “I can’t believe he admitted it! Oh my! Aah! Waay!”
Janelle: “What is WRONG with you?”
Glass: (completely glib) “I’m just making up words because I don’t understand.”
Sayid:Yeah, he has to carry on the subterfuge, because I don’t know that he knows that I know…
DM: Burton tries to walk closer to the wolves to see the wound but they get scared of him and sort of hide behind you.
Sayid: “Seems you make them nervous.”
DM: “I’m not surprised.”
Sayid: “Do you have any idea what’s been done to them?”
DM: “There’s a drug they administer to them. This drug is designed to prevent transformation.”
Glass: “I can’t believe he said that!”
DM: “The realm problem with this particular drug is that it stops them from transforming out of their current state.”
Glass: “AND his sister’s pregnant?!”
DM: “Once they’ve gone to their… it’s kind of useless, but if you can catch them beforehand it traps them in their weakest state. Leaving them vulnerable.”
Glass: “HOW many bullets?!”
DM: “Negates the regeneration, negates their ability to do a lot of things, so to speak. They lose a lot of their strength, it’s sapped from them.”
Glass: “That’s so sad, I hope he finds his parents.”
John: …This is Kurt, he’s speaking in English.
Glass: Yes he is! That hasn’t stopped me!
Sayid: “Can you do anything to help them?”
DM: “Yes, I do have an anti-drug, so to speak, it should help them get over the effects a lot sooner. Normally the effects would only last 24 hours.”
Glass: ”Music is my anti-drug.”
DM: “But this will speed up the process, they’ll probably be full strength in about an hour or so. I’ll let you administer it.”
Sayid: “You two, what are your names?”
DM: “Claire.” “John.”
Glass: …some shitty lupus names, I gotta say.
DM: “That’s the names the human assigned us. I do not wish to give you my real name.”
Sayid: “That’s rather ungrateful.”
Glass: He slam-dunked your honor, damn dude!
DM: I don’t know how to do lupus names!
Glass: Just come up with a deed name!
DM: A deed name?
Glass: Something they DID!
John: “Farts With the Wind.”
Janelle: “Shats in the Woods.”
DM: One is Swift and the other is Bird.
Sayid: Swiftbird.

Sayid injects the werewolves. Burton suggests they leave town to avoid the mercenaries they’ve made enemies of. The DM lampshades the fact that he had to rewrite Sayid’s actual goal up here because players had dropped out of the game. In exchange, Glass notes that most of the DM’s NPCs had historically been jerks.

Sayid: “Mr. Glass, I’m pretty sure you were able to understand what was being said before.”
Glass: “What where. When he was talking to you? Yeah, it was English!”
Sayid: “What where. Yes. I was talking about the two… objective of our hunt this evening.”
Glass: “What about ‘em?”
Sayid: Now I’m trying to decide whether he’s being deceitful or just stupid.
Glass: I’ll roll Manipulation + Subterfuge! (rolls terribly)
Sayid: “Anyway that’s not necessary. I apologize for deceiving you up to this point. But I am like them.”
DM: “OH MY GOD AAAAH!” You all murder the werewolf out of fear!

The transcriber leaves for a minute, and the remaining players are cruel to him. Sayid apologizes for ruining the DM’s combat. Burton does tricks with a watch, pretty much owning up to being a Mage in the process, then transports them all to a nice hotel room 57 miles away. They decide to investigate the new place.

Glass: (whispering) “Hey John. Hey John.”
John: “Hmm?”
Glass: “He says he’s a werewolf.”
John: “Yes, I put two and two together.”
Glass: “What do we think about that?”
John: “…I’m not sure yet.”
Sayid: Yeah, since I probably don’t know admitting it to them would probably be a very bad idea.
DM: “I will meet back with you in the morning once you have rested.”
John: “His kind and mine don’t QUITE get along in the end.”
Glass: “Kind?’
John: “Yes.”
Glass: “What kind is that?”
John: “A different kind.”
Glass: “Which is what?”
John: “A different kind.”
Glass: “Is iiiiiit… tigers?”
John: “No.”
Glass: “Bats? Lions? Boars? Coyote? Crow? Shark? Bear? BEAR –“ no…

Weresharks are mocked. Burton takes the wolves out of the hotel. Sayid’s player finds an excuse to get him out of the room so the others can talk.

Glass: “John’s a thing.”
Janelle: “A thing?”
Glass: “See if you can get it out of him.”
John: “…John’s a thing, see if you can get it out of him.”
Glass: “He’s standing right there!”

John is wisely determined to be a were-hamster. Somehow genies come up. Glass shoves Janelle at John; she trips over him, his pants fall off, they end up on the floor together. Sayid walks back in.

Sayid: “I can come back later.”
Glass: “We’re just trying to pump John for information. He hinted that your kind and his kind don’t get along too well so I’m trying to figure out what’s up with that.”
Sayid: “What kind is he?”
Glass: “YOU SEE, THAT’S WHAT I’M TRYING TO FIND OUT! If I knew I would just say it, but no, he’s gotta be all mysterious about it! YOU try to pump him! Pump him! Pump him!”
Janelle: “Shut UP, weredragon.”
Glass: “What?”
John: Okay, I guess I’m on the ground.
Janelle: And I’m on top of you, and I’m like, “Hi.”
John: “Since you were honest with me, Sayid, I will tell you. I am Gurahl.”
Janelle: I jump off you.
Glass: “I’m going to the bathroom.” (does, then escapes out a window)
Sayid: “I suppose we have to tear each other to pieces now.”
John: “If you want to follow the old ways, yes.”
Glass: “I’m just gonna hang out up here on the roof, where they’re NOT fighting.”
DM: All of sudden, straight above you, it’s the were-dragonhawk.
Glass: Aww crap. It’s one of those little ones. “I’m a dragonhawk. And you’re a dragon!” “Ah say, son, ah say where did you get an idea like that? I’m a rooster, boy! That down there is a dragon! You’re gonna recognize him by his big, bear-like nature!”
DM: He thinks all were-creatures are dragons… I like this character, I’m going to make him.
Janelle: And I’m sitting here watching this.

The others notice Glass is missing. Glass is up scanning the town with his Gift. He spies what appears to be shadowy dragons, or dinosaurs, and zips off to investigate this phenomenon. The shadows immediately vanish when he gets close.

Sayid: “What happened to Mr. Glass?”
John: “Nnnot sure.”
Glass: “Is this one of those trap things I’ve heard so much about?”
Janelle: “I think he went into the bathroom.” Did you lock the door?
Glass: No.
Janelle: “He’s not there now. And the window’s open.”
DM: You feel a hard smack to the back of your head. Just before you pass out, you hear the word, “Yup.” After only a few moments, you feel yourself kinda working your way back up. What form are you in anyways?
Glass: Still in human.
DM: Okay. You wrench up a little bit, and the moment you feel the back of your neck you feel an odd welt back there. A little mark.
Glass: “Hmm.”
Sayid: He’s been tranquilized… not-change-formalized.
DM: It’s not healing. Not like it should. Still there. Feels like a little cut, a little hole. You find yourself in a cage, a very familiar-looking cage, except it’s four plastic walls.
Glass: “Heeeey, this isn’t right at all.”
DM: This particular cage is resting on top of a truck. Looking around you see several other of these weird cages. In the back you see several people, probably handlers, they don’t seem very well-equipped. They have stunners, little rods, moving the cages around, moving the trucks, but towards the back you see a very colorful man wearing a giant top hat. Bright red and white.
Glass: (makes the poking gesture)
DM: You poke the edge of the cage.
Glass: Why did they leave me the stick?!
DM: You watch as two handlers fight. ”You took the stick out! It wasn’t IN there! Where’d he get it?!” “I don’t know, it wasn’t there!” You don’t really hear their voices, you hear muffled noises.

Glass starts throwing himself at the walls cheerfully, intending to knock the cage off the truck. Three successes rock the whole truck, to which the cage is attached. The guy in the driver’s seat is shaken awake in shock. Glass sees a wolf, a bear, a tiger, a shark in a tank, and a pale-skinned man in a tuxedo.

Glass: If that’s a were-penguin, I am going to kill you.

Glass of course can’t shift. The DM wanders off, then comes back. The rest of the group starts looking for Glass. Janelle manages to track him to the woods, with the others following. They follow his tracks, then the tracks of the people who abducted him.

DM: You reach the edge of this camp. You can tell they’ve started putting things away. Several large trucks, many cages, weird creatures. The colorful man in the back directing it all. They’re putting up a huge tent. “We must make sure this circus is ready, for people want to see these WEIRD CREATURES. Creatures of the night!”
John: “Oooooh YEAAAAH!”
DM: “And they will pay for THREE MINUTES of view times! So be ready! Get the tent ready!” And he continues to spew on about preprations.
John: “After we find Glass we gotta come back and check out the circus!” We move on.
Janelle: I’m gonna go take a look.
DM: You just gonna walk in?
Janelle: No, I’m gonna see if I can actually use my sneaking Gift this time.
Sayid: “I’m going to try sneaking in and looking for him.”

Everyone rolls and achieves phenomenal success. They in turn sneak in, seeing the many odd creatures. Janelle heads straight for a tiger cage to speak with it, but the cage makes it difficult. Sayid tries to figure out what she’s speaking, but fails.

DM: You know she’s speaking a particular language.
John: She’s speaking to a cat.
Sayid: Strange enough…
Glass: “Mew? Mew? Mew mew?”
DM: As far as you can tell this is just an overdramatic cat person.
Janelle: (looking at Glass, who’s been making strange noises for a while) …are you playing a fake harmonica?
Glass: I don’t have a real harmonica…
Janelle: Are we hearing this through the plastic?
DM: No.

Sayid and John continue to find weird creatures, like a were-mantis, and a fat lady the DM attempts to claim is a gorilla. Glass yells at the mantis to stop violating mass-weight ratios. John nearly walks past him, distracted by the fat lady, but then notices Glass. Glass makes plaintive expressions at him.

John: “…I’m second-guessing letting you out.”
Sayid: You found him?
John: Yes. (sighing) All right.

John admires the workmanship of the door, then attempts to rip it off.

DM: Gimme a Strength + … rip-door-off skill, do you have a rip-door-off skill?
John: Yes, I have a 5 in that.
Glass: Athletics.
DM: I was gonna do Brawl.

Janelle frees the tiger from its cage; John hauls Glass free. Janelle checks the tiger and observes it for tranq marks while Sayid stares in alarm at the massive sabertooth nuzzling her affectionately. The group starts springing other cages.

Glass: “I guess we’re freeing the animals.”
John: “Mmmmmmost of them at least.”
Glass: “Yeah, we probably shouldn’t free the shark.
Sayid: Wait, what?
John: (mimes shattering the shark tank)
Glass: (mimes a flopping fish)
Sayid: Yeah, it just flops around, we put one bullet in it.
Glass: Although I will point out that really advanced Rokea can swim through the air.
John: Really.
Glass: There’s a Gift for that.
John: That’s awesome.
Sayid: So a floating shark, like in Jaws 3.
DM: As you’re pulling them out, you look to the side to see: “INTRUUUUUUUUDEEEEEEEEEERS!” (pointing to them)
Glass: I grab his arm and point it out to the forest! That’ll fool ‘em!
DM: Wait, what? “I think he’s trying to make me point in another direction even though we can SEE that there’s people escaping!”
Glass: I also point to the forest.
DM: While most of the guards look at you one of them does in fact run for the woods.
Glass: “Idiot. He’s a temp, isn’t he. Please tell me he’s a temp.”
DM: “He’s the leader’s son, he’s kind of special.”
John: I like how they’re having an entire conversation.
DM: “Wait! Why am I talking to YOU?!”
John: (rolling) All right, I am now a 12-foot bear.
Glass :(pointing at him furiously) I guessed bear! I GUESSED BEAR! I. GUESSED. THAT!
John: “Like the twelfth one!”
Glass: “THAT’S. NOT. THE POINT – wait, you can’t talk.”
John: Rawr waah raaah.
DM: As these two argue, one growls, the other person shouting, you hear a lot of screaming in terror.
John: Excellent. But not as bad as if I were a werewolf. Damn Incite Reduced Delirium.
Glass: “Aww, we’re not so bad.” On the upside, you have the fact that you’re a giant BEAR going for you.
John: That’s true.
DM: You notice in a cage, a bear wearing a hat. The words on it, “Only you can prevent forest fires.”
John: “Cousin Smokey?! GOD DAMN IT!”
Janelle: I say to my tiger, “I suggest we get out of here.
DM: Too late! A few of the handlers which didn’t run in terror make their transformations as well.
Party: What?
DM: Yes!
Janelle: We have the fucking were population of Canada right fucking here!
DM: You can immediately tell that these are probably Shadow Lords… as they’re capturing were-creatures and putting them on display!
Glass: Oh Shadow Lords, you guys are the best at being villains, aren’t you.
DM: They’re the easiest ones to use! Leave me alone!
John: I don’t blame you, they really are!
DM: Now we will have a battle!
Sayid: (mimes playing a flute)
Sayid: I wasn’t gonna blow the flute. I’m going to shift to Crinos… which I guess I already did.

Everyone stares at Janelle expectantly. She says nothing and simply shrugs. Sayid and John continue to eye her and Glass, since it’s unusual to not react to the Delirium at all. Initiative is rolled! The furious release of Rage all around begins to stir Glass’s own, and he begins to recover from the tranq, but is going last. Janelle produces her gun as she and two freed tigers go first.

Glass: That’s right, shoot the Shadow Lords, that’s effective.
Janelle: Four successes.

Werewolf combat rules are quickly summarized and refreshed in the minds of all. Janelle gets three damage successes, but the wolf soaks. The creatures in the cages are getting really riled up. Sayid makes with the clawing. For the first time, he rolls all his dice at the same time instead of one at a time. Several promptly fall off the table.

Sayid: That’s what happens when I roll in a group!
Glass: Stop rolling on a slanted surface and you might not have that problem.
Sayid: I can’t help it!
Glass: RIGHT THERE! (pointing to a section of clear table)
Sayid: Oh.

Sayid slashes his foe. John ponders activating Razor Claws, but instead elects to maul his opponent viciously. His raw damage is 14 dice; his net is 8 damage. The werewolf manages to keep standing by some miracle, and swats with a -5 penalty. He misses horribly. Another one lunges to attack.

Sayid: That’s a very brave Shadow Lord. Like, two of them against one werebear, unless they were like armed to the teeth with silver, they should be running away.
John: “Yeah, remember you used to hunt us in PACKS.”
DM: These aren’t the brightest werewolves.
John: They’re young and brash. (pause) That’s right, they’re carnies!

John easily soaks 4 damage with 8 Stamina. The wolf Janelle shot charges her and swipes at her. She burns a Rage to get a dodge roll and lithely sidesteps with 6 successes. The two tigers bite the hell out of him.

DM: And now finally to Glass.
Glass: “I dunno, looks like you guys are doing okay.”
John: (makes a motion of hurling Glass into combat) Get back in there!
Glass: “Oh no!” (rolls to shift, then makes a Pokemon cry)
Janelle: Did you just shift into dragon form?
Sayid: Every creature in this combat…
Glass: “Hey guys, what’s going on in this thread?”
Janelle: “I TOLD YOU! I TOLD YOU! You son of a bitch!”
Sayid: “I wouldn’t have guessed that.”
Glass: “So you fell for the trick, huh?”
Sayid: “Trick?”
Glass: “It’s all paper mache!”

A long silence.

John: “Are you a mage all of sudden, trying to fake out reality?”
Glass: “Mages don’t exist. It’s true, if I was a real werecreature, I couldn’t talk coherently!”
DM: That was your turn? Janelle!
Glass: We can reroll initiative, this isn’t D&D.
DM: I’ll let you reroll yours since you’re now transformed.
Glass: I go at 18.
DM: You go now.
Glass: I’m burning a rage and gnaaaw, gnaaaaw.
Janelle: Why are you doing that to me?
Glass: Not YOU, the guy who’s trying to bite you!

Glass rolls five successes, after dodge has 9 raw damage, but only 4 levels.

Glass: All right, for my second action, Jaw Shear.
Janelle: What?
DM: I don’t know what that does.
Glass: It’s basically now that I’ve got him, I just do -- (shakes his head vigorously while growling)
John: Oh, I like the Mokole a LOT more now.

Glass’s raw damage is 13. The DM doesn’t make him roll, just declares the opponent decapitated. Janelle fires at the one atop John. Sayid takes down the one John had already mauled. Glass recounts the tail of the ancient term of the ‘Hispo chomp’ (the universal cry of a werewolf LARPer making his test to do an additional level of damage with his bite). John starts mauling.

John: 16 dice.
Glass: You did more potential damage than I did. I’m offended.
DML: Just waiting for John to pick up that truck.
Sayid: I would like to see you two go at it.

John does 11 damage. The DM grumbles that the werewolf could soak on every die and still wouldn’t survive.

DM: “What’s happening out here?! What’s happened to all the men!? Creatures out of their cages! Dead werewolves! This isn’t good at all!”
Glass: Hop. Flap. “HELLO!”
DM: Just as you do that, another wolf intercepts you in midair.
Glass: “Hey! You can’t fly! Only I can fly!”
DM: Leap! Crash! Tackling you aside. Roll … what you normally roll for successes…

The two combatants crash to the ground. They are now facing 2 werewolves and the main leader.

DM: “Oh this can’t be right! All these pesky creatures disturbing my nice circus! I don’t like this. I don’t like this at all!”
DM: He rips his hat off, spins it, then does this with a wave of his hand. A very large red fireball flies out of the hat. 2:18
Glass: Um, I’m grappling with this guy, right?
DM: Yes.
Glass: Is there any HOPE of him being between me and the fireball?
DM: Right now you to are facing each other, standing up, so the most you can do is if you overpower him you can probably turn him in the way.
Glass: Better yet, I grab onto his side and then shift down to Suchid.
DM: There you go.
Glass: ‘Cuz fire is agg and agg is bad!
DM: “Aww, he got in the way! I almost got that little one. He seems to have gone away though. But there’s plenty more targets! Please, deal with them, I must bring my cages back. Those pretty cats are out of their caves.” New initiatives, please.
Janelle: I’m gonna rip the top off the shark tank.
DM: Oh, gosh. The shark tank is coming into play!
Sayid: Don’t let that thing come near me, I have a shark phobia.

Glass goes at 25 (because a Striking varna gets an extra initiative die). He stealth-runs through the grass. Sayid slashes at a werewolf, not terribly effectively. Janelle does just what she said she would.

DM: The shark comes out, and smashes into the ground like it were but liquid.
Sayid: Wait –wait.
Glass: Oh god. This has ‘bad news’ all over it.

Sayid attempts to catch Janelle shifting, and fails because she didn’t. The shark is now swimming under the ground.

Sayid: What do I have to roll then? Do I have to roll to avoid frenzy?
Glass: For what?
Sayid: Shark phobia, it’s out of the cage.
Glass: You actually have Phobia: Sharks?
Sayid: Yes!
Glass: That’s great!

Sayid leaps onto one of the cages in fear. The shark dives into the ground, then bursts up to maul an enemy werewolf.

DM: “Things are getting ugly quite fast!” He reaches into his hat. Pulls out a machine gun! “Ah, my favorite kind of bullet!” Starts spewing bullets everywhere.
Glass: Hopefully his favorite kind of bullet is, like…
Sayid: Rubber.
John: Hollowpoint.
Sayid: Fruit! Fruit! It’s a potato gun!
Glass: Raspberries, blueberries, AND blackberries.
Sayid: Raisins. TRIX!
Glass: “Silly rabbit, these are for you!”

The bullets are in fact neurotoxin-laden. Everyone soaks it, and thus keeps their ability to regen. Sayid questions how long Janelle will be able to go without shifting. John mauls an enemy werewolf for nine damage. It soaks three and drops to Incap. The DM realizes he’d completely forgotten the tigers this entire time. Glass bites the top-hatted mage, still in Suchid, and poisons him.

DM: You see the ringleader. “Get off me… thing! Bloody… thing!”
John: I’m gonna change course and go after the other one that’s haranguing our female friend.
Glass: I don’t think ‘haranguing’ was the word you were looking for there.
John: No. Harassing was the word.
Glass: “You foul harlot! How darest thou come upon this circus of man! Thy kind is not welcome here!”

Sayid, still terrified of the shark, debates his options. The DM apologizes for screwing over Sayid with the phobia this early. Janelle shoots the wolf attacking her, while Sayid fires at the ringmaster.

DM: You fire several shots out. Even though he was staggered by this… (making a sweeping gesture) Puts his hat back on.
Sayid: Wait ,he caught the bullet with his hat?
DM: Yup.
Glass: I’m using my Rage action! I’m crawling up his body and stealing his hat!
John: Uh oh! His focus!
DM: He needs that to live! …I’m serious, he needs that to live.
Glass: I’m taking it! Soon as he left it unguarded, I was saving that Rage action!
John: My eyes are now trained on him. There’s no one else to kill.
DM: I need a Dexterity + … is there a thievery skill? Streetwise!
Glass: I’m not exactly being streetwise about it! I’m grabbing it and taking it! This isn’t larceny, this is fucking grabbing it!
DM: Athletics + Dexterity. The difficulty is seven.
Glass: Two successes.
DM: Just enough. You grab it, leaping away. “My.. my hat! My hat! NOOOO! NOOOOOOOO!”
Sayid: Shot number two!
Glass: You just see a hat go like this: (mimes the hat running away) You guys don’t even know what’s causing it, you just see the hat take off for the hills!
John: I’m okay with it.

Sayid plugs him between the eye, dropping him. The two tigers return to their feline form; the shark has disappeared. Sayid refuses to ever go on the grass again. John picks up the hat.

Glass: I’m on the inside of the hat. You pick it up and see nothing.
John: “Huh.” (mimes crushing the hat)
Glass: “AAAAH!” …you’re a bear, how are you picking up a hat?

The battle has calmed down, while John and Glass continue to dick with the hat. John pokes it with a stick. Janelle frees the other animals. Most of them flee, primarily because Sayid is a werewolf. Glass’s stick is broken, to his horror. John continues to find ways to accidentally murder Glass while he’s in the hat. John finally sets the hat down.

John: Let him come out in his own time.

Sayid contemplates shooting Janelle to see if she regenerates. Glass sneaks off under the hat.

Glass: After a small delay: “Aaaah, that was a good whiz. What’s going on, guys? Aah, you’re a bear!”
John: “As you mentioned before.”
Glass: “I forgot while I was whizzing. Trust me, it was THAT good.”
Sayid: “You’re a… dragon-monster.”
Glass: “Where?”
John: “I would’ve just stayed in the hat.”
Glass: “What – oh wow! What a SWEET hat!”
Sayid: “And you must be a landshark.
Glass: “Landshark! That’s outrageous!”
Sayid: “Truly.”
John: “Truly?”
Sayid: “Truly. Outrageous.”

Silence. Somehow it degenerates into old cartoon references, which then degenerates into a study of racism in Dick Tracey and Grape-Ape. Their victory is rewarded with experience! The DM, consulting the section on experience recommendations, asks the players what their characters learned.

John: I don’t know why I haven’t played a Gurahl before. Last time I played an Ahroun before was pretty cool. Not as cool as this, though.
Sayid: I learned that I was traveling with..
Glass: You learned that NOWHERE is safe from a shark!

The DM abandons the guidelines and dispenses experience and renown, to the joy of the players, and the game comes to an end.