Yellow Dawn Session Notes 7th September ¦ Return to Aigues-Mortes #4

Assassination and Revenge, Mopping up before the Storm

Yellow Dawn – The Age of Hastur, first published in 2007,  is an RPG written by British Science Fiction & Dark Fantasy author David J Rodger – it blends the Cthulhu Mythos and cyberpunk genres in a post-apocalyptic setting. It also has two novels set within it: Dog Eat Dog and The Black Lake.

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Resume Evening of 26th March YD+10.

  • Brendan at Prudence, with doctor, in a coma.
  • Jean-Luc – is drifting down in small pieces
  • Alex – is in the water, KO and dying
  • Bela is 500 metres away, by the edge of the water.
  • Winter and Ludoviko are at the mining CO-OPERATIVE and now able to respond to the catastrophe.

The session begins in the aftermath of mayhem. It’s night and we’re at a small cove.
Bela, straddling rocks by the edge of the sea sits in stunned silence as the fireball erupts, and then doubles and triples in size as the initial blast sets off the dynamite they had stored on the boat; and then the oxygen tanks detonate with an incredible flash.
Amongst the burning debris, Bela spots a figure swimming away through the black waters; Bela rightly suspects it’s the assassin returning to where he entered the water.


Bela snakes up and over the rocks, finds the road and then where the assassin has stowed his motorcycle. Bela finds a place to hide and waits.
The assassin gets onto his bike; Bela can see he’s holding his left arm as if injured (in the blast) and sets off down the road. Bela is able to rise up like a shadow in the faint moonlight  and take a swing at the assassin with a two-handed sledgehammer modified with brutal spikes. Bela misjudges the speed of the bike and misses, but the assassin takes note and stops.
They fight. The assassin isn’t able to get in past Bela’s massive threat zone (2 metres) and Bela slams the assassin’s injured arm, his leg and then delivers a massive power strike to the man’s chest driving a spike right into his heart. The assassin collapses, dead.
Bela strips his body, searches the bike, recovers:
<> Small sample of the rare mineral and documents revealing location of the source of the meteorite ore
<> Modified assault rife with scope and silencer, plus ammo
<> Wickedly brutal martial art fighting knife
The ID. No PA.

Meanwhile, Winter and Ludo are at the mining co-operative, dragging Alex out of the water – watching him die in front of their eyes. Jean-Luc is just a load of charred chunks of meat and shredded gristle. They manage to piss-off the old boy who runs the place. He locks up, unwilling to help them. But another man who was there, a Moroccan by the name of Samir (early 40s, good-looking, charmer, slim build, dressed in scavenged clothing like a traveller) helps them.

Bela returns with the motorbike. How the hell are they going to get back to Prudence? The boat is a sunken wreck  and it’s a 100 plus miles to walk. The owner of the co-op has a crappy old inflatable dingy with an outboard motor visible in storage. They camp the night, leaving the body of Alex off the side of the road.  They camp a mile away. Walking past the site of Bela’s recent fight / murder of the assassin, whose body he dumped in the undergrowth by the road.

27th March
In the morning, they find the body of the assassin has been tampered with. The back of the skull removed, along with the area of neck at the top of the spine. Blood and gore. Something is missing. Later, wild dogs arrive and start to eat the body. The team goes back to the co-op to “borrow” the old boy’s boat. They find him tied up by his wrists to the wire mesh fencing, his body sagging, his belly sliced open and guts pooled in front of him. He’s been badly beaten. The team realise that the assassin’s compatriots have arrived during the night and taken revenge.

They use the crappy boat and spend the day making their way to Prudence.

At Prudence they encounter Ted Schmidt who wants to confess to them about everything he’s done; about Magnus Hardstrom, the HE corporation, Magna Mines and the hard-boiling of lucrative contracts to extort more money from TerraGen. Schmidt is terrified that Magnus is going to kill him once he signs the UDP documents to close down Prudence; Schmidt wants protection. He wants the characters to get him to UDP safety in Aigues-Mortes. UDP to the east are too tied up in the escalating conflict with UTOC to come get him. Ironically the conflict is partly his doing; trouble stirred up by the assassin Tengo Gin and his men in the catamaran that’s been painted up with UTOC colours to make it look like UTOC have been roaming around killing scientists and UDP people.

Winter tries to use the PA he got to open up comms with Baron Toten Reich in Aigues-Mortes to tell him what’s going on, but he cannot get any kind of connection.

This whole dialogue / confession is taking place in Ted Schmidt’s high-tech survival module. Bela starts to take notice of the dramatically changing weather outside. Strange cloud formations. And then he realises that a Storm Curtain is opening up directly over the nearby sea. Temperatures plummet. The sea starts to turn to ice in every direction. Winter runs to the local medic’s house and scoops up the limp form of Brendan (who is in a coma). Bela runs to Ludo’s seafront shack to warn him. Everyone gets back to the module just in the nick of time as thick, predatory ice starts to sweep in from the sea covering everything.

The chip-voice of the module’s computer systems warbles numerous warnings and alerts, and then fizzles out as the -250c temperatures causes fatal failures.

Looking out through the damaged storm-shutters, Bela and Ludo see the vast “hole in the sky” open above them and the sea. They see winged shapes floating down from outer space. Then tracer-fire arcs up from below tearing apart a couple of these winged things. Bela and Ludo see that catamaran is there, locked in the ice. Abruptly several dozen more of these winged monsters swoop down from the hole in the sky and tear the catamaran and the people on it apart.

Ted Schmidt is gazing out of another set of storm shutters in a different direction and starts babbling about seeing a tower – and the moon -the moon is in front of the tower. Nobody goes near what he’s looking at. Everyone is busy trying to find a way to survive the terrible, impossible cold now seeping through the walls and floors. Ice covers the furniture. Ice forms on their beards and their exhaled breath starts to crystallise. It is intense. They are all close to dying.  First degree and then second degree frostbite takes hold. And then, abruptly, it ends. Temperatures start to rise even whilst the fabric the module starts to crack and fall apart.

Outside, in the grey light of the afternoon, is death.

Everyone in prudence is dead. Frozen.

All equipment has been wrecked. Nothing is salvageable apart from some bottles of booze.

They spend the night shocked, dazed and in pain, trying to sleep in the remains of a stone building.

28th March
The next day Bela collects as much fish washed up on the shore as he can. Ludo uses the salt stores at Prudence to preserve what he can. Then they begin the awful journey back to Aigues-Mortes, dragging the comatose form of Brendan on a travois behind them. Minimal help from Magna Mines (thanks to Henri who lets Winter make a call to Baron Toten Reich to tell him what has happened). Any hope of a lift or support to aid their return to Aigues-Mortes are dashed.  It takes them an agonizing two weeks to return.

12th April
It is strange getting back to Aigues-Mortes. Strange because they are so glad to see it. They walk past the squalid market that was life place of Bela and Winter for so many horrible years; they see people they know, and they feel like strangers. They walk to the main gates and this time are allowed in. Baron Toten Reich has a hotel near the gate prepared for them. Basic but dry, with food and bedding.  They debrief over plates of beef with rich sauces, vegetables and bottles of ale.

Toten Reich wants them to spend a few days inside Aigues-Mortes to recover. He pays them a thousand or so coppers for the work to date (60 coppers per day for the whole team). He wants them to take a boat to Libya and find the rest of the rare mineral that is required for the process developed by Stacy at Prudence (now dead).  All of her work was on the PA that Winter had taken (now destroyed) but they do know she emailed it to her colleague in Seattle: Toten Reich is following up that line.

RESUME

Evening of 12th April. The team are just settling into the hotel. Hot showers. Clean beds. They have a few days to kill. Toten Reich will be paying them via lodgings and food only for now. Once they head out to Libya he’ll put them on 60 coppers per day for the whole team.

>>>A strange goings-on may be afoot in Aigues-Mortes. Things to solve before they leave.

GM NOTES:

<> All Rank rolls have been done. Note Winter scored 2 Rank increases!!!
<> All money is up to date.
<> Bela has some raw components and specialised components he scavenged on the way to Prudence.

<> All hit points are back to normal. GM to check for any longer-term consequences from 2nd degree frost bite (it’s been 2 weeks).

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David J Rodger – DATA

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