This was one of those sessions where everything felt like it was lurching forward, but very little actually happened in some ways.
C., the player of a Mutant Alien-Space God’s Love-Child known as Brainzor was unable to attend, but Rhea, our Titan turned litigator was able to make it.
The session started off with Rhea being pulled to the mansion in the early hours of the morning to be in attendance for the Zorgology fuelled party that was engineered by Jessica Ga-In in the previous session. Chronos was already at the party and he and all of his duplicates were making the most of it. Cruthu, on the other hand, was hiding out.
I described the party as a wild affair with two main groups. The first were beautiful Zorgologists who were obsequiously out to please the PCs. The second was a huge cluster of A-list celebrities (if they are Scientologist, I painted them as a Zorgologist) that had StarGuard’s producers celebrating.
Golden Hammer and Brainzor, in the meantime, were flying back to mansion at super-sonic speeds in the newly dubbed ‘StarGuard Two,’ a vintage 90s Fantasti-Flyer donated to them by the show’s parent corporation. As they came into a landing, I had Golden Hammer review the news and learn that:
• The media’s hero bashing has spread to nearly every major super-hero and group, with the exception of Professor Fantastic and the Fantastic Family
• The Tomorrow Foundation had issued a statement to the press indicating that they were shocked that two accountants (the same that Brainzor had messed with) had committed suicide after confessing to moving money to radical groups (including Pulsar’s People’s Revolutionary Action Front)
At this point one of my players asked if StarGuard existed just to make the Fantastic Family look good, while another opined that they might exist just to make everyone look bad. It’s always good when your ideas start to take hold.
Golden Hammer and Brainzor landed and joined the party. I stated that Brainzor was offered sugar water and had his other challenges compelled and, consequently, disappears for the rest of the session.
I reminded the Players that Pulsar was slated to meet with the PRAF troops at 11 am that day and then rob the ‘Tans for Tots’ event at 1 pm. Would the PCs continue partying or would they try and get some rest?
Each player then made their choice and, if they had an appropriate challenge I compelled it to encourage them to keep partying. Everyone who kept partying (with the exception of Rhea who can regenerate and Chronos who power stunted his time control to rest) was given a temporary ‘Brutally Hung-Over’ aspect.
The PCs opted to wait until Pulsar and his cronies hit the event, to get better live coverage. Rhea staked out a position on a building overlooking the pier where the event was being held. Cruthu failed to make nice with crowd (she is a hideous freak. Jessica Ga-In brought a Korean boy-band with her causing some interesting roleplay, Chronos started stealing from rich guest using his super-human coordination and time-control. Golden Hammer said he would roll in late.
Rhea, failing an awareness check, did not notice when Pulsar and four PRAF members emerged out of a truck on the other side of the building she was on the roof of. The PRAF members were wearing bulky, ‘Stalinvolk’ Soviet Era battlesuits. Consequently the baddies got the jump on her as the fight broke out.
The fight was long. In fact, it pretty much took up the bulk of the session. The reason for this was some poor rolling on my Players part and a the handful of point of invulnerability I gave to the battlesuits. That said, my Players did look for creative solutions and did ultimately prevail. Highlights included:
• Rhea spending Determination in order to grab Pulsar’s junk through his forcefield and spending more to hang on after he punched her out
• Cruthu placing a lead lid over the ‘Tans for Tots’ contestants to protect them from radiation, but neglecting to put air holes in place
• The horrible deaths of two of Chronos’ duplicates as they cockily leapt off an eight story building and then failed their Coordination roll
• Golden Hammer losing another sports car and then using his transmutation power to cover Pulsar in a material that would cut him off from his solar power source
• Jessica’s concern for the crowd mixed with Ga-In’s ruthless elimination of a PRAF goon
• Rhea’s brutal beating of Pulsar after he was down
As the team started to recover from the fight, a Protect-Jet swooped down and the Protectors, including Rhea’s grand-daughter Artemis, American Agent and War Hammer arrived. The Protectors had been called in with an arrest warrant for Jessica Ga-In and were to detain the remainder of StarGuard as witnesses.
Panicking, Chronos stunted his time powers to get Jessica and himself out of there. Given all the looting that he had done lately, he was sure he was nailed.
The rest of the team postured and were not ready to back down when Rhea jumped in and busted out her legal expertise. Rolling exceptionally well, she managed to make the Protectors back down on legal grounds.
Each PC was then given a chance to do a little investigation or take other actions as they chose. Rhea focused on beating the charges against Jessica. Chronos and Golden Hammer all continued to investigate the Tomorrow Foundation and the other anti-StarGuard leads. Cruthu tried to do some community service to raise the group’s profile.
Jessica Ga-In, on other hand, tracked down Johnny Fantastic, president of Fantast-Inc. Productions (the company that produces StarGuard). I think she meant to question him on why the company was taking such a loss on the show and to tease out any leads as to Fantast-Inc. and the hero bashing that is going on.
Johnny, however, acted like a bit of a pig and Ga-In lashed out (the player said ‘I crush his heart with my telekinesis’).
I could have turned this into a fight. Instead I said ‘yes’ and had her kill Johnny Fantastic, the perpetually twenty-year-old member of America’s First Family of Superdom. Hilarity will ensue.
Finally and impulsively, I cut to Brainzor in the company of the Zorgologists. Brainzor, lured in by sugar water, is exposed to their ‘Echo Test’ to see if he is their Star Child. The test is run and a burst of energy goes into the sky. The Zorgologist’s true appearance as the echo of an Insectile Alien is revealed and it cries out that:
“The prophecy has been fulfilled, Zorg’s child has found the future home of the Zarg! Call the Void Hives, the Invasion must begin!’”