Sorcerer, Session Five (Bibliophage): Complex Conflict

We had our fifth session of Sorcerer last night. The whole campaign thing is detailed here, along with previous session logs.
This was a really interesting and challenging session — there was one metric assload of combat (something like six or seven different fights spread out in one long stretch of room-to-room warfare). There were a lot of interesting variables (Shannon was already a bit hurt, and no one in the reasonably well-armed group was particularly skilled at using guns on anything other than a firing range), and tons of currency exchange going on.
On with the show:


We ended last session with the group heading through the blizzard in an Escalade on the way to Jerry Rubinek’s home/studio/warehouse. It had come out in the previous session that Jerry was probably pretty closely connected to the snuff film that had been sent to both Ken and Val, and that he’d used the killing as a sacrifice to summon some kind of demon. Considering that the last time Val and Shannon had been in the area, they’d been attacked by a “mothman” demon, the odds were pretty good that Jerry had summoned a Moth Queen.
As the SUV pulled up to the destination, the roster was:
* Shannon, with her demon Bister.
* Val, with his demon Shade.
* Ken, with his demon Doji.
* Yvonne, with no demons.
Unknown to the group, the occupants of the warehouse included:
* Jerry Rubinek, ignorant neophyte sorcerer.
* The Moth Queen.
* Three spawn of the moth queen at various levels of ‘maturity’ (power).
* Two Mothmen. (Fully matured non-Spawn: demons in their own right).
Yeah. That’s eleven NPCs and three PCs in a big friggin’ setting. (The maps I used are here:
First floor
Second floor
Not that I was expecting combat or anything… oh no.
Now, what’s interesting about this situation is that no one was involved in this visit for the same reasons:
* Val had learned enough about the Moth Queen to figure out that she was bad news — they have a tendency to get summoned, taint their master, gain Immanence, and rebel. Their spawn also matures to become independent after time — he wanted to keep the things from infesting ‘his town’. He also wanted to find out why Jerry had been sending the snuff film to them, if it was indeed from him.
* Shannon just wanted to resolve the threat to Yvonne that she’d inadvertently agreed to help with so that she could kick Yvonne out on her butt and get on with her life.
* Ken didn’t care about the bugs. He wanted to asked Jerry some questions and wanted to rescue his psuedo girlfriend if she was there to be saved, and that was it… then it was back to taking over OsatoSoft.

Shannon: What do we need guns for?
Ken: I just want to question this Mr. Rubinek… I think a gun barrel pointed at his kneecaps might be very useful.
Yvonne: Good plan. (To Shannon) I like this guy.
Shannon: You two should date. (To Ken) Your girlfriends tend to disappear, right?
Ken & Yvonne: Hey!

The group pulled up in front and stomped through the snow and into the muggy heat of the warehouse. After a few moments of looking around (Shade teleported somewhere) and noting an acrid tang in the warm air that hadn’t been there before, the group was greeted by Jerry, calling down from the loft on the second floor above. He couldn’t see them and they couldn’t see him, and a few moments of tense conversation went by. (I was reminded of the conversation between Martin and the other assassin in the kitchen at the end of Grosse Pointe Blank.)
Then they heard Jerry pounding along the second floor hallway towards the other end of the building.
Val and Ken and Bister set off in pursuit up the central flight of stairs while Yvonne moved toward the elevator and Shannon tried to keep an eye on both the front and back doors into the place as best as she good, with an eye out for demons… she was looking for the Queen, you see.
Pounding up the stairs, Val and Ken noticed the door just on their right closing and moved to keep it open, but didn’t see Jerry (he was actually circling around through the building to work back to the elevator and hoping they would follow him on a wild goose chase). Val was a bit paranoid at this point and, thinking of the types of demons they were talking about, he looked up. This worked out very well for him because he noticed the Mothman sneaking in through the skylight above and fluttering down behind them.
Combat
Right. The mothman (one of the larger ‘not-quite-grown’ spawn) got the drop on them even with the early warning and leapt at Val. Val’s initial shotgun blast went wide and Ken didn’t do any better with his pistol. Shouting, Val smashed the thing in the “face” with the butt of the gun to get some room, which drove it back a step. Ken kind of freaked out a bit and unloaded at the thing — hitting by volume over virtue. The bullets weren’t really penetrating the carapace, but they did drive the thing back as well, which gave Val time to take time with the shot and really nail it.
Hearing the shots, Shade teleported (reluctantly) back to Val to help out and Bister abandoned his goal of checking out Jerry’s computers to go back and tell his mistress Shannon what was going on.
In the next exchange, the mothman opted to go full defense (since it was down a bunch of temporary damage), both of the sorcerers stuck with their guns, and Shade and Ken’s Doji opted to get into the fray.
The demon leapt into the air, flying violently toward the ceiling and in a circle that would have (after this round’s temporary damage was gone) eventually led it back to a flying attack on Ken.
It never got a chance. Doji used his Psychic Attack (which tends to manifest as bad luck for the target) on the thing. One of it’s wings caught a hanging light fixture and it careened into one of the cockeyed interior partitions-cum-walls. The thing hit the floor in a fluttering heap and Shade (and Val’s shotgun) tore it to ribbons.
Somewhere in building, something very large screams.
While they were finishing the thing off, Jerry slipped out of a door on the other side of passageway and ducked down the hallway through another door that lead to the elevator. Ken pursues.


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