Old Man Henderson
|This article contains something which makes absolutely no logical sense, such as Nazi Zombie Mercenaries, Fucking Space Orangutans, anything written by a certain Irish leper, or Matt Ward creating (against all odds) a codex that isn't completely broken on every level. If you proceed, consider yourself warned.|
Proof that great times can be had, even if bad GMs want to run stupidly brutal grimdark horror campaigns.
Here's an audio of it in case you can't read: https://soundcloud.com/stephanosrex/the-tale-of-old-man-henderson
The Origin of Old Man Henderson
Alright then, I'd like to start by saying that the GM was a bastard that had it coming. Bullshit tactics to make everyone go crazy like a d6 with only 5 sides. No story, no reason; lose 10 sanity. The others continued to allow this idiocy. We were playing a modern day setting, with the other players being a college professor who found a couple of stray pages of a copy of the Necronomicon and wanted to find out just what the hell it was, a detective who was investigating a missing persons case connected to the local cult and a local athlete (I think it was football) trying to find out why some of his friends seemed so distant lately. And then... there was Old Man Henderson, who was never given a first name.
Old Man Henderson was already a little crazy, and blamed his life's misfortunes on Vietnam.
He never went to Vietnam, he was 12 in 74. (And I will be fucking amazed if anyone gets that reference. (Not everyone does. It is the song "My Brother-In-Law" by Tim Wilson, as far as I can tell.) )
[Link for those without google-fu: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0O3gZVUp9o]
Old Man Henderson wore combat boots, cargo shorts, and an open-front Hawaiian shirt with a wife-beater underneath.
He was dyslexic, and had a lesser case of Schizophrenia. allowing him to assume that the reason he saw crazy shit was because he WAS a little bit crazy.
He had a grizzly adams beard and wore his hair in a mohawk.
He never took off his aviator shades, for any reason.
He had a stuffed parrot on his shoulder named Rupert that he constantly asked for advice, while ignoring the other party members as convenient, assuming they were hallucinations.
He had an Automatic combat shot-gun he knew how to use.
He also had MEMORIZED the anarchist's cookbook. He started the game with a pre-existing hatred of religion, cutlery, and books.
His motivation was that he thought that the cult had stole his lawngnomes; while he had actually donated them to a charity auction, got high, and forgot about it.
Most importantly, he had a 320 page backstory that justified EVERYTHING, from his casual knowledge of physics to his ability to speak Portuguese flawlessly.
You can just imagine the sort of Shenanigans that character was involved in.
The point to having such a long backstory was three-fold.
- to ensure the GM would never actually read it and
- Since he would never read it except for in excerpts I pointed out to justify things, I could re-write and change things around completely at random without anyone noticing and MOST IMPORTANTLY
- Convince everyone that I was serious about this character, and that it wasn't simply the game wrecking bullshit that it was.
Dickish yes, but he really did have it coming.
First outing of the group. The Detective was spying on the building of the cultists with a camera. The Jock was parked nearby, waiting for the group to let out so he could snoop it out The Professor had joined the cult to try and gain information.
Old Man Henderson very calmly parked his car, got out holding the shotgun in clear view of anyone who happened to be looking (in this case, the detective and the Jock), strolled up to the front door and kicked it in.
While everyone just kind of stopped in shocked silence for a moment, he leveled his shotgun on the lead priest/cultist guy and yelled "MUCKLE DAMRED CULTI 'AIR EH NAMBLIES BE KEEPIN' ME WEE MEN!?!?"
Did I mention that he had a nigh-incomprehensible Scottish accent that came and went as he drank and/or as amused me?
The leader couldn't understand my simple request to return my lawn gnomes (literally, you think what I typed is hard to understand? imagine it being slurred at you by a drunken Scotsman), he assumed I was trying to cast a spell at him in an elder tongue and summoned a shoggoth by murdering one of his fellows.
One Molotov And about 20 rounds later, the Shoggoth is dead, as is the cult leader, the Professor (he made the mistake of trying to make peace-maker mid murderous rampage) and about 10 assorted cultists.
Old Man Henderson then pissed on the Shoggoth's corpse, got back in his battered '92 Buick Century, and went home. The whole event was over in about ten minutes game time and nobody thought to get the Buick's plates.
The building burned down shortly, along with about half the written plot, and every lead either of the other surviving players had. The GM called a break then to figure out how to fix and/or work around what I just did.
It only got crazier from there.
The Tanker Truck Incident
Now, time for what will forever be known as 'The Tanker Truck Incident'. Notice 'The' is capitalized. This is because no matter what incidents in the future may involve tanker trucks, this is the definitive one.
It started out innocently enough. Old Man Henderson left the stakeout in a van outside the evil cult's meeting place to go get some hooch. The only people left there were the Detective and James Fink (the professor's second character). Jimmy was gone because it was a school night (Old Man Henderson was a bad influence, but damned if he didn't have the kid's best interests at heart.)
The cultists see me leaving --I had a very distinct appearance, after all. (VERY USEFUL in scoring TPKs.)-- and discover my friends spying on them. The detective gets a pretty GAR death, and James dies like a bitch. But not yet.
I'm on my way back, walking along. The Detective and James had been brought inside as part of a ritual to give Hastur an avatar in our world (he had been banished, and the only way he could come here is via a loophole). He could only use as hosts people who knew he existed and had thwarted him thrice, and then he had to make them drink the life-blood of their closest friend to make the binding permanent. In case you're wondering, permanent binding = GAME OVER.
The first part of the ritual was completed, but before Hastur could take control, the detective broke James' shackles and he tried to run. He made it as far as the street, when the detective (now Hastur) caught up with him, part demon-form.
Now where this church (for lack of a better term) was located, was at the end of the road on a T-shaped intersection. There was a gas station about three blocks away, which is where Old Man Henderson was while this was going down.
Old Man Henderson sees the shit hit the fan, and steals a half-full tanker truck that WAS refilling the station's holding tank.
While I bring the truck up to ramming speed, I toss a 12 lb block of C4 in the passenger seat and rig the detonator to the airbags.
Old Man Henderson then took a bracing shot of whiskey, jammed a knife through the gas pedal, then jumped out of the truck onto his heelies. Yes, he modified his combat boots to have heelies. I swear to god I had not planned this to happen, the heelies just sounded like something fucking ridiculous and in character.
He watched the truck ram the detective into the church, then blow him and all the cultists to Kingdom Come. The truck also killed James by running him over.
That's when the back-trail ignited, fire going all the way back to the gas-station and destroying it; continuing my streak of accidentally destroying anything that might lead people back to Old Man Henderson.
I took a moment to call Jimmy.
"Henderson here. Figured out what the nasties are weak against."
"What's that, Mr. Henderson?"
"Point blank annihilation."
Dropping The Yacht
Old Man Henderson, with his erstwhile companion Jimmy (the Jock) and his Friends William Brocklaw, a once humble bartender (The now dead Detective's player. Old Man Henderson burned down his bar on accident and blamed it on the cultists. One bluff check later and he in the Posse.), and Simon Breckenridge, British Spy (the Professor's player, now six characters in. And yes, they were more or less all killed by Old Man Henderson).
Old Man Henderson had discovered that there was not one cult to the Elder Gods, but several. This complicated his search for his gnomes/crusade. He decided to enlist help in making the problem solve itself.
Using his contacts, Simon discovered that a Influential Cultist of Hastur was coming to town to try and figure out how an Avatar of his god was killed. He also located the exact dock on which he would be landing his boat.
Jimmy, meanwhile discovered the home of the head of the local Cthulhu cults was at a penthouse suite downtown. A plan was hatched.
Old Man Henderson used all of his cunning to steal a Military Cargo Helicopter (read: Shoryuken'd the pilot and flew off), and hid it in an abandoned warehouse.
Jimmy, and Will set up a VERY EXPENSIVE surround sound speaker system at the docks, while Simon made and planted a lot of smoke bombs.
That night, the Yacht pulled in, and we made our move.
Right as Simon maneuvered the Helicopter over the docks, we set off the Smoke bombs and activated the Speakers.
On one side: A fifty piece marching band playing 'God Save the Queen' at max volume, and on the other the audio from the beach scene from Saving Private Ryan.
Imagine, for a moment, what being on the dock would have been like.
Utter. Fucking. CHAOS.
I jumped down from the Helicopter onto the boat, and rigged it to lift out of there. During the course of which I ran into the cultist guy and Ninja Kicked him in the head, knocking him tail-over-teakettle and off the boat. I later learned that he broke his neck in the fall.
Damned convenient, otherwise he might have have been able to ID me. We then lifted the boat out of there, switched to out secondary audio on all sides (My Heart Will Go On - Celine Dion. I was in a vengeful mood, gnome stealing bastards.) So when the cultists finally got the smoke to clear their Yacht was gone, their leader dead. And Celine Dion was stuck in their heads. Not the best of days.
Then we went across town, in a stolen Military Cargo chopper, carrying a 40 foot yacht, and 'parked' the helicopter above the penthouse, with the yacht about 80 feet above it. Then we cut the line, jumped out with our parachutes, and watched the yacht ruin a dinner party while placing bets on whether the military would save the chopper, blow it up, or if it would just hover there until it ran out of fuel.
Hell on Ice
Okie-doke. We were in the endgame, with zombies and shoggoths chasing us I managed to get Jimmy disappeared, so it was Old Man Henderson, Simon and Will going to the final strong-point we had an abandoned hockey stadium.
On the way there, we had rammed through a small home-and-garden store in our truck. And when we arrived, we started barring the doors and windows, when I noticed something. Our trip through the store had netted us a passenger- a single lawn gnome.
Somehow, I knew right then that this was it. No lucky turn of fate, no Deus Ex Machina... Old Man Henderson was going to die. But I'd be damned if it wouldn't be the best fucking last stand ever.
I then revealed to the GM that Henderson was a world champion figure skater, hockey player, and golfer.
The Backstory of Doom got one final use.
We had got almost all of the doors barricaded, but the zombie/shoggoth army kicked in the last door and got Simon, Will was pulled off the Zamboni after he manage to throw the Crate onto the ice.
The crate full of exploding hockey pucks.
Lasted a couple of minutes while blasting Bust A Move (Young MC) before the situation resolved into totally fucked I switched to the next track as I yelled "HASTUR HASTUR HASTUR!" The next track came on, it was the Canadian national anthem, which Old Man Henderson began to sing proudly, at the top of his lungs.
I then threw out the three pieces of knowledge that marked Old Man Henderson's Blaze Of Glory.
- Calling Hastur's name 3 times will summon him, but only if the one who is truest foe at the time calls it. (Guess who.)
- When an elder god is summoned from beyond, they suffer a sort of summoning sickness. They're still unbelievably strong, but can be killed FOREVER if you hit them hard enough.
- The building had enough explosives wired to make Michal Bay blush.
And that my friends, is the tale of how Old Man Henderson won Call of Cthulhu.
Anonymous 07/07/10(Wed)20:26 No.10998795
- I hereby suggest the use of "Henderson magnitude scale of plot derailment quake" to be used from hereon. One full Henderson rates as "total derailment".
Director's Cut Part 1
Anonymous 07/29/12(Sun)02:09 No.20082449
- Just want to say, WHM actually posted a continuation to Old Man Henderson.
- Shit's whack.
- Search for Eli Burning (I believe) on foolz.
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 07/29/12(Sun)02:52 No.20082857
- He never actually posted more than a quick summary of it actually.
- Also, for those of you curious as to whether or not Old Man Henderson was 'real'... Yes, yes it was. I was there, I was the Professor and like 15 other fucking people.
- Because Henderson had no concept of 'collateral damage' or 'inside voice'.
- The whole and complete story was fucking crazy, because crazy shit was happening in and out of game, and he only gave you guys a 'highlights reel'. I might end up story-timing the whole thing. even though I'm not as eloquent as him. Seriously, I read the backstory of doom. What he told you about it does not do it justice.
WHM tends to get emotionally attached to a well-made character. To him they're the means of exploring a story, and a good story is something he thinks the very foundations of modern society are based on. He doesn't mind a 'bad end' so long as it's legitimate.
Botched a roll at a bad time? Shit happens. Bad choice, in character? Meant to be. Simply screwed by circumstance? Them's the shakes. 'LOL you're dead because you actually disagreed with my self-insert fetish-fuel character with two katanas!'? I actually had to stop him from choking the fat bastard.
Which might make him sound like a bad person, ruled by petty emotion, but the truth is he's like a bear: normally quite chill. Not that easy to piss off normally. So he doesn't move often, but when he does... Things like Henderson happen.
It was the fifth session of the game with an 'experienced' GM, using 'Trail of Cthulhu' (a small distinction on the whole, but one worth mentioning in my eyes) and he'd already lost three characters. To the STUPIDEST shit.
Seriously, the last one some evil force put a curse on him, and he ended up being killed by a horse.
Falling out of an airplane.
So the GM goes to grab the pizza, since it was his turn to pay, and I could feel the room cooling slightly. WHM's expression never changed, he never looked at me or the other two guys. "I know you're thinking about leaving, but I want you to stay. I want you to watch what I'm going to do."
I knew this was bad, because while he can get frustrated mad (which is hilarious by the way, he makes a choking noise in the back of his throat like a murlock caught in a trash compactor), when he gets TRULY pissed, he gets calm.
We continue for the evening, and about a week later, we come back. He's giving me a ride, and he looks like he hasn't slept in two days, and the stubble is almost, but not quite, into gangly half-beard territory.
"I've done something. I'm not sure it's a good thing yet." he says as he hands me the little binder thing he keeps his character sheets and notes in.
"You've done something?" I ask, as I take the folder from him.
"I.... created? No, created is the wrong term. I feel like it was already there, waiting for me to give it life. I put a thing on paper, and I'm bringing it down on that fat fuck like the wrath of god."
"Uh huh." I say, as I look at the sheet. "Is Henderson his first or last name?"
"I don't even fucking know."
So then I look at the stack of paper he called a backstory. I start reading it, and I'm immediately fascinated by what can only be called a tome of madness.
It switched perspectives and tone wildly, at one point it's written with stage directions in the form of a script. At one point it went to GERMAN.
I know for fact he only knows like two words in German, while I'm kinda fluent.
The German was in his hand, and it was grammatically flawless.
I find my voice.
"Been asking that myself. All fucking day."
So we get to the game, and the GM asks what we're all doing.
Detective Guy's drinking alone at his desk, waiting for one of his contacts to get back to him.
Jimmy, the jock type, is struggling with math homework.
My character, Professor Filkins, is grading mid-terms.
Then we get the introduction to Henderson. He's sitting in a lawn-chair in his house, smoking a bong, staring at a wall he painted to look like a Hawaiian beach. "You know, Rupert?" He addresses the stuffed parrot currently resting on the arm of his chair. "You're a good friend. Most people would've asked for a hit, but you know how much I love this shit. Way better than what we had back in 'Nam." he chuckles, and then begins reminiscing "You know, I still remember the first time I got high. Back of my Older brother's van. Know it musta been some good shit too, because I'm an only child. Ain't that right, Charles?" He looks over to an empty corner of the room.
".... Charlie?" He then gets up, mildly concerned. "Man, what the hell?" He begins to search the house in earnest, before sitting down on a chair in his kitchen. "Where the fuck are my lawn gnomes? I mean, did somebody steal them? Who the fuck would steal them? Yeah, they're worth a lot, but come on." He then pulls out a sharpie and begins to scribble on the table. "Alright, 215 gnomes, total weight about 800 pounds, total value approaching 40 k. Not a one man job. Need help to carry them, need help to sell them. I'm looking at a large and well organized group of assholes."
He looks into the middle distance. "Like those guys down the street? They're Mormons, right? Large religious group, come around in the early morning like those damned charlies.... Rupes, I think we've got a lead." And then he poured a bottle of Jack Daniel's in a large go-cup, and went and got in his car.
Before I get back to the rest of the party, it should be noted that Henderson looks a lot like Jeff Bridges of today. So imagine all of his lines in that voice. Because that's the voice we were treated to at the table.
Anyway, I've had the lead on a cult meeting for a while, and I managed to get an invite. I'm sitting in the front row, listening to a passionate Arab man talking about how there's more to the world than we know. Despite myself, I'm intrigued.
Jimmy is sitting outside, thinking about his friends and trying to decide if he should go in and talk to them or what.
The detective's gotten his call-back, and is now watching the scene with interest.
A battered '92 Buick Century fails to get their attention until it suddenly executes a perfect handbrake turn and parks at the curb.
Back to Henderson's point of view, he's blasting Creedence Clearwater Revival when suddenly he sniffs the air and says 'Mormons' before whipping around and parking out front and killing the car.
He then gets out of the car, and pops the trunk. In full view of the detective, he then shoves 'Lurid Lucy', an inflatable sex toy of exceptional quality, to one side and pulls out some sort of Israeli-made combat shotgun and starts walking towards the house.
He then kicks open the door while our mouths are agape and shouts the words that let us know the game would never be the same.
"MUCKLE DARMED CULTISTS! 'AIR YOU NAMBLIES KEEPIN' ME WEE MEN?!?"
So at this point the GM has not yet realized what Henderson IS. In fact, I think I'm the only one who truly understood what was about to happen to existential horror, as at this point in time...
Here's another fun fact about WHM: When he's at a game table with a character sheet, you aren't at the table with him. You're at the table with whatever character he's playing until further notice. I don't think he could've meta-gamed if he tried.
So anyway, the GM has decided to regain control the only way he knows how: By killing Mike's latest character via bullshit, and summons a shoggoth.
Henderson, having passed the will check to not puke up his brains, and winning the initiative, comments on how it's the UGLIEST fucking poodle EVER oh god, and then shoots it in the fucking face until it dies. Then he shoots the cultist guy who summoned it. Then he shoots me, then a random guy, then he pisses on the shoggoth's corpse since everyone else is too busy losing their shit in a panic over the Creature That Should Not Be being summoned, and casually sets the tapestry on fire with his cigar as he walks out the door.
So then everyone still alive runs the fuck away from the burning building before the cops show up. Henderson makes it home (about three blocks away) when he realizes something horrible.
He totally fucking forgot about the lawn gnomes.
He RUNS back to the still burning building, only to see the fire department has already arrived. They inform him that no gnomes were in the building that they can tell.
On the one hand, he's relieved as fuck since he didn't lose the gnomes, and killing that many little people would probably constitute a hate crime.
Never mind that he totally just leveled a church with the speed and brutality of the fucking Spetsnaz.
Anyway he goes to try and cook up where they could have gone at the local pub.
The GM at this point looks up at us from his notes. He's clearly been thrown so far off the fucking tracks by what just happened that he can't just improv his way out of it. "I... I think I need a minute. Or ten."
He amscrays, and I look over to the man I thought I knew. He has his cell-phone out, and is asking us if we're cool with Chinese food since we had pizza last week.
"What the fuck was that?" Asks one of our fellow players.
"Remember when I said I was getting revenge? I brought out the big guns. I don't even have the small guns anymore. I was given some once, and promptly returned them. 'Won't be needin' these' I said. Hello, (Chinese food place I forget the name of)? You still got that special on the shrimp fried rice?"
Director's Cut Part 2
So when I ended the last story, we had a dead shoggoth, a burning building, a bunch of MIA lawn gnomes, and we totally just ordered some bitching Chinese food.
Anyway, at this point in the proceedings Henderson decided that if he couldn't get a proper brainstorming going at home as to the location of the gnomes, then he could always try Harry's bar.
Good ol' Harry was scared proper shitless of Henderson after an incident with a 'commie bastard pinball machine' prior to the game's start, so he could drink in peace and nobody really bothered him about the mounting tab.
So he's sitting there working on a new plan of action with his two best friends, Mr. Daniels and Mr. Walker, when suddenly a news report comes on. Apparently some woman was commenting on how the quiet religious group a few blocks away from the bar just had their shit wrecked. Henderson was VERY interested in knowing that they were not in fact Mormons, but rather 'Disciples of the Yellow King' which apparently were a radical sect of Buddhism that had the details promptly ignored since there was a hockey game on.
Then Henderson had a really good idea. Since somebody at the other table had the 'Dragnet' theme as their ringtone.
He knew fuck all about looking for people, but a Private Detective...
So after a few minutes in the phone book, he decides to literally call the first name he saw under the PI heading.
By sheer freakish coincidence, the phone in the Detective player's office starts to ring.
"I need a man who's good at finding things, doesn't have any great love of religious loonies, and doesn't mind maybe shooting an ugly ass poodle or two."
"... I'm sorry, but WHO is this?"
"Name's Henderson. I need some help from a professional."
"No argument here. So, you're looking to hire a PI?"
"Yep. Had something precious stolen from me."
"And that was?"
"Roughly 40 thousand dollars of Lawn Gnomes."
There was a silence both in game and at the table. "What?"
"I'm not saying it was cultists, but I'm pretty sure it was cultists. Or aliens, but that seems unlikely given the circumstances. If you're interested we can talk down at Harry's on the south side by the river." And then he hung up.
Since the detective was quickly getting nowhere with his missing persons case, he decided it'd be good for a laugh.
Henderson meanwhile had discovered that Harry had acquired a Pac-Man arcade machine, and decided to fill the score board with profanity.
So when the detective arrives, he asks for 'some guy named Henderson' and was promptly pointed to a man in... unusual attire who was teaching a girl how to shoot pool.
"Hold on, just a second. The important part of a shot in pool is to make sure it's smooth. Take all the time you need to line up the shot, don't let them rush you." He says, and then he sinks his last three balls and the '8' in one stroke. He then turns to the detective.
Who promptly recognizes him, and tries to leave. Too bad for him, Henderson decided to follow. "So how do you think you're gonna go about this?"
"I'm gonna get the hell back in my car and leave the crazy ass arsonist/murderer behind."
"No shit?" He looks over his shoulder back at the bar "Which one?" He looks at the detective poking him in the chest. "What?"
"The church! You burned down a church!"
"They started it."
"Because you walked in with a shotgun?" He asked exasperated at the infuriatingly flawless logic of a complete asshole.
"No. Because they stole my goddamned lawn gnomes."
"Yeah, you mentioned that. How do you fucking steal 40 thousand dollars in decorative lawn fixtures? Where the hell did you even get that many gnomes?"
"I worked briefly as a prostitute in Thailand. The antique gnome collection was my retirement plan."
"Ended up riding some dude's junk all the way back home. Hell of an uncomfortable ride, let me tell you. not meant for the ocean blue. And I would know."
"You... understand the logistics... of riding another man's junk... across the ocean..."
"Well, in a general sense. I took a course on ship building back in college. This was before we had these fancy navigational Gypsy Pathfinder Space-fairies."
"... I... alight, you said you were looking for gnomes?"
"Actually, that was earlier. Just now I was explaining that I knew so much about catching a ride on somebody's junk because of vigorous study in my youth."
"Let's focus on the Gnomes. You think they were stolen by a cult?"
"Only thing that makes sense from what I know. I want you to look into this 'Disciples of the Yellow King'. See if they're doing anything suspicious."
"Actually, I was looking into them already for another reason: looks like they've got a hand in human trafficking. Lawn Gnomes... seems like an odd direction to go in, but I won't deny that they're up to no good. I'll let you know if I find anything worth talking about."
"Sounds good. I'm usually at Harry's unless I'm not. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go see a man about a horse." Henderson then walked across the street, stole a bicycle, and rode off into a plot-hole for a brief period of time.
- Now here's the question: do you guys give a shit about non-WHM related things? Because the rest of us were trying to play a somewhat serious game around him, and I wanted to know if you guys wanted the WHOLE story, or just shenanigans.
- (several votes for whole story later)
Alright, so at this point, the guy playing the detective decided to give my character an easy-in with the group, since poor Jimmy was still on his lonesome for the moment.
In rolls James Fink, one of SEVERAL characters whom Henderson killed, and the only one besides Simon who's name ever got remembered by the rest of the group.
James is a long-time friend of the Detective, whose name I just remembered was Albert Johanson (Pronounced 'Yo-Han-Son' for some fucking reason). Back when Al was still a cop, Jim was a thug for the local mob. They worked up the ladders of their respective organizations, gained the respect of their co-workers, and eventually ended up leaving their jobs on good terms with their bosses.
In Jim's case it was because his wife had a baby on the way then, and asked him to find safer work. Al ended up in a shoot-out where his partner got killed fighting against a bunch of crazy meth addicts. Shortly after quitting they ran into each other by coincidence and discovered that the other one was 'the bastard who kept wrecking our job/getting away!' and ended up becoming fast friends. This continued on a fairly regular basis for several years until the Henderson situation, and Al decided he wanted back-up. And there was nobody in the world he trusted more.
"So," Jim said as he walked into the office. "Who's the client?"
"Some crazy motherfucker named Henderson."
"That his first or his last name?"
"Man, I have no fucking clue."
"Alright, so what's he want?"
"Apparently he thinks a cult stole his antique lawn gnome collection."
"... So drop the nutter."
"Two good reasons not to: The cult he's accusing I honestly believe to be involved in both activity illegal and bizarre. The other is that any man who can afford to just have 40 grand in gnomes lie around can write a pay-check."
"...Why the hell would somebody have fourty-"
"Don't tug on this particular string Jim. Trust me, just... don't."
"So what's our first lead?"
"Well I was gonna go kick around in the ashes of the church my new boss burned down, and then see if there were any witnesses."
"Wait, our BOSS caused that church fire?"
"Yeah. So you're in?"
"You kiddin'? I NEED to see how deep this rabbit hole goes."
That evening they went to the site, and discovered the shoggoth's corpse. There wasn't enough left of it to force san checks, but plenty to make them start asking some pointed questions.
The Professor ended up on the list of people to look into when this body was identified, and then they found the page of the Necronomicron. Recognizing the occult symbols on it, the Detective dropped it off at his office while he went to ask if he could borrow a notebook out of the cold-case evidence lockers.
Henderson meanwhile discovered that during a recent bender, he had agreed to chaperone a dance at the local high-school. So he swings by the detective's office to let him know where he'll be.
So he's at the office, and he meets Jim, asks him to pass along the info to Al, and then snags the scrap of the Necronomicron on the way out the door saying he needed paper. Jim failed his spot to notice which sheet he took. The GM fudged it, probably assuming Henderson was going to read it and he could kill him off via San-damage.
Boy howdy, was he wrong.
So Henderson shows up to the dance in his usual attire, slightly less scruffy than usual, and volunteers to sit outside and make sure punks from the other schools didn't try and gate-crash the party. The more 'proper' people were glad to keep him out, since that meant he wouldn't be able to corrupt the youth.
Henderson was glad because there was no way they'd let him smoke the monster blunt he just rolled inside.
I then realized, as he lit an 'atomica', as he called it (a blunt roughly the size of a cuban cigar), that there was currently only one piece of paper on his person.
As soon as I found out where he was IC, I went to the school to try and prevent the inevitable.
Meanwhile, Jimmy (the jock) was sitting outside, sad because his girlfriend didn't come because she was too busy being a crazy cultist.
Henderson decides to introduce him to the wonderful world of substance abuse, and like a bro passes the blunt.
To be totally honest, I'm surprised this moment didn't make the original story, since smoking the giant book of Bad Juju was the best thing to ever happen on accident.
So Jimmy took a hit, and totally failed every check the GM sent his way.
He saw Jesus, and then Jesus turned into a giant squid thing. In the deep distance, the Weed softened the blow by masking everything behind a cartoon-ey after-glow.So imagine for a moment watching Elmer Fudd scream 'Cthulhu fhtagn' and shoot Daffy in the face. Only instead of a fucked up beak and a muttering of 'this means war', he screams 'HE COMES!" and tentacles rip out of his form to molest wildlife.
This is the part where I had to go to the door and retrieve the precious shrimp fried rice, but I came back to "So wait, I ONLY lost 15 san?"
"Yeah. What now?"
"I pass it back."
Henderson of course manages to ace the tests, and then comments on how 'this is some really GOOD shit man' and how Jimmy is 'a lightweight'.
Jimmy then does a bit better and they get to swapping stories. Pretty soon the Cult comes up, and they agree to join forces for the sake of cute girls next door, and lawn gnomes everywhere.
Sadly that roach burned fast and hard, so when Me and Al got there all we saw was the crazy old fuck and some ginger teenager crashed together against the wall giggling at 'those silly squid things in people's heads'.
So we then discover the kid's connection to the madness, and promptly discover what he knows.
This leads to the three people who DIDN'T have school tomorrow (both in and out of game) to prepare a stakeout of some church.
So at this point, we all get into Jim's van, and park down the street from a church. The church happens to be on the end of a road, at a T-shaped intersection, and we're parked a bit up the way from it.
"Man, stakeouts are boring."
"No shit, Henderson. You have anything useful to contribute?"
"Not really. I should've brought a book or something."
"Would you be paying attention to the building if you had reading material?"
"Then I guess that would defeat the purpose of a stakeout, wouldn't it?"
"Not if you two were watching. Hell, we could have two of us watching the third man playing bait."
"You'd volunteer for that?"
"Beats the fuck out of sitting in a van with two dudes who won't even let me smoke."
"Didn't you smoke EVIDENCE last time you lit up?"
"I regret nothing. Fuck it, you guys hungry or something? I'm gonna go grab some munchies from the gas station."
"And some cheese doodles."
"Aight. Back in... fuck it, just leave the doors unlocked."
And he went in search of snacks. When he hopped out of the van, one of the cultists happened to see him on a lucky roll, and as he walked around the corner into the gas-station, they ran out and beat the shit out of the two of us left behind.
About the time we got dragged into the building, Henderson had FINALLY got out of the bathroom. About the time we got tied to the altar, Henderson had stopped to try on hats. About the time the ritual reached it's height, Henderson was debating which AC/DC album was the best with the cashier.
The end result of that argument was that while they couldn't decide if Back in Black or Dirty Deeds was the best album, Black Ice was pretty boss and heralded only good.
So then with some tense tests of willpower and resolve, Al managed to free Jim and hold off the cultists while an evil presence steadily took chunks off his San score until he was no longer able to resist.
Smiling in malicious glee, Hastur began to stalk his new prey. At this point in time, Henderson had JUST walked out of the store, just in time to see my character get murder-glomped by a monster wearing my friend's face. So he does the only 'logical' thing he could. He stole a fucking fuel truck.
So then we find out he was packing C4, and was making all sorts of tests while gunning it down the road towards us. He made it, and bailed, just in time for the truck to hit him off of me, and run my ass over. Hastur rode that truck to its end, while Henderson placed a call to Jimmy.
"Hey kid, Henderson here. Found out what the nasties are weak against."
"What's that Mr. Henderson?"
"Point blank annihilation." he then hangs up the phone, and proceeds to walk off. I finished bleeding to death two turns later.
That's right, mother-fucker LEFT ME TO DIE.
Sure it wasn't like I was screaming for help, but he could have at least CHECKED.
Since I'm not sure how familiar /tg/ is with certain Cthulhu based rule-books, I was basically in what D&D calls 'alive, with negative hit-points'. So helpless, dying, but still there's hope.
Until the back trail ignited, and the tiny amount of fire damage ended me.
My one consolation was that the fire blew up the gas station and took the bar he left me for with it. Then, the detective's player, after the fastest re-roll I've ever seen, entered stage left. William Brocklaw runs in and yells about how his newly refurbished bar just got destroyed on the evening of its grand reopening.
"Hey man, if it makes you feel any better, I can help you get back at the people who did this."
"Who are you?"
"Name's Henderson. This is my right hand man, Rupert."
"... and you know who did this?"
"I'm fairly certain I do. Ever hear of the 'Disciples of the Yellow King'?"
"Are you saying that this was done by cultists?"
"Look, I'm not saying it was cultists."
"But it was probably cultists. Come on, your bar might be gone, but it's not the only watering hole in town. Ever hear of a pub called Harry's? You look like you could use a drink."
At Harry's bar, he got filled in on what Henderson knew, while getting a couple of drinks 'on the house'.
(I probably would've been there too, were I not slightly pissy about losing two characters in as many sessions.)
So after a few minutes of back and forth, Will decides he'll get in on it IF Henderson can provide some proof as to the whole evil cultist thing.
"So why'd you decide to go after them?"
"Really? What happened?"
"Same bastard who blew up your bar killed two of my buddies. This is after they stole all my fucking lawn gnomes."
"Damn. Tell you what, when we catch the guy, I'll hold him still while you kill him."
"Mighty generous of you."
This was the point where we called it for the evening, and at the start of the next session Henderson headed up a 'daring plan' to kidnap one of the heads of the cult. I'll tell that one next time, but quick spoiler: I managed to get three of MY OWN characters killed in one session.
Director's Cut Part 3
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 08/11/12(Sat)02:33 No.20271993
- I got enough free time to do the story of Henderson's 'Hat Trick'.
- While killing a god is cool and all, that happens a lot in Tabletop Games. Granted it was a first for a CoC inspired game, but I digress.
- Henderson has another record that I find far more irritating, for obvious reasons: Henderson is the only PC I've ever seen to manage to kill the same player's characters four times in a single session.
- Namely mine. The bastard.
- I'm gonna type this up in chunks around what I'm already doing, so don't be surprised if this takes a while.
Technically I mistyped the end of the last thread: I REROLLED three times in one sitting, but I already had one character ready to go at the beginning.
When we first arrived for the game that day, I was determined to not get upset at a character death. It's just a game, all pretend.
I failed, eventually.
I don't even remember the name of my first character. The session began with the cultists using a mob front, planning to kill the son of a rival crime family. Incidentally, the same one Jim used to work for.
I was playing the role of the bodyguard, and I was quickly knocked out and thrown in the trunk of one car, while the kid was loaded into the back-seat of another.
Enter stage left: Henderson and Will. They see them wacky cultists up to no good, and they decide to nick the vehicle with the visible hostage. While Will hotwired it, Henderson punched a hole in the gas-tank of their second car, and lit it off. They then sped away after unknowingly leaving my character to burn screaming in the trunk of the second car.
Approximate elapsed time between the start of the session and first character death? Two minutes and thirty seconds.
I promptly rolled up a second character, and agreed with the GM that I should wait until a more appropriate time to join the scene than in the middle of a drive across town.
They then decide to pull into a local bar with the Don's kid to help him get off his problem.
My second character of the evening's name was Ronald. Ronald was a used car salesman coming off the tail-end of a bad divorce in which his wife gained all their worldly possessions, and then promptly killed herself and left it all to the new church she had found: The Disciples of the Yellow King.
At this point in time, he was playing darts. Unbeknownst to him, a cultist from that church just let loose a powerful entropy curse after the car that was stolen from them. A curse with a very specific target: The brake-lines of the car coming in for a hard stop just outside.
Ronald looked at the perfect game he was playing, and felt genuine joy for the first time in weeks. Then he was ripped in half by a BMW coming through the brick wall behind him. This was less than ten minutes after the first death of the evening.
Henderson gets out of the car, and the Bartender with the mob connections immediately puts a gun in his face.
"What the bloody hell do ya think you're doing?"
"Trying to escort a young man to safety. Damn cultists must've cut the brakes."
The bartender then recognizes the Don's son, and calls him over to see if he's alright. Danny, the boy, is confused but mostly unhurt. This saved Henderson's life, but the GM soundly refused to let me just take control of such a politically powerful character just to get back into the game quicker, so I started to roll up another: a cop, looking into a lead in a weird house across town.
A weird house connected to a cold case that his old friend Al asked about immediately before his mysterious death in the middle of a huge explosion.
A place the mob had just told Henderson and Will should have answers for some of the questions they had, as a favor for saving their son.
They get there after me, and open the door to creep inside. I've already investigated the upstairs, and found notes saying something about a lab in the basement. Henderson, in the meantime, had gone straight down on the logic of 'what the hell kind of evil cultist just fucks around in the living room when they have a creepy ass cellar to play with?'
He finds an old summoning circle down there, and decides to spit in its general direction, accidentally activating it as he walks out the far door, finding nothing of 'interest' in the room. Upon discovering that this other door leads outside, he circles back around into the house, and winds up in the study with Will.
Meanwhile, with my new lead pointing me at the basement, I run in, see the horrible thing taking shape, botch the FUCK out of my save against 'crawl into the fetal position and cry while losing 2d10 sanity'. Henderson meanwhile picks up a book off the shelf and flips it open to a random page.
"What the hell kinda gobblydegook is this anyway? How are you supposed to pronounce this: Al'whya al Cthulhu fhatagan? K'kili'far al is ar'arkas fal dep'wa?" He turns to Will, completely oblivious to the be-tentacled beast he just conjured into existence behind him, cocked eyebrow barely visible above the rim of his sunglasses. "What does that even MEAN? What's the point of wasting paper with that sort of nonsense?"
Will, having barely failed his SAN check, loses five points from his score and points behind him muttering something about a thing that 'should not be'. Henderson chuckles and says how he's not going to fall for that one again. Last time he did the tranny he was interrogating vis-a-vis his lawn gnomes had 'her' pimp beat the shit out of him and steal his wallet. So he leads Will to the kitchen, leaving the monster to its own devices.
In the kitchen, Henderson continues to be disappointed with the continuing lack of clues, while the professor is overjoyed to discover that the liquor cabinet was never emptied by the previous owners, and helps himself to a bottle.
Then the local cultists, getting a report of Henderson's location, proceed to kick in the door to come kill him.
Three of them are eaten by the thing Henderson summoned in the study, and while they're screaming the two of them take a peek at the next room, and Henderson smashes all the alcohol and lights it off while they run out the back door.
The abomination in the basement with me does nothing of importance, while I regain my wits and attempt to leave. I burst out the way I came, see the fire, and immediately have a SECOND breakdown caused by a pre-existing phobia of fire (randomly rolled for) and then die burning, screaming in pain and terror.
Much like the cultists and the monsters.
Meanwhile, Will is asking Henderson why his car only has the Creedence Clearwater Revival playing ever. It turns out that it's because the CD is jammed in there and the radio is broke. Henderson just never bothered to fix it because Creedence is awesome.
So they ride away happily listening to 'Around the Bend' while I fucking died for the third time in the last hour. At this point I was beginning to get a little pissy and break my promise to myself to not let the game get to me.
I roll up another character, determined to do SOMETHING of consequence in this session. I end up with a nasty street-fighting thug named Patrick.
Somebody in a yellow robe gave Pat a pile of money and a picture of Henderson, asking him to make sure he 'disappeared'. Now normally Pat would think twice about accepting such a shady deal, since he preferred to 'rough people up' since it couldn't get you 25 to life.
However, it was a LOT of money. And I was getting to be very bitter about the whole dying every fucking session thing. So Pat agreed to the job. I figured that this would end with me either killing Henderson or us getting into a scuffle and then Pat switching teams.
Oh how wrong I was.
Turns out, Henderson wasn't a particularly tough fellow to find, since there's only one crazy old fucker with a mohawk and Hawaiian shirt running around reeking of cheap whiskey and porcelain.
When Pat caught up with him, Henderson was taking a piss in an alleyway on the cardboard 'home' of a hobo that just tried to mug him, now dead. As he finishes up, Pat taps him on the shoulder, and he turns.
"Indeed I am." And then Pat's right hook hits him in the face and smashes his aviator shades into a useless mess of metal and glass shards. At which point Henderson very calmly pulls it off his face and pulls out a spare pair of shades, puts them on and comments "Well that was kinda rude."
Then Pat caught him with a left.
Henderson then tosses the second useless pair of sunglasses aside, dons a third set and then says "Now son, I've only got one more pair on me and I've got considerably less patience than that. What the bloody all loving fuck hell are you doin?"
"I got good money from a man in yellow saying that you're a no good son o' bitch who needs to be put down."
At this, Henderson puts on a very surprised and concerned face. "A man in yellow you say... Son, I'm afraid that there's been a very big mistake here."
"... I've been lied to?"
"Nah, you're pretty spot on." Henderson replies, before shooting out both my knees with his concealed handgun, followed by a pair to the balls. "But no man gets between me and me wee men." He then walks out of the alleyway, leaving me to bleed to death, and everyone at the table kinda looks shocked at the fact that Henderson just blatantly executed a PC right there.
I will admit to flipping my shit a bit. While the GM went to consult his 'notes', I confronted him.
"Why the fuck did you just kill me?"
"You just fucking shot me dead!"
"I shot a random guy who threatened my life and started trying to beat the shit out of me in the middle of a crime scene where I totally just murdered a hobo? Yes, yes I did. What possible reason could I have to NOT shoot you?"
"It's ME you cock! I've already died like three times TODAY."
I went to make the call for takeout, knowing that I would've hit him if I stayed.
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 08/12/12(Sun)01:16 No.20284013
- Before anybody says anything, I know getting violently angry over a game is stupid, that's why I walked away before it got the better of me.
- Nobody in the group (except maybe the GM) was a 'that guy', but we all had a tendency or two that could have put us into that category.
- WHM has a thing about the 'rules' and about characters that I'm pretty sure are signs of his OCD coming to the fore. It's a really mild case, so you wouldn't even know he had it if you didn't notice little things: like the fact that he never has the volume set for an 'odd' number.
- If there are rules in place for a game, he expects them to be followed as written. If someone modifies the rules for some reason, that's fine as long as he knows in advance there's a change. The dice land as the dice land, and he tends to be very chill on the whole as long as you don't manage to piss him off.
- Me, I like being a team player. I honestly hate playing a multiplayer game if it means going against my friends. I think this quirk may have eventually rubbed off on WHM as far as Vidya are concerned, but I digress.
- So one of my sore spots is basically infighting. If two people start to have a fight, IC or OOC it ruins the fun for me. I don't give a shit if the random kobolds we're beating up are having a bad day. I give no shits about some random guy in a server I keep sniping. but that guy I'm shooting isn't Dave, my friend who let me move in after I had a bad breakup. That Kobold isn't Mike's new PC.
- Personally, I think this is where the line between That Guy and the rest of us is drawn: We're all geeks and nerds. Given what gets posted on /tg/ and 4chan at large on a daily basis I think it's fair to say that we're all assholes to some degree as well.
- We all have in us some quality or two that might be detestable. The difference between us and 'That Guy' is that we're TRYING to at least be 'acceptable' if not good.
- But now I've gotten off topic a bit.
- I opted to go for a quick drive to get the pizza since it was a bit cheaper, and we were taking a break anyway. WHM decides to go with me, defeating the purpose of me trying to get away and clear my head.
- On the way was probably the time where we actually became friends. You see, up until this point we'd just been kinda hanging out in the same group, playing games and shit. But on this day... I don't know what prompted it, but I got angry, and I kinda yelled at him. He took it in stride, came back with a reasoned argument and let the matter drop.
- On the way back we bickered over stupid shit, but I think out of all the crazy shit I've seen and done with him: near death experiences, epic games, lan parties, late nights having to go help a friend, that time he talked down a jumper... this was the one that stuck with me the most. Partly because I'd never before seen anybody just let their guard down and be honest like that.
- I won't share what we talked about, except this: He actually bought St Anger.
Waffle House Millionaire 08/12/12(Sun)01:31 No.20284195
- For fucks sake, are you ever going to let me live that down?
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 08/12/12(Sun)01:32 No.20284203
- That CD was fucking garbage and you know it.
Waffle House Millionaire 08/12/12(Sun)01:34 No.20284228
- I didn't at the time!
- Fuck, Metallica's pretty consistently awesome, how the hell was I supposed to know THAT was the album they were going to fuck up?
- It was two fucking years before we even met, and I already apologized for it.
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 08/12/12(Sun)01:36 No.20284252
- Make all the fucking excuses you want man, the truth's out there now.
- Now all the internets know you done goofed.
BACK TO THE STORY AT HAND-
We get back to the table, and the GM has got some new stuff lined up. I decide to opt out of re-rolling and rejoining even though we were only like halfway through the session because I wasn't ready to have another character killed off just yet.
Will and Henderson bounce around trying to find a lead to work with for the whole 'revenge' plot they were kinda working on. They ended up meeting up with Jimmy to try and talk his girlfriend out of being a cultist.
Which ended up fantastic.
Jimmy basically agrees to go to one of the meetings if she promised to seriously have a chat with him afterwards about the whole 'joining a cult' thing. She agreed, basically telling him that he'd totally change his mind once he saw what it was all about.
Jimmy was a smart boy, and he called Henderson's cellphone for backup in case things went south.
So, pretty soon, Henderson and Will are sitting outside the church on the curb.
Henderson breaks the silence. "Man, I fucking hate stakeouts."
"They aren't that bad."
"Last time I was on a stakeout, two of my friends got killed and your bar burnt down."
"... does this shit happen on a regular basis with you?"
"Not causing it. Well, not usually. I remember I got arrested about a year ago for scaring a cook shitless."
"I told the motherfucker that I was allergic to olives. I get olives on my everything. I coulda fucking died if I didn't check it out."
There's a silence.
Then "Fuck it, there's a Best Buy and a video rental place around the corner. I vote we get one of those portable DVD things and a movie."
"Fuck yes. Shit, we're just here in case Jimmy calls us, let's get baked and watch something funny."
So they went and got a copy of Grandma's Boy, got high, and laughed their asses off.
In public, outside a church they're supposed to be watching for cultists that already know what Henderson looks like.
Surprisingly, nothing comes of this until Jimmy calls them from inside the church. Apparently they just called up some kinda demon, and told it to eat his girlfriend and him as a sacrifice to their god.
His girlfriend, shocked at the sudden change in tone from the companionable welcoming air that was there before, suddenly realizes that cults aren't as awesome as she thought.
And that's when Henderson and Will run inside, guns drawn. Jimmy, wise man he is, grabs his girlfriend and ducks, while full auto-shotgun spray kills every motherfucker in the room.
They go outside and into the car, Henderson starts it up while Will keeps the arson streak alive and sets the building on fire. As they pull away, Kary (Jimmy's girlfriend) goes all 'my hero' on them, and soon the two freaked teenagers are 'getting busy' in the back seat. Will looks shocked, while Henderson lights the bong up and starts hot-boxing while cranking up the stereo.
Which is when they passed a cop going in the opposite direction.
To this day, I giggle to myself thinking about what that cop must've been thinking when he saw that.
There's Henderson 'driving' the car, taking a hit off a bong the size of god, next to him is a dude who looks like a slightly less fat Kevin Smith looking bored out the window, there's so much smoke inside that you'd think the car's on fire, and there's a couple of people obviously fucking in the back seat.
I'd like to think that he was thinking about his family, or going to watch a hockey game at the bar with his friends. Or maybe finally asking the cute waitress out.
I just... Some part of me desperately wants to know why it took him two blocks to process what he just saw.
Henderson just keeps going, not a care in the world.
Cop turns around and starts to follow him.
Henderson keeps going.
Cop turns on his lights.
Henderson keeps going.
"Sir, pull over the vehicle." The cops says into his loudspeaker.
Henderson pulls into a drive-through.
The cops walks up halfway through an order for tacos and politely asks what the fuck he's doing. Henderson responds with a 'hold on a sec' gesture and finishes his order. Then he asks if the cop wants anything.
The cop asks him to please step out of the car, sir. Offers of a chalupa are denied.
Henderson gets out of the car, a plume of smoke accompanying his exit, Jimmy and Kary are kinda blushing and avoiding eye-contact, mostly having recuperated.
Will, having seen three cosmic horrors in the last day, killed a bunch of people, and still coping with the loss of his bar... apparently has no fucks to give. He just sits there, high off his ass listening to 'Fortunate Son'.
The cop interrogates him as to why he didn't pull over, and Henderson responds that was because he was color-blind, and that he didn't realize there was a cop behind him.
The cop asks him why he smelled like weed, and Henderson replied that it was because he just smoked a huge fucking bowl, but it's cool because he has one of those medical licenses.
When asked about the kids in the backseat, he stated confusion, and asked what kids, before looking back and seeing Jimmy.
"Hey Jimmy, when'd you get here?"
"You... you came to pick us up."
"No shit?" He turned to the cop. "Tell you what, memories the first thing to go, followed right by the memory. So how can I help you officer?"
After replaying the conversation a few more times, the cop made Will drive and they left relatively unmolested with their tacos.
Director's Cut Part 4
I think when I left off on the last story our intrepid 'heroes' had just gotten their hands on tacos and narrowly avoided getting arrested.
Henderson is formally introduced to Kary at this point, and I decline the offer to take over her character to get back in the game. I already had a character in mind, and the session was almost over at this point anyway.
Henderson, being the responsible adult that he is, takes the kids to Henry's. "If you're old enough to kill cultists, you're good to drink." He told them, and grabbed everyone a beer. We got most of the way into an elaborate 'The Big Lebowski' reference when Mike finally asks a question, in a tone of voice that suggested irritation.
"What the hell are you guys talking about?"
"I mean, you guys are clearly having a laugh at my expense. I don't mind that, but I'm not getting the joke and it's pissing me off."
"Dude, Henderson is practically the 'Dude' from The Big Lebowski. That can't be accidental."
"It was. I've never seen the movie."
"...I've never seen The Big Lebowski?"
"What the fuck do you MEAN you've never seen it?"
"Not sure how that can be misinterpreted. I think my Uncle mentioned liking it in passing once."
The GM agreed to call the evening right there so he could work on the next part of the game, while we dragged our 'fearless leader' to watch what WE thought was a fantastic movie.
So at Harry's, they bump into my second to last character: Malcolm Reeves. Mal was a soldier who just got discharged from the military after a tour of duty sent him into a nest of monsters.
He was diagnosed with Schizophrenic hallucinations caused by PTSD, and sent home. He overhears Henderson talking about cultists and deformed hell-poodles, and asks if he can get involved.
We move out of the bar as evening begins to set in, in various degrees of drunk. We start with the building Henderson exploded.
We go back to the remains of the Church Henderson burned down.
Same story with the old mansion and the Cult meeting we saved Kary from.
"Fookin' cultists!" Henderson yelled dismayed. "Not one clue anywhere!"
"Maybe if you didn't burn everything down we'd have more to work with?" Mal suggests.
"We wage a scorched Earth sorta war here, kid." Henderson says darkly. "But that can wait until we get a lead. Anyone have any ideas?"
Jimmy, buzz well on it's way to wearing off, raises a hand. "Uh... the Internet?"
"What the hell's an Internet?" And then Henderson learned something new about the world.
Seeing as how Kary and Jimmy's parents wouldn't want a trio of random dudes showing up to use their computers, they do the next most logical thing: break into the library and use the public access lines.
Sadly, Google had zero useful results under 'Gorram poodle fookin cultists'.
'Disciples of the Yellow King', as Jimmy pointed out, and then corrected Henderson's spelling, had a list of locations and possible meeting times for various groups across the city.
There were ten unmolested locations, and several of them were having meetings this very night. Clearly the GM was wanting us to get back to investigating.
Henderson instead bought enough gasoline to make about fifty Molotovs, and we burned every one of those motherfuckers down that evening, before dropping off the kids at home for a good night's sleep.
Mal buys the first round as we watch the news, seeing our exploits all over T.V.
We all got a good laugh when the Cops apparently failed their assorted checks, tests, and investigations. Since we players decided as a group, that 'going to confront possible suspects' meant 'have no fucking clue what's up' and 'we're gonna go arrest Jeff Bridges, Kevin Smith, and Marshall Mathers'.
Triumphantly, we return home for the evening, and we all catch the news the next morning. Apparently people are appalled by the hate-crimes against this one religious group in the community, and they send their prayers with them.
The head of the local cultists thanked the community for their concern, and said that he had the permission of the local government to gather together and pray for the souls of their departed in a local High-School Gym.
In retrospect, the GM telling us that every living cultist of Hastur would be gathering into one convenient location should've been a hint that it was a trap.
Like one big enough to be visible from space.
This is when Henderson had a 'cunning plan'. He was gonna go there and talk to the head cultist guy. I tell him that it's a fantastic plan, since Will already shared the summoning of the demon thing Henderson accidentally accomplished with him.
So the new plan, of which Henderson was only vaguely aware, was that Jimmy was going to help the 'deacon' set up a slide show thing for all of the words of the prayer that he was going to lead.
Henderson asked what significance Lawn Gnomes had in their worship. The Deacon, after deducing that he wasn't in fact being mocked, explained that the church was rather neutral on the topic of Lawn Gnomes. Henderson then kept chasing the line as hard as he could, asking about things like Human-Gnome relations. Whether the Gnomes had souls. Whether said souled-Gnomes could theoretically be used as sacrifices to Satan.
The Deacon then, and I'm quoting the GM here (in the only good line he had the entire game), gave Henderson a Look. A look that can only be summed up as 'Dude, I fucked a Shoggoth and you're creeping me out'.
Jimmy then lead Henderson away from the fracas, after he completed his secret mission of changing one of the slides about a third of the way into the show.
That evening, the cultists prayed to Hastur. They asked for guidance and protection. They asked that their dead be avenged. They asked that they be allowed to continue serving.
Or at least, that was the intent.
One of the slides had been changed to say something more like ' Al'whya al Cthulhu fhatagan, K'kili'far al is ar'arkas fal dep'wa'.
One horrible, tentacled monstrosity per member saying the prayers out loud. The GM assumed that we would crash the show, we chose instead to barricade the doors and leave. After the horrors had ripped apart the cultists, they turned on each other. Soon the hall was left with only the dead and dieing, while some stone-cold motherfuckers shot pool across town.
However, we didn't account for one thing. Hastur wasn't the only game in town, and a High Priest of Cthulhu felt a hundred monsters being called into the world in his Master's name. He investigates and finds the scene of the crime, and then looks into the earlier summoning performed by Henderson.
Gravely insulted by the turn of affairs, He uses a sympathetic binding using what little remained of the corpse to sick a pair of hell-hounds on Henderson, before returning to his meditations.
When they catch up to him, Will's already gone home, the Kids are sleeping, and Henderson's going for a walk with Malcolm. We're in the park not far from his house, about to part ways when we hear a horrible snarling noise.
Pistols drawn, we get a lucky shot off and kill one of them while the second leaps onto Henderson's face. He throws it off, and dodges it's second coming.
Guess who get's a crit to the fucking throat? Fucking Guess.
Yes, I'm still bitter that no character other than Simon survived across multiple sessions.
So as the monster kills me, Henderson manages a few solid kicks into it. The summoner, having detected a kill from his beasts dismissed the survivor, assuming that he got the kill he desired.
Henderson called the cops, and Mal was given a small but tasteful funeral at the military's expense. The official police reports read it off as a mauling by some dogs that apparently escaped, heavily wounded.
The surviving party members raised a glass in his name, while you and I are going to diverge from the sad scene.
That night, on the way home, I had a terrible premonition. I now wonder, looking back, if this was the same fey mood that took Mike the evening he created Henderson.
I lurked forums. I googled strategies. I shared small snippets of my sob story online, while I accumulated knowledge.
Henderson was born of Madness, and a man's hatred towards blind antagonism. I on the other hand, turned my eyes towards a magic more... solid. Practiced. Dependable.
I delved into deliberate munchkinism for one express purpose: The Creation of Simon Breckenridge, British Spy.
I knew setting out that I would never curb Henderson's madness. I could never hope to match it either. I therefore built Henderson's exact opposite: Competent, sane, cunning.
His karmic balance.
The Yin to his Yang.
His fucking soul mate in plot annihilation.
The perfect support character. When utilized properly, a well made/played support character is a fucking force multiplier for team effectiveness.
Since Henderson was already wrecking the campaign harder than anything I could possible design, I chose to co-opt Mike's efforts, and make the Henderson situation EXPONENTIALLY WORSE.
Since I've been absent for longer than intended from the whole 'Director's cut' thing I've been doing.... I'm gonna power through the rest of the story tonight. So excuse me while I go slip into something a bit more comfortable and grab a snack.
Waffle House Millionaire 11/20/12(Tue)02:09 No.21665956
- Simon was intentional?
- That explains SO MUCH.
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 11/20/12(Tue)02:15 No.21666030
- Man, I can't make shit up off the cuff like you can.
- Simon was like a week's effort. I skipped a couple classes to perfect my technique.
Switching away from the antics of Henderson for a little while, we take the action to London.
Most spies who try James Bond level bullshit get killed. They get lost, or abandoned by their own country.
Most spies are not Simon Breckenridge. Due to careful manipulation of events behind the scenes, he managed to close multiple gaps in security, sleep with most of the attractive ladies in town, and pass all the blame to other people. He had a distinguished career behind him, and retired at Age 45 with enough embezzled government funds to have him tried for treason.
Less than a week later, without his spy network in place, his country house is destroyed and he goes back to work trying to figure out who killed his wife.
His one lead skips town on a boat, so he goes to America with only one goal in mind: Revenge. He knows that he'll have to use local conditions to his advantage, since he going in blind and without a penny to his name. After all, the crown could hardly be caught funding a covert operation Stateside.
I track the Yacht, and find out where it intends to make landfall. I send a wire back home, and discover that it's an influential member of a group known as the 'Disciples of the Yellow King'. Looking around, it's not exactly hard to figure out why he might be interested in this town. Someone apparently declared war on his fucking religion.
I decide that finding the group responsible for this would be a wise move, since the enemy of my enemy would make an excellent disposable asset for the given value of 'friend'. Deciding to get up bright and early the next day to search it out, I retire to a pub near my quaint hotel room intending to sample the local fare.
As I walk into Harry's pub, I'm greeted by a pair of people in the midst of a heated argument.
“I'm telling you Will. This sort of degenerate activity is what's wrong with this country today.”
“You're fucking crazy Henderson. Each Generation has it's thing. You guys had Woodstock. This is just the new thing.”
“Come on, we all know those punks on the T.V. Are talentless hacks. The REAL masters of the craft are dead and gone.”
“I guess that's true enough, assuming you give proper credit to the proper men.”
“Will, there's no FUCKING WAY, in ANY universe, that Tupac was better than Biggie.”
“Let's get a second opinion.” Will responds, before pointing at Simon. “You there, new guy.”
“Tupac or Biggie?”
“For what, President? I'd rather vote for someone with a sense of pizazz. What's Liberace doing these days?”
Henderson smiles. “I think I like this guy. Sup, Limey? What brings you across the pond?”
“I'm a secret agent for the crown. I came here to re-enact a James Bond movie, and get throw out under an assumed name. Given your hilariously liberal gun laws, that should take most of my holiday.”
“Connery. The only proper one.” Simon notes, a hint of distaste in his voice.
“Nice.” Henderson looks at the T.V. “Hey, they're talking about us again.”
“Your church?” Simon asks, taking mental notes.
“Victims of Jihad.” Will responds, taking a sip of beer. “Demon summoning cultist bastards.”
“Stole my Gnomes too.”
“Why do you reckon they did that anyway?” Will asks, turning to his compatriot.
“Nearest I can guess, some sort of ritual sacrifice.” Henderson responds. “By the way, that taxidermist ever finish stuffing that poodle? I figure I can use him to keep away the kids on Halloween.”
Simon finishes his mental assessment: These morons will make for EXCELLENT cannon fodder. “Gentlemen? A proposition.”
He then explains the Yacht situation to the two of them, while Henderson takes a call from Jimmy. He then laughs. “Can you boys handle getting some parachutes and some speakers for a rock concert? I just had the best plan ever.”
“... What sort of plan is this?” Will asks, watching Henderson intently.
“The best one ever. Come on, when have I ever lied to you?” Refusing to explain further he goes and leaves in his Buick to unknown destinations.
Will lets out a sigh. “I know where we can grab some speakers. You think you can get some parachutes?”
“I think I can manage. We meet back up here tomorrow?”
So while we went off to do some very mundane things, Henderson went to the local Airforce base. He told the man at the gate that he was a veteran needing to see a Doctor, and then drove off to where the vehicles are kept. Since the GM had no idea how base security was supposed to work, he pretty much just walked up to a cargo chopper going through pre-flight checks and punched out the pilot. After hooking up the Buick, he flew across town to an abandoned warehouse and parked the chopper before going home.
There really isn't anything more to that story. Apparently these were the worst MPs in the history of our armed forces.
We all come back to the bar, and Simon informs the group that the Yacht will arrive in two days time. Henderson and Jimmy rig up a thing that would let them control the various light charges and speakers from a cheap laptop, while Simon reacquainted himself with the controls of a helicopter.
The theft and dropping of the Yacht clearly happen at this point, so I'm not going to bother reposting that part of the tale here. My version wouldn't be nearly as funny as the way Mike wrote it anyway.
Waffle House Millionaire 11/20/12(Tue)03:30 No.21666866
- I totally expected more resistance. I planned that shit out like a Shadowrun style attack, and then... nothing happened. I just kinda walked in and jacked the chopper.
- Hilariously, I had no 'fly a chopper' related skills. Even in the backstory.
- GM just assumed it was there and I went. I fully expected to crash that thing in a field running from like, the entire military.
At this point in the game, having dropped the Yacht, we are under no illusions as to what was going to happen next.
The GM gave up the investigative undertones, we gave up on the disguising our war. I don't know why, but the GM refused to give us a cop-out. He didn't want to just rage-quit and go 'rocks fall, everyone dies'. The session ended with us dropping a Yacht, and we all walked out of there fully expecting open warfare when we returned to the table.
A week later, we met for the last time as a group after MONTHS of weekly games. It took Henderson about three weeks to completely destroy any semblance to a plot or a long term goal. All that mattered at this point was that our deaths were long, glorious and brutal.
Ironically, it was the first time we all arrived at the table with the same expectations and enthusiasm. Mike wanted to see Henderson die and the GM wanted to kill him.
I wanted Simon to draw it out as long as possible, John wanted to see Will continue to give Zero fucks.
In a way, we all succeed in our respective goals.
The game picks up about three days after the dropping of the Yacht. The remaining cultists begin to kill each other in open warfare and the police and federal investigators are all flipping their shit over the blatant WIZARDRY happening.
In the midst of it all, we're hitting high priority targets and wreaking as much havoc as possible.
The Buick is sacrificed as a Car-Bomb to wipe out a police station filled with Shoggoths.
We manage to briefly steal a tank from the National Guard and drive right through a bunch of Zombies in a Shopping mall.
Henderson updates his outfit, swapping the Hawaiian shirt for a Leather Jacket, the back of which is emblazoned with a Gnome wearing Aviators and throwing up the horns. He also dons a regular pair of Gray Cargo pants, since he would have more pockets then.
Simon put on a Tuxedo and refused to take it off, while Will donned a Flogging Molly T-shirt and a Utilikilt.
Jimmy and Kary, sadly, couldn't update their costumes. Their players were pulled out of the game at this point by Jim's parents in the real world, since they insisted on dragging them to some movie.
We decided that meant that Henderson made Jimmy get the hell out of dodge, commanding him to continue the good fight if it came to that. We went back to the abandoned Hockey Stadium we were using as a base and loaded him up so he'd get out safe, and then dropped him near a military evac zone where he met his family. We raided an Applebees to get some food supplies, and then hit up a hardware store along the way. On the way back, we find out the the badguys have realized WE'RE the cause of all their problems, and were about to launch a coordinated strike against us.
They breach the military line between us and them, and start to pour after us like a black sea of unthinkable horrors. Along the way, they started to reanimate the dead and dieing of both sides to join their charge.
We managed to stay a half a step ahead all the way back home, occasionally taking a detour through a place like an abandoned shopping mall or the home and garden center at Lowes.
We get back, and then Henderson lifts up a Gnome from the back of the Truck. He smiles, and then sets it back down, before turning to us. "Gentlemen. It's been a pleasure." And with that, he made his way to the Rink.
We all knew then that it was a last-stand scenario, and we started barricading the doors. We managed to get three of the four entrances almost unbeatable, but the fourth one was being broken open when Will and I got to it. Simon told him to go and make sure he took as many with him as he could, before walking into the mass to rejoin his wife.
Will Stole a Zamboni out of storage and set a new high score while running over zombies and throwing Ammo and such to Henderson. When he died they were forced to go over the machine he left to get onto the ice, where Henderson was waiting for them. He managed to kill a shitload of them, but then he saw they managed to get rid of Will's impromptu barricade. As if on cue, all three of the still locked entrances explode open, and a horde seemingly without number comes in.
Henderson smiled, and called Hastur forward into the world, and set the timers.
As Hastur stepped forward, he got a rather... unusual greeting.
"O Canada! Our home and native land! True patriot love in all thy sons command. With glowing hearts we see thee rise, The True North strong and free!~"
The King in Yellow pauses, while Mike apparently hits the limit of the internal clock he's been ticking off in his head.
"Alright, we win."
"The charges go off. I set them for fifteen seconds. I needed to make sure he had enough time to arrive, but not enough time to actually ARRIVE."
He then broke it down and explained little pieces of information gleamed from investigative portions of the game. Meticulous notes from MONTHS prior. Together, they painted a very obscure bit of information regarding the nature of the gods in this setting.
"But that's... That's..... You BASTARD!" The Gm accused dramatically, standing up and pointing.
"You only just now noticed?" Mike returned, politely baffled.
The Gm then performed the first and ONLY table-flip I've ever seen in my years of gaming, before leaving in a huff.
After a few moments of awkward silence, I realized that for all the bullshit, it wasn't really a satisfying ending. I'm not sure what drove me to do it, but I stood up. I picked up the table, and I moved to the now vacant GM's seat.
Henderson came to a few moments later, most of his body crushed in rubble. A few feet away, he notices another figure.
"Sup?" He wheezes, while reaching into his coat with his one good arm, pulling out a joint he stashed away for future use.
"I'm dieing." The form replies, his voice weak. "I must commend you Human. I did not think you capable of such a task."
"Yeah, you seem the type to know a lot. Something I learned early in life is that no-one expects a sucker-punch from someone they underestimate." He then lights his slip with a smile.
"True." The form responds. "You know, I've been following you. You know I never took your Gnomes?"
"Fuck, really? Well now I feel like I might've over-reacted a bit." He says with a cough. He then passes the blunt to Hastur, who after only a moment's hesitation, accepts.
"You apparently gave them up for a charity auction." He informs him. "... You know, I've figured out everything but one little detail. Mind if I ask you a question?"
"Is Henderson your first or last name?"
".... Man, I've got no fucking idea."
Laughing, the man and the Mad god died together moments later. Henderson's body was dragged from the rubble two days afterwards, and only Jimmy and Kary and some old preacher man cared enough to attend his funeral.
Waffle House Millionaire 11/20/12(Tue)04:49 No.21667694
- To clarify in further detail, Henderson asked for them to not waste money on a corpse.
- His exact words were to just 'toss me in an old sack or something and send me to the dump. Ain't nobody gonna mourn me or give two shits I even lived'.
- Jimmy opted to get him a rather nice coffin, and pay for a decent funeral, even if there was only the two of them there to mourn. It amounted to nothing, but I felt oddly touched that he felt obligated to make the gesture.
Will was buried nearby, since they were apparently friends in life and he didn't have much left in the world after his bar burnt down. Simon was quietly retrieved by his Son and put to rest near his wife's grave a week later.
Jimmy and Kary managed to get into a nice college together, since the insurance from Henderson's life and homeowners insurance policies, as well as the money coming in from liquidating Will's assets gave them a nice headstart on life.
Their story didn't QUITE end there, but I'll let that shit slide for now, since I know you guys only care about ONE epilogue.
Henderson opened his Eyes, fighting off a Migraine god only knows how long later. He forces himself to his feet and squints around at the blank desert horizon.
He looks at the Mesas in the distance, and the endless sands in every direction. "Well, I'm either in Hell or Utah." He lets out a deep sigh, realizing he's out of cigarettes. "Utah, knowing my luck."
He notices a town in the distance, and have no better idea on what to do next, he begins to wander in it's direction. "Man, that better not be a fucking Mirage."
A Self Called 'Nowhere' 11/20/12(Tue)04:41 No.21667621
- Alright, that's it then. The official, final end of the Old Man Henderson story.
- This was the definitive version, since neither I nor WHM have much more to expand on from there.
- There IS more in store for our.... 'Hero', but it's not really just his tale anymore.
- Sometime in the future, I'll tell the story of the game I will never top as a GM. It was a first in many ways for me: It was the first game system I 'designed' (admittedly, it was mostly just Deadlands modded to hell). It was the first full game I ran. It was the first campaign I named going into it.
- It was a game so successful and loved by my players that EVERY one of the main characters ended up getting their own spin-off campaign.
- So, that's it for Henderson. But keep your Eyes peeled for when I lay out 'The Kings of Nowhere'. I'm not gonna half ass it like I did this one, since it's THE campaign I feel that I need to do justice.
Waffle House Millionaire 03/06/12(Tue)05:25 No.18224834
- Right, so the tale of Old Man Henderson ended when he died.
- Or so I thought.
- A friend of mine gave me a call and asked me if I wanted to play in a game he was going to run.
- The premise was this: there were various people who were simply amazing during life. Like how there's a normal engineer, and then there's Tony Stark. There's a normal driver, and then there's The Stig. There's a normal detective, and then there's Sherlock Holmes.
- These people were basically heroes, like the ones of old, expressed in a new way. And when these legends die they don't completely fade away.
- Sometimes when one dies with a job unfinished they end up haunting a place. Some when they die, they become martyrs for the cause, never fully removed from memory. And then there's the oddest cases. When two heroes clash and destroy each other, their duel continues in another place. A place somewhere between life and death, heaven and hell. Here, their quarrel is settled properly, and the winner gets a second shot at life.
- I'm not going to tell the full campaign story here, since this isn't the time or place, nor have I had a chance to type it up properly.
In the end, Henderson beat a vastly weakened Hastur, and won his resurrection. Then he found out what happens to a god when it dies. It doesn't GET an afterlife, it just stops existing and then a new one takes its old place in the cosmos.
So he did something that threw everyone for a loop: Hijacked Hastur's essence to contact another god. Nyarlathotep answered the call, since he just LOVES fucking with the established order of things. He cut a deal with Henderson: He'd bring them both back to life as normal humans, but he got to keep Hastur's power unless Hastur decided to claim it back.
Henderson was then reborn into the mortal world. In his new life he came across some knowledge that his childhood friend Heather was Hastur reborn, while simultaneously regaining all the memories of his past life.
He then got Heather drunk, got her to 'reclaim' her power and sealed it in an amulet.
Nyarlathotep does not appreciate the irony, and tries to send cultists to kill him. Which is kinda like trying to put out a wild-fire by dumping oil on it.
Henderson was last seen at around age 17, grabbing Heather and using some weird ritual to throw them into a parallel universe that Nyarlathotep couldn't touch.
- You could also call Young Old Man Henderson Eli Burning, since that's technically his name now that he's been reborn.
Fate of the Backstory of Doom
Anonymous request: due to the EPIC levels of madness in this story, is it inappropriate for me to ask that Henderson's full backstory be put up somewhere? 'cause I really want to read it. and have the backstory of doom preserved for all time
Waffle House Millionaire 7/29/12(Sun) 04:30:26 No.20083788
- Fuck no, I burned that thing. It was EVIL.
- Seriously, the world is a better place without it.
AR: that may be true, but since when does anything about Henderson take the good of the world into account. The backstory is part of the legend. Old man Henderson's story can't be told in full without it's release. Besides, it's 320 pages. The only people who will read it are those who need to use Henderson as inspiration (translation: have jackass GMs)
Waffle House Millionaire 8/10/13(Sat) 00:08:50 No.26536512
- I burned that motherfucker. I'm pretty sure I've said that before: there's only ever existed one copy.
It doesn't exist anymore anon, take this up on the talk page if you really feel the need to keep doing this. You should've asked there to begin with.
Henderson meets Hassan
- Original thread
- Director's Cut Part 1, Director's Cut Part 2, Director's Cut Part 3, Director's Cut Part 4
- Dramatic Reading part 1, part 2, and 3. Also the finality edition.
- Bastard has his own TvTropes page now!