Friday, June 17, 2016

Demonic Trails of Cthulhu: First Downtimes

As the last session took place in July 1923 while the next session will begin on the 9th of January, 1925, we have almost two years of downtime.  So what do the characters get up to?  Well they each get two free skill points they can sink in any skills and this is a great time to justify those spends.

Nithriel does some work for the Mogens Institute, bringing a few dead individuals back to life who died from some of the pharmaceutical tests, as well as some individuals of importance to the cult. She's also told to bring likely bodies to be frozen in the Institute's own morgue to be reawaken for possession by a demon once the summoning rituals are complete.  After all she can still raise them even if they've been dead a day, they're just mindless and therefore perfect hosts.
She also gets to know the other two Fallen who work for Belphigor and the only two other Fallen known to him in this world.  These included Zipacna (earth forging angel called an Annunaki) and Ezurial (angel of the wilds called a Rabisu).  She mentions their names to Gipontel during an invocation one night, though both are Faustians, Gipontel is eager to know that another Annunaki was on this world.
She reveals herself to her boss, Rupert Harper, who freaks out and wants her to stop and doesn't take kindly to her raising a random dead person in her true form.  He tries to make sense of her history lessons on a chalkboard but later keeps forgetting many of the details (partially on purpose). 
During her speech she made a point to invoke Haruta while bitching about him and so later on after she had dropped the connection, she kept getting invoked by a mad Haruta in the abyss (or so it seems). He demanded she find a way to free him, and she agreed so long as he ceased invoking her, though to begin with she had no desire to do it.  Until she found out Gipontel's plans and then figured why shouldn't she invoke her oldest friend?

Nithriel also gets to talking to Jackson Elias at Prospero Press about his cult investigations and gets some information (Text Can Be Found Here) on how to deal with cults.  She starts reading his books and gains two temporary 1-point pools to help her in her next adventure.  Sons of Death gave her a 1-point History for how previous regimes have tried to stamp out cults while Way of Terror gave her a 1-point Assess Honesty for identifying cult-like behaviors.
Gipontel returns to his boarding school where he must spend the next year and a half learning how to be a gentleman until his host finally reaches the age of eighteen.  Unfortunately it takes him awhile to realise that his body won't age while he has Faith in his system and so he still looks quite young by the time the trip back to New York takes place.  He makes a point to pick up Arabic and learns some tidbits on occultism and theology from the library as he seeks to summon forth his old friend, Ahrimal. 

Learning that Belphigor has successfully summoned Zipacna, he invokes Belphigor from across the way and demands all of his research materials on that summoning ritual.  The two debate a little bit, politically rubbing up against each other, before settling on Gipontel having access to those materials -- but only in New York.  Belphigor also offers access to his library and laboratory, and limited access to his cult, in order to do it.

Naturally Gipontel can't therefore work on this ritual until he has completed his studies, but what is a year and a half to an immortal being?  Occasionally he invokes Ahrimal who rambles madly, occasionally bursting into harsh barks of laughter or sudden sobs.  It's a very depressing process.  At least he can have socially awkward conversations with Zipacna where the two talk at each other about their own fixed interests while knowing the other won't judge them and is kind of listening -- as is the Annunaki way.
Gipontel also arranges toward the end of 1924 to celebrate his first year free from university.  He even gets permission to go back to New York for a month or two, which his father approves of since his business trip and visit to Ambrose Mogens certainly gave him many financial advantages in the New York sector that he's eager to ensure.  His sister, Gwen, and her friend, Letty, also manage to get permission to go with him so long as he chaperones them.  Their mother also accompanies them.
Finally Gipontel is told by his father, the Earl, that he must have a valet, even as the youngest son.  Since his own father's valet is due to retire, Gipontel arranges to have him as his valet -- with a difference.  He grants his valet his youth again in a demonic pact.  It turns out his father's valet was quite a handsome man back in the day.

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