Aug
14
2017
0

Adventure Seed: The Knockerhood.

Knockerhood – Google Docs

The Knockerhood

 

For as long as men have gone down into mines, they have told stories about mining spirits.  Sometimes the spirits were considered malevolent, but more often — particularly in the British Isles — they were essentially seen as being benevolent entities who would warn human miners of dangerous conditions. The Cornish and Welsh called them Knockers, or Bucca; and, like all good tale-telling traditionalists, the miners brought the idea of the Knockers along when immigrating to America.  

 

Where the Knockers promptly joined the union.

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Aug
04
2017
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Adventure seed: The Catallus Conspiracy.

Blame this.

The Catallus Conspiracy – Google Docs

The Catallus Conspiracy

 

Who?  Gaius Valerius Catullus. He was a Roman poet of the late Republic era.  His poetry only survives to the present via the timely copying of a mysterious found, then lost manuscript — ah, yes, you’re wisely nodding your head.  Yes, trust those conspiratorial instincts of yours.  They will serve you well, in the Order.

 

So. Yes, those weren’t actually Catallus’s poems. They only exist because Catallus was a real person, who wrote real poetry, and who happened to be referenced by enough public figures later that it was deemed necessary to do more that time than simply bierce his poems and blame it all on those pesky monastery mice.  So our medieval ancestors in the Order had some of their best people at the time put together a suitable body of work, and passed it off as being from the poet.  Back in 1300 AD, this was simplicity itself.

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Jun
21
2017
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Adventure seed: The Ust-Kuyga Anomaly.

Blame this.

Ust-Kuyga Anomaly – Google Docs

The Ust-Kuyga Anomaly

 

Roughly 12 hours ago, a party of illegal mammoth ivory miners came stumbling into the desolate Siberian settlement of Ust-Kuyga with an unbelievable tale. Well, unbelievable to anybody who wasn’t looking for certain keywords in babbled reports, not to say access to certain satellites that continually passively scan for spikes of certain forms of radiation. One of those satellites was in place to do a deeper scan, which turned up sufficiently positive to justify this on-the-fly briefing. It’s a long way to Vladivostok, even with military transport.  

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Jun
06
2017
2

Adventure Seed: The War of Saltes.

War of Saltes – Google Docs

 

The War of Saltes

 

As in “Essential Saltes:” turns out that HP Lovecraft had access to something resembling legitimate occult knowledge, although he certainly shaded stuff a bit. For example: Deep Ones? Not actually awful, once you get past the fact that they have no recognizable body language or facial cues. Ghouls, likewise, although you can generally get a decent enough psychological read on them. And shoggoths burn just fine.

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May
23
2017
3

Adventure seed: Beeleggers.

Beeleggers – Google Docs

 

Beeleggers

 

It all started when those well-intentioned fools up in the Imperial District decided to ban mead.  Now maybe mead was more of a worry now than it used to be, seeing that mages have figured ways to convince the honey-spirits how to give regular mead a proper, heavy kick.  And sure, more than a few members of the demihuman races turned out to have a real problem keeping their noses out of the new, boosted mead-casks. Nobody’s arguing that there weren’t problems — but banning all of the mead, period? That was just too heavy-handed.

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May
14
2017
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Adventure Seed: The LAMP Project.

So, this went dark quick.

LAMP Project – Google Docs

The Limited-Awareness Mobile Platform (L.A.M.P.) Project

 

Little known fact: people have been able to successfully replicate AI in machinery since about 1790 AD (this, of course, predates Babbage’s Difference Engine). Even less-known fact: nobody was ever able to sustain said replication at full strength for more than about thirty seconds.  Apparently the new intelligence goes screaming up the scale to either Singularity-style apotheosis, or the neurological equivalent of putting a pelagic sea cucumber in a regular-pressure salt water tank; frustratingly, nobody’s ever been able to get a straight answer from the AIs as to whether they were shouting in joy, or screaming in terror.

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May
07
2017
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Adventure Seed: Alien grave in Mississippi!

Man, but I miss the print edition of the Weekly World News.

Alien grave in Mississippi – Google Docs

Alien grave in Mississippi!

 

There is a corpse waiting to be dug up in Mississippi.  It’s currently somewhere among the up to seven thousand corpses currently buried on University of Mississippi Medical Center property (said bodies dating back to the 19th Century, when the land was part of the Mississippi State Lunatic Asylum), and nobody at the moment is particularly looking for the corpse. Not that there’s much reason to, given that almost the only records involving the corpse were part of the batch of papers quietly burned by Secretary of War Edwin Stanton after Lincoln’s assassination. Including a 1863 handwritten memorandum by General Sherman reporting success in removing all details of the corpse from the asylum’s own records (a copy of this memorandum can still be found in Sherman’s papers at the Library of Congress, albeit physically misfiled among some papers from a 1866 diplomatic mission to Mexico that General Sherman had participated in).

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Apr
20
2017
3

Adventure Seed: The Grant Escape.

Just as a reminder: Julia Child was a member of the freaking OSS.

Grant Escape – Google Docs

 

The Grant Escape

Turns out that Ulysses S Grant is not actually buried in Grant’s Tomb.  He’s apparently not buried at all, in fact. And, yes, we’re talking about something that’s a bit creepier than mere grave-robbing.

It’s like this: old H.P. Lovecraft was onto something with regard to Essential Saltes — or, rather, the books of his grandfather’s that he mined for ideas were onto something.  Not the bits about cosmic horror, hopefully; but the techs keep babbling something about DNA echoes and the holographic residue thrown off by souls and the short version is, if you mix enough of a corpse with enough carbon, water, sodium chloride, and [CLASSIFIED] you can get a self-aware humanoid product of science that more or less has the skill set and memories of the original donor.

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Mar
19
2017
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Adventure Seed: Attack of the Fifty-foot Panda!

Attack of the Fifty-foot Panda! – Google Docs

 

Attack of the Fifty-foot Panda!

 

…Yeah, that’s going to be problematical.  For a bunch of reasons, really. And it’s going to be problematical for everybody, including the aliens that created this creature in the first place.

Probably the principle was sound enough: take some animal DNA, splice it into a weird biological plastic construct that could emulate said DNA at a ‘monstrous’ level, and send your new critter out to level Tokyo. And it works! And it’s even pretty cheap!

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Mar
14
2017
3

Adventure Seed: Abernathy and Weekes, General Grocers.

Abernathy and Weekes, General Grocers – Google Docs

Abernathy and Weekes, General Grocers

This Connecticut company first starts appearing in tax records a decade before the War of 1812.  A general grocers with sidelines in transport and warehousing, Abernathy and Weekes persisted as a private corporation until 1935, when it was dissolved by the state of Connecticut after the death of Blaise Abernathy, intestate.  Mr. Abernathy had been sole proprietor of the company after the death of his business partner Oscar Weekes in the First World War; neither Abernathy and Weekes had any other listed family, or other heirs.

Which is a sad story, but why does anyone care? Because of the advertisements that Abernathy and Weekes placed in various newspapers, journals, pamphlets, and other publications during the latter half of the Nineteenth Century.  The company regularly announced that they had a wide and comprehensive stock of items that are today on secret government occult watchlists: and not ‘eye of newt’ or ‘toe of dog’ stuff, either.  We’re talking about the hardcore materials that gets used to blight counties and sway towns.  The ingredients that black-bag sorcerers try to weaponize before the NSA finds them and then no-knocks a silver-and-steel team right through the wall.

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Mar
08
2017
1

Adventure Seed: Avenging the Cores.

I’ll be honest with you: I have no idea why somebody would flat-out steal an entire research facility.  Fortunately, when you have the right kind of players, you don’t need a reason. You just pick the one that your players like best and run with it.  This is Secret GM Knowledge: feel free to feel honored by it.

Avenging the Cores – Google Docs

Avenging the Cores

Somebody has kidnapped the Austin Core Research Center. For those that don’t know, said center is a part of the University of Texas’s Bureau of Economic Geology; it’s a storage / research facility for core samples taken from well drillings.  Which is a very useful resource for geologists and engineers to have, yes, but it’s not exactly something that you’d expect to be kidnapped.  And ‘kidnapped’ is the right word: the entire building has been removed, right down to the foundation (fortunately and oddly, the cleaning staff was left behind).

Why, yes, it would be nice to know how that trick was handled.

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Mar
04
2017
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Adventure Seed: the Commodore P-31.

Blame this. And… entropy, I guess.  We grow old.  …Well, at least it beats the alternative.

Commodore P-31 – Google Docs

The Commodore P-31

This ‘Commodore P-31’ is certainly an interesting piece of  inexplicable computer tech.  It’s unquestionably designed in the same style as Commodore’s 1980s computers, starting with the way the keys are set up and continuing with how the entire unit is contained in one keyboard.  This one has a serial number and production stamp on it dated 2016, but needless to say said serial number is gibberish.  It does have standard USB and HDMI ports; there’s what appears to be some sort of disk drive, but it looks more like the slot for a camera memory card than for anything else. In terms of raw processing speed and performance, it runs slightly more slowly, and a good deal more warmly, than a comparable gaming computer rig.

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