Shadows over Pendergast

Tonight In Pendergast!

The shapeshifter, the kinetomancer, and the changeling broke into a minor mob boss’s lair while he was there, where they were led, at gunpoint, to have a chat with the fellow. After an exchange of threats and manipulations, the three were allowed to leave, finding themselves at yet another dead end.

The next morning, Kitty (the shapeshifter) woke up frazzled after a rather distressing nightmare. She opted not to share her night of freakish thoughts with her two friends and returned to work at the templar owned library where one of the knights templar, young Ioan who had previously contracted her and the two others to help him hunt down and kill a black court vampire who had killed his only brother, approached her, distraught and angry for the three had been seen sitting at the hotel bar, having a chat with a vamp. He threatened to expose her secret, which he had discovered by accident, to the other templars which would mean she’d be hunted down and killed by her own employers. Noticing his torn cloak she countered with pointing out the tear and how it seemed similar to the piece of cloak found at a murder scene in the hotel kitchen. Should he be found guilty of killing a gang-member there, he would have been in violation of Neutral Ground, something that which would likely cost him his freedom if not his life and would surely cause an all out war between the two high strung factions of the city.
Hearing sirens in the distance he swore his innocence and begged her to help him, to hide him. Seeing as he was genuinely afraid for his life, and seeing as she desperately desired some acceptance from others, she agreed.

Meanwhile, back at the hotel, the kinetomancer was doing some of the chores to pay for his tab and his room when he was approached by a minor practitioner, who asked him to look into a lost family heirloom which his ex girlfriend had supposedly stolen. Being somewhat of a con man, the sorcerer had no difficulty manipulating the girl to hand him her box of valuables to stash in the hotel safe.
The changeling was awoken in his room by a phonecall from one of his old friends from his days when he did odd jobs for the local mafia. He had been spotted the night before and was being asked to promise his allegiance to the newly broken away fragment of the mob and support the don’s son to become the new leader. He lied and gave his word, but he may yet accept his fae heritage, at which point his word may become more binding.
The kinetomancer informed the changeling of what he was up to and got the changeling to give him access to the safe, where he proceeded to rummage through the young girl’s possessions, looking for the lost heirloom. Instead he found a generous assortment of other jewellery and a bundle of money to the value of approximately two thousand dollars.

The police arrived at the library, and the shapeshifter was able to deceive them and tell them that she had not seen the missing templar. The police informed her that they’d post an officer in a civillian car outside to keep an eye out for the suspected murderer, and to keep the mousy woman safe.
When the cops left, she called the kinetomancer and the changeling, looking for backup to help her get the young templar somewhere where he can be safely hidden away.

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Let the dead lie
A Templar's Cry for Help

Some details may be wrong, correct them if you find ‘em, it’s been a while…

Ioan didn’t take the news well, his brother was the last remaining member of his family, or at least as far as he knew, and his death was more than the templar initiate was able to handle. The suspicious circumstances only served to increase his pain. The police had been fishing the occasional body out of the river for a couple of months but this was the first Ioan had become aware of it. His brother had just been dragged out of the river two days ago, and Ioan had insisted on seeing the body. He was so pale, drained of every drop of blood, and the brutal wound upon his neck looked an awful lot like a something, or someone, had chewed on him. The suggestion that the street-dogs were getting out of control, or that his bigger brother had gone a little too far up river, into the woods, just seemed a little off to Ioan and so he took his search for answers to a place where he knew the information could be found.

Kitty walked through the shelves, breathing the soothing scent of old print on old paper. The library was as close to home as any place had ever been. There came a rustling from one of the isles and she followed the sound. To her horror she found a distraught young man, wearing initiate’s clothing, pulling book after book from the shelves and roughly turning pages back and forth. He was obviously searching for something, but his handling of the precious tombs was terrible, never mind his weepy appearance. What if he’d get tears, or worse, into the books!

She approached him and stopped his frantic search, asking him what he was looking for. The templar hesitated a moment when confronted with the mousy librarian, but seeing as this is her domain he started blurting what he knew, and what he thought. “Vampires” he said, “It must be.”

The late afternoon in the hotel bar and cafĂ© wasn’t terribly busy, but it kept Jack busy enough, going from table to table, making sure everything was alright. He kept a watchful eye as a shorter man in a neat leather jacket approached Darth over at the pool-table and reminded him pointedly of an old debt. The conversation didn’t go on long however as Darth assured that the debt would be repaid at the end of the week.

Shortly thereafter Kitty came waling into the hotel, leading Ioan to a table in the corner before seeking out Jack and Darth. She had met them before, they knew her and they knew each other, they could help, or at the very least, they would know how to talk to the templar and would take him off her hands. Jack brought a couple drinks to the table and Darth talked to Ioan, assuring him they would help.

After getting all the information they wanted from the templar, they sent him on his way and urged him to get some sleep and then they began their search for the vampires.

They spent a while figuring out where to search and then gathered up makeshift weapons, Molotov cocktails and holy water in glass bottles, as well as the axe used to chop firewood for the hotel’s vintage fireplace and piled into a car to drive around the streets on the northern end of town, the streets closest to the old Riverview Cemetery, hoping to confirm their theory. Their search did not reveal any vampires, but they did happen upon three men who were assaulting the fourth.

Darth got out of the car, unable to tolerate bullying in any form and walked hastily towards the fight, threatening the assailants and Jack followed suit with the axe in hand. Not being keen on fighting a madman with an axe the three assailants ran. Jack and Darth picked the victim off the ground and got him into the car. He said his name was Mike Pollock and he thanked them for the rescue. Since our heroes were focused on another task they left the beaten man at a pay-phone to fend for himself.

Driving past the cemetery itself they took the time to try and see if they could spot anything therein. They caught a glimpse of motion and humanoid outlines.

After the night-time search the three returned to the hotel where Darth and Kitty opted to get some sleep while Jack stayed up into the red light of dawn, calling up stray acquaintances and various forces around the city, trying to rouse some backup, but none took too kindly to being called in the dead of night.

Come dawn they made for the cemetery, convinced that they had the right place. Kitty changed her form into that of a lynx and went into the cemetery to scout. She was not gone very long but when she returned she reported what she found. There were two men in the cemetery who stood strangely and twitched near a crypt within the heart of the cemetery. Taking cat-form again, she readied for the fight, as the other two grabbed some bottles, and the axe, and stalked towards the fight.

The cat disappeared into the unkempt grass and overgrown weeds and went un-noticed while Darth and Jack rattled noisily between tumbled down headstones. Jack looked at the two twitching men and a glint of recognition shot through his mind. He could not remember their names but he knew that he had met the two before. Angry yells came from the cemetery-dwellers and they ran towards Jack and Darth. Out of nowhere a streak of fur lept upon one of them, knocking him over. His head struck one of the fallen headstones, ironically causing his death. Darth threw kinetic force at the other, aiming to throw him back, but the force of the blow threw the man like a rag-doll, smashing his body against a crypt.

Having easily dispatched two enthralled and violent men in self defense, the group carefully stalked towards the crypt they appeared to have been guarding and pulled open it’s doors. Peering into the darkness they could see that the lids of two stone coffins within seemed jut a little bit ajar, as if they’d been closed hastily. While they were emboldened by the ease of the fight so far, they were not too hasty. Vampires are scary things. Darth flexed his magical ability and shot a blow of force into the crypt, causing the lids to be thrown up and back off of the coffins. Jack deftly threw bottles of holy-water so that they smashed harmlessly into the bottoms of the coffins. There was no response. Hesitation and insecurity started to set in, unsure how to handle the situation. Time ticked by as Jack and Darth discussed what to do next, while Kitty hatched a plan and tried to convey the message, eventually opting to get behind the crypt, take human form for a moment, and yelled back at them “A TORCH! We need light!”

They didn’t have to search far for a branch, what with the ancient woods slowly taking over the old cemetery, and the Molotov cocktails provided a rag and accelerant. Jack tossed the torch into the far side of the crypt but even with the added light they still couldn’t see anything.

Ioan came stomping from behind them, a picture of righteous fury, equipped with a templar’s sword. He had been watching them through the night and was fast becoming frustrated at the hesitation they showed. A quick comment about the lack of courage and lack of action was uttered as he passed them by and confidently strode into the crypt.

A strange mist trickled down from the ceiling and solidified behind him in only moments. Kitty hissed furiously and Darth yelped and tossed holy-water at the vampire’s heels. The young templar spun around, startled by the sudden ruckus, his sword leading the way. The vampire deftly dodges the flying metal though it throws it off balance and causes it to miss it’s attempt to attack the templar. The other vampire’s claws catch the templar’s shirt, harmlessly tearing his sleeve. Jack snaps into action and grabs the axe with both hands holding it at either end of the handle, and slips it over the head of one of the vampires and tugs hard, dragging it screaming from the crypt and into the daylight. The cat balls up and then springs at the vampire still in the crypt. Maybe if she saves the templar he’ll hesitate to turn her in to his commander, dooming her, or at least getting her fired. The leap is poorly calculated however and she tumbles over the vampire and ends up in one of the two coffins. The templar twists the sword deftly and scores a lethal blow against the vampire, slicing it’s head cleanly off. The head tumbling down next to the cat. Outside the crypt the vampire claws at Jack, drawing blood from his forearms, as Darth smashes a bottle of holy water on the vampire’s face. Jack lets go of the head end of the axe’s handle and swings it around to knock a leg out from underneath the vampire, knocking it further off balance. The cat tries again to leap upon the enemy and this time her leap is true, the claws digging furiously into the walking dead flesh. Darth delivers the final blow, grabbing a sizable chunk of rock off of the ground and throws it down upon the vampire’s head with all his strength, practically replacing the vampire’s head with stone.

In the aftermath of the fight the cat runs back to the car to get changed, and get changed, while the templar is left with the other two. They decide to put the bodies into the coffins in the crypt, hoping not to rouse any inconvenient questions. They’re rifling quickly through the pockets of the bodies when Kitty comes trotting back from the car. She calls out to them, urging them to check the vampires’ skin for markings, something to tell them where they come from. On the back of the left shoulder of both vampires an odd marking is found in the shape of three spikes with a dot under each. In the pockets of the enthralled they find two hand drawn notes with a sequence of symbols ending with the same symbol as they find on the vampires and four dollar’s worth of coins.

They toss the bodies into the coffins and close the lids, then take the templar with them back to the hotel.

They all have coffee together and talk the templar into keeping quiet, Darth makes a friend for life.

Kitty researches the symbols in the library and finds references to a demonic cult as well as a local nursery rhyme referencing the sleeper and the sleeping dark.

Jack makes some calls, trying to see how Mike Pollock faired and finds that no one in town appears to know that name, leading him to suspect that the man they saved in the night had given him a false name.

And this is where we left off…

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