Julian Carey: Anyway, we have to reward one child and punish one child.
Julian Carey: Which seems easy. Just being around us is usually a punishment.
GM: Ah yes. Well, as I recall, I gave you three choices each.
GM: So pick!
Dexter Maskelyne: WE did!
Julian Carey: I’m strongly in favor of Cecily Kincaid for the good list.
Dexter Maskelyne: And then you made us wait.
Dexter Maskelyne: Yes, I agree.
Dexter Maskelyne: And for the bad list…
Dexter Maskelyne: Hang on, Obsidial signed me out
Julian Carey: Mostly because Julian should have a teen sidekick. That would be hilarious.
Dexter Maskelyne: … the logs from last week are not up.
Dexter Maskelyne: The one who killed Santa.
Dexter Maskelyne: That’s the bad ‘un
GM: Cecily Kincaid is the one trying to kill her little brother first, right?
Julian Carey: Correct.
GM: Teen sidekick! What would your wife think?
Dexter Maskelyne: “Oh goodie; I get one too now?”
Julian Carey: I might not be reducing the number of assassination attempts poor Cecily has to deal with.
Julian Carey: But I’ll certainly make them more exciting!
Dexter Maskelyne: … of course, since this is a FLASHback
Dexter Maskelyne: One has to wonder where your sidekick has been for the last three odd years
Dexter Maskelyne: maybe you sent her to Thibet to train?
Julian Carey: Private schooling.
Julian Carey: Man, Tibetans hate Julian.
Dexter Maskelyne: I don’t think you should have anything to do with her privates
Julian Carey: There’s an aspect and everything.
Dexter Maskelyne: let alone be schooling them
Julian Carey: Anyway, Cecily and whats his name that’s trying to kill Santa?
Dexter Maskelyne: Yep.
Dexter Maskelyne: Other nick agrees.
Julian Carey: You did want to animate Santa’s mortal remains and hide them in the kid’s closet.
Dexter Maskelyne: I did!
Dexter Maskelyne: It’s using necromancy for good!
Dexter Maskelyne: I almost never get to do that!
GM: Artemis Sinclair, yes.
GM: Who first?
Julian Carey: “Should we split up? What sort of deadline do we have here?”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Good idea; we can do more damage that way.”
GM: Mrs. Claus: “Split up? We only have the one sleigh.”
GM: Mrs. Claus; “Although…”
Dexter Maskelyne: “I teleport. And Julian can fly.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Or, jump hella high, I forget which.”
Dexter Maskelyne: *it’s one of those nights, it seems
Julian Carey: “How much eggnog did you have?”
Julian Carey: “I keep telling you, just because it has egg in the name, doesn’t mean it is healthful.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Lies and more lies! I feel renewed with vigor with each sip.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Also, quite dizzy after with every third sip. But the fourth sip clears that right up!”
Julian Carey: “Are you sure you’re up for necromancy? I’d hate for there to be an incident.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “I’ll be fine.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Just remind me again, which one is widdershins?”
Dexter Maskelyne: begins whirling like a top, but widdershins.
GM: You spin around for a while. Is there goal of some kind?
Dexter Maskelyne: There is not!
GM: Mrs. Claus: “Stop spinning you’ll toss your nog all over my nice rug.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Anyway, as you can see, I’ll be fine, once I make use of a vase or bucket of some sort.”
Julian Carey: “This is why I don’t want to leave him around children.”
Julian Carey: “Children we don’t want to terrorize anyway.”
Julian Carey: “Worst case with Artemis is that he brags about Santa already being dead until he throws up on the young one. That probably still counts.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Certainly! And I won’t do that.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Provided I find a bucket sometime soon.”
GM: Claus orders one of the Fae to retrieve a bucket.
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): returns it, in someone worse condition.
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): Damn, I cannot hotkey worth a damn tonight.
Julian Carey: “It is settled then! I’ll deal with the Kincaids and you’ll do awful things to your chosen child.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Meet you back here at dawn.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Dawn-ish.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Dawn adjacent, perhaps.”
GM: THEN IT IS OFF TO SAVE CHRISTMAS
Dexter Maskelyne: 20
Dexter Maskelyne: [1d20 = 11]
Dexter Maskelyne: Hmm.
Dexter Maskelyne: 11 isn’t a very good save vs. Christmas.
GM: That was terrible.
Dexter Maskelyne: I"m telling you, this is what kind of night it is for me.
Dexter Maskelyne: It’s not any better on this side of my skull.
Julian Carey: It never is.
GM: I also sleepy!
GM: Hey, X-Com patch!
GM: Second Wave options added in
Dexter Maskelyne: yep
Dexter Maskelyne: Anyway, are we splitting the party, or did our GM run out of brain?
Dexter Maskelyne: If you have to emulate Jeremy Renner, I’m not sure that’s the best way to go about it.
Julian Carey: Well, we could run around getting mind controlled. But that wouldn’t solve anything.
GM: I’ll level with you, I’m all out of steam here. My ideas for both of these kids are bad.
GM: Well, one is just a rip-off of MaOCT
Dexter Maskelyne: Ooh, off-screen resolution time!
GM: YOU MUST SAVE CHRISTMAS
Dexter Maskelyne: But: it’s a flashback. Therefore, we DID save christmas.
Dexter Maskelyne: Ergo, bring on the hookers and punch.
GM: Dan, you arrive at the Kincaid estate in upstate New York. It’s a large mansion with a hefty estate
GM: Dexter, how are you travelling again?
Julian Carey: “I’d knock, but that wouldn’t be terribly Santa-esque.”
Julian Carey sneaks his way in all sneaky like.
Dexter Maskelyne: Teleporting. Using the Naughty List as an arcane connection.
GM: Down the Chiminy, you mean?
Dexter Maskelyne: Which isn’t a thing, except that I made it a thing.
GM: Then you arrive! Waste deep in fetid water in some kind of PIT
Julian Carey: Not the chimny neccessarily. That’s probably really dirty.
GM: Then you break into a house! It is empty! And somewhat decrepit and ill-maintained, like the family had fallen on hard times and the staff had to be fired. or would have been fired, if their slashed throated bodies weren’t adorning the sitting room.
Julian Carey narrows his eyes and keeps going, all business now.
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): I’m not sure what the Victorian equivalent of humming the Mission Impossible theme is, but you should totally be doing that.
GM: You turn a corner into a long hallway. At the other end, barely silhouetted in moonlight coming in from the foyer window, is the creepiest 12-year oldish girl you have ever seen. We’re talking Full Tilt Movie Ghost Story type fancy child’s dress, etc.
GM: She tilts her head quizzically. “I didn’t think my brother would resort to hiring an assassin.”
GM: Meanwhile, Dexter, you are in a well. There’s a dim stream of light coming from wel above you, and then a snotty child’s voice calls down. “Oh sir, you seem to have fallen into my well. Would you like me to lower a rope down?”
Julian Carey: “He didn’t. Also, if I was, silhouetting yourself like that would be a bad idea. Makes a target of yourself.”
GM: She steps sideways into shadow, startled. “oh, good point. If you’re not here to kill me…why are you here?”
Julian Carey: “I heard about your . . . situation from a third party and decided to lend you a hand.”
Julian Carey walks over in her direction, keeping his hands visible.
GM: “Did Mr. Miles make it off the estate? I thought my brother managed to shoot him before he got to the trees.”
Julian Carey: “I didn’t notice any survivors. But, I wasn’t looking for any off the estate.”
GM: She stares at you skeptically. “Then how do you know I need help?”
Julian Carey: “I heard it from a . . .”
Julian Carey thinks back to Santa and all those hookers and donkeys.
Julian Carey: “. . . holy man. I’m going to go with holy man.”
Dexter Maskelyne considers levitating up the well, then decides the better of it.
Dexter Maskelyne: “Could you please? It’s so dark down here.”
Dexter Maskelyne trails three drops of his blood across the dead Saint’s lips.
GM: Snotty Child’s Voice: “Oh, I think I’d rather just let you drown. You see, I built that trap to keep pesky wizards from apparating in, as you have.”
GM: Cecily: “I don’t believe you.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Are wizards normally susceptible to drowning? I would think that’s something they could easily manage.”
GM: “I believe I shall feed you to my kraken.”
Julian Carey: “I’d elaborate, but I doubt that would make my day any more plausible to you.”
Dexter Maskelyne places a liberated Elfish tool in each of Claus’s hands. Pickaxe would be ideal, but claw hammer works just as well.
GM: She pauses mid-hand gesture. “I have a kraken. My brother and I are locked in a mortal game of cat and mouse. I had expected today to be about opening presents. My day can not get much stranger.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Kraken? I thought they’d gone extinct.”
GM: (Sorry, Artemis is set to drown you. Cecily has the Kraken)
Julian Carey: “Santa told me about you.”
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): Whoops. My bad.
GM: Artemis: “If you’ve beaten drowning, obviously you have nothing to fear.” A trickle of water starts hitting your head. SLowly but urely, the pit will fill, at this rate.
GM: Cecily: “You expect me to believe that?”
Julian Carey: “Look, didn’t I just tell you that you wouldn’t believe it?”
Dexter Maskelyne speaks the name of death, the name of the wind, and unspeaks the name of life, causing the Kringle to rise once more.
Dexter Maskelyne: I can roll for Sorcery if the effect is important.
GM: It is!
GM: You are raising the santa-zombie?
Dexter Maskelyne: I am. That should still leave me with a Sorcery point for Levitation, should I need it.
Dexter Maskelyne: [1d3+3d6+3 = 15]
Dexter Maskelyne: 15. I’ve done better, but I’d like to see this punk Counter that.
Julian Carey: “Look, making sure you aren’t killed is very important to the something something of the winter elves! I was drunk for part of the explanation. Regardless, I’m here to make sure you don’t get killed. And possibly to kill your brother.”
GM: The eldritch might causes various loud noises upstairs and then you hear a child’s shriek. “What? I killed you! I used the Curse of Dionysian Excess!”
Julian Carey: “I’m not sure about that part. How old is he? I’d feel better about shooting him if he were at least pubescent.”
GM: Santa: “Oh, you have been VERY NAUGHTY THIS YEAR!”
GM: There’s a scuffle. You can levitate up at your leisure.
Dexter Maskelyne: “Clearly you missed a few lines.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “A Dionysian death involves being ripped to pieces, and eaten. Here, you’ll see soon enough.”
Dexter Maskelyne levitates.
Dexter Maskelyne: Was there a line in there about not actually killing the kid?
Dexter Maskelyne: Does he just need to be scared?
GM: Cecily: “He’s my age. Twelve. He has a serpent. It’s evenly matched with my kraken, so it’s just been him and me hunting one another. Since yesterday.”
Dexter Maskelyne: I might need to reign in the monster I’ve just unleashed on the world.
GM: He needs to be “punished”
Dexter Maskelyne: I hate when I have to do that.
Dexter Maskelyne touches down, drops the levitation, and places a mental block on the Kringle to keep it from slaying/maiming Artemis.
GM: Santa, being a creature of Faerie, is pretty hardcore about the “punishment” thing. In this case, incarceration within the Dread Ice Fortress of Santa Claus until the Blind Monks of CHristmas purge his sorcery from his system through fasting, prayer, and ritual isolation.
GM: There was a pamphlet. Mrs. Claus briefed you.
Julian Carey: “Tsk. Well, I knew this would be an ugly deal when I agreed to it. No sense crying about it now.”
GM: Cecily, on the other hand, needs to be rewarded for her good behavior this year. Escaping the wreckage of her life alive is one wya to do that, but I leave that up to Julian.
GM: So you can get out of the child murdering if you want. But then again, it wouldn’t be a very Kerberos Christmas without some child murder, would it?
GM: (Perhaps in the spirit of the season, Julian merely escapes with his new sidekick?)
Dexter Maskelyne has some time to kill, so he rifles through Artemis’s things.
Julian Carey: (He’s at LEAST going to kill a serpent.)
Julian Carey: (I mean, come on.)
GM: Sinclair is a magical prodigy who has apparently grown up mostly unsupervised in a wizard’s house. You even recognize the man, by reputation, as a foggy old Hermetic.
GM: It’s entirely possible the whole “kill Santa” thing was just a plea for attention.
GM: You hear a “hissing” noise right above your head, Julian.
Julian Carey: “What on earth precipitated th . . . hold on, I have a serpent to kill.”
Julian Carey shoots!
Dexter Maskelyne: Hmm. What’s the penalty if Artemis is only half-punished?
Dan1 (Julian Carey): I think Dexter is getting a teen sidekick, too!
GM: He needs to be punished sufficiently to meet with the approval of the 42 Judges of Ma’at. They’re already pissed at you from that thing with the elephants back in ‘38, though, so calling in a favor for leniency might be hard.
GM: However, the aggrieved persons (in this case, Santa) can forgive him and reset the karmic balance.
Dexter Maskelyne: Well shit, resurrection’s hard.
GM: Well, remember the Unnatural Death loophole. Plus, Santa’s not human and has no soul, so you really just need to reset its mystic weave.
GM: (In other words, Sufficiently Advanced Fate Point Expenditure…plus you can have a sidekick too!)
GM: Make an attack roll, Julian. The (invisible) snake (apparently on the ceiling?) is lunging at you.
Dexter Maskelyne: Well, I can get him away from the Judges, except that helium hasn’t been discovered yet.
Dexter Maskelyne: Trust me, it all makes sense in here.
Julian Carey: [4d3-8 = 2]
Julian Carey: 1d6-2 = 11]
GM: Sinclair: “Define a bit!”
Julian Carey: A mighty 1d6-2 = 10]
Julian Carey: 10 for the defense.
Julian Carey: [3d3+1d6-2 = 9]
Julian Carey: 9 for the attack.
GM: You blind the snake! It retreats, hissing and spitting and is set upon by the Kraken! They start wrasslin’
GM: Cecily: “Oh, you’ve evened the score out, sir, I think.” She sits on a sitting chair in the foyer to watch.
Julian Carey: “Do more than even a score . . .”
GM: Sinclair: “You boiled my heart. And turned it to rock.” He looks at Dexter. “That’s great! Teach me how to do that!”
Julian Carey grumbles to himself as he walks over the the mirror and shatters it, wrapping his hand in cloth before grabbign a big shard like a dagger.
Dexter Maskelyne: “In time.”
GM: Eventually the Kraken drives the Snake off and ambles over to Cecily’s side. At least you can kind of hear it’s suckers on the floor.
Dexter Maskelyne: “I mean, I literally can’t right now. Because I sold pieces of myself that you haven’t grown yet.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “But when the time comes… I’ll be your soul broker.”
GM: Sinclair looks a little confused. “Ohkay…sorry about trying to drown you? I just read about this wizard in one of these books, that’s what he did to his enemies.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Yes, don’t do that.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Drown people, I mean.”
Dexter Maskelyne: "There’s usually faster ways to kill them.
GM: Sinclair: “Okay. No drowning.”
Dexter Maskelyne: “Oh… and I think you’re not supposed to be killing people. I’ll have to consult with a colleague on that.”
GM: You both escape and return to London with wards in tow?
Dexter Maskelyne: Yes!
Dexter Maskelyne: Next week: Kerberos pets!
Julian Carey: “Well, that was exciting. Tell me, Cecily. How would you feel about a change of address?”
GM: “Staying here means I either die or am killed by my brother, sir. What did you have in mind?”
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): “Run away with me, only don’t tell my wife.”
Dan1 (Julian Carey): She’s 12. That’s not a threat.
GM: Then it is back to London! Upon reuniting, the two new apprentices are introduced to one another. Both blush, straighten their hair, and issue awkward hellos. Sinclair: “Today my heart got turned to stone!” Cecily: “I have a pet monster Kraken.” They both look at each other and would say “COOL!” simultaneously if it weren’t anachronistic for them to do so.
Nick2 (Dexter Maskelyne): Tell that to Carol Ferris.
GM: And that shall be that for a Very Kerberan Christmas.
Kerberos Club: Strange Corners of the Earth
We Saved Christmas
Well . . . we did.
Julian Carey: Anyway, we have to reward one child and punish one child.