Recommend
27 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

A Touch of Evil: The Supernatural Game» Forums » Sessions

Subject: A Green Hallowe'en rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Bela's dead and Vampira won't talk
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
'Tis well known among the townsfolk that our misty town of Shadowbrook has oft been reputed to harbor creatures of the night.

Legends speak of blood-drinking demons, horribly transformed beast-men, and even the shade of a fallen soldier from the War of Independence who, so grieved by his untimely demise, returns year after year to claim the heads--and the souls--of those who wronged him. I have often read these tales with great interest, for I am Anne Marie, teacher at the local school, and sometime scholar of town legend and lore.

It was then with some surprise that I awakened to bright sunshine and the smell of blossoming trees on that reputedly most haunted of days which the Celts call Samhain. Yet the brightness of the sun and uncanny warmth of autumn belied a darker, colder purpose lying beneath. A local boy, something of a rapscallion, had reported that, the previous evening while exploring the Olde Woods, he had of all things, been attacked by a menacing tree, and had barely escaped with his life!

Normally, such a story from such an unreliable fellow would have been easily dismissed, boys being boys and prone to all manner of mischief. Still, on the Even' of All Hallows, in dark Shadowbrook, some suggestions are not taken lightly, however outlandish--and for an amateur historian such as myself, the opportunity to learn the town's secrets proved too enticing to resist. We gathered in the town hall before the elders, myself, a valiant but superstitious soldier by the name of Karl, and the local playwright Victor Danforth, present for reasons similar to my own and known for his gregarious manner and ostentatious productions.

Recalling legends of occult happenings at the windmill years ago, I began my investigation there. It was with some surprise that I noticed, in a small stand of trees adjacent to the windmill, that several of them appeared disquieting, almost, it would seem, menacing. Taking it upon myself to examine the stand, I was disturbed by what I saw. They appeared to be oaks, but of no variety known to me from any book of natural history. I admit to having felt some fear upon experiencing this realization, a fear that was magnified tenfold when a massive limb of the tree collapsed, nearly crushing me beneath it!

Having narrowly escaped concussion or worse, my curiosity was doubled as I moved to enter the windmill. Yet hereupon I was immediately set upon by a pack of ravenous wolves, and so far from their ordinary environs! I succeeded at length in scattering them, but not before they had dealt me three most injurious wounds! Even with my heightened endurance, I was nearly at death's door, and I sought to return to visit Dr. Manning. Unfortunately, such a visit was ne'er to occur.

At the time, I thought it a hallucination brought on by loss of blood and my already harrowing day. Now, I fear that what I saw was all too real... A woman, it appeared, approached me from the forest, cloaked in moss and flanked by prehensile vines! My mind clouded as I gazed upon her, and to strike her enchanted frame seemed anathema. It seemed only seconds before an enormous bramble dashed me to the ground. The encounter proved nearly deadly, my investigation was set back greatly, and I did not come to for some time.

Lady Hanbrook was reported dead that night, found in bed by a servant overcome by thorny brambles. More reports would come later, of the Reverend, of Sophie, and of good Dr. Manning. It was, I thought, imperative to investigate the manor house for more information about the Lady's demise, and I confess that I was in some measure relieved at the opportunity to give up my near-fatal investigations at the windmill.

I was then at ease while I awaited the Lord of the house in his parlor, sipping a glass of wine proffered to my by a servant. That ease, it appears, was misplaced, as I doubled over upon drinking but half of the glass. Poison! Fever took me, and I recovered hours later in the town center, surrounded by relieved friends and frightened citizens.

Upon my reawakening, and emboldened by a snifter of brandy, I returned to inquire after the diabolical servant, only to learn that she had disappeared overnight under mysterious circumstances. I did, however, recover a crucifix, the importance of which I would not know until much later.

With but a little headway made, I felt that a mote of protection might be advisable, and I turned therefore to the town's vendor. It was in his shop that I met a Mr. Heinrich Cartwright, an outsider who had come to our town feeling that "something was not right." Though I dismissed him initially as a mere vagrant and madman, my opinion of the man shifted greatly upon discovering that he, like myself, had come on this warm and sun-filled day to purchase a torch...

I presently made fast friends with the shopkeeper, and would return repeatedly after examining the unexplained growths that appeared seemingly everywhere, and the ominous trees where so many of the investigators and townsfolk were found injured, and afterward only able to explain implausible "accidents" or even more outlandish tales. My investigations were fruitful, and I hastened to purchase the store's supply of tomes, first this very Book of Town History in which I now recount my tale, and second a Book of Arcane Lore. Between the outlandish tales of vampires and lycanthropes, I discovered vague allusions to a forest spirit, one that brought villainous malice to the plants and ensorcelled the weak-willed with her magiks. Could this have been what I encountered in my ill-fated trip to the windmill?

Using information that I had gleaned from this very book, I investigated the townsfolk, but was far from the only one to do so. With the hour late and the town nigh overrun by the encroaching forests, evidence was abundant, and interrogations were the order of the day. Armed with knowledge, however--and fire--I was perhaps most prepared, but the superstitious soldier had spent many hours in prayer and the rest in the pursuit of arms, and he too sought our foe.

Poring over my tomes, I sought information on where the villainess might make her lair, discarding false suggestions at every moment, until eventually tracking her to--quite surprisingly--the fields betwixt the manor house and windmill. Was the preponderance of animal and vegetable life to the south of town a mere ruse? I did not know then, but all would become clear presently...

Of the elders, only Lord Hanbrook and Magistrate Kroft remained alive. The former seemed somewhat entranced by the dark magiks afoot, and the latter was widely gossiped to be in league with the witch herself.

As the dark creature's sway over the town neared completion, she sent creeping brambles to thwart the four heroes still in her path. Two of my companions fell to the demonic plants, yet Karl and I overcame, and--agreeing that it was to our mutual benefit and to that of the town--used the knowledge gained to shake the sorcerous cobwebs from Lord Hanbrook's mind.

Musket in hand, Karl took this chance to thwart the knave once and for all, believing her to have taken shelter in the bridge near the olde wood. Though this did not match my research, I admit to a moment of apprehension as he arrived, fearing that my studies had proven faulty. But evil, it seemed, was on the move, and it appeared the soldier's information was out of date, or even fabricated to begin with!

Rumors, as I have said, swirled that Magistrate Kroft was in league with the villainous nymph, and I set to learn the truth. He confessed to me what had in fact happened. It was he who, believing little in such supernatural nonsense, had started the gossip and rumor by way of a servant to disguise his great shame at having betrayed the colonies during the great War. Yet, seeing now an opportunity for redemption in the eyes of the people, and now knowing the threat to be real, he joined myself and the noble Lord Hanbrook in confronting the villain!

Evil was on the move, and indeed, as the sun set I seemed doubly challenged to trace the villain to her lair in the fields. But would my research prove errant? I think not! After some time the crops became lushly overgrown, and I knew that I came at last upon our nemesis.

"Your enchantment," I called out, "holds no further sway over me! I know it was you who poisoned me, and know that it was you who sought to entrance the good Lord. I have read of your history," I shouted with conviction, "and know that the you seek to make this town yours Lady Hanbrook!"

Hereupon she emerged from a knot of brambles, and though shaken, her one-time husband remained resolute. She smiled a thorny grin and addressed us. "Lady Hanbrook? I am the spirit of the forest. I was here long before your people, and long before the natives of this land. And I will be here when the earth has swallowed up your towns and cities."

"Day shall break on your stranglehold over our town!" I cried, and she seemed to wither slightly, but only for a fleeting moment. No longer hesitant, she sprung at us with a ferocity I could not have foreseen!

My companions flailed at her with hatchets as I directed their blows according to the knowledge I had obtained, and she recoiled! But the Magistrate was struck almost at once by a knot of thistle, and fell to the ground in a ghastly spectacle. The noble Lord narrowly dodged a crush of foliage, and I, facing the brunt of the Dryad's attack, nearly succumbed, but stood bruised and bleeding.

Here I retrieved the fallen Magistrate's hatchet, and with Hanbrook attacked again! We laid into the fiend, chopping tendrils and blossoms from around her, but she redoubled her efforts, nearly striking her onetime husband! Perhaps hoping to regroup with Karl instead of facing a losing battle, he escaped from the fields in retreat, much to my dismay!

Worse, she struck at me once, twice, thrice! Two vines and the back of her thorny hand in quick succession! Knowing that any further assault would be my undoing, I acted on instinct! I revealed first my crucifix--Lady Hanbrook's crucifix--and hereupon she hesitated for an instant. Seizing this brief moment, I barely evaded the deadly thorns. Against the second, I reluctantly brandished my torch, knowing that if it were knocked away all would be lost. But fortune at last smiled on me, as the tendril recoiled and I retained my grip on the precious fire!

Yet alas! My defenses were spent, and as the back of her thorny fist struck me full upon the face, a moment of gloating joviality flitted upon the enchantress' lips, and I nearly collapsed to the creeping ground.

But no! Spitting blood and defiance, I turned back and cried out to the witch: "'Tis but a scratch, thou ill-mannered shrew!"

I knew then what must be done. With what little strength remained in my battered frame, I hurled my torch twixt the encroaching foliage at the fiend's very breast! As the smothering vines closed about my throat, I heard at last the impious scream of something neither human nor animal, and all faded to blackness...

---

I know not what mercy spared me from the flames, but I awakened at dawn surrounded by the charred and ashen remains of crop and bramble. Stumbling to my feet, I examined closely my surroundings, but of Shadowbrook's grassy malefactor naught remained but ashes.

Thus I entrust this latest chapter of horror to our town's shadowed book of history in the earnest hope that it need never be used again. If, however, the blossoms bloom again too brightly, or the trees take on the vague semblance of menace, or the howls of wolves echo just too loudly from the forest, I implore you to retain what I have written. For this is how I contrived to defeat Lady Hanbrook, the nefarious Delion Dryad.

Anne Marie of Shadowbrook
31 October
13 
 Thumb up
5.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bela's dead and Vampira won't talk
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
By way of additional summary, the above report recounts the tale of a four-player competitive game that a group of friends and I played on Halloween against the newly released official web villain, The Delion Dryad.

It's obviously abbreviated and told primarily from my character's perspective, but the game turned out wonderfully and the Dryad was a very tough opponent. The events as told above are almost universally attributable to Mysteries, Events, or other cards in game.

Three of our earliest Mystery cards (there was a reshuffle early as well) spawned 3 wolf packs (4 because of the Dryad's ability), and this combined with her Control of Nature to nearly block off the bottom half of the board. On the other hand, between the trees and Mysteries, investigation was all over the place, more than anyone could pick up, and The Hour is Late came up early as well.

The game was a lot of fun, and the Dryad nearly won in a three-way nail-biter between her, myself, and the Karl player. Altogether, she makes for a great addition to the game, and was a wonderful Halloween treat.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ronald Estes
United States
La Vergne
Tennessee
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Highly enjoyable narrative!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bela's dead and Vampira won't talk
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Mandrake wrote:
Highly enjoyable narrative!


Thanks for the compliment; I'm glad you enjoyed it!

The Dryad was a pleasant surprise for one of my favorite holidays, so I thought it was only appropriate that someone add her story to the Book of Town History.

Did that tree outside my office window just look at me funny? Hmmm, I ought to find out...

Best,
-lc
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.