Scion: Legacy

The River of Doubt 6

Story 2 - Session 6

Session six revealed a great deal of plot and information critical to the player’s mission. Beginning in the National Archives in D.C., the story continues with the newly summoned spirit of Kermit Roosevelt answering the questions of Ayuko who used her powers over death to summon his spirit.

Kermit is willing to speak about the Rondon-Roosevelt Expedition down the River of Doubt but even in death, the memories of what he saw during the journey still eat away at his sanity.

After briefly discussing his meeting with Candido Rondon, the leader of the South American expedition team, Kermit began to recount his journey down the river and one particular event that changed everything.

The expedition encountered several tribesmen along the river two weeks into the journey. They wore large brown leather belts common to a tribe Rondon met during previous expeditions. He called this tribe the Cinta Larga, an uncontacted tribe that was believed to be involved in cannibalism and other depraved acts.

At first the natives did nothing but three days later the party was attacked along the shores by a group of men emerging from the waters draped in moss and river plants giving them the appearance of sea monsters.

Most of the hired labor screamed in fear, crying out “MAMAINDE,” while others screamed “TSATHOGGUA” as the natives attacked. Many fled, attempting to cross the river to the other side while father and son, along with Candido Rondon, charged forward. At the time, Kermit didn’t know what TSATHOGGUA or MAMAINDE meant but it sent chills down his spine.

Ayuko however, was able to translate “MAMAINDE” from its alien language. It means “Servant of the King.”

As Kermit and the others continued their charge, the tribe attacked from shore with bows and spears and Kermit’s compatriots began firing at them with rifles.

Two of the creatures were killed and the rest fled back into the jungle. Upon closer inspection their skin was discovered to be oily and slick with an indistinguishable substance like the skin of an amphibian. They wore chakra and other strange symbols under the moss.
Kermit restored the original sketches in his journal with the help of the journal’s spirit so Ayuko could see the symbols. These symbols included the Yellow Sign, sign of Tsathoggua and various other babbles and trinkets.

Kermit continues his story. Parties were dispatched to assess the threat and they saw more of the tribesman with belts, they were fired upon and fled, but Kermit never felt they were a threat. They seemed concerned, scared even, but not of the explorers.

The party continued their travels inland for some time, roughly six miles, before coming upon a stone circle with strange geometries that could only be known by the terrible thing that crafted it. The area seemed to glow and reality clouded and twisted the explorer’s minds. Kermit, his father and Rondon failed to grasp what they saw and even now Kermit cannot fathom the queerness of the corruption poisoning their minds. Roosevelt himself declared the party doomed and that whatever made this was not of God’s creation.

Strange pillars of unknown construction surrounded the stone circle resonating with the party’s minds and among the pillars were disgusting statues and carvings of men and beasts engaged in immoral acts of lust. Except for one statue which drew Kermit too it.

Kermit, an amateur artist, took his tools out and sketched the terrible visage of the unearthly creatures carved in black obsidian. The statue is that of Hastur in his yellow robe with tentacles raised around him and Tsathoggua sitting before him.

Even in death Kermit shudders at the memories.

“Even in death I am not permitted to forget Carcosa and its ebony shores, to escape the Yellow King’s watch.”

A terrible howl of unearthly origin then sounded, and the deep breathing of a massive beast filled the jungle soon followed by the chanting of inhuman things watching from the shadows.

“We fell into despair certain the devil was here to take us, but tribesman rushed from the forest and pulled us away and brought us to our senses. We foolishly shot at them as much as we did the darkness around us certain they were just as guilty.”

Kermit made it to the river and rejoined the group and pushed forward because the rapids were too powerful to turn back.

What Kermit saw never left him, the symbols ate at him and he could not stop sketching the terrible writings he saw until he at last put a bullet into his brain.

With his story concluded, Kermit pointed to a location on the map indicating the location of the stone circle and returned to eternity giving Ayuko a final warning that she would do well to leave all of this behind her.

The reporter, who was all but forgotten during the discussion with Kermit, returned to her senses after being exposed to the madness of Kermit’s story. She wants nothing to do with the players any longer and parts ways but not before giving Ayuko and Naomi some additional information.

The town closes to the site Kermit pointed to, Espigão d’Oeste, is locked down due to the paramilitary activity in the area. The Brazilian Army and Air Force are patrolling the area. Government and paramilitary forces are fighting it out along the Rio Roosevelt and the various tribes are caught in the middle.

Ayuko will leave Washington D.C. alone. Naomi chose to stay behind in the nation’s capital and warns that their Scion band doesn’t have to play the heroes all the time and that they should walk away from this and that this mission will kill Lucas. Determined to go on, Ayuko steps into the shadows, Ayuko leaves D.C. and arrives in the back of Bazett’s car as it pulls into Lloyd’s of America.

After a swift elevator ride to the top of the Lloyd’s of America building, the players are greeted by Roman Dolder the executive officer of the American branch office. Also there is his obnoxious aid Mr. Cummings.

With pleasantries out of the way the players sit down to tea and snacks as Dolder explained his reasons for wanting to see the players.

Dr. lensman was a powerful Magus and served as one of the organizations chief claims officials. In this capacity, Lensman traveled the world finding and acquiring countless artifacts of considerable magical abilities for Lloyd’s. As cover for his operations, Lensman played the role of documentary film maker, a convincing cover that when backed with Discovery and History Channel money made slipping in and out of remote and hostile areas easy.

Recently, archaeological evidence has been found in South America hinting of Rome’s presence in the region, specifically in the most remote and forgotten parts of the country among the uncontacted tribes of the Amazon.

Lensman, a long time fan and researcher of the Roman Empire was intrigued and sought to investigate the claims for himself. Lloyd’s supported the research in the hopes that maybe the relics would prove valuable in academics, money and magic. His first foray into the region proved unsuccessful but that changed when a routine cataloging of stored records and research papers from Miskatonic University revealed several lost journals from President Roosevelt’s journey down the River of Doubt.

As the executors of the Roosevelt family will. The papers returned to Lloyd’s control. A review of the material rendered two Lloyd’s researchers insane. Apostle hunters from the Clock Tower, including Lensman, were called upon to review the material and what they found started the chain of events the players now find themselves in.

The journals described terrible things along the River of Doubt. Talk of monsters and cannibalism and strange Roman statutes and gods filled the pages. Roosevelt was not a fool or a mad man. The journals were authenticated by magic so they were not forgeries. Roosevelt saw these things and the Clock Tower needed to look into the situation.

Already versed in the Amazon, Lensman was selected for the task. Disguising his journey as a documentary on the Rondo-Roosevelt expedition, Lensman set out to the Rio Roosevelt to investigate the claims. His orders were to prove the authenticity of the claims, recover any relics for research and wipe out any threat that could not be taken for research.

What happened on the river is unknown, but Lensman returned a changed man and his expedition mates lost. He recovered a single relic, the black obsidian statue of the God Tsathoggua a God spoken of from the Age of the Gods. He also returned with another name, Hastur.

Lensman quickly fell into the abyss of madness and the players know the rest of the story.

Lloyd’s needs the players’ help in ending the threat. This Hastur must be stopped but how or why is unknown. The players are asked to take the job, at considerable financial gain. (1 million each)

Ayuko decides that more must be found out about the strange statue returned from the Amazon and depicted in the sketches of Kermit Roosevelt. Using her powers to call forth the spirit of objects, Ayuko summons the statues spirit.

The spirit appeared as a sort of viscous and semi-liquescent substance, quite opaque and of a sooty color. The center swelled as if with the action of some powerful yeast and an uncouth amorphous head with dull and bulging eyes arose gradually on an ever-lengthening neck. Then two arms arose inch by inch groping toward us the players with tentacle-like appendages.

Intrigued by the player’s audacity and resourcefulness, the jeering bag of flesh recounts the story of how it arrived on Earth and South America:

Carcosa, the world of bleak shores and black stars, is home to Hastur the god of madness. Whether Hastur and Carcosa are separate objects or one amalgam is unknown but the two seem interlinked in ways undefined. From Carcosa’s shores Hastur sends forth the Byahkee. His servants of madness to spread his will across the races of the universe. Once found, Hastur’s power begins to grow exponentially as his worshippers spread word of him. Eventually his influence grows enough for him to draw close to the world. Carcosa itself draws near, not in a physical sense but metaphysically, Hastur can form in the world through avatars and other representatives of his worship from across light years to enact his will.

Earth like so many other planets was touched by the Byahkee at the dawn of man and countless servants fell to his madness. The empire of Rome and the tribes of the Amazon were the most notably touched by Hastur.

Many worshipers travel to Carcosa via magic beyond space and time and live in the city of Carcosa fueling the madness and power of the dread God. Countless races have fallen pray and earth is no different.

The statue itself was crafted by a Roman sculpture who worshiped the god. He was executed by Nero Caesar’s soldiers but the relic was saved by other worshipers of Hastur.

During the reign of Nero, the worship of anything but his pagan idols wasn’t tolerated and the cult of Hastur was hunted down. Eventually, the followers were forced to flee. Many fled to South America bringing the yellow king with them. Others left to Carcosa utilizing gateways when Hastur’s power was at its zenith (Kermit and his father found one of these along the river of doubt.)

These gates are also used to bring slaves, sacrifices and more to Carcosa. Countless of these came from the uneducated and superstitious natives of the Amazon.

Time passed, and on Carcosa, a group of slaves from what is present day Rondonia in South America, called the Ure-Uwa-Ure plotted rebellion. During a ceremony to draw Carcosa closer to earth and to open a gate here, the Ure attacked the ceremony. They slayed the presider of ceremonies, the one who wore the pallid mask of Hastur. They successfully prevented Hastur’s power from reaching its zenith but not before the gateway was opened. Forced to flee, the remaining Ure-Uwa-Ure fled through the gate returning to their ancestral home, the Cinta Larga are a part of the greater Ure tribe.

Their enemies followed and brought with the ideals of their worship including the obsidian statue of Tsathoggua, the one sent to find the rebels and kill them.

The story ends there but a few things are now known, the Cinta Larga are the descendants of the Ure who fled from Carcosa and have interbred with the locals. The frog people Kermit described are likely the ancestors of Hastur’s followers and those already present in the country from Roman persecution.

Lensman walked into the middle of a war and was nor prepared. He was driven mad and used as an Avatar to spread Hastur to the outside world. A single mad man almost brought the full manifestation of Hastur to reality.

The threat he poses cannot be underestimated.

The idol is eventually destroyed by Abel returning the players to reality. The office was destroyed in the process and the magus were somehow prevented from experiencing the shared vision of the altered world.

The session ended with the players more committed then ever to stop Hastur.

Thus ends session six

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OrneryAmerican

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