The Shadows of Oz

Road Trip

Road Trip
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Brigadier Shadow called you all into the briefing room. A call for assistance had come in from the mysterious Mr. Johnson. His monotonous, synthesized voice played over the speakers.

“Hello, Shadowrunners. Your work on recovering my lost data was flawless. I have confidence in your ability to handle my latest problem.

“I have purchased 50 custom-made ”/campaign/shadows-of-oz/wikis/aztechnology" class=“wiki-page-link”> Aztechnology nexi. The price is acceptable. Unfortunately, their delivery fee is astronomical. Aztechnology provide free delivery to metropolitan areas near their factories, but charge for interstate delivery. I have a manufacturing plant in Lonsdale, South Australia. This is where I require the nexi.

“I have paid Aztechnology the compulsory advance fee and have arranged pickup from the Aztechnology store in Westfield-Woolworths Mall, Highpoint. They have informed me that delivery will take place on Thursday morning (3 days.) The invoice for the nexi is not paid in full. They still require payment-on-delivery.

“Can you collect and deliver the nexi to my manufacturing plant? I can pay you the half of the remainder of the invoice now, and the other half on delivery.”

The team asked the value of the outstanding invoice. There was 60,000¥ outstanding. After deliberating over how the team could make money out of this job, they accepted. Mr. Johnson transfered 30,000¥ to Shadow Company who then distributed it among the 6 team members, 5,000¥ each.

Kyuzo had read about Aztechnology raids in Megacorp Law Weekly. Numerous raids on Aztechnology delivery trucks had occurred throughout Melbourne and other cities. Not many of the offenders had been caught. The team identified potential sites and routes the cargo would pass through. A careful hack into the Aztechnology network indicated that the nexi were being built at a factory in Brooklyn, delivered gradually to the Aztechnology Logistics warehouse in Derrimut, and finally be packed and delivered to Highpoint at 5:00am, Thursday morning. When Access Jack attempted to gain further access to information, he failed to sneak past the firewall and was IP blocked.

Access Jack then broke into the traffic grid to confirm the routes of the Aztechnology delivery trucks. He queried records for the last two weeks on the routes of all Aztechnology trucks in Melbourne. It showed that the trucks consistantly followed the same route, detouring only due to traffic incidents. They saved this information, thinking that certain individuals and organisations may be interested in purchasing it.

Vladimir searched for information on tourist and smuggling routes between Melbourne and Adelaide. He found little information. Most of it indicated that there was no real authority outside of the cities. He came across a blog by someone living in Ballarat. This man had been to Melbourne about four months ago to purchase supplies. He stated that he had performed some road maintenance enroute. The team requisitioned a delivery truck from Shadow Company and loaded the Shadow Van with enough food, water, fuel and ammunition to last three days. Some team members also attempted to purchase arms for the journey, but couldn’t find a supplier with stock before the date of action.
Jun 23

GM (Mark) and Harry:
The team set up an ambush on a narrow suburban street. As the truck approached, Access Jack forced the truck to stop. Simultaneously, Vladimir drove the Shadow Van into the path of the Aztechnology truck and opened the side door, exposing a machine gun turret. The Aztechnology driver got on the radio to headquarters, but Access Jack quickly cut all wireless connection on the truck. Kyuzo cast Mind Control on the driver, forcing him to give up peacefully and be restrained.

The team moved the truck to another site where they had another truck waiting to receive the goods. They quickly transferred the contents (including the drones), changed the truck’s cargo manifest to “Scorched Wreck” and torched the truck. With the sounds of Archon sirens coming closer, the team quickly left the area and drove along the Western Freeway.

As they passed through Bacchus Marsh, they saw a large friendly sign reading:

You are now leaving
Greater Melbourne.
Good luck!
Jun 23

GM (Mark) and Harry:
The team continued into the wilderness. Vladimir and Sasika led the convoy, driving the Shadow Van. Beeta and Access Jack followed in the truck. Kyuzo and Paul each rode their bikes either side of the convoy.

As they passed through the hills, wireless communication began to deteriorate. A quarter of an hour later, the clouds grow thick and satellite communication ceased as well. Wild animals, grazing at the road’s edge fled into the scrub as the roar of the convoy approached. The roads were deserted and in poor repair. Someone had been maintaining the roads the best they can, filling pot holes with gravel and painting yellow symbols in front of hazards. The team occasionally passed burnt out buildings that probably were roadhouses and petrol stations once upon a time.

The drive was nowhere near as boring as they first expected. They had never been outside the city! This is the first they’d ever witnessed those brown fuzzy creatures, the boundless dry, brown plains, the carnivorous strangler vines…

As they passed through Ballan, they saw that people still lived out here, somehow surviving in what they thought was a perilous ungoverned wasteland. The sun rose behind them as they approached Ballarat. It became clear to them that a lot of people live outside the metropolis. Ballarat was still a thriving, though completely alien, town. The vehicles were generally in poor condition and most people appeared to travel on foot or person-propelled bikes. They even got a wireless signal, though the available network appeared to be limited. The Shadow Van reported increased levels of background radiation.
Apr 16

GM (Mark):
The convoy left Ballarat behind. About five kilometers out of town, a large group of vehicles approached from the other direction. There were a lot of vehicles, all motorbikes. The team could only count a dozen from this distance, but it was clear that there were numerous more following behind. Each motorbike carried one or two people, all wearing leather jackets. The bikes slowed to a stop, forming a blockade across the entire road.
Apr 19

Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:
How deep are they? Are they one or two deep, or seven or eight deep?
Apr 20

GM (Mark):
About six deep.
Apr 24

GM (Mark):
The lead biker dismounted, removed the AK-97 from his back, and hung it over his handlebars. You saw the gang’s logo emblazoned across the back of his jacket: a three eyed skull wearing a sombrero, revolvers crossed underneath. The rest of the bikers waited on their bikes.

The team held back while Kyuzo drove forward to meet the leader. After some small talk, the leader became very interested in the delivery van. Kyuzo told him it was souveniers, like whitegoods and stuff. The leader replied that they had been needing some more whitegoods back at the clubhouse. He thanked Kyuzo very much for delivering it to them, and instructed two of the bikers, Mick and Sandy to drive the truck back to the clubhouse.

Kyuzo continued protests began to upset the leader. He returned to his bike and picked up his AK-97. The bikers responded and raised their weapons as well. Mick and Sandy, now at the delivery truck, pointed their guns through the window. Kyuzo, tiring of ineffectual negotiations, decided to make his point more visible. He produced an arc of lightning between his hands and demanded that they be allowed to pass now. The leader, backed up by 40 armed thugs, shot where Kyuzo’s foot was only a moment earlier.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
The team decided this meeting was only going to end bloody. Access Jack slipped into astral, materialised near the gang, and taunted them while blasting magic at Mick. At the same time, Beeta drove the truck straight at Mick and Sandy. Vladimir brought the Shadow Van forward to provide cover for Kyuzo, but the heavy van couldn’t make the distance.

Several of the bikers fired at Kyuzo. His perforated body fell to the ground and began bleeding to death. Many more shots were fired at Vladimir in the Shadow Van, but it’s hardened glass and internal armour protected him. It all of the excitement, one of the bikers was killed by friendly fire. Mick and Sandy ran out of the path of the delivery truck. Mick fired his machine gun through the delivery truck’s window, sending glass and upholstery everywhere, but thankfully none of Beeta. Beeta put his arm out of the window, and cleanly fired a shot into Mick’s face, dropping him. Sandy took aim at Sammy, grazing her cheek with a bullet. Sammy repaid the favour to Sandy, providing a similar scar. One of Kyuzo’s bound spirits, an Air Spirit, followed his standing order to dispose of anyone causing him to fall unconscious. He threw a large lightning bolt at the leader, who promptly started convulsing. Access Jack, still taunting the crowd, blasted Sandy with more magic, causing her to fall to the ground in agony. Sammy quickly put her out of her agony by accelerating the motorbike over her. Sammy accelerated hard, and riding along the front of the bikers, crushed the leader, stopping his convulsions.

Seeing their leader fall under Sammy tires, the bikers quickly filled her with lead. The first few shots knocked her off her bike, which landed providing some cover for her. She would surely be dead several times over if not for this fortunate event. However, she still lay unconscious, bleeding. The rest of the bikers, spooked by the terrifying Air Spirit, opened fire. In it’s materialised form, even a spirit cannot endure 140 bullets. Vladimir pulled up infront of Kyuzo, using the van as a shield. The van’s door slid open revealing a mounted machine gun which promptly sprayed supressing fire at the crowd of bikers. Access Jack joined in the carnage by throwing a ball of lightning through the crowd. Unfortunately, the lightning just gave them all a good jolt.

The bikers opened fire on the Shadow Van, causing major damage to the passenger-side panels and wheels, and disabling the machine gun. The bikers began to encircle the team. Seeing how badly things were going, Beeta jumped out of the delivery truck and threw his gun away. Vladimir jumped out of the Shadow Van and slapped a trauma patch onto Kyuzo. Access Jack, one to not give up on a fight, turned his body invisible, and hid behind the truck’s seats.

The bikers descended on the shadowruners and painfully beat them unconscious.
Apr 24

GM (Mark):
The bikers took all of the vehicles and began driving back to Ballarat. After about half a kilometer, they abandoned the Shadow Van. It’s damage was making it near impossible to control.

Halfway to Ballarat, Access Jack started causing trouble for the bikers. First he commanded the truck (to which he was an admin) to stall and report engine failure. The bikers were very tired and frustrated. Unable to start the vehicle again, they checked the truck’s cargo to see if this was still worth their while. Their eyes lit up and one of the bikers exclaimed “Rook’s going to want this!” They radioed for a tow truck. Five of them (with three bikes) waited for the tow truck to arrive. Access Jack dropped into astral form and began haunting them. One by one he twisted their insides with his Death Touch. His icy third-hand wrenched their organs. The bikers quickly realised one of the shadowrunners was a mage and jumped on their bikes to make sure the shadowrunners’ bodies were all properly dead.

Access Jack commanded the truck to wait briefly, then return to the team. Dropping back into astral, he chased the bikers and stole their lives, one by one. One biker was so startled by the icy fingers clawing at her spine she came off her bike. Laying on the asphalt, she suddenly saw the delivery truck barrelling towards her. Instinctively, she drew her revolver and shot out one of its tires. The truck lost control and, narrowly missing her, crashed into a roadside ditch. She felt a tap on her shoulder. She turned, but there was nothing there. Then an invisible icy hand crushed her throat.

With the tow truck on its way, Access Jack had one chance to stop it. He stood by the road side, astrally, some distance from the delivery truck. He spent several minutes honing his focus. The tow truck approached, with six bikes in escort. Access Jack let fly with a lightning bolt. The tow truck driver had seen enough mana storms in his time. He expertly swerved out of the lightning bolt’s path. A faint smell of burning rubber filled the air, but the tow truck continued unhindered.

While none of the bikers had any magical aptitude, it happened to be that one biker’s best friend was aware of the astral world. The tow truck driver’s dog, happy for a new vehicle to piss on, found a very strange smell and a very strange aura. His growls caught the attention of the tow truck driver. He opened the truck’s cabin. Access Jack swung his monofilament whip in a wide arc at the driver, but took off more headrest than head. The driver drew his pistol, fired a shot into Access Jack’s chest, and dragged his sorry ass out onto the road.
Apr 24

GM (Mark):
A VTOL flew overhead and landed at the original encounter. The team quickly located Sammy, loaded her onto a stretcher, and rolled her into the emergency medical aircraft. She spent three days in intensive care at a private hospital in Melbourne, costing her 2,700¥.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Beeta, Vladimir and Saskia woke an hour later. After surveying the battlefield, they spotted the Shadow Van in the distance. They carried Kyuzo and began their trek back to the van. The van was in worse shape then they were. Beeta and Vladimir went to work straightening out the wheels, and after an hour, had something workable. Vladimir changed the colour of the van’s morphing paint and drove back to Ballarat.

On the way, they passed some of the bikers motorbikes, along with the corpses of their drivers. Their faces were laced with terror. They also passed most of the corpse of their commrad, Access Jack. His leg was missing.

Once in Ballarat, they managed to get a signal through to Shadow Company. Shadow Company gave them the address of a reliable Street Doc. They left Kyuzo in his care. Three days and 3,000¥ later, Kyuzo was back on his feet. Although he felt as good as new, seeing the bruises and swelling on his teammates was a painful reminder of the days past.

Back at the bikers’ clubhouse, Dog happily chewed on his new trophy.
Apr 27

Harry:
I suggest to Saskia that she discreetly ask around town.
(Not 100% that girls knows how to be discreet)
Apr 28

Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:
Saskia can be discreet… it’s just that people remember her, that’s all
Apr 29

Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:
Bikers:
leader named Rook; has scales
weapons include AK97s, Manhunters. nothing overly good. bikes heavily modified, desert mods
all sorts of weird creatures fight in the arena, some Awakened
locals are not impressed with the bikers
Tech shop: students allowed to perform any research they like into mutations and genetics

Apr 30

GM (Mark):
Most of the team woke up the morning after the fight, feeling sore, but ready to take action. They asked around town for information.

A local gun shop owner was very helpful. He informed them the biker gang are the Raditos, and used to be known as the Banditos until about 15 years ago. They reside at what was once Ballarat University. Their leader is named Rook because his shiny black scales are reminiscent of the black bird’s feathers. He is also known as The Roach, partly because he survived a nuclear blast, but mostly because people would love to see him stamped on. As violent and free-willed as he is, he is a man of his word. The Raditos regularly hold arena fights on Saturday and Wednesday nights. The entry fee is cheap. The fights to the death include captives, creatures, and willing contestants. All sorts of weird creatures are fought in the arena. Some of them are mundane animals, tormented into a frenzy, and others are awakened creatures.

They thanked the shop owner for his help. Wondering what Rook would want with the nexi, they tried the technology store. There was only one in town and their stock was very limited. The shopkeeper was able to fill in a few gaps for them. He told them some “students” are still allowed to study at the University, provided they perform research of benefit to the Raditos and do not release it to anyone else. A lot of their research leans towards developing technology to create and control mutations. The arena is where they test their creations.

Kyuzo performed some astral surveilance of the University. Immediately, he noticed a lot of live teeming throughout the area. A handful of watcher spirits circled the University, but were easily avoided. An extremely bad vibe eminated from the North-East corner of the University. Kyuzo gleaned relative densities of life in each of the buildings. He attempted to Mind Control one at random, but his poor health impeded him. The watcher spirits, sensing a disturbance, converged on his location, which he quickly vacated. He tried a second time, this time successfully, and suggested that the victim e-mail the details of the building he was in to Kyuzo. The watcher spirits converged again, but the spell held. They received a brief message stating that he was in the gym with about 30 other guys.

A quick search of the Matrix uncovered an archived map of Ballarat University from when it was still an educational institution.

Ballarat University

The team sought explosives to assist in their raid, but only found some tear gas and frag grenades. Sammy and Kyuzo were released from hospital and the team reunited in Ballarat. Wednesday night came and the team drove to the University.
May 13

GM (Mark):
The team drove in via Gear Avenue and East Terrace. Four guards stood by the road, watching the vehicles pass. They took little interest, but the weapons they brandish made it clear who’s in charge. Parked in the main parking lot were hundreds of motorbikes, modified and decorated in so more ways than a rainbow has colours, only they were all black. Some had side cars and weapons mounted on them. Others were stylised. Some even had trailers. The buildings on the East side of the University had been flattened and now laid in ruins. As they approached North Terrace, the Shadow Van’s geiger counter became more excited. A gaping crater ended near the edge of the road. From 200 meters away, the shadowrunners felt a tingle in their skin. The radiation levels wouldn’t cause lasting damage, provided they didn’t stay here longer than necessary. The accommodation area North of the university now resembled a tip.

The team spotted the delivery truck in the small parking lot between what was the gymnasium and the library. This parking lot had space for twenty vehicles and was bathed in a soft light from four lamp posts. Several other trucks and vehicles were parked here. Two armed Raditos manned the doors to each of the buildings. Two more stood upon a small raised platform, watching over the parking lot. They were all drinking and talking, obviously not expecting any trouble. The Shadow Van pulled in and parked next to the delivery truck. Beeta accessed the truck’s computer and discovered that 47 of the nexi were still onboard the vehicle. The other three, among several other whitegoods, had been unloaded. Sammy, now driving a 4WD borrowed from a fellow Shadow Company member, parked near the stadium.

Map Note: All other buildings are ruins.

Jun 23

GM (Mark):
The Raditos guarding the library approached the Shadow Van. One of them rapped loudly on the driver’s window. Vladimir rolled it down. The biker questioned why they parked at the library instead of the stadium. Saskia politely informed them that they were here to help set up the new nexi. The biker didn’t know anything about any new nexi, and couldn’t radio anyone who knew either. Saskia then confessed that they were really invited by the students to play awesome AR games on the new systems they recently acquired. The biker believed her, but still wouldn’t let her in without the students as an escort.

Kyuzo, hiding in the back of the Shadow Van, magically cast thoughts into the second biker’s mind that he really needed to use the toilet. Sammy approached the library on foot and Kyuzo made her invisible. Sammy tailed the biker into the library. Kyuzo “told” the biker to find the nexi, but he stood there dumbly. Kyuzo let him continue to the bathroom. Sammy joined him, expertly knocked him out, destroyed his radio and bound him with his own bootlaces.

Saskia hopped out of the Shadow Van and approached the first biker, flirting with him, asking if he was sure there were no games they could play inside. The biker could think of one (and only one) and invited Saskia inside. She quickly opened the back of the Shadow Van to collect her purse. An invisible Beeta, thanks to Kyuzo, silently jumped out and followed Saskia and the biker inside. The other four bikers chuckled at their mate’s good fortune and went back to their beer and banter. Saskia was led to a private room on the ground floor of the library.
May 13

GM (Mark):
Beeta, closely following Saskia and the biker, pistol whipped the unsuspecting biker. He fell to the ground, unconcious, concusssed, and probably brain damaged. Beeta repeated the maneuveur on his kneecaps and they dumped his body in the private room. Kyuzo dropped the invisibility spell and Sammy waltzed up to Beeta and Saskia.

The nexi were turned on and broadcasting. Using the van and their commlinks, they triangulated the nexi’s location to the first floor. Using the fire escapes, rather than the exposed escelator, they proceeded to the first floor. Beeta gave the fire-escape door a once over, looking for alarms, finding nothing. Peering into the room, they still saw no signs of resistance. This room was full of computer terminals, most about 20 years old. The nexi were in a large meeting room. Again, Beeta found no alarms, however, the door was locked.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
In the meantime, Kyuzo and Vladimir decided to have a look at tonight’s game. The walked over to the stadium, paid entry with a bottle of vodka, and found a couple of good seats. The stadium used to be used for football events. Age and neglect had turned the green turf into a field of dust. Makeshift constructions dotted the arena, including cover, spiked posts and pits, and beams across the top of the arena. The box seats had been claimed by Rook and other high-ranking Raditos. Rook stood out. His armour simply screamed status and power, and his black, glossy skin made it hard for people to avert their gaze. Heavy metal music blared, thoroughly distorted, over the old public address speakers. Biker-chicks walked the aisles, selling beer and meat rolls.

The Raditos leader’s voice booms over the speakers. “Tonight, I introduce you to a family of farmers. They claim they don’t need our protection. I can’t bear to think they may be living in danger, so I felt we best make sure they can look after themselves.” A gate opens and the contestants enter the arena, approaching the centre, waving their weapons in the air in defiance to the Raditos. The crowd begins to roar. As they reach the centre of the arena, the voice continues. “Welcome, challengers. Tonight, you will prove you can look after yourself from life’s dangers. Try not to die too quickly. Everyone here tonight has come for some excitement. Open the gates!” There is thunderous clanging as numerous doors open around the arena. There is a shrill cry of a large bird. This prompts several more cries from various points around the arena. Several giant birds enter the arena. These flightless birds resemble emus, but stand 2.5 meters tall. Their bodies are pale with sparse tufts of white feathers. Long slender legs end in large, barbed claws. As the birds see each other across the arena, and the contestants in between, they glare at the contestants with bright red eyes and shriek menacingly at the contestants.

Kyuzo felt sick to the stomach. There’s no way he could watch these innocents be slaughtered. He very nearly interfered with the fight, but Vladimir held him back. It could have provided the distraction the others needed, but the risk was great. Kyuzo stormed out of the arena, enraged. Vladimir followed after him. They would at least get an eye for an eye. With a quick word to Sammy and the others, they coordinated their actions. Sammy shouldered the meeting room door open and the three of them carried a nexi each downstairs to the front door.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Sammy and Beeta waited inside the fire escape. Saskia was inside the main entrancce to the library, ready to return to the Shadow Van. Vladimir drew his Warhawks and Kyuzo made him invisible. Gunshots were heard from the stadium. Vladimir rounded the corner and fired at each of the bikers outside of the gymnasium. There were two explosions, one being a bikers head, the other being the cement wall next to the other biker. This biker looked up, startled, wondering where the shot came from. Sammy burst out of the fire escape, raking the guard tower with machine gun fire. The two guards, thoroughly perforated, collpased. Their blood dripped through the crudely erected platform. Saskia ran for the Shadow Van to retrieve her weapon. Beeta crossed the car park and put a bullet in the back of the startled biker. The shot threw the biker to the ground, face first. Sammy ran over to join Beeta and finished the biker.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Not wasting any time, Vladimir grabbed one of the biker’s radios while the other loaded the nexi into the delivery truck. He took the Shadow Van while Beeta and Saskia took the delivery truck. Over the radio, Vladimir heard “Sucks to be on guard duty tonight. Sounds like a good fight!” They started driving casually out of the University. Kyuzo and Sammy walked back to the SUV parked at the stadium. Half-way there, a couple of bikers spotted them and questioned what they were doing out here. Sammy and Kyuzo made a quick story about wanting to get away from the action for some action. The biker warned them that other bikers may not be so understanding and let them go. The bikers continued towards the library. Sammy and Kyuzo picked up their pace and quickly joined the convoy out of the University. Shortly after leaving, they heard on the radio that the slaughter at the library had been discovered. They described Sammy and Kyuzo. The convoy sped up and got out of Ballarat as quickly as possible.

The continued into the wilderness and into the night. They passed through Beaufort, merely a collection of houses. Ararat was significantly larger, but still gave them no reason to stop. As they drew close to Stawell, the weather began to deteriorate. A light misty rain fell around them. A few kilometers past Stawell, the rain picked up in intensity. Kyuzo started feeling very uncomfortable. Dropping into astral briefly, he gave himself a terrible fright. They were about to drive into a mana storm!
May 14

GM (Mark):
The convoy pulled over at the side of the road. They checked their maps and saw the next shortest route around was a 290km detour, 235km of which was off the highway. They waited for a while to see if the storm would disepate. It didn’t shift one bit. The team decided that waiting for the storm was futile and proceeded back to the detour route. As soon as they left the highway in Ararat, the road conditions deteriorated significantly, making for difficult progress.

Half-way to Avoca, they encountered a rusted out wreck in the middle of the road. Drainage ditches on either side prevented them from driving around. The team looked around for any signs of an ambush but saw nothing. Kyuzo inspected the area astrally and spotted a small creature in the back of the vehicle. Kyuzo attempted to lift the vehicle off the road telekinetically. Unfortunately, he only suceeded in making the rusty suspension squeek loudly into the night. Sammy crept up on the vehicle and peered inside. A brown snake was sitting in the back seat, eyeing Sammy warily. Sammy put her hand in the vehicle to see if it was in neutral. The snake turned, interested in the hand. Sammy changed her mind and used her sword instead. The gear stick flopped to the side, not attached to anything. She gave the car a quick push to ensure it was movable. With another loud squeek, the vehicle shifted slightly. Beeta jumped out to assist with moving the car. Together they quickly and noisily pushed it off the road. The brown snake, agitated at the home invasion, fled the vehicle and slithered off into the wilderness. Saskia walked along side the convoy as they drove off, wary of any other threats that may present themselves. Nothing did. She hopped back in the SUV and they continued on.
Jun 23

GM (Mark) and Harry:
The convoy reached the ruins of Avoca around midnight. With fatigue setting in they found a place to sleep for the night. Sammy, Vladimir and Saskia took turns watching for trouble during the night. Thankfully, nothing went bump in the night. Early the next morning, they woke and got back on the road.

Also up in the morning was a mob of kangaroos. Fifty of the animals were lounging around the road, grazing and sunbathing. Kyuzo dropped into astral and floated above them. While up there, he spotted several kangaroos with an astral glow about them. Regardless, he dropped a lightning bolt in the middle of the mob. They were immediately spooked and fled off, away from the road.

St. Arnaud was as ruined as Avoca and merely served as a momentary change of scenery.

Between St. Arnaud and Murtoa, the vegetation became more dense. A large tree had fallen across the road, blocking it. Kyuzo threw a lightning bolt at it, blowing a small chunk out of it, but in no way removing it from their path. It did, however, show that the tree was hollow and rotting. Taking a chance, Vladimir took aim and drove directly at the damaged part of the tree. Chunks of wood splintered in all directions. Miraculously, the Shadow Van came out completely undamaged. A path now made, the convoy continued through.

May 15

GM (Mark):
GM’s note: after rereading the rules, the Shadow Van should have taken 7 damage (16 minus 9 resisted) instead of 0 damage (8 minus 9 resisted) when ramming the tree. I thought the Ramming Plate halved the damage to the ramming vehicle, but it only increases damage to the rammed target. Also, I’m fairly sure the Shadow Van doesn’t have a Ramming Plate.

Regardless, this is in no way meant to lessen your victory. The tree was significantly rotten. It’s more to say it won’t work the same way next time.
May 16

GM (Mark):
Murtoa was merely a couple of small farms. Horsham, was clearly the local hub. The team, having lost so much time taking the detour didn’t stop for a second. They continued, driving in shifts — or rather, autopiloting in shifts — to Adelaide. From Murray Bridge into Adelaide, it was clear that these towns were under Government jurisdiction. The roads were fully maintained and the drive was quick and pleasent.

They drove down to Lonsdale, calling Mr. Johnson to announce their arrival. Mr. Johnson indicated that their vehicles would be approved for entry into the Ausi manufacturing plant. The team were to unload the nexi and their reward would be waiting for them in the loading dock. In addition to the 30,000¥, Mr. Johnson explained that he needed their help with new security technology he was developing. A collection of weapons and armour would be available for them to field test.

They entered the loading dock and the doors closed behind them. The only feature in the room was a table with a number of suitcases on it. They unloaded the nexi into the loading area. Upon unloading the last nexus, the suitcases unlocked. The retrieved the suitcases, and quickly left the building. Inside the suitcases was everything as promised: 30,000¥, one sword, two heavy pistols, one grenade launcher, one submachine gun, one shotgun, two armour vests, and one armour jacket.

The team divided the new equipment and prepared for their journey back to Melbourne.
Jun 23

GM (Mark) and Proberton@googlewave.com:
Karma!
As always, please feel free to challenge any of my decisions.

Access Jack: 5
Located and stopped the Aztechnology truck.
Dramatic performance: haunting and hunting the Raditos.
Neutralized several Raditos single-handedly.
Almost recovered the delivery truck before it reached the University.
Good role playing: fought to the bitter end.

Beeta: 6
Infiltrated the Raditos’ library and neutralized a Radito.
Neutralized Raditos in a surprise attack.
Retrieved the nexi from the Raditos.
Removed the rusted wreck obstructing the road.
Delivered all 50 nexi to Ausi Security Electronics.
Survived.

Kyuzo: 8
Neutralized the Aztechnology truck driver.
Astrally scouted the University.
Assisting with infiltrating the library and a surprise attack.
Good role playing: putting honour before safety.
Retrieved the nexi from the Raditos.
Dispersed problematic kangaroos and assisted in removing a fallen tree obstructing the road.
Delivered all 50 nexi to Ausi Security Electronics.
Survived.

Sammy: 6
Infiltrated the library and silently neutralized a Radito.
Neutralized Raditos in a surprise attack.
Retrieved the nexi from the Raditos.
Removed the rusted wreck obstructing the road.
Delivered all 50 nexi to Ausi Security Electronics.
Survived.

Saskia: 6
Gathered information on the Raditos in Ballarat.
Good role playing: never a dull conversation.
Infiltrated the library and silently neutralized a Radito.
Retrieved the nexi from the Raditos.
Delivered all 50 nexi to Ausi Security Electronics.
Survived.

Vladimir: 6
Gathered information to ensure the escape from the University.
Neutralized Raditos in a surprise attack.
Retrieved the nexi from the Raditos.
Removed the fallen tree obstructing the road.
Delivered all 50 nexi to Ausi Security Electronics.
Survived.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
In addition to the above karma, I’m awarding another 2 karma points to Lee’s characters. He responsibly played Sammy and Vladimir in weeks when their players were absent. Lee deserves the karma points earned through his choices.

Bryan, on the other hand, loses 1 karma point for killing Sammy.
May 24

GM (Mark):
Saskia, unable to spend any more time away from work, caught a flight back to Melbourne. In Adelaide, the team stumbled on a lost soul, Constantine Hoax, and offered to take him back to Shadow Company. The trip back to Melbourne was fairly uneventful, at least until they encountered the mana storm again.

The storm still hadn’t shifted and the people of Horsham were becoming concerned. The storms were becoming more frequent and lasting longer. They couldn’t trade with Ararat and Ballarat as they usually did. Their food and water stocks were dwindling. The team talked with some of the town’s folk and discovered that the aborigines had some control over the mana storms, particularly the Bunjil tribe at Mokepilli (Halls Gap.)

The team agreed to do what they could to remove the storm. The town offered 25,000¥ in reward. A man who had attempted to drive through the storm described it as “giant invisible hail stones.” After being hit by one, he returned home. An aborigine, Duncan, agreed to protect the team while driving through the storm to Stawell.
May 24

GM (Mark):
Team went to the pub where all the action was. Spoke to the bartender. Heard Warrun-Derain’s story. Sobered him up in a dam.
May 24

GM (Mark):
Travelled to Mokepilli. Spoke with chief. Kyuzo arranged peace between the tribe and Warrun. Recruited Warrun’s new apprentice. Travelled to Wartook Lake.
Jun 24

Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:

Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Hoax found the boat. Vladimir fixed the boat. Beeta piloted the boat. Warrun located the staff. The apprentice identified the burrow.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Beeta attempted to retrieve the staff and almost lost his leg to a chameleon. The team commenced smackdown. Sammy skewered the first lizard. Kyuzo planted his sword as a flag in the second. Vladimir shot the flag, red-misting the beast beneath.
May 24

GM (Mark):
Beeta retrieved the staff and eggs and piloted the team back across the lake. They returned the staff and Warrun to the tribe. They started the ritual. The team drove back to Horsham and received their pay. They returned to Melbourne.
Jun 23

GM (Mark):
Karma!

Beeta: 2
Piloted the boat safely across the lake.
Eased the storm and saved Horsham.

Constantine Hoax: 2
Found the boat.
Eased the storm and saved Horsham.

Kyuzo: 2
Negotiated peace between the Bunjil people, Warrun, and Warrun’s guilt.
Eased the storm and saved Horsham.

Sammy: 2
Cleverly made the invisible lizards visible.
Eased the storm and saved Horsham.

Vladimir: 2
Quickly repaired the boat.
Eased the storm and saved Horsham.
May 24

GM (Mark):
Also, I’m granting my characters 8 karma each, the average the other characters have earned on this adventure.
Jun 30

GM (Mark):
Rewards

Realise that Horsham and the Bunjil people will remember these characters and will most likely assist them if they need help in future. Each character received 5,000¥ for saving Horsham. The team collected 4 wakurri eggs (awakened lizard), safely transported to Shadow Company. The team must decide what to do with these eggs very soon so that they are cared for correctly.

Contacts
The Bunjil tribe is now a contact: Talismonger Warrun-Derain, loyalty 3, connection 1.
The people of Horsham will also be helpful if you’re ever in the area.
May 25

Harry:
And Beeta got a rundown old boat…
May 25

GM (Mark):
…with a rusty hull. ;-)
May 25

Harry:
I said rundown… It sufficed then… I’m sure a little bit of effort will have it operational again, and no doubt cheaper than a new one!

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Demon in a Bottle

Shadowrun: Demon in a Bottle
Mar 25

GM (Harry) and Mark:

Topal hired you to act as body guards as he made a late night deal.

He led you through Gang territory, finally ending up outside Black’s Junk Yard.

After an Archon raid where Topol’s erstwhile business partner shot him dead, you fled the scene, with the item Topol was trying to sell/exchange/give away.

Mar 25

GM (Harry):
Going to ground to investigate it, you discovered it was a stone idol in a wooden box. The idol is just over 30 long and carved from a deep red stone. It’s eyes glow, and it holds a glowing pinkish ball to it’s chest. The carving is vaguely demon-shaped, and is etched with symbols and patterns that have become faint and worn almost flat, either by the ravages of time or from handling.
Mar 25

GM (Harry):
It is impossible to damage the idol in any way. (Even Troll Spittle) The stone cannot be scratched, dented, chipped or smashed.
Mar 25

GM (Harry) and Mark:
While in an Orange Goblin safehouse, the Gunslinger got a call from his Archon mate, informing you all that Archon was closing in. All your other contacts are giving you the cold shoulder as well.

You scarpered.

While on the run, a group of Magical Academics found you, and started attacking, until one went down, near death.

Mar 26

GM (Harry):

One of the Children of Sophocles told you about how the idol was brought back to Australia by one Simon Templemen. The Children didn’t know he was back from his expedition until Topol told them about his untimely death (From natural causes… which they thought was odd, as he was healthy when he left. Now that you think about it, Topol wasn’t all that healthy… and got worse over the few hours you new him.)

When asked for details on the idol, the Children knew nothing, however, they directed you to someone who may know.

They directed you to Trixy, an old fortune teller in Altona.

Trixy examined the idol, and thought it over.

She told you the only way to safely be rid of it was to have a Dragon destroy it.

She gave you the details of Geyswain, a young dragon who runs Lochlann Investments, a Real Estate firm.
Mar 25

Mark:
Mushroom Cloud’s second Beast Spirit is guarding us against heatstroke (and any other environmental hazards, accidents, and glitches.) Unfortunately, this doesn’t cover Lachlan who didn’t arrive with the rest of us.
Mar 25

Mark:
,The beasts struck fear into the hearts of two of the security guards (4 turns, and 2 turns respectively.) Mushroom Cloud fell into a trance and blasted one of the security guards from the inside out (7 damage.)

The beasts continued to terrorise the guards (6 turns, 5 turns, 7 turns, and 1 turns respectively.) Mushroom Cloud, now well in her trance, continued to magically pummel the guards (9 damage.) Two of the terrified guards fled into the elevator and pressed a button. Mushroom Cloud commanded the first beast to materialise in the elevator and press all of the buttons. The lift was already on the way down, but now has a long journey ahead of it. The second beast continued to torment the guard laying prone at his feet (4 turns.) Mushroom Cloud gave a guard a burst appendix (8 damage) and he collapsed on the ground, dead. The guard, prone infront of the second beast, curled up in pain (5 damage.)

The second beast glared at the last sane guard and filled him with dread (4 turns.) Mushroom Cloud, starting to feel the effects of Mana Drain, proceeded to chase down the fleeing guards with Mana Bolts (7 damage.) The remaining guards, fleeing and falling, were quickly dispatched.
Mar 25

Thommyawesome@googlewave.com and Proberton@googlewave.com:
The Jenkins family cordially invites you all to a memorial service this sunday for young master Howitzer, who leaves behind three orphaned children, Colt, Magnum and his youngest, Clyde Jenkins the 4th (or C4 to friends and family). They all sound like sons of a gun ;) specially that last one… sounds like a real blast
Mar 25

Mark:
I’m busy.
Mar 26

GM (Harry):
Regretfully, the Lochlann Center guards are having a fully catered family picnic this Sunday (at an undisclosed location.)

Working for a Dragon may have it’s cons, but some of the perks are worth it.

The day includes many games for the kids, free alcohol for the employees and parents, and an all you can eat buffet, with three kinds of spit roasted meat.
Mar 28

Proberton@googlewave.com, Mark and Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:
Two Manhunters at the nearest minion. Bang-bang!! Bang-bang!! Hold the lift!!
Mar 25

Proberton@googlewave.com and Lachlan.shield@googlewave.com:
serious, though, I think if everyone had Wave and we seriously used it for tactical discussions it might work a lot better. One Wave for Harry to use to distribute information, and another for us to exchange tactical information.
Agreed. One for the game, one for Harry, and one for us!
Lol!

Mar 25

GM (Harry):
That way, I don’t see your tactics….
Mar 26

GM (Harry):
It also makes it easier to distribute documents…
Mar 25

GM (Harry):

18 Earplug radios
18 Helmets
36 Plastic restraints
18 Remington Roomsweepers – Stun Gel rounds
18 Stun Batons
18 Armour Vests
Apr 1

Mark, GM (Harry) and 2 others:
The team was quickly knocked out by sleeping gas. They woke more than 24 hours later in Western General Hospital, most likely broke from hospital bills, surrounded by crazy people. We were congratulated for our speedy recovery thanks to a friendly magician. Their gear was returned, minus the idol.

A woman, Arleesh, met the team outside and informed them that Geyswain is disreputable. Arleesh is a great feathered serpent. Geyswain is a lesser dragon and is trying to learn how to use the idol, changing the shift of power in the world. Arleesh is going to attack Geyswain and demands the team assist her, given they essentially handed over the idol. Arleesh has only been awake in this world for about 10 months and needs help with how the world works. Arleesh suggested the team best help lest other dragons take offence at our giving power to a lesser dragon. The team is requested to meet at the Docklands at 1:00am.

Apr 1

Leeroylasvegas@googlewave.com:
note to self “stuffer shack” = “convinience store”
Apr 2

Mark and GM (Harry):
From the Docklands, the team returned to the Lachlann Building. After an attempt to storm the building showed no one was inside, assensing showed that mad spirits were circling the upper floors. The cameras were inactive too. A security guard at the reception desk looks like he’s been dead for years. The building looks a little more rundown than earlier today (But that might be due to the rampaging crazies that were here earlier). A second guard, dead for years, lays near the elevator, riddled with bullets.
Apr 1

Mark, GM (Harry) and Leeroylasvegas@googlewave.com:
The team descend the stairs and find an ominous, red stain at the bottom of the stairwell. The cameras are all dead. Mushroom Cloud’s beast found no life or automated defences. The team searched the lockers in the Locker Room and found a corpse, scratched by human nails. The beast discovered a single person eating something in the Computer Room. The Computer Room was locked with a palm scanner. The palm of the corpse in the Locker Room unlocked and opened the Computer Room door. The person looked up from feasting on what appeared to be human flesh, and quickly returned to his meal. Saskia put him out of his misery with a shot to the back of the head, the heartless bitch! Chester, the Shift Supervisor, was in the Break Room and ran madly at the team when they opened the door. The door was quickly closed in his face. Saskia drew her gun, asked someone to open the door, and expertly removed the threat. The rest of the floor was either trashed or useless.
Apr 1

Mark:
The team took the elevator, packed with dead wage slaves, to the penthouse. There they found a mountain of dead bodies, and felt cool moist air as though the building was exposed. Geyswain sat on the far side of the mountain of bodies, playing with a live body, tossing it in the air and catching it. Geyswain threw his “flesh toy” aside and stated that the team’s blood might be strong enough. The flesh toy arose and turned out to be Bloodwing. Geyswain appears very worn and aged. The two approached the team.

Geyswain launched a fireball into the middle of the team, roasting everyone except Gunny. The beast charged Geyswain and raked his claws across his chest. Geyswain barely noticed the strike. Bloodwing wanted to join the fight, but had no weapon. The team suspected that he did not appreciate being a flesh toy. Gunny attempted to punch her gun into one of Geyswain’s pus-filled welts, but he moved, causing her fist to slide off. Saskia fired two rounds, missing her target. Howitzer fired two explosive rounds at Geyswain. The first blew a chunk out of his shoulder (3 damage) and Howitzer ran seeking shelter in the elevator. Mushroom Cloud cast a mana bolt into the dragon, but was easily counterspelled. Axe King ran up and swung his axe neatly through the air in front of Geyswain.

Geyswain, bleeding and suffering from mana drain, began to flee into the cool desert. Harry brought sexy back and Arleesh decloaked in front of Geyswain. She failed to blast Geyswain with a powerbolt. The beast chased Geyswain, slicing into his tail (2 damage.) Bloodwing strode toward Geyswain, firing. The bullets hit home, the second drawing blood (3 damage.) By this point Geyswain was barely standing. Paul persued, blowing Geyswain another hole (5 damage.) Geyswain fell… on the beast.
Apr 1

Mark:
Arleesh turned into her dragon form, and took the idol from him. She encompesses it in a purple glow, then tosses the inert idol to the team. Gunny caught it. Bloodwing demanded the idol. Grissim, the captain who led Archon at the junk yard, landed on the roof. We quickly sold the idol to Bloodwing for ¥50,000. As the team was leaving, Grissam entered, placed a gun against Bloodwing to arrested him. Bloodwing produced documents stating he had diplomatic immunity.

The team split the loot, gaining ¥7,750 each (after hospital expenses.) Each team member gained 6 karma.
Apr 1

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