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A Loose Confederation of Evil Forum Index Game Log Issue 15: "It's All in Your Head"
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Fri Mar 03, 2006 6:13 am
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Post subject: Issue 15: "It's All in Your Head"
February 3, 2006

Short version:

The group, except for Trickster, discusses the Shadow, Dr. Severus, and ways to deal with them. A member of the Covenant appears, gives them some intel on Severus, and offers them their fondest desires if they take him out. Chronomaster, in exchange for a future favor, sends Dr. Science back in time, where he manages to steal Dr. Severus notes, after some interesting encounters with Wang and a giant brass head that he frees in exchange for future help, and then loses. Many puns about wangs and getting some head are made.

Long version:

In the outside world, things are rather chaotic at the moment. Heroes are being kept busy by alien invasions, the various villains freed from the Vault, etc. For example, Dread Knight, an escapee from the Vault, destroys much of Jersey City. Given that CADRE's heli-carrier was destroyed, it's likely that KRACKEN, the evil spy group that opposes CADRE, is taking some kind of action. In fact, it's likely that any number of groups with long-term plans are taking advantage of the chaos to further their goals.

The group, minus Trickster, brainstorms ways of dealing with the Shadow, since the information Dr. Severus gained is learned to be in the Justice Legion database, meaning the Shadow will eventually take advantage of it. Research reveals that the Shadow tends to go after two kinds of targets: Super-villains, at the behest of the Justice Legion, and powerful political and corporate figures, criminal figures, gangs, Tongs, etc., which appear to be his own specialty. He clearly is incredibly intelligent, never goes after an opponent without studying them thoroughly, and for the non-villain targets, he usually destroys their life before bringing them down. One possible way to go after him might be to determine who the Shadow is targeting, and set a trap. One possible Shadow target - Wilhelm Frederick Von Krupp, head of the Krupp family. Originally Prussian in origin, they are behind a powerful business.

The group looks into Dr. Severus as well. Interestingly, he is almost never photographed or caught on tape. Even stranger, no one in the media seems to think this is odd. When Dr. Severus is photographed, it's usually at a charity event, in some really goofy pose, which makes it hard for people to take him seriously. The group discusses how to lure him out - obviously stealing an object like the Goya paintings might do it. As they discuss the matter, the room darkens, and dark laughter is heard as a shadowy shape appears. The Covenant offers their assistance in dealing with Dr. Severus. Polaris asks what Dr. Severus' weaknesses are, and they reveal that he usually sends his dream-self out into the world, keeping his real body safe. So when he's photographed, those are occasions when he's really there? A wise observation. Dr. Science asks if there's a way to trace Dr. Severus back to his body. The figure gives him an oval black mirror and tell him to capture Severus' reflection in it. It also says that there's a monastery in Tibet on a copper-colored mountain, within which lies a silver key that opens walls of dimensions - getting that key would get Severus' attention. And that Dr. Severus' greatest weakness is that he cares for people. Polaris is given a crystal ball that they say can be used to contact them again. The Covenant promises wealth, their fondest desires, if they can eliminate Severus. Polaris says her fondest desire is the Shadow's death. The Covenent figure fades away with more of that dark laughter. Polaris notes that in some ways, the Shadow is a lot like the Covenant. The group speculates as to whether the Shadow trained with the Covenant, or was trained by someone from the Covenant, or was once a member of the Covenant. Interestingly, the full name of the group is the Covenant of the Silhouette.

More research into Dr. Severus, reveals he once wrote a paper on using bio-feedback techniques to allow people who are sleeping to share the same dream experience. He did an experiment where he went without sleep for seven days - the only one of his experiment to do so. There were four who went without sleep, four who got normal sleep, four who got interrupted sleep, and four who got random, interrupted sleep. He appears to have had a psychotic break as a result, spending some time in a mental hospital on thorazine. Also of interest, Dr. Severus has been petitioning for permission to do psychotherapy on patients at Dunwich Sanitarium, which is where all the villain crazies are locked up.

Dr. Science contacts the Chronomaster via Al the AI, for help in making a device that will interfere with Dr. Severus' abilities while he's in his dream state. Al reports that the Chronomaster can't help him, but he can take him someplace where Dr. Science can find what he needs. In return, he asks for a future favor to be negotiated later. Dr. Science agrees. Al tells him to go to the hanger, and gives him a lecture of the dangers of changing things too much in the past, such that he causes a divergent timeline. Polaris opts to stay behind, figuring that two people means double the chance of fucking things up in the past.

In the hanger, an object appears consisting of three concentric spheres, the outer two being transparent. A hatch opens, Dr. Science enters, the two outer spheres begin spinning in seemingly random directions, and the whole thing vanishes.

Dr. Science arrives in Central Park on January 10, 1972. He recalls that this is the year that Dr. Severus wrote his paper and went nuts. He goes to Empire State University, finds out where Dr. Severus lives, and goes there. He arrives at Dr. Severus' Brownstone in Greenwich Village and is let in by Dr. Severus' manservant, Wang. When Dr. Severus arrives, Dr. Science explains that he heard Dr. Severus was looking for subjects for an experiment. As it turns out, Dr. Severus is in need of someone right now. Dr. Severus has Dr. Science remove his shirt, writes astrological symbols on him with permanent marker, attaches wires to the symbols, and has him lie down in a sarcophagus full of salt water. He then asks Dr. Science to breathe in time with the red light. Dr. Science starts to feel calm. Dr. Severus begins fiddling with a machine. A voice calls Dr. Severus "master" and says that things aren't as they seem. Dr. Severus asks him to explain. It says this man isn't what he seems. It can't forsee his future. Oh. Too bad, then. Dr. Severus throws a switch, and a current goes through Jackson Stone's body - Dr. Science suspects that if Stone wasn't so relaxed, he'd be having an epileptic seizure. Dr. Science feels something sucking him down, and leaves the body entirely to avoid getting caught in it. He realizes the brass head in the room is speaking. It tells Severus that now the demon has left the body. Shall I master it for you? A demon? Certainly?

Dr. Science flees. The brass head speaks a word in a language he doesn't understand, and for a moment he feels something grasp at him. He deflects it and sees the image of an old man with the crown of a king and the eyes of a cat superimposed over the brass head. He tries to possess it. It feels like sinking into sewage, grasping for something slippery. It then tries to possess him as well. There is a struggle for several minutes before Dr. Science manages to get a tenuous hold of his opponent. He realizes this is an infinitely old being - the face he saw is just another facade it presents to the world. Dr. Science tries to hurt it, but it's like jello, so it's hard to tell if he's hurting it at all. It says they don't need to fight. You're here to kill my Master. Eventually. That suits me. What do you need to know? Dr. Science asks how to weaken Dr. Severus. It says Dr. Science is not capable of being taught those secrets. It would take years of training. It can help them when they attack Dr. Severus, though. It notes that Dr. Science must have a strong will to possess an earth elemental. It tells him that when he leaves, take the brass head - bury it, throw it in the ocean, anything, just get rid of it. If he does this, it gives him its word that it shall be there to help them the day they bring its vengeance to the descendant of Severus. It swears this thrice on its name. Dr. Science agrees. They disengage. Dr. Science waits for Dr. Severus to begin shutting down the machine then possesses Jackson Stone again. Severus gives him $100 and asks if he'll be back tomorrow. He says he will.

Later that evening, Dr. Science finds a spot where a bunch of people are doing heroin, leans up against the wall, and drugs Jackson Stone unconscious. He then returns to the brownstone, but finds himself blocked by a barrier. Searching around it, he finds a spot where the barrier is frayed. Pushing through, he finds Wang and, with difficulty, manages to possess him. He finds the brass head, which chuckles when he picks it up, and throws it out with some trash. Afterwards, again with difficulty, he erases Wang's memory of the event, then returns to Jackson Stone's body and waits for it to wake up. Then he returns to the garbage, but it appears to have been rifled through and the head is missing. Using Jackson Stone's knowledge, he interrogates the nearby street vendor and learns that a homeless guy with a black wool cap, ragged jeans, green army jacket with patches on the elbows, beard, etc., rifled through the garbage and left with a bag. Searching the areas that the homeless guy might frequent turns up nothing. He possesses Wang again and steals the good doctor's most recent notes (a journal, several rolls of EKG readings, and a manual explaining how the EKG and its extra needles works). Then he returns to the spheres.

He arrives back in the present to find a red-headed Polaris who greets him as "Science Master," and several goose-stepping guards that "Sieg Heil" him. Polaris asks if his mission was successful. Dr. Science looks uneasy and says he's not sure. He turns to go back to the sphere, at which point Polaris cracks up and pulls of her wig. Just kidding!

Researching the brass head reveals that Francis Bacon was said to have created a magical, talking brass head, the Templars are reported to worship a brass head named Baphomet, and there's one in Arabian Knights, among other instances.

I've held a fusion reactor together. What have you done lately?

"Hey, I don't eat souls, I kill people. There's a difference."
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