Monday, September 18, 2017

M-Com Mission Report - Operation: Weird Library

M-Com Campaign

With feelers and false arrangements made all over the globe and Carracci and Kasper both making false trips to lure out the remains of Hikozaemon's brainwashed Suidobashi Heavy Industries groups, the site of the last ritual seems to be secure. To take extra care, and to heighten the effect of the last ritual, Katkemat reasons that they have to set the last ritual at the site of the last race of the Triple Crown even as the Kentucky Derby festivities are opening up. This way they hope to use the double symbolic match to both the Kentucky Derby and the fact that this ritual is the end of their own campaign as well.

Towards this end, Carracci presents herself as a rich Italian woman seeking to rent out the empty race arena for herself and several friends. The presence of several Arachne Bioware faces and M-Com European operatives helps give the impression of very rich foreigners with a lot of protection on hand. The caretakers of the facility were initially doubtful as to the matter at hand, but Kasper had convinced M-Com that this was a mission where no amount of expense should be set aside and the amount of money provided for the sole use of the facility proved more than enough encouragement.

This left Katkemat and Thomas to prep the site for the ritual along with the other M-Com mystics, several of whom had been involved in all the previous three rituals, but others of whom where now fresh after their rest from the Jerusalem ritual. Thomas again performed the spell to make the Spooky Girl act as his proxy, once again casting it so well that she managed to manifest visually along with her spear. In addition to that, he managed a much more solid seclusion field to protect the sight of the ritual such that outsiders might not even be immediately aware that there was an on-going battle even if they wandered inside. They'd see and possibly interact with some illusory individuals all while the ritual continued just off the normal scale of reality.

Meanwhile, Carracci checked her sources. This led to a disturbing discovery that she kept turning up hints of Suidobashi Heavy Industries activity in the 1960s. At first this didn't surprise her much, given the length of time over which Hikozaemon had been stretching his plans, but then she started to notice a heavy amount of Suidobashi interest in Cuba circa 1962. Realizing that Hikozaemon was desperate enough to try to trigger a nuclear war to prevent M-Com's ritual from succeeding, they discussed their options.

At this point, Kasper revealed that he had been seeded operatives into the past to keep an eye on key historical events. Or, more precisely, that he'd had Violet MacNeil, the analyst whose chang shih infection was held in check by nanites, making the dangerous trips through the time channels to keep an eye on various locations and recruiting locals from the site and time that she felt would be useful and able to take on the problem at hand. Word was sent to her and while the world came close to nuclear war at the time, she managed to prevent Hikozaemon's scheme from working.

This problem answered, they started he ritual, pushing through the first six hours until they started feeling an immense sort of extradimensional pressure and became aware of some eldritch thing outside reality trying to close in and crush the world in its coils or folds or whatever else might describe its nature. Katkemat opted to leave the reins of the ritual over to Antonina Pajari and revealed that she had a plan.

Earlier in the year she had inflicted an assistant demon, taking the identity of self-help guru Malcolm Eyerson, with a sense of self and ego. This provided her, and Thomas, with a backdoor where they might attack the devourer indirectly and with minimal risk. Since this involved a potential mental battle as well as Thomas's destiny, she brought along Thomas and Lt. Daley, leaving the Spooky Girl to act as Thomas's conduit as planned.

They appeared in Eyerson's house as he was on the phone with someone whom he was most displeased with. Noting their arrival, he commanded the five metallic Adessi Golems on hand to attack them. Unfortunately, as they were all commanded by a single mind, they were easily brought to a halt by Lt. Daley's powerful telepathic presence as she finger tapped the rhythm to Cowboy Mouth's "Jenny Says" onto her rifle and shut down Adessi's multiple bodies, ramming the song through what was left of her human mind.

Thomas meanwhile lunged for Eyerson before he could call for security. The assistant demon might have made it to the button had not Katkemat called several spirits to create a force of wind blocking him from reach it. Thomas's chain sword whipped out and started tearing apart the assistant demon while also flooding into the multiverse-devourer beyond causing it react by reflexively releasing their planet. At the same time, Daley channeled the pain of this eldritch abomination straight into Adessi, finally ending the assassin's threat and causing the primary crystal holding her splintered soul to go dark. They picked up the phone and returned back to the site of the ritual as Katkemat gained help from several spirits to make the return trip amidst the psychic backlash of the devourer's pain and rage.

Upon gaining the phone, it didn't take long for Carracci to back-trace where Eyerson had been and then to identify several people he had been talking to, including the man on the other end of the phone when Eyerson had been finally destroyed. Identifying the other as Hikozaemon and tracking his position to Oradour-sur-Glane, France, they realized he had returned to the small proto-type shelter he had created using the force of the Nazi's atrocities on D-Day. Apparently the fact they had avoided leaving signs of their presence on that investigation bore fruit.

It also turned out that Kasper had rigged the facility with explosions just in case this ever did happen. With the magical shelter slightly outside of normal space, no one saw the explosion though M-Com officials were later able to confirm that Hikozaemon had been killed in the blast.

The ritual completed but the combined fatigue of some of the participants and the lack of skill of Antonina compared to Katkemat, with the addition of the devourer's thrashing, meant that the world experienced a plethora of clearly supernatural events which were impossible to cover up. The existence of the supernatural had been irrevocably brought into the open, but they now had a safe harbor to launch attacks against the devourer.

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