Sunday, 26 January 2014

Dark Heresy: Tattered Fates - Session 1 - Everything Goes Wrong

So after a very long break we're finally back with Dark Heresy again. After the rampage of last time in dealing with a rogue cardinal with the level of discretion and collateral damage only our group could be expected to cause, we were onto an actual campaign. For the first time as well, we were onto one which was (mostly) being taken from a book, with a few differences.

After arriving back at the Tricorn Palace and briefly re-enacting a scene from Hellsing to enter the Inquisitor's office, we arrived to find that he was missing. After reading a note stating to make themselves at home, Van Graff joined us via hologram. He had been called away to deal with other problems off-world, but informed us that our mission was to head to Locanthos and investigate the figure Seth the Voice. The only problem here would be finding transportation. Well, that and Cromwell. 

Determined to take advantage of Inquisitor Van Graff's absence, the tech priest was suddenly putting every effort he could into trying to retrieve booze from his cabinet. Knowing he had everything from some very expensive wines to the sort of stuff Bardason guzzled down by the barrel, Cromwell approached the cabinet and immediately received a shock. Apparently Van Graff knew the value of such substances, and as a result Cromwell almost lost one arm thanks to a void shield activating around the drinks the second he approached them. Having only grabbed the closest bottle, the one without the label, he had no idea if it consisted of the good stuff or the 41st millennium's equivalent of Toilet Duck. Just taking it for the moment, the group opted to quickly leave before they discovered what else he might have set up to protect the drinks. Suspicions ranged from high grade nerve gas to an elite Inquisitorial stormtrooper squad devoted to protecting the cabinet.

After very quickly stopping at the requisitions office within the fortress, shortly following GM Von Diego mocking us for not grabbing any weapons from Gunmetal, we soon arrived outside the space port. It's here we really saw the two sides of our group. 

As our psyker and arbitrator, Guilliman and Dwr, attempted to head for the departure office of the spaceport, Bardason drew up a sign. One which listed "LOOKING FOR ROGUE TRADER, WILL ACT AS ARMED MUSCLE" which he merrily held up like a hitchhiker. In less than a minute, he was promptly joined by Cromwell and a little after that Bardason was dragged off to the drunk tank. Less than an hour later he was released upon them realising he was not drunk, just extremely stupid. Cromwell meanwhile joined up with two women. Their bodies were found several days later.

Admittedly the other two didn't have too much luck, realising we are notably short of what was required for the cheapest craft heading there. They did receive a little more success upon stating "we're on a mission from the God-Emperor" and the captain of the craft, a small trading vessel, realising just how big Dwr's gun was. Managing to get the other two to join them minutes later, and boarded the craft. Settling in on a small cabin on the underdecks they prepared for a quiet arrival without too many problems, intending more for a stealthy approach rather than our usual nonsense.

They woke several days later, severely drugged and suffering from the after affects of tranquilisers. Their weapons were gone, Guilliman couldn't feel any connection to the warp, Cromwell and Bardason's bionics had been disabled and they were stark naked. Worse still, as they blearily got a sense of their surroundings, the group realised we were in a pit. One surrounded by spiked rings, with a lot of screaming people, panicking nearby. This unfortunately led one of our group trying to get answers, namely Cromwell. This was met with the expected results:

"Alright you lot, stop screaming and tell us where we are."

When this failed and they kept screaming, he promptly followed up that ingenious effort with:

"Don't make us come over there!"

While a few answered, also from the ship and saying their last memories were of sitting down to dinner, others were from entirely different vessels but did not recognise the place. The efforts to get answers from our captors by yelling "Oi! Heretics!" got no answer. Well, not the kind we wanted. Their response was to open up a number of gates and release the rancor a number of spindlemaws, vicious carnivores which were likely unstoppable in our current state.

Deciding to try and buy us some time, Bardason and eventually Dwr charged at several of the emerging monsters while trying to get the others to stay and fight. Despite being unarmed, this resulted in Bardason caving one's head in with his fists, Dwr no-selling it biting down on her arm and breaking its neck, and other inventive means. Notably dealing with one by choking it to death with the remains of one of the other dead creatures. Despite this, with more gates opening up and Guilliman's efforts to grab onto a very rusted ladder just out of reach, the duo were soon forced to fall back.

Eventually with Cromwell jumping and Guilliman on his shoulders, the psyker managed to grab onto the lowest rung of the ladder and drag it down. Racing to the top, the group, with no other survivors, kicking down the ladder towards the monsters to buy us a few moments. Racing towards the only door leading out of the pit's room, they slammed it shut behind them, locking the beasts inside. Before they did however, Guilliman spotted a lone figure with an elaborate heron mask covering his features, departing from an observational area overlooking the pit. 

The place beyond the pit proved to be little safer, apparently a decrepit mining facility filled with monsters, armed guards and the corpses of those who had come before. Worse still were other things. Chaos afflicted idols and daggers were found in one room, while shrieking winged creatures could be seen elsewhere. 
While the group had various forbidden knowledge talents covering everything from the Black Library to cult organizations, there was no cabal they knew of operating inside the Calixis sector. However, between the blood pits and the heron masked man, we were eventually able to piece together the identity of the organisation here: The Beast House. An outlawed group supplying gladiators and monsters to whatever noble could afford the price of their entertainment.

Unable to go in guns blazing as per usual, the group was forced to sneak about, hunting for what little equipment they could find. First a pair of armoured gauntlets and a laspistol taken from a long dead body, an Imperial Guard issue dagger, then a tool to reactivate some of Cromwell's better offensive capabilities. Nothing special, and with their best weapon being Cromwell's plasma pistol they weren't in any position to deal with any of the guards. As such when the group stumbled upon a small army of goons dealing with various caged monsters, they had to opt for something beyond blind murder for a change.

Somewhere between thirty to fifty heavily armed figures were moving the cages, with others besides them marching between them and a massive figure with a chain-axe carving up meat at a station close by. What soon drew their interest wasn't the various xenos creatures or weapons, but something of terran origin: An Imperial Guard survival pod in the middle of the massive ferrous cavern. One which had been set up and was clearly in operation.

Oh joy.

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