Caught Between Worlds
8th Entry James
Compared to my last entry this one will be brief. My life is currently in great jeopardy and time is not in abundance. In fact all of my future journal entries will be slightly different but it is safer if I don’t elaborate on that for now. Our investigation turned out to be fruitful but that might also have been our doom…
There are now two immediate threats to my life, first is a wild pack of psychotic killers, and the other is a very large group of mutated cannibals. Yes “The Crazies” have been upgraded to psychotic killers. Too many things have happened now, these people are not part of the world I’m from any more and I fear that if they read this journal they will turn on me. I will be hiding some of the text so that I can try to keep documenting everything that happens.
After my evening of talks with the restaurant owner I went back to my rooms and caught a few hours of sleep before starting out on a long day of negotiations. I did have a fairly unusual dream, but it was not the first one I have had in this world so it was not altogether surprising. I talked with many people, from the supplier merchants to the multitudes on the street to enact my plan to put undue pressure on the business. The rest of the group spent their day snooping around, and talking to people who eat at the Pot. They discovered several things like the odd behavior of some of the local people. They implied that it was due to eating at the Pot, but I don’t think they have spent enough time talking with people here in this world; most of them are odd in some way. I have a few more thoughts on this but I will skip them for now. We debriefed in the evening with a nice meal, the oddity of the meal was actually the Britt as she ravenously consumed the least cooked piece of meat I have ever seen served. To each their own, moving on…p. When the evening came around ROTC, Stoner, and I moved into positions around the store to watch for the delivery that I saw the first night. That evening was quiet for me except that the delivery wagon was tipped off somehow. I saw a little stick with a red cloth poked out the window, waved, and pulled back in. Following that the delivery wagon turned away and we missed our opportunity. ROTC and Stoner apparently had a run in with a crazed mugger. Some dastardly ruffian with a blowgun attacked ROTC from the roof top. Stoner came it his rescue by sneaking up behind the fiend and pushing him off the roof, or something. The next morning they recounted the tale as an obvious sign that we were getting closer to the truth.
Okay, seriously, they described the guy as huge, unnaturally strong, long claws, with a snout and fangs. Yet it ambushes ROTC from stealth with a blowgun? The only thing believable there is the stealth part, after all who wants to go toe-to-toe with a man carrying a three-and-a-half-foot piece of sharpened steel with a handle attached? Ambushing the ambusher was a spot of good tactics though; I have to say well played to that. Now the insanity, so imagine, you are a capable person, you get mugged, you fight back and accidently kill your attacker (accident defined as gaping chest wound left by your giant sword, and multiple stab wounds in the back that your buddy left,) what would you do next? Naturally you would search the body for “clues,” and coin, he’s dead after all, oh and then of course throw the body down the closest sewer. The general ranting and shouting full of expletives have been removed from this section. So now a couple of college kids are full on killers with no hesitation around little things like rifling dead bodies, and hiding the corpse. Did I miss something? I know I’ve been pointing out their psychological break downs before but this is a whole new level. Oh and the best part, the huge clawed & fanged creature turned out to just be a man once he lay dead in the alley. I guess we will never know if they were actually attacked or if they just saw some coin glinting in the moon light.
While we were meeting to catch up on the night below our employer’s daughter stopped by our breakfast table and delivered several maps to us. She pointed out a few things, something about changes being made. Everyone was very certain we were on the right track but we needed the final proof! So we commenced to stalking the delivery wagon back to where it picked up its deliveries. We followed it into one of the slum districts, I can not remember the exact name but it is distinctly marked “Do not come back here” on my map. So we came to an old sewer entrance to see the wagon positioned to be loaded. There was a brief discussion on what to do, which should have been a bit longer. Fortunately Capitalism gives me the advantage of being able to stay back far enough not to draw attention but the ability close that gap quickly, so my position was easy. Sneaky Stoner stayed close to the wagon after doing a little freeform sabotage to make sure it wouldn’t go anywhere. The Britt, ROTC, and Baseball Goth stuck together and out of sight. Nature girl however proved she was not in her element. Not so sneaky Nature girl and loud snarling wolf dog positioned themselves strategically away from everyone else and close to the wagon. So when the wagoneer and the guy supervising the loading stepped out of the sewer entrance and started loading the barrels bound of The Pot, surprise left our book of tactics. Now on an up note, we did effectively stop the transport of soup/stew to the store. And through bad circumstance Snap was close to the barrel when it was opened and immediately tasted it. He confirmed our worst fears as he informed us that the stew taste of human. This enraged the entire party and with clear conviction we advanced on the sewer entrance to stop these horrible human stew pedaling… cooks. Even loud snarling wolf dog was incensed at the thought of someone cooking humans.
So WTF, Snap makes some offhand comment about the stew tasting like human and everyone believes him?!!? I’m his only supporter, everyone else has threatened or even attempted to kill him, and now he is a trustworthy source of info that we will use to decide the fate of other humans? WHAT?!!? I wish, oh how I wish I was making this up, after I questioned Snap as a source, Stoner looked me straight in the eye and said, “How about the way the dog is acting?” Right, so ignoring the creature that pleased himself with the mule before eating it, we should decide where or not to kill people based on how the dog acts. Maybe next time we’ll consult snails before we decide to slaughter a group of people and coincidently take all of their belongings.
So as we advanced into the sewer I strategically held the rear guard. We quickly determined the direction the despicable culinary agents went and moved up to a closed room. ROTC went in first followed by Stoner. They quickly crossed the room to engage a hooded villain who was waiving his/its hands about madly. Suddenly after a potentially scarring flesh wound grievously delivered to ROTC, he simply froze. This put Stoner in a particularly bad position, partially surrounded with no backup. Baseball Goth was very busy waiving his hands around producing sparkler like effects which seemed to startle two of our attack-ees. I moved toward one of the bunny-esk creatures and swiftly knocked it unconscious to remove the threat to the rest of the group. Turning quickly I charged in the fray that was going poorly for the rest of the group. Within seconds of my arrival the victims of the others were vanquished.
Psychotic fucking killers! We charge into someone’s home, business, whatever, 6 armed & armored charging in with weapons drawn. These people were probably just trying to defend themselves from attack, and here we are ganging up on them while they were just working! These lunatics will kill anyone if the price is right and they are doing “good.”
After a brief rest and discussion about our duty to stop this horrible stew cooking blight on this fair and just town, we decided to continue on deeper into the sewer. As we moved down the next hall everyone tensed and then charged into the next room to lay waste to anyone else involved in marketing, or packaging stew. The scene revealed was shocking, several guard like creatures at the front of the room, a therapeutic stone slab bed sized for a child & occupied, with hooded figures around the bed. The group moved through the room with lethal efficiency and soon only the child with the bad back and one lone hood figure were left. I advanced to the back of the room as the lone figure moved a lever which began lowering the entire bed/center piece down. Stoner and the Britt both moved onto the platform with the poor helpless child and started to free her from an assuredly horrible fate. I moved off the platform to address the last man standing and to see if I could remove the sense of urgency from the situation. It took several of us to move the lever back into the “raise” position and while it was traveling down a grisly scene was unveiled below us. Hoards of creatures were filling the cavern below where we were. One particularly irate individual was upset about the platform not coming down the whole way and began throwing explosives at us.
At this point two decisions were made: one – we didn’t really need to shut down the entire stew cooking operation; two – what we had already done was clearly enough and it was time to leave. I was inclined to agree but my options were limited as I was hanging from fragments of the floor with one hand. Fortunately endurance is one of my strong suits as I had to wait for everyone else to devise a plan to pull my up on the other side of the widening whole. They finally pulled me up and we went to make our exit only to see Snap scurry back into the room and slam the door shut. Apparently the way out was blocked by more of the things from below.