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Wednesday Night Icons: What do you do with four foreign students?
james_nicoll
You make them (part of?) the school patrol, of course and make the disaffected, cynical goth upperclass girl their mentor. I don't think she put in an appearance once, unless it was to offer a mocking laugh whenever Hari protested the injustice and pointless cruelty the administration turns a blind eye to.


Present were Glim, an alien Ambassador's kid. Hari from Kumarinadu is the one with a stick up his butt about rules; he exists in perpetual bafflement that people say the regulations are one thing and then act as though there's a secret set of rules everyone but Hari is in on. Rumspringa is a young angel, obsessed with protecting people even when they do not wish to be protected. Sari is from Brazil, had some kind of nightmarish poverty in her background and she may have been stuck in the Patrol to socialize her.

See the end of post for the character, unless I forget, in which case you're SOL.

As the lights go up, it's September 23rd and and Homecoming is looming (nobody in the patrol seems to have date-related scheduling conflicts). Hope Prep's football [1] team, the Hellions [2] will be facing Hope Prep's bitter rivals, whose name I don't seem to have recorded. Since both sides are schools for the empowered, the game is held in a pocket universe to limit the collateral damage if any of the kids get too ... excited.

1: Sari was outraged at what Canadians think "football" is.

2: And the angel was Deeply Concerned about the choice of team name.

One of the jocks (I think) decides to hassle the giant, super-strong alien about being an alien, suggesting that e.g. the aliens defecate from their mouths. Glim handles the situation with restraint, so the lucky jock gets to continue on without a life-altering injury.

The super-science teacher is the former Professor Pulse, Mr. Bailey. He's reformed or so the kids have been assured. Today he is kind of manic; he drops a pop quiz on the class (which both Hari and Glim and I think Sari blow. Hari and Glim are both sure they aced it). He's also handing out detentions like he will never get the change again. On a possibly related note, he looks younger than he usually does. One of the female students is sure Bailey is in love.

When the four Patrollers get to gym class, the showers are not working and there's another pop quiz. The choice is "work hard and stink for the next class, which is sure to raise the next class's teachers ire, or slack off and piss off the gym teacher. Hari opts for the first because the next teacher should understand the situation with the showers (and in fact "try hard and stink" seemed to be the general rule).

Hari looks around with ESP and spots the problem; rapidly breeding giant slugs down in the basement. Since the teachers seem oddly disinclined to do anything about it, the Patrol sneaks down, hoping to deal with the problem in time to get showers before the next class.

It turns out these are not your normal giant, rapidly breeding basement slugs but giant, rapidly breeding basement slugs with interesting tricks like being able to grow armour at will and mental zaps that pack quite a punch. Hari teleports up to super-science to grab some flame throwers. Bailey gives him a detention for popping in and then complains bitterly about how he isn't allowed to build flamethrowers any more and how if he just had two! he could take over the world . Hari leaves Bailey to his muttering and settles for getting slug poison from the staff (I forget who); it's just enough to really piss off a giant slug, which is how the group learns about the whole brain frying thing.

Hari uses his grasp of the intricacies of the Cerulian Light to give everyone a certain amount of mental defense while the others each use their own particular skills to wallop on the slugs. The slugs turn out to be pretty tough and can either shrug off attacks or breed faster than the quartet can take them down (Glim and Rumspringa could do damage but Hari and Sari had a hard time connecting hard enough). In the end, Hari blinded the slugs with the Cerulian Light while the angel broght the overhead power cables down, which turned out to do the trick.

The pipes are patched, the water is turned back on and everyone gets their shower, although the angel claims they don't need one; angels don't sweat, they glow....

Hari is happy with lunch because there's a simple vegetarian option. Sari is happy because nothing is rotting; it's the best meal she's ever had.

The teachers all seem oddly unconcerned about the slugs. As the day goes on, Bailey keeps doing very disturbing things for an ex-villain and the teachers blow the patrol off about that as well. Hari finally asks one if they are actually as obtuse as they appear to be or whether it's all a test. I don't recall that he got an answer.

In Arcane Philosophy, the school reporter asks the quarterback if it's true he's dating an alien. He is happy to announce his love for the feathered, tentacle-nosed girl who nobody particularly noticed before to the entire class. Interestingly, they very suddenly fell for each other while being tutored by Bailey. Dun dun dun!

Those who have detention go to detention. Hari is pleased to see that he has to pick up the garbage until he is told he cannot use powers (he was going to practice picking up groups of items). He submits to his assigned punishment and contemplates the Light while he gathers candy wrappers and pop tins.

At the run up to the football game, he and the rest of the patrol get drafted into a dodgeball game; the idea of letting kids hurls balls at each other horrifies the angel (who is a lot like any herding dog in some ways). Hari was looking forward to seeing if he could get a soccer ball above Mach 1 but sadly no powers were allowed. As it turned out, only Glim got tagged; his ball turned out to have pink paint in it.

You might ask if any of the jocks got punished for throwing paint on other students. Insert hollow laughter here. That said, the science club nerds got their own humiliations in another sessions and they were definitely planning their own vengeance. Ever wonder why so many nerds become villains? This is why.

While the patrol was wasting their time warning the school about Bailey, the nerds appear to have warned Bailey about things that Bailey did. This seems unlikely to produce useful results. The patrol makes a point of sitting near Bailey during the game, in part because they wanted to keep an eye on him and in part because nobody else wanted to sit near a muttering, twitching mad scientist and thanks to the dodgeball game, the patrol got last choice of seats.

During the game, interdimensional portals open and armoured troopers pour out. One pair pops out in front of Bailey and the kids; Hari off-handed pops the portal shut once the troopers are clear (they have a really graphic way that I have not come up with of teaching kids back home about not snapping portals shut on people). Since the plot required the kidnapping to work, Hari got an extra determination point to use later on. When the troopers took Bailey away, the patrol followed into what looked just like our gym.

It was the little details that were off, like the Cthuloid tiger football players. We are in Pryde High, Hope High's evil twin alternate dimension parallel.

During the kidnapping tussle, the angel life-drained one of the troopers; she took off her helmet (for some reason) and the kids could see she was Serena, or a version of Serena. Glim lets slip that he has a big crush on Serena, who he met while she was hazing him, but this is a different, evil (or eviler) Serena and he was happy to bound up to her to grab her by the throat and squeeze a little (happily this is a system where it is hard to kill people).

Serevil's companion grabs Glim and flies him and Serevil upwards; Hari decides this is an interesting idea and accelerates the guy with his TK. One soft crunch later and Serevil is out for the count. Her buddy takes more pounding to put down (he has his armour on) but after a life drain he's down too.

Hari grabs the portal key from the trooper.

Bailey has legged it during the fight. Hari heads off after him but realizing the only teleporter keeping the only key is a bad idea so he hands to the nearest person to safeguard. This turns out to be Glim, who promptly crushes the key.

Hari catches Bailey, who nails Hari with the pheromone. This doesn't stop Hari from taking his favourite teacher back for safe-keeping but it adds a lot new subtext to how Hari won't let the dreamy Mr. Bailey out of his sight.

Hari's attempt to teleport everyone home fails but what he succeeds in doing is teleporting everyone to the nearest Bailey, which turns out to be the original one from the Hope Prep universe. The tic-ridden mutterer turns out to be but a clone and since he was force grown, likely to suffer any number of fatal maladies. Saddened, Hari resolves to put clone Bailey into a pocket universe Kumarinadu uses instead of refrigeration; it's a universe without time so things never go back. Once there, clone Bailey will safe and unchanging in his current adorable state for eternity.

Bailey is freed from his cell but sadly lacks the tools to fix the key. The proper tools will be in his evil twin's laboratory. The problem is, his evil twin will also be in the laboratory....

(Yes, there were three Baileys by this point and I cannot guarantee there will not be more)

Hari

Hari of the Cerulean Light                   
Prowess      3       Intelligence 3                   
Coordination 6       Awareness    6
Strength     4       Wisdom       5

Stamina: 9
Determination: 3

ESP 6
Wizardry 5 (Cosmic, tied to Awareness): the Cerulean Light
A: Teleportation
B: Telekinesis
C: Create Light

Specialties
ESP 2
Wizardry 2
Slight of Hand 1

Aspects:

Qualities
Catch Phrase: “By the Great Light!”
Identity: Foreign Transfer Student
Motivation: Compassion

Challenges
Still a minor
Unreasonable expectations
Social: Raised in a Pocket Universe by Monks
Enemy: Lorn
Clique: Artists


Sari Tem

Prowess      5       Intelligence 3                   
Coordination 4       Awareness    4
Strength     3       Wisdom       4

Stamina: 7
Determination: 5

Strike (Slash/gadget) 4 
Blast 5

Acrobatics 2
Athletics
Weapon (blades) 3

Qualities:
Protects friends
Survivor

Challenges
Brooks no insult
Never backs down


Rumspringa

Prowess      7        Intelligence 5                    
Coordination 5        Awareness    5
Strength     5        Wisdom       6
Stamina 11

Powers
Telekinesis 6
Leaping 3
Invulnerability 4
Life Drain 5

Supersenses 7
Infrared
Radar
Sonar
Enhanced vision
Enhanced hearing
Extended vision
Extended hearing 

Qualities
Metahumans of tomorrow
Rigorous education
Urge to protect someone

Challenges
Minor
Unreasonable expectations
Naive


Glim

Prowess      6       Intelligence 4                  
Coordination 2       Awareness    3
Strength     8       Wisdom       4
Stamina 12

Invulnerability 5
Danger sense 4
Enhanced vision 2

Qualities
Choke 'em
Ambassador's son
Aims to please
Take one for the team

Challenges
Poor English
Clumsy


It's weird how common sensory powers are in the group.

Rumspringa's abilities parallel Hari's and since the angel clearly has more raw power so I am playing Hari as the one with finese and flexibility.

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It's weird how common sensory powers are in the group.

Mind you, it will be a pleasant change from years with a D&D group where none of the characters could spot hidden....

As far as stats go, 3 is average, 6 is max human. Poor Sari and poor Glim will be requiring tutoring, I think.

Our muscle is ot-nay oo-tay ight-bray, lacks situational awareness, doesn't have intuition working for him and he can lift a train over his head. I can see no way that this could go horribly wrong.

Your basic normal is all 3s except prowess, which will be a two. To put Sari in perspective, a trained soldier looks like this:

Prowess      4       Intelligence 3                  
Coordination 3       Awareness    3
Strength     4       Wisdom       3
Stamina 7


martial arts, military, weapons (guns).

And Sari is only 14 or 15, I think. She just needs to learn some more skills and maybe better nutrition will bump the Intelligence a little...



Edited at 2011-11-03 05:23 am (UTC)

By the way, Invulnerability 5 means he's immune to anything from an assault rifle on down. (He must have an interesting home planet...) I think you can get him with a machine gun, but really you need torpedoes or bombs or more to do damage to him. Maybe a wrecking ball...

Just looking at the writeup there, Sari's Starting Determination would be 5. (6 minus 1 or each power or attribute over 6, or minus 2 for certain versatile powers such as Wizardry).

6 minus 1 for each power... is what I meant to write.

I didn't give out enough Determination, in retrospect; remembering the session, there were at least twoo incidents where I should have given some out, and I didn't.

This is supposed to be a one night adventure--character choices have eliminated that, even though I cut out the humiliation of the science club (the players are supposed to be involved, after the dodgeball game).

Expect wild improv next time.

Our group couldn't role play ordering a cup of coffee in just one session!

Sounds like a subplot for next session: Jade decides to take the patrol out for their first cups of coffee!

I think only Sari is likely to have had one.

Coffee was cultivated in Southern India after the 9th century, centuries after Hari's forefathers accidentally inundated Puhar while experimenting with the Cerulian Light and the second Master and his acolytes legged it to the pocket universe of Kumarinadu.

Even tea seems to have been a Northern and Eastern thing in India, not a southern thing when Puhar went away so he may never have encountered that either.



Edited at 2011-11-03 05:44 pm (UTC)

It would amuse me if caffeine was part of the evil plan to inhibit magical powers and connection to the Great Power Source: that is, you take caffeine, you can't use Hari's brand of Wizardry.

Not that I'm suggesting that's what you do, but it would amuse me. He could try coffee and enjoy the fact that it lets him work longer hours, right up until he discovers he can't work magic. Oh, the tragedy! How long will it last?

The established failure mode for the Cerulian Light isn't that it stops working but that it starts working far too well.

I think Hari commented at once point that the Light is inexhaustable and infinite but his ability to channel it is definitely limited. I'm thinking Pickering A run through a ten amp fuse....

So "on coffee" = "power overload"?

That would be my take.

If it just was a power up, he'd be tempted to carry a can of Jolt with him.




Edited at 2011-11-04 06:24 am (UTC)

Sounds like a subplot for next session: Jade decides to take the patrol out for their first cups of coffee!

Player characters spending some time in a quiet controlled environment - yes, nothing could possibly go wrong!

Remind me to tell the story of the time our characters in another campaign had a quiet conversation with a demon over coffee in a Tim Hortons.

Edited at 2011-11-04 06:30 am (UTC)

Hey, that was a non-violent resolution, as I recall.

We've had several campaigns where coffee shops played an important role. Ah, the Circle Perk.

Edited at 2012-03-23 09:22 pm (UTC)

Oh, and yes, "part of the school patrol."

They haven't actually gone on patrol yet: they have to have the courses (there are three, and at the end of every term you need to prove that your patrol group has achieved a certain level of mastery--it's set up that way so you can learn to cover for each other's weaknesses; being on the school patrol involves less certification than becoming a lifeguard) and they've had one. I think they'll actually get to go on patrol near Hallowe'en, so it'll be part of the Hallowe'en storyline.

I look forward to more of Jade's jaundicd view of the school.

What's Jade's power/skill set?

Added to my list of Hope Prep characters (currently set to friends only).

Essentially: Powers involving plasma control and teleportation. But she's an artist, really!

Added to my list of Hope Prep characters (currently set to friends only).

WHere is this?

NPCs are now here. (The list got long enough that I split PCs and NPCs.)

Oh...I need to bring out Serena's Halifax connection. How best to do that...? A visit from Tectonic?

This seems to have been a more High School Musical session than usual?

>Homecoming is looming

"Everyone was there, it was to-tally cool / I was so excited, I almost wet my jeans..."

>blinded the slugs with the Cerulian Light

"Wrapped up like a douche, another slugger in the night"

>although the angel claims they don't need one; angels don't sweat, they glow....

(where do they THINK holy water comes from, anyway?)

>the school reporter asks the quarterback if it's true he's dating an alien

"Uh-huhhh." "What's she like?" "REEEEAL different!" "By the way, where'd you meet her?" "I was nude sunbathing on my pa-ti-o and she was checkin' me out from her UFO..."

>it adds a lot new subtext to how Hari won't let the dreamy Mr. Bailey out of his sight.

"...I would wriiite across the sky in le-e-tters..."

>(Yes, there were three Baileys by this point and I cannot guarantee there will not be more)

"there's always two of me just a-hangin' ro-ound"

--Dave, Julie Brown as RPG prophet

also, "Cerulian" or "Cerulean"? We need to know to properly design next season's gym uniforms.

--Dave

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