Better Off Dying

210: Exit Stage Left
Episode 210

Neal and Jay stay outside of court.
Something is about to happen with the statue, but it’s unclear what.
MaxXx stomps around the art museum on “patrol.”
Henry and Seanan go to court.
Art exhibit is “art inspired by antiquity.”
A theme of supernatural ends. Curated by Lady Davis.
They discuss how odd this is.

Neal and Jay are visible outside.
Beckett walks up to Neal. He asks about the pending apocalypse.
Beckett tells the story of the Pale Woman statue.
They suggest to talk to Henry Thurston.
Beckett offers to do them a favor.
Shannon apologizes to Henry in court, and he now has 2 Status.
Beckett introduces himself and talks to Seanan in a corner.

Melanie walks up to Neal.
Mentions that she saw Michael Giovanni talking to a woman that appears to be a Setite.
Her eyes turned into a snake’s, and Giovanni was locked still.
She drove a dark brown Cadillac Seville 1990ish.

Henry approaches Prince Schreck. He meets with her in her office, and the neonates sit near to the Prince.
Prince agrees to have Beckett take the statue off their hands.
Beckett walks out and tells Neal. Seanan and Henry reemerge and join the coterie, and they discuss how to enter the History Museum.
They show Beckett to the exhibit room, when the guard that was controlled by the statue before makes his way back to the room to see what’s happening.
Neal gives him the finger as well.
Beckett boxes up the statue, puts it into a truck, and it takes off.
Beckett warns them that something is wrong with Lady Davis.

Head back to court. Everyone goes inside.
Joey and Vivian, Davis and Paul Gerard, Melanie and Spider.
Henry goes over to Prince to say the job’s done. Joey doesn’t know.

Melanie is accused of diablerie.
Neal says that Jay can do this.
Spider asks if they want to take this step, and they decide to talk about it for a bit.
“I don’t like her. She’s twitchy.” – Jay
She has no black streaks.
They decide to approach the Prince.

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209: Shattered Faith
Episode 209

The coterie plans a stakeout for right before dawn.
Neal looks for greenery to hide in.
MaxXx offers to be bait. After some discussion, Neal agrees to let MaxXx be bait. She agreed to keep the phone line open.
Neal is in the shadows behind the treeline between properties. (4 sux)
MaxXx is walking up and down the street.
Jay is following in Obfuscate.
Henry is hiding in the back seat near the footwell. (0 sux).
Seanan is in the rented house with binoculars.
Police car pulls MaxXx over.
Neal hears window breaking.
Thin man, wearing Cleveland Indians gear. Not trained. Neal jumps him and knocks him out.
Seanan tells Frank to call his new Police contact about the crazy fanatics.
MaxXx argues with the hunters in the car.
Jay is on overwatch.
Neal tracks a man inside the house. Sees it is Sullivan Dane. He brandishes his cross, and nothing happens.
MaxXx convinces the cop that they are under the possession of a demonic influence. She stops him from committing suicide.
Neal notices that a teenage girl is standing at the top of the stairs.
The girl talks Dane down, and he collapses.
They take all the hunters to the house.
Dane reveals that they hacked into the SwordofCaine.org and found out that the statue could be one of the Antediluvians.
Dane gives up the rest of the cell, and starts to pray.
They decide to have one of the hunters shoot MaxXx and kill her. Frank and Jay stay. Everyone else comes with Dane. Dane prays to himself.
Neal takes the finger without touching it.
MaxXx yells “Mom, I love you, I’m sorry” before the Dominated hunter shoots her in the head.
MaxXx and Jay are taken to the morgue.
Spider takes Dane and the other two hunters.
Henry goes into the trunk.
Seanan goes into the sewers and hears rave music before going to sleep.
Neal goes to Lake Erie and melds into the water.

FRIDAY
Morgue: MaxXx and Jay.
Jay has a blanket over his head. Can hear people nearby.
He sneaks and Obfuscates.
Sees a slab marked “S. Maxcy.”
Seanan wakes up. Much dirtier. Still hears rave music. iPod plugged into a stand.
“Warehouse Mix: DJ Gray.”
Henry wakes up in the trunk.
Neal pops the trunk open after saying he doesn’t see the car.
Frank helps to get the rest of the crew out of the morgue.
Mistaken paperwork; MaxXx was “cremated.”
Seanan’s clothes are burned.
All get ready for court.
Neal keeps the finger. Decide not to tell anyone about the finger.

PRE-COURT
Neal avoids the main floor. Primarily looking for Spider.
Dane died of a heart attack. Spider has the body on ice nearby.
Mentions Beckett in town and that Michael Giovanni wants to talk to him.

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208: A House Call
Episode 208
  • It takes a while, but MaxXx goes to rent a VHS player from a video store.
  • MaxXx feeds from her Herd. Neal hooks up the VHS player.
  • They watch the delivery tape. Four people in normal clothes. They unpack the statue and leave. It looks legitimate, just weird.
  • MaxXx asks Neal about Beckett.
  • MaxXx tells the rest of the coterie what happened at the museum.
  • They believe they need to destroy the statue.
  • They watch the tape of the statue when the coterie tried to acquire it.
  • It was taped over another tape, and they watch a group of people trying to attack the delivery people. Two of them are on fire, one after the camera turns white. The attackers retreat, and they see that one of the people is Fadil.
  • The timestamp on the assault is one day after the delivery.
  • Beckett has been hunting for the statue for a long time.
  • Chernkov shows up at the Warehouse.
  • They ask about Beckett. Chernkov doesn’t know.
  • Chernkov tells them a legend about a woman in white that causes problems where ever is shows up. San Francisco in the 19th century, New York a few decades ago.
  • Nosferatu entrance in Lorain was collapsed. No one knows what happened to them.
  • Hunters came back a couple of weeks ago, and did not contact the Catholic Church.
  • Chernkov can move the statue. The coterie consider leaving. They decide to wait until after court.
  • They discuss whether the statue is even their problem.
  • MaxXx gets some mysterious texts and storms out.
  • MAxXx has her mortal mother threatened.
  • Neal gets a pair of tongs from the kitchen.
  • MaxXx drives off to her home.
  • Neal talks to animals to get a message to Beckett.
  • They recall that the hunters went to the boarding houses near the convent two nights ago.
  • When she arrives, there are fire engines, police cars, and a lot of confused people.
    From what MaxXx can see, her family is fine.
  • Frank looks into the convent tax records. He finds a lot of ways that they could improve their money.
  • MaxXx finds a laptop in George’s apartment and takes it with her.
  • Frank sees that a large donation was made to the convent, and was rejected. Two weeks ago.
  • MaxXx shows back up with a laptop and starts messing with it. She gets into the Gmail account.
  • Jay tries to talk to her. She ignores him. Frank charms her, and she loosens up.
  • They share information.
  • Discussion about trying to make a charitable donation to the convent to get through to the hunters.
  • They call Spider. He asks about the history museum, and he says there’s nothing going on with the convent.
  • They decide to go to the convent.
  • Mother Superior Mary Ingham.
  • holyroller42@gmail.com – offers to give financial incentive to the nuns for support.
  • Edwina Chavez is the financial support. Investment banker specializing in charitable organizations. Took a leave of absence two weeks ago.
  • The Mother Superior doesn’t recognize “the authority” of the hunter group.
  • “The Archbishop no longer listens to us. – S.D.”
  • They decide to cancel
  • Dane’s group broke off from the Church.
  • Dane has a surprisingly good grasp of Internet security, unlike the rest of his group.
  • MaxXx gets very anxious and wants to deal with the hunters tonight.
  • OOC: Some confusion on whether Sullivan was talking to the coterie. He was before the war, but not after.
  • MaxXx shows the picture that the mortals have. And she mentions that they’re after her mortal family.
  • Mother, father, sister. Accountant and legal aide.
  • Neal talks about faking MaxXx’s death.
  • Neal puts the new security group to protect MaxXx’s house. Maxcy house. They monitor frequency until morning. They are to work covertly.
  • They arrive, one cop car left. Fire engine and other cops left. One cop in the car, one in the house.
  • Frank chats up the cop. 7 successes. Mentions that the family got some threatening religious. Also mentions that the police have been looking for religious nuts inside as well. They think MaxXx is part of a cult. Frank played up the anti-religious sentiment.
  • Frank goes back to tell the coterie. He buys a nearby house for the security team.
  • They stake the house out tonight. MaxXx decides to wear a ski mask. Neal summons his dogs.
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207: Natural History
Episode 207

Wednesday

  • MaxXx looks for George Stantos on the Internet. Cleveland resident, sports fan, online religion groups, “red state” opinions. Facebook.
  • Looks for cell phone records. Apartment in East Cleveland. Shitty flip phone with E911 GPS.
  • Goes to talk to Jay about the hunters and what they know.

History Museum

  • Go to visit the statue at the natural history museum. Take Henry and Sean along.
  • Old dried blood on the side of one camera. Appears to be an old ward vs Kindred, but is broken. Kindred with limited resources put this here a while back.
  • MaxXx botches lifting the Tremere up. They run to avoid the guard noticing them. They try again and get him up.
  • Seanan tastes the blood of the Ward. Discovers that it is Kindred blood of moderate Generation. Been here about 1-2 weeks. Has committed diablerie.
  • They decide to climb the trees after hearing some animal noises from the back. They are now on the roof. Rip the hatch open, but Jay keeps it silent.
  • Statue is from Carthage. Beckett has been looking for some like this for some time. Lots of bad rumors associated with it.
  • Find the “Ashes of Carthage” exhibit. They feel palpable energy entering the room, and Jay sees the shadows moving.
  • Seanan reads the aura of the statue. He theorizes that it has trapped someone inside. That person is probably very old. Also very, very angry.
  • Guard comes in, and kneels down in front of the statue, starts to mutter. Seanan records some of the muttering.
  • Guard touches the statue, and blood oozes out of his pores. MaxXx tries to get his attention with Awe, but he’s enraptured by the statue.
  • MaxXx goes to restrain him, and uses his own clothes to restrain him.
  • Seanan is compelled to touch the statue, but Jay uses Celerity to knock him out of the way.
  • It uses some form of Dominate.
  • Seanan warns them not to look at the statue. MaxXx immediately looks, and is compelled to touch the statue. Jay knocks her hand away, and she nearly frenzies on him.
  • MaxXx complains about the Tremere.
  • They go to the security room, swipes the VHS tapes from tonight, and replaces them with blank tapes.
  • Original finger robbery tape missing. Tape of original arrival of statue taken by MaxXx. They blow the fuse and head out.
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Nearly A Disaster
Episode 206
  • Court in two nights.
  • Go to Shooters (a local sports bar/pool hall) to meet Reggie.
  • Reggie’s nervous. Afraid for his life. Nobody else seems interested in their conversation, however. He asks to talk outside (after Neal Quells him).
  • Reggie tries to say he was paid to look the other way by people that said they were Coffer’s “church group.”
  • Reggie is really working with the Society of Leopold. Only 3-4 that he knows of. Reggie pees himself a little at how intimidating Neal is.
  • Neal tells him to call the Society of Leopold and tell them that he’s out. Set up a meeting in Lincoln Park in two hours from now, but Reggie can skip town now. Coterie agrees to help.
  • Seanan gets a message from Primogen: Finger from salt statue broken off in museum break-in a week ago.
  • Stake out the park. A few close calls, but they ultimately arrange the contact with “Reggie” (really Jay in disguise). Two men: one with ball cap, one bald (with True Faith).
  • “Reggie” gives them a package of people asking about Coffer. Written to implicate Fadil and the Setites.
  • “Georgy” (George Stantos) with ballcap. One of the hunters with Dane.
  • Michael — bald, simple, but has some faith.
  • Georgy shows “Reggie” the finger of the statue, claiming that it gave them visions.
  • The hunters leave.
  • Neal summons pigeons, but they try to eat Neal.
  • Despite the pigeons, Neal follows them to a house just north of St. Francis Convent.
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A Little Light Hacking
Episode 205
  • Joey investigating police problems on his end.
  • MaxXx and Jay talk about Dane and look into Setites instead.
  • MaxXx tries to break into the III website.
  • Encrypted email messages on the server. Archbishop Moran tells Fadil (Serpent of the Light) to infiltrate Cleveland. She calls Spider, and tells him. Then she calls Joey.
  • Joey is concerned that the Media might also be infiltrated. She asks Henry. They go to Rapture.
  • At Rapture, they run into Arthur. He says that he will have Shannon apologize at the next gathering. In exchange, he asks Henry to make sure Gangrel is not a diablorist for Lady Davis.
  • Ask if Arthur has had any problem with his Media contacts. His contact in the Plain Dealer was killed last night (in the same warehouse event).
  • Spider deputizes MaxXx and the coterie to look into this.
  • Jay asks around with his junkie contacts. Hears stories of inhuman vampires feeding off the local homeless. Spider helps.
  • MaxXx tries to find the physical computer that the “Setite” website was on. It is located in Parma Heights. MaxXx tells Spider.
  • MaxXx tries to brute-force the email address for Archbishop Moran. Tries to attack swordofcaine.org. Gets as far as the file directory before someone tries to get control of her computer.
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Burn Baby Burn
Episode 204
  • Snapchat back to Neal. He’s back. He’s not alone. Sabbat?
  • MaxXx and Jay come in to discuss. They sneak back to the bike and head back to the Warehouse.
  • Meet with Spider at Warehouse. They give him the details. Spider wants, and tells them to give him a call.
  • Call Melaine. Tell her to be ready.
  • They make plans to keep tabs on the warehouse, so they can nab Fadil.
  • They set up wireless cameras around the warehouse – four cameras places, streaming to the phone.
  • Three car tail, with Jay as the anchor. Security service covers half an hour before and after.
  • Next evening, Setite/Sabbat warehouse is on fire. MaxXx calls the fire department.
  • 911 system has been down for the past hour, but they will get trucks there as soon as possible.
  • Ten year old van, Ford, license plate is blah blah blah.
  • Security company calls back — agents have been killed.
  • 911 operator shot.
  • Jay investigates the morgue. Finds bullet fragments. Takes a spread of pills. Makes his way out.
  • Psychic impressions from the bullet: See Sullivan Dane shoot the security guards. No sense of terror from him.
  • Joey calls — Coffer’s badge left on the badge of a 911 operator that was in Joey’s employ. Someone is using Coffer’s files.
  • Put a passing student into a drawer.
  • Sees “Smith” shoot the 911 operator. Fake cop uniform. Possibly Latino. Jay gets his aura, but not enough to read it. About an hour before the assault on the warehouse.
  • They get out of the morgue.
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Slaves
Episode 203

And we’re all just slaves under stricter masters
We’re all slaves under stricter masters
We’re slaves.
- Bad Religion, “Slaves”

DOWNTIMES

  • Henry and Frank, talking about Henry’s sire.
    • She’s angry that he doesn’t remember her; he’s mad that she’s trying to kill him.
    • Henry asks Frank to look into it.
    • Asks if the rest of the coterie should know — Henry agrees.
  • Tremere Chantry
    • Seanan goes to the chantry to look into Fadil Massri as a blood magician.
    • Salt statue that’s come into the possession of the Cleveland Museum of Art. It’s Cathaginian.
    • The Archbishop of Cleveland (not a Kindred pawn) is antsy, and claims that Sullivan Dane is continuing to poke his nose into local business. How is he getting his information?
  • MaxXx freaks out on a customer, and Jay sneaks out to score drug-laden blood.
  • Elliotte is warming up to Frank, and tells Frank about MaxXx freaking out on a customer.

MAIN EVENT

  • Frank and Henry want to talk to the coterie about his sire.
  • “Didn’t that sire stick you in that steamer trunk?”
  • Henry will play ignorant, while Frank finds out more. Neal wants to play it straight.
  • Frank wants to know what he’s digging up.
  • She raised him up to be a stage magician for the better part of a year. It was purely business. He didn’t notice any romantic intents.
  • “Are any of you schtupping each other?”
  • Seanan talks about what the Tremere Primogen told him.
  • Neal is looking into some things with the police and the Setites. Finding a way to force them to present them to the Prince. They don’t have a right to be here.
  • Neal notices that MaxXx is low on blood.
  • They discuss which way to proceed. Decide to call Fadil to have a meeting.
  • Neal discovered that the car was driven to a warehouse in East Cleveland, owned by III.
  • Jay tries to Spirit’s Touch the card, but gets no impressions. He gets the Setite’s phone number.
  • Invite Fadil to the club, then have someone trail him back once he leaves.
  • Do we want to include Melaine? No. But we can talk to her beforehand.
  • She comes by when the club closes.
  • The Plan: Schedule the meeting with Fadil tomorrow night. MaxXx and Jay head to the warehouse, Henry watches outside.
  • MaxXx texts Sullivan Dane. “Why is Archbishop pissed?” He says it’s because he’s mad at what they’re doing.
  • Meet with Fadil at 3am at the club. (Club closes at 3:30am.)
  • Melaine comes into the office.
  • Fadil art dealer for “small fry,” including some of Melaine’s customers. Otherwise, no one’s really heard of him. The company’s so new, not even a month.
  • Melaine feels like the whole thing is a fake, but she can’t figure out why.
  • She really liked the hunt, BTW.
  • MaxXx asks Joey to use the car wash. He gives her shit, but he agrees. She and Jay goes.

MEETING WITH FADIL

  • Jay sneaks up to the door. Vague impressions of Kindred, but it fades. Also, no food debris in the trash.
  • They watch the car leave. Jay senses a Kindred presence, and also a mental silence that reminds him of when the Nosferatu died (Sabbat attack).
  • Henry notices Fadil stalling. He sends the message to the rest of the coterie.
  • Fadil starts to pitch. Low-level crap, until he gets to slaves. Suddenly, his pitch changes, and he’s selling to a Ventrue.
  • Pictures are taken in South America.
  • Frank notices that most of the people are coming from heavily-Sabbat controlled areas.
  • Neal pushes the lack of presentation, but then leaves it.
  • Awkward pause leaving and entering car.
  • Car returns to the warehouse.
  • MaxXx and Jay suspect Sabbat. Jay senses an additional presence in the car on the way back.
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Straight Edge
Episode 202

I’m a person just like you
But I’ve got better things to do
Than sit around and fuck my head
Hang out with the living dead
- Minor Threat, “Straight Edge”

  • Coterie meets to discuss all of the plans on the table. (Frank isn’t there.) They debate talking to Melaine.
  • Neal takes a bet that the talk with Melaine will go badly. MaxXx agrees to teach Celerity if she loses, and Neal agrees to teach Fortitude if he loses.
  • They go over the history with Melaine, and give her a call.
  • MaxXx has a tense call with her, and they agree to meet at the Art Museum, which is Elysium.
  • They discuss the nuances of Elysium and Anarchs.
  • Fadil comes in. Jay notices right away that he’s a vampire, and examines his aura. MaxXx calls Code Edward.
  • They talk, Fadil offers to sell drugs, MaxXx politely excuses him. Fadil apologizes for the insult.
  • They check the security tapes.
  • Seanan recognizes the pang of a blood magician. Henry recognizes him from somewhere. Seanan infodumps what he knows about the Setites.
  • Blue 2013 Tesla Model S. Quiet, surprisingly tactical decision.
  • Neal talks to some pigeons about following the car.
  • They meet back up to discuss. MaxXx is upset about the “small, loyal customers” the Setite mentioned at Warehouse.
  • Neal has the business card.
  • They all to meet with Melaine.
  • She’s angry. Neal and MaxXx takes swings at her.
  • She breaks down and confesses that she has no one in her corner. The coterie convinces her that she’s too loud and high-strung, and she eventually agrees that she’s willing to come back to the Cam if they’re willing to give her support.
  • They go to Rapture to talk to Ivan about sending drug pushers to Jay.
  • Neal suggests that Jay text Melaine to tell her to hunt tonight, and she will feel better.
  • Ivan is surprised by the assertion that he sent the Setite over, and offers prestation for more information.
  • MaxXx, Jay, Seanan. Henry and Neal stay to indulge.
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Victory
Episode 201

History
History is laughing at us
Plotting it’s discovery
Victory, victory
Blame it on the victory
- “Victory,” Bad Religion

Background Ties

  • Frank comes in to help manage the club and works with the coterie to run the logistics while the rest of the Kindred focus on the war. Paying off a boon to Andy Andy.
  • Seanan. Goes as a Sabbat adviser and hooks up Frank as fellow immigrants to support each other. “Security consultant.”

V for Victory

  • Party at Playhouse Square Center. MaxXx gets word about the theme (“V for Victory”), and tells the coterie — dressing up in the theme would make the Kindred in question look like they’re “in the know.” They discuss how to proceed with the party.
  • Everyone is wearing a “slightly 40s” style. Enough to address the theme, but still doing their own thing.
  • Frank is making sure that the regulars are being taken care of, and is paying the staff much more than more.
  • They all show up at the same time to the party, in a themed car. Y0 e ii
  • The Kindred are on the stage, with mortals and ghouls off near the wings.
  • Spider and Joey say hello. They seem cool.
  • They notice that Lady Davis is conflicted, and possibly possessing a mortal. She is charmed by Frank, probably against her better judgment.
  • MaxXx takes Jay to see Henri for Jay. He’s reading a book, so they leave him alone. They go talk to Takashi instead and talk bikes.
  • Arthur gets a 1-dot Boon from Henry for talking to Shannon.
  • Spider mentions to Neal that there are no Nosferatu present.
  • Michael Giovanni sitting in the front row. Neal sits near him. Michael feels guilty for the role he played in the Sabbat war.
  • MaxXx gauges the temper of the Brujah. They’re frustrated that they don’t have a “proper” Primogen.
  • Frank talks to Shannon (7 successes). Reveals herself to be Eleanor, Henry’s sire. They exchange numbers.
  • Melaine bursts in and demands that that her Anarch-hood be recognized. The Prince grudgingly does so, but threatens her if she violates the laws or the Traditions. Spider cuts her off and they exchange rapid-fire Spanish.
  • Paul Gerard suddenly interjects himself and demands that Frank give Melaine a project.

Downtime

  • Snapchat all of the Brujah clan — a self-destruct text app. Joey, Spider, and Takashi, as well as the coterie.
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