Sunday, August 22, 2010

Roadside Distractions

When travelling beyond the City, across the roads and highways of the Strange New World, you never know what you might find...

Bring Me The Head...
A down-on-his-luck adventurer with a broke-down car is stranded at an abandoned roadside diner. He carries a strange bag, that turns out to hold the head of a Zingaran bandit hero stolen from his grave--a head that's still very much alive due to a spell cast by a bruja.  He plans to sell the head to a cabal of wealthy cultists for a substantial sum. The only problem is, he’s pursued by Zingaran revolutionaries who want it back, and Hell Syndicate thugs playing to collect on the soul-debt the bandit chief welched on.

Nightmare Town
Strange doings, in a small, isolated, desert town with a secretive sort of excavation--guarded by out of town thugs--on its outskirts. The locals are tight-lipped and scared, but what they do say is interesting.  They tell how the town has been taken over by the urbane, but menacing, Llewellyn Wail--the enormous, hairless, and almost-albino overseer of the dig--and his hired guns. They're looking for the meteor that crashed near the town about a hundred years back--in a place animals avoid, and old-timers call haunted. Townsfolk have seen weird burns on injured diggers, and heard them discuss the need for welding torches--maybe even magic ones.  Then there's the odd glow, and unnerving hum, coming from the excavation site that makes folks want to close their shutters and cover their windows at night.

A Burial Is Arranged
In a roadside oddities museum, the mummy of a Native medicine man puts out a psychic plea: "Return me to my ancestral grounds for burial and I'll show you the hidden riches of my people."  What the mummy doesn't know--and neither does anyone else--is that the road back now cuts through a stretch of badlands swallowed by a black dust elemental and crawling with zombies.

The Blood-Spattered Bride
A late-night sighting of a woman in a white dress on the side of the highway leads to the discovery of a ghost-town where a macabre wedding is in the offing.  The vampiric bride, and the rest of her undead wedding party, are waiting for the groom--and they're not too picky, as long as he's living.