Monday, February 17, 2014

The Haunted Mansion

My WaRP Weird Adventures gaming group met for the first time since September last night. The PCs were still exploring Charles Ranulf Urst's estate, looking for treasure of some sort. After checking out the opulent pool house, they moved on to the grand main house. What they found only deepened the mystery.

First, there was a sound like an audible exhalation when they first entered the house that set the creepy mood. Then, the theater room had a film playing without the benefit of electricity--a film that appeared to be from the point of view of something waiting just outside the room. Professor Pao, stepping out side of the room, felt a cold chill that sent him to his knees and Rob glimpsed an errant shadow fleeing away from his stricken companion.

Rue tried again to contact spirits. She felt a pervasive presence, but nothing specific. Then a playing card drfited down from...somewhere. One with Urst's own monogram printed on back.


Things only got weirder from there. A visit to the refectory (a large dining room) had the gang intruding on a ghostly dinner with phantom food and diners who paid them no attention. There seemed to have been places set for the group, but they declined to partake.

In the large, social room, there is a young woman (her image sort of flickery, like a movie) playing cards. She offers to tell the PCs' fortunes by a draw from the deck. Only Rue takes her up on it. She draws a card with the image of the grim reaper on it! He swings his scythe and she drops dead.


The rest of the gang can't believe it at first. They question the woman who gives her name as Camille. She nonchalantly confirms that Rue is indeed dead--but adds enigmatically that the house is a collector and spirits are unable to leave it. When they try to question her further she flickers and disappears. Rob and Jacques start looking around for where Rue's spirit might be. The Professor stays behind to guard her body.

Meanwhile, Rue awakens in an overstuff leather chair in a library of some sort. She feels a bit less substantial physically, but is otherwise okay. A man with the head of a wolfhound is sitting across from her reading a book. He introduces himself as Claude and confirms that she's dead. He says he was Urst's dog, until the wizard uplifted him to sentience to serve as an assistant. He goes on to say that Urst purposely built this house on a borderland between dimensions. There are spirits here but also "termites" in the walls that came from elsewhere.

Rue bids him good-bye to try and find her friends. Before she goes, he warns her not to trust the cat-headed man in the fez.

To be continued...

8 comments:

Chris C. said...

Cool dining room scene.

I like the dead-PC-turned-ghost mechanic. "Sort of dead" but not really (if I understand correctly).

Trey said...

Yeah, that's was sort of what I was going for. Though obviously if all of them wind up that way, they'll be in the house forever.

Aos said...

fez wearing cat-men are never to be trusted.

Jack said...

Interestingly, your sort-of dead character is in-line with the number of ghosts in Victorian fiction that have a body--just less of one than they had while alive.

Trey said...

@Aos - True that.
@Jack - Huh. That is interesting.

garrisonjames said...

Sounds like a lot of fun. Like the ghost mechanic; not-quite-dead-yet. Jack is right; this method resembles quite a few classic ghost stories, even old Cary Grant movie Topper, which might just fit into Weird Adventures/The City...

rainswept said...

You've mentioned using the WaRP system for Weird Adventures a few times. As an OtE fan from way back, I'd love to read a post on the nuts and bolts of using WaRP for your game: tweaks, extensions, favourite Clichés, and so forth.

If you're the request taking type, that is ;)

Trey said...

@garrisonjames - it was a good time for n'er a combat occurring.

@rainswept - I don't know that there's a whole lot to tell, but I can probably do a post on that.