In theory, it is May 12, 2022 (in-game) for The Huntsman, but he is in another dimension, so who is counting? For Connie Bleak, we’ve skipped ahead to May 13, 2022, because that is the day her plans will take place.
At the beginning of the session, we talk about how Connie Bleak hasn’t been touching base with her father about the apartment hunt. Connie loses 20 Karma for “Missing a date”, which is double because she is a supervillain, so it adds up to 40 Karma.
The Huntsman (aka Samuel Holt) arrives in a barren wasteland that was once the glorious kingdom of Avalon. Everything here is dry and desiccated, unable to sustain life. He sees a castle off in the distance and approaches it. During the journey, he succeeds at a Reason FEAT to determine what he knows about Avalon. Avalon is one of those dimensions where time is cyclical, and myths play out repeatedly in different permutations — much like the Marvel Universe itself.
Upon arriving at the castle, The Huntsman encountered a dried-up moat. He is cautious in his approach, but there is no need to be. Everybody in Avalon is long dead except for the king.
At the end of the last session, Samantha Sol (the union activist from Specter Industries) is left with a big decision. Does she follow Connie’s plan and get her men to destroy critical servers at two of the company’s data centers? Or does she have her own ideas?
It wasn’t at all obvious to me what Samantha would do, but I decided that she would continue with her original motivation. She would try to find incriminating data about the company to expose to the public by using the two explosive devices to create a diversion at one of the data centers. She has three union activist friends plant the two devices at the building and detonate them to create a distraction. I roll two Agility FEATs, and both succeed. The next step is for the third activist to hack into one of the servers onsite and begin exfiltrating data. I roll a Reason FEAT for this and fail. There are two explosions in the building, causing chaos and disarray, but the hacker fails to accomplish their mission.
The Huntsman explores the castle stealthfully using his Apparition spell (unaffected by the material limitation as this is precisely the environment his spell works with). From his vantage point, he sees an animated skeleton sitting at a round table. The skeleton is wearing an iron crown and a bearskin cape. He appears crestfallen. The Huntsman used his Illusion spell to create a mythic version of himself in full epic regalia to approach the skeleton.
Asides from the king, he sees four seats with four named plaques:
1. The Shieldless Knight is an empty suit of armor with a puncture hole where the heart would be.
2. The Indigo Knight is a 1L corked jar containing dimly animated blue light.
3. The Sunken Knight is a giant humanoid lobster shell.
4. Myrddin is a pointy wizard’s hat propped atop a grimoire.
The Huntsman’s illusion introduces himself to the king as Cernunnos the Huntsman. The king recalls some pagan legends about Cernunnos that predate Avalon and acknowledges him as a powerful and ancient figure. Cernunnos the Huntsman was The Huntman’s original superhero alias, but it got shortened due to being wordy and hard for people to pronounce (care-NOON-noss for the record).
The setup of The Huntsman safely observing from the shadows while presenting the image of a powerful and recognizable figure to the king left an impression on me. The Huntsman’s actions changed how I played the king, whom I imagined being more difficult and melancholy, but how could he speak to an ancient god like that? He had to pull it together. It also became relevant tactically in the next session.
The king himself refers to himself as once called The Dolorous King, but now he is The King of Nothing. He and The Huntsman converse, working through a vague, weird comic book-y version of some of the Arthurian legends that have played out in Avalon.
The short of it is that the land is dying, leaving only the king. Myrddin sent the squire of The Shieldless Knight to earth to find the grail to cure the king and his lands. The squire (Norman) was on this mission carrying the shield of The Shieldless Knight. This was the downfall of the knight. The squire never returned. (The squire is obviously The Silver Shield, Samuel and Connie’s parole officer).
The Huntsman, aware of the cyclical nature of this dimension, offered the king some hope that things would return to how they were. The king believes these words; after all, Cernunnos is an ancient figure who returned to the realm to deliver these words of hope.
The Huntsman spoke more with the king, and they started to work out an arrangement. The Huntsman asked to use Myrddin’s grimoire to see if he could find a spell that would transport him back to earth and offered to look for the grail and bring the squire back to face justice for abandoning the quest. The king agreed but made The Huntsman promise to kill him with his broken sword if he could not find the grail. It is the only thing that can end the king’s suffering, and the king cannot do it himself.
At this point, Connie is raiding the Specter Industries HQ (which is at a different location than the data centers that Samantha’s men raided). She rushed past security and phased up the elevator shaft to the floor with the servers. The building security team responds by locking down the building. Connie entered the server room and started using her energy touch power to destroy servers.
Some hired mercenaries (extra security brought on after the last incident at the HQ) confront Connie. They try to tase her, but it does nothing because Connie is phased. The mercs cower (tactically) when they can’t affect Connie. She beats up their captain, causing them to flee the room. Once safe, they radio Ed Kalvar (Specter Industries CEO and Connie’s nemesis) for help. A few minutes later, he makes an appearance. He phases down through the ceiling into the server room, donned in a slick, modernized version of Connie’s $PECT3R suit. Connie makes some quips about him being obsessed and asks what he is trying to prove with the costume. He cracks his knuckles and says: “Paybacks are a bitch, Connie.”
At the end of the session, The Huntsman has 129 Karma, 90 Resources, and 10 Popularity. Connie has 100 Karma, 4 Resources (I have been mistakenly tracking it as 3), and 1 Popularity. Connie had received 60 Karma for “Commit local conspiracy” and another 40 for “Commit destructive crime”.