10/14/2013

Demigods in the Underworld

Other posts on Scion and Leander.  Last recap.

A little retconning to follow up on last session...  Lha-mo has the ring and Nick didn't disappear,as his player was able to come back.  He hit on some Atua, which is as it should be.

When last we saw the Demigods now known as the Hestia, they had been asked to go into two different underworlds at the behest of two very different individuals owed favors by various members of the band.  Nick and  Brock filled in a few more of the details of the task set to them by Kane and the rest of the team discussed how they might need to delay their trip to rescue Agwe's daughter Genevieve.  Leander pointed out that it was likely that they could travel from Yomi to Guinee by finding a large body of water and diving straight down into it.

Ultimately, the band decided they needed to push on to Yomi first and informed Skulldug and the crew of Genevieve's ship that they'd have to stop there first.  They set out, following a compass that would lead them to Guinee until the ship suddenly turned and dove into the water (it's amazing Brock didn't talk about almost being in Pirates of the Caribbean) and emerged into Yomi.  On the horizon, there were several villages, some looking like ancient Japanese fishing towns and others like their more modern counterparts.  The Demigods directed the crew to bring them to one of the more modern ones, in particular looking for one that would have been built near the time that the atomic bombs would have been dropped on Japan.

When the Scions arrived at the village, they were a spectacle, not likely helped by the fact that once they were off the ship it transformed into sand which flowed into a pouch which had appeared on Leander's belt.  Quickly, they were confronted by a dignified ghost which began to yell at them in Japanese.  At first, none of the Hestia could understand them, but their divine heritage helped both William and Nick to learn the language quickly.  They discovered he was telling them that the Demigods don't belong.  Eventually, he stormed off.

Soon thereafter, the band was approached by another individual, younger and more modern.  He spoke to them in English and stated that he was a big fan of Brock's work.  He warned of the Shikome and invited the band to a place where they could discuss how thinks work in Yomi.  Unfortunately, he led us to a shady warehouse and after the band entered, they discovered the people inside were worshipers of Mikaboshi.

They discussed how the traditions of the ghosts of Yomi were keeping them from having a happy afterlife and how the Shikome would ravage them at any provocation, saying that Mikaboshi had promised them release from their pain.  Rivkah, speaking for most of her friends, told them they were fools and the fight was on.  Supernatural darkness flooded the warehouse and the Hestia went to work.  Unfortunately for the Titan-worshipping ghosts, they were rather weak and the Demigods were filled with divine righteousness.  They fell in droves as, outside, a high keening began.

As the Titansworn were routed, the  symbol of Mikaboshi was cracked in two and the darkness faded.  Then it became clear that the Shikome were coming to put down the fight with extreme prejudice.  Thinking quickly, Nick transformed himself into a visage very similar to his own, but with Japanese features.  He directed the Shikome towards the fleeing Titansworn and they passed by the Hestia without incident.

From there, the Demigods scouted the surrounding landscape, spotting the various villages and a large market city, as well as the Poison Sun Ward and Yellow Spring Mountain.  After considering for a moment, the Demigods decided to head to the Yellow Spring Mountain to attempt to gain permission for their mission to the Poison Sun Ward from Inzanami.

After a relatively short journey, the band arrived at the foot of the mountain, to find a great line arrayed before a striking woman, like a giant Shikome of both terrible visage and immense grace.  This, then was the Dark Matron of the Shikome.  Clearly, the line was avoiding approaching her, but when the Hestia voiced their intent to do so, those in the line, muttering about "her mood," pushed them to the front.

Leander hurriedly dredged up all he could recall of Japanese etiquette and briefed the team.  The Hestia decided to make a gift to the Dark Matron and Inzanami a gift of one of the fire-resistance charms they'd had made by Athena.  Nick prepared a speech to convince the Dark Matron of the team's need to head into the Poison Sun Ward.

The discussion went well, overall, because the Dark Matron did not decide to unleash her Shikome upon the Hestia and promises to "forget" that the band had approached her to ask permission.  The Ward was offlimits to all, including the soldiers of Yomi.  Inzanami remained distant.  As the Demigods left, the Dark Matron ordered her Shikome to slaughter the assembled crowd, so as to prevent there being witnesses to her "forgotten" discussion.  It took an act of will for Leander to turn his back on the slaughter.

The Demigods began, from there, the long walk towards the wall around the Poison Sun Ward.  After quite a few hours, including Leander riding Tak-me, they began to approach a large area with an airfield surrounded by military buildings and Edo period fortresses.  The Hestia hunkered down for a moment, to discuss their plan.  It seemed like the military would be unlikely to support their attempts to cross the wall, so instead, the strategy was to steal a WWII era bomber and fly over the wall to face off against the infantile Titan.

As the band discussed, a jeep with several Japanese soldiers emerged from the base travelling down the road toward the markets.  The Demigods emerged from hiding and Nick managed to bluff them into giving him their jeep, which the team turned around and headed towards the airfield.  Rivkah, driving, used her divine speed to breach the perimeter in the blink of an eye and then the Hestia hustled onto the bomber they'd sighted.  Rivkah got it airborne and provided it with the same divine speed enhancement as the jeep.

It was slow taking off, and the alarms of the base went off.  Anti-aircraft fire went off, tearing a hole in the plane as Leander gathered parachutes and switched his glasses to detecting radiation.  And then the team was over the wall and gazing down onto the poisoned streets of the Ward.