Fear is a funny thing… Vecna and Strahd had ruled though fear for so long that it was hard to remember a time where they where not the names spoken in whispers, the boogymen under the bed that children where warned about.
Until the prior day neither would have been likely to admit that there was things they feared, nor that they would wind up spending the night together. Strahd trapped in mist form and Vecna sitting in front of Tasha’s magic scrying box flipping channels from MTV to CNN to local news as he tried to make sense of the strange series of events leading them to taking refuge in Tasha’s basement.
Time passed and the next morning Tasha arrived, a change of clothes and looking much better then before but there was a look of worry on her face. “Okay lets get this over with” she said gesturing for Strahd to come out of Vecna’s lungs so that she might cure him of the strange affliction that had cursed him to be only able to breath underwater.
Reforming Strahd looked worse then ever.. overnight his skin had entirely dissolved into Jelly “Eww…” Tasha said before ignoring Strahd’s complaints she drew upon her full powers to cast the mightiest spell in any wizards vocabulary…
The spell of which all others are but sliver, a tiny reflection of the true power every great mage could call upon if one was only brave enough to risk the consequences if you where to do it wrong.
She cast WISH.
…or at least tried to.
Tasha looked down at her hands.. “What? Wait… that isn’t right let me try again…”
She tried again, but something felt wrong… felt off “I… I don’t think I can?…” she muttered before flopping down onto the couch. There it was, that weird feeling she had felt ever since the High School.. the feeling that something had been taken from her, that she was less as a result.
Strahd of course was instantly ranting.. Vecna disbelieving but then he felt it too… something truely to fear, the power of a god and yet here, in this place he could feel himself weakened, feel himself LIMITED in a way that he’d not felt since he was first banished back to Ravenloft.
Strahd was less aware of the problem, for while he talked tough there was no question that he had never been as powerful as Vecna, nor as strong at magic as Tasha. What he did have was a serious problem. While Vecna was very edgy there was no question that he was more the ‘raising the dead’ then healing the sick, and Tasha.. well she was a witch but seemed unable to cure him.
Vecna could not stand to remain in the house any longer, no longer a child he strode up the stairs, past the still blood stained dining room and out the door, Strahd in mist form following them all the while. Peppering Tasha with questions the witch shook her head, whatever magic Strahd needed to be cured it was beyond her skills, and part of her was still rather cross with both of them.. Strahd for forcing himself into her lungs without her consent, and Vecna for casually slaughtering her ideal parents.
Stepping outside into the early morning sunshine the three of them was still arguing where a strange figure stepped out of the house across the way.. Daniel had managed to shove a fish-tank over his head, the water slowly leaking just enough to trikle over his jelly-like skin which shone with a layer of oil to help protect it.
Greeting the others he seemed none the worse for wear “Yeah this guy he was super nice, put me in his well and all night he was spraying me with his hose and insisting I moisturise.. very considerate.. annoying dog though” Daniel explained, oblivious to the danger of spending the night with one of the towns collection of serial killers.
“Right.. so you don’t happen to have any way to cure”.. Tasha gestured up and down at Daniel, great.. now they had two of them. That wasn’t to say that finding Daniel was a total loss, catching Daniel up on the problem of the disease both he and Strahd appeared to be infected with, and the fact that none of them could cure it Daniel surprised them all with a good idea.
“The Carnival!” Daniel said “we could go there” he added before explaining how he had come across a Carnival before becoming a Dreadlord and that if there was anyone who could heal Strahd that they could be found there.
How then became the next question “Oh.. that’s not so hard” Tasha said looking to the east, further away from the school and deeper into her domain “We can catch the train”.
“Train?” the other’s questioned, Tasha nodded “Have you never heard of it? It’s said that it passes though every domain, that all you must do is climb aboard and you can pass from one Domin to another, no problem at all”.
The others had no better idea, and so it was agreed.. the would ride out and catch this train.
Tasha looked at Danel and Vecna, a yearning in her eyes.
“Oh go ahead then” Vecna said, annoyed but could it be with a little hint.. of fun?
Tasha smiled, her hands moving in quick, efficient motions as she drew upon her dark powers, summoning three push bikes, one for her, Vecna and Daniel..
Once again transformed into three pre-teen kids, riding though the streets, past houses where monsters lurked behind the polite faces of suburbia to the edge of town ..
Tasha laughed…. and for one brief moment it seemed like Vecna was having fun too…
Dumping the bikes in a pile as they ventured across the threshold onto the platform of the Train Station.
A sign saying ’Next Train Departing 11:05, the clock showing 11:03 and painted in big letters across the platform in Common the words:
MIND THE GAP
Tasha’s magic faded as the Witch, the Litch and the Tiefling waiting impatiently as unknown to them they had been followed… a invisible form running along, getting caught in bed sheets and deciding for fun to LICK the rails of the approaching train. Seizing as the arcing electricity ran though his invisible body the noise was just enough to distract, the others turning away from watching the clock.. the HONK and sound of steam first far away and then coming closer as the clock now read 11:09 the party barely having time to get The Invisible Person out of the way before it came.. in a rush of smoke, lightning tingled with the green faces and what at first seemed to be the scream of the engine becoming clear that it was not just steam.. but the screams of the unfortunate souls fuelling it.. for this was no normal train.
This was the Morning Rail, doomed to travel from domain to domain, never stopping and never slowing. 999 carts long.
Inspiration Log: Session 2
Daniel Gains 1 Point for sharing the tidbit about his underpants
Daniel Gains 1 Point for defeating the Nothics by having no secrets
Strahd Gains 1 Point for setting fire to the school with a well placed Fireball
Vecna Gains 1 Point for refusing to help anyone
Strahd Gains 1 Point for jumping headfirst into a OBVIOUS TRAP
Daniel Gains 1 Point for ‘skewering’ the Aboleth
Daniel Gains 1 Point for solving the Aboleth Disease by stealing a fish tank off a old couple of Nothics.
Vecna Gains 1 Point for being willing to let Strahd hang out in his Lungs
Vecna Gains 1 Point for casually murdering Tasha’s fake-parents then COMPLAINING when they didn’t appear to suffer
Daniel Gains 1 Point for volunteering that he’d spent the night hanging out in Buffalo Bills’ Basement from Silence of the Lambs
TIB Gains 1 Point for showing up late and almost dying because he’s so invisible.
Meanwhile – Daniel and Strahd are both DISEASED by the Aboleth and have failed to cure it in time!
Both have their skin become translucent and slimy, they can’t regain Hit Points during a rest unless it is Underwater, and the disease can be removed only by heal or another disease-curing spell of 6th Level or higher.
When outside a body of water, they takes 1d12 acid damage every 10 minutes unless moisture is applied to the skin before 10 minutes have passed.