Strange #9 Antithesia

As I said in the last post, we’ve been playing in Antithesia for the past couple of games. I’m updating with the “Cliff notes” our GM wrote up, his memo and the latest from Joey F in this post. Enjoy!

Latest memo from K. Manners:

kjm_Estate_Memo 4-27-15

GM Notes:

Attached are the Cliff’s Notes version of what Dr. Mendal gleaned from the pyramid scrolls:

I know what you’re thinking: couldn’t he just have sent the bullet points……

For those of you with short attention spans here they are:

  • Queen Nyquil bad, very bad
  • Pyramid built upside down
  • Skeletons will f**k-up your day
  • Why a levitating boat? Why the f**k not?

And now, the long version…

Over four millenia ago in Egypt, the last queen of the Sixth Dynasty, Nitoqris, came to power along with her husband, the Pharaoh Menerere II. Nitoqris was always vain and power-hungry and during their reign, as she aged past her youth and toward middle age, she gradually became more and more obsessed with death. She began to surround herself with a series of priests and shamans of the occult outside the traditional Egyptian religions, who promised her immortality, not just in the afterlife but in the material life on Earth. All of their fanciful magic could not satisfy her need for power, nor enhance her own nascent ability to access the Strange, and over the years she continued to age, her power stagnating. One sorcerer she discovered in Phocis in Greece was an actual translation expert who she took in as a mentor. He taught her techniques of translation and brought her to a few recursions. When he warned her of overextending her reach for power, she used her newly discovered revisions to destroy him. She increasingly traversed the Strange, and once while traveling on another recursion she met a powerful paradox, that she called Ashakhet, and promised him that if he returned with her to Earth she could grant him all the resources at her disposal toward the development of their powers and immortality. She persuaded the Pharaoh to name him High Priest of the temple of Anubis and Thebes served as their headquarters; from there they translated to countless recursions in search of artifacts and powers to extend their lives. The Pharaoh, Menerere became jealous of Ashakhet and Nitoqris’ intimacy and of their growing political power, and while ignorant of the extent of their dark arts, became convinced that Nitoqris and Ashakhet were plotting to overthrow him. He ordered that they be executed on the summer solstice, and had them imprisoned. On the fateful day, as they made their way to the block, Ashakhet created a gate opening to an ancient, abandoned monument on Antithesia. Nitoqris and Ashakhet murdered dozens of the viziers, soldiers, priests, nobles and servants who were present to witness the execution, with a powerful life destroying revision, and then made their escape into the Negative world, carrying with them the piles of corpses to serve and guard them in their eternal un-life. She brought the Pharaoh Menerere along alive to keep as a trophy of her conquest.

In the mean-time, Nitoqris has periodically continued her travels throughout the Strange, seeking to enhance her power and recruit followers. The pyramid was originally a solid structure, but many levels and rooms have been carved out over the millenia by her undead slaves to serve her purposes. Over the eons she has discovered and brought back many different creatures suited to dwell in the negative plane, as her playthings and guardians. Her minions, scattered about the pyramid, have seen few if any intruders here over the centuries, but are totally devoted to Nitoqris and ensnared in her power. They will obey her every command.

After approximately 100 years in exile, Ashakhet and Nitoqris returned to Egypt to steal an important and sacred artifact from the Temple of Osiris—the Sekhem Scepter. It was known to the Egyptians as a symbol of the power of the priests of Osiris, for in distant legends it was known to hold the power of healing for the living and in preparing the dead for their eternal afterlife. The secrets of its powers had become lost over time to the Egyptians, and it had come to serve only as a symbol, but the research of Ashakhet and Nitoqris determined that the Sekhem Scepter was ancient artifact of great power, dating back to an obscure time in the origin of the Strange. They carefully planned an assault on the Temple of Osiris using a translation portal they crafted to gain surprise. The priests of Osiris were completely caught off guard with the ambush and Ashakhet and Nitoqris easily managed to secure the scepter and translate back to Antithesia with their prize. And they brought with them many living priests as slaves. Ashakhet continued his research with the scepter and began his attempts to employ the artifact. Over time, they continued their raids on Earth and on other recursions and always wielded the scepter as a symbol of their power, but only as a symbol, as they were unable to access its powers. Ashakhet never let the scepter out of his sight, becoming obsessed with the futility of his efforts to learn its secrets. Simply possessing the scepter was slowly eroding his power. Ultimately, the scepter lead to his downfall, and on his last, nearly successful attempt to utilize it, his complete destruction. It has been centuries since Nitoqris conducted raids upon other recursions.

The Finkelstein Files 2

Man, I’ve done some f*cked up sh!t in my time, like the time me and Yanders – well, I’d better not write that down…

So Kathy tells us we’ve got a mission to go on. Some sh!t about this Egyptian queen and a wizard or something. I didn’t really pay attention, but it sounds like she wants us to scout something out and I’m thinking I get a free trip to Egypt out of this new job. Not! A few minutes later we’re sitting in a room meditating. WTF? Yanders and I had burned one about a half hour before our briefing and I’m ready to start singing “Kumbaya” just to see the look on his face when suddenly we’re standing in the middle of a desert. I look over at Yanders and there’s this seven-foot tall stone statue standing where he used to be. It starts moving and I’m like “f*ck”! Then I notice the rest of us have all changed too. The professor looks like a mummy, Kyle is some kind of zombie, Skinner looks almost normal, except he’s got these great f*cking fangs. I don’t even know what I look like, except I got these long claws growing out of my hands and I’m all gray and sh!t.

This place we’re in is totally messed up. It’s like this endless desert. There’s no sun in the sky and no stars either. We can all see, but it’s kind of dim. When anybody talks, it’s kind of a whisper and I don’t think there’s any air in this place. I look around and spy this great big pyramid stuck upside down in the desert. There’s this huge column of energy shooting up from it into the sky. It’s a total trip. Me, I’m thinking, “This is great. It’s like Warcraft turned up to 11. I didn’t know anybody had technology to do video games like this!”

We move up to the inverted pyramid and find signs of a battle. Looks like zombies versus skellies. The corpses are picked clean, so after a bit of d!cking around outside we finally enter the place. It’s pretty creepy inside and I’m thinking the programmers did a heck of a job on all this sh!t. The walls are all covered with pictures and stuff and it’s all different no matter where you look. We wander around the place and poke our heads into different rooms. I’m digging around for treasure, cause I figure it’ll help me level up or get some better gear or something. It’s not until those little stone guys start attacking us that I start thinking this isn’t a video game. The little f*ckers lay into us with weapons and it f*cking hurts man. Like I’m bleeding and sh!t. Who the f*ck would program a game like this???

I’m not going to describe all the sh!t we found in this place. I mean, there were traps and puzzles and all sorts of monsters we fought. We needed to gather a bunch of stuff on each level to open up the door to the next one. And then there was this long tunnel we had to climb up and I kept on slipping half way up and Yanders was a complete ass-hat when I fell. (Note to self: bring more rope if we ever come back here.) There were also signs of a fight as we travelled through this place, and once, we got caught in the middle of a fight between these ghouls and this vampire and a bunch of skeletons. There was also this big jar of hearts we found and Yanders ate like 10 of them. The guy can put away burrito’s, but that was f*cking disgusting to watch. Finally, we found this room that the professor said was some kind of library or something. He spent the better part of 2 hours reading through scrolls and sh!t until we finally got him to admit that he had all the info he needed to make a report to Kathy about what was going on in this place. We got some kind of memo about it later, I’m sure somebody will tell me the good bits if I need to know it.

I don’t know what I got myself signed up for with this Estate place, but it sure ain’t testing video games… I still don’t think any of these Bozo’s have got their head’s screwed on straight. Who’d hire Yanders for sh!t like this? Although he sure did tear into them skellies when we was fighting…




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