The Drifters’ Code

Phillip and I left the boxed set of Farscape next to the door this morning so we wouldn’t forget to bring it when we left for Everett – and then forget to bring it.

We picked up Ben along the way.

Kathi was back with us today. Before Daniel, Colin, and Sam arrived, we filled Kathi in on what happened during the last two role-playing sessions. The problem was, none of could remember all that happened without Kathi’s character. It’s been three months, after all. (Last month was a one-session Star Trek game.) We were like four sufferers of amnesia, remembering disconnected events, and slowly piecing our story back together. Ben remembered something about a reptilian alien creature.

Finally, I said, “I should have read my blog this morning.”

Kathi pulled up this blog. I couldn’t remember what the posts were named, so I suggested searching for Armstrong and book dealer. That restored our memories, and brought Kathi up to speed, even though I’d forgotten to include that the homeless person in Pioneer Square turned out to be a reptilian alien creature.

With this new importance placed upon this blog, I hope I don’t leave out too many details of today’s session.

We picked up right after the last session, when the group has all arrived home from the sniper situation at the Federal Courthouse. Suddenly, all the electrical appliances in the kitchen start acting strangely. Using his magic, the estate appraiser (Sam) traces the energy flow to the hacker’s loft apartment.

They all make our way up to see if the hacker (Kathi) is all right. Along the way, the former drifter (me) hears a few notes of “Runaway”, by Del Shannon, coming from nowhere – as if it’s in the wind.

The hacker, they find, has just emerged from a trance, which she thinks has lasted several days. In reality, it’s been just one day.

The group finds themselves in a flashback, in the 1950s, in Kansas City, Kansas. They’re the same people they were in the 1960s flashback, only seven or eight years younger. They’re standing around a bonfire. It’s the fall. The book dealer (Colin) is wearing a Letterman jacket. At the order of a Baptist minister, who has the community under his control, they are pushed, one by one, into the bonfire. The first three people – who  the group doesn’t know yet, but learn are members of the group of twelve – perish in the fire. The book dealer is the fourth to be pushed, but he used his magic to save himself and every one of the group who followed.

There’s a dance after the bonfire, and they realize that the minister and his followers want them dead. So, after escaping the bonfire, another attempt will likely be made. They all barely escape.

Back in the hacker’s loft, they hear, and feel, a loud noise, as if something has hit the building. It turns out that a firetruck, avoiding an accident, has hit the side of our apartment building. Strangely, neither the building nor the firetruck suffered any damage at all.

Meanwhile, the building’s head of security has suffered a heart attack, and has been taken to Harborview Medical Center, leaving the hacker in charge.

During our last session, the former drifter didn’t get to do much except find a parking space. In this session, he had a pivotal moment.

While he was outside the building, looking at the firetruck, the former drifter (whose name is James Joyce, by the way) happens upon a drifter friend of his, named Joyce James. She once saved his life when he almost fell into The Grand Canyon, and they haven’t seen each other since.

She’s staying at The Green Tortoise Hostel, but doesn’t know the way there. James offers to walk her there. With all the strange and dangerous things that have been happening, he doesn’t know if he can trust her, however. He applies the drifters’ code – give out no personal information. Everything a drifter tells you is a lie, and everything they don’t tell you is the truth. James doesn’t even know if Joyce is her real name, and vise versa. So he tells her most of what has actually happened – including freeing sex slaves – knowing she wouldn’t believe him. He plans to stay with her at the hostel and make sure she leaves town.

He doesn’t have time to tell the group about this, and, overhearing the part about freeing sex slaves,  they think he has betrayed them. So they follow him, as a group, intending to stop James from saying too much, and also intending to discover Joyce’s true intentions. They read Joyce’s mind from a distance, using magic, and discover she’s a normal human woman with no magic ability, and that she doesn’t believe anything James is telling her.

James, meanwhile, sees the group following them. Fearing that a group of people suddenly descending upon them, demanding to know what he’s said, would only raise suspicions and make his story believable. He grabs Joyce by the hand and they run across the street. They duck into a salon.

The cop (Daniel) runs into the salon and drags James out, demanding to know what he’s up to. Joyce runs out the back, never to be seen again.

The former drifter explains the drifters’ code to the cop, and what he plan was. The group comes to realize that confronting the former drifter as a mob was not a good plan.

The former drifter becomes moody, and barely speaks to the rest of the group for the rest of the day.

The group goes out to dinner at Zeek’s Pizza, near Seattle Center. The cop buys the former drifter a beer to make up for ruining his chances with Joyce.

As the group leaves Zeek’s, they see, in an alley, their server talking with the former sex slave (Phillip)’s school teacher. The school teacher suddenly turns into a fox and runs away.

Later, the group learns that the food server also lives in their building, has magical ability, and is one of the group of twelve. Everyone who lives in their building has magical ability. The former sex slave wants to contact the food server and welcome her to the immediate group.

The session ended with us creating characters for our next session, which will include a Victorian era flashback.

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