Sibling Rivalry

The Story So Far, Modern Age: Part 1

Ominous beginnings as the dragons awaken.

Covers episodes 1-6.

Our story starts with five relative strangers stirring in their sleep amid dreams of a war in a long-distant time:

Maggie Aden, a “street doc” (former paramedic now working outside the system in order to help those who can’t go to hospitals) with an inexplicable attachment to her father’s heirloom sword;
Kimiko Kojiro, a ninja by training (and moderately popular author by cover story) who is visiting London on a mission to confirm the city’s recent resurgence of magic and determine its cause;
Ivan Ivanovic, a professional wrestler in the British federation circuit, who moved to London after his former career as a hitman for the Russian Mafia turned sour;
George MacQuid, an inexplicably lucky, smooth-talking drifter who has been living day-to-day since he walked away from a promising career in the Royal Navy; and
Father Shane MacGowan, a priest and former Army chaplain whose studies and extensive social connections have recently been leading him into occult topics.

Maggie, Kimiko, Ivan, and George woke up from their dreams and felt an almost physical pull toward central London (Shane was unconscious at the time after a car accident the previous night, and would join them the next day under similar circumstances). Their paths crossed at a downtown cafe, and when they met each other, the names – each others’ dragons names – that had been whispering in the back of their heads finally roared forth and then fell silent. The group found themselves with an inexplicable telepathic link and a lot of questions – as a group of wild-eyed people charged up the cafe stairs and attacked them with improvised weapons.

The startled group fled – evading not only the attack but bullets from a hidden assassin’s gun – and watched their would-be assailants burst into flame. This began a search for answers that would ultimately lead to them tracking down the gunman, who fled – and died of a massive brain hemmhorage once cornered. He did however whisper the name “Ophois” as he died.

The group also discovered that a shadowy government organization had taken over the police investigation into the cafe incident, and seemed very interested in the attackers who burst into flame. While following this lead, Kimiko’s break-in of the medical facility was foiled by a government agent who introduced himself as Sir Arthur Lockholm – and let a hint slip that he was a fellow supernatural being. He played a game of information exchange with her and expressed interest in the group, while warning them that he had to honor his loyalty to his employer.

This all was complicated by Maggie’s run-ins with the Freemasons – specifically an upper-class boor named Hugh MacHugh, who had stiffed her a large amount of money over a job. MacHugh sent a goon squad to break into her apartment, and stole her sword – which by this time Maggie had realized had an important connection to her dragon past. He set up a meeting to arrange its return in exchange for lots of money and a groveling apology – but it was really an ambush. The rest of the group discovered his intentions, and coordinated their efforts in real-time to foil his elaborate preparations, showing them the power of their mental link.

The group learned from MacHugh that he had taken the sword (and planned the double-cross) because another Freemason by the name of Henry Cornelius Agrippa was offering a truly absurd sum for anyone who could bring it to him: 2 million pounds! MacHugh didn’t know why it was worth so much. Kimiko cut off MacHugh’s ear as a warning against ever hassling the group again, and left him for the police.

The group had previously heard of – but not met – Agrippa, a rich old Marquis with an interest in antiques and charity work. By coincidence, he had hosted the charity ball at which the group arranged a meeting with Lockholm (in order to give their side of that week’s events to their sole sympathetic ear in the government). At that ball, the group and Lockholm all shared a flashback, which convinced him of the group’s sincerity and served as a bonding experience. The flashback ended with Ivan’s former self healing a human ally of theirs named Lily – as the present-day Ivan similarly reached out, grabbing a woman by the shoulder who looked almost identical to Lily. She slapped him and immediately fled the party, eluding pursuit.

Meanwhile, a fellow priest of Shane’s by the name of Father John left Shane some increasingly disturbing messages about a man looking for God’s blessing to go slay some dragons – and then, after John met some people at a cafe, he vanished, leaving behind only a hurried plea to delete his messages and forget anything to do with dragons. The group did their best to investigate his disappearance, but kept getting interrupted by more urgent situations. (Ultimately, an organization calling themselves “Gehenna” – who had been badgering the group with tactless and increasingly heavy-handed offers of “friendship” in service of a mutual quest for power – returned John to the group, along with the corpse of his kidnapper, in a “gesture of good faith,” which did nothing to improve their image in the group’s eyes. John told his story – that he had unintentionally eavesdropped on Gehenna’s efforts to bring the dragons under their control, and he was about to be killed when Gehenna realized that he was a friend of one of their targets and had value as leverage.)

As the group tried to cope with all of this crap hitting the fan at once, they returned home to Ivan’s apartment. The door was ajar, and the place smelled strangely unscented. There was a man tied to a chair amid giant streaks of blood in Ivan’s rec room. The group cautiously approached him, at which point he looked up, smiled (revealing that he was toothless like the original attackers at the cafe), and said “My master Ophois sends his regards.” He calmly lifted his arms from where he had faked being tied up, and made a gesture to dispel his scent-suppression spell.

As the group suddenly realized that the whole apartment was flooded with gas from a broken pipe at Ivan’s hot-water heater, the man calmly snapped his fingers for a spark spell.

The explosion set off car alarms for several blocks.



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