The Road to Ascension

More Chance, Less Fate

Storyteller notes in italics

Quadi felt for the first time in his life what respect a gun can command. He closed his eyes (this helps with the aiming) and squeezed the trigger: skit went the dart right into the Technocratic agent’s brainpan. Quadi then stole the nondescript agent’s shades—he’s definitely cooler now (if you don’t believe it just check his aura).

Having dispatched the agent, Quadi, against the advice of Albert, goes to check on The Hooded Man. Albert warns him that he is involved with The Nephandi, and therefore is most likely insane and probably quite evil, and interacting with him will probably only open up terrifying vistas of reality. “Let’s convert him!” he suggests, but as he lifts him from the ground he becomes sick with dread, and his mind is flooded with horrifying imagery. By the time he tosses his body in the nearby bushes, three Agents have arrived on the scene and have started firing on Quadi and Albert (Again with the tranquilizer guns. Don’t worry folks, before too long HIT Marks with rail guns for arms will be chasing after you instead of these guys.) Albert quickly darts for the nearest door, using his campus key card to enter the building. Quadi uses his athletic prowess to jump a few feet into the air, but only manages to find himself hanging from a window sill in clear sight of the Technocratic Agents. Impressively, he manages to dodge most of the shots from their tranquilizer guns while dangling precariously, but is eventually hit. Even more impressively, he is able to concentrate enough to purge his body of the toxin using his knowledge of Life. Meanwhile Albert has been dashing through the building, running from the agent who easily bypassed the key-card panel on the door. Ducking into a lab, he notices Quadi’s hands clutching the window sill on the opposite side of the room, and decides to help him out by opening the window and pulling him in. The two can now hear the agents kicking down doors in the hallway outside the lab. Albert arms himself with a bottle of hydrochloric acid, and Quadi strategically places himself to one side of the door. As the door crashes open, the first agent through has his face promptly melted by Albert’s well-aimed acid splash. After some scuffling, during which Quadi slips in, and then rolls about in, the acid on the floor, and the remaining agent takes a dart to the juggular, the pair escape with their freedom intact.

He spent some time rolling around in the bushes and then some acid, neither of which really got him anything so sweet as a Hi-Chew. But Quadi and Albert Matheson escaped the sterile clutches of the Technocracy, for now, and made their way to Albert’s pitifully small studio apartment. There they were soon joined by Albert’s mentor, Prof. Allison Croft, who helped remove Quadi’s nano-tracker, even though she hates city college kids (because they are slackers, really, or else they’d be going to State). The Life Magick ritual Prof. Croft used to remove the tracking device was relatively elaborate, and involved cutting a Magick circle complete with ancient symbols, and accompanied by incantations, into Quadi’s flesh with a gemstone, after which a writhing mass of metallic worms erupted from his skin and soon perished. The night ended at Quadi’s larger (and cleaner) apt. downtown; they would be safer there, they thought.

The next morning the fog rolled in on the city by the bay, and Quadi and Albert ate their Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs in silence. Quadi thought about going to work for Mr. Tanaka, but then decided he was feeling too lazy (city kid). So, they headed over to meet Prof. Croft instead, to learn about the nihilistic Nephandi. On their way they met up with a fellow mage, Jed, who pulled a Marlboro/Tom Sawyer move on a couple of mundane police officers (Quadi’s Pig-Pen b.o. move was a real stinker, but the cops managed to hold down their coffee and donuts).

Jed Nelson had been attempting to stop a pair of police officers who where roughing up a homeless man in an alley. After some taunting, “Hey PIGS! Ya wan’ someone tah tangle wit, yoo gottit!” the police waltz over, as Jed cooly pulls a Marlboro Red from his overall’s front pouch, lights it, and blows it in their faces, which causes them to drop like a couple of “sacks a taters!” Realizing that the two watching this altercation, Albert and Quadi, “had dat twinkle in thar eye” he invites them to meet at a later date, to discus efforts to thwart the Technocracy.

The day ended with a study session in Prof. Croft’s dungeon (at her demented mother’s house, demented because of her cats). Here Quadi fell asleep after getting all the way to page 3 of what would be the equivalent of a see-and-say book for mages.

By Chance, or By Fate?

Quadi, prompted by his master, sets out in search of someone to help rid him of a nano-tracking device in his bloodstream, placed there by The Technocracy. It’s a danger to himself and those around him, and he can’t be safe until his body is purged. After an unsuccessful day of searching for someone who knows the ways of Life Magick, he finds himself on campus at San Francisco State University.

Meanwhile, after long hours of study, Albert Matheson overstuffs his backpack and prepares to leave that same campus. Prof. Allison Croft had warned him, “There are dangerous forces lurking about this place. I’ve noticed their presence, which means they may have noticed mine… and yours. Keep your eyes out for a man wearing a black hood. You will feel him when he is near. I believe he is involved with The Nephandi.” As he walked he felt an unsettling presence, as a shadowy figure fell in front of him. The hooded man...

As Quadi turned a corner, he heard footsteps behind him and felt the unmistakable coldness emanating from a Technocratic Agent. As he turned around to face him, a man in a black hood approached them, running on foot. As the Agent drew his weapon, anyone in the area could hear a thud, followed by damnit!. Albert Matheson could be seen nearby, scrambling to gather his texts from the ground.

Quadi’s instincts kick in, and he attempts to wrest the gun from the agents hand, to no avail. As a shot is fired from the gun there is no bang as expected, but only a silent pewf. The hooded man is down.

A look of concentration comes over Quadi’s face, and his arms move like serpents. The Agent does his best to re-aim, but the gun is already in Quadi’s hands.


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