Written summary of our second Grand Theft Cthulhu game

The original video for the second session can be found below:

Written Summary of Session

Trevor finds himself standing in an underwater city of strange spires and cobbled streets made from an odd black stone, the streets of this maddening city are covering with dead rust red sea creatures, and the ground seems to slope gently downwards; following the natural gradient, Trev arrives in a sort of town square that seems to be built around a large black hole or pit at the centre of it. Reaching down he picks up a stone and throws it into the hole, a few moments later there is a roaring sound and a dull red light shines from out from the bottom of the ravine; Trevor shudders as a cold sensation seems to play about the stump of his missing arm.

Looking around in panic for signs of help the settled dirt and silt seem to suggest no-one has been in the city for years but as he moves away from the pit Trevor spots a set of tracks, interspersed with other footprints, some barefoot, others almost skeletal, some modern shoe tracks; he is about to follow when he hears the roar again and a bright red light shines from behind him, a sensation of unhealthy warmth becomes noticable at his back. Screaming Trevor runs forward, risking a glance over his shoulder, he sees a huge amorphous black blob, with three pinpricks of red light, like three red eyes, shining out of it – the light from the eyes seems to bore into his very soul.

Deny is driving the three Whatley boys to a bolt hole of Horatios by the river when he is startled by Trevor waking up in the back of the car screaming about burning eyes; in shock his foot slips on the accelerator peddle and he plows the car into one of the metal supports by the side of the river, totalling it, and some of the barrier at the waters edge. Still covered in sweat from his nightmare Travor touches his arm and for a brief moment it feels chill and clammy as he relates the events of his horrible dream to the others; Horatio says that he thinks it’s some sort of conspiracy and that perhaps the statue is covered in some sort of deadly hallucinogen, this illicits a sarcastic response from Deny who asks what drugs can make a body dissolve a puddle of green slime. Whilst they ponder the matter Deny disposes of car by pushing it into the river, with a loud splash it slides into the murky waters of the Arkham river; they take the statue (wrapped in multiple layers of material for safety) into the Horatio’s small riverside hut, put it on a small table and sit down around it.

They eventually reach the conclusion that they’ve been double-crossed by Old Man Pierson and that they need some way to find out what’s going on; as they are talking the top of the bag has fallen open revealing one of the rubies on the statue, this seems to affect Trevor who starts shouting about the eyes and asking the others to shut the bag, puzzled Deny covers it up. Trevor wants to know why they’re carrying it and says it might have cameras in it so they can be tracked, Deny points out that they’re keeping it because the others want it; remembering the precious stones on the statue Horatio tries to pry one of the rubies out using a knife but is unable to find a seam or join to prise it loose and the knife slips off, his hand narrowly avoids brushing one of the poisonous spikes. Deny says he thinks the statue, and the others desire for it, is the only ace they currently hold and it might be the only thing keeping them alive; he remembers that he has a business card from an old colleague Charlie Hartwell and, removing it from his pocket, asks for a phone so that he can ring the ex-university lecturer turned black market dealer.

Horatio apologises but says he can’t help because he ate his simm card earlier to stop them getting tracked; initially Trevor is hesitant (thinking that the phones might be tapped) but eventually throws his phone to Deny just to get him to shut up; getting Charlie on the phone Deny is surprised to hear that they are all over the evening news for killing members of the ACPD and having a deserter from the army with them, but brushing that aside he asks asks Charlie about the statue. Surprised, Charlie tells them that he recently won an ancient manuscript in a poker game from another antiques dealer, apparently it once belonged to an ancient arabian tribe (from the middle ages) and he is in the process of translating it; the manuscript describes a religious idol that matches the description of the statue they possess. The translated part of the manuscript says that the spikes contain a reservoir of lethal poison, there is something about anointing it with water and apparently the tribe believed that it fell to earth from the sky, forming a huge crater that flooded. Deny arranges to meet up with Charlie the following morning to discuss potentially selling the profit, although Charlie wants a higher percentage than normal due to the danger of associating with known fugitives, Deny agrees to this and hangs up.

Listening to Denys recount of the phone conversation Trevor says it’s probably a good idea that they didn’t throw it in the river, Horatio is dismissive of all this “mumbo jumbo”; Trevor jokingly suggests tipping a glass of water on it, but when Horatio takes him seriously (bringing out a bottle of water from the back of the shack) both Deny and Trevor run outside. Horatio waits for a few minutes after tipping the water over the statue but nothing untoward seems to have happened, he shouts to the others that it’s all mystical mumbo-jumbo and that their pursuers are after it because it contains precious stones.

As the water hits the statue, Trevor gets a strong feeling that someone is behind him staring at him, but when he looks he can’t see anyone; from further down the riverbank Deny can hear a faint, womans voice calling his name and sets off in pursuit of it, a dreamy look coming over his face. Seeing Deny heading off, Trevor pursues him attempting to attract his attention but failing he shouts for the assistance of Horatio who is still stood inside the hut staring at the statue. The voice is now unmistakably Scarlett’s and is coming from the river, Deny moves towards it whilst a befuddled Trevor (who can’t hear the voice) runs after him; in the early morning light a mist hangs over the river and the setting moonlight gives the mist a strange ethereal glow, Deny can see a faint, human silhouette in the mist and for a moment sees a flash of red hair, a female hand with red nail polish reaches out of the mist towards. The voice of Scarlett beckons to him saying that they can be together.

Unable to see where the river starts because of the mist he moves forward, but realising that Scarlett is dead Deny snaps himself out of the trance that has gripped his mind just in time to see the huge, bloody, gaping hole where “Fat” Abbot’s bullet ended her life, a tracery of green slime lingers about it; Scarlett tells Deny that the black city is waiting for him, all he needs to do is step into the water and they can be together forever. Shouting that she’s not really Scarlett, a look of horror on his face, Deny pulls out his gun and fires wildly into the mist; although Horatio and Trev can’t see the figure, after the gunshots die down the two of them hear something drop into the water as the body of Scarlett falls into the polluted water and disappears from view, Trev screams for Deny to get out the water.

Deny warns Horatio not to put more water on it, although as far as Horatio is concerned nothing has happened and he tells Deny that he’s tripping; getting tired after the days exertions the boys return to the hut where Horatio locks the statue in a safe with the code 14/17/21 and they all drift off to sleep after checking all the doors and windows are locked.

As they dream, all three of the Whatley boys find themselves back in the black city of Trevor’s previous nightmare, Horatio instinctively reaches for his gun but finds that in the dreamworld he does not have it, they try to talk, but no words escape their lips only bubbles of air; Trevor mimes to point the direction of the black hole from his previous dream and, following the directions, they arrive in the town square with the ominous black hole in the centre. Trevor picks up a loose rock and hands it to Horatio who skims it into the hole; Trev starts backing away from the hole, when suddenly a pale clammy hand grasps his shoulder from behind, he spins around to see the pasty figure of “Fat” Abbot Whatley, a large portion of his face still missing from where Horatio shot him. In a perfectly clear voice that sounds in their head Abbot tells Trev that he shouldnt have done that, Trev screams, panicked bubbles rushing out of his mouth.

Abbot claims to be part of a new order that is coming, a new family, and tells the Whatley boys that they could be part of it, riding high when it arrives; he tells them that Pierson set them up because they were supposed to be the sacrifice, but by accident it ended up being him, Scarlett and the others who are now part of the family. Horatio isn’t bothered by these events because remains steadfastly sure that it’s all a dream; as though hearing his thoughts Abbot dares him to step into the abyss and, despite Deny’s bubbing protestations, Horatio steps into the hole still claiming that it is all a dream, and is swallowed entirely by the blackness. Abbot attempts to persuade Deny to join but is rebuffed, he tells Trevor that he came so close to being part of the family, and that he could still be an immortal god free of pain and fear. Shouting his defiance of Abbot both Deny and Trevor begin attempting to swim away from the area.

Deny wakes up to find out that the gurgling, thrashing that he was hearing wasn’t Trevor swimming next to him, but infact it is the sleeping form of Horatio who is coughing and spluttering with river water gushing from his mouth, nose and ears, Deny slaps Horatio and eventually manages to wake him up, which seems to stem the flow of water. Deny wakes up, remembering stepping into the blackness and then being surrounded by the recently dead, all standing around him in the blackness applauding as he walked between them, like some sort of twisted ceremony or initiation; behind them was a large black, slug-like shape that had three burning red eyes approaching him – one of the eyes split open like a mouth, containing rows of spike-like teeth, it reached out towards him and that was when he woke up; he is confused that Deny and him shared the same dream. Deny wakes Trevor up and explains that they all appear to have had the same dream.

Whilst Deny and Trevor are talking Horatio notices a tapping sound on the outside of the shack, like something scraping or banging on the walls of the hut and peeks out of the shutters, he sees numerous silhouetted figures moving in the mist, slowly emerging from the waters of the river and approaching the small hut, he shouts “Boys, we have a situation.”

Trevor wants to get rid of the statue whereas Deny thinks throwing it in the river would make it worse and says they should get some guns and bust their way out of their and escape; unfortunately Horatio doesn’t have any of the bazookas that Trevor recommends for this situation but says that they should grab the statue, fight their way out and burn the shack down; Deny opens the safe, but he sees that the spikes of the statue appear to have grown and are bursting through the bag, Trevor shouts for Deny to get away from it, saying they should burn it and run however Deny refuses to leave the statue for the figures outside to take it. Trevor feels himself drawn towards the statue (as though a will other than his own is acting on him) but is able to resist the compulsion, he shouts for Horatio to get the door open so they can run.

Deny says they need to destroy the idol but setting it on fire isn’t going to work, rooting around in the various gear lying around, he locates a net and a large metal case, using the net he drags the statue into the case and locks it. Deciding that the time is right to make a break for freedom Horatio boots open the door, preparing to go out all guns blazing, when skeletal hands grab hold of him and pull him into the thick mist; the others can hear Horatio’s voice calling for help from deep within the mist and they see occasional flashes of weapon fire. Wasting no time Trevor runs out towards the flashes firing wildly with Deny behind him, they find Horatio up to his waist in the river water with numerous green encrusted skeletal arms pulling him down whilst he fires his gun erratically into the water. Deny pulls the net out of the case and throws it over Horatio, with himself and Trevor pulling it they are able to drag Horatio free from the sucking mud and water, he scrabbles back up the bank as shambling figures, dripping green ichor, begin to stumble out of the river after them.

Trevor runs away from the river, Horatio untangles himself and bolts whilst Deny grabs the case and makes a run for it after them; the figures part and the almost skeletal form of an old man who they recognise as Asaph Peabody emerges from the crowd and tells the Whatley boys that if they leave the statue they’ll be allowed to go free, when the figure says the word ‘statue’ a darker more burbling undertone says ‘Glaaki.’ Trevor shouts for Deny to leave the statue, but he refuses saying that there’s no guarantee the figures will keep their word, he curses and drops the case as suddenly the spikes from the statue burst through the metal of the case and Asaph says “Glaaki awakens.”

Trevors runs for it as both Horatio and Deny snap off shots and follow suit; a few hours later finds the boys holed up in another of Horatio’s emergency shelters on the outskirts of the city where they collapse from exhaustion into a fitful sleep.

The next morning they are woken up by a newspaper vendor shouting about mysterious disappearances; Horatio buys a copy of the newspaper and finds that the headline story is “ACPD baffled by disappear of 50 residents from the Riverside District of the city”, the story cites that the only clue was an anomalous biological residue found in the houses of the residents, but that the police have yet to comment on this; with the sensationalism of the disappearances the police (and emergency services) seem to have forgotten all about the hunt for the Whatlet boys. Reading on they discover that the entirety of the Whatley family (besides themselves) are listed as amongst the missing but that there is no mention made of the statue under the section where it talks about the ACPD sweeping the river area.

As the months and weeks pass, with no-one to impede their progress Deny, Trevor and Horatio use their contacts to take over the underworld in Arkham City, and the memory of their experiences by the river fades until it seems like little more than a bad dream; however as the months stretch into years everytime they hear the river they can’t help thinking about Abbot’s new order and wonder whether or not this will be the day they’ll finally feel his clammy hand on their shoulder for the last time.

A Brief Summary of our Grand Theft Cthulhu Game

The video of the session can be found below:

However there follows a short summary of the game.
Main Characters
‘Dirty’ Deny Whatley : played by Afrodave
Horatio Whatley : played by Fozz
Trevor Whatley : played by Pigeon
Principle NPCs
‘Fat’ Abbot Whately : Mercilessly tough leg-breaker and rivil of Deny’s for the casino racket.
Juvan : Mechanic working in one of Trevor’s garages.
Louie Graves : Long time friend and contact of Deny’s, works in the vice trade.
Old Man Pierson Whatley : Patriarch of the Whatley crime family
Sandra ‘Scarlett’ West : On/off girlfriend of Deny, works as a receptionist at Trev’s garage.
Plot Summary
Arkham City had one been ruled by the Whatley family from the shadows of the underworld, if anyone wanted to run business in Arkham they had to pay a cut to the Whatleys; this all changed about ten years ago when a previously unknown English crime family called the Peabodys moved across the water and, with an almost supernatural ability to avoid the ACPD and have their deals come up golden they took over as the leading crime family within a week, leaving the defeated Whatleys to slink into the shadows, nursing their wounds and their grudges
Recently Pierson Whatley has gathered together three of the upcoming members of his family, Deny, a well known rough nut and security consultant for the familys chain of Silver hawk casinos, Horatio, an AWOL member of the military that the family have been sheltering because his training is very useful to them and Trevor, who runs a successful (and dubious) chain of chop shops and respray joints for the Whatleys. Pierson tells them that Ashap Peabody, the ruler of the opposing cri8me family, is ill and not long for this world, he hasn’t been seen in public for a couple of years and there aren’t many Peabodys left in the USA; one of Pierson’s inside men has told him that the Peabodys intend to bring in a shipment of weapons hidden in an oil tanker down the Masachussetts Highway at midnight. This could be the opportunity that the Whatleys have been waiting for, if they can seize the weapons then they both deny their enemies a valuable resource and can propel themselves back to the top of the heap in Arkham.
Heading to the Masachussetts Highway, the three members of the Whatley family concoct their plan; Horatio will station himself on one of the bridges with a rifle and shoot out the tyres of the tanker as it approaches, meanwhile Trev and Deny will be waiting in their armoured Patriot at the nearest on/off ramp (junction 32), once they hear the shots they’ll drive up and force the tanker into the hard shoulder where Deny will deal with the driver and Trev will change the tyres so that they can drive the tanker away and get it off the highway (since the shots are sure to attract the ACPD and they’re not known for their tolerance).
As the tanker rumbles towards the bridge Horatio stares down his scope and notes an odd glazed over expression on the drivers face; he is forced to fire a couple of shots as the wind whipping about him makes it very difficult to hit the target, but eventually he is rewarded with the sound of one of the tyres popping, through his radio link he shouts for the others to make their move. Roaring up the off-ramp in the souped up Patriot bumps into the side of the tanker where Trev is able, thanks to his superior driving skills, to force it onto the hard shoulder. Jumping out and running over to the cab, Deny throws open the cabin door of the tanker, he notes briefly the emaciated condition of the driver before grabbing his head and smashing it into the dashboard; expecting a bit of blood and unconsciousness, Deny is horrified with the skull of the driver cracks like an egg shell, revealing not brains and viscera but a pungent green slime that smells of stagnant water and death, he pulls his arm back (now coated with the goo), throws the corpse from the seat onto the road and begins hastily wiping his arm with his jacket shouting to the others.
Horatio has no rejoined them and pokes gingerly at the dissolving remains of the driver, but before they have a chance to ponder it any further Trev shouts that he’s changed the wheel and they need to get going; not eager to get back into the cab of the tanker Deny volunteers to drive the Patriot whilst Horatio and Trev jump into the tanker and begin gunning the engine. As they roared off however the sound of suddenly approaching police car sirens filled the otherwise quiet night air, Horatio frowned, how the hell had the cops gotten to them this quickly? No-one was supposed to know about the tanker, unless they’d been double crossed?
Looking ahead they can see that the police have spread their cars out across the road, Trev looks around frantically for a way to escape and sees that the weak point of the cordon ahead of them appears to be a spot occupied by a single army truck; a man wearing khaki clothes is stood by it, the man seems to have noticed Horatio and is frantically shouting into a radio. A sudden bright white spotlight flickers on around the tanker as the sound of an ACPC police helicopter comes swooping in overhead; shouting for Trev to get them out of here Horatio leans out of the window but is unable to hit the spotlight with his rifle at the speed the tanker is moving. Deny tries to keep up with the tanker, driving and shooting but, distracted by pulling his weapon, clips the front of the tanker with the Patriot sending himself crashing into the side struts of the freeway, there is a sickening crunch and a shower of sparks as the side of the car scrapes against the metal side bars of the freeway but Deny manages to keep the car moving forwards somehow.
Smashing at full speed into the military vehicle, Trev grits his teeth as the tanker plows through it, throwing the soldier clear like a broken rag doll, skidding around crazily Deny manage to follow but a hail of bullets riddles the Patriot, some of it finding chinks in the armour and wounding Deny’s leg. Pulling off the freeway the tanker and Patriot drive through little known backstreets, losing any pursuit in the chaos of the wrecked military vehicle, Trev rings ahead to one of his garages and tells his man Juvan to get ready to change some tanker number plates; a few minutes later they roll into the garage where the mechanic Juvan immediately begins changing the plates.
Back at the garage Horatio turns his attention to the contents of the tanker truck, using a large angle grinder to cut the lock off the entrance hatch to the back of the tanker, however, when entered he finds it empty besides a small, spikey, metal statue that looks like some kind of sea urchin or cross between a slug and a hedgehog with three tentacle like growths sculpted from it, each with a ruby eye set in them.
Deny’s phone rings and it’s one of his contacts Louie Graves who asks what the hell is going on and tells them that all the police are after them and that even the Whatly family themselves are pursuing them, saying that the three men have stolen something from the family; it would seem that Horatio’s suspicions were correct and then have been double crossed by someone within their own family, possibly Old Man Pierson himself. Graves tells Deny that his cousin Abbot Whatley has moved in on the Silver Hawk casinos saying that he’s going to be the new man in charge; Deny is protesting their innocence when Horatio and Trevor slap the phone out of his hand thinking it could be used to track them.
In order to slap the phone Horatio has put the statue down on a nearby crate, he hears a voice behind him swearing and turns round to see Juvan holding his hand, it seems as though he tried to move the statue and one of the spines broke off in his hand; an unhealthy looked green ooze lines the wound and thin green traceries seem to have spread out under Juvan’s skin from the wound. Whilst Trevor restrains him, Horatio plunges Juvan’s hand into boiling water in an attempt to leech out the poison and then attempts to make the injured man comfortable.
Deny has been looking around outside, however, he fails to spot the hulking figure of ‘Fat’ Abbot Whatley creeping up behind him, he only becomes aware of it when the cold metal of a gun barrel is pushed into the small of his back and the rough, threatening voice of Abbot begins to talk, admonishing Deny for stealing from the family and gloating about how all of Deny’s rackets will soon be his; unseen by either man the red haired figure of Sandra “Scarlett” West is arriving for the evening shift and, spotting her lover with a gun to him, runs inside in a panic, screaming for Horatio to do something.
Outside, Deny struggles to wrestle the gun off Abbot, unaware that Horatio and Trevor (followed by Scarlett despite Horatio telling her to remain inside) have burst out of the garage and are preparing to help him; the gun goes off, missing Horatio and Trevor, there is a muffled scream as the stray bullet hits Scarlett in the chest and she falls to the floor. Horatio’s gun barks out in response and Abbots face disappears in a crimson spray as Deny runs over to cradle the dying Scarlett who, through the gurgled gasps of a punctured lung, mutters something about a black underwater city; Deny frantically dials for an ambulance but, a moment after he finishes the call, Scarlett dies.
Juvan staggers out of the garage looking still quite ill, but seemingly wanting to help, his face suddenly goes slack and with superhuman strength he grabs Horatio’s neck with one hand and begins to squeeze the life out of him, lifting the gasping gunman off the ground; seeing green slime leaking from the minor wounds that Horatio’s struggling has inflicted on Juvan, Trev realises that his friend is gone and fires his shotgun at Juvan. Horatio falls to the floor gasping in lungfuls of air as he is released, the body of Juvan collapses and begins to rapidly decay into a fetid pool of green slime. Still spluttering and slightly blue in the face, Horatio tells everyone to get ready to leave; without thinking Trevor reaches over for the statue to throw it in the pimped out car that he’s prepared for their getaway when he feels one of the metal spikes pierce his skin.
A cold numbness begins to spread up his arm towards his elbow and green lines slowly start to spread from the wound under his skin; with only moments to think and not wanting to end up like Juvan, Trevor ties his belt around his elbow, pulls it tight with his teeth and picks up the nearby angle grinder. There is a spray of blood and a muffled scream and Trev drives the grinder down through his elbow, severing his arm, he reels back blood leaking from the wound despite his makeshift tourniquet, but at least it is red blood, whereas his severed arm begins to submit to the green decay as it lies festering on the floor. Outside there is the sound of the ambulance finally arriving as Horatio cauterises Trev’s wound; forcing the two paramedics inside he makes them dope Trev up on extra strength painkillers, but he spots one of the medics has signalled somebody using her radio, at gunpoint he gets her to reveal that she recognised the three men from the descriptions being put out over police dispatches and has radioed in her position.
Using the butt of his gun Horatio knocks out the paramedics and says that they need to get out of dodge, Trev is losing consciousness so he is chucked in the back of the car, Deny slides behind the drivers seat as Horatio grabs some thick welders gloves, wraps up the statue and throws it in the boot of the car. A few moments later they screech out of the garage and drive off into the night.