Campaign of the Month: December 2011
Dresden Files Dallas
Nicest Person You'll Ever Meet (Ex Leader of the Freakshow Confederacy)
Total Refresh: 10
Unspent Refresh: 1
Skill Cap: Superb
Total Skill Points: 36
Unspent Skill Points: 0
Unspent Fate Points: 1 (Sponsored)
- High Concept: Sorceress Counselor & Adviser
- Trouble: Bites Off More Than She Can Chew
- Southern As Sweet Tea
- I Don’t Judge I Just Want To Understand
- Mama Bear (because she can never be one)
- “An’ it harm none, Do what ye will”
- Rot, Weiß, und Blau
- (+5) Superb: Lore
- (+4) Great: Conviction, Discipline
- (+3) Good: Contacts, Empathy, Rapport
- (+2) Fair: Alertness, Craftsmanship, Endurance, Resources
- (+1) Average: Guns, Investigation, Performance, Scholarship, Survival, Weapon
Stunts, Powers, Magic
- (-4) Seiðr (Freyja)
- Sponsored Magic standard advantages
- Elements: family, home, birth, protection, sexual attraction, growth, healing, hearth fires, rain storms
- Thaumaturgy as per above listed Elements plus general Biomancy (healing, stat boosting, potions, etc.) at Evocation’s methods and speed
- (-0) Runic Spell Constructs (see Custom Stunts and Powers)
- (-1) Gatekey of Sessrúmnir – Game mechanically functions as The Sight and Soulgaze (similar to a Valkyrie’s “Fate” sight except more magical and less death oriented as befitting a servant of Freyja and not Odin)
- (-0) Boon of Fólkvangr – As per Wizard’s Constitution
- (-1) Refinement (4 Enchanted Item Slots)
- (-1) Refinement (2 Focus Item Slots)
- True Believer Powers
- (-1) Bless this House (Norse version, in conjunction with Sponsored Magic)
- (-1) Guide my Hand (Norse version, omens/portents in runes, blood, flights of ravens, etc.)
- (Free With Sponsored Magic) Best Foot Forward (Rapport)
- Shard of Brísingamen (Necklace) – +3 Control for Thaumaturgy (3 Slots)
- Freyjavinga (Knife) – +1 No-Prep Lore for Thaumaturgy
- Gullring (Ring) – +1 Offensive Seiðr Power & Control (2 Slots)
- Blood of Hildisvíni Potion – 5 Strength Biomantic Potion
- 5 Shift Endurance for Defense Roll to resist an attack/damage. Single Exchange.
- Note that this is Thaumaturgical Skill Replacement, no roll, just a flat 5.
- Freyja’s Cats Potion – 5 Strength Biomantic Potion
- 5 Shift Athletics for additional Zones of movement. Single Exchange.
- Ansuz Rune – 5 Strength Element: Family/Protection Potion – Communication w/Sympathic Link she actually cares about (Sticky Maneuver Aspect “In Contact with X”) rest of scene.
- Freyja’s Tears of Red-Gold Potion (2 Slots) – 6 Strength “Objects of Power” Potion
- 3 stored Power for Thaumaturgy
Enchanted Items (4 Slots, Selected From The Following)
- Straks Hjem – Weapon:5 Mental Attack (Element: Home) – Makes target want to flee back home
- Kvinnes Smerte – Weapon:5 Physical Attack (Element: Birth) – Target wracked with birth/labor pain regardless of gender
- Bärsärk Kona – (Biomancy at Evocation Speed as per Sponsored Magic)
- Mark off the Mental 3 box, and the Physical 1 box. Take the Minor Physical “Sore Muscles”
- Function as Fists 3 for the Rest of the Scene
- (Note this is Thaumaturgical Skill Replacement, i.e. no dice rolls for Fists, just a flat 3)
- Svart Is – Maneuver: (Element: Ice) “Slippery Footing” 1 Exchange – Zone
- Brennende Hud – Maneuver: (Element: Hearthfire) “Burning Up In Your Own Flesh” 3 Exchanges
Physical (Endurance): (1) (2) (3)
Composure (Conviction) : (1) (2) (3) (4)
Armor(s): Chainmail (1)
Basic Minor (-2): *ANY*
Moderate (-4): *ANY*
Severe (-6): *ANY*
Extreme (-8): *ANY*
In the power vacuum created by the Red Court and White Council “decapitating” each other, many of those with powers in the Dallas area have banded together for mutual protection.
With “power centers” in Deep Ellum, Lower Greenville, and Oak Lawn, this organization refers to itself as the “Freakshow Confederacy.” If it has something that could be called a leader, Belle is it.
She’s seen from time to time at Atwaters or The Purple House on Bell.
- True Name: (Obviously this isn’t readily in-game knowledge)
- Annabelle Traudl Schubertin Starr (spoken in a German accent)
- Schubertin does not appear on her birth certificate
- Her own family:
- From Münich (Bavaria, Germany) moved to Texas in 1852 to Fredericksburg. She has distant cousins that are still there.
- Her own family:
- Her magic is detailed here: Asatru Notes
- Almost always takes a Minor Physical “Deep, Bleeding Cut” (self inflicted by her Athamé named Freyjavinga, which she actually calls a Scramaseax in the Germanic tradition.)
- When Belle does a blót her southern roots are very much seen.
- Her stone hörgr has many features found on over-flame BBQ pits
- When she slaughters the pig (it’s always pig) she then prepares it for the pit
- She uses beer (Shiner Bock) passed around in a huge communal Maßkrug (one of those giant 1 litre Bavarian mugs from Oktoberfest).
- Freyja still demands the sprinkled blood though, so it’s not entirely just like a “backyard BBQ” – she paints runes in blood with her fingers and whatnot – but she makes it as “ungory” as she possibly can and still satisfy the demands of her goddess.
- Belle writes out her favorite passages from the Poetic Edda (collection of Norse poems about the Gods) when she “reddens” the altar (Scholarship declaration)
- Usually she performs the slaughter and reddening alone, then invites over friends to participate in the eating and drinking afterwards.
- When Belle does a blót her southern roots are very much seen.
- She owns iron chainmail armor that she wears if she expects “trouble” from fae. Functions as Armor:1 (not as good as Charity Carpenter’s stuff)
- Functionally a Weapon:1 it’s one of her magical focus items. She steadfastly does NOT call it an Athamé because she doesn’t wish to offend her Wiccan friends (both Minor Talents as well as mere mortal religious types)… her blade is used very differently from their blades. Freyjavinga most certainly does draw blood.
Phase One: Background
Born and raised in Fredericksburg, she’s a small-town Texas girl through and through (BBQ, blue jeans, country western music, Dr. Pepper, etc.). When she graduated high school she found a job up in Dallas (Austin just didn’t pan out… plus there were ex boyfriends and other things she wanted to leave behind) and stayed.
Side note – she speaks fluent Texas-German (Though her magic is Scandinavian themed, she doesn’t speak any actual Scandinavian tongues other than knowing a few words here and there). Her paternal grandfather (Fred Schubert) is an old school Fredericksberg Lutheran and Elder at Zion Lutheran Church (established 1852). He loves his little Rotkopf and always spoke to Belle in Texasdeutsch. (Frederich Heinz Schubert – Fred to his English speaking friends, Heinie to his german speaking friends that knew him as a boy – his middle name is just Heinz, not the full version of Heinrich)
Aspect: Southern As Sweet Tea
- Southern manners, southern hospitality, all that stuff – she obviously lacks the bigotries associated with the southern sterotype, but this can be used negatively to have her “keep it to herself” or “internalize the pain” or any of those types of negative southern stereotypes or in social situations to simply say nothing at all rather than say something that might give offense.
Phase Two: Rising Conflict
Her parents were part of the hippie movement/Neopagan reawakening and renamed themselves “Starr” (originally it was Schubert). Belle was born after that and grew up in a home in small town Texas as a non-Christian with “weirdo” parents. You can probably guess for yourself what turned her away from the christianity of her neighbors towards “anything else.” She found the Ásatrú movement (neo-Germanic heathenry) early as a teen, and is a member of the Ring of Troth organization.
She discovered early as a kid that arguing about stuff didn’t accomplish much… it was much better to ask questions. People love talking about themselves and are less likely to pick on a kid that actually seems interested in them. Plus, with knowledge came power.
Aspect: I Don’t Judge I Just Want to Understand
Phase Three: The Story
Her first “adventure” isn’t particularly a good story. In short, she’s became infertile due to damage to her Fallopian tubes arising from infection/complications brought on by date rape by a boyfriend as a young teen. The boyfriend got away with it (for various reasons involving his family having more money than hers) and is a lawyer in Austin now.
While recovering/healing she threw herself into her neopaganism – it was something that was uniquely hers. Her “first adventure” took most of a decade but she’s “over it” now (meaning she’s gained the defense and coping mechanisms that allow her to live her life). Freyja continued to dominate her prayers/studies/thoughts. In time, Freyja answered. Her faith in her Goddess and the magic she was given played a significant role in Belle’s recovery.
Belle gets really, really, really defensive about people she considers “hers” and tends to be very unfavorably disposed towards people who abuse power and authority to steamroll over others. She’s used her magic (Biomancy) to augment her physical traits sufficiently that she’s beat the ever living snot out of many individuals that have drawn her ire.
Unfortunately since this magic is mostly done via potions and aspected ritual magic (i.e. her sponsored Thaumaturgy) she can’t exactly use it as easily as a true Wizard… that said, she well understands the concept of “Revenge is a Dish Best Served Cold.” She’s never killed (not her style)… but she’s put people (usually dudes) into emergency rooms before… and she’s pretty much okay with it. There’s many reason the members of the Freakshow go to Belle for help, this is one.
Though some of the folks that know of her magic call her a Valkyrie… she hates that term. She serves Freyja, not Odin. Sure, death happens… and like any other Viking she’s not afraid of the concept. However, unlike Odin she does not SEEK battle and death. She has no warm feelings towards Valkyries – she’s no Chooser of the Slain. If anything, she’s a Chooser of the Living.
Aspect: Mama Bear (because she can never be one)
Phase Four: Guest Starring
Once her magic awakened, it became nearly impossible to hold a steady job in modern Dallas. Computers just don’t like data entry clerks that blow out their circuits every other stressful Monday.
Here in Dallas, she met and befriended another Minor Talent named Barbara. She is a keen business woman and the two friends saw an opportunity to go into business together. They purchased a well known neopagan landmark in Dallas from its previous owners and opened up “The Purple House on Bell.” Barbara did, and still does, consider it fate and a good omen that the street is named Bell just like her best friend.
Their primary customers and clients are Wiccans and neopagans of many stripes – the Wiccan Rede “An’ it harm none, Do what ye will” came to be an overriding factor in Belle’s values and belief system. The more people she met, the more she came to internalize the Rede. She wasn’t the kind to pass judgement on other people’s weirdness… she was pretty weird herself after all.
Aspect: “An’ it harm none, Do what ye will”
- She’s not Wicca-Tru per se… but the Dresden Files Magic System presents problems I have to work through. This NPC is how I’m going about it and mulling the matter.
Phase Five: Guest Starring Redux
One of the oldest members of The Freakshow (and the reason it has its unofficial nickname) is because of one of the earliest “adventures” between Pallas and Belle.
Early on in their friendship, it became clear that they shared a quirky pastime… soccer. Pallas is an avid armchair Eurosnob supporter of FC St. Pauli (that depending on the year either plays in Bundesliga A or B – anyone that knows St. Pauli’s leftist/counterculture identity shouldn’t be surprised by this) and Belle grew up knowing that the only sports team her hippie parents ever allowed her to root for was FC Bayern (from Münich – same as her family). Belle also knows the words to the FC Bayern fan hymn/song “Stern des Südens” by heart (the song title translates to “Star of the South”).
It came about one night when they were just enjoying a FC Bayern game at Christie’s Sports Bar (in Uptown, not too far from Oak Lawn where Pallas actually lives). Belle was in her old Carsten Jancker Bayern jersey, Pallas in his brown St. Pauli one. Now it should be noted that Pallas doesn’t really like soccer, he just watches it to be different from everybody else in Dallas that prefers other sports. Because of this, he’s okay with watching Belle’s team… especially since it’s nearly impossible to get FC St. Pauli games on TV… which suits him just fine because then he can complain about the “unwashed Cro-Magnon masses” that watch American football.
They were discussing what to do about getting all their friends (minor talents and whatnot) organized somehow. They both remember the dialog and scene as going something like this:
“I don’t know… we should band together, like a Confederacy or something!” said Belle.
Pallas vehemently shook his head, “Oh hell no girl. No way we call something here in the south a Confederacy of anything!”
In an annoyed voice, Belle retorted, “You got a better name smartass?”
In typical haughty Pallas fashion, he replied, “Not yet, but give me some time and I will; and it’ll be perfect.”
Now, Pallas can “flame” (as the slang goes) when he gets animated. Unknown to both, a couple of Orcs were there as well. They were enjoying themselves with their dates and were just going to leave the strange shapeshifter and the minor talent alone. However, they overheard Pallas and their bigotry kicked in. They got up, and came over, and taunted Pallas with the lyrics to a notorious Gwar song (Have you seen me).
First Orc, “Look at this D! Hey faggot, and a corpse full of maggots!”
The second Orc picked up the sing-song line, “He likes to blow $#& not bag it!”
Then they both roared the line, “#@$ dammit I’m horny!” As they shoved Pallas out of his chair.
The rest of the scene doesn’t really need to be described. Pallas and Belle got hurt pretty bad because they fought back. Luckily two things were going for them. One, nobody punches cute redheads in a sports bar with red-blooded southern boys in it. Two, Belle had a potion with her for “emergencies” that boosted her physical abilities quite well. It didn’t take long before the Orcs beat feet, chased out by three farm-fed good-ole-boys that were there to watch the Cowboys game.
When the cops and ambulance showed up to take Pallas and Belle to the emergency room for their various cuts and bruises, they overheard one of the bar patrons talking to a police officer. The line that was overheard was, “I dunno officer. Those two guys really looked weird. There was a lot of weird stuff going on, drugs or something. Hell it was a $%^*&$^ Freakshow in here for a while.”
Pallas took the bandage from his bleeding nose and just smugly looked at Belle. He drawled, “There you go. The Freakshow.”
Aspect: Rot, Weiß, und Blau
- This takes some explanation, she’s a country girl – proud to be an American, proud to be Texan, proud to be Texas-German. This aspect translates to “Red, White & Blue” which happens to be the colors of the US Flag, the Texas Flag, and FC Bayern… so this aspect is used to do stereotypical American, Texan, and/or German things as needed… both good and bad.
- (Accumulated 3 Minors 4/5/6) – Raised Guns
- Minor #4 – Banked
- (1/5 Credit) On Matthew and Barbara
- Minor #5 – Banked
- (9/5 Credit – 8k words as major focus) The Story of the Spell
- Minor #6 – Awarded for Season 2 Erlking events (Banked)
- Minor #7 – In Progress
- (1/5 Credit) Wedding Plans
- (1/5 Credit) Mojo
- Upgraded to 10/35 for Season 2, tweak to High Concept due to Coup
- Minor #1 – Banked
- (Count: 1638) Tornado Warning
- Minor #2 – Banked
- (1/5 Credit) Of Witches and Hillbillies, I
- (2/5 Credit) Ar Strae
- (2/5 Credit) Sheep and Wolves
- Minor #3 – Banked
- (4/5 Credit) Of Children and Confederates
- (1/5 Credit) Season 1 Epilogue
- Minor #1 – Banked
Connie Britton’s “Tami Taylor” character from the TV Show Friday Night Lights. Smalltown cheerleader turned wife of the football coach, mother, and high school guidance counselor.
The below video was made for laughs but it gets the idea across.
Source photos found via Google image search, in general used without permission, and digitally modified for our usage (claiming fair use: parody/pastiche). This is a non-profit site, no challenge real or intended to legally held copyrights. Please contact the GM if you would like your image/likeness removed or if you prefer different credits/notice.
- Actor/Model Used For First Photos: Model Unknown. Photographer: Lyubov Serikova
- Actor/Model Used For Second Series/Gallery of Photos: Model Nina Ilina photographer Polya Zhigalkina http://polyaray.deviantart.com