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Urban Fantasy: Blattodea and I


Jkeown
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Blattodea and I
A Ravenna Threat Report

An Indianapolis resident by the name of Martin Donnelly lives with a secret, literally. He has had a run of good luck lately. Bill collectors stopped calling, two of his worst supervisors quit suddenly, and a woman who snubbed him fell in front of a bus. Shortly thereafter the counter girl at CVS fell for him.

All of this could be marked up as coincidence were it not for the simple fact of a giant alien cockroach in his basement. The walls are filled with weird writing (they look like inky bug tracks (which is what they are)), the place stinks (it is, after all, a cockroach), and the monster’s newspaper subscription is going toward building a bizarre maze-like nest down there.

The beast subsists on a steady diet of cheap beer and what used to be called “TV Dinners.” Martin keeps the bug secret, and in turn, he gets spells cast for him. Martin’s girlfriend can’t remember how she met him, and can’t seem to notice the smell. In fact, she can’t even see the basement door.

These spells are Mind Control, Unluck (Usable As Attack), and soon (very soon) Killing Attack.

Martin himself does not have magical abilities. Just a weird friend.

 

The Player Characters probably start by investigating murders or something, tie the strings together at Martin's house in Drexel Gardens and then lock and load.
 

Some things to work out:

  • Why can’t the cockroach just turn invisible and stay hidden that way?
  • Can’t it go live in the sewer?
  • Why must Martin help him out of his own free will?
  • Why can’t he be coerced or Mind Controlled? 
  • Something about the relationship must be benefiting the bug, or he wouldn’t do it.
  • The roach arrived via panspermia – bug eggs drift through the cosmos and sometimes survive the trip through an atmosphere (there is a big pile of them on Mars, unviable and unhatched). The bugs awaken, mill about for a bit, and then get to the task of recreating their eons-old civilization.
  • How many other spell-casting cockroaches are there? A few? A few thousand?

Conclusion
So, gonna work all this out, then the PCs will find the bug, and all the detail in the world won’t matter; they’ll blow the house up, kill Martin, Mind Control the girlfriend into forgetting everything and get some Experience Points.
This is Ravenna, however, and they must abide by the Segreto – Magic must remain hidden. Can they do this without alerting the world to the Bug’s presence, let alone revealing magic to be a real force?

 

I see this as a kind of Faustian story, but instead of the Devil, it's a cockroach.

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That is totally disgusting, but brilliant.

 

That being said, I think they would just engineer a gas explosion when the girlfriend is out shopping, blow up the house and Martin, and call it a day. 

 

Blowing up the house often worked pretty well in Call of Cthulhu, in my experience.

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