So! Last time the characters took work at the Angellus Resort to pay room and board for a few nights, until they could figure out what to do about their wrecked van. They met a bunch of people on the shuttle up here, including Babi (the groom), his parents, his friend Damien, and bridesmaid Madison with her husband, Leslie.
The characters took rooms in the staff quarters (girls bunking together, guys bunking together). They got their story straight, but their story was pretty much like the truth - they were headed to Manitou Springs, their car flipped, now they were stuck. Once they got cleaned up, they headed to the main room.
There, they met more people: Serena, the bride, was sitting by the fire with her little sister Stephanie and two other women. Feather used Aura Sight and scanned the room, but everyone there was human. Matt went up and wished her congratulations on her impending wedding, but then the characters met up with Miguel, a ski instructor, who split them up doing tasks. Enoch and Avalon got handed off to Anna, who put them to work setting the tables in the ballroom. Grimm and Matt got told to shovel off the patio outside the main room. Since Feather had expressed interest in working the trails, she went with Miguel on a short hike with Babi, his father, Damien, Leslie, and Mike Amole (the best man).
On the balcony, Matt stared into the shining snow and saw a vision. He was sitting at a banquet, surrounded by people, and folks were passing food around. Some dishes he felt inclined to pass on, but someone behind him put a hand on his shoulder and said, "Try everything."
Grimm tossed snow at him to wake him up, and Matt told him about the vision. Grimm, for his part, thought he hear howls. He caught up with Feather before they left and told her that. She relayed the information to Miguel, but Miguel told her it was probably just the wind - wolves don't come this far up the mountain when the weather's like this.
Enoch and Avalon set the tables, and as they did, a woman entered (wrong room). She introduced herself as Freddie (Winnifred) Gale. Enoch made a comment about the mother of the bride, and Freddie told him to avoid that topic; the May sisters had lost their parents in a car accident two years ago. The rest of the May family was conservative (read: racist) and didn't approve of Serena marrying Babhi, which was one reason the wedding was so small.
Out on the trail, Feather listened to the guys bullshit and trade barbs like old buddies do. And then something drained her Pyros away...she turned and saw something moving in a snow bank. She called it to Miguel's attention, and he took his stick and brushed at it, saying, "Probably just a rabbit."
A huge black-grey wolf jumped out, tackled Feather, and knocked her down the hill, landing on her. She felt the rest of her Pyros drain away, and the wolf growled, "you aren't going to come between me and my prey. Back off." It bounded away just as Miguel reached her.
The group of them headed back, meeting Matt and Grimm, who were now shoveling the walk from the main building to the shed with the hot tub. Grimm expressed an interest in hunting the wolves, but they figured not yet.
Enoch, meanwhile, had been recruited by Peter, the head cook. Peter put him to work peeling potatoes and they chatted a bit (Peter was from Jamaica and had moved around a bit). And then dinner happened, and the characters did some serving things...except Feather, who was off because of her wolf experience. She did slip into the dinner and use Aura Sight again, and this time she saw something. Mixtures of fear, excitement, worry, of course, but Leslie had a mark on his aura. It looked like someone had tagged it, somehow.
Lying in her room, listening to Avalon's clock tick, she had her own vision. In the vision, it was pitch dark. Someone led her by the hand, and then switched to a hand on the small of her back. And then she fell, and she realized as she fell that she had been tricked, but that that wasn't the end of the world.
Dinner ended and the characters were off for the night. They and the guests hung out in the common room. Matt engaged in conversation with Leslie (Feather had explained what she'd seen). Matt came on a little strong, using his good looks and famous face to get into the conversation, and Leslie got up and headed for the bathroom. Closest one, as it turned out, was near the room where Feather was resting. Feather heard the clock get louder, and opened the door to see Leslie. She chatted with him a moment, asking if he was OK. He said he was, and headed back to the group.
Meanwhile, Enoch used Sense Pyros and Sense Flux while staring out of the window. He didn't sense anything with Pyros (other than the Prometheans), but when he sensed Flux, he got multiple hits. Pandorans, maybe? He also knew that Flux could infect living things...including, presumably, wolves.
Avalon chatted with Richard "Ollie" Ollenbeck, one of the groomsmen, who was sketching. She showed him her artwork, and he was fascinated by the drawings she did using her Device. She demonstrated, but just went really, really slowly.
At this point, Miguel poked his head in and asked if the characters wanted to play cards. Matt excused himself, thanking the girls for their kind words (and earning a milestone: Graciously accept a compliment). The characters are really just killing time, though, until they can slip out and go hunting wolves.
And now, some notes:
So, I may have kind of overplayed my hand, here, by letting Feather see that mark, but it seemed like a cool idea. I need to insert some conflict between the people here so that the folks with social milestones (Feather, Matt, and especially Avalon) can have a chance at making them. But I also need some backstory.
I know that Avalon's clock (the workings of it) are designed by Ashar'Arif. I know that I want Leslie to have signed a soul pact with a demon, and the Principle has sent Wolfpack to kill Leslie before the demon can reach the resort and claim his soul. Why, though? That has to be bigger than just one thing.
I had an idea that I want to use, and that is that the God-Machine is involved, basically trying to take over the Principle's "seven angels" thing, or even that it started the whole process as a way to a seriously major occult matrix. That would put the Principle in the position of not trying to stop the process (since that would thwart Pilgrimages, and It doesn't do that) but trying to co-opt it. I like that idea. That would mean that the Bad Angel was an angel, not a qashmal, which I can kinda get behind. Who were the other angels? The Living Creature (qashmal) and the Bright Light (also qashmal). So the G-M is really falling behind, here. I think Wolfpack should be an angel, then. I like the idea of the God-Machine trying to kill Leslie before the demon gets to him.
Fuck. What I need to do is go back through the chronicle thus far and pick out the God-Machine vs. Principle moments. But not right now.