Oracle & Delphi
|Oracle & Delphi|
The Bull of Crete
In which Delphi makes a new friend and uncovers more clues about the Pantheon and their followers.
After the events of Bloom in Darkness, Delphi has lost part of her connection to the mentor spirit Oracle. Having seen a vision of Oracle being held by golden chains against a rock in a cave by Pythia, one of the members of a group of Olympian Awakened calling themselves The Pantheon. Having spent some time
The Dame at the Door was Trouble
Delphi, finally getting some sleep for the first time in a long while, is awakened by the buzzing of her commlink and the pesky pawing her of cat Megaera. Answering the commlink she sees a panicked Argent asking where she was. The Syndicate fixer tells Delphi that she should get out of her office because someone is coming for her. Taking her time to get up and trying to get a handle on the situation, she gets a knock on the door and looks through the camera installed on the other side of the door. Delphi sees a woman in a kimono with a racoon on her shoulders standing on the other side of the door.
After debating the virtues of taking a jetpack and trying to escape the situation in a scene of fiery destruction, he is interrupted by the sound of the door opening and the sight of the racoon, which turns out to be a Bandit, has cut a hole in the glass of Delphi's door and unlocked it for his master. Chiding Delphi for being a bad host, the woman introduces herself as Hanako Shinoda. A member of Shiawase's Marketing Information and Forecasting Department. After some social barbs back and forth, Delphi asks what reason the corporate seer has for coming to the humble abode of the private eye. Hanako gives Delphi an invitation, sent out by The Pantheon, inviting the Awakened of Seattle that sit above five on the Dumas scale to a party in Bellevue. Delphi recognizes the address as the same place that her former patron was murdered by shadowrunners years ago.
Hanako explains that Shiawase is inconvenienced by the disappearance of Oracle, and that this party might provide them with the opportunity to get ahold of whatever allows the Pantheon to avoid whatever magical defenses might be in their bolthole that they are holding Oracle in, however as Delphi is not powerful enough to be invited, she will be going at Hanako's plus one and will be using her criminal ways to obtain whatever these defensive charms are in two days time. As well as freeing Oracle if the opportunity arises.
Before heading home, Delphi takes Oneiro and performs a divination to see what is going to happen on the night of the party. The seer does not get clear visions, instead is filled with the sight of blood and fire and lightning that all culminates in a sharp stabbing sensation in her gut. Shaken by the ominous visions, Delphi heads home.
Delphi spends the night after Hanako leaves discussing possible options with Informer and Argent who had gone to Delphi's actual home in order to protect against Shiawase's observation. The P.I. eventually rests and in the morning heads to Downtown in order to get some of her clothing properly tailored to her new corporate friend's taste. After getting the tailoring done and being gifted a Shiawase kimono by Hanako's tailor, Delphi starts calling contacts for any information about the party. She accidently meets up with Sarah Snow in the bathroom of a fancy restaurant. After doing some coke with Sarah, Delphi asks about the party and if she has any clients or contacts that might be there. After initial refusal, Sarah eventually gives Delphi a job to put a stealth tag on an Awakened lawyer by the name of Reginald Fitzgerald. Reginald is suspected to be involved in the purchase and trade of blank individuals and Sarah wants to track his movement.
Delphi also searches the Matrix for information about possible targets of The Pantheon. Coming back with several possibilities, but narrowing it down based on what she knows of The Pantheon's tastes to a young woman named Persephone that Delphi recognizes as one of the captured people from Noir Days and Bright Nights. After the traumatic experiences of being captured by Aztechnology and forcefully Awakened, Persephone has been having trouble with her new magic and apparently been taken in by Pythia as a mentor. Pythia has been teaching Persephone and is supposed to "welcome her into the fold" according to MeFeed. Taking a moment to consider her options, Delphi goes back by Bellevue to the manor that changed her life all those years ago that is being redecorated for the Olympian party.
Delphi also returns to Tartarus, the nightclub started by Hades, a member of the Pantheon. While Hades is not there, the club does cater to Awakened individuals, especially those who ae powerful. Delphi dons a mask and uses her Masking ability to try and hide her aura from the Awakened within the club. After doing some drinking and dancing, Delphi finds an adept by the name of Taylor who claims to be a friend of The Pantheon. After playing a game where Delphi guesses the password to The Pantheon's private social media feed, Taylor gives her access and she finds out that The Pantheon have been very active in recruiting others to the Olympian tradition through a ritual of Paradigm Shift as well as complaining about the influence of the corporations and the damage they're doing to the world. She also discovers that many Tartarus regulars, as well as The Pantheon's followers have been given interlocking rings that act as power foci for the Olympian tradition. Having gotten as much information as she believes she will, Delphi returns to her home and tries to fall asleep, but due to her insomnia, leads to a night with Taylor.
Entering the Snake's Den
Delphi is picked up by Hanako in a Shiawase limo and brings her to the party. Surrounded by opulence and the gazes of more powerful Awakened, Delphi is uncomfortable. She eventually finds her way to Reginald Fitzgerald who is bragging about bribing a judge. Pretending to be a member of Shiawase, Delphi chats the lawyer up and is able to slip the stealth tag onto his clothes before heading back to Hanako and trying to blend in. Delphi takes a moment to perceive the area and finds many members of The Pantheon entering from an upper floor. To distract herself from being in the den of her enemies, she attempts to psychomatrize the building and finds the event that she had attended years ago where her patron was murdered by runners. She sees the investigation and the ghostly form of her patron staying as an overlay on the floor. As the events of time play through in front of Delphi's eyes, she sees Pythia entering the building and doing the exact same thing that she is, before going to the ghostly vision of Delphi's patron and speaking in Greek "You have done well my Apollo".
Shaken by the vision, Delphi stumbles into the venue's bathroom and does a line of Novacoke. Feeling the concerns of her familiar, Delphi assures the cat that she is fine and finds that Informer has been following her for support. Delphi also sees Queen Elizabeth XXIII in the bathroom who greets Salem as her ward before disappearing. Delphi is able to convince Persephone to leave the side of Pythia and meet her outside for a conversation.
Once Delphi is outside the manor with Persephone, the two of them discuss the difficulties that Persephone has been going through, suddenly Awakening and being unable to deal with anything to do with Aztechnology. It's clear the young woman has deep emotional scars from the kidnapping and attempted sacrifice as well as built up anger that they faced no consequences for their actions. Delphi explains the situation and how The Pantheon are using the young woman, as well as the fact that she is not the first Persephone that they've attempted to recruit. Eventually convincing Persephone about the danger that she's in Persephone acquiesces and gives Delphi the Olympian ring. Letting Hanako know that they are going to try and get Persephone out of the area, Hanako lets Delphi know that Pythia has drawn a ritual circle in the middle of the party. Persephone also notes that golden chains, similar to those that she has seen around Oracle, are wrapped tightly around Delphi's aura.
Delphi, Informer, and Persephone find a secret passage beneath the gazebo and begin to follow it, Delphi feeling the intense pressure of a leyline that runs though the tunnel.
The Labyrinth of Fate
Finally emerging from the tunnel after what feels like hours, Delphi and her companions find themselves in front of the cavern where Oracle is being held. Though due to the fact that they only have the one ring, Delphi must go into the cavern alone. Informer gives their fellow investigator an Improved Invisibility spell and Delphi enters the cavern, avoiding the wards and ritual protections thanks to the ring that she wears.
Slowing advancing through the cavern, Delphi realizes that there is a labyrinth inside the cavern and begins using AR to mark where she's gone before hearing the sounds of stomping through the cave. Delphi advances into what looks to be a forge, and decides to slot an Infiltrator BTL, forcing herself to overdose when combined with the Novacoke but giving herself a small extra edge when sneaking. The BTL forces her to take something valuable from the forge and grabs a jewel-encrusted hammer. While sneaking out of the forge, Delphi finds the guardian of the labyrinth, that being the Minotaur of Crete, a minotaur that is stuck on a personafix chip of the legendary monster. Saved by the invisibility from her free spirit ally, Delphi avoids notice of the Minotaur and gets to the inner sanctum where she finds Oracle chained to the rocks.
Using her stolen hammer, Delphi uses all her might to break apart the rocks and the chains and free Oracle. The magical backlash alongside the earlier drug overdose strips away Delphi's enchanter's gloves and damages her hands. With her mentor spirit free, Delphi rushes out of the cave and meets back up with Informer and Persephone, who are waiting anxiously for her return.
Delphi returns to the Metroplex and is called by Hanako, congratulating her on her success while obviously standing in Delphi's office. Asking about the party, Delphi learns that after Persephone was no longer within the ritual The Pantheon grew hostile and dangerous, leaving Hanako to excuse herself. Hanako lets the street seer know that she will be in touch and that her services were valuable before hanging up and Delphi returns home, where Argent waits with bottle of elven wine that the two of them share.
- 7 karma (7 RVP)
- 10k Nuyen from Sarah Snow (5 RVP)
- A new best friend Hanako Shinoda (6/1 Superior Seer) (6 RVP or 12 CDP)
- Chainbreaker Quality
- 2 CDP
- +3 Shiawase Rep
Player After Action Reports (AARs)
Wow... this was something else... I'm not even sure where to begin. Caught between the proverbial rock and hard place of these Pantheon fraggers and Shiawase's MIFD and I somehow managed to crawl away with a victory - I'm still not sure how (I really thought I was going to die in that cave), but I guess it was fate or something.
That Shinoda woman... I knew she was trouble the moment I saw her (admittedly the heads-up from Argent helped in that regard), but I don't think I ever had much of a choice in working with her - she knew way too much about me for refusing to be an option, and now she seems to want to continue that business relationship... I'm not too proud to admit there's a lot I could learn from someone like that and that there's a lot of doors she could open for me, but still, it's playing with fire dealing so closely with corpos like her, and I don't like it one bit. Not as if I have many options though...
Frag, the arrogance of those Pantheon assholes is something else - I thought I'd seen mage hubris before, but they seem to literally think they're mantaling gods and can ascend to divinity... absolute fragging madness, but try telling them that. Or anyone else for that matter. At least I can focus on the victories here: Persephone is safe and back with her family, and Oracle is freed of his chains (though he's missing an eye, which is... concerning, to say the least... gonna have to get that back for him). I also have this hammer I stole from them, which means they can't make more of those rings at least for the moment. Though they're probably going to come after me for it - I'm going to have to try to hide it, and come up with some contingencies. Maybe that jetpack will see some use after all.
That Pythia woman though... there's no way she didn't chose that house for the party specifically to frag with me, especially after what I saw in that vision... I'm still not sure what to make of it, but it seems like none of this was a coincidence. I have to know more, to think that everything that lead to this was all part of some plan... did I ever have any choice with the direction my life would go? Or am I just some pawn of forces I barely understand? I don't know, it boggles the mind, and it makes me want a fragging drink.