By Sam Pay (Pythagoras).
This is designed to fill in GMs on the details of what really happened behind the scenes in the BPN 'ESP', and what will happen in the as yet unwritten sequel to it. The Full Story is written from the point of veiw of an narrator, the only way that I can write. :-(
I do not claim copyright for this peice of writing, only ask that if it is reproduced anywhere, that my name (Sam Pay) is attached to it in some way. Otherwise, feel free to alter, change, mutilate, copy, photograph, hang, draw and quarter this in any way you like.
Right, down to business....
Hundreds of years ago, on a Planet called Mort, an Ebon named Durer fell in love. His story is well known, and well documented. His love was to be the first domino pushed in a run that has not yet finished. Because of the conflict he had with another Ebon over his love, Slayer banished them both from Mort. Durer could not take this, and flug himself into The White. When he emerged, he was changed, reborn in the ultimate image of himself. Teeth, the first Necanthrope, was born.
This is all public knowledge. But the Necanthrope was a dark creature, who's potential even Teeth did not know at the time. As more and more of Slayers 'Final stage of Ebon Evolution' emerged from The White, some began to die. As is normal for such an important member of SLA society, most were buried.
But as Necanthropes are so removed from the rest of the public, some were taken away, unmissed by anyone, to a warehouse on the edge of Mort, and placed in a complex codenamed Valhalla. Here the bodies of Necanthropes were stockpiled, un-rotting and un-changing, preserved by their god-like powers. Slayer had a terrible plan for them. Part of his Big Picture. His World of Progress. But Slayer had not planned for everything.
When Salvation Tower fell, taking the furthest reaches of Mort with it, Valhalla was encircled by fallen buildings and rubble. Slayer was cut off from his morgue, and, infuriated with this failure, abandoned them, in the hope that none would ever discover it.
He was wrong.
40 years ago, Dark Night came to Cannibal Sector One. Moving so quietly and so stealthily that even Digger never came to know of them until too late, they infiltrated empty buildings and towerblocks, waiting for the right time for them to strike. They waited for 20 years, building for themselves a small colony in the wilderness, far away from the prying eyes of SLA.
And then, one day, while out searching for hunting targets, a Dark Night Interceptor came across an isolated building, set firmly into the ground. 'Complex 839', it proclaimed. Upon entering, the Interceptor was amazed to discover row upon row of coffins. Strong, sturdy, organic looking coffins. Coffins made of what looked like the Deathsuits that SLA Ebons used. Prising open one of the boxes, he gazed down in wonder at the perfectly preserved Necanthrope, who's eyes stared up at him blankly. And as he looked, a plan began to form in his mind.
The news of this discovery spread through the Dark Night information channels like wildfire, until it reached Night Center, the HQ of Dark Night. Authorisation was given for a D-N Necanthrope, Genesis, one of only a few, to visit Mort, and investigate the phenomenon. On arrival, and looking into the blank eyes of the dead warriors, he became privvy to one of the dark secrets of his race.
Necanthropes never die. Not ever. Instead, they become deposed of their mortal shells. Their minds are forced to wander through the Ebb, tied to their bodys by a flexible but unbreakable cord. And if you know how to pull on that cord....
Within a year or two, Genesis had began to unlock the secrets of the revival of the Necs. By 900 SD, he had done it, and a shadowy form was summoned before him. Flushed with his success, he proceded to not only summon all 400 Necanthropes held in Valhallas store-rooms, but bound them to his will, tapping out their knowledge bit by bit, torturing them until they gave up the secrets of SLA that they had gathered in their long lives. Forced them to teach Ebons the darker and more destructive ways of the Ebb. And, once their usefulness was at an end, killing them, sucking their power and potential into himself, becoming a great, perhaps the greatest Necanthrope to ever live.
But the enslaved race of Necs was not powerless. The most learned of them could leave their bondage. They could leave Mort, and fly among the stars. But above all, they could see with greater clarity than ever before. The future, the present and the past all stretched out before them like a 4 dimensional map, explaining the routes that every man, object, cell, molecule and atom would take, and how to change them. Any mind but those of the Necs would surely have been overcome with madness. But they persisted, until one day in the year 901 SD, one Nec saw how to free them. Saw how his influence could aid the Operatives who were destined to come and discover Valhalla. And all it would take was the influence of one, pathetic little human. Mark Cole was a no-one, a nothing, and yet his actions (with guidance) could save them all.
And this is what happened. The Necanthrope flowed through the Ether, and latched on to Cole, taking his brain and mind and turning them into plyable matter that could be controlled. All Mark had to do was plan some great escapade, one that would really get the attention of the Operatives in question, and allow the Nec to get these vital clues to them. So, with Mark as his tool, he began to sculpt a task for the Ops, and very soon, Mark Cole began planning for the future in a serious way.
He knew that Slayer would have to be kept out of the loop. Probably Valhalla was created with this very exercise in mind, only Dark Night had got there first. No, it had to be kept between the Operatives, Mark and any others who could easily be disposed of.
Firstly Mark convinced his friend, Clestet Cxix that he had a power. A power given to him by the gods. This power could show Clestet how to acheive the ultimate in life. By a few simple demonstrations, such as predicting the actions of his friends and the results of a few horse races, Clestet was sold this idea, and given a complex script of the next few years. This included buying various items, meeting various people, what to say and how they would answer, and what kind of song to write. It went on showing exactly how to move when the enraged Operatives attacked him, and how after this all was over, he would become great. Greater than any of them. And how he would die happy, who he would sleep with, how good they would be, his children, his family, his fortune and his fame. How could he say no.
But it was a lie. Clestet would be killed by the Operatives, or be forced into killing himself. The Necanthrope could not have anyone left, not even Mark, who could identify them to Slayer.
A few purchases, one or two jobs at a taxi company, or the Shiver Workshops (depending on the way the BPN goes) allowed him to plant the Bomb that would initiate the search for him. Rigging the apartment block to clear it at the right time was childsplay, and, to occupy the late nights, tiny timed explosives and electrical surges programmed in at just the right time would give the whole thing a sense of the dramatic. All there was left to do now was sit back and wait.
Meanwhile, the Necanthrope who was doing all this began to be noticed by Genesis. He was forced to teach and his concentration was diverted. Soon, he knew, he would be consumed by Genesis, but for some unknown reason, the movements of his captor could not be predicted more than a few seconds into the future. As the time of the BPN drew nearer, his power ebbed away from him. He controlled Mark less and less, prefering to save his strength for the final communication with the Ops. As the Operatives finally met Mark, Genesis prepared to devour the Necanthrope. His speech, prepared over years, had to be discarded, in favor of a short, and desperate communication with the Ops. As his conciousness was absorbed into the Dark Night Nec, he could only pray for the safety of his fellow prisoners. Pray that his message had been enough. For now there was no others that could help them.
Such is the background for the first campaign, ESP. The second is less preordained, but can be breifly summerised. The Players will later on receive a letter. They have been randomly picked for a specialist BPN, simmilar to a Black, only more sensitive in nature. Once the BPN is complete, their brains will be wiped of the experience, and be replaced by a fictional mission of SLAs invention. They will be paid highly, and their SCL increase will be formidable.
Their mission is to plant a receiver in the center of Valhalla, and defend it while specialist Ebon Reality Folders remove the Necanthropes. However, the layout of Valhalla is no longer recorded, and so the Players must first find the storage section of the complex without being killed by the Dark Night defenders. They will be cut off from SLA, and will have to fend for themselves.
However, Mark Cole was not the only one to be controlled by the Necs. The Ebon reality folders have been prepared for this moment for years, and will transport the Necs far away, safe from all prying eyes and ears. The Ebons will take the blame for this, and the players will be paid for completing their side of the BPN. Their minds will be wiped, and the whole escapade will be removed from their minds. The Necanthropes will be gone, and hopefully the information that the Players have will be enough for them to get through Valhalla without running into Genesis, a foe that they cannot possibly hope to beat.
The Second campaign has already been written, but is not yet formated for the page. However, I think that leaving a gap between these 2 campaigns is good. It will allow players to partically forget the unfinished sections of ESP. If there are any points that you have, be they questions as to how I intended a character to act or advice for improving the mission as it stands, mail me on Pi@stsm.demon.co.uk.