This is a short campaign that I am running trying out the new Adventure Edition rules set in the Deadlands world. You can find my player facing notes here which I will keep updated. This campaign is only expected to last about ten sessions. I am looking forward to the release of the updated Deadlands rules for the new system, but until then, I will muddle through with my own conversion. Though some of these conversions would not be used in a longer term campaign.
We start the session with the posse at the mine shaft that terminates with the strange checkered wall. Reverend Graves remembers seeing something like that in Reverend Browne’s book Monas Hieroglyphica. So he and Lefty go to look at the book and see if it has any clues as to what the wall is and what to do about it, while Greyeyes and Mongo stay to guard the strange wall.
At the church, they ask to see Reverend Browne’s book and flipping through it they find a section that talks about using a checkered stone wall to focus an area with a weakened spiritual border focusing that weakness into a door that "beings of light" can use to enter the world. It goes on to say that these "beings of light" must have an appropriate vessel to inhabit so that the petitioner can converse with them. They are left with a strong feeling that the wall needs to be destroyed and that will block whatever is possessing the townsfolk.
On there way back to the spiritual doorway, Reverend Graves notices several of the townsfolk looking upon the lynched body of the rustler Drusilla Proctor, which is still hanging from the tree with what looks like pride.
When Reverend Graves and Lefty make it back to the mine, they tell Mongo and Greyeyes what they found out, and Mongo goes down the shaft to start preparing the wall for the explosives. While this is going on, one of the spirits possesses Mongo. The spirit in charge of Mongo, slowly twists him against the rest of the posse, and the rest of the posse retreats from Mongo rather than confront him and watch as he starts carrying rocks and debris back into the shaft to protect the portal.
Eventually the possession ends, and the posse rejoins him. Reverend Graves blesses himself, and enters the shaft to set the dynamite to blow the wall. A spirit tries to possess him, but he manages to resist and places the dynamite and lays the fuse all the way to the mouth of the cave. Lighting the fuse, the posse ducks behind cover and waits.
With a loud crump the dynamite goes off destroying the wall and bringing down the ceiling in several locations. After looking around to make sure it is destroyed, the posse heads back to town. Where they stop to talk with Mr. Guggenheim to see if his people have made any progress on the Canker detector. Unfortunately he has not, nor is he inclined to share the sample in his lab with others. When the posse leaves his office, they decide to take down the corpse of Drusilla Proctor, and bury it in the cemetery behind the church.
Asking questions of Reverend Browne and Lefty they realize that something odd is going on in the town because of the weirdly high number of lynchings that are happening there. Working off of what Lefty remembers, they realize that there have been twenty six lynchings in the last year. This is a huge jump from the number the years before Marshall Cornell took over the post after the previous Marshal retired. Lefty also remembers having been in a lynch mob that hung a murderer and that Marshall Cornell did his best to talk the crowd out of doing this even though it Lefty was a witness to the murder.
The posse decides to look up accounts in the Oro City Gazette and then go talk to the Marshall about the strange number of lynchings in town. While they find some more information mostly about the crimes the victims are accused of are by no means certain, but there is enough circumstantial evidence to make it plausible that the victims did commit the crimes. They also find that the earliest lynchings were exclusively committed against drifters, but as time passed, some locals started getting lynched.
The posse comes up with several ideas as to the cause:
- There is something about the cells that cause those who spend between three and seven days in them to attract a lynch mob.
- That the marshal is cursed and that is why when he tries to calm the lynch mob down, they seem to get more agitated.
- Someone else is setting the victims up and getting the lynched to feed a spirit.
At the end of this, the marshal points out that he was not the only thing odd that changed a year ago. Mr. Hoover, the bar owner fell down a mine shaft and nearly died. Since then he has run the bar and walked with a obvious limp. This all might have something to do with his fall.
And that is where we left off for the evening. We are down to the final session and I am not sure how I am going to wrap this all up, what plots will be resolved, and what mysteries will remain. But it is going to be interesting to find out.