World of Darkness Text Game Recap: Shane

Between March and May of last year, I had been bouncing the idea off some friends of playing a game separate from our table ventures via e-mail, IM, or text. The response I got was fairly positive, so in mid-May, we worked out that we would try to have a game via text, and I hashed out some quick rules and details after deciding on the new World of Darkness.

Our Chronicle took place in Chicago, and though we didn't make it too far into the game, I found it fun and the game actually ran for almost a year, and could have been longer if not for an extremely long hiatus breaking focus amongst the players.

In this series, I will be posting the character sheet and logs for one PC per post. Along with the character sheet, I will give the background info submitted by the player, as well as various notes from me, including their "tie" to the supernatural, explaining where I wanted to take the game with them. The ties were all made early on, and I'm not 100% sure that's where I would have gone with them as the game progressed.

The logs and character sheet are presented as-is, with typos, etc. Player text is default color.

This one is for David P.'s character Shane Tomlinson.

Shane Tomlinson                    Virtue: Temperance                   Chronicle: Text WoD
Age: 23                                    Vice: Sloth                                Faction:
Player: Dave P.                        Concept: Slacker                      Group Name:

Intelligence: •••                        Strength: •••                             Presence: ••
Wits: ••                                     Dexterity: ••                              Manipulation: ••
Resolve: ••                               Stamina: •••                              Composure: ••

Mental (-3 unskilled)                 Physical (-1 unskilled)              Social (-1 unskilled)
Academics •                             Athletics •                                Animal Ken •               
Computer •                               Brawl •••                                  Empathy
Crafts •••                                   Drive •                                     Expression
Investigation •                          Firearms                                  Intimidation
Medicine                                  Larceny                                   Persuasion
Occult •••                                 Stealth                                     Socialize ••
Politics                                    Survival                                   Streetwise
Science •                                 Weaponry ••                             Subterfuge •

Other Traits
Merits                                       Health                                      Willpower
Resources •••                            • • • • • • • •                               • • • •
Toxin Resistance ••                   [][][][][][][][]                                [][][][]
Strong Back

Flaws                                       Morality                                   
                                                • • • • • • •

Size: 5                                      Speed: 10                                 Defense: 2
Armor:                                     Initiative Mod: 4                       Experience: 12/0/12

Weapon/Attack             Dice Mod.         Range              Clip      Size

Equipment                               Durability         Structure          Size     Cost
Smart phone                             1                      2                      1          1

Background: Shane is a 23 year old Irish underachiever. Within days of starting his new job at a home improvement superstore, he was running late. In order to keep things quiet (preserve his job) he rushed right out to the unloading floor and started to unstack boxes from a fresh pallet. Soon realizing that this box was pretty heavy and a little awkward, he adjusts his grip repeatedly. All of the stress on the box caused the bottom to fall out of it, along with fifty five pounds of very expensive, heavy duty wrenches on to his leg. The sheer weight, plus their acceleration to the floor crushed every bone in his foot and ankle.
            The ensuing lawsuit against the company that made the faulty box won him arguably enough money to never work again: 4.8 million dollars American, paid in installments. Needless to say, he was a little extravagant, but all the material things in the world mean nothing when you've got noone to show them to.

-Lacy Brust, sweetheart/best friend. Needs money, but too proud to ask.

Tie: Mage, looking for someone to bankroll. This could bring into conflict with Vampires, as they try to become the rulers of the Second City.


ST: You awake a little before noon and roll out of bed, look at your phone... "New Voicemail" You look, no record of a call, but sure enough, you have a voicemail.
"Mr. Tomlinson, I have no doubt caught you sleeping. I will call back at 9pm tonight. It would benefit us both if you answered." The speaker is male, the voice is clear, calm, very serious. No one that you recall, but someone who seems all-business.
9pm is a while off, right now you have a date with a box of Froot Loops and the Looney Toons.
Shane: and hour of cartoons and a box of cereal later I began to be a little curious of that voicemail. Didn't sound like the usually whiney boyfriend ofa girl who saw a bit too much of a goof time the night before. This man had no doubts that he had contacted the right person. Ah well. Time to get the day started. Rifling through my mental datebook I decide to meet with someone before seeing what tonights night life looks like. This apartment is getting a little too quiet.
ST: [OOC: nothing in the voicemail said you have to be at home to take the call. I assume you're going out? you can continue that line of action]
Shane: I suppose lacy would e the closest thing I have to a friend. She's who I go to when I want a more stimulating conversation than " wow how much did this tv cost?" Usually we sling insults at each other for a bit, see what the other has done interesting lately, more insults about our latest conquests. Things of this sort. Tonight though lacy is quiet and acting strangely. Some would say drunk but other than myself lacy holds her drink like no other.
I chalk it up to a monthly visitor or a family problem and don't dig too far. She doesn't butt into my business why should I to hers?
later I stumble into a nameless dive and sit around with some fairly generic people. A fer drinks and I'm considering leaving. The night is young after all. Just as I'm about to pay my tab and go, a hand claps my shoulder a little harder than I'm comfortable with. I snap around to see that the hand belongs to a drunken 30 something man. "How much did daddy have to pay for the boxster?" I reply with " my dad's dead. It was a gift from your mom" the grin on his face becomes a scowl and he takes a swing at me.
ST: [OOC: pause before that scene. I want to add something before moving on]
Shane: OOC [ ok done now. Sorry about the breakup of the messages]
[OOC: ok]
ST: you have a few more drinks with Lacy and nothing seems to make her mood better or poorer, more or less distant...she eventually gets up, collects her purse, looks you in the eyes after hugging and kissing you on the cheek and says "I love you, be safe. I'm gonna catch a cab home," leaving you to your own designs.
Shane: [OOC: should I wait to reply? Or does this just squeeze in where it belongs?]
ST: [OOC: squeezes in before you're at the dive]
Shane: I'm sure I look like a buffoon right now. "I love you" ? Not sure what's more strange. Her mood or that statement. We've never had a relationship like that. At least not in my mind. Sure we fooled around some but I had always written it off to the drink. Shaking the shock off of my face I step into the bathroom for a draining then I make my way out the door.
ST: the drunk throws a wild punch that is meant for your face, but glances off your shoulder [OOC: you can continue the fight or whatever from here]
Shane: the old bastard is completely soused. I give him a couple firm swings to the breadbasket and ring his bell once for good measure, putting him out cold on the bar floor. The bartender is pretty irate until I drop 200 on the counter for my 3 jack and cokes. I make my way out of the bark, making sure to lock up the car. I could use a little bit of a walk to calm down.
ST: you bust him up good, he looks to need medical attention, but the money on the bar and the bartender's quick "Drinks on our myterious friend, here" seems to quiet the angry/concerned mumbles before he gets on the horn to 911. Your fist is aching, but it feels good to have released some tension.
As you're walking to your car, your phone indicates you have a voicemail, though it never rang. The voice is familiar "I'll be calling in 5...4...3...2...1" your phone rings, your mysterious caller "Mr. Tomlinson, I hope this is a good time, unless you're going to continue to rough up the locals?"
Shane: "ah only as much as necessary. Can I help you?"
ST: "I think we can help each other, actually. I represent a...league headed by a group called The Ladder Foundation. All we wish from you is certain...allocations of funds, discriminate funding, if you will, to our league and the Foundation proper. IN return, we could arrange certain inroads and conveniences for you. A simple yes or no, Mr. Tomlinson, and you can be a rising star in Chicago, or will probably never hear from us again"
Shane: "ah yeah? What I'm hearing is " we want your money and we won't tell you what for" I like to know what pie I'm putting my hands in sir. How about we elaborate some?"

ST: "Fair enough." he says, his voice as smooth as before "The Ladder and its conglomerates are enablers. We enable certain "potentials" to become potentates.
Elevation and insertion into positions of rank. The Ladder deals mostly in politics. We could take John Q Schoolboard-member and make him a city councilman." He pauses a moment, letting that sink in before continuing. "Adamant, one of our partners, does the same with military, police, or securities. It's all very non-intrusive. We take care not to be overt, not to destroy as we build. Nobody gets hurt, because nobody finds out. You do understand, Mr. Tomlinson, how important it is that nobody finds out?"
Shane: "yeah I can see why you would want to keep things like that under wraps. You still haven't let me in on what good this does me. "Why should I throw my money away so that someone else can get a free step up?"
ST: "Throwing your money away? Are you always so fatalistic, Mr. Tomlinson? We change things for the better. We keep things running smoothly. In fact, our league has been in Chicago since before the fire." a little irritation creeps across his voice, but he clears his throat an continues, "I appreciate your misgivings, sir, I do, however, I've offered you all the information I can for now. Legalities get involved if I speak further. With that said, however, I would like to clarify my offer: you get all the conveniences The Ladder Foundation can arrange on a continuous basis as long as you aid us. That's the deal on the table. I've been authorized to give you one day to decide, if you would like?" he trails off here, waiting on your response
ST: the idea seems like a good one to you, and you can see how it would affect your life in the positive, but at any rate, The Ladder Foundation's secrets will be safe with you, no matter what you decide
ST: [OOC: I'm not arbitrarily controlling your character, something happened]
Shane: " well if its a "you can quit at any time" kind of thing I suppose I'll go long. Send me a bill. I'd give you my address, but something tells me you don't need it" I finish this off with some smug

ST: "We can call it that if you wish, it more or less works that way. Believe me, Mr. Tomlinson, you're not making a mistake." the call ends abruptly here, followed by a text asking for your confirmation of a bank draft transaction, equaling $75k every month for an indeterminate timeframe
Shane: [OOC: dumb question. Is this 75000? And if so will this infringe upon the characters lifestyle? Basically will he be missing this money monthly?]
ST: [OOC: yes, $75,000, and yest, it will put a slight crimp on his lifestyle, but since you told me he's pretty much bought everything he wants already, I assume he has quite a lot in savings, and it won't affect him immediately]
Shane: "sure. Let's see what this merry little band has for me. Confirmed.

ST: another text goes through showing that the first transaction has just been cleared. Seventy-five thousand dollars, and you haven’t even partied all that hard tonight. The night is, for the unemployed like you, relatively young yet

ST: the next few days are as normal as can be expected for someone who doesn’t live on a schedule and wants for nothing, except for the books. At first, just a few show up, packed carefully and tightly, always in unmarked, plain cardboard boxes, and always at your doorstep.
No one knocks when they are delivered, and nobody claims to have seen a courier, if asked.
The books deal greatly with the histories and locales of Chicago, including many of the local legends, as well as mentions of the Ladder, and various groups with ties, or in opposition, to them
Shane: the books keep piling up and yet I have no clue about the actual corporation that ive dropped a condiserable amount of money into. Only that they’ve done quite a bit of good for communities and a few select people. Im a little suspicious but not enough to commit to in depth investigation. I feel like I may go out tonight. See what the real world is up to
ST: tonight brings you to a familiar spot, Lacy’s new favorite spot, a glitzy newish club called 8 Fifty 8 in West Town. When you first meet up, she seems distracted, and when questioned about it, says that she is stressed, and apologizes about how she acted last time you hung out. “Just work, you know? Deadlines and shit,” she shrugs, before tugging you out to the dance floor.
The night goes well and helps you blow off some steam and sink more than a little money into drink, but as 3am rolls around, both of you are tired and drunk and ready to call it a night. You both linger in the street for a minute before being able to hail a cab for her, that parks across the street to wait. She gives you a peck on the cheek and stumble runs across to the cab, making it halfway before a dark colored old car races onto the street, coming to a screeching halt in front of Lacy, a large man exits the car from the passenger side, obviously brandishing a gun, and grabs her, throwing her in the car before getting in, himself.
As the car speeds away, your phone rings, thinking it may be Lacy, you answer to hear a familiar male voice, “Mr. Tomlinson, how goes your reading?”
[OOC: Lacy is a copy editor for UR Chicago, a magazine detailing Chicago night life, entertainment, and pop culture.
Before we continue, I’d like to know if you’d share anything about the deal you’ve made, the books, anything, with Lacy.
Also, I know I sent a book, remember that you can do actions during that time, just tell me what and when you want it inserted, if so]
Shane: [OOC Id share what I knew as much as she would like to know since we seem to hang out a lot. Im having to sore through the messages cause I received them mixed for some reason]
My mind is racing as much as it can considering that the last shot went down about 5 minutes ago. “this is going to have to wait. Call me later” I hit the end key. (What the hell just happened?!) I try Lacy’s phone a few times to no avail. I decide to go over to the cab and ask the driver if they saw that car and where it headed.
ST: [OOC: that’s the last message you’ll get today, if anything comes up, or you change your mind about anything, let me know]
Shane: [OOC: im solid] 

ST: You run over to the cab as well as you can, sobering quickly as the situation solidifies. The car begins to pull away, but halts as you approach, the rear window rolling down and Lacy’s head popping out. “Come to give me a kiss goodnight?” she laughs. It’s the last thing you remember before a voice stirs you. “How did it feel? When you thought you had lost her.” The voice is a familiar one, and when you open your eyes, after realizing you are in your bed, you finally put a face to it. He’s a slight man with a serious, slightly angular face, with round-rimmed glasses and short dark hair that is receding in peaks. He is dressed in a rather plain, drab suit, like you would expect a college professor to wear
Shane: “How did you get in here?!” jumping out of bed I grab the nearest weapon I can, which turns out to be one of those reach grab tools for old people. What can I say sometimes standing is a chore.

Though fairly tightly focused, Shane's Chronicle was one of the loosest (and busiest, as Dave played longer than most). Next up, I'll present Llana.

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