Dead Light: Modifications & Additions

Notes

From the Adventure: Only its use to him was known. It was for Doctor Webb and the one whose practice he inherited (and who knows how many before them) a kind of “sin-eater”. A thing for safely getting rid of nightmarish and misbegotten children born to certain families. A device for the murder of half-formed monsters and tainted kin too terrible to live, but which might not have been safe or certain to “kill” by normal means.

“Sin-Eater” – Wikipedia – In mythology, Tlazolteotl, the Aztec goddess of earth, motherhood and fertility, had a redemptive role in the religious practices of the Meso-American civilization. At the end of an individual’s life, he was allowed to confess his misdeeds to this deity, and according to legend she would cleanse his soul by “eating its filth”.

The Weird but True History of Sin Eaters

In 18th and 19th Century Scotland, families placed a piece of bread on the breasts of their dying loved ones. That’s not the strange part — the families then hired someone to eat the bread, believing that the practice would somehow absolve the sins of the deceased.

What did the sin eater say and do?  

I pledge my soul for your sins and ask that God Almighty remove those sins from you and place them up on me and I eat this food and drink from this cup to show that I have taken your sins upon me. If I lie may God strike me dead before I eat from this plate or drink from this cup.


Player Introduction

The Players are experienced Investigators that just went through a bad investigation.  Some are drained of considerable sanity, others are suffering from Madness, while others are wounded.  I will pass out condition cards to each of them at the start of the game.

Aftermath Cards 

  • Sanity Loss 1 – 1d6 Sanity loss from last encounter
  • Sanity Loss 2 – 1d8 Sanity Loss from last encounter
  • Sanity Loss 3 – 1d10 Sanity Loss from last encounter
  • Madness – 10% loss of sanity and Bout of Madness
  • Slight Wouund – 1d4 damage
  • Moderate Wound – 1d6 damage

What are they fleeing from

The text of the adventure implies that the doctor was involved in “special” abortions of eldritch mutant babies from the surrounding towns.  They are coming up from the small town of Bolton, where a cult for some unknown reason, raised an eldritch horror that seemed to be calling to this leader.  This cult was a very angry cult and so was the horror.  When the horror arose, it killed all the members of the cult but the players were able to stop it from going any further.

The subtext of this is that the horror was or was sent by the “mother” figure of the mutant babies being killed by the good doctor.  It was coming to this world to hunt the good doctor and stop his killing of its “children.”  Somehow, through their last investigation, the investigators will have learn that the rage the cult was expressing was emanating from a “motherly” source somewhere else.  It was like the rage of a mother bear protecting its cubs but worse.  Perhaps a rage that one of them tapped.

The Bolton Case Cards

Each started out with the same text – The previous investigation went down quick and horrible.  There were pieces and evidence that were never explored because time grew short to stop the cult.

  • Evidence indicated that the cult called itself the Cult of the Mother’s Rage.  The included many citizens of the town of Bolton who seemed known to be angry about something recently.
  • Evidence indicated that the eldritch horror summoned by the cult was some kind of death-dealing entity sent to this world by a greater old one with a specific mission in mind.
  • You had a dream at one point during the investigation of a man performing a ritual over your pregnant belly.  Light grew from inside your womb and a shooting pain throughout your body woke you up in a sweat.
  • Evidence within the chant mentioned a mother god, a sin-eater and children.  The mother-god was seen as almighty and great, the sin-eater was the enemy and children were lost.
  • Evidence indicated that there was specific target of the rage infesting the Cult.
  • Evidence indicated that the cult was made up of all men suspected of indulging in occult activity over the past 30 years.  All men were once married, wives since died of mysterious circumstances.

The Journal

The majority of the journal has been left blank except for the innermost pages, on which the means to control and use the Dead Light have been written out in un-emotive and shockingly neutral terms, painstakingly set in a small, neat hand.

“instructions” –  A particular spiraling mark would be painted in blood on the forehead of the intended living victim; certain words (phonetically written in his journal) spoken and the coffer would be opened.

Beside the “instructions” are a series of pages on which single letters are matched with dates and three and four figure numbers. There are sixteen entries in all, and the dates are erratically interspersed over the last thirty years, with the most recent date of 11/10/1919 listed. 

Cards that pace the skimming of the Journal.  Modify the Journal so that the blank pages are the ramblings of a guilt-ridden doctor.

The Journal of Dr. Godfrey Webb Cards (Sequential, flipping based on skill rolls)

  1. The first portions of the journal the first few years of his practice in Bolton, inherited from a long time town doctor from the old country (Ireland).  The first few years were routine and uneventful until he mentions something he inherited from his predecessor. Biblical Reference: Daniel 7:5.  Roll Investigation to flip the next card.
  2. The second portions of the journal are phonetic translations of a ritual, to be performed over the ornate coffer. Biblical Reference: 1 Peter 5:8.  Hard Occult or Cthulhu Mythos Roll. Once Successful, flip the next card.
  3. The ritual is a binding spell for something other-worldly – something call the Beast that Devours. The ritual involves a sacrifice.  Biblical Reference: Matthew 4:16.  Occult or Cthulhu Mythos Roll.  Once Successful, flip the next card
  4. The ritual passage ends with one symbol that is to be placed on the flesh of that which should be devoured. Biblical Reference: Revelation 13:16-17.  [Symbol Below]
  5. The third portions of the journal turns into a kind of ledger, with single letters matched with dates and three and four figure numbers. There are 16 entries in all, the dates are erratically interspersed over the last 30 years, with the most recent date of 11/10/1919 listed.  Interspersed are Bible verses such as 1 John 1:9, Psalm 25:11, Psalm 19:12, Daniel 9:9.
  6. The last portion of the journal deals with a spell, placed on an amulet or talisman. Biblical Reference: Hebrews 11:7. Hard Occult or Cthulhu Mythos Roll.  Once Successful, flip the next card.
  7. The spell is to cast on a pure gold amulet, and is to act as a ward of protection to whatever the caster chooses.  What the poor doctor misinterpreted was that it only is true while he lives.

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