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Where The Sidewalk Ends

Where The Sidewalk Ends

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Some people say that the world is ending; others swear that this is a declaration of war from across the sea. Whatever the cause, everyone agrees that demon attacks in Philadelphia are on the rise, and there's something suspicious about this outbreak....

1,991 readers have visited Where The Sidewalk Ends since Nannyhap created it.

RhiannontheDane are listed as curators, giving them final say over any conflict & the ability to clean up mistakes.

Introduction



It stank. The PPD’s forensic pathologist hadn’t made it fifty feet to the crime scene before it hit him like a wave, the balmy summer night emphasizing the spoiled scent of rotting meat that hung heavy in the air. Forcing himself not to gag, Billy pulled a dirty handkerchief from his pocket and held it to his mouth and nose. Ducking under the yellow police tape, he nodded and murmured greeting to the grim detectives there to meet him.

Bracing himself against the edge of the dumpster, Billy raised himself to the tip of his toes as he shined the flashlight’s stark beam onto its grisly contents. She’d been gutted—that explained the smell, certainly, and even after more than five years of medical training, he found himself fighting the urge to retch again at the sight before him. The naked body of the ingénue was twisted grotesquely. On her blood stained chest was a sigil, the calling card they’d seen before, and with it, the unnatural way her limbs were tied behind her back. Her organs spilled out onto black polythene bags, congealed blood glistening on the slick surface. The dark and sticky reds and blacks contrasted sharply against the pale of her mottled flesh. He grimaced; it was almost pretty, in a way. His gaze lingered on her face—her expression was blank and all beauty she may have carried in life was lost, her eyes rheumy and bulging from her grey cheeks. Clicking his tongue, Billy fell back onto the balls of his feet.

“Well, gen’lemen,” he said with false cheer, flashing the detectives a toothy grin, “I think we can rule out natural causes, how ‘bout you?”

“I don’t know,” a figure from the shadows replied, stepping forward to peer with little surprise into the dumpster behind Billy. He turned to the group of policemen and smiled slowly. “I’d say dying after something like that would be perfectly natural.” With a sneer, he added, “Or were you not asking me?”




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Demon attacks are on the rise in Philadelphia, reaching numbers that have gone unseen since the inception of its highly trained Occult Division. A large section of the city's industrial district has been shut down due to demon infestation, and grisly murders, which had been kept to a minimum up 'til now, are suddenly a dime a dozen. Perhaps the most disturbing pattern of this already trying time is the tendency for corpses to turn up with their hearts missing, even in the unlikely event that the rest of the body is intact.

Understandably, the public is in an uproar.

Some say that it's vampires seeking revenge for being outcast from society. Others, perhaps more educated in matters of the occult, are aware that the attacks come from extremely young demons, although this does not put their minds at ease. Some are even claiming that the goings on in Philadelphia are a sign of the end-times, a sentiment which local law enforcement is trying (with little success) to stifle.

For the brave young men of the PPD Occult Division, the question is not what—they're already well aware that the attacks are demonic, and even that the demon threat plaguing their city can be easily bested with simple banishing and containment methods. The more important question, as far as they're concerned, is how; even after they're banished or killed, it seems that more demons step out from the infected area, as though they were an innumerable army.

Not to mention the familiar ugly mugs walking around town, most of whom should have long since rotted away to naught but bone.

As if matters couldn't get any worse, now the Feds are getting involved, adding bitter resentment and old scores to a workload already tripled by stress, exhaustion, and a late June heat wave. Things don't look good for the city of Philadelphia....

Your mission, should you choose to accept it...

...is to help save the city of Philadelphia, and potentially the entirety of the Overworld, from the threat of demonic invasion by aiding in the banishment and containment of these uncooperative demons. If working out in the field where you have to stick out your neck (and try very hard to keep it from getting hacked to bits) doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, you might also try contributing to research on the creatures plaguing the city. How did they get here? Why do they just keep showing up? Or, if you’re a parapsychologist, what is their favorite color?

But what if you don’t want to help save the city? You might be a cultist or a thug taking advantage of the current situation. You might be a demon fresh out of the Sandlot, eager to destroy the new toys some merciful entity has bestowed upon you....

...or you might just be trying to survive.

Welcome to Philadelphia, June 1958. Enjoy the ride.


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Philadelphia:

The year is 1958, an eventful year even at its surface. In the last six months, America has launched its first successful satellite (Explorer 1), the first crossing of the Antarctic has been completed, and Elvis Presley has just been inducted into the U.S. Army. Coca Cola and the Sunday paper still cost the same amount—five cents apiece—and color televisions are still rare in the average household. As a matter of fact, it isn't uncommon for the average Joe to get his news from the morning or evening radio shows.

But this isn't the calm, peaceful world that your grandparents might remember. As a matter of fact, it isn't too peaceful at all. For as far back as history can recount, and perhaps even farther than that, mankind has been plagued with a sort of curse breathing just down their necks. All-seeing, but mostly unseen, demons have haunted the known world since the day the first true humans were born, and it's been said that they will haunt it until the last of mankind dies.

Demons walk amongst the general population, integrating seamlessly, for the most part, with the world around them. Throughout the years, they have become so adept at blending in with the human population that certain measures have become necessary for human survival, in the paranoid human mind. It was for this reason that magic was first discovered and harnessed for human use, and magic has remained a primary defense against both Infernal and non-Infernal threats for a very long time.

In recent years, some government organizations have adopted the use of cooperative demons, mostly to combat those that don’t feel so charitable towards the human race. Organizations such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation and many police departments throughout the United States employ demonic individuals known as Infernal Field Agents, whose primary duties include sniffing out and negotiating with Infernal threats and, in some cases, fronting any physical violence that may occur because of them. Government organizations with Infernal specializations focus on relocating the threat in question in order to minimize the damage on the general population.

Up ‘til now, demons in heavily populated areas have largely been under control, and in the last three decades or so, civilian interference with, awareness of, and casualties due to Infernal incidents has been greatly reduced. In recent weeks, however, strange things have been happening in Philadelphia, including a surplus of young demons with little rhyme or reason to the pattern of their attacks. These demons, while not especially powerful, are great in number, and have been wreaking havoc on Philadelphia’s industrial district. Add to that a slew of folks who, as far as any records show, are quite dead, and you have a recipe for disaster on your hands.

While there are many differences between this Philadelphia and the one you may be familiar with, certain issues such as racial discrimination and sexism remain in the kitchen as controversial as ever. Though employers in AU Philadelphia allow a handful of multiracial and female applicants into fields otherwise dominated by white males, these positions are rare at best and remain few and far between.*

*Note: This is not included in order to deter individuals from creating female or non-white characters. We here at the Snakes and Ladders headquarters are dedicated to historical accuracy, but not so much to prevent having fun. We don’t expect it to be much of an issue in game, but we want to ensure players understand the backbone of the world they will be playing in.


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Listen up, kids! Important note coming through!

Since we've already had two character submissions, I want to make it clear that all characters should be submitted to the WIP thread before they are submitted to the tab. If you don't want to submit your WIPs for all to see, you're welcome to PM them to Nannyhap and RhiannontheDane. We'll be giving out a lot of advice on most submitted characters, both critiques and normal ole suggestions, and it's easier for us to do so in those formats. It also keeps the tab from being cluttered.

Not chiding anyone so much as reminding you guys. I guess it's not posted very clearly (although I think it's bolded in the rules.)

Back to your regularly scheduled technical information!

Please keep in mind that this is primarily out of character information. Not all characters, especially human characters, are going to be aware of all or even most of this information, and no human character at the start of the game will know precisely what’s going on with all of these extra demons, until the situation is investigated. Feel free to misinform your characters however you like, regarding this info or any of the information found on the Wikiblog. As long as you understand that the game will still work as the GMs have planned, your character can believe whatever he or she likes.

Demons and Other Supernatural Entities
As has been mentioned on multiple occasions throughout this roleplay, the most prominent feature of this AU is demons. The ratio of demons and other supernatural entities to normal humans has not been precisely determined by the scientists of the day, but many estimate that there is at least one supernatural entity per every group of ten normal humans. This includes demons, vampires, ghosts, and otherwise unclassified supernatural beings.

Those wishing to play demon characters should give the About Hell page on the Wiki a good readover, and while players are encouraged to create and submit their own demonic species (all rights will still remain in the hands of the player), those who don’t wish to go through all the hassle are urged to choose from the list of available species posted on the website.

Players wishing to play supernatural entities who have not been specifically addressed, such as werewolves, vampires, ghosts, and other creatures may do so only with the permission and explanation of the GMs, who will be addressing these matters shortly if all goes as planned.

Players who have already created human characters will be given preference when new supernatural characters are submitted.

Magic
Magic is prevalent in this AU, as it serves as the primary line of defense against demonic threats. The GMs are leaving this notion open to interpretation. Magic is very likely different for each wizard, sorcerer, and religious leader who uses it, based on their upbringing and training. In the case of religious leaders, their magical styles will likely be heavily dictated by the styles of magic used in their denomination. The first player to choose a religious leader within a denomination will decide the basics for all subsequent individuals.

Players who have been with the roleplay or other Snakes and Ladders roleplays before will be given preference regarding wizards, sorcerers, and religious leaders, as these are high-power characters. This does not mean that the GMs will turn down a good character from a new player, however.

What the Hell (pun not intended) Is Happening?
This information is strictly out of character, as no human on Earth (and very few demons) actually know what is going on. To keep things short and simple, a hole has opened up in Philadelphia’s industrial district, leading to a realm of Hell known as the Sandlot, where young demons fight to the death to earn their way into Hell’s ranks. These wild young demons, though weak and susceptible to faith-based magic, are almost endless in number, and they’re pouring into Philadelphia at an alarming rate. They believe themselves to have discovered a new area of their stomping ground, and treat its inhabitants with the traditional amount of respect afforded to a food source.

Along with young demons, a number of damned souls are bubbling up from the depths of the Abyss as well. These are men and women who were primarily evil in life, and have remained so in death. Murderers, thieves, rapists, and frauds who have, according to record, been long since dead (or, more disturbingly, never existed) are now roaming the streets of Philadelphia alongside the living, and they are much harder to distinguish than the demons that have emerged with them.


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Several roles have already been filled by the GMs, who are playing numerous characters in order to move the plot along. These characters, and other filled roles, will be listed first, with open and available (unnamed) roles listed below.

The roles listed below are by no means the only roles available in the game, nor do they all need to be filled before we can begin. They’re merely meant to give you some ideas, to let you know how many of each kind of character we want, and to tip the scales in favor of human characters, which we are giving preference in this roleplay since it’s their world being invaded. The list will be updated as roles are filled or opened, so you should check back regularly! Available roles will also be listed on the “available roles” page of the Wikiblog, but it’s likely that the tab will have more up-to-date information.

The Philadelphia Police Department Occult Division

Roles Available
  • Police Detectives (x2)
  • Police Officers (no limit)
  • K-9 Unit Officers (x5) (PM Nannyhap or RhiannontheDane for info)
  • Secretaries (x3)
  • Forensic Pathologists/Forensics Technicians (x2)

Police roles outside the Occult Division are also welcome, though you’ll have to let us know that that’s what you mean to do!

The Special Occult Branch of the FBI
  • Bruce Faulkner - Wizard/Special Agent
  • Caius Groverfield - Infernal Field Agent/Special Agent/Instructor/Wizard
  • Theodore “Ted” Harrison - Special Agent
  • David Harrison (no relation) - Special Agent
  • Philippe Deladrier - Special Agent, assigned to Philadelphia
  • Amber Haydon - Investigative Specialist and aspiring Wizard, assigned to traditional FBI office in Philadelphia
  • Anthony LeBlanc - Wizard/Instructor/General Messer of Things.
  • Dolan Whitacre - Information Clean Up/Top Brass (shh)

Available Roles
  • Special Agents (x5)
  • Consultant/Specialist (x1)
  • Parabiologists (x2...get it? get it?)
  • Parapsychologists/Psychiatrists (x2)
  • Rehabilitated Sorcerer (x2) (PM Nannyhap or RhiannontheDane for info)
  • Wizard (no demon) (x3)
  • Wizard (with demon)
  • Demon (with above wizard)
  • Infernal Field Agent
  • Interns (x3)
  • Secretaries (x3)

Civilian(ish) Roles
  • Norma Roman - Investigative Journalist/Columnist/Occult Specialist
  • Viridiana Wordsworth - Wizard/Librarian (Philadelphia branch of the Arcane Archives)

Available Roles
  • Mayor
  • Other Government Official (PM with request)
  • Pro-Infernal Citizen/Activist (x5)
  • Anti-Infernal Citizen (No limit)
  • Neutral Citizen (No limit)
  • Religious Leader (x2)
  • Rogue Wizard
  • Private Investigator
  • Licensed Wizard (x2)
  • Cultist (x3)
  • Vagrant (x3)
  • Vigilante Demon Hunter (x2)

Other Roles/Other Demonic Characters*
Aside from those listed above, no demon roles are currently available. Check back soon!

*Note: Regarding demon characters, preference will likely be given to players who have already created at least one human character already, although ultimately we will still aim to pick the best profile.


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Any character sheet may be used for this roleplay, so long as it addresses all non-optional information requested in the suggested sheet. For those of you who like to stick to your guns on what the GMs have decided, the suggested character sheet is below. Please note that a considerable number of fields are optional before flipping out about the length of the sheet. Thank you!

Code: Select all
[size=120][b]Basics[/b][/size]
[b]Name:[/b]
[b]Aliases:[/b]
[b]Sex:[/b]
[b]Age/Date of Birth (if known):[/b]
[b]Species:[/b] (Please specify if your character is a demon or a damned soul. If a demon, please specify any known subspecies.)
[b]Voice:[/b]

[size=120][b]Appearance[/b][/size]
[b]Physical Description:[/b] (Text descriptions are better than images. Visuals are user's discretion, but no very recognizable/anime images, please. Exceptions for recognizable images will be made for images from noir films, since that fits with the intended genre)
[b]Distinguishing Marks:[/b] (Scars, tattoos, etc.. Optional field. Delete if unused.)
[b]Mannerisms:[/b]
[b]Wardrobe:[/b]
[b]Other:[/b] (Anything else you find important to the character's appearance should go here.)

[size=120][b]Personality[/b][/size]
[b]Moral Alignment:[/b]
[b]Intelligence:[/b] (Including wisdom and common sense.)
[b]Demeanor:[/b] (Give a description of how s/he acts towards others.)
[b]Attitudes:[/b] (Give a description of how s/he acts inside his or her own head.)
[b]Likes:[/b]
[b]Dislikes:[/b]
[b]Quirks:[/b]
[b]Flaws:[/b]
[b]Philosophy:[/b] (Optional)
[b]Hangups:[/b] (Optional; what wigs your character out, or causes them to lose control of their brain-pans and react on instinct?)

[size=120][b]Social[/b][/size]
[b]Occupation:[/b]
[b]Relationships:[/b] (Optional)
[b]Economic Status:[/b] (Optional)
[b]Opinions:[/b] (Optional; any important social opinions your character feels the need to express.)

[size=120][b]Combat and Abilities[/b][/size]
[b]Combat Prowess:[/b]
[b]Equipment On Hand:[/b] (Assuming your character doesn't have time to stop by the house, what does he or she usually have to work with?)
[b]Special Abilities:[/b] (Optional—not applicable for most human characters.)
[b]Special Training/Aptitude:[/b]

[size=120][b]General History[/b][/size]

[size=120][b]Professional History[/b][/size]
(Including training.)

[size=120][b]Other History[/b][/size]
(Optional; any specific event that you feel the GMs and other players should know about goes here.)

Toggle Rules


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Roleplay Specifications
This roleplay requires a firm grasp on the English language, with a posting minimum of 300 words. Likewise, unless you're playing multiple characters, or it only happens every once in a great while, we ask that posts exceeding 1500 words are cropped to a more manageable length. While we appreciate a good wall of text as much as the next lasses, we expect several players to join this roleplay, and longer posts will only make it more difficult to set a regular posting frequency. Basically, if you've got a good grasp on English and are willing to work with the GMs and other players to assemble believable characters, you'll probably be accepted.

While the GMs are not limiting the fun to to advanced players, roleplayers who consider themselves advanced are welcome and even encouraged to join.

Communication
The most important part of this roleplay is OOC activity, with the GMs, with your fellow players, basically with anyone you might be working behind the scenes with. Participation in the main OOC thread and other forms of OOC interaction are not optional features of the roleplay; rather, that's what enables the GMs to hold it together and direct it as you, the player, would like to see it run. Likewise, communication between players should never make another player uncomfortable, so please keep any disagreements you might have with one another to a private medium, and leave your IC scuffles in the IC. Remember, if you have any questions or problems, you can shoot a PM to Nannyhap or RhiannontheDane, and we should be able to sort things out in a grown up manner behind the scenes!

Characters
Characters should be believable and consistent with the setting. Rhiannon and Nan have done a lot of research to work this AU up to the point it's at, and anything you can't find on the Wiki presently is going into the behind-the-scenes workings of the world. What does this mean for you? Well, it means that if your character has a gun, it should be one appropriate to the era, and if your character has a job, he should be the proper age to have earned that job (and dress/groom himself appropriately!). It means that you need to understand that we may reject characters such as female police officers, not because we're sexist, but because such roles were seldom if ever filled by women in the late 1950s. Things like that.

If you use historical references such as web articles and wikipedia pages, the GMs would be happy to post them on the "historical resources" page of the Wiki, so that your fellow users can make use of them as well.

Demon roles will be limited in availability.* The GMs have the right to reject any demon characters submitted when there is no demon position open, as it isn't fair to submit your sheet beforehand as a "placeholder." This rule will only be waived for exceptional demon characters, if we have any submissions, and these characters will not occupy the upcoming demon roles. Although characters operate on a first come, first serve basis, the GMs will ultimately select the character with the better profile if it comes down to it, so make sure to put your best effort into it.

Please let us know you're making a character before you submit! Although we're sure you can figure out the process all for your bad self, the GMs like to hear the ideas that are being bounced around and make room for new characters accordingly, as well as provide any help you may need with the character creation process. As a matter of fact, a thread will be available for players to submit their WIPs for GM review. While it is not necessary to use this thread, we request that both of the GMs review your character sheet before you make your final submission to the tab.

*Note: High powered roles, such as wizards, demons, and characters in positions of power will be judged more stringently than mundane human characters. Demons returning from the original Snakes and Ladders roleplay will automatically be accepted, and will not count towards filling the available demon spots.

Sensitivity
This roleplay will be touching upon subjects that should be handled with maturity and class, such as sexism, racism, and religious discrimination. While the GMs do not wish to place an outright ban on slurs and other unkind comments in these areas in the IC areas of the roleplay, any intolerant behavior that seems to translate into the Out Of Character bits of the roleplay will be met with an iron fist. Please operate within RPGs rules on this matter, and don’t actually be racist sexist meanieheads.

Roleplay Etiquette
Naturally, as in any roleplay situation, this game will involve more than just a small handful of people. As such, it is important to be respectful of other players, both in character and out of character. In addition to the usual rules of RP etiquette, which I'm sure you're all well acquainted with (such as avoiding god modding, power playing, Mary Sue characters, and the like), the GMs have a few requests of their own that they would like to mention.

  • While the natural progression of character relationships is appreciated and even encouraged, keep in mind that the nature of this roleplay is not a romantic one. No, we won't kick you out for diabetes-inducing sweetness and romantic interaction, so long as these things are kept at a realistic level and do not become the primary focus of your character's attentions.
  • Ignoring other roleplayers in the IC or the OOC discussion is frowned upon; if your character is ignoring another character, rather than you simply ignoring a player's post, please mention it directly.
  • Please refrain from playing other people's characters without their consent (or the GMs’ consent, if they have been absent for a sufficent amount of time). The only time when it is appropriate to take control of another player's character is when the roleplay needs to progress at a slightly faster rate and they are not available to post, but try to get their permission first.
  • Permission should also be requested before moving into combat situations with characters that are not already hostile. Permission isn't required to engage in combat with hostile NPCs.
  • If you need to drop the roleplay, or are planning on being absent for a long period of time, please drop in and leave a note in the OOC so that your characters may be temporarily controlled or detained, or, in the case of a complete RP drop, permanently replaced. In this case, "a long period of time" is defined as longer than three weeks.

The GMs reserve the right to request the removal of any characters/players not acting in accordance with these guidelines.

Browse All » 10 Settings to roleplay in

Quarantined Area

Quarantined Area by RolePlayGateway

An area of Philadelphia's industrial district which has been closed off to civilians due to a high number of supernatural incidents. Citizens are advised not to go walking near the quarantine zone alone after dusk.

Special Occult Branch Headquarters

Special Occult Branch Headquarters by RolePlayGateway

The headquarters of the SOB, where much of the lab work and behind the scenes government action will be discussed/taking place.

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The Philadelphia base of the traditional FBI. In the event of an emergency, they will likely be involved.

The Arcane Archives

The Arcane Archives by RolePlayGateway

A branch of the national arcane library, responsible for compiling all public magical knowledge.

Al's Diner

Al's Diner by RolePlayGateway

The most frequented breakfast spot for the PPDOD, Al's is the only human-owned diner in Philadelphia currently open 24/7.

The Copper Coin Club

The Copper Coin Club by RolePlayGateway

A nightclub almost entirely owned and operated by the demon population of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The City of Brotherly Love!

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. by RolePlayGateway

Capital of the nation and home to the headquarters of the SOB.

PPD: Occult Division

PPD: Occult Division by RolePlayGateway

This is the city's first line of defense against demonic attacks and other occult threats. The brave men and women of the PPDOD put in long hours to keep the city and her residents safe from harm.

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June 24th, 1958: Our Story Begins

Storm clouds are gathering over Philadelphia, and the winds that carry them bring with them rumors of a growing Infernal threat right here in our city. Reports of attacks from all manner of supernatural creatures are on the rise, from vampire and werewolf bites to instances of brutal and gleeful dismemberment, supposedly perpetrated by demons. If ever there was a time to say that the world had gone mad, that time is now.

The reason? No one is quite sure, but several districts in Philadelphia’s industrial areas have been closed off without explanation, and the city has imposed a curfew to keep its citizens safe. Confusion and panic are beginning to spread throughout the ill-informed masses; tales of Russian spies, American betrayals, and a full-scale Infernal takeover are just some of the rumors flying between the citizens of Philadelphia. Though no one knows exactly what’s going on, everyone can agree that something is certainly happening, as instances of supernatural violence in Philadelphia have increased to levels never before seen in American history. Something big is going down, and the Philadelphia Police Department (traditional and Occult Division) is in way over its head.

It would be one thing if the human inhabitants were the only ones being targeted, but things are becoming more complicated than that. Registered vampires are turning up dead, which is less surprising than it might seem, but several of them aren’t getting back up again. In the morgues, the bodies of individuals with no vampiric ancestry are rattling in their drawers, only to be found dead a few blocks away after observant morgue technicians release them from their care.

Even Philadelphia’s Infernal underground has been getting a bit nervous. Anxious whispers wind their way through the city’s numerous back alleys, making their way as far as the ears of Philadelphia's finest—as if it weren't worrying enough that native supernatural beings were having trouble keeping their heads on their shoulders, paranoid demons (along with sorcerers who have found themselves in their service) have been showing up on the PPDOD's front door to report suspicious activity, and even known criminals whose faith in the police is all but nonexistent have started asking for the help of Philadelphia's occult division. Reports are varied in nature, and some even include rumors of long-dead criminals roaming the streets once more.

One of the first warnings from the Underground of something amiss occurred about three weeks ago when street magician (not licensed to practice as a wizard, but generally viewed as harmless) Barnaby Huxley was picked up by the PPD for selling faulty protection charms in the form of small, poorly crafted fetishes made of leather thong, twine, and something that looked suspicious like dog's teeth, garnished with a few bedraggled pigeon feathers. When brought in for questioning, Huxley, who is on first name basis with many officers in the OD, proclaimed that he was selling them because "even the mundies know something's up." He later went on to add that all of his normal customers were all jumpy or skipping town, and that he was only selling the charms in an attempt to gather enough cash to leave until "whatever this is blows over." He was released after questioning and promised to come back and report anything he found to be suspicious. His reputation as a coward and a sneak, however, makes that seem like something of an empty promise.

While just as nervous, the more cynical of Hell's employees seem convinced that this is part of some grander scheme on the part of the upper tiers. The PPD heard this first-hand when Officer Holowicz of the OD came to his superiors and said that one of his sources (outed demon Henry Juniper, status: cooperative) came to him at his home some days ago, saying, "I don't know what those fat cats up on Tier Four think they're playing at, but I don't like the smell of it." After being pressed further he told Holowicz that there were rumors that somehow a link had been created between the Sandlot and Philadelphia. "The kids down there, Frank—they're half-wild. If someone doesn't step in soon—hm? Do I think this is an accident? Please. This came straight from the top."

Adding to the stress of the current situation, the city of Philadelphia and its surrounding areas have been in a drought for the better part of the last two months, likely owing to the intense heat wave that has been plaguing the city for some time. On day our story begins, the anticipated high is 97 degrees fahrenheit, nearly twenty degrees higher than the city’s average in June. Efforts to conserve, such as a ban on the use of garden hoses and the discontinued maintenance of public swimming pools in the area, have been imposed, but these measures haven’t managed to give the sweating public very much relief.

In response to recent events, the Mayor of Philadelphia has declared a state of emergency within the city limits. In addition to the curfew already in place, citizens of Philadelphia have been advised not to walk within one mile of quarantined areas alone after dusk, and cars patrol the outskirts of this area to enforce this ban. Shipments in and out of the city are now being closely monitored, and the interstates and highways leading out of Philadelphia are subject to frequent patrol. Known demons and suspected rogue magic users may be picked up and questioned during the duration of this ordeal, but must be released within twenty-four hours if no cause for suspicion is found.

Special note: Due to an unprecedented amount of reports regarding vampires (though not specifically vampiric attacks), the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Special Occult Branch has sent in a response team specifically oriented to the vampiric crisis. Evidence currently suggests that the recent outbreak in demonic activity and these abnormal occurrences (known vampires disappearing suddenly or found permanently terminated, civilians not thought to be carriers coming alive during autopsy and being released only to be found dead several days later, etc.) are not related. Since the PPD's Occult Division has been directing its efforts to responding to Infernal crisis, the SOB's two Philadelphia agents have suggested the separate, specialist response team be called in to assist on that front, as the vampire unit's investigation would take attention away from what Agents Haydon and Deladrier feel is the larger threat.



The Philadelphia Curfew


As mentioned above, a curfew is currently in place for the city of Philadelphia. Civilian citizens under the age of nineteen (19) years are expected to be indoors by 11PM, and citizens age twenty (20) years and older by midnight. Individuals who work night shifts are permitted to travel to and from their places of employment. However, they are expected to travel by car, bus, or taxi, as anyone walking in the streets between the hours of midnight and 5AM will be fined between five (5) and ten (10) U.S. dollars (dependent upon the number of offenses) and will be immediately escorted back to their place of residence.

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Character Portrait: Phillip Collins Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
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It was Tuesday. Considering the amount of overtime everyone in the Philadelphia Police Department was putting in, though, all the days had started to run together.

The russet clouds that had settled over the city were making everyone nervous, not that everyone didn't already have reason to be nervous enough. Just a few months ago, Phillip Collins had been entirely certain that he didn't want to spend the rest of his life sitting behind a desk, scrawling his way into an early retirement, but that had been before the city had lost its mind. Now he couldn't think of anything that he wanted to do more, except perhaps slink away to some remote island in the Pacific and stay there until all of this blew over.

But that wasn't an option. The morgues were filling up, the department was down to the bare-bones of its usual operating staff, and even with the Occult Division stretched so thin, Collins knew they were going to have to stretch further. The phones were ringing at least twice an hour, more during the late evening and early morning hours—panic, he assumed, was starting to make people see shadows (because Collins preferred not to think that so many citizens were actually seeing Shadows). This was the first break from patrolling that he'd gotten in over a week, and the first time he'd gotten the chance to work on more than three hours of sleep in about that long. He was exhausted.

At least he had reason to linger in the air-conditioned building, he thought, going over the most recent incident report with a ball-point pen and a determined look in his eye. Another missing vampire, it seemed. Despite the public's lack of concern for the less fragile portions of the population, it was the deaths and disappearances among vampires that were starting to weigh on the detective's nerves. The idea of something being able to take down individuals who were functionally immortal with such apparent ease made his stomach churn; even demons had a hard time getting rid of vampires.

All the demons Collins had encountered, anyway. The thought of demons any more powerful than that sent a chill down his spine.

He scribbled a few notes in a tight scrawl, hoping that someone would be able to read them later. A handful of officers had already been sent to confer with the family, but ultimately, the investigation would fall to the response team the FBI had already launched. Collins closed the manilla folder, setting it in the basket at the front of his desk, and pinched the bridge of his nose. This was going to be a long apocalypse.

The door to the tiny office creaked open, and Nasir slid through the crack, looking like the cat who'd gotten the canary. "You aren't going to like what I have to say," he said, smug grin never fading, "but hear me out."

The detective sighed. "When do I ever like what you have to say?"

This seemed to be good enough for the little demon, who seemed entirely too pleased to be delivering unfortunate news. "You know our little hospital problem? I think I've solved it."

Collins could feel the color fading from his face at little more than what he could imagine Nasir's solution to the problem was. The city's major hospitals were finally starting to lose their nerve regarding the other half of the vampire situation, threatening to cut off their cooperation with the Occult Division unless they posted officers in all of the city morgues currently handling the body count. There weren't enough officers in the Occult Division to maintain regular operations and post guards to each of the hospital's morgues, and no one hospital had enough room to accommodate the growing body count. For a moment, Nasir looked almost sympathetic, but Collins had been around him long enough to know that the expression on his face one of disappointment—he'd wanted to deliver the news himself, and here the detective was, looking as though he'd figured it out already.

The disappointment faded, and the smug grin seemed to return. "There's a Raker floating around Philly right now who owes me a favor, and a particularly skillful pair of hands possessing a facility much needed by the PPD just happens to owe him a few favors themselves. Now, I haven't talked to them directly, but given my recent orders from Downstairs, I'd say that even non-IFA demons are expected to contribute when possible. That's handed down straight from Her Dark Ickyness herself."

Detective Collins blinked at him. "You want to enlist the Joneses."

On the list of things that were immensely bad ideas, Collins was well aware that trying to cooperate with the proprietors of the Jones & Jones funeral home on Broad street sat near the top, just under jumping off of cliffs hoping that one could fly. Desperate times called for desperate measures, sure, and they might have been the only building in Philadelphia capable of holding all of the bodies that had accrued so far, but Philadelphia hospitals had yet to withdraw their services. Wasn't going to the Joneses already something of an extreme measure? "Can they be trusted, do you think?"

Nasir shrugged. "No more than usual. But you've got to admit, they're damn good at what they do, and they're the only ones who have the space. Besides, that takes our waking vampire problem back down to zero."

Collins shook his head. "Those two will just kill them all over again until they stay down," he said, with an air of finality. "And they might owe someone a favor, but they won't share their space with the police, and even they did, I don't like the odds of them snapping on one of our men downstairs." Nasir's face fell dramatically; that was a very real possibility, and one he hadn't considered. "I'm going to talk to the gentlemen upstairs and see what they have to say about our hospital situation before I leave this afternoon. I don't advise making that suggestion to them."

The demon had moved on from his brief (and somewhat uncomfortable) realization, and was now picking at some stray fibers on his woolen slacks. "Hm? Oh. Sure, I hadn't thought it through, that's why I ran it by you first. Billy's kicked me out of the basement, actually," he said, looking a mite guilty. "Anything you need me to do up here?"

The detective rolled his eyes at his partner; at least he was the same as he'd ever been. "You could fetch me some coffee," he said, wondering if there was enough coffee in the western hemisphere to finish what needed to be done. "And somebody who's willing to work on these reports, while you're at it. I notice the stack on your desk is suspiciously untouched."

The demon grinned sheepishly and fled. Collins sighed.

Yep. It was going to be a long, grueling apocalypse. And he was going to fight it tooth and nail every step of the way.

The setting changes from PPD: Occult Division to The Arcane Archives

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Character Portrait: Viridiana Wordsworth
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The sunlight was only just beginning to filter through the windows of the Arcane Archives, but already the massive repository of knowledge was seeing just as much activity as it ever did on its busiest day. Granted, that was not much, but all the same, there was something to be said for waking up to a dozen vampires seeking asylum. The shafts of light which the librarian was usually content to allow to illuminate the dust motes that floated about the high-ceilinged building were cut off in short order by blinds and drapes both (for privacy, not protection), and the infrequently-used cot which was ostensibly her assurance that she could sleep if she really needed to was quickly claimed, the pillow and blanket on it pirated to different undead for comfort more than necessity.

Needless to say, the librarian herself was in a bit of a tizzy, as the continual clenching and unclenching of her hands would suggest to the observant. Usually, at this time in the morning, she’d be putting on a spot of tea in the breakroom, not because she’d just awoken but because she wished to stay alert, though of course her routines were rather broken and mangled at present. It was doing nothing for the state of her hair, which seemed if anything to have acquired only more oddments, and yet sill managed to droop dangerously-close to tumbling down off her head, like say perhaps a normal person’s would.

Any day that Viridiana Wordsworth spent within spitting distance of ‘normal’ was not a good day. Pushing her glasses up her nose, she sent her best glare at what appeared to be a young, sharp-featured man snooping through her papers. The offending party grinned, flashing very pointed incisors.

Well, maybe not quite so close to normal as she’d thought.

Huffing, the wizard clutched at the pocket-watch hanging like an ornament from her neck and peered at the hands. Six-thirty-two-fifty-four, and they’d been here three hours and forty-seven minutes too long already. Wringing her hands, she paced in the tiny space behind her desk, well aware that this situation might devolve into a full-blown panic attack at any second and trying her best to prevent that. Focusing on the regular chiming of her specially-designed metronome was helping, but not nearly enough, and she touched the golden needle of the device to still it for the moment. She needed tea, and now.

“Do not touch anything,” she said aloud, which earned her a few raised eyebrows and some indulgent smirks. Throwing up her arms, she turned on her heels and marched to the break room, trying not to visualize what might happen to her precious tomes and scrolls- her research- if they should disobey. Her purposeful stride was delayed, as the door to the break room was closed, meaning she had to turn the knob three times before she could open it, but once she was inside, Viridiana leaned against the wall and took several deep, calming breaths, forcing her eyes shut. “Yellow, yellow, it’s all gone yellow,” she muttered several times, twisting her hands in her nondescript blue dress. It had all started when her ambient magic detection device picked up frequencies she’d never seen before, and then shattered in her hands, the small glass orb beyond repair by any but the most skilled artificers. The reddish-dirge-slithering clouds had followed, and an air of palpable expectation that needed no device to discern it had followed shortly after.

She did not frequently bother reading the papers, but even she had been aware of the trouble with the vampires staying dead. There was some kind of pattern to it, one she’d resolutely ignored in the hope that it, much like her present unwanted squatters, would just disappear.

She never had been lucky.

“Yellow?” A curious voice echoed, and Viridiana emitted a startled yelp, jumping a good foot in the air. “Whoa, easy there, miss.” It was the same one from earlier, and he pulled his lips back from his teeth again. It was supposed to be a charming smile, but that fact didn’t quite register with her, and she blinked once, slowly, before turning away and putting the kettle on.

Today was… Tuesday. That figured. Things she did not like happened with greatest frequency on Tuesdays, or at least they had since she’d started keeping track, which was about four years ago. This was certain to skew the average even further. The vampire behind her was talking again, but she ignored him flatly, preparing her tea in the same (slightly chipped) ceramic vessel she used every day. The smell was reassuring, routine, green-blue, and pleasantly fraternal.

“…I said, my name is Sebastian.” For some reason, she caught this bit of dialogue, and it at last prompted her to turn and glance over her shoulder at the speaker. His brow was mildly-furrowed, his mouth still half-slanted, but she didn’t have to guess. This was one look she knew well enough. It was the look that people gave her right after they decided she wasn’t “all there.” Frankly, that was ridiculous. Viridiana was as much “there” as anyone else was “there,” or anywhere, for that matter. There wasn’t less of her to “be” someplace, and she had attempted no magic to “be” in more than one place simultaneously, so she didn’t really understand why this happened to her so often.

“Nomen mea est Viridiana. Salve,” she replied at last, returning to her tea.

Both of Sebastian’s eyebrows shot up, and he chuckled before shaking his head and leaving the strange one to her choice of herbal beverage.

#, as written by Kansiov
Amber sat quietly at her desk, her back well rested against the chair as she browsed through the morning papers. The air inside was still and calm, save from the sounds of muffled footsteps and conversations that occasionally come and go from outside. It usually isn’t always this quiet though, the empty desk was filled by her partner, Philippe Deladrier, a frenchman whom she found to be a little too brash and loud for her liking so far.

The air-conditioned office has done a pretty fine job so far of sheltering her from the city that has been getting pummeled by the unbearable heat and the plague of supernatural violence. For an aspiring wizard like herself, there couldn’t be a better and more dangerous proving ground than this.

Amber was merely into her second week and the city was already spiraling into a war zone. Out on the main floor, FBI agents were scrambling to keep up with the list of federal offenses committed for the day. Phones buzzed constantly, usually pleas from the local police departments for more federal assistance. The SOB would be providing much needed reinforcements to quell the vampiric insurrection by as early as next week, a huge relief to the agents here.

Even so, she was not impressed– the heat wave was signaling something else was coming to town, and it is going to be big.

“Amber,” the office doors swung wide open loudly. “Last week’s cases from the OD.”

“Thanks Judy,” Amber replied, slightly dazed. The doors closed promptly after.

Judith Meyer was her personal secretary, not exactly personal per se; she is shared between herself and her partner, but her secretary nonetheless. A WAAC Operator during the Second World War, mundane mechanical tasks such as these were almost second nature to Judy.

Diligently, Amber flipped open the files and began scouring the pages for clues and leads. For a team of two dealing with dozens of cases a week, priorities were paramount. She needed to deal with the city’s largest threat. ‘Demonic’ and ‘infernal’ were the words that came to mind– nothing else in the supernatural world could possess the power to form a weather anomaly like this, certainly not the vampires.

It didn’t take too long to find what she was looking for: a person of interest. Henry Juniper, outed demon. Claims to have some form of information of the demonic establishment planning something big, something about a link between the Sandlot and the city. This was worse than she could’ve thought. Immediately, Amber picked up the phone and dialed for the PPDOD.

“FBI Specialist Amber Haydon, badge two-five-zero-eight,” she glanced at her contact list. “Can I have Detective Phillip Collins on the line please?”


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski Character Portrait: Phillip Collins Character Portrait: Amber Haydon
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Coffee makers always reminded him of the beakers in chemistry class; which, he was sure, contributed to his utmost care when it came to handling the stuff. An explosion of coffee would surely be no less than unpleasant. and surely scald the skin tissue right off his face. Perhaps by some off-chance mercy of a particularly humorous God in the clouds, that would be the bane of their current pest problem, and all they had to do was plant coffee bombs all around town.

... No, wait, Nasir didn't seem particularly averse to grounded beans. Drat.

Humming out his disappointment in a lone, idle tune, Teo watched the black streams pool into puddles, ripples giving way to rolls of steady steam from each mug. His was a bright lime green, tall with a rounded handle, with some form of neat script proclaiming fame or adoration of so-and-so location. In a manner one might be able to call "expertly," he swayed from side to side, avoiding fellow suits who were nose-deep in some case or other. The mugs sloshed gently, but Teo didn't spill a single drop. This was an accomplishment that took practice. The occult division was much busier than drug & vice, filled to the brim with furious stomping feet and ruffling paperwork, photographs of mutilated cadavers and telephones that rang so hard they may as well leap from their respective desks into the wastebin. He predicted one to go off as soon as he arrived at his destination, in fact. Dwelling too near to the wall nearly caused Teo to collide with the infernal field agent, which would have been a bad, bad turn-out of events (although sufficient research material to test his coffee-bomb theory). Smiling widely, wryly, Teo gave Nasir something of a talk-to-you-later shrug and sidled past him into Collins' office.

"Busy day, everyday," greeted the younger detective, "they should'a made that the motto at the academy, huh?" He slid one steaming cup across the wooden desk--either a subtle way of saying "Thanks for watching my ass that one time, buddy" or "Don't scream for the superiors just yet, I'm only slacking off a little bit." Who could claim it wasn't a bit of both? Unable to help himself, he craned his neck meagerly to get a glimpse at what his senior was working on. Vampires. Great; there was so much talk of those buggers lately, it was discomforting. He imagined Collins must be having a fair amount more stress about the matter though--why, was that a white hair he spied? Before he could open his mouth to share some useless comment, the phone rang--as he'd thought. Without entirely thinking (or asking permission), he swiped it from its receiver, nestling it between ear and shoulder as he toyed with one of his suspenders.

"Y'ello, Collins' office."

When he heard the voice of a woman on the other line, he half-expected a damsel in distress, complaining of a long lost brother and beseeching his department's aid in a long lost mystery. The fantasy was quenched and stomped into dust soon enough. He recalled hearing complaints around the precinct about the FBI, the strain in the foreheads at the very mention of the acronym. Swiveling his back to Collins to ignore any protest, Teo continued, "The good detective has stepped out for the time being, ma'am. Bathroom break. Very sorry! Couldja leave a message?"

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Katie didn’t want him to go to Philadelphia. That wasn’t the only thought rattling around Ted Harrison’s brain as he and David drove from their hotel to the Occult Division, but it was the biggest one, and therefore prone to make the most noise. He hadn’t even gotten the whispers of an assignment yet when, while listening to the news after they’d put the kids to bed, she’d looked up at him and said stubbornly, “When they ask you to go to Philly, say no, Ted.” Of course, he couldn’t exactly refuse to do his job, but he did agree that whatever was gearing up in the city was going to be nasty. Now, sighing as he rolled down the car window, he was much more concerned with the weather. Of course vampires couldn’t die of heat exhaustion, but he certainly could, and it was rare you found a city more muggy than D.C. in the summer. He’d let David drive (an honor he’d allowed only after they’d been partners for almost three years—around the time he’d earned the right to be called something other than ‘rookie’) and they rode in silence, the only sounds the bebop on the radio. Ted didn’t really care for it (and he wasn’t positive David actually liked it either) but his partner was tapping his fingers on the steering wheel and might have been humming, so he didn’t ask to turn it off. It was better than silence, anyway, and they didn’t have too much to talk about.

And Ted was worried that Katie was worried. He hadn’t really wanted to leave her alone with their two children, but sometimes that was all you could do. On his mental to-do list he added calling her when they clocked out for the night. Adding to his ever-growing list was about all he could do now, without the police reports on hand and with the sun still up. Even if sun caused them no harm, most of the vampires who lived in the big city were halfway to nocturnal. He thought sourly of some of the more seedy places he’d fished sources out of in his past and wondered briefly how different his life would be if he’d chosen to be an accountant. He’d probably keep a more regular sleep schedule, that was for certain.

***********

Everyone knew the vampire response unit wouldn’t make it to Philadelphia until next week. Everyone knew that, but as Janine Wilder smiled widely and choked down a desperate, panicked sound of surprise while reading the two badges in front of her, she concluded that sometimes everyone was wrong.

“Agents Harrison and Harrison,” she mumbled through her teeth, a weak attempt at humor forced through her harried—though admittedly also a plasticky sort of congenial—visage. “That’s funny—the Philadelphia agent we spoke with suggested no one could arrive until next week at the earliest…” This weak protest quickly fell away and she shuffled through some papers at her desk. “And you’re working in conjunction with the Special Occult Branch?” The telephone at her desk rang, clattering noisily on the hook.

The city of Philadelphia’s only tax-funded defenders against unorthodox threats (that is to say, non-human, or at the very least non-mundane) were swamped. Normally the Occult Division had enough spare time to pick up the normal police work in their area as well, but the city’s increased security meant the small staff of officers were struggling to find the manpower for the extra patrol cars demanded. Janine was one of three secretaries who managed complaints, visitors and helped file incident reports, and they could barely keep up with the constant calls about suspicious activity and paperwork flooding the office. The sudden influx in supernatural eventualities was leaving everyone a little strained, and even those who often did complex jobs were forced to take up extra work. All of this compiled together meant that not only had she been doing eight separate things at once when the agents arrived, it also meant she had absolutely know idea if any of the reports necessary for their investigation were completed. She bit her lip and reached for the phone.

“If you’ll excuse me for just a second, agents? I can get you both a cup of coffee in just a moment.” She raised the receiver to her ear and brightly asked the caller to hold, assuring them someone would assist them shortly. Hurrying best she could, she slipped on her shoes while she opened the intercom to Detective Collins’ office. Janine was rather fond of Phil, but didn’t particularly envy him. The brunt of the paperwork for the vampire cases had fallen to him, though she wasn’t entirely sure why.

“Detective Collins?” She began nervously, “Two agents from the Special Occult Branch are here to pick up our reports on the vampire problem.” There was no way the police station would have them all completed, given the sheer volume of reports to file over the past few weeks, she knew that much. It was all she could do but sincerely hope they were at the very least somewhat presentable.

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Character Portrait: Philippe Deladrier
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#, as written by Cypher
The commute from Philadelphia to Arlington was a brutal one, and to be perfectly honest Philippe had no idea why they had called him from his home to the Special Occult Branch's offices in DC... Just so that they could send him back.

Even now, as Philippe chased traffic down the highway, aiming the Commander towards the peaks of Philadelphia's buildings, he ran through the briefing in his head. As always, he had been called at an ungodly early hour at his home phone, his superiors not bothering with the fact that he had a small child who needed to sleep much, much more than he did. So he had awoken to little Kenneth's screaming and the phone ringing off its hook in the kitchen. Philippe sighed--it was already turning into one of Those Days. 'Those Days' (capital T, capital D) being the days when he was going to wake up angry and run the rest of the day that way.

Philippe had a lot of Those Days.

The next several frantic minutes were spent first responding to his superiors' phone call, and then finally managing to calm Kenneth, change his diaper and get him some warm milk and put back down to bed. Kenneth, perhaps understanding the urgency of the situation, gazed at Philippe a while with those knowing little iron-grey eyes of his, and then nodded off into a deep slumber. Philippe watched the little one for a while, a frown scarring his features as his thoughts circled around the child briefly before he managed to return to his room and pull himself into his daily wear. He didn't bother with a suit; it was too early and the act of tying a tie always turned into an angry bout of yelling at nothing, and this early in the morning, with the baby fresh back to sleep, it wasn't a good idea to be breaking anything. After all, he was trying to be better for the kid, wasn't he? It would be what Lauren wanted, wouldn't it?

So Philippe was out the door by way too early in the morning once again, heading from Philadelphia to Arlington and then to Washington, where he sat in on his briefing. As he had speculated from talk around the office, it all had to do, once again, with the paranormal activity in the area. Deladrier and one of the other agents in the Bureau, some girl Haydon, were being assigned to study and investigate the phenomenon in an attempt to curtail its spreading out of Philadelphia, "In the interest of National Security". Philippe had chuckled inwardly at that--no doubt that someone down the line thought this had something to do with that Khrushchev fellow in the USSR and all of this fear of the ever-present Communist boogeyman.

So here he was, flying back down the freeway into Philadelphia in the middle of the day, hoping that he wouldn't catch mid-town traffic on the way.

Five minutes later, he was stuck in mid-day traffic, and his frustration grew by the second. Every inch felt like it was preceded by an hour of immobility, and he didn't know what the cause of it was, but for some reason, some unfathomable reason, if he craned his neck, he could see traffic moving swiftly to either side of his lane and just a little further up. This news frustrated Philippe infinitely more, and by the time they had made five blocks he was red in the face and could feel his blood pressure roaring up like a tsunami of hatred. A car shifted to his left, leaving a brief opening into the fast lane, and so Philippe took it--cutting off a line of traffic almost a mile long in the process on the way through. As he picked up speed, weaving dangerously through traffic, he roared past the front of the block, not even registering the long Hearse bearing the "Jones and Jones" logo losing a left-hand mirror as he shrieked past, screaming every obscenity he could think of as he sped off towards SOB headquarters.

{~}


Moments later, he hauled his Studebaker to a stop outside of SOB headquarters and stormed in, for all intents and purposes looking something like a large boulder, holding a thin manila folder--his briefing--under his right arm. He looked at the others around the office floor quickly, making sure they all knew his mood before he made his way over to his desk and immediately set about reading up on the case files they had available.

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Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski Character Portrait: Phillip Collins Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
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Eleven years of partnership with Nasir should have prepared Collins for this sort of behavior, but he assumed there was some unspoken taboo involved in braining a coworker that wasn't a perpetually irritating demon. With violence struck from the list of options (and to be perfectly honest, Collins didn't have the energy to shout about anything at just this moment), he settled for narrowing his eyes and turning down the corners of his mouth into what he hoped was a very effective frown.

“Give me the phone, Teo,” he grumbled, somewhat halfheartedly. Whoever was on the other line, Collins was fairly certain that they would only add to his already unholy mountain of paperwork, and he wasn't sure he could handle that at the moment. Grateful as he was to be out of the heat, he was starting to feel as though if he ever saw another ball-point pen in his life, it would be far too soon.

Still, duty was duty. Though he would have preferred to see Teo chuck the phone out the window than answer it himself, he made to reach for the receiver tucked against his shoulder. He might have made it, too, if a familiar voice hadn't crackled over the intercom at that moment. “Detective Collins?” Miss Wilder sounded like she'd been caught unawares, which was enough to make him nervous. Janine was prepared for just about anything. “Two agents from the Special Occult Branch are here to pick up our reports on the vampire problem.”

Collins stared for a moment in abject horror at the papers currently strewn about his desk. The reports he'd already reviewed would probably keep the agents busy for a little while, but with as little time as he'd had to work on them, it had taken him several weeks, and the stack was a little over half finished.

What Collins needed for himself, he decided, was a good sulk. There wasn't much he was going to do about that now, but it was good to be decisive about these things.

“On second thought, you go ahead and take that call,” he said, creaking as he stood. He was starting to feel considerably older than his thirty-five years; the abnormally dry heat was doing him no favors, and hours behind his desk had reaffirmed his suspicions that a desk job was certainly not for him. At the moment, his quaint apartment seemed a million miles away.

“Tell them I'll be downstairs in a moment, Janine,” he said, leaning into the intercom. Then, tucking in his white cotton shirt and making sure his sleeves were buttoned, the disheveled detective picked up his coffee started on the trek down to the building's front desk. He would have to thank Teo later, even if the little weasel had intercepted what was likely to be an important phone call. There probably wasn't enough coffee in the western hemisphere to keep him from losing his grip on sanity over the course of this thing, however long it would last, but the first cup was a step in the right direction.




It was easy to see that the Philadelphia Occult Division was viciously understaffed. Though there had to be less than thirty people in all currently occupying the small brick building (and David was sure he was being generous with his estimate), the floor above them seemed to be bustling with audible activity. The floor around them, come to think of it, wasn't much better; a handful of officers and a myriad of secretaries rushed through the tiled front office, digging through filing cabinets that looked like they'd be in need of a good re-filing by the time all of this had blown over. Agent Harrison had been to the headquarters of Philadelphia's finest before, and as far as he could remember, they were typically more organized than this.

He might have felt sorry for the bastards, if it hadn't been for the fact that WAM was like this the majority of the time.

“Top brass figured you folks had enough on your hands and sent us along ahead of the storm to see what we could do,” he said amicably. While he knew that large-scale involvement on the part of any branch of the FBI would probably have been resented in a city police department, he had no urge to start that struggle early. “You won't even notice we're here, Janine.”

This was not entirely true, but David was sure a little white lie wasn't going to hurt anyone, at least as far as this particular matter was concerned.




Nasir had nearly run into Collins on his way out, a cup of coffee for each of them in hand, and had looked rather crestfallen to discover that someone had already provided the detective with sufficient caffeination. He had a suspect, of course—and as he rounded the corner to Detective Collins' office, he discovered that his suspicions were quite correct. There sat Teo, receiver to his ear and his own cup quite full.

The office now contained two people and three cups of coffee. There was a certain amusement factor to that, Nasir supposed. “Where's the old fart headed?” he asked, flopping into Collins' chair (since his was already occupied). “Does he have time to take a break? Looks to me like he's already behind as it is.” He didn't envy his partner in the slightest; paperwork had never been Nasir's forte, nor his favorite thing, and this much of it positively gave him the chills.

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Arcs are bundles of posts that you can organize on your own. They're useful for telling a story that might span long periods of time or space.

There are no arcs in this roleplay.

View All » Create New » Quests

There are no quests in this roleplay.

Add Group » View All » 0 Factions to align with

Here's the current leaderboard.

There are no groups in this roleplay!

Events

Soon™.

Game Master Controls

Welcome home, Promethean. Here, you can manage your universe.

Arcs

Arcs are bundles of posts from any location, allowing you to easily capture sub-plots which might be spread out across multiple locations.

Add Quest » Quests

You can create Quests with various rewards, encouraging your players to engage with specific plot lines.

Add Setting » 10 Settings for your players to play in

Settings are the backdrop for the characters in your universe, giving meaning and context to their existence. By creating a number of well-written locations, you can organize your universe into areas and regions.

Navigation

While not required, locations can be organized onto a map. More information soon!

Quarantined Area

Quarantined Area by RolePlayGateway

An area of Philadelphia's industrial district which has been closed off to civilians due to a high number of supernatural incidents. Citizens are advised not to go walking near the quarantine zone alone after dusk.

Special Occult Branch Headquarters

Special Occult Branch Headquarters by RolePlayGateway

The headquarters of the SOB, where much of the lab work and behind the scenes government action will be discussed/taking place.

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The Philadelphia base of the traditional FBI. In the event of an emergency, they will likely be involved.

The Arcane Archives

The Arcane Archives by RolePlayGateway

A branch of the national arcane library, responsible for compiling all public magical knowledge.

Al's Diner

Al's Diner by RolePlayGateway

The most frequented breakfast spot for the PPDOD, Al's is the only human-owned diner in Philadelphia currently open 24/7.

The Copper Coin Club

The Copper Coin Club by RolePlayGateway

A nightclub almost entirely owned and operated by the demon population of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The City of Brotherly Love!

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. by RolePlayGateway

Capital of the nation and home to the headquarters of the SOB.

PPD: Occult Division

PPD: Occult Division by RolePlayGateway

This is the city's first line of defense against demonic attacks and other occult threats. The brave men and women of the PPDOD put in long hours to keep the city and her residents safe from harm.

Add Group » 0 Factions to align with

There are no groups in this roleplay!

Collectibles

By creating Collectibles, you can reward your players with unique items that accentuate their character sheets.


Once an Item has been created, it can be spawned in the IC using /spawn Item Name (case-sensitive, as usual) — this can be followed with /take Item Name to retrieve the item into the current character's inventory.

Mobs

Give your Universe life by adding a Mob, which are auto-replenishing NPCs your players can interact with. Useful for some quick hack-and-slash fun!

Mobs can be automated spawns, like rats and bats, or full-on NPCs complete with conversation menus. Use them to enhance your player experience!

Current Mobs

No mobs have been created yet.

Spawns

Locations where Mobs and Items might appear.

Events

You can schedule events for your players to create notifications and schedule times for everyone to plan around.

Permissions

Add and remove other people from your Universe.

Orphanage

By marking a character as abandoned, you can offer them to your players as pre-made character sheets.

Character Portrait: Viridiana Wordsworth
1 sightings Viridiana Wordsworth played by Kurokiku
A ladywizard with an unusual mind.
Character Portrait: Amber Haydon
3 sightings Amber Haydon played by Kansiov
Investigative Specialist of the FBI Occult Branch and aspiring Wizard.

The Forge

Use your INK to craft new artifacts in Where The Sidewalk Ends. Once created, Items cannot be changed, but they can be bought and sold in the marketplace.

Notable Items

No items have been created yet!

The Market

Buy, sell, and even craft your own items in this universe.

Market Data

Market conditions are unknown. Use caution when trading.

Quick Buy (Items Most Recently Listed for Sale)

Open Stores

View All » Add Character » 13 Characters to follow in this universe

Character Portrait: Anthony LeBlanc
Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
Character Portrait: Joseph Krohn-Delhi
Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski
Character Portrait: Billy Carson
Character Portrait: Philippe Deladrier
Character Portrait: Phillip Collins
Character Portrait: Caius H. Groverfield
Character Portrait: Dolan Whitacre

Newest

Character Portrait: Dolan Whitacre
Dolan Whitacre

"Is it customary to ask a coworker their species?"

Character Portrait: Caius H. Groverfield
Caius H. Groverfield

Cassius, over there, has a lean and hungry look

Character Portrait: Phillip Collins
Phillip Collins

Detective at the PPDOD. No relation to Phil Collins, the modern musician.

Character Portrait: Philippe Deladrier
Philippe Deladrier

An angry Moroccan Special Investigator of the FBI-SOB who hates being called "Philly Phil".

Character Portrait: Billy Carson
Billy Carson

a coroner at the PPD OD, Billy Carson is a preacher's boy who likes Elvis

Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski
Teodore Adamaszewski

"Okay, if I judge this right..." A loser gumshoe who mostly means well.

Character Portrait: Joseph Krohn-Delhi
Joseph Krohn-Delhi

Ex-criminal Police Officer

Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
Nasir Whitaker

Miss New Booty

Character Portrait: Anthony LeBlanc
Anthony LeBlanc

Dead Space-Wizard

Trending

Character Portrait: Caius H. Groverfield
Caius H. Groverfield

Cassius, over there, has a lean and hungry look

Character Portrait: Phillip Collins
Phillip Collins

Detective at the PPDOD. No relation to Phil Collins, the modern musician.

Character Portrait: Dolan Whitacre
Dolan Whitacre

"Is it customary to ask a coworker their species?"

Character Portrait: Billy Carson
Billy Carson

a coroner at the PPD OD, Billy Carson is a preacher's boy who likes Elvis

Character Portrait: Joseph Krohn-Delhi
Joseph Krohn-Delhi

Ex-criminal Police Officer

Character Portrait: Philippe Deladrier
Philippe Deladrier

An angry Moroccan Special Investigator of the FBI-SOB who hates being called "Philly Phil".

Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski
Teodore Adamaszewski

"Okay, if I judge this right..." A loser gumshoe who mostly means well.

Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
Nasir Whitaker

Miss New Booty

Character Portrait: Anthony LeBlanc
Anthony LeBlanc

Dead Space-Wizard

Most Followed

Character Portrait: Phillip Collins
Phillip Collins

Detective at the PPDOD. No relation to Phil Collins, the modern musician.

Character Portrait: Joseph Krohn-Delhi
Joseph Krohn-Delhi

Ex-criminal Police Officer

Character Portrait: Philippe Deladrier
Philippe Deladrier

An angry Moroccan Special Investigator of the FBI-SOB who hates being called "Philly Phil".

Character Portrait: Anthony LeBlanc
Anthony LeBlanc

Dead Space-Wizard

Character Portrait: Dolan Whitacre
Dolan Whitacre

"Is it customary to ask a coworker their species?"

Character Portrait: Caius H. Groverfield
Caius H. Groverfield

Cassius, over there, has a lean and hungry look

Character Portrait: Teodore Adamaszewski
Teodore Adamaszewski

"Okay, if I judge this right..." A loser gumshoe who mostly means well.

Character Portrait: Nasir Whitaker
Nasir Whitaker

Miss New Booty

Character Portrait: Billy Carson
Billy Carson

a coroner at the PPD OD, Billy Carson is a preacher's boy who likes Elvis


View All » Places

Quarantined Area

Quarantined Area by RolePlayGateway

An area of Philadelphia's industrial district which has been closed off to civilians due to a high number of supernatural incidents. Citizens are advised not to go walking near the quarantine zone alone after dusk.

Special Occult Branch Headquarters

Special Occult Branch Headquarters by RolePlayGateway

The headquarters of the SOB, where much of the lab work and behind the scenes government action will be discussed/taking place.

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The Philadelphia base of the traditional FBI. In the event of an emergency, they will likely be involved.

The Arcane Archives

The Arcane Archives by RolePlayGateway

A branch of the national arcane library, responsible for compiling all public magical knowledge.

Al's Diner

Al's Diner by RolePlayGateway

The most frequented breakfast spot for the PPDOD, Al's is the only human-owned diner in Philadelphia currently open 24/7.

The Copper Coin Club

The Copper Coin Club by RolePlayGateway

A nightclub almost entirely owned and operated by the demon population of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia by RolePlayGateway

The City of Brotherly Love!

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. by RolePlayGateway

Capital of the nation and home to the headquarters of the SOB.

PPD: Occult Division

PPD: Occult Division by RolePlayGateway

This is the city's first line of defense against demonic attacks and other occult threats. The brave men and women of the PPDOD put in long hours to keep the city and her residents safe from harm.

PPD: Occult Division

This is the city's first line of defense against demonic attacks and other occult threats. The brave men and women of the PPDOD put in long hours to keep the city and her residents safe from harm.

Special Occult Branch Headquarters

The headquarters of the SOB, where much of the lab work and behind the scenes government action will be discussed/taking place.

Traditional FBI Headquarters: Philadelphia

The Philadelphia base of the traditional FBI. In the event of an emergency, they will likely be involved.

The Arcane Archives

A branch of the national arcane library, responsible for compiling all public magical knowledge.

Al's Diner

Philadelphia Al's Diner Owner: RolePlayGateway

The most frequented breakfast spot for the PPDOD, Al's is the only human-owned diner in Philadelphia currently open 24/7.

The Copper Coin Club

A nightclub almost entirely owned and operated by the demon population of Philadelphia.

Quarantined Area

Philadelphia Quarantined Area Owner: RolePlayGateway

An area of Philadelphia's industrial district which has been closed off to civilians due to a high number of supernatural incidents. Citizens are advised not to go walking near the quarantine zone alone after dusk.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia Owner: RolePlayGateway

The City of Brotherly Love!

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. Owner: RolePlayGateway

Capital of the nation and home to the headquarters of the SOB.

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