So the further adventures of Novus Xanthis continue. (Warning - If you are, or intend on playing the Rogue Trader book - The Black Sepulchre - this log contains spoilers)
Our party was summoned to the office our Inquisitor to be given our next mission. However upon arrival we found only his two underlings. Apparantly our esteemed Inquistor is attending a conference preparing for the emergence of the Tyrant Star.
Our mission was simple. Join a local PDF raid, one of 17 that night on the house of a noble suspected of posessing Heretical tech and artifacts. We were to secure the landing zone and find the hidden tech cache, and assist in capturing (alive) the Noble.
We made a hot combat drop, from a Valyrie straight into the warzone of the courtyard and made quick progress to the chapel to secure the grounds. By the order of the INquisition the house guards within surrendered to us and the combat servitor was destroyed by guardsman Jerichus' shotgun. Following a short interrogation (and subsequent execution) of the guards by our arbite, Hudson, we located the noble and co-ordinated with the local PDF to converge on his location and capture him.
However by the time we arrived, the PDF had been massacred. Not only did the Noble have a strange demonic gauntlet that allowed him to fire bone shards at people, but he was protected by 3 huge reptillian dogs. After putting down his pets we made to disarm (literally) and capture him. Hudson pinned him to the ground and my brother Techpriest, Drake, swung his flail hard against the prone arm. The demonic instrument showed no damage, but his arm within in fractured and tore. Despite our best medical attention, he dissolved, leaving nought but the arm and a pile of blackened sludge.
While waiting for the Inquisition to appropriate the heretical artifact, we continued to search the grounds, thankfully with no further resistance. Upon finding the cache of technology, amongst the Xenos weapons, heretical books and a fake block of mud from High Terra was a data slate chronicalling the demon hand. Although me and my brother techpriest failed to decode it (against Tech Use of 85), Ruddy (our scum) managed to open it with street knowledge (needing a tech roll of 12). It detailed that he had learnt of the artifact at "a temple of gold with a heart of coal". He also mentioned that the demon was speaking to him, and referenced "Hekates Warrior rising from the Brine".
Upon our debrief we learnt that the golden temple could only refer to the Gilded Cathedral on Barrowspine. Despite frustrations of the Nobles death, we gained more information than expected and the Rogue Trader we are based aboard set a course for BarrowSpine
Upon arrival at the gilded cathedral we learnt of the "heart of coal". The Black Sepulchre, a mysterious and unexplained black object in the cathedral. After a long chat with the Abbot of the cathedral, myself and Hudson set about searching the library archive, while Drake and Khan, our pysker, investigated the Sepulchre and Ruddy and Mordacai, our sharpshooter, went into the market to learn things. However shortly after arriving at the library I found myself out of my depth. No computer system and no sense of any organisation meant I was lost the moment I entered. never the less I assisted Hudson in her search, and we found a list of Eclisearchal holding. One, the Hematite Cathedral, mentioned the name Hekate and was situated by the sea. This matched with our earlier clues so we established this to be our course of action
When we regrouped and arranged transport for the following morning, we learnt that Khan had sensed a physic barrier around the Sepulchre. And Ruddy had succesfully interrogated a Fruit Seller and learned....that she sold fruit.
The following morning as we left the Cathedral to our car we were assailed by a group of self flagelating pilgrims. They screamed a cryptic poem at us, as well as assaulting us with flails and physic powers. The powers rendered Ruddy unconcious and a well placed flail also knocked Khan out. However with the first shot of the engagement, Mordacai used his Longlas and blew the leaders chest open. After a swift kicking the enemy were put down and all wounds repatched. After a quick goodbye to the Abbot and an apology for the mess we departed on our 3 day drive to the Hematite Cathedral.
The Hematite Cathedral was overgrown and clearly long abandoned. Upon entering the atrium we discovered long rows of pews facing a raised platform. Upon this platform sat a giant siege cannon, which upon inspection appears that it could be repaired and fired once more.
We also discovered a secret door hidden in the clock. It would not open, even to lascutters, and in a small recess was a space for a key, shaped like the ensignia of the Adeptus Mechanicus.
We set about searching the mansion. Uponing opening a large door, omniously marked Sanitorium, we discovered a row of prison cells, inhabited by small, gollum like creatures. After a unfortunate grenade scattering by me and a few shots from my compatriates they were all destroyed, but both Hudson and Ruddy were wounded (by my Grenade). Few med rolls later and every was back to normal. Our search in this area revealed little beyond information of a secret room in one of the towers and a supply of drugs, that Hudson destroyed. However during the bout Khan mishapped on one of his tests and grew a large set of black angel wings that promplty rotted into nothing. Needless to say, we're keeping a close eye on him in this place. Something in the air doesn't feel right. I feel like i'm being watched.
Searching the first tower releaved a scale model of the planetary system, and a desk with an Inferno Pistol within. Mordacai, thief first and Assassin second, helped himself to this valuable weapon despite having no ammo or training in its use. Search of the second tower uncovered a large library, where we swiftly found the hidden room mentioned. There were three large books chained to the wall. I opened the first, and found it contained writtings of one of the Hekates suggesting they were trying to cheat death so they could live long enough to see a once in 10,000 year solar event, they took as the coming of their Saint. It detailed the movements of the planets required for this
The other two books, Drake decided to open. The first melted in his hands, showed him images of the Imperium on fire and the end of all things before running up his arms and trying to throttle him. Shaking that off he decided to try and read the third....which send him made and he tried to shoot Ruddy. Luckily he missed and snapped out very swiftly. Something about this place is just making us edgy and not trust each other.
Returning to the first tower, we moved the planets in the model into the correct places and a ghost of one of the Hekates appeared to us. Recognising his staggering intellect from his writtings I attempted to talk to him to learn about the situation. He responded calmy and we began to speak, when the Barbarians of Khan and Hudson decided violence was the only answer and opened fire. I stormed out the room in a huff and left them to it. Upon the ghosts "death" a body appeared in the seats in the main room, that crumbled to dust upon our approach. Within the mess left was a third of the Adeptus Mechanicus Key required to open the hidden door.
Continuing our search of the Cathedral into the 2nd wing we discovered the Kitchen. Within the oven we found a secret hatch into a hidden room. Within was a twisted biology lab, were people were clearly killed. We found a hidden trapdoor in the floor, within which was a dark well full of rotten corpses. Yet when we looked, they looked back at us. Drake dropped a grenade down the hole and we moved on to the fake wall at the back. Hidden behind were a variety of constructs, humans sown together in twisted ways. The 2nd Hekate appeared behind us and attacked. Despite him punching his ghost hand straight through my stomach, he was defeated and I healed back to full health. Upon his death another body appeared, carrying the 2 third of the key.
Here we left off our adventure for the night, picking up again in a few days time. We still need to find a third of the key, and are missing one Hekate family member. We then need to open the secret door and discover what lies beyond. Something about this cathedral feels wrong to me...the Ad Mech logo and the giant gun are off in a cathedral.
This was a good fun session with some good combat and investigation sections. I did however go from 2 insanity points to 12 in one session. Not as much as Drake who went from 8 to 32....