In the previous session we had found out that the local Red Lady at Dunoon was behaving strangely. Rather than heading directly down to find her, we decided to instead head up the hill to take a look at the standing stones there. Faerie dances were meant to happen at the full moon (the next one was due tomorrow night), and something bad had happened to the boy that had witnessed the last one.
Apart from eight standing stones, there was nothing special on the hill. There was a small faerie aura, but little physical sign of anything unusual. Some of the stones had recent looking holes in them – like a large nail had been driven into them up near their tops.
We headed down to the pool, where the flora was straggly and unhealthy looking. There were some red flowers, though they were shrivelled. Large thorns covered a lot of the plants, making it a most unwelcome place. Maedbh and Pisciculus went down to the pool, leaving Sid and Allistor just up the hill out of sight. The Red Lady would not be welcoming of men at the best of times, and if she was in a bad mood, then it would be unwise to upset her further.
There is a pond, covered in scum and surrounding by sick looking plants. There was a small grove at the far side, where a couple of arbutus trees grew. Sap, the colour of blood, was running down them from wounds that looked like claw or bite marks.
Maedbh called out to the Lady, but apart from a small ripple on the pool there was no response. So Pisciculus knelt down by the water’s edge and called out to her, though in Greek since she barely knew any Gaelic. There was a sudden surge of water, and a shape lunged up out of the water, grabbing at Pisciculus and pulling her back into the water.
There was pain as whatever it was penetrated her Parma Magica, and blood and water filled her lungs. Fortunately she was a strong swimmer, and kicked for the surface, struggling to shore as Maedbh called out for Sid and Allistor.
Maedbh managed to help her up onto the bank, but water was still filling her lungs. As Allistor arrived, he put his hands on her and cast a spell, granting Pisciculus the ability to breath water, something which helped greatly.
A figure of a dishevelled old hag formed above the water’s surface, with long finger nails and scraggly hair. As Maedbh tried to reason with it, it thanks her for bringing some more ‘gifts’ for her. However, Sid shoots her with an arrow. Normally such would pass through her watery nature, but the iron head was not well received, forcing her backwards.
Then Allistor, whilst still concentrating on keeping Pisciculus’ lungs working, dropping three Pilums of Fire on here. They were intense enough to boil away some of the water, and drive her screaming back into her pool.
Not wanting the fight to continue, Pisciculus tried a Call to Slumber on the pool, though the Lady was gone by this point so it had little effect. During this time, Maedbh has been working her way around to the bleeding trees, which look like they have some holes in similar to those we found in the standing stones. There is an effect on them causing the bleeding – MuVi magnitude 10, so way beyond what any of us could manage.
Something has obviously caused the Red Lady to turn bad, but so far we have no idea what.
This session saw our first battle with magi, which mostly resulted in Allistor stealing the scene. Pisciculus wasn’t able to do much – with her lungs full of water she couldn’t speak, and though that wouldn’t have been an issue for her Corpus spells, the hag needed Aquam rather than Corpus to affect her. Her most useful skill in the session was probably swim.
There were some good critical roll ups from various people, which definitely helped things, in particular the bow shot and one of Allistor’s mastered Pilums of Fire.