Shadows over Appalachia

Howling For Trouble

Dear Journal,

It’s been a few months since our encounter with the folks trying to wake the dragon under the mountains. I got back from Vegas and and settled in for some nice normal days. Ironknife, Nick (Rookie), Alan and Freedom all stopped by the bar so we could catch up on things. They were just starting to tell me about some weird ghoul thing when in walks a fairly attractive young lady. She talks with Big Don for a few minutes, then plops herself down at our table and asks Ironknife who he is. It was pretty brazen.

After some introductions and what not, turns out she’s associated with this new organizational network called ParaNet. Seems they are a bunch of small time talents who set up a phone network to spread information and keep tabs on folks. When the supernatural baddies start moving, it’s usually the small folks who get chewed up first. Seems like a great idea, and Ironknife was telling the lady (her name is Elaine, I don’t really remember when that was mentioned) about all the weirdness in this town, when guess who strolls in with a new posse?

Eddie Sledge is back in town and he’s got some more muscle in his gang than the last time we met. The upshot of his little visit was to try and get us to leave, especially Ironknife. Seems ol’ Eddie has hooked up with a new big shot who calls himself Blackwolf, and Blackwolf was “graciously” giving us a change to “leave town now”. Of course, Eddie threatens to burn Big Don’s down if we don’t. I casually remind him that Big Don’s is Neutral Ground, and of course he turns to threatening Sam. Freedom and Alan stalk out at this point, and while Eddie watches them leave, I snag his wallet. Ironknife tells him to get lost, and then we look over the wallet. It’s got a LOT of money in it, like a couple of grand in fresh bills, and a business card for a Nicholas Falls Down.

The rest of the group heads over to Sam’s ranger station, while I hit the police station to give them a heads up. Detective Jackson was super helpful as always, but as big a jerk as he is, he’s an honest cop with the best interests of this town in mind. He wasn’t too pleased with me (frankly, I don’t think he’s pleased about anything), but he put in the word. I drove to the ranger’s station. On the way, I hit this really weird fog, but I figured it was some magic stuff and just kept on going. As I pull up to the station, there’s this Indian, excuse me, Native American guy singing, and I can tell there’s a lot of magic stuff going on. Considering I got a call from Sam saying “Hey, we’re all going to die from these horrible spirits that are trying to eat our faces”, I was pretty sure he was not friendly. So naturally, I tried to run him over with my truck. That didn’t work so well, since it turns out, funnily enough, that he was a ghost. Oops. This ended with me putting my truck through the front of the Ranger Station. Still, I’m told that Freedom and Alan smashed a thing and that made it all better. I was a bit woozy at that point, but I recovered nicely.

We headed back to Ironknife’s place, and then Freedom, Alan and I went to talk to Carl Two Feathers. Basically, this Falls Down guy has been around for a long, long, LONG (like wizard life long) time, is a werewolf, and pretty much wants all us non-Native American folks to be dead or gone. Real friendly chap, let me tell you. I send Alan and Freedom on to do more research (Freedom mumbled something about some missing kid) while I head over to the Greenway. I stopped at a gas station to get a couple of six packs, and picked up a nice pizza as well. That weird homeless guy, the one who always seems to know what’s going on? Yeah, he’s getting the hell out of dodge. Turns out this Blackwolf fella is a bad, bad man. Took down a lot of Wardens in his day. I left him with the pizza and half the beer, and sought out Dum Dum. Nice guy, so long as you aren’t a small child and have food and/or booze. Dum Dum basically let slip that the Faeries had their hackles up over this guy. When the Faeries are scared, you KNOW it’s bad.

I get back to Ironknife’s place just in time to get the low down on this Blackwolf fellow. He is Grade A Evil, with a capital Kimmmler! I mean, one of Kimmler’s followers in KNOXVILLE of all places. His plan is probably to try and wake up the dragon and then steal/bind/something it’s power for himself. As we are pondering this, we hear about how some little kid has gone missing…right from his back yard and nobody saw anything. Yeah, that’s not weird. Especially since Freedom tells us that according to her research all the bad stuff that’s been going on happened right as a small child disappeared. We head out that way to investigate.

I sort of bluff my way into the journalist reception area, and come to find out no one saw anything at all. Except maybe this weird old guy. Freedom has been nosing about in wolf form, and we approach the makeshift tent where he’s been living. He seems…odd. Kind of like the Greenway Guy, and knows Freedom is around. So, she pads over, and the guy…stands up. I’m not a small man. I’m a good 5’10" or so. But this guy, he was HUGE. Of course, he drops all pretense of idiocy when he does that. Yeah, it’s Blackwolf. For a man who wants to rip my heart from my body and feed it to me, he was pretty amicable. Of course, Freedom goes for his throat the second he reveals himself, and he just…ignores her and slaps her aside like she was nothing. She, wisely, retreats for a moment.

Blackwolf wants me to deliever a message for him. That Ironknife and the rest of us should get out of town NOW, or we are all going to die, and our friends, loved ones, pets, and so forth. I counteroffer with “maybe you should go away”, but it’s a token thing and we both know it. He then says he has one other message for Ironknife…and strides towards me, probably about to crack every rib in my chest if I’m lucky. Freedom just…goes crazy and attacks him, and he just sort of…half shapeshifts and claws at her, leaving a long gash. I try my old reliable Flash Powder trick and…yeah, he just ignores it. In fact, he pretty much ignores me. Freedom tries a fighting retreat, and I try to step in front of this guy, but he just leaps over me and despite my desperate scrabbling he…really gouges a chunk out of Freedom’s leg. He takes it with him, stating “now I can always find her”, while I call for help, screaming my fool head off in a very manly way that wasn’t at all panicked. The cops show up as Blackwolf just…fades out, and I tell them about the crazy homeless guy attacking me. They buy it, and I find Freedom hiding in the bushes, bleeding. I tear up some of my hankerchiefs and bandage her up as best I can, but I’m going to need a needle and thread to stitch it up right. Good thing she’s a werewolf. That would have torn my leg off.

This might be my last entry, since this guy is not playing around. He’s worse than even the Loup-Garou AND the Hexenwulves put together. God help us, but we’ve got to stop him. No more kids gonna disappear on our watch!

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