Monday, February 4, 2019

Whitetail Pines

Everybody already knows about bigfoot. Of course they are real- one was dissected in Harvard over a hundred years ago. Mothman? Jersey Devil? They're real too of course, so are ghosts and witches and satanic cults in the woods. But they tend not to mess with people too much, people feeding deer and making them lose their fear of humans is a much bigger problem. Magic? Of course that's real. It's just not a great field to go into, welding is much more practical. Satanic Spellbooks are confiscated by schools all the time, where as mana crystals are sold in specialty shops. Many people still have bits and pieces that fell off the Roswell UFO. Government never tried to keep it a secret; the “visitors” haven't come back a second time yet. America still turns.

Whitetail Pines is a small fishing, hunting, and resort town. Surrounded by pine trees on all sides, it's very isolated but very comfortable. Most of the adult residents there like it, lots of good outdoorsy spots, tight community. Most of the kids hate it. Nothing to do besides hanging out at the roller rink- this is before the internet. You're expected to make your own fun. This sucks. And beyond that, not a ton of ways to make money either. Kids want to buy some weed or drinks, or maybe just some liquid cash to get started on your college education fund like some kind of nerd? You need to go out. Outside of normal society, outside of your comfort zone. Go investigate the abandoned bowling alley. Go in the woods to the witches house. Maybe you'll find some old jewlery or cursed VHS tapes you can sell to the local pawn shop.

The players are kids; teenagers. You're bored and need something to do in a small town. You pick up your baseball bat and old aprons to fashion some armor and go off into the uncharted places, dealing with ghosts and imps and supernatural curses and magic. You find magic spellbooks written in the margins of old diaries, trying to decode them while you pretend to pay attention in math class. There's an older guy in the town named Martin. He lives in a motor home and owns a gun. He knows more about monsters then any of you do, and makes his income driving state to state so he can get enough for the next full fuel tank and go adventuring some more. He's cool. But none of your parents think so. That's the feeling this game is supposed to evoke- because Martin is a total fucking loser. Why are you wasting time chasing spooks when you should be studying for your SATs. You should be trying to find a good job, or a good husband, not wasting your time doing dangerous shit. If we had a giant insect problem we'd call animal control, not a bunch of kids trying to hawk the carapaces so they can try to get college kids to buy them beer.

Welcome to Whitetail Pines.

The Weal Deal
This is Whitetail Pine's primer pawn shop. It's run by a kindly old man named Mr. Sandson. Mr. Sandson is a collector and antiquarian, and is known not to ask questions. As the only pawn shop in town, he's probably ripping you off, but you've got no where else to turn. He's still probably the only way you'll ever make a profit off that wendigo skull you risked life and limb for.

On top of buying artifacts, he sells them too. Sandson's only got a few; the old skull of a mesmerist that supposed to grant the powers of hypnotism, a few tarot cards loaded with spells by the town's old up-and-coming magician girl (she moved away to college in another state- few employment opportunities for wizards out here.), a few rusted swords. Minors going around with swords and axes and bows and arrows isn't considered that odd, adventurers are looked at like greasers. Tough guys, tolerated but given the stink eye. Guns are a no no though, unless you're on an actual hunting trip with your dad- Hunting deer, not bagging another Sasquatch. They're endangered now.

The Trailer Park
Filled up with freaks and weirdos; it's the best. Most of the tough kids hang here, but not all the residents here are normal, or even “human”. The people in this town have it as an open secret, don't ask don't tell about the vampires and troglodytes that live in the trailers. This is a great place to find the latest information about monster infested places or portals to hell opening up; the residents here are the closest to that kind of thing. But don't ask them to join you, they are trying to be more accepted into human society- the kids were born humans and they're trying to get out to the fringe. They don't appreciate what they have.

Beyond information, you can also get some magic. Back ally magic, oldschool magic, not that crap they teach in the special boarding schools with “elements” and “efficiency testing”. At least four witches live in the trailer parks (they're part of the vegetarian craze- they don't eat kids anymore), and they can brew up a mean love potion. Or more commonly, a potion of strength or fire resistance that a young troublemaker will want to sip before entering the salamander's cave out by dead man's gulch.

The Highschool
When the kids aren't on break or on the weekends, they spend every day here as normal. Boring math, history, science, religious studies. About actual religious gods, not prayer in schools or anything like that. That would be against the Constitution, as we are all aware. The dean is almost certainly a werewolf, and the chains under his desk are only jokingly said to be used on the students. (He really uses them on himself, and he knows he'll lose his tenure if anything happens). Health class teaches the genetic history of super-powered individuals, and the unfortunate crushing reality that nobody in your town has any chance of developing any powers into puberty or after- at least you highly doubt you're the one in ninty-thousand with the potential.

There is one ray of hope here though; Rooster. The metal, car, and woodshop teacher. He used to hunt vampires to pay his rent and loves to regale stories of it; but that was back when vampires and hunting them was much more common, and much more profitable. While he's not supposed to, he always keeps a couple of good oak stakes in his woodshop supply, none of that composite crap.

The Outskirts
This is the good stuff. Outside the town, in the woods or badlands, down the old highway, in old man Henassay's barn. These are the places were monsters and spooks may dwell. All around Whitetail are abandoned places, old condemned buildings, mysterious structures in the woods. You want a place to explore? No grown ups, just you and the mysterious forces out there.

Whitetail Pines Exploration Table – 1d8
[1] Ancient Sanitarium. Ghosts of the nurses are said to haunt this place, don't come without a conductive weapon- made of metal. Learned that in science class. If you manage to get a full set of antique plague-doctor trading cards Sandson will give you $220 dollars for it.

[2] Badlands. Cragy rocks nearby the hills, used as a dump for old chemicals in the 1950s. An old rusted plane is out here, the pilot is a zombie now. The navigation compass is possibly cursed, and certainly full of old magic. You can get $60 bucks for it.

[3] Witch's House. She's not always here, but her presence still makes this place scary; plus there's a few curses as traps and her familiars on the grounds. There's old jewelry in the attic, kept around real human hair wigs. Probably get $150 for a handful. Don't come if there's new chimes up around the house, that means she is home.

[4] Swamp Relics. Old underwater cold-war laboratory is still here, with a few experiments that roam around and eat trash from the garbage bins along the lake. The MREs inside are still good, and are one of the few things you can eat that demons can't cause you to throw up or turn rancid in your stomach; worth 10$ each. Don't come in autumn, else the spirits here may try to freeze the lake and trap you under there, leaving you stuck without hope of escape until spring.

[5] Old Drive-In Movie Theater. Was a pretty busy, fun place until someone cast a spell to make one of the characters real. He's become a serial killer. While he acts reasonable to sneak up on people, you can always tell its him because his skin is still black and white (he changed his clothes). Bust up the old ticket machines and parking meter things and get handfuls of antique coins and cash.

[6] The Old Wax Museum. The upper floor has been converted into the ice-cream stop in the town, and the owner is quite adamant about no one going downstairs to the lower floors. He keeps the place nice and cool, and as such the living wax figures don't bother anyone. However the old cowboys and indians sculptures down there wear authentic costumes that might be worth $20 each as long as their clothes aren't damaged too much from knife holes or burn marks, and the few real golden nuggets that were once on display could be worth a couple hundred dollars each if you could only get them out.

[7] Chalk Cave. The entrance to the cave has been marked by hundreds of young people over the years, little doodles, initials in hearts, and a few skulls and warnings. The cave itself is home to a family of mangy, diseased, and inbred wolves. The wolves can speak English and try to lure people into their jaws in the darkness, but have hilariously out of date language and are way too obvious. You could enter the cave to steal some of the old comic books the wolves grew up reading; the collector items could go for upwards of $150. Usually the animals are too weak and cowardly to attack, but if they are hungry enough they could be dangerous.

[8] Motel Room 4. At the old (and only) motel in town. Proudly advertises its color television as complimentary. While it is still a barely functioning small business, the 4th room is condemned, having boarded up windows and a well locked door. Still, kids manage to break in and explore the sinkhole in the closet that leads to a hidden realm. Watch out for mushroom men, and bring a breathing mask, lest you never be able to leave that place. Drag back the safe, the last guest in that room was a lawyer. Nobody knows what he could have left in there before running out screaming.

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