Sunday, April 26, 2020

TwK: David S. Terrence (A Contact for Lighthouse)

I have been recently inspired by Throne of Salt's Lighthouse.  For the unacquainted, it is a civilian organization that is meant to protect humans from the supernatural, as well as from the organized violence that uses the information blackout on all things non-material to abuse people as it sees fit.

In such a world, there are powerful government conspiracies, but rather then participating in them as in games like Delta Green, these conspiracies are malevolent and composed of wicked individuals who largely seek to despoil the world for their own agenda(s).

This is actually very similar to how I envisioned the Understudies in my Those who Know setting, civilians who stepped up to fight monsters and deal with the supernatural threats afflicting their communities that the Powers that Be, notably the Company, were too busy or too indifferent to take care of.  So regardless of what setting you're actually using, whether Lighthouse, Those who Know, Esoteric Enterprises, some kind of hybrid or your own spin on the same system, you could easily find a use for these posts.

For further reading:
- The original Lighthouse Post
          Contacts:
          - Jubilee and Briggs
          - Radio Live Free

                                                 from Wikidata
                                            RIP King.  You were taken too soon.

David S. Terrence was once a genius computer programmer who looked like he would have a brilliant career working in silicon valley.  He could have been the digital Nikola Tesla.  Instead, catastrophe laid him low.

Terrence is an insane individual, largely functional in terms of being able to feed and dress himself, but he needs constant supervision in case he does something dangerous.  He is fearless and endlessly honest.  He will relate to you the radical thoughts he is having at every moment of every day, talking about everything from his early sexual misadventures to his model train set to the Digital Temple.  He is an artist and a computer programmer- a genius crippled by madness.  He is as much amusing as he is pitiful.  He is mad, of course, and doesn't realize people think this way about him. 

He is hostile to and afraid of police officers, law enforcement and government officials.  He does not know about Lighthouse but is widely regard as an unofficial member.     

Appearance - A white man with wide eyes and mismatched clothes.
Manner - Wildly, disproportionately enthusiastic about his latest project, bored of everything else
Wants - To finish the Digital Temple.  To evade capture by the Midnight Men.  To enlighten everyone.
Morality - To do the Will of God, who he claims speaks to him.
Secret - His mind houses a dangerous psychic weapon.  He knows he must protect it from those who would abuse it.

Allison Terrence is David S. Terrence's dutiful, aging Mother.  She fears soon she will be too old to take care of David, but she has no one she can trust with his care.  She knows he would never be well cared for by the State, but she is working on a potential approach to convince him it will be for the best, even as she knows such an attempt is likely doomed to failure. 

As far as she is concerned, the supernatural does not exist and her son is just a man stricken by mental illness.

Appearance - An matronly woman with wrinkled around her eyes from age and smile lines around her mouth
Manner - Maternal, but concealing an iron core
Wants - To ensure David is cared for.  To reconnect with her distant husband. 
Morality - To care for her family and to do anything for them
Secret - She secretly wants to pass the responsibility of caring for David onto someone else.  She feels guilty over this.

Hooks:

Terrence heard from...

1d6

1- God
2- An online friend
3- The radio
4- A message in the clouds
5- The people on the news
6- His bowl of alphabet soup (he consumes it religiously)

That...

1d6

1- You're being followed
2- Government types have been poking around [location] recently
3- Someone's attempting to make contact with something otherworldly nearby
4- The new medical equipment being installed in the local hospital doesn't do what they say it does
5- An accidental death recently reported is actually a murder
6- The Midnight Men are nearby

Terrence is working on a computer program to enable him to talk to God, instead of just receiving messages.  To do this, he needs you to steal an artifact from a local collector.  50% the artifact is magic, with an independent 50% the collector knows about this.  He might let you keep it once he's done.

Terrence spotted a group of Recruiters nearby.  Keep an eye on them and make sure they don't do anything bad.  If/when they do something bad, kick their asses and send them back to Washington.  Be careful though- they're slippery as they come.

Terrence suffered a bolt of insight.  He got in his car and took off.  His Mother only knows the vague direction he was headed.  Find him before the police, the Midnight Men or another enemy of Lighthouse, Humanity or The Good grabs him.

                                                       source unknown

Insight Buys:

Cast the Bones (G-1). 
You can ask Terrence about the likely outcome of an event.  He will give you an answer based on information based on what his "sources" tell him.  He is not always right, but he usually is.

The British are Coming (G-2).  The next time you are about to walk into a dangerous situation, Terrence will send you a message ahead of time to warn you before hand.   

Flash of Insight (G-2).  Terrence will give you a fortune cookie of his own design.  By breaking it open, you will be able to deduce the problem to any logical puzzle before you, as long as their are no humans directly involved.  For example, it could give you the combination to a locked safe or point out a clue you missed, but not "Who killed Walter Hemmings?"    

Thicker than Water (G-3).  Terrence can bond your souls to each other.  You will be able to feel each other's emotions at all times, as well as approximate location.  The further away you are from each other the weaker the "signal" is, but it never quite goes away. 

Bad Trip (I-3).  Terrence can give you a serum that is made of a combination of ingredients, but the crucial one is his cerebro-spinal fluid.  By injecting this into your bloodstream, you will have a vision like the kind Terrence often experiences.  This will give you a vital piece of information about a past, present or future event.  For example, if you inject this before a heist, it will show you an alternate future where you are surrounded by police as soon as you enter the vault because you tripped the silence alar.  If you inject it during a heist, it will tell you that the SWAT team has arrived and you have only minutes before they burst in.   

Contingency Plan (I-5). 
Terrence told you a secret, then convinced you to forget it.  Now, when you choose, you remember the secret and it will give you an advantage in whatever situation you are currently in.  For example, if surrounded, you know just the thing to tell the leader to convince him that you are secretly a sleeper agent on his side.

Self-Hypnosis (1-5).  Terrence taught you how to hypnotize yourself.  You can use this to become temporarily immune to pain, fear, charm or other effects (Referee's Discretion).  Hypnotizing yourself requires concentration and at least one minute.  You will need to teach the hypno-trigger word to someone you trust, otherwise you will not be able to undo the hypnotic trance. 

Shining God (I-10). 
Terrence showed you the door, but only you could open it.  Your third eye opens and the true nature of Reality is revealed to you, in all its glorious splendor and baroque terror.  While your third eye is open, you get +4 to all attack and defense rolls against opponents who do not have fore-knowledge of events and can, as an action, speak words that force anyone who hears them to take psychic damage as the sharpness of your mind cuts theirs like a sword through a water ballon.  You can close your third eye at any time you wish.  The longer you remain in this elevated form, the more likely you are to drive yourself permanently mad (save vs madness when third eye closes, penalties for the longer you are in this form).  When you transform back, the memories of what you learned fade as well, as you're no longer high enough to understand them.  All you have left is the door and a lingering sense of melancholy, along with the thought that you've forgotten something important. 

Major Goals:

Find out who the Recruiters are working for.

Terrence also wants to know why they are kidnapping children and for what purpose.  This will require a lot of investigation, tailing and interrogating people, stealing classified documents and a very strong stomach.

Stop the Midnight Men.

Terrence doesn't know who or what they are, but he knows they have been following him for years, if not decades, tormenting and trying to direct the flow of events in his life.  He wants to take the fight to them, but he doesn't have enough information.  This will require you to investigate their nature, find out their weaknesses, as well as leadership, home and plans, then hopefully survive long enough to put that information to good use. 

Finish the Digital Temple.

Terrence is certain that soon, he will be finished and that he will be able to communicate with God like the prophets of old did.  He just needs a few more pieces of vital information.  This will require several burglaries, the recovery and translation of some ancient texts and potentially, an investigation to see if the being that Terrence calls and believes to be "God" is actually who it claims to be.   

                                                source unknown

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