Friday, December 13, 2013

Table Talk: The Great Obfuscation

Before we get into the meat of this week's Table Talk, submitted by valued reader Kat Cichocki, Improved Initiative has an announcement to make! This blog, along with my author blog the Literary Mercenary, now have a place at Patreon! This website allows readers to pledge a certain amount of money to help fund content creators, and we at Improved Initiative are asking for a holiday gift of $1 a month to keep the content coming fast and hard. If you want to make our holiday season then drop on by, and pledge to us here.

That said, let's move onto our first user submitted story where we approach a dark world filled with subhuman parasites, and terrifying creatures of darkness. And vampires.

All of the vampires.
Kat Says:
When playing old-world Vampire: The Masquerade, certain powers are very important to the survival of sneaky characters. Obfuscate is arguably the most important of all of those, as it is essentially the World of Darkness version of invisibility. What happens, though, when your character is in a dire situation and DOESN’T have it? This is my story.

I was a newbie live-action player, but a couple of years of table-top experience under my belt and years of on-stage experience in theatre had gotten the ST to trust me with one of his antagonist characters- a character whose sole purpose was to cause mayhem in the player-driven plots of the Vampire LARP scene. My character was a human masquerading as a vampire in order to destroy their society from within. She had several supernatural abilities (mostly psychic-type stuff), but most of this character’s ability to hide in vampire society was based on the wit and quick thinking of the player behind her. Like any over-enthusiastic newbie, I told one of my good friends ALL about the awesome character I was playing. He got it into his head that he wanted to create a character to connect with mine, and thus the plotting began.

Game night: the LARP has the run of the ST’s whole house and yard. The yard has a creek running through it and it borders on a cemetery, so it was ultra cool. The house had two levels. The lower level featured a spacious living room, a centrally located staircase, and on the other side a dining room that was set up with refreshments for the players. In particular, there was a punch bowl filled with “blood” for the vampires to partake in. With my character not actually being a vampire, I naturally avoided the dining area like the plague, sticking mostly to the more social living room.

I got cornered by my friend, who graciously insisted on getting me a cup of the refreshments being offered. As he turned his back to go get me the punch, I nearly panicked. I couldn’t drink it, and if I didn’t, I was totally caught. I had no stealth skills on my sheet, let alone the coveted Obfuscate ability. Then I looked up and noticed the staircase. And my friend’s back towards it.

Without thinking too hard, I stood up and dashed towards the staircase, getting very close to the friend (busily filling cups of punch at the bowl) as I positively flew up the staircase, trying to move as quietly as a young woman in high heels possibly can. I reached the upstairs, ducked into a bathroom, and stood there with my heart thundering in my ears for a few moments waiting to be caught. Seconds passed. Minutes passed. Holy shit! I had pulled it off! I did eventually have to leave the upstairs, but all things considered, I had managed somehow to save my own can through my own abilities, not powers or numbers on my character sheet.

I was later told that he had turned around and thought that somehow I had actually learned obfuscate, as there was no possible way I could have gotten out of that room. I couldn’t help but gloat over my own ingenuity, but I can honestly say that character never actually got caught, and caused a considerable amount of mayhem while the game lasted.
Kat stepped forward to share a story of a truly memorable night at one of her games... how about you? What slick trick do you have to brag about pulling off? Let us know by dropping comments or contacting us. If you want to stay updated on all of the doings both here and on the Literary Mercenary, then drop by Facebook or Tumblr and become a follower! As always, thanks for stopping by!

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