Whacks Hotel Enjoy Your Stay

HamBandit

The hotel was apparently once white, but the paint is almost entirely chipped off and peeling. A bright, bare light bulb hangs from a string in the lobby above the service counter. A navy blue carpet and several old pieces of furniture cover the floor, and several old rotary pay-phones hang on the walls. A set of stairs in the corner next to a maintenance closet door leads to the upper levels. It's warm inside, and smells of detergent. You can't see anyone else, though a brass service bell sits on the counter.


Tancred

Looking around curiously, Hank deposits his case on the counter and rings the service bell vigorously.


HamBandit

An overweight, middle aged woman with graying hair emerges from the back room. Strangely, (?) she seems to be completely normal.

"Welcome, welcome…" She says, straightening some papers absentmindedly behind the desk. "Can I help you folks?"


Tancred

"We'd like a room - a twin, not sharing or anything," Hank stammers, suddenly wary of the impression of two men checking in together. "Two beds, definitely. Not that we don't have open minds you understand, just he's… not my type, and we only just met, and I don't swing that way…" Hank rambles, smiling furiously in an attempt to reverse the woman's growing frown.

"Do you have a room in some wing called the Warrens? We heard that was nice."


HamBandit

She looks skeptically at Hank, placing the folder full of papers into a drawer. "These are the Warrens… the whole tunnel complex… all the way down to the King's Chambers. But to answer your question, yeah, we've got just one room left right now." She grabs a key off of the rack on the wall and places it on the counter and begins to ruffle through a desk for the sign-in sheet. "People from the surface don't come down here much… are you folks looking to meet with the King?"


Renatoram

"Maybe…" - says Franklin, staying vague.

"Can you tell us a bit about him? What should we expect?"


HamBandit

Sliding the sign-in sheet onto the counter, she rubs her temples tiredley.

"The King is pretty much in charge of everything that goes on under the City. He thinks that he owns the entire city… always talking about 'taking back what's his'. Nobody's exactly sure (Wake Up, Franklin) what he is, but most think he's older than the City itself. Anyway," She says with a wave of her hand. "Just sign in here, and I'll show you to your room. For three nights or less, it'll cost you a high-five and a compliment.


Tancred

"I'll pay in advance, hot stuff," Hank smiles, high-fiving the woman. "It might be worth meeting this King. How do we arrange an audience?"


HamBandit

ribsy.png

"Not many people actually ask for an audience… but I guess you could try one of the phones." She motions twoards the phones on the wall. "Or the one in your room. They sometimes work, sometimes don't. You get used to that sort of thing down here. Mr Ribsy?" She calls to the back room.

A lean silver-gray cat sleepily steps out from the doorway.

"Would you show these folks to their room please?" Mr. Ribsy somberly saunters over to the exit, where a cat-door has been installed, turning to face the two of you expectantly.


Tancred

Hank picks up his case and follows.


Renatoram

"Lead us, Mr. Ribsy, please"

Somehow, Franklin just feels the need to treat the cat formally, like an old butler…


HamBandit

"Oh, and by the way." The receptionist calls out as you step through the chipped doorframe. "Don't open the pantry!"

The cat, (in no rush) leads you up the short set of stairs and through a narrow set of corridors. The carpet is old and slightly soggy, and the entire building smells vaguely of melting candles. Each rooms' door that you pass seems to have completely random numbers and letters displayed on it. Your key reads "CranBurry8", and Mr. Ribsy stops at the door with the matching name.

"Sorry, no Room Service." The cat says casually. "The TV works though."


Tancred

Quote:

Originally Posted by HamBandit
"Oh, and by the way." The receptionist calls out as you step through the chipped doorframe. "Don't open the pantry!"

Hank makes a mental note to check it out. C'mon! That's the sort of advice no one ever takes!

Quote:

The cat, (in no rush) leads you up the short set of stairs and through a
narrow set of corridors. The carpet is old and slightly soggy, and the entire
building smells vaguely of melting candles. Each rooms' door that you pass
seems to have completely random numbers and letters displayed on it. Your key
reads "CranBurry8", and Mr. Ribsy stops at the door with the matching name.
"Sorry, no Room Service." The cat says casually. "The TV works though."

"No problem Mr. Ribsy," Hank answers, slotting the key in the lock and walking inside. "Franklin, you want to handle the tip?" he says, winking at Franklin.


Renatoram

Franklin puts himself in the path of Mr. Ribsy, who bumps its shoulder on his leg so hard he risks falling down, and then accepts a scratch behind a ear, managing to purr while remaining completely formal and aloof.

"Nice to meet you, Mr. Ribsy, I hope we'll meet again"


HamBandit

"Indeed…" Mutters the cat, trotting away down the hall.

The hotel room is typical, though slightly more homely than most: mainly because almost everything is made of oak wood, instead of the usual clinical white plaster and wallpaper…slightly reminiscent of a log cabin. Two single beds with dark green sheets sit against the far wall, and an end-table with an old fashioned rotary phone on top. The kitchen contains a single countertop and sink, though the pantry is padlocked, chained and bolted shut. The only illumination is from numerous lamps set up all over the room, (some in the strangest places, like under the bathroom sink) which, though not plugged in, give off a balmy orange-red light. That bed looks awfully inviting… especially to Franklin. (OOC: With exhaustion 0, I doubt Hank cares much though.)

The flame moth in Franklin's pocket flutters it's wings and slips out, floating over and settling in the ash-tray on the end table.


Tancred

Hank deposits his case on one of the beds and strips off his rumpled jacket.

"So what now?" he says, slumping down on the bed. "I could call this Wax King guy, see if he can help me out? Maybe he has some advice for you?"

Hank fumbles through his pockets, looking longingly at the ash tray. "Could use a cigarette about now…" He turns to Franklin with another question. "So how do you feel about things here?" face showing concern. "Supposedly we just wait here 'til a Clothbird or something comes from Clockwise with more information, hoping this Lamp and friends doesn't get brave enough to come after me here. Meanwhile, the fish you're supposed to be frying just sit untouched. What's your next step? Any advice?"


Renatoram

"I don't know, Hank" Franklin sits down heavily on the bed.

"I came here trying to catch up with my brother, brought away by some strange cops, because I fear he has been entangled in some mess".

"He said to me he deserved it, but I don't know: this Mad City place is damn weird, and I don't know what to think. I'm tired. I'm confused."

Franklin lays down, his hands behind the head, the legs stretched, staring at the ceiling.

"It's weird. I'm tired, but sleep really seems not to be an option."

He turns towards Hank, and stares in his eyes.

"Let's go and see this Wax King, Hank. If he has any power or connections, I figure he'll be able to lend me some help about my brother."


Tancred

"Good a plan as any I guess," Hank says, picking up the phone. Putting the handpiece to his ear, he toggles the connection a few times to get a dial tone. After some crackling on the line, it's answered - by the operator he guesses. No word, just heavy breathing on the other end of the line, laboured and phlegmy.

"Hello Operator? I'd like to speak to the Wax King… or his appointment's secretary? Can you put me through to the… Wax Palace?" Covering the mouthpiece a moment, Hank turns back to Franklin and tosses him the flat bottle of whiskey.

"Hey don't get too comfortable there - take a swig if it'll help you stay awake."


HamBandit

"…one moment, please." The voice crackles, as if over an old radio. With a click, Hank is placed on hold, and old Christmas tunes begin to play through the handset.

THUMP The ceiling tiles above Franklin's bed wobble, as something moves across them. The skittering and bumping noises continue to move, until stopping somewhere near the bathroom.

There is silence for few seconds, followed by the phone receiver being picked up, and answered by an official-sounding female voice.

"This is the Wax Kingdom, Front Desk speaking. What is your name, birthday, and favorite flavor of cake?"


Tancred

Hank looks concerned at the noises on the floor above, tracking the sound with his eyes as it moves across the room.

Quote:

Originally Posted by HamBandit
"This is the Wax Kingdom, Front Desk speaking. What is your name, birthday, and favorite flavor of cake?"

"Hank Sterner, April 1st 1972, Coffee," he answers briskly, lying about the birthday: Hanks' got no idea when he was born.


Renatoram

Franklin takes a swig from Hank's bottle, winces, then returns it.

"Not exactly finest scotch, uh… but it will do"

And make a brief smile.


HamBandit

"I'm afraid we don' t have you listed here, and I was never fond of coffee." The 'receptionist' says, the sound of pages flipping in the background. The static begins to get louder, overlayed by a sharp and consistent dial-tone noise that's steadily increasing in volume.

"The King does not see guests uninvited. Unless you've got an appointment, you're out of luck."

Something taps at the window, concealed behind the thin shade. Hank can see the Lady in Red reflected in the bathroom mirror looking around concernedly.

"Something's up." She mouthes to him.


Tancred

Quote:

Originally Posted by HamBandit
"I'm afraid we don' t have you listed here, and I was never fond of coffee."
The 'receptionist' says, the sound of pages flipping in the background. The
static begins to get louder, overlayed by a sharp and consistent dial-tone
noise that's steadily increasing in volume.

"The King does not see guests uninvited. Unless you've got an appointment, you're out of luck."
Something taps at the window, concealed behind the thin shade. Hank can see the Lady in Red reflected in the bathroom mirror looking around concernedly.
"Something's up." She mouthes to him.

"Thanks," Hanks says to the 'receptionist' distractedly, putting down the phone. He walks stealthily over to the window shade, catching Franklin's attention. Then he reaches up and carefully peels back a corner of the shade to look out the window.


HamBandit

A completely smooth mustard yellow wax-coated humanoid head peers through the window, cocking to the side quizzically. After a moment of inspection, it hisses distastefully and ducks out of sight. By the lamplight outside, you can see others swarming all over the walls and ceilings of the chamber, escaping through openings in the roof. They completely cover the building, like flies on rotten meat, on their way upwards.


Renatoram

Franklin, who got up to peer over Hank's shoulder, bursts: "Holy cow! What the heck are those?"


Tancred

"No idea," Hank answers through gritted teeth. "I don't like the look of this though - they're getting out of here through the roof, something's got them spooked." He squints downward through the window, trying to see any sign of the cause for the creatures' flight.


HamBandit

The lanterns around the building go out one by one. You can see a group of silhouettes moving silently to the door of the hotel, obscured by the darkness. With a loud *BANG*, you can hear the door forced open.

The lights in your room flicker.


Tancred

"Time to leave!" Hank says tersely, scooping up his case and heading for the door.


Renatoram

"Damn right!" Franklin jumps up and goes for the door.


Tancred

Hank throws open the door and looks around.

"I say we head for the roof, try and see if we can get out the same way as those weird-looking guys."

With that, he starts racing up the stairs two at a time.


Renatoram

Franklin runs together with Hank, checking behind a couple of times to see if someone… or something appears down the hallway.


HamBandit

Soft but hasty footsteps bump up the stairs as the lights flicker a second time. Hustling down the hallway, you can see the roof access at the end: an old, rotting door next to a janitor's closet. The door is bolted shut. A fire extinguisher sits on the wall under the small grimy window, smudged with handprints.


Renatoram

"Let's not waste time, here!"

Franklin grabs the fire extinguisher, gathers some speed, and smashes it near the lock area, hoping to break it and release the door.


HamBandit

The door easily is easily broken open, the rotting wood splintering with a sharp crack. The roof is soggy and cracked, and doesn't look very sturdy, though it does meld with the wax walls that the creatures are crawling through, adding stability.

A quiet hiss grabs your attention from the janitor's closet next to the door, and Mr. Ribsy's pokes his head out. You can see your reflection in his large yellow-green eyes.

"What are you doing? Hide in here, quick." The lights seem as if they're on their last legs, dimming like dying fireflies.


Tancred

Without a word, Hank leaps into the hiding place.


HamBandit

“Don’t make a sound…” Mr. Ribsy says quietly, pushing the door shut. The lights go out entirely as the closet door closes with a squeaky click. You can hear the footsteps of your pursuers pass by the door… and then stop. Ten seconds pass. As the lights begin to flicker slowly back to life, you can see the source of the noises.

Spread out in the hallway, holding perfectly still, are a group of eerie human figures. Some of them walk on all fours, crawling along the walls and ceiling. Slender, yet muscular, and completely covered from head to toe, they wear tightly buttoned denim jackets and leather gloves. Black ski masks, without eye or mouth holes cut, tightly cover their angular and smooth faces. They all press their ears to the various surfaces in the hallway, seeming to not see you through the small window in the closet. One of them has it’s face pressed directly against the glass, and begins to sniff quietly.

Mr. Ribsy taps Hank on the boot, and motions his paw like a gun.

OOC: I'm kind of assuming Franklin hid as well instead of running across the roof, but let me know if that's what you wanted to do instead.


Renatoram

OOC: sure thing… I hide with Franklin.


Tancred

Not one to ignore orders from a talking cat, Hank slips out the heavy revolver and puts his thumb on the hammer, easying it back as quietly as possible.

Hank starts to feel very hot all of sudden, breaking out in a nervous sweat. How did I end up here, with some stranger's gun in my hand? he wonders


HamBandit

*Click…Click…*

The creature begins to tap quietly on the glass with one gloved finger. The others, still motionless, all slowly rotate their heads to face the door. Mr Ribsy slowly advances deeper into the closet, and steps behind an empty bucket.

Quickly and simultaneously, as if one cue, the creatures on the ceiling and walls scuttle all around the door: like roaches skittering under the fridge when hit with a bright light. The one tapping begins to click its finger on the window louder and louder, until it's pounding with its fist. The cheap glass begins to crack under the sharp, incessant blows, until a hole is punched through it. The creature begins to grope its jacketed arm around inside, reaching for the handle, when a cold, shrill shriek rings out in the hallway.

The noise is inhuman-and sounds almost like a siren's whoop. The creatures are momentarily distracted, and turn their heads to the side in unison. Clockwise's small moth made from candle-flames sits on the carpeted floor, its wings upright. The tiny insect's tongue, little more than a minute ribbon of glowing fire, quickly stretches out from it up towards the group of creatures, mesmerized like deer in headlights. It extends six feet, growing and changing shape into a whip of liquid flame, dripping sparks. In the blink of an eye, the whip slithers around one of the creature's heads: this one wrapped in a black plastic bag. With the sickening noise of a wet bean-bag being squeezed, the moth's strand constricts, crushing the creature's head, and squeezing out thousands of pointy sewing needles, gushing from the stump of its neck like someone turned on a faucet. The plastic bag is ripped and discarded as the creature crumples to the ground, and the moth's tongue speedily retracts.

Snapping out of their trance, the creatures go berserk, smashing through the glass window and shattering the doorframe: clawing and seething. Three of them run at the flame-moth on all fours, uttering a hideous wail.

OOC: Wow, metaphors for the win. Pain: 8. You can handle it ;)


Tancred

Hank echoes the creatures' eerie scream, drawing something from deep within and expelling it in a fear-fuelled, near-crazed bellow of wild desperation. He raises the heavy revolver and levels his arm through the shattered window, shoving the revolver's barrel into the first thing's featureless face, then pulling madly on the trigger…


Renatoram

Franklin takes a big breath, clenches his fists, and still gripping the fire extinguisher jumps out of the closet, kicking the creature stricken down by the revolver shots from Hank's gun to the ground, and moves towards the group attacking the moth.

He starts with a low growl, then it grows while he charges, and finally he lets out, with a loud, rasping scream: the tension, the nonsense, the fear. It all sums up into an explosion of anger.

Fire Extinguisher raised he attacks the creatures, almost oblivious of his personal safety.

OOC: I'll use pain 8 myself, I hope it's ok. IIRC I had 2 exhaustion going. I'll throw in 4 madness, because it seems highly appropriate.

Franklin Waters rolled D 3, E 2, M 4, P 8
D: 3 2 1, M: 5 4 4 3, E: 6 2, P: 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1

Ugh… that's nasty! I lose 5 to 8!
Exhaustion Dominates unless Hambandit wants to use Coins.


HamBandit

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tancred
He raises the heavy revolver and levels his arm through the shattered window,
shoving the revolver's barrel into the first thing's featureless face, then
pulling madly on the trigger…

The creature's masked face is blown apart, gushing razor sharp needles all over Hank, lacerating his face and hands. The rest of them clammer over each other shrieking and gibbering as they grab at him, though he's able to hold them off.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Renatoram
Fire Extinguisher raised he attacks the creatures, almost oblivious of his personal safety.
OOC: I'll use pain 8 myself, I hope it's ok. IIRC I had 2 exhaustion going. I'll throw in 4 madness, because it seems highly appropriate.

Franklin feels a wave of tiredness cloud his vision as the masked things swarm over him, claws extending through their gloves' fingers. They rip and tear his flesh as he attempts to bat them away, draining his strength…

Flapping its tiny wings, the Moth takes flight. As the needle-creatures barrel down the hall at it, a cone of semi-solid fire, like gellied gasoline, jets from inside of it. It engulfs the needle-creatures, burning their clothes and causing them to flail wildly as they buckle under the air-blurring heat.

OOC: I think one more successful exchange will take the rest out. Franklin's exhaustion is now 3.


Renatoram

Franklin stumbles, overwhelmed by the sudden blow of fatigue, and falls to the ground; he gets hit several times by kicks in the ribs, which he tries to fend off protecting himself with his arms.

Then he tries another time to swing the fire extinguisher at the crouching creatures, shoving it hard, butt first, at the head of one of them.


Renatoram

OOC: I'm triggering one of my Fight responses, having lost my last roll…

I'm rolling 3 exhaustion, 3 discipline, and 5 madness… let's hit these things!

Franklin Waters rolled D 3, E 3, M 5, P 8
D: 6 1 1, M: 4 4 2 2 1, E: 6 2 2, P: 6 6 5 5 4 3 3 2

I win 7 to 3, Pain dominates.

The fire extinguisher hits the head of the creature hard, and it explodes in a shower of needles. Several of them stick in Franklin's arms, but he does not seem to take notice.

He's screaming practically constantly, now, on the top of his lungs, and gets up flailing around and violently hitting the other creatures while the Fire Moth strangles some.

Hank risks being hit at least two times, in this chaos, and it's only when all of the creatures is beaten down to pulp on the floor that Franklin stops, breathing heavilly, his eyes unfocused, the fire extinguisher still held in his hand, arms resting along his body.

He's bleeding from several cuts, and at least half a dozen needles stick out of his arms.

So, I'm at Exhaustion 3, I only have a Fight response left, and you get another Coin… yay for madness!


HamBandit

The moth returns to normal, and flapping its tiny wings, floats over the pile of corpses onto Franklin's shoulder. Mr. Ribsy nervously steps out of the closet and surveys the damage.

"Well damn. What did you guys do to do the Tax man to get on his hit list?" He sniffs at a corpse and wrinkles his nose. "Thanks for taking care of these guys though. Consider your stay and any other help you need free." Ribsy sits down, licking his paw and gives a quizzical sideways glance at the Moth on Frank's shoulder.

"That little guy sure is more than meets the eye." He says between licks.

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