Out in Eastern Washington, the police are beginning to get bored with investigating Kayou’s disappearance and the Park Service are by contrast far more engaged because murders don’t happen all that often out there and he will henceforth be known as Brick Providing Morbid Entertainment Sir Not Appearing in This Session.
Having portalled in over the lake, relatively out of sight, we head to the stadium and Eric begins to search for magic users. As we’re landing this helicopter, we hack the sound system to play the A-Team theme. Apparently the crowd is going insane and murdering each other, so they don’t really notice. However, making ourselves invisible would be helpful, though we lack the magic to do so.
The Saskatchewan Rough Riders scored 43 against the Browns, but the Browns scored 73, which is the highest score in recorded history. The quarterback is playing defense, too. There are Problems with a capital P, basically. We should probably not totally massacre everyone, though. Alex sees a bit of a flash of light and a bit of a boom from a distance, and then a ‘kachunk’ noise on the outside of the helicopter, but we’re not yet over the stadium.
The kachunk was in the upper regions, near the rotor, which is making bad noises. There’s now a hole in the helicopter, and things are smoking, which is a problem. The flash came from the rooftop of the stadium; Eric looks through binoculars to see who shot at us, but there’s no one there. Using mage sight, however, he notices a glowy blob but it’s hard to identify. Alex manages to repair some of the helicopter, so it’s smoking a little less but not totally repaired.
Rama and Maxime take up position at the side-mounted machine guns; Maxime considers ordering the Marine grunt pilot to send out countermeasure flares because hey, we’re SG-1 and messing with us is bad news bears. There’s another shot at the helicopter, and the pilot gets shot in the thigh. Eric’s radiological alarms go off around now, too, suggesting that the bullets are not depleted uranium, but active. Yaaaaay. Rama manages to heal the pilot, but he might get cancer later. He’ll need surgery still. Smokey will take good care of him.
The blob on the roof is moving at approximately running speed, and is now cheesing it. Alex creates Heavy Winds in the area to try to knock them down while Maxime ices it, and one has fallen off the roof having missed the netting. There’s screaming and flailing and a splatmark on the pavement, and a 50BMG just rolls away from an invisible body.
There are still two invisible people running away, and have at this poi nt hit the deck at the edge of the room and haven’t yet been blown off. Eric directs the pilot to buzz the roof at a low hover over the invisible blobs, and sir yes sir later, they’re having some issues. After God takes a little time to figure out what level his mages are, he has them portal, you know, elsewhere. Anywhere but here, really. They manage a portal, but don’t hop through it.
Except, nope, they couldn’t have done that because the one we killed was the space mage. Rolling that turn back, says God. Maxime yells that ‘now is the time that you surrender’, but it’s hard to hear over the stadium PA A-Team theme and gunfire and helicopter rotors. There is a loud boom of lightning and the damage to our whirlybird becomes no damage because durability. The shot came from the roof; one of the survivors rolled over and pulled a Pikachu.
And finally, after 19 sessions, the recorder realizes that the strategy ‘shoot first and ask questions later’ actually works here, because we can question spirits.
Maxime finally learns about the loudspeaker to order surrender again, and Eric orders the pilot to move about 40 feet off to the side so Maxime and Rama can whamblam at them from each side. The pilot does his usual sir yes sir and starts doing 360s. There is lots of red spray. If there were not loud whirlybird sounds, we’d probably hear screaming as well. All their spells end, and they go visible. The Marine sees them and he’s just “whaaaaaaaa sire how did that happen?” Eric improvs and says that they’re terrorists with stealth suits on, and the Marine fails resolve so he asks what’s happening because those aren’t real. Maxime pulls metamaterials out of his ass, and the Marine starts grumping about DARPA giving ISIS shit they shouldn’t again.
Eric messages Smokey that the mages are apparently down but we have a stadium full of crazy people trying to kill each other. He says ‘still rounding up airplane victims, do your best cleanup and quarantine’. Eric suggests letting it burn itself out and barricade the area, can you send a National Guard unit. Smokey says yep, yep, there’s lots of SWAT uniforms in Cleveland now, but the problem is there was a national broadcast going on so now we’ve got people in their homes going crazy too. He’s going to start moving over to Cleveland now, he’s got all the plane people in a holding tank. A presidential advisory comes over the line that ISIS Fourchan is conducting nationwide attacks, be on alert, if you see something say something.
Some of the stadium-goers are starting to leave because the game was shut down, but tend to appear mostly sane. They may not necessarily be infectious like the plane people, and in all likelihood it’s not the same option. While we’re waiting for the National Guard to arrive, we get the Cleveland PD involved to help us corral the game attendees. A fair number of people are just cowering at all the crazy, but opposing fans are accusing the other of cheating and doping, and are beating the shit out of each other. Only like 30% of the people are cray cray, it seems, so probably 10000 people rioting and around 20k either dead or trying to leave. Cleveland PD is informed by Smokey that Eric is FBI agent Ian Tor, Super Sekrit, and Eric insrtucts them to get the mostly-sane people to the warehouse.
It’s a bit of a shit show. The pilot is told to do a flyby over the parking lot and Eric informs the calm fans to go to the warehouse for debriefing. There are some who see a military attack helicopter and book it in their cars. Alex reaches to turn off all of the car engines, and Maxime goes for turning the people off, and the sleep the sleep of the dead for a bit. It gives us time to hurry up and grab them.
The pilot lands, and with the PD help and a box of ziptie handcuffs, and cuff them to their cars. The National Guard shows up eventually. There are a lot dead and a few wounded, and the rest are just continuing. We wait until we have enough tear gas to just dump it all over the stadium, although some of them just pick up the canisters and use them to beat each other with. The easiest option is possibly just to let it burn itself out; there are signs that some people are starting to wake up a little. Quarantine is still a thing.
Eric tells Smokey that we have 25k stadium goers quarantined, and like 5k dead. There are lots of dot dot dots. Given that there was a national broadcast, there are also a lot of violent people out and about that we may not be able to find. It’s a lot worse than on the Superbowl; there are dead people for sure.
Rather than destroy the pilot’s mind, we decide to not portal away. Smokey will be on site soon for cleanup. We take the helicopter to the Cleveland Clinic so the pilot can get seen, and leave it there for Smokey to deal with.
We need to get back to dealing with the shit that’s going down in Eastern WA before we were so rudely interrupted by Cleveland. Eric asks if we can locate a sleepwalker at a military base, and Smokey has us going around as a magic show for USO and get shooed off stage after a few spells by a celebrity. We want to find a few, a pilot and a few gunners. There are magic tricks involving ectoplasm air balloons and tiny box portals. Alex creates a magic welding K-bar knife and people are freaking out because there are arcs of lightning, fuck that, and then applause. She takes lethal damage to prevent the paradox.
We find at least a few sleepwalkers who are not even remotely impressed by the magic tricks. Everyone else is clapping and laughing, and there wasn’t much in the way of paradox unleashed so they’ll be fine. Smokey comes and personally hands Maxime his telesword and then leaves. Eric requests that the NRO keeps an eye on the site we were supposed to check out, and they’ll keep a satellite tasked over that spot until we get back.