Monday 16 October 2023

The Butterfly Effect: Palaeo Diet Pulp with the Chronographic Society (1/3)

Presenting a new three part adventure using Palaeo Diet: Eat or Be Eaten (using the Pulp expansion), Mark continues to entertain with his dispatches from Thailand. Here’s (the first part of) a report on another Pulp Fiction adventure by the intrepid dare-devils of the Chronographic Society.

The Society members featured in this adventure are shown here, in a group photograph probably taken a few months before this adventure kicked off.

L-R: Tintin (the famous reporter) (explorer); Snowy (Tintin’s hound); Capt. Archibald Haddock (Tintin’s longtime companion) (antiquarian); Prof. Logarithm (apparently-absent-minded genius); Bianca Castafiore (renowned opera singer) (engineer*); Irma (her maid); Chang Chon-Chen (mountaineer) (naturalist/medic).

*Castafiore’s “rare and unusual weapon” is her singing voice which has a range of M, takes 1 action to use, and counts as a Roar against anyone/thing not in this photo.


Rescuing professor Logarithm
It all started when Tintin received a letter from his old friend Logarithm, explaining that he (Logarithm) was currently studying some obscure aspects of Chaos theory, and had been invited to travel to Borduria to work on this subject. He would be gone for some time. Nothing to worry about. But the letter contained a code phrase alerting Tintin that Logarithm in fact had been kidnapped!

Tintin started sleuthing, and soon discovered the professor had not traveled to Borduria. In fact contacts confirmed he had last been seen at the aerodrome in company with Dr. Muller (international mad scientist) and a couple of goons. They had boarded a private plane which immediately took off for the Sheikhdom of Khemikhal.

The rescue team was soon assembled at Marlinspike Hall, and arrangements were made for the members to travel to Khemikhal separately - to avoid suspicion - and rendezvous at a safe house.

Muller’s “research institute” on the outskirts of town was easy to find, and so it was only a matter of sneaking into the compound, locating the professor, and getting him out.


Here’s a photo of Dr. Muller’s compound (looking E) taken by a small drone launched by the rescue team a few hours before they went in. There is no sign of the Professor. But Irma’s sharp eyes spotted some partially-obscured marks in the sand, possibly made by a walking stick, that sure look like another code message. 

The Rescue team made its move in the deep hours of the night. There seem to be several goons on patrol. The building believed to house the professor is at the lower L (NW) corner of the compound.

Castafiore & Irma will enter through the mesh fence along the S side and blow up the fuel depot to distract the defenders. Tintin and the Captain will then enter through the postern gate at the NW corner, presumably after shooting out the lock, and do a smash & grab on the building housing Logarithm. There’s a folding ladder in the car in case the Gate resists. Chang and Snowy are in the getaway vehicle outside the postern gate. 


Castafiore skulked through the gap in the fence successfully (this took 2 activation successes), but Irma, following her, caught her clothing on a snag (failed one so is still at the fence). The nearest goon, only a few metres away but luckily looking in the wrong direction, took no action. Next turn Irma passed a triple activation and skulked along to the nearer fuel storage shed, while Castafiore covered her from the corner of a building.

Irma opened her rucksack, took out a small incendiary bomb, set the timer, planted the device, and began at skulk back towards Castafiore before it exploded. Unfortunately just then one of the goons turned around and spotted her. He attacked Irma and wounded her. 

Castafiore then also failed an activation, and the other goon reacted, attacking her, but she let him have both barrels of her shotgun and he was dead before making contact. At this the goon attacking Irma moved away.  No other goons reacted, the next nearest are over L away.

The women ducked back behind the building just before the fuel dump went up. This (I ruled) provoked a reaction from all goons in play, and does not count as a normal ‘fire’. Most rushed towards the scene, so when Tintin and Haddock shot open the postern gate no goon was close enough to hear and react to the incident. One of them turned around though when Tintin accidentally kicked over a tin can, and moved in for a closer look. He can’t see Tintin who’s hiding behind the car, so doesn’t shoot. Then Muller himself, and another goon, came out of the house.

By now I had lost track of turns. But here we are -

At top L the fuel dump is burning merrily. The goon killed by Castafiore is out of LOS in the shadow of the square building nearest the fire. Castafiore has moved around to the alley between the square buildings and is stalking her next goon. Irma, wounded, is stayiing out of sight behind the building.  The other three figures in the large L shaped area of the outer compound are goons wondering what they are supposed to be doing. In the inner compound, Tintin & Haddock are lurking behind the parked car. The other three figures, in the open, are Muller and a couple of goons. 

Muller orders one goon to come with him and heads into the main compound to give orders about controlling the fire. The other goon is told to check out the mysterious noise he reported (probably only a gerbil, but better make sure) then stay in the area to guard the building.


A few turns later Castafiore & Irma have slipped unseen back through the fence and are making their way to the pick-up point. The suspicious goon has skulked towards the car and been rewarded with both barrels of Tintin’s shottie at close range, rendering him very much out of action. Muller and the other goons are all too far away to hear / react, and busy making sure the fire doesn’t spread to the fuel-loaded truck. One brave goon drives it back out of danger.

Back at the inner compound, Haddock enters the building while Tintin stands guard. Muller sends another goon back to check that all is OK. It has finally occurred to him (contingent event) that the explosion might not have been entirely an accident.

Luckily for our rescue team Haddock finds Logarithm (contingent event) in a locked room and the two of them are just coming back out the door of the building as the goon sent to check on things comes through the gate of the inner compound. Unluckily for the goon he is just within M shotgun range of Tintin, and he goes down like a sack of potatoes. 

This final photo (above) shows the professor and Haddock coming out of the building, Tintin in cover to the R, and the two goons he has cooled. Tintin and Castafiore have both shown damn’ fine shooting tonight, in fact, bringing down 3 goons in three double-barrelled (two-action) shots.

The rest of the bad guys are a long way away, so the three of them can make their escape, through the postern and into the getaway car. Castafiore and Irma are already aboard, and Chang is ready to go.  Next stop the landing strip at Akhenaton. Two can play the private aeroplane game, Dr Muller.

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