TBell, our benefactor, laid out a variety of strange occurrences that have been happening around the U.S. We select the one that has occurred in Evanston, WY as our first mission together.
A variety of animal mutilations and pet slayings have been happening there. Those that have organized to hunt the cause of the mutilations report bouts of amnesia and nightmares.
On our drive there Philix and Terrwyn have disturbing dreams. Philix dreamt of being on a table while a large looming figure walked up to him. While Terrwyn dreamt of a man playing fetch with his dog before something in the woods beheaded it and tossed the head to its owner.
We check into the local Day’s Inn, where Jack speaks with the receptionist there and she tells him a little about what has been going down.
Terrwyn visits the local psychiatrist and sets up a dinner through the receptionist for around 6; posing as a reporter for The Atlantic (a tabloid).
While we wait the roughly 6 hours for dinner time, Terrwyn and Drake go to Bear River State Park.
Meanwhile, Philix, Jack, and Mason go to the local eatery where everyone is eating some manner of beef. On their way in, a group of people were leaving and one of their group, in some manner of military uniform (not clear what branch/country/etc.) approached Philix and asked him to look up. Philix asked why, Jack went ahead and looked up, then Philix looked up, but neither see anything besides the sky. Then, the strange man said thank you, got into a black town car, and drove away.
In the park, Terrwyn and Drake happen across two mysterious black vans with heavily tinted windows. Terrwyn knocks on one but no one answers. Drake tried to unlock one of the doors with magic but inadvertently froze it shut. Then, the van started and drove away.
The party meet together there in the park and travel to the ranger station where they get a lay of the land and Terrwyn speaks with the ranger. She learns that everyone thinks that it is a mangy bear and pointed out a few places where pets have gone missing or have been mauled. Examining the three points the ranger gives us, we notice that the park is in the center of all three.
We decide to venture off the trails towards the center of the three points as they converge. As we go along, a strange voice yells at us to stop where we are. Most of us freeze but Jack takes a few steps back and inadvertently steps into a bear trap.
Turns out it was a park ranger that yelled at us and, when told we were looking for the bear, he tells us to quit; because we are liable to get shot by or shoot another hunter instead. He refers us to Peter Price, owner of the local Diamond X Ranch, because he is organizing a posse to hunt the bear. He advises us to work with the posse so that we’re coordinating, won’t get shot by or shoot a person, and hunt responsibly.
We call this Peter Price, but the call is ducked with an empty promise of getting a call back.
We travel back to town so that Terrwyn can go to the dinner she scheduled.
She meets with the doctor for a while, learning that the amnesia events that happened to affect young women are being blamed on date rape drugs. However, hunters have also had amnesia events and nightmares. All are, strangely enough, being prescribed drugs by the Wyoming Health Department that is headquartered there in Evanston.
Shortly after the dinner was concluded, Terrwyn called Peter again; but this time under the guise of being from the Psychiatrist’s office. In turn, she was able to get Peter to open up about what happens in his nightmares.
The nightmares all involve a mangy bear, that is somehow more than just a bear, and he also remembers a man with dark glasses standing over him.
We then meet back up all together and travel out to the ranch again. There we talk with some of the ranch hands a bit and learn that the death of Price’s prize bull was the catalyst that got him involved. One of the ranch hands even volunteered to show them a picture of the bull (alive); Terrwyn quickly (without permission) browsed the other pictures and finds one of the bull having been mutilated.
The bull’s “prize” was the only part of the bull that was damaged and removed, with surgical precision; definitely not an animal attack.
We then traveled to the nearby farm where a man’s dog was killed, investigated around the property, and Terrwyn recognizes it as the location from her dream.
In the area where the dog was killed, we find that a tree has had a message clawed into it, which reads: “I nose where you live.”
Drake uses magic to peer back in time to the time of the incident and sees the creature, which definitely isn’t a bear, and even has some human features. Looking around, he sees a man running away at full tilt.
Terrwyn tried to go and talk to the farmer, but immmediately offended him and he called the police.
While we waited, Drake used magic again (if less successfully, creating a large plume of steam) to peer into the past and follow the creature. To which he found that the creature went up to the road, crammed itself into an RV, and drove away.
We then went to the DMV, paid to pull up registrations of similar RVs, and highlighted one that had been reported stolen.
We then traveled to the Wyoming Department of Health where Jack, along with Drake and Philix, convinced the front desk that he needed to work on their servers and he needed a badge. They issue us badges and give us directions.
In the wing we travel through we find that there are a lot of laboratories that have small animals in them that are obviously being experimented on; rabbits, mice, rats, and small monkeys.
We then traveled to the server room and installed a piece of malware, provided by a hacker contact of Jack, in order to gain remote access to their systems. It will take less than a day for the hacker to complete their portal into the network.
We then tried the elevator but weren’t able to go to the basement initially. Jack had hoped to get past the card reader conventionally, but didn’t have the gear he needed. So, Drake used magic and successfully got the elevator to go down to the basement.
There we find a retrofitted basement that now has laboratories that could accommodate up to three human subjects; which is evidenced by the size of the tables, positioning of restraints, and man sized cages.
Drake again peers into the past and sees the same creature that he did before; which can now be distinguished as a man but deformed with animal-like appendages in several places. He is cooperating, begrudgingly, and the various doctors in the room are taking a variety of samples, running tests, and entering data into computers and onto documents.
Drake uses his vision into the past in order to find out the login credentials of one of the scientists. They use this access to download files and browse through things. We learn that the subject of the project is a Dr. Gunnar Flair. Who was convicted for illegal euthanization of humans.
We know that there is a surveillance system in the lab, which has undoubtedly been recording us, but we install a copy of the same malware on the computer we used.
After approximately 30 minutes Philix also gathers up some files, we split them between us for carrying unobtrusively, and then trip the fire escape; because Drake’s magic broke the elevator.
Back at the hotel, we learn that the organization behind the experiments is called:
We learn nothing more about their organization.
We do learn that the creature is actually a convict that had been convicted to a life sentence and agreed to the experiments as part of a deal on their sentence. Through a series of genetic treatments, he is able to ingest the DNA of creatures and then gain the attributes of the animal he ingested. He eventually escaped, and they then shut down the lab, so that they could completely devote their resources to recapturing him.