The Alligator Menace
The text of this blog is copyright 2012. Have fun with the content but don’t pass it off as your own or try to sell it, Okay.
Adventurers committed to truth and justice from all over the world have come together and committed themselves to cooperate in the League of Adventure Seekers, ably led by the famous Aviatrix, Miriam Ribbensberg, and her Psychic sister, Marion.
Left to themselves most of the time, members of the league follow the siren call of adventure wherever it is heard. Occasionally the hierarchy of the League requests its members to undertake missions of significance to the safety and security of the world.
when first we meet our heroes they are junior members of the League, having recently been invited to join the organization, and are about to receive their first real mission.
As 1932 opens the age of wonder is upon us. A world wide depression may have struck (and may ultimately lead to a war of all against all) but its shadow has failed to dampen the overall spirit of optimism in the air. Most people are hopeful and optimistic of a better day ahead. Backyard inventors are designing rocket packs in their sheds. A new energy source appears to be around every corner and the blank spaces on the world map are being filled in more and more every day. Progress! That is what the world is witness to! New opportunities for adventure and intrigue present themselves to the bold and the brave every day.
On the evening of the League of Adventure Seekers’ annual dinner, the city is awash with rumours of an epidemic of blackmail and extortion in which no-one’s secrets are safe. During the dinner the meeting is overrun by a new menace. Giant rampaging Albino Alligators burst in on the diners and attempt to kill the guest of honour, Marion Ribbensberg. After the attack is beaten back, Ribbensberg invites the heroes to stay and defend the city against this rising threat. The following morning the kidnap (by alligator) of two of the children of two of the city’s major mob figures, along with the disappearance of numerous others (including two of the heroes friends) is reported. The heroes are notified by Detective Tony Wells (a secret supporter of the League’s work) that an alligator has been trapped in the basement of the Pendleton Gallery where their two friends disappeared.
The trapped alligator is trying hard to rejoin its compatriots so the heroes follow it back to its nest. Doing so the heroes encounter an abandoned nest in which their two friends are caged and waiting to be fed to the creatures. When one of the cages is opened a switch is triggered that sends a deadly electrical charge through the other cage killing the occupant instantly. Tegan Rodriguez, driven to the edge of her sanity by grief, blames the heroes for the loss of her husband.
Leaving the scene the heroes are intercepted by members of the Falcone crime family who take them to a meeting with the head of the family, Jerry Falcone. Jerry Falcone orders the heroes to act as his emissaries delivering the ransom for his missing daughter to the designated drop location. The heroes do so and are met by Cinqo Tavolli (former cappo to the Falcone family, now working for the Tremeres) who is acting as the Tremere emissary. They place the loot on a slab that begins to drop down opening the cage in which Jocelyn Falcone and Marco Tremere are located (hanging over a pit full of hungry alligators), but Cinqo grabs the loot and tries to escape with it. The cage drops away and the alligators feast on both prisoners.
Pursuing Cinqo through the tunnels the heroes recover the money, but he escapes.
Falcone is desolate at the loss of his daughter and orders open season on the Tremere crime family. Cinqo convinces the Tremere’s that the deaths were caused by the heroes (working for the Falcones’) and so a mob war begins. Jerry Falcone instructs the heroes to leave town (under escort) for their own safety. At the train station the thugs who are escorting them receive word that Jerry Falcone has been assassinated by a sniper and that Eadie Tremere has been killed by an explosion. As they hurry off Claire Templeton, reporter for the Tribune approaches the heroes. She has evidence that Tommy Boscone (of the Falcone Family) and Dillon Tremere (of the Tremere Family) are colluding with an unknown third party to gain control of the two families.
She plays a tape of Tommy Boscone talking to an indistinct third party about how a rapprochement with the Tremere family can be accomplished after the assassinations. Mention is also made of the transfer of a large number of shares to a holding company on behalf of the indistinct voice for “services rendered”. When asked what guarantees Tremere cooperation the voice states that a similar deal has been made with Dillon Tremere. Claire is also aware that an alligator carcass has been recovered from the bomb site where Eadie Tremere was killed and has been transported to the city morgue. She offers to drive the heroes there.
As they approach the exit to the station a side door opens and Cinqo Tavolli, armed with a strange weapons appears, and motions the group into the stairwell and up onto the roof. He demands that Claire hand over the evidence she has gathered and in exchange he will let her live and allow the heroes to take her out of town with them.
If not, he will kill them all. Claire refuses to comply and Tavolli shoots her with his strange weapon. It is an electronic disruptor and it both stops her heart and destroys her taped evidence. The heroes charge Tavolli who, after a short struggle, tumbles off the roof to his death, but not before dropping the disruptor. Her heart has only stopped briefly and can be restored by the quick application of CPR. She is resuscitated and placed in an ambulance. As she is wheeled away she gives the heroes the name of the Medical Examiner (Theo Tyrone) who is examining the alligator corpse.
Unwelcome in the city by either mob (now that the Bosses are dead) and with vital evidence destroyed only the morgue remains a viable avenue for clues. At the morgue the heroes discover a wallet has been recovered from the animal’s insides along with human remains. In it are an id card, and a meal card for the Pevensee Street Mission. Apparently, the wallet belonged to a homeless man (Herb Whitman) who was eaten by the creature. Asking among the cities homeless the heroes discover that the Pevensee Street Mission itself is boarded up but hosts a soup kitchen once a week on the sidewalk out front. It has a very unsavoury reputation and it is rumoured that folk who break in to sleep there overnight tend to go missing. Locating the mission, the heroes discover that it is indeed abandoned and boarded up. Breaking in, they walk a short distance down the hall only to have the floor open up beneath them sliding them down into a cage beneath the building that sits on a ledge overlooking a huge nest of alligators.
At a control panel not far away, sits a cloaked man in a wheelchair. The machinery he is working with listens to vibrations in the pipes and plumbing of the city that allows him to listen in on conversations anywhere pipes are exposed. By means of this he has been carrying out his campaign of blackmail and extortion. He congratulates the heroes on getting so far and discovering all that they have but, sadly, points out that they have reached the end of the road. In a few moments he will depart and, once the winch is set in motion, the heroes will be lowered into the alligator pit where they will become food for his adoring minions. When told that he will not get away with his attempt to take control of the city’s crime families he laughs and says that this was all merely a fund raising exercise, the first step towards his greater goal. Laughing he starts the winch and leaves.
The heroes use the electronic disruptor to wreck the winch engine and get the cage door open; they then burst out of the pit to give chase to the villain. He hurtles along the sewer tunnels ahead of the heroes trying to make good his escape but topples off a bridge over a dark pit into unfathomable darkness. The body is never found.
The disruptor has wrecked the listening machine beyond repair and the alligators, no longer under his control disperse into the sewers never to be seen again. In coming months it becomes obvious that the Tremere and Falcone families are now one mob, but the ultimate power behind the families is unknown. The heroes are now very unwelcome in the city having failed to apprehend the villain, being hated by both crime families (because of the possibility they may know about the assassinations), being shunned by their friends (because of the friend they failed to save), and being distrusted by the police (because of the unbelievable nature of their story). On the positive side, Claire Templeton (alive and recovering in hospital) is now a staunch ally, and the deaths by alligator attack seem to have come to an end, as has the wave of blackmail that had been washing over the city.
- Heroes friend, Tegan Rodriguez (Socialite and wife of Martin)
- Heroes friend, Martin Rodriguez (Industrialist and husband of Tegan)
- Adventuress and Aviatrix, Miriam Ribbensberg (president of the League of Adventure Seekers)
- Psychic, Marianne Ribbensberg (Sister to Miriam)
- Detective, Tony Wells (honest cop and secret supporter of the League)
- Police Commissioner, Walter Doogan (opposed to vigilantism)
- Ace Reporter, Claire Templeton (opposed to vigilantism)
- Mob Boss, Jerry Falcone (opposed to drug trade)
- Falcone Cappo, Tommy Boscone (Ambitious lieutenant to Jerry and spurned suitor of Jocelyn)
- Falcone Socialite, Jocelyn Falcone (daughter of Jerry)
- Mob Boss, Eadie Tremere (Inherited the crime business from dead husband)
- Tremere heir apparent, Marco Tremere (son of Eadie)
- Tremere Cappo, Dillon Tremere (Jealous brother of Eadie – bitter that control went to Eadie instead of him)
- Tremere Thug, Cinqo Tavolli (ex-member of the Falcone criminal gang – now sycophantically working for the Tremeres)
- Medical Examiner, Theo Tyrone
- Mob Boss, Caesar Cordova (New comer but growing in power. Avoids turf wars and has an interest in maintaining the status quo – for now)
- Mayor, Frank wright (corrupt politician owned by the Falcones)
- Arch-Villain, Lt. John Whistler – alias The TECHNO-MASTER
- Mark Jansen – Reporter
- Corky Wallace – Society Columnist
- James Turner – Editor
- Jim and Eunice Jackson – homeless
- Ernest Queen – homeless
- Michael Hunt – homeless
- Sam Collins – news vendor
- Police Records Officer Jim Pillman
- Weatherby – Butler
- Mrs Naismith – Housekeeper and Cook
- Michael Prince – Sanitation worker
- Derek Watts – Sanitation worker
- Frederic Fennimore (Biology Dept Chair)
- The League of Adventure Seekers
- High Society (including the adventurer’s friends)
- City Hall (Mayor’s office, Police, Coroner’s office etc)
- The Crime Families
- The Falcones
- The Tremeres
- The Cordovas
- The Press
Name: John Whistler a.k.a The Technomaster
Backstory: John Whistler was on his way to greatness when the Great War came along, a research scientist and inventor par excellence. He did his part and signed up but a bullet in the back put an end to his days on two legs. A victim of friendly fire, he was confined to a wheelchair and returned stateside, but once back he was considered an embarrassment. He received a letter of thanks for his service, a medal (in the mail) and a tiny pension. No-one wanted to hire a maimed researcher and his career was destroyed. He lost his home, his lab, everything. As his bitterness grew so did his desire for revenge. He has hatched a scheme to takeover the city’s criminal organisations as the first move in a much larger game. He has invented a machine which can listen into the homes and offices of many of the city’s wealthiest men and women (in order to gather blackmail material) and has invented a new kind of weapon (an electronic disrupter gun) that he is selling to the city’s criminal element.
Description: He is confined to a wheelchair and wears long, coarse robes of a rough woollen fibre with a hood that acts to keep his features hidden in darkness. He has piercing blue eyes which flash with anger at the slightest provocation. He has long slim hands made rough by his work with metals and machinery. His voice is hollow and bitter, a rough whisper that rises to a shout in moments of intense emotion. He is surrounded by the smell of machine oil, grease, and burnt electrical wiring.
Sample Dialog: The fools who live above ground and enjoy the light of day are mere cattle, too stupid to know their days as masters of the world are numbered. When I am finished they will all grovel before me and then they’ll regret their treatment of my genius. I will show them all!
1. Raise money by blackmailing large numbers of the financial elite in star city in order to begin production of electrical disrupter guns and begin selling them to criminals (already underway).
2. Broker a deal to gain a controlling financial interest in the major crime families of star city (with the lieutenants of the families) with electrical disrupter guns as an incentive.
3. Kidnap the son and daughter of the two major crime families and murder them to start a gang war.
4. Orchestrate the murders of the family heads as an outcome of this war.
5. Establish the new family heads (the lieutenants) and broker a raprochement between them (and start collecting a percentage of all crime revenue as payment).
6. Use the funds to encourage a destablising arms race among the nations.
Star City Map (Player’s Version)
Star City Map (GM’s Version)
Star City Map Key and Clue Chart
|1. Tremere HQEadie Tremere
Tremere Thugs (8)
|Ransom Note||points to Cnr Cumberland and 14th Streets|
|2. Cordova HQCaesar Cordova
Cordova Thugs (8)
|3. Star City TribuneMark Jansen – Reporter
Corky Wallace – Society Columnist
James Turner – Editor
|Editor’s Statement||points to Tremere HQ|
|4. Indigo ParkJim and Eunice Jackson – homeless
Ernest Queen – homeless
Michael Hunt – homeless
Sam Collins – news vendor
|Homeless Statements||points to Railway Tunnels|
|points to Pevensee Street Mission|
|5. Police HQPolice Chief Walter Doogan
Records Officer Jim Pillman
|Missing Persons Reports||points to Pevensee Street Mission|
|6. Mayor’s OfficeMayor Frank Wright|
|7. Star City UniversityFrederic Fennimore (Biology Dept Chair)|
|8. Falcone HQJerry Falcone
Falcone Thugs (8)
|Ransom Note||points to Cnr Cumberland and 14th Street Ransom Drop|
|points to Sewer Tunnels|
|points to Ransom Drop Chamber|
|Falcone’s Instructions||points to Star City Central Station|
|9. Star City Central StationClaire Templeton
|Electronic Disrupter Gun|
|Claire Templeton’s Statement||points to Coroner’s Office|
|10. Regency Hotel Ball RoomAlligators (8)
|Alligator Control Device|
|Miriam Ribbensberg’s Card||points to Miriam Ribbensberg’s Suite|
|11. Pendleton GalleryDetective Tony Wells
Police Chief Walter Doogan
|Lost Alligator||points to Sewer Tunnels|
|points to Cage Chamber|
|Falcone’s Invitation||points to Falcone HQ|
|12. Rodriguez ResidenceMartin Rodriguez
Weatherby – Butler
Mrs Naismith – Housekeeper and Cook
|Invitation to the League of adventure seekers dinner||points to Regency Hotel Ball Room|
|Tony Wells invitation||points to Pendleton Gallery|
|Newspaper||points to Regency Hotel|
|points to Pendleton Gallery|
|points to Indigo Park|
|points to Sanitation Department|
|points to Star City Tribune|
|points to Falcone HQ|
|points to Tremere HQ|
|points to Cordova HQ|
|points to Star City University|
|points to Mayor’s Office|
|points to Police HQ|
|13. Cnr Cumberland & 14th StreetsCinqo Tavoli
Tremere Thugs (2)
Falcone Thugs (2)
|14. Pevensee Street MissionTechnomaster
|Alligator Control Box|
|Crates of Disrupter Guns|
|Schematics for the above devices|
|15. Sanitation DepartmentMichael Prince – Sanitation worker
Derek Watts – Sanitation worker
|Sanitation Workers Statements||points to Railway Tunnels|
|16. Coroner’s OfficeTheo Tyrone – Coroner|
|Herbert Whitman’s Meal Ticket||points to Pevensee St Mission|
|17. Sewer Tunnels|
|Ransom Drop Chamber|
|Alligator Feeding Ground|
Players need to learn…
A new threat has arisen in Star City that may endanger the world.
Albino Sewer Alligator’s are being remotely controlled somehow.
The son of one mobster and the daughter of another have been kidnapped.
The player’s good freinds Martin and Tegan Rodriguez have dissappeared (one of whom will die when they are rescued if the players don’t notice the trap).
Players need to learn…
The villain is sadistic and cruel and enjoys playing with people.
Major Plot point – instructed by Jerry Falcone to deliver a ransom for Jocelyn Falcone (his daughter). The players can be approached anywhere (but most likely on leaving the Pendleton Gallery).
The two mob children are dead (due to Cinqo Tavoli betraying his instructions). This is either witnessed by the players or learned of shortly thereafter (perhaps through Tony Wells).
Before the gang war can really fire up, Jerry Falcone and Eadie Tremere are killed (by alligator bombs). Their bodies have been taken to the Coroner’s (learned at the train station or from Claire Templeton).
Major Plot point – A villain called the technomaster made a deal with Tommy Boscone and Dillon Tremere to kill the gang bosses. The players can be approached anywhere by Claire Templeton (but most likely at the train station).
The Technomaster is the inventor of the electronic disruptor guns – one of which can be obtained from defeating Cinqo Tavoli’s attempt on Claire’s life.
Homeless people have been dissappearing and alligators have been sighted near the abandoned Pevensee Street Mission.
Players need to learn…
The Technomaster has been using a machine to listen into people’s homes for blackmail information using vibrations in the sewer pipes.
The Technomaster has been building and supplying Electronic disrupter guns to the underworld.
The Technomaster has orchestrated the deaths of two of the city’s mob bosses in exchange for 20% of the gangs’ takes.