High winds, dark skies, and threatening rain storms swept across the skies all day and evening on this Friday, the third of our new “DnD Every Edition” pre-game, Prelude at Hogwarts. For dinner were huge and thick beef patties grilled to perfection by Shannon, aka Thomas Thugg. Having given up all breads (and potatoes and carbs in general due to the gradual disintegration of my corporeal form) my burgers were between slabs of tomato and a thick paste of crushed avocado, with some fresh onion loops pressed in. They were glorious, and I ate three (as a Lord, I am allowed first dibs on any “remainder” foods after dividing equally.) I then nursed a glass of purple passion on the rocks through the game.
We began with five students waking at the crack of dawn Dec 23, 938, in the dust-and-sheet covered home of Sir Waverly MacGuffin, deceased egyptologist, who went down with the Titanic and his prized possession, the sarcophagus of the Princess Amun-Ray. Gwendolyn Weasley, Thomas Thugg, John Smith, the Aussie, Ivan Pachenko, and a new attendee, the young Miss Cassopiea Black, had to catch the Night Bus for a magical fast drive back to Hogwarts for trimester finals. They arrived just before the first class test besgan, andwere in for a day of grueling spell cast testing.
Each student had to choose which final to attend throughout the day. First hour was a choice between Charms and Potions. Those who passed Charms gained a Cha point and learned the cantrip Tic/Twitch/Flinch. Potions class was a test to concoct a magical Bandage/Poultice. Second hour was a choice of Dark Arts or Transfiguration. Those who passed Dard Arts gained a point in Srength if they succesfully gained the spell Ray of Frost. Those who already knew that spell could attempt to cast and learn something else, but nobody did, instead choosing Transfiguration, which took a constitution check and gained Moment of Strength.
Then it was lunch time, and everyone got to make a luck check to see how well their meal (describd by each and including a lot of fish and chips, and even a secret sip of fire water slipped from Saxton Hamm’s hip flask) gav e them an afternoon boost. Those who succeeded in eating a fulfilling lunch got to add or subtract 1 from their die rolls for the rest of the afternoon . ( I am just highlighting the new abilty score tonight.)
The afternoon commenced with a choice between Divination (wisdom) and Runes (Intelligence.) Divination gave the pair of cantrips Consult Magical Device – astrolabe and sextant. Runes handed out Mage Hand and Wizard Mark with two successes. Finally it was night and everyone took the bonus Astrology final on top of the highest tower, where each person could choose the ability score of their choice to try and raise by desribing how they use it to help score high in the astrology test. Most people did pretty well.
The kids then reported to the headmaster Albert Einstein Jr, to give him the rescued “Zero Mass Spell” and to regretfully inform hm that the body of Merlin was likely at the bottom of the Atlantic in the belly of the wreck of the Titanic. Einstein off-handedly suggested they find a way to retriee it before the next trimester starts. Thugg asks for and receives a bag of gilly weed, enough for two doses for esch of them, tat last four hours apiece. The only catch is that at least one breath of air has to be taken between the ingesting of each dose.
They neeed to get to the wreck. Bruce the Aussie tried to get his father (Rupert Murdoch) to loan him the family ship “Slow Boat to Australia” but had no luck. Thug wanted an airplane that could land and take off from water, but her father the muggle minister of aviation, said they had not developed such boats yet. (In fact in 1938 such flying boats existed, just not in Englands 1938 air force or navy – in my mind.) Finally some one suggested that they sneak into the huge military naval base just on the outskirts of Hogsmeade, and see if there were and available boats to “borrow.” in fact they fond five submarines parked at a docks. Two of them were fast but shallow old subs, and three were deep diving but slower subs that would require the kidnapping of a crewman to help them pilot.
They were fairly confident they could figure out the older diesel subs, and so chose the one on the end, the “Mighty Punic” and while Gwendolyn Weasley distracted the two bored british guards in WW1 era uniforms, backed up with Thomas Thugg hiding darkly in the shadows, the rest of the team ran for the sub, and eventually made it, though Alexi fell face first in the mud and Cassie Black lost her high heel and had to go “naked below the knee.” Better than mud caked Pachenko at least.
They made it into or at least onto the sub, and had to reverse away from the dock. Pachenko slid off the hull when it rocked violently and landed painfully, straddling a thick rope that bound the sub to the dock. He severed it with a well placed ray of frost. The boat roacked violently and they sealed the hatch. Each young wizard took a place, Pachenko steered by turning a huge valve wheel. The interior was full of steaming pipes and valves, wheels, and other piping contraptions. John Smith manned the torpedo station, Bruce took over the radar, facing shore where he watched soldiers rushing out to the other diesel sub. Weasly found the navigation table which was a map of the atlantic, and Cassie Black became dive master, she immediately began a dive, while Thugg shut the hatches and took over radio. He couldnt get the radio frequency so he moved to the sonar station next to Bruce.
They began a narrow escape out of the harbor in reverse, narrowly missing the rocks along the starboard side. Then they made way to the north atlantic, and Weasly found old records locating the crash site of the Titanic, and they were soon there, but first had to pass through the area known as Iceberg Alley. It was another narrow escape and when they reached the coordinates, they dove to 100 meters. The titanic was 2000 meters down, so they were deciding what to do when another sub appeared on the edge of radar. They immediately dove.
20 meters. 3oo meters, 400 meters, the boa begans a deep creaking sound. 500 meters, the sound continues, 600 meters, a few popping of rivets. 800 meters, silence. 900 meters, silence, 1000 meters, the max rated depth of the sub, the creaking begins again, 1200 meter ,and the rivets are popping like popcorn, and they even out. The sub passes above them and slows down.
Thomas Thugg tried to tune into any sounds emitting from the unknown visitor, but was having no luck, until Gwen Weasley cast ghost sound into the sonar set. Suddenly Thug heard the whisper “Casper loves Wendy”