GURPS Magic In The West

The Beginning
Field Notes

The subjects met for the first time, were introduced to their guide, an Indian Woman named Burning Sky, and set off. They traveled for a time before noticing they were being followed. Much to the surprise of their pursuers, they set up an ambush in the form of a false camp. They fought in the night.

The German, Axel Esslinger, showed his skill with a pistol, Burning Sky revealed herself as a fire mage, Richard Mathews shot a bandit and killed him in one shot using his rifle, Silus engaged a bandit in close quarters combat (subject has yet to take up interest in any firearms as was expected), the New England student named Smith Lee Ellington rose into the air and propelled himself into a bandit. His psionic abilities are unexpected, we must reconsider his position on the watchlist, he will prove to be unpredictable.

They have arrived in the Appalachians and taken shelter amongst the bivouac there. Richard seems to have taken an interest in the patches. No further progress.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Gaining Focus
Field Notes

During the night a significant number of the group left, leaving only Axel and Smith behind. The Indian woman, Burning Sky, stole Smith’s looted shotgun.

In an odd turn of events Dr Prave found his way to the Appalachian shanty town at that moment. Smith somehow convinced him to team up and they gathered food and supplies before leaving. They traveled peacefully, crossed a river by utilizing Smith’s ability to levitate, and reached the Confederate Earth Earth Mage outpost. It is currently unknown what that particular outpost is stationed there for or what missions they are giving out. Regardless, Smith, Axel, and Dr Prave left with unknown items and headed toward Louisville.

Along the road there was ruckus brewing between a man and a small group of highwaymen, the man was shot off his horse. Axel killed two of the robbers with his pistol, Smith proved skillful once again with his psychic tackling, and Dr Prave, unsurprisingly, shot a fleeing man that Axel had let go.

After that observation was made difficult. It is believed that dark magic was performed. No further progress.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Preparation & Travel
Field Notes

From nowhere the Silas and the Texan, Richard Mathews, appeared inside rooms at a hotel that Dr Prave, Smith, and Axel were also staying at. They met in the bar on the first floor and included another surprise arrival in their group. That surprise arrival was Elden Inglebard who I remind you has been unseen since 1878 when he blew up a Union stagecoach carrying arms to Pennsylvania.

Something else to note is the addition of a man named “Barry” who seems to follow Dr Prave around. His origin is unknown but highly suspect.

They shopped around Louisville for the day and equipped Silas with an impressive array of armor, though his frying pan spaulders are silly in my opinion. Many trips were made to the tailor and gunsmith.

After that they went to the train and left. It was abrupt, but not enough for them to avoid tracking. They stopped in Topeka and sat around for weeks, that is until our train 18 rolled into town. Whether this is the most inconvenient of coincidences, doubtful, or a planned attack I can not say. Either way the train caught fire not long after and is currently moving along without a number of cars that have been left behind. Await further report.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Important Acquisition
Field Notes

By the time I could view the part of the train that was left behind it was once again on fire. There was a large battle, involving the known criminals Sam Studwell and Rip Driller, they were accompanied by the Canadian industrial heir Dodge Durango.

HQ, this has gotten out of hand. With me is an agent that escaped, he has detailed the whole gruesome affair. This group is not to be trifled with lightly. I urge you to authorize the closest division to send aid. They are in possession of shipment 113 and the Russian guarding it was killed.

If all of that wasn’t bad enough Dr. Leonard Prave has shown no sign of stopping his practice of raising dead and communing with spirits. With his involvement I want my sister, Vivian’s, assignment report as soon as humanly possible. I mean it this time, HQ. No further progress.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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One Stop Shop
Field Notes

The group was not hard to follow, the second they opened that box the stagecoach might as well have been leaking a trail of white paint. They made one stop before the Missouri town, made camp, caught a deer. I almost took action there, HQ. After they killed my sister it would have been easy.

Take over the mind of the German then start shooting. It would be like taking out ceramic ducks at the fair. Maybe I would spare Durango, reports show he was a third party in all of this, or maybe I would kill him last. In one moment of hideous clarity I thought about interrogating Dr. Prave, asking him if he did anything to her after she died, offering him a quick death if he didn’t.

Afterwards they set off to the town and razed every manner of hell. They flashed a Union stamped gold bar at the local trader, who is now being questioned. Some of them even smoked an Indian drug and purportedly raised the dead inside the local whorehouse, Dr. Prave’s doing no doubt. If that wasn’t enough they set an animated statue of the Virgin Mary loose to wreak havoc. Nothing is sacred to these bastards. We’ll be on them soon enough. Nothing further to report.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Stagecoach Ambush
Field Notes

Our direct attack on their coach was ineffectual at best. We have gatling guns, why not use them? Were the howitzers too expensive to deploy? You army types never fail to disappoint me. In my report to HQ I mentioned a hope that the psionics would stop having to pick the slack for your failures.

Either way, I trust you made it known the Union is taking this matter very seriously. Dallas is within spitting distance, I should arrive a day after the attack. Have one of my agents send the location of your camp to me. That is all.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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The Escape of Dr Leonard Prave
Correspondence

To Agent Vickers of the Psionic HQ,
As per your orders we restrained the man we believed to be Dr Prave and forbade any of our men, or yours, to talk to him. But it was one of your men who allowed him to escape. I leave his punishment up to you.

In the strangest of escapes known to me he left behind several bottles of alcohol and a kerchief, if I recall correctly. Not knowing what its purpose was, we disposed of it. Granted, you told us not to underestimate any of those men, but none of the men, psionics or army, that assaulted that stagecoach got close to killing one of the outlaws. And Dr Prave, who was our prisoner, escaped.

I insist you tell me what it is that they stole and why it is worth reigniting the war. If this small skirmish is a vision of what is to come I am not sure people of the Union are ready yet.

Sincerely,
First Lieutenant Bertrand Wilkes

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Arrival In Dallas
Field Notes

From my position I am aware that the group who stole the shipment has arrived in Dallas. The army is approaching at a reasonable pace. I fear we may not recover the cobalt. I know what your opinions are and I hesitate in adding my own, but this could mean war. HQ should brace for that eventuality, make sure we strike first and strike hard.

I have a lot of traveling before I reach Texas. Nothing more to report.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Siege Of Dallas
Field Notes

During the battle our agents found their stagecoach, no case was found, only trace amounts of cobalt. We can only assume the Confederacy, namely the mages, have their hands on the shipment. There will be more on that in my next message.

One agent witnessed the group slay your experiment. Twice. Then he narrowly avoided Axel Esslinger, who made for the craftsmen quarter to aid the mages. They took back that section of the city in mere minutes. Thankfully the concentration of combat in front of the Institute of Magic went largely in our favor. There were heavy losses on both sides before we determined the shipment was not in the building. Magic is as frighteningly powerful as ever.

Last I heard they were in a meeting with one of the earth mages. Any other information is beyond our ability to track while they are in Dallas. As a side note, Wilkes has made it very clear the army may not be completely dedicated to the war, I leave that to you. Nothing more to report.

With regards,
Agent Vickers

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Ghastly Implications
Progress Report

To: Col. Avery Tate
From: Lt. Holly Ferric

So far the activities of the Virginia Team in Dallas have been included in the reports concerning the siege. After our latest meeting there were some noteworthy developments though.

Axel Esslinger expressed interest in Sgt. Hargrove’s gun contraption and proposed several ideas. Hargrove is even allowing Axel to test out the cherry bombs. I thought of asking him if that was wise but I held my tongue. Axel may prove very useful to Capt. Amy, Hargrove, and their band of Tinkerers.

Then there was the evening Dr Prave and Dodge Durango had. Dodge entered a brothel, not an unusual sight, though Prave remained outside. The peculiarity of the situation increased when a nearby mage reported a ritual took place after Prave used a grapple hook to shamble in a second story window. Shortly after Prave exited the same way with one of the whores, who seemed overly familiar with him. For the rest of the evening the two, accompanied by Elden Inglebard, bought the woman clothes and purchased a fancy meal.

I have no idea what this implies, but it doesn’t appear to be a threat to us.

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