Weird Tales of the Numenera

The Fungal Habitat

Date: April 28, 2017

Player Characters Present: Dzhudututsu, Jessamine, “The Major,” Frey

The group returned to Dzhudututsu’s village (Mirado) and found that one of the local villager’s children had mysteriously gone missing. The Major talked with the family of golthiar (a species of plant-like humanoids). Though they were incapable of verbal speech, he managed to glean that the child disappeared 3 days ago at around 4am. Frey used her temporal viewer cypher to re-watch the events that happened at that moment in time. While resting at night under the ground, Blue (the missing golthiar) dug himself up and walked into the woods without telling anyone. Strangely, Blue was covered in small mushrooms, unlike his family.  The Major followed his tracks until the group came to a large black dome of energy. After some trepidation, Frey barged her way through, phasing her way through the sticky green fungus that coated the inside of the dome.  Inside was a dark fungal forest, with tall mushroom trees, bioluminescent fungus, and a thick bed of green mold that creeped all along the edges of the dome. The air was damp and sticky, like a tropical forest.

Frey and the Major decided to explore the fungal forest, while Jessamine and Dzhudututsu decided to scout the perimeter of the dome for a proper entrance.  Though the dome did not have an entrance, Jessamine and Dzhudututsu did encounter a few travelers who had been inside the dome, and discovered that the fungus is destroyed when exposed to bright sunlight.  The travellers appeared to be affected by the fungus they ate, and were lounging in a dark, damp cave.  Inside the dome, Frey climbed a tall mushroom tree to scout the area, and found a black metal structure in the center of the dome. However, the mushrooms were too weak to hold a human’s weight, and started to topple! Fortunately, Frey was able to jump from across the tops of multiple mushrooms and landed safely, without injury.  Towards the center, the spherical metal structure was guarded by 3 humanoid creatures that looked like porcelain mannequins covering a sticky interior of green fungus. The fight was going poorly at first, but Dzhudututsu heard the commotion and fought alongside them, turning the tide of the battle. Inside the structure was a spherical control panel adorned with lights and a foreign language. The Major managed to learn enough of its operation to disable the dome, exposing the fungus to the bright light necessary to destroy the fungal forest.  Borgeal managed to locate Blue who was hidden underground, almost completely turned into fungus. He was narrowly saved from death by the Major’s Catholicon – a cypher that can cure any disease – and was returned to his overjoyed family. However, one disturbing detail remained: Two sets of tracks led to Blue, suggesting that someone had led him to this forest deliberately and maliciously.

Jessamine found a lead from a local nano botanist named Bish, who suspected a local drifter named Ushant because she saw him in the habitat before. The group tracked Ushant down to a ramshackle tent surrounded by garbage and empty beer bottles. After intimidating him for information, Ushant tells his story: He saw a person covered in bandages  sprinkle some strange green substance on the incapacitated golthiar before heading into the habitat’s control room.  The group told Ushant to leave the village, then went to confront the bandaged man.

Dzhudututsu recognized the bandaged man as Xinma, a diseased man who lived outside of the village. Xinma was rumored to be a nalurus, with a strange disease the causes anyone who sees his face to die shortly thereafter, or become a nalurus themselves.  Most of the group approached the door to Xinma’s hut head-on, while The Major went around the back to sneak in through the window. While Jessamine distracted Xinma in conversation, The Major found conclusive evidence that Xinma was not a nalurus, but was in fact a fungal alien – likely the same species that originally built the habitat. Through some coordinated diplomacy, the group convinced Xinma to leave the village and never return, avoiding an unnecessary conflict.

Loot:

  • 1 Chemical Factory Cypher (level 5)
  • 20 Shins (after selling scavenged synth)
  • Oddity:  An aerosol can that quickly grows small luminescent mushrooms when sprayed on most surfaces.
  • Artifact: Filtration Straw (level 3). Water that passes through this long, narrow synth tube is purified. Most other liquids other than water drawn through the tube come out as water (or mostly water).
  • Asset: Fungal Habitat Instruction Tablet (purple text written on a clear synth tablet). Confers a specialization in operating the fungal habitat (i.e., the dome that formerly contained the fungal forest). 

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