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Uno and Fog: New Age Mage

June 11, 2019

A familiar voice said in my ear piece, “run.”  The Fog was somewhere nearby and I realized that while SHE might not lie to me directly, that didn’t prevent deception when SHE said the ones that had accompanied me were under her sway because The Fog hadn’t come up with me.

The sound of an explosion rocked the back of the church and in that moment of distraction I ran as fast as I could out the church.

While I had been I having my fun with the Cadre and SHE, The Fog had been busy.  He had ridden north to the City of Shenandoah and then left the dirt roads as he reached the southern border, pulling his bike off the road and then covering it as best he could from prying eyes before he trekked across the fields in the early evening carrying a backpack full of illegal white phosphorus incendiary devices.

After our first interaction with SHE, The Fog had spent sometime modifying his plans for dealing with possible Kaiju to deal with her. (I told you he spent time making contingency plans for almost any situation).  White phosphorus burns and keeps burning as long as its exposed to oxygen, until there is no more oxygen, or there is no more phosphorus.

He trekked to the commune, the home of New Age Mage, and at a tree break he settled in to watch the area.  Unlike a lot of hippies in the 60s and 70s, New Age Mage stayed the course.

The commune had a central building containing a commercial grade kitchen with a common dining  and meeting area, with cottages in a circle around the main building.  A barn, granaries and other out buildings were nearby with a single road leading out to town and fallow fields surrounding the commune.  Old trucks and tractors were parked along the wall of the barn

His thermal scope showed a number of heat signatures in the common area, none of them moving.  There were three figures in one of the out buildings that were moving around and he focused his attention on them.  One of the thermal images was tiny.  A child or a baby.

The more he watched, the more he was convinced that the small one was a newborn.  While it wasn’t conclusive,  it was almost certainly the child of the old god.

He watched an he waited.  The figures eventually put the child down and went to bed.  Separate rooms for the adults.  He noted there was a difference in the thermal scans of one of the adults, whether that was because that individual wasn’t human or something else, he wasn’t sure, but there were spots of significant heat at various locations on the body.

The idea that an old god and the retired mage of mojo were in a little upstate town playing house seemed surreal.  He had spent considerable time reading up on the ancient myths and legends and while there were plenty of stories about them siring offspring with humans, as a general rule they seemed more inclined to vindictiveness, petty games, violence, fickleness, unpredictable outbursts and jealousy rather than parenting at hearth and home.

Then again, people often coveted what they didn’t have, perhaps the old gods weren’t any different.  Did immortal beings get tired?

He thought about how SHE had behaved upon arrival, and despite her unexpected appearance, SHE had been angry.  The anger of a woman scorned.  She did not appear to be one that just wanted to settle down.  He set that aside though, making assumptions, while sometimes necessary, could lead to mistakes.

The Fog weighed his options.   He did not want a direct confrontation with her, he couldn’t win that way, but he also needed more information.  Sneaking into the commune and checking on the people would gain more information but put himself at risk.  Going to the lone cottage that was occupied would be a source of more useful information, but more risky.

He decided to wait for the night to deepen before going in.  The moon rose over the horizon.  He saw one of the two adults get up and comfort the child once before collapsing back on their bed.

Finally, he got up and stretched.  Keeping to the tree break to do so then he made sure he had everything and then quickly and as quietly as possible over the fields.  He checked the thermals regularly, and he searched the skies too for any sudden approach but none came.

Once he go the outer buildings, he circled around and away from the occupied one and then head toward the common building.

The door was unlocked, and the inside was dark.  Moonlight streamed through the windows creating white patches on the linoleum floor.  The air smelled of sweat and other body orders.  He stepped inside carefully, making out the outlines of several figures just standing in the dark.

None of them moved.  Realizing he had been tensing up for an attack, he relaxed slightly.  Then stepped up to the nearest person.  A middle aged man wearing a flannel shirt and overalls.  His face had a content smile on it.  The Fog reached out a gloved hand and gently touched the man’s throat, feeling for a pulse.  The man didn’t react.

How the man was sustained without eating, The Fog wasn’t sure, but he was still alive, but somewhere else.

It was at this point that SHE attacked him.   He never would describe how he was tempted, other than to tell me that he was offered “answers.”  When I asked him to answers to what, he said simply, “the answers to everything I wanted to know,” and wouldn’t say anymore about it.

When he did break free, morning light was streaming through the windows and New Age Mage had just entered the building.  He was old, with long thinning hair held back in a pony tail.  His face was craggy and covered in a grey beard.  The peace symbol that he had used as a magical focus still hung from his neck.

He took one look at The Fog, “Its about time you showed up.”

 

 

 

 

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