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Carnival of Dreams
6×9″ format, 77 pages total (4 front matter and contents)
Welcome to the Carnival of Dreams one off adventure. A quick simple and fun romp. The setting is modern day with tongue in cheek super powers. The adventure has been developed as a sandbox; providing the background, main plot line, and as much information as we could cram in to support the GM. Feel free to use as much, or as little, of the provided information as suits your style of play. The information described in this document should at no point be taken as “law” especially if it would detract from the story you and your group are telling. If something else makes more sense, or would make more fun, then run with it.
In the Carnival of Dreams science has progressed to combat most illnesses using gene therapies. A tiny proportion of the population react to the therapies at a cellular level; mutating and developing super powers. The majority of mutants hide their abilities to avoid ridicule. Who wants to know you can make your nose hair grow on demand! However a small group banded together to form the Z list superheroes. If the world isn’t at risk, or you can’t afford a mainstream hero, maybe the Z List Heroes are in your budget! As their local paper ad says “If you can’t afford the best, we are the rest!”.
The adventure is based on the Fate Core rule set. You can obtain everything you need to play this by visiting http://www.faterpg.com/; a hardback version of the rules is available to purchase if you prefer. Throughout the adventure terminology from Fate Core will be used, so familiarity with those rules is essential.
Years ago people flocked to the carnival from miles around. Adults and children alike would pay for a day in the Clown School, or play games and enjoy the rides, before watching the big top show. Those were good times for the carnival; the performers bonding as a family.
When La’Marie fell ill they worked tirelessly to find a cure; foregoing shows to travel from town to town spending the last of their money on doctors and miracle cures to no avail.
Unbeknown to the performers the Master of Ceremonies possessed a tattered, leather bound, book of dark rituals, obtained in his quest for eternal life. Deciphering the book revealed a rite that granted immortality for a price. However his elation was short lived as he discovered he lacked the power to activate it. Without their knowledge he tested the performers; discovering Mysterio possessed the power to conduct the rite. When the performers had exhausted all other options for saving La’Marie, the Master of Ceremonies removed several pages detailing the exact effects of the rite, and delivered the book to Mysterio claiming ignorance of the contents.
Mysterio worked tirelessly deciphering it, uncovering the rite the Master of Ceremonies wanted performed, and realised it could save La’Marie. However due to how far her disease had progressed it would require the sacrifice of a child; swapping her life force for the child’s. Le’Manyard, desperate to not lose La’Marie, convinced the carnival to go along with the murderous plot. So on a stormy autumn night, the carnival committed its first murder.
As the rite completed mystic symbols scratched into the dirt held strong protecting the performers minds; but as the removed pages had explained their souls were ripped from their bodies and cast into hell. The General Hands who were outside the protective symbols were not so lucky; their minds and souls ripped from their bodies, and cast into hell leaving them zombies.
The Master of Ceremonies blamed Mysterio for their predicament, and retook command over the performers.
Every year to renew their bodies, and avoid joining their souls in hell, the carnival harvest and sacrifice innocents.