We got a little bit of information in Greece. The police are more helpful but clearly not in charge anymore. We don't know exactly why, but the military doesn't want us around. We didn't let them take us into custody to find out.
Then we headed back to France and tossed Pierre Foucard's flat. Looks like he's involved based on the pictures.
Back in jolly old England, Hank Grundy is enjoying his quiet retirement in the Midlands and Gentleman James Snow is still firmly in the Queen's custody.
Next time, off to Spain and Czechloslovakia.
October 1, 2017
We are popping off to Greece. We book airfare and load up the Bentley, then head off to Greece.
We land at Athens airport. The statue was at the National Archaeological Museum.
We’ll pick up the Bentley and head down to the museum to play tourists. We keep our eyes peel along the way…all of us but Rene spot military personnel (probably “government officials”) along the way. They’re going door-to-door, and some of the citizens are afraid. Not sure if this has to do with the coup or the investigation.
We pull over for a coffee and a snack to see what’s up with this. Rene learns that this isn’t to do with the coup. Obviously the generals are looking for dissidents, but not this particular time. Interestingly this theft is not being stolen and they’re asking about it.
On our way to the museum…nowhere near us, we can see a tank in the road up on the top of a hill. Not sure if it’s occupied or being driven. Otherwise, just two or three groups of soldiers patrolling.
Morris drops the rest of them off, then rejoins them after parking. We go in reasonably together and wander around. The museum is open and running, and they’re playing up the theft. There is a definite military presence inside. The statue is quite obviously missing and the area’s roped off.
Where would you bring in a heavy vehicle? Not the front door, for sure. There is a loading area in the back and probably a no-visitors area. There are tire tracks in that area that lead into the back. Looks like forklift-sized tires.
Alertness check – Simon was at -3 vs a Neat so it’s a 7-shift miss.
Seems plausible that the lift story could be true. There are soldiers talking around the statue.
Morris goes to talk to the soldiers. Empathy – Groovy…seems like the soldier was drilled to tell tourists to notify the police if needed…but that’s not his preferred opinion. He’d rather the military handle this one. One soldier was about to say the police were holding someone but wouldn’t say who…his compadre shushed him. Otherwise, keep eyes out but this isn’t harmful.
We definitely need to go talk to the police. Forgot to ask who was on duty at the time or who’s leading the investigation.
Alertness – Solid, hip, etc. We realize there are *no* museum guards here. They’re all gone…any guards who used to work here aren’t here right now.
Ana goes to ask at the information desk if the curator is here. $curator (Photos) is in their office. They haven’t been hustled out by the soldiers. Ana requests an appointment and is given some time. It’s a busy time but they can squeeze her in.
Meanwhile we head for the downtown police station. Ana and Simon will go in as Agents of Swing; Rene and Morris will hit the town and keep their ear to the ground.
Simon says he has information that may be of use to the investigation and the guy at the desk immediately gets a detective. They all introduce themselves as Agents, and Simon says that there are other thefts of similar type that he’d like to share information and cooperate.
Detective: You’ve seen the military doing their investigation, no? They haven’t learned much, but they are probably using this as an excuse to crack down on leftists… What can we do for you?
S: We believe the same thief took items in other countries. Do you have details not released to the public that may help?
D: We believe it to be taken with a rented lift truck, and all of the guards are under investigation because we don’t believe them. They claim to remember nothing. IF you had heard their story, you would not believe it either..so they are suspects.
S: This is similar to a theft in London, one of Shakespeare’s First Folios. There was also a loss of memory there either.
The detective may now be suspicious of their organization.
S: Any other calling cards left behind?
D: If the guards could remember what happen…we know where the forklift was rented from.
S: Was the statue’s base left behind?
Our information is that a full-sized replica was left behind…not a small joke one.
The detective admits that the thief left a replica behind, so it fooled the guards until the curator showed up.
Who was the curator? Same name as Ana got. It’s possible that had they not been there, no one might be the wiser. Thankfully they believe it to have been discovered quickly, and the guard’s memory loss seems to match.
Simon says he hasn’t spoken to the guards anywhere else. He does ask about the possibility of an inside job – could he and Ana interrogate the guards?
D: I’ll lead you there now.
Talking to the guards, they are confused even trying to remember. They are clearly nervous, not only because they’re locked up but with whatever’s happening with the coup.
Investigate 9 vs the guards…they’re not trying to lie. They’re frustrated and afraid…and they cannot be made to remember. Need some expert hypnotists or something, or some folks from Section 8.
What can Simon figure out about the time or physical barriers around the memory loss? It seems to be a fuzzy time thing, not a physical area. Some time between 10 pm and midnight people started to lose their memory, and they remember again towards 4 or 5 am. They certainly aren’t in collusion.
May he look at the replica statue? Simon has an art expert he’d like to look at in case he could determine who made the replica. Ana goes to find Rene. In the meantime, Simon looks at a statue with a desperately untrained eye. Eventually Ana returns with Morris and Rene and the police, grateful for the help, allow them right back in to see the statue.
Does Rene see anything? Solid…he doesn’t know who made this, but they were a real sculptor. Do we have a list of people who might be able to do this? If anyone had their copy of this statue stolen, they may also have leads.
Simon leaves a number to contact him in London.
Back to the museum…Ana has her 3:15 meeting with Professor Photos.
Ana asks directly about the art that was stolen. Are there any other security devices? Security cameras have to be watched all the time…no feasible recording. The guy in charge of watching was in jail, and he didn’t remember either.
Anything else weird or interesting before hand? The disappearance is strange itself, and the forklift coming in as well.
He says he’s been sharing with the police…the military hasn’t been helpful, and they can’t get the amnesiac guards to talk. The rental place people don’t remember anything either.
Ana says this is interesting but didn’t clear much up.
We could go talk to the rental people. It would be hard to find anything in anyone’s blood, but perhaps Section 6 could do it. London was the first one. Not all of the thefts happened on the same night or anything.
We get the police to surrender the address of the forklift. They got a lot of forklifts off of this rental unit. We head there and ask for their rental records. Cool investigation – He gets a +5. The rental was paid for in cash…but all the notes are in the same number bands. So either a very wealthy or powerful client paid for this in drachma. The forklift is here…We will have to take the police’s file and get it back to Section 6.
Driving down the road, we discuss our next plans. Two of us (Ana and Morris) realize we’re being followed by a military convoy. We hear a bullhorn telling us, “Pull the vehicle over on the side of the road.”
Well, is this a chance to talk to someone in power, or a chance to be blackbagged. Morris suggests that it’s been a bit of a while since he’s been part of a foxhunt. It’s less fun to be the fox but it’s still sporting.
The group suggests they can talk their way through this, so Morris pulls over while trying to leave an escape route.
The guy manning the machine gun leaves it trained on our rear window. Two armed guards come over to us, and we hear an announcement – “put your hands behind your head”, “get out of the vehicle”, etc.
We get out.
Rene: What is this all about?
Soldiers: You’re under arrest for investigating the stolen statue.
R: For investigating? Who is in charge here…you are making no sense!
It’s not clear who’s in charge.
One of them shoulders his rifle and pulls out some cuffs. They’re going for Ana first. Morris protests that he’ll drive under their escort. They tell him not to worry about it.
Morris, Rene, can’t you convince them that we’ll take their escort but drive ourselves.
One guy keeps his rifle pointed at Morris, but says something in Greek then tells us to wait. After a couple minutes, Simon sees the driver of the armored car on the radio. After a bit, a second armored car comes to join the parade and they tell us to follow. We get back into the car and will follow.
Do we want to talk to them? Simon doesn’t want to get shot at but doesn’t say he wants to run vs. talk. A few months ago, there were tanks used for the coup. Most of them are gone now. There are probably only a couple tanks left and may not be staffed.
Simon suggests that we may not ever leave…and that’s enough for Morris. We punch it.
Right now, destination does not matter…getting away matters.
Morris makes a drive roll +6. Ana won’t shoot yet; Morris had suggested to hold fire for now in the hopes we can get away. They start to chase. Behind starts to shoot and Morris dodges.
The streets constrict and get tighter. Ana attempts to shoot it…she hits with +5 shifts (which is enough for Swing die and an aspect). We talk about armor and guns…the gun is only for damage, and so is armor...as long as she does any damage after armor.
In this case, she hits with +5 shifts which is enough for an effect. She does 9 shifts (+5 + 4 for gun) = 9...armor is 4 so it takes a full 5-box and an aspect.
The Behind vehicle has Blown Tire…-1 speed, -1 manouevre.
They make their speed rolls…Behind doesn’t catch up, but A does. A shoots…and Morris deftly dodges again. B makes the manoevre to barrel ahead to catch up. He starts to careen through traffic until he hits something solid, then skids off the chase.
Simon tosses a bottle of vodka out the window, then shoots it…will it light on fire? He tosses it into the street to make an obstacle and lights it. A wall of flame erupts behind us! Ana shoots the vehicle and hits it, but doesn’t put an aspect on it.
Drive check for the Ahead vehicle…just as he passes through the curtain of flame, the Bentley hangs a sharp turn and we lose them. We manage to avoid getting black-bagged for now. We make a mad dash for the airport and get into the air before we are stopped by a bunch of soldiers.
In the plane we talk about our next moves. We have more fingerprints to turn over and questions about blood tests. We have guys to talk to or investigate.
We will head for Paris, then start beating the bushes to find Pierre.
Has Rene ever heard of Pierre? (+1 contacts) - no.
No luck with investigation.
Would Mimi know anything about this Pierre Foucard? Rene could ask her…Groovy (+5) art = Pierre hangs out near Moulin Rouge, is what he heard.
Much to our chagrin, Simon decides to go speak to the same police inspector. However, he’s not on duty since it’s a Saturday. He flashes his badge (not sure which one)…and gets to the on-call guy who’s on the investigative team.
Simon claims that he realizes this is a sensitive topic, and mentions that Discretion is his Middle name. Can they give Simon an address and/or description? Yes, but while they’ve been casing his joint, they haven’t seen anyone there.
If it’s Saturday, Detective Francois will probably tell his CO Closeau on Monday. We’d need to do this by Monday before they talk.
Entrances to Foucard’s place: Front door is the public entrance to the flat. Service entrance in the back. Plenty of windows on the second floor. We’ll do this at night…we know which one is his. These are fancy apartments / small condos.
The building is plenty quiet. We work our way upstairs to unit 22B, and Morris handles the door lock. We enter the flat, Simon and Ana carrying their weapons.
The place is nicely decorated and full of art objects. Ana covers the door; Simon clears the apartment and determines it’s empty. We look around…Rene raises an eyebrow at some of the art. The only thing suspicious in here, other than potentially stolen artwork, is an old locked trunk from a time long past.
The fridge is emptied out like someone was planning not to be here.
Looking at the chest, Morris identifies that the chest is difficulty 2 (alertness) and the poison dart will come out if screwed with. Hip Engineering to get the chest open, not to mention the trap.
Morris works over the chest to disable the trap, then opens the lock. The chest pops open successfully…Simon opens it up. Inside there is a strange mini-crossbow loaded with a poison syringe, but its springs are all tangled up. We rummage through Pierre’s chest and find evidence (pictures) of previous and future jobs (and a Plot X). We need to take a closer look into Monsieur Foucard.
What was in the vial, BTW? Some kind of slow-acting poison. From scene-to-scene, it deals consequences.
There is enough here to suggest that he may be doing research for someone, or he’s involved. This is evidence suggesting the three existing crimes…and possibilities for others.
We’ll take pictures of the evidence then un-toss the place and put the trap back. We will need to sneak out of Pierre’s place (no problem). There was no evidence suggesting who Pierre was working with, particularly the short list. It could well be PAIN but we have no solid connection.
Rene will ask around the neighborhood to find associates or other information on Pierre. Ana will go with him since it’s easier to get into parties if you have a girl with you. They find a bash in a safe yet slightly unsavory part of town…Ana and Rene get in.
Using rapport…a few people heard rumors about Pierre but no one here used to hang with him. Ana drops her housewife identity and puts on her woman in the red dress costume, then manages to get people to loosen up (fate point – group is more than its parts). That pushes Rene’s Rapport to +3…no one has seen him in two or two and a half weeks, which coincides with the art thefts. No one knows where he is, but he disappeared just before the first theft. He used to go to $clubs and he hasn’t been there.
Rene sneaks Morris in to enjoy a pint because it’s time. Simon goes over his notes one last time before bed. Rene and Anna get anything but a good night’s sleep.
Simon is able to definitely corroborate that Pierre is gone.
Next morning, we figure we’re done with Paris…and we head to London to turn over information to Section 6. There is stuff to do in London anyway.
We get the film from Pierre’s chest in to Section 6 and hand over the fingerprints from the Athens Police. We also have the poison and give that to Section 6 for analysis as well…is it unusually rare? Not really.
We decide to ask around for Hank Grundy. Simon’s Investigation - +9. None of the rest of us need to bother rolling. Hank Grundy is in Lincoln, East Midlands. He’s been there for a couple of years. We’ve got his name, address, and phone number.
We take a bit of a country drive northeast to Lincoln. Simon knows that Hank doesn’t have any family right now…he’s in “hiding” and may be retired. He’s now a small fish, and Simon already shot him once so he’s been gotten.
Walking through town, we find a number of people who know Hank and where he lives…and he’s probably at the Prancing Pony. We head over, and a few people turn to look at us. Morris looks like he’s born to be there; Ana and Rene stick out. We look around and spot Hank in the corner.
Morris buys a round of bitter and one for his friend, Hank, in the corner.
Hank: You’re not here for lunch, are you?
Simon: I’m here to buy you a drink. It’s been a while.
H: You do seem a bit familiar…
H: Oh, yeah. (scratches his butt). Interesting to see you again.
Simon: I’ve come a way and hoped you’d be willing to talk…just talk.
H: That’s all I do these days.
Simon introduces us, and says that we’re investigating a theft requiring a certain level of skill…something outside the country.
He’s fidgety but not nervous. He doesn’t appear to be ready to bolt.
S: A statue, Hermes and Dionysus…
H: Greece? I heard about that.
S: Yes. A very impressive bit of work.
H: Carted it right off, eh? And London, I heard they lost something too.
S: Yes, the First Folio. Both jobs have certain details in common.
Cold read reveals “Retired Art Thief”, “Keeping my head down”, “Knows how to play the game”.
S: I was hoping to describe some of what we found, and that you might be helpful.
H: Oh, certainly.
S: Does the name Pierre Foucard mean anything to you?
H: We never crossed paths, but he was a good cat burglar. From what I heard, he always was a bit flamboyant. Mostly contract work, but he did some work on his own. He was the guy if you wanted something big. I remember some guy, Perez, always took fancy jobs like that.
S: Good. And it’s clear you’re enjoying the quiet times her.
H: I was convinced to slow it down a bit *rubs hip*.
S: That’s not recent, of course?
H: That statue? Heavens no, not my style.
S: No one’s been interested in your other knowledge, or drinks shared?
H: No, no one asked me about the London or the Athens thing. They certainly played up that Athens matter. London, of course, that was just a bit down south. Not sure why they made such a big deal of it.
S: I figured as much.
H: You didn’t have anyone else in mind, did you?
S: AT this point, it’s an ongoing investigation.
H: Well, you know that Perez guy…
S: It’s a short list. Abe Serafinowicz.
H: Oh, that Jewish guy? He did a lot of private collections. I might cross him off your list…during the war, the Jewish people lost all that stuff. If it were my investigation I wouldn’t bother with him. That Foucard guy, he was for hire. That Perez guy too.
S: Snow as well.
H: He was always after some big jobs. Didn’t he get caught? The Royal Family had some interest if I recall.
We don’t tell him that Snow is incarcerated. If anyone knew Grundy’s past, they weren’t in the bar.
Simon thought that Grundy was more or less telling the truth. Morris points out that if he *was* giving advice, he may not be telling us…an after a pint or two, perhaps he’s got a story or two to tell.
Should we pop off back to London and ask about James Snow? Well, he isn’t formally on the list of inmates. We’ll need Hip Contacts or better. Rene - +4, Simon +4, Ana -1, and Morris +1.
We are eventually brought to a fairly comfortable prison deep underground…it’s not wet, dripping, and covered in old straw. Snow is in a reasonably decent cell and despite being in his prison jumper, he seems remarkably well-composed.
Cold read – probably Unflappable; More than a Charming Smile; cool, calm, and collected; ladies man.
Paul wants to tap that aspect, “Ladies man”. Simon introduces us and says that Ana has some questions for you.
GJS: I appreciate the attention, especially from the fairer sex.
Ana: Your name has come up as someone who may have information for an investigation.
GJS: I have been “at Her Majesty’s Service” for several years, but I will help as I can.
Ana: There have been some thefts that may be connected.
GJS: I heard that the Folio was stolen…
Ana: You heard about that. Anything else?
GJS: No…one of the King James’ Bibles, perhaps? Other than that, I haven’t heard anything high profile. But ask away!
Ana: We have heard Pierre Foucard may be involved.
GJS: A Frenchman who stole art stuff. Yes, that’s the kind of thing he’d do. He usually steals things to sell, but I know he’s worked under contract for various organizations.
Morris: What organizations?
GJS: The Italian Front, something Russian sounding, something Balkan-sounding, some weird artists’ organization, Poison or Pain…(and others ). He’s a man for hire.
Ana: Antonio Perez?
GJS: Very similar despite the difference in nationality. I can’t imagine his flat isn’t full of interesting artifacts. He’s worked for the highest bidder.
Ana: Have they paid a visit?
GJS: To me? Oh, no. Her Majesty’s guards bring the only visitors. Unfortunately, I’m out of the game so to speak.
He’s good but too flashy and can’t keep his mouth shut. Eventually the British Government had to nab him.
Empathy 0 (we all get it) – we think he’s not lying. No one has come to talk to him and we believe him. The guards don’t seem like they’re on someone’s payroll. We’re the first ones to talk to him in a while…he was interrogated for his crimes before but that was years ago.
We excuse ourselves to ask about if he knows about knocking people out. Ana goes back in alone and asks about a style of burglary where everyone around gets knocked out and doesn’t remember. Has he ever heard of that?
GJS: Interesting? Some kind of knockout gas or knockout darts? Gas in the ventilation system?
That’s definitely not the way he’d do it, but it might work.
We take our leave and figure that he’s off the list, and no one has contacted him.
We’ll head to Spain next…off to Bilbao.
We got 1 Plot Stress from Pierre’s chest and can scratch Hank and James off the list. Being unable to deeply penetrate the Greek guards’ memory loss hurts.
Next week Aaron’s out. Paul and Mitch are in. Scott is *probably* ok but may have to work.
We’re getting closer to some bullet-flying action so if Scott’s out, we’ll have to bag.
No feedback yet
Form is loading...