Deadlands: Riders on the Storm
|Deftness 2d6||Cognition 2d8|
|Nimbleness 3d10||Knowledge 1d4|
|Strength 3d12+2||Mien 1d8|
|Quickness 4d12||Smarts 2d6|
|Vigor 2d10||Spirit 1d4|
Damage: Claws (STR+1d4), bite (STR; once a nosferatu successfully bites a victim, it holds on and does STR damage every round to the same location. The only way to break free is to win an opposed test of Strength. On the up side, the nosferatu has to use its hands to hold its victim and can’t claw them).
Immunity: Physical damage. Noseferatu don’t suffer wounds from weapons or even damage causing spells and hexes. However, even though they don’t suffer actual wounds, it is possible for heroes to stun them—unlike most undead.
Infection: Any person slain by a nosferatu’s bite rises as a nosferatu in 1d6 hours.
Undead: Focus—Head/Neck. The only way to permanently put down a nosferatu is to decapitate it or expose it to sunlight.
*Weakness*—Sunlight: Nosferatu take 3d6 damage per round from the light of the sun. This is massive damage.
*Weakness*—Wooden Stakes: A wooden stake through the heart totally paralyzes a nosferatu until the stake is removed.
Shootin’ Irons & Such
Nosferatu are bald and emaciated humanoids. Their eyes are solid black, with only a tiny spark of red visible in the center. Coarse, brown claws tip their fingers and toes, while chisel-like incisors protrude from their mouths.
Royce Crandall and Delroy Little have not been vampires for very long, though Royce has been a bit longer than Delroy. Being as how Royce made Delroy, that little bit of time makes all the difference.
Both of them had been railroad workers the Bayou Vermillion railroad back in Louisiana. They were both traveling workers with a camp; laying rail by day and sharing drinks by night. It was a pretty good life. Until, one night, Royce had to go take care of nature’s business and got jumped by something in the bushes—something powerful strong and with way too many teeth. Royce vaguely remembers the pain and the fading away—but remembers the rising again more. And the hunger. By jiminy, the hunger!
He caught possum, rat, cat, armadillo—anything he could find to satisfy the craving. Finally, he caught some whore out behind the shanty saloon of the work camp. Delicious!
Feeling his oats, he caught Delroy out doing his business one night. Turned him, like he had been turned. Delroy took to follow him around. Royce liked that. The two took to hunting together—they had a ball, hitting up the towns along the railroad. They couldn’t work in the camp no more, but they could follow the line.
About a month later, some stranger from B.V. came with some sort of hoodoo charm and found him and Delroy’s hideout near the camp. He compelled them to come with him and he loaded them up on the boxcar and hauled them out to the middle of the godforsaken desert. That’s where they were let out.
Him and Delroy found their way to this stagecoach switch station. They were SO HUNGRY! They bled the little family that lived there dry, tout suite. They broke their necks so they wouldn’t come back and threw their bodies down in the cellar.
Right about the time they finished, they could hear the sound of a stage pulling up…
George had told the bastard that it was going to get dark by the time they hit the next switch. Money or no money, it don’t stop the sun. But, no. Damn carpetbagger thought he’d get to Paiute Springs by sundown. Oh well, it wasn’t that much further and George and Charlotte were each $25 dollars richer.
They pulled up to the switch and right away, George felt like something was off. No lights were on for one thing. That wasn’t like Edna. She usually turned on the lights as soon as the shadows started getting longer. And no smoke coming out of the chimney. That was odd, too. It was going to get cold tonight. Everett probably should have had a stew going for tonight.
“Keep ready, Charlotte. Somethin’s afoot,” George told his shotgunner. Charlotte nodded and checked the action of her scattergun as the coach trundled into the yard. She couldn’t even scream as a dark form leapt from the shadows and knocked her from her perch and into the dirt beside the moving wagon. Teeth tore into her throat and she dropped her scattergun as she fell.
“What in tarnation?!?” George bellowed as his partner fell. Yells of consternation and concern started issuing from within the coach. George struggled to control the horses who started bucking and rearing against their harnesses. Another dark form leapt onto the cab and struck George hard against the mouth with a vicious backhand. He saw stars and nearly lost control, but managed to slow down the coach before it tipped over. The form picked the nearly unconscious driver up and threw him bodily from the cab. He landed hard beside the coach, next to his shotgunner, who lay with Delroy on top of her, eagerly feeding off the last of her lifeblood. George looked into Delroy’s bottomless eyes and the thing grinned at him.
Royce went around to the door of the coach and threw it open. Inside was a motley crew of passengers from Virginia City on their way to Pioche by way of Paiute Springs.
The passengers all reacted poorly the ghastly visage of Royce staring at them. He didn’t really care. He harshly commanded them to get out and line up. The passengers complied, clearly in a panic
Delroy’s ghastly grin drained the color from the old man’s face. Then the vampire looked down to see that Charlotte had some fight in her yet. She’d taken her Bowie knife and shoved it up into the vampire’s gut.
“Get off me, you smelly sumbitch,” Charlotte whispered, blood pouring out of her neck.
George took the distraction to draw his Colt Lightning and fire at the creature on his partner. He hit the thing square in the head and knocked him off Charlotte’s prone form.
“Run, girl!” George bellowed, as he rose himself to get out of that nightmare.
Charlotte’s head flopped more than turned toward George. Blood still poured from a wound in her neck.
“Get on out of here, now, Papa,” she said, her voice little more than a whisper. “I’ll be leaving soon enough.” George couldn’t hear a word she said. He always was deaf as a post.
Royce came around the other side of the coach and hauled George up by the back of his shirt, lifting the old man off the ground, taking him by surprise. Delroy started cackling, a hideous lisping sound issuing from his lamprey-like mouth. “Time for you to join your friends,” Royce said and turned and threw the old man like a rag doll in front of the team.
He hit the ground sprawling and the Colt went spinning out of the old man’s hands.
“What about this ‘in?” Delroy said, pointing at Charlotte.
Royce sniffed the air. “You’ve let her go to waste. You take any more and she’ll turn on you. We’ve got plenty over here, anyway. Leave her.”
The two headed around to the front of the coach where George worked on picking himself up. Royce grabbed him by the belt and hauled him up like a piece of luggage and then propelled him around to where the others were gathered in front of the switch house. Delroy cackled again and reached down to pull the Bowie knife out of his gut. He flicked it away like a nuisance.
“Inside, everyone!” Royce bellowed. The passengers all scrambled to head inside the switch house. One reached down and helped George up and walked him inside.
Later that night…Royce listened as the posse from Paiute Springs questioned the hostages. As long as he had their little ace in the hole, their meal ticket was still golden. They’d behave, he had no doubt. And if not, Delroy would take care of it.
The door to shed opened and some uppity woman with a lantern came wandering in. Big mistake. Royce watched with mild interest as Delroy attacked the woman, latching on to her neck and lapping at her sweet blood.
They kept firing their guns into Delroy, for all the good it did. Stupid ijits.
She managed to break away and switch places with a colored fellow who kept pushing him back with some kind of mystical force. A “huckster.” Royce had heard of those fellows back in New Orleans. Warlocks of some sort. Now that was interesting. Still, he didn’t see it as a problem, and apparently Delroy didn’t either. He had launched himself at the colored boy and started draining him, too. The Huckster was formidable, but soon fainted dead away.
The cellar door opened and that bitch town marshal pointed her gun at Royce, demanding to know what was going on.
Then that woman was back—with a wood axe and a determined look on her face. This could be a problem. And before he could issue a warning to Delroy, that little woman had taken his friend’s head. She told the others that this was the only way.
He tried to reason with them, get them to let him and this little “Jasmine” get a mile away. He offered to let her go if he could get a mile out. He didn’t mean it, but he offered anyway. Still, they didn’t bite. So, he figured he better indulge while he could. Besides, what are the odds some skinny little girl could decapitate the TWO of them in one night in one shot? Slim.
Them that was upstairs kept firing their guns, to no avail. Royce ignored them. He just fed on the sweet blood of the little girl, who barely uttered a peep at the draining.
The woman swung the axe at his head, but missed him. He mentally chuckled and threw the girl down. He struck like a snake with a claw and gut her deep in the leg, taking the woman out of the fight. Then the town marshal jumped down and took the axe from the other woman.
Royce swung at her too, but missed, the nimble little minx. Then the Marshal swung and Royce saw only eternal night.