It might not have been the best of ideas just after being attacked by a powerful, unknown, enemy – but the group split up. The White Necromancer and Jason returned to New York – and the temple of Rathma – to research death cults, soul-powered necromancy, the Bane Mummies, dark dimensions, and various other unpleasant topics. The Chauffeur took Zachary to Olympus to find his mother. Kheileos and Yuki moved out to search for stray villagers and/or monsters while Ranko stuck around to explain to the Chinese Army. There were a fair number of them who were familiar with The Ranko Show (and the bootleg parodies from the Tokyo Society for the Promotion and Creation of Cat-Girls).
Yuki located the Kitsune’s little bamboo palace in the woods – and the several girls he’d managed to collect there. The Kitsune decided to present himself as “The True Emperor of China!” – in hopes that he could scare off this persistent pest – and Yuki informed the military of his presence. Already jumping at shadows and regaled with accounts of supernatural horrors, they were all too ready to assume that an old-line aristocrat in hiding – or some super-being pretending to be such – represented some subversive group. After all, they all knew about Kuei Wang and his Lin Kuei – the “Demon Emperor” and his “Forest Demons”. They immediately launched a massive assault despite Kheileos’s attempts to stop them – and Yuki’s rather appalled attempt to rescue everyone.
Thanks to tunneling and teleportation everyone survived – but the Kitsune (sensibly enough) ran away, and several of the girls were badly injured – one severely enough that Yuki, forgetting about the binding magic inherent in her blood, gave her an emergency transfusion.
Olympus turned out to be surrounded by seething chaos-magic, into which it was all-too-easy to tap, and was inhabited a selection of rather unbalanced mages/godlings who tapped into it far more than was at all wise. There were young godlings – like Hermes – playing practical jokes and trying to plant stolen thunderbolts on people, there were any number of parties, and there were a wide assortment of mythological creatures roaming about – apparently the whimsical creations of various godlings. It looked like the chaos magic tended to reduce the chances of surviving childhood to something minuscule, so the various gods had simply been creating near-adult “offspring” by simply stuffing souls into magically-created bodies and imprinting some vague memories of a childhood for generations – and the natural result was crazed monomaniacs, such as Apollo and his views on “Justice” (Namely: “They ALL deserve to get it!”) or the one who pronounced the Chauffeur married to some nymph or other.
Compared to a lot of them, Eris – whether He, She, or It – was relatively sane. Of course, He/She/It had simply created Zachary for amusement. Still, “she” was willing to acknowledge some small responsibility, and presented Zachary with a box of presents – “her” version of an allowance they supposed – before losing interest and dismissing both of them.
In the mountains of upstate new york, Kimai was holding a meeting with a few representatives of another “organization” when some hideous octopus-creature thing popped up and ate them. Then it started in on Kimai’s backup team. This was NOT acceptable! Those were ITS! Kimai rescued the one it could and headed for the city. The 911 call was a bit confused – but they routed it through to the Mandate eventually – and Theodore (who had eaten all the other phones and had a new charm for smelling people over the phone) got the call connected to the Chauffeur, the White Necromancer, and a few of the others, who headed out to deal with the problem. It was another swarm of soul-stealing enchanted fungus creatures. Why HERE? There was hardly anyone HERE. Maybe it was just where one of their old talismans used to be?
Anyway, the creatures were really no match for the Mandate – they were only a mass of enchanted mushrooms – but they REALLY needed to do some research. They’d left those souls entrapped for too long – but event he original White Necromancer had only been able to make the death cult forget about the rest of the earth, not stop them.
This was going to be a pain. The Mandate settled down to sorting things out with Kimai, to try to decide what to do with Zachary’s new servants (he’d experimentally tried using one of Eris’s copupons) and attempting to do some planning. Between them, they could figure out a fair number of things about the Bane Mummies. If they could just steal some of their Talismans, they might have a good shot at using their own power against them.