The Dresden Files: What Happens in Vegas

Session 5: Pride Goeth Before

Thy Sins Manifest

Phee and Karisa are still in the lobby of the hospital when Jacob arrives. He refuses to come inside (because being around technology is not such a great idea for a practitioner), so Phee steps outside to talk to him about Anja’s condition, of which they know very little at this point. Karisa remains inside monitoring the news channel on the lobby TV and her phone to learn if there is any news of the group’s involvement in the incident. She also receives a text from Marcello saying that he is going home to change clothes and that they need to talk when he arrives.

By the time Marcello finally does arrive, the group has received word that Anja is stable and can see visitors. Karisa’s plan to get some time with Marcello fails spectacularly, requiring them to send Phee off to gather art supplies for her newest why-we-should-be-friends diagram to show to Anja. This gives them ample time to discuss Karisa’s sudden kiss earlier and whether Marcello is comfortable pursuing a relationship with Karisa. Ultimately, they decide to give it a go just in time for Phee to return with her new presentation aide. Because she went to all that work, Marcello and Karisa allow her to present her diagram to a badly-concussed Anja. They soon regret it. Both step in quickly once Anja starts to cry, leaving Phee to puzzle over what she had said to make the woman burst into tears.

From Anja, they are able to learn that she was not alone when she was attacked. Anja and her boyfriend, Kenneth, were using the book to perform a ritual that was supposed to give them anything they desired: and what they desired was to be together forever. Unfortunately for them, a spirit broke free and multiplied before their eyes. Kenneth was dragged through the gate, and Anja was physically attacked. When asked about the coin, Anja said it was mentioned in the book, but they skipped over that part. It sounds as though she read only the parts of the book that were about the ritual and didn’t bother to read anything else. Anja tells the group that the book should still be in the house, and that she’ll help them if they can bring Kenneth back to her. They promise to try.

Jacob, Karisa, Marcello, and Phee return to Anja’s house to retrieve the book, and they find the house engulfed in flame. After a quick glance, they realize that the fire hasn’t quite spread to the room the book was supposedly in. Knowing that she is the only one who would recognize the book on sight, Karisa volunteers to break in to retrieve the book, and Marcello offers to accompany her inside. The pair are able to battle past the flames, manuever their way around the burning house, and locate the book safely, although they’re a little singed by the time they step outside. The growing crowd, meanwhile is informed about the nature of fires by Phee, who was hurt that neither Karisa nor Marcello wanted her advice on how to avoid burning to death in the house.

Karisa insists they return to the hospital to inform Anja personally that her house has just burned down, to which she replies that her parents are going to kill her. Realizing that Phee ran off with the book, Karisa and Marcello suggest Anja rest and tell her they’ll check on her in the morning. They find Phee in the hallway near the giftshop with the book open on her lap accompanied by a mess of string and post-it notes.

After Phee cleans up her mess, the group returns to Phee’s Escalade and head back to Phee’s shop. By the time they arrive, Phee has decided that she is going to learn Finnish in order to translate the book. Karisa suggests to Marcello that they get something to eat…and Jacob offers to pay. Karisa is pretty put-out until Marcello phones in an order of Chinese delivery for Jacob and Phee, then tells her they’re going out for a nice steak dinner. Phee spends the rest of the night studying Finnish while Jacob watches, and Karisa and Marcello retire to his place after dinner.

The following morning, Jacob awakens in a chair he fell asleep in and is disappointed to learn Phee has consumed all the coffee already to keep herself awake. Marcello and Karisa show up eventually, and the group put their heads together to figure out where they should go from here. Karisa is happy to take Anja up on her offer to translate the book until it is pointed out to her that she could end up hurt worse or dead by helping them. They also make it clear that they don’t necessarily trust her. With that said, they want someone to go back and ask Anja a few more follow-up questions.

Because Jacob won’t enter the hospital and because Karisa doesn’t have a car, both Marcello and Karisa end up going to visit Anja. From her, they learn that her ritual was done the same night the doppelgangers attacked the group. They also learn that Kenneth was a welder and that he created the ritual circle himself. While they’re visiting people in hospitals, Karisa also decides to visit Ian. The nurses tell Karisa and Marcello that they aren’t allowed to see Ian, as he is currently in police custody for the shooting. The hospital staff is initially annoyed with their presence, but once they learn that Karisa and Marcello aren’t reporters, they become a little more sympathetic. The pair play stupid and claim not to know anything about the shooting and tell the staff they were just trying to find out if Ian was okay. The staff can only tell them that he’s stable, and Karisa thanks them for that much before leaving.

Meanwhile, Jacob goes to investigate the sight of the fire. He is able to tell that an accelerant was used. He also finds smallish footsteps leading up to where the accelerant was placed and pieces of the ritual left-over in the ruined house. Strangely, he begins to feel sluggish and tired as he wanders throught he northwest corner of the house.

Back at Phee’s shop, Phee has gone back to trying to study the book. She is able to make out something about the coin acting as a safeguard against foreignors and that it sings for them, which makes an odd sort of sense as the coin vibrated when in the presence of the possessed Ian. After reviewing their findings and confessing to some weird feelings the night of the doppelganger attack, the group decides to split up to check their various networks for information.


IvoryThorns IvoryThorns

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