Norton Auxiliary Dicemasters

Who Is Luring the Homeless Into the Bay?

Executive Summary:
Reports of homeless individuals disappearing without trace, combined with eyewitness evidence of one such individual walking calmly off of the 55th St. pier and a biting by a monstrous creature lead to a fight with an apparent Japanese water demon (girzu) and her minions. Possible plan by the girzu to gain power from feeding off of souls of homeless to build an army of mermen for unknown purposes.

Report
4:30 am on Tuesday, 1/29: Non-human asset (name: Henry, class: Demon), noted “shabbily dressed” man walking calmly off pier into water, sans typical suicide-type or substance-effected behaviors. Asset used boat to investigate and was attacked by a toothy creature “like a piranha mixed with a small child”. Killed it with pistol, no specimen retained. Asset came to HUD Office Baltimore 3R for treatment and debrief. Marks of many thin, sharp teeth.
Recruit human asset (name: Phillip, class: reporter) for assistance due to extensive video equipment and investigative abilities.
6:00 am: return to pier. Interview various residents individuals of the 55th Street pier encampment to no effect. Meet “Mack” who has alien abduction theory to explain purported disappearance of other local homeless – gives names: Whistle, Jeremy, Cooter and Jilly. Names the “shabbily dressed” man as “Honey”. Possible report of missing pets from camp as well. Indicates that he eats lunch at St. Dominic’s kitchen.
To test for possible creatures in the water, toss in meat on a string. No response. Guess that this is a nocturnal phenomenon.
Phillip sets up a drone to watch the pier, assigns his staffer (Betty) to review the live feed.
Noon: Go with Henry to St. Dominic’s (note: Henry unaffected by Christian iconography). Meet helpful priest (name?) who introduces us to Hudson, a homeless man who works at St. D. Indicates Mack known for story-telling. Knows W, C and J. Indicates four others whom he thinks have disappeared – Tater (lived/s at 47th Street and Lincoln courtyard), Peanut, Lilly and Barth. He has been looking after Jilly’s dog – first actual evidence of disappearance?
At the kitchen, we learn that a Japanese co (“Gir Corp”) is providing the fish stock for lunch soup and rep encourages the lunch crowd to come to a rally. We attend (Henry, myself and Phillip). Mayor speaks, CEO (“Ketsuri Moriko”) speaks, both lauding the company’s generosity. (Political angle? Campaign contribution?) Phillip learns from a rent board member that Gir Corp won the contract for homeless services by low-balling next higher contract by half. Henry and I stand at the back of the small crowd, and simply observe.
3:00 pm: back in office. Verify that Gir Corp deeply underbid. Gir Corp only incorporated 2 months before tendered bid. Why? Where did they come from?
6:00 pm: meet back at pier. Henry, Phillip, myself and Phillip’s driver (“Carl” – human, and station wagon) are there.
Henry has come with a lobster trap filled with meat. This is placed into the water.
As we are waiting, an apparently homeless woman walks purposefully down the pier toward the water. We detain her, but she is distracted, and insistent on proceeding to water. As we are speaking with her, we see a group of apparent homeless approaching the pier – with similar distracted looks. There are more than we can detain.
I fire one handgun round into the water to attempt to gain attention of possible beings below the surface. Immediately thereafter an adult-human-sized aquatic humanoid (appearance similar to “Creature from the Black Lagoon”) – hereafter “merman” – climbs out of the water and scales pier, closely followed by a second of the same type.
We release the homeless woman, and she walks into the water and disappears.
As they are advancing upon us, an impressive, apparently female-gendered semi-humanoid mermaid creature appears on the pier (mechanism of movement not noted). “She” is holding an apparent ice javelin which she accurately casts and hits Henry, receiving substantial harm (fortunately he is very tough – it would likely have killed a human).
A quick review indicates it’s likely these creatures can be hurt by fire, but no fire is on hand.
I disable one merman with conventional buckshot round (badly hurt).
Phillip casts a circle – which we step into. Henry, however, steps out and is hit by a second ice javelin, again taking substantial harm. Unknown if circle can deflect projectiles – or just creatures themselves. We realize we must get Henry to care soon or he will expire with unknown consequences.
The group of homeless people walk off the sides of the pier into the water and disappear, we are unable to save them.
The mermaid then changes form, taking on the aspect of the CEO of Gir Corp – Ketsuri Moriko. “She” taunts me, asking for my name, implying she has special business with me. I take a guess, and tell her that we know about their plan to turn homeless people into “fish soup”. She laughs, “I thought you were more clever than you are – you have missed the point.”.
While she and I are talking, Phillip calls Carl, asking him to bring the car to the pier entrance – they will attempt to escape.
I shoot her with one conventional round of buckshot at close range. While she is distracted, Henry and Phillip run from the circle toward land and the car.
The “Moriko” creature looks at her wound (appearing merely distracted), says to me “See you later”, and dives into the water. Wounded mermen have been dragged back into the water by their fellows, so no samples can be retained.
Henry, Phillip and I, driven by Carl) go to Baltimore Office 7G with haste.
2:30 am: I apply successful first aid to Henry. Lacking knowledge on these creatures which we have encountered, I contact “Charlie” (class: human, description: herbalist) a friend of the asset Wilson who assisted with the Ahrens case (see file TZ-665-U). We send him downgraded images (from Phillips cameras). He immediately identifies as the “Moriko” creature as a girzu, a Japanese water demon. His information comes from a 15th century report, which would indicate that the “mermen” may be part of her force or army. The story indicates a case of a girzu attempting to build an army. They are apparently nourished by human souls, and have hypnotic powers. Historical evidence confirms our expectation that they are most effectively attacked by fire.

Attachments:
File containing stills and video from Phillip’s cameras, handheld and drone emplacement.

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