OK, so. First thing's first. I really want to figure out milestones and Pilgrimages n' shit. But if I'm smart, I should do the plot of this story so I can run the damn game, and then work on Pilgrimages.
Fine. So, our victim is fucking Calogero. Yeah.
Calogero is (was) a Redeemed Promethean. He helped the throng out during the Water of Life game, basically kickstarting the chronicle. Since they moved on from Chicago (March 2005, so about three years ago, game time), he's been continuing to study alchemy, keep abreast of Promethean goings-on in Chicago, and so forth. He recently developed a lung condition and uses an inhaler...and this led to his death. He goes by Charles Rivers, and was fairly wealthy, but lived modestly.
The Pristine Order of the Auric Chalice (seriously, fuck these guys) learned about Calogero. Their point man in Chicago is a human shark named Devon Kennedy. Kennedy, old money and mobbed up on his mother's side, dumped money into research and learned that "Charles Rivers" didn't even exist until the late 1990s. Parker knows about Prometheans, but not that they can become human, so he simply assumed that Rivers was a Promethean hiding his condition extremely well.
Parker approached Rivers, trying to find his price, but Rivers wasn't interested. Parker decided to "prepare" him with an alchemical mixture, one of the principle ingredients being mercury. He'd used it on Prometheans before, and it just makes them tired and weak. Humans, though, it kills in a few hours. Rivers was visiting the Shedd Aquarium on April 26, 2008, when he collapsed in the Amazon Rising exhibit and died. The characters get to be on hand for that.
Parker and some Pristine Order members are there as well (Parker has a couple of bodyguards nearby, which the PCs can spot, but unless they use powers they're not going to know who they're there to protect). Rivers dies, and I think I'd like one of the PCs to spot that he has a Pilgrim Mark tattooed on his hand - it basically means "leave me in peace" (as in, for the love of god, don't cut me up and turn me into a Promethean).
Now, into the mix, we have the Scorched Earth throng. Scorched Earth takes the whole "Divine Fire" thing literally, and believes that true change for Prometheans comes in the wake of big events - Firestorms, mostly. They see Rivers die, and their leader, a Light-Bringer pursuing the Psychopomp Role, has a revelation. This murder needs to go unavenged, not because this guy didn't deserve justice, but because he didn't want it. When the PCs start poking into the death, Scorched Earth is gonna get all up in their face.
So, Scorched Earth:
- Andrew Write (Extempore/Phosphorum): Andrew was a murder victim turned into a Promethean in the same wacky series of events that made Matt. He's now the leader of the Scorched Earth throng, following Phosphorum and trying to learn the Psychopomp Role. Alembics: Blaze of Glory, Solar Flare, Ignis Aspiratus, Sanctus Aspiratus.
- Legion (Unfleshed/Aes): Legion was created in a lab in Cincinnati. He escaped with the help of some mages (here) and hasn't been seen since. He hooked up with Andrew and the other Scored Earth-ers recently, and learned Aes from Rusty Nail. Presently working on Bodyguard. Alembics: Arc (fixed), Community, Charites, Zephyrus, Command.
- Rusty Nail (Frankenstein/Cuprum). Frankenstein who's coming to the end of his journey. He needs to make another Promethean, but isn't sure how, and the manipulation of Divine Fire terrifies him. Working on Hermit. Still a badass in combat, but less fighty than he once was, having passed that mantle to Legion. Alembics: Hygeius, Aptare, Bestiae Faceis, Interficio (fixed).
- Persephone (Ulgan/Argentum). Persephone, created by Marty Black here (she later robbed him of Vitriol). She's been occupying the Envoy Role for some time, dealing with ghosts and other supernatural creatures, to the point that she hasn't spoken to a person in a good long while. She looks crazy or handicapped to most people, and some spirits are starting to call her "Mama" again. Alembics: Clades, Stereo Humour, Receptive Humour, Redirect Disquiet (fixed).
So that's a decent start, I think. I'll have them wander around the museum a bit at first, and then maybe have Calogero chat with someone (maybe Matt), and then have him drop dead and then they can solve his mystery while the other throng dogs their every step.