Session Summary #6 -- "Attack of the Killer Potatoes"

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Dead Lands Session Summary #6: Attack of the Killer Potatoes

Several months after the adventures at Red Mesa Complex, our heroes gather again in Idaho, where they pick up the neo-samurai Jim, who has been undergoing training as a Templar in Boise. As they drive along the interstate, they overhear some distress calls on the CB radio, and they go to investigate.

They discover a semi that has been run off the road, spilling produce from the trailer over the highway, and another semi that had tried to come to its aid is being chased by a black tractor cab. The heroes give chase, thinking the black cab to be involved with the Combine, and end up sniping out the left tires of the black cab, forcing it off of the road. They manage to rescue the driver of the wrecked semi, though most of the produce is a loss. (The coyote eats some of the potatoes.) When they go back to investigate the black cab they'd caused to go off the road ... they find that it's gone!

Our heroes head to a truck stop with the other semi truck (and the now truck-less driver). The "Sunshine Truck Stop" is something of a fortress just off the interstate, with walls constructed from junked autos and trucks, and watch towers at the corners. Inside, though, there is lots of parking, and a number of truckers that still ply the interstates have various wares to trade. Our heroes sell off several rolls of toilet paper (which turn out to be a much sought-after commodity...) and manage to get some decent food and get cleaned up ... though the coyote isn't feeling so good.

Over the next few days, the group stays at the truck stop, as some members of the group get sick -- and in most cases, eventually recover -- and they suspect that there's something unnatural about this sickness. Plus, there's the matter of the "ghost trucker" -- and, as the heroes observe, every night at midnight, they see a lone truck going down the interstate, though most wouldn't ever dare to go out at night like that.

As our heroes investigate further, they learn that there was a trucker who'd been hauling potatoes from the town of New Jerome, who got sick while he was at the truck stop. Despite being deathly ill, he pressed on, and ran off the road, killing himself in the process. When they observe the actions of the "ghost truck" at night, they observe that it seems to come into existence at the site of the crash ... then drives along ... then turns back and heads in the direction of New Jerome.

Our heroes investigate the crash scene, and find some potatoes growing in the back of the trailer, though otherwise most of the truck has been ransacked for any possible salvage. While most of the group opts to head back to town, Barney insists on going on to investigate the town of New Jerome. The others let him go on alone on his motorcycle.

Barney arrives in the town to find an oasis of tranquility ... there are no barricades surrounding the town, and the lawns are all nicely manicured, and children play ball in the streets. He stops by one of the houses to ask around, and is invited inside to have some potatoes. It seems that all anybody here does is grow potatoes, as he learns, while trying to talk with them -- and it also seems that all they know about is potatoes, too. Things start to get even more creepy, and as Barney tries to excuse himself, his "hosts" won't let him leave, as yet more potato products are brought for him to "sample". When he refuses to eat, his host forcibly wrenches his mouth open violently. Barney, in a desperate move, plugs the man with his gun, spattering the wall with black goop ... giving Barney the oddest sensation that he's just shot a rotten potato. The man seems unaffected by this, at which point Barney figures that he's most definitely dealing with one of the Walkin' Dead, and he hits the man in the head, which appears to be much more effective. The man's wife is completely unaffected by the sight of her husband being reduced to paste by Barney's gunfire, and still insists that Barney have more to eat ... as the townsfolk begin to gather outside the window.

Barney makes a desperate gambit, leaping through the front window and landing in a shower of broken glass -- protected, thank goodness, by his body armor. He rushes off to his motorcycle, and barely makes his escape, as the zombie-like townsfolk lumber after him.

Barney makes it back to the truck stop and relates his tale of horror, and the truckers hear this and start putting two-and-two together, with some other odd tales they'd heard about New Jerome. At last, they resolve to put together a posse the next day and deal with this menace.

The next day, they all head out for New Jerome with a group of semi-trucks full of angry truckers. The heroes notice that it seems that they've picked up another trucker -- a driver in a black truck. Leonard hails this driver on the CB, and manages to figure out that this is the "ghost truck", and that he's "along for the party", though he isn't able to get much of a conversation out of the phantom driver.

In the chaos that follows, the truckers roll into town, and all the townsfolk are waiting for them. Sure enough, it turns out that they're zombies, every last one of them. After the potato-zombies are dealt with, the truckers burn everything down in hopes of containing the disease that was being transmitted by the potatoes grown here. The phantom truck mysteriously vanishes while nobody is looking ... and Karl, who had been suffering greatly from an illness brought on by these cursed potatoes grown in New Jerome, miraculously recovers.

So, having dealt with yet another bizarre horror of the Reckoning, our heroes load up their Hum-Vee and head out on the interstate, in search of yet more adventure.

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