Whether in spite of its reputation or because of it, the city of Salem, Massachusetts has become a sanctuary for a diverse and eccentric array of supernatural individuals. In order to maintain the illusion of normalcy for the mortal population, a commission has been appointed to deal with incidents that threaten to raise public awareness

Cast

Eightball

Type: Vampire (Daeva/Malkavian)

Community Roles: Identity consultant; gadfly

Eightball’s not exactly a joiner, but she understands the value of community, and she knows that the best way to make sure people have your back is to make sure they need you. To that end, she’s turned her particular set of survival skills (identity fraud) into a trade that is particularly valuable to to people with unnatural lifespans and plenty of secrets that need burying.

 

Mother Machree

Type: Mage (Verbena)

Community Roles: Elder of the Sistren of the Bitter Well; local eccentric

Mary Machree is an Irish immigrant to the United States.  After taking her brother’s ill-gotten comission and posing as him to become a decorated Civil War sniper she returned only to accidentally murder him.  She awoke as a mage when she placed a blood-curse on herself granting her immortality to live with what she had done.  Now, as Mother Machree she wanders the streets of Salem as the town eccentric and the leader of the new Sistren of the Bitter well.  Always seeking atonement and always ready to fight for the downtrodden.

 

“Coach” Jack Foxglove

Type: Werewolf

Community Roles: Head coach, Salem High School Witches; leader of the Witchcraft Heights werewolf pack

Jack Foxglove is a middle-aged man, single, and lives alone in a modest house, on a modest street. He’s a regular nearly every place he goes – same sports bar, same diner, same barber, same grocery store. He coaches the Salem High Witches (the high school’s football team) and has led them to the first winning record in school history. 

 

Miw

Type: Mummy

Community Roles: Warden of Harmony Grove

Over 5000 years ago Miw was a mortal man in Irem, the first empire, in what is now Egypt. He was a funerary priest who performed the Rite of Ascension – a spell that turned the chosen few into one of the Arisen, who would serve the Sorceror Kings for eterinty. Hoping to please his masters Miw began experimenting to devise a way for the Arisen to spend the centuries in a succession of living bodies, rather than in death-like sleep. But this was not what the masters wished. When he demonstrated the spell on himself the process was sabotaged, and he found his fivefold soul inhabiting the body of a cat. But he remained faithful to his masters thereafter, serving them as he was able, and at the end of his life he was rewarded with the Rite of Ascension, and mummified as a cat.

On subsequent awakenings Miw served various Arisen of higher status or power as a free agent. While working for the widespread cult of Nebit-akh-hotep he was dispatched to Salem, MA to root out the Black Hand, who was using the cult to some nefarious end. He was too late to thwart or apprehend the Black Hand, so while keeping his vigil for the villain, he began taking an interest in the unusual community. He designed a new tomb for himself in a cemetery and became its protector, helping the spirits of the dead to find their way.

 

Truly Reynard

Type: Changeling

Community Roles: no thank you

Truly is a relatively new member of the Salem supernatural community and has been working as a waitress in Bell, Book, & Coffee for the seven years since she arrived. She’s a changeling who doesn’t talk much about her history and also seems to be discreetly but perpetually looking over her shoulder. She has a knack for being in the right place at the right time (or not being in the wrong place at the wrong time) and also for guessing anyone’s favorite flavor of pie.

Setting

Gallows Hill takes place in our version of the World of Darkness–a world filled with supernatural beings hiding just below the surface, trying to get by without being discovered and causing a panic–using a lot of the oWoD lore, but tweaking the details to make things more compatible and less immediately hostile.

The campaign takes place in the city of Salem, Massachusetts, which has over the years become a kind of sanctuary for the supernatural. It’s a relatively peaceful place, but with so many strange beings in such close proximity, that peace requires some careful attention.

System

Gallows Hill is a World of Darkness game, using the full gamut of White Wolf’s monster systems, of various editions (leaning nWoD for systems, oWoD for lore).

The world-building prologue, Uncover Something Old, uses a variant of The Quiet Year called The Deep Forest.