It’s the 21st century, and the Fungi from Yuggoth have a Christmas present for the people of Investigatorville! Yummy eggnog, everyone’s favorite Yuletide beverage. There couldn’t possibly be anything wrong with it, could there?
So, as usual, the Keeper targets the Investigators’ hometown for the next round of hijinks. This time, in a plot I’ve just realized is uncannily similar to that in the Josie and the Pussycats movie, a major corporation (which I am arbitrarily titling the Shoggoth Corporation) is using the joys of blatant commercialism to bend the minds of the general populace to their will.
In the pursuit of this goal, they have sent out coupons for a free family pack of Shoggoth-brand eggnog! A family pack consists of, you guessed it, 8 pint-size containers. Each one is loaded with what amounts to state-of-the-art, mass-produced brainwashing drugs that are triggered by a sequence of colors (much like those that trigger epileptic seizures!). For the beta-test of their program, they are starting with one city and will branch out into others if it works well.
At the same time the eggnog is available, media affiliates owned by the Shoggoth Corporation are broadcasting subliminal messages to trigger the drugs in the eggnog! Within a week, 75% of the town is suddenly as calm and orderly as the Stepford Wives.
As an added twist, the Investigators are unable to get hold of any eggnog through a series of unusual Keeper-induced coincidences. Store just ran out, coupons lost in the mail, cat drinks all of it, etc. So, they get to watch with horror as the town warps around them into some bad commentary on conformity!
What do they do from here? First, they need to get the hell out of Dodge, because Phase 2 is to have the 75% who are now pod people indoctrinate those who aren’t. Second, once they are not being directly hunted down, they can trace back the whole eggnog program to the Shoggoth Corporation. At this point, the best they can hope to accomplish is to get some bad press going against the Shoggoth Corporation and get a public apology from them. There might even be a class-action law suit which will have a negligible effect on them. This is, after all, a cyberpunk adventure.
What if they don’t strike back against the corporation? Well, provided the GM doesn’t just fiat that someone else will take up the banner, this could be the first step in a global takeover. The population slowly domesticated for use as slaves by future masters. The ultimate identity of these future masters is up to the Keeper, though my personal favorite is the mi-go. This blends sort of well with someone running a game based heavily off of Delta Green.
Jeremy Zimmerman is a teller of tales who dislikes cute euphemisms for writing like “teller of tales.” His fiction has most recently appeared in 10Flash Quarterly, Arcane and anthologies from Timid Pirate Publishing. His young adult superhero book, Kensei, is available as part of Cobalt City Rookies. He is also the editor for Mad Scientist Journal. He lives in Seattle with five cats and his lovely wife (and fellow author) Dawn Vogel.