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Read Chapter 29 Here: https://www.reddit.com/saw/comments/1417n7j/legacy_from_the_book_of_saw_chapter_29_wristdeep/
____________________________________________ *** CHAPTER 30 **\
As Daniel is brought into the control room, his eyes widen at the sight of the bustling tech team huddled around a computer terminal, engrossed in their work. The ethereal glow of multiple screens illuminates their focused faces, while a tangled web of cables drape across the tabletop.
But what truly captured Daniel's attention was the meticulously detailed layout of the museum displayed before the team. The blueprint, marked with distinct security zones and strategic points, sprawled across the surface. Each section was carefully annotated, indicating cameras, alarm systems, trap locations, and other crucial information.
Time passes sluggishly, with tension hanging in the air for what feels like an eternity. The tech team painstakingly maneuvers through digital obstacles, their nimble fingers dancing across the keyboard, determined to breach the formidable firewall guarding the museum's security feed. Finally, success flashes across their faces as they gain access to the coveted treasure trove of footage.
The computer springs to life, displaying a mosaic of individual camera feeds. Daniel’s gaze darts across the screen, observing the technician skillfully navigating through the labyrinth of lenses. Each camera reveals different corners of the museum. His heart races as he witnesses the victims, trapped and vulnerable, captured by the unblinking eyes of the cameras.
Just as the tension reaches its zenith, the door swings open and Lincoln strides into the room.
Aware of the team’s crucial task, Lincoln breaks the silence, “Any progress?” he queries.
A spark of adrenaline ignites in Marlow’s eyes, “We just got it,” he exclaims, unable to contain his elation.
Lincoln’s footsteps echo softly as he circles the table, his eyes fixated on the monitor, and together they notice Gavin sitting on the cold floor, his posture guarded, clutching the box tightly against his side.
Marlow, furrowing his brow, spoke with concern, “That’s strange,” he murmurs.
Curiosity piqued, Lincoln redirects his attention towards Marlow, eager to uncover the cause of his colleague’s unease, “What is it?”
Marlow, delving into the depths of the internal code, sifts through the virtual layers with a sense of urgency. A realization dawns upon him as he unearths an unexpected anomaly. “This shouldn’t be here,” he stated.
Puzzled, Lincoln seeks clarification, “What’s the problem?”
With his eyes fixated on the screen, Marlow reveals the unsettling discovery, “There’s a duel broadcast,” he discloses.
As the significance of Marlow’s revelation sinks in, Lincoln’s gaze narrows, honing in on the critical detail before him. The digital feed displays a timer, ominously counting down from a daunting forty minutes. A sense of urgency permeates his words, “Is it live?”
Marlow focuses on Lincoln, “Yes, but, I need to establish a barrier to block Hoffman out and prevent him from regaining control.”
"Good. Do it. Let me know when it's done." Lincoln said.
Leaving the room behind, Lincoln stepped outside and spotted Agent Kullen with a squad member. Several entrances had been cleared of traps, and the dismantled weapons and explosives were being carefully transported to the rear of a SWAT van.
“We’ve got access to the security feed," Lincoln said, "The survivors are still alive.”
A sense of relief filled Kullen’s words, “Where are they being held?”
“You were right, new construction.” Lincoln confirmed.
Kullen looks over his shoulder towards the expansion area, "We’re still disabling those traps."
"One more thing," Lincoln said, "I didn’t see Logan and Elanor, but Gavin Beck is inside, and he's injured. Can't tell how bad…."
Swiftly responding to the update, Kullen activated his radio and relayed the crucial information, his voice urgent, “Attention, we’ve located three victims. One of them is injured. Requesting ambulances to move to the front immediately and prepare for emergency evacuation.”
Attempting to maintain composure amidst the escalating situation, Kullen addressed Lincoln, “Stay positive, Detective,” he said, his hand trembling, “I just got off the phone with Zeke Banks. He’s on his way. What about Hoffman and Schenk?”
Surprised by the mention of Zeke’s impending arrival, Lincoln inquired, "Zeke is coming here?"
Before Kullen could respond, his peripheral vision caught a glimpse of movement. Across the caution tape, news reporters scurried about, positioning themselves in front of their cameras, a sense of urgency driving their actions.
“What’s going on?” Kullen muttered to himself.
Together, Lincoln and Kullen maneuvered their way toward the journalist, their curiosity triggered by the unfolding scene.
“We’re outside of the National History Museum, where we can now confirm the presence of three survivors trapped within,” the reporters voice resonated through the airwaves, “Gavin Beck, Sarah Harper, and Renee Walsh have become the latest victims in the harrowing saga of the Jigsaw Killer, whose reign of terror has plagued our city for over a decade.”
A sharp pang of shame pierced Lincoln’s core upon hearing the reporter's words, the weight of responsibility pressing heavily upon him.
“But now, for the very first time, we possess live footage capturing the game as it unfolds,” the reporter continued, a hint of excitement in their tone. “The following footage has been extracted from the security cameras situated within the building behind me.”
Stunned by the unfolding revelation, Agent Kullen broke through the caution tape and stepped purposefully in front of the camera, his intention clear - to put an end to the broadcast.
“What do you think you’re doing?” the angered correspondent demanded, her voice beaming with frustration.
Kullen fixed a stern gaze upon the woman, his tone firm, “How did you obtain this footage?”
“It’s all over the internet!” She explains, “The whole trap is being shared online.”
Audiences across the country were turning into the live feed.
As their televisions faded to black, a message materialized: Viewer Discretion is Advised.
Meanwhile, growing tired of Elanor’s desperate cries for help, Hoffman maneuvered her away from Logan, who remained unconscious, and wheeled her into the surveillance room. Pushing her into a corner, he retrieved duct tape from a nearby drawer and used his knife to slice off a substantial length. He then applied it firmly over Elanor’s mouth, muffling her anguished wails that now fell upon deaf ears. Just as Hoffman prepared to depart, his attention was captured by the television, revealing the live footage of the ongoing trap.
Intrigued, Hoffman placed his knife down and took a seat at the nearby table. Folding his arms, he watched intently as Gavin struggled to remove the weighty sandbag from his chest.
“What the fuck?” Amanda exclaimed, seated behind Hoffman, her astonishment, mirroring his own.
Outside the surveillance room, Logan began to regain consciousness. As his awareness sharpened, he quickly assessed his surroundings and searched for Elanor. Shifting his body upward, he felt the tight restraints of the handcuffs encircling his wrists. Peering into the surveillance room, he caught sight of Elanor in distress, while Hoffman remained fixated on the television screen. A wave of relief washes over Logan, knowing that she was still alive. Determined to find a means of escape, his gaze scanned the room until it landed on the aluminum dispenser above him, along with scattered barrels of petroleum.
Across town, Autumn had finished gathering her belongings when she too caught sight of the live footage showcasing the museum trap. Recognizing two of the victims, and recalling the information she had learned from Lincoln about their previous trials, she became engrossed in the broadcast. Setting her bag down, she stood near the couch, locked into the unfolding events, with a police escort standing beside her.
As Autumn remained captivated by the live feed, she witnesses Gavin rise to his feet and stagger toward the women, his movements unsteady. In his approach, he picked up a brick from the tower, clutching it tightly in his hand.
Within the confines of the exhibit, Gavin positioned himself behind Renee and Sarah, observing their relentless efforts to assault the grate obstructing the ventilation shaft. Sarah turned around, and Gavin extended the brick towards her. With determined force, another powerful strike landed, causing one of the bolts to come loose. They repeated the action, gradually peeling the barrier away from the wall, creating a narrow gap. Utilizing their combined strength, they exerted enough force to retract the screen, bending the screws on the left side.
Gavin retrieved another brick from the tower and rejoined the women. Gripping the red brick firmly, his palms began to perspire, a symbol of his mounting apprehension.
“Almost got it,” Renee uttered, twisting and pulling the screen until it finally yielded, breaking off the hinges.
Exhausted, Renee leaned backward, allowing Sarah to be the first to peer inside.
Gavin takes a deep breath, loosening his grip on the stone, anxiously awaiting the reveal.
Sarah sighed, disappointment tainting her voice. The shaft lay before them, outlined with menacing barbed wire and shards of broken glass.
“Told ya,” she said.
“We’ve made progress,” Renee exclaimed, still hopeful, “That’s what matters.”
Sarah’s eyebrows arched dubiously as she voiced her concerns, “We don’t know if that’s a way out and we’re running out of time.”
As Sarah turned to gauge Gavin’s perspective, her world abruptly shattered. A brutal impact from the brick collided with her head, causing blood to spill from the painful gash. She crumbled to the floor, disoriented and struggling to comprehend the sudden assault.
The unexpected violence filled Renee with fear and her mind raced frantically. Without wasting a moment, she launched an attack against him, but her weakened state rendered her efforts feeble. Gavin easily overpowered her, forcefully pushing her to the ground, her head meeting the unforgiving concrete with a sickening thud.
Meanwhile, the horrified audience watching from the safety of their homes bore witness to the unfolding events, their hearts gripped by the chilling spectacle. Each gruesome moment played out before their eyes.
Hoffman, displaying a disturbing apathy, seemed unaffected by the brutality taking place, while Elanor’s eyes bulged from their sockets, a silent plea for help and salvation.
Autumn, filled with disbelief and revulsion, found herself appalled by the heinous attack. Beside her, the police escort swiftly reached for his radio, urgently engaging in communication with law enforcement personnel on-site.
Inside the control room, Lincoln, Kullen, Marlow, and Daniel endured the torment of witnessing the disturbing footage. Their faces etched with concern as their minds raced to find a way to intervene and put an end to the nightmare.
With her stomach to the floor, Gavin straddles Sarah and removes the piano wire from his pocket.
Still dazed from the wicked blow to her head, Sarah fought with all her strength, desperate to free herself from Gavin's torment. She struggled to push him off her back, kicking and flailing while her screams for help filled the room.
Determined to succeed, Gavin attempted to wrap the piano wire around Sarah’s throat, but she instinctively blocked him, using her remaining hand to shield her vulnerable neck. In a surge of defiance, she reached back and delivered a forceful elbow strike to his abdomen. The pain coursed through him, causing him to drop the piano wire to the floor. However, he swiftly flipped her body over, sliding her wrist beneath his knees, effectively immobilizing her. With a frightening resolve, he resumed his vicious attack, tightening his grip around her throat, Desperately gasping for air, Sarah’s face grew increasingly red under the pressure of Gavin’s grip, and her vision began to blur, the world around her fading into a hazy abyss.
Unbeknownst to Gavin, a flicker of consciousness had returned to Renee, and the sound of Sarah’s harrowing struggle pierced through the fog of her own pain. With great effort, Renee attempted to rise, battling the throbbing ache in her head, her focus fixated on the weapon discarded by Gavin, lying on the floor within reach.
Seizing the piano wire with a surge of adrenaline, Renee quickly closed the distance to Gavin, her sole focus on saving Sarah. Without hesitation, she skillfully wrapped the cord around Gavin’s neck, forcefully pulling him away from her friend’s gasping form. Gavin’s hands thrashed about in a futile attempt to clutch the sturdy wire that tore into his flesh.
Sarah, still recovering and crawling to safety, watched in astonishment and awe as Renee took control of the situation. With a fierce determination fueled by anger and vengeance, Renee twisted and yanked on the cord, tightening the grip around Gavin’s neck, causing him to bleed profusely and struggle in agony. Beads of sweat formed on his head, his tongue protruding from his mouth in a grotesque display. His face contorted into a horrifying medley of colors-red, purple, and blue- as the life force drained from him.
Lost in a moment of unbridled rage, Renee’s primal scream pierced the air as she continued to tug on the cord, relentlessly severing his throat. Each pull intensified the macabre scene, painting the floor with a gruesome tapestry of blood. Sarah, a witness to the chilling brutality, could only watch in horror as Renee nearly detached Gavin’s head from his body, the lifeless body hanging limp on the wire.
A heavy silence settles over the room, punctuated only by the lingering presence of blood and the haunting memory of the violence that had just occurred.
The savage display captured by the security cameras spread like wildfire across the internet, captivating an audience of thousands. The harrowing footage was swiftly clipped and shared on numerous websites, causing the viewer count to skyrocket with each passing second. Reactions on social media were diverse, ranging from visceral disgust to arguments defending the act as self defense. The disturbing visuals ignited a storm of controversy, prompting a deluge of calls to flood news stations, with viewers expressing a myriad of complaints and concerns.
Feeling a wave of overwhelming emotions, Daniel emerged from the suffocating confines of the control room, his face flush with disgust.
Noticing Daniel’s distress, Lincoln approached with a sense of understanding. "You alright?"
"Just overwhelmed," Daniel replied, "Needed some air, some space to process it all."
Nodding in acknowledgment, Lincoln offered a small gesture of comfort, “I got some water in the car. Go on. Take a rest.”
Grateful, Daniel made his way towards the car, allowing himself a momentary escape from the relentless onslaught of darkness and despair.
TO BE CONTINUED...
Just wanted to share this with ya'll as this was something that was very special to all of us.
Our campaign has been running pretty strong for the past 4.5 years, with us playing over Fantasy Grounds every other Saturday. The party consisted of myself Playing Rorik Ironfist, a one armed Dwarven Pugilist, Dibble Dabblestone, a Gnomish ADHD Artificer, Tharic, a half elven multiclass Servant of Mystra (mostly Pally/Cleric) and Fedhin, a warforged (robot more or less) wild magic Barb. The campaign started at level 1 and we ended at 20.
All of us players actually work at the same place and have known each other for many years. But our DM, (name changed for Privacy) Mark and I met first on Xbox nearly ten years ago through his brother when he randomly dragged him into a Crota's End Raid on Destiny. Both are Australian, but Mark lives on the East Coast as he is a professional actor. Spends most of his time in theater. But also has done some voice acting in games and a few smaller films.
Over the course of 4.5 years Mark weaved for us literally the best campaign I have ever played in DnD. It was 100% homebrew with the most vibrant cast of NPC's ever, spanning over most of the Moonshae Isles where it took place. We started out on a lowly fishing ship, barely knowing one another. We fought Goblins, saving the Moonwells, protected Kingdoms. We tavelled to the Fey Wilds asking for help on the side of the road, while a bunch of Fey ignored us. We made a quick enemy of an Arch Fey named "Sadereal" whom Dibbel immediately wrote a song about called "Sadereal's a dick". We "befriended" a Green Dragon. We were sucked into a bottle where we lived in a desert until we could escape. We found ourselves on a space faring ship, The Argent Traveler, making more friends of the crew along the way. We made close friends of William, the proprietor "Williams Wonder Emporium", who was always happy to invite us into his home/shop for a cup of tea and a chat about adventure. We generally over-payed Tanka, the kind and mostly reserved Firbolg owner and bartender of "The Ivy Rose", where we would always sit upstairs and drink in our booth to chat about our next steps. This is where Dibble also found a flyer an upcoming Dinosaur carnival. The entire city showed up to watch the dinosaur ships dock, but all hell broke loose when we found that they were out of their pens with all the crew massacred. We had to track down a bunch of Dinosaurs running amok! This is when Rorik succesfully grappled a T-Rex! (well TBH he grappled a TON of things). Rorik found out about his Long lost family (he was Born in Waterdeep, a beggar, thinking he was tossed out due to his misshapen arm) the Lightrocks. We travelled to White Rock, the largest Dwarven settlement only to find that most of my clan was lost, but a good amount were still holding on. We took back the mines from an evil Beholder named Xualaxisk, who was the one that bit off Rorik's arm as a child. Rorik plunged his fist into the eye and had William fashion a new Ironfist out of it. Dibbel grew close to another smart Gnome named Layla and she helped him make new special ammunition for his rifle "Duchess".
But some evil was set to take over the entire Moonshaes as well as Toril. All this crazyness was coming to a head and we had to stop it. "The Onyx Empress" was behind all of this. All of our friends we made along the way were rallying together, and we found a relic that would allow us to meet the Onyx Empress in a pocket plane.
But months before all this happened, Mark told us that we wouldn't finish the campaign.
At least not over Fantasy Grounds.
He told us that for the last session he wanted to fly out from the East Coast so we could finish the campaign. Together. In the same room.
This was obviously amazing. Not only would I get to meet a good friend whom I had never met in real life, but we would be together when we finshed this story that was so important to all of us. We had a few months to prepare while we contiued to play over FG. We rented an AirBNB on Oregon Coast. Planned Food. We all ordered custom Minis from Hero Forge, as Mark was already painting Minis and creating terrain for the final battle/session.
We knew that we wanted to do something special for Mark. Get him a gift. Something to remember this wonderful journey he took us on. We eventually settled on a party portrait. I contacted MANY artists on Reddit and eventually settled on u/Weeeizard
aka Isabell. I asked her to create a drawing of all of our characters, together in the Ivy Rose, but with one extra person there. Mark. Retelling us his stories. Isabell was awesome throughout the entire process. Professional, on time, and never complained if I needed changes done to the characters. She understood how important all of this was to us. We spent four wonderful days together at a rented house on the Oregon coast being nerds. One of which was a 7 hour session where we faced off against our BBEG, The Onyx Empress, with wonderful terrain and gorgeous minis hand painted by the DM we cherish so much. We barely survived only to have the BBEG implode sucking Tharic (the guy toying with the silver flame) in immediately killing him, but sending him back into the hands of his God, Mystra. This is a GOOD death for Tharic. He only ever wanted serve his mistress and was happy to do so to bring balance to Toril. Dibbel was saved barely as he was out of the AOE. The rest of us survived and ended the campaign going our separate ways. Dibbel (the gnome) and Phedin (the warforged) are returning to Caer Callidyrr (the main city in the Moonshae Isles) to help rebuild the city after the destruction the BBEG had brought. Rorik (my character, the tattooed Dwarf) is returning to his clan and family, that he only recently realized were still alive. There is a teleportation circle available so he can go and visit his friends in Caer Callidyrr when he needs.
We presented the art to Mark after the last session and he LOVED it. We all teared up a bit together with him and embraced. He was so greatful for the memories that had now been immotalized.
We finished the weekend, by chilling on the beach, playing a bunch of board games, probably drinking too much and also watching the DnD movie together.
Thanks for reading my wall of text. This was so special for us, and I hope you all have a wonderful campaign/DM out there for yourselves! It's so nice to be able to share the game we love so much with one another.
PS: We're starting a new campaign in a couple of weeks with Tharic's player as DM and Mark playing as a PC!
Here's Isabell's webpage if you're curious on more of her art: https://www.isabellbartnicki.art/links
Also many thanks to u/SterlingVermin
for the Pugilist. Rorik was a blast to play and will probably be one of my favourite characters ever. Although me and my DM had to nerf the class a bit in the later levels.
TLDR: We played a 1-20 homebrew campaign over 4.5 years on FG with a DM I had known for a decade but never met. He flew in for the final session so we could play together in the same room. We commissioned some dope art that he loves. It was a wonderful weekend for us and we're starting a new campaign soon!