I then ran my one shot, a romp through Mythic Russia. The intrepid PCs, who were siblings in a small village, were tasked with finding out why the expected winter thaw had never come--and rescue their father while they were at it. Along the way they rescued the puppy of the Wolf Queen, returned an egg stolen by poachers to the Firebird and were rewarded with a feather, bribed Grandfather Frost to end the winter by giving said feather, passed through to the Representational World, and enlisted the Wolf Queen's help in rescuing their father's remains from the clutches of Baba Yaga before she got a chance to devour them. Bringing Papa back to life was left to be a tale for another day. Alex drew a quick sketch-summary of the action. Like a Bosch painting, there's whole levels of symbolism here that I can't even get into and will just have to pass out of time and memory.
After wrapping up Mythic Russia, we busted out Arkham Horror--and quickly realized we'd bitten off way more than we could chew. Not only were the rules fairly in-depth (a 24-page rules manual?) but the required table space was just too much for our little city apartment to handle. So we set the box back in the closet, earmarked for a time when we have more time and space.
We headed out to dinner after that--oh my god, it was sooooo goooood--then came home for the last portion of the day's gamertainment (check it out, I coined a word!): Alex's All Flesh Must Be Eaten game.
This was to be a special occasion, as we'd made plans to teleconference Tim in from down in L.A. Our initial plan was to use Ventrilo on my computer, but with technical difficulties eating up our remaining time we bailed to Plan B: having Tim call my land line and putting him on speaker phone.
So we gamed with a phone at the table. And it worked surprisingly well. I rolled all of Tim's dice for him with his permission.
Here's a shot of the human participants of the game. That's me peaking into the frame. Des is looking circumspect as Alex launches some sort of zombie attack; you probably can't see it, but he's wearing his I Kick Ass for the Lord shirt--an excellent choice for a Zombie Master!
The game was every bit as crazy and over-the-top as I expected it to be. A renegade magician from the Magic Castle had laid a zombie curse on Hollywood, and it was up to our intrepid band to stop it. In the end, Tim's fallen priest found his faith in time to call down a pillar of Divine Fire on the magician during the final confrontation. I rolled an "8" for damage, and Santiago the Black was incinerated in a column of 80 points of fiery damage.
And so another chapter in my game group comes to an end. But with every ending there are also beginnings. After posting a "25 Things You May Not Know About Me" list on Facebook (in which one of the items was that I play RPGs), I got this comment from a friend in the city:
Okay. I think we should have a night where I learn a RPG. I mean, I read comics and play videogames, so I might as well make the full nerd transformation, y'know?
ETA: I'm sorry, but I just have to share the dinner I had. We went to our favorite Mexican place, and they had a special Valentine's Day menu. From that I ordered the rib-eye steak with grilled onions and a cheese enchilada on top. ¡Dios mio!