The DresdenVerse

Final Reckoning with Rafielli

From Kevin’s Journal (as transcribed by Aunt Gladys for the White Council).

The vampires have made a critical error, and the time for our attack has come.

A gathering of wardens was called for, at meeting location nine. Jasmine, Miles, Vinnie and I arrived with the bulk of our peers for a briefing on what turn out to be one of the first major large scale offensives of the war. In the briefing area, we met Sanya again, which was nice. Having that kind of ally on hand is always welcome.

The purpose of the meeting was simple, the White Council had identified a major stronghold for the vampire alliance. The Red Court was relying heavily on the financial and political influences of their White Court allies throughout Europe and the United States – especially in the funneling of funds and other resources. Our allies had been doing a very good job of ferreting out and destroying these resources, but the time had come for decisive action. It also soon became clear why our team had been summoned.

The White Council had located an estate in northern Italy being used by the White Court, specifically David Bell and the vampire we’d come to know as Rafielli. It turns out that their family had been responsible for a number of major operations for the Red Court, and their estate was a central location for various money laundering and resource management operations. The mission was simple: Destroy the stronghold, and get whatever information and intelligence was possible from the files and equipment there (our human allies were on standby to recover anything technological). There was a catch, however.

We’d learned that the Demon we’d seen in Portland was near to completion of its emergence into our world. The night of our attack was chosen to coincide with a ritual being performed by Bell and Rafielli. It would mean their attention would be focused elsewhere, and they’d be guaranteed to be on the premises. It also meant at least one innocent pregnant woman would be there, awaiting sacrifice. We could not strike too soon, or risk them fleeing or fighting us at full strength. An innocent life was being hung in the balance.

The plan was for a small strike force to penetrate the complex and deactivate the shield generator – Sorry, I got distracted there. Our team would infiltrate the compound using an underground escape path that emerged in a nearby church. We would expect minimal guards, as the path was supposed to be well hidden. I of course, expected a trap – possibly an entire legion of their best troops. In order to enhance our force, we were given the option of various allies to bring along. We chose to bring along an Ogre. He wasn’t very bright, but he could hit hard and was nearly impervious to magic (so friendly fire was not really an issue). We also took several magical potions and tattoos to use during our attack. It would be dangerous for us, but we best knew what to expect from these White Courts and their allies.

We approached the church from the never-never side. It looked normal for a church, especially an old one. We entered quietly (the ogre still outside- I named him “Chewie”), and didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. Miles opened his site and noticed something… dark behind the altar. Whatever it was quickly manifested (it was a veiled sorcerer, one we had actually met before). The sorcerer used some black magic (unsuccessfully), and we dispatched him quickly and moved towards the secret passage.

Once inside the tunnels, we relied on chemical lights and a big ogre to keep us safe. We came across a series of cameras which were easily hexed (thus alerting any guards to our approach). The first guards were human mercenaries, equipped with high quality military gear. We used evocations to stun them, and did our best to knock them out with mundane means. Unfortunately, a grenade angered the ogre and he dismembered two of the guards before the rest surrendered. Another passageway lead to a heavy metal and stone door, which we found to be trapped (both magically and with explosives). We quickly created a ward to protect ourselves while we detonated the trap (focusing the blast outwards towards any other guards). We had to hurry, as the ogre was becoming increasingly erratic and impatient. When the dust of the blast cleared, we charged into a large underground room – full of surprised guards (surprised we were still alive).

The large room must have been part of some audience hall at one time. A dozen guards with grenades, automatic weapons, and shotguns engaged us. The ogre charged in, drawing most of their fire. The rest of us spread out, denying them the ability to focus fire. Two white court vampires (skilled in melee fighting) entered as well. The fight was brutal, but Jasmine and Vinnie hounded down the two vampires while Miles and I kept the guards busy. When the vampires broke, so too did the guards. At this point in the fight, the guards were aware of the assault on two fronts and they were easily routed (many would later surrender to our forces outside). With the entry secure, we pushed on to find David Bell and Rafielli – and stop the ritual.

We quickly found the main room, most of the guards were defending the perimeter and few other defenders gave us any trouble. Inside we found Rafielli, David Bell, a Demon, and another warlock. The warlock was no trouble, but Bell and Rafielli used powerful mind magic and wards to prevent us from entering. I charged in anyway, and between myself and Vinnie we managed to kill Rafielli and seriously injure David Bell – disrupting the ritual. Bell showed his true colors and fled, leaving his brother to die. The Demon worked its powers against us, and the young woman was clearly close to death – the baby still inside her. I charged through the demons wards and was knocked out by the force of it.

Afterwards, I found out that the rest of my team was able to force the demon away (without the ritual to power it). Miles successfully delivered the baby, but the woman died during the procedure. We quickly learned that she (and likely the baby) were gifted with magical talents –which might explain the complex ritual. A thorough search of the estate netted a huge repository of dangerous magical artifacts. As expected, we found a great deal of other intelligence assets: money, maps, and details of various operations throughout the world. Our allies will have a field day with most of it.

In the aftermath, the council assayed the damage and results. I offered to take the baby girl and raise her, since her family had all been killed. My fellow wizards and I named her Mathilda – in honor of the poor Filipino girl who had been corrupted and taken by the Red Court and the Denarians. It is my hope that the child will have a better chance in life than her namesake.

End of report.

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