It’s time for another install of Mysterious Monday. Today, I present to you an abbreviated version of this column; two more story seeds for your next horror game. Think about how to further shape them into a complete scenario for your players.
Nestled in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains in Western Massachusetts, sits a little town that time has forgotten. The town has gone to shit! The citizens have all but given up on any effort to reinvigorate the town. The single flashing traffic light in the middle town stopped working three years ago; buildings are falling into disrepair and the roads are horrible from repeated winter storms. Despite a dwindling population and the total collapse of the town, the state asylum continues to thrive with patients arriving at regular intervals. In the nearby towns, rumors have persisted for decades that various doctors use their patients as guinea pigs for sinister experiments. Despite the continued arrival of patients each Wednesday from other locations, the beds never fill to capacity. There is also a steadily growing onsite cemetery within the grounds of the asylum. Are the rumors true? What is happening to the patients? What has caused the town to fall into ruin?
Several college students went hiking together last summer with the intention of hiking the entire Appalachian Trail. The trip of a lifetime got off to a great start; they were making good time and documenting their experiences via one of the student’s blog. As the second week came to a close, all three realized that they had taken a wrong turn and ended up on trail spur wound down into a deep and remote valley. Three days off course when they realized their error, they began to formulate a plan to return to the correct trail on the far side of the valley. The valley has a long and frightful history. Small towns (best described as settlements) dot the valley sporadically, each with a population of fewer than 40 full-time residents. Residents who are very superstitious and wary of outsiders. By the time the students make it through the valley and return to the trail, several have been separated from the group. What happens to them? What horrors lurk in this remote valley?