The Black Brand


Three days ago, five teens snuck onto a Chippewa Cree reservation where they performed an old ceremony in a misguided attempt to snub a trouble maker. Unfortunately for them, it worked.

The Briefing

1. The Crime occurred outside the small reservation town of Box Elder, MT, near the Bear’s Paw mountains.

2. Evidence monitoring algorithms were placed on alert in relation to passages retrieved from a blood spattered paper found at the scene.

3. The search party is headed by the county sheriff in coordination with a BIA officer as the apparent crime was carried out on tribal grounds and involved two tribe members. The agents are part of a special task force, ostensibly put together by the state.

4. The area near Box Elder was recently hit by an extraordinary cold weather front and much of the terrain is covered in snow.

5. Periodic snow storms are impeding visibility.

6. By coincidence, a gun show is visiting the nearby town of Great Falls.

The Scene

The agents are provided with the pertinent evidence in the case, including coroner reports, crime scene photos, a list of next of kin, and access to the surviving teen, Kitchi “Kit” Thompson. An interview with him, or the local police, will indicate there was a fifth teenager present: One Samoset “Sam” Kyle. Now missing.

Photos of the scene upon discovery show a disturbing tangle of limp bodies fixed with shock amidst red and white snow, (SAN 0/1 violence if the agent isn’t used to this kind of thing). Footprints indicate the teens arrived in two groups, one from the town of Box Elder and another from a pickup parked to the west of the crime scene. Careful scrutiny of the photos indicates one person present went barefoot. Bloody booted footprints lead away to the North.

The paper found at the scene is a printout discovered near a bloody depression around which one victim was splayed. Though water worn and stained, it is legible and claims to be a “ceremony of exile” as translated from the Cree syllabics.

The Ritual

“With great regret, we come together in distress. One of our number has traveled the path of exile's, casting out our ways for those of the black brand. We do not wish harm upon them, nor can we abide them to live among us. They will pass from these lands and travel to the lodge of exile, where they shall live out their days. No food will be given, nor water, and no tribesman shall look upon their face. Let it be done.”

The text then details the need to heat the blade of an obsidian spear in a campfire and brand the subject. Once performed, it is said that “The Rebel” will guide them to the lodge of exile in the high mountains from whence they may never return to this earth.

Researching this paper comes up with little information, and nothing matches it in historical documents or legend, though it may remind an agent with Anthropology or Occult 30% or better of the story of The Wendigo from Native mythology.

Investigators searching the net are treated to odd results claiming to be from various sources mentioning The Rebel and his, “Black Brand,” including the full text of an occult Mexican bible, (1 day to read, 0/1 SAN Unnatural), and others.

Searching the dark web or interrogating Kit leads to a website claiming to peddle in spells. Witches and wizards offer their services to place or lift curses. Thorough investigation costs 0/1 San Unnatural for the most disturbing requests.

Three spells can be found alleging to be procured from Algonquin texts, one of which matches the printout. The other two are titled: “The Oath of Service” and “The Right of Great Passage.” Feel free to provide appropriate rituals from your campaign or the Handler’s Guide. Note: no evidence is provided, beyond the disclaimer, that Cree is the culture of origin.


The trail leads, rather clearly, to the South East of the crime scene. The initial search teams focused largely on a tight 5 mile radius until some extra scrutiny revealed a very clear direction to the visible tracks.

Sam Kyle has covered a lot of ground in the night but reports start coming in the next day from drivers who believe they saw someone trekking through the snow and across roads in the early morning near highway 234, roughly 30 miles to the east.

Before this point, occasional blood splatter can be witnessed in the tracks, which are easy to follow with a search score of 50 or higher.

Sam spent the night in an old shed just off of a farming property ten miles from the scene. Investigating the shed results in a SAN check for helplessness, (0/1d4), as the snow and dirt near the shed is soaked with blood and urine and various other body fluids. Anyone with Medicine or First Aid knows that someone losing this much fluid will not last long. This makes reports seeing him ten miles or more away from this scene appear unlikely.

The storm becomes more of a barrier from here. It’s winds aren’t strong but they do pick up the lightly packed snow now and again and create flurries. What’s more they are interspersed with freezing rain and hailstones. Anyone caught out alone must make survival checks. A high score in Survival or a modest score in Science: Meteorology, allows a player to recognize unnatural funnel patterns, (SAN 0/1 Unnatural).

The trail leads in a straight line towards the Bear Paw mountains but following it becomes much more dangerous as Wendigo began to make themselves known in the storm. They harass pursuers with their terrifying screaming, hampering their driving, and smashing equipment carried on the outside of vehicles. (See Wendigo stats for the effects of a scream).

The Mountain

Climbing the Bear Paws requires leaving behind any large vehicles the team may have been using. Fortunately this seems to be a calm point in the storm weather events are less intense here. Still, the team may be subject to Survival checks to traverse steep terrain quickly. Climbing gear, snowshoes, and snow mobiles will prove useful, here.

If the party has made their way here swiftly, they have a chance of spotting Sam climbing the hillside, surrounded by obscuring snow. An agent with high Alertness may notice that his eyes appear to gleam in the light.

Sam is heading up a trail at the top of which is a snowbound cabin. The Wendigo hover in the barren tree branches above this cabin, obscured by the weather, looking very much like hanged corpses. Searching the cabin the players see that the roof and back wall has collapsed and amidst the wreckage is a bloody shoe, (0/1 San from Helplessness for realizing Sam is suffering a great deal).

If they haven’t yet, the Wendigo attack in earnest, here. As the agents agitate the site, a harsh wind howls and freezing mist penetrates the cabin. With it comes a moaning wail and, soon after, the Wendigo, tearing at the door and crawling along the ceiling.

If the agents are delayed or wait out the storm till morning they find Sam's remaining bloody footwear at the mountain peak beyond the lodge. Something fleshy and slick fills them and anyone scrutinizing the garments must make a 0/1 check for Violence OR 0/1d4 from Unnatural should they make the appropriate connection.

The search is now over.

Catching Sam before he reaches the peak offers them an opportunity to rescue him given they find a way to interrupt the effects of the ritual. Having a tribe member force feed him food or water (and spending 1d6 POW), is the simplest method.

Should the team dispatch the Wendigo quickly and meet Sam at the peak, they see The Rebel’s obscured form standing before him, (1/1d10 SAN from Unnatural). If they fail to reach SAM quickly and negate his transformation, witnessing him floating away, footless, into the sky is particularly disturbing, (1/1d10 SAN Unnatural).


Samoset “Sam” Kyle AKA The Wendigo. He is marked by the Black Brand of The Rebel. He instinctively seeks out high ground from which he can ascend to the, “place beyond reach.” Sam has a record and spent some time in juvenile detention for crimes against his fellow tribespeople. He also seems to have gotten into trouble off the reservation now and again. He and some of the other teens present were served for being minors in possession at the same party last year.

Kitchi “Kit” Thompson. Performed the ceremony, but freaked out and ran when Sam began to act strangely. Feels terrible for his involvement. He is reluctant to say exactly what happened.

Agent Sky of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. They have experience in this region and are well respected. Ready and willing to help the DG Agents accomplish their mission. A possible DG candidate?


Wendigo (SAN 0/1d8)
STR 24, CON 25, DEX 9, INT 8, POW 16
HP 25, WP 16
Armor: 4 points thick and frozen hide
Alertness 40%, Athletics 90%, Stealth 80%, Track Prey 99%.
Attacks: Claw 80% (1d10 or Grapple), Bite 80% (1d8) and communicates wendigoism (see The Black Brand).
Flight: May hover or fly up to 30 mph
Howl: Spend 4 WP and agents must make SAN test or gain temporary insanity; stun on success
Icy Hide: Immune to lethality, half damage from ordinary attacks. Hypergeometry inflicts full damage upon a wendigo. Fire ignores the wendigo’s armor and inflicts double damage.

The Rebel (SAN 1/1d10)
The Rebel is beyond a physical form. He appears as a fit and naked man, holding in his hand a spear of Yew. His head is obscured in a disturbing mask of swirling blackness, that seems to emanate from the center of his face. The tip of his spear also has this effect.
Dismissal: Certain hypergeometric principles may cause The Rebel to abandon the physical world for the Abyss. This requires access to or knowledge of a ritual that dismisses The Rebel, a successful activation roll, and the permanent expenditure of 2 POW.

The Black Brand: Branded Agents must make SAN tests (at a −20% penalty if branded more than once, or −40% if the Agent has ever eaten human flesh). On a failure, the Agent gains +6 STR and +6 CON, adds 40% to his or her Unarmed Combat skill (up to 99%), and does 1D6 damage (and communicates wendigoism) with a bite. The Agent has a new disorder: an addiction to eating human flesh. The Agent’s feet begin to deform and their eyes change color; this can be noticed with an Alertness test. At the end of the operation (or later at the Handler’s discretion), the Agent transforms into a wendigo and flees for the north.


This was an entry to the 2017 Delta Green shotgun scenario contest, written by Justin Ford.

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