Meddling Kids RPG Need: Basic RPG and any compatible supplement.

Teenagers solving mysteries and crimes have been popular for years, beginning with Hanna-Barbara’s Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? And continued with cartoons like Josie and the Pussycats, The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, The Funky Phantom, and Jabberjaw. The setting can be anywhere –or any time—and usually involves anywhere from 3 to 6 kids (The Chan Clan has the record with 10 kids.) and a pet. The pet is usually a dog or a cat, but does not have to be (Jabberjaw was a shark). Sometimes there was a special companion, such as the ghosts Muggsy and Boo, in The Funky Phantom. Meddling Kids cartoons have at least one thing in common: The kids are usually minding their own business when the trouble starts. Then, the mystery begins, something spooky happens, or they meet someone –or something—scary. Before they know it, the kids and their friends are involved, and, being the heroic kids they are, they stick to it until the mystery is concluded and the crook is captured. And among the last thing the villain says before being taken to jail is: “And I would have gotten away with it, if it weren’t for those meddling kids!” Let’s create a group of “Meddling Kids” and go through a short mystery: 1. Create characters as you would for any other RPG, but they are no older than 17 years of age. We’ll make an even number of kids, four: 2 boys and 2 girls. We’ll also add a pet and a “special companion”. First up is Mark Matthews. He’s your average leader: Handsome (blond-haired, blueeyed); athletic (captain of just about every sports team); smart (at least A’s and B’s), likeable and quite a leader. He is the oldest at 17 years old. Strength: 4 Stamina: 4 Hit Points: 12 Smarts: 4 Charisma: 7 Dexterity: 4 Magic 4 Skills: Leadership; gymnastics, detective Equipment: Owns the RV the group travels in. Second is Lisa Harper. She’s the fashion-plate of the group. She’s wealthy, and is the one who finances the group’s travels. Which explains how they can afford to travel around the world. She’s pretty (Red-haired, green-eyed), and is Mark’s girlfriend. She’s about 16 years old. Strength: 3 Stamina: 4 Hit Points: 11 Smarts: 5 Charisma: 7 Dexterity: 4 Magic: 4 Skills: Fashion,

Equipment: Mostly cosmetics and jewelry. Anything “girly”. Third is Marvin Holmes. He is a decedent of Sherlock Holmes, and is a fair detective. He doesn’t possess the knowledges or even the courage of his ancestor, however. He is decent-looking (Brown hair and brown eyes), and is skinny and wirely, giving him more dexterity than Mark. He possesses a nose that can sniff out mysteries or danger. He is about 16 years old. Strength: 2 Stamina: 3 Hit Points: 12 Smarts: 3 Charisma: 4 Dexterity: 7 Magic: 3 Abilities/Powers: Detect Mystery/Danger. Skills: Equipment: Fourth is Dani Dennison. This is the same girl who first met Binx the black cat, and Billy Butcherson, the Zombie, when she was eight years old. She is now a 16 year-old, and has gotten together with three of her friends (Mark, Lisa, and Marvin) to investigate strange things that have been going on lately. She has honey-blond hair and blue-eyed. Her crush is Billy, which has given her a “Goth-light” kind of look. Strength: 4 Stamina: 5 Hit Points: 17 Smarts: 7 Charisma: 6 Dexterity: 8 Magic: 11 Abilities/Powers: Magic Spells. Skills: Detective, spell-casting, Weapons: Equipment: Book of spells that can counter the ones from Winifred Sanderson’s Book of Spells. Binx (Cat). This is actually Thackeray Binx –a boy from the 17th century—in the form of a black house cat. He has returned to this form to help the teen-aged Dani and her friends. He is 317 + years old. Strength: 2 Stamina: 3 Hit Points: 15 Smarts: 6 Charisma: 5 Dexterity: 10 Magic: 10 Abilities/Powers: Immortality (will always come back to life when he “dies”); speech (is familiar with modern terms.) Skills: Jump, climb, tracking scent, enhanced senses, night vision, running, witch lore (especially the Sanderson Sisters) Weapons: Teeth: 1d3; Claws (x2): 1d3 each. Billy Butcherson (Zombie). Billy has once again awakened from his eternal sleep to help Dani and her friends. He has not changed in the eight years since he first met Dani, her brother, Max, and their friend, Allison. Dani –now in a “Goth-Light” state of mind (the dark look, but not the dark attitude)—has developed a crush on Billy. Billy is 300 + years old. Strength: 9 Stamina: 12 Hit Points: 30

Smarts: 8 Charisma: 9 Dexterity: 9 Magic: 8 Abilities/Powers: Regeneration (1d6 HPs/turn. Max time: 15 minutes); Superhuman traits, Low Pain Level; Warm Skin, Retains Memories/Old Skills (see Zombie Hero RPG rules for details.) Skills: Fencing (Str), Winifred Sanderson’s Secrets (Smarts); Weapons: Sword (1d6) Equipment: 17th century gentleman’s clothing, in browns, torn and soiled from the grave. 2. Now, we need a reason for this group to be together. Investigating the strange is one, but since we’re using three characters from the movie, Hocus Pocus (Dani, Binx, and Billy), let’s add a little something. How about this: Eight years after the Sandersons were defeated by Max, Dani, Allison, Binx, and Billy, someone has discovered Winifred’s Book of Spells. This person has decided to continue the evil of the Sanderson sisters, so he –or she—has begun to learn from the book. With some minions, this person travels around in an RV, going from place to place, searching for mystical items. It’s up to Dani’s group to stop them. 3. Now we need antagonists –that is, foes. Most Meddling Kids cartoons have different antagonists every episode –usually turning out to be some crook in a monster costume. Rarely is there a reoccurring enemy. An example of one would be Dr. Dred and O.G.R.E. in Drak Pack. (The Drak Pack can be counted as “meddling kids” because they are so much like groups like Mystery, Inc. of Scooby-Doo, they just happen to be monsters.) For our group, we are going to have one main antagonist, plus minions. Leandra Sanderson is a young woman who is the descendent of the Sandersons, possibly of Sarah, maybe even Winifred, herself. She has found Winnie’s Book of Spells, and is determined to find a way to bring back the Sanderson sisters. In order to do this, she must find several mystical items that, when brought together, will return the sisters to life, without the Immortality Potion. But they must be brought together at a certain time in order to work. Strength: 4 Stamina: 5 Smarts: 7 Charisma: 7 Dexterity: 6 Magic: 11 Abilities/Powers: Magic spells. Skills: Magic, Magic Lore, Understanding magical runes, potion-making, magical item creation, Weapons: Equipment: Witchcraft supplies and equipment, RV (mobile headquarters) Zombies: These are Zombies like Billy that Leandra has resurrected to do her bidding. As they tend to have minds of their own, and can even change from evil to good, she does not raise very many of these, preferring the mindless kind. (See Note, below, for mindless zombies.) Strength: 8 Stamina: 8

Smarts : 6 Charisma: 6 Dexterity: 8 Magic: 6 Abilities/Powers: Regeneration (1d6 HPs/turn. Max time: 15 minutes); Superhuman traits, Low Pain Level; Warm Skin, Retains Memories/Old Skills (see Zombie Hero RPG rules for details.) Skills: (Depends on former life.) Weapons: (Depends on former life.) Equipment: (Depends on former life.) Note: She can also resurrect a mindless kind of zombie for “expendable” minions. For these zombies, Dexterity is 3, Smarts is 1 or 2, and Charisma is 2. They can not speak, except for groans and grunts. 4. Name the group or groups. Meddling Kids groups tend to have names, especially if they are singing groups (like the Chan Clan, Josie and the Pussycats, The Neptunes, etc.). Even Scooby and his friends have a group name: Mystery, Inc. They’re original name was “Mystery Five”. For our Meddling Kids group, let’s call them, Mystic Sleuths. Leandra’s group –such as it is—is referred to by the Mystic Sleuths as “The Z-Crew”. 5. Now that we’ve got our groups, let’s get started on the introductory mystery. At least five to play (A GM and the four kids). A sixth could play Billy, and a seventh could play Binx. Part 1: Theft Sanderson Cottage, Salem, Massachusetts 2001 It is late night, and the old cottage/museum is dark. It is cluttered with ancient artifacts of 17th century witchcraft and 20th century tourist commerce. It smells musty with dust and old spices and herbs, and cobwebs cover everything. The stub of an old candle lays abandoned in a corner, and on a pedestal is an old book. The book is covered in red leather. On closer examination, one can see that it is human skin. About halfway down the right side is a round, gold-like setting. A figure in a long, black cloak enters the building through a window. It glides past all the other objects and heads toward the pedestal. When the figure arrives, the round setting opens to reveal an eye, which looks about the room. The figure snatches up the book, and, with a swish of the cloak, is gone. Part 2: Jacob Bailey High School Four kids –Mark Matthews, Lisa Harper, Marvin Holmes, and Dani Dennison—are gathered in the school cafeteria. Allow each character to introduce themselves to one another before they get to discussing the news, namely that the Sanderson museum was robbed. Marvin has the morning newspaper. Reading the paper gives the following information: A. The robbery happened sometime late in the night.

B. It’s believed that only one person was involved. C. Only one item was stolen: Winifred Sanderson’s Book of Spells. Nothing else was disturbed. D. There are no leads at the time being. Let the four kids discuss this information, and try to form their own opinions. If they decide to investigate the Sanderson museum themselves, they will find “Crime Scene” tape all over the place. They can not get into the building. Dani may suggest a visit to the Old Burial Hill Cemetery. If the kids go there, they will meet a couple of Dani’s old friends. Part 3: Old Burial Hill Cemetery However they get there, the first thing that happens is that the kids will meet Binx. Binx is a talking black cat who is really the spirit of Thackery Binx. He has returned to his immortal form to help with a new problem: Someone has Winifred’s spell book. Have the four kids react to Binx however they like. From out of the ground, a zombie breaks free. But this is not any ordinary zombie. Dani should recognize him as the gentle Zombie, Billy Butcherson. Allow the kids to react to Billy. Binx knows who has the book: Leandra Sanderson, descendent of the Sandersons, but which one is unknown. He also knows that Leandra intends to use the book to bring back the witches with a spell that is even better than Winifred’s Immortality Potion. But she needs certain items for the spell. Binx, however, does not know what they are. Neither does Billy. GM Note: One of the items is the string from Billy’s mouth, which still hangs loose from when he cut it. Alternately, it is in the scrapbook Billy and the kids made soon after Billy’s body was moved to a mausoleum. If Billy is in his mausoleum, the gravestone is embedded beside the door, and Dani leads them there. In this case, she will introduce Billy to the others, and explain what happened that Halloween night, eight years ago. If Leandra decides to get the string straight from Billy, she will have to capture him to do so. He will not surrender the strings on his own. She will not want to be in contact with Billy’s body any more than she has to. She dislikes him because of his part in the defeat of the Sanderson sisters. If Leandra decides to invade the mausoleum for the strings, she will wait until Billy, Binx, and the kids leave, then sneak in and get the strings.

In either case, Leandra will get the strings, and the kids will know that they were the first magical item needed for the spell. One clue –a scrap of paper—tells that Leandra will need a total of 13 items. These are random, and there is a long list of magical items. She now has the “Strings from the mouth of the Zombie, Billy Butcherson”. She needs 12 more items to cast the spell. Part 4: Continuing the Adventure As this is the end of the school year, the kids, Billy, and Binx are free to continue the chase. They get an RV to travel in, permission from their parents (they’re going on a summer road trip with Dani’s friend, Billy.), and the race to the magical items continues. GM Note: To continue the adventure, make a list of magical items –make them up, or use real legendary items, such as the pen the Magna Carta was signed with—and pit Mystic Sleuths against Leandra and her “Z-Crew” in whatever location you want to put them in. Just run with it. Of course, this is just an example. Players and GMs can recreate their favorite “Meddling Kids” groups, or create their own. Play it how you want it. Fill your adventures with animals and NPCs from Zombie Hero: Animals, and Zombie Hero: Friends, Foes, and More supplements.

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