The Society and the Boanthropic: A Brief Primer for New Pilgrims

Introduction

This is a brief summary of the main plot of the Society and the Boanthropic, including short bios for the major characters designed to help interested participants catch up quickly before events resume this Fall. For an in-depth, in-game timeline of all events that transpired through June and July as well as more detailed character analyses and pictures, click here. For all the latest Haunting coverage of the Society and the Boanthropic including announcements for upcoming events, please click here.

 

Introduction to The Society

The Society, a hedonistic cult that lives in a compound somewhere in the Los Angeles hills, began making trips down into the city to make contact with potential new inductees. Led by a mysterious man known only as the Founder, this leader is rumored to possess incredible powers, including teleportation, inter-dimensional travel, and some form of immortality. He is reclusive, rarely seen by even his own followers. In his place is Tad Shafer, the public face of The Society who was hired by the group to be its intermediary with the outside world, facilitating their visits and serving as their mouthpiece in person and online. Though the Society espouses love and spiritual oneness, there is a darker side to their activities resting just beneath the surface.

 

One of the members of the Society, a young woman named Mary, is pregnant. It is rumored that the Founder was the one to impregnate her–without her consent. The rumors further suggest that the Founder plans to use the baby to enact a ritual related to the story of the Moonchild, a myth of dark magic and the antichrist. To prevent this, a resistance cell has formed within the Society led by Mary and another Society member, Eric Andrew Hoff, who is also known by his resistance code name: The Black Rose. With the rallying cry of this resistance “Save the Moonchild”, Eric is recruiting would-be resistance members to infiltrate the Society to rise in their ranks and save Mary. However, another force is at play that also wishes to stymie the Founder’s plot: the Boanthropic.

 

Introduction to The Boanthropic

The Boanthropic are entities of pure energy manifested from the intense trauma experienced by people who endure severe, dehumanizing emotional abuse and manipulation that strips them of their memory, will, and identity. This intense emotional pressure then pushes the last remnants of the victims’ spirits out of their physical bodies, leaving them behind, alive but boanthropized; the spirits then join a larger collective spiritual body known as the Boanthropic. They are ethereal beings that have come to earth to intercede and guide a group of willing humans (who they refer to as Pilgrims) towards the goal of preventing more pain and suffering at the hands of people like the Founder. The Boanthropic Resistance, or “the Bobo” (separate from The Boanthropic) led by Mary and Eric believe in the power of the Boanthropic but have never actually made contact with them in the way the Pilgrims have. Generally Boanthropic spirits cannot be seen, but lately Pilgrims have witnessed them entering the physical realm by influencing physical objects, sending messages via electricity, and apparating into strange beasts.

 

This complicated history was at one time documented by another mysterious figure known as The Wayfarer, a devout researcher and computer hobbyist who spent his life researching the origins of the Founder and his powers while also attempting to unravel the mysteries of the Boanthropic before he apparently disappeared in 1983. The men and women of the Boanthropic Resistance revere the Wayfarer and his research as they continue his work pursuing the Boanthropic spirits and challenging The Society. The Boanthropic spirits’ chief means of communication is through an old woman named Beverly who lives in Montauk, New York. From an early age Bev was visited by the Boanthropic and proved to be a willing conduit for them, often conveying messages through an Instagram account that Bev manages. Recently Bev has been aided in her Boanthropic duties by Krysta, a seventeen year old girl who lives next door.

 

As Mary’s due date fast approaches, Pilgrims must to continue to aid Black Rose and the Resistance by rising through the ranks of the Society as all sides wait for the Boanthropic spirits’ return to earth.

 

A Primer for the Various Groups

  • The Society: The Society is the chosen name of a community of likeminded spiritualists who live together on The Mountain, an as of yet undisclosed location high up in the hills outside of Los Angeles. The Society first began decades ago under the guidance of a mysterious leader known as The Founder. They believe in helping people reach a state of Oneness and “orgiastic bliss;” maintaining a conscious awareness of your body from moment to moment, celebrating indulgence and sensation. Most Society members live up on The Mountain full time, rarely if ever venturing down or interacting with people outside of their community.  Only very recently have they ventured down in an official capacity with some regularity. Society members can be identified by their all-white clothing, a white string that they tie to their wrists, and a symbol written on their hand that they must continuously reapply. They have recently created a website, an Instagram account and a Facebook page to better engage with interested parties.

 

  • The Boanthropic: The Boanthropic are a mysterious entity, a spirit-like manifestation of trauma that phases in and out of our plane of existence. A new Boanthropic is formed as the last remnant of a person’s spirit is pushed from their body during extreme emotional trauma, leaving their corporeal bodies behind, a living shell boanthropized. Somehow they have asserted themselves into the physical world to guide the resistance movement within the Society, bringing more members into the fold to achieve their goal of rescuing Mary from the Founder and preventing his plans for the Moonchild. They communicate primarily through Beverly using the Instagram account theboanthropic. Krysta has also started a blog to keep track of her and Beverly’s experiences with the Boanthropic.

 

  • The Bobo: The tongue in cheek nickname of the Boanthropic Resistance. They are avowed acolytes of the Wayfarer, following his teachings and protecting the knowledge that he left behind while adopting his penchant for 1980’s technology and aesthetics. It is widely believed that the Bobo is the same resistance movement that Eric “the Black Rose” and Mary are involved in. It is unclear how the Bobo have been able to work in tandem with and receive help from the spirits of the Boanthropic, as they have admitted repeatedly that, like the Black Rose, none of them have ever actually heard or seen signs of the Boanthropic in the way Bev or the Pilgrims have. They communicate with the Pilgrims primarily through their Instagram account.

 

Character Guide

Tad Shafer
Tad Shafer
Chief Spokesperson and Prudent Necessary of the Society
The chief spokesperson for The Society and their primary link to the outside world, referred to by the group under the official job title of “Prudent Necessary.” Tad himself is not a member of the Society; he comes and goes as he pleases, visiting the Mountain regularly and enjoying a congenial relationship with those who live there, including the Founder. Tad plays the role of the relatable skeptic, but is deeply protective of the Society when he sees evidence of anyone speaking out against them; especially anything related to the propagation of the Boanthropic.
Eric Andrew Hoff, also known as ``The Black Rose``
Eric Andrew Hoff, also known as ``The Black Rose``
High ranking Society member and secret Resistance contact
Leading the double life of one of the Society’s most accomplished and visible members and one of the chief architects of a resistance designed to bring about its downfall, Eric is a warm, spiritual man with the ability to turn on a dime when speaking clandestinely about the cause. Recognized for his charm and magnetic personality, he is the Society member most commonly asked to venture down from the Mountain for recruitment events. He is desperate to aid the pregnant Mary in her plan to escape from the Mountain before it is too late. A strong believer in the Boanthropic, though he has never seen them nor heard their call.
Mary
Mary
Captive Society member, Resistance contact, and mother-to-be of the Moonchild
A longtime member of the Society, Mary appears to be both an active member and the chief mission of the resistance. She is several months pregnant with what is believed to be the child of the Founder of the Society, likely against her will. She has demonstrated an adeptness at covert activities within view of other Society members and has done what she can to recruit and inform new members of the resistance despite her more restrictive circumstances She was the first one to implore curious participants to “Save the Moonchild,” likely referring to her own unborn baby.
The Founder
The Founder
Enigmatic, unseen leader of the Society
The mysterious, as of yet unseen leader of the Society. His true identity and history are apparently unknown to his followers. The Founder is the father of Mary’s unborn child and the conception of said pregnancy was likely done under conditions against Mary’s will. Rumors of the Founder are running rampant, with people suggesting that he has certain powers and has actually lived many lives. The Founder’s current age/bodily appearance are in question because of his many purported trips to other dimensions. Believed to have performed satanic rituals at Devil’s Gate Dam as part of an attempt to fulfill the prophecy of the Moonchild. It is presumed that now with Mary his goal is close to completion, though his motivations remain a mystery.
The Wayfarer
The Wayfarer
Missing Society researcher and Boanthropic ally
A mysterious figure whose exact age, identity, whereabouts, and well-being are unknown. He has been described as the foremost authority on the history and practices of the Society apart from actual members. It was his life’s work to unravel the mysteries of the Society and the Boanthropic, but for whatever reason he ceased his activities in 1983 and went into exile. He is characterized by his connection to old technology. His motivations may lie in a connection he had to a woman a long time ago.
Beverly
Beverly
Conduit of the Boanthropic
A proud resident of Montauk, New York, Beverly has been a sporadic conduit of the Boanthropic for most of her life; the spirits' occasional visits stem from an undisclosed childhood trauma involving her family. She is both deaf and mute. While working with the Boanthropic does take a toll and sap her strength, she feels complete with their presence and mourns their departure. She has no connection or history related to the Society that she knows of. Beverly communicates the wishes of the Boanthropic through the Instagram account theboanthropic.
Krysta
Krysta
Beverly's next door neighbor and a Boanthropic ally
The seventeen years old next door neighbor of Beverly, helping her maintain the theboanthropic account. Has chosen Taylor Swift as the face of her online presence because her parents wouldn’t want her to share pictures of herself with strangers and she loves Taylor’s music (obviously!). She has demonstrated great concern and reliability when caring for Bev or aiding the Pilgrims in potentially dangerous situations. She has started a blog about her time with Bev and the Boanthropic.

Conclusions

As promised, the Boanthropic are gathering strength in preparation for a return to our world on the night of October 5th. Meanwhile, the Society will welcome the Harvest Moon down from the Mountain the weekend of September 22nd as they induct new Seekers into their ranks up to level 16. Now is the time to join the Pilgrims in their quest: save the Moonchild.

About The Author

Chris Wollman
Chris first checked into the McKittrick Hotel in 2011 and has loved immersive theatre ever since. He holds a Bachelors in Theatre from SDSU, a Masters in Education from USC, and is currently teaching Shakespeare to kids. As Douglas Adams said, he loves deadlines; he loves the whooshing noise they make as they go by.
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