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Nerdarchy > Parody  > A Wild Critmas Carol – The Nightmare Before Critmas – Zoo Mafia RPG Edition
Bunni Malone newest Mob Boss for the Zoo Mafia RPG

A Wild Critmas Carol – The Nightmare Before Critmas – Zoo Mafia RPG Edition

TTRPGs Hacked: PbtA Fusion of 1920s Mobsters and Zoo Animals

‘Twas the night before Critmas, and a new Nerdarchy group was formed.

The group gathered together, and at Steven’s house, they dormed.


For it was Steven’s turn to run a holiday RPG campaign.

The group was already doing Zoo Mafia TTRPG, which had gotten insane.


Their characters are all animals with 30’s mafia spice,

These animals were naughty, with no chance of being nice.


The first was a goat, played by Robin, named Eddie.

A button was he, and a little unsteady.


Dave played an alligator thug he named Theodore Rex.

As a grifter, this reptile was hard to perplex.


Ted was a partridge, a nod to a name, our dear Zookeeper’s.

This bird was a stool pigeon lookout, great with using his peepers.


Lastly was Carlos’ driver, a reindeer, and Rudolph by name.

You’ve probably guessed our theme here, so let’s dive into the game.


The heist was afoot, a real holiday pleaser.

The crew was trying to teach a lesson to a raccoon tycoon, who was named Ebeneezer.


As you might guess, Ebeneezer was a miser.

So, the crew set to heist his speakeasy by day, when he’d be none the wiser.


Of course, this task was a real powder keg of danger,

So, they staked the place out from the petting zoo’s manger.


Set up for the holidays, the group had swapped places

With the décor characters, despite their animal faces.


None suspected the zoo’s nativity scene with animal “props.”

They simply looked and moved on, and no one called the cops.


Once the coast had been cleared and the lock was picked open,

The players slunk to the food court shop, full of peanuts they were hopin’.


The four sneaked in the back and to their surprise,

The raccoon tycoon lay, snoozing atop the peanut pile, their prize.


The tycoon awoke with a pistol in hand.

He saw our four mobsters, still clothed like they belonged in nativity land.


“Who are you, strange fellows?” the raccoon demanded.

“You can’t be in here, and I’ve caught you, red-handed!”


That’s when our grifter came up with a plan.

“We’re the holiday ghosts, and we certainly can.”


“Be here, that is, for we’ve come to see you.”

“I care nothing for celebration!” the raccoon cocked his gun, too.


Lying through his crocodile tears,

Ol’ Rex gave a performance, the act of the year.


“Oh, my dear tycoon, don’t you remember me at all?

I’m your now long-dead partner, Marley.” “No, you’re not. You’re not small.”


“I’ve been born again, a reincarnated.

This is why you see me in the body of a gator.”


“These ghosts, these three, will teach you the meaning of the season.”

“That seems rather stupid. What’s the rhyme, what’s the reason?”


“If you don’t,” said Rex, as he thought lightning-quick,

You’ll be reincarnated as a poodle, made to do tricks.”


The tycoon did hate dogs, especially poodles.

As he pondered, the gator shared his plan, the whole kit and kaboodle.


While each “ghost” took turns walking Ebeneezer around,

The others would be here, stealing his wealth in a mound.


“Fine,” said Ebeneezer, “I really do hate dogs.”

“Then we’ll begin first,” said the goat. “We’ll visit the hogs.”


The hogs were a well-to-do society class,

Exclusive, they shut out Ebeneezer like an ass.


The goat took him to spy on the muddy pit of pigs.

They wallowed in filth, despite their Night Life upper-crust digs.


“They gained their wealth through abusive factory running.

They pay their workers peanut shells for their work, devious and cunning.


“And the poor workers,” said the goat dressed as Mary,

“Give up their proverbial orchards, exchanged for one meager cherry.”


“These workers are those whom you then extort,” said the goat.

He took the raccoon’s pistol and jammed it in his throat.


“And to think all your wealth and your cheating would end,

With a simple trigger pull, my greedy little friend.”


The button then uncocked and removed the gun.

“You’re like these hogs, so uppity and filthy and one…


Just one little change is all you would need

To make up for your cruelty and miserly greed.”


“And what change is that?” The raccoon inquired.

“Stop extorting the poor, that’s what’s required.”


“With that, the button left, and the partridge lookout arrived.

Now, let’s see some of the families who’ve barely survived


Your gambling racket’s extortion attempt.”

And with that, in broad daylight, the bird and raccoon went to a village of tents.


“Here, in this slum of a back alley, behind the lions’ den,

Is where your goons have been harassing the poor squirrels and a peahen.”


The raccoon looked at the deserted area and said, “So?”

“So,” said the partridge, “They have nowhere to go.”


“Are there no prisons, no workhouses, no factories at all?”

“There are,” said the partridge. “Look at you, with your gall.”


“Here you have literal piles of peanuts to spare,

And the richest among these poor folk is the hare.”


And this hare to which the bird did refer,

Had only enough to eat after selling her fur.


“To feed her little ones aplenty,

She sold her fur for a coat, at the rate of one peanut, plus twenty,


Which I’m sure you would know with your miserly ways,

Is enough to feed her and her children for two days.


But what’s she to do when the winter’s cold snaps?

Or forbid that she fall into the zookeeper’s traps?


Then how will her children feed themselves and live on?”

The raccoon’s lips quivered, but his words came anon.


“I don’t know,” is what he finally confessed.

“And that,” said the partridge, “is why you’re cursed and they’re blessed.”


“I once was poor myself,” the raccoon defended.

“I worked for my wealth, I clawed and upended.”


“You say that you worked for your wealth, and it’s true.

Exploiting the weak is such a taxing thing to do.”


“Now, you listen here-” “No! You listen!” The partridge shrieked.

“You’ve hands and sharp teeth, not weak bones and a beak.”


“You know nothing of animals beyond your own world.

You’re a predator at heart.” At this, the tycoon’s lips curled.


“Even still, you now take pleasure in your privileged place.”

The partridge glared. “Get out of my face.”


The partridge then alighted into a pear tree,

And Rudolph pulled up in a golf cart. How did those humans not see?


In truth, they had seen him and dismissed him as a costumed man

Which was all part of brilliant Rudolph’s grand plan.


He drove the raccoon all over the zoo,

Showing innocent victims and non-innocent, too,


All of them were harried by the tycoons exploiting factories and extorting racket.

Each with their own stories and lives, barely able to hack it.


Then finally, as the sun had just set,

Rudolph took Ebeneezer to the grimmest place yet.


It was the animal graveyard, behind the zoo’s front.

Here, beside its entrance, the golf cart did shunt.


Then Rudolph led Ebeneezer to an open grave.

“This is the reward that you’ll one day have.”


The raccoon looked inside. “It’s only a hole.”

Rudolph nodded. “Eventually, all wealth comes to naught, and you live like a mole.


You spend your days underground with the worms.”

At this, the raccoon uncomfortably squirmed.


Then Rudolph shoved the Raccoon down inside.

He clawed at the crumbling dirt wall and he cried,


“Please let me out, dear spirit, I beg!”

Rudolph smiled darkly. “Nice act. Break a leg.”


With that, the reindeer turned and he drove away.

He joined up with his companions who’d had quite the day.


Together they hauled peanuts, bootlegs, and cash.

They took them all to their safehouse to stash.


As each regaled others of their holiday grift,

The raccoon across the zoo finally got himself a lift.


And he escaped his dirt prison with the help of a crane,

The bird, not the machine, but he’d gone half-insane.


Muttering and mumbling about spirits and wealth,

Ebeneezer was clearly in much poorer health.


He returned to his home and was half-shocked, half-relieved,

Ebeneezer saw something he scarcely believed.


His wealth was all gone, and his stores were all dry.

You’d think he’d be angry, but instead, he gave a sigh.


A chance to rebuild and do things the right way.

That was the gift those ghosts gave him that day.


No ill-gotten gains to niggle his mind.

Instead, he could focus on the joy he could find.


He’d use his connections, confections, and what

To build up his factories and speakeasies as they ought


To have been the whole time: both equal and fair.

Thus the holiday campaign ended right there.


Thus, the Christmas Rex, a green villain who lied,

grew his heart three sizes inside.


The Yule Goat, Eddie was all but destroyed,

As he drowned in holiday spirits, knocked out, overjoyed.


The Partridge who alighted the pear tree,

Had his first day of Christmas where he didn’t have to flee.


And Rudolph who flashed lights on his Critmas Eve ride,

Had terrorized the thief of gifts. He felt tingly inside.


As for our holiday zoo tail my friend,

We must now conclude, for it’s reached its end.


At the risk of sounding just a bit wordy,

Merry Critmas to all, and we hope you stay nerdy.

P.S. Get in the know and get notified when the Zoo Mafia TTRPG launches on KickstarterHere

Steven Partridge

The quill is mightier than the sword, and the partridge quill never falls far from the pear tree. Wait, this was going somewhere. Either way, Steven Partridge is a staff writer for Nerdarchy. He also shows up Tuesdays at 8:00pm (EST) to play with the crew, over on the Nerdarchy Live YouTube channel. Steven enjoys all things fantasy, and storytelling is his passion. Whether through novels, TTRPGs, or otherwise, he loves talking about storytelling on his own YouTube channel. When he's not writing or working on videos for his YouTube channel, Steven can be found swimming at his local gym, or appeasing his eldritch cat, Yasha. He works in the mental health field and enjoys sharing conversations about diversity, especially as it relates to his own place within the Queer+ community.

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