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The story so far… part 6

We decide to go to the Blue Pyramid – Philippa is wearing a corset. Grant has hidden a revolver and lady Robin has the standard rifle in the pants. In fact we are all pretty guntastic.

The blue Pyramid is full of loudly gesticulating customers, and there are belly dancers wandering around. People are putting money in their pants – Lady Robin sees these as her kind of people. We ask if Tewfik is about and she goes and gets Yalesha (another dancer). Apparently he’s not in yet but we arrange to meet her at the coffee shop next door at midnight. A fat guy comes over and shouts about us making trouble for his dancers.  He is apparently the owner. His name is Abdul and he asks for us to leave.

At midnight, Yalesha comes out of a side door and goes to the coffee shop where we are waiting. She asks if we know Tewfik – but doesn’t sound happy. She asks if we are friends, and asks if we know that the police spoke to him. Abdul told her we were investigators. Her boyfriend has disappeared (a week ago) and thinks Tewfik was involved. A truck has been coming once a month to the back of the club – a special selection of friends of Adbul and Tewfik. Boyfriend left in the truck and never came back. Abdul claims that the boyfriend has left the country, but Yalesha doesn’t think he would leave without saying so. Tewfik is just a spice dealer, but when he got  questioned by the police, everyone got very nervous. He was friends with some important looking men in suits – including Gavigan. Tewfik’s spice shop is on Ardour Street.

Inspector Barrington phones up Patrick at the hotel in the morning. A belly dancer has been stabbed through the heart at about 1am. He goes in for questioning. Barrington asks if she seemed afraid for her life – we said that she was afraid of Tewfik. He offers to rent us an unmarked car to help stake out the place.

We phone Mickey Mahoney to ask about Alan Groot – the guy who was attacked by a fog monster. He is now in an institution in Scotland for the insane, although the attack happened in London.

STAKING OUT THE CLUB

At midnight the truck pulls up, and at 12.15 it leaves and we followw. It doesn’t go towards the docks, but north towards Essex. After an hour and a half we are near Harwich (we think…) The roads get smaller and smaller. We turn off the lights and back off a little. It makes a sharp turn to the right down a tiny road. We wait a minute and then follow. It goes half a mile into boggy ground  – there is a fence in the distance.. it goes through some open gates and disappears inside. We go towards the fence and notice it is 6 feet high and etends as far as the eye can see. the gate is cast iron and open – a chap waves us through. Probably because they want to kill us rather than because we are waving our pimp canes.

We are driving along a levy 5 feet high. We cross a bridge. The bridge is in fact a turnstile bridge. Nadgers. As we reach the ISLAND to the right is a large manor house with a big ol truck outside. The back of the truck is open and no one is inside. There are some burnt out but still warm cigarettes, and you could fit about 20 people in. In the manor, there are lights on the lower floor. While we discuss if cultists would chill indoors or outdoors for rites and stuff, Phillipa mentions that she has seen an obelisk on the way in. We head over and see people in robes with torchlights.

The pyramid at the top of the obelisk is wonky.

Philippa and Robin go look in the manor for robes. It is dusty and hardly any furniture. There is a big fireplace in the hall with a brick that looks weird. When we pull it the fireplace opens out onto some stairs into the basement. We go down the stairs to a large iron door. There are cells with big irons rings for shackles. We find some robes (fuck yes.) and also 5 people in the cells. They are tied up but apparently alive. They are mostly insensible, but one is alive, unhappy, but compus mentus. We put on the robs and talk to the awake guy who is an Egyptian. He is apparently a cultist who has been bad and locked up. We explain that we may let him go – but he doesn’t want to as he suspects that the ritual will kill him. Then he suspects that we are not actually cultists as we didn’t try to kill him. Tewfik is the head of the cult – the cult of the black pharaoh. Gavigan also helps run it. Tonight is the sex ritual apparently. As the other prisoners haven’t left, the ritual hasn’t really got going. The black pharoah will send his minions to rape the victims. We bop the guy over the head and carry him out – some cultists suggest we take him to be tied up. We put him in the boot of the car.

BACK TO THE OBELISK.

Dancing and shit starts. The ladies take off some of their clothes (i.e. the top half) and the sanity rolls commence. Grant and Patrick are right in there and roll for sanity. Phillipa and Robin are on a hill at a slight distance. The clouds start to go purple. We take a picture of the victims all tied up and run like fuck. As we leave, we heard a loud crack and some howling. Some large shadowy forms turn up. We think ‘Oh my word!’ and drive our way back to London. We ‘appear’ not not be followed. we get back at about 3am. Inspector Barrington is waiting for us.

We show him the photo – including a blurry picture of Gavigan. We interrogate our cultist.

CULTIST TIME!

– Our book suggests that the black pharaoh is just a name for something bigger. The uk branch of the cultists have connections to Shanghai, Cairo, and New York – the HQ is somewhere around Cairo. They consider themselves eminently better than the dirty prehistoric cult in NY that is Gavigan’s contact.

-The manor house is called Miser House – previously owned by some Egyptian nuts, but then Gavigan purchased it. He is the owner of the entire area. They send out some police officers who arrest some tired looking cultists, but not Gavigan. They seem wild eyed and not fully there, but can’t explain where Gavigan went.

– On Gavigan’s desk: Dear Aubrey, Elias has been dealt with in New York – You must stop Brady, this. It is stupefying that he has evaded us for so long. This man amy become an obstacle to our Great Lord. If you wish I will…

It is dated yesterday and in Gavigan’s hand. It was clearly unfinished.

THE END (for now…)

The story so far… Part 5

We meet up with Lucy’s friend Astrid the stage magician. We have no idea why she’s here, but she is wearing a sparkly bikini, so we roll with it.

Penhew Foundation

All impressive and shit, and there are gorillas in bow ties outside. Astrid claims we have an appointment and they let us through. Monkeys.

The lady at reception arranges an appointment, but we have half an hour to piss around. There is a visiting scholars library and also a public museum.

Grant goes in the library, and finds some vague references to a period in Egypt where a sorcerer called ‘the Black Pharaoh’ ruled the Nile.

In the scholar’s section, Phillipa rolls on luck, and notices suspicious looking men, i.e. they are Arabic. They are looking through the scholar’s area, and talking in gibberish. They go to the back door. Astrid rolls to hide, and we follow them to the  back where they go to a loading area. We peek through the window – the men are loading a large heavy crate into the van – we can’t see the shipping label. We go back inside.

Patrick looks up the word ‘hotep’ in the library – an ancient Egyptian word meaning ‘rest’ or ‘peace’. She knows that ‘hotep’ turned up as a partial word in the human skin book though.

Meeting Mr Gavigan

We suspect he’s in the box, but then we meet a dapper young businessman in power stripes. He’s all like ‘Hi bitches’. He’s got a large oak desk.

When he says we are not the first to visit he has a facial twitch, which recurs when we mention Elias. Elias asked about the Carlyle exhibition and about cultists etc. Apparently Carlyle’s mysterious black lady ran off early in the exhibition with £3,500, they then went to Kenya and shit happened. They were investigating the period where a sorcerer ruled the Nile.

Patrick wanders around the office while Grant, Astrid, and Robin go on a tour – the safe in the office is both open, and empty. NADGERS!

Grant notices on the way home that an Egyptian is following us – once we notice him, he disappears down a side street. We follow him but he notices and nips into a pub, and we lose him. We end up near the limehouse docks. Astrid rolls for fast talk to see if they know the guy and where he has gone. People glance at a warehouse, and then fall silent.

We notice a lorry parked outside, and it has the same number plate as the one at the Penhew foundation. There are four people wandering around – they are lascars. We go back to the hotel room in order to grab explosives and guns. Oh yeah, explosives and guns bitches. Also shanks. For shanking. We left Astrid behind.

We don’t see Astrid,  but then she touches on the shoulder and iss all like ‘shhh, this way’. There are about seven men, patrolling in a pattern. This is no ordinary warehouse. The truck is there but the suspension is looking high enough that it is probably empty. Astrid sets pyrotechnics in the van. As it turns out, Astrid overdid it a bit, and 8 people run out of the warehouse to look at the truck. Lady Robin stakes out outside, everyone else goes in.

The crate is indoors , Patrick crowbars it. Inside is a very large octagonal green mossy stone. It has dark brown stains on the top. It appears to be a sacrificial altar stone, probably Mayan era. The brown stains look like very old blood stains. None look new. The shipping label on the box says ‘Ho Fong imports, 15 Kaoyang Road, Shanghai China’ Underneath is ‘attn Honorable Ho Fong’.

The distraction begins to die down, and they all run. Astrid is trapped inside, but then sneaks out. As she shuts the door, it makes a loud click. London fog is setting in, they grab Rockerfeller and head for the hills. As we are running through the fog, the fog wraps around Grant and slides past him in a disconcerting manner as though it tries to grab him, but fails. It was disconcerting to say the least. Patrick also feels felt up by the fog, but it feels a lot firmer, and he stops. The fog leaves off, there is an arm around Patrick though. The tentacle goes up Patrick’s nose and she takes damage for not being able to breathe. Astrid notices his distress – Patrick loses 5 sanity, Astrid 5. There are 10 foot long fog tentacles, one inserting itself into Patrick, and 5 others. Astrid shoots and it goes straight through the fog. Patrick struggles and breaks free of the fog, and notices a smell of burning hair. We drop a flashbang as we run away, upsetting the fog enough to slow it down and we escape.

Patrick’s temporary fear is of things being inserted into her – including food.

Once we get back, Phillipa  thought she heard the tap tap of shoes while we were fighting the fog-thing. Like someone in very smart clicky shoes. She rolls against her occult and remembers something from the newspaper office. It was about a guy who was strangled by a fog thing and had the smell of burning hair too. The victim was Alan Groot.

Anyhoo, looks like we’re going to the blue pyramid, Derby, or China. Or maybe back to Mahoney.

The story so far… Part 4

Lady Robin spends plenty of time fucking sailors and regains a crap ton of sanity, everyone else gets only gets a little bit. As it turns out fucking sailors is a good cure for temporary insanity. We are on a boat to England.
When we get there, Philipa phones up the Penhew foundation and the secretary says that Mr Edward Gavigan is busy for the next month. When prompted that he may take personal engagements she didn’t mention THE RICH HISTORIAN she hung up. Phillipa is shit.

So we decide to go see Micky Mahoney. He is irish – loooooooolzorz.
Apparently Elias came asking about a death cult operating in London, but seemed too afraid to go into too many details as they were well connected. He went through Mahoney’s files and seemed particularly interested in 3 of them.

FILE 1 works of art with horror in on sale for £300 Miles Shipley is the artist and they are pretty  horrific, i.e. maidens ravished. They look so real that they may be from first hand experience or photos even though Shipley has no formal training. Shipley says that he is in contact with another dimension and merely paints what he sees.
contact details attached

FILE 2 2 murders and a serious assault in the Valley of the Derwent. Apparently unrelated. A farmer and his wife in lesser Edale were torn to shreds on consecutive nights in a nearby area. Someone else driving in the area saw something humanoid but not a man, which attacked his car.  Someone claimed to have shot it but residents have seen it since. Bizarre wailing at full moon reported. Apparently around the mountaintop is massively dangerous. MARP MARP MARP

FILE 3 Slaughter continues, and scoop offers reward. An unidentified foreigner was found floating in the thames, the 24th victim in a series of bizarre slayings. The victim was beaten severely by several people and stabbed through the heart. The series of murders has spanned 3 years. Sherlock Holmes is being called out of retirement. All took place in London.

Inspector Barrington has been investigating the murders – they’ve been called the Egyptian murders as 17 of the 24 victims were Egyptian natives. The previous inspector went missing too.

He has been to see the paintings, and they were so unnerving he needed a guinness. The address is 6 Holbein Mews, and the artist lives with his grandmother.

______

We go to see the artist, Miles Shipley

Grant notices there is a skylight at the top of the house and the buildings on either side are apparently deserted.

A decrepit old lady answers the door, a bit dotty and with her knitting. We flash some cash from lady Robin’s knickers and are let in. The room is bare with a slopy roof and the aforementioned skylight. The skylight is painted black, big painting covered in a sheet on an easel, and painting against the wall. There are four tiers of paintings along one wall, crap ton of paintings.

The man inside looks ragged and hobo like, a bit grubby etc. He is trmbling and nervous. Patrick claims he’s been having some bad dreams and wants to look at the paintings. Artist is clearly bananas and screams WANT TO SEE PAINTINGS? PAINTIIIINGS!

The canvases are quite gruesome and weird, Patrick volunteers to have a look.

The first painting is a malevolent colour and true size, appears to be a paiting of a swamp with lizardy things crawling through the swamp. Not pretty to have in your living room, but no sanity roll yet.

Next picture temple like building (aztec pyramid ish?), lots of people raising their hands and praying, rising over the building a humanoid creature with a massive red tongue where a head should be. it is HUGE. teeny tiny worshippers are wearing hoods with red ribbons round the front.

Patrick loses 1 insanity point and needs a guinness. Miles claims he’s seen it in a dream, it’s a gift.

Grant looks at another pile.

DM keeps asking Chris to spot hidden. More paintings, more swamps, lizards, antarctica. they are unpleasant but not gibbering insane unpleasant. Grant loses two sanity points.

Philippa looks through the biggest stack of paintings. Loses 5 sanity points. Finds naff all. Phillipa is scared of snow.

Grant looks in the last pile and loses three sanity nothing interesting to find. He narrates his own life and believes he’s in one of his own novels. He rolls for idea and luck – narrating himself he mentions the stench of the house, but then it reminds him of the stench of a reptile house at the zoo.

We pay Miles, he names the notes after us, Tanya, and Elizabeth. We ask the old lady what brought on Miles’ ‘gift’. a couple of years ago, suddenly he locked himself in his room and paintings happened. She makes us leave.

We break into the house next door to look at the black painted skylight. There are 2 bedrooms and then the attic in the skylight in Miles’ house. Phillipa rolls for occult. Has ominous feeling. Standard.

___

We go to the pub. Have a nap.

Go see Inspector Barrington
We go to scotland yard. Go Grant go!

Elias came enquiring about cult murders, came to say that the murders were probably related to a death cult (black pharaohs). We show him the painting. They have an egyptologist, from Penhew Foundation. He said black pharaoh definitely not related, method of killing definitely different, Elias probably just attention seeking. MARP MARP MARP cultist.

The inspector does not recognise the sign of the bloody tongue found on elias, but says it looks like a bat. One of the victims called out HOTEP when he was dying (egyptian rest or peace) Many of the victims hung out at the blue pyramid club in soho – they staked it out but no leads.

A spice dealer, Tewfik Al-Sayed was called in for interview, guide for egyptian expedition. He also said black pharoaah extinct, tailed him but nothing interesting. Connected with Penhew Gavigan recommended him as good egyptologist.

Predecessors file focuses on blue pyramid and death cult. Was somebody playing them as a fool, or has the files been edited??? Probably not.

______

LEADS
DERBY – scary mountain
PENHEW – possible cultists
TEWFIK AL-SAYED – spice seller
MILES’ HOUSE – creatures?
BLUE PYRAMID NIGHT CLUB – black and white minstrel time.

The story so far… Part 3

Reconvening again, the team decide to read the remaining books:

 

People of the Monolith: mostly talks about the being who lives under the seas, talks about the cults that follow him but all in a fairly abstract way, minus 2 insanity points

Patrick reads Selection de livre d’Ivon and loses 5 sanity. with weeks of study it could be used to learn magic. sanity points lost because it is all occult and shit.  As patrick has lost a crap ton of sanity he goes a bit bananas and now has temporary agoraphobia.

lady robin rockerfeller reads Pnakotic Manuscripts and loses 8 sanity. the book will improve ritual magic.  As lady Robin started out with very little sanity due to inbreeding etc. she also goes a bit batshit, and has hypersexuality (satyriasis if you’re clever) occasionally wandering around with her rifle while absolutely starkers.

We decide that’s enough for one night, and go to bed.

we have weird dreams of men with long black beards with scrolls in front of pyramids (of the non-inverted variety)

ELIAS’ FUNERAL

Only us and Jonah Kensington arrive.  Patrick brings an umbrella to help with the agoraphobia, robin snuggles up to also  ‘help with the agoraphobia’. Philippa gets all upset about the priest’s book.

Later on we see a guy in  adirty mac and hat with suspicious bulge under the elbow apparently waiting for us to leave.  Grant asks if he’s there for the funeral and he claims he knows we were there at the night Elias was killed.  From behind a tombstone, Patrick asks  ‘how do you know?’

Grant explains that Patrick is afraid of the outdoors and can’t come out, the man notes down ‘Patrick Dubious then?’ Patrick asks who he is, and he answers ‘lieutenant Pool’,  and more to the point, he wants to know why we weren’t taken in for questioning. he works for NYPD, and Patrick asks for id. he gives a look.

he asks us not to leave the state as we may be called back for further questions.

Lucy (a.k.a. guest character) turns up as the lt. is leaving and recognises him as someone from the homicide squad. She approaches Pool and asks why he’s there. apparently he’s investigating ‘another’ ritual murder. He says that they have all been similarly gruesome. they have taken someone in but they’re not being particularly helpful – was found with a knife and will probably go down for life. Thinks they probably acted alone. lt says he didn’t tell us anything as we were really hostile. To be honest, he was badgering us AT A FUNERAL.

GRANT

goes to the police office, and is let in (bitchin’ persuade skill bitches), because one of his ten readers happens to work at the reception desk. He bumps into  Pool, and apologises about how hostile we were and then pretends he is researching his new book re: death cults. He asks about guy in cells, and Pool claims he is a heroin addict, not a death cultist. There have been 9 victims over the last few years but Pool doesn’t really link them together.  A cult expert came in to chat about it. Dr Lemming or something.  The victims have been killed over the course of 2 years, but they are keeping it quiet from reporters. Further questioning shows the accused has gone to psychiatric hospital and is not in the cells any more. Pool believes it is gang presence to blame, Grant believes otherwise. The police are trying to avoid the real issue. The getaway car from the night elias died was stolen, the person whose car it was is not believed to be involved.

EVERYONE ELSE: Emerson imports is a long narrow buildoing on the docks, it’s grim and grimy. We meet Arthur at the door, who says that Elias came a couple of days ago asking about the import business. He asked about Mombasa and Ahja Singh in particular, a Mombasa based exporter. We ask about Silas n’kuame, who we find out manages a small business down town, a juju house, selling stuff from Mombasa popular with local kenyans, v. profitable. 137th street, east of Lennox ave.

JUJU HOUSE

We go downtown to the juju house. It’s all like dangerous and stuff. there’s a little alley with two winos. The front door to the shop is actually a beaded blind. no cthulhu mythos roll, but Phillipa thinks the shop has an oppressive uneasy feel about it. there are tribal fetishes for rituals all over the shop and there is one old black dude behind the counter. Lucy notices he has a key around his neck on a leather thong.

We ask if he knows Elias, he came in and asked about what was sold, “definitely nothing illegal”, but apparently DID NOT ask about cults. Grant asks him about the Bloody Tongue, which rings a bell from Silas’ youth. Some uprising happened in his youth, as a child people talked about it. Probably before his time.  we ask if he knows anything about worsip of bats – not really a kenyan thing apparently. Grant pushes the fact that the bloody tongue use batshitsticks, draws a blank. Elias asked about kinds of people that bought things “definitely nothing illegal”, but nothing about cults. Grant perceives that we are not being told the whole truth.

patrick assumes that Elias would only have not asked about cults if he thought Silas was involved. nadgers.

when the DM rolls saying “well you’ve been here for a while now…” we opt to turn tail, but then some black guy comes in. Lucy tries to look under the big rug over the trapdoor while Grant attempts to distract the big guy. He rolls an epic 99 and fails. We try to look under the rug and there is a trapdoor. We leave.

When we leave one of the winos has left. also nadgers.

WE GO TO LONDON

but before we go we leave copies of our notes with Jonah, and let him know we’re going. He suggest we meet up with his friend Mickey Mahoney, a tabloid publisher (paper name: scoop) and he loves gory stuff. elias used to meet up with him to get the scoop on gory cult stuff.

‘will the ocean protect’

WE’RE ON A BOAT MOTHERFUCKER DON’T YOU EVER FORGET.

The story so far… Part 2

After a week long hiatus while the DM and one of the key characters go on holiday, the team reassembles.

16th January: The team sleep uneasily, having dreams about inverted pyramids, and a land where the sky is dark and the ground is light. However, we sleep well enough to heal up all our wounds, which is always nice. Grant calls up Lady Robin to ask if she can join him for his appointment with Prospero House Publishers. After a little confusion over how a 1920’s phone works, she agrees. Phillipa calls Lady Robin. A similar confusion as to the operation of the phone ensues,  but they agree that it would be best to meet up at Patrick’s bookshop to swap information and go to meet Jonah Kensington together.

Having realised that they all had the same odd dream, the team consults Phillipa to interpret the dream. Apparently, it is a good sign, suggesting that it is going to be bunnies and unicorns all the way. Lady Robin begins to doubt the extent of Philllipa’s abilities as at best, ‘hit-and-miss’. Patrick makes an appointment to see Prof Cowles at 3pm that day.

So anyhoo, we all rock up at Prospero house to meet Jonah. He is, in short, camp-tastic. The man is wearing a ‘throat scarf’. We explain we have come to see him regarding Elias, and he assumes we are visiting in order to discuss the will. We do not disabuse him of this impression. As it happens, Jonah is the executor of the will, as he assumes the rest of Elias’ family are dead. The funeral will be tomorrow (17th January). We ask him about the book Elias had requested in the letter, and Jonah has no idea. Elias asked for books and money all the time, which Jonah supplied.

The police have contacted Jonah about Elias’ death, and Jonah assumes that one of the death cults he studied have finally caught up with him. Patrick explains that Elias seemed afraid at the time of his death, and asked Jonah if he was aware of this. Jonah says that sometime before Christmas Elias called to say he had been in China and Africa. He seemed agitated, and mentioned an international conspiracy and asked to meet Jonah. He dropped off some notes, and hurried off.

ELIAS’ NOTES
– Elias sent a note explaining that he thought not all of the Carlyle expedition were necessarily dead. The authorities deny the cult angle (they believe it was a racially motivated massacre), but the natives ‘sing another tune’. He claims to have juicy gossip that may make them rich, and signs off his letter, ‘blood and kisses’.

-Elias’ Nairobi notes in his own handwriting, assembled by Jonah.

SET ONE: Speaking to Nairobi officials, all Elias concludes is that he discounts the official version of the Carlyle massacre.

SET TWO: He visits the massacre site. It is particularly barren, all tribes of the region avoid the place and say that it is cursed by the God of the Black Winds, whose home is the mountain top.

SET THREE: Elias interviews Johnstone Kenyatta, who believes that the cult of the Bloody Tongue killed the Carlyle expedition. The cult is reputedly based in the mountains and that its high priestess is a part of the Mountain of the Black Winds. Elias is skeptical but Kenyatta is insistent. In quotes, Elias notes that regional tribes fear and hate the Bloody Tongue, that tribal magic is no protection against them, and that the cult’s god is not of Africa.

SET FOUR: Follow up of the Kenyatta interview. Elias confirms that the Bloody Tongue exists, but has no first hand evidence. Tales include children stolen for sacrifice, creatures with great wings from the Mountain of the Black Winds to carry of people, and the cult worships a god unknown to folklorists, fitting no traditional African pattern. Elias in particular cites ‘Sam Mariga, rr-sta’.

SET FIVE: Single sheet reminding himself to examine the Cairo-based part of the Carlyle itinery. He believes that the Kenyan side-trip was prompted by something that Carlyle saw on the Nile.

SET SIX: Long interview with Lt. Mark Selkirk, leader of the men who found the remains of the expedition. The bodies were remarkably undecayed, ‘almost as if decay itself wouldn’t come near the place’. The men had been torn apart as if by animals, but they seen to have been pulled apart too systematically (‘Unimaginable. Inexplicable.’) Selkirk agrees that the Nandi may have been involved but thinks the charges were trumped-up, and cynically claims it would not be the first time it happened. No Caucasians were found among the dead, only Kenyan bearers.

SET SEVEN: Another single sheet, interview with Nails Nelson in Nairobi. Nelson claims to have seen Jack Brady alive (March 1923) in Hong Kong, less than two years before Elias was in Kenya, and a long tim after the Kenyan Court declared that he and the rest of the exhibition were dead. Brady was friendly, though guarded. Elias thinks other members of the party may be alive.

SET EIGHT: Outlines structure of Elias’ upcoming book, includes entries like ‘tell what happened’ and ‘explain why’.

The last note Jonah is reluctant to hand over as it does not show Elias in the best light. We do some persuasion, and he hands it over. It’s pretty scrawled, this is all that’s legible.

Many names, many forms, but all the same and toward one end… need help… too big, too ghastly. These dreams, dreams like Carlyle’s? Check that psychoanalyst’s files… All of them survived! They’ll open the gate… why? So the power and danger is real. Many threads beginning. The books are in Carlyle’s safe. Coming for me. Will the ocean protect? Ho ho, no quitters now. Must tell and make the readers believe. Should I scream for them? Let’s scream together…’

We interview Jonah a bit more on what he knows about the Carlyle exhibition. With Carlyle on the exhibition was Dr Houston, his psychoanalyst, a photographer (female), his black lover who got him interested in archaeology, and his best friend and bodyguard, Jack Brady.

Jonah states that Elias had indeed mentioned a close friend who he had asked to help on the expedition, and the will leaves a legacy for us to carry on his work. BINGO!

We go to see Prof Cowles. The Bloody Tongue is not his speciality, he investigates a Bat Cult in Australia.

ONE: The bat cult worships the Father of all Bats, and sacrifices to him to make him appear. Victims are sacrificed by being hit with clubs covered in bat teeth coated with a substance derived from rabid bats. Although a fast acting poison, it would send people mad before they died. Leaders apparently could take the form of winged snakes, enabling them to take sacrfices from across the land. Cowles believes this cult became dormant hundreds of years ago but he is interested in Elias’ reports of modern day cults.

TWO: An aboriginal song cycle mention a place where enormous beings gather in west Australia. These gods, not at all like men, built big walls and caves, but living winds (new gods) blew down and overthrew these gods, allowing the Father of all Bats to grow strong in the land.

THREE: A slide of people with carved stone blocks (architectural) The discoverer of these, Arthur MacWhirr of Port Hedland records attacks on the party by aboriginals in his diary. The puncture marks all over the bodies suggests the bat cult.

FOUR: Northern Australian tale from the Arafura Sea where Sand Bat, or Father of all Bats has a battle of wits with Rainbow Snake the Aboriginal deity of water and life. Rainbow Snake wins and traps Sand bat and his crew underwater where he can only grumble and not trouble the people. Sand Bat has wings and tentacles all over his face.

MARP! MARP! CTHULHU ALERT!

Notably, he mentions that although the Bloody Tongue is not his speciality, beliefs like this often travel to remote places and the un-African nature of their god is not totally surprising.

RESEARCH:

Phillipa phones Miriam Attwright from the occult section of Harvard library (we have a letter from her saying that a book Elias requested was missing). The book was Africa’s Dark Sects. She knows it was missing because a few months before Elias requested it, there was a weird smell in the library and then it disappeared. As for the symbol on Elias’ forehead, Attwright confirms that this is a symbol that the cult of the Bloody Tongue put on the foreheads of their sacrificial victims. The cult are super-secretive about who their god is, and that’s all she knows. Supposedly the cult was stamped out some time ago (i.e. centuries)

ERICA CARLYLE’S PARTY

Seeing as how Robin has an invite to Erica’s house party, we put on our glad rags (in Patrick’s cawe, a rather fetching floral number) and go party. Grant pretends to be our chauffeur, and searches the house. All he finds is Erica’s used underwear, resulting in the DM revealing his own love of used underwear found on ebay. THE HORROR!

Meanwhile, Erica is boasting about the new unpickable safe she has installed ‘downstairs’ *chuckle* compared to the crappy one Roger put all his stuff in in the library. Robin gets chatting about Roger. Erica does not know the name of the black lover but remembers her being some kind of priestess. Roger had bad dreams after he met her, and she referred him to her own psychiatrist, Dr Houston. They got along so well in fact, that he joined them on the expedition. We try to convince her to give us Roger’s notes, but she’s having none of it. She suggests however, that we may enjoy Roger’s book of poems by Edgar Allen Poe. Grant rejoins the party.

We go to the library. Phillipa freaks out the people chatting there, and then we lock ourselves in. Behind the book of poetry is a sliding panel, and a button, which when pressed, reveals a safe. Inside the book is the combination – how fortuitous! We put the combination into the safe and IT CLICKS MOTHERFUCKERS! There are books inside so horrific they require an insanity roll. We take them home.

BOOK 1: Pnakotic Manuscripts, normal binding, in English.

BOOK 2: Selection de Livre d’Ivon, leather binding, in French, commentary of a Latin original.

BOOK 3: People of the Monolith, Bound in an unfamiliar skin, feels reptilian. It is rare, and in English. Nothing of particular interest inside.

BOOK 4: INSANITY ROLL TIME! Life as a God, handwritten, by Montgomery Crompton, 1805. Bound in human skin.

Phillipa reads the book, and loses 6 sanity points, developing a fear of books, while in Patrick’s bookshop. She explains between screams that he was mad before he even wrote it, and that it was particularly the beating of sacrificial victims with spiked clubs that freaked her out. She directs us to a section that won’t drive us crazy:

‘Its angles were magnificent, and most strange; by their hideous beauty I was enraptured and enthralled, and I thought myself of the daylight fools who adjudged the housing of this room as mistaken. I laughed for the glory they missed. When the six lights were lit and the great words said, then He came, in all the grace and splendour of the Highers Planes, and I longed to sever my veins so that my life might flow into his being, and make part of me a god!’

The rest of the book details the terrible acts perpetrated by Cromtpon for the Brotherhood of the Black Pharaoh (he was a minor priest) for the Pharoah of Darkness, or Black Pharaoh.

END OF SECOND SESSION, AND STILL NO FISTING.

The story begins when Patrick Dubois receives a telegram from his good friend, Jackson Elias. He is investigating the doomed Carlyle Expedition, and wants Dubois’ help in assembling a reliable investigative team to aid his research into his new leads. The team must meet him by 15th January. Patrick first of all calls his business sponsor, Lady Robin Rockerfeller, and the crime writer, Grant Ingram, who likes to hang around in Patrick’s bookshop, eating doughnuts. Lady Robin brings along her friend Phillipa and the team are ready to roll.

13th January: Grant decides to head off to the library to look up the Carlyle expedition. They set off for Egypt around 1920 looking to DIG STUFF UP. Newspaper reports from the period describe how reports from Mombasa came back, claiming that the expedition had gone missing. Roger Carlyle‘s sister, Erica went out to investigate. She found none of the bodies, but police confirmed that the team had been killed by Nandi tribesmen. The tribesmen were all hanged after a trial, accused of racial massacre, although to the end they refused to disclose where the bodies of the white expedition leaders were buried. The prosecution insisted that the Nandi had killed the white leaders, however the Nandis’ insistence that they knew nothing may be entirely truthful – there is a possibility that they were merely set up. Having been assured of her brother’s death, Erica returned to NY.

14th January: Phillipa gets an ominous feeling.

15th January: Elias Jackson calls Patrick – he’s staying at the Chelsea Hotel in room 410 and asks to meet at 8pm that night. He sounds nervous and jumpy, and insists Patrick checks that he is not followed. DUN DUN DUUUUUUN!
– Phillipa checks at the library about the Nandi tribe and finds nothing of interest.
– Grant goes to the library to look up Roger and Erica Carlyle. They are an independently wealthy family who built up a financial empire based around lumber and textiles during the civil war. Roger was tragically ignored by his father, and was through out of Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Miscetonic, Cornel and USC. He took over the family company and did ok for a while, but then got interested in Egypt and left. After his death, Erica took over the firm and her good business sense has seen the company’s profits soar. Shareholders are frankly pretty pleased to see Roger out of the picture.

LATER
– The team goes to the hotel, dissuading Lady Robin from bringing along her rifle. There is no answer to room 410 on the intercom at reception. Grant persuades the receptionist to lend us a key. We knock at the door, and when there is no answer, just open it. In the room are two black men, and one white man, all wearing ceremonial-looking black hoods with a red ribbon between the eyes. One of the black men is half way out the window, the other two are next to the window looking angrily at us, all with sharp bloody knives. There is a substantial amount of blood on the walls.

A fight ensues – the man halfway out of the window escapes in a getaway vehicle (registration NYL7), the white man is knocked unconscious and the other black man is shot in the chest. During the skirmish, Phillipa tackles a large black man to the ground in spite of her 25% grapple skill, and calls over a security guard to help. Lady Robin laments leaving her shotgun behind after all, and Grant manages to miss a point-blank range shot in spite of all statistical probability. We discover Elias is dead – intestines conspicuously missing, and a strange symbol carved into his forehead.

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

While the security guard goes to the front desk to call the police we loot the room, and question the white guy. He doesn’t seem all there – he mumbles in a foreign language and his arms are covered in needle marks. The only information he provides is that he was told to kill Elias.

On white guy’s body:
– A letter from Prospero House Publishers explaining that the book Elias requested was no longer there, but other books may provide the information he needed upon request. Dated 7th November 1924

– A photo. It is blue and grainy, although a yacht surrounded by Chinese junks is discernable, as well as a recognisable building in the background with a tower. The first few letters of the name of the yacht are DAR.

– The reverse of an Emerson Imports card signed in Elias’ handwriting, ‘Silas N’Kuane‘.

Found on the unconscious guy:
– A letter to Roger Carlyle from Egypt dated 3rd January 1919 stating that this man had some curios for his consideration being sent for Carlyle to view. (I didn’t get down the name and address he provided!)

– A business card for the Penhew Foundation in London.

Found inside one of Elias’ books:
– An advertisement for a lecture call ‘The Cult of Darkness in Polynesia and the South West Pacific’, 8pm, but no date provided. The lecture is by Prof. Andy Cowles Ph.D.

The guard comes back, and we leave.

Last minute research made that evening:

PATRICK: Seeking vengeance, he attempts to go to the lecture. Unfortunately for Patrick, it was a month ago. He does however, discover that Prof Cowles lives in Arkham, a couple of hours away by train.

PHILLIPA: Looks up the Penhew Foundation. The Penhews have apparently used their family fortune to invest in archaeology around the world, although primarily in Egypt. They have a very good library and museum exhibiting their finds. They are known to invest well in poor students’ archaeological digs.

ROBIN: Looks up Emerson Imports. All she finds is that Arthur Emerson is the owner and that they do imports with Mombasa.

GRANT: Gets an appointment with Jonah Kensington at Prospero House Publishers.

END OF SESSION 1. Join us in two weeks time for more mystery, intrigue, filthy jokes, camping it up, and above all, used underwear.

Good morning campers! I shall for the time being be using this blog as a place to update our Cthulhu-tastic adventures, trekking into the unknown armed only with a limited supply of sanity, Lady Robin’s rifle, and a 50% fisting skill. We don’t even have a steamboat yet.

 

GAME ON!