The sea diaries of Willie Garvin.
Of Ships passing byEdit
I aint one for my letters, nor given much to deep thought but of late I find I need to get my head straight and so the Reverend suggests I write down whats happened so it's clearer to me.
Helena's safe. Thats the most important fact an it's the one that probably keeps me sane as the world goes topsy turvy round me.
It'll probably help if I started at the beginning or at least what happened when I went to Hyde park when the letter said. It was just 'nother normal day in that great flea pit that is London. Now Hyde park itself aint too bad an some of the posh bits are downright nice but the rest of it, well the only reason they don't torch the lot of it is the rest of the country would be overrun as all the rats jumped ship. I've spent the last two years sailing the Southern Med with nothing but the warm winds of the desert on the air. Getting back to all the smoke an fog an ash weren't doin me a world of good but it does ave the advantage of a much better class of crumpet that you get miles out to sea. There was a group of these Suffages women complaining about not 'avin the vote. Don't get why, I can't see what you'd do with a vote once you got one but these lasses got a bee in their bonnet about it so their you go. Advantage being that it often brings out a decent collection of legs at these things and many of them just dyin to 'ear what great advantages a likely lad can get up to in forn parts.
I'd just got me some company so it was gonna be more than bed bugs I cuddled up to that night when this right burk starts a fight with an 'ole crew worth of lads. Now I against a bit of a barny now an then but I feel that fifteen to one aint exactly playin fair. Grabbin the sod out of there I get ready to take my leave when I notice he's got a letter same as mine. Appears that a fair number of us got these letters and I saw how many shortly after when we finally found this Thomas bloke. Turns out he was a Major or somat but now was part of this secret band that fights the creatures of the night. Now I aint a god fearin man and I aint been to church much since getting out the foundling home so I'm not one of these that thinks that gods the only thing out there. In fact I've sailed far enough and seen enough that I know there's more 'n most people know out there. That said I aint gonna turn turn down Ten whole quid a month just to keep some old geezers from been afraid of things under their bed. Or at least thats what I thought at the time, cause you see it was soon after we all agreed that somebody points out a guy actin wierd. Then, and may god strike me down if I'm lyin, the lot of them turn and run off into the fog after the guy. I swear they don't got the sense God gave to kittens. Seein I 'ad to go help them I set off an affore long I caught up to where they'd cornered this wierd man-wolf thing. Now amoungst the group was a right Toff. I'd tried out my cheery chappy routine on the guy, even callin 'im Bobby to his face, an he didn't complain nothin. I swear give me 'alf an hour and I'd been able to swindle the teeth right out of 'is 'ead. Still 'e's more'n a fair shot with a pistol and the Reverend Steel aint much worse so the beast was soon brought down.
After that we got a cab to this pub where Major Thomas was avin us stay. Turns out tho this Scottish woman Mrs MacTannon ad left some stuff in Hyde park. Well seeing she was a right mark I 'ad no option but to escort 'er on this 'orrid nag of hers, a right stroppy beast fit for nothin but the glue factory if you ask me. It was on the way back that this young lady ran right out into the middle of the road. Well strike me down cold if it weren't Helena herself in a right state. Seeing the stupid prad was gonna run her down I had no choice but to leap off it and block it's course, no easy task let me tell you. We got Helena back to the pub safely an it turns out that Miss House, another of our wierd collection, had studied as a nurse so she could look after Helena.
Next morning, once she'd calmed down, she told us the tale of 'ow Lord Wicks 'er husband had gotten him self into a spot of gamblin problems at this posh place the Umbral Rooms. Seems he'd been gettin ever deeper into debt and the East India Company weren't bringing in money like it used to so he'd even put up the house as 'is stake. Well I weren't 'avin Helena sleeping on the streets so we set about casin the joint. We got a cover together an it was all sorted when the Reverend, who was never gonna make a snakesman in any way, starts avin a fit about not robbin a place on the day of rest. Well I aint well read on the bible but I thought it was quite firm on the fact there aint no good day for a bit of screwing. Still it pays not to argue with them in charge so we agreed to wait a day. Rather than singin hymns with the rest of em Rigs, Miss House an myself 'eaded down the docks to look into some deaths which were botherin Rigs seeing as how he came from round there. Well we followed some leads an such around when we heard some screaming from down an alley. We go to check it out when we see this half man, half shark think chowin down on some poor bleeder. Quick as a flash I jam a board in the critters mouth to stop it going for seconds on us lot but the thing bits through this inch thick bit of board like it's paper. Now I've dealt with sharks before, I've even ad to search the seas after watchin a Mako jump up an crush a dinghy off the Solomon Islands. I've seen those things shrug of pistol bullets. The bleeder was already dead it was obvious so it was time for Miss House and us to get out of there when all of a sudden Rigs steps up to the creature and, gods honest truth, punches the thing so hard his hand goes through the things hide. I aint never seen anyone punch that hard before and I've seen more an a lifetimes of punches.
The next day we went to these here Umbral Rooms for a bit of looksie. Now I aint the best screwsman there is bit I've down my bit so we got in nice and quiet like. The joint seemed empty as we went through the back but when we got to the front desk we saw one of the hired help. I don't know what scared me more, that the Reverend would pull out a pistol or the fact the guy glowed when shot and didn't seem none the worse for takin a lead shot through the eyes. We got im down in the end but the amount of noise meant the rozzers would be along like nobodies business. Movin sharpish we continued to check out the joint until we found the private rooms downstairs. Off a side door we found a corridor by a load of cells, which guessin from the reactions of the Swell's with us weren't normal for this class of joint. We was just checkin who it was was chained up in the last cell when the door burst open an this Frog set his minions on us. Now I've had my fair share of scraps in the 'olds of ships so this close quarter stuff weren't a bother, in fact it were easy what with the floor not rockin every which way, and Riggs has done 'is bit in a tavern brawl or two so we were soon puttin these guys down, only problem was they weren't stayin down. We was hittin em hard enough and they were fallin proper but a few seconds later they were gettin back to their feet as if we'd just been playin. Suddenly Mrs MacTannon started screaming in this odd language I aint 'eard before and starts throwing balls of light, true honest to God balls of light, at this large hourglass in the room. Soon enough the glass cracks and suddenly the Frog and all his guys fall down. Weirdest damn thing I've ever seen, and these days thats sayin something.
Well shortly after that the cops turned up but it seems Miss House had managed to heal some of the missin Toffs and they blagged us a way out of it somehow. Seems like they are good for somethin after all. Lord Wicks was one of those who'd been found and he had some tale about the French chap offerin to clear is debts if he gambled on one last spin of the wheel. He'd lost and somehow he was bein kept as a servant in some way. Well I waited a few days then sent a letter quiet like to Helena. Only it seems I wasn't quiet enough cause it was Lord Wicks imself who replied and he was askin for a meeting. Now some men don't like you hanging round their wives and Helena, she was one in a million. I thought about not goin but I thought that might look bad for Helena and there was no way I was gonna be the one that got her in trouble with her husband. Turns out the Lord wanted to thank us for savin his life and wanted to know who we was. Well we were meant to be secret so I didn't tell 'im but the very next day Sir Robert sees an article in the Times thankin us all by name, how he found out I've no idea. Still it's nice to be better known an it seems that things are back to normal for Helena so it was a good week as far as I was concerned.
Of Noises in the NightEdit
Now I'm right glad that I got to help Helena one more time but it seems this Major Thomas bloke was right about there been more goin' on than most folk realise. It seems that many folk look but few actually see.
It twas while we were dealin' with them what took Lord Wicks that Mrs Morag saw a Punch'n'Judy show what caught her attention. I aint too clear on what her issue was but it seems this guy was skilled above normal for these shows. It was while was restin' after dealing with that Frenchie that Mrs Morag once more noticed that same show in the street. It seems the second time there was a little girl doll used in the show that was supposed to be the spittin' image of a lass she'd met at the first show. Mrs Morag seemed most certain that somethin' evil were afoot and lackin' anything better to do Sir Robert decides to go investigatin' so I went with to keep him safe. Well I got a new set of right nice threads out of it so I didn't mind none but we also managed to find these bleedin' bloke. Sir Robert tries to have a chat with the guy but these toffs really don't understand how to talk to the common folk, seems that not only do him and those in Parliment want ter take our money but they also want ter take our lively hoods away. Sir Robert tries to get one of the blokes dolls but the guy weren't havin none of it, them bein' the only way he's got to make any money. There was a right flap before the old geezer legged it off into the crowd.
Next morning Sir Robert had this wierd story about finding something down in the sewers near where the show had been. What he'd been up to I got no idea but me 'n Rigs decided to check it out. Once we got down there we find these tracks like real little feet. Followin' them we headed towards where the guy had set his stall up again when suddenly we got jumped by this wooden doll. I aint been drinkin or nothin but there it was large, well small, as life - a punch'n'judy doll movin' around without no strings or anything. Miss House is right smart, even though she's only a woman, so I thought she might want ter have a butchers at this so Rigs 'n me we manage to wrestle in into the canary's cage. Shame really, we should 'ave let the canary out first poor little mite. We'd just got the thing caged when we hear more footsteps from ahead of us. It was the rest of the dolls from the show and this time they seemed right interested in slittin' Rigs throat. I've seen that guy punch through shark skin but these little bleeders were right scrappy and things weren't going how we'd like when suddenly there's that seem wierd chantin that I heard at the Frenchie's place and we see Mrs Morag standin' there glowin as she throws those balls of light at the dolls. She burns Mr Punch right to dust an' then the rest of the dolls just collapse like the string they didn't have got cut. The Reverend started tending to Mrs Morag who had fainted again. Now the Rev he aint to happy with the abominations of god that we've been seein recently but he weren't too worried with what Mrs Morag can do so it guess it's alright, I just aint never heard of any other scots woman that can do that.
When we got back to our digs we find a telegram waitin for Mrs Morag, seems some bloke Archie who knew her husband needed her help up in Scotland. Well the lady had twice helped us out of a real tight spot, even if she don't got no memory of it after, so we said we'd help out.
I've not had chance to travel by train much before in my life seeing as how I'm drawn to deep waters and clear horizons rather than anywhere on dryland so it was an interesting trip. The Reverend seemed somewhat meloncholy on the journey and told us a bit more about his life, unlucky sod that he's been. I always thought his hatred of the abominations of god was personal like since he didn't seem the sort of fire and brimstone preacher that was normal bothered by such things. Rigs, the stupid nonce, managed to get jumped for his money. I'd of thought the bloke would 'ave been smarter what with living near the docks but I guess we all have our off days. He seems somewhat wilder more recently, always lookin fer thrills and the like. Guess it's the worry of dealin with creatures of the night, there are days where I dont know if I should scream or just hit somat.
It was once we got to Scotland that things really started to fall apart. For some reason Mrs Morag had insisted we bring that vile nag of 'ers along with us all the way from London. We was travellin through the hills to this monestry we was goin to when some wild animals started chasin the stage coach. Now the main horses, not bein' burks, legged it but no, her stupid nag had to stay round us and drew the animals in. First we knew about it was Rigs almost disappearing backwards out the window. I went to go out the other door, seein as how Rigs was blockin the main one, when a second of these wierd creatures jumped me. I don't rightly know what they were. There's this creature called a gorilla which I've seen on my travels, looks like a real hairy human, but thats still not quiet right. It certainly wasn't a bear, not at the speed it was moving nor in the length of its arms and legs, but rather it was more wolf like. It looked like the thing that had attacked us in the fog in London back when the Major first hired us. I wonder if this is where the creatures come from but it would 'ave been nice if Mrs Morag had warned us about them cause they were right brutes. It was a right messy scrap since there were even more of the creatures on top of the coach as well. The Reverend helped out how he could but the coach was swayin to much for any clear shootin with that pistol of his. There were a few really close calls but the Rev was chantin away in latin from the bible and although I dont understand a word he said it seemed to help. I knew a bosun like that down in the China Seas, had a tongue that could strip hide from your back at 100 yards, but certainly made sure you got you riggin sorted away no matter how much the boat was heavin in the storm. I think the Revs ways better, especially since if the ladies had heard my old bosun their ears would ave caught fire.
Once we got the horse buried and we found our bags that had fallen off the coach we headed on into the village nearby. It weren't much of a village and the vicar insisted we have this wierd dish called haggis, well it's certainly no pigs snout in dripping I'll tell you that much, but I've had worse in my travels. Talkin to the local folk it turns out that all sorts of sheep and such had been disappearin recently so maybe those animals weren't local. The monestry we was interested in had been empty for a few months, ever since the brothers had moved away. We'd come this far so we thought we might as well go on and thus Mrs Morag hired a cart from a local and we took the high road up into the hills. It was gettin late in the day when we got to the next village but there weren't a soul in sight. We had a look round but someone, or something, had attacked the village and everyone was missing. We didn't have no choice but to continue on to the monestry.
Like we was told the monestry was empty so, leaving Mrs Morag with the cart, we began to search the place. It didn't feel quite right as there was a load of letters talkin about some guy up in a mansion nearby and how they would force him to their viewpoint, also all the robes were this bright orange like those beggars in Sri Lanka used to wear. Suddenly we heard a scream from outside as more of those walking wolf creatures went for the horse whilst poor Mrs Morag was still on the cart. Rigs was a bit quicker 'an me and lept out the window first when suddenly he starts screamin and yellin and attacking the wall and everything around him. Now I wanted to help Mrs Morag, I really did, but I aint going near Rigs when hes screamin like that so I headed for the stairs instead. By the time I got outside the Reverend had plugged one, which is a mighty fine shot at that distance, and the others had run off. Mrs Morag dashed past me to the building which is understandable really, those creatures turning up like that would have given anybody a bad turn.
After the fight Miss House shut herself away in the kitchen with the bodies of those animals, a while latter she calls us down and tells us she might be able to use parts of the body to help us. She managed to create some 'extract' that will allow us to see in the dark. I like the idea of seein at night, it'll be right useful for some of the things I do, but I've been told that extract means juice and I dont want to think what it is I could be drinking if I use that potion. She also says she could do something with the bones of the animals to make us tougher which Rigs was all for but the Rev seemed against. I took the Rev off to search through the library again to distract him when we suddenly hear Rigs screamin like I've never heard him scream before. I've known some crazed sawbones in my time but nothing prepared me for the sight we saw when throwing open the kitchen door for there was Rigs strapped to the table and above him stood Miss House with a blood soaked corkscrew in hand. For once I agree with the Reverend, some things just aint right!
The next morning Rigs was moving around and seemed alright but he had holes all over his body. Still they say if yer still alive after the doctors seen you then you know yer goin to get better so I guess I'll trust Miss House on this. Since we had found nothing useful about this Archie bloke we was after we decided to head on to the mansion that was meant to be up the track. Well the track was there but the mansion weren't, it had been flattened so all that remained was the floorin and the foundations. After a bit of searchin we found a trap door under a flagstone in the kitchen leadin down into some tunnels. It seemed like some posh storerooms with book shelves and display cases but there was also this prison bit. If I knew then what I know now I'd have left the place alone but I didn't and locked doors have always held a bit of a mystery to me so I worked my magic and got us in. In the last cell there was an old guy all curled up surrounded by empty bottles of extract of misletoe or some such. We got him out of there but he was still delirious and we couldn't learn more than this was the Archie feller we'd been asked to come and meet.
The mansion didn't exist no more so we returned to the only stone buildings we knew about - the monestry. None of us wanted those animals to return but since Mrs Morag wouldn't leave the cart we had to hole up in the church. The others found some catacombs they went exploring for other entrances as I bought some mattresses over and started barricading the doors and windows. The Archie feller still wasn't feeling too good so we left him resting on the altar when suddenly this moonbeam came through one of the windows and fell full upon him. Right there, in front of my very eyes, I saw him turn into one of those wolf like man things. With a howl he called the rest of the pack and soon the place was surrounded with them burstin through all the windows and doors. We managed to fight them off till he fled through a window but everybody was hurtin and the Reverend he'd lost his arm, ripped clean off.
Of Heathen GodsEdit
We was all in a somber mood when we returned from Scotland. I still don't like travelling by train, it just shakes you not like the proper roll you get out at sea and the beds are too hard and don't allow you to sleep proper. I slept so bad my arm was tingling the whole journey back, I really need to get some proper kip in a hammock again. I always said proper beds aint no use unless you got something warm to sleep up against.
Well anyway soon we got back to the smoke filled dive that is London. Scotland weren't much to look at but at least the air was clean and the smell was fresh. It weren't a patch on the Southern Med where we got pure clean winds straight out the desert but it were close to paradise compared to London. We got a handsome cab from the station seeing as how the woman had packed many a suitcase for the trip but the previous geezer had dropped a note and before we could tell him he'd legged it for the station. Well it seemed like a right important scrap of paper as it was an invitiation to one of them swanky mens clubs wont dont let my sort in. Being the nice bloke I am, and at the urging of the ladies, I decided to go to the club and see if I could find the guy to return it. I showed up and gave them the note and they mistook me for the guy it was for. I was going to try and explain but they'd already left me in this swish room with all wood panneling and such with no one to talk to. I made myself comfortable to wait since they had an amazing well stocked bar, they even had the Fonseca Vintage Port of the same type I'd been smuggling a few years back. That were a bad caper since there were at least 2 other gangs after the cargo and I lost some good mates on that one. At the time it seemed daft the amount of work that went into a few crates of drink but after trying it I got to say it's a right smooth drink, don't burn the throat not at all.
I was just settling down with the bottle when the lights suddenly went out and I heard someone come in. When the lights came back I was already to explain the misunderstanding and to leave when the bleeder turned round and shot me! Now many folk say I got a friendly face, especially the women, but the daft burk thought I was some sort of bruiser sent to do him in. I was already to give the guy a right kickin for that but he were an old gent who was fair shakin in his boots and the gun weren't nout but one of them derringer toys and so I just gave him a stern talkin to till he told me what the blazes he was upto.
Turns out this guy is one of the richest money blokes in London and he'd recently given some money to a group what went to this old heathen temple in darkest India to bring back whatever they could find for the amusement of the gentry. Personally I dont know why them rich folk dont just go see the bearded lady an the two headed chicken like the rest of us but it seems they prefer staring at trinkets what the benighted heathens used to worship. Course then I found that that this temple was dedicated to a goddess Kelly what comes in the night to pleasure her followers so there's me thinking the heathens might have got a better plan than we do. Anyway it turns out the trip was a right roaring success and this guy ended up with even more money than he started but then the people who went on the trip started dying. Seems the heathens weren't best pleased by what had happened and were striking back. That probably explained why that darkie threw the snake into our cab, he thought we were the previous bloke what had been part of the group to the temple. It weren't much of a snake but I'll say this for Miss Morag, she might not dress like much but shes got nice knees.
Anyway I've been raised to know it aint nice to leave rich folk with their troubles, especially when their troubles is having too much money, so I said we would help this bloke look for his mate. He was right grateful, didn't even ask about how much it would cost once. We headed to his mates house but we was too late as the place had been well and truely blagged. It weren't a proper job this, they'd just come in and shaken down the whole place. We split up to find the missing gent but all that did was make us easy pray for the heathens what hadn't left yet. Rigs and me set about seeing the guys off whilst Miss House found an odd letter. The letter mentioned reading the scriptures but from books that dont exist. Now I'd learnt early in life that you can get through conversations if you just look em in the eyes and pretend what your sayin is true, it's especially easy with scriptures since there aint many what bothered to read the things and so nobody knows if your adding a few here and there. Miss House however saw the truth that it were some sort of code and so we managed to work out there was an extra item that hadn't been sold, a hand of this Kelly goddess and the missing gent had hidden it in the underground below a clock on one of the platforms.
At this point the old guy wanted to go steal some trinkets that he thought would protect him but the rest of us wanted to see what this hand could do so we went to the station. By the time we got there we say we were too late as some screwsman had already opened the gates to that platform. Legging it down we saw a hole underneath the clock where something had been taken and a train pulling out. We ran after the train as fast as we could but only us men could keep up and jump onboard. It didn't feel right leaving the women alone on the platform but they're smart folk and I've seen them hold their own in a fight. Glancin through the door I saw more of them darkies waiting for us. I knew from the lot we'd fought in the house that they had some right nice throwing knives so I was bidding my time but Rigs charged on through. At least he'd thought to buy some inserts for his coat cause he soon ended up with more than four of them blades in his chest. Giving him what help I could we started puttin the blighters down when a yell from Sir Bobby let us know the rest of the bad guys were getting away. It seems whilst we'd distracted these guys Sir Bobby had gone over the roof and so he'd seen the heathens had left their friends behind and had unhitched the carriages. It was a right impressive jump that Sir Bobby made to land on the train, it's just a shame he couldn't dodge the blow of the bruiser standing there waiting for him.
We tended to our wounds as the ladies caught us up before continuing on down the tunnels. We found the train abandoned outside a side tunnel which was where the heathens had their lair. Rigs once more pushed on, only to get more knives in him. Only it seems he didn't have no metal inserts and all this time the blades was wounded him bad, he was just too daft to notice. We left him to be tended by Miss Morag as we finished exploring. We found a group of tramps what told us they had been taken from the streets and some of their numbers had been sacrificed by the heathens. Now that aint right. I aint got no problem with them doing what they like in their own place but no englishman is going under the knife for any heathen goddess no matter how pretty she was meant to be. I don't really remember much of what happened when we got to their temple sanctum area. I remember seeing some poor lass chained to the walls as their next sacrifice and some large statue with multiple arms and some VERY large swords. They must have been burning odd herbs in their lamps, either that or that port has got a real strong after kick, as all I can see from that point on is odd images of the statue appearing to move, curtains on fire, a massive snake that looks like it ends in the body of a woman and the head priest reaching into his own chest, pulling out his own heart and then walking about calm as can be afterwards. It don't make any sense but then again you could say that about most things that have been happening lately so there you go.
The Heart of Darkness Looks BackEdit
I've been out of sorts recently, what with those Heathen worshippers and with releasing that tormented soul up in Scotland so I decided to get back in touch with reality and spend some time round those who always have their feet on the ground and you can't get more earthy than the lovely lasses of WhiteChapel. I get on well with those ladies, their good and honest in their own way and if you treat em right and help out a bit they can be downright friendly. Wiser men than me have said that living in slums pretty much makes you trash yet owning slums makes you a man to look up to. Well it seems those men what want to be looked up to don't bother looking out for others so most of the places round there are in a right state. Somebody with good hands and a willing to work pretty much has his pick of places to stay so over the years I've gotten cosy with a number of the houses.
This time though there was something wrong. You could tell almost as soon as you entered the chapel. There was fear in the air. Turns out someone has been preying on the ladies, not just killing em but cutting on the bodies afterwards. Now that just aint right. I'd heard of tales where doctors buy bodies so they can study and such but cutting em up in the street just aint no way to treat a person. There was even rumours that Jack the Ripper was back. Well seeing as how few others would bother to look out for them the girls was right scared so I promised I'd do what I can. Miss House was even nice enough to check through the papers a bit for me to see if she could find anything.
Turns out at the same time Miss House's Uncle and Carstairs were both involved with looking after some addict by the name of Sherlock. Seems he was a bit famous around London as a detective but seeing how me and the cops dont exactly move in the same circles I couldn't really say much about him. For some reason Carstairs had Sherlock held naked in the basement of the British Museum. Once we got there he mentioned that Sherlock was having his drugs supplied by a ghost of some guy he offed at a waterfall. Well blow me down with a feather but not 1 hour later I myself got to see this ghost walking into a sealed room. Fair made my hair stand on end it did. Although it seemed a very polite ghost as there was no screaming or shaking of chains or nothing.
Since Miss House had been gracious enough to help me with the newspapers I offered my help, such as it is, in researching ghosts and how to kill them. Or rekill them. Maybe defeat is a better word. Well the only place with a library about such things was the Ripper headquarters - Van Helsings home itself. Other than that time I burnt down that Dutch monastry out in the Spice Islands I don't think I've ever seen so many books. We spent hours and hours researching in that place before they think they found what was needed. It was getting late thus the others decided to rest but I still had my promise to the girls to keep so I headed on down to Chapel. I was still on my first loop around the area when I heard a most heartstopping scream. Belting there as fast as I could I was still too late to help the lass who had been butchered open as if she were no more than a carcass. Looking around I saw the bonesaw the killer had used as I was just picking it up when I heard the police whistles. Why do the damn cops always have to turn up round bodies and crime scenes, it's like they're no better than bloody flies. It drove me livid, all those fresh clues and nobody but the police were gonna see them now. If that meant I couldn't find the killer before he struck again then there was going to be a reckoning! Still I had no choice but to leave and return to our inn and just hope that one of the others would be able to get some information from the bone saw at least.
The next morning I went back to the museum but neither Carstairs nor the others were about, probably lying in or doing more research I thought so I decided to use my free time to see if I could find out more about the murders. It was still early so all the girls I knew would still be asleep, resting up after work, so it was only gossiping housewives out and about. They are usually good for all sorts of information, at least if you can keep em away from stories about their kids or what their cousins have been upto, so I strolled on over and introduced myself. It turns out I was due a break as it appeared somebody had caught a glimpse of the killer. I almost felt I knew the person she was describing when she suddenly started screaming and yelling that I, of all people, was the killer. Well thats just daft so I was busy explaining why to here when I suddenly feel a hand on my shoulder as a load of coppers turn up. They didn't seem interested in listening to me, typical pigs just grab the nearest person and stitch em up. Fortunately at that point Carstairs and the others turned up, how they managed to find me I've no idea, and they managed to get the police to back off with a story about Egyptian Fever.
From that point on I was confined in Dr House's home where I found they'd moved that Sherlock bloke to. All of sudden me, two other rippers acting as guards, and Sherlock descended on the house and they only had one young maidservant who was almost swept of her feet, so I helped out there. When the others returned they had the bonesaw I found and upon examining it they found the crest of Dr John Watson, the uncle of Miss House and the close friend of Sherlock.We decided to keep this quiet until we could find out more but Rigs went and mentioned it anyway which caused Sherlock to have a massive fit as he started running around yelling "Bond did it. He's left handed" which dont seem to make no sense to me. Once Miss House got him calmed down he explained that he'd seen signs that pointed to one of his guards, named Bond, being the killer. He'd spent his time addled by opium and locked up in a room but it was more than I had to go on so we gave it a chance.
The lasses down in WhiteChapel were willing to let us crash at theirs till we caught the killer but none of them was willing to be bait for our trap. They managed to persuade Rigs to dress up as lass somehow, I had no idea how many little tricks they got for tarting themselves up since they even managed to make that bruiser into a right looker. Somehow Bond knew about our trap and he jumped me as I was waiting in an alley. Well there was no way I was going to let him out of my reach after what he done to that girl last night so I took him on. It was during the fight that he was raving about taking people power into himself that he pulled out a human heart and started munching on it as if it were no more than an apple. We took him down in the end and the rippers locked him up so they could deal with him, Sherlock got the cops to back off and the girls are happy as the streets are safer again.
But everytime I see Rigs dainty white fingers and the marks he's got where his bones were changed I wonder what has happened to him, what he'll turn into, what he'll be responsible for. Then I wonder, if we want to defeat the monsters we face, what will I have to become?
For Whom the Bell TollsEdit
Help Van Helsing find his missing father
Research in the library
Rigs is a bounder
History of the Rippers
Heading to Rosslyn chapel
The stone cutter and the story of the ghost Apprentice
Rigs is famous & entrance to the Chapel
The Putting Down of RootsEdit
Well it seems that these Ripper fellows are right chuffed with what we been doing recently and have got us sorted with a place to be. It seems the Cabal scum 'ave been causing problems down in Southend. I aint been there before seein as how any ship that aint kitted out right fore leavin London aint gonna make it to the Med and any that is aint gonna stop fore they get there. Well we pulls into town to find what sorta lodge we'll be runnin and it turns out we're gettin some rooms under a school so we've got an excuse for collectin books and science stuff.
There was not one of us what had been to Southend before so we decided to go out and get a feel for the town. The ladies was making themselves known at the church and Rigs had already headin down the docks so I decided to 'ave a shufty at them what dont always follow the rules. The way I see it is it aint gonna be the teashops an such what got rumours of any killings we'd 'ave to keep our ears a lot closer to the ground. The sorta folk I were looking for aint the type with open arms but fortunate like I remembered the stash of gems I'd picked up from the toffs when I was helpin out Helena. It were the matter of moments to set up a ruse of me as crew what had jumped ship with the captains private stash and thus I was wantin a place to lay low away from the water. It was while I was askin around I found out that the head geezer in these parts where a guy by the name of Fisk who ran cockfights every Friday, regular. I go down there an lay on the Blarney thick an sure enough he offers me a proper meet to sort business. It was while I was waitin round that I spots Rigs mopin round like the last puppy to be picked from a litter. Turned out he was casing this posh guy with a red sash what had been talkin to Fisk earlier. Rigs new Red Sash from London since it was him what had set Rigs up in a bent fight. If Rigs knew the guy then it stood to reason that the guy knew Rigs to. You can never be to sure if them toffs take note of those they think of as servants but since Rigs were well known up in Rosslyn chances are some local bloke might be able to place him so I couldn't take no chance and give Rigs a new name but nor could we let this sash guy slip off our hooks. Thus it were I told Fisk that I touted out for Rigs and asked if he could set us up with some matches so we could raise spending money.
Turns out the others were havin luck as well in findin out all sorts of going ons in the area. There's tales of folks disappearing during Spring Tides and it seems like the soil of the graveyard barely stays still. We called on the girls to help us out with Victoria, Lana and Bonnie all headin out to see what they could find out. Me and the rest of the group kitted up as the man in the sash had bitten on our hook. He arranged to meet me at these gloomy crossroads out of town. There was no way I was going out there by myself so I had Rigs come along an the others were guided by Barry to a place where they could watch nearby. It was alright in the end since the guy just wanted to talk. I played it cool and seemed to impress him since he promised to arrange a future bout for Rigs. I thought about seeing if we could take the guy down then and there but I didn't want to be too hasty and risk the fish jumping off the hook, as me mate Ying out in the Spice Islands always says - when fishin for sharks you make good and sure the hooks settled afore you pull em over to where you are.
Since Red Sash was on the line all we could do was wait till Fisk gave us the nod for the first fight so we focused on getting our stories straight and on settlin in to the new town. I got myself 'hired' as the schools groundskeeper so I gotta tend to all the bushes in the girls' school and when our cover is finished and the wayward girls turn up I also got to make sure they dont scream out if theres a bang in the night. The rest of the group busied themselves with preparing for the offical groundbreaking party. It was during these preparations that I noticed a guy in a bowler hat hanging around. I don't know what it were but something didn't feel right about him so I was keepin my eyes good an open during the do. Thus it was I saw this young scalleywag pocketin the crowd. Cause he got spotted by others and soon there was a right hue and cry going up. Well the young fool obviously were an amateur at this as he took off at the noise. The way I was taught was to palm the goods to the safe man quickly then if they start shoutin you dont run cause they can't prove nothin unless you drop yourself in it. It were quite a laugh to watch Sir Bobby an the ladies legging it after the kid and the whole town seeing them sliding through the muck and dodging the cake stands and all.
Normally I aint one for staying still and most times the place I call home leaves on the next tide but I got to thinking that maybe this bit of merry old England might not be too bad a place to hang my hammock in.
The Murderer and the MadhouseEdit
Talking with the hired help
No new admissions at the asylum
Casing the crime scene
The wolf is brought to the lair.
The Law is told but not all
The lunatics take over
Disarming myself, one bad guy at a time
Doing what must be done, but what about Hans?
The trail is found
Clancey Trombly the intelligent man
Pistols in the port
When the explosions die down
The three master returns???
Now I'm the one recruiting
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (or so the Rev tells me)Edit
It's been a while now and I still can't really say I've got used to the idea of living in one place and knowing only one set of people but it does make it easier knowing thems is people what are willing to SEE. Most of my life it's been my job to look the other way. Don't explore the grounds, don't look over the horizon, don't look in the forward cargo hold, don't see who started the fight, don't witness nothin but now it's different see as it's us what is keeping an eye out for everyone else. Cause it's a bit complicated on account of the fact we aint meant to tell anybody what it is we're looking out for. Supposedly we be setting up 'The Archway House for Lost Souls' which is just a fancy way of sayin an orphange from what I can see.
Well we got a lot to do for the Rippers what with tales of people disappearing at Spring Tides and with ghouls hunting in the graveyards. Since we got a good group of people what with the dock workers joining us so we decide it's time we show this 'ere Cabal bunch that there's a new force in town. Barry's in charge of the graveyards round 'ere so he 'hires' on Harold and Al so they can have a bit of a looksy round after dark. Since a spring tide was due in the coming months the lads came up with a right smart idea of gettin a launch and patrolling a bit off shore. That way we aint bothering the locals none and we got a good way of gettin about. Problem was, like a real burk, I trusted Fisk to find us a boat. I knew the guy were more twisted than a corkscrew so I made double sure to check the engines but I didn't check the bilges none as they was floatin in machine oil. Turns out that weren't by chance and the boards were more worm eaten than the last barrel of apples in the batch. The lads basically had to build a whole new hull round that thing so I realised I'd already done enough and I left em to it.
Now I aint one for inaction but there weren't really much I could do. Lana was workin 'er moxy down Fisks neck of the woods and Barry and the boys 'ad their 'ands full dealin with the local kids who thought rumours of an haunted graveyard was the greatest thing what had ever happened round 'ere. That took me back to the old haunted bridge back by the ophanage. Aint been many women as 'eld me as tight as Molly did when I dared 'er to go down there on a moonless night. I dont got no real fond memories of that orphanage but we was a good bunch of kids an I hope they all got out okay and weren't sent to the workhouses or nothin. Well I was gettin right maudlin by that point and me mind wondered back to that kid what had made a scene at the festival. Struck by the whim, and with the spare money from them gems I nicked burnin a hole in my pocket, I decided to see what had happened to that blighter. Sure enough the local plod had shipped 'im off to an orphanage. Well I remember what it were like back then, puttin on our Sunday best and bein paraded in front of them geezers what wanted chimney sweeps and kids for workin in the mills an such. It weren't no real life and I dont see how I could just sit there and let it 'appen to a likely lad like that. Sure enough the old sod who ran the place were more than 'appy as to get rid of the kids as soon as they saw the colour of my money and so there I was in short order surrounded by 10 of the little scallywags with no real idea with what to do with em. Me I was just thinkin as how I could get em a proper meal and maybe a good nights rest but I didn't really 'ave a clue with what to do next. So I bought em back to our digs and left em with Mrs Morag. Or at least I tried to but that Charlie is a right cheeky sod an 'e an the other lads broke into the rooms below an found the snake woman what we got on ice down there. Now when I were a lad we liked to 'ave fun an all but we knew how to respect the grown ups but the kids these days are right little devils.
Fortunately Mrs Morag and Bonnie took the little ones in 'and and soon enough the girls were sewing away at school uniforms and the boys was learnin proper craftmanship workin round the boat. Thats when Fisk got in touch again sayin he wanted to see Rigsy do another fight to prove he's got what it takes before he puts his name forward to the Red Sash man. This one was going to be 3 guys ganging up on Rigs, and there was one chap by the name Brainbox what was confusin the hell out of poor Rigs. Now Rigsy aint the sharpest tool in the box but I'll say one thing for the guy, he sure knows how to hit back at a guy what has hit him. Soon enough all 3 of the challengers were laid out on the sawdust so we went for a celebratory drink. That was when Charlie, who I'd been 'avin scope out the area came back to tell us the guys what were talkin to Fisk seemed to be mentioning Night Watch or Night Guard which was the name of the German geezers what ran the asylum. It appears this Master of the Night in Transylvania 'ad more than one group workin in Blighty.
Well Rigs were a bit sore after the fight so we rested up and waited to see what happened an sure enough our troops did us proud. Lana recruited that Brainbox chap from the ring and so got us somebody in with Fisk's organisation, Barry an the boys managed to protect the graves from all comers an kill a load of the ghouls in retribution for Victoria. Gibbs an the other dockers even managed to get the old bucket seaworthy in time to rescue two boys what had been pulled into the water off the quayside. It was some great nights of celebration we had those followin nights and it felt like was makin a mark on the world and soon everythin would be right as rain.
Now I'd been troubled by some bad dreams for a while now about lakes of blood, an skeletons what tried to crush me, an of Rigs pushin this large statue off a cliff as it tried to fight us, an worst of all of Doc House cuttin her own face off just to please me. Since we got young ones around a lot more now it didn't seem proper none for me to wake up screamin an punchin so I 'ad a couple of chats with Doc House about it. Shes a right calmin lass and well smart so she managed to put my mind at ease. It were connected to this play The King in Yellow what she had been readin a while back and how it had pulled us through a hole into another world. Worse thing was we then heard how some students up at Oxford was going to be putting on this very same play so we sent Dave and Imogen up to put a stop to it before anybody got hurt. Unfortunately it was more than just the weather that had turned that October and we was too late and though Dave managed to get some of the people back Imogen was lost. It was shortly after that we found out that Barry and Lana had managed to track the ghouls back to their nest but the they were spotted by the fiends an Barry lost his life defending the way so Lana could report back. As a final curse on that foresaken month Joe an Gibbs what were meant to be patrolling the waters were sent adrift by an unnatural mist whereupon they were attacked by my old foe the three masted pirates. Joe was lost at sea that day and now there is spilled blood that must be settled between us.
I was just startin to plan my vengence when Sir Bobby graced us with 'is presence. Turns out that he'd been chattin with that Intelligent Trombley guy and they'd heard word that the Night Guard were after some loony by the name of Challenger. Well we couldn't just let another Inventor of the Realm be snatched by no foreigners so we upped and headed to London sharpish.
Rigs and Mrs Morag went to Helsings lodge to see if they could find our any informations from Hans what we captured at the asylum and Sir Bobby and Doc House went to talk to Mr Challenger when Bonnie came back to me an told me that the workmen what were outside were acting strange. Well we started walkin up the road casual like when indeed the blighter started pullin out a makeshift musket. Bonnie screamed to keep em off balance while I chucked a knife at the shooter. It were a damn nice throw even if I do say so myself an it meant the guy had to turn an fire at me. It probably saved Challenger's life as I don't know how they packed the powder but that gun had a right kick. We set about the watch what was remaining but then this great hulking brute came from the tent and started sending everybody flying. The locals were scared by all this goin on outside their homes and so started headin out to the streets to see what was happening. Well a second coach of these Germans was coming right at us when it lost control and slid into the crowd. I've seen what happens when a crowd starts bayin for blood so I hoped on the lead horse and soon we were gallopin through London on a wild ride.
Are we still freaks if we're not in a circus?Edit
It was with the joy of success that we returned to Southend. It had been a hard fight and a wild ride but the others were pleased with the hiring of Professor Challenger. Upon returning we found the Reverend puzzling over a letter from a Mrs. Harker. It was explained that the lass was a Ripper based in Bucharest which were an area of interest to the Reverend. A clergyman acquantice of his had visited a few months previously and they'd spent many a long hour in theological debate. It aint really an area which interests me, other than working out how soon it's alright to leave church on a Sunday. Well the Reverend had been moping a bit what with havin that brute in Scotland rip 'is arm off and seeing as how I was the one what got it out of it's cell I felt I owed the poor chap a rather serious favour.
It were a long journey ahead of us but fortunately Sir Bobby did the decent thing an got us a ride on the famous Orient Express. It were a wonder of our time and had only just expanded a few years back to cross the whole of the civilised world on just the one train. As if to celebrate Britains firm stand alone the channel ran with a strong So'Westerly that drove the crests to a right froth. Our ship were bucking and fightin as if she were pleased to be alive when the flying jib let go with an almighty crack as she shook to her scuppers. As Rigs grabbed the stays I were up the mast quick as a flash. It weren't the most dangerous of fixes but with the sails backing we were risking headin Easterly onto the Casquets off Alderney. As I rode her masts I swear I spied a shape driving through the storm astern of us and it were none other than that accursed three master that has dogged my steps these many months. As if the sight of that vessel had scared the lass straight, or if it were just she'd had her fun with us for that voyage, she calmed right down and the skies cleared with one of those rare moments of clarity that reminded me of a previous voyage.
Well anyway we made Cherbourg in ample time to catch the midday train to Paris. From there we got settled in to the Orient Express as we prepared for the overnight departure for the East. Sir Bobby had done marvelously and we had an whole carriage to ourselves for the journey. I still aint to sure about these steam trains providing travel but I could get right used to the luxury I saw on that trip. The train must 'ave been going at a fair rate of knots as the landscape flew by an' even the border guards seemed more inclined to let the engine fly on into the night rather than bother with their usual noseyness. It were less than a week afore we'd travelled all the way to Bucharest. Mrs Harker had asked our help as we was known to the main Lodge in London after helpin Van Helsing look for his missin father an cause the Reverend was known to the clergyman what we need to see. Seem the Rev has travelled round a fair bit an we spent most of the followin 8 days swappin tales of lands we've seen and places we've been. After ridin the rails the coach journey into the mountains were a bit borin, baring that group of bandits what thought they could jump us, so we had a fair amount of time to chat.
It was with relief that we finally approached Brasov seen as how Rigs refused to sit inside the coach and thus we had to keep the windows open so we might converse and it were damn nippy up in them hills. We went round to the Black Church right sharpish but it seems the geezer what knows the Rev was seein one of his parishoners even further up and thus wouldn't be back for a couple of days. Fortunately there were a circus in town an' they 'ad bearded ladies an tigers an elephants an everything, even if their fighter were a bit of a wuss and not capable of beatin up Rigs.
The night before the circus opened I was awaken to the sound of screaming. Now this aint as rare as it might seem as Rigsy has been screamin at damn near everythin for a while now but these screams seemed higher pitched than he usually acheives. Gettin up to investigate it seems Bonnie had dreamt of a little girl in their room who had then left walkin right through the door. Me I dont have no dealins with eldritch creatures especially in the dead of night but it seems the others aint so particular what with them runnin off in their nightclothes to chase the thing down. She led them a merry dance round town till they ended up in a courtyard with the body of a brutally slain child. There was blood everywhere but still we could find no prints or tracks from what had done this terrible crime. That weren't the only time that girls ghost appeared afore us, five more times she would take us to find the corpses of slaughtered orphans.
The ladies turned to their books and the towns records to see if they could research any possible clue to why these murders where occuring. It seems the town had suffered similar loses 51 years ago and in fact the loses seemed to occur every 51 years regular like. Always 7 orphans would be found butchered and then the killings would stop again. We also found tell of gypsies being blamed for the last set of killings so we tracked some down to see what excuse they could have. The Reverend, having travelled much across Europe knew the ways of the Roma and thus got us admitted to their camp, there the head gypsy told us a tale that they themselves wished vengence on the murderer seeing as how it were gypsy kids what had been killed in the past. Since the townsfolk were suspicious of them the Gypsies had no chance to investigate themselves but wished to know whatever it was we could find. Then an old wizzened crone came forth from one of their caravans and told a tale of an old pact with the horned one and how the one what done the pactin would have the details of the contract in their home and we had to find such to get the dagger what could finally slay the beast. The woman must 'ave been 90 if she were a day yet she still seemed well taken with the Reverend much to the poor blokes embarasement. I understand how many praise God but I never really saw the point of giving up joy in the world in the hope of gettin some in the next.
It were as we returned to town that the girl appeared again and led us deep into the woods. There we saw a corpse that appeared to have been trampled to death but we also saw for the first time the creatures responsible for the attrocity. They were demonic clowns, all capering and tumbling with grotesque feet and motley for skin. It were a hard fight but no Abominations of God could stand against the combined might of the Reverend and Mrs Morag. Such unique creatures turned our minds to the circus and thus we resolved to investigate the ringmasters caravan next time the big tent opened. With Bonnie to act as a diversion it were a matter of moments to gain access to his home. After a thorough search the Doc found a small bound notebook that appeared to list names and dates, grouped into sevens and spaced 51 years apart. With this evidence in our grasp we retired to the inn to research and plan the downfall of this satanic collaborator. Mrs Morag found tell of an old mansion used as the site of the first offering to the horned one and Bonnie's sharp eyes picked out concealed pages that told of a desperate flight from a fire during the first summoning forcing the guilty to leave behind the very knife we hoped would become his downfall. The next morning the Reverend led us to the church so he might confer with the curate to gain knowledge of the mansion whilst the Doc and Mrs Morag returned to the gypsies to report our findings and to ask for help in our attack upon the culprit.
Through the Reverends skill with the local lingo and his association with God we soon found a parishiner willing to allow us to dig up his front room in search of the mansion's cellar. As we descended into the murky dark it soon came apparent a pentagram had been carved into the floor and strewn around we could count the skeletons of seven children. Darting forth to claim the knife we required I must have set of some ancient trap for a great mist and smoke arose from the flagstones themselves. A great clawed demon soon stood before us but having faced Baphomet afore no fear entered my heart as I lept forth, cold iron dagger in hand. The creature fought well as Rigs and I both tasted the cruelty of it claws but vanquish it we did. I hesitate to commit what happened next to the record of my journal as I know not what it portends but with the slaying of the beast I heard a voice most clear with in my mind as the creature gloated that Reverend Steele's soul belonged to it.
We had lost many hours to the demon and night had once again fallen in the accursed town and there lay but one more murder before the enemy would be beyond our grasp. We dashed to the Circus wherein the Reverend did summon the men of Brasov to our cause and thus we did battle with forces of darkness that night. The ring ran red with blood but through heroic sacrifice of Doc House none of it were the last orphans and thus the Reverend and Mrs Morag could focus their faith onto the demented creature and hold it's powers at bay long enough for Sir Bobby to drive the reclaimed dagger deep into it's heart.
Tentacles in the TundraEdit
As we rested in Budapest we received a telegram from Carstairs requesting our assistance in investigating the fate of a scientific expedition led by Donnelly, whom we met in the case of the Kelly worshipers. We met Carstairs at the docks in Le Havre where the resupply fleet was preparing for it's voyage to Antartica! Fortunately our associates at the lodge know their business so we left them to take care of our duties and they were shortly to be joined by the Reverend who was to assist our new recruits from Brasov as the settled into their new home. There was a minor altercation as the ships captain found out we were to sail with women onboard but fortuately there were sufficient vessels a more commidating Captain could be found.
The voyage was fairly mundane and it was only the ceremony as we crossed the equator that caused any problems. I thought it was very willing of my associates to submit to that ritual but it seems they had forgotten to mention it to Rigs and thus I found him hanging from the rigging as punishment for inciting mutiny in the crew. It was a good and memorable party that managed to break the tedium of the voyage nicely although the ships doctor still seemed irritated that Doc House had hired his best assistant away from him.
I knew little, well nothing, of our destination before we arrived and now if anybody asks I would suggest that they not travel there. It is cold, frightningly cold, colder than anything I have ever experienced in my life. I sailed away from England to find out what was over the horizon and what I found was clear blue skys and white sandy beaches on lands populated by women who wear no more than a grass skirt. Antartica was nothing like those places. I would prefer to spend eternity sailing the Horn, at night, dodging the ice falling from the rigging with freezing spray in my face rather than spending time in a place where it's so cold a man's piss freezes afore it hits the ground. Still we could make no other choice but to travel further into the frozen vastness of that place in search of our quarry.
There were no settlements nor living places of any sort in that whole country, indeed if it weren't for the blubbery skin of the seals, walruses and whales that populated the nearby waters no sane man would ever sail that far south. Thus it were that we must transport all our food and shelter ourselves through a land that seems to consist of nothing more than one frozen snowdrift after another. Most of the group took snow shoes, a wierd device consisting of a large wickerwork lattice the size of a frying pan attached to the underside of the shoe so as to stop the wearer sinking into the snow. However I met a right friendly chap by the name of Olafson who showed me how to use things called 'Skis'. A long thin plank of wood is shaped as if a sledge itself and then strapped one on each foot of the 'skier'. At first since the two skis are not connected by any mean other than my legs they had a tendency to head off in different directions. For a while I worried that by the time we had finished our search my legs shall have been pulled so far apart the ladies would find nothing more to me than a great tear where my manhood should be. Fortunately I soon managed to master the devices and soon I grew to like the odd method of moving around. When the wind was right a man could open his arms and let the wind make the effort as he glided along. Olafson claimed I was a natural and that if I was ever in Sweden he would show me boats they sail on the ice itself and he and I could experience the joys of skiing the land before taking some of the local lasses to a heated room they call a sauna.
Soon we were ready and headed of into the white land. Snow and ice covered all the land we could see and most days clouds or storms would decide turning the sky white so one could no longer tell what was solid land beneath your feet and what was air that would see a man tumble to his doom. We followed what directions we were given and soon managed to find the first encampment of the missing expedition. No signs of what befell them remained for the camp was clean and deserted. Assuming the party must have continued on from this place without hindrance or mishap we followed their path once more. After more days of travel we found a second encampment where there were obvious signs of violence. Although there were neither blood stains nor bodies, signs of hasty and unplanned abandonment abounded and there was a heavy trail as if off many bodies dragged off that lingered still even after all this time. In the wrecked tents we found a journal that mentioned damned beasts that arose from the snow to attack them with tentacles.
With great trepidation and with our wills sapped by the continuous biting cold we had no option but to follow the scarred trail to the lair of these mentioned but unseen foes. It was as we followed that path that we suffered our first encounter. Our party, split by blizzard, was beset as this abomination arose from some tunnel it had crafted by some eldritch means to ambush us. It resembled a gigantic and hideous jellyfish given ability to float in air not water and it reached forth to entangle us with it's tentacles. I attempted to free Mrs Morag who was the first ensnared but my blades passed through the abominations bulk as if it were no more than morning mist. Carstairs shotgun had a much greater effect on the beast and it soon retreated. Mrs Morag wanted to chase the creature back through it's tunnels but cooler heads prevailed and we followed the path onwards.
Ahead at the base of a great mountain we saw a stone pyramid. Carstairs was driven to wonderment for he knew of no culture of people that had travelled to this place and yet he claimed the writings and pictograms carved upon the edifice where similar in style to a number of the more cultured lands. As we climbed the steps to the temples entrance Rigs had cause to set of an avalanche and thus we were soon entombed in the forgotten building beneath layers of snow. Leaving the dogs and the hired help to dig a path back out the rest of us penetrated further into the complex. As we travelled, wonderments of wonderments, we quickly became warmed - a feeling I had all but forgotten in our travels across the icy wastes. Whatever lay ahead was producing amazing amounts of heat and with no regrets of any kind our party divested themselves of the thick arctic clothing that so restricted our movements.
We noticed some form of regular alcoves lining the path and at first we could make out nothing except a vaue shape entombed in swirls of solid ice. After much labour we cleared away enough that we could stare upon the grotesque travesty within. It was as if an evil and lowly snake had been lifted from its belly and crafted into a shape that was a mockery of man's own. Further down we found an immense chamber arranged with rows of those creatures, each connected by a profusion of tubing to the missing members of Donelly's expedition. Overseeing it all was some contraption of steam kettles pouring out the heat by which this place was preserved. At our entrance the snakemen started to rise and those jellyfish like creatures descended from the ceiling. Beset on all sides we fought back to the best of our abilities until some attack, by either chance or planning, caused the kettles to scream and shudder. The whole place started to shake and collapse and it was all we could do to drag what members of the expedition we could back to the temple entrance before the whole place descended again to the hells from which it had sprung.
With few supplies and those we rescued still suffering from their abusement in the hands, or claws, of their captors our journey back across the tundra was a time filled with hunger and ache. It was by the barest of margins that we managed to successfully return to our original landing spot and there we feasted on the slimy and greasy carcuses of the slaughtered seals as if it were ambrosia from the gods themselves. For everyday of the return voyage I consoled myself with the knowledge that we were that bit further away from that abominable land.
If you can't give your word what can you give?Edit
We were newly returned to our green and pleasant land and still rejoicing at days filled with warmth when Rigs burst into our breakfast one morning with tale of a note addressed to him found in his room. That somebody could know of our existence and manage to break into our lodge, hidden as it is underground away from prying eyes filled us all with curiosity and so we vowed forthwith to travel to Prague and put this matter to rest. Through my new life with the Rippers I've had many an occasion to appreciate the advances that science bought us with the iron horse. What used to be a long a tedious journey by carriage across numerous mountain passes has instead been reduced to but a few days amoungst the luxury and refinement of our moving hotel, even if it does involve pretending to be Sir Bobby's servant.
Prague is a sort of dull and uninteresting place made even worse since none of our party could speak the local lingo, what with Carstairs back in England still trying to make people believe the story of that accursed temple we found in the land of snow and ice. We managed to find a hotel eventually but it appears nobody had heard of the Monastery of St. George within which we were meant to meet the mysterious correspondent. Through further investigation we found the monastery was abandoned and now merely part of the grounds of a larger building, which in turn had been repurposed as the main offices of the local government. It even appeared the monastery had been burnt to the ground in result of or retribution for black magics.
As the midnight hour approached we snuck through the town to break into holy ground. We went early so we might see the letter writer approaching and hopefully work out where he lived if we needed to have further dealings with him. The monastery was a large edifice, still with minor damage from the fire that marked the end of its useful life. We spread out and prepared for the mysterious guest, mostly in silence except for the bit where Mrs Morag saw the bats what nested in the belfry.
As the midnight hour was struck in by the towns bells we saw a mist start to rise from infront of the altar and soon the form of a shadow and indistinct monk appeared. Seeing as how this didn't seem quite Christian I moved across the nave gesturing for the ladies to keep quiet and stay low. Now it's been remarked upon before that I'm naturally quiet (when I wish to be) and I could 'ave sworn I made not a sound but still the monk turned and spoke to me and by name as well. Seems this bloke were Brother John Melmoth what sold his soul to the devil centuries before and now he wanted to make Rigsie boy the same deal. Well this didn't seem right to none of us so we all started yelling and such. Seems this Brother John thinks Rigs is already damned and thus might be willing to trade since John can't release himself from the pact till he finds another to take his place. The Brother and the ladies started yammering away in that church language they all know but before that Brother John told me that I weren't damned yet. I got to say that were a relief to hear what with some of the jobs I've taken in my youth, with what that Reverend Gill said when he found me with his daughter in the haybarn, not to mention I've always found felt bad about them lasses in Saigon what I couldn't save.
Since most of the night was gone we got a bit of kip and then checked out the town. There weren't much we could learn about monastery nor could we find any mention of Brother John. There was nothing else we could so we resolved to head back to Britain.
Well I've never thought of myself as evil and I gotta say it's nice to hear it from the other side as well. That night I slept the sleep of the righteous.
The following morning we got the train bright and early and started heading home. Something seemed to be the matter with the Doc since she were all pale and quiet, I think the food didn't agree with her. Me, I'd finally got to try that Vodka stuff Owen had been going on about, so I was in high spirits. The journey were mostly boring except for the bit where Sir Bobby was entertaining a merchant friend of his and wouldn't you know it but bandits chose that very moment to attack the train. Well it were a touch difficult dealing with the situation since we couldn't pretend to be more than the servents of Sir Bobby but we managed it in the end.
It were only when we were back in the lodge that I found out the truth. A fire broke out in the training room and once it were out Rigsie admitted to me that he started it by playing with eldritch powers what he's now got. It seems the daft burk went back to the Brother on the second night and agreed to the deal. He says he's now immortal and can summon fire an' such. I aint one to judge, I know I've done more 'n enough shady stuff in my past that many a person has treated me as one damned but still I gotta say selling your soul is a new one even for me. I told Rigs that he aint to test no more of his powers in the lodge since we got to be able to pretend we're a school so we can't have no screams of the damned or nothing come echoing out of the 'cellars'. I told him any time he wants to practice he should take the launch and head up to the marshes out of town. The lads and the boat are always available for him. I also told the lads seperate that if Rigs ever came back from a training session wrong, or wierd they were to bundle him up in a fishing net and sink him into the ocean before coming and getting the rest of the lodge.
I also went to tell the Reverend about what had happened but seeing as how that Baphomet thing we fought in Brasov said that the Rev's soul belonged to it I didn't have the guts in the end. Both of them seem damned, Mrs Morag seems to be possessed by some angel they tell me - it's getting so it's only me and the Doc what seem sane. And she tried to CUT OFF HER OWN FACE!
Picking Scraps in the SewersEdit
Repercusions from when Garvin took up pyschomanipulation.
The Gates of Hell are paved with French ConnectionsEdit
Some secrets are better left buried
Of Ships that haven't passed byEdit
Where we learn that ship board romances are a historic tale
Wedding Horror StoriesEdit
Some mothers-in-law just give the rest a bad name