Monday, January 31, 2011

From the notebook of Ivan Trotsky

1 Apr 22 George Edmonston
- papyrus, Egyptian? poss. forg.?
- prodigious qty obscure books and lit.
- gothic statuary, Italian?, num. bas relief
2 Apr 22 Edmonston murdered!
- papyrus police evidence.
- estate auction?
3 Apr 22 Prev. Res. Dr. Briggs
- superior artifacts! daemonic temple? basement
- brief glimpse, locked, return with Frenchman?
- careful of neighbours, police
4 Apr 22 Greyfell Institute, Northumberland
- panel painting, lobby, Dutch, van Eyck?, ca 1400?
- tell Nikolai
4 Apr 22 Dr. Winterton, Harrowgate, Yorkshire
- another papyrus, burnt! Idiot.
- good rugs, Persian?
5 Apr 22 Baron reports a Dr. Masters, Oxford, Murdered Apr 3
- also papyrus, obvious ca 1922!
- ask Baron if artifacts? Watch for estate.
- Took Winterton to London, protect from Dr. Wraight's "hunting
horror". Is it real?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Francois' Journal Entry

2nd of April 1922 9 o’clock p.m.

Today has been the most interesting of days. It was just this morning I received a telegram from the Baron and the Professor, asking me to come to London for a break and enter. Quite insulting actually, implying that I might actually have to break something. Of course I accepted the request, I quite enjoy new experiences and I had never tested the locks on a London townhouse.

I arrived in London and I was informed of the quite disturbing details of my summoning. It was about one Mr. Edmunston I think, I’m not quite sure. You see, the lock on the Baron’s dresser was an exquisitely made combination lock, it was not only beautiful but it looked like it would take at least four minutes to solve. I always do love those 1892 combination locks but I didn’t even get to ask what it was guarding before I was swept off to look around the loony Mr. Briggs’ previous residence.

When we arrived we asked around about the ownership of the house. One neighbour in particular was helpful after answering the door (1867 mortise lock, an ancient thing) she told us that Mr. Briggs had sold his house, and that she hadn’t yet met the new neighbour, he hadn’t replied to her invitations to tea. We then went and knocked on the door of Briggs’ home. There was no answer so I asked if I could try to open the door. The lock was another Mortise lock just like the neighbour’s, given it was newer, so it would have been easy to open. But, it was decided that I shouldn’t and that we should go around back. We did and I got to try that door, easily opened in 1 minute and 13 seconds to be exact. I think that is my record for an 1879 pin tumbler.

Once we were in we searched the house, what we found in the basement was quite disturbing, there were most foul symbols and drawings everywhere. Professor Wraight said it was a Demonological temple, and we all believed her. Then the Bobbies arrived at the front, so we took our leave out the rear. There was a lone cop back there but the Baron gave him what for. It was hard to keep a straight face while seeing the look on the constables.

Tomorrow the Baron, Mr. Wiez and I plan to warn the other possible targets of the infamous Briggs of their danger. This will hopefully prevent anyone more from being harmed. I admire both the Baron and the Professor in their crusade and I hope to be as much help as I can in stopping these evil people and their horrific actions.

Francois Serrurier


Early the morning of the April 4th, the body of Reginald Masters, 64, Professor of Medicine, was discovered in his rooms at Balliol College. Dr. Arthur Smith, Master of Balliol, told the Times that "Professor Masters was a valuable and much loved Fellow who will be greatly missed as a professor, colleague, and friend. Our thoughts go out to his surviving children and their families." While most declined interview, several of the college's fellows described Masters as a genial and highly competent doctor and professor who was liked and respected by all.

The manner of the professor's death is as yet officially unknown, but it has come to light that the death was not a natural one. Inspector Peters of the Oxfordshire Constabulary, placed in charge of the investigation, has stated that inquiries are being continued with all diligence, but has declined further comment. The Times, however, has learned from several sources that there are some baffling aspects to the professor's death that seem very bizarre indeed. Extensive damage to the second floor window of the Professor's bedroom, indicating entry through that window, was visible until University workers covered it up on the evening of the 4th. Furthermore, witnesses to the finding of the body have stated that they believe that the Professor was attacked by some sort of large animal in his rooms, although no sightings of such a beast in the area has been reported before the event or since.

While unconfirmed by police, the Times has learned that respected Doctor of Zoology Sir William Stevenson has been called in to consult on the case. When contacted for an interview, Sir Stevenson confirmed that he had both studied the body and the professor's room. "I have never seen anything like it. Were it not for the death of Dr. Masters, I would put this down to some sort of elaborate student prank. While I cannot go into details, I will say that the size of the wounds to the late Professor is far greater than anything I have seen in the wild, and that no reptile that I know of has ever had a scale the size of the one found on the scene."

When asked by this newspaper about the possibility of a dangerous wild animal being on the loose, Inspector Peters declined to comment or to issue a warning to area residents, but stated that anyone who possesses any information regarding the death of Dr. Masters should contact the Oxfordshire Police immediately.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

From the Diary of Jochim v Furchtberg

We have been playing "Death in the Post" from Green and Pleasant Land (using Realms of Cthulhu, of course). The following is a diary entry by Jochim v Furchtberg (written by Christian).

4 April 1922, 2300 hrs.

It is clear that the monster which the accursed Dr Briggs has summoned is yet another THING from Beyond the Veil. I have counseled my compatriots who have found another parchment in Harrowgate that the monster will likely not attack this night, but I believe that it will the next. The postmark came from Chester. I will travel there in the morning, and hope to somehow catch Briggs and his henchman Phelps before they summon the Horror. The Russian, Trotsky, wishes the rest of us to join them in helping fend off the monster, but I believe that so long as Herr Doktor Winterton is kept under bright light that the beast will not attack. Fraulein Doktor Professor Wraight believes that only daylight will dissuade the beast, but I feel that she must be wrong in this. As well, I do not believe that our newer companions, the Frenchman and the Hungarian magician, will be able to stand the mental strain of seeing the beast. I hope that I am right in my decision, but the Horror is only the symptom. It is Briggs who is the disease.

Instead, I will take another step in fulfilling my vow. Briggs must be destroyed. If I am able to kill him, then warning Lord Elwood, Herr Professor Masters in Oxford, and Dr Collinbury in Petersfield will be academic. I will then be able to purchase the papyri and destroy them quite easily. Should I fail to find Briggs, then the others must be warned and protected. We must find out what will happen to the Horror if we are able to drive it off. What will it do if it fails in its mission?

Alexei has told us of the Elder Sign. I am torn as to whether we should learn more of it. Is it effective against the hell spawn? By using it, do we tar ourselves with the same brush as those I am sworn to eradicate? Or is it acceptable to use the weapons of the enemy, so long as the overall aim is maintained?

Perhaps I need to spend more time reading the horrible books that we have collected. The accursed work of v. Junzt scared me badly, and my dreams remain... troubling. I have seen THE BLACK MAN in them again, standing silently amidst shadowy figures and that hellish piping noise. I fear that in my dreams he will speak, and if he does I will surely go mad. But perhaps some of the works that we possess have been written by persons sharing the same views as I do, and who have weapons that can drive back the darkness.

I do not trust our new companions, but especially the Hungarian "magician" and the Frenchman, and have decided to keep them both where I can keep an eye on them. They share a naivety which when mixed with their desire to know more is dangerous. The Frenchman's eagerness after seeing some of the... things in THE LOCKED BOOK was unwholesome. As for the Hungarian, he has already stated his desire to find out "new tricks" for his so called "magic show". He must not be allowed to read any of the books. If his curiosity and desire for knowledge continues after he SEES ONE OF THE THINGS, I fear he may well find himself among the hunted. I feel somewhat better about the Russian, but I will keep an eye on him as well. He is out for himself, but I think he realises the threat posed by THAT FROM THE OTHER SIDE, and those who serve them, is real.

Tomorrow I will kill Briggs and his henchman. They will suffer for their crimes, and for their betrayal of humanity.

v. Furchtberg

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

François Serrurier

Dramatis Personae Cthuliana

More Character backgrounds... this time Patrick's new character from our new Realms of Cthulhu campaign.

François Serrurier - Locksmith - (Patrick)
Ag d10, Sm d8, Sp d8, St d4, Vg d8,
Pace 6, Parry 4, Toughness 6
Skills: Fighting d4, Shooting d6, Notice d6, Stealth d8, Lockpicking d8, Climbing d6, Repair d6, Investigation d4, Knowledge: Locks and Traps d10, Boating d4, Swimming d4, Streetwise d4
Edges: Theif
Hindrances: Quirk (must investigate locks), Curious,
Gear: Lockpicks, Electric Torch, Pistol (Range: 6/12/24, ROF1, Damage: 2d6, AP:1)

François was born and raised in the port town Calais, France, where he lived with his father, Aldéric a locksmith, and mother, Madeline. He had no brothers or sisters. Madeline did not have a job other than at their home, just a few blocks from Aldéric’s shop. On August 10th, 1903, she was killed in the Paris Métro train fire along with her sister Antoinette whom she had been visiting. She was 29 at the time. Francois was only 6 when she died so he doesn’t have many memories of her.

During his childhood he spent hours upon hours tinkering with different locks in his father’s shop. If there was something he couldn’t figure out, he would go to his father’s collection of books and research the topic. When François was only eight years old Aldéric started to give him jobs that he didn’t have time to do. They never told customers that it was Francois doing some of the work, and the customers never noticed.

In 1914 François was recruited as a mechanic for the French navy. In 1916 while Francois was installing a gun on the Dreadnaught Lorraine a support strap snapped and the gun fell. The gun hit and cut Francois’ head but did not land on him. He was injured quite badly and was put into a hospital. He had healed by the end of the war, and was very thankful of the English nurse Jean Roberts, who he claims “healed him single-handedly”. After he proposed to her but she declined, saying she had to return home to Cambridge. He followed her there, and after he had opened a locksmith shop, in 1919 he proposed again. This time she accepted, and they now live in the flat above the shop in Cambridge. Jean works at Addenbrooke’s Hospital and is studying medicine at Cambridge and plans to become a doctor. Before entering the School of Medicine she also studied anthropology, at Cambridge. François plans to keep his shop in Cambridge until retirement.

François met Dr. Wraight and Baron von Fürchtberg when they brought a very large locked tome to him. They wanted him to make a key to open it so that they would be able to close it again afterwards. For François to do this they had to trust him with the tome for a few weeks. François had no trouble manufacturing a key for the lock but he wondered why there would be such a heavy lock on a book and what could be in it. He started asking questions of Dr. Wraight and The Baron. Because they realized his talents could be helpful, they didn’t ‘quiet’ him. Instead they answered his questions and told him the basis of their adventures. François wasn’t sure he believed them and wanted to see for himself.

François is 24 in January 1922; his birthday is February 19th, 1897.

Jean is 25 in January 1922; her birthday is November 8th, 1896

Aldéric is 51 and was born on October 7th, 1970. He still lives in Calais and does small repair. He gave his book collection to François as a wedding gift.

Madeline’s birthday was April 14th, 1974 she would have turned 49 in April 1922.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Savage Saturday Back in Session

Dave, Patrick, Christian and Amanda all showed up to play Realms of Cthulhu this evening. They are playing through "Death in the Post" from Green and Pleasant Land.

Christian and Amanda reprised their roles as Freiherr und Ritter Jochimm von und zu Höllenstadt-Fürchtberg and Doctor Emma Wraight, professor of Archaeology and Anthropplogy at Cambridge, respectively. Dave and Patrick had not played in the Cthulhu campaign so they started new characters: Ivan Trotsky and François Serrurier. so we had a Prussian Noble, Ukranian smuggler, a French locksmith and a "respectable" Englishwoman traipsing about London trying to determine the whereabouts of a evil sorcerer that killed their friend by summoning a particularly nasty beastie from beyond.

More on that soonish...

Shivansu Malaker

Sgt. Shivanshu Malaker – Gurkha (Darrin)
Ag d8, Sm d8, Sp d8, St d8, Vg d10,
Pace 6, Parry 7, Toughness 8, Sanity 5, Corruption 1
Skills: Fighting d10, Shooting d8, Notice d8, Stealth d8, Intimidate d8, Climbing d8, Swimming d4, Survival d10, Tracking d8, Knowledge: Mythos d6,
Edges: Brawny, Woodsman, Alertness, First Strike
Hindrances: Heroic, Code of Honour
Gear: Rifle (Range: 24/48/96, ROF1, Damage: 2d8, AP: 2), Kukri (Str+d6)

Shivansu Malaker served as a Sergeant of Gurkha Rifles. While detached to The Kings African Rifles in East Africa during the Great War he met Miss Wraight and later Mr. Höllenstadt-Fürchtberg under most bizarre and unworldly circumstances. Shivansu was honorably released from service follwing the war and traveled to England to work for Miss Wraight.

Shivansu is the son of Krish and Ema (father and mother, respectively) and brought them much honor when he was accepted into the Gurkha Rifles.

Shivansu’s oldest brother Parul will be taking over the family farm and trading business, it has grown since Shivansu had been sending money home throughout his service. His other older brother Prabia died leaving behind a wife, Kritee, and an almost grown daughter Kulnja. Shivansu’s sister Rohin, only a year older, has married into a fine family. They have two girls and are expecting another child very soon.

Shivansu’s little brother Upendra, has twice honored their family by also being accepted into the Gurkha Rifles. Shivansu has told him of my travels and experiences, even the extraordinary ones and prays he does not find such things.