|Missing: Ancient Vase, Diamond Necklace, Maltese Falcon and Magical Teleporting Painting.|
Faithful readers will remember we left off our last session with the dangerously imbalanced woman, Colette Blue, was holding the respectable head of the Penhew foundation at gun point. When Edward Gavigan finished his work for the day, went to retrieve his coat from the closet opposite his desk and found Miss Blue lurking within the folds of the fabric barrage of winter sundries. After an initial moment of confussion, Colette was told to scram. Her response was to whip out a pistol and demand some answers! Gavigan called off the approaching guard and agreed to answer some questions. "What's with that closet? I was in there for a while and it was wigging me out!" thus setting the tone for the remainder of the interview. Colette remained convinced that the closet was some sort of whimsical vehicle to the past or future. A time closet, if you will. Gavigan had no information on the closet, but was able to clear up a little of information regarding the numerous amounts of cults that seemed to be quickly becoming major religions throughout the world.
Minutes later, Colette exited the Penhew foundation, meeting her friend and accomplice Elly Mists.As they descended the steps into the foggy night, Colette began to smell burning hair, after which she was promptly attacked by an invisible entity that invaded her nostrils and cut off her ability to breath. In a panic, Colette fired her weapon into the very mist that was attacking her, in so doing revealing an unearthly tangle of tentacles seemingly formed from the mist towering 30 feet into the air. Elly rummaged around for a solution, finally settling on a ceremonial headband she had pillaged from the Ju-Ju house in New York. She placed it on top of Colette's head, and she looked fabulous as she slowly suffocated. Before losing all semblance of cognitive ability, Colette ran from the attacker, as she moved further away her airways were cleared and she was able to use that oxygen to propell herself further away from the looming threat. Elly followed suit. Hailing a cab Elly and Colette witnessed the ethereal beast shrivel and retreat rom the beam of the cabs headlights. The two women rushed to the hospital where they met a friend of a friend. Dr.Victor Smallhousen had been in contact with Hariet Oslow back in New York and was told to expect strange injuries with even stranger stories associated with them. Gladly dropping his post at the hospital, Smallhousen decided to accompany the women on their hunt for the truth about stuff... and maybe he just liked big women with imaginations large enough to concoct something as ludicrous as a "time closet"
After speaking to the police and giving adequate reasons for killing a local artist and his giant lizard friend, Jezebel dissapeared into the night and Horace Scarth headed back to the hotel. As he walked into the lobby a young woman approached him introducing herself as a reporter for The National Inquirer, a new Newspaper starting up in the states. Horace had little patience for chit chat. He had just assisted in killing two individuals and witnessed two others magically transport inside a painting, a fate he nearly succumbed to himself. But when the woman asked about her brother, Dick, he realized he had some very bad news for this young lady. Regina Shmee had been receiving tips and information about her brother's series of adventures. When the letters stopped coming she tracked him down to this hotel. Horace informed her that Dick was sucked into another dimension. She took the news quite well as Horace stashed the painting in the hotel safe.
Once everyone was together again, introductions were made and no one seemed to notice that Kun Li was missing. A pact was made then, a solemn and unbreakable pact that I expect to last for at least a good hour. This pact was an oath to not split the party. So, because of this agreement, they decided to go down to Scotland Yard as a group and speak to an inspector Barrington. This was the man in charge of investigating a number of murders targeting individuals of Egyptian descent.
The hotel lobby called up to the room the following morning to inform Regina and Horace that the painting they had placed in the safe was stolen in the night by two masked assailants. Also stolen was an ancient Chinese vase, a diamond necklace and a Maltese Falcon. The Falcon was owned by a Canadian by the name of Jasper Eagleton who wanted nothing more than to be thought of as an American.
Bodies had been washing up in the Thames and showed signs of ritualistic murders. The victims were covered in bruises as if they had been beat before having a single spike driven through their heart. Barrington felt a certain amount of respect for Horace, both being investigators, managed to give them an extremely crude drawing of a recovered murder weapon. While it seemed of Egyptian origin, it was not connected to any known cults. Barrington reffered to other people interviewed about the murders. Edward Gavigan, whom the investigators had already run into, and a local spice dealer by the name of Tewfik Al Sayed.
Stepping out into the fog shrouded afternoon, everyone was a little leery of tentacles and kept an open nose for the scent of burning hair. Alas, no one was to be suffocated at this time. Instead of burning hair, the exotic aroma of cumin, cinnamon and peppercorn greeted every nostril as they shuffled into the small spice shop. Tewfik stood at his counter and greeted them kindly. A round of investigations revealed that Tewfik had accomponied a number of investigations with the Penhew foundation, but was also oddly unaware of a cult whose figure head was a shadowy pharaoh. Regina, always the connoisseur of fine spices, offered to trade a crate of her brothers gin for a sizable jar of Cumin. While reluctant at first, they shook on the deal. The two began to talk about Tewfik's trips to Egypt and Regina convinced him to show off his favorite prizes from the digs he went on. While Tewfik scuttled upstairs to his apartment above the shop to retrieve said prizes, everyone got a quick look around. No time closets. Tewfik returned with two black metallic scepters, one a crook and the other an inverted ankh. He had little information on the pieces, but seemed quite proud of them. Colette took this opportunity to pull out her pillaged scepter she got while burning down half of Harlem. The spice dealer was impressed and wished to buy the item, but she wasn't selling. As they prepared to leave, Tewfik recommended an establishment by the name of The Blue Pyramid.
So, heading into the heart of Soho, where the majority of murder victims stemmed from, our heroes went in search of answers and dinner. The Blue Pyramid sported some tacky exterior decor that loosely sent out an "Egyptian vibe". The interior of the establishment was crowded and loud, cymbals crashed and flutes sang as the strong aroma of middle eastern cuisine wafted through the air. Drinks were ordered and an entire roasted goat was brought to the table. A number of belly dancers worked their way through the crowded atmosphere stopping at tables and receiving tips. A large man sat in a roped off VIP area conducting business. The waiter informed them that the man was Abdul Nawisha, the owner of the club, he was currently talking to vendors. Regina managed to get a meeting with Abdul by posing as a Cumin distributor, which oddly caught the attention of the owner. Upon conversing it was discovered that their regular distributor was mysteriously sold out of cumin, and it was necessary to keep food prep running smoothly. When pressed about the recent murders in the area, Abdul brushed the topic aside, not wanting to discuss something so disturbing and inconsequential to his business. Little was learned, other than the man needed the spice to flow. As Regina sat back down, one of the dancers shimmied on over to the table. Regina was confused. Until, that is, The dancer leaned in to whisper that she had information that might be of value. She requested to meet the group down the street at midnight.
With little else to do, the group began to separate (of course). Dr. Smallhousen and the ever faithful Elly Mists went back to the hotel to arm themselves before scouting out the meeting spot. Horace and Colette attempted to get a better look around the club before ducking into a cafe down the street to await the approaching midnight hour. Regina stuck around the club long enough to see Gavigan and Tewfik enter within minutes of each other. While they weren't sitting at the same table, interactions were exchanged, the nature of which she couldn't tell. She did, however, manage to spill the fact that Tewfik had sold his entire supply of cumin to her instead of Abdul. The owner was less than pleased and Regina left the club with the two arguing heatedly.
The midnight hour approached, and with it a thick mist and Yalesha, the dancer from the club. It was learned that her fiance was murdered by a group called "The Brotherhood of the Black Pharaoh" a very real and active cult. Once a month a truck would pull around to the back of the club, a group of people would willingly and head to some location that she believed outside of London. Her fiance entered the van one night, and washed up in the Thames the following week, bruised and stabbed through the heart. The man responsible for driving the van went by Tewfik Al Sayad. A familiar name to the investigators. Regina payed the woman for her time and the evening ended.
Evidently feeling there was more to be done at the Penhew foundation, a brainstorming session took place to figure out the best way to get in and, perhaps, get a good look at that time closet, maybe check out the basement as well. Preliminary scouting revealed some odd wiring and plumbing going underneath the building. A plan was set for Elly to go in inquiring about Colette, pretending to not have seen her since the night of "the incident", explaining that she was off her medication and imbalanced. She then would infiltrate other areas of the building to glean whatever clues she could about The Brotherhood, or other such mysteries. It was a fair plan, but it was completely scrapped in favor of entering the sewer system to find a way in from below. Donning rubber galoshes and a number of high powered flash lights, the descent into the sewer was vile. Horace Scarth, a former marine and veteran of conflicts, wretched the contents of his most recent meal due to the smell. Everyone else was fine. Until, that is, the distinct odor of burnt hair showed up. However, equipped with flashlights and Regina's camera, the menacing tentacle beast was held back, as was evidence by it's shrieks of protest. Shaken, but undeterred, they pressed on. Elly managed to blind herself with Regina's camera...twice. other than that, they made it to the basement of the Penhew foundation with no problems.
A quick scan of the basement proved to further their suspicion that there was a hidden room within the building, but finding the entrance was the problem. Waiting in the basement until after the foundation was closed, the crew marched upstairs. Quickly realising they had a night watchmen to deal with they hid in the library. When the poor unsuspecting guard passed the door to the library, Horace leaped out and pistol whipped him in the back of the head. It wasn't a very hard hit, but the following whacks from the rest of the group did more than enough to knock him unconscious. Miss Shmee noticed an inverted ankh necklace around the guards neck. She stole it. His gun didn't stand a chance either, as Elly swiped it to replace her woefully inadequate derringer.
Starting with a locked door adjacent to Edward Gavigan's office, they began their search. In the supply room were a number of crates and knick-knacks, as well as a large sarcophagus with ruby eyes on the floor. Colette walked over to the wall shared by Gavigan's office and pressed on it. To her surprise a door opened directly into the time closet! however, there was nothing actually particularly special about it. That weird vibe she got was simply from the fact that it contained a hidden door. Horribly disappointing. Their attention was turned to the sarcophagus. While Horace, colette and Victor were shouldering up to push the thing aside, Regina pushed on its eyes. The unmistakable whir of a mechanical pulley system was heard as the entire thing moved itself to reveal a staircase leading down. After a brief pause, it was decided that if they were to die it would all be together! Thankfully the trip down the stairs proved to be less than deadly. What they stumbled upon was a small room completely separate from the rest of the building, it held numerous texts and paintings, most of which were stolen by our heroes. Also there was a box containing two silver daggers that Regina pocketed. There were also two crates, one address to "The Honorable Ho Fong" at Ho Fong Imports in Shanghai. It contained a huge statue of a bloated woman with the trunk of an elephant. This left everyone feeling pretty gross. The smaller case was addressed to the Randolph Shipping Company in Australia, addressed personally to Mr. Randolph. It contained a small tentacled statue (It was Cthulhu, but THEY didn't know that.) that when Regina touched it caused a tingling in her arms and torso. After looting Mr. Gavigan's private sanctuary, they decided to high-tail it outta there. Tossing the unconscious guard into the sewer and waltzing out the front door.
To be safe, they all took up residence at a new hotel, Mr Scarth was adamant about dropping off the items at the American Consulate bright and early the next morning. It was news the next day that their previous hotel rooms had been ransacked, and all of Mr. Horace Scarth's suits had been ripped to shreds. This effected him far more than the fog-tentacle monster.