journal.wiredreflexes.com Jack the sound barrier. Bring the noise.

9Jan/160

Call of Cthulhu: Sir Kevin O’Reilly vs Detective Taegan “Tiggy” Quinn

It struck Kevin as a strange conversation to have, with anyone, but especially with detective Quinn.

It wasn't that detective Quinn was an unpleasant fellow, just a bit rough around the edges. Nothing Kevin hadn't seen before in the Great War; men of violence whose situation slowly eroded their civility. Perhaps it wasn't so much an erosion of civility as a sharpening of their violent nature until they became the perfect soldier, devoid of the unnecessary trappings of civilised society. In detective Quinn's case, he had probably galvanised into the perfect bloodhound, giving up superfluous things, like bathing and shaving, in order to gain focus and clarity.

"In all honesty, detective, I had forgotten all about the safety deposit box," Kevin said, slightly bemused.

The detective scratched his head as he studied his notepad. "Now that I've reminded you about it, any chance you'll clue me in on the contents of the box, Mr. O'Reilly?"

"Sir," Kevin said. Quietly. Like he couldn't help himself.

"What?" the detective said, crudely.

"Sir Kevin O'Reilly," Kevin said, with slight hesitation.

"We haven't recognised the monarchy since that little tea party we had in the Boston harbor, pall."

"Yes, of course. I apologise, detective." Kevin felt he was getting on the detective's bad side and he might need the good detective to find his possessions. It might have skipped his mind that he had a deposit box at the local office of First National, but that didn't mean the contents weren't very dear to him.

It didn't surprise Kevin at all that he had forgotten all about the deposit he made since all of the details surrounding that time in his life were a little distorted. He reckoned it was hard enough for the human mind to remember many of life's details without the circumstances around those details being more than most minds could bear. In all honesty, even if Kevin could remember an accurate description of the items in the deposit, which he had a hard time recalling, he wouldn't have given them to the detective anyway. Better not, lest the detective start asking questions about the origins of the ill-gotten items.

"Okay, your highness," the detective said with an elaborate sweep of his arm, "should you be able to give me a few more details beyond 'some papers and antiques', let me know, if you please?" The detective ripped the page of notes he took of his interview with Kevin off the pad and paperclipped it onto the rest of the file of the bank robbery and placed the file on a stack of other files on his coffee stained desk. "Thank you for coming into the station. You've got my card, so ring me on the telephone or come by any time." Both men stood up and shook hands. They walked across the large expanse of the office, past other detectives sitting at desks filled with papers and boxes of evidence, into the public area of the police station. "Have a nice day, O'Reilly," the detective said and immediately turned to the next person waiting to be interviewed about what the robbers might have taken during the heist.

Kevin walked past the many waiting people and stepped outside. Slowly some of the details of the house at 25 French Hill Street and the church on Brown Street started to come back to him. They were details he had put to rest in the hope of never having to review them again. He had been forced to when the detective confronted him with the news of the bank heist, presumably performed by Bosso Morgan and his crew, and he felt a knot form in the pit of his stomach.

2Jun/120

The Auction

Monday, September 1st, 1924, Labor Day

Sir Kevin O'Reilly, English-born history professor at Arkham's own Miskatonic University is enjoying an Indian summer morning preparing classes for the soon starting semester, when he hears a gentle knocking on the wooden door frame of his modest apartment in the staff housing building on campus. He looked up from his paperwork to find the tall, imposing figure of Mr. Blair Monroe standing in his doorway, with Mr. Walter Simons behind him. It wasn't hard to see that Mr. Simons was there reluctantly.

It had been more than a year since Sir Kevin and Mr. Simons had visited Mr. Monroe in New York City, getting permission to peruse his extensive library for the journal of Pavel Dvorak. It had also been more than six months since Mr. Simons and Sir Kevin had come back from Oswego county, after which they had not stayed in touch. Seeing them together standing in the doorway was quite surprising.

It turned out Mr. Simons had been doing some work for Mr. Monroe and that they had stayed in touch. Mr. Monroe informed Sir Kevin of an upcoming auction to be held in Arkham at the end of the week, organised by the renowned Austrian auction house of Ausperg. The closed-door auction would hold many curious items Mr. Monroe assumed would be of interest to Sir Kevin as they pertained to his particular field of expertise, the occult. Having no interest in the subject himself, Mr. Monroe would only be attending because of certain rare books and manuscripts that would be going under the hammer, the acquisition of which would sate his inner bibliophile. He had hoped to get Sir Kevin, Mr. Simons, Mr. Mason and the lovely Ms. Nannetti to come in order to bid against the other attendees in order to deplete their cash reserves, allowing Mr. Monroe less opposition while bidding his items.

Mr. Monroe turned over a small booklet describing the lots that were to be auctioned. Most of them were quite expensive and Sir Kevin wasn't sure whether he'd be able to put up much of a fight in the auction room so Mr. Monroe offered a budget of £2,000 in order for the investigators to bid against other attendees. The goal was not to buy the items, but if one of the investigators would win a bid, the items could always be sold off at auction. A small loss was acceptable, as long as the investigators would play the bidding game intelligently, Mr. Monroe didn't worry.

After a handshake and Mr. Monroe's departure, Sir Kevin and Mr. Simons spent some time talking. Mr. Simons appeared to be in an even more fragile state of mind than when they had returned from Oswego county and Sir Kevin worried about him. Mr. Mason was contacted and brought in on the plan and seemed to be a willing participant in the matter.

In the meantime, Mr. O'Donnell, concierge at the Miskatonic Hotel was arranging for all the necessary preparations for the arrival of Baron von Ausperg and his entourage as well as the arrangements for the auction that would take place on Thursday evening. The owner of the hotel, Mr. Tillinghouse, had used his considerable influence in local politics to arrange for the police to grant a detective and two officers to help secure the hotel. Detective Quinn was a taciturn man, but Mr. O'Donnell eventually broke the ice and the two came to an understanding, even about the champagne the baron demanded to serve at the dinner prior to the auction.

The actual pick up of the baron turned out to be quite the affair. The baron, his wife, his guard, his assistant and four servants arrived in Arkham carrying more luggage than anticipated and the baron seemed keen on sightseeing before heading to the hotel. The items to be auctioned had not arrived yet, but the energetic baron was already a handful.

In the meantime, Detective Quinn worked the grave robbery case he had been assigned and poked his nose into the robbery of the vaults of First National Bank of earlier that month. Sir Kevin and Mr. Mason both spent some time on the shooting range, considering recent developments, as well as in the library reading up on the House von Ausperg and some of the items on sale.

 

Von Ausperg Auction Booklet

Von Ausperg Auction Booklet

7May/120

Liber Tenebrae

24Mar/120

Call of Cthulhu Campaign

Yesterday, after a very long hiatus, we started a new Call of Cthulhu campaign. I had planned to take this campaign very seriously and I had been working on it almost non-stop for the last two weeks. It's a tough game to lead and a tough game to plan so I thought two weeks would be enough to prepare for it properly.

I was wrong.

Because CoC is such an unusual game compared to other games, it always takes a moment adjusting to the setting and the style. Most of us are pretty experienced players and we only had one person in our group this time that had never played the game, but you could feel that everyone had to get back into the swing of things.

Having taken the time to write up some preludes for each of the characters, some of them more than one, or even several, I had already set the stage and put some things on the mind of some of the characters. We have a group of four, with one very experienced character, being the veteran of four scenarios, one being the veteran of two scenarios and two new characters, I had quite a bit of previous material to work with. The veteran history professor had his cache of mythos items stolen in a robbery at the bank he had used to put the items in a safety deposit box. The experienced author had just adopted a child and was dealing with a big change in his family life while simultaneously seeing his career skyrocket.

The new characters, a taciturn police detective and a concierge at a prestigious hotel got a few write ups helping them ease into the coming scenario.

The problem always remains to be the atmosphere. I had decided to try doing something with music. I had bought an iPhone dock recently, one that's easy to transport, and I had chosen some mood music. I settled on Lustmord, which might not necessarily be the most obvious choice, but when my cousin Mark used to run his scenarios, he always choice kind if atmospheric space music, like The Darklight Conflict soundtrack to accompany his games, which worked surprisingly well. Lustmord is atmospheric and creepy, filling me with a sense of dread and foreboding. Signs and portents. I had some trouble finding the right volume, but I felt it did help the mood at a time or two. I will continue my experiments.

I had also brought my netbook to host some of my notes and books on but I'm not entirely sure that worked out. Sure, I didn't need a stack of books, but it didn't quite feel right at a CoC table, a game set in 1924. I will try it out next week and see how I feel about it.

The game started slowly, as I knew it would, but I didn't waste too much time with fluff and flavour. I wanted to start it off right away and allow for fluff and flavour after I got the ball rolling.

Monday, September 1st, 1924, Labour Day.

Sir Kevin O'Reilly, English-born history professor at Arkham's own Miskatonic University is enjoying an Indian summer morning preparing classes for the soon starting semester, when he hears a gentle knocking on the wooden door frame of his modest apartment in the staff housing building on campus. He looked up from his paperwork to find the tall, imposing figure of Mr. Blair Monroe standing in his doorway, with Mr. Walter Simons behind him. It wasn't hard to see that Mr. Simons was there reluctantly.

It had been more than a year since Sir Kevin and Mr. Simons had visited Mr. Monroe in New York City, getting permission to peruse his extensive library for the journal of Pavel Dvorak. It had also been more than six months since Mr. Simons and Sir Kevin had come back from Oswego county, after which they had not stayed in touch. Seeing them together standing in the doorway was quite surprising.

It turned out Mr. Simons had been doing some work for Mr. Monroe and that they had stayed in touch. Mr. Monroe informed Sir Kevin of an upcoming auction to be held in Arkham at the end of the week, organised by the renowned Austrian auction house of Ausperg. The closed-door auction would hold many curious items Mr. Monroe assumed would be of interest to Sir Kevin as they pertained to his particular field of expertise, the occult. Having no interest in the subject himself, Mr. Monroe would only be attending because of certain rare books and manuscripts that would be going under the hammer, the acquisition of which would sate his inner bibliophile. He had hoped to get Sir Kevin, Mr. Simons, Mr. Mason and the lovely Ms. Nannetti to come in order to bid against the other attendees in order to deplete their cash reserves, allowing Mr. Monroe less opposition while bidding his items.

Mr. Monroe turned over a small booklet describing the lots that were to be auctioned. Most of them were quite expensive and Sir Kevin wasn't sure whether he'd be able to put up much of a fight in the auction room so Mr. Monroe offered a budget of £2,000 in order for the investigators to bid against other attendees. The goal was not to buy the items, but if one of the investigators would win a bid, the items could always be sold off at auction. A small loss was acceptable, as long as the investigators would play the bidding game intelligently, Mr. Monroe didn't worry.

After a handshake and Mr. Monroe's departure, Sir Kevin and Mr. Simons spent some time talking. Mr. Simons appeared to be in an even more fragile state of mind than when they had returned from Oswego county and Sir Kevin worried about him. Mr. Mason was contacted and brought in on the plan and seemed to be a willing participant in the matter.

In the meantime, Mr. O'Donnell, concierge at the Miskatonic Hotel was arranging for all the necessary preparations for the arrival of Baron von Ausperg and his entourage as well as the arrangements for the auction that would take place on Thursday evening. The owner of the hotel, Mr. Tillinghouse, had used his considerable influence in local politics to arrange for the police to grant a detective and two officers to help secure the hotel. Detective Quinn was a taciturn man, but Mr. O'Donnell eventually broke the ice and the two came to an understanding, even about the champagne the baron demanded to serve at the dinner prior to the auction.

The actual pick up of the baron turned out to be quite the affair. The baron, his wife, his guard, his assistant and four servants arrived in Arkham carrying more luggage than anticipated and the baron seemed keen on sightseeing before heading to the hotel. The items to be auctioned had not arrived yet, but the energetic baron was already a handful.

In the meantime, Detective Quinn worked the grave robbery case he had been assigned and poked his nose into the robbery of the vaults of First National Bank of earlier that month. Sir Kevin and Mr. Mason both spent some time on the shooting range, considering recent developments, as well as in the library reading up on the House von Ausperg and some of the items on sale.

Of course, Sir Kevin thought seeing the Arabian man was rather fitting, though it filled him with a sense of dread and foreboding.

9Mar/120

Manitou

Synopsis

When Mr. Armitage unexpectedly shows up wounded at Dr. Nannetti's house carrying a newspaper clipping of an accidental shooting at a ranch in Oswego County, NY, he manages to convince the investigators that a pack of werewolves are causing trouble in the little rancher community of Redfield. Frequent disappearances and even more frequent cattle mutilations have caused a lot of tension between ranchers but also between the ranchers and the nearby Mohawk and Iroquois reservation.

The investigators decide to stage a small expedition to Redfield and investigate. After two days of hard driving they finally arrive and find the small community to be friendly and open. When the following day Mr. Simons' dog Barry is brutally murdered, things take a turn for the worse.

Visiting with Mr. McClain and his son on their ranch, they are invited to spend the night. They accept and are treated to a delicious meal and interesting conversation. At night, the ranch is attacked by two man/wolf hybrids, one of which the investigators manage to kill, but not without Mr. McClain getting lost in the fight and the next day being found decapitated some distance from the ranch.

When the sheriff is called in he treats the investigators as suspects and interrogates them seperately. He concludes that their story doesn't add up and when Sir O'Reilly gets lippy, he locks him away in the local jail. The sheriff then takes Mr. McClain's son and heads out to the ranch to do some more research in what happens.

When the investigators are later warned that Mr. McClain's son is dead, they suspect the sheriff of being dirty and they free Sir O'Reilly from the jail and head out to the ranch only to find the corpse of Mr. McClain's son and the sheriff inside the ranch shooting at them. They return fire and manage to take the ranch only to be beset by more werewolves at nightfall.

The investigators survive the night, but not without taking heavy damage. They don't trust anyone in Redfield and decide to grab their things and return to Arkham. Mr. Armitage, not keen on giving up, especially when everyone agrees they haven't gotten to the bottom of things, decides to stay behind and try to finish up what they started, but the rest is ready to throw in the towel and head home.