April 07, 2013 19:31
March 14, 2013 19:37
The three remaining heroes stand by a cabin in the middle of nowhere, while eldritch sounds emanate from the woods around them. On the hillside beside them, a man named Stanley Mulligan waves a firearm around, while strange creatures in sunglasses who used to be men watch them.
At a loss for what to do next, Clara asks: What do you want from us? One of the creatures answers: Nothing.
Troy asks: What do you want from Stanley? The answer: He had knowledge of the site.
Clara: What are you? A: We have been called the Great Race by your kind. We understand that time as you know it may be…short. We will make you a deal.
Troy: what kind of deal? A: Safe passage as well as your friend (Marion) if you don’t molest this area any further.
At this, Stanley looks around as if to say “what have you done?” to the creatures.
Clara asks the creature what will happen to Stanley and it tells her that it is likely he’ll attempt to hide out in Seattle but that he’ll be found in 3-4 years.
Douglas asks why Patterson is looking for Stanley. The question elicits a strong reaction from Stanley, who asks the creature if he “let that guy free.” The answer, of course, is yes.
Behind Stanley, the bushes part to reveal the man from the dolmen…his tentacles have grown, and his body is less humanoid in shape…spindlier. The heroes decide to take the deal that they have been offered.
They are directed to enter the cabin…the tentacled lumberjack shrieks and thrashes towards them, and they run.
Inside the cabin, the creature/man from the window is sitting in one of the chairs beneath the light contraption; he appears to be dead. The flesh around his eyes is ravaged-fresh and old wounds surround the sockets. The eyes are black with the barest ring of white around them…they appear to be too large for his head. The eyes twitch as if registering the presence of the three humans in the room.
Clara looks at the figure on the table…but it isn’t a figure at all…it’s a circle made of some kind of black stome…shaped like a whirlpool or vortex. She can almost make out arms and fingers…and three toothed orifices (mouths?) in the ‘eye’ of the storm. She reaches out and touches it.
“The devouring wind,” says the not-so-dead creature. “That is teh being that is now dead.”
Troys asks how long has it been dead? A: We believe that trying to explain time you are like us. We exist outside time. You have been severed. We do not remember you.
Doug asks how it doesn’t remember us, yet asked which one are you, which doesn’t make sense. The creature goes on to explain that our heroes are outside time, there are no other like them. Troy was like others and then became like Clara, Douglas, and Marion. Tells them that the creature that took Mariom was a Hound of Tindalos, and that wherever she is, she will be returned to us on the train. It also tells them that its eyes belonged to a dolphin.
The air is rent by a high-pitched sound like the scream of a panicked horse, followed by thrashing sounds. The creature tells our heroes to leave…go back to the train.
They run back to their cabin to grab their things. Through the window they see a creature made of horse bits bearing down on Stanley. They leave the cabin and run out to run around him and the beast. The last thing they hear from him is a wet noise and gunshots.
They take off towards the lumber camp, but Troy freaks out and takes off in the wrong direction. Clara and Douglas chase him…Clara sees something in the woods moving in to intercept Troy…it is a simian form that clearly used to be human. She calls out to Troy to make him stop. The ape-thing attacks, Troy and Douglas shoot and kill it.
Clara searches the remains…finds a picture of a man with a little girl and an older woman.
Douglas looks behind them…he doesn’t see anything but all three heroes hear the thrashing horsemonster sound again.
They head towards the camp. About two minutes in, they stop hearing horse screams but the crashing sounds continue.
They make it to a cleared area beside a large creek, and follow it towards the camp. On the way, they find the corpse of an outdoorsy-looking man, his body against a stump, his severed arm and the axe that removed it remain on the stump itself. Clara’s inspection of the body reveal that he died from impact to chest and sternum. His wallet is still in his pocket, along with chew, dice, $4.00, and check stubs with the payee name of James Painter.
Finally they arrive in the camp. It is deserted. They cross the rope bridge to the store and Troy takes out the bridge.
The stables have been smashed…the doors are gone. The far end of the horse pen is also smashed out. There’s blood and bits of horse all over the place.
The house attached to the store…porch is destroyed…the store is empty…the doors are open on all the buildings except the store. They loot the place, then head towards the train. Clara goes ahead of the other two…Troy and Douglas take out a two-person-corpse creature on the other bridge.
In the passenger car, Clara sees a figure seated at the back for a moment, and then it’s gone…the face is her own. The expression of surprise is hers, too. More severe looking, but clearly this is some other Clara. Clara feels that there were others, but that they’re gone now. She feels that same feeling she experienced when she used the talking board at Eugenia’s…the light has that odd quality…but then everything goes back to ‘normal.’
Marion is sprawled on the floor, injured and unconscious…no worse off than before her abduction, albeit paler. Troy and Douglas try to start the train so that they can leave, but it doesn’t work out. They end up spending the night in the engine because it’s the most defensible spot. It’s a long and sleepless night…they keep hearing the thrashing sounds, sometimes close, sometimes farther away, and strange shrieks punctuate the dark hours.
February 09, 2013 03:11
February 07, 2013 20:27
Our group meets up for an early breakfast before catching the train to Skookum Lake.
It is a dreary, rainy day as we make our way to the train. A man in work clothes stands under the passenger car overhang, smoking a cigarette and trying to stay dry. It turns out that he’s the engineer. He lets us into the passenger car; it’s not luxurious like the one that we took to New Mexico. It’s a more utilitarian version, meant for the workers.
The journey is about 15 miles, roughly an hour’s ride. This isn’t a day trip. This train will most likely not return to Tillamook for several days.
About 15 minutes into our journey, Marian asks if we smell something…her voice is muffled..everything is muffled. In the seat next to her are the sickles…the sack is smoking. Marian looks around, opens the sack…her face is illuminated by their glow. she grabs one. The rest of us see the ‘shadows’ collect in all the corners of the car. It’s more like the edges of the car are being pulled away somehow.
Douglas pulls a penny from his pocket and throws it at the ceiling edge…it bounces off as if the corner is still solid, yet it leaves an after-image in the darkness. Something comes through the space…another flat, projected thing, a creature, paile blue, vulpine, with spindly appendages and spiky, protruding joints. It strikes.
Overcome by the sudden appearance of the monster, Troy loses his mind a little. Clara, Marian, and Douglas somehow manage to keep their panic in check.
The creature lunges at Douglas, who tries to dodge away…he isn’t fast enough and it claws him.
Marian attacks it with a sickle. She swings at the wall. the creature turns and raises one of its appendages. There is no apparent contact between it and her, and yet it somehow moves her arm aside. She falls back, which actually saves her from being injured.
Troy goes after it with the other sickle. He connects, hitting it pretty solidly. There’s a sickly blue flash, and the image of the creature appears to be wounded.
Douglas attempts to shoot it. There is a muffled pop when the gun discharges. The window shatters…rain comes in, making the floor slick.
Clara picks up a coffee urn and hurls it at the creature. It hits the back of one of the seats and careens off, rolling down the aisle and spewing hot coffee everywhere.
Troy hits the monster again with the sickle and deals it a gash to the face.
Marian swings and misses.
Clara shoots her gun at it…she thinks she hits it, but there is no blue streak; there’s no shattered window either.
The creature moves up the wall to the ceiling. It attacks Mariam from above and she drops her sickle. She turns white, freezes, then disappears like mist. An image of her reappears behind the creature, receding into the distance like the projected image on the wall of Mulligan’s hotel room.
Clara goes into a frenzy at this, and hits the creature with the sickle that Marian dropped. It goes after her but she manages to dart out of its way between rows of seats.
Douglas slips on the coffee urn and shoots wild.
The monsters runs through Clara, leaving ragged tattered flesh in its wake. It skids to a halt near the broken window.
Troy attacks it again with his sickle. Something falls off….it limps and thrashes angrily.
Douglas shoots at it again, but the shot goes wide, leaving a hole in the wall.
Clara tries to attack, but has nearly no strength due to her own injury, and is unable to hurt it.
Troy takes it down with the sickle. Blue and yellow ichor spray from it’s wounds…the image shatters.
Douglas and Clara patch themselves up.
The encampment is pretty much what you would expect: there’s a company store, sleeping quarters, and dining hall, as well as a turnaround for the train.
We disembark without the engineer seeing the damage to the car or the fact that Marian’s missing.
We talk to the foremand, Anthony Boyd, giving the story that we’re here to do an article about Skookum Lake. He directs us to the company store for supplies and to get lodgings for Clara.
When we go in, we are greeted by the proprietor. After some conversation about the area, we are told that there are three hunting lodges a small distance away. One is already occupied (by Mulligan and co), but the other two available for use. We purchase a map and some provisions, then limp to our lodge.
We realize that the information on the back of the photograph of the dolmen actually coincides with map coordinates for a location south of the lake. We decide to investigate.
Passing the lodge that Mulligan is using, we see smoke coming from the chimney. There is also a dome-like (geodesic) structure out front which reminds us of the smoke lodge at Gatineau’s place in Forest Grove.
Further on, we hear voices and stop. Troy ventures forward on his own. He sees Mulligan digging a huge pit. The man in sunglasses stands above him, smoking. Another man in sunglasses stands near the prone figure of a man who has been tied to a rock. His face is turned away, but as he struggles, his face comes into view, or rather, what should be his face…it is a mass of tentacles. As Troy looks on in mute horror, a tentacle stretches from the ruins of the man’s face, reaching out and probing the surface of the rock.
Troy sneaks away and returns to the rest of us safely, recounting what he had seen.
December 27, 2012 20:35
September 16, 1924—TillamookWhile Douglas is at the diner waiting for the order, he notices some sharp-dressed men in a booth. They stand out from the other patrons of the crowded restaurant. Judging from the state of the table, they’ve been there a while. The rest of the diners are studiously ignoring them, possibly in hopes that they’ll go away. Douglas doesn’t recognize any of the men. One of them gives him a long look over the top of his newspaper, but quickly dismisses him. A young man that Douglas remembers from the hotel enters, shakes the rain off his hat, and joins the men in the booth.
After getting the food and returning to the hotel, Douglas tells the rest of the crew about the men in the diner; upon comparing notes, they figure that the young man Douglas recognized is Charles, the same man who solicited Marion, Mulligan’s henchman.
Now that they know Charles is out of the way, they decide to check out Mulligan’s room. Troy successfully picks the lock withoutdamaging it; he looks inside and points out something strange: the room looks fairly normal, except for a bizarre chandelier next to the wardrobe. Marion thinks at first that it’s a piece of surreal art…it consists of coat hangers and electrical wiring (still in its cotton insulation) that has been shaped into a rough ovoid. It is dotted with small lightbulbs, and five vacuum tubes are suspended behind it. In the center, a snowglobe of what appears to be the Washington Monument hangs upside down.
Troy head out into the hallway to keep watch in case Charles or one of the other gangsters comes back from the diner unexpectedly.
Marion hears a high-pitched, almost imperceptible tone. Nobody else hears it…she assumes it comes from the chandelier. Douglas and Clara enter the room and inspect the chandelier more closely. Douglas ascertains that it is indeed a snowglobe of the Washington Monument. The ‘snow’ is hovering around the tip of the monument. Now Douglas and Clara both think they can hear the tone that Marion heard. They also notice small pieces of some kind of machinery hanging behind the contraption.
A search of the rest of the room turns up (for Douglas): an ashtray with several Galois cigarrettes, as well as two hand-rolled butts which smell like the ones from Gatineau and the apartment building in Bay City. clara collects oe of the butts. She then checks the wastebasket and finds a crumpled note. It smells like fish.
The note reads:
Mr Milligan (sic) Sir
These were all I could get from the last catch. I know it is not as much as you wanted so I also return half of the money which I hope you will find fair.
The men think it is distastefull (sic) keeping them so it is a hardship to convence (sic) them otherwise. I have a plan though and all I need from you is two or three days and I should have everyone in line. Best regards.
Also in the wastebasket are three pieces of brown wrapping paper, with Corrigan’s Ice Block printed on them. They are damp but do not smell fishy.
Douglas opens the bedside table and finds a pocket bible, a folded piee of paper, a photograph, and a scrawled chalk symbol. As he looks at the chalk symbol, the chandelier lights up for a moment and the sound gets louder. The vacuum tubes glow ultramarine blue,the small bulbs light up, and the snow in the globe spreads out.
Douglas and Clara look at each other…both see on the wall by the bed a picture of the room in which they are standing…like a still from a movie projector…it shows Clara inspecting the trash and Douglas looking in the side table. The colors are lurid—-shocking. Half a second later, the picture slides up the wall and disappears where the wall and ceiling connect. The chandelier goes dark and the humming stops. The smell of hot electical wiring permeates the room.
Douglas looks back to the symbol with the intention of copying it for Marion, only to find that it in now a blackened spot in the drawer, similar to the mark left by a burning cigarette. He attempts to recreate the symbol from memory, but isn’t very confident that he has it right. He shows it to Marion, explaining what happened at the same time.
Marion can tell right away that Douglas’ reproduction of the symbol is inaccurate. However, it does look somewhat similar to something she remembers described in the Azure Crown…and that it is basically and occult signal flare of sorts.
The photograph in the drawer appears to be of a man-made cave or open cairn…it brings back the mention of a dolmen during the talking board session. They decide to pocket the picture. On the back is written the following:
The numbers are preceded by a symbol resembling an uppercase cursive L.
Also in the drawer is a bill of sale for Kellerman’s General Provisioners. The list consists of 4 shovels, 4 flashlights, 6 toothbrushes, 6 suit brushes, 3 garden spades, and 5 oilcloth sacks.
Troy alerts them that Charles and a dark-haired man with a pencil mustache are exiting the diner….the two men can be seen standing under an awning in the rain, holding a surreptitious conversation while darting furtive glances back at the diner.
Our heroes close the room back up and leave, acting like nothing is amiss. Troy relocks the door just as the hotel door opens below and Charles and his companion enter.
The group passes the men on the stairs. Charles greets Marion, but the mustached man pushes past, barking at Charles to follow.
Troy peers back around the top of the stairs and watches as Charles and the other man go into Charles’ room.
Marion inspects the photograph further and recognizes the symbols as being British pounds sterling. The second entry is negative…what does this mean? There’s no total. The group is mystified.
They spend the afternoon playing cards in the lounge. Around 6 in the evening, Charles and his budy leave. They’re all business…Charles doesn’t even acknowled Marion. The men can be seen going into the Diner…and then the group of men from the booth file out and get into their fancy cars, heading off in the direction of Bay City.
The group decides to follow. Douglas is at the wheel. It is raining…a steady, heavy downpour. Douglas swerves to miss a crumpled mass in the road, skids, bumps the thing and goes oof the road. Nobody is hurt…the group ventures out to inspect the thing in the road and find that it is a man. They recognize him as one of the men from the diner…the one who had scoped Douglas out over his newspaper. It appears that our group drove over his legs.
Clara ascertains that he is dead. His neck has bee broken and he has some kind of blunt trauma injury to the back of his head. There are also bruises around his neck, as if someone had throttled him. Checking his pockets, they find a wallet…the drivers license identifies him as Emmet Kline there’s also a large wad of money and a folded picture of four men. One of the men in the pic is circles. The circled man is Mulligan. The photo is of a street scene. The two men with their arms around each other’s shoulders are Marty and Johnny Smith, both of whom were killed in the cemetery standoff. Nobody recognizes the fouth man, but he looks like a mobster, too.
They pocket the cash, the pic, and a cigarette case (the contents appear to be normal cigarettes, not the special Gatineau variety). They decide to return to the hotel instead of following the killers.
Charles doesn’t show up for his ‘bible study’ with Marion. They decide to retire for the night.
Around 2:30 AM, Troy, Douglas, and Clara awaken from a fitful sleep. They hear that high-pitched sound again. They spend the remainder of the night pacing, going out in the hall, smoking. The fancy cars are still missing.
When they meet up for breakfast, they discuss what happened in the small hours of the morning…and the three of them realize that the shadows in the corners had been much darker than they should have been…just like the tunnels under Portland.
Our Heroes Head to the Great Outdoors
December 16, 2012 03:19
Our Heroes are Eluded but Learn to Live a Life on the Rails
December 01, 2012 01:21
Bay City, OR 4AM
Douglas finds himself standing barefoot in the road, struggling to reconcile two conflicting sets of memories that encompass the same three week period of time…one of being a patient at Morningside, and another of going about his life as usual. There’s a kind of ripple effect in experience that stretches over the consequent years, and then the two timelines merge at a point roughly a year before the night of the Eugenia Taylor estate auction.
-Douglas remembers being at Morningside in 1919, but also remembers starting at the paper in 1920…somehow both events are real though they don’t seem to correlate to each other.
Marion and Troy fetch Douglas’ shoes from the hotel. When they return, they pile into the car in pursuit of the man in sunglasses. There is no sound of a car starting, so they assume he is on foot. Clara is driving, Troy is shotgun, and Marion and Doug are in the backseat.
As they creep along the darkened streets, the car’s headlights glint off something metallic in the gravel next to an apartment building, so they stop to investigate. They see a fire escape on that side of the building has been semi-lowered (unhooked but not extended), the end still too far from the ground for a person to grab from the ground.
Walking over to the building, they don’t detect anything, no smell of smoke…of course it’s breezy now so that isn’t surprising…Marion gets on Troy’s shoulders to pull down the fire escape ladder. While they are busy with that, Clara looks down at the ground and sees taht the metallic glint they had seen earlier was from what appears to be a teaspoon that somebody has flattened and shaped into a scoop-like device. It is stained with a dark, dried liquid, which looks like blood. Scattered around it are some cigarette butts.
Marion then notices a dark, wet patch on the ladder, like clotting blood. The group hurries to the roof, but the creature has escaped. There’s no way a human could’ve gotten up the fire escape and away from the roof…all the buildings around are too far away. They suspect that the man in sunglasses is the same type of creature they encountered back in Forest Grove the night Troy got pulled into the nightmare.
They opt to go back to the hotel and get some rest, rather than chase after the horror in the dark. Everyone sleeps except Douglas, who is still wracked with existential confusion.
Douglas recalls a snippet of conversation with Roger/Steve at Morningside:
“That fella, he was a vet like you. Got him out. I can get you out, too. Good guy, kinda crazy. Named Troy. Let me know,” Roger/Steve had murmured to him.
After breakfast the next morning, the group heads to Tillamook in search of Mulligan. They decide to go to the railyard first. On the way into town, they pass a restaurant called Doug’s, and a hotel called the Siren by the Sea. Douglas notices more high-end cars parked around than one would expect, especially for a Tuesday morning in September.
Upon reaching the railyard, the group try to find out if anybody has seen Mulligan, without tipping Mulligan off that they are looking for him. Cara strikes out when she tries to convince the foreman that she is Mulligan’s sister, and that she’s looking for him because their mother is ill. Marion has better luck with a man named Charlie, who states that Mulligan caught the train to Skookum Lake the day before.
Clara and Marion then use their charms (and a wad of cash) to secure spots on the train to Skookum which is set to depart on Wednesday morning.
With nothing else to do and a day to kill, the group book rooms at the Siren by the Sea and lay low for the day.
They notice several men who don’t fit in…they, like their cars, seem a little too fancy for Tillamook. These men have noticed our group, too.
While Douglas is picking up food from Doug’s Diner, the rest of the gang are in the smoking lounge of the hotel. A young, sandy haired man asks Marion to dance. He introduces himself as Charles in a vaguely Irish accent, and proceeds to tell her that his boss is in room 211, while he himself is in room 213…he extends the offer for Marion to join him later for ‘bible study.’ He then mentions that his boss (who ends up being Mulligan) is away checking on the camp.
Armed with this piece of information, the group plan to search Mulligan’s room while he’s away.
A sea side vacation
November 11, 2012 19:09
A brief description of Marian’s findings when she went over the invoices from the shipments:
-In Mid-March (before the fateful auction), there was a greater incident of items disappeaing in transit from the coast (Astoria, Bay City)
-In Mid-June (after the auction), things got sloppier…book-keepers were noticing. On the surface it looks like more varied items are missing.
-August 5Th, there’s a botched train robbery attempt in Carlton, OR. After that, things slow back down, still more obvious than the activity back in March. Notably, the targeted items weren’t very valuable.
In order of disappearance, they are:
1-A shipment of Napoleonic Era mirrors from San Francisco (nothing terribly fancy, they were the more common bourgeousie style)
2-a Korean book from 1797 on the subject of tea blending and cultivation; beautifully decorated and illustrated, referencing teas from all over the world, and including recipes for blends that incorporate non-tea ingredients, such as basil, tobacco, and cocoa
3-a leather mask from Guam titled “Bridge to the Ancestors from Water.” Marian recalls that this is one of the epithets used in the Cthaat Aquadingen in reference to the water people.
**Marian realizes that the trend in missing items goes back to February 14th with a more ornate Napoleonic mirror, and that the itmes are most likely earthquake salvage from the 1906 earthquake in San Francisco.
Douglas digs up more information on the possible victims of “Kate”:
1-Phelps, the most recent disappearance: a lot of blood and a bottle of bathtub whiskey were found in an alley near his house, which happens to be eight blocks north of where the little girl dropped the noted down th storm drain. This is a rough part of town. Next of kin are listed as Margaret (wife), and Charity (daughter…presumably the aforementioned little girl).
2-Thomas Carpenter (most likely the Thomas from the lamp-post note and picture), a dockworker who didn’t return home from work six weeks prior to Phelps’ disappearance. Caprenter is survived by his wife, Maude, and three (unnamed) children.
3-Owen O’Daly disappeared from an alley beside a known den of iniquity two months ago. His hand was found at the scene along with a large quantity of blood. This occurred while our heroes were in New Mexico. A trail of blood leading to a manhole had led investigators to think the body was dragged and dumped in the sewer, but no corpse was ever recovered.
4-Research turns up a criminal record for assault on shop-keepers with blunt weapons, suspicion of robbery, as well as an assault in Vancouver in which he was charged alongside Stanley Mulligan (August 1923)
5-Also finds notes from another journalist about reports from hobos of disappearences.
6-Owen O’Daley and Liam Weaver were questioned regarding Hayden Island Gang, but no charges were brought against them, and Weaver and Millugan were brought in and charged for patronizing a speakeasy in March 1923.
7-Doesn’t find anything on Patterson.
Marian is shown the ledgers from the haberdashery basement. She figures that the one with shorthand and prices is for those items which went missing in February (the mask, the teabook, the mirrors). The second ledger (partially destroyed, from Bay Ocean Transportation) appears to be mainly operating expenses. There is also the note saying “Use mill rail lines” which she recognizes as being in Edmund Cage’s handwriting.
The group get Liam Weaver’s address from a phone book and decide to pay him a visit. He liveds in a rowhouse in a slightly seedy neighborhood in SW. They see a Ford with two men seated, neither of whom appear to be getting out any time soon. One of the men is recognized as having been in the room during our discussion with Patterson at the party. Clearly they’re already staking out Weaver’s house. The group then decide to go to the Paradise Rooms, a flophouse near the speakeasy where Weaver and Owens had been picked up in March ’23 (known as the Elysium).
While the group are standing outside the flophouse trying to decide what to do next, Clara spots a man with curly, auburn hair and an unbuttoned shirt walking towards them with a paper sack. He looks at her and starts to cross the street…then he sees Marian and makes a beeline away from her. Marian doesn’t recognize him. Douglas goes after him. He isn’t cooperative…Douglas threatens him, which doesn’t work, so Clara works her phchological juju on him, which seems to do the trick.
He is Liam Weaver.He tells the group that Mulligan is in Tillamook, and that he is involved in artifact theft…including some books. Mulligan is thinking that Kate has hellhounds under Portland.
-Weaver is the one who tossed Marian’s apartment, which is why he recognized her.
This is as much as we can get from Weaver. He’s scared and angry and uncooperative.
**This is enough information to give Patterson, but they decide to go to Tillamook and Bay City themselves.
While stopped for gas, they see a train with logs and lumber on a mill rail line, and it clicks…this is what Cage meant in his message.
The group checks in at a hotel in Bay City.
They ask around to see if anybody knows Mulligan, but they strike out.
Clara talks to an accountant named Peter DuChamp at Bayocean Transportation…using the Taylor and Taylor business connection, she’s able to get the man to relax. He mentions that a man matching Mulligan’s description had been talking to people down at the railyard back in June, and that a security guard was fired for taking bribes in return for allowing certain items to be stolen. He then goes on to say that a ledger had also gone missing…sure enough, it’s the same one that was found in the haberdashery. Clara convinces him to compare his manifest records to the ledger and notify her with the names of the ones that would have been listed on the missing pages.
Douglas talks to George Krieger, a security guard at the railyard. Krieger is a self-important buffoon, eager to belittle others in order to build himself up, which makes it hard for Douglas to get a straight answer to his queries, but he is able to find out that Zalesky was the name of the fired security guard, and that Kriger had seen him arguing with Mulligan. Krieger mentions that Dave McClain is the security boss, and that Krieger suspects he is also on the take. Krieger also believes that Mulligan is at the new railyard in Tillamook…the Skookum Mill Yard (Skookum Lake is nearby).
Marian recognizes Skookum as a type of doll she has appraised from time to time, generally a small doll with an apple head and stuffed body. Skookum is also a word for Big Foot.
The group retires…girls in one room, boys in the other. Clara and Marian are awakened in the middle of the night by a smell…the same smell they had encountered in Simon Gatineau’s backyard, a scent of sweety, minty smoke. It’s coming in through the open window.
Looking out, they see a man smoking a pipe. He wears sunglasses, a nice suit, and is well-groomed. He looks up at the two women peering down from the window at him. Douglas is standing beside him. He is turned away from them. More notably, he is still in his day clothing, but barefoot.
Marian turns to go check on Troy. The pipe smoker sees her move away from the window, says something to Douglas, and walks away, leaving Douglas standing on the pavement in the dark.
Marian knocks on the door. Hears a shotgun being cocked. Asks Troy if Douglas is with him, which of course he isn’t.
the three go out to intercept Douglas, who is still standing on the pavement…apparently aware of something other than his three companions. He is perfectly still…facing the space where the sun-glassed man had stood.
Clara reaches out and catches Douglas’ arm
Douglas remembers talking to Simon Gatineau about the problem with the oceans and how there are things in the ocean that affect people badly if they don’t treat the ocean well. “The ocean is sentient.” Then the conversation ends and Clara is holding his arm and he’s barefoot in the street in the middle of the night.*
Douglas now remembers Morningside…and the bench…and Roger/Steve…and Clara……and Simon.
Our Heroes start the search for Stanley.
October 21, 2012 20:07
Our heroes leave the party with the following knowledge:
While the gala had seemed like just a social obligation, Mrs. Terwilliger emphasized the Argent Group and had angled Douglas toward endorsing Perkins-there had definitely been an undercurrent of mutuality (you scratch my back, I scratch yours).
-Douglas needed to get an article thrown together before the Sunday deadline, and would be needing to research the Hayden Island Gang
-Marian was going to research the missing items from the shipping invoices.
The following morning, Clara telephones Mrs. Terwilliger, ostensibly to thank her for the invitation to the soiree, but also to try to glean more information about the Argent Group, with a view to attending the next meeting.According to Mrs. Terwilliger, the Argent Group is more like a rotary club than anything, with business owners meeting at Risotto’s, a restaurant owned by Michael Kay; the next meeting is slated to take place there in six weeks. Our heroes think there’s more to this, as this isn’t anything like the setup for the Argent Group in Forest Grove.
Patterson’s pointed remark that Stanley Mulligan had liked shoes…that brought our group to recall Orchard & Hayward’s Men’s Outfitter, a now-defunct haberdashery located near Good Samaritan hospital. The business is owned by Rufus Clegg, who happens to be Samuel Clegg’s nephew. The location in question is closed, having been used at one point as a warehouse for the remaining location in NE Portland. In mid-1922, they stopped using it entirely and now it sits empty. The group suspects that it may be used for bootlegging.
Marian heads to the auction-house to go over the missing artifacts in hopes of figuring out what the common thread may be. She realizes that all the missing pieces were shipped through one carrier, Bay Ocean Shipping.
Doug goes to the newspaper to work on his article. While there he researches the Hayden Island Gang. First of all, it isn’t really a gange..there is no clear leader. It is loosely affiliated with bootleggers on the coast. Patterson, Mulligan, and the Smith brothers (Johnny and Marty who both died during the cemetery standoff).
Troy and Clara have lunch at Risotto’s, hoping to snoop around a bit, but they turn up nothing.
Doug, Troy, and Clara resolve to ivestigate Orchard & Haywards. Eating dinner at Diane’s (a restaurant near Good Sam), they notice a note and flowers strapped to a nearby lamppost. Painted vertically on the lamppost is the query “Why, Kate?”. Upon investigation, the note depicts a man in a suit and high collar, and the words Thomas, I forgive you. Please come back. The handwriting on the note is different from the writing on the post. Troy notices a storm drain next to the post. He draws a connection between them, because the note was near the bottom of the pole.
Walking a few blocks up the street, the group notice a girl dropping something down a storm drain. She is joined by another girl and the two walk away. Clara decides to follow them. Troy and Doug try to see what she dropped.
Clara can see that the first girl has been roughed up, and the other girl looks like she has been crying.
Douglas and Troy find some crushed pieces of crayon near the drain, but nothing else. They see Clara walking away, and then they hear a car sputter and almost die, and then another one does the same thing in the same spot. When they watch for it to happen again, it doesn’t.
The little girls realize they are being followed and run away, darting down an alley. Clara tries to pretend that she wasn’t following them by looking in her purse, but it’s too late.
Troy and Doug join her…their attempt to find the girls is fruitless. They decide to move on to searching the haberdashery.
They break in via an upstairs entrance, using the fire escape. On the salesfloor, they find empty crates of Lime Crush, presumably used for transporting liquor. They go through a door and down a ramp into the basement. There they find a generator, a desk, a heavy, padlocked door, and two tables with hobo stoves on them.
Troy gets the generator started. The group now have light.
On inspection of the door, they realize that the hasp of the lock has been torn from the wall.
They find a ledger on the desk…the contents are written in some kind of shorthand, with amounts written in, ranging from 10s to 100s. Doug realizes that this is similar to the appraisal ledgers that Marian uses at the auction house. They grab the ledger to show Marian.
They also find an older ledger for Bay Ocean Transportation, Bay City, Oregon. Doug finds a page, presumably from this ledger with the name Pirreaux and a handwritten note to use Mill Rail Lines.
Clara remembers that Bay Ocean is one of the companies under which Taylor & Taylor’s taxes had been erroneously filed.
Troy finds brown paper sacks lying on the ground between the desk and the crates. They smell of potpourri and contain moldy, crushed leaves and flowers. Clara identifies these as amaranth/love lies bleeding, which is the same plant that had been used to reanimate the corpses of Phillip Pratchett and Benjamin Corbett, etc.
They light the hobo stoves and open the door. The passage on the other side is crude brick, with low, arched ceilings and a packed-dirt floor. Proceeding down the passage, they discover surgical coats hanging on the wall. The coats are moldy and foul, but don’t appear to be very old. The group surmises that the passage is connected to the hospital, most likely the morgue (where the escapade with Dr. Bell had occurred).
They reach a four-way intersection and opt to turn left, heading in the direction of the storm drain down which the little girl had dropped the unknown object.
Upon reaching the terminus, they find the run-off ditch for the storm drain. Clara sees and fishes out a piece of cardboard. On it in red crayon is scrawled: Dear Kate, please make Daddy stop.
Then the group hears a splash; something big…bigger than a rat…they decide to turn back.
Their flashlights die when they reach the intersection. They notice that the shadows are closer than they should be…they aren’t receding like they normally would. The hobo stoves still work. Troy shoots into the darkness. The three flee. They reach the basement room, blocking the door with the desk and tables.
They escape and get home safely.
The next morning there’s an article in the paper about someone being murdered within blocks of the haberdashery. It turns out to be the girl’s father. *note to Arthur: I can’t remember how we figured that last bit out*
October 14, 2012 20:44
An effusive and slightly inebrated Margeret Jameson greets Marian Elliot, noting that she’s having problems acquiring certain collectibles. Marian noted that the Rosebloom Auctionhouse was having similar problems. A later conversation was promised.
Clara Taylor is greeted by Mrs. Violet Terwilliger, who thanks her effusively for her contributions and her family’s support for Portland businesses. She mentions how pleased she is to have women taking lead roles in society, complementing her on her position at Morningside.
Troy Valjean points out Michael Kay, noting that he saw him several times in Forest Grove. At least once he saw him driving away from the house he’d bought for(?) Simon Gatineau, with a mystery companion in the passenger seat.
Meanwhile, Dr. Peter Evers seems to recognize Troy from across the room, but Clara breaks his line of sight. The Doctor gets distracted, and a possible awkward moment is averted.
Douglas Ryder attempts to speak with Mr. Perkins, but apart from getting some vague platitudes and some semi-amusing anecdotes about being a dentist (and some lackluster analogies between dentistry and running a city) doesn’t walk away with much. Trevor Clegg seems to make it a point to avoid Douglas.
EDIT: More to come if all goes well…