Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Cthulhu Gaslight: Bloody Daggers

Cast of Characters:
Thomas Roquefort, American, archaeologist and adventurer, recently arrived in London after an expedition to Egypt
Richard George Thomas Lumley, second son of the Earl of Scarbrough
Jasper Burnside, physician and in the last two years something of a hermit. It's common knowledge that he has lost someone close and there are rumours aplenty for those willing to listen (he's my character)

Last time...

During the fight, Thomas had been wounded by a dagger and with the help of Richard, he makes it to a fleabag hotel. From there, he sends for Jasper, he doesn't want any awkward questions from Sir Jeffrey or the others. It takes the longest thirty minutes of Thomas' life for Jasper to arrive, but at least both he and Richard know better than to attempt to remove the knife.

Jasper does that when he finally gets there, after giving Thomas a dose of laudanum for the pain. Thomas is well enough to walk back to the Shepheard's Hotel and so they return while Jasper is being told what had happened.

With Thomas in his room, guarded by Richard, Jasper goes to find Inspector Fox whom he had left earlier in the hotel lobby, already a bit tipsy on brandy and not all that eager for another night of bad dreams. When he doesn't find him there, he tries Fox's room and discovers that Fox overdid the brandy more than slightly. The man has drunk himself into a stupor, not without throwing up on the carpet. At least he managed not to suffocate on his vomit, thinks Jasper and starts his night watch by cleaning up Fox and the room.

Fox has been carrying around a briefcase for the whole journey like his life depended on it and he left it lying around in plain sight. Jasper argues with himself for a while and then gives in to temptation, he has a theory he wants to test about those dreams Fox is having. He unlocks the briefcase with a key he found in Fox's pocket and finds the dagger that was left behind (in the butler) when Thomas Kincaid was abducted. Having proof for his theory, Jasper locks the case again and puts everything back the way it was.

After midnight Richards comes to check on him, having left Thomas in the care of his manservant Craig. While they talk, Fox suddenly sits up, staring straight ahead and moving his lips without a sound. He's clearly not awake and falls back after a short time. When Jasper wakes him, he cannot remember anything and quickly falls asleep again. Richard returns to his room to get some sleep and Jasper resumes his watch, but nothing more happens until morning.

They all have to get up way too early since the Egypt Star, the ship that will take them up the Nile, leaves at eight o'clock. Jasper decided to ask Fox about the briefcase and clearly is not convinced when Fox says that it contains just some files and papers. Fox figures out that Jasper opened the briefcase and he admits it, apologising for the breach of trust. He also asks the inspector to let him have the dagger for one night, to see if he will have that dream as well. Fox refuses at first, but then agrees as long as he can keep it in his sight.

After breakfast and lots of mocha coffee to get them all up and running, the group leaves for the harbour. There, they are met by their Egyptian guide Kamal who is almost skewered by Captain Hayden who mistrusts all natives on principle. Thomas manages to defuse the situation and later asks Kamal about Hermopolis Magna. Kamal seems to be afraid of the city, at the very least respectful. He suggests that there are things buried in the Egytian sands that may better be left hidden.

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Poor Inspector Fox. We all wouldn't bet much on his chances to survive this (nor on our own, for that matter).

We once again were busy swapping conspiracy theories. I have no idea if we're right, but both Thomas' player and I would feel safer without Captain Hayden and his men around. Jasper tends to trust Fox, who might well be seen as expendable by his superiors. As a player, I think about deceiving appearances and
wouldn't trust anyone, but that's the view of someone who has played way too much Cthulhu already.

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