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)
On board the Egypt Star, the groups makes their way up the Nile. As promised, Fox hands the dagger over to Jasper for the night and stays to keep an eye on things. Jasper feels somelike like a slight electrical shock when he touches the dagger for the first time, but it may have been his imagination. He falls asleep and wakes up, hearing a quiet, monotonous singing and laughter in front of the door. He tries to wake Fox who sleeps deeply and who fixes him with a very penetrating glance when he wakes up. Then Japser wakes again, with things back to normal. Fox really has fallen asleep, but reacts normally when woken. Jasper doesn't get much more sleep that night and the little he gets is disturbed by bad dreams.
In the morning, he talks about this with Thomas and Richard and in the afternoon, everyone gets together for a briefing on the expedition. The next stop is the caravanserai Thena el-Gebel where Egyptian workers will join the crew. From there, it's about half a day to the excavation site at Uno. Again, Kamal remarks that things hidden in the Egyptian sands often stay hidden until the time is right for them to be found. Captain Hayden snarls at him and both Richard and Jasper defend Kamal.
Sunday morning sees the expedition at the caravanserai where everybody is introduced to camel riding, with varying success. An uneventful ride later they arrive at Uno and find the baboon statues marking the site of the temple without many problems. Digging starts and Thomas asks everyone to stay close and not wander off alone. Which Richard promptly does, but two of Hayden's Husars keep an eye on him. At dinner, Kamal tells an old story about an oasis, much more beautiful and greener than all others - always just a day's ride away, never to be found.
The next day nothing much happens, but on Tuesday (December 9th 1890) the diggers have found the entrance to the temple. Thomas takes a closer look and finds hierogylphs engraved into the lintel. He writes them down, gives instructions to continue digging and then tells Jasper and Richard in private what they say: "Believer, enter the realm of the God of the Moon with reverence for he is the Lord of Time."
Richard suggests that someone should take a look at Captain Hayden's orders and at Sir Jeffrey's papers and volunteers for the mission. Thomas and Jasper keep the others occupied with a meeting and he gets into the tent unseen. Neither Hayden's orders nor Sir Jeffrey's papers (including his personal diary) reveal anything suspicious, it seems that they are not hiding anything.
A short while later, the entrance to the temple is cleared and the expedition enters.
Well. It seems that we were a bit too enthusiastic with our conspiracy theories. Pity - Captain Hayden made such a great subject for them. In other news: Richard is no longer useless. Jasper has been wondering about him for a while now, ever since Fox seemed so eager to have him come along, and he's beginning to understand why. But maybe he'll just ask Richard one of these days.