Auld Reekie

24/03/12
Some old friends drop by...

Morgan and Cumbersomething, two old army friends of Professor Fotheringshaws pop in to the newly formed cryptozoology department on an april afternoon, the brandy starts flowing as do the stories and soon Fotheringshaw has got his special photograph collection out. Several other members of the department are also in the building, Victoria a young classics graduate who has been translating some old texts, Augustus a sceptical young grad student who is assisting the professor in order to receive some extra credits and Stevenson an engineer has dropped by to discuss the sale of several specimens he has brought back from India. It is not your average slide show however and the disturbing contents of the photographs cause several present to lose a couple of sanity points.

While the six discuss the photographs a commotion is heard downstairs and a rather smartly dressed gentleman Detective McEwen from the Glasgow Constabulary has shown up investigating the apparent suicide of Sir George Bullough Apparent Suicide of Millionaire Landowner the millionaire playboy and land owner, who Professor fotheringshaw has had dealings with in the past. Bullough has disappeared from his yacht leaving a suicide note but before doing so he has carved the names of the investigators who were previously involved on the isle of rum into the wheelhouse desk.

The players are convinced by Detective McEwen to come to check out the boat now docked at Inverkip marina at the mouth of the clyde and are instructed to meet at the department at 7am sharp. McEwen is a little concerned that the other five investigators who were on Rhum with Fotheringshaw are all either missing or dead.

That night all six of the investigators have a similar strange dream where they are deep underground in a stone chamber standing and chanting in a circle surrounding a deep hole. Victoria tries to paint the scene in the morning but her art does not turn out as she had hoped.

The journey from Edinburgh to Inverkip is uneventful and when they arrive at the yacht they notice a reporter Andrew Gordon from the Glasgow herald is trying unsuccessfully to gain access to the yacht. Once onboard the investigators enter the wheel house to a horrific scene. Strange characters and symbols have been written all over the walls and desk in blood and the Bullough Suicide Note is pinned to the desk by a large carving knife.

After closer inspection of the characters by Victoria they quickly become apparent as a crude imitation of occult symbols. Cumbersomething identifies the blood as cows blood and the whole set up is extremely fishy to say the least. Stevenson has an unnerving feeling of being watched while on the boat so decides to leave and try to speak with the reporter on the shore.

Meanwhile Augustus spots a bald man on another vessel and alerts the two soldiers who head off in pursuit. After having a cagy conversation with the reporter Stevenson heads back down to the dock, he bumps into the bald man coming the other way and recognises him as Isaac Hart. Stevenson tries to communicate with the man but gets no reaction until he mentions Fotheringshaws name. Hart is initially hesitant but proceeds to punch Stevenson in the gut winding him, he goes to knock him out but is interrupted by the two soldiers who have sneaked up on him. He flees and Cumbersomething stops to assist Stevenson while Morgan takes off after Hart. After a brief chase a fist fight ensues and Hart knocks out Morgan and breaks his nose with a punch to the face and disappears by the time Cumbersomething arrives on the scene.

Victoria then tracks Harts footsteps to a small b&b on the outskirts of town, it appears he has assaulted the old woman who runs the b&b before speeding off towards Glasgow on his motorbike. Morgan consoles the old woman and plies her with brandy as the others uncover 4 hunks of human flesh wrapped in a 3 day old Inverness courier newspaper. They also find an unopened Telegram for Hart simply instructing him to return to Inverness. The investigators conclude that the fastest way to get to Inverness for hart would be by train so they endeavour to try and catch the afternoon train to Inverness as well. Having no form of transport they quickly fast talk one of the police men into letting them borrow his vehicle and head off siren wailing back down the Clyde to Glasgow. A flat tyre and some quick repair later they arrive at the station just as the train is pulling in. They decide to abandon the rifle as it is two big to conceal but armed with several side arms and a hidden shotgun they all board the train for Inverness.

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Session 2 21/04.12
A Train Trip to Remember

As the investigators are rushing to board the train two railway employees spot Morgan and Cumbersomething trying to conceal firearms and apprehend them. With the railway staff otherwise busy the remaining four manage to sneak a shotgun onto the train. A busboy arrives to take the investigators luggage and an attendant serves drinks as the investigators are led to their compartment at the front of the train. They then move onto the dining car and are greeted by Dr. Esther Jacobs and Prof. Archie Douglas also of the Cryptozoology department. As the train pulls away from the station sirens can be heard and a police car is seen pulling up outside the train station. Once comfortably seated in the dining car the group orders steaks and brandies and ask one of the train staff if they could check the train passenger log to see if an Isaac Hart was on board. The staff member returns just as the steaks are being served and it turns out that Hart is indeed aboard.

After dinner Augustus and Prof. Douglas decide to sweep the train for any sign of Hart. As they move through the two second class carriages peering into each compartment it becomes apparent that Hart is nowhere to be seen. Suddenly Prof. Douglas notices that they themselves are being watched by a suspicious looking man who has stuck his head out from one of the compartments. Douglas stays to keep an eye on the man and Augustus heads back up the train to tell the others.

Meanwhile as Prof. Fotheringshaw leaves the washroom it seems that a train attendant is waiting for him with a drink on a tray with a cloth draped over it. After a brief conversation it becomes apparent that the attendant has concealed a pistol under the cloth and wants Fotheringshaw to move toward the back of the train. As the two move away Stevenson notices them leave and alerts the others that something might be up. Dr Jacobs tries to use her feminine ways to enlist the help of one of the railway staff but on this occasion the man in question proves to be too professional. Having wasted a few seconds Dr. Jacobs and Stevenson decide to follow Fotheringshaw while Victoria heads back to her room to retrieve her shotgun.

Augustus encounters Fotheringshaw as he moves down the train followed by the attendant, after an exchange Augustus goes to take the drink from the train and purposely knocks the tray from the attendants hand revealing the gun underneath. The other passengers in the carriage start to panic at the sight of the firearm and a scuffle involving the three breaks out. Augustus manages to wrestle the gun from the attendant and Fotheringshaw lands some punches that any boxer would be proud of but it is all futile as the attendant displaying superhuman strength shakes off Augustus and manhandles Fotheringshaw towards the rear of the train. As they both pass through the last carriage they bump into Prof. Douglas who keeps his cool and lets them both pass before trying to cut the attendants throat with his previously concealed steak knife. The melee continues and as more investigators arrive on the scene the attendant throws Fotheringshaw to the floor and sprints to the rear kicking the luggage compartment doors open in the process. The investigators pile down the corridor after him. As Douglas is entering the luggage room, the suspicious looking man emerges from his compartment and attempts to tackle him while running at full pace, Douglas hears the man coming and at the last minute spins and impales the man up to the hilt with his steak knife being knocked to the floor with the power of the charge. Several attempts are made to catch the attendant who is ultimately too fast as he disappears into the rear of the luggage room. The suspicious man tries to push himself up off the knife while coughing up blood into the face of Douglas just as Augustus presses down on the man’s back impaling him once again on the knife. Douglas eventually gets the man off him but it is clear that he is bleeding badly and will die.

The investigators quickly look round to see if they can spot the luggage that contains their firearms but it is nowhere to be seen. Dr Jacobs attempts to save the suspicious man’s life while Fotheringshaw and Victoria investigate deeper into the carriage. Stevenson find several torches in a maintenance locker and now the party can see in the dark carriage. As they delve further it becomes apparent that there are several shapes lurking toward the rear. A stand-off ensues and then suddenly the antagonists make their move trying to flank Victoria and Fothingshaw. Fotheringshaw anticipates this and moves to a better position catching a glimpse of the strange hunched canine creature advancing upon him alongside Hart, It is too much for Fotheringshaw who breaks down and slumps sobbing in a heap, not before shooting the thing in the shoulder knocking it back through the luggage. Victoria fires her shotgun hitting the attendant in the chest killing him instantly. Hart sees that he is outgunned and outnumbered and flees toward the back just as the ghoul picks up the luggage rack and empties its contents over Victoria and Fotheringshaw. This gives Hart and the ghoul the opportunity to leap out the open door from the moving car bouncing down the railway verge into the forest.

After the dust settles it becomes clear that the men were searching for something and that they didn’t find it. There is also a grisly discovery at the rear of the room, it appears that the men and the ghoul had been feasting on the recently dead corpse of one of the railway staff. As the train manager arrives the investigators manage to convince him that they are the authority here and he unwilling concedes to them having a look around the crime scene. They find the mans wallet revealing his identity as Graham Mackay from Dalgety Bay and also the name of the third man by using the train manifest, James Monroe.

The police are waiting as the train pulls into Inverness. After a long nights interrogation the investigators are released without charge due to the combining facts that many eye witnesses confirm it was self defence, several of the investigators are wounded and that they have helped out the Inverness police department in the past. They head to a nearby hotel to get some well earned rest. In the morning they trace the telegram delivered to Hart to a small rural community just outside Inverness and find out that it was James Monroe who sent it. They locate Monroe’s house and search it turning up a set of notes detailing cannibalistic rituals and the strange discovery that there is no food to be found in the house. The building to the rear is a different matter however as it is a makeshift smokehouse full of chunks of human flesh hanging up on hooks. They realise that the chunks of flesh found in Hart’s B and B must have come from here.

The next stop in Inverness is the office of George and Buchanan law firm. After a brief chat with the receptionist they gain an audience with the obviously stressed Martin George. George is initially hesitant to divulge any info but in the face of some rather persuasive interrogation techniques from Augustus (yelling in his face about cannibalistic cults) George breaks down in tears and shows the investigators George Bullough’s Will revealing an Edmund Sutherland as the benefactor. It is at this moment Buchanan arrives and he tells the investigators about Bullough and Jack Brodie (Bulloughs groundsman) showing up last week wanting to change his will. He also says that Bullough didn’t seem himself, he was aggressive and apparently left handed when he was previously right handed. Also his complex signature didn’t match so the firm decided that they could not change the will. This cause Bullough to fly into a rage. That night however George changes the will much to Buchanan’s dismay. The two argue and Buchanan storms out. George then irreversibly processes the will and the hand over of Bullough’s estate is complete. After a quick search of George’s desk reveals a gun and two notes, it is apparent that George is being blackmailed and that his wife has been kidnapped…

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