30 September 2012

CoC - Gaslight: A Strange Meeting

After receiving the metal figurine we immediately went of to see Mr Roquefort's friend, whose name was Emily.

We arrived at a tall building which had served as an observatory in previous times. The first curious thing I noticed was the door-knocker which hat the form of a cat's head. Mr Roquefort knocked and a few moments later an intimidatingly large, bearded Arab opened the door and bade us in. He led us upstairs to the top of the tower to a curtain and told us to walk right in. We did.

I don't know what I had expected but certainly not this. A very old, blind, white-haired woman was sitting on a large cushion smoking a sheesha. I was unable to guess her age. But she was certainly old enough to be Mr Roquefort's mother. But they had definitely no family relation. The room itself was circular and must have been the observation room. Models of the planets were hanging from the ceiling and a lot of rather strange objects and apparatuses were standing all over the room. I also noticed some cats strolling around.

As we walked in she greeted us both first Mr Roquefort and then me. And she knew my name and judging by her manners maybe more about me. I was slightly taken aback by this. Where did she get this knowledge? My companion couldn't have told her about me before. At least I wouldn't know how.

After the exchange of the usual pleasantries on catching up with someone one hasn't seen in a while, she wanted to know about his business in Egypt. He told her about the events of the last weeks. And as he mentioned the "Fire of Ra" her face and voice became very serious.

She told us that the Ibis-Dagger could be a potent weapon for us but if used improperly could be the ruin of the one wielding it. She asked me explicitly about my motives concerning the "The Book of Secrets". I told her, I had no desire at all to possess such knowledge and that my main concern was the safe return of Sir Thomas Kincaid to his family. She looked at me with a penetrating stare as if to penetrate into my mind to see if I was being honest.

She was obviously convinced of my motives and continued to tell us that the "Fire of Ra" is capable of storing a vast amount of energy which could be used for good or evil. But ultimately the knowledge in the "Book of Toth", as it was also called,  was not meant to be discovered by any man. She made as vow to destroy the Book, if we ever came to possess it. We both agreed without hesitation. At that moment I realised that this whole affair could be more serious than I had imagined.

She knew a lot about the history of the Book and shared it with us. It was supposed to be hidden in a place called "Toth's Shadow". Nobody knew exactly where it was. Its location was estimated a trip of five days and five nights distant of the "House of Toth". Legend has it that a man called Meheret had once found "Toth's Shadow", and his heirs were looking for the Book. She advised us to start our search at Hermopolis Magna.

Before had left she gave us a vague warning about some danger from the inside. This was not really helping my mood, as we were already suspecting Dr Laydon and the Egyptian League of using us to their own benefit.

We then bade our farewell and left the room. We were both deeply in thought after these informations and dreadful warnings. Reaching the bottom of the stairs, we became suddenly very alert. On the threshold lay the corpse of the large Arab. We heard the flapping of wings and Mr Roquefort was instantly very agitated. I myself was to shocked to do anything for a few moments. Mr Roquefort pushed his revolver into my hands and told me to stand guard at the door. He was running upstairs before I could utter a single word of protest. Finding myself in this unfamiliar situation, I assessed my surroundings.

It was very dark outside and the entrance was lit by several oil-lamps. I suddenly realised that I was quite a target and rushed to put out the lights. Standing guard as had been rudely suggested by Mr Roquefort, I faintly heard him call from upstairs. I shut the door and ran upstairs. I entered the room just in time to dodge a knife that was thrown at me. Without thinking I aimed at the attacker and pulled the trigger. I had never been a very good shot, but I got lucky. He fell backwards and didn't move at all.

After recovering from this shock of actually having taken another human being's life, I looked around and saw Mr Roquefort engaged in hand-to-hand combat with a second assailant. Before I could act he took his knife to the attacker's neck and slit it open. Up until this moment I had never thought of him being capable of such grim behaviour.

But the strangest thing in this whole struggle had been Emely's behaviour during the fight. She had been sitting absolutely still, as if she had known that things were going to happen the way they did. Afterwards she only rushed us to go and not to forget what she had told us. We did as she had asked.

As I looked back at her a last time, I saw lots of cats emerging from the dark corners of the room and starting to feast on the dead bodies of the attackers.

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