Previously On: Horror on the Orient Express

August 11, 2019

We're underway with our Call of Cthulhu: Horror on the Orient Express investigation (with just a dash of Pulp Cthulhu rules thrown in) and we have our first write up! Thanks to Kelly for this excellent summary of our recent sessions. We're rewarding players who provide dispatches to friends or colleagues with sanity and luck points. Given that the investigation may kill off investigators, someone ought to go looking for them and continue the investigation in their stead.

 

Now, roll Sanity!

- Game Master Caleb

~ ~ ~


SEBASTIAN:

Gee willikers, it was a kick getting to England, home of the BEST and most famous detective IN THE WHOLE WILD WORLD aka Sherlock Holmes. AND Scotland Yard. But I digress. Professor Smith was kind enough to pay my passage on the steamer to England, but even with the mad technology of today I was late joining the party that to which his note directed me. One could imagine my distress when I found out that he is reported missing, possibly dead.

 

I went to the hotel where three men with the same name had been found. All named Makryat and all Dead! When I arrived Nils, a train conductor with an impressive presence was talking with the Concierge. It is quite a motley crew: what seems to be a rather proper but intimidating servant of a higher order, Bernard or Betram his a rather scary mistress, a Mrs. Mabel Edwards, quite the demanding dowager that reminds me a little more than I care of my grandmother. Except she is a tad on the loud side. Robin, young man about my age, but he seems to have a better presence than I. Okay, muscles. The last person I met, and I could not believe it, was Yuri Nettal, THE boxer. The most famous boxer from the lower quadrant of the Antalya province in Turkey. I regret that my Charles Atlas exercises have not been paying off. Maybe he can give me some pointers. But I digress. Mrs Mabel mentioned she has a young protege she sent shopping.

 

Nils talked his way into our investigating the now cleaned room of the dead fellows. Using what I have learned from the Charlie Chan Number One School for Detection, I spotted a small piece of parchment with blood on it written in Turkish. I handed it off to Yuri as, sadly, my languages to date are limited to English and Latin and Greek.


Yuri read out that the notes related to a very realistic model train. Interesting.

 

BERNARD:

I smile benignly as some pencil neck twerp has joined this already ragged crew. I long for the days in the Boer War where the worst thing that could happen is I would get killed. Ah yes, here comes Mrs. Edwards now. My day is complete. We arrive at Scotland Yard with a minimum of fuss which means I am hanging on to my temper and what’s left of my sanity. As I speak to Detective Fleming I can see the Madam going into one of her, “Do you know who I am?” snits. Well, I am British so ignoring bad behavior is one of the things I do best. Hmm, it only took two Bobbies to “escort” her to the car this time.

 

I try to focus on the Detective, out of the corner of my eye I see the Rolls lurch down the street. The little info I get is that the corpses were desecrated, skin removed, and I have to leave to rescue the Rolls as I can see her blasted scarves fluttering out the window as the car weaves through traffic.

 

 YURI AND NILS:

Trip to Turkish embassy was a waste as it was closed.

 

GM's Note: Yuri was able to speak with the clerk Mustapha Köprülü over lunch as he was locking the doors at the Turkish Embassy. He was able to share that the details of Makryat's file have all vanished! The Brits think the Turks are incompetent and rife with corruption and forgeries, but all of the older Makryat's files were previously in order...

 

SEBASTIAN:

On a whim I went to the British Museum Library to check on the toy train illustration. It was a replica of a train that crashed in 1897. The accounts did not add up as one reported that the front was crushed then another report that no debris was found of the front! How odd. As I was pondering this mystery and wondering what Mr. Holmes would deduce, a young boy dropped a message in hand from the reputed dead Professor Smith! It said to meet him posthaste. Agog, I hurried to meet the gang at the the Antique store and tell them. I can not do this alone.

 

Using my locksmith skills learned from the Nancy Drew Sleuthing Manual, I successfully unlocked the door to the store. Well, it is an antique store and needs some serious dusting. I spy an old ledger with notes written in French and Turkish. I hand the ledger over to Nils and Yuri as Yuri finds some interesting facts regarding the toy train. A Randolph Alexis purchased the toy train a few months ago. But, BUT Randolph Alexis is reported to have died on the train in ….1897!!!!!! According to the notes his address is in Stokes Newington.

 

BERTRAM:

The Madam and I go upstairs to take a look around, but find very little. As we are descending the stairs we hear a ruckus. I look behind me. No, the Madam is still there. What overbred idiot is in trouble this time? Perhaps I can shoot someone today.

 

SEBASTIAN:

As we depart from the antique shop into a rather dank alley, we are attacked by ruffians. Being attacked by ruffians is not as much fun as it sounds in the comic books as one of them punches me in the stomach, and let’s say I don’t come off at my best. In my defense, I have always had a sensitive stomach. But I digress from the main action.

 

BERTRAM:

Good God Almighty! This is beyond pathetic. Our newest nimrod just threw up on one of the bastards, but the other skinny one, Robin, was smart enough to use a wrench on one of the attackers. Good fellow. No surprise that Yuri is quite effective with brass knuckles. A little low class, but it works. Well, he’s not British.

 

Oh nooooo! The twerp just threw a garbage can lid like a discus which does …absolutely nothing. Who invited him? Has he no weapon? Wait, pipsqueak found a knife, but, damnation, reverts to type by playing keep away from one of the bastards. We finally dispatch all but two, and load one of them in the Rolls. Bother, I just detailed it last week.

 

ROBIN:

I rule.

 

MABLE EDWARDS:

Oh goody! I finally get to use my small parlour. Bernard serves us tea and some nice sandwiches as I roll up my sleeves, metaphorically of course, to interrogate this vile creature. He’s really not quite the thing, but needs must be met. He rolls his eyes threateningly to no avail and mutters out a cryptic message like “Skinless one demands,” in Turkish which is downright rude if you ask me. The boxer translates. Then the miscreant adds “Smith is ash”; inconveniently bites his tongue and dies. I do hope Bernard can get the blood out. Nice rugs have been difficult to find since the war.

 

GM's Note: I recall the interrogation happening in the wine cellar, so no issue with blood on the carpet there!

 

SEBASTIAN:

I feel faint.

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