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Butters last won the day on March 19

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    Down South
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    Call of Cthulhu and other horror style R.P.Gs

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  1. Sinister Spelunking The party has made their way back to the shop of Rimehart the dealer in all things fun and festive which is how Mallebench had gotten his claws into him by threatening to expose him to the Puritan authorities if he failed to do as he was instructed. At the moment though Rimehart was still somewhat shell shocked after learning that Mallebench had just tried to have him murdered, poisoned in fact along with the rest of the Collectors as Mallebench obviously considered them a loose end now and so a potential threat to his plans but luckily he had met us. As Rimehart was considering his somewhat bleak future the rest of the party spent their time trying to get warm and dry the Doctor though briefly went outside again to get a bucket of snow in a vain attempt to clean his clothes of some of the rather smelly fluids which were splashed across them. After getting a fire started and helping themselves to Rimeharts cheese collection the party finally get down to discussing what to do next. Turning aside for a moment his mouth full of cheddar Ralph looks around for Rimehart and seeing him crouched in a corner calls out merrily to him " Hey Rimehart you old buzzard have you got something I can stick this in?" and shows Rimehart his new sword Rimehart looks up and is about to say something rude but then seeing what Ralph held in his hands he instead immediately perks up a cold calculating gleam appearing in his eyes. " Ah I see you found that rusty old sword then, you know I could take it off your hands....for a fair price if you liked" his hands extending out as if to caress the blade. Ralph quickly jerks the sword away and firmly tells him that the sword is not for sale and that he just wanted a box or some such to store it in. Rimehart slinking back to his darkened corner throws Ralph a thin wooden box and almost growling says "Here this should do for now.............until your ready to sell that is" The Doctor finally despairing of ever having a clean shirt again decided that enough was enough and they should at least check out the nearby Dangling Slattern especially since it was close by and most of its somewhat troublesome clientele were now either dead, missing or arrested. (There is no evidence to the rumours that the Doctor just wanted a pint) "Right I'm off to the pub the serving wenches might know something about the German, back in a minute" and with that he strides back out into the storm and crosses the courtyard heading towards the inn. The others watched him go and after the briefest of pauses to check that he had closed the back door they returned to discussing plans and strategies. The Doctor makes his way to the inn and finds himself unable to see into the tap room due to a unfortunate lack of windows, he decides to go in anyway as surely there would be only a few drunks left at this early hour and begins to open the door. Unfortunately the Doctors recent run of bad luck continues as the inn seems to have plenty of customers some of which are still very much awake as it seems that this is where all those army patrols had ended up after the incident at Blatters. So the door opens and the Doctor is suddenly aware of a terrible silence as every awake soldier turns to look at him the silence hangs heavy until a large sergeant staggers upright and bellows "In the name of Sir Ireton I demand that you state your name and business Sir' the Doctor being an honest sort if a little prideful replies "Why I'm Doctor Norton of course, how may I be of service?" This was completely the wrong thing to say apparently as some of the more sober soldiers all leap up and start running towards him, the sergeant yelling "Its a Norton grab him" so after a brief and somewhat one sided struggle the Doctor finds himself tied to a chair and guarded by a couple of Redcoats "What is the meaning of this? unhand me you knaves" demanded the somewhat bruised and shocked Doctor. The sergeant walks behind the Doctor and leans forward his beery breath hot upon the Doctors cheek "Demands does one? Huh all you Norton's are the same, its you who will be answering questions my boy not I and your questions will be asked by the very Lord himself" standing upright again he tells some of his men to form an escort and to take the Doctor to the castle. Whilst all this was going on the rest of the party were still at Rimeharts discussing things, luckily Craigh the canny Scot had decided that he needed some fresh air and a good pipe to help clear his head so lighting his pipe he stands up and wonders away from the rest of the party to find somewhere quiet. Finding himself outside under the shops porch he is just in time to see a group of men cross over and head towards the stable. The figures are hard to make out through the driving rain and mist but one does seem to be wearing a very familiar hat which causes Craigh to squint in an attempt to make out who the others are he is just about able to see a bit of uniform here and there and the gleam of a musket and sword. "Och the fool has only gotten himself arrested" He takes one last mournful puff on his pipe before tapping it empty and heads back into the shop to inform the others. The party hearing the news are at a loss to explain why the N.M.A would want to arrest the Doctor as if they were worried about how many patients he had lost they would have arrested him a lot sooner. "Well I've an idea how to find out the inn staff should know you ken? So why don't I just pop over and ask around sneaky like?" Craigh asks (Again there is no truth to the vicious rumors that Craigh only wanted to go to the inn as it was now breakfast time and having missed his tea due to the fight at Blatters he was feeling in the mood for an exotic meat pie with extra wobbly bits) Saul tipping back his hat looks up from the bench which he laid sprawled to the oddly salivating Scot "You sure? that's what the Doctor said as well you know" Craigh laughs "Och nae bother man I know a few tricks, I'll be back in a jiffy" and with a last crooked smile he wraps himself up in a cloak and heads out towards the inn the rest of the party sigh and start to gather their things. So stealing out the back the Scot merges with the shadows and skulks towards the Dangling Slattern the effect is only slightly spoiled by the rumbling of his stomach but to be fair it had been a long night. Reaching the inns door Craigh wraps up his clockwork arm as best he could takes a deep breath and opens the door to the inn. It was much the same as the Doctor had left it just a little emptier, the few soldiers remaining turn to see this new person who had foolishly dared to intrude upon their revelry. The same sergeant looks up with bloodshot eyes from his tankard and yells out "Hey you! you bespawler have ye a name?" Craigh replies as smooth as you like that he is called McAdder and is in Norwich to collect a shipment of fish from Yarmouth but due to the flooding has been somewhat delayed. The sergeant staggers up "What are you going on about I only asked for your bloody name not your whole life story, your in luck my kilted barbarian friend we're not looking for any poxy fish salesman. Though before you go and I think I would like to know how a Scotsman got himself such a fine looking arm?" It seems the sergeant wasn't as drunk as he acted. Craigh smiles "Oh this old thing I got it mining for Haggis in the Highlands" The inn goes silent and apart from a young soldiers whispered question "What's a Haggis?" You could hear s pin drop........then the sergeant let's out a mighty belly laugh " You cheeky bugger not all us English are idiots, Haggis mines indeed. Now get yourself out of here this inn has been commandeered for use by members of the N.M.A which you ain't so shove off now, there's a good gentlemen" Realizing that he could do no more and had already pushed his luck Craigh laughs along with the sergeant and backs out the way he had come "Here's tae ye bonnie men in redcoats" and with a final jaunty wave he leaves and as soon as the door shuts he mutters "Fuck that was a wee bit close" and with a quick glance back recrosses the courtyard and back to the others. "Hullo I'm back but I dinnae ken what happened to the Doctor.....nor dinnae I get a wobbly meat pie" the last he adds under his breath. He leans on one of the pillars by the fire and tells the others what had happened. Saul thinks for a moment then shrugs "The Doctor is on his own for now we have to get Gahwon and those books or we all may end up swinging before the nights over" "So where do we go Saul if not after my cousin?" asked a slightly peevish Ralph. "Where else but back to Tinker town and the ruins, come on let's go daylights burning" and after grabbing their gear they finally leave Rimeharts and head back out into the muddy refugee choked streets of Norwich. The Doctor after a somewhat uncomfortable journey tied to the side of a cart finally reaches the grim castle gates where he is somewhat roughly dragged off the cart and dumped onto the cobbled floor. He is then quickly dragged past the hastily repaired cracked wall and is escorted to the cells beneath. The others reach the Tinker town area and head back into Nutleys house to retrieve the cypher book from where the Doctor hid it and the rest of their gear. After a quick search and finding the house empty of any unwelcome guests Saul finally heads down into the basement only to find that the false wall had been pulled down and the book missing. Storming back up the stairs his face pinched in anger he hisses "That mammering beef witted arse has been here, the book is gone" The others step back in the face of his anger "Look Saul we knew it was always going to be a slim hope that the book would still be here, look he must be in the ruins come on we can still get him" Ralph says pouring calming water onto Sauls blazing anger Saul thrusting his sword back into its sheath with some force wrenches the door open and stomps toward the ruins the others sharing a knowing glance follow closely behind. Back in his cold cell the Doctor receives an unwelcome visitor in the form of Zeal for the Lord Harrison who without much preamble begins his interrogation but the Doctor was at the end of his tether and staggering upright stood up to the screaming madman and calmly said "My name is Doctor Thomas Norton I'm a member of the Medical Guild of Norwich and was a serving soldier on that bloody day at Naseby where I saw a King die and I demand a lawyer as is my right" Zeal looked somewhat shocked stopped shouting and after a menacing pause nodded and said "Well if you insist" and turning swiftly stalks out of the cell the door slamming shut behind him. "Well that went better than expected" said the Doctor just as his legs buckled beneath him and he collapsed back onto the earthen floor in a heap. The others following Saul catch up with him at the ruins "Well let's start looking for that wee skunner Gahwon eh?" Craigh says and so they did. Some of the church though was still standing its broken roof causing weird shadows to twist and twirl onto its few remaining walls as the sun cast its weak rays onto the ruins below. The search didn't uncover much but some tracks were found which led to a shadowy area by the altar poking around they find a hole dug under the few remaining paving slabs. Saul gathering the others together gives a brief speech "Here it is then lads the gates of hell itself and we must go down it seems to face old Nick himself if needed" and with a curt nod starts to climb down, the others loosing their weapons swiftly follow him down. The hole slopes quickly downwards leading under the main body of the church and leads into a network of tunnels the party passes earth and stone which seem to have been melted away as if by a great heat and in some places the stone had been turned into a strange glass like substance. Passing through the narrow confines of the tunnels their armour leaving deep metallic scratches in the walls as they struggle through. After some time the narrow tunnels open up into a larger cavern allowing them to stretch out but only briefly as they were soon interrupted by a familiar chittering sound which echoed strangely in the confines of the cavern. Ralph and Craigh shared a worried glance, could that be the demon Imp again? their answer was soon forthcoming as the cursed creature popped up from behind a stalagmite and began chittering and squeaking loudly at them pointing its tiny furry finger at them and blowing any chance of the party being able to sneak any further. Saul shrugs takes aim and with a crooked smile which threatened to break out on his craggy face as he takes aim and fires just as the Imp pops up again from behind a closer stalagmite to begin screeching again but instead it meets head first Sauls hurtling balls of lead which only slightly slow down as they fly through whatever the Imp was using for a brain spraying tiny Imp brains and pulpy eye bits against the caverns wall. "Come on that blasted creature was the pet of Gahwon so he must be close by" shouted Craigh crossing quickly he heads towards another tunnel on the caverns opposite side the others swiftly following. They plunge back into the narrow confines of the tunnels and struggle through but only for a short time as it opens out again into a wider cavern and they were faced by something that might as well had come from hell itself. Several figures of unwholesome and unnatural aspect were crouched low over what looked like a figure of a man they were gnawing unwholesomely on the figures arms and legs, ripping chunks of red wet flesh away from the figures face, a face that they barely recognized from the fight at Blatters....the figure was the Gahwon! Ralph and of Craigh stopped frozen unable to take in what was before them. Saul the old soldier that he was merely spat on the floor and seeing the signs that his comrades were about to crack and do something foolish swiftly punches them both unconscious and drags them back around the corner and out of sight. After awhile they struggle back to consciousness and rubbing their painful jaws look angrily towards Saul, "Wait! remember what you saw before you do anything rash" this was enough to stop them "What was those things?" whispers Ralph tears springing unbidden from his eyes. "I dinnae noo but they are due a right kicking" replies Craigh readying a pistol Saul nods and gives Ralph a friendly slap on his back "You ready for this?" Ralph pauses wipes the tears from his face and draws his hatchet "Yes! lets purge the unclean in the Lords name" They made their way back to the unwholesome feast and drawing their muskets made ready they find the creatures still eating and so they make their way around the side of the cavern finding a good position behind a stalagmite they raise their guns and on Sauls command let rip the musket balls smashing into the abominations tearing grey corrupted flesh away from them. The creatures let out howls of pain? and turning away from Gahwon begin to lumber toward them leaving a slimy trail of grey pus in their wake the parties muskets spent they are quickly dropped and instead pistols, clockwork powered blades and hatchets are pulled out and made ready and again they let fly a ragged volley, this closer volley does much more damage causing black ichor to spray everywhere and one of the creatures begin to stagger and then falls to the floor Ralph throws his hatchet with all his strength at the last creature just as it rears up in front of him the hatchet hits with a powerful meaty thunk and the creature wavers for a moment lets out a tremendous fart and collapses at Ralphs suspiciously wet boots. Not wanting to risk meeting any more of these foul creatures and not quite believing their luck the party quickly searches the area close by and find the missing books cast onto the cavern floor near the body of Gahwon. They were somewhat damp and covered in a strange salavia type goo but still seemed to be in a good condition so they were quickly thrown into haversacks.They also find another body which whilst partly eaten seemed to match the general description of Tobias the tailor, it seemed we had finally met the party planner. Unfortunately before they could investigate any further the creatures started to writhe and boil as thousands of white maggots appeared and began crawling out of the tainted flesh. The party now began rushing trying to get to get clear but Saul tarried and then decides that the body of Gahwon will provide more evidence of foul sorcery or at least evidence of flesh eating creatures and so begins to drag the corpse back through the tunnels and caverns and after a lot of effort on his part and a few helpful kicks from the others he does manage to get most of it back up to the surface. The party after resting, praying and in one case vomiting decide that the best cause of action after seeing those creatures is to get Henry Iretons doctor involved and on their side so off they head to the home of the great Doctor Thomas Browne to challenge his theories of how the world is really governed in the hope that with all their proof that he will join them in fighting against the foul machinations of Mallebench, oh and to get that other doctor out of the clink.
  2. Cheers, And I hope so as its weird that there seems to be this whole bunch of English Civil War/17th century weapons and tactics which seem to have faded behind all those hedges of Pike and musket smoke. Did these guys volunteer to carry a Fire pike or did they just draw a short straw? Was the job seen as similar to the poor fellows who set Petards or was it just another weapon to use when the situation demanded it? everything is so vague.
  3. Shiver me timbers its available on the Kindle, that's my bedtime reading sorted.
  4. Thank you this is awesome, its one of the great things about this hobby that you can learn about all this cool stuff which otherwise just seems to get forgotten and now I have this other great sounding weapon that I've never heard of before to track down the brilliantly named Slur Bow which fires brass balls of fire! Now if I can just sneak them past the G.M I might be onto a winner so thanks again. Now I wonder if calling my new Pirate character Jerry Lee would be a little too much
  5. I've been reading up on some of the real life battles that took part during the English civil war and I've come across something called Fire pikes and I was wondering if anyone had any more information on them.They seemed to have been used in the Royalist storming of Bristol in mixed groups, some men had the Fire pikes whilst others were issued primitive grenades.Now the mystery is were they just normal pikes with something like pitch and hay tied to the end or something a lot more potent?As one description I read does seem to hint at something a lot more substantial, A Royalist officer Lieutenant-Colonel Littleton galloped along the inside of the Parliamentary line with a fire pike causing panic among the garrison troops who cried out "Wildfire"Any help on this mystery would be gratefully received.
  6. Hi Gary
  7. I would go with your first option but it is a little odd reading it though I guess it makes sense as you get to add all your weight behind the swing and you lose your second reaction due to the follow through.
  8. A terrible tale of domestic chores With the outside door slowly opening Ralph and the Doctor quickly dart into the dining room to prepare an ambush for this late arrival even Saul shakes off his fatigue picks up his musket and makes his way across the dark hallway to provide covering fire if needed. Craigh and Giulio on the other hand being the malingers that they are just drag themselves further down the hallway in an attempt to hide amongst the gathering shadows moaning about little things like blood loss and cracked ribs. The front door finally opens and a rotund and bedraggled man enters he struggles for a moment to close the door behind him fighting against the storm that still rages outside. He eventually manages to close the door and he staggers further into the gloomy house removing his hat and muttering to himself he brushes the snow off it. Getting level with the dining room doorway and finally feeling that something may be wrong he wipes away the rain from his eyes and squints into the darkened room he looks up and then down into the barrel of a fully loaded and operational donderbus which is held in the somewhat shaky Doctors hands. There followed a brief chat which involved a discussion about the merits of bribery on one hand and the demonstration of how exactly a donderbus works on the other the man seeing his limited options reveals that his name is Milton and that he is just a cook. It seems that he had worked for Mallebench in the past and had been instructed to come to this house tonight and prepare a fine meal for four people, set the table but then oddly leave before the guests arrived. Seeing that he was no threat the party regretfully paid him off and suggested that it might be wise for him to have the night off, Milton wisely decided that this was indeed a capital idea and ran back to the front door and quickly left with barely a glance backwards. The Doctor taking a deep steadying breath smiles and then turns and heads into the kitchen to see what was keeping cousin Ralph whilst Saul relocked the front door. Peering through the clouds of flour and steam the doctor found Ralph elbow deep in a goose suddenly assailed by visions of uncle Norton's petting zoo the doctor worriedly asked if Ralph was feeling alright. Ralph a huge grin upon his now grease smeared face laughingly cries out with alarming glee, "I always wanted to be a cook you know Thomas but father forbade it and he wouldn't let me spend any time with Cookie" and with one hand stuffed inside a surprised looking goose whilst the other was resting on a meat cleaver he finally turned to fully face the Doctor "You wouldn't be here to stop me cousin would you? Its fate you see that I cook tonight and thus prove father wrong" the Doctor wisely decided to just nod and back away slowly leaving Ralph alone with his goose and chopper. Craigh, Giulio and Rimehart decide that things are getting too weird for them and finally drag themselves off the hallway floor and shuffle off to find somewhere quiet, safe and preferably far, far away from Ralph. Since the Doctor was backing out of the kitchen he failed to see another man step out of the room with the trapdoor but before this intruder has a chance to capitalize on the situation he steps onto a creaky floorboard causing the now paranoid and scared Doctor to spin quickly around and since he still had the donderbus in his hands he ends up pointing it into the now shocked face of his would be attacker. Regaining his wits quickly the Doctor yells out "Burglar!" which alerts Saul who quickly makes his way back downstairs. Realising that his best option is to try and strike a bargain the stranger tells us that his name is Ezekiel and that he works for the Hand as a trader in information. He tries to get on the parties good side by revealing that a gang member by the name of Jonas has stolen the Hands pay chest and that if we helped him get it back he would split the fortune with us. Unfortunately for him the party has no good side and instead they ask questions about the Hand and Mallebench this makes Ezekiel more and more nervous and he foolishly tries to escape a dagger falling into his hand from a hidden sheath and he slashes wildly at Saul, the Doctor standing behind him tries to hit Ezekiel with a handy jar but Ezekiel twists to the side and easily avoids the clumsy blow the jar shattering its foul contents onto the floor. Saul avoids the dagger blow and in return smashes Ezekiel across the kneecap with the butt of his pistol bringing Ezekiel crashing to the floor and crying out in pain Ezekiel begins to crawl towards the door swearing and foolishly making dire threats against the Doctor and Saul cursing them to hell. The Doctor shrugs and steps heavily onto Ezekiel's back and places his sword against the mans neck being the coward that he is Ezekiel quickly changes his tone going from threats to pleading telling them that he knew things, things about the men coming to dinner, men of quality he claims, men he was sent here to kill and to prove this he produces a small Jack box which holds several glass jacks of powder within. Ezekiel goes on to say that Mallebench was cleaning house and tidying up any loose ends and that we to were on this list. Saul and the Doctor wouldn't be so easily deterred though and they keep pressing him (Quite literally in the Doctor's case) for information about Mallebench. Ezekiel finally reveals more of the Hands relationship with Mallebench and the location of Gahwons house (Oddly enough it was Nutleys) and that there maybe the possibility that Mallebench has something going on in the ruins of the nearby church. He also revealed that due to our recent activities the Hand were starting to regret their deal with Mallebench and arguments were becoming more and more common amongst the rank and file as Mallebench seemed to be losing his grip on things and he was not helped by the death toll of senior gang members which continued to mount thanks to our meddling. As he saw the Doctor and Saul's reaction to this information Ezekiel again started to slyly try to get them on his side promising further help and riches but he soon sees that this wasn't going to work so instead he started to hint that Doctors family might be involved in the whole murky affair and that the Doctors mother was in danger of becoming the plaything of Mallebench. The Doctor having heard enough tries to cut Ezekiel's throat to stop these lies and terrible insinuations. Unfortunately being the Doctor he botches his slash and so was only able to cut into Ezekiel's jacket panicking Ezekiel fights back rolls up and thrusts a thumb into the Doctors bandaged face causing the doctor to yell out in pain and fall backwards. Luckily Saul was still close at hand and with a sigh swings down his mortuary sword causing a mighty wound upon Ezekiel and ending his unworthy life. The Doctor after thanking Saul was told to drag the poor unfortunate Ezekiel to the temple and to clean up the rest of the mess so he headed back to the kitchen for a mop and bucket. He does stop to pick up the Jack box though and smiling remembers what Ralph's plan was earlier regarding the bread. Cousin Ralph was still cooking up a storm and was attacking some poor unfortunate potatoes with the back of his bloodstained hatchet. The Doctor brings Ralph up to speed and after a bit of discussion Ralph agrees to poison the gravy. Saul and the Doctor clean up the ground floor setting everything back to roughly how they had found it before all the bloodshed whilst Ralph finishes off cooking and setting up the meal ready for the honoured guests. Once everyone was more or less happy they split up into their various hiding places to wait for the Collectors to turn up. The Doctor and Ralph eventually decide to hide out in tailor's shop next door whilst Saul decides to stay in the house and waits in Mallebench's bedroom musket loaded and primed. After fifteen or so minutes a carriage is heard pulling up outside the Collectors house and several people are heard getting out and with much stomping of feet to clear them of snow soon enter the house. There follows a very tense time as the party waits to see if their plan works but they are eventually rewarded by the sound of running feet and shouting. It seems that one man at least didn't like the gravy. He is watched by various party members as he runs back outside and jumps into the waiting carriage and shouts out to the driver to go with all haste. The Doctor creeps out, looks around and heads towards the open door of the house of Pus as he enters he calls out pretending to be a somewhat heavily armed but concerned neighbor hearing no reply he heads in further and soon comes across two vomit covered bodies after a quick examination they are found to be both quite dead. One is wearing a fine and expensive looking outfit and also has a fine sword belted at the waist. This sword is a rapier and seems to match the description of the cursed sword of the Order of Kites. The other man is much younger and whilst less well dressed is still obviously a man of means and is found to be in possession of a small ledger which seems to track payments or something similar and the last entry was for 750 pounds. The Doctor makes a copy of the last two pages of this ledger and Ralph takes the rapier bundling it up in some rags from the kitchen. The two men were also found to be wearing similar rings which display two triangles pointing towards each other. So with one last look around and leaving the front door open to encourage someone else to find this grim tableau the party quickly heads back out into the storm and head to Rimeharts. Once back in the relative safety of the shop Rimehart confirms that the two dead men were Cheswick Orb and John Corbett Jr and that the man who escaped via the carriage was indeed Brandon Leven who turns out to be a very wealthy gentlemen farmer who farms land just outside Norwich. And that is where the curtain fell.
  9. Humorous Humors We escaped the house of Blatter via a tunnel guided by Sam Wills the recently captured gang member we quickly made our way through this section of tunnels and back to the surface via an exit leading into a house owned by a group called the Collectors of pus who were involved with the Hand via Malenbench. Sam listed some of the members of this group saying that whilst he had never been inside the house he had been part of the Hand team which had hired as guards for some of the meetings held inside. Ralph after some suitable encouragement finally agreed to climb up the rusting ladder into the house. The room they found themselves in seemed pretty bare just a desk holding a ledger which noted grocery purchases and a tapestry which looked suspiciously French so being a true son of England the doctor immediately started to cut it up to provide bandages for Inky whilst cutting strips off he learnt from Sam that Tobias had given his Mothers shaven hair to Ghwon but he didn't know why, maybe it was for a wig he suggested? Ralph said nasty hurtful things about the doctors mother but the doctor ignored the jibes knowing that Ralph was just jealous that his side of the family had money and could read and besides he knew that Ralph got this way when he was scared. After dismissing the "Cooking them a nice meal" plan they quickly left the house Inky making better progress know that his feet were bandaged and bound he also now didn't leave bloody footprints behind him which was somewhat handy They took this moment to further discuss Sam's story as he had told them he was really a good guy and was only involved in leg breaking and extortion because Mallebench had kidnapped his family and that he could help them more if they saved them this led to more bickering and name calling. The weather was still foul outside and we were soon cold and wet again but the bad weather did work in our favour keeping us concealed from any prying eyes. We kept to the side of the street in an attempt to avoid any military patrols and to be honest away from the worst of the rain. The injured amongst us going silent as they struggled to keep going all their focus turning inward and keeping one foot in front of the other. We encountered a couple of men on the street luckily they turned out to be orderlies from a nearby asylum it seems that they had a breakout earlier and two patients were still unaccounted for and they had been went out in the cold and told not to return without the two missing men and luckily we had two men that we wanted to get somewhere safe and in one case secure so we bribed the orderlies to take Inky Pete and Sam Mills in place of the two missing patients, Sam would be kept secure and Inky would get some medical treatment and perhaps more importantly be safe from any further kidnapping attempts. Neither Pete or Sam were very happy about this but a price was agreed and we told them we would be back in a week to collect them so off they went. There was one worrying thing though it seems one of the escaped inmates was known as the Blood beast of Bodmin but the doctor was sure this was just a nickname to make the man sound scarier than he really was. The party still unnaturally silent apart from the occasional bickering heard from the cousins decided to explore Tobias's tailor shop since it was nearby and they had some time to kill they found it much as they had left it the front door still broken and the shop dusty and unkempt the doctor was less than enthusiastic seeing that they had already searched the shop but Ralph was insistent he thought he could find out why his Auntie had been shaved. Finding nothing new they decided to re-enter the mysterious club house of the Collectors of Pus via a door which led from the store directly into the house. So they eventually found their way into the mysterious house next door again, Rimehart didn't seem too happy about this but after a glare from the recently scarred Giulio he soon fell silent and behaved himself. The house appeared empty and silent as they crept in and the injured collapsed into a heap onto the hallway floor unable to continue further without a rest leaving all the work to the brave and handsome Norton cousins. So after making sure none of them was going to die and Rimehart was secure in their care off went the the rugged and charming Norton's. Cousin Ralph was leading the charge like some kind of over eager hunting dog he searched through bookcases and cupboards, looked behind shelves and knocked on walls looking for more secret doors. All this hard work was rewarded as it seems this was one of the lairs of the arch heretic himself Mallebench! as Ralph soon discovered signs of him in one of the bedrooms. They also discovered that whilst the house was empty and had a slightly abandoned feel it nonetheless boasted a fully provisioned kitchen ready for tonights festivities no doubt. Ralph also discovered a letter and a key, this key was hidden under the desk in Mallebenchs bedroom whilst the letter was from the group calling itself the Brothers it seemed to be demanding a progress report of some kind from a man they call the Black Crow of Norwich, maybe Mallebench wasn't the all powerful puppet master maybe someone was pulling his strings? Ralph soon figured out that the key opened a panel located in the dining room this panel concealed a passage which led further down into a hidden room. Brave cousin Ralph immediately stepped down and through and into the incense filled room his footsteps echoing oddly on the stone flagstones. He quickly discovered that the room had a foul and terrible purpose it served as a some kind of blasphemous church to *SATAN*! The room contained many shelves along its damp walls each one heavy with jars and jacks and each of them was filled with a variety of abominations from strange bubbling fluids to ungodly insects. There were other terrible, darker things floating in these jars but they were either to strange or horrific to name. And where there was no shelving blasphemous idols instead lined the walls casting their evil eye on proceedings. Further parting the thick sweet smelling smoke coming from whatever was in those glowing braziers Ralph came across the final proof of this rooms malign intent, there squatting malevolently at the base of the chambers rear wall was an altar, stained darkly with unknown fluids this dark altar was surrounded by four shallow shafts, one for each corner and each one in turn was covered by a rusting filth encrusted grate. Looking down past these grated covers he gasped in horror as each shaft contained a strangely disfigured corpse. He quickly backs away coughing and calling out for the doctor in panic. The doctor upon hearing the cries rushes out of the library and almost knocks his cousin down in his rush and after recovering he was shocked to see his cousins horrified expression so almost against his will he allowed himself to be dragged into *SATANS* church and soon realised fully what had caused Ralph's horrified expression. He briefly examined some of the jars which seemed to contain humors and other foulness he avoided the blasphemous idols with their dreadful gazes until finally being dragged inexorably to the altar and those unwholesome shafts. The doctor just about managed to examine the burning herbs and found them to be mostly harmless used for their ability to cover up less wholesome smells no doubt before finally ending up at the back wall. The altar was indeed stained deeply with blood as was feared and the bodies in the shafts seemed to have died from a variety of diseases everything from leprosy to the bloody pox. The doctor visibly paler now after his examination of the room turned around to ask Ralph a question only to find himself alone, alone apart from the silent corpses and leering idols that is. The doctor feeling that discretion was indeed the better form of valour made a hasty exit. It turned out that Ralph had left the baleful room, wandered past his groaning comrades who were still malingering in the hallway and had ended up in the kitchen where he was looking very thoughtfully at the bread and wondering if poison was the way to go it certainly would be easier but could it be guaranteed to work? His thoughts were interrupted by the sound of the doctor running in the hallway, luckily not with scissors though so no further injuries were sustained. Meeting each other in the hallway again with a crash each was full of questions for the other unfortunately they had to remain unasked for the moment as each slowly turned to face the buildings main door, and both wondered had that been the doors latch they had just heard moving? We ended up with a book describing how to control people via a dolly made from their hair ( Oh Mother what have you done ) Another Pus related group who were making demands A key to the Temple of SATAN! 50 shillings A letter from the Brothers to Mallenbeench Four dead and diseased bodies And a whole load of satanic ritualistic decorations. Bob the Orderly Dr Alan Melrose of the Asylum *Collectors of the Pus*, Cheswick Orb John Corbet Junior Malenbench Brandon Leven Tobias the tailor/barber/party planner and spymaster? And whatever happened to Black Philip the goat? 
  10. Thanks for the reply our party really needs a lot of healing as currently some of them are walking around with more bandages than an Egyptian Mummy.
  11. Just double checking a rule whilst it may take some time to do in game I'm reading it that I can do multiple Healing rolls on someone as it only mentions restrictions under the first aid skill. Is this correct or are they both once per individual injury? Many thanks Butters
  12. It sounds bad when you put it that way, we left them in the care of medical professionals, burly club wielding, knuckle cracking medical professionals maybe but still highly trained medical professionals. I'm sure Inky Pete will understand though it does seem we should have asked about visiting times now that I think about it but I'm sure it will be just fine.
  13. BLATTERD AND BRUISED The tale of the storming of the house of Blatter is a grim and bloody one as the party was confronted by a veritable host of gang members from the Tenebrous Hand within. The more martial members of the party reaped a bloody ruin upon the gang members but also suffered grievous injuries in return stabbed, shot and hacked at they none the less wore their injuries with honour all being delivered to their fronts unlike the cowardly curs facing them even gentle Guilio bore his injuries with pride which included one received in the few last minutes of combat a sword slash to his face that forever ruined his good looks and caused many a young maiden to weep upon hearing the news. After Death had collected his grim harvest the party regrouped and looked slightly unbelievingly at the carnage they had wrought in their rescue attempt of Inky Pete. The doctor now more focused than he had been previously finally began to give much needed medical help to his fellow party members and to his now rescued friend Inky who had suffered terribly at the hands of the gang, the flesh from his feet had been flayed away in their diabolical quest for answers. Still in shock and great pain Inky told us of his brutal kidnapping and the questioning he had undergone and as we suspected it was the books they wanted and one book in particular the one written in cypher. The party was also left with two prisoners unfortunately neither of them was Gahwon, the right hand to the devil himself Mallebeench. Gahwon seeing Saul wielding aloft his bloody Mortuary sword, Craigh the canny Highlander with his sling firing hissing shot through the air and Giulio behind them both providing lethal support with his Glaive knew how this battle would end and he made his escape early on though not without a reminder of who he faced as he took two serious wounds before he managed to skulk away leaving his men to die. And die they did under the relentless assault of Saul, Craigh, Giulio especially now that they were reinforced by cousin Ralph who freed from looking after the semi delirious doctor joined the fray adding much needed strength to their tiring arms. Though it seems not all would die for their craven masters as we return again to the two prisoners. Only one though could provide us with valuable information the other turned out to be just a local hired thug bought off cheaply with ale and a few pennies and since time was short as the alarm must have been raised by now only one was needed decisions, decisions. Luckily Giulio stepped up and performed a quick, brutal and messy interrogation on the thug as the rest of the party quickly gathered any useful items, one of which turned out to be Rimehart who the doctor found bound and gagged in a nearby room. The party was now less one hired thug but still up a lieutenant in the form of the remaining prisoner who turned out to be called Sam Wills and Rimehart, the import/exporter of choice for Mallebeench and now after his recent treatment by his erstwhile master might now also be more willing to talk than previously. The battered party made their way back down to the ground floor where Sam our new best friend showed us the trap door which lead down back into the tunnels beneath. We made good our escape not a moment too soon it seems as just as the trapdoors lid was closed the front door was smashed open by soldiers wearing the blood red uniforms of the New Model Army they were confronted by the chilling words ' Mallebeench was here' scrawled across a wall in human blood.....it seems that the doctor and the Scotsman have a very weird sense of humour.
  14. An unfortunate guest leads to underground fun. Saul and Thomas deal with the fallout from the bar fight by paying off the landlord who might have a line of tasty yet oddly textured pies for sale soon but with the specter of famine looming over the town beggars can't be choosers. The surviving thug is patched up and the gruesome twosome pour some rot-gut over him and half carry half drag him back to Nutleys. Luckily they avoid most people due to the worsening weather but did bump into Craigh and Guilio who had decided to venture out to find out what the hell was going on. The party get the thug back into the house and tie him down to a chair in the kitchen and whilst the ropes are being tightened a blazing fire is set in the nearby fireplace and the party soon start to dry off and when they are all toasty the questioning begins. The Doctor returns from removing any left over Satanic imagery from the house and gets to work, the thug reveals a few more pieces of the puzzle, He was a Tenebrous hand member and they had been told where we were by a German known as Gerwan(?) who we now suspect was the master of the strange Imp and their instructions were to follow us and recover any books they found on us. He also told us that they had split up, some to confront us in the bar whilst the others went to find out why we had visited Inky Pete s. 'Damn it, I have placed Inky in trouble, if he's hurt I will make sure all of you face the Lords justice' cried out the Doctor and he leant heavily onto the thugs injured leg bringing tears and screams from the thug. Craigh had to pull the Doctor off before the thug passed out from the pain and calmed him down with a few whispered word 'Thomas we need answers, he needs to live a little longer at least my old friend' Taking a steadying breath the Doctor returns to the thug 'I can save that leg you know as I'm a Physician but you must tell me everything' the thug looks through his tears and seeing the grim looks on all of faces looking down at him he sobs and nods his head 'I will tell you everything just don't hurt me anymore' So after the interrogation the party learnt that the Tenebrous hand was, led by a man called Tommy Gunn who worked with a guy called, Mallebench and the relationship was very profitable one gaining foot soldiers the other political clout and money. Tommy had Inky Pete and the merchant,Rimehart held at a house in Cow Hill known as Blatters. Mallebench was not in the town but his second in command (Gerwan) was at least up to a couple of days ago and the cherry on top was the identity of a traitor in the N.M.A garrison a Captain by the name of Richard Fleet. Unfortunately the thug didn't survive the fire side chat and passed away due to blood loss and he ended up in a shallow grave in the basement and the Doctor didn't seem to upset about this result and a hardness had entered his eyes that hadn't been there before. As the party discussed what had been revealed and how best to use it the Doctor sneaks away to get some personal time and do some shopping, the recent conversation with his old friend Inky playing through his mind as he fought through the wind and rain in search of a Buckler shop. After haggling with a shop keeper and becoming the proud owner of a very, very small shield and finding himself low on funds and yet near Norton Mansions he decided to pop in and speak to dear old Dad and find out what he had found out about Cheswick Ord, oh and to see about some pocket money back pay. Further mentally scarred after his visit but forty shillings better off and with some useful information about the mysterious Cheswick who seemed to be a rich textile merchant who was against some of the new governments policies especially the new laws against the theater but whose wealth had spared him from any serious punishments so far. The Doctor trudged his way back to Nutleys hoping that rest of the party had come up with a rescue plan of some kind. Luckily they had they had and with some last minute input from the Doctor who being a loyal son of Norwich remembered the natural tunnels that wormed there way under Norwich and that his family had won a contract some years back to expand the towns sewer network and that his grandfather had taken him down a few of the converted chalk tunnels explaining that they had saved a fortune by just re-purposing the tunnels into sewers and that these tunnels also ran under the Cow Hill area. The Party gathered their weapons and buckled their armour on and prepared to wade through the muck of Cow hill one more time though in this case literally. The party make it through the dank tunnels with only a few swear words, splashes and the occasional detour and after removing a grate find themselves in a courtyard fairly near the house of Blatters. Saul and Craigh check out the nearby area and spot something odd there seemed to be a few heavyset men standing on nearby corners selling chestnuts which was weird due to the fact that the weather was by now almost a storm and there were very few people on the streets even the refugees had found somewhere sheltered to wait out the weather. After dealing with a few urchins who as urchins everywhere were immune to the weather and were having a slush ball fight in a driving blizzard the party formed a plan and began to sneak towards the house of,Blatters. The party made it to the house without being spotted mainly due to the storm as some of the party were as sneaky as elephants the more martial of the party made strange hand gestures which ended up meaning that the party should pause as voices had been heard inside. A brief discussion and some hard-core violence latter the two potential sentries lay dead on the ground floor and a passing urchin ended up with a new and unusual football. The party quickly secure the ground floor and slowly mount the stairs to find out if they were in time to save Inky and why the Hand was holding Rimehart.
  15. Mystery and Mayhem Leaving the others behind to recover their health and to clear out the Satanic filth in Nutleys house Saul and Thomas braved the crowded streets of Norwich and head towards the rabbit warren of Lower east Trostust in search of the Doctors good friend Peter known to most as 'Inky Pete' The Doctor was wearing several gore streaked bandages which covered his missing eye under his Plague mask whilst Saul made do with a heavy scarf wrapped around the lower part of his face with his hat pulled down tightly this was done in an attempt to disguise ourselves from any prying eyes and to keep us warm as the weather had again taken a turn for the worse and become bitterly cold. (Thinking about it the Plague mask might have attracted more attention than we would have liked) Trudging through the mud filled streets and forcing themselves through the refugee filled streets they cast weary glances upwards and behind to see if they were being followed they slowly made their to Inky Pete's office. It seemed that Inky Pete had turned to the dark side as he was now working as an assistant to various Norwich based lawyers. After a brief moment of totally understandable confused horror on Inky Pete's part on having such an odd pair turn up outside his office introductions were made and friendships renewed. After some polite conversation where we learn that Sir Henry Ireton was still ill and barely seen leaving control of Norwich in the hands of Zeal for the Lord Harrison Inky Pete finally got the kettle on and started to read the Latin book as that was the smaller of the tomes and Latin was almost his mother tongue by now. The Most Holy And Sacrosanct history of the Blessed Order of Kites This book appeared to be a journal of sorts written by a Knight called Beauregard Mallebeench it details the early history of the Order from their start and their involvement in the Baltic Crusades. It seems the corruption started here as they were somewhat isolated and had to recruit men at arms from the locals and any European scum that they came across, these men soon outnumbered the original knights and these new men brought their brutal ways into the order and they slowly became the norm. It also seemed that trophy hunting became normal amongst the Order and the weapons and talisman's of the Pagan enemy became symbols of how mighty the Knight was. In fact Beauregard himself became a Captain within the Order after defeating the original owner of a certain ruby bell and claiming it for himself and the order. The Bell was used to summon a daemon which was compelled through unknown means to fight on behalf of the Order but Beauregard warns that the bell should only be used twice otherwise their would be dire circumstances something involving a gate being opened to the realm of Bazayer(?) the pale. The cursed sword is also briefly mentioned surprisingly it was a rapier but one that would not break no matter how tough the fight its other benefit was that it would be guaranteed to always draw blood whenever it was unsheathed. The downside was that the blade did not care where the blood came from be it friend or foe it didn't matter the blade only cared that the blood should flow. Beauregard Mallebeench seems to pass on sometime during the period that the Order is recalled to England and comes to an end for some reason. The few remaining Knights destroy many of their unholy items and finding that the bell could not be destroyed and that it was too dangerous for them to use as Beauregard seemed to have taken the secret of its control to his grave they decided to place it into his tomb where it was hoped it would remain safely hidden until Judgement day. After taking in this baleful information it was grudgingly decided to leave the Greek book with Inky in the hope it would reveal more information and provide some clues as to what Mallebeench was up to, though Saul was concerned that the book may corrupt Inky in some way agreeing the Doctor said yes to Saul's plan to keep Inky on a short leash. After discussing the Journal and more local problems (The blight, refugees and the growing fear of famine) Saul and Thomas left Inky Pete's office throwing a concerned glance at each other as Inky was already bent over the Greek tome muttering to himself as his tea slowly went cold. As they hadn't eaten a proper meal in days the party decided to repair to a local inn for some small beer or in Saul's case hopefully clean water and a warming meal of Pie and potatoes. We should have known better as the Inns sign had suspiciously the muse Melpomene painted onto it and the legend The Dying Mask carved deeply underneath it. The tavern was fairly quiet with only a few workmen looking patrons propping up the bar Saul and Thomas got a table near the door and ordered a couple of drinks and their lunch. Thomas looked worried and kept rubbing the bandage s covering his eye but he was happily chatting away about the forthcoming meal it seemed as if he was trying to forget about the terrible history of the Kites if only for a moment. Saul on the other hand was quiet and brooding casting suspicious glances around the bar 'Relax my melancholy friend a good hot meal will make all our troubles fade away if only for a short time' said Thomas a wan smile upon his lips. 'I don't think one pie no matter how tasty it is will make things better, I doubt things will ever be better again' Saul growled back. 'Who said anything about it being only one pie Saul we have some time before we are expected back' laughed Thomas 'I fully intend to eat every morsel that this tavern has to offer' Saul slowly shook his head always amazed about the Doctors refusal to be dour for too long no matter the problem. The ordered drinks arrived Saul sipping at the lukewarm water whilst the Doctor quaffed his small beer spilling most of it and letting out a satisfied belch 'I'm not going to get drunk on this but by thunder it feels good to drink something not out ditch for a change' laughed Thomas he was going to say more but Saul tensed up and pointed to something to the side of Thomas.The taverns door had opened and a group of men had entered and after a brief pause to look around the bar the group of men start to walk towards the seated party there seemed to be a somewhat heated but hushed conversation going on between two of them but then the burliest of them shouts "Enough" jabs a dirty finger at the party and growls 'I f*%king knew I recognised you B%$tards hand over our bosses gear or you will get a smack' A brief attempt at bluffing was tried and failed and then the fight was on. Saul leapt up drawing his weapons as the barkeep ducked down behind his counter "I can't waste time talking to you... I'll stop that mouth with steel!" Saul barked sardonic till the end. "Flip the table Thomas and get behind it" Saul called over his back as he advanced upon the thugs. Thomas tried but since it was a heavy table he only ended up knocking the tankard's and the Porridge starters onto the floor. "Arse" muttered the Doctor and decided to draw his sword for the third only time since Naseby as he staggered past the muck on the floor and towards the thug on the left. A brutal fight broke out Saul again showing his mastery at the art of killing raining vicious blows against his opponents as the Doctor taking full advantage of his opponent slipping on some cooling porridge sliced the thug across his chest opening up a rather nasty cut on his chest. Even with Saul fighting the party was slowly forced back and they decided to make a fighting retreat to the taverns door but then the tide changed a thug made a small mistake and Saul capitalised on it and was able to dispatch one opponent after another in quick succession and from the jaws of defeat the party was left breathless with two cooling corpses at their feet and one thug though badly wounded subdued. Thomas slightly wobbly and obviously in pain strode towards the still cowering Innkeeper, he reached down and dragged the poor man up by his hair "Ah good Innkeeper I was wondering if their was any chance of a takeaway?"