It was time for the Halloween Game again, and once more our chosen game was Trail of Cthulhu. Two of the same characters from our previous game were joined by two new characters: the Reverend Ephraim Pennyweather and Thomas Middleton, slightly dodgy scientist.
This was not a published adventure - it was one I wrote myself. So I'll include all the various handouts and gubbins in case anyone wants to use it themselves. So, what was the set up? Here was the introduction. And the Reverend had some extra information....
Our brave heroes arrived on a cold November day in 1935 to met by the groundskeeper, Grady. Ignoring his dire warnings, they bravely enter the Mansion.
Running true to form, they brought no equipment. Nothing. Well, a torch and one set of batteries. And a camera. No weapons - apart from Thomas, who brought a colt .45. This will become important later.
Investigating the squalid confines of the Fell, they discover evidence of debauchery and pain; their nerves are already on edge when Bernard discovers a painting which has a peculiar effect on him...
It is about this point that some of the more sensitive members of our intrepid adventurers begin to notice that things seem to be moving when others aren't looking. This includes the dustsheet they removed from the dining table being put back over it.
It was around this point that they armed themselved with cutlery. Yes. Facing down the denizens of an uncaring universe with steak knives. Or a butter knife, in you're a man of God.
The Library provides a treasure trove of information:
Photographs of the construction:
By now the Intrepid Investigators is starting to develop a very definite idea of what is going on in the house... re-inforcing this are the notes they find in the bedrooms.... They also find some interesting tomes in the Library.
Bernard pockets the Necronomicon and Branston settles down to read the King in Yellow. This is a Bad Idea, as anyone familair with Lovecraft or Chambers could tell you. But this doesn't slow down the others, who are convinced they are dealing with a massive haunting...
Unfortunately, they are wrong. You see, the house is designed as a massive invocation. As their grasp on sanity slips, they open the way for the King in Yellow. As they decide to flee the house and burn it down, Grady - actually the reanimated corpse of Fisher, the psychic killed in the previous expedition - bursts in with a shotgun.
It was at this point - as the sight outside of the house shifted from the hills of Vermont to the endless plains of Carcosa - that our Intrepid Investigators show that grit and determination and skill which marks them out as true heroes. Bernard legs it - followed by Thomas (the only one with a gun, if you recall) leaving the Reverend and the parapsychologist to fight the living ghoul. The reverend proved himself to be a dab hand at the old fisticuffs while Branston waded in with a steak knife and cleaver. Thomas - as the firearms guy - takes control of the shotgun. No-one makes any comment about this, even given what happened with the gun.
The immediate danger over, they head down into the cellar and discover the Stadkrone like altar which is channelling all this energy and realise they must do something about it...
Well, most of them do. Thomas stays upstairs. With the shotgun. The Reverend is screaming that they need to destroy the unholy thing while Bernard starts singing a hymn to the Yellow King in the hopes this willl molify him or something? I don't know but there's certainly the undertone of the guy hearing a lion pulling on his running shoes.
In a final ecstacy of terror, the Reverend throws his Bible at the altar which disrupts the flow of energy. The heroes escape from the Fell just as the mansion falls about them.
Well, Branston runs back in to take a photo of the floor. It obviously seemed like a good idea to him at the time.
Another great little game. I've said it before but Trail of Cthulhu really is a fabulous little system and ideally suited to playing in an internet environment. I can't recommend it enough.