With dark clouds threatening rain, the investigators decided a few more inquiries and preparations were in order before exploring Walter Corbitt's house.
Sam and Jezebel travelled to Boston University. There they met an old contact of Sam's—Professor Ankins—who taught Latin. The pair asked him to take a look at the book Jezebel had found in the crypt below the ruined Chapel of Contemplation. The professor agreed and asked the two to return the next day.
Meanwhile, Rupert and Solomon visited Roxbury Sanitarium to meet with Vittorio and Gabriela Macario—the last tenants to live in the house. Vittorio was quite mad; he simply sat in his cell, rocking backwards and forward, muttering the same phrase over and over again: "By his own weapon is the devil worsted!"
Gabriela was in a much better condition. She told the pair that she believed an evil spirit dwelled in the house and that sometimes at night, she could feel it leaning over her while she slept. The presence hated her husband and could make dishes and other objects fly around the house when it was aroused.
The Professor’s Note
Jezebel and Sam returned to Boston University to meet Professor Ankins. He wasn't there, but his secretary returned their book and gave them a note from the professor. It simply read:
"Here's your book back. Don't read it. I'm going away to France for a rest".
Of course, the two immediately ignored the professor's advice and sought out another Latin expert—Chuck Smithers. This time the pair stayed with the linguist as he translated parts of the book. As Chuck read, his face paled, and he occasionally shook. Eventually, he turned to the two and explained the book was called the Liber Ivonis and that it contained knowledge of a horrible and shocking nature. He also suggested the pair not read the book.
Back in Boston, Rupert and Solomon visited the nearest Catholic church to the Corbitt house. Here they met Father O'Reilly, who had only bad things to say about the Chapel of Contemplation and good things to say about the Macario family. The old priest had heard of the Liber Ivonis—the two groups of investigators were in touch by telegram and telephone—and he strongly advised the pair to have nothing to do with the old tome.
Dynamite & Petrol
With their final preparations and investigations complete, the investigators approached the house. They had a key, and it was easy to enter the home. Sam and Jezebel explored the living and dining rooms while Solomon and Rupert searched a small storeroom. A boarded-up cupboard caught Solomon's eye. Carefully, for things falling out of cupboards or off shelves held a special fear for the agent, he pried the boards loose. Three books lay inside the cupboard. Rupert quickly examined them and declared them to be Walter Corbitt's diaries. The learned researcher, though, could only get a rough sense of the contents. He declared it would take days to pry loose their secrets.
Meanwhile, Jezebel was investigating the cellar door, which lay at the end of the corridor running the length of the house. She discovered a lock on the door and three deadbolts. As she was pondering her next move, Sam tripped and knocked a heavy soup tureen onto the floor. The loud clatter resounded through the empty home. As it faded, Sam heard ominous creaking overhead. Someone—or something—was upstairs!
Sam shouted a warning, and Jezebel panicked. Unbeknownst to her friends, she carried a stick of old dynamite she had got from a "friend". She lit the dynamite and dropped it on the floor next to a can of petrol she had also insisted on bringing with her.
She shouted a warning as she ran down the corridor, and her friends joined her in a mad dash for the street. As the four stood on the street, looking back at the house, nothing happened. The dynamite did not explode!
Bravely, after a short while, Sam crept back into the house to see what had transpired. He found the dynamite on the floor by the cellar door. The burnt-down fuse lay on the floor next to the petrol can.
The revelation deeply affected the investigators. What had happened? How had the fuse become detached? What was Jezebel up to? Had she gone temporarily mad with fright, or was she a danger to public safety?
After a brief discussion, the four decided to retreat. Rupert said he needed several days to read the diaries, and it seemed wise to see what information they held before the investigators once again dared the house.
About this Session Summary
This post is a prelude to my 7th edition Call of Cthulhu Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign. We decided to run some “origin” sessions for some of the main characters, and this is one of them. Session summaries are posted in (game world) date order, so it will be some time before we get to the main campaign.
This session summary comes from the classic Call of Cthulhu adventure "The Haunting".
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This post is a session summary for my weekly 7th edition Call of Cthulhu Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign.