Masks of Nyarlathotep

Episode 1: The Return of Jackson Elias, Part 2

Tuesday, 17th of February, 1925.

Neville, Barty, Robert and Cami meet for breakfast at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel, where Neville is currently lodged. Placing down the newspaper he’s reading over an orange juice and gin, Neville clears his throat.

“Ahem, perhaps I should call Erica ahead of our meeting. I don’t think she’s going to be too chuffed by the fact that we’re all going to the meeting.”

Scott, Camille and Barty look up at Neville from their bacon and eggs in silence. “Well then,” he concludes as he begins to rise from his chair.

Before he can stand, a waiter interjects. “Neville Wordsworth? There’s a call for you.”

“Well, who is it then?”

“Uh, she wouldn’t give her name sir,” sheepishly replies the waiter.

Camille looks around at the group. “I think we all know who that’s going to be.”

Neville rises and heads to the phone. “Jax?”


“What is it Jax?”

“I’m going to meet you at 3pm at the Waldorf to come to the meeting with Erica.”

Neville pauses for a moment. “So all four of us will be there then?”

“I guess so.”

“Do you think Erica will mind?”

“Probably. I don’t think she likes me too much. Maybe don’t mention it.”

“What’s going on Jax?”

“I need to ask Erica some questions about Vanessa.”

“Vanessa? Who’s Vanessa?”

“I’ll see you at 3 Freddie.” The phone clicks and Neville is left with silence.

Neville hangs up the call and asks the operator to be put through to Erica Carlyle’s estate. After receiving the run-around by Erica’s staff, a prudent and sure voice introduces himself to Neville as Bradley Grey, Erica’s lawyer.

“Now I’m sorry you couldn’t speak directly with Erica, but she is very busy. What can I help you with?” asks Grey.

“Well, I just thought I should inform Erica that my associates Scott and Camille will be joining us for the meeting this afternoon.” Neville hears shuffling of papers on the other side of the line.

Grey responds, “Alright then, just as long as there’s not going to be any trouble for Miss Carlyle.”

“No trouble at all, Mr. Grey.”

“Well then, we’ll be seeing you at 4.”

Neville returns to the table. “It was Jax, she’s going to be coming with us to Erica’s.”

“And what did Erica say?” asks Scott.

“I didn’t get to speak to her. I got her lawyer, Bradley Grey. Say, Barty, what do we know about Grey?”

 “Sir? Mr. Grey has given us quite a lot of legal service, we’re well acquainted,” replies Batholomew.

Neville eyes Barty quizzically. “I don’t remember meeting him. What kind of work has he done for us?”

“Sir, he’s helped us with quite a few corporate undertakings, as well as… cleaning up after certain…  benders, sir.”

“Hmm, very well then. What do we make of the man, Barty?”

“He’s a good man, sir. A good lawyer.”

Camille eyes Bartholomew. “A good man, or a good lawyer? You can’t have both”

“Ah. A good lawyer Miss.”

The group then have a discussion about Roger Carlyle and the expedition. Bartholomew is a font of information, and is able to provide them with as much, if not more detail than the society papers and the reports of the expedition’s massacre could.

Scott pushes his meal forwards. “I have to check in with the Bureau. I’m still on their dime. I might also get them to check on this ibis headed dagger for us. I’ll meet you at Sotheby’s at 10.”

Scott takes his leave and heads out into the cold February snow. He autos his way to the Bureau office downtown. Purposefully, he makes his way towards his desk and sits down. His partner, Agent David Cooper, spins round on his swivel chair to meet Scott’s gaze.



“What’s this mess you yourself got into night before last?” asks Cooper.

“I was helping a friend out with a little stakeout. Things got a little sour on the Queensboro Bridge. I’m sure you heard.”

“I did. Coughlin sounds pissed. Is there anything I should be helping you with Scott?”

“Well, now that you mention it, I need you to look into an ibis-headed dagger that’s being sold at Sotheby’s today.”

“An ibis-headed dagger? What’s that got to do with? Is this part of an investigation?”

“No Coop, I need you to keep this one off the books. Please just look into it for me. I’ll bring you in once I know what’s going on.”

“Alright Scott, I’ll look into it. You take care of yourself, alright?”

“Will do Coop. Thanks.”


Down at Sotheby’s Neville, Barty, Scott and Cami arrive just in time for the auction. The crowd is mostly rich playboys and society matrons; however there is a contingent of short Chinese men, all identically dressed in black suits and bowler hats. Surprisingly, they don’t bid on any Chinese artefacts. They only start bidding when the ibis-headed dagger comes up.

“Pre-dynastic Egyptian dagger, in wonderful condition. Do I hear $10,000?”

Neville nods at Barty, who raises his paddle. “$10,000,” he says surely.

“$10,000, going once. Going twice. Going – “

“$15,000,” says one of the bowler-hatted men.

“Sir?” asks Barty. Neville nods. “$20,000!”

“$21,000!” exclaims Bowler Hat.

Neville nods. Barty raises the paddle again. “$22,000.”

“… uh… $22,500.”

Neville takes the paddle from Bartholomew. “$25,000.”

“$25,000, going once, going twice… Sold, to the gentlemen in the back.”

The auction ends with Wordsworth victorious, and the bowler hatted contingent departs in a huff. Camille stands and discreetly follows the men to the entrance. Peering out a window, she sees them enter two black cars parked near the building. Wordsworth makes some bids on other useless items to make them look as though they weren’t only after the dagger. Once all the lots have been cried, Neville, Bartholomew and Scott make their way to the loading dock where they receive a small enamelled box containing the dagger. Barty swings the car around into the loading bay and begins to load up their merchandise.

Cami becomes increasingly nervous about the fact the bowler hatted men have not yet left. Heading back to the loading bay, she informs the others as much.

“Maybe Scott and I should take the dagger on foot,” says Cami, looking at Neville. “You and Barty take the car and draw them off.”

“Very well,” agrees Neville as he and Barty climb into the Bearcat. Barty reverses hard into the street, slamming the brakes just in time to narrowly avoid hitting an approaching car. Barty steps on the gas as nearby traffic begin to sound their horns in confusion and anger. Watching from their vantage point at a window at the front of the building, Scott and Cami can see the two black cars pull off in pursuit of Neville and Barty.

Barty engages in evasive manoeuvres, madly switching lanes at the last minute to make unpredictable turns. Cars swerve up onto gutters and into telegraph poles in response, the sounds of horns trailing in Barty’s wake. After a few minutes of mostly driving round in circles, Barty slows down and resumes his typical responsible driving. After driving straight for a few blocks, all the while watching the rear view mirror, Barty turns to Neville and says, “Sir, I think we lost them.”

Just as Neville begins to speak, a black car comes screeching out of an alley and slams into the passenger side of the Bearcat. The driver and passenger are stunned senseless as a second car comes to a halt in front of their vehicle. Four bowler hatted men pour from the cars and surround the Bearcat. Three draw pistols while one sticks a sawn off double barrelled shotgun in Barty’s face. Looking at Neville, he shouts “Give us the dagger!”

“Good lord, whatever are you talking about?” asks Neville.

More deliberate this time, in his slightly broken English, “Give us the dagger.”

“I’m still not sure what you’re talking about.”

The man with the shotgun collars Barty and places the shotgun against his temple. “We’re not playing around. Give us the dagger.”

“Good god man, we don’t have it!” shouts Barty, his forehead wet with perspiration.

“Get out of the car, you’re coming with us.” Neville and Barty are wrenched from the vehicle, Neville grabbing his sword cane before exiting and pretending to need it to walk. They’re practically dragged into the other vehicles and bailed up inside.

The man with the sawn off leans over the back of the front passenger seat and levels the gun at Neville. “Where’s the dagger?”

“Well we don’t just go driving around with $25,000 pre-Dynastic artefacts, do we? We left it back at Sotheby’s to be delivered to us.”

“Who has the dagger now?” asks Bowler Hat.

“Uh, I’m not sure. It’s being arranged for delivery.”

“We’ll make you talk Gwailo.”

Neville and Barty are driven south to a nondescript warehouse in Chinatown with blacked out windows. Crates and pallets inscribed with Chinese letters are stacked in precarious fashion around the warehouse floor. Once the loading bay doors are closed, Neville and Barty are dragged towards two waiting chairs under a single incandescent globe, the only source of light. Neville pretends to struggle as he walks with his sword cane, but it is quickly knocked from his hand whilst he is dragged along.

Bound by rope to the chairs by the goons, the leader strides into the dull glow of the light, drawing on a cigarette.

“Tell us where the dagger is Neville.”

“I already told you, we left it at Sotheby’s.”

“Why don’t I believe you?” asks the man, his face shadowed from the light behind him. He clicks his fingers and two brutish bowler hatted man step forward from the darkness. One grabs the back of Barty’s chair, while the other begins to pummel him.

“I’ll ask you again Gwailo, where’s the dagger?” continues the shadowed man, cracking his knuckles. Flat, hard, packing sounds of punches being laid into Barty are heard to Neville’s right.

“How many times do I need to say it?” shouts Neville, infuriated now. “It’s back at Sotheby’s!”

The shadowed man makes a short punch that connects with Neville’s solar plexus hard. He chokes back on his air, suddenly winded.

The shadowed man draws on his cigarette. “We’ve still got men at the auction house. If it’s there, we’ll find it. If not, we use you as a ransom. I’m sure we’ll find your friends at the Waldorf…” He drops his cigarette and grinds it under his black brogues. He steps away from the light and heads to a loft near the rear of the warehouse where lights can be seen behind dusty Venetian blinded office windows.

Barty pulls himself out of his slump and looks up at his two assailants, now standing in the darkness, their menacing expressions lit up by the cigarette they are sharing.

Neville turns to Bartholomew, “Are you alright Barty?”

“It’s nothing compared to the Hun,” he says, licking blood from his lips. “What are we going to do now, sir? We still have the meeting with Erica in a few hours.”

Speaking French, Neville replies, “I’m working at these ropes with my cufflinks. I think I’m making some progress.”

“Very good sir,” Barty replies in French.


Meanwhile, back at Sotheby’s, Scott suggests they make a call to Coop. Before he and Camille can be lead by the auctioneer to a phone, the front door bursts open and three bowler hatted men enter the lobby. One of the men points at Camille and Scott and shouts something in Cantonese. Two of the men begin to bolt towards the pair. Scott removes his Bureau of Investigation badge and draws his M1911A and levels it at the running men.

“Stop! Federal Agent!” he shouts. The two men pause momentarily, while the third man continues to shout in Cantonese. While the two men continue to flounder, the third man draws a revolver.

“Drop the weapon!” shouts Scott.

The man at the doorway levels his weapon at Scott.

“Stop, or I’ll shoot!” Scott manages to shout as a loud report fills the lobby. Scott is struck by a bullet in his left shoulder. Backing up and wildly returning fire, Scott takes cover in a doorway as Cami bolts for the phone. The two running men continue their pursuit, while the third man makes his way towards cover. Scott pops out from the doorframe and levels his .45 at the first runner. He squeezes off three rounds in short succession. Months of target practice on mobsters in the Treasury department has honed his shooting; two centre mass and the third to the head. The man collapses in a shower of blood. Unable to change his momentum in time, the second running man topples over his now prostrate accomplice.

Shots continue from the armed Bowler Hat, spraying splinters of timber from the door frame into the air around Scott. Scott returns fire on the man who is now diving for cover, but neither shot lands home as he begins to reload. Cami makes the call to the police, playing the damsel in distress and not giving away her name. Expertly, Scott jams another magazine into the Colt and swings round the door frame to see the toppled man has righted himself, pulled a knife, and his running full pelt towards Scott. Taking time to line up the shot, Scott squeezes the trigger and sends a .45 into his head, killing him instantly. The third man’s eyes go wide in shock as he wildly fires his weapon at Scott while making a mad dash for the door. Scott begins pursuit, wincing from the pain in his shoulder.

Now outside, the wailing of sirens can be heard in the distance as Bowler Hat crashes into pedestrians while charging away down the street. Badge in one hand and M1911A in the other, Scott madly chases after him. Before too long the pain in his shoulder, or possibly the lifetime of whiskey and cigarettes catch up with him and Bowler Hat is long gone. By the time he returns to Sotheby’s, the place is surrounded by police cars.

Detective John Coughlin stands next to Cami.

“Well if it isn’t fuckin’ Agent Scott again. What’s wrong with you?” sprays Coughlin.

“Coughlin. This is official —” Scott gasps out as he is cut off by Coughlin.

“Yeah, yeah, Bureau business. Whatever. I’ve got two unarmed corpses here. What the fuck are you doing? I should just arrest you right now!”

“Coughlin! Listen to me. The third man, the one who ran, he pulled a gun on us. I showed him my badge and gave him ample warning to drop his weapon before he fired,” explains Scott, pointing to his shoulder. “I returned fire once I was fired upon. And these men weren’t unarmed,” continues Scott, kicking a switchblade towards Coughlin.

“Fuckin’ hell Scott, it’s every 8 hours with you. You’re killing me. The doctor’s got me on these blood pressure tablets now, I swear to God it’s because of you,” Coughlin’s flushed ruddy face begins to calm. “Listen, go get yourself fixed up by the medics. I’ll take care of this.”

Camille doesn’t wait around. With the dagger in her satchel, she rides a taxi back to the Waldorf and assumes a disguise. She sips a soda water and watches the entrance.

After getting patched up, Scott calls Coop.

“What have you got Coop?”

“Well Sotheby’s was pretty tight lipped. They reckon there’s a clause on the sale of the dagger that the previous owner is to stay anonymous. I’m getting a warrant drawn up and I’ll let you know what I find once I find it. Less specifically, I’ve hit the books and if it is an Egyptian dagger, the ibis-head is probably a representation of Thoth, the ancient Egyptian god of knowledge. Beyond that, I haven’t really figured anything else out. I’ll keep looking into it for you.”

“Thanks Coop,” sighs Scott at the lack of information. “Say, you should probably come down to Sotheby’s. I’m reporting this one officially. Just got into a shootout with some Tongs.”

“Jeez, are you alright Scott?”

“Yeah, took a bullet to the shoulder, but it’s only a flesh wound.”

“Damn, alright. I’ll get down there shortly.”


Back at the warehouse in Chinatown, Neville has made his way through his ties. While the guards aren’t looking, he shuffles towards Barty and unties the binds. Both try to look indubious.

“What’s the plan then, sir?” asks Barty.

“I say we charge them. It’ll be just like Passchendaele.”

“Right you are, sir.”

Barty and Neville rise from their chairs, Barty scooping up his chair in an overhead fashion. Neville leans down mid charge and picks up his cane, drawing the sword and tossing the sheath in one quick action. Both of them scream their war cries and fall on the enemy position. Neville leading with his sword outstretched, the large butler taking up the rear, clumsily bringing the chair to bare. They can almost smell the cordite and feel the dull thuds of a walking barrage as they fall on the two dumbstruck bowler hats, a limp cigarette falling from a gaping mouth. Neville runs his sword through the gut of the first man, while Barty crashes the chair down hard on the man’s neck, splintering timber with a loud crack. The second man goes to pull a revolver but is foiled by the swing of Neville’s sword, a huge laceration opening up on the forearm he brought up to defend the blow. In an equally deft one-two, Barty clocks the man across the side of the jaw with the chair leg, dropping him to the ground.

Upstairs, the boss Bowler Hat exits the office followed by two henchmen armed with pump-action shotguns. Neville and Barty begin to run towards a door in the opposite direction, darting between boxes and crates. A deafening roar fills the warehouse as shot after shot rings out. Buckshot skitters about as crates explode under the gunfire along the two Englishmen’s escape route. Barty barrels towards the door, but is clipped in the leg with a pellet. The man stumbles but keeps his feet.

“Barty!” shouts Neville.

“I’m alright sir,” replies Barty as he hobbles along under fire.

Neville crashes into the door full pelt, taking no chances with the lock. The rotten frame of the door pulls away and the Englishmen are blinded by the brilliant snow-reflected light outdoors. The gunfire stops as Neville and Barty skid out onto the ice. Before long they round a corner and hail a cab back to the Waldorf.


The group meet in the lobby and return to Neville’s lodgings to clean up in preparation for Jax’s arrival.

“They mentioned the Waldorf,” states Neville.

“They know we’re here? I don’t think we should stay,” replies Cami. “We can stay with my aunt.”

“I’m sure we’ll be quite safe,” Neville continues. “Surely they won’t try anything here.”

“Are you kidding? We got into a shoot-out at Sotheby’s. How do you think we’ll be any safer here?” Cami asks incredulously.

“I’ll keep watch out front,” says Barty, reaching for his things, his face puffy and black.

“How will we know if they’re here?” asks Cami.

Barty packs a sawn-off shotgun into his valise, “I’m sure you’ll hear Miss.”

Scott pipes up, “I’ll make a call, see if I can get some officers posted outside.”

Checking the time, Neville suggests they make their way back downstairs to wait for Jackson.


Outside, Barty and two uniformed police officers see a woman in white enter the Waldorf-Astoria. In short time, Cami, Scott and Neville make their way down to the lobby. They see a woman in white nervously smoking in the corner.

“Do you have the dagger?” asks Jax.

“Yes, we’ve got it, but you need to tell us what’s going on here,” asks Camille, frustrated.

“Can I have it please?” asks Jax.

“Listen, Jackson, we got into some serious trouble back there getting that dagger. We almost got killed. You need to tell us what we’ve gotten into,” asks Scott, while Neville sits quietly, almost sorrowfully.

“I’m sorry…” mumbles Jax, “I didn’t mean to get you hurt. I’ll explain everything when I can. Now, please, give me the dagger.”

Camille frowns and looks at Scott. Neville leans forward, “Give her the dagger Camille,” he pleads.

Camille sighs and digs the enamelled box out of her satchel.

Jackson bursts into tears as she opens the box. She quickly stymies their flow and tucks the dagger away in her bag.

“Listen, I’m very sorry. I never wanted you all to get involved in this, but I needed your help. I’ve helped you all in the past. This should all go away very soon, and you can all get back to your lives. I promise I’ll explain everything when I can. Now, should we head to Erica’s?”

“Very well,” says Neville as the group stands to leave.


Arriving at the Carlyle estate in Long Island, the group are met by a mansion set on a sweeping lawn and gardens, all blanketed in white snow. The property is on at least 10 acres, all surrounded by a cast iron fence. Stating their names and intentions, they’re allowed entry by the gatekeeper. Meandering up the long drive, the door is guarded by the burly Joe Corey, Erica’s bodyguard. He drags heavily on a cigarette. His thick trench coat only adds to his commanding presence.

“I’ve gotta search you all, we’ve had some break-ins recently,” booms Corey.

“I’m a Federal Agent,” states Scott, “I’m not leaving behind my firearm.”

“Well you don’t get to come inside then, do you,” says Corey, turning to face Scott.

Scott grumbles and unclips his shoulder holster, placing his service pistol in Corey’s hands.

“Right. Let’s head on in then.”

Joe opens the double doors into a sweeping lobby. A double staircase leads to a mezzanine level with walls covered in works of contemporary artists, both known and unknown, but all of impeccable taste. The group is lead to a waiting room where Erica Carlyle sits in business attire.

“I thought this was going to be a private meeting,” begins Erica, “until Grey let me know you’d all be coming. And I see you’re here as well, Jackson. I didn’t think you’d be showing your face since last meeting. Neville, I must ask what is the meaning of this meeting?”

Neville shrugs, “We’ve just got some questions about Roger and the expedition.”

“Roger?” asks Erica, “What about Roger?”

“Well, what happened?” quizzes Neville.

“What happened?” replies Carlyle, clearly incensed. “Surely you could have read about that in the society papers?”

“Yes, but we want to hear it from your perspective Erica,” reassures Neville.

“What else is there to say? He went off on his little expedition and wound up dead. It was a long time ago. Why bring this up now?”

Scott pipes up. “You saw his body?”

Erica fixes Scott with a glare. “No, I didn’t see his body. But I saw the massacre. And we persecuted the people responsible.”

“But then how do you know he is dead? If he were still alive, wouldn’t that mean he’s still the heir to the Carlyle estate?” retorts Scott.

“What are you implying?” simmers Erica.

“Just that you have a fair bit riding on Roger being dead,” continues Scott coolly.

“He was my brother! I loved him, despite him being a wastrel and almost ruining the business. It was all those ideas that [slur for a black woman] filled his head with. I would give it all back to have him here. I never saw his corpse, but Roger is gone,” finishes Erica.

“And what about Vanessa?” asks Jackson.

“You know about Vanessa? What do you know?” asks Erica, now flushed.

“I’ve met her,” states Jackson.

“I’m sorry, I have a board meeting to attend. Corey will see you out.”

Erica stands and departs the room.

“Time to go,” says Corey in his gravelly voice.


Outside, next to the car, Camille turns to Jackson.

“Who is this Vanessa? Why did Erica shut us down when you mentioned her?”

Jackson butts her cigarette, places on a white hat, and speaks, “I’ll get to the bottom of it myself soon. I’ve got some leads to follow up on now.” She heads to a cab that seems to be waiting for her and gets in.

 Cami eyes Scott and Neville mischievously as Jackson motors away. “Should we follow her?” she asks.

“Exactly what I was thinking,” says Scott as Neville nods.

The three pour into Barty’s hired Model-T and begin following the cab with the white hat in the rear window. Back in Midtown, the taxi turns down East 39th and pulls over and lets in a new fare. Barty pulls the car up next to the cab, blocking it in.

Cami looks over at the driver, recognising him as someone she’d done some work for in the past, Joshua Jenkins. “Hey Josh,” shouts Cami from the back seat, “where’d the woman in white go?”

“Oh heya Camille. She got out at that last intersection, jumped in another cab,” shouts back the cabbie.

“Where was she headed?”

“I think I heard her say the New Yorker hotel. Say, reckon you could let me out? I’ve got a fare to run.”

Cami waves and Barty races for the New Yorker. The group burst into the lobby.

“Did a woman in white come into this building?” asks Neville.

“I’m sorry, sir, I have to maintain the privacy of our guests,” says the attendant.

“So she’s staying here?” asks Scott.

The light flickers momentarily. “The wiring in this place is terrible,” mutters he clerk.

Just as Scott is about to press the question, two black men and one white in coveralls and carrying tools walk into the lobby. “Hey, you [racial slurs], get out of here. Go round the service entrance.”

“But we’re here to fix – “

“I don’t care! Get in back!” Turning back to Scott he says, “Sorry, pal, nothing I can do.”

Scott pulls out his badge as Cami and Neville follow the workmen outside and to the service entry.

“Listen, pal,” begins Scott, “you’re going to let me have a look around, or I’ll be back with a warrant and we’ll really look into this place.”

“Woah, buddy, ease up now. Hey, I’m gonna go have this cigarette and if I happen to leave the desk unattended, you won’t tell anyone it was me that left it that way. The broad’s up in 1703”

Scott boards the elevator and rings up level 17.

Meanwhile, out back, Cami and Neville approach the hotel dick sitting out front of the service elevator. “What are ya here for?” he asks.

“We’re with the repair crew,” says Cami as she eyes the numbered lights above the elevator. The numbers stop blinking at 17.

The dick looks hard at Cami and then gives Neville’s expensive suit a quick once up and down. “You don’t look like repairmen…”

“Well that was worth a try I guess. We’re after a woman,” continues Cami.

“Aren’t we all,” replies the dick.

“Listen, I’m a detective myself,” says Cami, showing the man her license.

“Well I’ll be. A lady dick. I shouldn’t let you up, but what the hell.” The hotel dick gives Cami the high sign and pulls back the elevator grate for them.


Scott arrives on level 17 and creeps down the hall towards room 3. Listening at the door, he hears muffled footfalls. He takes a look through the peephole and sees at least two people moving around in there. While trying to figure out who is in there, Cami and Neville approach. Scott gestures for them to be quiet. Almost on cue, a woman’s blood curdling shriek and plaintive cry of “No” is heard from behind 1703. Neville had heard sounds like that before; made by young boys in the trenches just before they were snuffed out.

In one smooth motion, Scott draws his pistol and rears his leg back, bringing his kick straight down on the door right next to the handle. The jamb snaps as the door flies open. The three men in coveralls are there, now wearing African tribal masks. The white man stands closest, spiked club in hand, while another rifles through things in a draw. The third is straddling an unconscious Jackson, a large ornate knife held high above his head ready to be plunged into the woman. The two standing men turn to face Scott, while the third plunges the dagger into Jackson’s chest. Scott fires three rounds into the man on top of Jackson, spinning him round, dagger clanging to the floor. Neville shouts and charges the closest man, running him through with his sword cane. The third man picks up a spiked club and approaches Neville, while Cami draws pistol and reverses grip on it to use it as a club, thinking to take a prisoner. She swings the makeshift weapon down, but the blow is deflected by the man’s club.

Neville runs to Jackson and scoops her up, “It’s going to be alright Jax,” he says to her as her white dress begins to stain with blood. He makes a bee line for the elevator and smashes the button for the ground floor repetitively as it makes its slow descent.

Scott raises his weapon at the last masked man, “Stop!” he shouts.

With a back hand motion, the man clubs Cami in the ribs, dropping her to the ground. He raises the club over his head to bring it down onto her as Scott fires three rounds into his chest. He collapses to the floor. Removing the mask, Scott barks, “Who are you?”

“The Bloody Tongue will have you,” whispers the man as blood issues from his lips.

“The Bloody Tongue?” asks Cami as the man’s eyes lose focus and his body goes limp.

The two begin to search the corpses and the room. All men have strange and unsettling identical tattoos on their arms. Scott collects up one of the masks, as well as a waterproof zip-up pocket containing Jackson Elias’s journal.


Downstairs Neville screams for the attendant to call an ambulance. Neville comforts Jackson while the ambulances arrive to take her to the nearby French Hospital. Neville rides in the back of the ambulance, gripping Jackson’s hand the entire way.


I’m kind of glad you didn’t include the funeral bit. Now that you’ve had time to think about it I suspect reading it will make me even sadder.

MichaelMcLoughlin MichaelMcLoughlin

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