The Investigators of Down Cthulhu

While Westinghouse is Away

We train to Arkam.
Bridge had dinner with Donelly the night before he left for Foxfield, NW of Arkam.
Small town, few hundred people.
We check the office for any paperwork. Just that he was investigating death threats vs Henry Barnes. He has a cousin Timothy Barnes, lives in Arkam who was concerned and asked Bridge to look into it. Article in the paper in Arkam Advertisor about even.
It says town abuzz with rumor, the threatened is a church priest. He’s the town supervisor also, vetoed leasing of land to a lumber company The authorities had several suspects, one of his constituents mad at a land lease to a lumber company. Rumors he was involved in a physical altercation days before the threat.
Its a corderoi road to the town. Ugh.

Theo goes to talk to Armitage et al about Foxfield, and to see if Armigate heard from Bridge at all, being his named local contact from us.

  • 1881, The Haunted Woods article in newspaper. Voices heard by a local, happens fairly often. Its a known thing.
  • Another is watchman, Wipple, fell to death from the fire tower. Desent man, was a town fire watchman. Believed he suffered a dizzy spell and fell. This was last year.

Foxfield: on Fox river, south bank, flows into Miskatonic R. Farming community first, now manufacure in wool mill. Industrial community, lots of immigrant workers drawn in; Mill town mostly kept to north of river.
Mills slowed after civil war. 1886 burned beyond repair, the main family sold property; economy collapsed leaving it to farming descendants; small businessess closing. Central town has electricity from local power; farms not but for a few farms. Centralized switchboard connects to Arkham. Wagons the norm. Rustic roads anyway. Only 1 town constable, State Cops handle all else.

Next Morning:

Make our way there by rented wagon team. We are very sore from terrible road. Still lots of farms, mostly sandy roads to them.
Most farms have low stone walls or wooden cross fences. Town proper in good repair. Couple steamcars parked; Parker’s general Store main building; Gothic Revival Union Churth; Ruind of abandoned mill loom across the river over a covered bridge; Dirt road goes past mill north to farm country.

No hotel in town.
General store largest buiding, tavern and inn connected with 6 rooms for rent.
We stop there first. Old inside, but clean and organized, also has postal substation within.
Owned and operated by Louise Madson.
We get rooms and a meal. Very affordable to stay here.
Louise dodes on Jack. He butters her up, then ask about Bridge.
Had room upstair, disappeard but left his stuff in a room upstairs.
She has Charlie the handyman take us upstairs. His face is a mass of scars, head a divot, hideous to look at. Half of his body is partially paralyzed as he lumbers up the steps ahead of us.
Jack stays here, and she tells her Charlie’s sad story. Handsomest guy in town, top of class; joined the army and went out west. Skirmished with Mexican Bandits and hit by artillery shell. Steal plate in head saved life, but dumb now. Girl married someone else and left town, lives across street with his mom.

Theo, Donelly, and Will upstairs find his notes. All pages from where this case started are torn out missing. They search the room, taking 20. Find scrap of paper in bottom of drawer in Bridge’s handwriting:
HB not honest
Scared?
What’s in the woods?
Call W, his cup of tea

Louise tells Jack that Bidge talked about being here to see Barnes. He did talk to the state police Lt. Tolliver over the phone.

We’re stumped.
She saw him last about a week ago. Only here 3 days. He talked to Henry several times, Louise says. She told him no specifics.
No one can figure out who made threat.
Ike Cochly is the guy he had the fight with. Farmer from north, whose land is part that the lumber company would cut and would have made a tidy sum. Does not know why Barnes was so vs land deal, was even originally for it. Majority of townsfolk are for it. Just the one threat is known, left in writing. Its said Barnes burned it; he does not live at the church, but in the Pickering mansion that overlooks the river; w/in easy sight of mill. Across road from church and right across river from river. The old Pickering house is the records office.
Donnelly “Pickering is just a little too close to Pickman for my liking. Maybe this priest is a cultist, found something in teh woods to his liking and doesn’t want it found.”
Theo “Or, he’s a good man, found something bad in the woods that should never be exposed.”
Will “That was my thinking.”

We call for the state cop, but he’s out on the road.
We go to see the town constable. Lives about half mile down the road. Donnelly introduces us. He welcomes us inside, name is Billy Boner “Marge, get some lemonade.”
He’s a bit heavy, as is his wife. He asks what he can do for us.

Jack stays with Louise, learns a lot of useless info about the town.
He recalls Bridge, spoke to him too. He wanted to know about the voices in the hills. Asked nothing about threats to Barnes. This happened 3rd day he was here. He said nothing about what led him to the woods. Kept asking about the buzzing, supposedly heard in the north hills.
He gives us the names of the specific farmer he gave Bridge. Donnelly thinks he’s a simpleton, but Will believes his heart is in the right place.
This whole place is average to a fault and apathetic, no real fault of their own considering its shrinking and decreasing job market and few young people. They all leave for Arkam and abroad.

John and Theo take a short walk to the old mill.
Closed up with no trespassing signs all over. We ignore those of course. We find nothing but weak spots we would have fallen through into the pond below if we hadn’t seen them. We carefully go up to 2nd floor, see something moving in a shadow, maybe just a rat but more than 4 legs. We check it out. We se a huge tick like red bug except rat sized. We ignore it, but Jon keeps an eye on it. Its like one of those little red bugs you find in wood and book pages.
IT follows, onto the ceiling. Jon draws his martial wpn cross and swings as it tries to leap at Jon. It misses and it drops on him.
“Get it off” its on his shoulder, with a needle like proboscus in his neck.
Theo gras at it and throws it across the room with a thud DEAD.
“How’s your neck?”
Jon clearly pissed “Probably infected.”
Theo “At least its not a Mi Go.”
We take it with us.

Back with Louise, she tells Jack about how Barnes wife died a few years ago, rheumatic fever. Leaving him with kids Mary 11 and Robert 10. SIster in law moved in then. 6 weeks ago sent kids to boarding school in Arkam, and Sara moved back to Providence to take care of a sick friend.
Will “Anyone ever see them leave town?”
Actually, no.
On way back Jon gets nauseous and vomits. Fever of 102, bump swelling and pain on the sight.

As Will and Donnelly leave, Dicky, the young son, catches up with us, saying quetly “Are you looking for the monsters? The one your friend was looking for?” say she has one at the creek. We follow, he digs up a cigar box showing the husk of a large insect like creature. “When Bridge saw this he got really excited.” Boner found it in teh woods here, dead already. He buries it again. “Don’t tell my pop, he’ll be mad. He says there ain’t no monsters.”

Theo calls the cop from the bloody tongue investigation in Arkam to look into the kids at a boarding school. Shirley Suttler calls us back, Wang answers. He says no record of them ever being here.
He knows nothing else, but Bridge called him to check to see if Westinghouse was back in NY yet. He wasn’t of course.

Back at the Dr., Jon has a headache. No worse otherwise. Bite not visibly worse, still pretty nasty. Skin has decayed away into a small hole.

Talking to some others in town in the meantime, most people are in favor of the $ and jobs from the lumber company. We call Armitage to look into the lumber company.

There are actually 2 churches, the Unitarian we know of, and also the congregational church held in a barn to the north. Most know about the haunted woods. Some say indians who originally inhabited the area told of it too.
Barnes heard reading childrens books aloud at night, from an open window upsairs from one of the kids old rooms.
Told of death of Mr. Wipple. We talk to the Dr./Coroner. She thinks it was suicide. Heavy drinker and dementia. Claimed he could see unnatural things moving around in the woods fairly often from his vantage point in the tower by the northern woods.
His head was smashed to pieces, but couldn’t find any brain matter.
Theo says the Mi Go take brains, Armitage once mentioned them being a particular potential issue in this area.

We could stake out the woods from his tower, but if Bridge is missing but not dead, we need to get to him fast.

We rest until morning.

Jon is much better in the morning. He goes to talk to Barnes with Will.
Jack says with Louise i the meantime.
They ask about Bridge. He confirms Bridge was worried about the threats made to him. Doesn’t take the threats seriously. He says he warned Bridge not to go into the hills. He came to the same conclusion as him about the threats, but felt something up there was worth looking in to. He’s not sure what made Bridge think that, but he talked a lot about how many had heard voices and things, plus Wipple. He says he changed his mind on the land deal only cause hadn’t thought it through.
There is another meeting tomorrow, may be revisited again. More vote his way now than with Copely who he had a fight with. Barnes is more popular than Copely.

The council of a whopping 3. The subject comes up again. Lots of northern and southern farmers present. Copely goes on for the deal, Barnes no. The third, the teacher Helen Suttler, changes her vote in favor!! Ike gives Barnes the business over it.

Farmers are in town yelling at each other late into the night. Copely is in for it for the money to sell the land. He feels its his land, so the town should have no say anyway.

Next Morning

There has been a murder! Helen Suttler found dead by the road. They can tell by the clothes, but her head is missing. The cops will be here soon.
We go to coroner to see dead body. Head chopped off roughly. She was seen leaving meeting, and on way home. No one saw anything.
Lots of blood at the scene.
Barnes is not visible in town around all the fuss.

We go to church, door is open but no one there.
To his mansion, all locked up, drapes drawn.
Donnelly “Probable cause, he could be dead as well”
We breakt eh door down, hear him talkiing on second floor. There is blood everywhere in this badroom, bloody handsaw. Sutter’s mutilated head on floor, brain upon a table, and Barnes speaks to it. Asking it why she changed her vote, should have kept vote with her. SHe wouldn’t be in this “distressed state” otherwise.
Theo “Is this what you did to Bridge?”
He says no, Bridge had nothing to do with this. He can’t tell she’s dead, since he can ‘talk to her brain’. He says he talks to his kids all the time they’re in the dresser. Sure enough, their brains are in there.
The Mi Go took his kids, gave him the brains as proof they were still alive. Umm, yeah, ok. He’s in loopy land, totally.
Theo "He’s mad. The Mi Go used him only to keep the vote, and their woods untouched.
He plugs in a speaker and earphones, indeed a voice says “Dad, dad, please get me lout of this. Its all dar, I can’t feel anything. Dad? Please get me out.”
He plugs in mary’s now, only the speaker, all we hear is screaming. Donnelly shuts it off.
He says they are behind the waterfall.
“You need this, its the key.” It will get us in and open the door behind the waterfall. He wants to go first to tell them what happened. Let them know it was not his fault.
He turns to Sutter “I wish you hadn;t done it, we’ve been friends for so many years.” He tries to talk to her but o answer “She must still be mad.”

Time to clean out some Mi Go.
Will asks what to do about the kids. Theo and Jon are quite sure if we destroy the brains, it will finish off the kids and end their suffering. They’ll die.
The psychological implications of killing the 2 kids is rough on us. Jack bows out of the discussion alltogether. Its too much for him.

We decide to leave them until we take on the Mi Go. Perhaps there is somehow we can save them. Jon insists all possibilities need be expended.

We rush to the cave behind the waterfall.

The cave is covered within by fingus, tendrils of rotting flora, air stale and rotting; spongy layers under foot make walking feel unnatural.
Tiny animals of some sort we see rustle away here and there. The cavern grows as we get deeper, mold hanging from ceiling. Small insects of some kind, buzzing humming and chirping above.
A metallic winding sound from ahead.
Theo still wants to call NY for backup.
Jack “What the hell! What was that wang, don’t tell me!”
Theo “As I said, call NY.”
Jon “We must press on.”
We continue.

At a huge room, large hole in the floor.3 other exits. A sickly green glow comes from all 3 paths.
We walk in,and we hear a buzzing. 3 mi go rise up, flying via alien wings and sprouting antennae where they should have a head, out of the pit in the middle of the room. Masses in their hands covered in electric circutry.
Jon “Look out!”
Thanks to Jon, they don’t catch us off guard. They look like articulated wasp/grasshoppers made of fungus. They wear some sort of armor.
Donnely unloads his shotgun DEAD.
THeo with his sawed off hits , Cassandra and Will fire her .38. All 3 together kill 1.
The last Migo goes for Jack, firing an electric charge from the sphere which misses him by a mile.
Jack fires his shotgun DEAD.

We check the hole. A lot of bones not far down and body parts. It stinks to say the least.
There is also a small chest, made of a slivery slick metal, about 12’ down.
Wang climbs down to tie it off so we can haul it up.
There is a table there as well with instruments on it, like medical stuff. 5 glass tanks with greenish liquid and some thing moving around inside. One has a foot and leg, bulbous flesh growing off the cut end. Another has a foot, another an arm growing an obcene shoulder, a hand with an arm growing, an ear attached to an idiot drooling face.
Theo ties off the chest and the others haul it up.
Theo dumps all out of the muck in the cylinders. Jack tosses his big dagger down and Theo ruins it all. It is epically gross then climbs back up.

The chest has some kind of puzzle lock on it. Will fails at opening it after a long try. He stops, takes a deep breath and tries to channel Westinghouse. Success!!
Inside is a little old lady. It’s aunt Sarah, the aunt of the kids! She’s alive! Right leg missing, left foot, left arm, right arm. All that was in the cylinders. Plus her tongue, just for fun apparently.
She is hopelessly insane. Cassandra says for us to simply walk out of the room, she’ll end the woman’s suffering.
The aunt desparately tries to get out of the chest. Theo helps her out and helps her over and seats her against the wall.
She tries to crawl toward the exit. THeo stops her, convinces her to not crawl through the fungus. Just wait for us.
We take the passage on the left. Its full of webs. We try the middle one, going about 600’ before opening into a broader tunnel, then it slopes downward. We pass several rotting bodies. 8 or 10 migo and 3 humans. This happened a while, bodies very desicated. They are dressed as hunters with rifles. WE recall a story we read of hunters 18 years ago who disappeared in the area. They have tentacled mushrooms growing off of them.
Jon gives last rights. We hear the buzzing. Several tunnels lead generally south along a mile long tunnel going east. The eastern cutoffs are much more rounded and smooth. Lots of buzzing from each.
We go back, investigating the first, Will choosing our directions. It splits into 2. Donelly writes down the intersections and turns we make so we can get out.
Several intersections along the way. It ends up being a lot of walking, many paths cut back leading back to others. Finally, we come to a fungoid machine, using some kind of light flash to burrow through the very rock. 2 migo run it, 1 supervisor, and 4 others collecting the fragments of rock from the flash.
The machine is quite loud, Will feels loud enough to dampen the sound of gunfire. They do not wear the armor.
Donnely, Jack and Theo both kill one as we ambush them. Donelly kills another as they turn, as does Jon. They begin to spin their burrower around to aim it at us.
Will finishes one off with his .38. Somehow all but Jon misses the final migo, and he only wounds it.
Theo finishes hit off.
We hear buzzing behind us, and see 7 bearing down on Cassandra and Will who were just behind the rest. They are workers too.
They buzz around us, Theo engaging in melee to take heat off Will.
We finish them off, Theo taking the brunt of their attacks.

We reverse and continue, finding another machine with no one operating it. The other group that tried to attack our rear came from here.
This seems to be quite the colony.
We continue on, coming across more mining crews and machines, including a different type that scrapes layers off the walls instead.
Finally we start seeing some fleeing ahead, hearing our skirmishes.

We keep following, pressing them, and run into 14 of them waiting for us and charge. We drop 1 before they engage, Wang moving forward hoping to attract extry attention and misses with AoO.
He attracts 6!
We wipe them out, but Donelly and Will are not in good shape. Still, we know one other area we heard working so far. Jack and Theo stalk down and check it out, finding 3 crews working close together. Attacking 1 will attract the other 2.
Will says go for it. He and Donelly will stay in out of the way.

Theo and Cassandra think we should use the mining beam on them since one of their crews tired to use it on us to it must hurt tissue.

We ambush the first crew, wiping them out in 2 rounds and lie in wait for the other 2.
We then run the machine up to them, Donelly and Will operating it, and lead the attack with that. All 14 are waiting for us and we fire at them. The beams fire out, hitting 9 of them; killing 2. We fires shotguns from the flanks killing 5 more.
All 7 left are wounded and counterattack.
We clean their clocks.

At this point, we know this place too large for us to take on ourselves. We make our way back to the main tunnel that leads back to the entrance. Soldiers are guarding the way, however. 3 at each of the 3 ways back to the main tunnel from this mining area.

We go to the closest one to the entrance. She casts a fist of yogsothoth on one of them, almost killing it.
We drop all 3 before they get a chance to fire.
Will “RUN!!!!!”
We take off, grabbing the woman on the way out. The fungus slows us down. Father Jon takes the rear to hold them off. Wang passes the woman off to Jack so he can help Jon.

Theo jumps the first one, grappling him. He tries to aim one of the beam weapons at Theo in the grapple, but it goes wild.
Jon then strikes one. That one fumbles his weapon, the other misses him.
Theo crushes his to death.
The weapon looks like a rock strangely.
Jon crits 22 the one still armed DEAD, cleaves fumbles.
The other goes to pick up his gun.
THeo hits 9.
He shoots his weapon at Wang and hits 5 but he makes 2 saves.
Theo finishes him off. We take their weapons, and grab the other 3 in the pit.
We make it outside.

We get back to town, we are taking the children’s brain jars.
Donelly doesn’t want to leave the girl alive, she is obviously in something terribly worse than hell.

We wire Roosevelt from town. He wires that he is going to speak to the President of the United States.
Wow.
Jon begins to use the communicate with her; he has to do so at all times to keep her attention from whatever place she is in. He talks to the boy as well, but feels he can do so less often. This is a full time job at the moment.

Back at the Inn, in our 3 rooms.
Will/Cassandra
Theo/Jack
Jon/Donelly with the brains

Night:

Theo dream: giant bumble bee flying around him. Suddenly it changes to a clock tower, hearing a tick, tick tick. He wakes up, hearing the ticking. He turns the lamp light on and follows the ticking to under his bed while yelling for Jack to stand up.
He sees a bomb of unusual sorts under his bed with a timer, surely a Migo bomb.
A needle rapidly drops to its bottom. He grabs it and moves to the window. No one is outide. He throw sit into the street and ducks.

A minute later it blows. If it would have gone off in here, it would have killed us all. There is a crater in the street.
The side of the building is sererely damaged.
Theo and Jack look out the window. Bullets wizz by hitting the building.
The migo have agents still here!
We get away from the windows and crawl into the hall.

Louise from downstairs runs out the front door “What’s going on!” and we here gunfire and her drop.
Another man runs into the street and is also taken down.

We close and barricade the front door. We see Louise still moving. Jack runs out to get her. 1 bullet wings him but he gets her inside first.

We stitch together a large sign that says SNIPERS. When we see cars driving toward town, we unfurl it out a widow. The cars screech to a halt. Warning is a succes. Its Friday with the Flying Squad, with Detective McGilicudy.
A few hours later, a steamcar pulls up with militiamen! Must have been sent by Roosevelt.

The snipers have disappeard.

We muster up, and make for the cave with our men.
Theo and Jack lead the way in.

Waiting at the entryhall is an orieltal old man with a long white beard, leaning on a staff “Ho there, my masters have told me to greet you.”
Jack “SOmething tells me thats not entirely true.”
Wang “For what purpose?”
“They care nothing to you but they wish no harm to befall you. My masters are merciful and feel that the minerals they can get from this mine are not worth the notoriety we have brought.” Basically, we ruined their mine and he claims they are leaving without a trace.
Wang “Where to?”
“That is no business of yours. So turnabout and leave.”
He says he has served them my whole life, these lords of creation. They invite you 3 (Theo, Jon, Jack) to travel with them to their home world, you who have done so much to oppose them, to see there city. They simply find us interesting, we would make great servants and they would make us immortal.
We demand the children to be saved, he says they can still do so, their bodies are perfectly healthy. That’s the deal.
He agrees to lead us to their leader, past old mining ops.
Not far, Wang and Jon smell burning. We stop and listen, hearing a hissing. They look behind them and see little smoke trail rises faintly from the floor a few ranks back. Jon “A fuse!” he and Wang pointing. Will and Cassandra are both almost right next to it.
Will grabs for it, pulling up 5 sticks dynamite crudely tied to it burning fast. There’s enough room in this part of the cave, so he throws it fast. It blows in the air, hurting 1 militaman.

Theo and Jack confront the old man “What’s the meaning of this?” He challenges Theo to fight.
Theo attacks as sniper shots ring out from the dark of the cave side. Our men kneel and drop low in a firefight. 1 militiaman drops dead, 2 others are wounded.

Their old man, a kung fu master, readies with his staff, from the end of which he now projects a blade and lashes out at Theo, who kicks back 16 asn Jon hits and Jack misses.
Theo finishes him off in the next round with a critical.

By the end, their last man waves a white hankerchief. 3 militia are down, a few others wounded.
We question him, he says they weren’t hired to take on no military nor cops but the masters told us to.
These men are mad, driven insane years ago. Much has been done to them.
He leads us ahead, past the abandoned mines and a storeroom. He says alien tech is in there. Will and Cassandra go to check it out, with Friday, 2 flyers and Theo. Room is empty. Tech certainly had been in here, but it has been cleared out.
Cassandra “Theolonius, the floor is moving.”
Wang “Everybody out!”
Spores have begun to crawl up his legs, and he’s stuck.
Theo, thanks to the cops help, yanks himself out of it. He feels pricks on his skin. Will has begun to prepare a torch and begins to carefully burn it off. They have bitten in some already but nothing permanent.

We continue to a large main room. 3 exits: main mine, lab, living area.
We go lab first, he says it’ll be guarded.
A buzzing as we enter, and 10 migo open fire with electric guns and we open fire.
2 militia are struck and die instantly! 3 others are paralyzed! Its some super weapon.
Theo, Jon, and Jack engage them in melee, Theo disarming his.
They fly upward and shoot us from the air.
By the end, we have 8 pvt’s left out of 12, plus 1 cpl died of the 3. The Lt is fine.

Another flies upward from the rear, saying do not kill him, he is leaving.
Will demands the kids to be put right.
“Come with me.”
He leads us to the kids bodies, tops of their heads off, but hooked up to machinery, alive, and puts them back as they should be.
It takes about an hour to do each one. We hear explosions from various parts of their facility. They are destroying all their equipment they can’t take.
Ruins Will’s idea to take their mining cars for LP mining ventures. Also collaping the tall stalked mushrooms in the living area, which were their homes.
We also find Bridge in the room, brain separated as well. The lab migo puts him back together as well. He is relatively ok, sanity wise. He needs a break though.

The kids are in bad shape. Boy thinks it was all a dream, the girl is at least temporarily insane, likely years of psychoanalysis.

Our captive guide is taken away by Friday. He’ll likely end up in an asylum.

We retreat out. We watch the lab migo go through a dimensional gate.

Back to town, and visit Arkam, then back to NY.
The militia will be listed as killed on maneuvers.

We take the other 10 super guns with us, too.

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