Beginnings (December 1922)
Filburt-Filburt Du Pont, Dilettante
Dr Alan Fleischer. Teacher
Rory Flannagan, Jornalist
Professor Nathan Smythe-Jones
From the Journal of Filburt-Filburt
My father requests me to attend an Auction in Vienna, Austria to attend
an auction of occult-related items. There is some items in particular
he is interested in - riveted brass head and two books. Items being
auctioned include an Egyptian Ankh, an hebrew manuscript, magicians cassock
and wand, a preserved hand (hand of glory), african fetish, a book - The
Magus, an alchemists sword, a human skull, a riveted brass head, i-ching
sticks, some books, some medallions, a medicine bag and a shamans gold ring.
I make some calls to see if there is anyone free who wants to accompany
me. Alan and Rory both agree to come. We are to travel by
steamer - The Mauretania.
The journey to Europe is uneventful, taking six days in total.
Amongst the other passengers is Count Kurosov, a Russian with a supposed
claim to the Russian throne. He has a large entourage, including food
tasters. There also seems to be a scruffy-looking priest milling
around - not sure how he's got into first class.
During the evening meal I notice another well-dressed man with a copy of
the auction catalogue. I recognise him as Sir Martin Murray, a famous
occult collector. Later I speak with the count.
The next day we are watching a shuffleboard game. Alan notices the
priest but also observes that he has some associates. The priest and
his associates pull guns. Alan yells a warning. There is a shot
and the steward falls to the ground. The priest throws an object at
the count 'Die, oppressor!".
Alan and Rory dive for cover. I step forward, grab the grenade and
throw it overboard. It explodes without injuring anyone. The counts
bodyguards take care of the attackers.
Sceance, strange visions, sanity loss and Alan recovers some strange
books. He reads one called Nameless Cults and another called the Xanthium tablets.
He looks a bit shaken afterwards!
At the auction, the bidding goes well and I secure the items my father
asked for (Lady Margaret Jameson, Nicolai Tchyevski and George Walker) all
bid strongly on the head. However, before I can collect them there is a
scream. One of the auction houses assistants is dead (torn apart with
body parts strewn across the room) and the brass head I bought is missing.
There is a sickly-sweet smell in the room. A trail of blood leads to a
I open the dumb waiter. A shaft descends to the basement. I
call the dumb waiter up. Inside there are blood stains. Myself
and Alan enter and descend. Rory runs down the stairs.
In the basement there its obvious that someone has tunnelled through,
however the tunnel has been collapsed. We speculate that it may lead
into the sewers.
The police arrive and question everyone. Afterwards we aren
approached by the master of the auction house. He asks us to
investigate as be believes the honour of the auction house has been
A number of people contacted the auction house to try to buy the head
before the auction - Lady Margaret, Klaus Underprest, and Michelle de Bousin.
Lady Margaret and Michelle both bid on the head. Klaus wanted it but
didn't bit - highly suspicious!
Klaus is in his is in his mid-50'S with a stocky body and a repellent
cast to his face and oily skin. Michelle leads a group of French
Occultists. He believes the spirit world speaks through the head, via
some unknown ritual.
We secure an address for Klaus from the auction house - its a poor
quarter of the city.
Lady Margaret is staying in the same hotel. The next day over
breakfast I speak to her. She is a devotee of Alasteir Crowley.
She knows the same information about the head as Michelle.
We research Klaus. He lives alone in a location quite close to a
cemetery. He doesn't have a full-time job and sometimes acts as a consultant
on the occult.
The next day we go to the building Kluas lives in. The ground floor
apartment belongs to the supervisor. I speak to the supervisor.
He tells me that Klaus lives in the basement. When he arrived seeking
a room the basement room was unfinished. Klaus offered to finish it
We moved round to the rear of the building where the cellar entrance is.
Alan picks the lock and we enter the apartment. Several rooms with a
familiar smell. In the bedroom is a walk-in closer with a trapdoor in
the floor. One room has a number of books about reincarnation.
I open the trapdoor. A stench engulfs us. A ladder descends
into darkness. Alan believes the whole was dug up from below! The
ladder descends 60' to a sepulchre. The brass head and a book sits on a
small table in the centre of the room, covered in burnt blood. Alan falls
into a stupor. Nathan grabs the head and the book when a door opens
and ghouls emerge!
Combat ensues. I get wounded. Both myself and Alan are carrying
shotguns which inflict severe damage. We escape back up the ladder
into the apartment with the head and the book