Cthulhu Calling:Moons over Cairo Act two

Train to New York


written by Aja , February 24

The Professor finished his toast and smiled to himself as he watched Justin polish off another egg before wiping his mouth with a napkin. 

“Justin, I’m sure I know that chap from somewhere. He looks as if he’s been dragged through a hedge backwards and from the way he’s eating he doesn’t appear to have had a good meal for a while. I think I’ll have a word and see if the old brain cells trigger something.”

“Right you are Professor. If you don’t mind, I think there’s some jelly in that jar that’s in desperate need of some toast”.

The Professor rose from his seat and swayed along the dining car to the elderly gentlemen’s table.

“Forgive me. Would you mind if I joined you. My name’s Harold Trimble and I’m sure that your face is familiar. It would be rude of me not to see if we are acquainted”, said the Professor to the man.

Meanwhile, Justin sat back in his seat with great satisfaction. He hadn’t had a breakfast like that since the Olympics in Belgium. Justin glanced around the carriage. The Professor was talking to the disheveled chap and everybody else was finishing off their breakfasts. Justin could see that the two men and the lady were still playing a game of some sort. Intrigued, Justin got up and walked along to the opposing table. Justin was a competitive chap by nature and took an interest in games of all sorts. He smiled and introduced himself.

“Good morning, I’m Justin Le Dunst from Boston and I couldn’t help notice the game you are playing. I’d be fascinated to know what it is that you’re playing.”


written by symatt , February 25

The three at the table stopped and altogether and stared at Justin. Moments passed then a smile broke across the womans face. she stood, offered justin her seat and in a very english accsent Said. 

“Please, ofcourse, plenty of room”

Sitting herself in the next seat along she handed Justin a hard leather dice shaker and a couple of dice.
The two men opposite continued to drink there coffee and stared at Justin.
Justin , at this point could’nt fail to notice the simularity between the two men.
“Ha, Twins” he laughed to himself.

The Game board was set out with one hundred squares starting from the bottom left at 1 and ending at 100 at the top right. The path that the colourful counters took was interspersed with ladders that if you landerd on a square with a base of a ladder in it, it would take you higher up the board and in total oposition if you landed on the head of a snake it would move you back down again.
Justin grined” this is easy and taking the shaker, shook the dice for his first go.

Neanwhile Professor Trimble took the seat that was offered to him by the grey haird gentleman, who, saying nothing just pointed to a seat with a half eaten sausage.

Both men sat in silence for a good five minutes as the man finished what was on his plate.
The professor felt very akward.
Eventualy he wiped his mouth with the edge of the table cloth and told the waiters to Bugger off and without looking at Professor Trimble , spoke.

“You think you know me, eh!” The grey haired man stated. ” Well do you read man!”
His eyes darted up and looked straight at the Professor.
The Professor opened his mouth to say somthing and before he had chance to utter one word the man continued, in such a load tone as to make everyone in the car stop what they where doing and look his way.

” Im William Sather, Professor to you , but you can call me Bill”.
He then offered a grubby hand to Mr Trimble who politly shook it.

Professor Trimble’s mind raced, then in a flash it came to him. A while back now he had read a journal with an artical in it about a professor Bill Sather that had gone missing, (this was several months ago now, he was sure) in Northern Africa, It had been reported that he was maybe eaten by wild animals as no trace had been found.

So, where had he been and why was he on this train to New York in such a sorry state.

“So tell me Bill, what takes you to New york ?” The Professor asked with a quiet enquireing voice.

“John Coles, he hasn’t the first idea of what he is getting himself into, thats for sure”.

Coffee man! Bill bellowed at the waiters, who at once refilled his cup from a shaking pot.


written by Aja , February 25

Justin rolled a 3. He moved his counter, one space short of the foot of the first ladder. He passed the shaker to the woman and smiled at the twins. 

“I’m getting off in New York. Is that your destination too, or are you travelling further afield?” asked Justin.

The woman rolled the die. A 6! She moved the counter and rolled again. A roll of 3 took her counter to the foot of a ladder and up to space 23.

The first of the twins took the shaker and said “You’ve done it again – are you sure you’re not influencing the roll?”.

Professor Trimble tried to regain his composure. This man was presumed dead, but here he was, large as life sitting in front of him. Drinking coffee. Eating sausage. Two sausages. Three sausages. The Professor realising he had been sitting there with his mouth open, quickly recovered. He kindly asked the waiter for a cup of coffee and took a sip.

“Bill, you can call me Harold, I’m very pleased to meet you. Of course I’ve read about you. What on earth has been happening, the papers say you’re missing presumed dead!”, said the Professor. Barely taking a breath he continued, “What about your family – do they know you’re ok and what’s this about Cole? He’s asked me to have a look at some find he’s made – he’s being very mysterious about it and my colleague had to dig around a bit to find out he’s been digging near the Valley of the Kings. And what do you mean he doesn’t know what he’s getting himself into?”.

Sather drained his cup. “Waiter!! More coffee!”.


written by symatt , February 28

Justin sat quietly playing the game, every question he asked was met with silence. The only time any of them spoke was to comment on the dice roll or to ask for yet more coffee.
This did give Justin time to really look at the gameboard and see the pictures within the squares.
The pictures denoted foreign scenes, India Justin thought but was’nt sure.
“What do the pictures mean?” Justin asked quizically.
The woman who still hadn’t given her name said” Each ladder is a virtue and each snake is of evil”, she continued happy to explain “Look” she pointed “No12 is faith and 57 is generosity and so on”,
“Oh i see” answered Justin “So that one is……?” pointing at a snake on 76 “Drunkeness” the women interrupted, “If you make it to the top you reach nirvana, now, stop talking and play the game”.
once again the shaker rattled and the dice thrown. As Justin dropped the dice into the shaker for his turn out of the corner of his eye, he could see what looked like ………well like mist, seeping out of the corner of the carriage. He took a mental note to keep an eye on it and then continued with the game. 

Bill drained his cup again spilling half down his beard and splashing onto his shirt, which Harold had noticed on being closer was alot dirtier than he first thought.

“Coles…..ha! He thinks it’s all his idea!” Bill’s voice had annoyance in it.
” I started that dig, i was the one that ‘let it out’, he hasn’t got a clue.”
Bill forced into his mouth a large piece of bacon and stuffed a bread roll into his jacket pocket with the other hand.

Harold furrowed his brow and was about to ask, let what out? When he noticed steam or smoke around his feet, actually he thought, it’s acting more like early morning mist. He leaned to his left in his chair and looked along the floor to the mists point of origin being the corner of the carriage where the side meet the back panels.
“How odd” Harold said rhetorically, which made Bill look in the same direction.
“OH BLOODY HELL, it’s found me already” said Bill with urgency and fear.
The mist was starten to thicken now and one of the waiter’s had noticed and was pointing it out to the others.
Bill stood knocking his plate to the floor cramming the last of the bacon into his mouth and the last rolls into his pockets in desperation.
Everyone in the coach noe stopped what they were doing and looked at the thickening mist in the corner.

The young man who had been sitting on his own demanded that something be done,
” The steam from the loco is coming into the dining car, someone get the conductor” he yelled. He then stood picking up a couple of napkins and strode through the mist towards the now darkening corner.
He bent into the mist to investigate, his body now a silhouette with no real shape to it.
“I can’t find wh…..” Before he had chance to finish his words a sickening inhuman scream broke the tense silence of the dining car. Moments later his body flew through the mist sending wisps twirling in every direction, landing hard on the carpeted floor.

The woman at Justin’s gaming table let out a shrill scream and a waiter dropped a tray in shock.

Laying just a few feet from them was a scene that very few people would witness ever in their entire lives.
The young man lay on his back arm’s out stretched, his upper chest and throat was torn and ripped and blood glistened, his faceless form had a deathly smile as there was no skin from his forehead to his chin, his eyes had no lids and where blankly staring at the ceiling, a cough and a spurt of blood spat from his open mouth.
” MY GOD! He’s still alive” yelled a waiter hysterically.

Bill was the only person moving in the whole carriage, he ran in the opposite direction to the mist, knocking the conductor off his feet, who was just entering. H arold in disbelief watched him go and in total surprise was shocked and horrified to see Bill run into the ajoining carriage yank open an outside door and jump.
Harold turned to look at Justin who along with the others were looking at the
mist.

Something was taking shape,
In the mist, something was coming………………….


written by Aja , March 01

The Professor leapt up from his seat and headed away from the mist towards the carriage where Bill had leapt off the train. 

As he passed the supine figure of the unfortunate young man on the floor he shouted “Justin! We’ve got to get out. Let’s go!” and carried on towards the next carriage.

Justin had other thoughts. This poor chap needed help. He warily eyed the mist and grabbed hold of the man’s shoulders and started to drag him away. “Someone give me a hand – he needs help!”.


written by symatt , March 05

Justin leaned back as he pulled the severely injured man away out of the mist,
it had been a while since he had lifted something so heavy. He glanced up into the mist, a dark shadow was moving forward towards him, it looked animalistic as it edged his way. Justin pulled hard but this time something was holding the body back. 

The carriage was aleat half full with mist now, and the help Justin had asked for was now all exiting the car followed by the conductor scrambling to his feet. Justin gave one last tug at the unmoving body which was then pulled from his grip ripping off a finger nail, Justin failed to notice the pain, h e was now fixated on the form in the mist. His mind raced to try and make sense of what he was looking at through the gloom, the only thing he could think of was a dog or wolf of some kind, but no, that wasn’t right.

Time seemed to slow to almost the point of stopping. A limb of elongated proportions broke into view. The thump of Justin’s heart in his chest motivated him to move and so he ran unsure of what he was running from but he just knew he had to run.

Harold was unable to see back into the dining car as he was jostled by the other diners running past him.
“Justin!” Harold’s voice was panic stricken. Justin, moments later ran through the carriage and the conductor slid it shut as hard and as fast as he could, and before he had time to let go of the handle something red, wet and sticky slammed against the doors small window,slid down the glass and slopped to the floor leaving a blood smeared stain.

They all stood in the corridor of the next carriage, the other passenger’s were coming out and asking what was going on. The diners stood shaking, tears and fright on their faces.


written by Aja , March 08

Justin stood back from the door, his heart thumping in his chest. The Conductor was desperately trying to calm down the passengers. Justin motioned to the Conductor and took him to one side.
“I don’t know what the hell is in there, but I think it would be advisable to put as many doors as possible between us and it. How many more carriages are there?” said Justin. 

Before the Conductor could answer, Justin had an idea. “I’ve got a rifle in the baggage car – I’ll go and get it, come back and keep guard – I’m a pretty good shot.” Justin headed for the baggage car pushing his way through the passengers milling in the aisle.

Meanwhile, the Professor moved towards the open door and, after checking there were no approaching tunnels, leaned out of the open door and looked back along the track to see if there was any sign of Bill who had jumped out of the train so precipitously moments before.


written by symatt , March 19

Harold looked back along the carriages, wind crashing into his hair and jacket, animating them into a frenzy of movement yet not a sign of Bill could be seen. 

“For goodness sake why don’t we stop the train”
A shrill female voice calls from the group of passengers and a call of agreement from the rest is quickly interupted by the Guard.

“NO! NO! We will be in NEW YORK in just over an hour, i’ll keep the coach door locked and whatever animal has got in there can just stay there until the authorities can get to it” Trying his best to hide the fear that he was feeling he continued,
“So please, please all return to your cabs, lock your doors and stay calm”.

The Guard bent, picked up his hat from the floor and with a instinctive action, dusted it off and placed it on his head whilst taking a quick glance through the bloodied coach door window, mist obscured every angle.

Passengers where dispersing when Justin came running back from the baggage car with rifle in hand and sweat on his brow.


written by Aja , March 19

Harold hauled the door shut and turned to see Justin loading a rifle. 

“You’re not going in there young man. It’s not safe, rifle or not.” said the Professor.

“Don’t worry Prof – I’m just going to stand here – any sign of anything, I’ll let off a shot and scarper!”.

The Professor sighed and headed away from the mist, joining the other passengers. Justin put the rifle to his shoulder, aimed it towards the door and tried hard not to think about the congealed red lumps sliding down the window.

Justin muttered softly under his breath, “Roll on New York…”

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