Horror on the Orient Express
Session 32 up to the 25th January
For the first time in several days I am able to sleep in the bed provided for me by Cav at the Plaza, but I cant sleep. Too much has happened, and though my body feels heavy with lethargy, my mind just wont settle. Truth to be told, I am not sure that I want to sleep for fear of what might be waiting for me in my dreams.
In short, we have gained the torso of the SS, rescued Cav, restored her youth and her voice, returning AFs back to its rightful host, have help DI.DR solve the issue of Spin’s death, and it looks like we have avoided incarceration. That is the good. The bad …
There is too much to write for that, not least of which is what I have had to do to DI.DR. He is a honest-to-goodness good man, an exemplary member of the police, diligent and above bridery in his duties, a staunch catholic. Everything you would hope of a DI, should you not be guilty of the accusations levelled at you or your companions. But by necessity I have inducted him into our task, not as a member like the rest but as a collaborator and accomplice, no matter how unwilling.
After seeing the ritual room of AF, and spending the entire night interrogating AF, DI.DR was more open to our story. Well, my story at least, I have no idea what tales the other have spun him, but mine was mostly the truth, if carefully appended, and he had been willing to accept that AF believed what I had claimed. Remarkable movement forward to be sure but too slow to be of any use to us. Something irrefutable, something he witnessed and had no means of explaining away was needed if I was to procure his support. So in his presence, with the well-lit lighting of the interrogation room, I enacted the spell that allows flesh to be molded like clay, and undid what AF had done to her.
The experience was not a pleasant one for either Cav or myself. I passed out from the exertion and my arms are evidence of the cost. But at least the rest of us – myself, JC, EA, Sp and Cav – knew to some extent what was to happen, and after what we have all experienced, were in a better position to deal with it. DI.DR had no such basis to work from, believing the story believed by the rest of us was some mass hallucination as it was too wild, too fantastical, and too horrific for anything else. Then he witnessed the truth of how horrific things really were, he witnessed the physical restoration of Cav, as performed with a chant, gesture and touch.
He now knows that regardless of the horrors that people perpetuate in mundane manners, that there are worse things out there which are real.
It had the desired effect, he assisted in gaining the items needed to restore Cav’s voice and in the rite itself.
He seems to be bearing up well considering how fast the realization was sprung on him. In truth, I am struggling and I have dreamed of similar to this for years. He has had that wide eyed, hyper vigilance that I saw so much of during the Great War, of soldiers who had experienced too much and fearful of what was waiting for them next. I need to talk to him again before we leave Milan, I need to warn him of the risks from the Brotherhood of the Skin. I doubt that will improve his disposition, but this is a fight too big for just us others we can trust are needed to help too.
I fervently hope that this experience will make him an even better DI, able to see and handle things others will undoubtedly ignore or miss because that’s how we deal with such things. I hope that his father in Our Father is strengthened, now he knows a little of what is out there in the darkness. Mostly I hope he has the strength to not let this drastic shift in belief and ideology send him down the wrong path.
Even feeling some of the drain and the pain caused by maintaining the circle during the rite, EA and Sp seem far to enamoured with the concept of what could be achieved. I may have to reconsider which of the books now in my possession I let them have access to. At least there is no risk of them learning the flesh shaping spell – that scroll has been burnt. It is far too dangerous to let others use, because even though I fear it having felt it and used it, like an addict I find myself, even now when bone tired, thinking of things that it could be used for. A voice in my head whispers that the pain felt was only because it was the first time it had been done, that there wouldn’t be such pain again, that with practice it will become easy, a tool that could be used for great good in the hands of a conscientious trauma surgeon.
I fear it and yet crave to use it again, just once more. It’s seduction is frightful, and Sp is too eager and enamored while EA is too naïve and incapable of considering consequences for either to be trusted with such a thing.
I don’t know if I can be trusted.