Last time, we ended in a prison cell deep beneath the ground; much like the Xbone – abject failure. Today, we’ll scurry back in time a little and try to stay out of that damn kitchen.
Things went south very quickly after we turned off the stairs after the vampire and ventured through the portal mirror. The option to continue down the stairs was the last big deviation I neglected to explore, so that was where we pick the adventure up. The narrow stairway descended further ahead and took me down to a T-junction at which I took a right, leading me to a short passageway with a door at either end. Going through the right hand door I was greeted by the sight of a food storage room in which I had the option to eat a number of food-stuffs, I opted to just go for some bread as that seemed reasonably safe. Good decision too as I got 2 Stamina points back. The room at the other end of the passageway was curiously locked from the side I was on, unbolting it led me into a small cell, inside which was this happy chap.
He asked of I had ‘come for him’, desperate for any friends I could find in here and given that he’d been locked in this room, I figured I could trust him and told him the truth. What followed was a brief bit of exposition, mostly detailing how he had once been part of the Masters coven, but was now set to be a sacrifice in the next ceremony. But then, before we could continue two men burst in through the door wearing goat heads and wielding knives. Me and my new friend, who I’m calling Mungo II took the Devil-Worshippers on and as I felled my opponent I turned to see Mungo II take a dagger through the chest. Even more useless than Mungo I. In a moment of sheer bad-assery I simply punched the remaining Devil-Worshipper in the back of the neck and killed him instantly.
Exploring the left turn at the bottom of the stairs cost me a Stamina point as the stairs continued down even further and in the darkness I slipped and fell to the bottom. What awaited me was the hideous banned image that had been removed from later editions that I mentioned in my intro. Around forty goat-headed men in robes stood around a fire, chanting in a monotonous tone whilst a naked woman lay on an alter. One man with his goat-head dyed purple stood over her with a knife.
I had no option but to watch the events unfold, the pitch of chanting rose, the men encircled the woman and with a huge scream, the one with the knife brought it down on the woman. The goat-men then descended upon the body to smear her blood all over themselves. That’s pretty heavy for a story aimed at kids, I must say! My escape was aided by the blood-frenzy though as a Luck test helped me sneak out of the room undetected through a passageway and slowly into the dark. Fumbling around against a wall led me to discover a small button which opened up a sliding door into a left-right passage with a door at either end. Going through the right door it seemed I had found one of the brethren who had completely forgotten about the sacrifice.
I’m not even mildly concerned about the severed goats head on the table by the way. It seemed he wasn’t the most loyal of the brethren though as he whispered to me that he was not a poor man and would reward me if I helped him escape. I told him the truth about my fairly eventful evening in the house so far, he said his name was Rafferty and that we should escape together! Apparently there was a secret trap-door in the ceiling, if I were to allow him to climb up on my back he could get it open and then help pull me up. Now that sounded like a swift way for me to get double-crossed with a knife in my back, figuratively or actually, so I left Rafferty to his goat head. At the other end of the corridor, the door took me into some sort of kennel which housed some rather poorly drawn great danes.
My awesome Skill came in handy as I killed three of them without getting bitten once. However my bravado was short-lived as I took the option to drink from their awful dog-water for 2 Stamina points. Beggars can’t be choosers. Leaving the room took me back into the corridor, but no way out was evident, the sliding door I had come in through had closed up. A bell-push on the wall seemed to be my only option and so I used it. Rather than open up the next stage of the adventure, what I had actually done was sound an alarm, a bell began ringing through the house which was about to result in the servants and devil-worshippers of the house coming in to take me away for the next sacrifice. My adventure was over, again!
Damn your eyes, Jackson! Another long wild goose chase, dead-end with no way out? Maybe I missed something, but I guess I need to back-track even further as without the keys I haven’t yet discovered, there is no way forward after the vampire. Looking back at my map, proving to be the most important one I’ve made so far, I think the best option is to head back to the landing overlooking the entrance hall and continue exploring around there…
We’ve already explored some of the balcony’s left side, the Balthus and Diabolus rooms, so now we’ll check out the right side. My first port of call was the Azazel room, set into the right side of the landing, and this turned out to be a small laboratory.
Opening up some of the drawers revealed a letter-opener which I could use as a weapon, pretty useful as I’m playing fair and so no longer had the knife I’d found in the store room, this getting me back to my Skill of 12. Hearing voices outside I had to move on after they had passed and so I couldn’t search around any further, this took me around the lading to the next door, the Erasmus room, which was locked and sadly too sturdy to break down. One door remained at the end of the landing, but before I could reach it 1 more Fear point was mine…
She appeared in front of me and but seemed incredibly relieved that I had found her and told me we must speak immediately in the room ahead. Desperate for some help by now, I figured I may as well go in and see what she wanted, something positive has to happen at some point in this god-forsaken building, right? Well it seemed this was what I’d been looking for, some information as to what the hell was going on here and a little direction in how to make things better. I sat on the bed of the elegant Apollyon bedroom whilst my new friend hovered in front of me and told me about the house. The ‘Master’ we have heard of is a powerful Black Priest of the Night called Kelnor, Earl of Drumner. My arrival here at the house was no accident, as the lead-in with the white-haired old man suggested, and I am to be offered to the Demons of Hellfire by sacrifice. Tonight’s sacrifice is to be a young woman, a district nurse who called at the house earlier and my ghostly girl pal wants to save her and have me defeat Kelnor by finding the Kris knife – his only weakness. Which begs the question why you would keep a weapon which constitutes your only weakness about the house. Oh well, evil villain logic should never be questioned I ‘spose. Before she could tell me precisely where the Kris knife was though, she was torn apart by ghostly great danes. Perhaps she was what they were eating in the illustration above?
I left the room and decided to check out the other side of the balcony area instead of turning off into the store-room like previous. Following the landing around the the opposite side brought me to a passage that branched off to the left, this passage in turn had two doors which linked off it and following it straight ahead would take me around to the Shaitan and Mammon rooms. To my left was the Asmodeus room, which was locked, but thankfully some kind soul had left the key in the lock, I clicked it open and went inside. A single candle lit the room and a number of packing crates obscured my view, but before I could react, a white-haried man in a dirty grey robe came bursting out of the dark and knocked me to the ground, adding 1 Fear point. Was this the man who gave me the directions here earlier? Anyway, I was to do combat with him, another easy foe at 7/9 thankfully, but combat was stopped as soon as my first blow was landed.
I raised my hands to tell him I meant no harm, he seemed terrified and accused me of being one of ‘them’, so to prove my story I crossed myself, which would apparently make anyone associated with the Master burst into flames or something I assume. He seemed pretty pleased to meet someone friendly and gave me some information about how to defeat his Master. Again, the name of the Kris knife came up, but he went one further than the ghostly lady and told me it was in a secret room somewhere downstairs, and while he didn’t know the password ‘Old Mordana’ did, although she died some time ago. However, I would assume that counts for little round these parts! Mordana was a familiar name too, hadn’t I seen that written in the window condensation earlier? ‘Mordana in Abaddon’? I think this one may be coming together now, let’s go find the Abaddon room…