High Thrills and Social Ills

The Goat and the Hound

During the debutante ball, Blackmantle overheard that a man who goes by The Hound could be trusted to get a dirty job done. Blackmantle had need to have a man, Diedrick Lexington, followed, his moves recorded. He sent a servant to The Hound, requesting his service. With terms agreeable to both members through their medium, the Hound began to tail Mr. Lexington.
Risa is awakened to find that a member of her caravan has been taken. She takes it upon herself to try and find the missing girl. She asks for the help of Father Dobbs to ask about and see if anyone knows anything. The two begin to search.
The Masked Bandit stumbles over a serious beat down in Whitechapel. Turns out members of the McEwan gang have kidnapped one of Cutter’s illegitimate daughters. He’s heard that The Masked Bandit was pretty good about this kinda thing and he had his hands full with the situation in Whitechapel. Cutter let it drop that Kent Darvey was behind it as an incentive to get The Masked Bandit on the job. The Masked Bandit set out immediately to find the problem.
That night Risa had a vision that left clues that some evil lurked over the city and was the controlling force behind the kidnappings. The next day while searching they encounter The Masked Bandit, who is on the case as well. As they combine their clues, they figure out where the children might be.
Alistair’s watch seems pretty uneventful. The man receives a letter, no big. The next night, the man meets with a priest, Dunnsworth he overhears, in Bethnal Green and they discuss purifying sites. The next day is more tedious letter sending, however Father Dobbs request The Hounds assistance. While they discuss what is to be done, The Hound ask if Father Dobbs can inquire about a strange symbol he was asked to look into. He also mentions the meeting between Lexington and Father Dunnsworth. Father Dobb’s research show that the symbol belongs to The Prince’s Knot, a mystery cult. He is able to translate the ritual for the Hound.
The Masked Bandit has solved where the children are located and stole his way onto the ship in which they were contained. During his attempt, he is stopped by Kent Darvey. A brief confrontation leads The Masked Bandit to shot the molotov cocktail Darvey was going to throw at him, blowing up half of his face. After accessing the situation, he decides to rally the troops. The Masked Bandit, Risa, and a halfling friend of her’s sneak onto the ship while Cutter and his men, Officer McNaulty and a few of his trusted officers, The Hound, and Father Dobbs all take on the crew of this West End Terror ship. During the commotion, the children are easily secured below deck. As most of West End Terror is apprehended or have fled, the children are released and sent back to their families.
That Friday night, the summer solstice,five fires burned in different parts of the city. The more occult-minded could feel that something was up while most assumed that some crazy person may be on the loose. The papers over the next few days were full of news about the fires and the bust on the boat.
The Hound delivered his detailed report back to Thomas, who promptly delivered the information back to Blackmantle. He now had a name for what he hunted, an idea of their agenda, and how they were going about it. All he really needs to know now is how to identify them and who the rest of them are.

Presenting the Queen!

It is the week of Charity’s debutant ball and everyone in her house was excited, except Charity who was more nervous. The event was bound to be unconventional at best (something of a comfort) with a male arranging the ball and dress, the lack of female friends, and her foreigner status. Luckily, Sheela was around to lend a hand where she could, namely giving Charity a dress from her native land instead of the ugly one her father had selected, and waiting with her as she greeted guest.
Fidget was asked by Dmitri Maximov to find the stash house of William DeHarve and “redistribute” his wealth to as many people as possible. While beginning his quest, he managed to intervene on a group of thugs trying to accost Charity, namely by dropping the sewer grate from under him.
Archie Waylan sent Kael a message for him to come check out the advancement on his investment, a steam/electric horseless carriage. They took it for a test drive and were impressed by just how fast the vehicle was capable of going. Kael’s sister and Mr. Blackmantle also took note of the vehicle and came over the chat about it. During their conversation, Rifford Rafferty drove up in a wicked-looking automobile of his own. As rich boys with toys are one to do, he challenged Kael to a race.
Blackmantle noticed on the vehicle a strange symbol he had only seen once before, on that horrible day. He later questioned Mr. Rafferty about it who had no idea about it; his mechanic did all the real work. Rafferty gave Blackmantle the name, Deidrick Lexington. He began to hunt down the man.
Archie believed that they needed an edge to beat the other horseless carriage. After a cocaine inspired brainstorming session, he came up with blue-prints for something new, something never seen before. However, what he needed was strange at best and he asked Kael’s assistance in gaining those items while be finished tuning the car and adding the new parts. After getting a new steampot from a silly man, hiring Willy to steal the strange nitrogen from the only man who had ordered it, Mr. Lexington.
Fidget managed to find the stash house of DeHarve after much tailing. He grabbed as many items of value that he could get his hands on (a surprisingly large amount) and made his escape. During which time he ran into Kael and Charity. Kael, thinking the worse, gave chase but was stopped by Charity, who had been helped by the Ratman earlier that week. Fidget also had a tremendous amount of silver, an item Kael needed to finish his engine. The trade was made and they went their separate ways.
With the horseless carriage supped up, it was time to race. The two cars burned rubber down the track until Mr. Rafferty’s front end literally twisted upon itself. The man was okay but shaken, as were all who witnessed the strange site. Blackmantle knew that the mechanic was a strange man indeed. An attempt to chat proved him to be a secretive one as well.
Finally, it was the day of the ball! The event is small compared to some but the fine weather of the evening and exotic decor made it quite popular with those who were fortunate enough to attend. Many men where in attendance and Charity received a fair amount of bouquets. During the party, she spoke at length with Baron Branford, Harold Wyndham, another man from their native country. They were interrupted but the presents of none other than Queen Elizabeth herself, who approved of Charity’s boldness of dress and commented on how lovely she looked, before attending to business with her father and a few others.
To the observant member of the party, it was obvious that trouble was brewing when several prominent members of foreign affairs moved away from the party to discuss urgent business. To most, it was just another pleasant party as the social season began to head towards a close.

Down with the Sickness

During a Sunday service, Father Dobbs notices that several members of his congregation have taken ill with a mysterious sickness. It seems pollution from a factory on the river is making the water unsafe for use. Determined to help the members of his flock, he set out to learning what he could about the sickness.
A newly-arrived gypsy girl, Risa, gave a reading to one of the local farmer’s wives in which she had a vision of a sickness spreading through the community and saw that the woman all ready had it. Later that evening when she noticed the symptoms as predicted, she blamed Risa and led a mob to chase her. A wandering Father Dobbs intervened and the two decided that it was in their best interest to get down to the root of the cause.
The Hound is hired to shut down the factory that makes “Clay Vaugn’s Headache Powder”, which the condition not to damage the place. After attempting to threaten the man to closing down his shop. He decided a different approach is in order.
Father Dobbs ran into Dr. Basil Dawson, a young doctor working out of his home, who is trying to find a cure for this strange illness before it has a chance to spread. Father Dobbs offers his assistance and is tasked with getting a few items he’s need to begin working on a treatment. However, Father Dobbs was taken ill with the sickness and was unable to be much help. Risa went out to collect some of the items and was taken ill as well.
Alistair decided to back up the polluted water into the factory itself and get it shut down that way. After a hard night’s work, he managed to get the pipe clamped but also came down sick. Luckily Dr. Dawson needed blood samples of the sick, which each of them offered up. After some work, a treatment was created and spread out to the immediate populace. The poor of the East End think highly of those who helped them when they needed it most.

Breaking In and Breaking Out

With the strange death of Gale Buffet, it was left to his lawyer, Victor Offdensen, to untangle Gale’s will and figure out what was to be left to the organization he had envisioned. When Kael arrived at the lawyer’s office he had a proposition for Kael; Offdensen would “dissolve” the organization and take the two hundred pounds that went with it. In return, Kael could have the hangar left behind to do with as he pleased. Kael readily agreed, now having a base of operations for any future endeavors.
Charity finally made a friend within high society, a woman named Sheela. Sheela invited Charity over for tea, happy to know another foreigner in the area. Through conversation, it was revealed to Charity that Sheela was a skilled swordswoman and was knowledgeable about many things in the area.
While out patrolling one evening. The Masked Bandit overheard some workers from a nearby train tunnel excavation site report of some stolen equipment. After an investigation of the area, it was revealed that the culprits had to be operating north of the site. He also rumors of other blasting material going missing.
Kael decided to use the money he was paying to Wiley Willy Wollsworth for a good purpose. To begin his secret career, he would need to formulate a good persona, and needed an acting teacher. Willy introduced him to Caroline Pearl, a woman who sometimes helps during Brigg’s Gang cons. She agreed to help Kael for five shillings an hour. Kael also inquired as to where he might learn to handle a wyvern. Having no clue himself, Willy suggested The Phoenix Squadron.
Kenneth Valentine approached Fain with an issue. Kenneth was the man that sold Fain his grappling gun and he figured that Fain could help him. A group of thugs had forced him from his shop and he wanted them out. Turns out those men had been the ones stealing the tunneling equipment. It became obvious that they were trying to break into a prison for the mentally ill. The Masked Bandit, with the help of Officer McNaulty, took down the thugs before the plan was carried out, however the mastermind was never found.
Kael got in touch with The Phoenix Squadron which agreed to let him practice and they would help train him. After all, he’s a fellow soldier and one in good standing.

Ancient Chinese Secert

For Lord Velsullius to full back Father Dobb’s church, he would like him to better understand how far the Church has gotten from it’s roots. He asked that Father Dobbs dig into the lives of some of his churchmen to learn the truth. By purchasing the help of the Hound, he was able to find that one priest had a love of asian women and that another was a pimp of sorts. He himself also discovered another who stole from the church on occasion. A minor taste but as some of those where those he considered allies, a rude awakening.

Terry Turner, leader of the Commercial Road gang, would like the Hound to free the brothers Motombaa and Wantanbe from the clutches of a merchant who works on behalf of the Black Gold Beneficent Society. The brothers happen to be gifted smugglers of items from Africa and the Far East. The Hound, with the aid of Fidget, and Father Dobbs, successfully broke into the merchant’s shop and collected the doll that held the the brother’s in thrall. During the break out, the doll became filthy and a fortunate washing of the doll freed to brothers finally.
The Commercial Road gang now has access to the some of the best smugglers in London and the brothers feel a debt to those who helped free them from the clutches of the Black Gold Beneficent Society.

Mystery at the May Day Masquerade

The House of Mr. and Mrs. Campbell had a May Day Masquerade, mostly to show off their new “Aluminat” artifact; a white marble lion with a strange red tongue. All of high society was in attendance to such a joyous evening. However, trouble was right around the corner.
During the party, Fain noticed that a few members of the staff were slipping away. Following them, he discovered five men setting up some sort of strange contraption, then, having been spotted by the armed men, he set about to try to find to what was afoot.
Father Dobbs was introduced to Lord Velsullius, an old man who has always taken an interest in the goings-on of the Church. Seeing Dobbs as a trustworthy man, he decided to patronize the Father’s church.
Kael was introduced to to Gale Buffet, the first man to fly an airship in combat. Mr. Buffet mentioned his interest in having Kael as the head of his project and the captain of his crew. More was to be discussed at a later date.
Charity ran into a Middle Eastern woman who, like Charity, had noticed that the sculpture was not Aluminat at all, but Indian in origin.
Mr. Blackmantle made his appearance to the social scene but on a mission. He was contracted by a mysterious man to kill a man who was attempting to assassinate Mr. Lockhart. So he watched as he made new friends.
Then West End Terror stuck! A man, calling himself Kent Darvey, began using “sorcery” to seemingly mind control half the guest to rob the other half. At this time, the lights went out of the party and everyone broke lose. Two men worked their way through the chaos and tried to kill Mr. Lockhart and Sir Edmund Crofton. However, Blackmantle quickly dispatched Mr. Lockhart’s killer and Kael was able to subdue the man after Crofton.
All the while, Kent Darvey was trying to get way. Charity had given chase only to find him all ready been tailed by The Masked Bandit. A trick shot with the grappling gun brought down Darvey but he managed to vanish before they were able to fully bring him to justice.
As they lead out the captive killer, he threw Charity a dirty look, one she would never forget.

Press: The Attack

The Hound had received a note about a possible job. He met “Thomas” at the P’s & Q’s pub and was informed that his master would like three task accomplished. First, he would like the Illustrated London News out of print before Sunday. Second, he would like someone to keep an eye on and protect Stevie Steadman from a group of thugs. Finally, he would like a story stolen from Gary Stone.

The Hound, knowing he could not achieve all these goals on his own, hired out for additional help. To take out the printing press The Hound hired Fidget. The task was accomplished by having Fidget crawl in through the ink drain, douse the place in gasoline and other accelerants, then lite the place on fire. They managed to get away unnoticed.

The Hound spent time shadowing Stevie Steadman until his attackers showed up. After beating the three men, he was thanked for his efforts by the man. Then he stayed around to make sure no one would try to attack him again.

Belle was hired to steal the story from Gary Stone. After seducing him, she had recovered the story about one of her more vile clients. While thinking she was delivering the story to another one of her horrible clients, she was relieved to find a young journalist with interest in the story. The man turned out to be Sheldon Hearst, a young ambitious man.

That Sunday the characters made headlines.

Science and Exploration

The Clockwork and Steam Expo had begun. Several groups and guilds, primarily the Worshipful Order of Horologist, supported the Expo. The Expo featured the best and latest trends in technology. The Expo took place on the Exposition Hall grounds.

Kael discovered Archie Waylan, a middle-class gnome with a need for speed and a steam/electric engine. After viewing his work, Kael hired him to begin work on a bigger, more powerful version of that engine for airship use. Archie accepted but continued to showcase his work. The next day, three men tried to steal the motorcycle but were thwarted by Fain Spruce wielding the grappling hook he had just purchased.

At 6 p.m on the first day of the Expo, Mr. Tannehill drops dead. It is revealed that one of the springs from his pocket watch came loose and pierced his heart, killing him instantly. The pocket watch came from Mr. McArthur’s Watch Emporium. Mr. McArthur was investigated and was going to be sued by Mr. Tannehill’s family. It was discovered by Kael and Father Dobbs that Aaron “Bow” Boden, Mr. McArthur’s old apprentice, was the man behind the murders. He was taken to prison by Officer McNaulty.

On the last day of the Expo, Charity was running around the Expo when she saved a brass pianist from being knocked over and broken. To thank her, the dwarf merchant let her have the pianist as a gift. She tried to play the music from the automaton and instead heard a message a Gerald Mannsberg that mentioned him being imprisoned and his coordinates.

Payment for Services Rendered

Alistair was on a mission to build his reputation. With the Cudgel’s list of names, he set off to take down his next heavy-hitter. His search leads him to Cutter, one of Whitechapel’s shot-callers. Cutter then hired him to collect the debt owed to him by The Vicar, the shot-caller of St. Giles. After an initial beat down, Alistair came back with two of the biggest pugilist he could find, The Russian Bear and the Italian Stallion. The Vicar agreed to pay after he had his ass handed to him.

Father Dobbs was asked to see Father Wilkinson about a rumor he heard. Father Wilkinson informed Father Dobbs that members of the Church had been discussing his hanging around some questionable company. Father Dobbs reassured Father Wilkinson that he had nothing to worry about and went to investigate the source of the rumors, Father Andrews. The talk ended with an apparent peace accord but with a look at the volatile nature of Church politics.

Fidget went out and started to meet new contacts. He came across members of The Agents of the Queen (Arbonne faction) and made contact with Cutter.

Among Thieves

The high classers tracked down a stolen shipment of Indian goods belonging to Mr. Lockhart. In doing so, they allied themselves with a mysterious character known as “the Bandit.” The culprits of the crime were the masterful Briggs gang, who were working for an Indian immigrant who planned on shipping the goods back to his home country.