- John - Keeper
- Todd - “Skinny Larry” Simons, Inventor and jazz musician
Scott - Ritter Gunter von Stiglitz, former German POW
- Cyle - Aaron Winters, Occultist
- Tom - Oxford “Ox” Sykes, chemist and well-to-do ne’er-do-well
- Eric - Gerald “Gentleman Jerry” O’Shea, former bare-knuckles boxer
While others spent their time caring for their injuries and reading from Walter Corbitt’s three journals, Ox took a trip to Roxbury Sanitorium to check in on Vitorio and Gabriella Marcarios - two of the most recent tenants of Arnold Knott’s house. Vitorio had quite taken leave of his senses, and every response was punctuated with the phrase, “Evil!”, or a gesture towards his bible and a comment regarding the truths it held. His room was decorated with cheap knock-off crosses. He commented that his children had “Drank the evil”.
The wife, Gabriella, was a lot more lucid, and spoke of the evils that dwell in the Knott house (hereafter referred to as the “Corbitt House”). She admitted that she could not say whether or not she really belonged in the asylum. The two children had gone south to live in Baltimore. Both of the married couple commented on a “Dark form with blazing eyes”. Gabriella related that dishes had flown through the air of their own volition, smashing against the wall or floor.
The journals provided the insight that Corbitt was in general a mean, nasty individual.
- 1835 - earliest entry
- Home was purchase from a sick, infirm man
- 1852 - sued by neighbors for being a terrible neighbor
- Corbitt won the lawsuit for lack of compelling evidence, mostly hearsay
- He joined the church, which seemed to be an actual building
- Spoke of occult experiments in the “Chapel of Contemplation”
- A ritual to “Summon forth the opener of ways”
- 1866 - last entry
- Several blank pages at the end
With these new findings in hand, the investigators visited the public library and the Department (Registry) of Records. They gleaned the name of Corbitt’s legal representative in the court case, one William Parr, Esq. Visiting the cramped office of Parr’s grandson, they requested he pull out any old ledgers with information on the case from 1852.
The Corbitt House was built in 1833.
The Civil Court Recorder revealed the Church of Contemplation was led by the Reverend Michael Thomas.
The executor of Wills provided no useful information regarding Corbitt, but the Records Registry had information about churches! The Chapel of Contemplation closed in 1912, and its address was provided.
The group visited the address to find old, burned, weathered ruins, inside which an odd symbol was painted (?) upon one of the walls. (three joined “Y”s with a central eye). Two party members narrowly avoided falling into the basement by nimbly jumping aside, with help. Climbing down a rope, the party discovered a pair of skeletons in ancient, threadbare, silken purple robes, and a cabinet upon the wall.
The two men seemed to have died from smoke inhalation.
The cabinet revealed some moldy church records and another journal penned by Corbitt which mostly regarded the workings of the church. Disassembling the cabinet’s lower portion revealed a musty tome, the Libre Ivonis. Portions had rotten away, and what remained had been hand-scribed in Latin. The buzzing in Jerry’s head - which all had experienced - intensified, so he retired up the rope and to the vehicle parked out front.
Upon vacating the premises, Jerry used a call-box to alert the police about the two skeletons and the danger of the structure, should one enter it without caution.
Ox’s favorite high-end dry cleaners employed a man who recognized the old garments, many years ago they were brought for cleaning by … Reverend Michael Thomas.
A second visit to William Parr III, Esq. revealed more information of interest, a police raid in 1912 had been the incident that closed the Chapel of Contemplation. The Reverend Michael Thomas had been arrested, though records were evasive regarding the charges.
The reporter for the Boston Globe that had written a short article about the skeletons deserved a visit; George Wilson, a younger man, asked for any follow-up information the party could relate as he seemed fascinated by the history.
The next five or six days were spent healing, and Jerry purchased a gardener’s spray can and several roadside flares.
Upon re-entering the Corbitt House, the investigators went directly to the basement door. Aaron and Jerry went down, followed by Larry. Jerry rushed to the small, five-foot space he had uncovered a week prior, whose rear wall was a wooden door or wall, and proceeded to spray the area - including a dozen or two large rats - with kerosene. He noted a brief, odd, mental haze but was dead-set upon completing his plan. Striking a flare into brilliant red flame, he tossed it into the…closet (?), casually roasted the scuttling vermin that had caused him so much pain.
Watching with satisfaction, he stomped the skulls of two that scampered about on the stone floor. Without warning, Aaron buried about three inches of the pointed tip of the pick-axe between Jerry’s shoulder blades.
With the slightest exchange of angry words, Jerry proceeded to coat the rear wooden wall of the closet (?) with more kerosene. When Aaron grabbed his arm, Jerry shrugged, struck a second flare with his free hand, and tossed it underhand against the rear wooden wall, which was by now kerosene coated, noting a couple of still-twitching rats. The wooden paneling burst readily into flame.
Gasping as the pain (and realization of betrayal) hit him, Jerry placed the sprayer - a metal can with two handles and a pump on top, and a hose with a trigger, upon the stone floor and limped to the staircase and up the steps, noting the old rug that Larry and Ox had spread out upon the rickety steps, passing Larry, who descended the wobbly stairs.
Jerry sought out Ox, who had acquired Aaron’s rifle from the trunk of the car out front. Unable to treat himself due to the position of the deep gash, he pleaded with Ox for help, who patched him up. Breathing heavily he re-entered the house and leaned against the wall of the hallway outside the kitchen, while down in the basement, the scorched wooden wall was sundered by Aaron, at Ox’s behest.
A small hole revealed a withered, nude male figure lying upon a crude altar. Aaron sought to fire a round into it, but his long gun was missing its firing pin. Instead, he fired Larry’s Colt Handgun, hitting it. It lay, unmoving. They tore down enough scorched wood to gain entry.
As they examined the dessicated corpse, they noted a chain about its neck and little else. Suddenly, it reached out to Ox, circling his throat with its wickedly sharp nails! Blood oozed between its bony fingers as Aaron placed the revolver to the dead man’s temple, pulled the trigger, and its head exploded in a cloud of mold, dust, and bone.
Walter Corbitt…or what had once been Walter Corbitt…was no more.