Saturday, June 14th 1924: Honoring Thy Father.   Posted by The Keeper of Secrets.Group: 0
Jrodimus
 player, 27 posts
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 17:02
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 2):

As the pulled into the driveway, Mike gazed at the dilapidated estate. The wood shingled rotted away, the paint weathered and chipped away from neglect and the elements. Everything seemed to be brown with hints of maroon and red.

Blood in the mud.

Mike checked his revolver after he parked, and then pulled out a Lucky Strike and lit it. He got out of the Chevy, and looked at the estate. He remembered playing with the guys when they were kids in this great yard. The swing still hung on the Weeping Willow that stood near where the garden used to be. The white paint on the small fence had chipped and rotted away to brown. His memories of this place were bright and happy. But now the place felt foreboding. He hadn't spoken to Old Man Meredith since before the war. He wasn't sure how to approach him again after so long.

He turned to Clarke, "Well, it's been a long time. Now that I'm here I feel a bit ashamed of not visiting earlier. But the old man was always kind to us for the most part. I'm sure you remember."

Mike shrugged, "One foot over the other I suppose." He put his cigarette out, exhaling the smoke through his nose and gestured for them to approach the door.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 37 posts
 Heirloom Specialist
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 17:12
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 3):

"Who could forget?"

Clarke was only lying a little. He did remember. Vaguely. As if through a darkened curtain. He recollected becoming part of the trio even though he was a touch older and cycling up to the estate, imagining adventures, imagining seducing attractive woman who looked a little more like him, and a little less ... white.

He followed Mike towards the door, glancing slightly back to see if Zoe - his brain - had anything else to had about his thoughts. She didn't, he didn't. Rather, she was sprightly bouncing from one foot to another. Her monocle was still there, her face pointedly facing towards the mansion as it loomed larger and larger.

The weather-beaten door was close now.

This message was last edited by the player at 17:14, Wed 04 Oct 2017.

Jrodimus
 player, 28 posts
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 17:32
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 4):

April 18th, 1918. The Meredith Estate, Arkham.

Mike and Jack clinked their glasses of whiskey together with Jack's father while standing in the parlor of the Meredith household. "To good luck and Godspeed to you two!" Mr. Meredith finished his toast.

Both Mike and Jack wore their Army uniforms, complete with ribbons and badges they earned over the course of their training at Ft. Devens. Though they didn't volunteer for the service, the Selective Service Act of 1917 made sure that they didn't get left behind.

Jack laughed easily, "Don't worry, pop. We'll beat the Germans and be back before you even miss us!"

Though Mike was uneasy with the prospect of going to Europe, Jack seemed to delight in the thought of it. He was always the more adventurous of the two. In a way, he was probably relieved. Mike on the other hand was worried about his folks and their modest living at home. Even so, he was glad that he and Jack were at least going to be in it together.

Mr. Meredith downed his whiskey and poured another one. As he refilled their glasses he pointed two fingers at Mike, "You just make sure this young rabble rouser gets back in one piece."

Mike smiled genuinely. Mr. Meredith was a jovial man with a well manicured mustache that he was absurdly proud of. Though he was in fairly good shape for his age, he had gained a few pounds over the past few years.

"I'll do my best," Mike replied, raising his glass slightly. "Though it's more likely he'll be the one taking care of me."

Jack slapped him on the shoulder affectionately and chuckled light heartedly, "Mike you're a bigger man than I. I doubt that will be the case."

Mr. Meredith laughed a full deep laugh, the kind often heard from those who are nervously inebriated, "Just take care of each other you two. Make sure to write as often as you can, your mothers will be worried sick about you."

The two young men agreed earnestly, "Of course!"

"Well," Mr. Meredith began with a sigh, "I suppose we should head to the dining room. Jack's mother spent all day in the kitchen preparing for this dinner. It's bound to be heavenly!"

The three made their way to the dinner after filling their glasses one more time, laughing like the war was far away, never to darken their doors.

Now. Arkham.

Mike approached the door and hesitated. He looked over his shoulder at Clarke and Byron behind him, then shrugged and raised his hand and rapped on the door three times.

This message was last edited by the player at 17:33, Wed 04 Oct 2017.

The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 45 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 17:49
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 5):

There is a long delay after Mike knocks on the door, to the point that you think that no one may be a home. But eventually you hear the approaching clatter of footsteps. "I'm coming, I'm coming," says a muffled voice.

The door opens to reveal a mousy haired woman, short of stature and clad a crisp white nurses uniform. "I wasn't expecting any visitors. Can I help you?" she says, only opening the door a fraction.
Jrodimus
 player, 29 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 02:42
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 6):

Mike bowed his head slightly, "We apologize for showing up unannounced, Ma'am." He gestured to his friends, "We grew up with Jack and knew his family. We heard that Mr. Meredith had fallen ill and wanted to pay a visit." Mike dors his best  to smile charmingly.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 46 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 05:01
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 7):

"Charles will be so happy!" She says with a beaming smile as she ushers you inside. "Honestly, I didn't think he'd have any visitors. I mean so few came when Elizabeth passed away." The nurse leads you deeper into the house and up a sweeping staircase. "I apologize for the mess but most of the staff left a long time ago and I have to split my time between here and the hospital." She rattles on in the almost endless stream of someone who has few conversational partners. "But Charles isn't much work. He rarely gets out of bed anymore. Honestly I'm more of a maid then a nurse. I get his mail, cook his meals..."she prattles on.

She leads you to a large oak door where she stops and softly knocks. "Charles? You have visitors!" she says in a singsong voice. She opens the door and you greeted by a richly adorned room dominated by a large four-poster bed. Nestled in a pile of overstuffed pillows and satin sheets lies Charles Meredith. Time seems to have taken its toll on Jack's father, stooping his shoulders and whitening his mane of hair. Liver spots blotch his skin and his once strong frame has turned to sinew and bone.

"Who is it Jenny?" he says in a whispered rasp, gazing up from the photo album that lies open in his lap.
Jrodimus
 player, 30 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 08:06
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 8):

Mike stepped towards the bed, "Good afternoon, Mr. Meredith." He said hesitantly, "I'm glad to see you again. I apologize for not coming by sooner, but you know how business can make time run away from a man."

He peered at the old man, amazed at how hard times can render a man once so hardy into a mere husk of what he once was. He saw the photos in the album. Photos of Jack and Elizabeth. One with Jack in his uniform, taken the day of the going away dinner his mother had so painstakingly put together.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 47 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 08:37
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 9):

Following your gaze, Charles see you looking at the photos of his family. With a sigh he closes the album and sets it aside. "I have no idea how you found out but I suppose it was inevitable. I'll admit, I'm surprised to see you three after so long". His frail hands pluck at the heavy blanket that is covering him. "I always knew it would end this way, I just didn't want to believe it." The feeling of sorrow emanating from this man is almost palpable.

"We are all alone in the end..."

This message was last edited by the GM at 08:41, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

trahernwithglasses
 player, 38 posts
 Heirloom Specialist
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 13:48
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 10):

Clarke rested his hands just over his belt. He maintained a sober expression. It was one he had designed over the years to convey neutrality: expressing nothing except what the speaker wished to read into it.

His gaze flicked around the room - noticing the large windows they could use to escape and the heavy chairs they'd need to rapidly break them. The rest of the ornate furniture offered little in the way of assistance except as maybe makeshift ropes to break their fall, or barriers to be propped up in an engaged firefight.

Zoe sat in one of the dustier chairs, leaning forward and then leaning back. She stood up. "So this is what codgers look like when they get old. Not so impressive, are you now?" She spat on the floor and flicked her hair back.

"You tell Byron about it? The time you overheard this ass spitting his racist diatribes against us lazy Arabs? How we lacked ingenuity? And how he hated his son associating with us type? Obviously couldn't tell Mike; him and Jack were too close."

She strode towards the bed and made a gun gesture from her left hand. "Blam!" she mimicked. "Blam motherfucker. Blam. We fought in the war so you could die in your bed."

Clarke shook his head slightly, to say no to Zoe's question. His fingers itched for his cards. They made a small riffle motion.

Zoe got on the bed. "Look at you now ancient bastard," she yelled, her hands raised to the ceiling. "Your son lost, your wealth in tatters, your life decimated. And here I am, under Allah, under the god of gods, with the power to grant you peace. Get on your knees." She leaned down and cupped a hand under his chin. "Get down and grovel to us for making you rich. For keeping you safe. For us dying, crying and bleeding under the Eastern sun."

"Beg you Occidental Dog!"

"I'm sorry I couldn't come sooner as well," Clarke said. "It was just, well, the" the word 'Egypt' got stuck in Clarke's throat, "campaign lasted longer than I thought. Only got back recently. Heard Jack has had some rough times too since arriving home."

This message was last edited by the player at 13:57, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 48 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 14:09
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 11):

Tears fill the old man's eyes. "Jack was a good boy," he croaks. Unconsciously his hand drifts towards the closed album. "Oh and how Elizabeth did love him so. I always told her not to coddle the boy but she couldn't help it. She was never the same after he left for Europe. She.." He is cut off by a hacking cough the wracks his frail frame. Jenny rushes forwards with a small bedpan and Charles spits and cancerous looking clot into it and she gently wipes his mouth.
trahernwithglasses
 player, 39 posts
 Heirloom Specialist
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 14:18
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 12):

Clarke crouched down so he could meet Meredith's eyes at the same level. Zoe rolled her eyes and shook her head as he did it.

"Mr. Meredith, no one knew what the war was going to be like. How much destruction it would bring to not only on those who fought, but the families affected. If anything happened here, it's not your fault."
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 49 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 14:33
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 13):

Charles' unfocused eyes shift to you but only for a few moments before they moves on. Strangely, his gazes seems to settle over your shoulder, off towards the back of the room. Clarke thinks to himself that maybe Charles' mind has finally failed him. Are we just wasting our time here? he wonders. A small gasp from Zoe startles you. Clarke turns his head to see her staring at Charles in shock... And he is staring back!

"Who are..." Charles begins but is once again by chest rattling coughing fit. Once it passes, he seems to have forgotten entirely about Zoe as he attention has come back to his son's childhood friends.

This message was last edited by the GM at 14:37, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

Jrodimus
 player, 31 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 14:37
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 12):

Mike placed a gentle hand on the old man's shoulder as he recovered from his fit, "Jack was always the best of us in a way. You and Mrs. Meredith raised him well. He loved you both."

He grimaced, both at the state of Old Man Meredith and the tearing of his heart at what to say next. He swallowed the stone in his throat. "Mr. Meredith, we're going to the cabin up North. But we need an address and directions. It's for Jack."

This message was last edited by the GM at 14:39, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 50 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 14:42
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 15):

"For Jack? Charles asks seemingly genuinely mystified. "I... I don't understand..." Mike can feel a slight tremor building within Charles and can almost see the next fit forming.

This message was last edited by the GM at 15:02, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

Jrodimus
 player, 32 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 15:56
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 16):

Mike squeezed the old man's shoulder gently.

He thinks his son is dead. Jesus, we all did, didn't we?

He took in the room. The large bed holding the frail shell of a man, the windows and their wooden frames. The hardwood floor and the chair in the corner. He turned to Clarke and Byron, his red rimmed eyes beseeching them for support.

He cleared his throat and said huskily, "We're going up there to honor him. To put the war behind us and to remember the better times. One last hurrah for the old gang." He pats the old man's shoulder affectionately, "For our families."

Suddenly filled with fatigue he sits next to the bed and rubs his eyes.

One last hurrah. Into the mud.
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 51 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 16:18
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 17):

"You know they burned him..." whispers Charles. "Said there was some sort of mix up at the morgue. Wrong body got sent to the incinerator." The words seem to be ripped from his soul, diminishing him with each syllable. "The coroner didn't even finish the autopsy." Another coughing spasm seizes him and its minutes before he can continue. "I can't even bury my own son..."He seems to fade away, the last of his energy expended as he sinks into the oversized bed. With one shaking hand he gestures for Jenny to approach and whispers something in her ear. She nods in understanding and looks towards you.

"All this excitement has worn Charles out. He told me to give you a key to the cabin and some directions." She begins to usher you out of the room like a mother duck.

As Mike is about to softy shut the door behind him, Charles stirs. "I hate you Mike," he rasps, the intensity of his gaze freezing you in place. "You went to Europe with my son. You were supposed to take care of him." He breathing sounds like little more than a death rattle although his eyes shine in their intensity. "Yet you came back and he didn't. And I will always hate you for that..." As suddenly as he began Charles stops, seemingly in a deep slumber.
Jrodimus
 player, 33 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 17:14
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 18):

Mike stood staring at the slumbering old man feeling like the wind got knocked out of him. Tears welled in his eyes. He didn't want to lie to the old man, but he didn't want to stir up any hopes. Hell Mike didn't even know if Jack was alive.

Though it seemed Jack was still alive, it was probably better that Old Man Meredith didn't know. Throughout the war, Mike and Jack kept each other alive, watched each others backs. But watching Jack's soul unfurl after bearing witness to the horrors, his inclinations becoming more and more deviant, his demeanor more savage despite the intelligence burning within him. It was like a demon consumed the soul of his friend and comrade.

But the demon got inside all of us.

Mike felt his viscera shift as he gazed at the old man. Anger boiling up suddenly. He gripped the door knob in a death vice, then exhaled.

He closed the door gently and looked at Jenny. "I guess we'll be leaving after we get the directions and key then."
novissimo
 player, 13 posts
Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 17:30
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 18):

“Quit sad to see him in such a state” Byron said aloud. He almost choked on his words. He not only recalled the robust man that Mr Meredith once was but he also was reminded of his own father growing ill and dying suddenly.

He felt drained from lack of good sleep as well as from his panic attack from earlier in the day.

He also felt severe revulsion of the sick and dying, despite what Mr Meredith meant to him. He could barely stand to be in the same room as Mr.Meredith in that state.

Despite his fascination with the after life and his experience in the war, he was never comfortable around the biological aspects of death.

The day was rough going and was liable to get worse.  He would have to find some inner well of strength to pull through what would likely soon be a tremendous experience.

This message was last edited by the player at 17:32, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 52 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 01:02
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to novissimo (msg # 20):

Seemingly unfazed by the old man's failing health or perhaps immune to it from so much time in his company, Jenny natters away happily about local gossip. Once you reach the foyer, she rummages through a side table, removing a large key and a small pad of paper on which she writes directions to the cabin. "I'm sorry Charles isn't in a better mood. He's been that way since he got the news a week ago. Poor man, first his wife and then his son." She makes a soft tutting sound.

"What are you gentlemen planning to do up there? It's awfully nice for you to be honoring Jack." she asks as she writes. After a few short moments she holds out the directions and the key.
Jrodimus
 player, 34 posts
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 03:06
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 21):

Only a week ago? What's going on here?

Mike took the key and directions from Jenny with a smile trying to hide his surprise. "Well we planned to reminisce and remember Jack. We figured the old cabin would be a good place to put his memory to rest."
The Keeper of Secrets
 GM, 53 posts
 Harbinger of Doom
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 05:01
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 22):

"Ah that sounds lovely," Jenny says with a smile. "Nobody in Arkham seems like they could be bothered to care. And I'm sure Charles is happy that at least someone is honoring Jack's memory."

Looking at the directions, Mike figures that it's about 4 hours from Arkham to the cabin. If you left now, you could get there just before night fall.
Jrodimus
 player, 35 posts
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 05:28
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to The Keeper of Secrets (msg # 23):

"Thank you Jenny, for everything." He gestured around the old run down house. He turned to Clarke and Byron, "We could head out now and make it there before nightfall or wait until tomorrow morning. What do you guys think?"
trahernwithglasses
 player, 40 posts
 Heirloom Specialist
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 16:57
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 24):

Clarke couldn't help himself, he had his cards out again and was shuffling them. His hands had moved of their own accord, almost as if they had a mind of their own.

"Now?" he said. "I think Jack would appreciate a night time reminiscence more than a day one."
Jrodimus
 player, 36 posts
Sat 7 Oct 2017
at 07:40
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to trahernwithglasses (msg # 25):

Mike nodded, "I agree. I'd just have to let Shelley know we're leaving early. What do you think Byron?"
novissimo
 player, 14 posts
Sat 7 Oct 2017
at 15:29
Saturday, June 14th, 1924: Honoring Thy Father
In reply to Jrodimus (msg # 26):

Byron blinks vacantly. "We should go to Maine. It seems we have everything."

Byron feels the dread creeping into the back of his mind again. He pauses and turns away as he wrenches his eyes closed to focus on suppressing his foreboding.

Despite his fascination with researching the super-natural, he can barely contain his vague but dark premonitions of what may come.

"The faster we get to the bottom of this, the better it will be on all counts" Byron says breathlessly and rapidly.