Chapter 100 – Research Team 7

21 02 2009

(CloudsAreGatheringOverMe)

I’m not really sure what to think now.

We’d made up our minds to visit Steamburg. I like Steamburg. We went there on holiday once when I was twelve, and I loved the place. If it wasn’t for the possibility of being arrested or killed, I’d have been really looking forward to going back there.

It wasn’t difficult to find 15 Ferris Drive. We weren’t sure what we were going to find there, but what we certainly weren’t expecting was for the house to be unlocked and deserted, and completely empty apart from a small table in a room at the back, under which we found a small black box with a red button on top, and a piece of card bearing the name “Bradley Turner” and the instructions to press the button and put her eye to the lens, with the request that this be done somewhere private, rather than in the house itself.

So far, so weird. We were just discussing what to do about the box when we heard the front door open. We all froze, listening, and heard the sound of footsteps going down the hall. Iaru reached for his sword in his bag, but Tom caught his hand and shook his head, and motioned for us to follow him along the side of the room. There was a large low window at the back, and we opened it and climbed out. Then we ran and ran and ran, and didn’t stop until we were back in Tom’s car.

Tom drove us out to the countryside and Bradley pressed the red switch down and put her eye to the lens. At once, the side of the box lit up like a screen, and words appeared on it. It addressed all five of us by name, and said that we should all pay attention, because the message would only play once.

The message requested that we don’t make all the information it contained publicly available, but it included:

  • The information that the message was indeed from Research Team 7.
  • An apology to Bradley for the incident in America.
  • The proposal that we give them the clef in exchange for information and protection.
  • The correct spelling of “clef”.
  • Directions to a place where we can meet with Research Team 7.
  • The warning to beware of an organisation called the Network of Allies, who are also after the clef.
  • An additional warning to beware of “shadow creatures”, such as the one that attacked us at the farm.

After the message finished, it advised us to place the box on the floor and stand back, which we did. We soon found out why: there was a small bang, the casing cracked, and a great deal of smoke came out of the box.

The question now is whether to trust them enough to meet up with them. They seem to be going out of their way to make themselves seem trustworthy, but they admit to being Research Team 7, who are the one organisation we were certain we couldn’t trust.

So… now what?

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Chapter 60 – Mictlantecuhtli – my thoughts

28 11 2008

(johnny07)

So, I’m assuming everyone heard about the latest body that was found with an “m” on his head on Tuesday? That one wasn’t far from here at all.

In the letter that was in the news, it said that the victims had been claimed by Mictlantecuhtli, “the god of death”, which is why everyone thinks the murders were committed by some kind of cult.

I’ve done a bit of research into that name. Mictlantecuhtli, Lord of Mictlan. He was the Aztec god who ruled over the depths of the underworld, where the bones of the dead lay. He was a skeletal figure with huge, wide eyes, and was often depicted as bloodstained or wearing a necklace of eyeballs. Charming, no?

His wife was Mictecacihuatl, the skull-faced Lady of the Dead. He was associated with owls, spiders, bats and dogs (dogs accompanied souls to the underworld).

The letter in the papers claims that Mictlantecuhtli is a benevolent god, but the stories I’ve been reading make him sound vindictive and malicious. He was worshipped largely out of fear, and the Aztecs would offer human sacrifices to keep him happy. Granted, the Aztecs seem to have been fond of human sacrifices, but all the same, he doesn’t seem to have been a very nice guy.

Interesting though that was, it doesn’t tell us anything about who is committing the murders. Clearly not someone who is mentally stable. Nobody in their right mind believes that an actual god is claiming these people. Even if I was remotely religious, which I’m not, the murders showed obvious signs of being committed by a human. The culprit or culprits obviously made an effort to cover their tracks, but they can’t hide the fact that the victims died of strangulation and stabbing, for example. And I somehow doubt that a god would use a marker pen.

I guess the most likely explanation is that the murders are being committed by a cult, or maybe one fanatic. Perhaps the murders are actually sacrifices, and the “m” on their foreheads is a signal to Mictlantecuhtli? But that doesn’t explain the letter. If you’re going to engage in cult rituals, why risk blowing your cover by sending a letter to the press and telling the world what you’re up to? It seems more like an egotistical gesture than anything.

This whole thing really bothers me. I mean, is it safe to even leave the house? Who knows what kind of nutters are out there? As it is, I never really did much socially in the evenings, but now every time I even go outside I’m scared, like some psycho could be waiting around every corner with a knife and a marker pen.





Chapter 59 – Murder

26 11 2008

(bizzariarox)

i suppose you heard about mictlantecuhtli’s latest attack yesterday? i was the one who found the body.

it had been a good day up until that point. i’d stopped by at the odd jobs agency on my way back from a game of football i’d been playing with iaru and his mates, and i saw this request for a single delivery, that said it was urgent, to be made to a house in forest floor, under tree top town. that’s not far from where i live, so i thought, why the hell not? 20€ just for delivering a parcel!

so i took the bus home as usual, but instead of stopping there, i headed on to forest floor. i’d forgotten just how dark it gets there in the evenings. it took me a little while to find the house in the dark, but i found it, and delivered the parcel successfully. i turned to hurry back so as to catch the last bus to south dock, but i took a wrong turn down one of the streets and wound on the edge of the woods. i was going to just turn back, but then i spotted this figure slumped against a tree. i thought it might be someone hurt, so i just went to have a look. i saw it was a man, and that he wasn’t moving, so i called out, “are you ok?” he didn’t react at all, and then i got closer and realised the guy had a little black “m” on his forehead.

that was the most surreal moment ever. for a moment, i thought it couldn’t be real, you know? like i was imagining it or something. and then i panicked. i straightened up, looked around, and ran. i didn’t stop running until i was out from under tree top town and back in the open. then i called the police, and told them what i’d seen.

it was hard to get the words out. i think i was in shock. then of course they wanted a full explanation of everything, what was i doing there, did i see anything suspicious, etc. so it was a while before i could go home, and i was exhausted by that point. i had to hand my proof-of-delivery slip thingy in today, cause the agency was closed by the time i was done talking to the police.

why does everything crazy seem to happen around me? i mean, am i being punished for something? do i have bad karma?

everyone at school has wanted to discuss what happened. normally i’d be the first to tell everyone about such an exciting tale, but i’m so tired today, and i’m really not in the mood for people being morbid. as far as i can tell, i’m lucky to be alive myself. if the killer had still been around, they could have been really close by. the whole experience was scary as hell.

need sleepp now…. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz





Chapter 49 – Driving Lessons

7 11 2008

(johnny07)

I had my first driving lesson today, first thing after school. I was pretty nervous about it, because I’ve never driven a car before.

My driving instructor was a tall, laid-back seeming guy. He kept telling me that I needed to relax, so I guess my nervousness was showing.

To my relief, he started by running me through the basics – what does what, how the clutch works, that kind of thing – and preparing to drive, remembering to check the doors, the handbrake, the seat, the seatbelt, the steering wheel and the mirrors first. Then he got me to actually drive a short distance, which was frankly terrifying, but obviously he wasn’t going to let me do anything stupid, and it was fine. He specifically chose an area where there weren’t many cars about, which I guess is standard practice for first time learners.

So I guess these lessons aren’t going to be so bad after all.





Chapter 22 – About last Friday…

15 09 2008

(johnny07)

Thanks for the concern, guys. I thought you might like an update on the whole oh-my-god-someone-tried-to-break-into-my-house thing.

I know what I did was insanely stupid. I could have been killed. Or I could have killed the burglar, for that matter, swinging the bat around like a lunatic, and then I don’t know what I’d have done. But I wasn’t thinking, I was absolutely terrified, and I just did what made sense to me at the time.

We got the window completely fixed on the day, so if anyone was planning their own break in, you missed the opportunity. Not that you’d have much luck, anyway, since it isn’t a very big window, and it’s on the second floor. Which of course, makes the whole thing all the more baffling. You’d think they’d go for the larger window; that way they’d have more chance of squeezing through it.

Anyway, I guess we may never know what they were after. Point is, it’s over now. Thank goodness.





Chapter 21 – Burgled!

12 09 2008

(johnny07)

Last night, we were burgled. Well, someone attempted to burgle our house, but “Attempted Burglary!” wouldn’t have made for such a snappy title.

I woke up in the night, and there was this shadowy hand, reaching in through my bedroom window. For a moment I thought I must be dreaming or imagining it, but then I realised what must be happening and I was absolutely terrified.

The hand reached for something on the windowsill and I said, “Oi!”, and was answered by this weird sound, more like a hiss than anything else. Then the hand snatched up a paperweight off the desk and threw it at me. I just barely caught it, then I picked up my baseball bat and hit the hand with it as hard as I could. The hand withdrew. I looked out the window, but there was nobody there, just an empty street. As you can imagine, I was pretty freaked out. I checked the window, and the frame around the lock was all warped, like someone had tried to melt through it. Weird thing is, it wasn’t wide enough for a person to fit through, so I think they must have been trying to take something off the windowsill.

Anyway, I told the police the whole story. We’re having a new lock fixed on the window even as I type this. I’ve also moved everything off the windowsill and put it somewhere safer.

But as you can imagine, I’m still a bit freaked out, and really, really tired.