Signs Writ in Scarlet

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Details

Sacraments of Evil

Pages: 30

Author(s): Kevin A. Ross

Artist(s): John T. Snyder, Tom Kalichack (maps)

Setting: 1890s

Appears in: Sacraments of Evil

Summary

Investigator's attentions are drawn to a series of brutal, possibly ritualistic murders in London's East End - Jack the Ripper's old hunting grounds.

Links

Spoilers - Keepers Eyes Only

Players should not read any further.

Synopsis

 Spoiler Section (Highlight to Read)
The scenario begins when, in the last five nights, three lower-class workers are found dead in the streets of London's East End, with geometric symbols carved into their bodies. The responsible for these deaths is Joan Bayldon, an employee at the Malbray Asylum for the Insane. The Asylum director, Dr. Alexander Vandorff, was using Joan as a guinea pig for his experiments with the Liao drug, which sends the consciousness of its user backward in time. The last experiment sent Joan's mind billions of years back, driving her insane, and drawing the attention of a Hound of Tindalos.

Now Joan is on the loose, haunting the streets of East End. She kills and carves angular symbols on the bodies as an offering for the hound, in return for her own life. The police, the populace, Dr. Vandorff's "orderlies", and Dr. Christopher Blessing, Vandorff's assistant, are all looking for Joan, and the hound is coming closer by the minute.


References

Player Handouts:

  • Newspaper article describing the first murder, dated October 20, 189-;
  • Newspaper article describing the second murder, dated October 23, 189-;
  • From a Vienna newspaper dated May 13, 1879;
  • Selected passages from Ludvig Prinn's Mysteries of the Worm;
  • A passage from the Mesnard edition of Hermes Trismegistus;
  • From Dr. Vandorff's patient records on Billy Ashworth;
  • From Dr. Vandorff's patient records on Joan Bayldon.

Locations: London, England.

Creatures: Hound of Tindalos, Spawn of Ubbo-Sathla.

Tomes and Artifacts: Mysteries of the Worm, Mesnard edition of Hermes Trismegistus, Liao drug.

Comments

The following data is included for use in this scenario but may also be useful somewhere else:

  • Statistics for 8 East End Toughs, Thieves and Thugs;
  • Statistics for 8 East End Prostitutes;
  • Statistics for 8 Typical Metropolitan Police Constables;
  • Statistics for 8 Typical Vigilantes;
  • Statistics for a human de-evolving into a Spawn of Ubbo-Sathla;
  • Statistics for a Hound of Tindalos;
  • Map of Whitechapel and environs;
  • Detailed description of London's East End daily life in the 1890s;
  • Description of how inquests were conducted during the 1890s;
  • Description and statistics to obtain the Liao drug.

The scenario contains two new spells:

  • Prinn's Crux Ansata details the construction of a very powerful magical artifact used to banish any non-deity Mythos being.
  • The Baneful Dust of Hermes Trismegistus burns the flesh of any extraterrestrial creature.

There is also an optional rule allowing the investigators to learn these spells at an accelerated rate in order to conclude the scenario successfully.

Keeper Comments

Scotland Yard's Inspector Martin Cleveland and Detective Sergeant John Craig, who are responsible for the investigation in this scenario, also conduct the investigations described in The Eyes of a Stranger. This can be used as a tie for a gaslight-era mini-campaign.

This is a complex scenario, recommended for experienced keepers and players. There are several NPCs, with different agendas, all having their own activities as the scenario progresses. At least one of the antagonists is extremely powerful.