[IC]Prologue: The Beginning - Lima, March 1921

Using the 2018 remastered edition of Masks.

March 1921, Lima, Peru: A disparate group of academics and adventurers gather to assist Augustus Larkin's expedition to locate a pyramid long forgotten by history.

Years later a friendship forged in Peru will bring this group together again - can the investigators unravel the mysteries of the Carlyle Expedition massacre before it's too late?

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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Mr. Handy » Fri Aug 10, 2018 4:39 am

Image

Amy looks at the artifacts with fascination, but she isn't yet knowledgeable enough to tell much about them. While money wouldn't go amiss, she is far more interested in the possibility of making a great discovery. "These are amazing!" she says. "Are they Incan?" She has of course heard rumors of lost treasure of the Inca, to whom the last man to arrive seems to bear some resemblance. "Maybe this pyramid is where the Inca hid some of their wealth. Pizarro couldn't have found all of it."

Spoiler:
Archaeology roll (41% skill) about the artifacts:
Mr. Handy rolled 1d100 and got a total of 54:
54
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:17 pm

VashShotFirst wrote:"What's the deal with this guy?" She motions to Mendoza, asking Larkin "He seems to have some sort of problem. I'd ask him myself, but he doesn't seem to have the time of day form me."


Jesse Hughes chuckles quietly at Olivier's question, "Now that is a very good question."

De Mendoza glares at Olivier, he doesn't speak aloud, but mutters something under his breath which she imagines was very rude, though nothing worse than she'd heard a thousand times before back in Atlantic City. Larkin though just laughs, "Ah you must forgive my friend," he claps de Mendoza on the back, "Luis speaks very little English. Plus he dislikes cities intensely.

"Once we are up in the hills, then you will get to know the true Luis de Mendoza!"


Larkin laughs loudly at this and even de Mendoza smiles for a second, as he nods in agreement.

"Luis is truly invaluable though, being the fine figure of healthy that I am, I'd struggle to accomplish any of this without his assistance."

Mr. Handy wrote:"These are amazing!" she says. "Are they Incan?" She has of course heard rumors of lost treasure of the Inca, to whom the last man to arrive seems to bear some resemblance. "Maybe this pyramid is where the Inca hid some of their wealth. Pizarro couldn't have found all of it."


"I suspect the site to be much older than that Miss Lawrence, although it is certainly possible that the Incas may have been aware of it."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Mr. Handy » Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:26 am

Image

"That's even more interesting, Professor Larkin", says Amy. "The pyramid could belong to a precursor of the Incas, or maybe even a previously unknown civilization. I've always found it fascinating that disparate ancient cultures separated by long distances all built pyramidal structures. Of course, it could simply be the best shape to build something tall and stable before the invention of mortar."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby HelplessBystander » Sun Aug 12, 2018 3:02 am

John nodded along, squinting at the object every once in a while to show his interest.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Zero » Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:10 am

Atauchi's expression remained stoic as he continued to observe de Mendoza's behavior from his position across the table. When the other man did finally speak, the tracker turned an ear toward him in an effort to pick up what had been said, or at the very least to identify what tongue had been used.

Based on Larkin's remarks on his aide, it seemed plainly apparent that he held the man in high regard and believed him to be an integral part of the coming expedition. That would remain to be seen, after all, deeds said far more than words. Only time would reveal his true worth.

At the mention of a pre-Inca civilization, Atauchi's attention was drawn from the hostile aide to the young woman their host had referred to as Miss Lawrence for the first time. She was filled with plenty of enthusiasm and curiosity, two traits that would make his job of protecting her all the more difficult. Perhaps de Mendoza saw this in her as well. However, there was something vaguely familiar regarding such a prospect.

Spoiler:
Zero rolled 1d100 and got a total of 86:
86

Spoiler:
Zero rolled 1d100 and got a total of 95:
95
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Silver Priest » Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:24 pm

Marcus adds nothing, most of the discussion going over his head. Sure, he'd like to be as rich as Larkin claimed, but he remained skeptical. If the man had any real compelling evidence he wouldn't have needed to hire outsiders.

As the others eat and chat, he spares De Mendoza a glance. His antagonistic nature suggested could be trouble, and he made a note to watch him.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:53 am

Bar Cordano, Lima - Peru
8:10pm - Friday 18th March, 1921

Most of the excellent food is finished by now, and the meal has been an enjoyable experience despite the brooding hostility of de Mendoza. The host Augustus Larkin, and the American folklorist Jesse Hughes are both friendly and good humoured.

Larkin smiles at Amy and takes a sip of his wine, "I'm no professor I'm afraid, merely an enthusiastic amateur. But yes, I believe the pyramid to belong to a precursor civilisation in the Puno region, possibly an offshoot or outcasts from older settlements on what is now the Bolivian side of Lake Titicaca."

Luis de Mendoza continues to nod in agreement with everything that Larkin says, while Hughes asks, "How do you intend to travel to the pyramid site?"

"I have hired three trucks and drivers to transport all of us, plus some supplies as far as Puno," Larkin stops to mop his brow with a handkerchief, the evening humidity is affecting him more than most, "They are arranged for first thing on Monday morning, which is when we will depart."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby HelplessBystander » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:58 pm

"Is that all?" John said, slightly disappointed.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:37 pm

"Well no," replies Larkin.

"I plan to purchase pack animals and fresh food once we reach Puno. We'll need to travel overland to the site itself, the journey should take about three or four days."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Silver Priest » Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:11 pm

Spoiler:
Silver Priest rolled 1d100 and got a total of 37:
37


Though content to stay in the background, a good meal has made Marcus slightly more talkative. "Are you sure you're up for the trip? You don't look well at all." He asks Larkin bluntly.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:47 pm

"Oh I'll be fine, I'm the picture of good health," says Larkin with mock sincerity.

He laughs, "I'm afraid that I've never quite recovered from a bout of malaria, I should probably count my blessings to still be alive.

"I'll be fine after a day's rest, although I should be getting back to my hotel, It's been a long week for me."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby HelplessBystander » Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:19 am

Spoiler:
HelplessBystander rolled 1d100 and got a total of 86:
86


John, being nothing more than a simple layman, had completely missed any signs of illness.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Mr. Handy » Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:30 am

Image

"I've heard you never fully recover from malaria," says Amy with some sympathy, almost noticing something. "How high up is the site?" she asks, wondering if she'll need to do some climbing.

Spoiler:
Spot Hidden roll (60% skill) looking at Larkin:
Mr. Handy rolled 1d100 and got a total of 61:
61

I know I could spend a point of Luck, but I don't think it's worth in this case. I may need it later, and I wouldn't get a check anyway. Besides, someone else is bound to succeed.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Zero » Tue Aug 14, 2018 8:44 am

Atauchi returned his gaze to Larkin when the question had been raised about his health. He had little medical knowledge, but had to agree that the man did appear somewhat fatigued, though no more than anyone else at the table by his estimation. It was entirely possible that the man was merely unaccustomed to the heat and humidity of the region. Still, it would be prudent to keep him under closer observation for a time, the tracker surmised.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Tue Aug 14, 2018 10:52 am

Larkin nods in agreement, "I have good days and bad days, today is a bad one, but as I say it's been a busy week. I shall be able to rest fully during the weekend, as everything is in place now.

"As to the location of the site,"
he continues, "You understand of course that I cannot risk giving precise details until we are underway, but Lake Titicaca is a little over twelve thousand feet above sea level. The pyramid site is on a higher plateau, probably at about fourteen thousand feet.

Gesturing towards de Mendoza and Atauchi, Larkin says, "With the guidance of our experts though, we should be able to reach the site with pack animals. The farmer indicated that his grandfather found the pyramid by accident, so it shouldn't be too inaccessible."

With that Larkin drains the last of the wine from his glass and he and de Mendoza look ready to depart. He reaches for his wallet and places enough money on the table to cover the food and drinks and a generous tip.

"If it's okay with you all, I really should get some rest now.

"Enjoy a relaxing weekend in Lima, we shall see you outside the Hotel España at 8 o'clock sharp on Monday morning."


As Larkin and Luis de Mendoza leave the table, Jesse Hughes asks, "Would the rest of you like to join me for a drink? Get to know each other better?"

Looking at Amy with a smile, he says, "I believe I may already know your father; Professor Lawrence of Columbia University?"

OOC:   Amy has never met Jesse Hughes before. Her father has also never mentioned meeting him.  


Once the two expedition leaders have left Jesse asks those who've stayed for a drink, "So, how much do you believe of what we've just heard? Do you trust this Larkin?"
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby HelplessBystander » Tue Aug 14, 2018 1:58 pm

"Well, the alternative is to stay here in Peru and pretend to be cultured, so I would say I trust him only about as far as he's more interesting than the alternative; wild goose chase or not." John said, shrugging.
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:07 pm

Bar Cordano, Lima - Peru
8:15pm - Friday 18th March, 1921

"Perhaps," replies Hughes, "and what about the delightful Luis de Mendoza?"
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby VashShotFirst » Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:30 pm

"I'll always have a few drinks." states Olivier. As she orders and downs some as the conversation goes on.

In response to Jesse:"Eh, I'm willing to go along for now, nothing he's said sounds too outlandish." she says with a shrug. "Why? you don't believe him?"
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby Raiko » Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:39 pm

"No, I'm afraid that all is not as it seems and that Augustus Larkin is planning to lead you all into great danger."

He pauses for a second, to allow his words to sink in and then continues, "I am not Jesse Hughes, my real name is Jackson Elias.

"I have been researching for a book about secret societies here in Peru. In particular I've recently spent some time travelling around the area near Lake Titicaca looking for evidence of a death cult that may have operated in the region since the arrival of the conquistadors in the 16th century."


Elias takes a puff of his pipe and goes on, "While in Puno I was warned of a dangerous man named Luis de Mendoza, who the locals believed to be a 'kharisiri' - that is a kind of vampiric monster from local folklore that sucks the body fat from people."

Elias chuckles at that, "Obviously such monsters do not exist in reality, and the legends likely started with the arrival of the conquistadors, but it was continued links to stories of these kharisiri that first brought me to Peru. I believe that if the local death cult does exist, then they are using superstition and tales of these mythic monsters as a cover to conceal their very real crimes.

"So I made note of the name Luis de Mendoza - imagine my surprise when I crossed paths with de Mendoza here in Lima. I observed his activities and learned that he was working with one Augustus Larkin arranging to explore a long lost pyramid near to Puno.

"And Larkin was another name that I'd already come across in Puno..."
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Re: [IC]Prologue - Peru, March 1921

Postby HelplessBystander » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:08 am

“Great...golly darn me! This whole business with fake names, death cults, and mythical pyramids sounds like it’s a plot ripped straight outta one o’ those Pulp Magazines. This is simply too-too. Count me in!” John said in excitement, smiling.
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