Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

December 1880. The characters are tasked to assist in the case of a suspected haunting by a recently murdered landowner on Dartmoor. Investigations will drag them into a confrontation with an ancient horror, and a terrible curse.

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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Philulhu » Sat Sep 29, 2018 6:56 am

”We will talk to the Police, to see what progress they have made,” said Captain FitzWilliam, in what he hoped was a reassuring tone.

”Why do you think that your husband’s killers may be among the local people? Has he made enemies in the local community?”
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Raiko » Sat Sep 29, 2018 2:08 pm

Upstairs...

Image
Melody is almost relieved to be taken up into the servants' quarters in the attic - she understands well how to remain quietly in the background when Dr. Campbell is in polite company, but is sure that she would commit some dreadful faux pas if she were to act above her station.

She looks around the small room and smiles warmly at Mary, she is used to people staring, especially on the doctor's trips outside London - and after her childhood in Limehouse she knows all too well that having a roof over her head makes her one of he lucky ones.

She introduces herself to Mary and asks, "Perhaps you'll 'ave time to show me around later?"

...and Downstairs

Now is probably a really good time to remain quiet, thinks Melody as she listens to Lady Allingham talking with the rest of the society. She looks at the painting above the fireplace, such a fierce man would be hard to work for, I wonder which servants discovered the Lord's body. Melody glances around the room to see which servants are present.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby HoneyDog » Sat Sep 29, 2018 3:45 pm

Spoiler:
Mary nods. “Of course!” she exclaims. “But I think the Mistress will give you and yours the run of the house anyway. She’s been in an awful state since Sir William died. No doubt you’ll dine with us this evening.” She is called, and hurries away.


Spoiler:
Melody sees the butler and housekeeper in attendance.


Lady Amanda turns to the Captain. “They hated him, the villagers” she snarls. William was progressive in the changes he wanted to make. He wanted to make the farms and smallholdings more productive, but he was resisted at every turn. Those backwards fools couldn’t understand that we need to change with the times. They can’t just continue as they have forever.” She slumps back in her chair.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Rooter » Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:12 pm

"Quite so," Percy agrees. "This has been a terrible time for your family, Lady Allingham, and you have my sympathy. Now, from what you say of the circumstances it seems one of the villagers is a likely suspect. But given the nature of our society which you have asked for aid, I presume you have some other theory? Mr. Shearer mentioned you had an idea the old boy is still around in the spirit, as it were. And I'm sure you've heard this talk of a curse."
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Mr. Handy » Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:14 pm

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"Is there anyone among the villagers you suspect in particular, milady?" asks Alexander. "Do they have a leader?"
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby HoneyDog » Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:37 pm

Lady Amanda raises herself and fixes Percy with a ferocious glare.

“Old boy? How dare you sir!”

Lady Amanda is livid with rage, and storms from the room, barely in control of herself.

Spoiler:
? Seriously?
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Philulhu » Sat Sep 29, 2018 6:29 pm

Captain FitzWilliam rolled his eyes. ”Well done, Mr Stringer,” he said drily.

”Lady Allingham is of landed gentry,” he explained patiently. ”You can’t address her as you would speak to a barrow boy down the East End.” FitzWilliam stood and said to the Butler, ”Please convey our most sincere apologies to her Ladyship. If and when she is ready to talk, perhaps one or two of us may speak to her again?” He looked pointedly to Percy, to make it clear that he thought that the reporter would not be one of that number.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Raiko » Sat Sep 29, 2018 7:27 pm

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Oh dear Mr Stringer, thinks Melody, that's why I'm glad to be quietly stood back here.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Rooter » Sun Sep 30, 2018 9:13 am

"Lady Allingham is clearly overwrought," Percy replies defensively. "Though I confess I am more used to dealing with the patrons of London's more, ah, scurrilous gentlemen's clubs than the nobility in my work. Ah, well. Perhaps she'll calm down and we'll see her at dinner."
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Philulhu » Sun Sep 30, 2018 10:43 am

”She’s overwrought because her husband has just been murdered!” snapped Captain FitzWilliam, his colour rising. ”Perhaps you would do well to excuse yourself from dinner, to give her ladyship time to recover. You’ll be lucky if she just doesn’t send you back to London on the first train!”

He shook his head and looked to the rest of the party to see if they had anything to say.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby aine » Sun Sep 30, 2018 6:22 pm

Isolde shakes her head gently, "The gentry are a different breed to us mortals; I should know having been governess in several families. Indeed, think of them almost as immortal; maybe not the individual but certainly the family, the name, their place in the landscape and in history.
Speak only when you are spoken to and then with deference. I should think Mr Stringer might consider feeling under the weather tonight; we could make your excuses."
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Mr. Handy » Sun Sep 30, 2018 8:49 pm

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Alexander keeps his mouth shut. Melody has the right of it, he thinks. Better to say nothing than to say the wrong thing.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby HoneyDog » Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:36 am

The butler, who had hurried out after Lady Amanda’s dramatic exit, returns and announces his mistress, who appears to have calmed down. She resumes her seat and addresses the companions, but her voice is cold.

“Owing to the fact that I am pressed for time, I am forced to retain your services. But I will not be insulted again. You sir!” she says to Percy, with iron in her voice. “You will refer to my late husband respectfully or not at all! Is that clear?”
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Rooter » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:06 am

"Indeed, I apologize for my poor choice of words, Lady Allingham," Percy replies contritely. "Different worlds and all that. I assure you I am as anxious as anyone here to see your husband's killers brought to justice. Please proceed with your instructions."
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby HoneyDog » Mon Oct 01, 2018 3:46 pm

Lady Amanda nods. “Thank you Mr. Stringer she says. “I accept your apology. Now, I would like to give you a clearer idea of why your society in particular was asked to help. We’ll have dinner soon, and I’d rather not discuss these matters in front of my daughter, so if you have any pressing questions please ask them now, not at dinner.” She pauses.

“As I said, the police have been no help, so I must take matters into my own hands. I am sure that the killer or killers are not far from us, and once they have been brought to justice, then William will be able to know final rest.”

She hesitates, then carries on. “Since his murder, just over a week ago, strange events have been occurring here.” She gathers her shawl around herself. “For example, doors and windows which were barred at night have been found unfastened and wide open in the morning. Objects and furniture in the rooms have been rearranged. The servants can attest to this; some have sat up all night in attempts to catch the prowler, but have seen nothing. I believe it is William. It must be!”

A far-off look has entered her eyes. “He cannot pass on to the Other Side until his soul knows peace, and so his restless spirit is with us. You must help me contact him! He will be able to tell us whom his tormenters were! We can bring his murderers to justice!” Her voice rises, she seems on the edge of hysteria.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Philulhu » Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:14 pm

Despite himself, Captain FitzWilliam felt a shiver run down his spine. He thought himself a pragmatic man but he found Lady Allingham’s recounting of events disturbing. He glanced across at Isolde and wondered how she would respond.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Raiko » Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:42 pm

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Melody's eyes are drawn nervously back to the painting of the stern lord, as though she expects the ghost of Lady Allingham's late husband to emerge into the room from within the portrait.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby Mr. Handy » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:27 am

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Alexander also glances at Isolde, who is the expert in such matters. He would rather not mention his skepticism in front of Lady Amanda, who probably would not take it kindly. In any case, they will ultimately need to uncover concrete evidence. A ghost cannot testify in court, after all.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby aine » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:08 pm

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Isolde nods gentle as she listens to Lady Allingham. "Yes, Lady Allingham, you are quite correct. Lord Allingham's spirit is likely unable to rest after such an atrocity. We can hope to contact his spirit and perhaps give Lord Allingham and you, My Lady, closure. Whether we can gain such specific knowledge; well, we can try. We are an intrepid group of investigators and will do our best on the mundane plane as well to allow justice to be served." She wonders privately whether justice has already been done but she obviously says nothing out loud.
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Re: Chapter 3: Heart of Dartmoor

Postby HoneyDog » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:25 pm

Lady Amanda visibly calms. “That is what I was hoping you’d say” she says in a gentler tone of voice. “You have my permission to make a full exploration of Bargrove Hall, and the servants have been ordered to fully cooperate with you. The coachman and the carriage are also at your disposal. I will of course try to answer any questions that you have as well as I can, and I very much hope that we will be able to contact William. Of course, you must be tired, so please begin your investigations tomorrow. Now, let us adjourn for dinner.”

She gets up and leaves the room, and Howard indicates for the companions to follow. He hesitates when he sees Melody, and addresses Alexander. “Sir, do you require your servant to be present with you at dinner?” he asks.
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