After a breif mourning of Hanks untimely disapearence (death), the group ran into a new ally, Professor Herbert Melbourne of Miskatonic University. It turned out that he had a great interest in Elias’ works and was in the same hotel as the Investigators. He was extremely skeptical of almost everything that the others told him, passing most of it off as youngster hog-wash, but he had a real interest in the occult and couldnt pass up on an opprotunity to get involved. The group’s first course of action was to visit Edward Gavigan at the Penhew Foundation to try and find some answers about Elias’ business in London and how the Penhew Foundation was tied in with the Carlyle Expedition. Gavigan was a true English gentlemen, but seemed quite disturbed by the group’s prying about Jackson Elias. He told them what he said he’d told Elias (which wasnt much) and then went on to dismiss theories about The Brotherhood of the Black Pharoh and other “sorcerous fairy tale nonsense”. The investigators were extremely suspicious, Heidi and Betsy resolved to stake out the foundation and perhaps break in later that same night to find out the truth of the matter. They didnt have to wait more than a few minutes before Gavigan was on the move, Heidi trailed him to a London bank, from which he made a sizable withdrawal before returning to his office. Betsy also noticed a truck loading a large crate from the rear of the building, but the two ladies had no way to follow once it drove off. After that they rented a car. At the same time, Herbert and Pangalia visited the spice shop of Tewfik al-Sayed to see if he knew anything about the Egyptian Murders that Barrington was working on. Tewfik proved intelligent and personable, but rather useless in terms of actual clues. He did seem VERY curious as to where the two had heard about The Brotherhood of the Black Pharaoh and why they were so curious about it.
At about 8:00 pm that evening, Gavigan left the foundation along with the rest of his staff. The investigators, determined to find the truth, broke in through the back entrance; thanks to Betsy’s skillful locksmithing. Once inside the group determined that a secret room likely existed given that some of the outdoor appliances did not lead inside in such a way that seemed possible; an extra hidden room seemed to be the only explanation, but they didnt know how to access it. They pressed on up to the mainfloor, being as quiet as possible and stopping to listen all the while, which alerted them to the presence of atleast one night guard in the building. They were careful to avoid him while they checked out the storage room behind Gavigan’s office. The storage room was quite plain and dusty, but the perceptive Heidi (with a little help from Betsy) discovered that depressing both eyes of the face on an old sarcophagus twice would open a hidden panel leading into the aformentioned secret room. Pan was unfortunately too large to fit down the narrow opening, so he instead lurked in the stairwell while the others sqeezed down through. Using an old oil lamp, the investigators eagerly searched the strange chamber for clues. They got more than they bargained for. A literal treasure trove of mythos scrolls and tomes as well as many ritualistic reagents and 2 silver daggers were of immediate interest. Later they discovered two important leads: Ho Fong Imports in Shanghai and Randolph Shipping Company in Australia stenciled on two crates. The Ho Fong crate contained a corroded bronze statue of a hideous pregnant and tentacle-laden women. The Randolph crate contained a much smaller (16 inch) bluestone Cthulhu figurine. It is now obvious that things of great importance are going on in both Shanghai and Australia. One final clue remained hidden in some of Gavigan’s paperwork, an unfinished letter to Sir Aubrey Penhew saying that Jackson Elias had been “taken care of” in New York but that Brady was still at large. This information was alarming as it all but proved Gavigan’s involvement in Elias’ murder as well as cult activities. But perhaps even more strangely it seemed to suggest that both Sir Aubrey Penhew and Jack Brady were still alive quite recently (atleast as recently as Elias’ murder less than a month ago). Did that mean that other members of the Carlyle Expedition survived as well? Questions needed answering, but that was the last clue that the investigators were going to get out of Gavigan’s secret room.
After a close call of nearly being discovered by the guard, they slinked past into Gavigans office to examine things further. The office proved devoid of clues, but they were able to releive Gavigan of nearly 500 pounds which he had convieniently (and strangely) withdrawn from his account mere moments after their interview with him and then apparently stowed in his safe. The safe was unlocked and left open, so pocketing the cash was a small matter and done with little hesitation.
At this point the group thought it best to leave the Penhew Foundation with there valuable loot. Herbert retired to the hotel room to read Africa’s Dark Sects, as he was quite worn out and not well suited to the groups next stop that night, the Blue Pyramid Night Club. One person at the club proved exceptionally useful, Yalesha the belly dancer/bar tender. It took some work to get her to open up, but it was worth the extra effort. Yalesha confessed that her boyfriend was one of the 24 murdered, and that she suspected that a new “gang”, The Brotherhood of the Black Pharoh, was responsible. She knew that once a week, a group of about a dozen club regulars led by Tewfik al-Sayed (the spice dealer) left the club at midnight to catch a ride in an old truck that she beleived was bound for somewhere outside of London proper. She had also overheard a man talking about the Limehouse Docks being used for exportation by the Penhew Foundation, this seemed relevant to her because the man who mentioned it was one of the dozen or so who caught the old truck once a week with Tewfik. All in all, this visit had netted the group another 2 solid leads to work off of.
In the morning, the group decided to catch the next train to Lesser-Edale to follow up on the lead provided by Mickey Mahoney’s article about a “monster” slaying and terrorizing the townsfolk there. While on the 6 hour train ride everyone in the group decided to brush up on their mythos. Herbert read the Arabic scrolls (which each detailed a spell), Pangalia read the G’harne Fragments (quite powerful mythos-wise), Heidi began reading the Liber Ivonis (in Russian), and Betsy began reading The Book of Dyzan (her first mythos tome). The next session will begin with the group’s arrival at Lesser-Edale where they hope to discover more about this monster.