Episode 4

New Born

2nd March
In the morning the various people went to church. Afterwards Archdeacon Abbott took George Smythington over to Captain Edington’s houseto discuss what they were going to do. Shortly after arriving Lieutenant Day turned up. He had been over in Spain fighting for the Republicans in helping to depose King Amedues I and had just got back.

Professor Havelock announced to Annie that they were going to go to Demonstration of a new Aether Powered Hackney Carriage at Crystal Palace. As they turned up at Crystal Palace there were a number of demonstrators outside with placards demouncing the use of Aether as a posionous substance that was a danger to everyone. The Professor and Annie slipped in to find a group of distinguished Aether Engineers preparing for the demonstration.

The young inventor Entwhistle went into great detail about his new invention before climbing in it and starting it up. As he began to move off the contraption exploded, badly injuring the young Entwhistle. The engineers did what they could for him as Annie went to check the device. Her expert eye noticed that the device had been sabotaged and she called the Professor over who concurred with her.

3rd March
The remainder of the group when to see Annie to ask her to go with them the following day to Crawley to see Lady Anne Blunt. Annie said they’d need to ask the Professor and although initially against the idea Archdeacon Abbott talked him round.
After seeing Annie they decided to go talk to Lord Patience and in particular Captain Edington wanted to question the servants. When they got there the Butler told Captain Edington that the servants had already been questioned by Inspector Kenway and he didn’t want to have them upset any longer.

Lord Patience was accompanied by Lady Lamont (Lady Patience’s younger sister). Lord Patience was still upset about his wife’s murder and wanted to string up those responsible. He asked if the local Priest had finalised the arrangements for the memorial – he was apparently going to bless it for Lord Patience.

As drinks were arriving Lady Lamont brought one over (somewhat unsteadily) to Archdeacon Abbott. There she told him she wanted to tell him something and asked for his arm to take a walk. She told him that a week before her death Lady Patience had come to tea with her at her flat when Mervyn Reed called round. He had found out that she was here from the servants from her house. Very often Temperance almost ignored the fact that she was here, perhaps seeing her blindness as a barrier to listening. She told Mervyn that it would happen next week, and Mervyn replied to her that if you really think so. It was odd as she had not seen Mervyn for many years and the visit was quite unexpected. It was almost as though she was going to do something important on the day that she died.

The group made pleasantries for a while before making excuses and leaving.

Meanwhile Sean Shelley went to Newport and try and find Mervyn had left his house down there a week ago, packing up his stuff. He tracked him back to Bath, but lost the trail there. He then summoned up his employer and had a long converstaion with him about several things.

4th March
The group headed off to Crawley to see Lady Anne Blunt. Whilst on the train the group skeptically informed Lieutenant Day of the events of the past week. It was clear that Captain Edington didn’t believe that this was more than an obscure cult, but it was established that the Lieutenant had a woad tattoo of a sword on his chest as well.

The train was delayed by 2 hours due to a fallen tree on the line and Sean’s train came in not far behind it. The group took a Hackney carriage to Lady Blunt’s estate. The bultler introduced them to Lady Blunt who remembered some of them from several weeks previously, but was anxious to know why they were here. Archdeacon Abbott said that they were anxious to talk about something close to the skin when the Bulter announced that another gentleman (Mr Shelley) was here to see her also. She was very surprised that she was having so many visitors today and asked him to wait in the library whilst she dealt with her other visitors.

After some verbal fencing the group at last admitted that they had woad tattooes. She asked to see what they were as there was one in particualr that she was interested in. They wanted to know whether she wanted revenge on someone. She replied that no, she was looking for her love Rhi’ana. She identified only George as being her love Rhi’ana. She told him that their paths had crossed many times in the past but it hadn’t necessarily gone well for them.

She explained that the Druids in the Dark Ages put the tattooes of their Gods on the chosen heroes to defend Britain against first the Romans and then the Saxons. The tattoes meant that the heroes would re-incarnate and join with a new soul after death. The newborn would have the original personality on top until they were awakened during which their Dark Age personality would come to the top.

She had met Christian Cooper by accident at the theatre who had caught a glimpse of her tattoo on her neck. He was a Druid of Lugh who had been the custodian of the Seat of the Overking for many years now. He had given her the choice to awaken and had led her beneath the Theatre where she had been awakened. It had involved a great deal of pain, but she had come through it.

She called George by the name Rhi’ana again (who didn’t like it) and told him that she had found his horse quite by accident in Egypt. The Arabian stallion outside was his horse called Starfire. He’d been tattoed and he also re-incarned as the other tattoed were. George decided to go and look at the horse and the others decided to follow him out there.

The stable man told them horse was unrideable and had badly injured one hand wh’r tried to ride it. Yet it came up to George and nuzzled him, before starting to look at him quizzically.

Sean Shelley was shown through and he almost immediately offered to show her his tattoo on his shoulder blade. She looked at it and told him the information she had told the others. She then told him that she had known him in the past and that he had been Taliessin. She suggested that he talk to the others and decide whether they all wanted to awaken and talk to Mr Cooper.

The group took the train home and decided to go to the theatre that night. Captain Edington told them that a new play “The Happy Land” by F Latour Tomline had just started there and was causing controversy. It was about the PM, Chancellor and the First Commissioner of Works who went to Faerie Land to teach them about good government. The play was a satire of the political figures and the costumes were charactures of the real people.
Annie got permission to go with her Guardian and they all went home to get changed. Archdeacon Abbott went early and fixed an appointment with the theatre manager Christian Cooper after the show.

After the show they met Christian Cooper in the bar. The Professor declared that it was time Annie was back in bed and since no one argued with him they left. After they revealed that they all had tatooes Christian invited them to come through backstage. He asked to see all their tattoes and he recognised the tattoes of Lietenant Day whom he called the Usurper, Mr Symthington who he said he had plotted with to kill Guinevere, Sean Shelley whom he called Taliessin and Captain Edington whom he had met when he was Muckle John (Jester to Charles I) and whom he claimed was the Witchfinder General. He said that he didn’t trust Captain Edington but grudgingly agreed to help him Awaken.

He said that at least they were not one of the three great traitors to Britain whom he identified as Myrddin who had betrayed the druids by reducing their power in the wake of the Jealous God, Gwenhyfahr (aslo known as Meghan) who had betrayed the Druids to the Romans and Bedwyr who had betrayed the trust of his Druid by killing him and going over to the Jealous God. Only these had two tattooes, though their original tattoo was now obliterated by the God or Goddess in question.

Having agreed to Awaken the group he lead them past the dressing rooms of the Actors. The leading lady was the red headed woman whom George had met on one of his nightly excursions. On seeing him she screamed out that he was a pervert and acused him as such in a loud screechy Irish voice. Mr Shelley stepped in and said he would defend her honour and challenged George to a duel. The woman was happy with this and satisfied to note that at the thought of a duel George scarpered.

The group met up again and went down the trap door in the props cellar and then past an underground railway. As they went Sean Shelley muttered some poetry out load. They spotted a hunched man in filthy clothes hiding in an alcove with a ball and chain round his neck. When questioned the man said that he was a “monster” and that he had to hide here away from people. Christian Cooper took the group aside and told them that this was Bedwyr the traitor and that he was getting his revenge on him. He had Awakened Harvey Morris six months ago whose ability was that he could see the tattoes of other heores and he’d told him the price of Awakening Harvey was that he would have to help him find the man who was no Bedwyr. Harvey had sworn after that he would never be used again to play petty revenge games of the heroes.

After going down through a number of other tunnels the group arrived in a large cavern that once housed a large building. There were seven columns with white crystal stones attached and another stone under a huge stone chair. In the centre of the room was a disk made up of three closed sections. When asked Christian said that he didn’t know about the disk as it had been here well before his time. The chair was used to crown the Overking in the Dark Ages and in his time he was aware of three Overkings crowned on the seat. These were Vortigern, Ambrosius Aurelius and Arthur Pendragon. The King would have to sit on the throne enduring great pain during his whole coronation to show their humility and strength in front of the assembled Druids and Kings. To Awaken they would only need to stay on the throne for a couple of minutes at most, but first they would need to activate it by putting blood on each of the stones. Christian began activating the stones on the far side of the room away from the Seat of the Overking and Sean Shelley started with one next to the Chair. Then he started to activate the one at the back of the chair. Upon doing this there was a grinding noise of gears below and the central disk began opening. After a few seconds the group could hear hellish barking and four hellish looking hounds with clawed feet sprang out of the opening.

The group started figting them and although Sean Shelley, Leiutenant Day and Captain Edington did some damage to the hounds, they were taking far more than they were dishing out. After being hit by one George Smythington decided to run back the way he came. Then came of hellish whiney and a spectral black hellish horse with clawed flaming hooves, a flaming mane came out of the opening. The hellhounds started to head for the exit and George decided that they were not going for him and ducked into an alcove just as the Nightmare unleashed a nightmarish assault on the minds of those nearby. Only Sean Shelley, Christian Cooper and Archdeacon Abbott seemed unaffected by it, but to everyone’s relief the Nightmare and the hounds run up the tunnels and out of the theatre.

Christian looked at the stone beneath the throne and it had gone black instead of red. He declared that the real stone had been taken and replaced with this one. Sean Shelley spoke another poem and marched into an alcove at the side of the cavern where he started digging and uncovered the stone. Christian was seemingly surprised at this as he said that the head of Bran the Blessed should have been here since he had hidden it here after Arthur (in one of the three unfortunate disclosures) had disclosed it because it did not seem right to him that this Island should be defended by the strength of anything, but by his own. Christian was convinced that it had been stolen. The Head of Bran the Blessed, son of Llyr, had been concealed in the White Hill in London, with its face towards France. And as long as it was in the position in which it was put there, no Saxon Oppression would ever come to this Island, or so it was said. The head had already been moved once and thus the Island had fallen but Christian had hoped to keep it safe here anyway.

After the stone was put back in place and all the stones were activated with red beams heading into the stone chair from each crystal, Captain Edington declared he would Awaken first. After about a minute on the throne he fell unconscious and Christian suggested checking his woad tattoo. It was now glowing so he was removed from the throne. Each of the others were Awakened with on Sean Shelley and Archdeacon Abbot remaining conscious through the process. When George Smythington became conscious again he exclaimed “I’m a man!”.

The group headed back up to the theatre and noted that the hounds had not touched Bedwyr, but had broken through the trap door. They declared that they would bring back Annie here the next day so that she could also ascend.

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