41: Mirror MIrror

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When It Happened (Chronicle Time): February 15, 2008

Who Was There: Mark Donovin (Eric), Yukio Ohta(Bob), Bruce (Matt)

What It Was

New York gets a Rosicrucian; Mark, Yukio, and Bruce head to New Jersey to investigate a double murder; and the Spooks On! crew get another very special episode.

The Full Horror

[Adapted from Dennis Detwiller's scenario, "From a Darkened Room" with additional material from A Peculiar Pentad, by Jeff Grubb et al.]

Ishida is recovering steadily from his ordeal a few months ago, and winter has set in over the City.

Urban Renewal

Katsoulakis contacts Yukio and Mark (and through them, Bruce) and asks them to meet with Alfred Granger, the new proprietor of a long shuttered rare books shop that he has opened again for business. Granger has a problem, and Katsoulakis would like the men to help him with it, adding, "This man has my approval."

Granger apparently recognizes them for who they are, because no sooner do they come into the shop than he ushers the rest of the customers out and closes the shop. That gives them a few minutes to check out the collection, and it turns out to be exceptional. Once the civilians have left, Granger properly introduces himself, and then reveals that he is a Rosicrucian, having moved to New York at Vincent Aglie's request and Katsoulakis' blessing, to keep an eye on Stuyvesant Lodge.

Everett Rolston and Alistair Jameson were apparently delighted to welcome such a learned scholar into the Lodge, though they, obviously, have no idea of his real affiliation. While Aglie having an operative in Katsoulakis' New York is surprising, a Rosicrucian is not as provocative as a Templar would be, and Katsoulakis appreciates scholars. In fact, Katsoulakis has added Granger to his regular dinner guest rotation. And having Granger join Borsavin as members of the Lodge means its members will now be even better supervised.

Granger's "Biblioporium" is part of a neighborhood revival clearly inspired by the rebirth of Stuyvesant Lodge. Other new shops nearby include the Healing Herbs, Roauld Hubert's Fine Arts gallery, and an eccentric repair shop, (Simon) Fixx's Fixxit. The neighborhood also includes several Asian restaurants, and their employees seem to hold Raimonda Zinicola Zhang and Zhang Zhijian, the two owners of the herb shop, in high regard.

But back to Granger: recently, some Rosicrucian scholars have been deeply impressed by the work of a young Egyptologist named Yamilla Isari, who showed a knack for inventive interpretation of ancient texts. Her work was always within the bounds of accepted scholarship but never failed to raise interesting questions. Aglie was sufficiently intrigued to send another Rosicrucian and scholar of ancient cultures, Arthur Sullivan, to make contact with her. They proved to be a good match, and the two scholars got along famously—until both turned up dead on the night of January 27 in Isari's home in Secaucus, New Jersey.

Aglie and Granger are understandably alarmed, but Granger is a scholar, not a field agent. So at Aglie's request, Katsoulakis is asking Mark and Yukio (and Bruce) to look into the two deaths.

The police reports are filed but inconclusive. The two victims both died of cuts to the throat, but the no leads have turned up, and the files might as well have "cold case" printed on them already. So the three men decide to visit the home in New Jersey. Which is when all hell breaks loose.

Full House

The only wonder is that Isari managed to survive in that house as long as she did. The place is possessed by multiple spirits, each of which seems determined to kill the three men first. Had it been anyone else, the result would have been three more body bags, but that obviously won't be the result this time. In fact, Mark, Yukio, and Bruce decide to make things more amusing by putting in a call to the Spooks On! team and offering the house for an impromptu episode.

Sure enough, chaos ensues. Fortunately, Mark, Bruce, and Yukio came well-prepared, even bringing along orgone detectors disguised to appear very similar to the useless gadgets carried by Borsavin's well-intentioned Spooks On! crew. After plenty of ghostly manifestations, Mark's close-quarters investigation of house's crawlspace, and a surprise cameo by Critters Apocalypse, the possessions are put down in a suitably decisive Four Aces fashion. Meaning the house ends up burned right to the ground, which does, after all, solve the problem.

Bruce even manages to score a used table for the carriage house.

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