I Fought the Law

Playlist: I Fought the Law - The Clash

Cave Under Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 21st March 1941 22:00

Keeper Note: No Steve, Loz or Arthur this week, so Cyril, Anné and Charlie are largely bubbled; Charlie's mental state needed attention however.

Birapeer and Jake went to check on Marcus, who was standing off to one side glaring suspiciously at everyone else. Across the cave Charlie, deprived of an immediate crisis to distract him from his mental damage, leaned his back on the wall and slid slowly down to sit huddled on the floor, rocking gently backwards and forwards.

Professor Marcus Brody

Jake spoke carefully to Marcus, trying to reassure him and talk him back towards normal. This didn't seem to be working, so he tried a gamble and threw in a provocative statement, challenging the professor's loyalty to his friends. For a moment, Marcus' eyes flashed with anger, and then his powerful intellect took over, rationalizing past his unexpected reactions. "I'm not myself at the moment," he muttered, "better look after these til it passes." He handed Joe his remaining grenades and his guns.

Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 21st March 1941 22:30

Sgt Brody and Officer Hannigan on their last day in service

After checking the explosives were safe and sound, and marking them in case of tampering, the team returned to the bookshop, dragging the bookcase back into place across the secret tunnel. A surprise awaited them, however. When they pushed open the trapdoor and climbed into the shop, four Miami policemen were there waiting for them.

There was a tense stand-off while the cops, who had been alerted to "suspicious-looking foreigners carrying military guns" by the cab driver who'd brought Birapeer and de Marigny here, demanded that the PCs put their weapons down and answer questions. The fact that several of the party were smeared in blood, and Jake's clothes were literally shreddded, didn't help at all.

Eventually, Birapeer wandered to the coffee bar and brewed hot drinks for everyone, which helped defuse the situation a bit. The police took down everyone's names and addresses; perhaps a little rattled, everyone gave their real names.

Between Joe and Jake, the team managed to cobble together a story of them coming to investigate the disappearance of the owner of the shop, a friend of a friend. Joe suggested that a phone call to Deadman's office in Arkham might start the process of explaining things. Sergeant Brody made the call from the shop phone, and Deadman promised to get a call made to the Miami police in the morning to sort things out.

This was a good start, but Brody then insisted that the team come to the police station while they waited for the call. Birapeer asked for his "one phone call" and used it to call Curt, telling him that they were unavoidably delayed and (perhaps unwisely) that it was with the police. "Don't you be bringing no flatfoots to mah shop," drawled Curt warningly, "or you an'I, we gonna have a problem."

Tunnel under Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 21st March 1941 23:00

Back down the Rabbit Hole

Joe had explained about the tunnel, while making no mention of anything supernatural, but the policemen were still very suspicious. "Come and see, then," said Joe, and Brody took him up on the offer. Leaving one officer with Birapeer and the still-shaken members of the team, he gathered the others and they headed down the tunnel with Joe and Jake. Joe refused to go without his Bren, so Brody had one of his officers carry it.

Perhaps fortunately, none of the cops noticed the sizeable bomb attached to the wall just before the archway; but once into the cavern, they noticed de Marigny's corpse all right. Sprawled on the rock floor, it was ripped and corroded by the effects of the Shoggoth, so badly that the damage made by ten rounds of .303 was impossible to distinguish.

Large bloodstains were dotted here and there, from the team themselves though nobody mentioned this.

Of the Shoggoths or Deep Ones, there was no sign whatsoever.

"There's the owner," said Joe, not quite carrying off an impression of surprise that would have disociated him from the death. Brody put his hands on his hips. "At the moment, sir," he said heavily, "the only people who have been down here as far as I can tell are you and him. I can't see any other possible suspects in his death past you. Unless there's something here you're not telling me or showing me?"

Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 21st March 1941 22:45

Back in the shop, Birapeer had reached the same conclusion that Joe and Jake were; they just weren't going to be able to talk their way out of this. As he handed a second cup of coffee to the cop left in the shop, he suddenly struck, dealing the man a powerful blow to the back of the head. The cop staggered, but somehow remained conscious, so Birapeer punched him again, dropping him senseless. Disarming, tying him up and using his own handcuffs to secure him to a radiator, the Sikh retrieved his Bren and dropped down into the tunnel, moving quietly along after the others.


While he was gone, Anné and Marcus broke into the police car where it stood out side, and in the absence of keys, pushed it around the corner. Then they redrew the shop blinds and put the lights out.

Cave under Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 21st March 1941 23:30

A Sap

Sgt Brody, pistol once more in hand, pointed at the corpse. "Thompson? Pick up that poor fella." he said, and turned to head back to the shop as the named cop reluctantly started scooping de Marigny's corpse into his jacket. With one cop carrying a Bren, another a sloppy corpse and the sergeant looking away, Jake figured the time was right, and - whipping out his sap - walloped Brody on the head from behind. The sergeant dropped, and Joe struck out with his Mclaggen-Poskett commando weapon. In seconds, all three cops were down. As the two were taking stock of this, Birapeer arrived.

Keeper Note: With this dark turn to the adventure, these three characters faced a SAN check for the effects of .the guilt. This was the point I heard a quote I've never expected to hear: "What we need is another Shoggoth!"

Unfortunately, the two men Joe had hit had both suffered fractured skulls and were quite dead. They looked at each other glumly; no-one had intended things to go this far. Then they gathered up the remains - Jake quietly cutting Brody's throat - and set off back to the shop.

Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 22nd March 1941 02:00

A couple of hours later, the unfortunate guardians of the law had been artfully replaced in their own patrol car, sans cuffs, keys and notebook pages with incriminating details. The car had then been rolled off a bridge and into the Miami river. Hopefully it would be some days before it was located. After that, mentally and physcially exhausted, the team bedded down at the shop to try and catch some sleep while watching for further incursions.

Deep One Reef Breaker

Around 2am, Jake, on watch on the ground floor, was jarred from a semi-doze by an horrendous crash. The cellar trapdoor had slammed open, despite the two heavy armchairs and water cooler that had been stacked on top. Pouring up from below and dimly visible in the near-dark came a flood of Deep Ones, with two terrifying creatures at the fore - Deep Ones, but easily twice the size of the others.

Birapeer practically fell down the stairs and looked wildly around for the light switch. Luck was with him - it was near the steps. He snapped it on and turned to face their foes as Jake unloaded a shotgun blast at the nearest Reef Breaker, then - as it ran up to him - stuck the hot muzzle under its chin and fired again. Blood, bone and scaly flesh fountained in all directions as it collapsed. Jake dropped to a knee so as to allow the others a clear shot past him. As he did so the huge claws of the second Reef Breaker hissed through the air above his head.

Behind him, Joe reached the bottom of the stairs and sent a controlled burst of Bren fire into the second Reef Breaker, mixing it and a couple of the normal-sized Deep Ones into a mess of flesh and blood. Above, after several seconds of frantic searching, Marcus - now feeling rather more himself again - finally located his shotgun and started down the stairs.

Jake heard the thunder of another shotgun from behind him as Birapeer fired, and his hair was actually riffled by the close passage of the blast. He fired from his kneeling position, scoring again, and Joe raked the survivors with his Bren until everything went quiet. With the exception of shouts and barking dogs from houses around. Birapeer knocked the lights back off.

Ten minutes later a police car cruised past, but didn't stop.

All bar one of the corpses were put in the cellar - the last one was arranged in an armchair wearing one of the unfortunate Gleeson's hats for the police to find.

Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 22nd March 1941 03:00

Ready now to confront their foes again, the team descended into the cellar, and rolled back the shelving. To discover a blank wall, to all appearances exactly the same as the wall around!

Deep One Jewelry

While some investigated the new surface, others conducted a detailed search of the cellar, suspecting some Deep Ones might be concealed therein. While they didn't find any, they did discover a concealed panel at the back of one of the shelves, behind which was a stash of strange-shaped gold ingots and some more of the bizzare jewelry of the Deep Ones. A memory of reading awoke in Marcus and he explained to the others that the Deep Ones guarded this jewelry jealously, and had been known to go to extreme lengths to retrieve lost pieces.

The gold alone was worth thousands of dollars, and the connection between Gleeson and the Deep Ones began to appear slightly different.

Meanwhile the other group had managed to hack a small crater in the new piece of wall and emplace a hand grenade. After an abortive first attempt - where the sides of the hole prevented the lever flicking off - it detonated, creating a man-sized hole in the new wall. The resulting explosion must have been very muffled outside, but once more the neighboring dogs started barking and the party decided to pack it in for the rest of the night.

Agni Corner Bookstore, Miami, United States, 22nd March 1941 09:00


After some sleep, the group split up to prepare for another expedition down into the tunnel. Joe and Birapeer went off to complete the transaction at Curt's Guns, and paid the balance in Deep One gold after the surly Curt refused to take the jewelry.

Phone Booth. For before the invention of the Mobile!

Then they went back to the Hotel Spectacular to collect the rest of their possessions. On arrival, they learned that the police had been there, around the same time as the patrol had arrived at the bookshop, and left a card. Birapeer took it to the phone booth on the opposite wall, and dialled the number. A harsh New Yorker voice answered; "Brannigan." Birapeer put on his most agreeable tones. "Hello, yes, Birapeer Balwinder Singh Sandhu here" he said, "you left your card here at the Spectacular for us?"

"Oh, yeah," thought Jake, "so they'll confuse you with all the other Sikhs called Birapeer in Miami...!"

There was a pause. "Ah, the foreigners with all the hardware, yeah? Stay put. We'll be right over." Birapeer said, "No, no need, we'll come to you, want to get this sorted out after all. Where are you?" There was a snort from Brannigan. "3rd Precinct - address is on the card, boy." Birapeer stepped out of the phone box and dropped the card into a nearby wastebasket. "We need a different hotel," he said quietly.

At the counter, the receptionist had received the keys and now rotated the register for them to sign out, and leave a forwarding address - common practice in better hotels to make it easier for mail to be routed after departing guests. Jake shook his head. "We don't need to do that; we're important," he said.

Gilman House Hotel, Miami, Miami, United States, 22nd March 1941 13:20

The Gilman House Hotel

Looking to find something completely different from the Spectacular, the team ended up on the waterfront, checking into the Gilman House Hotel. It was different, all right, dim and grungy and a whole dollar per night. Marcus had his fake ID all ready when they booked in, but the only identification the grimy receptionist was interested in was payment up front.

Marcus' nerves were a bit shaky after their recent experiences, and after they had dropped their bags into their plain but reasonably clean rooms he went and sought out the hotel's basement. Chairs and clutter were dumped across the entrance, and once he'd cleared these and dragged the door open with some difficulty, the steps down were choked with rotting refuse and dirt and clearly hadn't been used for some time.

He made the Voorish Sign and, rather than any worrying arcane traces, felt rather less of the normal flow of psychic energy that usually underlay human habitations. Turning away, he discovered the receptionist staring at him in unintelligent puzzlement. "You've got to be careful of basements," said Marcus airily, "You never know what might come out of them." The man's scowl didn't alter, and Marcus made his escape.

Keeper Note: It seemed sensible to leave this decision until more of the players could be there to discuss options.

After that, the group gathered for a conflab. What to do next? Birapeer was feeling rather guilty at the death of de Marigny, and was considering returning his effects to his home in New Orleans and offering to sub for him until Deadman recruited a replacement. Some wanted to return to the Agni Corner Bookshop to root out the Deep Ones, and others suggested tipping off the police and letting them deal with it.

Session Date: 28th January 2020