Dr. Felix Vaber, French archaeologist
Lucas Finch, British mathematician
Patrick Richardson, British sportsman
Rev. Calvin Reed
Frank Moore, British Martial Artist
Philip Murphy, British former thief
Col. Roger Marsden, New Zealand Marine
After returning from adventures at sea the team were ready for a rest but alas duty calls. They were debriefed on the rescue ship by Crothers, their SOE handler and any wounds treated. They arrive back in London only to be met by N's bodyguard, a large man with a scarred face and an eyepatch. Though exhausted they go with him, tiredness doesn't take away the fear of his master.
Climbing the stairs they hear an angry one way exchange. Entering the room they find N on the phone. "... Damn it all man I'm a senior civil servant and I'm not asking, I'm telling you to recall them... Hello? Hello? DAMN IT!". N explains that since they were abducted by SOE things had progressed. Some bureaucratic minion had thought it best to send a group of evacuees to the Batersby House. Batersby House had been a children's home operated by Von Smitt's toy company so the guess was that there was something sinister. There had been an incident in 1922 but details had been covered up. They needed to bring the evacuees back!
The investigators fly into RAF Invergordon, a short hop away from Avoch the nearest village to the causeway that would take them to the island Batersby House sits on. They do a bit of digging and discover from the local minister, that all the children bar a handful had died in 1922 after the staff went mad. He himself had adopted one of the survivors.
The investigators had to wait until the causeway was open before making their way across. There they discovered the house in disarray and the children scattered. The ones that were gathered they sent back across to the church in Avoch with the only member of 4 staff that came over with the evacuees. Half the party decided to explore the grounds while the other half checked the house.
The three exploring the grounds came across some of the children hiding in a cottage in the grounds and were set upon by a young man, recently escaped from the Inverness Care Home for the Mentally Deranged, while exploring a light house. Dr. Felix Vaber found himself on the end of a wire noose but his fellow investigators were able to rescue him before he found his neck stretched! They also discovered the bodies of two of the other members of staff.
The three in the house found the children but also evidence of some of what happened leading to the 1922 incident. Dr. Corbitt and his staff were experimenting on the children for Von Smitt but Dr. Corbitt also seemed interested in his own experiment which had caused tension between the two mentalists. Each of the four houses in the children's home had a different experiment running: one to encourage a child who would manipulate other children, one to bring out latent magical ability in new and terrifying ways, another to inspire a child to push for purity at all cost and the last to extinguish all love and compassion from their upbringing. Dr. Corbitt's experiment was to increase his own psychic ability. The investigators were attacked several times: gym equipment flung itself at the investigators, a bed threatened to knock one out of a window and bed sheets tried to force themselves in an effort to smother the group. They did take out a scroll box they found hidden in the staff quarters.
The two groups met together again with the first group counting themselves lucky that they went to stretch their legs. Both groups decided to send the children they had found back to the church on Avoch with one of the investigators (he couldn't make the second session). They came to the crushing realisation that the remaining children were probably in the creepy basement, the group who had explored the house felt that maybe they could be excused? But alas no one was in the mood to hear their complaints. Opening the basement door with a key found in the lighthouse they moved further in and discovered two of the children staring blankly at a central wall. Their efforts to remove them found found one investigator struggling for consciousness. "Maybe we should just leave them for the moment?". Everyone agreed that that would be a good call.
They continued to find children all staring towards this central space but so far found no door. All of the investigators found a faint itch at the corner of their psyche but one in particular found that a voice other than his own in his head. They were attacked by the remaining member of staff who had accompanied the evacuees but were able to put him down. "I wonder what came over him" wondered all but one of them! They eventually found a bricked up doorway were able to push through the bricks into a hidden laboratory.
Inside the lab they found the prone body of Dr. Corbitt, not buried in the grounds as previously thought but hooked up to machinery in the basement. Everyone reacted in shock when he seemed to hoover to his feet. There was only one way to deal with it... shoot him repeatedly! Except one of their bruisers seemed to not want to target the evil doctor but his team mates. Nurmerous combat rounds saw Corbitt injured but still wailing round him, Thomas Richardson firing his shotgun at everyone who Corbitt whispered to him to fire at, Lucas Finch conscious but fading fast, former marine Col. Marsden unconscious and Philip, their thief bleeding out and in need of medical attention. Unfortunately Philip was put beyond medical attention when Patrick turned his shotgun on his fallen friend. Lucas had to be talked out of a suicide run on Crobitt with a pair of grenades. A round of firing from the remaining investigators proved too much for Corbitts psychic ability to hold back and he died, freeing the children and forcing Patrick to see the full extent of what he had done.
The next day the investigators were brought before N for debriefing. The scroll case contained accounts of the Tick Tock Man having 4 bringers of chaos compete to bring him the best sacrifices they could. The process of anointing the four had been replicated in that basement. It looked like chaos would once again descend!
Keeper's Notes: Went well. I had done this one as my investigators had become reliant on heavy weapons so i wanted them to see that sometimes having a shotgun or grenades can lead to death. As a result Philip Murphy died, a character that had been around since when I started running CoC games and others barely survived. It served as a good starting point for the campaign they are now doing "To play, To die" with them now being aware of the four chaos bringers. They've already done the first session of the next adventure, Operation Piercing the Darkness. Alas poor Philip