My master bade me watch them, and so I did. For several nights now they have been investigating the area, looking for clues to something. Like most Kindred they are devisive, each with their own plans, their own aims. That is their weakness, within my master is strength, her court is loyal, her servants true. This night they awakened early, two of them, the mad ones woman and man left the boat and met with my master’s fool and the reeking lunatic. They drove northward, beyond the islands where I dare not follow. The others awakened later, they met, they plotted, they drove north as well. I did not follow, but I waited, and when they returned I watched them from the brick building called, the Custom’s House. When they returned I had failed in my duty, as a burglary had occured near their communal haven. The master punished me for my failure.
The madmen exited the sputtering VW bus. They were in the parking lot of a large stadium, with well kept lawns and shrubbery. Here and there are cars parked throughout the parking lot, none quite so obnoxious as the bus itself. They move quickly to the entrance, no one else seems to be outside the building. Was the Call corret, had it been misinterpreted? The door is unlocked, so the four slip in quietly. Inside the smell of rot is overpowering. Each of the dead men squints into the darkness as their senses become heightened. The hallway is empty for quite a while, and then they meet a frantic young man in bunny slippers. In place of one of his eyes is one of those gimmick plastic eyeballs that bobs and turns as he moves his head. The blood around the eye socket is fresh, and has stained his shirt. He appologizes, but he simply cannot help them, he’s late!
The four continue and find others, eventually they find their way into the stadium proper. It’s rotting hulk shows the highwater mark of flooding, and obvious structural damage not taken care of his Hurricane Andrew, a decade or more ago. The local government uses it for storage occaisionally, or even to put up municipal workers in times of need. The whole thing has been decorated in a wild homage to Lewis Carroll’s classic Wonderland books. The crowd around them is dressed in costumes ranging from the lame to the elaborate. Somewhere two twins that look as though they have Down’s Syndrome spout nonsense poems at each other. In the distance someone is batting the Jaborwok with his Vorpal blade. All is strange, all is madness.
The four from the Keys mingle nervously. There is a buzz through the crowd, an uncomfortable air of expectation. An improptu tea party, with cups and kettles full of blood, sets up in the middle of the crowd. Two of the four, the man with no memory, and the woman that was a man chat with a cat, then a hare, then a hatter, all quite mad. Then the trumpets sound, the boy with the bunny slippers and the googly eye announces the coming of the Queen and King. The crowd falls into silence as a crimson and imposing figure steps forward, her King and consort gently snores from his tiny throne, center stage. The lights dim, darkness floods the stadium, a blood red light illuminates the imposing Queen and sleeping King. Warnings and prophecies, the coming of the Queen, the Moon Beasts, the rising of the dead, a great storm to drown them all in blood.
The figure departs, the crowds disperse. The four return to the VW bus, and putter at maniac speeds back to the Isle of Bones.
Meanwhile, the Archons do their job. Aaron and Giselle are not happy to be working together, neither fully trusting the other with full disclosure. Aaron taps his contacts in the local police. Recent aquaintences he’s met through local charity events. Newspaper articles are researched by Giselle’s ghouls, using the internet and other devices too esoteric for their Mistress to comprehend. All information points to the upper Keys. Something is moving in, or getting resteless up there. Disappearances, break-ins, fires, vandalism, gang activity, and cemetaries disturbed. Aaron, Giselle, and Hank ride north to investigate. They find symbols and implements that point to the Sabbat. Later this is reinforced by one of Lando’s visions. They find all the ingridients for a Sabbat creation rite, a mass Embrace of kidnapped victims, who are then buried alive and forced to dig their way out.
When they return, they find the Malkavians have returned. Lando and Ms. Hurtz relate their experiences to the others, facts are shared. In addition, the Mel Fischer Museum has been robbed. Artifacts from a nearby Spanish wreck have been taken. Items that the coterie knows are important to the Don’s plans, a map and a coin that may lead a lost Papal relic. Returning to Giselle’s yacht, the two groups compare notes, and are startled by a knock on the cabin door. Hank and the ghouls, guns in hand go to answer it, but when they open the door no one is there. Lando senses something is amiss, and he uses his heightened perceptions to detect the intruder. A waif of a girl badly injured and pale. When confronted the girl introduced herself as Sandy. She begins her story crying, and ends it with two shocking revealations. First that she had escaped from a military base on the island where she had been turned into a vampire. The second was that while inside, after she had been turned, she had given birth to a child.
To Be Continued…