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In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" - H. P. Lovecraft





The butler's face didn't flinch at the attempts of charm from Rosanna Liang. Standing almost a foot taller than the petite young woman, the butler looked at her like he might look at a curiosity, or something on the bottom of his shoe. His gaze scanned the invitation she had handed him dismissively, before handing it back to her, and turning his attention to the other two guests.

Mister Cobalt stepped up next, offering no words to the butler, and simply extending his invitation towards the servant. Rosanna couldn't help but notice that the man's attention seemed to be drawn upwards, towards one of the windows further up the house. In fact, his attention was so drawn, that it took an obvious cough from the butler for Mister Cobalt to realise that his invitation had passed the inspection, and was waiting to be returned to him.

In the towering figure of Mister Red, there was at last someone that the butler couldn't literally look down his nose at, but if the stone-faced figure was intimidated, or even phased, by the hulking frame before him, he did not show it. Taking the invitation, that looked comically small in the oversized hands of Mister Red, the butler eyed it dubiously, and then handed it back, apparently satisfied, although it was impossible to tell from his unflinching expression.

"Really, Peters, you're allowed to smile. It is a party, after all."

The voice of Avery Wildes from behind them caused all three of the guests to turn, the hostess having closed the gap from the carriage and arrived at the doorway. Peters nodded smartly towards Avery, and if any of the guests turned to see his reaction, then they would have seen him force a smile, but to call it a smile is to do a disservice to joy and happiness. Thin lips drew back to reveal yellowing teeth, and there was no flicker of emotion in the cold, grey eyes. It was like a dead thing attempting to replicate the expression, without truly understanding it.

As Avery reached the group, she gestured them forwards, and all four of them stepped through and into Wilde Hall itself, leaving Peters standing at the doorway, the smile still twisting his face.
So I've somewhat thrown three of you together, looking to start merging the groups. At the start it might be a bit messy, with plenty of moving parts, so please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions. If you want to talk to NPC's, I can provide responses outside of updates, if you want to collaborate conversations, you are more than free to do so. And as ever, if you want any rolls (trying to read somebody etc.) then just shoot me a PM!

Sorry for the delay, but I'll be getting updates for the rest of you up later today as well!
In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" - H. P. Lovecraft





The wide eyes behind the mask of Miss White did not falter from the face of Simon Hart as he spoke. His quick explanation even drew a smile from the young woman, and she went to open her mouth, apparently to reply, to answer the question that had been burning on Simon's mind since he had first noticed her shoulders stiffen at the sight of Doctor Green, and then the spell broke. The rattle of wheels on the road, the crack of horseshoes striking stone, and another carriage emerged from the darkness, and drew to a sharp halt beside the unusual pair.

Simon and Miss White both turned towards the interruption, and found themselves looking into the grinning face of a striking woman. Grinning widely, Opportunity Knox greeted the pair, and invited them aboard. Beyond the unusual sight of a woman leaning from a window, Simon could just make out another figure within the carriage, short and lean. At first, the journalist was a little taken aback, both by the invitation itself, and the vessel of the invitation, but once again, Miss White was the picture of charm.

Taking a step closer to the carriage, the pale-haired woman nodded her head in greeting to the newcomer, her voice ringing out.

"Your offer is a generous one. If you are bound for Wilde Hall, is there space enough for myself, and my companion?"

Before Opportunity could reply, more noise broke out in the silence, even above the panting of the carriage horse. Footsteps. From the shadows that stretched out like clawing hands from the depths of the Wilde Woods, three figures stepped into the pale lamplight. The leader was slender, well-dressed, with a smile written across his face. In his wake came another man, Moses Reaves, taller and broader, and a woman, dressed all in black and petite next to her two companions. It was the leader who spoke first, striding towards the carriage.

"Good evening, one and all. I dare say, it's jolly good to see you folks. I'm afraid the Deacon, the Mademoiselle and myself have been on somewhat of a detour. Are we all bound for Wilde Hall?"
@DruSM157 Sorry to hear. Best wishes for your recovery, and I'm more than happy to NPC Alvin until you return.

For the rest of you, keep your eyes peeled for updates over the next few days. With a tighter group, I'm looking to bring everyone together, so it becomes a more conventional roleplay. As always, thank you to everyone who is still ticking along.
In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown"
- H. P. Lovecraft





The carriage shifted slightly as Benjamin Zebrowski climbed aboard, but it quickly settled again. The warmth within was a welcome change from the biting chill of the Arkham night, and as Benjamin's eyes adjusted to the lamplight, he could see that Doctor Green's eyes were still fixed on the two guests that had not proven as keen on his invitation. No, not on the two of then. On Miss White. Benjamin's voice seemed to shake the Doctor out of his trance, and he glanced across at the other man, the beaming smile returning to his face.

"Why do any of us attend parties? I'm sure my reasons are not so different from yours, my boy."

His gaze darting back to beyond the carriage, Doctor Green leant forwards, shifting his heavy frame as he reached out to grip the handle of the door. One last glance, and another broad smile, and Doctor Green spoke, his voice booming.

"I hope to see you both at Wilde Hall. Good luck."

With that, the Doctor swung the door closed. A cane appeared in the man's hand, and he knocked on the carriage ceiling three times with the heavy metal handle. There was a moment's pause, and then the carriage jolted forwards, and they pulled away, leaving Miss White and Mister Blue behind them in the night.

Doctor Green took a few steady breathes, before seeming to remember his company, his gaze falling back onto Benjamin, one eyebrow raising behind his mask.

"You had some unusual companions. Tell me, did you know either of them well?"





It seemed as if their excuses had been convincing enough for the stranger in the carriage, and Simon Hart had to stop himself from breathing a sigh of relief. Mister Strawberry may have taken up the invitation, but with Miss White at his side, Simon couldn't help but feel her tension. The glance that she had cast him was a hint of reassurance, but with the beaked mask still watching, he still bit his tongue. As Mister Strawberry dissapeared into the carriage, Doctor Green reappeared in the doorway, and his voice boomed out through the dimly lit street once more.

"I hope to see you both at Wilde Hall. Good luck."

Before either Simon or Miss White could even think to muster up a reply, the carriage door slammer shut, and the shadowed coachman cracked the reins, the carriage lurching forwards. Simon watched as it moved away, before being lost in the deep darkness of the Wilde Woods. 'Good luck'. Had that been a threat, or simply a genuine concern? Something about the night, whether it was Miss White, or his own reasons for travelling to Wilde Hall, had Simon jumping at shadows, and on the narrow street, he was surrounded by them.

A sing-song voice at his shoulder, quieter than before, softer, pulled him out of his own thoughts, and Simon turned to see Miss White facing him, blue eyes watching his face.

"Thank you, sir. I..."

For the first time, the pale-haired woman, her face almost entirely obscured by her elaborate mask, seemed to falter, and Simon noticed how young she was. Her gaze flickered down the path, into the shifting depths of the Wilde Woods, after the path of the carriage, before coming back to Simon, her eyes focusing on his own.

"Thank you. I hope I have not delayed you for too long."

In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" - H. P. Lovecraft





It was Alvin Fennel that led the unusual trio towards the doors of Wilde Hall, although whether that was by choice, or coincidence, only he could know. Whatever the order, Rosanna Liang made extra care to stay close to her two new companions. The house seemed to loom above them, dwarfing even the formidable frame of Drachen Steinboden. Just as Alvin reached the doorway, hand reaching out for the heavy brass handle, the door swung open from within.

Alvin managed to keep his balance, but he almost staggered backwards as a figure stepped out from within the house. A few inches taller than Alvin, wiry, sharply dressed, greying hair, the man that stood in the doorway was an intimidating sight, and it took the guests a moment to recognise that the man must be the butler. He surveyed the three of them with barely disguised disdain, looking each of them up and down in turn, before finally breaking the stifling silence.

"Invitations. Please."

A gloved hand thrust forwards. Clearly the Wilde Hall was not open to all, and security was surprisingly tight, considering the fact they had already shown their invitations to the coachman. Either way, the stern expression set on the butler's face suggested that arguing was not an option. If nothing else, the warmth and music that spilled out from the half-open door was becoming increasingly enticing.
@Dark Cloud@Lady Selune It goes without saying that it's a shame to see you both go, but I understand that situations can change, and can only thank you both for your time and effort, and wish you luck for the future!

With people dropping out, I'll have a quick roll call with those left, just to make sure people still want to move forwards, so if I can get a show of hands from @DruSM157@psych0pomp@Prosaic@sassy1085@Eviledd1984@Penny then it would be greatly appreciated!
In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" - H. P. Lovecraft





Mister Slate nodded graciously at the words of Opportunity Knox, but she couldn't help but notice the curiosity on his face as she spoke. The man sitting across from her in the carriage was smartly dressed, of course, as you would expect from anyone bound for a house as grand as Wilde Hall, but Opportunity had developed a good nose for sniffing out old money, and this stranger was not old money. Her answer was vague, but it did not take a particularly quick mind to realise that any relation of the Wildes, no matter how distant or convoluted, was likely to share in the wealth and pomp that the Wildes enjoyed. It did not take a quick mind, and there was something about the eyes that looked back at her from behind the fox-faced mask that told Opportunity that her unlikely companion was far from dull. He was polite, well-mannered, but in those eyes, there was an edge. As quickly as she had noticed it, it was gone, as the man held his hands up, a polite smile crossing his face as he spoke again.

"I don't know if I can confess to any sins. Truth be told, my invitation is as much a mystery to me as it is to you, but I am loathe to reject such an offer. I have not been in town long, but I know..."

Mister Slate seemed to catch himself, the smile on his face faltering for a moment, before he continued, shrugging apologetically.

"Forgive me, ma'am, I forget myself. The invitation called for a masquerade ball, and I should not be telling my life-story to the first guest I meet. I say, what's that up ahead?"

Something had obviously caught Mister Slate's attention mid thought, and as Opportunity turned to follow his gaze, peering out from the carriage window and up the road ahead, she saw what it was that had caught his eye. Another carriage, pulled to a stop beside two figures, lamplight casting long shadows across the street. From this distance, and in the half-light, it was difficult to make out many features of the figures, but there was enough light to see that they both wore masks. More guests. If they called out, or knocked on the carriage roof, then the coachman would likely stop, but to what end? They had space in their carriage of course, but by the looks of it, the guests already had their own transport. Opportunity glanced at Mister Slate, only to see that he was already watching her with a questioning look. If they were to stop the carriage, then the decision lay on Opportunity's shoulders.
In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown"
- H. P. Lovecraft





From behind the beaked mask he worse, Doctor Green's eyes were a pale brown, but there was an intensity to them, a light that sparked in the glow of the carriage lamp. His gaze danced to Simon Hart, and then seemed to linger on Miss White for a moment, before darting to watch Benjamin Zebrowski as he spoke.

"Room? Of course, my boy, plenty of room for all of you. Climb aboard!"

Doctor Green beckoned the three guests forwards, but the broad smile faltered as his gaze turned back to Simon and Miss White. Simon's voice was quiet, but the Doctor's ears were obviously sharp, his head tilting slightly as he caught the words on the wind. Under the scrutiny of Doctor Green's gaze, Miss White seemed to freeze for a moment, like a mouse that has been transfixed by a cat, and then the spell broke. The tension seemed to bleed out of her shoulders, and the dress seemed to shift around her as she nodded her head politely towards Doctor Green, her voice sing-song.

"Thank you for your invitation, sir, but I am enjoying the fresh air for now, and I do not want to burden you."

The eyes seemed to bore into Miss White for a moment, but even as the moment stretched out, the pale-haired woman met the gaze with one of her own, and eventually, Doctor Green looked away. Shrugging slightly, he turned back to where Benjamin stood, and beckoned him over.

"Your choice, madam. The invitation is still open, my boy, if you're not as fond of the chill."

As Doctor Green's attention turned towards Benjamin, Miss White's eyes glanced at Simon. It was fleeting, but Simon had been looking for it. Was it a look of thanks? A warning? Or simply an acknowledgment? With the broad frame of Doctor Green still silhouetted against the light spilling from within the carriage, neither dared to speak openly of it, but in that moment, the air seemed to shift. The night ahead was long and dark, perhaps darker than any of the guests were yet to realise, but on that street, between the two strangers, there was an understanding, and something that could come to be an agreement.

In This Fine Town Of Arkham

A Night At Wilde Hall






"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown" - H. P. Lovecraft





Mister Violet's glanced down at the gesture from Renee Bellerose, taking in her dark clothing for a moment, before realisation seemed to strike him. Stepping back sharply, the man held his hands up in apology.

"Forgive me, Mademoiselle."

His face twisted for a moment, the smile fading, but before Mister Violet could speak again, the voice of Moses Reaves from further up the path, and the quickened pace of Renee herself, interrupted him. Glancing around at their surroundings, the darkness of the Wilde Woods looming over them from one side, and Arkham under the shadow of night on the other, Mister Violet frowned. Even for someone who knew this path, it was near-impossible to get any sense of bearing in the darkness that surrounded them.

"My mother always used to say that it is better to push forwards than turn back, and I am loath to disagree with her. So long as we keep the city to one side, and the forest to the other, then we are certain to strike something. Eventually."

Mister Violet watched Moses pull the tree branch free with curiosity. With the darkness closing in all around them, it would not take some great leap to think that the tree branch that the man now clasped in his hands was a weapon. After all, there were few that roamed the streets of Arkham after dark, and on this half-forgotten road, strangers could very quickly start to look like enemies. Yet if any of these thoughts crossed Mister Violet's mind, it did not show on his smiling face.

"Well, I hope it will not come to that."

His gaze moving past Moses, and moving along the path that still lay ahead of them, Mister Violet squinted for a moment, before his eyes seemed to light up. Pointing ahead, the others turned to follow the man's gesture as he spoke.

"Perhaps you spoke too soon, Deacon. I'll be damned if that isn't a light up ahead. Where there's light, there's road. And where there's roads, there's carriages."

Both Moses and Renee squinted against the darkness for a moment, straining to make out what Mister Violet was claiming, but sure enough, as their eyes adjusted to the darkness, they could both make out a light, still some distance ahead of them, but tangible, and something to head towards. From this distance, neither of the two guests could be certain what the light was, but Mister Violet seemed to be confident, striding past Moses, and leading the unusual tree onwards, leaving Moses and Renee to follow behind.

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