New Colony Span Bridge
I know what you must be thinking: how did she end up here? Well, I am a sucker for field uniforms with silver lining. No, that’s a joke. I was always the bugs and animals girl at school. So this is, um, kind of a career path. Cryptozoology. I guess I didn’t see that coming when i signed up for R&D. They don’t really ease you in gently, how all the urban legends…aren’t. Legends. Or even that urban, I mean the stuff I saw in Iowa would- Never mind. Well, I don’t have any regrets. Yet. And this work gives great miles. Even more, now we’re getting flown to some new catastrophe every couple of months. Well, you must be pretty used to it by now, though, right? Doing that… thing you do. Would you say a “flock” of superheroes? This is totally bugging me.
The Secret World
It’s nice to be able to talk to someone about all this. Who understands. I can’t call up my folks and be all “You will never believe what I performed frozen section on today!” I see these things so they’ll never have to. I’m keeping them safe, safe in their reality. Protecting the world with science! I was so into that idea as a kid. Now, well, I think it can make you a little crazy. Staring too long into the abyss, and all, down the old electron microscope. Like I was happy to be one of the “Vali Girls,” we have an internal mailing list, but now they’re calling us the “Frankenstein Patrol.” Things are getting kind of gross. But I have Blake as a grounding influence. Oh, he is super-grounded. And so I look at him and think: Ann, honey, just do what you’re told then get your buns out of there.
The Orochi Group
I’m under a strict NDA. I can’t really talk about my employer, or my job, or Blake, or all this hardware, or the helicopters, or oops. That was already too much. Can I retract? Look, it’s not like you can’t figure out things on your own. Put two and two together. We’re here, and I’m sure you’ve seen our base camp out west- Oh, shoot! Damnit. Nice one, Ann! I guess “covert operation” means “be a blabbermouth” in your world. Sorry. Yes, we work for the Orochi Group. No, we can’t talk about our reasons for being here, but… look around. Isn’t it painfully obvious?
The Secret Societies
I’d love to be a part of an ancient secret society. I’m sure you guys have access to some amazing stuff, like libraries and artifacts and…and… Okay, yeah, I’m geeking out a bit. But come on, I grew up reading about this stuff! It’s like all my childhood fantasies suddenly coming true. Superheroes, secret societies, creepy crawlies, magic… If my mom only knew, she would feel so bad about trying to get me to be “normal.” My mom doesn’t know. Anything. At all.
Ann Radcliffe and Harrison Blake worry about the mutated zombies on Priest Island. Their abnormal growth could be triggered by an environmental source. Investigate the island to find the cause of the abnormality.
These black toxic pools gushing out of the earth are like lesions bursting upon the skin of a dying man. The earth is dying on Priest Island, and by all accounts it is a rotten death. There is of course a resulting growth, but we hesitate to call it life. The undead hulks are more like restless scabs. Perhaps these ugly forms of death and mutation are necessary parts of the cycle, or perhaps not. We will ruminate on the matter. In the meantime, please seek more information about the nature and composition of the black liquid.
Ann Radcliffe is apprehensive about some of her employer’s actions. There seems to be a lot of secret activity beyond her security clearance, and she’s worried that some of it might not be for the greater good. She hints at suspicious activity at the airport.
The more, the merrier. The more organisations seeking - and failing - to hide things from us, the more space there is for vacuity and madness to fill. There are many questions to answer before manipulation can begin, but already answers begin to billow and take shape. Namely: What is the purpose of the Orochi experiments? Clearly, they are curious about the draug's inner life. Why do the Orochi import excavation material? Clearly, they have reason to dig. Why did Orochi incompetence allow us to access their base? Clearly, we are favoured by fate.
Dead in the Water
This was an extensive undertaking. Years from now, entire tomes will be dedicated to it. For now, we must wait and see how it will affect the draug. Regardless, we are pleased. You have not only drawn out the most primordial of the draug, but also defeated them. The lost vessel that was found, Polaris, is a glimpse into the depths of the Sargasso Sea - and its legend of an Isle of Dead Ships. Something has fed this legend, nourished the draug and the thickness of the fog. It is at the heart of whatever has pulled them here.