Monday Night Madness

Amidst the Ancient Trees, chapter 2

Dead Man walking

Saturday, June. 24th, 1922 – Father Ward awakes screaming near midnight. Others are roused, also complaining of vague and troubling dreams. Hayward complains about not having alcohol, leading to a debate over the quality of what Edith keeps in her flask while Jonson plays his new accordion. Later, as they are all again struggling to return to sleep, Hayward and Ward hear a truck in the distance (Hayward attempts to get a better idea of distance but fails, nearly getting lost in the forest – upon his return he persuades the good Father to give him a little whiskey the priest has tucked away “so he can get back to sleep”).

Quotes: Father Ward: “Whenever you have four Episcopalians together, you have a fifth…”

Edith awakes to the sound of gunfire and wakes Anne-Ann, who also hears it before the echoes end. Failing to discern where it is coming from (only that it is far off), they again drift back to sleep. Over breakfast the following morning they discuss the sounds they heard, as well as whatever nightmare had caused Father Ward so much distress.

Quotes: Father Ward: “Nothing to worry about; I was dreaming of the old church choir.”
Hayward: “Surely it was more than that!”
Father Ward: “You haven’t heard them sing.”

They set out, attempting to be stealthy. Mid-morning they find a new trail covered in recent blood-splatter, and decide to back-track it. They lose it after a few hours, so they return to where they had been before and return to their original trail.
Meanwhile, Carol Cliffe, Antony Flinders and Emilia Webb (all part of a different search party some miles to the west of our Investigators) encounter a truck, but let it go unimpeded and without comment. A couple of hours later they run in to our main protagonists and decide to join them (the rest of their party ready to turn back because of their own distressing dreams). Near dusk Edith, Antony and Emilia spot a glint of reflected light from a nearby ridge, giving them enough warning to dash for cover when someone starts shooting at the search party. Retreating further back into the woods, they establish camp and make plans for watches that night, as well as possibly sending scouts later to sneak up on the sniper. While on watch Edith and Hayward realize someone is spying on them from the tree-line, and they manage to pursue and capture him – shocked to find he is a mummified corpse in a civil war union uniform. After handcuffing and tying the body to a tree they settle down for the night, only to be awoken near midnight by a loud explosion miles to the north. They are also distressed to find the corpse has slipped his bonds and escaped.

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