Taking Back the Night

Inspector Neame finished reading the reports of the previous night’s events, squared the papers and placed them neatly upon the corner of his desk. He removed his pince-nez and regarded his assembled officers over steepled fingers.

“Gentlemen,” he began, “as you are aware, Constable Rowan suffered an assault in the pursuance of his duties this past night. Whilst he does not appear to be physically harmed, given the specialised nature of our duties, I thought it prudent to send him home, in order for him to recuperate fully.”

There was a murmur of concern from his men, with Sergeant Webb looking particularly distressed.

However,” he continued, ” this was not the only attack to have occurred last night.” He tapped the neatly ordered papers significantly. “One Sally Meadows, or ‘Saucy Sal’ as she was more commonly known, also ran into our mysterious blue lady, but unlike Constable Rowan, she was not so fortunate as to survive this encounter. She is currently occupying a slab at St. Bart’s and…” he reached for the relevant document, scrutinising the details, “it would appear our mystery woman, for reasons known only to herself, decided to cut off Miss Meadows’ face and carry it away with her.”

This revelation caused a sharp intake of breath from the assembled officers, although Constable Moore appeared to have something else on his mind, judging from his expression. Moore had a reputation for exacting attention to detail, worrying at the minutia of a case like a terrier at a rat. If something was troubling Moore, Neame wanted to know what it was.

“You have a question, Constable Moore?” The inspector asked.

“Yes, Sir,” said Moore, gathering his thoughts, “based on the reported times of the two attacks, can we be certain that the same person committed both?”

Neame pursed his lips in thought and looked back and forth between the two reports. Moore had a point.

“The two incidents did occur in close succession, yet were seperated by a distance of a mile or so, which would suggest that they were the work of two separate indivduals…however, witnesses attest that both were committed by a ‘blue woman’, so unless we have two of them runing about, we have to assume that it was the same person.”

Inspector Neame leant forward. “This state of affairs cannot continue. I want this woman apprehended and in custody before the day is out. To that end, I shall be sending you out in force this evening. Now, I appreciate that we are a man down, with Constable Rowan currently indisposed, which is why I have requested the services of Mr. Grimm here…” He gestured to the man who had been sitting quietly in the corner of the room, a Gladstone bag at his feet, so silent that the officers had not even registered his presence.

Lancelot Grimm rose from his chair, taking his bag and placing it on the desk. He unsnapped the catch and drew forth three truncheons, which he silently handed to each officer. 

“I have a fair idea of what is stalking the streets of Blackwell,” said Grimm, “and that is why you will need these.”

Constable Nash whistled appreciatively, sighting down the length of the obviously non-regulation baton. “Solid Rowan core, 18 inches in length, studded with stirling silver,” he murmured, “nice…”

Moore hefted the truncheon, a thoughtful expression on his face.

“Does this mean…?” He began.

“Indeed it does, Constable,” interrupted Grimm, a savage grin on his face, “We’re hunting faeries…”

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11 thoughts on “Taking Back the Night

    • Thanks Dave. I’m enjoying chronicling the adventures of men of the Black Museum too, as you can probably tell. The next instalment is intended to be an actual game, as the forces of the Black Museum converge on the streets of Blackwell and attempt to capture the nefarious murderer. But is all as it appears? I guess we’ll all have to wait and see… 😁

      And the same applies to Lancelot Grimm…

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  1. Extremely enjoyable, as I have come to expect from all your literary creations. An AAR will be a wonderful addition to the growing saga, nicely cementing game and story into one solid fused whole.

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  2. Wonderful and marvellous as always jez. I feel like I`d following a weekly Bow Street Runner serial in `The Strand` written by a fledgling HG Wells or A C Doyle. Even the authentic mention of the glasses on Neame`s head seemed right and just so (Inspector.. or Chief Inspector?).

    The inclusion of a first AAR will be a welcome bonus to an otherwise already fine tale.

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    • Thank you, Hils. I’m sort of treating it as a weekly serial, with each instalment furthering the tale, yet not revealing all. I like to tease, as you well know. 😉

      As for the reference, I do try to add enough period flavour so that it feels right for the era. Too much ‘Victoriana’ and it ends up reading like a parody.

      As for Inspector Neame, he was a real historical personage and was actually responsible for setting up the real Black Museum, although I may have raken a few artistic liberties regarding its purpose.

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  3. YAAAY yes yes a battle report to look forward to next time. Crazy good news, I can`t wait to see this.

    the story is intriguingly moreish and is unfolding at a pace I enjoy, nice.. and slowly, but with a natural pace that feels both measured and casually paced, to perfection.

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    • Thank you, Steve. I’m trying to balance giving enough of the tale to keep you interested, but without overwhelming you with too much that you lose sight of the story.

      As for the AAR, I know who (and what) will be involved, where it will take place, but have no idea of how it will play out. Should be a lot of fun finding out.

      I will probably keep any mention of the rules (Way of the Crow, naturally) to a minimum, maybe keeping the non-narrative aspects to a separate section at the end.

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  4. If it’s any help, I tend to put the “rulesy” type stuff in captions under the photos so that the narrative can flow.

    This is a lovely set up for your AAR mate, just lovely. Constable Nash sounds like a plucky fellow… 😉

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    • Thanks Andy. As i’ve only published two AARs, I’m still finding the right format, so any advive is welcome.

      As for Constable Nash, we shall see just how effective he is when he takes to the streets.

      Like

  5. Pingback: Green Grow the Rushes, O… | Carrion Crow's Buffet

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