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Welcome to Tales of Terror

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Who is the murderer?

Miss Sarah Spencer is convinced that someone is going to murder her but does not know who or why. She needs help and is willing to pay. Two days ago she received a letter with a local postmark. The letter was typed on a typewriter with a missing ‘e’.

She was going to leave it at that but yesterday found a message in the personal column in the newspaper.
There is another message today.
She has left her job and has booked into a hotel.

The messages were telephoned to the paper and paid for by a man giving his name as Robert Cook. Tomorrow’s note in the paper is to read:


1 Miss Spencer is dangerously schizophrenic and quite insane. She is usually Miss Spencer, but at times of stress becomes Robert Cook. Cook is gradually exerting more control and believes that by killing Miss Spencer he will be completely free. He will, but not the way he thinks.

One room in Miss Spencer’s fastidiously neat house is messy and unkempt. This is Cook’s, and pride of place is an antique typewriter with a missing ‘e’.

2 The letter was written by Miss Jane Marsh, jealous ex-lover of Robert Cook. Miss Spencer is now seeing Cook, and Miss Marsh has sworn to kill her and frame him. She knows where Miss Spencer is staying and has posted an invitation to Cook to visit her there. There he will find the mutilated body of Miss Spencer just as the police arrive.

3 Miss Spencer is a deep one before the ‘change’ and is luring the investigators to their death. They have been getting too close. The cliff top hotel she says that she is staying in is old and dilapidated and smells of fish.

© Graham Theobalds

Dark Incal


1 The statue is a representation of the N’Ho, a tribe of sand dwellers making their home in the desert during the time of the Egyptians. A small enclave of the tribe still exists and Pennyworth died at their claws as they recaptured their totem.

2 The statue, with the help of a piece of translated papyrus, was used to summon Anubis. However, without a binding ritual there was nothing to keep the old god at bay. He grabbed the professor and dragged him back to his realm.

3 The professor’s jeep overheated in the desert. Unable to re- start it he set out on foot in the direction he thought his camp lay. He perished in the storm, hugging his prized possession to his chest.

© Perry Okerstrom

Sunday, 14 May 2017

The Helmsdon Monster

The papers of 1913 are full of stories about the Helmsdon Monster. It is possible that some similarity between the killings can be reached.


1 The Monster is a ghast summoned by some foolish farmers dabbling in the occult. It came up through the caverns that riddle the area and began slaughtering the sheep. By day it hid in the caverns, by night it stalked the moors.

The farmers were terrified by the thing they had unwittingly called, but were powerless against it. However, the stories in the press attracted a sorcerer who came and bound the ghast to the caverns.

The sorcerer has just recently died, releasing the ghast from its bindings. Once again it is reaching out to the surface and feeding on the sheep it finds. Eventually it will get brave enough to attack individual homesteads.

2 The slaughters are the work of one crazed lunatic who roams the moors, killing the sheep with his bare hands. He is completely insane, and very dangerous.

3 The creature is a large wild dog, a doberman. It is quite canny and will do its best to avoid capture. It was a guard dog at a nearby manor, but was set free during a drunken party. It will attack unhesitatingly.

© Steve Hatherley

Saturday, 13 May 2017

The Toast of London

Anyone with the right connections receives the above invitation. At the meeting, dozens of London’s rich elite will be there. This is an ideal time to establish contacts, and new clients.

Note: Victor Neuberg was a medium and conjuror, and a genuine member of the Golden Dawn.


1 Neuberg is a fabulous fake. He is very flamboyant and every spectacle he produces is designed to milk money from the unsuspecting public. His illusions look to be completely realistic but are accomplished using sleight of hand and expensive magician’s props.

2 The magic tomes offered for sale seem to contain genuine magic formulae but are all flash and no substance. The Psychic Circle does own some dangerous works, but these are kept under lock and key.

3 In his effort to impress, Neuberg accidentally summons something a little too powerful during his act. The demon, happy to be in the material world, pushes Neuberg’s mind aside and takes control of his body. Nobody is aware of this fact. Not at first.

© Perry Okerstrom

Saturday, 6 May 2017

The Theatre of Death

It has long been known that Chinese immigrants living and working in London’s docklands have imported their own brand of organized crime.

The Tongs control most Chinese businesses in London and the police have identified at least four different Tongs controlling everything from petty crime to prostitution. They believe that drugs, particularly opium, are directly controlled by the Tong known as the Rising Dragon, its leader the mysterious Doctor Cheng.

However, the police are far from making any arrests and have yet to identify Doctor Cheng. While his activities remain confined to the Chinese community they are not pursuing their investigations that zealously...

Dr Cheng is a woman, a night club illusionist called Lin May and her hold over her Tong comes from her skills as a necromancer. Lin May is extremely beautiful and twice as deadly. Cold and cunning she is the perfect femme fatale. She demands absolute loyalty of her companions but in return will help them any way she can. To her enemies, and those that break her loyalty, she is death.

While leaving the mundane world of criminal activities to the other Tong leaders, Doctor Cheng offers a highly-specialized service to the decadent rich in the shape of her Theatre of Death. To thrill hungry little rich kids, the Theatre is the ultimate decadence. A place of excitement and death not available anywhere else. Once a month a huge warehouse is turned into a great theatre to which the cream of Europe’s elite flock. The only way in is by invitation, and invitations are both scarce and expensive. Once there, guests participate in all manners of death, violence and sexual perversion.

The main attraction is Doctor Cheng’s illusory performance, but the audience is ‘warmed up’ first by a vicious display of fighting between newly dead celebrity zombies. The zombies are newly reanimated by Cheng, and the more famous the better. Cheng has connections in very high (and very low) places that supply her with corpses.

After Doctor Cheng’s performance, there are other delights to amuse the guests, including a bizarre game involving taking vagrants from the street and offering them three boxes. In two are death, the other riches. Each box has a glass back so that the audience can ghoulishly watch the poor tramp make his choice.

In other, curtained, sections guests participate in perverse sexual practices both with each other and the staff. Opium taking is commonplace, Doctor Cheng presides over it all. Her guests arrive loaded with money, most of which is spent during the night.

All the staff are dead. Some are almost fresh and barely marked, others are rotting heaps of flesh. All wear simple white aprons and many serve drinks or opium. Necrophilia is common in the Theatre of Death.

Doctor Cheng herself is constantly flanked by two bodyguards. Zombie fighters dressed in ancient, ornate armour in the manner of her ancestors. They protect here against her guests, for occasionally in their opium induced haze they forget themselves. Cheng has no real need for the guards, but it helps to impress her guests.

The guests themselves will discourage investigation into the place. All of them have much to lose should it be discovered that they frequent such a place. Curious individuals can make themselves many very powerful enemies in a matter of minutes. The police will never raid the place, Doctor Cheng’s guests will see to that. Several Scotland Yard Inspectors and prominent members of Parliament will crush any investigation before it starts. The remains of corpses, those that cannot be re-used, are dumped into the Thames and never seen again.


1 Lin May is the head of a small sect of The Corpse Eating Cult of Leng. After the Theatre of Death has finished she, and her cult, fall upon the zombies and feed on them. They chant and worship their foul god for many hours before the Theatre of Death is truly over.

None of the ‘normal’ clientele know of the cult and none would do anything about it. After what they have been doing, are the cult rites that much worse?

2 Lin May’s necromantic and illusory skills have their origins in Chinese black magic. She is aware of the power of the Great Old Ones and their followers but provided they do not intrude on her territory she takes no action. Her arcane arts are more than a match for most cults and if recruited she would make a powerful ally against the forces of darkness. However, making her acquaintance (let alone recruiting her) is not easy.

3 Doctor Cheng worships Nyarlathotep. During her illusory act she works her audience into such a frenzy that the Outer God is summoned to the Theatre of Death. From the moment he appears the Crawling Chaos – in the form of the black man – sits by her side. Her dream is to become Nyarlathotep’s bride, something which the god has promised many times. He has yet to deliver, but Lin May continues holding the Theatre of Death in his name. Perhaps soon he will make her dream come true.

© Garrie Hall

The Terrible Old Bookshop

The Terrible Old Bookshop is situated on Darker Street. The once green (or perhaps grey) paintwork is peeling, the windows are filthy. Inside, the shelves are stacked high with dusty books, more are in heaps on the floor and in rotting cardboard boxes. It will take several hours of careful searching to realise that there is nothing of interest to investigators. There are, however, plenty of novels by Ethel M Dell and Marie Corelli, school texts on geometry, Latin grammar, and other such.

The proprietor sits on a high stool behind a small counter, bent over a large leather covered volume. He appears to be in his thirties and is strikingly handsome in a Saturnine way. He has a neat goatee beard and if he was an actor he could make a career out of playing the devil.

As strangers approach he hurriedly stuffs his book under the counter. He will answer no questions about the book and will refuse to let investigators see it.

Breaking into the shop is quite easy and is the only way to gain access to the books. Behind the counter are two books, Magna Mysteriis and Mysteriis Mundi. They are handwritten in an unrecognisable script. Also behind the counter is a cupboard with a good, strong, lock.

The proprietor is very furtive when he leaves the shop, taking a devious and tortuous route that doubles back several times. A careful investigator will be able to tail the man until he lets himself into a house on Coven Lane.


1 The two books are written in English using an alphabet of the shopkeepers own devising. Given time, it can be cracked. One is a racy, partially fictitious novel, the other a diary and ideas book. The house on Coven Lane belongs to a married lady who supplies him with practical experience to write his novel.

2 The locked cupboard contains hard-core pornography. The books are ledgers containing accounts and the house on Coven Lane is a place where young children are kept after being abducted. The children are sold to various unsavoury individuals throughout the country. They are never seen again.

3 The books are occult tomes, rare, original copies. The proprietor is compiling several lesser works (kept in the cupboard) into one big volume. The house on Coven Lane is a meeting for a group of black magicians. Currently they are harmless, with only the proprietor knowing of the power of the occult. That might change, in time.

© Peter F Jeffery