The Twisted West

DeletedUser13682

"Well, alright, let's go now," Ian said. It was a good afternoon, considering what had happened earlier. M was looking intently at the paper Mr. Cain had given him, Mr. Cain himself was looking worried about something, most likely being out after dark, which was understandable, after what happened to him last night. He was surprised M wasn't very scared. The other man, Ben, he was trotting along on his horse, a pretty well kept creature, which bode well for Ben's character. While everybody else was busy on their various things, Ian reloaded his Volcanic pistol, and put that safely away.

When they arrived at Mr. Cain's house, they hardly noticed the man waiting outside, until they were nearly inside said house. Mr. Cain had his hand on his revolver, but Ian drew his M1861 and pointed it at the man. The light was fading, and Ian couldn't tell much about the new stranger. He felt something on him, and turned around to see M peeking out at the man from behind him. Mr. Cain challenged the man, and he turned around from talking to Liu. He responded that he was looking for Mr. Cain, worker of the Huànyǐng dàlǐshí. But what was that he was about to say? The devil's stone or something? He was a religious, maybe a priest, but definately religious. Ben went with the priest idea, but Ian wanted to be sure. "Identify yourself," he ordered the new stranger, keeping his revolver pointed at the man. "I want name, occupation, and purpose for being here."
 

lafittejean

Another man appeared and brandishing a gun demanded Jean's identity and purpose. This situation was in no way progressing to his liking, "My name is Jean Lafitte. I am a messenger and spreader of the lord's word. I recently encountered some incredible monstrosities and in my investigations ghostrock was brought to my attention. I found out that Mr. Cain was a manipulator of it and decided to see him and inquire about its properties." What an ill-mannered man, the last time he'd been treated this way was by an airhead of a brigadier general who'd nearly gotten his unit slaughtered.
 

DeletedUser28032

"I am Alexander Cain" he said introducing himself to the priest at his door behind which Liu stood watching him nervously "Liu would you be so kind as to show Mr Lafitte to the drawing room and get him a drink whilst I show Agent Smith and Miss M my workshop" the young Chinese girl nodded opening the door to allow the priest entry.
"Mr Andrews you are welcome to join Mr lafitte but I must warn you that even with the original it will take me several hours to complete any repairs" that and also Alexander wanted to keep the number of people in his workshop to a minimum, much of the equipment within was delicate and or dangerous to those not trained in its use also he didn't wish any of his schematics to go missing whilst he was distracted by his other guests "Now Agent Smith, Miss M if you will follow me I will show you my workshop".

Alexander walked down the flight of stones stairs into the old wine cellar, from the darkness were the tell tale clicks as the gramaphone ran along the records inner ring, the music long since finished.
The room was long and fairly narrow made more so by the machines and cabinets lining its walls, drawings and schematics covering the spaces in between them.
In the centre of the room there was an old battered workbench littered with tools and pieces of machinery in various stages of construction, it was also upon this table that Alexanders current invention sat waiting for him.
The three of them gathered around the table as Alexander showed it to them "Well here it is...I am afraid it isn't finished yet but I hope to have it completed soon" he said gently picking up an object around the size of a cricket ball made from several interlocking brass plates which according the rough schematics currently in M's possession allowed it to pump water through the four openings in its polished surface, two at the top and two at the bottom.
However it was whilst they were examining the item that they first noticed the low rumbling sound coming from behind a great steel door at the far end of the room. Acting like he'd only just noticed the noise himself Alexander left the workbench in order to reset the gramaphone, its music easily masking the noise but not hiding it completly "So does anybody have any questions they wish to ask me?"
 

DeletedUser31931

Ben went to the Drawing Room with Mr Laffite and sat down. Liu served drinks and Ben took a glass of wine and sat and waited he looked at Mr Cain's impressive Library. Being able to read ok he was impressed by Mr Cain's collection. He picked up a book called The Uses Of Ghost Rock and began to read.
 
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DeletedUser25825

M raised an eyebrow as she looked around Alexander's work space. She was obviously unimpressed, but it wasn't clear exactly what was uninspiring about it. She looked at the pumping mechanism, and narrowed her eyes thoughtfully. She glanced at Ben as he pulled down the book, snorted at the title and shook her head as she looked over at Alexander. She asked, "Seriously?" She clucked her tongue and remarked at Ben, "That book isn't very accurate at all. Sure, you could try to convert the properties of Ghost Rock into medicinal concoctions, but you're liable to die shortly thereafter. But read away anyways, the world needs less fools."

She looked back at the pumping mechanism and folded her arms as she frowned at it thoughtfully and asked, "Power source right? I mean... I know what I think it is... but if it's the case... there's much more missing from the entire project. Oh my yes indeed. SO much more. You'd need an entire system of other mechanics... or even biological support systems. Now... I don't know if you realize this... but in my extensive research into.. um... this kind of stuff... I discovered that a tremendous amount of energy is part of the make-up of this system. If this is not a stand alone trinket, I would say... draw from the overall power source. It wouldn't be all that hard if you showed me the rest... if it exists I suppose. My guess is you're in your rudimentary stages with this though.... right?" Her eyes flicked toward Ian, before looking back at Alexander.
 

lafittejean

Mr. Cain was courteous enough to allow Jean to wait in his drawing room. Cain's servant was attempting to serve Jean some brandy which he politely turned down. Glancing around the room he saw Mr. Cain had some refined tastes. Beautiful silks adorned the room. More than likely souvenirs from China as various items indicated. He noted that the other fellow. Ben was his name? Was investigating Mr. Cain's extensive library. Jean did not feel like appearing to snoop so he sat down in a simple wooden chair. It appeared to be made of an exotic wood and was beautifully carved. Jean adjusted his collar a little. The warmth of the room however caused him to start to doze off...
 

DeletedUser28032

Alexander gave a short laugh at M's surmations about the ghost rock book Ben had discovered nestled amongst his collection "The author is an old friend of mine he gave a copy upon its release... he hits upon a few valid points but M is quite right the majority of whats written within is simply rubbish" he had a few other books on the subject of ghost rock but those were all safely locked away from prying eyes.

He quietly observed M as studied the device she was holding, the look on her face telling him she knew or at least suspected what she held in her badly scarred hands "Yes you are quite right I am still working through the design stages however it is my belief that the...Hosts own systems would be more than capable of working in conjunction with the device you are holding" Alexander eyed Ian nervously he wasn't sure how much the Pinkerton agent could understand or what his reaction would be if he was to realise the devices true purpose.
"If you would excuse me miss M I should see to my other guest upstairs...Feel free to look over the rest of the schematics I would be interested in hearing your thoughts" Ascending the stair case into the main part of the house Alexander seated himself opposite the others, a drink of brandy placed delicatley onto the table next to him by his maid Liu "So gentlemen what is it that I can do for you this evening?"
 

DeletedUser31931

After their attack on him he put the book away. There was one on the working mechanisms of a gun. He picked that up instead. It was always useful to know how to fix your gun if it broke down. Then he began to read.
 

DeletedUser25825

M cracked the knuckles of her right fingers with a complex twist of her hand, and spread the schematics out with her useless left hand. She studied them all with a strange intensity for such a flighty seeming woman. Her lips parted in a lopsided smile as she began to see the big picture of Alexander's work, and her head began nodding slowly. She lifted her head, and found herself only in the company of Ben. She chose not to address him, partly because he was a rude goat, but also because he seemed preoccupied in his own studies. She gathered the schematics together in her right hand, and sorted them in an order she would use to begin work. She was excited about the ramifications the machination would present. Almost to the point of focussing on Alexander's work, rather than her own. Almost. M found it very hard to split her attention from the siren's song of her own invention. If she were to finish that, it would present a MUCH better laboratory for Alexander's work, and it was far more secure than what was presently available. A large steel door could only do so much after all.
 

DeletedUser13682

Ian followed Mr. Cain into the lab, a narrow, extremely long place with things everywhere. What could be done about it though? An experimenter will be messy, well usually. They arrived at the center of the room, where a brass device was sitting there. It seemed like that was the big invention. "A brass ball? Well, it looks neat, and it is pretty small, but that's nothing to be afraid of," Ian said to Mr. Cain. He looked at it for a minute, then realised that it wasn't a ball but a pump. "Oh, it is a pump." Then, he heard a rumbling coming behind the steel door at the end of the room. He was going to ask Mr. Cain what that was, but him and M were conversing, and he left soon afterwords. That left Ian and M in the lab.

"Well, from what I hear, it sounds like he's making a heart, am I right?" Ian asked M. "That's great if he is. People living longer would make lots of people happy." The gramophone was playing its music, very loudly. Ian went over to it, and turned it off. The rumbling from the door became loud again. "M, what do you think is behind that door?" Ian asked. He walked over to it, pulled out his Volcanic, and grabbed the handle. "It's a steel door, whatever is behind there is either top secret in Mr. Cain's eyes, or very dangerous. The rumblings make me think danger."
 

DeletedUser31931

Ben noticed the rumblings after a short while. Mr. Smith noticed them too and asked M about them. "You are as likely to get a reply from here as from a man who is held by himself in the mirror. She is so immersed in her work she won't come out of it for a bit."
 

DeletedUser28032

Sipping the brandy given to him by his maid Alexander listened to the priests questions however the myriad of butterflies currently hovering over the mans head made concentration difficult accursed ghost rock, once the heart is finished I can be rid of the infernal stuff closing his eyes Alexander slowly counted to five before opening his eyes once more to find that the butterflies were gone. Alexander smiled with relief the halucinations were getting more and more common it was also taking much longer to remove the grey-green stains from his fingers from where he had been handling the powdered form he used to power much of his machinery.

As he sat in his comfortable sitting room his attention now safely back on what the priests was saying when the music coming from out of his workshop suddenly stopped. Alexanders heart seemed to stop with it as the rumblings from the room began to emanate through the open door, Liu cast a nervous glance towards Alexander although she didn't know what hid behind that door or even what was in the workshop she understood that what had just happened wasn't good.
"I am sorry to interupt you but it appears one of machines is malfunctioning, if you would escuse me" he told the lie easily as he rose from his chair heading immediatley for the workshop door, his heart hammering frantically in his chest they mustn't open the door they mustn't open the door his head screamed angrily.
Grabbing a revolver from off of a bench, an experimental weapon he'd started some years previous Alexander reached the centre of the workshop just in time to see Ian push the large steel door open.
It opened slowly, grating loudly as it did so to reveal a tiny storeroom in the centre of which stood a single machine.
It stood eight feet tall and had the appearance of of a giant steel coffin flanked by two enormous machines which were not only the source of the deep rumbling now echoing across the workshop but also the reason that the room was so cold, freezing in fact causing the walls to be covered in thick frost, greast clouds of condensation billowing out of the open door.
In the centre of the great steel machine there stood a single pane of glass through which could be seen the machines sole occupant.
She was beautiful with long blonde hair and wearing a summer dress revealing flawlessly pale blue skin, her eyes were closed as if she were simply asleep, yet the small hole in her chest attested to a different verdict.
Standing behind the two of them carefully aiming the revolver in his hand Alexander calmly and politley spoke "Allow me to introduce you to my wife...Jessica Cain"
 

lafittejean

(OOC:Sorry about being slow to post.)

As Jean battered Mr. Cain with a number of questions he got an increasingly clearer picture of what Ghostrock was. A material with unique properties that had only recently started to appear, with amazing applications, and was also a destroyer of the mind. When Jean pried into Mr. Cain's own inventions however, it seemed he was hiding something. Not only that but he seemed to be in an increasingly dazed state as he stared lazily at Jean. Then he closed his eyes. Was he sleeping? Then suddenly he rebounded and once again listened intently. Jean noticed something however, as their discussion continued. Something, some sort of music he'd heard in the background had stopped. Then Mr. Cain left suddenly, while appearing quite distraught when mysterious rumblings started to come from the basement where he had invited a few of the visitors Jean had seen.

The Chinese maid appeared nervous for some reason, Jean decided to follow Mr. Cain into the basement. He asked her where a restroom was. She directed him to a room a few doors from the study they were in. Indoor plumbing, what a nice touch. Fortunately she was too nervous to guide Jean who approached the entranced to the lower floor. Mr. Cain was in quite a rush apparently as he'd neglected to lock it and Jean stealthily moved down the stairs. He could hear rumblings and voices below. He reached the base of the stairs and peeked around a corner. There was a well illuminated workshop, with many strange devices. He could see the center of attention was an open steel door from which a pall of cold and warm air mixing seemed to lend a mystery to what was inside. Jean squinted and saw through the distant pane of glass a woman who was... Wait, she was dead the serenity and the blue pallor of her skin could only suggest that. Then Mr. Cain started speaking. So, it was his wife.

Then Jean realized something, this man was being driven to greed and madness in his pursuit of one thing a long lost wife. Yes, that had to be it he wanted her back to life and would continue paying miners to produce the Satan's rock until he had what he wanted, no matter the sins and evils he might promote. Not only that but he must have a desire to be god. For he was now attempting to resurrect his wife, an act left only to the lord. Yet this man wanted to play as such. It was a rapid conclusion. One formed with little evidence. Perhaps the man was simply preserving his wife for some reason. Jean however could stand it no longer.

He rushed out of the shadows and declared quite loudly, "What in the name of the lord are you attempting to do Mr. Cain?" The man's name was nearly spat from Jean's mouth such was his level of irritation.
 

DeletedUser31931

Ben swore as the priest ran out. He spat and he hated priests (at the time Atheism was beginning to develop) and his parents had to after they had been seen drinking all the wine, mead and eating the best crops which had been taken to "sacrifice" to the "wonderful" Lord God. "Mate he wants to bring his wife back. If he does then it would be a scientific wonder. Millions of lives could be saved. Isn't that what the Church wants! Isn't it! Or are you just greedy beggars who just steal peoples crops for themselves! The priests in my town where and they now lie dead! If you are going to worship this so called "lord" then do it properly!". He pulled out a gun and aimed it at the priests hand. If the priest did anything odd then he would blow the priests hand off.
 

lafittejean

"No you fool! He is playing god! This women clearly left the world some time ago! To revive her would be to destroy whatever fate was originally charted for her soul. Now put that gun down you raving lunatic! I am a man of god, not only that but if you miss you might blow us up all of us in this laboratory. Ghostrock may not like beong hit by one of your hand cannon rounds. Now, as I was saying Mr. Cain! What were your intentions with this projet you've revealed to all of us?"
 

DeletedUser28032

Alexander whirled around to face the priest pulling back the hammer on his weapon, he had no idea if it was loaded or even if it worked "Out of my house priest your God isn't welcome here" he snarled feeling the same red mist descending as he had felt moments after agent Smith had left his house the previous evening, a black rage that had resulted in the bruisinig on Liu's arm.
He watched in suprise as an unlikely ally in the form of Ben came to his aid giving him chance to check the chambers of his gun, flicking open the cylinder Alexander smiled as he noted the ghost rounds nestled within yes...now i remember i was using this weapon to test the powder mix returning the cylinder to its proper position Alexander began to slowly edge towards the open steel door behind him. The priest was quite right one stray round could cause an explosion especially one of his rounds however if he could get behind that door then both he and his wife would be quite safe.
"My wife was stolen from me two years ago and ever since i have been working to bring her back to my side" he replied to the priests accusations of him playing God he could feel the beginning of tears at the corner of his eyes, the walls were once more beginning to bleed, oh the price he had paid to bring her back, his sanity had been crumbling around him ever since his wifes death but the ghost rock required to bring her back threatened to destroy him a small price in his oppinion if he succeeded in his goal.
Alexander moved slowly very aware of the fact that as well as the priest in front of him that agent Smith was stood behind with his own weapon, but on whose side would he fall there would be no neutral ground here.
 

lafittejean

Jean saw Cain draw a weapon, he realized he'd neglected to bring his. A small holy book and his golden cross were his only "armanents". However as he watched the man shake with anger and explain how he had lost his wife two years ago he felt a slight pity for Cain. Jean noticed Cain was trying to shut the door and lock himself and his wife in.

"Why do you run? Are you cowering from me simply because I challenge your own greedy desires? Your wife has passed on, we on Earth can do no more for her. You however have tried to revive her and as far as I can tell that hasn't happened. Meanwhile your pursuit of Ghostrock is destroying the town and people around you. The increasing harvests seem to make insanity enroach on the stones harvesters faster. And as the harvest increases so does the appearence of the strange Satan spawn that have already killed several persons. Mr. Cain your quest is folly. Put down the weapon, and abandon your pursuit. Close the door to me, and you close the door to your salvation and the enduring safety of the people you know and perhaps even care for. If you stop now we will be a step closer to eradicating the Satan's spawn and preserving the remaining innocence of this place."
 

DeletedUser13682

Ian had opened the door, maybe that was a bad idea. Behind it was cold, and in the cold was a steel box, and within the steel box was a woman, dead, but preserved by cold's touch. He didn't know what to do. He barely heard Alexander come down and introduce the woman as his wife, and barely heard the imminent gunfight unfold. The priest was down here, Ben was down here, Mr. Cain was down here, M was down here too. Finally, Ian was able to turn his back to the woman in the box, and saw that Mr. Cain was very close to the door.

Ian closed the door, cutting off the view of the woman. Mr. Cain and Ben both had revolvers drawn, both pointed at the priest. Ian was sure there were unstable explosives here, anything with enough force would destroy the lab and the people in it. There was one thing Ian could do that felt right. He walked between M and the others, and pulled out his revolver. This he pointed at Ben, the Volcanic was pointed toward Mr. Cain. "Now, I want everybody to slowly put their weapons down, and I want everybody to leave this house. I need to figure this out, and I can't if you have weapons pointed at a man with no weapons. This is a federal order, if you do not comply, I will arrest you. Understood?"
 

DeletedUser28032

The door closed with a loud clang sealing off his beloved from the rest of them, Alexander gave a sigh of relief she was safe. "Very well Mr Smith I will lower my weapon but i have no intention of leaving my own home" he said placing his weapon onto a nearby table and taking a few steps away from it. He looked up at the priest standing by the stairs "Mr Lafitte you are no longer welcome in my home and if i see you near my property again then i won't hesitate to have you removed" Alexander spoke calmly enough but inside he could feel a deep burning rage towards the priest knowing full well that if the man was foolish enough to interfere with his work then he would kill the man after all he would require test subjects if he was to improve his designs
 

lafittejean

"I see your judgement is still clouded. But, I will forgive and perhaps someday you will reconcile yourself with me and eventually the lord. As for the rest of you, I bid a good night and godspeed." Jean knew his further presence could only result in bloodshed and he now knew what he needed to know. He backed towards the staircase; then he sprang up them and was out the door. As he mounted his saddle he looked back at the house. "May god find forgiveness for what you are about to do," he left the words to hang in the cold dark grips of the night. He lashed the horse with his riding crop and rode back to his quarters. Ghostrock it did peculiar things to men and material. He would attempt to repair the situation when the sun finally rose...
 
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