The Worms that Walk

"A Terrible Sense of Purpose"

From the journal of Theodore Atticus

It seems that eldritch madness has become the norm, rather than an aberration, and the world around me seems to grow more perverse by the day. My return to the Carruthers household was one marked by trepidation, curiosity, and desperation, but I emerged from that crucible with a terrible sense of purpose. After discovering the tome of Yog-Sothoth and the journal of Walter Corbitt, I felt that I had trespassed on forbidden grounds. Like a hand burned by a candle’s flame, I mentally tore myself from my lifelong study of the occult. I had hoped, upon entering the Carruthers house, that I would be able to find some way to undo my discoveries up until then. I thought that I could perhaps pretend as though none of this had happened, and the mad cultists and demons would let me resume my life. I see now that my life is something I must fight tooth and nail to regain, for the forces of madness will assault us at any opportunity.

They seized poor Dr. Harkness while we were inside the house. Receiving a text message from him to the effect that I should come and help him decipher some strange symbols, I went to that horrid room which contained all of those mutilated cats. He proceeded to push me out of the window, and the injuries I incurred from the fall nearly resulted in my own death. Looking back, it is odd to think that I was so close to death, yet still continued to act. My own death seems a distant, alien possibility in retrospect. At the time, I’m sure it was simply adrenaline which drove me to climb down the old coal chute as a way to escape the man I was sure was out to murder me, and to seek refuge with Officer L’Angelle and young Jeffrey. I’m sure I must have frightened dear Penny half to death as she sat on the stoop, but what awaited me down in the basement was hardly better. I could scarcely believe my own eyes, but as I arrived on the scene, a dagger was quite literally flying about the room and attacking members of our party seemingly of its own volition.

The madness did not end once we had finally trapped the dagger within a box. We ascertained that Dr. Harkness had been possessed, though by what forces we knew not, and Penny went to investigate the spot where he claimed it had happened. Behind a hollow wall, we found a bizarre room containing yet more cats, though these were still alive, albeit malnourished. And in the center of the room was a dais on which were laid the remains of none other than Patrick Carruthers! And when we moved to investigate the body, it veritably sprung from its sleep and began to attack us! I still shudder when I think of him lashing out at us, beating three of my companions unconscious. He was not un-dead so much as post-dead. With this terrible monstrosity laying waste about him, and with my own taser merely glancing off of him, I must admit I fled. The madness had simply become too great, and with all sense of logic leaving me, I ran back to retrieve the dagger. Perhaps, I thought, magic will quell magic. It seems foolish to think now, but it worked well enough. As I returned, the dagger sprang from my hand and began stabbing at the body of Mr. Carruthers.

At long last, we stilled him, and it was as though I had been simultaneously freed and enslaved. A great burden was lifted from my mind as I knew we had freed the world from this soul’s madness. I emerged from the house of sounder mind than I feel I have been in some time. At the same time, however, I know now what I must do, and the thought of it fills me with dread. These forces will not stop plaguing us until we put an end to them, and I feel that we have only glimpsed the tip of the iceberg that is the insanity of these people. Still, we are no longer moving about as blind men, and even with the small quantity of information that we have, we can move forward with purpose, rather than groping about for clues. I will soon begin eager study of the note that we found in Mr. Carruthers’s pocket, and I hope to understand more of how he is connected to Lower Walsherham through it. In addition, I now am in possession of the magical dagger as well as an amulet worn by Mr. Carruthers that has strengthened my resolve, and I feel emboldened by them. The dagger, especially, has grown somewhat dear to me not only for the protection it provides, but for what it means to me as a scholar. I keep it close to me at all times, just in case. I had thought about submitting it to the boys down at Berkeley, but that could mean giving it up to some museum archive or archaeology department for study, a thought which I find distasteful. No, I shall keep it for my own, and with it, I shall strike out against the madness of which I had formerly been so fearful. Fear, wolves, for now this sheep has claws!

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