Join Date: Jan 2008
An Excerpt from Mr. Hemlock Stone’s Case Files as chronicled by Sir Walter Harvey…
I had been sharing a flat with my friend Hemlock for the past six months when he received a strange visitor, a German by his accent, claiming to be an ancient Teutonic Knight. I was skeptical for it seemed nigh impossible that such a man could have lived until 1893. But Stone listened silently nodding where appropriate and puffing on his pipe.
The man’s tale went thus ‘I have lived through the ages and believe I was kept alive to witness some great event. I fought in the crusades alongside my brethren but unlike most I survived. Recently I have come to your country at the behest of a man calling himself the Gentleman, a circus performer of sorts. He and I are now headed to America where he claims there are others like us. Those gifted more than normal men. He mentioned we were needed as strange creatures were coming out from the deepest recesses of the Earth.
One such creature the Gentleman himself encountered on this very street four years ago. A creature with three heads, he believed as do I that this man was the fabled Jack the Ripper who was never caught. But either way he was a menace. The Gentleman claims there are others just as vile or maybe even worse and that we would need to work together in order to stand up to them.’
“But that is impossible” I exclaimed at length as I could take no more of this fabricated tale “what do you take us for? This is Mr. Hemlock Stone you are talking to and he is no fool!”
Hemlock looked over at me and without so much as a flutter of his eyelids spoke “calm down my good Walter. Though this story seems highly improbable it is not altogether impossible. I have seen other signs of this in my travels as well. Now if you please good Knight continue your tale.”
When the self-proclaimed Teutonic Knight finished his tale Mr. Stone agreed to accompany him and the Gentleman to America to meet this other gifted men. He was so intrigued it showed across his face which was normally a stone mask betraying no emotion whatsoever. I reluctantly agreed to join them so I could write down everything occurred though I was less sure than my colleague that there was anything worth writing about. For I was convinced this ‘Knight’ belonged in an asylum and not running around like Don Quixote fighting windmills.
We took a steamship, the Queen Katarina II, and sailed in early 1894. We arrived in New York met by the other men who called themselves the Adventure Club. Most of the group seemed to be nothing more than circus performers like the Gentleman and all of them seemed a bit touched in the head. I feared we were now at the mercy of madmen. I tried to tell Stone but he wouldn’t listen.
We stayed with the men in their rented rooms and they each showed us what they called superpowers. Most seemed inhumanely strong. But one stood out from the rest. A man named Cannon. He emitted some sort of concussive energy from his hands. If I were a religious man I would have sworn he was the Devil incarnate.
But after a few weeks they proved my original assessment wrong. These were not deranged madmen but gifted with the power to better mankind. They performed various good deeds around New York and traveled around the country performing others. I still did not understand the purpose of them wanting our company however.
Until one day in late autumn one of Hemlock Stone rogues’ gallery came a calling. Professor Bullsworth Froggerton had come to America. The fiend was no more human than a daffodil! I had not believed Stone when he had told me of their previous encounter. I had thought he was under the influence of his opium habit when he recounted their battle atop Tinkenbach Falls. But when I saw this anthropomorphic frogman I became a believer Stone past adventures. But this Professor Froggerton should have died when he fell over those wretched falls. Perhaps his sharing the same physiology of a bullfrog made him perfectly at home in the waters and he survived.
Afterwards he had come to America to start a new criminal empire. One in which Detective Hemlock Stone could not interfere. The Adventure Club claimed they had heard rumors of this criminal mastermind and were hoping Stone would be able to help them locate him before Froggerton could put his schemes into motion. But the very presence of Hemlock brought Prof. Froggeton out of the shadows where he concocted a plot of revenge so vile it took the might of the entire Adventure Club…
The document abruptly ends here with no notion as to how the confrontation actually unfolded or to the exact outcome of this event.