h5. February 25th
After the investigators left the Shambling Tiger Bar, they headed back to their hotel for a short rest. Jacques Tabarin Dupond talked to the concierge to be woken up shortly before 11:30 PM. A bell man warned them that stalking the streets of Shanghai at night can be dangerous. As they set to head into the night, they grabbed tools they are now all too familiar with, guns, knives, and sword cane. The walk to the British Consulate took them about 20 minutes, though the view across the bridge was beautiful even at night. When they arrived, Monsieur Dupond they saw a man being beaten by three Chinese men, but the other investigators were also at the top of their game. David Whittaker noticed four more hiding in alley ways or in building overhangs while Dr. Norman Addams noticed that one of the men in an alley way held a scroll, while all the others held clubs, sticks, or staves. Mr. Whittaker snuck away and hid into an alley way, while Dr. Addams and Monsieur Dupond walked up to the man being beaten, who they quickly realized was Fergus Chum, the bartender of the Stumbling Tiger Bar. Monsieur Dupond shoved one out of the way, knocking some teeth out as he elbowed him in the face. Dr. Addams then swung his cane at another breaking his jaw instantly killing him. A thug walked past Mr. Whittaker, but he waited, not wanting to reveal his location at that moment, so the Chinese man swung at Monsieur Dupond missing. Another twirling a three-sectional staff clocked Dr. Addams, cracking a few ribs. The man with the scroll case, pulled it out and started chanting in Chinese about a calling upon the power of the Fire Dragon. Mr. Whittaker then sprang his plan. Firing shots from his gun into the dark, he shouted “There is a man with a gun! Run!” One Chinese thug ran away, the other three involved in melee started to back away. The man with the scroll just kept chanting. Monsieur Dupond then threw his African dagger at him, piercing his belly. The sorcerer just smiled, wiped his blood on the scroll, and then the scroll burst into flames. The flames began to swirl, snake like, until it formed a 10 foot long serpent. Then it shot straight at Monsieur Dupond and Dr. Addams, scorching both of them badly with unholy fire. They have seen too much recently to be fazed by this event, but for Mr. Whittaker, this was the first real supernatural event he had ever witnessed. It shook him up pretty badly.
After the investigators realized that even after almost two months of uncovering the mysterious of the darkness that is enveloping the world, no one had bother to learn the rudimentary basics of first aid, Dr. Norman Addams and Jacques Tabarin Dupond limped back to their hotel with Fergus Chum slouched over their shoulders, barely have stayed conscious from the beating he received. Meanwhile, David Whittaker decided to follow the sorcerer losing him somewhere around the Shanghai Museum. He then decided to focus on tracking the blood that was caused by the knife wound and after searching for a long time in the dark, found that the blood led to a large mansion surrounded by a thirteen foot wall topped with spear heads. He saw the sorcerer get inside through the guards, because they obviously knew who he was. Mr. Whittaker realized that the Chinese characters signifying this house were the same ones that were on the crates that travelled from New York to Shanghai along with the investigators. Back at the hotel, Monsieur Dupond realized that they were in no shape to question Fergus Chum in either his condition or theirs. He went downstairs to talk to the concierge about finding a doctor at this late hour. Being a man of his social standing, why was never asked. A half hour or so later, the concierge returned to his room with an old Chinese man. After apologizing for not being able to find an European doctor due to some incident at the British Consulate, this man was all that he could find on such short notice. The old Chinese doctor felt that the hotel room was not conducive to healing and forced Monsieur Dupond to rearrange the room before he would heal anyone. He then stripped the two injured investigators down and begin lighting incense on their bodies along their meridians, increasing their flow of healing energy. Though the healing burned and hurt, it miraculously began to heal them. Fergus Chum would live, though, the bruises, welts, and broken ribs would take weeks to fully heal. Dr. Addams felt the power of the Fire Dragon that burned his skin lessen. This Chinese doctor explained that they angered a powerful sorcerer who was able to call upon the Fire Dragon. The power of the Fire Dragon burns, but it can be used for rebirth and healing, or for destruction. They need to be more careful. Instead of a business card, he handed Monsieur Dupond a token. One one side had the character for medicine and on the other character for Chan, which was presumably his name. After a very long day, having just arrived in Shanghai, the investigators sleep well into the morning.
h5. February 26th
After eating a cold breakfast that was served hours ago, Jacques Tabarin Dupond began questioning Fergus Chum. Fergus was incredibly frightened over the events of last night, but it was the final proof that he needed to trust the investigators. “Jack Brady is in some kind of trouble,” he pleaded. “Please help him. The man saved my life. I don’t know where he lives, because I think he is keeping that a secret to protect me. What I do know is that I think he has been up to something, and it has put his life in danger. See these newspaper articles, I think they are all tied to Jack Brady. Especially the one about the flower girl house. He confided in me that he really liked a girl there.” Monsieur Dupond decided that it was worth his funds to keep Fergus Chum safe. He had an aunt that lived outside of Shanghai in the country side that he could stay with for awhile. The Shambling Tiger Bar would fall into ruin, but his life was worth more. For once, the investigators decided to rest and pause for a bit before inquiring more into finding Jack Brady, but they now had some leads.
h5. February 27th
David Whittaker took the day to talk with Isoge Taro, believing that now maybe some information could be exchanged. Mr. Isoge was not unpleased to see this American again. Mr. Whittaker told his tale of the man who could summon fire, though it had to have been a flamethrower or fireworks, because a summoned fire serpent is just not possible. Drawing the connection between the crates and the house seemed innocuous to Mr. Whittaker, it was disturbing to Mr. Isoge who informed David that Ho Fong is one of the most powerful men in Shanghai, nearly untouchable. His interest in Ho Fong was information that he had that suspected that Mr. Ho was building a weapon of some kind, in secret. This was something that the Japanese government felt was not in their best interest to have happen. Mr. Isoge did not have much information yet, but did finally get a man inside Ho Fong’s warehouse which is on the docks south of the Japanese Quarter.
After a day of rest, and smuggling Fergus Chum out of the city, the investigators decided to follow up on one of the leads they were given. After an English breakfast at 10 AM, they headed back over to Lantern Street where they traveled 7 more blocks along a street dedicated to bars and other places of entertainment, to get to the Silk Butterfly House. After they knocked, it was some time before anyone answered the door. When it was, three hastily dressed Chinese women answered the door. After some awkward flirtation and small talk, Dr. Norman Addams asked about Choi Mei-Ling. One of the girls, Silk Flower, said, “Oh you mean Quivering Jade.” Just then Madame Gee walked down the stairs and looked pissed. The girls immediately shut up and moved out of the way. After yelling at them to look more presentable, Dr. Addams was able to calm her wrath enough to be invited in for tea to discuss partaking of her girls. When Madame Gee was asked by the Doctor that he was requested Quivering Jade as he had heard good things. The Madame said she was sold to a Taoist doctor down the way. “She wasn’t worth the trouble and didn’t bring in enough money,” Madame Gee remarked. “Glad she’s out of my hair, now are you interested in my girls, or are you wasting my time. With the attack and people coming around asking questions, business has not been good. And I lost one of my best girls, Magenta Joy, who is now in the hospital.” While the other two enjoyed a late morning romp, Jacques Tabarin Dupond got Silk Flower. Instead, he flirted with her to get her to open up and tell him more about Mei-Ling. Monsieur Dupond found that Quivering Jade was sold one day before the attack. The real reason was that the American she was seeing, started having people showing up asking questions. Madame Gee would have none of that. Unlike what they heard down stairs, she was in fact one of the most profitable girls in the Silk Butterfly House. Though she knew the American as John, after Monsieur Dupond described Jack Brady, he was pretty confident it was the same person. He told her to stay here and instead was paying her for her discretion. Jacques then went to look at the room where the murder took place and wish he hadn’t. It was covered in blood and guts from the ceiling to the floor and on all the walls. Bed, desk, and chairs were all in pieces. The window was hastily boarded up, because what ever came in here was not much larger than a large dog, but obviously came and went via the window. Monsieur Dupond was on the cusp of understand what could have done this, but held onto his sanity a bit longer. Dr. Addams on the other hand has embraced the Mythos with a fervor and realized that this was related to the creature that killed Samuel Paletta, but now understands that Hunting Horrors come in different sizes and different number of wings, though it is very common that witnesses still rationalize as seeing a large bat. Afternoon, the investigators head further up Lantern street to the Taoist “doctor” who had a shop full of pickled dragon feet, incense, and charms. He was pissed that his purchase ran away from him. Dr. Addams noticed bruises on his face and welts on his legs. After reassuring him that they were not his enemies, got him to open up that some thugs beat him up, inquiring about where the girl went. They must have believed him, because they let him live. Could these thugs be of the same ilk as the ones that attacked Fergus Chum. If so, they maybe on a collision course with one of the most powerful man in Shanghai.