Finding his lovely lady friend had been missing, agency detective Jake Spade asked around for Valerie and looked out front in the hotel’s parking lot, looking for a car she drove. There he bumped into one of the mafiosos who, thanks to Dr Coppard’s sharp eyes, was attempting to sabotage the cars out front as Jake had intended but found that none of the car’s engines would turn over. Indeed, all the vehicles in the hotel’s parking lot–all three of them–were inoperable. Probably due to the effect the machine had on all other electrical devices within a mile or so of the demonstration.

Soon it was time for the dinner and everyone was required to attend with their finest clothes, etc. After some discussion, our heroes agreed to a plan set forth by Amanda “Manny” Merlot; Dr Coppard would talk with Kepler and attempt to steer him and his men’s ire towards the mafiosos while simultaneously someone else would do the same and force the mafiosos to falsely think that Keppler had the intent on killing them and taking the machine.

Coppard found that Kepler already had planned on killing the mafiosos after winning the auction.

Tom unsuccessfully drew the attention of the Italians in his attempt to speak with them. Thankfully, Manny swooped in and through her charm managed to secure a seat next to the mafioso’s leader. The Don, finding her attractive, drank what she was serving and mistook her gestures to be suggestive of more intimate pursuits. Once more, Manny gracefully navigated the encounter, laughing and denying the Don any further advances.

Jake passed a letter to the Pelfries, intimating that they had some terrible knowledge of the machine they were selling. Information which should be shared with the rest of the people there. The note was pocketed by Wade, their lawyer, and never seen by either Pelfy or his wife.

Before the auction began, it became known to many at the hotel that Valerie, the lovely lawyer with a sharp wit, was missing from the event. Many eyes began to look at Jake, who had spent part of the evening with Valerie in her room. To everyone in the hotel, they had discovered her door had been kicked open (by Jake, previously) and recounted that the private detective was last seen in her room before she vanished.

Manny wrote a very convincing message and used her charming wiles to tell the Don of the mafiosos that Jake was not someone they needed to worry about.

Wade calmed the hotel manager after one of the staff had claimed to see a strange creature flying around outside in the mists.

Jake attempted to slip out unnoticed from the solarium, but was told by both the mafioso’s Don and Kepler that no one was to be allowed to leave during the auction. There were many protestations, especially by Dr Coppard but Wade and the hotel staff were insistent that no one was to leave during these proceedings until they were over.

As the sealed auction began to draw to a close, a loud knocking sound erupted from the far side of the room. A large seven foot man was allowed to enter into the room from the outside. Donning all black clothes and with a gaunt parka, the stranger introduced himself as Mr. Sleep and spoke to Wade.

To the outrage of both the mafiosos and Kepler, Sleep was allowed to enter a late bid. When they questioned the legitimacy of all this, Wade simply stated that he was the auctioneer and he could have whoever he wanted to bid on the machine.

Once the sealed auctions were opened, it appeared that Sleep had the winning bid by several tens of thousands of dollars. At this point, the mafiosos and Keppler’s people spoke to Wade and he said that there was a “tie” for the winning bid.

Around this time, a pair of approaching headlights were seen through the mists by everyone in the hotel. Suspicious of what this might mean, Keppler and the Don conceded to have the third party that clearly lost the bidding to take one of their men to investigate.

As the majority of the group headed to the car, Jake slipped away and went to investigate the barn directly across from the hotel.

Tom, Coppard and Manny went with their two bookends and saw a young porter standing near the front headlights of the working vehicle. When they approached, they found that his speech was…wrong. In a strange voice, he spoke to our heroes and demanded that they allow “us” to take the machines and to not allow Sleep or the others in the Solarium to gain control of the device. Then they watched, in horror, as a large creature with batlike wings, pincers and a head covered with squirming antennae. A umbilical like tentacle slid from the back of the young porter’s head and the creature rose into the air before anyone could act to strike it. The porter fell over dead and they all glimpsed the surgical quality of the damage done to the back of his head. This creature had used a human being as little more than a literal puppet.

Meanwhile, Jake drew his pistol and made his way to the barn. As he approached, he noticed an eerie and iridescent glow from within its walls. Looking inside, he found the rest of the vehicles that belonged to many of the other guests at the hotel. He also found that nothing inside the barn emitted any sound whatsoever. Above the cars, in the haystack, he found the source of the strange light and pursued it, climbing to the top. There, he witnessed a living nightmare.

Brains and eyes–including Valerie’s–distilled in brine jars, strange machines being operated by three of the same bat winged creatures the hotel staff described seeing. Each of the creatures held a strange device that appeared to be some kind of alien firearm. In their midst, floating in the air between the trio was a crystalline thing that turned and emitted the strange multicolored lights Jake saw from a distance. As it turned, Jake glimpsed alien vistas from beyond; realms belonging to the creatures he faced now, and many other terrible truths.

The private investigator charged into the haystack, shooting at Valerie’s distilled brain to put her out of her misery. He then fired repeatedly at one of the three creatures as he ran toward them, realizing in his mind that the only way to stop the carnage would be to use their own weaponry on this window into their realm.

With luck, Jake was able to wrestle one of the creatures and guided the electric fire that was projected from its weapon into the floating crystalline structure.

As the rest of our heroes rushed back to the hotel, the barn across from it erupted in a brilliant explosion of light and sound. They then heard the telltale sounds of gunfire coming from the solarium followed by a bone chilling roar. The group then saw a similar explosion at the hotel. In its aftermath, the walls of the solarium buckled and burst from the enormous creature that grew within its halls. The one known as Mr Sleep appeared to be a many tentacled, many eyed monstrosity that threatened all around it with its expansion. Around it, more of the flying creatures descended from the mists, seemingly at odds against the monster in possessing the machine.

Manny hopped into the car left by the dead porter and heroically charged the large creature, injuring it. She then proceeded to take arms against the creatures around them, letting fly with whatever firearms she could manage to procure.

Tom bravely engaged the creatures around him by similarly taking up a thompson machine gun and firing into the throng. In the ensuing firefight, however, the stuntman lost his leg and found the gruesome and twisted remains of Jake Spade’s head among the remains of the ruined hotel. The head laughed and screamed.

Dr Coppard, suffering from mental trauma, leaped at one of the flying creatures attempting to flee in an attempt to better destroy the area. Through his actions, Coppard damaged the machine sufficiently that the resulting firestorm that ensued melted the device, exposing the alien crystal core inside. The resulting explosion destroyed the good doctor, but also vanquished the rest of the creatures with a follow up implosion.

With only Manny, Tom and Keppler left alive, the trio left the site as its only survivors. Thankful for their help in surviving the ordeal, the Merchant of Death would go on to ensure that Tom and Manny’s testimony that the destruction was wrought by “foreign antagonists” would go unscrutinized.

Professor Finch, grateful for his bravery, purchased Tom an early prosthetic so that he may continue to pursue his career in film. Manny returned to the outback, shaken from her experiences. Both heroes continued on, unaware that darker powers had taken notice of them.

And thus ended our two part Pulp Cthulhu Terrifying Tale!

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