Game Master Daniel Penfold 351

A play through of the Masks of Nyarlhotep campaign for Call of Cthulu.





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Henry, looks like you have the deciding vote.


Thinking a moment, Henry says, "I think we should stay with Larkin. The only one we know is going to be a problem is de Mendoza. I don't trust Larkin, but if he thinks we're double crossing him, we might not be able to get him to believe us once we kill de Mendoza. So far, we don't know if he's actually one of the kharasiri or not."

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Arthur nods in agreement with Henry's logic.

"Those creatures, were fearsome. Tis a good thing that we were warned of their susceptibility to fire. However, I've used three torches and now have only seven left!

If de Mendoza makes the connection between our trip here and the loss of his minions we may still have a problem with him. We must make sure we are not separated from each other in his presence".

You head back to the hotel, despite calls for the police in the market, no one bothers you and as there are no bodies to be found the police decide the incident was just high spirits. Neither Larkin or De Mendoza leave their rooms all day

Is there anything that you want to do on the following two days or is it Ok to jump straight to Monday

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Based upon their effectiveness, Arthur seeks to stock up on torches and at least two more zippo lighters if he can find them.

Thereafter he casually watches de Mendoza's movements whether by day or by night (if he can). He asks at least one more member of the team to accompany him.

Are you going to do the same with Larkin, with Jackson as well could of you could watch each one.

And apart from watching Larkin and/or de Mendoza do you want to do anything else?

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

Barney for some reason thinks Larkin is the more dangerous of the two, and decides to keep a close eye on his actions.

"I still don't like working with them, and don't understand why we are, since we know where to go, and we've got the gold symbol... but hey! I'm a team player".

The rest of the weekend passes relatively uneventfully, you see very little of either De Mendoza or Larkin, you are told they are both suffering from altitude sickness.

On the Monday, however it appears that De Mendoza and Arkin have recovered a bit. They have organised orses for you all to move into the highlands of Peru.

After three days travel into the highland you eventually reach your destination. The ruins containing the pyramid are located on a plateau overlooking a deep, windblown valley. The surrounding land is arid and plant life is sparse.

No plant life grows on the plateau. It is barren and dusty, with only the man-made structures breaking up the monotonous brownish-gray of the dirt. An eerie whistling or piping sound can be heard blowing on the wind. Despite the cold, you notice an increasing number of flies in the air as you draw closer.

From above, a few key features can be made out in the ruins. A stone wall surrounds the site; it is difficult to tell how tall it once was, as it is now partially buried by silt, but the visible portions protrude from the ground at heights of around 6–12 feet (2–4 m). It would be relatively easy to climb over the perimeter wall by scrambling up one of the banks of dirt and dropping over to the other side. Alternatively, there is a main entryway, taking the form of a rectangular doorway flanked by huge stones and topped with a weathered stone carving. The carving appears to represent a human head, but it is thin and elongated, with a grotesquely distended mouth.

Natural World roll if desired.
Archaeology roll if desired

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Arthur strokes his chin thoughtfully at the strange terrain and man made buildings that have been erected. The strange distended mouth is particularly interesting.

Natural World 10% - 1d100 ⇒ 66
Archaeology 50% - 1d100 ⇒ 45

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

Barney shrugs as they view the scene before them... "Well? Easy way or hard way"?


Natural World, 10%: 1d100 ⇒ 60
Archaeology, 01%: 1d100 ⇒ 48

Henry looks at the area, then shrugs. "Easy way seems fine to me."

Arthur you realise that the structures resemble those of the Tiwanku site on the south side of Lake Titicaca, over the border with Bolivia. The 60 mile distance from Tiwanku suggests the site was meant to be remote from their main cities.

As you look you can see two figures in the distance that look like kharisiri. One ascends to the top of the pyramid. When it reaches the top it walks over to what looks like a crack in the stone and kneels before it. It then proceeds to vomit a stream of thick white fluid into the hole. Once it has finished it is replaced in turn by the other one. They both look significantly gaunter once they have done this, they walk to the far side of the pyramid and disappear from view.

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Arthur shifts away from De Mendoza and Larkin and whispers to his companions, "Quite sure I just saw more of our friends atop the Pyramid..."

He then nods and speaks aloud, "I think you are right Henry, these structures do resemble those of the Tiwanku site on the south side of Lake Titicaca, over the border with Bolivia.

I postulate that the 60 mile distance from Tiwanku suggests the site was meant to be remote from their main cities.

I suppose we will never know why until we enter and explore ourselves".

Are there others on the trip with us? I believe they were not able to find anyone else to go but want to confirm that.

No, there's no one else, just you three, Jackson, De Mendoza and Larkin

You notice that Larkin is particularly suffering from the heat and altitude

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

"Mr. Larkin, are you well? Perhaps we should stop for some water and a rest before we attempt to explore further?"

I thank you, this heat and the altitude seem to be affecting me. I will wait here while you explore with De Mendoza.

Medicine roll if wanted

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Arthur tries to evaluate Larkin's health. Vs. 40% 1d100 ⇒ 11


Henry looks at Larkin.

Medicine vs 01%: 1d100 ⇒ 60

He eyes de Mendoza, then says, "Are you sure you'll be alright?"

Arthur, it is clear to you that Larkin is suffering from heroin withdrawal.

Henry de Mendoza grunts and says he is ready to enter the tomb with you all.

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

"Oh Well. No time like the present... After you".

NOTE: Is Barney still suffering from the high altitude?

1d100 ⇒ 38 CON (75%) If required


Henry takes his .303 out of its case and loads it. If anyone asks, he says, "Just in case. You never know what kind of wild animals may have roamed into the ruins."

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

"Prudent Mr. Chandler. Dark in there as well I would wager".

He removes a torch from his backpack and proceeds to remove the zippo lighter as well.

"Anyone else need one or will you be brandishing a weapon instead?"

Am I sure it is Heroin withdrawal and not similar to the sickness we say with the Professor after having been a victim of the kharisiri?

Barney, you have acclimatised to the higher altitude and now feel able to cope with no problems.

Arthur you think that it is a combination of heroin withdrawal but also there's something like the kharisiri going on in Larkin's body.

You can have a Spot Hidden roll Arthur

Where on the map do you want to head to, you are at the edge of the map, where the path labelled 4 begins

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Spot Hidden vs. 70% 1d100 ⇒ 22

Just for a moment as you are looking over Larkin you see the whites of his eyes turning black and then it is gone. At the same time you feel something pressing into your mind before that too is gone.

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Arthur sighs and turns to his fellow Investigators keeping his torch in one hand and lighter in another, "Shall we enter or shall we camp out here and explore the perimeter first? I think that we may need to make sure there are no natives to chase down first. What say we split up and do just that?

de Mendoza, keep an eye on Larkin while the rest of us do just that? This way when we return, we will have a base of operations to rest in when night falls. I don't think staying within the Ruins is prudent if there are wild animals lurking within or graverobbers with ill intentions!"

De Mendoza sullenly agrees to wait with Larkin, although you can see that both him and Larkin are unhappy with this idea

You head down the path to the main gate. The main structure is a stepped pyramid with a large flat top, most of which appears to be below ground level. Around this is a network of crumbling inner walls, many of which have collapsed. A number of the walls are decorated with archways. The ground is uneven, with piles of silt blown into small dunes by the wind.

You can have an Archaeology or a Spot Hidden roll here.

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Archaeology 50% - 1d100 ⇒ 51
Spot Hidden 70% - 1d100 ⇒ 52

Once the group is within the main gate and well out of earshot Arthur speaks, "I believe that de Mendoza has begun the process of turning Larkin into a kharisiri. At first I believed it to be heroin withdrawal but his eyes looked oddly dark to me as I watched him.

If we delay, it will be too late to save Larkin. Perhaps now is the time to strike at them? I certainly saw kharisiri atop this pyramid or my eyes deceived me. Your thoughts my friends as to how to proceed?"

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

"Something is the source of this curse. I say we find the source and cut it out of the equation. Otherwise these things will keep showing up again and again".

"Let's keep our eyes open and find out what this gold seal has to do with the whole thing".

Arthur you find a vertical shaft capped by a broken stone slab, there are a number of similar vertical shafts around the site.

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

Just to clear things up, is there another way in, or only the vertical capped shafts?


Henry grunts and walks down with the others, leaving Larkin and de Mendoza to set up camp. "Based on the writings that grad student discovered, we need to get into the underground tunnels to put the gold piece back. If that vertical shaft is our only way in, so be it. We can either try to find another one, or use that one."

Other than the shafts you think that there might be a way in in the charnel pit (Area 8)

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

"So you postulate that if we enter this place and 'defeat' whatever evil is within we will free de Mendoza and Larkin of this curse?

I am not sure that I wish to leave them at our backs undealt with if they are truly servants of whatever this 'evil' may be.

As far as climbing down a shaft, have we the proper gear for that? If not we would be better served finding another way down below that is less dangerous".

Arthur lights the first of his torches at this point.

Are you trying the shafts or do you want to scout out above ground some more?


"Let's make sure we have a full idea of the lay of the land before we go looking underground."

Scout out up here.

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

"Yeah. Wouldn't hurt to check everything above out first".

1d100 ⇒ 89 Spot Hidden (35%)

"I really don't like dark vertical shafts".

Looking around outside

The pyramid is mostly submerged in the earth with only its top five steps rising above the ground. The steps are made of rough-hewn stone, worn and cracked with age. Each step is around 5 feet in height. A long, narrow crack runs diagonally across the top of the pyramid.

On the far side of the pyramid (Area 8) is a large pit about 15 feet on each side and 10 feet deep filled with human remains. The buzz of flies and the stench of decay grows stronger as you approach. All of the bodies are emaciated. Many appear to have been here for some years.

Spot Hidden rolls please


Spot Hidden, 45%: 1d100 ⇒ 36

Henry looks at the charnel pit. Not too different from some of the mass graves I saw during the War, although I'd say these were victims of kharisiri, not mustard gas.

Henry you notice that in the pit there is the outline of a tunnel entrance. There is also the glint of something golden at the bottom of the pit.

HP = 9/11|MP=14/14|SAN 70/70|Spot Hidden 70%

Spot Hidden vs. 70% 1d100 ⇒ 11

"We must be cautious to ensure that we too do not fill that pit..."

Arthur, you can tell that there is a definite tunnel at one side of the bottom of the pit.


"That pit looks to hold an entrance into the underground area. If we aren't going to take the vertical shafts, we're probably gonna have to go that way. I also saw a hint of some kind of gold in there."

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

"Does it look like we can get down to that cave without wading through a bunch of dead, disease infected corpses? If not let's get some rope, and pick a shaft".

You would need to wade through the bodies to get to the tunnel

I'm assuming you are heading down a shaft

The tunnel descends 15 feet, it is dark below but with the light of your torches you can see that the shafts are made of worked stone but the tunnels they drop into are just bare rock/earth. The tunnels descend at a 60 degree angle.

Can you make a Dex or Climb roll to get down the tunnels

Male Human (Scottish American) Bounty Hunter

1d100 ⇒ 10 DEX (65%), Climb (35%)

"I'm sure there is some rope in the trucks. Let's get some and tie ourselves off for safety".

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