The Curse Of Nineveh

Madmen and Meetings (11th - 13th July 1925)

As Walter stepped forwards the hunted eyes of Peter Simkins snapped up from beneath his matted hair and with a cry he leapt up and forwards fists flying. The rage of the maniac took Walter completely by surprise and in a matter of seconds, a the horrendous pain of a broken rib gave way to blackness under the manic strength of the madman. Ripley pulled his friend clear as Hilary leapt into the hall, immediately falling into a well trained boxers stance. Hilary’s confidence in being able to deal with most opponents, certainly one this malnourished and weakend , was quickly overcome by the strength of the frenzied attacks and he quickly drew his revolver in genuiine fear for his life. Even with his gun in his hand Simpkin’s attacks were terrifying and having taken a hefty blow from the end of Hilary’s pistol, when any normal man woud be reeling, he struck back with such incredible force that Hilary felt his shoulder dislocate. With Walter out of immediate danger Ripley leapt back into the fray but despite both his and Hilary’s best efforts Simpkins fought like possessed animal. Ripley took a blow to the jaw that knocked him to the floor, out cold and only the arrival of Hamilton allowed them to subdue the lunatic and stop the assault.

Hamilton used Walter’s handcuffs to restrain the unconcious Simpkins while the survivors nursed their wounds and tried to calm neighbours who had been alarmed by the sounds of fighting and more so by the repeated discharging of Hilary’s revolver. That far from trying to leave the scene the investigators were nursing wounds and asking for someone to fetch the police calmed things considerably. Walter briefed the officer when he did arrive, while Ripley quickly investigated the house finding little of interest, and in short order Simpkins was taken away. Hamilton, who was bruised but had remained relatively unharmed drove the group to St Thomas’ Hospital where they had their wounds tended to.

Ripley and Iain returned home while Walter stayed the night with Hilary, Hamilton keeping armed watch with a shotgun. While no assailant or burgler disturbed their rest only Ripley and Hilary escaped dread nighmares that were only half remembered the following morning.

Sundary passed slowly, Ripley accompanying his wife to Church in the morning while (having explained his cuts and bruises as business deal he was looking into had taken a turn for the worse when the contact got violent). Hamilton dropped Walter home after lunch and most of the group did little more than tend to their wounds from the day before. Certainly nobody felt like making the planned trip to Lewis to see Iain’s family.

Ripley awoke on the Monday morning once again unrested after a night of barely remembered dreams in which he was suffocating under the blows of some unseen foe.

Walter started the day getting back up to speed with his normal workload at Scotland Yard. However at 10am he had a meeting with DI Brinslow (who was responsible for the Lord Brightman murder) and DI Partridge (who was responsbile for the Glossop murder). After initially apologising for stepping on their toes with regards to MacAvoy and Simpkins he began to explain what had led him to MacAvoy’s house holding back little information. While holding back details of the golden statuette and the death of the “drowned man” from the journal he detailed the meeting of Neve Selcibuc and all of the other events from there. As was to be expected both detectives were highly interested in the story and asked a number of pertinant questions. At the end of the interview Walter asked if he could be assigned to the case but DI Partridge in particular didn’t seem very keen on the idea.

Having caught up with Howard and got details of the research he did into the team who undertook the 1919 expedition Hilary and Ripley headed off to the British Museum for the meeting that Ripley had arranged with Thompson. They were met at reception by Patrick Longton,a genial and friendly curator who took them to Thompson’s office and introduced them.

The meeting with Thompson could have gone better. Unsure of what the meeting was about and not having expected a peer to be accompanying Ripley, Thompson was obviously shocked when they uncovered the golden statuette and asked him for his opinon on it. Outside of mentioning the Wentworth Club they refused to say where it had come from and pushed hard to get answers to questions that Thompson either wouldn’t or couldn’t answer. Upon breaking news of MacAvoy’s death and Simpkins insanity to him things didn’t improve. When Hilary made to leave taking the statuette with him, a statuette which all had agreed started out as property of the museum, things really came to a head. Thompson called for security and Hilary, threatening to have him sacked and ringing the Home Secretary, demanded that they called the police threatening all kinds of dire outcomes if they arrested him or tried to stop him leaving with whatever he decided to take.

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