Shaylee is working at Outer Planes and a guy comes in. This guy has been coming around the store a lot and seems to be very interested in Shaylee. He makes a point of talking to her every time he comes in. He is kinda cute and estimates his age to be a little older than her own, around his late 30’s.
This evening he is waiting out front for her and has a rose. He asks her out to dinner that night. Shaylee refuses, saying she has plans. After he leaves she heads to the movie theatre- just after she gets her ticket, he gets in line. She notices him. She notices that he is still carrying the stem of the rose, not the flower- just the stem.
He heads into one of the theaters but she can’t tell which one he went into. She decides to just leave. He is really creeping her out. She gets on her scooter and goes home.
Shaylee calls her friend, Ty and tells him about the guy and that he is creeping her out. Ty invites her to come over and hang a bit. They watch a movie at his dorm room. During the movie there are a couple of times that Ty notices an acrid scent coming from outside.
Ty asks Shaylee if she smells anything. Ty is noticing the scent about every 15 minutes now and looks up to see if he can figure out where the scent is coming from. He notices a tall powerfully built man outside his room and realizes the smell is coming from him. The man is a bit distracted and has a full sleeve tattoo on one arm. The work is very good and much better than an average college student could afford.
Ty tells Shaylee about the guy but Shaylee blows him off, but Ty is really bothered by the scent. There is something not natural about the smell. There is some element of something else- something supernatural. Ty gets up and opens the door and gives a low growl and the guy notices him. Ty tells the man to go away (Presence attack) The guy just looks at him and says “What if I don’t want to?” He has no intention of going anywhere. Ty notices that he is holding the stem of a rose, just the stem with no rose. The clock strikes 10 at this moment.
The guy gives a snort and turns and walks away. As Ty closes the door- there is a thudding sound against the door- and something comes through the door. Shaylee notices a headless stem of a rose that is embedded in the door.
Meanwhile, back in the graveyard… Neiman and Roxanne are in the graveyard. Roxanne runs over to Michael to see if he is ok. After a minute or so he starts to come around. His eyes are twitching almost as if he was having a minor seizure. After a few moments he wakes up and and says “Something dark and terrible has happened.”
“There has been some dark ritual in town that has been cast,” Michael continues.
We all hear sirens in the distance. The ambulance that we called for the poor girl that had been attacked by the ghoul is arriving. Neiman and Roxanne leave the scene to go check out the tombstone that we had originally come here to. So we head down to the southern part of the graveyard. Michael and Lothario stay and wait for the police to get there.
Michael covers for Lothario and tells the police that he was there in the graveyard with him and so was there legitimately. After about 15 or 20 minutes the police tell Lothario and Michael, “Thanks for your time. You can go now.” The police completely neglect to ask Michael what HE was doing in the graveyard. They just seem to assume he was there for a legitimate reason.
Roxanne can’t talk to any of the spirits. All the energy in the graveyard has been disrupted by the occurrences this evening and all the spirits are upset and she cannot see the normal energy for the graveyard and thus, can’t tell what is abnormal at this point. So she can’t really finish the job she and Neiman came here to do.
Michael tells Lothario that something bad has happened and that someone has been killed about the same time that the ghoul attacked.
Neiman and Roxanne decide to head back to her place and chill a bit. We get in her car and drive off. On the way to Roxanne’s, they notice that Michael and Lothario have pulled over. Recognizing them from the incident in the graveyard they pull over to talk to them.
Lothario is obviously upset and Michael tells us that we have to excuse him, as he just discovered that he is a white court vampire. He apparently had killed his girlfriend and Roxanne quickly looks to see if I see her ghost around him. She doesn’t.
Lothario takes a moment to process his newly found self discovery but then recovers very quickly. Michael invites us over to his store for a drink. All agree that it sounds good after the excitement of the evening and they all head over to Michael’s place.
After they arrive, Michael’s phone rings. It is Shaylee and Ty who are calling to ask him if he knows anything about this strange guy. Michael invites them over to his shop to discuss it further. They tell him about the strange smell and describe the guy. Michael is sure he has references to this in his library.
While waiting for Shaylee and Ty to arrive, Michael does some research on the man that they saw. He can’t find out much information, but he knows this guy is very dangerous.
They are all at the book shop and are drinking and chatting about events that transpired that day.
They hear that there was a disturbance near Montgomery Village and Shaylee decides to summon a fairy friend to find out more information.
A tiny ball of purple-blue light come through the window and land on Shaylee’s hand, then settles down in front of her. The pixie’s name is Periwinkle. Shaylee asks it if it knows what the police were up to near Montgomery Village. It is about two blocks up from where they currently are. Shaylee struggles to keep the pixie’s attention, as it is far more interested in the strawberry ice cream that Michael has than in paying attention to what Shaylee is asking.
The pixie says that someone’s heart has been cut out. It says that someone has had their heart cut out and their throat cut. This happened in a church. Ty mentions the scent he had caught at his dorm, saying that the smell is like sulpher and ash with a hint of burnt toast. The pixie says yes that scent was at the scene of the crime.
Going through many books, the group finds multiple rituals involving hearts being ripped from the body. Michael is able to weed out quite a few of them as not relevant to the particulars of the cases that we know about. In all the books he has access to, there is nothing about outsider related magic involving consecrated ground, ripping out the heart and hanging the corpse. If this is a ritual, it is something very specific.
Lothario finds an article about a another murder, in a church nearby at Stony Point Christian Fellowship. He thinks that the murder was similar to the one we just heard about.