The Pyramids of Hertfordshire, episode 4

Marsh dodges a bul­let; April puts the boot in.


20th May 2010.

Dramatis Personae


Fol­low­ing their vis­it to the Man­or, the team delib­er­ated their next move over din­ner, even­tu­ally decid­ing to try to loc­ate and scout the camp in the forest that even­ing. Grabbing copi­ous sup­plies of teas to keep them awake, they armed them­selves and headed out into the gath­er­ing fog. Pren­tiss took the lead with his ground-eat­ing pace, but Lady Ant­o­nia had to pre­vent him drift­ing off the faint path; in the mean­time, Marsh’s attempts to move quietly par­al­lel to the group com­bined with his lack of wil­der­ness skills led to him trail­ing them by quite a dis­tance. They arrived at the ridge after dark­ness fell com­pletely, set­tling down to wait for a few hours while Marsh scouted out the camp location.

Around mid­night, they saw the lights appear over the val­ley, mani­fest­ing in sev­er­al loc­a­tions with­in the cloud before swirl­ing togeth­er. There was no obvi­ous source, but the effects were clearly centred on the camp. They could also feel the vibra­tions in the ground start up as they appeared. Cur­ruth­ers tried to get a good look at the camp using his bin­ocu­lars, but nearly blinded him­self des­pite his best efforts. With noth­ing else hap­pen­ing, Cur­ruth­ers and Pren­tiss both attemp­ted to get some sleep.

Marsh arrived at the camp, which was situ­ated on a small plat­eau, sur­roun­ded by a 10-foot bank, and fol­lowed the peri­met­er around, tak­ing the occa­sion­al peek over the bank to sur­vey the area. Not­ing the bright lights eman­at­ing from the camp itself, he was extra care­ful, but his second attempt was nearly his last: he was look­ing almost dir­ectly down the muzzle of an ele­phant rifle held by a well-hid­den sen­try. Luck­ily he was not spot­ted and was able to drop out of sight.

Back on the ridge, Miss Spit became aware that the sur­round­ing woods were very quiet, then heard crash­ing noises in the fog. She quickly warned Lady Ant­o­nia and Miss Sharpe, then woke Pren­tiss and Cur­ruth­ers to wait for the vis­it­or. After a few minutes of watch­ing, Miss Spit became impa­tient and used a spell to illu­min­ate the area below the ridge and clear the fog, reveal­ing a zombie.

At first, they hoped it was going to ignore them, and wander past, but to their chag­rin, it began to climb the slope. Lady Ant­o­nia pre­pared to shoot it, but Cur­ruth­ers reminded her that the shot would be heard across the val­ley, so she lobbed a rock at it instead, fail­ing to do any dam­age. Sev­er­al attempts were made to pre­vent it succ­ss­fully cimb­ing the slope, but it demon­strated dogged per­sist­ence, tak­ing a swipe at Miss Spit as it arrived, but she had cast anoth­er spell to dis­guise her loc­a­tion so that it missed. Lady Ant­o­nia tripped it up, with some effort, and Cur­ruth­ers pinned it to the ground with his sword. It con­tin­ued to try and hit them, but they poun­ded it with rocks and bat­ons (Pren­tiss sit­ting on its leg) and, even­tu­ally, April con­nec­ted with a steel toe-cap and caved the side of its skull in.

It stopped moving.

In the val­ley, Marsh con­tin­ued to silently skirt the camp, then stepped on a twig, caus­ing a loud crack. This was imme­di­ately fol­lowed by a deaf­en­ing blast and some­thing whistled past about five feet away, while the lights went out. Think­ing the shot was aimed at him, Marsh pan­icked and ran for the trees, while more bul­lets whizzed past him. He turned into a rat, then real­ised he was not the tar­get as he saw sev­er­al zom­bies head­ing towards the camp. The sentries were des­troy­ing them quite effect­ively with their large-cal­ibre rifles, so Marsh decided to take advant­age of the con­fu­sion and sneaked up onto the plat­eau, chan­ging back to human to scout the camp itself.

As the lights came back on, he noted a cent­ral fenced-off area, con­tain­ing two bar­racks build­ings or offices, a steam-powered elec­tric gen­er­at­or, some kind of labor­at­ory and the mast. Stand­ing in the cent­ral square were sev­er­al sol­diers and three gen­tle­men who appeated to be sci­ent­ists by their dress. Marsh decided dis­cre­tion was the bet­ter part of valour and, hav­ing mem­or­ised the lay­out, he returned to the ridge, where his col­leagues, a little wor­ried after the gun­fire, were wait­ing for him.


I find zom­bies and fog always go well togeth­er… It took a while to take down the lone zom­bie – bad die rolls seem to cause lots of prob­lems in this game, but it was nice to see Con­stantin­a’s magic finally get­ting an outing.