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#77-8604

Jan 20th, 2019
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  1. Tags: Cosmic horror, personal log
  2. Commissioned by: ReddGeist
  3. Length: ~3.5k words
  4. Want something written? Check https://pastebin.com/VPD1jDNq
  5.  
  6. ---
  7.  
  8. Contract # 77-8604 / Log
  9.  
  10. Professor Fyodor A. Markov has hired my company to assist in an expedition to the glaciers in the Northern Atlantic. As of this writing, my men are organizing for the biggest contract we've received, deploying almost our entire company. We've had to hire specialists in the form of medics, archaeologists, geologists, and others with the necessary skills, paid for by the professor. Due to the magnitude of this contract, I will be on the field as well.
  11.  
  12. ___
  13.  
  14.  
  15. Day 1 since landing, 08:45.
  16. Our two ships arrived to solid footing in the Arctic. Task is to locate the crevice Professor Markov spoke of, after which we'll unload our machinery and proceed towards it. For that purpose, I've sent a few groups ahead in the general location the professor believes the crevice could be in. Judging by how the expedition looks too militarized to be a normal excavation group, I've given those groups a few more men just in case.
  17.  
  18.  
  19. 09:50.
  20. Group Two appeared to find it. The description matches what the professor had in mind, and it seems to run for quite a while in terms of depth. I've ordered the machinery to be unloaded, and we'll proceed towards the crevice.
  21.  
  22.  
  23. 10:40.
  24. We have reached the crevice. It's big enough to fit our machinery, although Group Two reported obstacles in the cavern it leads into that'd make their path difficult. So far they didn't see anything our driller can't handle. We'll arrange a formation with our vehicles and advance.
  25.  
  26.  
  27. 11:20.
  28. The cavern had widened enough for our vehicles to go through comfortably without the driller. Group Two had come across a cave-in up ahead cutting our path, and now that we have reached it the specialists judge it bad enough that it could take us most of the day to get through. My men will set up watch and the driller will start as soon as possible, in case whatever Professor Markov hired our guns for appears while everyone else takes a rest.
  29.  
  30.  
  31. 15:30.
  32. Some of the driller's crew say they heard strange noises on the other side. Specialists say it's impossible, that there's still too much rubble to hear anything through it even if the driller wasn't active. Professor Markov isn't commenting on it. A team will now be on alert by the driller on rotation just in case. The crew will be on rotation from now on as well.
  33.  
  34.  
  35. 19:10.
  36. We got through. As soon as the driller came out the other side, groups One and Three went in expecting hostiles on the other side, but they saw nothing. Group One will scout ahead while the rest of us pack up.
  37. While writing this entry, Group One radioed in some findings. The cavern's terrain looked cleaner as they went in, as if long term activity had taken place. Professor Markov looked happy to hear this.
  38.  
  39.  
  40. 20:50.
  41. Group One arrived to what they had described as an underground structure of sorts, interior resembling a library of unknown size with the ceiling reaching roughly six meters tall. I ordered them to stay put until the rest of the convoy arrived. Upon arrival, we confirmed the report. Professor Markov immediately said not to touch any of the books inside, so I've relayed the order to the others. Professor Markov has no information as to how big the library is, so groups Three through Nine will investigate the immediate surroundings. Priority is to establish a perimeter and prepare to spend the night here.
  42.  
  43. ___
  44.  
  45.  
  46. Day 2. 03:40.
  47. My men came across an unknown entity. According to the report, it approached a group of three on watch duty. It shambled towards one, and despite shouts and even warning shots, it didn't stop, so they shot it. Took several rounds for it to stop moving, even if they were in the head. Its appearance resembled that of a malformed humanoid creature with most of its body covered in what resembled charred skin and rot. The men saw it walking with a strange gait, leaving to question its health. I had the medics take it away to inspect it, and put the camp in high alert in case more of those things show up. So far, Professor Markov is still inspecting the library and the contents of various books. I had made a deal with him that I'd turn a blind eye to anything questionable he does in exchange of keeping within camp boundaries.
  48.  
  49.  
  50. 10:00.
  51. The medics ran an autopsy, or as close to one as they could get in these circumstances. What little they all could agree with is that it's a creature they never saw before, and that something must've changed it from its original form. They detailed something about unnatural alterations to its biology, how it would add up with that strange gait.
  52.  
  53. Many of its organs looked like they couldn't sustain their theorized purpose. Its digestive system was atrophied as well. After a discussion where the topic of my scouts not finding anything pointing to a food source in the library came up, they found no viable hypothesis as to how that creature even kept itself alive. They also want to take it and any more we find back home. Hopefully enough show up so that I don't have to deal with them trying to kill each other for that one specimen.
  54.  
  55.  
  56. 10:45.
  57. Caught Roderick reading a book. Giving my second in command a black eye would've probably made Professor Markov suspicious, so I let it be for now. Another reason is that the book seems to have some information about the library, so it might help us here. The groups I sent to scout still haven't found an end to this place in any direction, so if that book has anything to say about this and that specimen, I can keep it a secret from Markov.
  58.  
  59.  
  60. 12:30.
  61. Roderick came back to me with some information. He found a layout of the surrounding area in the book, but it doesn't look like the whole thing. In the layout, though, there's a room that caught my attention. It was different in design than the others. Might be some sort of 'hub' for this area, Group Two will investigate.
  62.  
  63.  
  64. 13:00.
  65. Group Two radioed in. They found the room with no signs of those things around, although there is a giant statue of a humanoid in it along with a plaque in unknown language. Roderick will prepare a detachment, then we'll go in with Professor Markov.
  66.  
  67.  
  68. 13:30.
  69. The room is circular in shape, reaching an unknown height. When I guesstimated five stories tall, nobody disagreed. There are two staircases leading up to the platforms by the bookcases on each level. At the center is the statue Group Two mentioned, reaching almost as high as the room. It looks like a human woman of short stature, of long hair with bangs covering her eyes. The specialists haven't yet checked how long ago this statue could've been built, but the clothing on the woman looks almost too modern. The similarities end there, as there are several tendrils appearing from different places on her physique. Group One will join Group Two in exploring the upper levels while we set up a perimeter here.
  70.  
  71.  
  72. 13:50.
  73. Group One is coming across more visual elements. Small hallway statues, portraits, engravings on the walls, all increasing in frequency the further they go. I don't imagine Professor Markov would take too kindly about not letting him go study those, so Group One will be recalled and escort him to keep things under control. Roderick took the opportunity to study the plaque on his own with that book he got. I don't want him getting caught with it, so Group One has orders to report every ten minutes on their whereabouts and alert me if Markov decides to return.
  74.  
  75.  
  76. 14:20.
  77. Roderick figured something out about the plaque and this place. He couldn't translate it, he believes this place to be almost a place of worship, in a sense. A word pops up every now and then wherever he looks, which he assumes to be the name of the entity the statue was built for. Luc'shaatoth. Neither of us knew how to pronounce it, so he gave her the nickname of 'Lucy' since it seemed close enough to the name. Considering the size of that statue, this 'Lucy' is either the subject of worship, or very high up there. Still no information as to what that thing my men killed was.
  78.  
  79.  
  80. 16:30.
  81. Been noticing more men gathering around the statue. Roderick's been there the entire time, and now keeps talking with them about 'Lucy'. The professor is still off playing explorer. Told Group One to keep him on a leash; I don't want him straying too far away if another of those things show up.
  82.  
  83.  
  84. 18:50.
  85. I might've tempted fate. Several of those mutants showed up in force, running at my men this time. The body count is at roughly two dozen before what was left of them ran away. We lost three men. The medic teams are all running autopsies on them to figure out what they are and what can be done should we face them again. Luckily, it seems Group One didn't attract the mutants, so Professor Markov is alright. He is no longer allowed to leave the area under our control without at least a detachment. Group One also reported that what they saw of the visuals seemed to get more uncanny as they walked further into the library. If that's the case, I fear Professor Markov will want to go as deep as he can regardless.
  86.  
  87.  
  88. 20:00.
  89. Professor Markov caught Roderick with the book. Roderick didn't even seem to care about the risk of getting caught, since he was still talking with others in front of the statue despite knowing Markov could show up. I've also noticed that his group had grown in numbers dramatically, many of which I caught skipping watch duty to be there. This is bad. Insubordination is bad enough, but even if I got rid of the ones in question, I fear Roderick and his book may have costed me any future contracts with Markov. He seemed extremely upset about the matter, far more than I'd have imagined.
  90.  
  91.  
  92. 21:00.
  93. Professor Markov wants us to pack up as many books, portraits, and the like as we can into the transports, and leave tomorrow morning. Roderick protested as did the others who were with him. I am neutral in this regard; though I had enough provisions for a month, I'm not too keen on actually spending them, and we'd still be getting paid the same amount regardless of when we leave. Still, Roderick had grown some eerie attachment to this place, that statue, and that book. I've grown cautious of this, so it's probably for the best that we leave before this behavior worsens or those mutants claim more of my men. For now, we'll load the transports partly and finish tomorrow morning.
  94.  
  95. ___
  96.  
  97.  
  98. Day 3, 4:00.
  99. The cavern we came through caved in. Coincidentally, the driller suffered a critical malfunction when the crew tried to use it. I have a hunch as to what really happened, but I can't do much about it over lack of evidence and the risk of splitting the company. Roderick already has too many on his side, and he couldn't have done this alone. To think I used to trust that guy. For now, I've arranged a few teams of those I trust to keep watch on rotation in case more of these shenanigans happen.
  100.  
  101.  
  102. 5:20.
  103. More of those mutants came around. Greater in number than before. Bodycount, forty-two. We lost five men. To make matters worse, the driller crew doesn't believe we'll be able to put that thing back into shape.
  104.  
  105.  
  106. 5:40.
  107. Roderick insisted on taking groups One and Five along with a detachment into the library to scout for a way out through there. Despite ordering him not to, they all went regardless. Not only that, I've noticed that those that went with him had begun sporting some strange aesthetic around them, unauthorized modifications to their outfit and equipment mostly in the department of visuals. What they all had in common was some manner of emblem or insignia crudely drawn on their outfit or guns: A crudely drawn outline of a book with a gaping maw, with tendrils surrounding it like those of the statue.
  108.  
  109. Professor Markov may share my thoughts that they're not being entirely truthful about their intentions. I can not allow this split to happen, so I'll organize the teams I arranged earlier and seek Roderick out. Ideally, he will reconsider his actions and fall in line with the rest of us, but I am ready for the worst.
  110.  
  111.  
  112. 7:50.
  113. Roderick is dead. Groups One, Two, Five, and Seven are dead. The firefight costed the lives of well over half my task-force. Roderick's group withdrew further into the library with losses I can only estimate at around thirty percent. After autopsies on the bodies of Roderick's group, though calling it a cult seems more accurate, the medics saw early signs of the same alterations to their bodies. The procedures they did to themselves baffle the medics; they see the effects but they can't grasp how they were achieved, as modern medicine would dictate those procedures should've killed them ten times over. There's also signs of mutation which they also can't understand. From what I get, it must've been what made them harder to kill like the mutants from earlier.
  114.  
  115. Regardless, I have Roderick's book. Despite Professor Markov's protests, I may have to read it in order to find a way out of this library. We don't have the luxury of exploring it at our leisure with our own men turning against us, on top of those mutants from earlier gathering in numbers. Staying in the same place for too long will invite disaster, so I've ordered everyone to forget about filling the transports and instead pack up and be ready to move for an indefinite amount of time. No more camps, we are nomads now.
  116.  
  117.  
  118. 8:20.
  119. The book contains far more than architectural design. There's even mention of the alterations the mutants and Roderick's cult must've done to themselves. I don't blame the medics for not understanding it, as most of it sounds religious in nature. Perhaps the religious aspect is just a simplification of scientific procedures that one would otherwise not understand. It must be where Roderick and the others got the idea from, and how the other mutants came to be.
  120.  
  121.  
  122. 9:00.
  123. Roderick's cult tried to ambush us, but Group Three caught whiff of them before it was too late. They seem furious. Even heard one of them shout 'Heretic' from where I was, as if I needed more proof of their lunacy. In any case, if we go deep enough into the library, there may be the chance that Roderick's cultists won't know the layout, while we do thanks to this book. It may end up only trading the threat of the cultists for the mutants that may lurk there, but there's only one way to find out.
  124.  
  125. I've wondered for a while now, though. The medics don't understand the procedures, but if they did, would they be able to revert the effects? It seems ridiculous, but what's happening lately is just as ridiculous if not more. I can't leave this place with less than a third of my men left. Even if the losses didn't risk destroying my company's future, I've known them all for too long to just abandon them. Losing Roderick was bad enough, I can't sit idle if there's a way to save the others.
  126.  
  127.  
  128. 9:20.
  129. We came across a group of those mutants. Small one. My men have grown experienced at killing them, as we faced no casualties. The bodies, however, presented an opportunity. I knew the risk, so I picked only one of the medics and had him read the passages detailing the procedure, then gave him free rein with the bodies we recovered to see if he could find something on how to stop it. Let's hope for the best.
  130.  
  131.  
  132. 9:55.
  133. The medic came back to me. He said that even though it's enough information to carry out the procedures, it simply isn't enough to understand it fully and figure out a way to revert the effects it if it's even possible. He suggested that I have Group Three be on the lookout for books that look the slightest bit related to this. Reading multiple books after seeing what just one did to Roderick is the stupidest idea I've heard, but there isn't any better alternative, so I relayed the order to Group Three.
  134.  
  135.  
  136. 11:20.
  137. Luc'shaatoth is the deity this library was built as a shrine for. From what I get, her area is 'knowledge'. I suppose that's what I need. I need to know. To know a way out, to know a way to revert this mess, to know if we're even gonna see another day. Everyone's afraid, terrified. I had thought Professor Markov would stop us to get the transports to capacity, but they're still half-empty. In a way, by making Group Three look for those books, I guess I may have turned into what I feared from him. It doesn't matter, I'm not doing this for myself.
  138.  
  139.  
  140. 11:50.
  141. We arrived to another of those circular rooms with a statue in the middle. It's as I thought, central hubs for different regions of this library. The plaque is the same.
  142.  
  143. 'Grant us wisdom, grant us knowledge, teach and instruct us so that we may learn of the primordial truths, o Luc'shaatoth.'
  144.  
  145.  
  146. 13:40.
  147. Group Three alerted me of a section of the library that may have been of interest, but it was too far away from our current path, and there were too many things for them to carry back themselves. We could've taken a detour and hunkered down there, but Professor Markov rejected the proposal. He wants to get out of here. I don't blame him. We're of no use to him after this. He'll go back to his home, drink some tea by the fireplace, enjoy the money he gets from selling these things, and go to a warm bed while my men are either dying or mutating. He'll just hire another company. Ph'vulgtlagln if he gets out of here in one piece. Perhaps we'll find another section in our path.
  148.  
  149.  
  150. 15:00.
  151. Another mutant attack. Group Three early on alerted me of another section a fair distance away, so I used this as an excuse to take a detour there. My medic feels he's making progress, but I don't know if it'll be enough. He did seem open to the idea of having more of the medics read the passages to join him in finding a cure. Luc'shaatoth preserve us.
  152.  
  153.  
  154. 16:10.
  155. Professor Markov caught us loading a concerning amount of books into the transports that he didn't ask for while we were crossing the section. He's getting paranoid. Told us to throw them away, something about them only being dead weight and slowing us down for the cultists and mutants to catch up. I'd rather not enter open conflict with him in this position, so we had to begrudgingly obey. It matters not. There may be more sections up ahead, but I'll have to deal with him if I want to get my hands on those books. Ooboshu uaaah cah li'hee.
  156.  
  157. He doesn't know. He doesn't want to know. He's unaware of what mess he's in. Ignorance will cost him just like it costed me and the others. Entering Luc'shaatoth's realm and going against her values only invites disaster.
  158.  
  159. Maybe he's the heretic Roderick's cultists are trying to get rid of. Maybe he's the one the mutants are flocking to. He's a threat to this expedition. We must bid our time, and solve this when the opportunity presents itself.
  160.  
  161.  
  162. D'faehr 4, 11:40.
  163. Luc'shaatoth li'hee Yoggoth Tsathoggua bug Dagon 'bthnk shugg Tsathoggua grah'n y-sgn'wahl, y-llll sgn'wahl uh'e 'fhalma s'uhn vulgtlagln sll'ha ehye nnnep Yoggoth, shagg geb bug phlegeth s'uhn syha'h mg athg orr'eoth. Grah'n nw uh'e f'Cthulhu llll Luc'shaatoth nnnYoggoth r'luh, kn'a ooboshu chtenff ahog shagg nanilgh'ri, fm'latgh h'hrii Azathoth f'Cthulhu ron.
  164.  
  165. Ooboshu nauh'e gotha ee hupadgh shtunggli lw'nafh h'Hastur uaaah lloig n'gha 'fhalma Yoggoth orr'e li'hee, Luc'shaatoth kn'a nnnhafh'drn lloig uh'e lloig k'yarnak Hastur hrii gof'nn ah n'ghft. R'luh uh'eagl Tsathoggua phlegeth shtunggli y-hlirgh ep, sgn'wahl y'hah hupadgh ngllll geb, ph'athg Yoggoth wgah'n llll Luc'shaatoth.
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