Night's Black Agents: Dracula Dossier

Episode 54: Shadow of the Vampire

August 31st, 2018 – September 14th, 2018

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A week had passed since the incident at Castle Shreck. Vincente Rojas was gone, having run off somewhere to either turn into a creature of the night or end his life, Illari Vassyl was slowly healing, and Wolfgang Fechtner was dead. The sole shining point was that Kat DeWein was still alive and active.

When Kat determined that her fellow agents were not coming back, she made her way to the castle and discovered the automobile the agents had used. When she returned to her hotel to suit up and attempt to breach the castle on her own, she was stopped by Brother Oskar Groth. The mysterious monk explained he was a friend of Vicente’s and that Vicente and Illari were alive and at his monastery. She had to come with him. Cautiously, she came with him. But when arrived Vincente was was gone, already fled the scene to deal with his own problems.

Once Kat realized the severity of the situation as well as the fact that Wolfgang was dead, she immediately returned to the hotel to gather up as many supplies as she could in order to flee the scene and stay at the monastery while Illari recovered and they could determine their next plan – if any. However, while at the hotel, she narrowly escaped agents who were clearly looking for her. But she came in and out, unnoticed.

A week passed at the monastery as Illari slowly recovered and came back into health. At the end of a week, however, Brother Oskar came to Kat and told her that a mysterious stranger had come and wished to speak with Illari. Kat agreed to meet with the stranger.

In the chapel, Kat was introduced to Aiden Tobias, a man who had a very unusual story, including his involvement with the Stargate Program, a secret CIA project that explored psychic abilities. With that, she took him down to Illari where Aiden explained the rest of his story.

Aiden unfolded a tale where he knew Cal Morrison years ago but was taken into Stargate. After spending time in the program, he escaped, and came to Europe, knowing full well there were organizations that were coming after him. But he was acutely in tune to psychic energy and had explored the occult. Aiden knew he could help the team as he was aware of the dark forces that had gathered over Europe. He knew of Vampires. He knew of the Dracula Dossier and knew of the evil that was spread over the land. He was in a unique position to provide aid.

After a few days of reviewing the Dracula Dossier as Illari healed and as Kat reviewed more of the documents they had, they knew they had to secure the text, Le Dragon Noir. That was, after all, what they had come for. This is where Aiden could excel. He explained that he could try and remotely view the castle and see where the text was kept. He went into a deep trance and began seeing visions from the past and present. He saw Murnau, an obvious Renfield for the master that lived in the castle as well as the master’s brides, Irma Kessler and Vilma Koch. But when his visions came to the text, he was filled with evil and dread as he also sensed the master, a creature so wretched and vile, so depraved and removed from anything decent, that master’s mere existence was a grotesque blight on humanity. This being was the very essence of blackness in the world, sitting atop an organization not motivated by profit but motivated by spreading human misery and pain. This was what held control of Le Dragon Noir.

Kat DeWein made contact with a local supplier, Eric Bennings, and secured much needed items for their mission. But something about him was suspect . . .

The team suited up as soon as Illari was up for it. They decided to do more surveillance of the area this time, as they suspected a frontal assault would be a death sentence. Instead they searched the surrounding houses and discovered they were empty and they were likely used as graves for the underlings of Major Doring. When the team decided to search for a tunnel, they discovered one, a tunnel that would likely take them into the castle, and likely closer to the dark place where the text was kept, perhaps avoiding the master’s brides.

They entered the tunnels and passed through a chamber with mutated and grotesque rates, the size of small dogs. They were oozing pus and were in a state of rest. They carefully moved past the creatures but not before Aiden seemed to suddenly feel ill as he was convinced he had contracted something, decidedly unpleasant. They moved on, getting deeper underneath the castle, knowing they would likely have to deal with those grotesque servitor rats in the future.

They rose through the chamber into the main castle and were suddenly enveloped by darkness and were in the presence of pure evil. Their lights were quickly doused as the power of the master became known and within moments, the master revealed himself. Instantly, he was recognized for the sinister force that he was: Graf Orlok, himself, the nosferatu!

The fight was brutal and grotesque as Orlok used fell magic and his speed to quickly overcome the defenses of the agents. They, in turn, soon discovered that the weapons they had were mostly powerless. The only weapons they had which seemed to have any real impact, were their powerful flashlights that seemed to burn his impure skin. And they knew they had a limited amount of time before his brides arrived. And when Illari went down from the rats that had arrived, the situation became desperate.

Eventually the team used enough light to drive Orlok off, but they were aware he would return in a short amount of time. Aiden quickly moved towards the chamber where Orlok studied and found Le Dragon Noir. But he found something else to take him him. The document was a page that Orlok was studying – the Renfield Page.

They team escaped and made their way back to the monastery for Illari to again recover. They examined the Renfield Page, studying it and determining it was a code. But the real prize was Le Dragon Noir, ready to study it and reveal whatever secrets were present to help them defeat Dracula.

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Episode 53: Fechtner's Last Reich

August 23rd, 2018 – August 30th, 2018

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The infamous Castle Schreck was something the team knew they would have to penetrate if they were to uncover the secrets of Le Dragon Noir. Of course, the dangers that they suspected they would face were something even they could not yet imagine. To mitigate the danger, they did as much legwork as they could, reading historical documents of the castle and finding what they could. Whereas they did discover tunnels underneath the castle as well as a small stream, they were adamant in their theory that they should not blindly use underground, dark tunnels, but instead try something with less potential peril.

Illari Vassyl decided they would pose as hunters and investigate the surrounding forest near the castle. Wolfgang Fechtner and Vincente Rojas would also take part but Kat DeWein would stay behind in Passau, monitoring their progress.

The plan was to approach the castle in the dark hours of the morning, establish various posts from where they could monitor the castle as well as the castle grounds and keep watch all through the day, leaving when it became dark. It would be a very long day, filled with mostly dull observation. But hopefully it would reap dividends.

Through the day, there was minimal activity other than the actions of a lone man, a caretaker (later identified as Murnau). Murnau came and went from the castle and looked through the property. Only at around 6 PM did Murnau come out from the castle and remove the lock from the gate that sealed off the property. Most likely he was expecting visitors. But who? This certainly was enough to keep the team in position, to see who was coming.

As they waited, shortly after dark, a truck pulled up to the property and the driver came through and entered the courtyard. The team watched as the truck came to a stop and unloaded 15 bound and hooded prisoners and placed them in the courtyard. The driver and the passenger of the truck quickly got back in and drove away, nervously. It was at this point that the agents knew they had to do something as it was evident that these prisoners were to be used as food for whatever evil was inside. They immediately came down from their positions and made their way to the castle as quickly as they could.

Entering the courtyard, they immediately saw that in the time it took for them to get here, one of the prisoners was missing. Someone must have come and taken one. Before anything else could happen, the team began untying the prisoners, but discovered they were groggy and drugged and were incapable of helping themselves. Suddenly, behind them, having come from the same direction they did, was a figure. Wolfgang quickly saw his tattered Nazi uniform and pieced together this must have been the infamous Major Helmut Doring that was referenced in some of the Dracula Dossier materials.

Wolfgang sprung into action, merely hearing some of the grumbles that Major Doring uttered before opening fire, which immediately caught the attention of Illari and Vincente. But just when the team thought they had things under control, Major’s Doring’s undead troops came storming through the courtyard, with the agents risking being overrun within moments. The agents unloaded with every grenade, holy water vial and weapon they had, but they quickly were swarmed. Wolfgang barely knew what had happened before he was taken down by a group of the undead and both Illari and Vincente spent every ounce of their will to fight the creatures. Wolfgang managed to fend off some and his allies took out the others. But as he crawled his way over to Major Doring to deliver a kill shot, he knew that he was about to be swarmed again. He delivered the shot to the undead Major before another swarm swallowed him, leading to his inevitable death. But in a final act, he pulled his grande, taking some of them with him.

Shocked by the death of Wolfgang, Vincente and Illari pushed on. fighting valiantly, but they, too, were quickly overrun with Vincente taking a ruthless bite from one of the creatures, a bite that seemed to have deeper ramifications, as he would soon see. But both men succumbed to their injuries, falling unconscious, in the presence of some of horrific creatures. Was it the end of the agents?

When they awoke, they were in a dungeon, presumably in the castle. They were chained to rusty beds, in almost total darkness and their bodies were wracked with pain. They were weak and tired . . . and Vincente was hungry.

As Illari mustered his strength to see if he could get free, there was a figure at the door. The caretaker, Murnau, had come to speak. He wanted to know who they were, wanted to know who had hired them and wanted to know what they were doing. Illari tried to carefully play along, dropping false hints they were with Edom, and seemed like Murnau believed it. Of course, Murnau also revealed that he was something of an artist, darkly hinting that he had taken many pictures and created many movies over the years, suggesting something rather dark. Murnau then left, as he felt Illari had not provided enough information, claiming that he was going to collect some of the Master’s brides . . .

While Murnau was gone, Vincente went to work trying to get free. He mustered up the strength needed to twist off one of the metal pieces from the bed and quickly began to pick the lock from the manacles. As soon as he got free, he freed Illari and the two of them escaped the room. But the entire dungeon are was enveloped in darkness. Vincente needed to feel his way around the castle until he came to an area with some light that lead to a stairway. But every moment he moved forward was painful. And he felt the hunger try to take control of his body. As he ascended the stairs, there was light but there were also voices. Female voices with Murnau’s. Vincente knew these must have been the brides. He attempted to sneak past them but the brides, Vilma and Irma, smelled him, and took note of his scent. And then the chase was on. For a moment, Vincente pondered dropping Illari, but he reached down deep inside of himself to find the strength and pressed on. As the brides chased after him, climbing on the ceilings and walls, he pondered stopping and taking a final stand. But he jumped through a nearby window, finding it was light outside, and breathed a sigh of relief as the brides were unable to follow in the daylight, merely hissing at him.

Vincente found the car they arrived in and made his way outside of town. He decided to activate an old associate at a Benedictine monastery, Oskar Groth. Brother Oskar took in Vincente and Illari and hid them in the basement.

Several days later Illari awoke and discovered that Vincente was gone, Brother Oskar explaining that Vincente had slipped away, struggling with his vampirism. Illaru needed a burner phone and needed to contact Kat as the castle was clearly dangerous but contained Le Dragon Noir, an object they badly needed.

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Episode 52: Branching Out

August 12, 2018 – August 22nd, 2018

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The team decided that investigating the Tuefel Cartel was heir next course of action. After all, Sir Wilfred Corbin informed them that according to his research, the famed Le Dragon Noir was in their possession and this would be a powerful weapon with which to challenge the forces of Dracula. However, they had a problem. They clearly needed some assistance in dealing with the powerful criminal organization. Wolfgang Fechtner suggested that N Branch may be able to provide some aid but the complications that set in were that N Branch had already given Fechtner an assignment – investigate Henri Valant and the connections to human trafficking. And since Valant was connected to Elizabeth Bathory, a woman they were now (partially) trusting, this would require some finesse on their part.

With that in mind, the team decided to return to London to speak with Hansi ‘The Hun’ Wollf, Fechtner’s N Branch contact. Of course, according to Corbin, N Branch had been subverted by the Tuefel Cartel, so the negotiation would have to be delicate, indeed.

Upon arriving in London, they made arrangements to meet up with The Hun and report what they had found and see if she had information. Meanwhile, Illari Vassyl decided to meet with his sister, Nina Vassyl, to see if she was safe. The meeting went well, with the possible exception of her current boyfriend, Graham Martin, an investment banker with connections with Heal the Children. Martin seemed a safe, but clueless choice, for his sister.

The following day the team met up with The Hun and informed them that they were close to finding Le Dragon Noir, the reputed mystic tome. But upon hearing that it was in the hands of the Tuefel Cartel, she became somewhat guarded, informing them that there was something of a blackout surrounding the organization. They would receive minimal help from the German government or N Branch on this specific assignment. As to their involvement with Bathory’s organization, she seemed pleased that they had gotten so far involved with the group and was very pleased with the valuable intel they had provided. However, at the end of the meeting, despite the fact that officially they could not help the team against Tuefel, she provided them with a lead in Frankfort. This lead ended up being a credit line with the Bank of Frankfort that they could use to fund an operation ‘off books.’

Making their way to Passau, they spent time taking in the scenery, getting to understand the layout of the land, and most importantly, conducting a watch on Szell and his organization. It seemed that Arnold Szell kept to a routine, conducted most of his business at his offices/warehouses near the river docks and spent time at his country estate. Briefly spending time with a young lady on Saturday, he was constantly surrounded by bodyguards. There were certainly coded conversations with underlings but he acted like a man who was untouchable. After all, if he had the German authorities on the take and had eliminated most of his enemies, he had little to fear. But the concern the team had was to figure out who is superior was. It seemed as if he had little contact with anyone else. They would need to do something that would cause him to make contact with superiors.

The scheme they came up with was to break into Interpol and German intelligence reports of Tuefel’s operation and set up a bust on behalf of Interpol (who was not in Tuefel’s pocket). They contacted Pascal Lerue and had him pull the strings needed and be on the scene. The plan was for the team to then monitor what Szell did next, knowing it would prompt him into action.

They executed the raid and Fechtner ensured the story immediately got to their contact, Laurel Dene with The Guardian. They would put pressure on the conspiracy. With Kat DeWein and Vincente Rojas waiting near Szell’s compound, they would monitor his actions.

As expected, word got to Szell quickly from his agents. And within an hour, Szell and his bodyguards were on the move. Curiously, he seemed as if he was going to speak to a superior rather than make a phone call. This caused some concerns, as anyone whom he would have to speak to was either unable or disinterested in using a telephone. But with the trip along a single road, it would be difficult for DeWein and Rojas to follow without being seen. When Fechtner tried to monitor with satellites, there seemed to be a blackout over the area, further leading to suspicions that something was amiss. But it confirmed they were on the right trail. When Dewein and Rojas tailed Szell and his team to a castle on the outskirts of Passau, they KNEW they were on the right trail . . .

The team waited, wondering what would come of the meeting and how long it would last. After a couple of hours Szell and his henchmen left and returned the way they came. Apparently, whatever business they had was concluded after meeting with, what was likely, the master. But with whom or what did they speak?

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Episode 51: The Corbin Connection

August 5th, 2018 – August 11th, 2018

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Still recovering at the Vienna resort of Elizabeth Bathory, the agents had physical and mental injuries that needed to be addressed. The few days spent were well worth it. Kat DeWein spent most of her time relaxing by the pool. However, for Wolfgang Fechtner and Illary Vassyl, there was more to do. Fechtner set to work identifying which of the Trinity Seals may have been forgeries but his research was, as of yet, inconclusive. Illari, by contrast, set out to find some black market contacts to replace some of their tactical supplies. Vincente Rojas needed more time than the others to recuperate as the fight had taken the worst toll on him.

A curious turn of events suddenly transpired with Wolfgang. A call came in from Sir Reginald Hillary, the law professor that had provided useful information back in Exeter. Sir Reginald provided information on a local asset that he had previously promised to reveal. Sir Reginald mentioned that his secretive associate, Sir Wilfred Corbin, was willing to assist them and as it turned out, was not far away, leaving in a reclusive home in Esztergrad Castle outside of Budapest.

The group then got together and made their way to Budapest and arrived at Esztergrad Castle. They were shown into the posh home by Sir Wilfred’s servant, Conall MacBay and brought to the grand and impressive library where Sir Wilfred was hard at work. After making some warm introductions, Sir Wilfred got down to business.

Sir Wilfred explained that as a hematologist, he had vast experience in studying blood and various blood diseases. At some point in his history, he came across the existence of not only vampires but also by the existence of Dracula, himself. This generated interest in the team and Sir Wilfred continued with his explanation. He provided charts and notes on the various vampire lineages as well as some of the powers that he had identified in them, including the activities of werewolves, which he stated were the direct servants on Dracula and his undead vampires.

Curiously, Sir Wilfred claimed minimal knowledge of black bag operations or clandestine activities but he also went into some detail of teams he had deployed into the field to conduct studies on the undead. Illari seemed to think that Sir Wilfred knew more than he was revealing, but either way, Sir Wilfred’s knowledge on the subject was some of the most complete they had come across. However, there were a few areas that Sir Wilfred was unsure about. He stated that his research would be enhanced by both the Dracula Dossier and Le Dragon Noir. When the team claimed they no longer had the Dracula Dossier, Sir Wilfred implored them this was a text they would have to continue to regain. As to Le Dragon Noir, Sir Wilfred stated that he knew of a group that had possession of such an item – the infamous Tuefel Cartel, located in Passau, Germany. Of course the Tuefel Cartel was no stranger to the team as this was an organization the team had deal with on several occasions, directly or indirectly.

Sir Wilfred explained that the mysterious leader of the cartel, an individual named Tuefel, was in possession of Le Dragon Noir and that a team of Sir Wilfred had almost secured it several years ago. This book was key to unlocking some of the secrets and vulnerabilities of Dracula and his associates. The team agreed this would be something they would attempt to recover, much to Sir Wilfred’s delight.

When the conversation turned to Dracula, himself, Sir Corbin revealed that there would be several areas in which to look, in order to destroy him. First, Dracula’s true castle would have to be found, as well as the weapons to destroy him, finally finding a way in which to prevent his escape to return to either a Red Room or some of his sacred earth. This was earth-shattering news to the team but was reassuring to know they had been on the right track.

Wolfgang Fechtner felt that Sir Wilfred was trustworthy enough to hand over a copy of his Barker Analysis. This seemed to legitimize the idea that the agents were competent and confident in their actions. It was during the time that Sir Wilfred stepped away from the library that the rest of the team was able to poke around the library. They found a cache of books that got their interest, such as ancient philosophical texts and texts dealing with vampire hunting through the centuries. It was clear that Sir Wilfred had been in this game for quite some time and had invested decades of work and a small fortune to get where he was.

Upon his return from reading the text, Sir Wilfred was amazed at the amount of work the team had put into their own efforts. At this point he revealed his own aid to the team, which was a small case that contained 5 doses of a serum that would, if used ahead of time, would prevent the spread of vampirism. The case was a silver electronic, refrigerated case that held the serums. He warned that the serum would have to be taken before an attack and would only go in someone’s system for 12 hours.

At this point, the group decided to get back to Vienna to the Countess’ resort. Upon returning and settling back in, the team knew that they would have to make a trip to Passau and find a way to wrest Le Dragon Noir away from the cartel. But that was a plan they needed to perfect as Sir Wilfred explained that the cartel was a serious threat.

Upon getting back to his room, Wolfgang was greeted by Elizabeth Bathory, herself, who seemed curious as to where he and the team had been. He carefully constructed a lie that the Countess likely did not believe. But when she attempted to get the truth from him through magic, he somehow resisted. At this point, the Countess warned him not to keep secrets from him and left. Wolfgang wasted no time in getting to the others and suggesting that they may have outstayed their welcome and it was time to move on to Passau.

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Episode 50: Night of the Bat

August 1st, 2018 – August 5th, 2018

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The plan was set.

Or, at least, mostly.

Knowing that the only way of getting their hands on the Trinity Seals from Adelaide LeClerque was to rescue her partner and lover, Narcissa Dvorask, from the clutches of the notorious Tuefel Cartel. But with the complication of the presence of Dracula, they needed a plan that would allow them to escape as well as leave LeClerque in the clear from wrath of the Dark Prince. The team needed a scheme to throw someone else the blame rather it falling on LeClerque. Wolfgang Fechtner came up with a clever scheme. By laying enough evidence behind the rescue operation, it would leave the observer to conclude that Edom was responsible, using a pawn, Savas Osman, having double crossed Dracula. Wolfgang, along with Kat DeWein and Vicente Rojas set about constructing the paper trail that would leave LeClerque in the clear and throw the blame to Edom. Illari Vassyl, however, scoped out the warehouse where Dvorask was being held to gather whatever intelligence he could.

It was decided that the team would send Vicente to the top of the warehouse along with LeClerque’s trusted agent, Johann Strause. Wolfgang, Illari and Kat would remain nearby, ready to spring into action with the element of surprise. Strause and Rojas made their way to the roof of the warehouse and silently took out three of the guards on top of the building and began to work their way to the door to get into to the building. As they opened the door, they were surprised to find another agent waiting and took him out as well. But at that exact moment, back in the van Kat intercepted a message into the warehouse that, when translated, was sending a warning to those inside: ‘Infiltration Imminent.’ At that exact moment, a swarm of bats came past the van. The teams could not wait any longer. They sprung into action. Rojas and Strause stormed the building and Wolfgang rammed the van through the front gates of the warehouse.

As the two groups entered the different points of the warehouse, they began shooting and taking out as many opponents as they could, keeping an eye out for the hostage, Dvorask. While Wolfgang, Illari and Kat took out combatants on the floor of the warehouse, Vincinte and Johan broached the top level and offices of the warehouse. In a short amount of time, the pair discovered a room where Dvorask was tied to a chair. However, before they were able to untie her, they were beset by the mysterious Bon Hoest, the leading agent of the Tuefel Cartel. And when it seemed as if they had the upper hand over him, he revealed a secret of his own: his servant creature, a giant man-bat creature that towered over all of them and seemed as ferocious as it did sinister. And this creature would soon prove to be one of the more dangerous adversaries they would deal with.

Meanwhile on the floor of the warehouse, the firefight raged on, with bullets flying around the entire facility and the team doing their best to repel the attackers. But upstairs, Vincinte had his hands full with the creature that screamed and clawed and bit with dangerous natural weapons. But with a strategic attack, Vincente pushed the creature away with a dangerous attack of his own, sending the creature out of the upper floor. But it was at that moment that another twist occurred – Strause turned against his ally, stabbing him in the side, commenting that the death of Dvorask and turning over the Trinity Seals to Dracula would end all of his problems and put him second-in-command of LeClerque’s operation. Vincente managed to kill him with a well-placed shot in the head. But the dangers were not over.

Hoest, now on the floor of the warehouse commanded his creature despite numerous and relentless attacks against it as a mind-boggling amount of damage was done to it. But Hoest seemed to control it with some kind of arcane ability. As the creature began to heal, Hoest then attempt to possess Illari, sending the spirit of the creature into Illari. But a series of shots against him seemed to shut the power down. At that exact moment, as Illari was regaining control over himself, Wolfgang got a text from LeClerque: HE was coming. The team had to escape before Dracula arrived. Vincente managed to plant the evidence implicating Osman and Edom in the attack, hoping it would be enough to send Dracula in a different direction. After that, the group fled the scene in a stolen car, but as they left, they noticed that lights in the area were going dark, indicating that Dracula and his agents were making their way towards the area. It was best that they not be around when he arrived.

The team contacted LeClerque, desperate for harbor as they had been hurt badly and Vincente Rojas was in rough shape, having been bitten by the bat creature. They recieved instructions to bring Dvorask to LeClerque’s yacht, on the Vltava. Upon meeting up, they set sail moving their way towards the Danube and towards Vienna. In the meantime, medical attention was required for everyone and a special serum was needed for Vincente, lest he succumb to whatever disease the bat creature would have given him.

Thankful for their aid, LeClerque kept her side of the bargain and handed over the Trinity Seals. Upon leaving them in Vienna, they made their way back to Elizabeth Bathory and learned that she had a lead on the final (fourth?) Trinity Seal. But of greater interest, they discovered that their scheme to undermine Edom was even more successful than they had imagined. Not only was Dracula furious with Edom but Savas Osman was killed as retribution. But the only way Edom could have gotten to Osman so quickly is if he had some kind of concrete relationship with them.

Osman clearly had a closer relationship with Edom than the agents had ever suspected.

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Episode 49: Czech Out

July 29th, 2018 – July 31st, 2018

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Immediately making use of the talents that the newest agent, Kat DeWein, brought to the table, the team made their way to Prague in order to meet with her contact, Johann Strause. Strause was a member of the LeClerque Syndicate and was clearly close to Ms. Adelaide LeClerque.

Kat and Strause met at an open air cafe which allowed Illari Vassl to be nearby as well as saw Wolfgang Fechtner in the van, running surveillance. Having met up with Pascal Lerue, he was also present, working the area on foot. It did not take long for Vassyl to notice an agent walking around the block several times which put Lerue on him.

Meanwhile, Kat pressed Strause for information, specifically getting around to the idea of purchasing weapons and other materials pertaining to her undercover role as a criminal operative. Strause was all too willing to help his former lover in this regard and he provided her the name of a location and a code word – St. Monica’s church in Prague. When matters turned to more unusual items, he became intrigued. She showed him a list of items she was also somewhat interesting in finding, one of which was the Trinity Seals. This caused Strause to abruptly call an end to the meeting and return, presumably, to his employer, LeClerque. Whereas this did not get them close to her, it was at least laying the foundation.

As the conversation between Kat and Strause continued, Lerue decided to lift the passport from the man running surveillance. They quickly found his name was ‘Volik’ but this would have to be investigated further. After Strause left and the group got back together, they then looked at the evidence they had compiled.

At Kat’s insistence, the group made their way to an upscale hotel in Prauge, for better or worse with the nightclub, ‘Meet Market’ in the lobby. It was here that they determined they would start investigating Volik.

Wolfgang quickly discovered the passport was fake and was the work of the renown operative Klipper Vonnet, a weasel, but an expert in the field of government document forgeries. Whomever could afford Vonnet was a powerful adversary, indeed.

Illari and Vicente Rojas made their way to St. Monica’s in order to look around and see if it was a safe spot for Kat to follow up. Whereas St. Monica’s was in a rough section of Prague, it was amazing that the church was neither defaced, nor seemed to have any trouble from some of the locals, suggesting there was something more involved. Upon making contact with the priest, Fr. Jan Konec, it became clear that the priest was the next link in the LeClerque syndicate and who would be selling weapons on the organization’s behalf.

Back at the hotel, Wolfgang continued to pry into Volik, who was a Czech citizen who carried a French passport and had done lots of traveling to England and back. Further, their investigation revealed he was staying at the Kronsenstein hotel, a converted palace. The plan then began to form of perhaps kidnapping Volik. Pascal used his sources to discover that Volik was, indeed, staying there, but was clearly off the books in all aspects.

Later that evening, Kat went to St. Monica’s to negotiate with Fr. Konec. Using the code word provided, she was able to go into the confessional with him and discuss the sale of numerous arms. The deal went smoothly (for once) and she was on her way. But again, this did not really get the team any closer to the LeClerque organization. Instead, they determined, they would have to engineer some kind of problem with the order and demand to ‘speak with a supervisor.’

Their attention then turned to dealing with Volik. They determined if he was keeping an eye on LeClerque, it was possible he was an adversarial buyer for the Trinity Seals with was something they could not allow to get in their way. So a kidnapping was now on the table. They gathered uniforms for the hotel, a room service cart and other disguises and made their way to the hotel.

After attempting some subterfuge with the hotel manager, suggesting Volik had ordered a call girl, the manager explained, in no uncertain terms that Mr. Volik was no longer at the hotel, Kat’s plan was faltering. His associate Zenzy had stated he had checked out. Was this some kind of punishment for losing his passport? Perhaps whomever Zenzy was, would have more answers. After using more charm to get the manager to summon Zenzy (and then Wolfgang hacking the system to see which room it was), Zenzy made a brief appearance in the lobby to shoe Kat away. Zenzy was intimidating and intense. And also very clear she was to leave.

Of course, this generated a new plan. Wolfgang discovered that Zenzy was staying in the Presidential Suite (meaning he was seriously connected). Wolfgang also determined that Zenzy was listed as an attorney with Billington and Sons, the lawyers in England who were connected with the conspiracy. Was Zenzy Edom or something else?

The plan was then to engineer an issue with the heating and cooling in the Presidential Suite, prompting Zenzy to call down and complain. The team would intercept the call and make their way into the room. From that point, they would either interrogate Zenzy or kidnap him. As predicted, Zenzy did call to complain, they did intercept the call and Wolfgang assisted them in getting through the security parameters to get into the Presidential Suite.

They were greeted by armed guards outside the room and when they got inside, they quickly discovered why security was so tight . . .

Certainly Zenzy was present, but from the back emerged the Dark Stranger, the man they first met at Carfax Abbey, and Zenzy referred to him as Baron de Vil and it was apparent to everyone that this, standing before them, was none other than Dracula, himself! But within a short amount of time, de Vil wiped the memories of those present, though somehow Illari resisted, recalling every harrowing moment of repairing the broken heating and air system. But it was Wolfgang who managed to control the settings from a distance.

Amazingly, Illari was able to maintain control of his faculties and get the team out. Once they returned to the van nearby, Illari explained what had happened and the group came to the dire conclusion that Dracula’s presence meant he was here to oversee the possession of the Trinity Seals, personally, meaning they had to act. Quickly.

They made their way over to the nightclub that Adelaide LeClerque operated and Kat made a frantic call to Strause to explain an emergency had come up and she had to speak with him immediately and fortunately he agreed. Upon getting into the nightclub. Kat quickly approached and explained that the Trinity Seals were now a major concern. Upon hearing that, he took her upstairs to meet with LeClerque.

LeClerque was alone in a massive living room, standing under a portrait of herself. Suspiciously absent was her lover and partner, Narcissa Dvorask. Kat began to explain that there were dangerous people in Prague that were looking to take the Trinity Seals from her and would likely destroy her and her organization in the process. LeClerque seemed unfazed by Kat’s directness but seemed distracted. To Kat’s surprise, LeClerque seemed to not be surprised over the revelation, explaining not only was she aware of the faction wanting the Trinity Seals, but was in negotiation with them to hand them over.

LeClerque explained further, however, she was uncertain what to do as she was in a predicament. She knew who Dracula was and how dangerous he could be. She then explained that another group, the Tuefel Cartel also was in town, wanting the same items. And the Tuefel Cartel seemed to have the upper hand. Unbeknownst to Dracula they had kidnapped Dvorask and were using her as leverage to get LeClerque to hand over the Seals. And LeClerque had been doing everything she could to stall both groups until she figured out what to do.

At this point, Kat asked to bring up her associates. LeClerque agreed and once the others arrived, LeClerque again explained the situation and suggested that if there was a way to get her out from underneath this problem, she would not only hand over the Trinity Seals she had (even though one could be a forgery) but would also provide another surprise they would make use of. But they had to create a solution that not only resulted in Dvorask being saved but also prevented Dracula and his associates from exacting revenge, which caused the other to considering the possibility of making Dracula think Edom was involved. When asked whether or not LeClerque had any intel to provide, she stated that she had her people follow the Tuefel Cartel’s agent, but he literally would disappear, suggesting he was somehow supernatural. The blurry nature of the photos her people had taken seemed to confirm this theory. But the team now had a plan and were narrowing down where the Cartel had been holed up.

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Episode 48: You Only Die Twice

July 24th, 2018 – July 28th, 2018

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Returning from Budapest with one of the Trinity Seals in hand, the team knew that something had gone wrong. Either the information Elizabeth Bathory had provided was wrong, or it was, at the very least, old. Bathroy had told them that all of the legendary Trinity Seals would have been in possession of the sellers but there was only one. And she seemed to provide no indication of the Werewolves they had encountered. Martin Schule, her field operative, agreed to be the one to provide to her the disappointing news.

En route back to Vienna, the team knew the heat was on and therefore uses several side routes to get back, taking longer than was expected, but it was, after all, the safer option. From their vehicle, they contacted Illari Vasyl and made an effort to meet back with him at Bathory’s resort where they would plan their next move.

Upon returning to the resort, they met with Illari and filled him in on the dangers they had recently faced, and providing him with the information regarding the single Trinty Seal. It was at that point that Cal Morrison seemed hesitant to provide Countess Bathory with the bad news. And in a moment that almost seemed to foretell the future, Illari commented that Cal had been ‘pussy whipped’ by her.

Going with Schule, the team met with Bathory to inform her what had happened. She was disappointed regarding the single Trinity Seal, but stated that she would use her network of contacts to see where the others would be. When they mentioned Werewolves to her, her eyes narrowed, telling them that Dracula had long used Werewolves in his schemes and they were created by magic and the use of his blood. However, the closer they were to his pure blood line, the less effected they were by items like silver. The ones they faced had to be weaker, further removed as silver seemed to impact them. As to the spectral hound they encountered, she suggested that was a non-corporeal manifestation of Dracula, himself, watching them. She indicated that this likely told them that the purchase of the Seals was of great importance to the vampire king.

Bathory concluded by telling them they should relax around the resort for a few days and once she found some information, she would provide it. But there was an assignment she might have for them in the meantime, something that would likely not even cause them the need to leave the resort. But she would tell them when it was needed.

The group took advantage of Bathory’s hospitality, her grace and the many amenities the resort had to offer. But not content with resting, Cal determined he needed to poke around and get a better layout of the place, whereas Wolfgang Fechtner wanted to scope out his options for a vehicle, in case of an emergency. An escape route from a monster like Bathory was a necessity.

A day later they were summoned to Bathory’s lounge where she told them she was working on a lead she had of some individuals who may have one or both of the missing Trinity Seals – a criminal associate of hers, Adelaide LeClerque and her lover and partner, Narcissa Dvorask, who ran a criminal network out of Prague. But she was still running down the lead. In the meantime, she needed them to perform a job for her. Something far more unusual, but, she promised, rather easy.

Bathory took them down a back elevator into a secret sub-basement of the facility, taking particular interest in the weapons Illari had on his person, fascinated by the silver blades that Cal had forged. She suspected that those would have some grander purpose before the night was up. She eventually took them to a theater of sorts where in one of the box seats overlooking the stage was a woman who she introduced as Aria Cardellini. They instantly recognized her as the missing wife of Franco Selvaggio. But she was cold to the touch, and it was quickly evident that she had been turned and brought into Bathory’s fold. They knew Franco had gone off to find her when he discovered she was last seen in the company of Henri Valant, one of Bathory’s agents. They knew they would have to find a way to break the news to him when they next saw him.

However, they would get the chance sooner than they expected.

Bathroy took the entire group down to the stage and ordered her men to bring something out – a prisoner. Within moments they discovered that Franco had found Aria, as it was he who was brought out on stage. He had clearly been tortured and bled. Bathory commented that Franco had revealed secrets about the agents, enough that she felt she could at least trust them. But it was now time to end Franco’s life as he had damaged the integrity of her operation by penetrating some of the defenses. And she wanted the team to kill him. Shedding his blood with the silver blade Illari carried would be symbolic, transferring the weapon into an artifact of great power, such as the spear that pierced Christ’s side or the guns that killed the Archduke or President Kennedy. They were standing on the edge of history at this moment.

Whereas most of the team reacted in horror at this possibility, wanting no part in killing a trusted friend and ally, Cal had a different opinion. He was ready to strike the blade in Franco’s heart without hesitation in order to serve the Blood Countess. Bathory theorized the scene would play out in one of several ways: the group killing Franco in a blood ritual of treachery but putting their souls in danger, Cal killing Franco and then being killed by his fellow agents or all of them trying to walk away.

Which would it be?

In a tense few moments, the team mentally ran down their options. Wolfgang and Illari began to undo the bonds that kept Franco in place. Illari, to his horror, realized that Franco, who having been tortured, was not insane and could possibly recover. This would not be a mercy killing at all. This would be a depraved murder. But the Countess watched, seeing how the scene would play out. Cal balked first, not wanting to miss the opportunity to please the Blood Countess. Before the two allies could take Franco off the stage, he unleashed his spell, The Power of Humanity, onto Franco, killing him, instantly. As Cal turned to explain his actions, desperately, Vicente Rojas turned and shot him in the head, with Cal dead before he hit the floor. This, suggested Vicente, was a mercy killing.

The Countess, amused by what had happened watched as silence fell on the stage, interrupted only by the sounds of Aria lapping up the last moments of life that flowed out of Franco. The Countess turned to the remaining agents and told them if they were gone by midnight, they would have no reason to fear reprisals from her and she would never again bother them. If they were to stay, then she would continue to assist them in their war against Dracula. It was a decision they had to make . . . Soon.

After some tense discussions, the team decided that whereas it may not be wise and that Bathory may or may not be trusted, she was their best option for the time being and she may be the best ally they had. Certainly the most powerful, if not the most ruthless. In the end they decided to stay and see what the Countess had to offer.

The following morning, they met with her and she further detailed that indeed, LeClerqe seemed to have one of the Trinity Seals. They could either attempt to buy it from her, barter with her or steal it. But since LeClerque was a sometimes valued member of her extended operation, she would want whatever was done with subtlety and without her name attached as that was a bridge the Countess was not yet ready to burn. Not yet anyway.

It was at this point that Vicente seemed to recall another agent he had worked with in the past, a woman named Katerina ‘Kat’ DeWein, who had experience in the European underworld and had contacts with the German intelligence world as well as that of The Unicorn. Vicente quickly set up a meet.

DeWein proved to be very familiar, very brass and very capable of what she was doing; clearly a ‘face’ in the world of intelligence gathering. The N Branch Ring that Fechtner wore on his finger, a gift from his new allies, was something that caught her attention. DeWein revealed that she was familiar with the LeClerque organization from some of their arms deals and drug operations in Prague and that the two lovers had the local authorities in fear or on the payroll. Dealing with these two would have to be a careful step. But as fate would have it, she had a former lover upon whom she was still on good terms, Johann Strause, who was an operative in their empire that she may be able to activate. Either way, however, they would need to act fast. The reason the women had the Trinity Seal was unclear but it was unlikely they would be holding onto it for long . . .

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Episode 47: Neck Deep in Werewolves Before the Night is Done

July 20th, 2018 – July 23rd, 2018

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The discussion with Szofia Nadasdy (Elizabeth Bathory) revealed that she had a begrudging respect for the agents as they seemed to have come as far as they did and some of her associates suggested that they were dedicated and worth bringing into her trust. She suggested that the rest of them meet for dinner later as she would have the opportunity to further discuss the Trinity Seals. At that, the group remained in the exclusive spa while she left them, having to deal with more pressing matters.

Upon their return to their rooms, they had a note waiting for them. Written in code, they immediately detected the communication was from Pascal Lerue, suggesting he was at the hotel and staying on a different floor. He beckoned them to meet up with him to report on their latest activities.

Arriving at his room, Wolfgang Fechtner and Cal Morrison filled him in on what had been happening the past few weeks, including why they were in Vienna, specifically their recent encounter with Bathory. This quickly began a conversation where Cal was on the defensive with Fechtner and Lerue, wildly defending a possible alliance with Bathory, whereas his associates were far less trusting of her. It was clear that the exposure to the Bathory Journals may have had a negative impact on him and could have warped his mind. This caused Lerue to decide to keep a close watch on his associate to ensure he had not completely slipped into madness. But one thing was evidently clear – he would not allow for an attack against the Countess and strongly felt she was a worthy ally.

Later they were all taken to a private dining area on a secure floor that was heavily guarded. It was there they met the Countess for dinner (of course she dined on something altogether different than her guests). Throughout the course of the evening, they engaged her in conversation and she introduced them to two of her associates; her majordomo, Janos Ujvary and the leader of her mercenaries, Martin Schule.

The Countess then turned her attention towards the topic of the Trinity Seals. She explained that these seals were powerful weapons against Dracula. If used in the proper way, they would hobble his ability to react to the agents and could potentially weaken him. The Countess told them that she had information that an agent of Russian President Viktor Petrov, Igor Vozich, had stolen the seals from the State Russian Museum in Moscow and had arranged a sale with a likely Edom agent, Jorge Robles. The meeting was happening in Budapest in roughly 48 hours. The Countess offered assistance if the team needed it, in the form of a team of mercenaries and her chief mercenary, Schule. The team agreed and set out to pack their things and co-ordinate with Schule.

En route to Buspast, a couple of days later, Cal examined some of the research he had conducted on the Bathory Journals and made a stunning determination. In questioning why the Countess would be so intent on destroying Dracula, he realized that her likely goal was nothing short of removing Dracula, taking his pre-existing organization, and assuming control for herself. She was a being of ambition and ruthlessness and dealing with her would be something that would have to be taken with even more care than was already being given.

The team arrived in Budapest in immediately investigated the location where the exchange was to take place – a cemetery outside the city. They searched for all possible points of entry and exit and planned out where they would position Bathory’s mercenaries. Meanwhile, Cal set out positioning remote detonated claymores and hunting down an RPG in case things went badly.

The following night, when they arrived, they hid in various positions and placed Vicente Rojas on top of a caretaker’s building nearby. He would provide excellent sniper cover. Everything was just about ready. But Cal had one more plan up his sleeve.

Cal set out to create a dummy account and planned on intercepting the electronic payment that Rojas was going to provide to Vozich. Knowing that the money would likely come from Bichi National Bank, Cal was ready to create a stalling tactic for the deal, hoping the confusion would buy them some time to swoop in and steal the Trinity Seals.

When the met began, the two groups came together from different directions and had a brief discussion. When it was evident that Robles wanted to see the item that Vozich had brought, there seemed to be some kind of initial problem. Based on partial lip reading and partial study of body language, Fechtner determined that perhaps Robles thought it was a fake or perhaps something with the authenticity was in question. But the issue was quickly resolved and the deal continued. It was at this point that Cal executed his scheme.

As soon as the money was being transferred, Cal intercepted it and only allowed 10% of the funds to process. This caused more confusion on the part of the two teams. And they seemed to begin to take some kind of precautionary action but the precise nature of the action was unclear. But within moments, things began to get brutal.

Immediately behind Fechtner and Cal appeared a disturbingly mangy dog that was growling, catching their attention. As it turned out, the creature seemed impervious to physical attacks, indicating it was some kind of apparition or disguised surveillance system. When the shooting began, everyone drew and the bullets were everywhere in mere moments. The most shocking aspect was when several of Robles’ men transformed into werewolves and began savage attacks. But fortunately, the agents were prepared with silver jacketed rounds.

As the firefight continued and enemies were picked off in a short amount of time, Lerue made his way to Robles and Vozich and snatched the item that was being sold and raced it to safety. As soon as they had killed all the guards as well as the werewolves, they quickly escaped, unsure of exactly who would arrive next. But either way, they did not want to be present.

En route back to Vienna to report to the Countess, they opened the satchel that was transporting the items and to their surprise, they discovered that the contained did not have three Trinity Seals, but merely one Trinity Seal. This was certainly something they would have to investigate as there were clearly two others out there they they would have to track down.

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Episode 46: From Prussia with Love

July 15th, 2018 – July 20th, 2018

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Magda Vasilescu stood over the defeated agents, with their lives in her hands. However, she seemed to be willing to negotiate for said lives, but on her terms. Her underlings arrived to take Wolfgang Fechtner, Illari Vassyl and Vicente Rojas to the infirmary while Magda took Cal Morrison to another room to negotiate. With Cal, Magda was very clear – she felt that there was a way he and the agents could assist her and her operation but she was unsure if they were the right people for the job. If she discovered they were not the right people, she would surely kill them. She further explained that while she was an enemy of Dracula, he was a difficult opponent If they were to succeed against him, they would need more resources. And for those, they would need to go to Vienna and meet with her associate, Henri Valant. It was then that she left to allow Cal to clean himself up and she would await for the rest to join her.

Meanwhile, Illari watched as Wolfgang and Vicente laid motionless, close to death. A man, seemingly a doctor, looked over the two of them, mostly taking pictures. Illari realized that Wolfgang’s medical problems were severe and would need hospitalization. He was unsure how they would get out of this situation. It was then that Magda came in and surveyed the situation. Seeing Wolfgang laying on the table, she quietly cut her wrist and fed her blood to him. Illari tried to stop her but she quickly dismissed him with her magic powers. Within a short amount of time Wolfgang was recovering from his grievous wounds.

After she left, Wolfgang came around, amazed that he was back from the brink of death. But when Illari explained what happened, Wolfgang was shocked and suffered a brief mental break, fearing that he was on the verge of turning into a vampire. But when Cal came in, he explained that the Linea Bathory did not turn victims without arcane acts. But shortly after the reunion, they were summoned by some of Magda’s underlings to bring them upstairs for a group meeting.

Upon arriving back upstairs, they were led to the library. Magda was out on the patio, overlooking London. However, collected in the library were many of her vampire servants, suspiciously eying the agents as they approached, hissing as they got closer. But clearly they had specific instructions not to bother them and they approached Magda unmolested. Together, they discussed their options.

Magda was intrigued at the possibility of ending Dracula’s reign of terror as she and her organization were enemies of the Dark Prince. She further explained that she lived in secret, hiding from groups like Edom who would love to try and recruit her to work for them. However, that was against her interests. She suggested that her ally, Henri Valant in Vienna, would provide them with further details if they were willing. She would provide them transportation but there was something they needed to do for her. In Le Harve, France, there was a semi truck waiting for them. All they had to do was, en route to Vienna, take the semi to Salzburg where they would hand it off to agents of hers and then move on to the Grand Vienna Hotel where Valant was waiting. With the fragile agreement in place, the agents left to rest and get as far away from Magda as possible, even though Cal was evidently intrigued by the the woman’s charms.

Over the next few days they gathered their strength, healed and collected the supplies they needed. During this time Illari noticed that there was a dark change in Cal. The war against Edom and Dracula’s minions had finally taken a toll in the altercation underneath Darkest Night. He was developing psychological wounds that would not be easily healed. But Illari knew that he would have the will to move on and continue the fight.

Once in Le Harve, they found the semi as well as the small compact car that Magda had provided. Illari was curious about what they were transporting but Cal reminded them that Magda was clear on her instructions not to open it. In the end, they all came to the conclusion it was better not knowing.

On the way to Salzburg, Wolgang received a call from his former handler, Johan Schmidt. Schmidt was brief and to the point: He had always respected Wolfgang and what was about to happen was nothing personal. It was at that moment that Wolfgang warned everyone to brace for impact as two small helicopters arrived on the horizon. Clearly he had sent a kill team to take the group out. However, a few well placed shots and some tactical driving by Wolfgang took the assassins out, but then they had to pull off in order to conceal their vehicles as the altercation had been messy and dangerous on a high traffic road in Germany.

Upon arriving at the Grand Vienna Hotel, they were immediately shown into a back lounge and not long after, Henri Valant arrived. Cal was concerned he would be holding onto a grudge when when they robbed him several months ago and from when they robbed his storage facility and made off with the Bathory Journals. However, Valant seemed to not even acknowledge the incident. Instead, he stated that Magda stated she highly recommended their abilities for a series of projects. It was then that he referenced something they had not come across before – the Trinity Seals. He stated that the Trinity Seals were not in his possession but knew where they could get hold of them. However, in order to further discuss the specifics, he needed to check into a few details. In the meantime, he checked them into some rooms and provided passes for the exclusive spa on the grounds of the hotel.

When they relaxed in their rooms and then went to the basement where the spa was located, they were shown into a private sauna. However, there was an individual waiting for them. The woman introduced herself as Szofia Nadasdy, but to Cal it was clear who she really was.

Elizabeth Bathory.

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Episode 45: Linea Bathory

July 13th, 2018 – July 15th, 2018

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The next option for the agents involved setting up an operation with Hanna Stasuk in order to get into Darkest Night. They needed to pose as wealthy eccentrics in order to look around and see if there was any truth to what Hanna had to say about the possible human trafficking operations. They knew it would take a day or two in order for her to set it up so they allowed her the room she needed and they used that time to investigate what the Patrescu Travel Agency had to offer. In the meantime Hanna assured Illari Vassyl that she would do her best to set them up right.

The team went to the travel agency which was on a forgotten London street. The smell of curry and the dank air hung like a fog. Upon entering, they noticed a couple older men playing chess and a buxom receptionist seeming disinterested and posters that advertised Dracula and his relationship to Transylvania.. But as soon as they came in, a few words were dropped that caught one of the older men’s attention. But the word that seemed to have the most impact was when Illari mentioned Matias Emerlich. This prompted one of the older men who introduced himself as Ilie Patrescu, to bring them in his back office.

He was cagey and suspicious but before too long he did reveal that he has been working with the CIA and MI6 for years, acting as a middle man between agents in the east and agents in the west, professing his strong hatred for Communism, Stalin and Ceausescu, in particular.

When the topic returned to Emerlich, he explained that he and Emerlich had been associates for years but he was hesitant to admit it but he had reason to believe that the traitor in the 77 Mole Hunt was Emerlich. Further, as the discussion progressed, he revealed something even more earth shattering. He explained that not only did he know one of the annotators of the Dracula Dossier, ‘Van Sloan,’ but that Van Sloan was still alive and in Wales, in his 90’s. He agreed to provide them with the way to get a hold of him as long as they left his name out of it as he did not want Van Sloan’s wrath upon him. But he also warned that Van Sloan was wily and far more spry than a man his age. Of course, he also reassured them that Van Sloan was not a member of the undead.

A this point they left and they waited until the next day to execute the plan to infiltrate Darkest Night. They arrived in a limo with Cal Morison posing as the agent of an obscure prince who would be interested in partaking of the wares Darkest Night offered. Wolfgang Fechtner, Vicente Rojas and Illari waited nearby. They reviewed the numbers for the club as well as the billing, playing the part of the prince’s agents, focusing on whether or not they could perhaps, purchase girls if they so desired. The agent they spoke to quickly turned things over to Magda Vasilescu, the manager of Darkest Night, who assured them that everything was for sale . . .

When Ms. Vasilescu took them on a tour, they met up with Hanna. The entire location seemed lavish and expensive but they were not prepared for what awaited them in the basement of the club.

Ms. Vasilescu opened up a large room filled with BDSM equipment but when she leaned in to whisper a secret to Cal, she instead attacked him, baring her fangs. When Hanna did the same to Illari, they realized that Hanna had been turned. As Vasilescu sunk her hangs into Cal, he also came to the sudden realization that these women were vampires in the line of Elizabeth Bathory, information that had come to him after reading the Bathory Journals. These were not only powerful vampires but also had the blood of witches in them, making them equally powerful sorcerers.

For the agents, the altercation did not go well. They fought valiantly but the sheer power of Vasilescu was overwhelming. Her powerful magic and her vampire followers were almost too much for them. But Cal was a fast thinker and recalled his reading of the Bathory Journals where Elizabeth Bathory was a sworn enemy of Dracula. He used this to attempt to convince Vasilescu that a deal could be made. It was not until the last moment, from a position of strength that she agreed. Certainly, her underlings had been destroyed, including Hanna, but Vasilescu was in complete control of the negotiations to come . . .

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