EPISODE 7: NADIR

Trapped in Howling House’s basement, the children discovered a hidden room, and within it, the horrendous secrets of this God-forsaken place. Armed with iron, fire, and the terrible knowledge of the house's history, they descend into the darkest depths of this damned domicile.
 

Content Warning: Violence, gore, harsh language, child endangerment and abuse, vore, cannibalism, domestic abuse, murder, misogyny, gaslighting, addiction, and putrescence.

An illustration of a decrepit Victorian house with a light on inside and a cat sitting on the gate with the Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program logo above it, by Sarah DeLaine and Ashley Lanni

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Full Transcript Below

Original score composed and performed by Ryan and Mike McQuinn of Neon Dolphin Music Design

EPISODES:

Meet the Cast
Part 7

CREDITS:

Written & Performed by:
Luke Stram – The Keeper
Cat Blackard | Manda Bruno | Brandon Gerson | Chris LeBrane | Colin Peterson

Based on “The Dare” by Kevin Ross with revisions by Bret Kramer, published by Sentinel Hill Press

 

Sound Design: Colin Peterson

Editing and Mastering: Colin Peterson & Cat Blackard

Story Editing: Cat Blackard



Cast (In Order of Appearance):
Cat Blackard as The Narrator/ The Announcer
Cat Blackard as Advertising Woman
Luke Stram as The Keeper
Colin Peterson as Tommy "Woods" Northwood
Chris LeBrane as Joey Davenport
Manda Bruno as Chelsea Northwood
Brandon Gerson as Dirt
Luke Stram as ???
Alyson Grauer as Evelyn Barnaker
Leeman Kessler as The Cat
Cynthia Beckert as Grandma Northwood
Cat Blackard as Dirt's Mother
Ebonie Ellington as Joey's Mother
Nicky Holland as Cherry Featherbottom


Musical Spotlight: "You Can Never Go Home Again" by Jasmin Kaset

Original Score: Ryan McQuinn and Mike McQuinn

Neon Dolphin
- Bandcamp

Album Art by Sarah DeLaine and Ashley Lanni

Executive Producers: Colin Peterson & Cat Blackard

Producer: John Sebastian La Valle

Associate Producer: Jessica Mudd

SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIALS:

TRANSCRIPT:

[Omniverse Audio Brand]

ANNOUNCER:
The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program is for mature audiences only.
This episode contains violence, gore, harsh language, child endangerment and abuse, vore, cannibalism, domestic abuse, murder, misogyny, gaslighting, addiction, and putrescence.

Please listen at your own discretion.

If you find our stygian stories simply scintillating, unlock further secrets at Patreon.com/OmniverseMedia, and help us fund future series via our IndieGoGo campaign at CthulhuMystery.com/crowdfund

[SFX: Radio static, the dial tunes until...]

[The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program intro plays - sinister]

Gruff Voice:
Do you hear that?

[SFX: Eerie wailing]

Gruff Voice:
In the cruel blackness of night, an unknowable evil from beyond time cries out! What dark deeds unfold on the streets of Arkham? And which unwitting souls, innocent or impure, will succumb to the maddening call? The Call... of Cthulhu!

[Music swells and fades]

ANNOUNCER:
Yuggoth Pharmaceutical Company brings you Part 7 of The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program - “Night at Howling House”. Tonight’s chilling chapter: Nadir.

WOMAN:
Often a bridesmaid, but never a bride - Edna’s case was really a pathetic one. Like every woman, her ambition was to be wed. But instead, at the tragic age of thirty she died, grotesque and alone.

If only she’d tried Yuggoth Mouthwash - her grace, charm, and loveliness would’ve shone so bright on her wedding day.

Don’t be like Edna. Never be like Edna. Reach for Yuggoth Mouthwash and spare yourself the shame and embarrassment of halitosis - bad breath. You never know when you have it and even your close family and friends won’t tell you, but the horrible truth is: your body is covered in germs and bacteria - invisible to the naked eye, but festering in every orifice. They’ll smell it; they’ll taste it on you. And they’ll know how disgusting and disgraceful you are.

Future husbands and scientists agree: natural odors are repugnant and must be cleansed. Fortunately there’s Yuggoth Mouthwash to aid humankind’s ascent above base creatures. And once you’re enraptured in marital bliss - stay that way by adding the gentle germicide of Yuggoth Mouthwash to your feminine hygiene routine to render you odorless, inoffensive, and pristine on your wedding night.

Purify your body beyond reproach with the antiseptic power of Yuggoth Mouthwash - and never be shunned again.

NARRATOR:
Trapped in the basement of Howling House, the children discovered a hidden room, and within it, the horrendous secrets of this God-forsaken place. This was never a happy home, it’s a prison for a demon - a demon that first wore the skin of a man named William, and now wears the skin of a gray cat. The supposed witch, Evelyn Barnaker, is but one in a long line of victims, stretching back centuries. However, she managed to imprison the mephistophelian monster who married her - dooming them both to an eternity of accursed hunger. Now, the Northwood siblings, Joey, and Dirt, armed with iron and fire, steel themselves to descend into the darkest depths of this damned domicile.

[SFX: Slow leak]

[SFX: Water dripping]

JOEY:
See? It’s, like, some kind of drain!

WOODS:
And we heard singing coming out of it.

CHELSEA:
We have to go down there?

JOEY:
We’ve been running away but maybe it’s time we head towards the crazy stuff. Help me get this thing off.

WOODS:
Alright. One, two—

JOEY:
Two—

WOODS & JOEY:
—three!
[Grunt]

[SFX: Heavy scraping]

WOODS:
I shine my flashlight—

[SFX: Flashlight clicks on]

WOODS:
—down the hole. Do I see anything?

KEEPER:
The sides are slick, bare earth. But one of the sides has rough-hewn handholds. It’s ten feet down to a muddy bottom. And there’s a tunnel that looks like it has about five feet of height to it.

BAT-THING:
Mama lair!

CHELSEA:
Your momma’s down there?

BAT-THING:
Momma feast! Bad brothers!
[Pleading]
Friends! No…

CHELSEA:
We shouldn’t go down there.

WOODS:
We have to, Chelsea.

CHELSEA:
Why?

WOODS:
Where else are we supposed to go? What else are we supposed to do?

CHELSEA:
I—I don’t know! Everyone is dying, Tommy! And we’re gonna die, too!

WOODS:
No, we’re not! And maybe we know something that they didn’t. Look!

[SFX: Footsteps]

WOODS:
I put one of the horseshoes in her hands.
What is this?

CHELSEA:
An iron horseshoe.

WOODS:
Not just that. It’s a lucky horseshoe! One that Charlie might wear. And you think about that luck!

CHELSEA:
I left Charlie upstairs!

WOODS:
No, you didn’t!

CHELSEA:
But I—

WOODS:
Charlie is right here.
And I put my finger right on her heart.
This is a magic horseshoe. You’ve made it this far, right? You and me together. Mom and Pop are watching over us. And we’re gonna get out of this—together, okay?

CHELSEA:
…Okay.

WOODS:
I hold the other horseshoe tight in my hand.
[Sighs]
Who’s going first?

DIRT:
I’ll go.

WOODS:
Dirt, are you sure?

DIRT:
It’s a dirty hole so…that’s normal for me.

WOODS:
Well, sure, I guess so. Just be careful.

DIRT:
Okay.
I’m gonna climb down with the torch in my—
[Muffled, holding the torch post in his mouth]
—mouth. It’s gonna be in my mouth. It’s gonna be like this.

KEEPER:
As you descend, Woods shines—

[SFX: Cautious, descending footsteps]

KEEPER:
—the flashlight from above down onto you. And when your feet touch the bottom—

[SFX: Muddy squelch]

KEEPER:
—they sink a couple of inches into the muddy floor.

DIRT:
Ooh! Ohh!
[Spits out torch]

KEEPER:
Aside from the corpses, this is the worst thing you’ve smelled all night.

DIRT [Out of Character]:
I work on a farm.

KEEPER:
Oh, it’s far worse than that. This mud is basically sewage.

DIRT:
I inhale as deeply as possible so I can try to get used to it.
[Heavy inhale]
[Hissing, shuddering exhale]
It’s still bad. It didn’t help.

[Cast laughs]

WOODS:
I guess we follow—we follow afterwards.

JOEY:
Yeah. So we follow him down.

[SFX: Cautious, descending footsteps]

KEEPER:
The lot of you make your way down into the subterranean—

[SFX: Muddy squelch]

KEEPER:
—cavern.

[SFX: Squishy footsteps]

WOODS [Out of Character]:
How dark is it down here?

KEEPER:
Except for your flashlight and Dirt’s torch, it’s entirely dark.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
Like, cave dark?

KEEPER:
Yes.

[SFX: Stalactites dripping]

ALL:
[Quietly humming, murmuring]

CHELSEA:
…Don’t wanna be here!

JOEY:
Just stay close.

WOODS:
Okay. Alright I guess we just have to press on.

CHELSEA:
This is a really bad idea!

DIRT:
I—I start walking down the tunnel.

[SFX: Sloshing footsteps]

WOODS:
Everyone? Stay close. Watch out for anything. You’ve got to be prepared!

JOEY:
We got this! Whatever this is, we got this.

KEEPER:
As you make your way around this slightly curving tunnel, you see further around the bend, flickering—maybe of candlelight?

WOODS:
[Groans]

KEEPER:
As you turn around the bend, you hear a voice call out.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Run away, little ones!

[SFX: Dramatic stinger]

ALL:
[Shriek, yelp]

JOEY:
Shit!

EVELYN BARNAKER:
I’m so—I’m so hungry! Let me just—let me just see you. Or taste you. Please?

DIRT:
I turn to the bat on Chelsea’s shoulder and I ask,
Is that your mother?

BAT-THING:
Mother! FEAST!

DIRT:
Okay, well there’s a mother feast up ahead so that sounds pleasant.

JOEY:
Yeah it sounds pleasant, huh?

WOODS:
Yeah, yeah, yeah—

JOEY:
Check it out, Dirt.

WOODS:
I take my horseshoe and I’ve got it, like, in my hand, like, it’s like brass knuckles. Like, ready to go.

JOEY:
I have the chains—

[SFX: Iron chain clatters]

JOEY:
—going around my wrists.
Wish somebody would! Let’s go!

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Don’t be afraid, children. Come now! She’s been waiting so long to see you.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Damn you, William! Damn you!

WOODS:
[Stammering]
There’s nowhere else to go. There’s nowhere else to go—

JOEY:
There’s nowhere else to do—

WOODS:
[Nervous stammering]

DIRT:
I’m gonna slowly make my way forward, like, inch by inch.

WOODS:
I reach back and I—I grab onto Chelsea’s hand as hard as I possibly can.

KEEPER:
Before you, the cavern opens up into a much larger area. The muck dips into a shallow pool of water, a couple of inches deep. There’s something pale in the mud, raking against your footfalls. It’s…bones!

[SFX: Dramatic stinger]

KEEPER:
Piles of small, yellowed bones—the bones of children all around. Everyone, make a Power check.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I got a 47 out of 65.

JOEY: [Out of Character]:
I got a 100 out of 60. Absolute fail.

CHELSEA [Out of Character]:
I got a 16 out of 75.

DIRT [Out of Character]:
Yeah, I got a 90 out of 40.

WOODS:
[Out of Character]:
Go, Team Northwood...

JOEY [Out of Character]:
[Laughs]

KEEPER:
In the torchlight you see that the pile of bones only gets bigger the closer you get. But then, Woods, your flashlight catches something: an alcove in the cavern wall. Your beam traces the edge and then falls across the body of your grandmother!

[SFX: Dramatic stinger]

KEEPER:
She’s smeared with blood and mud! She looks like she’s been dragged down here. There’s recognition in her eyes as she lifts her head and she sees you.

WOODS:
Grandma!

“GRANDMA NORTHWOOD”:
Tommy? Where am I? What is this place?

WOODS:
Grandma!

CHELSEA:
Where? Tommy, what are you talking about?

KEEPER:
Chelsea, you see it now. That is not your Mema.

CHELSEA:
Oh, no!

[SFX: Hideous, echoing, shrieking wail]

KEEPER:
This must be Evelyn Barnaker. But this isn’t the woman from the photograph at all.

EVEYLN BARNAKER:
[Labored breathing]

KEEPER:
It’s a hunched creature, shrieking in the flashlight beam. Her skin is viscous, lumpy, translucent, and pale. White with purple and blue splotches. Her two long arms hold herself, hiding her face behind long, black hair.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I’m sorry. I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry!

BAT-THING:
Momma! No, no, no!

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Baby! Come to me, babies!

WOODS:
Grandma!

CHELSEA:
That’s not Mema, Tommy!

[SFX: Unsteady footsteps]

KEEPER:
As your bother lurches forward through the muck, Evelyn’s head bobs up and you see her eyes: beads of white in pools of black. Her mouth opens—

[SFX: Maw stretching and tearing]

KEEPER:
—four sizes too big, with teeth encircling it like a lamprey’s.

[SFX: Frantic, pulsating swish]

KEEPER:
And now you see her belly: it’s bulbous and distended as though pregnant. Within the transparent membrane of her taut skin there’s something yellow and horrendous, undulating and moving beneath.

CHELSEA:
[Screams]

JOEY:
What the hell, Chelsea?

WOODS:
We have to save Grandma! Chelsea, we have to save Grandma!

DIRT:
Grandma?

KEEPER:
Dirt, you see her now. It’s…your mother. She’s standing in a warm, golden light.

DIRT’S “MOTHER”:
My baby boy! My sweet baby!

KEEPER:
She kneels and puts her arms out to hold you.

DIRT:
Mother?

KEEPER:
Yes. Mother. Joey, you aren’t sure what you were looking at for a moment but it’s your mother. She’s hurt—really bad. Her leg is bent the wrong way and there’s blood. It’s like she must’ve fallen down here.

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
[Agonized moan]

JOEY:
Ma?

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
Joey! Is that you?

JOEY:
Momma—?

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
Ahhh. I’m hurt. I was trying to find you!

JOEY:
Momma!

KEEPER:
Everyone, make a Sanity roll.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I failed.

DIRT [Out of Character]:
I failed, too.

JOEY [Out of Character]:
Definitely failed that.

CHELSEA [Out of Character]:
I rolled a 28.

KEEPER:
Everyone who failed: you lose d6 plus one Sanity. Chelsea, you lose 1d3.

DIRT [Out of Character]:
I lost 2.

CHELSEA [Out of Character]:
I lost 3.

KEEPER:
Did anyone lose more than 4?

JOEY [Out of Character]:
I lost 5.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I also lost 5.

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
Joey!

[SFX: Squealing of rats]

KEEPER:
You see rats—

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
[Screams]

[SFX: Tearing of flesh]

KEEPER:
—leap at your mother, clawing at her face.

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
[Screams]

KEEPER:
She can hardly move—

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
Joey! Help!

KEEPER:
—with her busted leg. And she can’t defend herself.

JOEY’S “MOTHER”:
Joey! Help!

KEEPER:
The choices you’ve made, the trouble you’ve caused—

JOEY:
What have I—what have I done?

KEEPER:
This is all your fault. She loves you. And now look.

JOEY:
Momma! I’m coming!
I’m gonna twirl this chain around and beat those rats off of her.

KEEPER:
Charging ahead, carelessly like that—

[SFX: Sprinting footsteps]

KEEPER:
—that’s what got you into this mess. It’s a low ceiling, and as you lurch forward, you smack right into a stony lump—

JOEY:
Arrgh!

[SFX: Heavy, dull thud]

[SFX: Body hitting ground]

KEEPER:
—knocking you out cold.

[SFX: Splashing]

KEEPER:
You land in the mud and bones.

JOEY:
Ugh.

KEEPER:
Woods, your grandmother looks awful. You’ve got to get her out of here. It looks like she’s maybe tied up—

[SFX: Confident footsteps]

KEEPER:
—and you go for her to try to free her from her imprisonment.

WOODS:
Grandma! Grandma! We have to save her! Chelsea, come help me! Come help me! Grandma’s tied up!

CHELSEA:
Don’t! It’s a monster! Don’t go!

WOODS:
No, Chelsea, come—

CHELSEA:
Don’t go!
I stick my feet in the ground and I latch onto him, and I will not let him move.

KEEPER:
Chelsea, make a Strength check.

CHELSEA [Out of Character]:
I fail.

KEEPER:
You dig in as best you can in the muddy water but—

[SFX: Splashing, floundering]

KEEPER:
—you can’t get a grip. You’re not strong enough. And your brother just drags you. Your feet dig troughs through the bones and shit on the floor as Woods pulls you closer and closer to the salivating creature.

WOODS:
Come on, Chelsea! It’s Grandma! We have to save Grandma!

CHELSEA:
It’s not Grandma! That’s a monster!

WOODS:
It’s Grandma! Can’t you see her? You have to save her! Come on, Chelsea!

CHELSEA:
You’re an idiot! It’s not Grandma! You were an idiot to bring us here. You were an idiot to take your Scoutmaster’s knife! Dumb! You’re dumb. That’s not Grandma!

KEEPER:
Dirt, you see this happening but it’s not his grandma—it’s your mother. You have no idea what he’s talking about.

DIRT:
Is your grandma my mom? That’s okay. She’ll hug everyone just the same. She’s real nice.

DIRT’S “MOTHER”:
Come to Momma, baby. Let me hold you. Let my love keep you so, so warm.

DIRT:
I’m running—running towards her.

KEEPER:
You run towards her?

DIRT:
With open arms.

KEEPER:
Okay.

DIRT:
I mean, one of them has a torch, but you know what I mean.

KEEPER:
Okay, Woods. Fortunately for you, you’re being slowed by—

[SFX: Plodding footsteps]

KEEPER:
—your sister’s protestations and her violent attempts to stop you.

CHELSEA:
It’s not Mema, Tommy! Please, stop!

KEEPER:
The cat circles around her looking on gleefully, his eyes flashing—

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
[Laughs evilly]

KEEPER:
—a mesmeric sheen.

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Come to Mother, children! Give her a kiss.
[Laughs]

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Please! Don’t.

KEEPER:
Dirt runs—

[SFX: Splashing footsteps]

KEEPER:
—past you both—

DIRT:
Mother!

KEEPER:
—his torch drops into—

[SFX: Hissing of extinguished torch]

KEEPER:
—the water and goes out.

DIRT:
Mommy!

BAT-THING:
Friend!

KEEPER:
At last, Dirt. You mother’s arms are around you.

DIRT’S “MOTHER”:
[Moans]

KEEPER:
You feel so loved, so warm.

DIRT’S “MOTHER”:
My sweet baby!

KEEPER:
It’s like you’ve always imagined.

DIRT:
Finally.

DIRT’S “MOTHER”:
I love you so, so much.

KEEPER:
But you see it, Chelsea. This creature lifts Dirt’s tiny body—

[SFX: Ripping, tearing]

KEEPER:
—from the ground—

DIRT:
[Moans]

KEEPER:
—effortlessly holding him—

DIRT:
Everything is perfect—

KEEPER:
—into the air—

DIRT:
—just like I always imagined!

KEEPER:
—and greedily shoves him—

DIRT:
Oh, Mother, we’ll be together forever.

KEEPER:
—into her mouth—

[SFX: Hideous crunching]

KEEPER:
—headfirst.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
I don’t want to! Oh, please!

KEEPER:
Her neck bulges, ballooning and contorting around his body as it disappears into her.

[SFX: Slurping]

DIRT [Out of Character]:
I’m fine.

KEEPER:
You take 10 points of Damage, Dirt.

DIRT [Out of Character]:
Yeah, no, I’m—what’s negative 7 mean?

KEEPER:
It means that you’ve never felt such comfort in your life. It’s like being wrapped in a rapturous flame. Nothing and no one can hurt you now. You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be: a sacrifice to Ærgot, sating Evelyn’s torturous hunger and extending her torment. No longer a boy with dreams but nourishment to a horrific god.

DIRT:
[Moans]

KEEPER:
Your essence, unmade. And…remade.

DIRT:
[Muffled screams]

EVELYN BARNAKER:
My sweet baby!

CHELSEA:
Oh, my God! She’s eating him! We have to get out of here!

WOODS:
What?

CHELSEA:
She ate Dirt! She ate Dirt! Why don’t you understand? We have to get out of here! We have to kill her!

WOODS:
Kill Grandma?

CHELSEA:
I’m gonna knuckle him in the face with one of the horseshoes.

[SFX: Heavy thud]

WOODS:
Ow! Chelsea, what are you—?
[Gasps]
Oh, my God! What is that thing? That’s not Grandma! That’s not—where’s Joey? Where’s Joey? We have to get Joey! We have to get Joey! He’s got the chains!

KEEPER:
Joey is unconscious in the water, half-sprawled out across a pile of bones.

WOODS:
I run back—

[SFX: Frantic, splashing footsteps]

WOODS:
—I run back to go get Joey.
Joey! Joey, wake up!

JOEY:
[Groaning]

WOODS:
Wake up!

JOEY:
Oh, my God! My head!

WOODS:
We need you!

JOEY:
What’s going on? What’s going on, man?

WOODS:
Joey! Joey, wake up.

JOEY:
Ugh. Alright. Alright.

WOODS:
Joey, that’s not Grandma!

JOEY:
Ma!

WOODS:
That’s not your mother. That’s not anyone’s anything. Look…at…that thing!

JOEY:
Oh, my God! What the fuck is that thing?

WOODS:
I don’t know but we have to kill it!

JOEY:
Oh!

WOODS:
It’s up to us.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Run, children. Please!

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Oh, now, where will they ever run to? Besides, you’ve grown so weak, my love. You need a decent meal.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
No. Stop.

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
She’s just a terrible conversationalist. It’s the same nagging over and over. Look at that little one: Chelsea. Think of how her plump, little leg meats will go chomp-chomp in your maw, how good she’ll feel asphyxiating in your guts.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Argh! Kill…you! Ugh. It’s coming.

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Behold, children! The miracle of life. Ærgot’s sweet madness gone to seed.

[SFX: Flesh stretching]

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
One more bastard for Mommy and Daddy! She always wanted a big family.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Agonized moaning]

KEEPER:
Evelyn’s stretched face contorts and she scrabbles—

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Gasping]

KEEPER:
—to her feet—

[SFX: Heavy thud]

KEEPER:
—waddling forward into the water towards you.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Labored breathing]

KEEPER:
Behind her there’s a nest of rat creatures who scatter—

[SFX: Chittering and excited murmuring]

KEEPER:
—to all sides. The sickly, yellow-green shapes in her abdomen churn—

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Screaming]

KEEPER:
—and an ooze spills from between her legs.

ALL:
[Panicked screaming]

[SFX: Splattering]

[SFX: Slurping]

KEEPER:
There’s a squealing and suddenly something flops out of her—

[SFX: Wet thud]

KEEPER:
—with a splash.

JOEY:
Oh, my—! What is that? Ohhhh!

KEEPER:
It’s one of those rat creatures. It looks up from the water at you…with Dirt’s face!

[SFX: Dramatic stinger]

KEEPER:
And it flees off into the darkness!

RAT CREATURE DIRT:
[Squealing]

JOEY:
Oh, that is fucked up. That is not happening to me!

WOODS:
Was that shit Dirt?

JOEY:
That is—

WOODS:
Was that Dirt?

JOEY:
Dirt is a bat—

WOODS:
Rat…thing?!

JOEY:
—rat thing!

WOODS:
No!

JOEY:
No?

WOODS:
I won’t be a rat thing!

JOEY:
Not gonna be a rat thing!

WOODS:
I can’t be! Not today!

JOEY:
No! Let’s go!

WOODS & JOEY:
[Battle cry]

JOEY:
Let’s do this! I’m gonna lash out with the chains.

KEEPER:
Make a Fight check.

JOEY [Out of Character]:
I got 45 out of 80 to Fight.

KEEPER:
Evelyn is hunched back against the ceiling as she lumbers—

[SFX: Heavy, lurching footfalls]

KEEPER:
—towards you. You’re much faster, Joey, and your chains slap against her—

[SFX: Clattering of iron chains]

KEEPER:
—weird flesh.

[SFX: Heavy thud]

[SFX: Hissing, bubbling]

KEEPER:
It bubbles where you struck, leaving marks immediately, like acid on a mucus membrane. She recoils.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Ahhhh!

[SFX: Wounded, retreating footsteps]

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Do it! Please! End me! I can’t stop!

CHELSEA:
I turn to my bat friend.
Will you—will you attack her?

BAT-THING:
Momma feed! Papa hurt!

CHELSEA:
But they’re gonna hurt us!

BAT-THING:
Scared!

CHELSEA:
I’m scared, too!
I hold onto my horseshoe tight.

[Frenetic music fades out]

[Frenetic music fades in]

WOODS:
I’ve got my horseshoe! And I am gonna punch this thing!

KEEPER:
She’s pretty slow-moving, so take a bonus die.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I’m not even close. 79.

KEEPER:
Try the bonus die!

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I made it! Barely.
[Laughs triumphantly]

KEEPER:
1d4 Damage.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
1.

KEEPER:
You hit hit with the horseshoe as hard as you can on her belly, but it’s a glancing blow.

[SFX: Soft thud]

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Gasps]

KEEPER:
It leaves a red mark on her but she seems mostly unharmed.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Please! Please come into me!

WOODS:
Ahhhh!
I back off.

KEEPER:
Make a Power check.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I definitely pass! 35 out of 65.

KEEPER:
Not quite half. Okay!

WOODS [Out of Character]:
But I could spend Luck! I could spend Luck to get it down to half.

KEEPER:
Do you want to?

WOODS [Out of Character]:
Sure. Yes, absolutely! Absolutely! 3 points!

KEEPER:
Good thing because Evelyn locks eyes with you.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Don’t look. Please, don’t look!

KEEPER:
And you almost get lost in her hideous visage for a moment before you turn away from her.

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Such a brave, little boy!

[SFX: Sloshing]

KEEPER:
There’s some kind of terrible power being wielded against you, Woods. And it almost had you. Joey?

JOEY:
What was that?

WOODS:
Don’t look at her face, man!

JOEY:
Oh, my God!

WOODS:
Don’t look at her face!

JOEY [Out of Character]:
I gotta attack her again! I gotta attack her again! 69 out of 80.
So I jump, hit her in the back of the head with the chains!

KEEPER:
Roll for Damage!

JOEY [Out of Character]:
2 Damage!

KEEPER:
You crack her in the back of the head—

[SFX: Chains whipping]

KEEPER:
—with the chain.

[SFX: Heavy thud]

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Yelp]

[SFX: Hissing and bubbling]

KEEPER:
She stumbles forward some and lets out this guttural growl.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Agonized howl]
Please. I need you inside.

JOEY:
Not gonna do it!

WOODS:
Not today!

JOEY:
Not today!

WOODS:
Not tomorrow!

JOEY:
Nuh-uh!

WOODS:
Not ever!

JOEY:
Not my type!

WILLIAM BARNAKER:
Why fight it, lads? You will die here.

JOEY:
You’re next, pal!

KEEPER:
Chelsea, she turns to you.

CHELSEA:
[Quavery breaths]

WOODS:
Hey! Don’t you look at her!

[SFX: Resolute, splashing footsteps]

WOODS:
And I’m gonna stand between her and Chelsea.

KEEPER:
Evelyn begins plodding towards you, Woods.

WOODSL
A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, truthful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty—thrifty! Thrifty!
I’m gonna use the Scout’s Law! I’m gonna be thrifty and courteous, and I’m gonna offer myself up to her and I will hide—I’m gonna hide my horseshoe behind my back.

KEEPER:
Be a Pal for me, Woods.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
I rolled a 6! I nailed it!
Mother, I—I just can’t do this anymore. I offer myself unto you. You are—I—I—I am—I’m too weak. You’re right. I give up.

JOEY:
Are you crazy?

CHELSEA:
What are you doing!?

WOODS:
I give up and I—I just can’t do this anymore.

JOEY:
Dude!

WOODS:
My face is slashed. My ankle’s—my ankle is wrecked. I—

JOEY:
Woods, are you out of your fucking mind?

WOODS:
—I’m so tired. I just can’t do this anymore!

CHELSEA:
Brother, no!

JOEY:
Woods!

WOODS:
Please, just take me into your embrace.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Oh, good boy. Sweet boy.

KEEPER:
Evelyn Barnaker—

[SFX: Sloshing of fluids]

KEEPER:
—shambles over to you quickly, hungrily. She grips you tightly as she lifts you.

[SFX: Crunching]

KEEPER:
Make a Gym Class roll. With a bonus die.

WOODS [Out of Character]:
7.

KEEPER:
[Laughs]
As she pulls you towards her mouth—

[SFX: Maw stretching taut]

KEEPER:
—with the hand you’ve had hidden behind your back you pull out the horseshoe and hurl it into her gaping maw.

[SFX: Thud]

KEEPER:
She doesn’t notice it at first—

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Uh!

KEEPER:
—and then…screams!

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Screams]

[SFX: Hissing, bubbling]

KEEPER:
A horrible scream. Vomiting blood—

[SFX: Wet splattering]

KEEPER:
—and gore all over you.

WOODS:
Ughhh! God!

KEEPER:
As she drops you into the water, all around—

RAT CREATURES:
[Howling, hissing]

KEEPER:
—the rat creatures scream.

CHELSEA:
[Screams]

WOODS:
Chelsea! Joey!

CHELSEA:
Tommy!

EVELYN BARNAKER:
Ahhhh!

[SFX: Floundering]

KEEPER:
She has forgotten her hunger. It’s all maddening pain. Evelyn plunges one of her arms—

[SFX: Ripping of flesh]

KEEPER:
—into her own abdomen and starts frantically—

[SFX: Slithering of entrails]

KEEPER:
—ripping open her own body—

JOEY:
Oh, God!

KEEPER:
—trying to pull out the horseshoe. She’s spooling lengths of intestine and inhuman organs from her body until suddenly she realizes what she’s done and stumbles backwards—

[SFX: Tottering, splashing footsteps]

KEEPER:
—into the pile of bones.

[SFX: Rattling bones]

KEEPER:
She looks at you, Woods, and howls.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Inhuman, shrieking, howling wail]

KEEPER:
There’s a sound inside her convulsing form like fish wetly flapping. Like something inside her meat receding. And then…she goes still.

EVELYN BARNAKER:
[Exhale]

[Triumphant music swells]

[Music fades]

WOODS:
Holy shit!

JOEY:
What the fuck!

CHELSEA:
[Screaming]

JOEY:
Oh, my God! Oh.

WOODS:
And I run over to Chelsea—

[SFX: Quick footsteps]

WOODS:
—and I hold her close and I just—and I’m like,
I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry that I’m—so, so sorry. I’m so sorry.
And I pull Joey—we—

JOEY:
Oh!

WOODS:
—Joey over here and we’re just, like, in the filth and the dead rat creatures and, like, just, like, celebrating the death of this disgusting and horrible thing.

KEEPER:
The cave is silent. William the Cat is gone. And the rat creatures have all scampered away. Your bat friend remains latched onto young Chelsea’s back.

BAT-THING:
Mother…free?

CHELSEA:
I guess so.

BAT-THING:
Out?

JOEY:
Did you just say, “out?”

BAT-THING:
Out!

WOODS:
You know a way out?

BAT-THING:
[Gurgling]

KEEPER:
It points into the darkened corner beyond this open area and says,

BAT-THING:
Out! Out!

WOODS:
Yeah. Let’s go. Let’s get out of here.

JOEY:
Let’s go!

WOODS:
Let’s get out of here!

CHELSEA:
I want to go home. Let’s go.

WOODS:
And we just slowly trudge our way—

[SFX: Exhausted, splashing footsteps]

WOODS:
—just holding onto each other, arm-in-arm and go towards where the bat-thing pointed.

KEEPER:
You find a narrow offshoot to the cavern.

WOODS & JOEY:
[Heavy, labored breathing]

KEEPER:
It’s slick and muddy but it leads up.

[SFX: Staggering footsteps]

KEEPER:
The bat thing leaps from Chelsea’s shoulder—

BAT-THING:
[Excited chirping and gurgling]

KEEPER:
—and scampers ahead, calling for you to follow. It’s a rocky scramble through dirt and darkness until the passage ends at some kind of a wooden trapdoor above you.

JOEY:
Oh, boy.

KEEPER:
It takes some combined effort from the lot of you to push it as it seems like it’s been covered over with dirt.

WOODS:
Okay, you ready?

JOEY:
Alright. Alright. On the count of three.

WOODS:
One.

JOEY:
Two.

WOODS & JOEY:
Three!

WOODS & JOEY:
[Grunting]

[SFX: Creaky wooden boards]

ALL:
[Grunting]

[SFX: Wood gives]

JOEY:
Oh, my God!

KEEPER:
As you—

ALL:
[Sounds of exertion]

[SFX: Heavy, ascending footsteps]

KEEPER:
—clamber up from this hatchway, up above you what you see is—

[SFX: Crickets chirping]

KEEPER:
—moldy, wooden slats, the bottom of the porch out in front of the house. There’s not a lot of room up here; only a couple of feet. But you’re able to crawl your way out from underneath the porch.

ALL:
[Panting]

JOEY:
Oh!

WOODS:
[Laughs]

JOEY:
Oh, my God! We’re outside! Oh! Oh!

WOODS:
Let’s get out of here as fast—

JOEY:
Oh, my God!

WOODS:
—as we can.

CHELSEA:
Set it on fire.

JOEY:
I do have my lighter.

[SFX: Flick of a lighter]

WOODS:
Set it on fire, Joey. Do it for Dirt.

KEEPER:
Chelsea and Woods, you—

[SFX: Rustling of branches]

KEEPER:
—gather dead weeds and debris for kindling. As for something more formidable, there’s a decrepit porch swing split down the middle.

JOEY:
I smash the damn porch swing—

[SFX: Splintering of wood]

JOEY:
—and we set this place alight!

[SFX: Wood splintering]

KEEPER:
The flames from Joey’s lighter hungrily—

[SFX: Flick of a lighter]

KEEPER:
—take to the kindling. It’s slow at first but the splintered wood catches and this time, it doesn’t go out.

[SFX: Roaring flames]

JOEY:
Ohhhhh, Dirt. This one’s for you.

KEEPER:
The fire dances up the walls of the house and surrounds the posts of the porch.

WOODS:
Come on, let’s get out of here.

[SFX: Roiling flames]

KEEPER:
The three of you watch from the distance of a nearby hilltop as the darkness of the Barnaker House is consumed in a golden light. It’s a funeral pyre to Dirt, to Roger, to Donna Briggs, and the countless other lives taken there. Here ends the cycle of the children of Arkham being preyed upon. And of Evelyn’s unspeakable torture. Eventually the fire department arrives—

[SFX: Crickets]

KEEPER:
—but all that remains for them is a burning husk of a long-abandoned house.

WOODS:
Wait till everybody hears about this on Monday!

JOEY:
Hold up: no one is hearing about this ever. You hear me? I wasn’t here. We weren’t here. There’s bodies in that house. Bodies! And you know Roger’s family is loaded. That’s trouble. We weren’t here, man. In fact, we’ve got to come up with an alibi.

WOODS:
We’ve got to get to a hospital!

CHELSEA:
With my bat friend?

WOODS:
Heck no, Chelsea! We can’t keep that!

CHELSEA:
But he’s our friend!

WOODS:
Go, Friend, be free! Into the night!

BAT-THING:
Friends!

JOEY:
This is fucked up, man!

CHELSEA:
It’s not fucked up!

WOODS:
[Gasps]
Chelsea Northwood! You did not just say that cuss word!

CHELSEA:
I don’t even know what that means!

WOODS:
Well, it’s—it’s very bad. It’s a very bad word.

JOEY:
[Laughs]

WOODS—AGE 21:
My childhood ended that night—

JOEY—PAST:
You don’t even know what that means, do you?

WOODS—AGE 21:
—one last thing eaten up by Howling House. But, of course, we were the lucky ones.

 

WOODS—PAST:
Of course I do. It’s just very impolite and Chelsea you have to promise me that you’ll never say it again.


CHELSEA—PAST:
…and you’ll let me keep my bat friend?

WOODS—AGE 21:
As soon as they found Ace Simmons’s burned body the cops were all over. Fortunately Roger’s reputation preceded him. Ace had been drinking and he’d been loud about his delinquent brother so that’s where the blame went. There was a manhunt but no one ever found him. Joey and I cooked up an alibi that put us elsewhere in the town that night. The story was that Chelsea and I got lost in French Hill and got held up at knifepoint. That’s where I got this nasty scar: the leg wound and the consequent limp. I told them that Joey stepped in to save the day, got his injuries in the fight but chased away our mystery assailant who also was never found. We thought protecting Chelsea would make us heroes; maybe we’d be in less trouble. We were half-right. We were the talk of the schoolyard but Grandma came down hard on me. I don’t think Joey had it any better. But Joey and my relationship was different after that. We always could count on each other. We changed. And only we knew how and why. I never did patch up things with Dorothy Pickett. This part is off the record, mind you.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Of course. And no names like we agreed. Just for my own curiosity, though, your Scoutmaster’s knife: what happened with all that? If you don’t mind, that is…

WOODS:
My parents died. I had the Scouts and then—I endangered my sister’s life because I didn’t uphold my oath as a Scout. I broke a sacred trust. And I paid for it. I was honest with my Scoutmaster about taking his knife and after that, no formal reprimand happened, but he made it clear to me that I wasn’t welcome in Troop 16. I might not be a Scout anymore but I still honor those laws to the letter.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
And Chelsea? I mean, a little kid holding her own against all of that?

WOODS:
Exactly. She was a little kid. She deserves a normal life and I’ve seen to it that she gets one. And if I hear that you contacted her…

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Mm.

WOODS:
Do you have any other questions?

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Did they find the other bodies at the Barnaker House?

WOODS:
Yeah, but no one dug deep enough to find the children. Their bones are still there. They never identified the murdered vagrant. And those rat and bat creatures? They found corpses but wrote them off as weird raccoons.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
And your little bat friend?

WOODS:
Oh, I chased it off. I mean, we couldn’t keep something like that around my grandmother. I mean, it’s horrifying. I have no idea where it is.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
It’d help folks believe your story!

WOODS:
Ms. Featherbottom, this is the first time in nine years that I told anyone the whole story. You found me, remember? And now you’re saying you don’t believe me?

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Hey, I barely believe half the stuff that’s happened to me. Doesn’t make it any less true.

WOODS:
You wanted the folklore of Arkham! This is a firsthand account. And the references I’ve given you are ironclad!

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Yeah, you did your research. This is good stuff! All the news clippings and everything? It’s just a shame you don’t have the scrapbook or those journals.

WOODS:
We were trying to stay alive!

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
I get it, kid. I get it. I do. S.I.S.T.R.U.M. only prints facts about what we can verify. But we’ve got uncanny mysteries in the name. Some tall tales are true. I can print the story.

WOODS:
I just want to set some things straight, you know? Kids still tell stories about Black Widow Barnaker. And it wasn’t her fault. She tried to stop it. I mean, she ate poor Dirt but—but—but she sealed that monster up for fifty years. Who knows how much worse it would’ve been if she hadn’t stopped him? He got all those people hung as witches in Salem!

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Allegedly. I can’t make that leap.

WOODS:
But he’s still out there. It is still out there. William Griggs. William Barnaker. The cat. That demon! We freed him!

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
What about the fire? “The—

[SFX: Pages turning]

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
—efficacy of flame?”

WOODS:
Couple of weeks afterward we started seeing it: a gray cat in the distance, watching us, following us. Those sick, yellow eyes burning in the darkness.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
You were traumatized kids.

WOODS:
It’s not like I can’t tell the difference, okay? He’s out there. I’ve devoted my life to this. I’ve been trying to find him, stop him, end him. If I could just figure out how.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Well, look, if you’re sure about this, a demon wearing a cat’s skin…I know some people who might be able to help.

WOODS:
I beg your pardon, Ms. Featherbottom, but I’ve been down that road before.
Thanks, but no thanks. I work alone. Just promise me you’ll get the word out. And if anyone writes in about that demon or Barnaker—anything, you’ll let me know?

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
I will.

[SFX: Hardbound notebook closes]

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
I’ll reach out if I’ve got any follow-up questions.

[SFX: Zipper]

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
S.I.S.T.R.U.M. publishes quarterly. I’ll send you a complimentary issue.

WOODS:
He is still out there.

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
I hope you’re wrong, Mr. Northwood. I sincerely hope you’re wrong.

[SFX: Door opens]

CHERRY FEATHERBOTTOM:
Thank you for your time. And take care of yourself.

[SFX: Retreating footsteps]

KEEPER:
Cherry Featherbottom, journalist of the occult  and the unusual, turns her elegantly tailored ensemble and—

[SFX: Car door slams]

KEEPER:
—heads off.

[SFX: Car starting]

[SFX: Engine roars]

WOODS:
Hope something comes of that. Hmm.

[SFX: Door slams]

[SFX: Key turns in lock]

WOODS:
But there’s work to do. After all, a Scout is trustworthy—

[SFX: Knapsack tossed to the ground]

WOODS:
—loyal—

[SFX: Zipper]

WOODS:
—helpful—

[SFX: Shotgun shell being loaded]

WOODS:
—friendly—

[SFX: Shotgun shell being loaded]

WOODS:
—courteous—

[SFX: Closing a double-barrel shotgun breach]

WOODS:
—kind—

[SFX: A revolver cylinder spinning]

WOODS:
—obedient—

[SFX: A revolver cylinder clicking into place]

WOODS:
—cheerful—

[SFX: Knife sharpening]

WOODS:
—thrifty—

[SFX: Knife being sheathed]

WOODS:
—brave—

[SFX: Multiple zips]

WOODS:
—clean—
[Whistles]
—helpful—

[SFX: Fluttering of leathery wings]

BAT-THING:
Friend!

WOODS:
—and reverent.

BAT-THING:
Hunt?

WOODS:
That’s right, Scout!

[SFX: Motorcycle engine roars]

WOODS:
Time to hunt some demons!

BAT-THING:
[Jubilant laughter]

[SFX: Motorcycle zooms away]

[Heroic music swells and fades]
 
NARRATOR:
And so, Thomas Northwood, at 21 years of age, rides out, as he has so many times since that fateful night at Howling House - chasing a demon from his childhood. Chasing a demon that, in one form or another, has haunted New England for centuries, and haunts it still today.

Whether or not he should find his quarry - that’s a story for another time. One that we hope to someday tell - and with your help, we can. As it stands: the fate of The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program rests entirely with you, dear listener.

The crowdfunding campaign for our next season, “The Case of the Penumbral Gate” marches onward towards an unknowable fate. But - with every donation increases certainty increases. Head to cthulhumystery.com/crowdfund to be transported to our IndieGoGo campaign and help ensure our chances of survival.

We’re here to entertain, delight, and yes horrify - we hate to burden you by asking for money to do so, but it’s the only path forward, friends. Our show is strange, our production is strange, the people who make it are strange, and unique things have to fight for survival in this rigid human world.

To those of you who have contributed, who’ve become producers of the series or official members of S.I.S.T.R.U.M., who’ve picked up a bag of red herring coins, a “Terrible Secret of Lot X” hardcover book, or chanced the whimsy and delight of your own Lot X Mystery Box - we can’t say it enough: thank you, thank you, thank you for being a part of this uncanny experiment in morbid merrymaking.

Were it not for your support, your enthusiasm, and yes, the gifting of your hard-earned dollars, this program would’ve never existed - it was created at the behest and financial backing of our listeners, years ago. Even then, once this audacious production was germinated, it was intended to be a one-and-done production. But it wasn’t - with your love it thrived, it grew beyond its garden confines, like a species from an alien land, it sprouted rampant in the fertile soil of your appreciation as it blossomed within our own imaginations as to what it could be. Now this verdant, emerald web of vines and eldritch blooms covers the ground, has crawled up trees, and has indeed absorbed the gardener’s home, inside and out, in a veil of breathing green. Reports of the gardener’s whereabouts are unknown.

However lush it may have grown, without your nourishment, this peculiar program of mysteries will wither and wilt. A sad fact of small and unconventional productions such as ours. So, again, that’s cthulhumystery.com/crowdfund to go to our IndieGoGo page and contribute. Even a couple bucks will see us right - you can turn your coffee and cigarette money into something of lasting brilliance, hopefully the fine folks at Top Hat and Black Pharaoh won’t mind me saying so, but the fact is: if everyone listening sent a dollar, we’d be able to make our next season, if everyone listening sent five, we’d be well on our way to making three. The campaign ends November 23rd.

And as those of you with keen eyes may have noticed, there’s more content related to “Night at Howling House” that we’d love to make - just take a peek at our stretch goals. Once more, I say it so often, I’m told I mumble it in my sleep, head to cthulhumystery.com/crowdfund for details and to donate to this, dare I say, “noble” cause.

Since this is the last you’ll hear from me for some time, allow me to share with you this: if we don’t make our goal to fund the next series, we’re going to do our damndest to put something out. We’ll look at what we’ve got to work with, run the numbers, and it might take years but, if possible, we’ll fight to tell this story as best we can - and we’ll keep our supporters informed all the way. If you’re hearing this broadcast after the campaign has wrapped, there are other ways to support this show: such as Patreon. Our community of supporters there help keep the lights on here at W*I*S* and Ominverse and their financial backing made what you’re hearing possible. We’ve had a lot of new supporters join our ranks during the release of “Night at Howling House” and to them, from all of us here at the station, we’d like to say “thank you” and “welcome”.

Patronage is far from a one-sided affair - we keep all our supporters up-to-date on our goings on, share early releases of our shows and work-in-progress material, as well as offer exclusive series such as our Surprise RPG miniseries, Cthulhu Cthommentary, and even raw roleplay recordings of in-production and behind-the-scenes full length Call of Cthulhu games. Whatever comes next, be it more Mystery Program or strange aeons beyond, our Patrons are there at the front lines. You can join them at Patreon.com/OmniverseMedia.

And, to continue our plant metaphor from before, my grandmother used to say that plants grow better if you talk to them. Now, I don’t know this to be true, but if you’d like to whisper sweet nothings our way, or become a part of our community, you can find the whole Omniverse gang at Omniverse.Media/Discord.

Or, for the wallflowers among you, leave us a rating or a review:  just like a kind soul named GoardBames did, when they gave us a five star review on Apple Podcasts and said that “Night at Howling House” is “an astounding piece of production that truly takes this series to whole different plane.” And AshwiiS reviewed us over on Podchaser, paying our crew some truly humbling praise, and calling Mystery Program, a “delightful gift that keeps on giving,” their, “favorite… audio drama,” for the past three years and that they, “have yet to find a better, spookier, more fantastic… podcast.”

From us who poured blood, sweat, tears, and hitherto unknown precious bodily fluids into this production over many sleepless nights, thank you Ashwii, thank you Goard, and thank you. We’re glad and grateful you’re here. As with all things, togetherness is the torch that lights the path ahead. Together we can shine bright, and burn a hole through the darkness.

We’ve been on a tremendous journey together. It’s safe to say that we’ve all changed. I’m sure you can imagine the challenges of Joey, Chelsea, and Woods attempting to return to their lives - seeing what they’ve seen, enduring what they’ve endured. And then there’s poor little Dirt, perhaps his terrible fate was a mercy, but I know this much: the world is a less kind place without him.

It’s fitting then, that we close with this song by Jasmin Kaset - a heartrending tune called “You Can Never Go Home Again”.

Jasmin is a musician from Nashville, Tennessee whose body of work is a tapestry of tones and vivid poetry. From You Drive, her collaboration with Make-Up + Vanity Set - fusing the later’s technological proclivities with Kaset’s sophisticated folk stylings, to Tuxedo her rollicking album with the band Quichenight, and all across her solo releases.

“You Can Never Go Home Again” comes from her second record, Quiet Machine, which is produced by Jordan Lehning - a name you may remember from his own song, “A Walking Picture” earlier in this series. These two incredible musical forces frequently collaborate, including Ms. Kaset’s latest singles, the show-stopping “Have You Met Me Yet?” and heartaching “I  Will Never Let You Go From Me” - each worthy of their own spotlight here in the proximity of The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program, but none so appropriate to this sobering moment in the story as the one we are about to play.


For all those who’ve been shattered, who’ve stepped through doorways through which they can never retread, who grieve places and people they can never return to, I hope that the passage of time grants you respite. Take it from this old voice in the box, time does heal and it can pleasantly surprise. It’s worth it to stick around and see what comes next, but the old saying is true, as Jasmin Kaset will now hauntingly illustrate, “You Can Never Go Home Again”.

Though we might not be able to return from whence we came, I do hope that we’ll have the opportunity to meet again, when the stars are right.

From W*I*S* and The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program I bid you all, a fond goodnight.

[Jasmin Kaset : You Can Never Go Home Again]

Announcer:
Thanks for listening to The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program!

This series is recorded and produced in Central Florida and Nashville, Tennessee on lands stolen from their Indigenous people: the Timucua and Seminole, and Yuchi, Chickasaw, Shawnee, and Cherokee, respectively.

Acknowledgement of the first peoples of these lands, and the lasting repercussions of colonization is just the beginning of the restorative work that is necessary. Through awareness, we can prompt allyship, action, and ultimately decolonization. For links to aid Indigenous efforts and to learn more about the first nations of the land where you live: visit cthulhumystery.com/landback

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Joe “Tank” Ricciardelli, MjolnirMK86, Sean Hutchinson, Sean T. Redd, Josh King, and Patrick Webster, and Chris Cowan
And our Executive Patreon producers:
BigBadShadowMan, Marcus Larsson, Jaimeson LaLone, and Becky Scott Fairley

Join the team at Patreon.com/OmniverseMedia!

Episode 7 -  “Nadir” - was written and performed by Luke Stram, Cat Blackard, Chris LeBrane, Manda Bruno, Brandon Gerson, and Colin Peterson, with additional scripting and story editing by Cat Blackard and performances by Alyson Grauer, Leeman Kessler, Cynthia Beckert, Ebonie Ellington, and Nicky Holland.

Editing and mastering is by Executive Producers Colin Peterson and Cat Blackard. It’s Produced by John Sebastian La Valle and Jessica Mudd is Associate Producer.

Our original score is composed and performed by Ryan McQuinn and Mike McQuinn of Neon Dolphin - home for all your custom music needs and more. Neondolphinmusic.com.

The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program is proudly played using Chaosium’s Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition. “Night at Howling House” is based on The Dare - a scenario by Kevin Ross with revisions by Bret Kramer, published by Sentinel Hill Press.

For full episode credits, transcripts, as well as character sheets and other supplemental material - visit CthulhuMystery.com.

All characters appearing are fictitious and any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental.

This has been The Call of Cthulhu Mystery Program… Goodnight

[Music fades]

[Omniverse Audio Brand]