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The William Tailour Project #WTProjectSWL - An Open SWLRP Plot

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November 11th, 2017

Senior Archivist Knowles approached me for assistance researching and building a warding and binding ritual for a book in the special collection. It was to be a training exercise for me, being new to some of the more difficult items in that collection.

The book was a personal memory book of one William Tailour, a blood mage, witch, and demonologist active in 15th century England, outside Ipswich to be precise. We determined the most likely curses and enchantments to be found on the book, and designed rituals to suit.



November 13th, 2017

The rituals prepared, Senior Archivist Knowles and I went to perform them, in order to bind the dangerous magicks in the book so that it would be safe to handle.

Aside: Speaking with Anjali on November 17th, I learned that something followed me to work that day, clinging to my spirit in the astral plane. I haven't been able to determine what, as it seems that after the incident, I was reconstituted by my bee without this hijacker.

Senior Archivist Knowles constructed the ward, and I tested it with a lesser blood magic curse, more a proof of concept test than something actually meant to test its capabilities. The book was safely placed into the ward, and he began the binding ritual.

Something went wrong. A dark cloud began to form inside the ward, and something struck out through it at Knowles. He dropped like a marionette with his strings cut, before something struck out at me. I remember pressure, darkness, a pain like I was drowning, and then darkness, followed by the golden light of Agartha.

At my meeting with Anjali, I learned that she was the first to respond to the scene, and found a smearing of Filth on the wall behind where I had been standing. She also found the book to be missing. We reviewed security footage, and it seems to have blinked out of existence within the ward.

After my death, but before my reconstitution, some strangeness occurred on my Twitter feed. Something seemed to be tweeting on my behalf, changing my username to that of my grandmother (Julia Taylor) and using a corrupted photograph of her that I wasn't aware was digitized. On review, it looked awfully Filthy, but I can't confirm, and can't imagine why it would use my grandmother's name and likeness. Once it seems to have lost interest, I appeared unconscious in Ealdwic Park and was brought back to my home by Lynch and Binkx. I was vomiting inert Filth for a few days, but seem to have recovered.



November 17th, 2017

The date of my meeting with Anjali McKendrick.

Prior to our meeting, I was researching a genealogical record for William Tailour, and cross referencing with the rolls of an Ipswich branch of the Templar society at the time of his life and death. A woman whom I've determined to be his wife, Kinborough Tailour, is listed in the rolls following his death in 1478. I also traced his descendants down through a few generations, but hit a bit of a wall. Luckily, it was a very narrow branch, as his descendants seem to have had a very long string of single children, thanks possibly to a high mortality rate? Fitting for the time.

The details of my meeting with Anjali are in the previous entry. She determined the presence of my astral hitchhiker, whatever it was, using a pendulum that tracked strange energies following my path through the archives on the 13th.



After this, the case went a bit cold. I found myself wrapped up in Lynch's rescue from Sheol, and haven't had time to get back to it until now. I'm hoping, as is Temple Hall, to find whatever happened to the book, and to hopefully recover it. To that end, I've been authorized to seek help with the investigation both within and outside the society, at my discretion.

Please contact me if you'd like to offer your assistance, or have any suggestions for paths I may investigate.

Thank you, very, very much!
-- Messenger Julia Evans, Junior Archivist, MLIS.



(( OOC beyond this point! ))

Thanks for reading this, and for showing interest! I'm intending for this to lead to a bit of torment for my dear librarian, and appreciate your help with it! I have a few hooks below, based on the previous poll I ran.

First: I retconned John Tailour to William Tailour. Too many Johns. Johns aren’t all bad. #NotAllJohns. Sorry for any confusion, but I figure that this happened long enough ago that no one remembers his name save me anyway. ;)

Second: Here's a memory collecting Julia's tweets on the subject up to this point, if anyone wants to dig for more hooks. Some of them are threads: https://twitter.com/i/moments/951208734436376577

Third: I'll be using the #WTProjectSWL hashtag to keep my posts on this plot sorted on Twitter, and for future reference. If you get involved, I'd love if you could too!

Fourth: If any of the below apply to you, let me know and I'll throw you a blurb to hopefully get things going!

Business School hook:
If you are or were a businessperson, you may know about the William Tailour School of Business, an American business school in Ipswich.

Obscure Illuminati Projects:
Illuminati characters may have heard about a "William Tailour Project" whispered about in hallways and boardrooms. If you were active in the 70s, or have a hobby of reading old reports, you might know a bit more.

People aware of Templar membership between 1940 and 2003:
Whether you were personally active or have a hobby reading old rolls or reports, you may know about Agent Julia Taylor, Julia's grandmother. Julia doesn't, or at least, she doesn't know that her grandmother was a Templar.

Other hooks may appear depending on how the plot goes, and what directions players take. Thanks for looking, y'all, and I hope to write with you! I'll be keeping a group DM going on Twitter, and will ask anyone who contacts me if they want to be included. I'm happy to write on Twitter or Google Docs, depending on your preference, and even in-game. I have a few in-game scenes plotted out at least, if the plot goes there.

Have fun, and have a lovely day!
--The player of Julia Evans.
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 15, 18 · OP
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Day 1 - January 16th, 2018

This is posted to a secure channel, and passwords have been given to members of the investigative team. Yay, newfound paranoia! Who knew that telling the entire secret world that you're investigating a valuable, dangerous, missing book might be a bad idea?

Goodness, what a busy day! I tried to sum up everything that happened, but my goodness, this got long!

Yesterday, I sent out a public call for assistance in a case that I’ve been trying to get going since a mishap that ended, or began, with my death back in November. After an absolutely outstanding response, I want to thank you all for your offers of support and assistance. It’s been a busy day, but here are my notes.


The William Tailour School of Business

Cordelia remembered hearing the name “William Tailour” before, and after bit of thinking, recalled the William Tailour School of Business, an American business school based in Ipswich, Suffolk County. As we already knew, William Tailour himself lived outside of Ipswich back in the 15th century, so the coincidences seemed a little too great.

Bassic recalled visiting the school on a worldwide tour of schools back in 2016, and dug up some old, rather disturbing old recordings of strange sounds he heard while there. He thought the first sounded like someone scratching at a wall, and the second like someone intoning something that began with “Psi…”

Vakarine launched reconnaissance at the school under the pretense of scouting for a partner school for intern opportunities within Stardust. I’ve been monitoring that one through a feed she’s been able to send me thanks to some rather ingenious technology, and she sent a summary to the group that I’ll share below:

Spoiler: Vakarine's ReportShow


Psi-Tau-Rho (ΨΤΡ)/The Tailour Project

Alric reviewed some old files of his, and recalled water cooler conversation in the Labyrinth to both “The Tailour Project” and something called “Psi-Tau-Rho”, and believed it had something to do with recruitment for the Illuminati. He also had a transcription of an old recording that mentioned something about people being kept outside their bodies, which he speculated may have been similar to some sort of “MK Ultra Remote Viewing” experiments.

Evan recalled something similar, including celebrations about this “Tailour Project” in the 70s or 80s, though both said that they weren’t aware of much since. An old colleague of Evan’s had once having trouble with some jerks from a fraternity called “Psi-Tau-Rho” twenty-some-odd years ago.


Black Markets

Asmod put Arkham in touch with me, and he’s monitoring the black market for word of the book. I’m not entirely certain what that entails, but if someone tries to sell it, I imagine he’ll hear about it.

Anna is also keeping an ear on whatever channels she deals with, as she frequently buys and sells books and artifacts.


Other

Araci is looking into her own calendrical records for references to William Tailour or anything else that stands out and sounds related.

I met with Ankhani to go over the events of November 13th, the day that Senior Archivist Knowles and I attempted to bind the enchantments on the book, causing his injury and my death, in addition to a large amount of other strangeness. I need to write a report for her, and she’s going to try lining it up with whatever she can research on William Tailour and his book from the Temple Hall archives. Goodness knows she knows them better than I do!

I also had a surprise meeting with Dame Tyburn. Yesterday, I had a few offers of help that were conditional on having access to a copy of the book’s contents, once it is found and its enchantments are neutralized. I submitted the request through my handler, and received a solid no. But this morning, Dame Tyburn came marching into the archives and told me, and I quote "I don't give a bloody damn what you do with the book once its enchantments are voided. You just make sure that they are, Miss Evans. If you need to photocopy a dead man's diary to pay your men, then do it." It seems this might be more urgent than I thought, and Temple Hall seems more concerned about the book’s enchantments than its contents.

A number of others have offered their assistance and support, and I’m certain that as this investigation continues, it will be needed. You’re all wonderful, and thank you so very much for your help!

Also, unrelated, but I received a message from a Giovanna Landers who said that she recognized my grandmother from somewhere, and implied that she knew her from the war. My grandmother worked at Bletchley Park during the Second World War, but I think Giovanna was implying that she may have been a Templar? Anna also recognized her, and we’re having dinner on Thursday to talk it through. Like I needed another thing to look into… as strange and distressing as this news is, I’ll probably need to let it wait until after this business with Tailour’s book is concluded. Still, a bit of a side project can’t hurt, and I promise that my main focus will remain on the book’s recovery.

-- Messenger Julia Evans, Junior Archivist, MLIS.


(( OOC:

Damn, so much writing! Today was incredibly fruitful for the #WTProjectSWL plot, and I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings! So many plot points were hit, new hooks were found, and more than a few of you threw me curve balls that I had to scramble to write for. It was a /tonne/ of fun. Thank you all so much! ))
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 17, 18 · OP · Last edited Jan 17, 18
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Day Two - January 17th, 2018

This is posted to a secure channel, and passwords have been given to members of the investigative team. The paranoia is strong!

I woke up to an explosion in the group chat, and what feels like a billion leads to explore. Let's get started with today's notes, but first...

I posted this in the chat, but I'll put it here for posterity, and to make absolutely sure that you all see it.

...someone poked me with a concern that I thought was /definitely/ worth sharing with the group.

After what Alric and Evan found yesterday, connected with what Vakarine found last night, it looks like we're edging really close to the Illuminati. They obviously have something with this school, even if it's just recruitment. It's not my intention to blow open any secrets, at least partially because I don't want to see a bunch of innocent business students put in danger.

So, anything regarding this school, and this "Tailour Project", if it's connected (which it certainly looks like it might be), should be handled delicately.

And added warning for any Illuminati in here. I really don't want to get y'all in trouble, so let's all play it careful and quiet? I absolutely respect if you need to back away, but I promise I do not intend to "strike a blow" against the Illuminati. I don't think my superiors would appreciate such an unauthorized aggressive act, and neither would Venice, never mind that I'm personally not too keen on cross-factional aggression. It's not my goal here at all. :)

To reiterate: This project seems to be moving in the direction of the Illuminati. I don't want to get anyone in trouble, and I'm not looking to blow open any Illuminati secrets... I just want to retrieve the book, and maybe find out what caused my death in the process.

Now, on with the notes.


William Tailour School of Business

Goodness... where to start?

I'll split this one into a few different sub-categories, since a /lot/ came out about the school today. A little real information, and lots of brainstorming.


WTSB - Student Astral Projection

Louis brought up a number of points
- Concern about mass astral projection taking place in a basement. It's doable, sure, but the amenities can't be comfortable.
- Sleep deprived students? Astral projection normally results in a pretty good night's rest, UNLESS (emphasis Louis's) you're doing "some really heavy-handed shit".
- These are causes for concern, but not /too/ much concern. Yet.


WTSB - Scratching Sounds

Louis floated the idea that the scratching could be non-physical. Some creature, or being, or person doing /something/ in an astral plane. He posited astral rats. Astrats. Seriously. <3


WTSB - Templar Investigation in the 80s?

Cameleo told us that in the 80s, he was assigned by the All-Seeing Eye to guard the WTSB. He once caught a "cute templar mouse sniffing around," who he "dealt with", and once found her blood.

I talked with Ankhani about this when I turned in the report she had asked for regarding events happening around our attempt at binding the book. We examined death records in long-term storage and found nothing, and now have turned our focus to old case records.


WTSB - Psi-Tau-Rho

Goodness. Louis again, with his longest, most incredible contribution yet. I can't abridge it. It's too glorious. The base of his theory holds on the idea that Greek letter societies use Greek letters to represent the foundations of the group. Behold:

Spoiler: Louis on the significance of Psi-Tau-RhoShow


The Watcher

Lynch's phone threw up. Or someone hacked it. Honestly, it's probably the latter. Either way, she said that she didn't send these messages that appeared in rapid succession while she was dealing with a ghoul infestation.

"Have any of you watched the Watchers yet?"
"Have a look for it, would you?"
"The Watcher."
"May be more than one."
"It is relevant."

Other than speculation that it could be related to a Keanu Reeves film or a Dean Koontz novel, some really wild speculation occurred.

- Ignore it... anonymous tipsters have their own agendas.
- It could be the astral travellers at the school.
- Rosaendra, a new addition to our team from the Temple Hall archives, suggested that "Watchers" could refer to Grigori, Angels. We have no direct evidence, but plenty of speculation, both for and against the possibility.


William Tailour

Nena Nightcraft joined our team at Vakarine's suggestion, and will be researching Tailour in her domain in Hell. Sensible, seeing as Tailour /was/ a demonologist.

Araci dug up something in the Venetian archives. She didn't find any record of Tailour in The Calendar save what we already knew about his death. But she did find reference to a cult that sprang into being after his death, revering Tailour's work and trying to determine a way to raise him from the dead.

She found old records of rituals and observances that were "wildly ineffectual", and the cult ultimately died out forgotten. She posited that it may have inspired the Illuminati into "creating something less mumbo-jumbo and more professional-looking like the school."

Vakarine agreed, adding that people frequently use Astral Projection to contact, and attempt to contact, dead souls.


Astral Field Trip/Bee Slumber Party

Lynch, Louis, and I are about to drop into the astral once I've finished these notes. We hope to examine the school, and maybe follow the threads of the astrally projecting students to see what they're look at. Or for. Or doing.


Black Markets

Anna said that there's been a fair amount of chatter about the book. She hasn't noticed any credible attempts to sell the book, but she'll keep looking.


ADDENDUM - WTSB Astral Projection

Vakarine's investigation into the school was prolonged, but she has some interesting, and honestly disturbing, findings. I don't have time to sort through them, so I'll post them here verbatim for posterity and easier access than getting buried in the chat logs.


Spoiler: Vakarine's findingsShow

Goodness.
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 18, 18 · OP
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Day 2.5 - January 17th/18th, 2018

This is posted to a secure channel, and passwords have been given to members of the investigative team.

Yesterday's report from Vakarine spurred some pretty heavy conversation, understandably. To briefly summarize her report for the notes, since I posted it verbatim last night...


Vakarine's Findings

In addition to touring the upper levels of the William Tailour School of business, Vakarine... well, I'm not entirely sure how she did it, but she investigated the basement as well.

Students in the basement of the school are astrally projecting to access the Akashic Library, a depository of all knowledge. It's a little complicated to explain, but imagine if everything we know, knew, and can know is in one place, that we see as a library because that's what makes the most sense to us. The catch is that nothing is sorted, so finding anything specific is astromonically difficult. While exploring, some of the students "tap a steady rhythm in their sleep."

Vakarine encountered a woman mentally damaged by this task, scratching at the wall at a similar rhythm, who psychically screamed the below at her:

"I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I FOUND IT GRAVEYARD DIRT SULFUR DRIED GROUND SNAKESKIN I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I HAVE HIS SEAL BUT HE CAN'T HEAR HE DOESN'T LISTEN I FOUND IT I FOUND IT I FOUND IT BETTER A SHEEP THAN A KOOK BETTER A SHEEP THAN A KOOK BETTER..."

When Vakarine asked her where, she replied "in the library. Everything is in the library."

Vakarine also learned that the school is associated with an asylum in upstate New York, which may be a blessing, and found a motto belonging to Psi-Tau-Rho:

"The Seekers Seek,
the Watchers Watch,
until the book is found."

She beleives they have been at this for some time, searching for Tailour's book in the Library in a concerted effort. However, if they're still at it, then they haven't recovered it, never mind a unique complication with the Library...


Briefly on the Akashic Library and Scope

Books in the Akashic Library aren't books, any more than the Library isn't really a library. They're thoughts, concepts, ideas and awareness drawn from the collective subconscious and the universe. Under normal circumstances, a thought can't be brought to physical form any more than a physical thing can be brought into the astral planes. So I'm not too sure what they're up to, precisely.

I could give an entire lecture on the Akashic Library. Not an expert one, but it's difficult to sum up. However, that realm also suffers from rather severe time dilation. During efforts to rescue Lynch from Sheol, Louis and I traveled to the Library, staying there for a less than a day, which we experienced as about six months. Ten people doing this are experiencing a combined span of time that could equal upwards of three years a day. Twenty would be six. In a year, they've spent 2,190 years in the Library, where they don't need to eat, sleep, or do anything but read, learn, and... well, seek.

Unfortunately, as shown by the damaged woman that Vakarine encountered, this isn't sustainable. I'm sure they're moderating their exposure somehow to lessen the impact of being out of your body for what feels like months at a time (on my return, moving a physical body felt like a chore), but still, it's an absolutely staggering amount of time.


The Resulting Discussion

The resulting discussion was... frantic. Louis reflected on the nature of the library and the time dilation we experienced, and how that could indicate the scope of the William Tailour Project (noted in the above section with a bit more detail).

There was speculation that the book is from the library, and had somehow been brought into our realm. I'm only aware of one such case, and the power involved was staggering. But... if the book has /physically/ been in Temple Hall since it was recovered after the death of William Tailour in 1478, then looking in the library would have been entirely fruitless in all that time, I'd think. It may be more complex than this.

Rosaendra suggested that perhaps the book may have "returned to the library when a spell was cast upon it, as a safeguard."

Louis expressed great concern for the treatment of these students, as did a few others:

"I've seen -- VERY accomplished Magi go INSANE trying to find Books in the Library. And it's not your regular sort of insanity. It scars your soul. It's an illness of your soul. Like being infected with Filth."

"Some might've been so obsessive in searching for the Book that -- you know. Physical bodies need -- upkeep. It wouldn't be the first time a body wasted away while astrally projecting -- and certainly wouldn't be the last. Maybe that's their twisted way of becoming "Divine". A disconnection from the physical body entirely."

Rosaendra presented more questions that we've yet to answer:

- Who's running the secret recruitment drives?
- Who's keeping people out of the basement (Vakarine noted very little security, included in Day 3 notes)
- What stories are given to the parents and loved ones of students that go missing, and who sends them?
- Who quiets investigations into the school, since they must occur.
- Have there been any who have left Psi-Tau-Rho? (Alric is investigating)

A conversation sprang up later regarding concern whether these students had been coerced into this task without knowing the risks.

-- Messenger Julia Evans, Junior Archivist, MLIS.
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 19, 18 · OP
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Day 5 - January 20th, 2018

This is posted to a secure channel, and passwords have been given to members of the investigative team.

I intend for today's notes to be a consolidated summary of the findings and speculation to this point, as well as to fill you in on the current status of various leads that are being investigated.

Spoiler: Illuminati WarningShow

Spoiler: Briefly on the Akashic Library and ScopeShow

Spoiler: William Tailour and his BookShow

Spoiler: The William Tailour School of BusinessShow

Spoiler: Psi-Tau-Rho and The William Tailour ProjectShow

Spoiler: Jenny ArbuckleShow

Spoiler: Cameleo's Templar MouseShow

Spoiler: Black MarketsShow

--Messenger Julia Evans, Junior Archivist, MLIS.
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 20, 18 · OP
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Day 7 - January 22nd, 2018

This is posted to a secure channel, and passwords have been given to members of the investigative team.

I intend for today's notes to be a consolidated summary of the findings and speculation to this point, as well as to fill you in on the current status of various leads that are being investigated.

* Updated 22/01/2018 New additions highlighted.

Spoiler: Illuminati WarningShow

Spoiler: Briefly on the Akashic Library and ScopeShow

Spoiler: William Tailour and his Book *NEW*Show

Spoiler: The William Tailour School of BusinessShow

Spoiler: Psi-Tau-Rho and The William Tailour Project *NEW*Show

Spoiler: Jenny Arbuckle *NEW*Show

Spoiler: Cameleo's Templar Mouse *NEW*Show

Spoiler: Julia Taylor's Letter *NEW*Show

Spoiler: Black MarketsShow

--Messenger Julia Evans, Junior Archivist, MLIS.
Julia "Dewey" Evans
Posted Jan 22, 18 · OP
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