11: IT HUNTS FOR YOU
Pavel polices the brass (removes evidence of the gunfight) and goes to the Mission.
Lucio, the canon’s right hand man, meets him on the way in.
“We were sorry that you had to see that. It is at times necessary to use people of good faith as agents in the sunlit world, and they can be careless in their zeal. We will entrust you with the item for now. We hope that, in turn, you will share your findings with us. In the meantime, would it be possible to see a picture, so we can try to translate the inscription?”
Once back in the car, with the engine on, he calls Arthur.
“They work for us.”
“Whose Kindred? Our Kindred, my Kindred or your Kindred?”
Pavel refrains from answering on the phone.
Dr. Barrow spends the rest of the night having the tablet X-rayed and otherwise analysed.
Arthur leaves early the next evening to scout around New Age and occult bookstores in the Haight. The one C mentioned is run by a raddled-looking man called Donny who smells of granola.
“Well, I needed a new athame and goblet anyway. Is there a good book on local legends?”
Dr. Barrow’s test results show that inside the tablet is a solid stone, roundish, carved.
C suggests Arthur ask more of an expert in lore than her, one Brother Capricorn. He translates the inscription as well.
“The blood of the owl is black. It hunts for you.”
Dr. Barrow also finds a news report showing the stolen item, and hands it over to a professor of Native American Studies for an independent translation.
“The owl, seen here hiding from the sun, represents death and ill omen in various tribal traditions. The inscription says that the owl is the bird of death which hunts and destroys.”
Lucio leaves Arthur a voicemail.
“The spirit of the owl is darkness. It seeks your death.”
They compare translations while looking at the original tablet.
“Okay...” Arthur says. “Let’s not break it open.”
Yes folks, owls. Hey, this book was Blood And Smoke: The Strix Chronicle at the time.
I did not actually have this picture as a handout, it was Googled up mid-session, along with a number of other likely candidates, and some real American owl legends as well.