28: Whycroft’s Store

11th May 1925Cuncudgerie

Whycroft’s Store Cumcudgeree (A.K.A Cuncudgerie)

Cumcudgeree (A.K.A Cuncudgerie), Australia:

Cuncudgerie – 19:41 PM:

Irma: “What’s it called and what’s it about?”

Whycroft: “Wonderous Intelligences” by James Woodville.  I’m more important than you. Why should you have this book?”

Irma: “You don’t know about the city!”

Whycroft: “Yes I do. I know more than you.

Irma: “Have you been to the city? Did you find the way in?”

Whycroft: “No but HE did. He is a genius. He is in charge. And he’ll be in charge OF THE WORLD soon!”

Irma: “Are you talking about Penhew? Huston?”

Gupta looks at the old battered book. Author and title are printed on it. Pages are worn. Fingerprint stains and low quality. Late 17th Century. Crude woodcuts of sexual practices etc. Whycroft’s gentleman’s literature?

Gupta: “I think it is old but very interesting.”

Greg: “Are you Mortimer Whycroft?”

Whycroft: “I want to be them and they should be me!”

Gupta: “What do you mean? You want to be them?”

Irma goes downstairs to get to the Yithian communicator. He shows it to him.

Whycroft: “Where did you get this?”

Irma: “It was a gift to us from them. We use it to speak with them.”

Whycroft: “But only he speaks with them.”

Irma: “He is a heretic!”

Whycroft: “No he is not. I have seen. When he comes: I have seen the sand bats! You mustn’t know!

Irma: “How do you know? He sent his men away.”

Gaidar shows him the photo of the Carlyle expedition.

His eyes go googly.

Irma: “What have you seen?”

Whycroft: “Mustn’t say.”

Irma: “Have you seen the end of the world?”

Whycroft: “I don’t need a map. They will only allow you to enter if you are worthy. You are not worthy!”

Gupta casts cloud memory on him:

Gupta: “You shall forget we were here and who we are.”

It is successful. Greg chloroforms him. We search the place he has a loaded van for a journey. Greg surreptitiously executes the Kooris by injecting heroin into their eyes. His van is disabled so he can’t drive off immediately while we try and do so investigations in Cumcudgeree. Telegram is sent to the investigators in Port Headland to join us once Dodge has arrived.

We go to the pub.

Joseph: “give me a bourbon”

Barman: “What’s that mate?”

Joseph: “Whisky”

Barman: “Alright we got whisky for you.”

Joseph: “I’ll take a glass of Irish. What can I get you gentlemen.”

Barman: “Cheers mate I’ll have a beer and a chaser.”

Irma: “We heard there was a bad accident here.”

Barman: “Where’d you hear that? It was further east from here. Whole thing was hushed up. Two dozen men died. Not Americans. There was a crazy yank that took people out there. The dug a 30 foot deep pit and then sent them back to Darwin to get their pay! About five years ago. The same guy who dug the mineshaft showed up again but we ain’t seen him since and no idea where the mineshaft is. John Carver, posh, fly-away white hair. 40-50 years old. Ask Whycroft, he outfitted their expedition.”

Irma: “You know him?”

On the picture Robert Huston is identified as John Carver.

A drunk says: “The abos say there is a buried city out there. The sand covers the entrances to it. I don’t believe in that stuff. I believe in the bible.”

Another drunk says: “McWhirr made an expedition out there.”

Greg goes back to Whycrofts. There is a light on and crashing and banging inside. He is looking for his book… Sign on the door now says closed due to illness…

Eventually Whycroft comes out. He is looking around his truck, dynamite. Greg notices it is like the lights are on but there is NOBODY HOME. Around midnight he finally goes to bed.

12th May 1925

Side Truck 02
Our Hired Daimler Trucks

The Next Day In Cumcudgeree (A.K.A Cuncudgerie):

08:55 AM:

We procure 2 vehicles. Mortimer goes out and goes to an auto repair shop. They come over and repair his truck. We find 2 Daimler truck to hire.

3 or 4 days drive to the Percival lakes. A beast as big as a bear attacked a cattle herd, flying off with some.

Back in Port Hedland. Dodge arrives.

Dodge: “Pleased to meet you!”

We waste no time and head off to Cumcudgeree. Doctor Dodge is skinny and enthusiastic.

Dodge has McWhirr’s diary! Wesley reads it on the train. Robert McKenzie was McWhirr’s buddy and is apparently in Cumcedgeree.

(Handout 36, written in 1919 or 1920 approximately).

McWhirr’s Diary

Mar. 7: Jock Kuburaqa says that abos are following us. Most unusual if true. Primitives have every reason to fear guns and our bush ranger predilection for using them. In the past, I have always known them to head the other way as soon as they sight white men.

Mar. 21: We are about equally distant from Joanna spring and separation well, east of an awful line of dry lakes. The heat is terrible. Our hopes are low-there is nothing here, certainly not quartz reels! L’s notations are in systematic error. He is a complete duffer as a surveyor. Today we sighted several enormous birds flying lazily far above us. How did they get here, and where can they be going?

Mar. 22: At about noon today we found jock, partly buried in a gully. His body was scoured and covered with hundreds of small punctures, as though somebody had sandblasted him, we buried him, of course. I shall miss his counsel, and he was an excellent hand with the camels.

Mar. 23: We have discovered what appears to be remnants of an ancient city, rising from the shifting sands! I believe I have secured several good photographs of this amazing find, though the heat has ruined all but six of my photographic plates. By the pitting of the stone, the blocks and pillars appear to be more than 10,000 year old! Incredible!

Mar. 24: Four camels killed in the attack last night. I saw at least two abos, and more must have been skulking out there. I’m sure I hit one. That ends this trip, we’ll have to head back to Cuncudqerie and report this incident. More than men were out there last night. I saw shapes much bigger than men during the attack. My evidence is the body of Old Sam the camel, punctured and scraped if the best way I can described the remains, just like poor Jock. Since the attack lasted only a couple of minutes, it’s hard for me to believe that anything human could have done so much damage so quickly.

But then what was it?

In Cumcudgeree we meet McKenzie.

“An American came to see me some years ago. Huston. He is a thief! He stole everything! Except the plates. He stole notes, drawings rubbing’s etc. He said he had a dodgy stomach and had to keep going to the toilet. And he stole everything from here. All that is left is the plates and the diary. The rest I committed to memory. 22314 South XXXXXX East. He died of influenza in the end. That was the last I heard of him. Gentlemen you are welcome to stay here. Whycroft calls his abos inappropriate names.”

That night Whycroft puts the bodies in his truck and leaves at dawn. We are ready and pick up his tracks.

13th May 1925

Travelling To Percival Lakes
Travelling To Percival Lakes

Travelling To Percival Lakes:

05:02 AM:

2 vehicles.

Front truck Wesley, Simon, Dodge & Gupta (Driver).

Rear truck Gaidar, Trixie, Joseph & Irma (Driver).

We set off into the desert in pursuit of Whycroft but at a distance. We make a detour to get water.

Joseph: “We have the coordinates of the location anyway.”

We see a man dressed in black on a camel. It’s a white man.

Stranger: “Strange things. Ground shaking. Bats. Kooris vanishing. I’m going east.”

We continue and see weird rocks: They seem to be standing impossibly due to wind erosion. We have problems with tires etc.

14th May 1925

Still Travelling To Percival Lakes
Still Travelling To Percival Lakes

The Unforgiving Outback:

14:01 PM:

Bush fire! We try and out run it. Gupta drives successfully but the second truck has mechanical failure. We find a dry riverbed and dig a trench. The axel is shattered. We consider towing the other truck.

To Be Continued….

Journal Wesley

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