Bone Mother

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See also the Partial Transcript of the Meetings held at St. Michael's Basilica during the Summer of 1668 concerning the Cultic Problem.

Bone Mother is a Tekumel (Empire of the Petal Throne) entity but there are parallels in various HPL stories such as 'The Picture in the House, 'The Rats in the Walls' and 'Pickman's Model'.

T167, The Swedish Empire of Russia
Qvint the Lame, Jarl of Agder was also reported dead, being killed in a skermish with flesh eaters in the woods of Friesland. His body was recovered, however, by trackers working for the Sisters of Mercy - a militant and vigorous Catholic order that has established a string of fortified outposts along the coast of Holland to try and reclaim the land from the cannibal bands.

T167, Occitania
The Danish army under Tzimices entered the blasted, barren, wasteland of Ile de France with a cautious eye out. Bands of flesh-eaters roamed the countryside and there were other, equally loathesome brigands around as well.

T168, The Church Spiritual
Father Koros of the Jesuits, ordered by Alexander to investigate the depredations of the flesh-eaters in the Low Countries, made a harrowing journey through Holland, Brabant and Hainaut, finally staggering out of the wilderness into Burgundian Nivernais, where the local border rangers took him in. He found that the devastation wraught by the Free Companies campaign had so destroyed the countryside that the common populace (that which survived the genocidal attentions of the Freikorps) was forced to subsist on berries and acorns. In the harsh winters that had followed, many - simply to survive - had turned to cannibalism. In time these tribes became strong and continued to prey upon the other bands of refugees. Thus were born the flesheaters and strange and terrible were their gods...

T169, The Swedish Empire of Russia
The notorious Count D_ of G_, accompanied by a famous actress, attended a midnight performance of the Grand Opera in Berlin. As usual, the Count was dressed ahead of the first fashion, his dark satin doublet and bone-white pendant complementing the flawless pallor of his skin. When astonished onlookers inquired regarding the incident of 1660, the Count laughed and replied, "Reports of my death were...premature. I've been away on a small journey, but now I'm back."

Editor's Note: The bone pendant is a common accessory of Bone Mother worshippers in Empire of the Petal Throne. In the novel 'The Man of Gold' several people, mostly highly placed in various governments are replaced by minions of the Goddess, who look similar to the replaced person. Several are hinted of as suffering 'accidents' but surviving.

T169, The Danish Empire
His Excellency, Pope Alexander, was trundled north with Stamma to the Low Countries and made to view the choked graveyards, the reefs of bone and skulls, the captive flesh-eaters - repulsive and degenerate in their long descent into madness. All his works, he looked upon with blind eyes, seeing all. And Alexander wept and prayed, his head upon the ground, and did not see the silent rushing figures that attacked his guards and company near the demon-haunted ruins of Bruges. Stamma's cavalry patrol was quick upon the scene, and found the guards dead, their skulls caved in, their brains drawn out. They tracked the miscreants into a confusing warren of ill-dug tunnels and pits under the ruins of Bruges. Stamma launched a full scale search, which rapidly devolved into a fierce, chamber to chamber struggle in the noisome depths. Apparently the flesh-eaters had begun building a new city beneath shattered Bruges, replete with breeding dens, temples to the Goddess of the Pale Bone and other foul works. As soon as the full nature of the dens and holes became apparent, Stamma wasted no effort in men or powder in destroying the artefacts and inhabitants of that wretched and dire city. Indeed, the hunt for Alexander was somewhat forgotten amidst the orgy of slaughter.

Luckily for the Pontiff, Captain Jack Ramsay - who had attempted to break Alexander out of the dungeons of the Pearl some years before - dared the hell-pits and succored the old man, turning up with him in Alfredville in Normany, waving good-bye to the ailing church leader as he sailed, free at last, back to the Azores.

T178, Naipon-Austral Empire
When spring cleared the passes in the north in 1684, the Ming lord, Prince Wu-jian, found himself commander of a force of some 19,000 sohei gathered at Nakamura. The Tokugawa lords continued to huddle in Chaisan, now behind the barrier of their fleet, and sent no one to command the Japanese sohei. Thus, the Ming prince led his army south in May to drive the Oroists from Japan. The ash wastelands of Kwanto, Aichi and amato were crossed by the sohei, who began to believe that they had descended into hell itself. Bands of starving refugees attacked their columns, seeking soldiers to carry off to their cookpots. Strange underground temples littered with gnawed bones and deformed statuettes were discovered and purged with fire and quicklime. The boots of the soldiers crackled and crunched on a carpet of cracked skulls, splintered bones and pale grey ash. By the time that the sohei army reached Shimane and saw green farmlands, they were a ghostly and stricken host.

Information from Thomas:

The first reports of Bone Mother worship occurred after the Freikorps had destroyed the Dutch Republic. After absolutely obliterating the Dutch towns and driving the citizens into the fields, there was a very, very fierce winter. By spring, the Low Countries were almost entirely depopulated and those who remained were living in underground dens. The Freikorps were destroyed by Denmark, but the whole Low Countries/Rhur area was left in ruins (mostly uninhabited ruins).
Later, the Yaqui crusaders occupied the same area, but did not stay long. They were relocated to Anatolia (to reinforce the Exarchate of Trebizond). The area was abandoned again. Very recently, the Danes have been resettling the provinces and rebuilding the cities. Both the Yaquis and the Danes have been fierce in their repression of the Bone cult and its gruesome followers.
Well... there had been this war in England between the Scots (supported by the Aztecs) and the English. Went on for 2-3 turns and employed a huge number of mercenaries, including contingents from the Americas and Africa. Finally, the Danes intervened and kicked the Aztecs out, forcing an end to the struggle. The next turn the huge gangs of mercenaries decamped for the continent under the command of a certain Bavarian condotierre named Wallenstein. This vast force (now called the Freikorps) invaded the low countries and destroyed (and I do mean destroyed) the Dutch Republic. Another war followed, between the Duchy of Burgundy (now the Frankish Commonwealth) and Denmark vs. the Freikorps. Eventually Wallenstein was defeated, his men hunted down and killed and the whole thing became a particularly gruesome footnote in history.

T210, Frankish Commonwealth
On the verge of defaulting on the stolen Russian loan, the Archon just did not need any additional bad news, but here it was. In horror the Archon read intel reports concerning the true nature of Wolfden & Cane Holdings Ltd. He shook his head at the content of the detailed intelligence reports about the mercantile entity. The reports explained many of the questions the Archon had recently pondered… Where did the W&C come from? What was the source of their funding? Why were they quickly expanding throughout the Frankish Commonwealth without coordinating or communicating these actions with the government? It was all here in the ministry reports. The W&C were backed by the Illuminati, the Golden Dawn. A shadowy organization claiming to be arch enemies of the Bone Mother Cult.

Perhaps they were. Agents of the Dawn had contacted the Archon and the Frankish Government last year and offered “…to be of great service to the Commonwealth…” They had requested permission to build secret bases in the Commonwealth from which to fight this evil. The Archon’s own investigations for a sign of the Bone Mother Cult had revealed nothing, absolutely nothing, a big zero. The Archon had demanded proof, some sign of the intent of the Golden Dawn. He had received nothing of substance, nothing more than vague promises and a request for blind trust. With the recent evils in Khirgiz and Georgia, blind trust was hard to come by.

The Archon was disappointed Wolfden & Cane had not been forthcoming of their relationship with the Golden Dawn. He and his ministers had been in communication with the W&C in recent years to discuss their actions. Opportunities had been presented and these opportunities had been brushed off and passed over. The Archon gathered his ministers and marshals and drew up plans on how to deal with the W&C…it was time to act before they and the Golden Dawn had entwined themselves so deeply into the Commonwealth that the Archon and his government would become mere puppets. Encrypted orders were dispatched to every command and garrison, armed forces were placed on alert in the event the Golden Dawn and their minions in Wolfden and Caine sought the armed support of mercenaries. Perhaps help from the Catholic powers…

“Wolf-Den and Cain” the Archon pondered, “what’s in a name?”

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