Part 13 - The Ghouls of Paris
In spring of the following year, the Nephilim took a trip back the lake where they were twice incarnated. There they retrieved the items that had been deposited there nearly 500 years ago. They then returned to Calais. Gregor was living in the monastery that was operated by the Order. The others rented a home in the city.
In late July, Gregor was given his next mission. Five monks of the Order had been sent to Troyes to investigate rumors of heresy. They never made it, but instead disappeared without a trace. He is ordered to go to Troyes, but on the way stop at the preceptry in Paris. Gregor got the others together and they prepared for the journey to Paris.
Three days later they arrived in Paris. They went to visit the preceptor there, a man named Renee the Black, but he was not home. When he did not return by the end of the day, they broke into his home.
They searched his home and found a letter from a woman name Alix in Troyes describing the events of the annual Hot Fair. She stated that the two people running the fair that year were Aribert the Moneylender and Foulque the Spicer. She also stated that it was rumored that Foulque dealt in the occult and used his spice trade contacts to acquire occult artifacts. Finally she stated that she had heard of supposed holy men in an around the city of Troyes who claimed to be sinless, as would anyone who would follow them.
Valentine grabbed some personal items of Renee’s and they returned to their room at the local inn. Valentine cast a ritual to create a bond between Renee and the recovered items, giving him some insight into Renee’s location.
Following the guidance of the spell, they were led to some ruins on the outskirts of town. Searching the area, they discovered a recently moved flagstone. Removing it, they found a tunnel from which issued the stench of the grave. They descended into the darkness.
They did not get very far before they were attacked by Ghouls. They fought their way through them and eventually found themselves in a cavern that contained and old church. On an altar was Renee the Black, tied to a strange idol and ghouls danced around them. The Nephilim attacked and freed Renee and took the idol with them.
Once free of the catacombs, he told them that the idol was uncovered a week ago during a renovation. It was tied to a buried corpse. He brought the idol home with him to study and a short time later he was attacked by the ghouls. As near as he could figure, the idol was important to the ghouls, and needed to be bonded to another creature to have power. When the idol was separated from the corpse, they needed a new person to bond with it and they chose Renee. Thanks to Gregor and the others, that fate was avoided. He then asked that they take the idol with them or else the ghouls in the city would continue to seek it out.
They also discussed the contents from the letter form Alix, the wife of a clothier and an agent for the Order. The matter discussed in the letter was the reason that the five monks had been sent to investigate. So with the hideous Ghoul Idol in tow, they continued on to Troyes.