Meet Me At St Louis
i ragazzi perduti
Work in progress
Meditation 1 Little Italy
“Bah, electric light, whats wrong with gaslight.” Cosimo began to restore an old argument with a new talking point. Lucio would suggest that the light would make it easier for the old to get around. Cosimo would then either take umbrage at being called old, or alternatively sally straight into the socialist versus capitalist’s argument. It was as inevitable as the game of chess they were playing out.
As he sees Maria coming toward him, he offers odds “I think Cosimo will go straight to the socialist opening this time.”
“Unlikely, he’s had the grapa this evening. He’ll take umbrage at being called old.” Salvo nods his head in defeat as he hear’s Cosimo begin. “ So I get to chose your dinner.”
“You have a ammiratore segreto Salvo?” asks Maria as she places the Cacciuccio ‘bottom barrel stew’ in front of him. “This came for you with the mail.” An old book, plainly bound and wrapped is then placed to the side.
“Ah Maria, you know until I find out the recipe for your Cavatelli a Ragu my heart can’t admit another. Still I wasn’t expecting anything.” A tad like Buridan’s Ass , Salvo’s curiosity found it hard to decide on smelling the stew or looking to the book first. In the end prudence won out, and he took to the excellent stew first.
The felt on the book was slightly faded in places, worn in others. Even before his misfortune Salvo would have worked out that this suggested a right handed man, probably leaning back against something. The fabric had been damaged by the environment it was kept in, most likely having been read on, or near, the sea where the salt-tang and spray would have slightly reduced the fabric and dye. From this, it seemed reasonable to speculate either a hammock or perhaps the wall at the head of a pier.
All this was confirmed, well annoying aside from which hand the individual used, when he let his hand touch the book. This time the memories were vague, almost washed out when he went across them. He felt it was more than just the age of the memory this time, something to do with he person who had owned it. Also the locations were vague, it felt well-read and travelled.
Well, time to rely on deduction again, the book is at least a century old, written in English and it would seem likely it has been owned by one person in that time. Whilst the potential for it to be simply collected from a book sale and sent to him existed, he had a sneaking suspicion that it came from a kindred in town. He looked to the book,
“Were you to live three thousand years, or even thirty thousand, remember that the sole life which a man can lose is that which he is living at the moment; and furthermore, that he can have no other life except the one he loses…”
At that point a telegram came, asking him to attend the Doyle at court.
Meditation 2 St Louis Hotel
“The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
In truth he found it unfortunate that this book was so open to interpretation as he looked to Doyle and Caitlyn talking. Caitlyn’s fragility and feyness had grown more noticeable now.
After briefly discussing the issue of the Gangrel waif near his domain, and reporting that he believed there maybe others judging by the absence of animal life, he touched on a few other points with Doyle. First that for information another creature had controlled a fox close by the Sabbat still. Not guaranteed evidence that the Gangrel known as Fox had been aware of the still, but a piece of evidence to consider if he then failed to attend court going forward. Second, a question on who might have been involved in his creation, given Caitlyn’s obscure reference to the eigth rising.
Mediation 3 – St Louis Hotel
He saw Benedict working the floor, Louise in discussion with a fellow kindred and Reggis enraptured at the singer. By the movement and actions of those around, deliberately avoiding looking at her, she was probably a kindred. Salvo turned to his book, waiting for the others to finish.
“Say to yourself in the early morning: I shall meet today inquisitive, ungrateful, violent, treacherous, envious, uncharitable men. All these things have come upon them through ignorance of real good and ill.”
He looked up from this line to see Deacon, of the Ventrue, blanche and quickly exiting the room at meeting his gaze. He finds himself tapping out a different tune, the opening bars to the Marriage of Figaro, as the deviant scurries away, “Somehow Marcus I do not think we are in agreement on accepting uncharitable men”. He waits for the others to join him, before raising the point that the installation of new lighting would allow for those involved to map out kindred havens, to potentially do other constructions off of the records.
It is then the atrocity is related to them.
Meditation 4 – St Louis Slums
“Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future too.”
Eerie quiet, not enough animals out, not even the human ones. Anderson’s face gaunt and sallow. Gaslight flickering, showing a greenish tinge. Broken door ajar, rotten wood on steps up, everything rotten.
Broken bodies, discarded toys. The rotten sensation in his bellow, the feeling of satisfaction. He traces through the building, forcing himself to process, remember. Hands touching the putrefaction, the beasts trail, its memories like a spoor.
The shattered skylight, the matter cleared. He breaks off one jagged banister, puts it to his pocket and starts on the trail. Only to be stalled at the entry to anothers domain.
Meditation 5 – St Louis Opera House
_ “If someone is able to show me that what I think or do is not right, I will happily change, for I seek the truth, by which no one was ever truly harmed. It is the person who continues in his self-deception and ignorance who is harmed.”_
A name from his past, Egan, the source of the corruption. A deal struck by Templeton. A way to bring the victim of Egan’s travesty in so that the town is safe, and justice served.
He offers half of the stake to Templeton to continue the pursuit.