After convening at Sayed’s brother’s, the Investigators separated to pursue different leads and questions
Georgia had an invitation to meet with the mysterious Nisra. A carriage took her to a grim, rundown neighborhood, but a nondescript door opened to palace hidden in the squalor. Nisra was anxious for her help with some complex theoretical math, equations that suggest new, startling relationships between space, time, matter, and energy. Nisra is thrilled with what they might accomplish, and spoke of a new era of learning and enlightenment springing forth from Turkey and transforming the world. Georgia was introduced to Selim Makryat, who appeared to accept her as a companion to keep Nisra amused. The Duke Messeraine had more to say though: he revealed that he and Nisra are plotting against Makryat and his plans to summon the Father of Sorcerers and learn from this entity the location of a lost statue possessing vast occult power.
Alfred consulted with his contacts in the city’s newspapers to learn more about the missing Menkaph the Elephant, Constantinople’s former crime lord, and how his absence has left the city’s underworld in chaos. On his way back though, he experienced a vision of a huge rally of German soldiers, listening to an impassioned speech by some charismatic leader.
Clarice returned to the bazaar, and heard some of the rumors about dangers and cyclopean monsters lurking about the neighborhood of the Shunned Mosque. She stumbled into a street battle and met Bulent Sadik, a lieutenant of The Elephant. Charming him, she heard the tale of how the Elephant had become acquainted with “the Frenchman” (apparently Duke Messeraine) and began enjoying the city’s entertainments together. He even sold the Frenchman his favorite slave — Nisra. It was shortly after this that Menkaph abruptly retired and retreated into seclusion.
Sayed talked his way into access to the police records of the city, looking into the history of the Shunned Mosque, and the heathen cult that operated there in the previous century. In more recent times, despite various reports of criminal activity and rumors about the so-called Brothers of the Skin, the police seem to be avoiding investigating the area too closely. Sayed’s own investigations were interrupted by a visit from an officer of the Sultan’s secret police, who advised Sayed to avoid looking too much into things best left alone.
Alfred, Sayed, and Clarice decide to investigate the Shunned Mosque in person. They quickly divide up. Alfred, following the route from his previous visit soon found a hidden entrance and a passageway beneath the ruins. Sayed noted that the Minaret is not quite as ruined as it seemed and climbed its stairs. Clarice was fascinated by the strange architecture and wandered inside on her own.
Alfred donned a disguise, avoiding Brothers in the dark passages. He did though encounter the missing Hamlin Polk. Polk seemed quite cheerful and said his now recovered son wants to thank Alfred and the others for their help. Alfred decided to declined this meeting.
At the top of the minaret, Sayed found Selim Makryat waiting for him. Makryat demanded the return of the missing pages from the Apocrypha of the Fez. Sayed denied having them and Makryat threatened to send a cursed Fez to Sayed’s family if he does not comply. Sayed responded by defiantly sings a call to prayer from the tower. He struggled with two of the Brothers, but Makyrat ordered them to let him go, saying Sayed has until sunrise the next day to produce the missing pages.
Clarice found a old mosaic beneath the plaster walls of the crumbling mosque. It appeared to depict a tower with a weird, abstract swirl design rising above it. A Brother discovered her and the two scuffled. She managed to get him a choke hold, but was badly slashed on the face. The outcome seemed ominous when Sadik, whom Clarice had asked to watch out for her, appearsed, shot the Brother, and heroically rescued the damsel in distress.
Eventually they reconvene bask at Sayed’s brother’s — though Georgia is still staying with Nisra. Thugs are prominently lurking on the street keeping an eye on the place. Sayed consulted with Smith, who says a gentleman would give the pages and deal with consequences later. Reluctantly they all agree…