Sunday, May 29, 2016
Crossover of the Week
DEAD MEN’S BONES
Charles St. Cyprian, Sergeant Bass of the American 81st Infantry Division, and Thomas Carnacki are camped outside the fortress of Ylourgne in the province of Averoigne. St. Cyprian had to leave the company of a young woman he met at the cabaret in Vyones in order to go on this mission. Carnacki says he believes there is an oil painting of Ylourgne, or rather the Chateau de Faussesflammes, in the Louvre. The adventures of Carnacki, England’s present Royal Occultist, appeared in the pages of The Idler, just as those of the Great Detective had appeared in The Strand. Corpses throughout Averoigne are coming back as zombies, in places such as Vyones, Les Hiboux, and Ximes. The Isoile is mentioned. Professor Max Ewer tells the trio Ylourgne was the site of one of the greatest acts of alchemical diabolism in this age or any other, according to the writings of one Gaspard du Nord: a dwarf named Nathaire made a giant monster out of dead men’s bones, which rampaged through Vyones. Carnacki refers to the 266 Squadron RFC.
Short story by Josh Reynolds in Kaiju Rising: Age of Monsters, Tim Marquitz and Nickolas Sharps, eds., Ragnarok Publications, 2014. Charles St. Cyprian is the protagonist of Reynolds’ Royal Occultist stories, which take place after he has assumed the role previously played by Carnacki. Sergeant Bass is John Bass, an occult detective from Jackapo, South Carolina featured in several of Reynolds’ stories. Thomas Carnacki appeared in stories by William Hope Hodgson published in The Idler, which were later collected as Carnacki the Ghost-Finder. Ylourgne, Averoigne, Vyones, the Chateau de Faussesflammes, Les Hiboux, Ximes, the Isoile River, Gaspard du Nord, and Nathaire are from the works of Clark Ashton Smith. This marks the second attempt by a madman to create their own version of Nathaire’s Colossus during the Great War; the first was in 1916, as seen in Matthew Baugh’s “What Rough Beast.” The Great Detective is Sherlock Holmes. The 266 Squadron RFC, from W. E. Johns’ Biggles books, is not to be confused with the real 266 Squadron RAF.