April 17, 1922
THE COVENTRY STREET TERROR
Charles St. Cyprian and his assistant Ebe Gallowglass are called in by Special Branch to investigate a series of apparent vampire attacks. Inspector Boothroyd thinks it might be poison, “like that business in Brichester last year.” Vampires are, save for that brief, unpleasant incident during Victoria’s reign so inventively described in Stoker’s book, mostly extinct in England. St. Cyprian says maybe Thibaut de Castries was right when he said, in Megapolisomancy: A New Science of Cities, that cities were the new dark forest of man’s fear. St. Cyprian considered placing a call to the Westenra Fund but decided against it. Edwin Drood helped the fund’s founding members kill a frisky Wallachian. The head of the fund is Lord Godalming. St. Cyprian tells Gallowglass, “Trout isn’t the most imaginative sort, but he and Cuff know the score. They were involved in that Myrdstone business, a few years back.” They are helped against the vampire by Baron Palman Vordenburg, who mentions a certain theater in the Boulevard du Temple where the undead congregate at times. He identifies the vampire as Lothar Karnstein, who was the lover of Countess Dolingen of Graz. St. Cyprian tells Trout and Cuff that Lothar is not exactly Raffles, running about in disguise.
Short story by Josh Reynolds in Casefiles of the Royal Occultist Volume Two: Hochmuller’s Hound, 18thWall Productions, 2020. Brichester is a town in the Severn Valley in Ramsey Campbell’s Cthulhu Mythos stories. The brief, unpleasant incident during Victoria’s reign is a reference to Bram Stoker’s Dracula. The Westenra Fund is named after the late Lucy Westenra, who was turned into a vampire by Dracula and subsequently staked by Van Helsing and company, including her fiancé, Arthur Holmwood, Lord Godalming. Countess Dolingen of Graz is from Stoker’s “Dracula’s Guest.” Thibaut de Castries and his book Megapolisomancy: A New Science of Cities are from Fritz Leiber’s novel Our Lady of Darkness. Edwin Drood is from Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Inspector Trout is from the movies The Abominable Dr. Phibes and Dr. Phibes Rises Again. Cuff may be a descendant of Sergeant Cuff from Wilkie Collins’ The Moonstone. “The Myrdstone witch-cult” is mentioned in Lin Carter’s Anton Zarnak story “Curse of the Black Pharaoh.” Baron Palman Vordenburg is a descendant of Baron Vordenburg from J. Sheridan Le Fanu’s “Carmilla.” The Karnsteins are Carmilla’s family. The theater in the Boulevard du Temple is the Théâtre des Vampires from Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles. A. J. Raffles needs no introduction now.
For many more crossover writeups like this, check out my book Crossovers Expanded: A Secret Chronology of the World Volume 3, to be published by Meteor House! Much like the first two volumes, this book is an AUTHORIZED companion to Win Scott Eckert's Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World Volumes 1 and 2!
The St. Cyprian stories are really entertaining.ReplyDelete