Time to reanimate this profile...
Herbert West's forum posts
Herbert trudged through the frozen wasteland, the wind howling and plucking at his clothes. He was shivering violently, one could almost hear his bones rattling. His mechanical hand had long since frozen stiff, the gears coated in frost. He wanted to lie down in the snow, let it cover him like a funeral shroud. But death…death was his immortal enemy. He would do absolutely anything not to succumb to his clutches. Anything.
He reached into his doctor's back, pulled out a syringe. It was full of a fluid that looked like liquid fire. He rolled back his sleeve, stiff with the cold like it had been freshly starched. He pressed two fingers against the crook of his arms, finding a good vein. Then he plunged the serum into his veins. The small wound hissed slightly, and Herbert's skin took on a less ghastly tone. His eyes burned. "And they thought only magic could fight the bitter cold…" he muttered, flickers of flame dancing in the air. Herbert set off with a new spring in his step, shucking his jacket as he walked.
The mountains loomed before him, their peaks hidden by the blizzard. The sound of flutes…or perhaps just the howling of the wind. Herbert knew that there was a cave nearby, in which the shoggoths dwelt. (He had gone to Miskatonic…he had followed the exploits of the Peabody Expedition closely). If he was willing to brave the cave he would not have to climb over the mountain range…the others probably knew nothing of this. Herbert would have the treasure before they could look upon the ancient city on the other side of the peaks. Smirking, Herbert turned left, prodding the rock face with his outstretched hand.
Herbert strode towards the church, keeping an eye on the mesmerized townsfolk that surrounded him. Their mindless stares did not unnerve him, he had spent much too much time with zombies for that. Still, there were a lot of them, so Herbert planned an escape route. If he ran down the main street, he could hide in one of the numerous side-streets that characterized the town. If need be he still had the key to the bunker he used as a laboratory for a while. There might be a few of the re-animated in there, but Herbert could handle that.
"Hello Doctor West, it’s so very good to see you" Herbert jumped slightly, startled. How had the musician known his name? He turned to look at the man incredulously. " That’s right, I know it’s you. Only you would have a vial of that special glowing re-animation serum in your bag. I want to give you a choice. Join me in the hunt, and you can have as many bodies as you want to experiment on, or become one of the cadavers you like to cut up so much". Herbert snapped the bag shut, cursing under his breath. He briefly considered playing the part of Anton Bierce, lab assistant, but he knew it was too late for that. His cover was blown.
Usually he might find the promise of unlimited cadavers quite tempting. However, those who promised them tended not to deliver properly. The corpses would be long dead, an android rather than a living being, or something of the sort. It was extremely frustrating. Also, Herbert HATED working for hire. People bossing him around, thinking they could claim what was rightfully his, it made his viscous blood boil. If Herbert was working with someone, it was on HIS terms. Plus, he could hold his own. All he needed to do was zombify some of these hypnotized puppets and he'd have a little army to protect him while he made his escape.
At that moment, a fissure opened in the ground, a pulsing tentacle writhing in the air. Herbert leaped backwards, barely avoiding its slimy clutches. "I got the treasure fair and square, foul creature from the crack. So now my pawns I tell you all that now you must ATTACK! " Well, that made matters easier. Herbert began to slink away, knowing that he wasn't finding any alien metals here. He'd be better off killing this musical man later. And resurrecting him later of course. Maybe minus the vocal cords. " Remember my offer West! You’re either with me or against me!" And then the Meister was gone.
Herbert shook his head in disgust. "Fool…" he muttered, then looked up at the sky. "Anton, I know full well you're watching this. Send me over to Antarctica now, at the Mountains of Madness." He vanished in a puff of brightly colored flame.
Herbert appeared on a windy plateau, near the foothills of the sinister Mountains of Madness. He shivered, pulling his thin jacket around him. He had to remember that Anton took orders literally…purely to annoy Herbert of course. As a result, he was now in the middle of the Arctic dressed in clothes more suited to a screamo rock concert. Muttering curses under his breath, and thinking about what he'd do to Anton when he got back to the lab, he set off towards the peaks. Shouldn't be any organ grinders in this desolate part of the world.
Herbert West looked around the town of Bolton, New England, a town rife with sour memories. He scowled at the gambrel rooftops, the wide streets lined with cobblestones. Bolton had never been much of a town for 'modernism'. Paving the streets was most decidedly out of the question. It was ironic that here, in quaint little Bolton, an interstellar treasure was hidden. Okay, Herbert didn't really care much for treasure in itself. He was much, much more interested in what he could buy with the treasure. There was this nice little Hadron Collider he had had his eye on. And if the treasure was cursed (because let's face it…it almost all was), Herbert was sure that Anton could deal with that. Or he could send it to the medical division of Miskatonic. Heh, that would teach them.
Where to start? The church maybe…even if there wasn't anything there, Herbert would get to defile a church. That was always great fun. He slung his suitcase over his shoulder and set off down the main street. Everything was quiet, except for the occasional screech of an ocean-bound bird. As was the way in these New England towns, the people were congregated more towards the center of town.
Drawn by curiosity (it had been so long since he had been here), Herbert changed course, heading towards the town square. There was a garishly dressed man, an organ grinder of some sort, in the middle of the square. Another treasure hunter no doubt…Bolton did tend to be on the receiving end of occult horrors, but they tended to be more muted in color. Herbert reached into his suitcase, rummaged around for his smaller doctor's bag, found it, and palmed a scalpel. It would be best to take out the competition early. Herbert pushed his way through the crowd nonchalantly. He had no fear of being recognized, between being 'dead' for several decades and his disguise, no one would suspect him of being the notorious Re-Animator.
And then the music started. Herbert froze. "Good evening people of Bolton, I have some news for you. You’re gonna help me find the treasure of Cthulu " H e could feel a compulsion to dance, almost overwhelming…but not quite. It was not that the hypnotic charm had no effect on Herbert. He could resist it, but it took his complete focus. Why was he able to keep from becoming a marionette for the sinister Music Meister? It was complicated. Partially it was his altered body chemistry, his brain reacting differently to stimuli than it would in someone who had not injected themselves with a multitude of chemicals. Mainly it was because Herbert West was completely tone-deaf.
Tone-deaf he might be, stupid he was not. “Now go and find the V’loorganite, that’s hidden somewhere in this town. And if someone tries to stop you, make sure to take them down. ” That was a very clearly worded command to the simple townsfolk to tear anyone like Herbert apart…it might be best to play along. He shot a nasty glance at the master of music, and walked slightly rhythmically towards the church he originally planned to raid. He wasn't going to dance like the other villagers…that would just be demeaning.
Herbert West was working in his laboratory, oblivious to the events that were unfolding near Miskatonic. He knew only the clinking of medical implements in their jar, the resistance of flesh before his scalpel, the smell of congealing blood and the look of dead eyes turned to an unfeeling heaven. As usual, the Doctor's eyes were bloodshot, dark rings lingering under his eyes. There was not enough time, not in this life nor the next, not enough to discover everything he meant to. He had turned to pills, chemicals, unhealthy amounts of coffee to stave off sleeps dark terrors. Enough foreign substances ran through his veins to kill the normal mortal. Ah, but Herbert West was far from mortal. Who knows what had changed him…he had tested so many of his own compounds on himself over the years. No, It took more than mere dismemberment to stop Dr. Herbert West.
In the other room, Anton Bierce, formerly the mercenary Mortality, now the lab assistant to Herbert West, was on the computer. He was supposed to be replacing the files that two ancient warlocks had inadvertently deleted, but of course that wasn't happening. Anton happened to be checking his e-mail. "Hey Doc, I didn't know you had a brother," he yelled into the lab. Herbert withdrew his arm from the torso of a cadaver, not paying any heed to the gore he was getting on the tiled white floor. "Oh, you must mean Howard. I had forgotten about him. We were never close." Thinking the topic had been closed, Herbert went back to rummaging around in his current experiment. Anton still had more to say. "I just got a message that your nephew is throwing some kind of scavenger hunt for some kind of ancient alien treasures." Herbert just grunted, trying to sew up a burst artery in the corpse's heart. "Oh yeah, and I'm invited to help out. They're going to be raiding that town you practiced in by the way…though I thought you worked in Arkham, not Bolton?" Herbert had heard enough. He threw his bloody gloves onto the table, and stormed into the library. "WHY do they have so much information about ME?….They think I'm dead? Hurm." Herbert hadn't even known he HAD a nephew. Or what he had to do with this challenge. The message was very vague as to the sender, or why the West family was so important to this.
"Why were you invited?" he glowered at Anton, who shrugged noncommittally. "Maybe because I'm an accomplished sorcerer and explorer, who's BEEN to some of these places? I don't know…and because I'm NOT presumed dead like you? Also, I'm dashingly handsome and who WOULDN'T want me on their expedition? But I don't actually want to go on a treasure hunt, I've got plenty of money and I've already got plans." There were obviously gears turning in Herbert West's head. Sinister, oily gears. "Wait, don't respond yet…I'll go in your place. Maybe see if I can get hold of some familial corpses." He smiled darkly. Anton was obviously torn, but getting the entire house and laboratory to himself for however long the doctor was gone seemed like an extremely good exchange for his identity. "Sure, sure. I'll keep things in order here…you know, make sure the re-animated don't escape, make sure not to water the plants or feed the fish, etc, etc. Go have fun being me."
Herbert West left the room quickly, headed to his quarters. He changed out of his bloody lab gear, put on more civilian clothing. He turned to find Anton leaning on the door frame. "You know, you REALLY don't look like me in that stuff. And you probably should die your hair. I'm not having an impostor me looking like someone who walked out of an old 1960s movie. Here, put these on." Anton threw some clothes at West, who looked at them in disgust. "I've left the hair-dye in the washroom, just don't get any in your eyes." Herbert scowled after him, and gathered up his disguise.
About a half-hour later, Herbert was dressed, his hair dripping with viscous black ooze. He was extremely unhappy, not sure if whatever it was he had signed up for was worth this. He looked like a standard emo, and the gloves he had to wear to hide his robotic hand were not helping matters. Anton threw a suitcase at him, telekinetically dropping it into the hallway. "Heeeey, looking good! I packed your doctor's bag in there, you can't be carrying that around, that is NOT something I would do. Um…yeah, that's about it. Bye now!" Anton created a fiery portal in front of the doctor. "Hey, what did you expect? A taxi? Hellooooo, I can teleport. Just step through, if you feel like you're being torn apart by thousands of tormented souls that's normal." Herbert picked up the suitcase, somewhat dazed. He stepped through the portal, and appeared in the marked rendezvous point a moment later.
Anton meanwhile was watching the proceedings through a scrying glass. He wasn't going to miss this for the world, Herbert was bound to do something really stupid.