Nothing suspicious is happening. No siree. It's just another day in 1920s Massachusetts, and five people are going about their business. Professor Cole Whitman is a bit odd, though, always with his studying and long conversations with private dick Richard Castle, otherwise known as Dirk Codpiece when he's not in earshot. But a quirky old professor is probably meant to be odd.
Matthew Clarkson, on the other hand, is a more dubious character. He claims to be an undertaker's assistant, but the ubiquitous spade, the forever-muddy clothes, and his appearances at a local pub at only the latest of hours makes me suspect he is actually a gravedigger. Or grave robber. My suspicions are further roused on learning of Madame Za Za, a fortune teller with a curiously keen insight in to the occult, particularly learning that she's been unconscious in the boot of Clarkson's car for the past couple of days.
Me, I'm Dmitri Sokolov, a writer emigrated from Russia, patron of the same pub as Clarkson. There's nothing odd about me, even if I claim to have written The Idiot and The Brothers Karamazov whilst having a dislike for titles starting with the definite article, and not being able to do a convincing Russian accent.
But odder still are the rumours about the Hermetic Order of the Silver Twilight, a secret society with a predilection towards having foreigners as members. It's probably nothing sinister, we suppose, but we are all vain enough to want to be invited to any kind of secret society, and try to use our connections to see what's behind those doors. Lucky professor even gets a direct invitation. I hope we're not about to be drawn in to some shady organisation.