Ed O’Brian calls the three teams of investigators into his office and explains that he received a call from a Dean Clements of Miskatonic University (MU) in Arkham. The university experienced the theft of four rare books from its prestigious library during the previous week and it is felt that the police are not doing enough to progress the case and recover the stolen items. The university is paying very good money for Eagle Bond to conduct a well manned and professional investigation. When questioned why so many investigators are being dispatched on this one case Ed explains that when he was a young policeman in Arkham during the 80s he witnessed a few strange things and he believes in the principle of safety in numbers. He informs them that they should drive down to Arkham and meet with the dean as soon as possible; motel rooms have been secured for the team in the French Hill district close to the campus. Malcolm Ashford is the most senior of the investigators and is assigned the role of team lead and is also instructed to check in with Ed at the end of each day and provide a progress report.
The team drives the short distance to Arkham in a convoy of three cars and book into their motel before arranging a visit with the dean that very night. By 5pm they are sat in the dean’s office on the third floor of the administration building. The dean explains the circumstances of the theft, the fact that there were no signs of a break in and that there are only three keys to the Restricted Section, and also confirms that the four missing titles stolen from the Restricted Section are:
Cultes Des Goules
The Book of Eibon
The Revelations of Glaaki
The dean agrees to arrange a visit of the crime scene with himself and the head of campus security, Max Fallon, first thing the next morning.
That evening the team head over to the Arkham House of Pizza close to their motel to discuss their plan of approach to the investigation. It is quickly decided that they will break into their three pairs (teams A, B and C) and conduct different strands of the investigation to cover more ground in less time. That night the team spend an uneventful night in their moderately okay motel – the only notable occurrence being Malcolm’s rather anti-social misuse of the free cable TV, much to his roommate’s, the more junior investigator Carl Paronuzzi, disgust.
The next morning team A head downtown to the Arkham PD and meet with Detective John Stubbs, who is a rather jaded, slobby and slightly offensive character. Fortunately Malcolm’s seniority and bearing wins him enough respect to be informed by the veteran police officer that there isn’t much to go on but he definitely believes the thefts were an inside job.
Team B turn up at the prearranged meeting to view the crime scene and get to interview both Max Fallon, the head of campus security and Adele Parkes, the head librarian. The duo learn the security set up – the campus police patrols, the alarm systems, the key card entry system and the roving librarian walk-throughs of the reference wing and checks on the Restricted Section. Looking at the crime scene through the police tape sealed entrance it appears that there’s an absence of the tell tale signs of a break in. The team also learns more details of the stolen books themselves as well as the fact that Professor Gregory Fairbanks, one of the Restricted Section key holders, has recently been showing his classes around that area as well as the books themselves.
Team C spend the morning conducting online research on the stolen books and on the university as well as Professor Fairbanks. They learn that a copy of Volume III of the Revelations of Glaaki was being sold on Amazon.com by a seller in Japan for $17,000. Of the other books there is nothing except the Necronomicon: there are historical records of the Catholic Church executing people, mainly by burning, for possessing the book throughout the 12-17th centuries. The only copy that appears to be available in modern times was the one held by MU. The duo also look up all the book dealers in Arkham under the hunch that whoever stole the books may seek to sell them locally.
The teams re-converge at the Rivertown bar Neon Neptune’s for lunch and a discussion of the morning’s activities. They agree the afternoon’s team plans and duly set about them. Team B decides to re-interview Max Fallon again in his office to clear up some facts; they obtain rota lists for the library opening and closings and quickly determine that Shaqeela Roberts was on the duty for the week of the thefts. They confirm that the stolen books were not electronically tagged and that the main fraternities are Sigma Phi and Delta Phi while the two sororities are Gamma Delta and Kappa Delta Phi. Quizzing about on-campus religious groups they learn of the Campus Christian Alliance (CCA) and the Pagan Academics Network (PAN). The campus police patrol rota doesn’t reveal anything special but they do learn that a peeping tom has been reported prowling around the dorms late at night on at least four occasions while the police logs also show that there was an incident concerning a vagrant intruding into the campus administration building. A brief online search also reveals that the two overt Arkham occult societies are “We Are Wicca” (WAW) and the “Arkham Witches Society" (AWS).