Essen, 14 December


It is my understanding that we correspond in Albionese for the course of our work. A superior made this request of me; I ought not ignore this request. I think the word “order” in Albionese is probably a better choice than “request” here—but we have no military rank or discipline in the Society. As a result, I am more accustomed to receiving requests of my time in service to my oath. I suspect a similar request was made of you regarding the use of Albionese, but I do not know that for sure. What I can be sure of: this letter, and the letters to come, will no doubt be read by eyes other than our own.

Perhaps it is all the same. If I were able to record my findings in my native Saxonian, it would be easier for me, but perhaps more difficult for you. If you were able to write in your native Gallian, it would be simpler for you, but heavy for my mind. I have much to explain to you and I fear that Albionese will not be sufficient for my reports. However, this is how we find ourselves. Forgive my short sentences and poor grammar.

My organization has recently suffered incredible losses. Our hope to dive underneath Skald is sunk and lying on the sea floor. We have reason to believe that our best agent—a leading expert of certain transformations of the blood—has been compromised. And now I have received word of the loss of the laboratory at the College. All of this demands that at least some of us work toward a reëstablishment of the original Stiegsmark Pact. If it means Albion is quaratined forever, so be it. But there are those of us who still believe that Albion’s condition is only temporary. We believe that the reversal can even be accelerated.

I will not shock our shadowy readers if I denounce the Quarantine as a hindrance as much as it is a help. After all, any wall has two sides. There are people I know in Albion, people who are still alive according to what I know. They could unlock at least some of the research that I have done over these eighteen months. Here, I am frustrated that I do not have their minds. Now, I was never a student of the this Von Neumann fellow, but I am convinced I do not need to be. You might be an adequate link to resources I do not have here and cannot access because of the Quarantine.

Folios 1 and 2 are the rubbings from four sites here, in Saxonia and Tyrolia. I present them that they might be compared with the Essen research. The rubbings show a clear connection in both style and use of tools to make the markings. I have labelled them each according to origin. The first set of rubbings (above my red pencil) is from the Altensteine in northern Saxonia. The second (below the red line) are from Tyrolia, from the hills at the foot of the great Waldberg. The smaller set on the second folio constitutes a third rubbing, this time from a site high up in the Alpinspitze. Finally, the fourth set seems to tie them all together. This one is obviously the most similar to the ones at Mont-Bré, but were not etched onto dolmens. Instead, this last set comes from the dark caverns underneath Dürenmar.

I am not a linguist, nor am I an archivist, or an archaelogist—but in times like these the Society must rely on those who it knows are loyal first and knowledgeable second, and not the other way. I am a physician, biologist, and a naturalist, and my true interest is in effect of the transformations. The feared loss of our agent from our ranks is a bitter blow. Now, our conclusion that she is no longer reliable put me in the expert’s chair for these matters. Yet I am in desperate need of assistance.

At any rate, it is my hope that you can assist me in gaining access to those records. If you cannot, then I will of course turn to other things. But the Quarantine be damned—we need to know how to protect ourselves from lycanthropy. If we can profit from that goal and find a way to control its impulses, then we stand astride the world.

Please convey the enclosed records with my goodwill and sincere wish to receive some of the secrets that remain guarded there. For all our sakes.

Dr. Friedrich Nussbaum