By Maurice Merchant, Editor in Chief
8/10- It is with a great sense of both personal and professional relief that I am able to announce the nearly year-long search for a member of the Gazette family has come to an end. Adella Chatelaine, who traveled to the colony of Lelina along with the famed archaeologist Veronica Trenum and several other acclaimed New Crowndon academics to study a recently discovered ruin in the swamp has been found, alive and relatively well, after mysteriously disappearing last year.
Details of the events leading up to her rescue are scarce at the moment, but we have been told that Miss Chatelaine, along with several others, were found trapped within the decaying remains of a large building in the woods 60 miles south of Point Hammond. Not much is known about the abandoned structure, or how Miss Chatelaine and the others came to be there.
We have no word on what happened to the rest of Miss Chatelaine’s team, though none of them were found. Miss Chatelaine herself is said to be, understandably, shaken by the experience, and local law enforcement has restricted the amount of information released to the public until a proper investigation can be made.
Pixie Sinclaire, however, is less beholden to such things.
“I’m still trying to parse out everything I saw,” Miss Sinclaire wrote in a brief statement to me. “Still trying to process it…much of it defies any attempt at rationalization, as if the thoughts themselves are alive and fighting my efforts to interpret the events in a natural, earthly way. It may just be the exhaustion, the low that comes after a rush of adrenaline and the chilliness of the horrors I saw muddling my mind, interfering with my ability to think. Perhaps, with time, I will be able to explain things better. It could also be that I have no right to attempt to explain what I saw; the best source for answers will be those, Adella among them, who lived in that nightmare for who knows how long.
“I would advise not pressing the matter on them, however, until they are ready to speak. If you truly consider Adella your friend, do not force her to relive any events that may have transpired until she is ready and willing to divulge that information herself. In fact, perhaps in just this one case, some questions are best left unanswered.
“We should simply take solace in the fact that our mutual friend, and those others found with her, have…survived (I balk at using the word ‘alive’ and hate myself for it, but I fear it may be the wrong word to use). Our only desire now should be helping them find peace.”
Today marks my first feeble attempt at introducing some horror elements into the Gazette, and the larger Blackwood Empire story line, just in time for the Halloween season. It’s also going to be the last Gazette this year. With any luck, however, the answers that Pixie suggests are best kept hidden may start coming next week. I’ve always wanted to try my hand at a good old Gothic style or Lovecraftian horror story, an itch that’s only gotten worse since I’m now waist deep watching that show Penny Dreadful, so that’s what I’ll be working on the next few weeks.
The idea I’m going with is that Adella didn’t stop writing after her last fateful missive to the Gazette…she kept on, but that writing never got sent. The narrative will consist of her lost articles, leap-frogging with journals kept by Pixie Sinclaire in her search for the missing expedition. Hopefully I’ll be pleased enough with the early results to post them.