in request for its


~ 12th of October, 1881 ~


Lethality Concealment Desirability Priority Status
8 7 8 (Mojave Desert) 7 D
Thinking Creatures - Armed with Anomalous Weapons - Non-Aggressive / Neutralized

Bounty Commissioner, ​Gereon Blanch
Lead Bounty Hunter, Harold C. Wright, Dr. Arnold Ward



Biting clouds of gold and red. Animals left dead in its wake. Beware of the east wind. It is of concern that you do not be late with this. Warrants for searching are of limited time, and secrecy is imperative.

Upon capture, immediately notify


*of the esteemed RED ROCK CLUB, under the Left Peak branch of the AXTON HORNSBY EXPLORATION SOCIETY


Men'll believe anything in this fuckin' jumped-up road-town. Tarred and feathered enough thieves to know that desert can drive people off the brink. A second sun made of gnats? Who knows. Heard worse, in my time. Indians out everywhere here been speakin' about some cloud of red hanging over the sands since forever. 'A house of hair'. Never seen it myself, but… Maybe. I've known an' caught enough folks maiming animals in the name of something to believe there's least some kind of truth there.

- Ranger Lee Johnson


Written July 1890, Revised 1910. Blakely esq.

ANOMALIE OBSCURA No. 387 was found by the Wright-Ward hunting party while investigating the Colorado Desert under Bligh jurisdiction following a tip-off about some large locust swarms out near the Algodones Dunes in southeastern California. While this normally would not give cause to presume the presence of beings necessitating the Creatura Obscura label, increased obsessions with Anomalia following the success of the Arnolds case resulted in several opportunists seeing the strange in everything in the hopes of future fame, and with all going on with our branches in Europe, the rising claimants to discovery are all too quick to fund such dreamers.

Rumors of periodic swarms of some kind of insect had been filtering through the local towns for a while by that point, with some claiming they were tied to a person known as 'the man in red', who had been thought murdering various animals and even people near at least three known towns at the border of the desert, nearer the railroads. After panning of various sources both via the use of our more criminal liaisons, the reports were confirmed as at least holding some truth, providing a lead. Such swarms were associated colloquially with a sickness of the bowels, though our men had very little time to confirm such reports, and experienced no such symptoms themselves. God's hand was on them, or so Wright claimed, and so it was that they found their quarry in due time.

After around three weeks of searching in the desert, the party we sent out was approached by said 'man in red', claiming himself to be 'the Servant', though when asked for a master he claimed that he served none but 'God'; contrary to his reputation, he was more than willing to help and aid the authority in their search, and insisted that he had 'killed nothing' when confronted on the matter. Upon further cooperation and the man's assured lack of weapons, the party followed him to the site where No. 387 was later found. Upon their entry into No. 387, sentries posted outside the site reported seeing the swarms arise from No. 387 that had been rumored days before, confirming the existence of the purported Anomalia, though their true nature had not been fully discerned as of yet.

It is believed that No. 387 was also responsible for the 'ship in the desert' rumors that had been circulating in that area for quite some time beforehand, as well.

I'm a man with a mission. My queen gave it to me, my queen and Country- and Viceroy. I can tell you're good people. My friend has been ill for some time, since before you changed your face; but you'll help, you are still Knights of Spur.

- The Man in Red



The only known photograph of No. 387

I had a brother once. A sister too. I loved them, would pray for them every night when I first set out from my homeland over the Atlantic. The ship would smell of bad ale and cabin whores and heaps of shit, and I'd pray not in spite of it but because of it. It's dirt we come from, and to dirt we return.

It's strange, though. I hadn't thought of them in ages. Not until I met you, anyway

It's a sign. It must be.

- The Man in Red

It is considered of import to note that any and all accounts regarding aspects of such Anomalia recounted here come distinctly posthumously, via the mouths of brigands and gunslingers, who, though hired under Axton Hornsby's Bligh Charter and given their shields for authority, remain known of ill-repute and excessive aplomb. The writings here that follow are pieced from their words as can be best managed, but certain discrepancies continue to fail to be addressed hereby.

The cache of queer things found and labeled under the designation ANOMALIE OBSCURA No. 387 are numerous and have been placed beneath it for the purposes of simplification - upon the destruction of the central thing, the others seem to have died also, or so the men there assumed.

We're pilgrims. You, me, everyone here. We're pilgrims bearing witness to something gold and brilliant, but that's all that's left. I never got to sail the glistening seas of the El Dorado rivers, Portugal took it from me by gunpowder and by spears. But in a way, I found it anyways, rotten shell on the sandbar of America that it is. I never got to meet the king of the golden city, but I feel a duty to preserve the last husk of his honor. You would feel the same if only you'd seen it.

In a way, I'm a Knight of Spur, too. Only, for my dead golden crown.

- The Man in Red

No. 387 in and of itself, believed to be the source of the strangeness blighting the region, refers to a 'ship' of certain quality and unknown origin that was found half-lodged in the sands of the southern portion of the Colorado Desert in California. Lengthwise it was recorded to be some hundred meters long, and widthwise a mere fifty.1 It seemed made on the outside of a material similar in texture and quality to that of rusted Damascus steel, metallic when the sun hits it at certain times of day. While the ship bears a strange pronged 'mast' of sorts, it has no real upper deck; rather, a series of doorless jagged buildings clutter the top, spined and ribbed with bones of unidentified large animals. The successive layered nature of such 'buildings' imply the metallic character of the ship to not be inorganic at all, but rather 'grown' upward as if by a natural process. Attempts to dig into the ground outside the ship yielded that it had no bottom, its walls extending into the sands for as much as could be dug at the time.

The interior of No. 387 reveals a much larger inside to its outside, with a maze of spiraling passages that radiate out from a central space presumed to be located directly underneath the ship's mast. The material within the ship itself is not metallic, but upon close inspection bears a remarkable resemblance to analogous fossiliferous rocks - they are composed of creatures innumerable, stacked and cemented together in some reddish rust-like groundmass, all of unidentified origin, and all seemingly drained of something before they were given to No. 387's walls. These walls appear to be alive, in a way, and it is well-advised that one must not touch them. An attempt to remove one of the creatures from them proved ill-fated, resulting in the loss of one of the party sent into the ship, his body being systematically torn apart by the creatures therein, who had come alive, and cemented and assimilated to become one of their numbers.

Various heads of animals local to the surrounding area around No. 387 were found suspended by unknown substances of substantial strength to the ceiling of the passages at certain points in the network, their eyes sewn shut by an unknown fluid and jaws permanently dislocated. The function of such displays are unknown, but they appear to place at every intersection between two passages, arranged in a spiraling cluster.

No. 387 B designates a man with no given name beyond 'the Man in Red' claiming to have once been a conquistador with a writ from the Spanish monarchy to find 'the nine wonders of the New World', declaring that he had been led to No. 387 B by a 'golden dream'. In spite of this, he has only been reported as speaking English, with some occasional lapses into a language unknown by the gunslingers on the scene. Despite the hellish locale, he appeared completely ready and willing to serve and aid in leading the men in our employ to No. 387, believing they could help him with various tasks pertaining to its maintenance. The man seems more a corpse than living, with one of his hands so decayed it essentially is useless in its present state. He at least partly appears aware of his current disposition but chooses not to put any weight to it, believing that serving the 'glory of the crown' and the health of the spirit was more important than the trivial matters of the body.

B eyond the nature of the network itself, it is strongly believed that No. 387 is also capable of producing certain life to aid in its defense and repair - here lies the Creatura Obscura so suspected from previous reports. During the investigation, a multitude of previously unclassified creatures was discovered, but only seven were described thoroughly enough to be included here. Naming conventions as stated below come from names provided by No. 387 B, or are otherwise labeled by number alone:

No. 1. The Red Pigs:

Such creatures have no eyes, but appear entirely segmented similar in manner and form to other metameric elongated arthropods on the earth,2 though it is clear they are most certainly alien in origin. They grow to various sizes, anything ranging from the length and width of a man's thumb, to something much larger. The biggest recorded was nearly thirteen feet in length and two men abreast widthwise, and lay entirely stationary with no seeming reaction to foreign stimuli even when directly provoked or interfered with via the use of machetes and firearms.

It is additionally important to note that they seem to only have one orifice which functions as both the mouth and anus of their bodies, and it is by seemingly rotatable root-like structures (possibly teeth, but they appear to be jointed and held together by exterior 'ligaments', implying a rather different origin to our own) that they appear able to attach themselves to various surfaces and thereby sustain themselves. They were encountered both feeding in this manner and apparently growing from the walls of the tunnels in various protrusions and fibrous sacs, producing a fluid from their joints similar in appearance to that of animal blood, though the color is blacker than red, and its consistency far more viscous. No. 387 B called them 'gifts of the Spanish sun's great herd', claiming it was they who bored the tunnels within No. 387, and that they are 'the tormented, and the damned. They were stolen from death for a purpose, and when they fulfill it, so it is that their lives shall be stolen as well, and that they may finally rest.'

No. 2. The Heralds:

These creatures appear consistently 1-1.5m in height, standing on two legs with multiple claw-like appendages protruding from their torso. Their bodies are vesicular in appearance and bear globular tumor-like ocular structures imbued with a strange inner light. While roughly like a man in appearance, no defined 'head' can be seen on their bodies. They were reported as traversing in wolf-like packs through the tunnels, but their explicit purpose in doing so - whether social, or something more sinister - remains unknown. No. 387 B refused to speak of their nature beyond the name he had given them.

When gunslinger Jeremy Northrope tried to stop one and question it, it froze and attached its claws into him, emitting a piercing thrumming sound for four minutes before releasing him and walking away, causing him an intense feeling of vertigo and disillusionment. When he finally awoke from his delirium an hour later, he said he had been taken somewhere else: a 'golden city larger than the whole world where a thousand fires burned, rising from a sea of blood that eats the sky'. No. 387 B claimed this to be a real place, a 'memory' of El Dorado, saying that the ship was 'a cathedral, born there like Jesus'.

No. 3. The Carriers:

'The Carriers' typically appeared as headless animals of various species whose bodies were taken from the surrounding area outside No. 387, the source material from local deer, coyotes, roadrunners, and even rattlesnakes and small lizards having been recorded. These creatures tended to cloister around the intersections of the passages near their missing dangling heads, seemingly moving around aimlessly but never straying farther away.

Given how a litter of No. 1's 'red pigs' were seen emerging from a split-open body of No. 3, we strongly suspect they are not autonomous at all, but rather serve as living insulators for such creatures to develop and grow before they come of age. Therefore, the reason they 'move' is likely due to being solely motivated by an attempt to regulate temperature for the creatures inside.

No. 387 B claims to be the one who removes the heads and prepares the animals for transfer.

No. 4. Unnamed:

Similar in appearance to No. 1 specimens, but smaller with more orifices and spines. Only one such creature was recorded, having been attached to No. 387 B's head. It's unknown if this was how No. 387 B remained alive or not, and it was never fully acknowledged by No. 387 B despite having engulfed a large portion of the man's face, with attachments seen driven into one of his eye sockets and both ears.

No. 5. Unnamed:

Unnamed spider-like creatures with nearly twelve legs, and a thorny hide covered in skulls, both human-like and not. They range in size, and most seem 'dead'. It was presumed they were originally just part of the organic architecture of No. 387, but upon No. 387's demise they seemed to come alive to protect No. 387 C at all costs.

No. 6. Blood Flies:

Creatures of this manner and form were found in swarms both outside and inside No. 387. Originally believed to be some kind of locust, close inspection reveals them to have distinct red-gold coloring with nearly ten wings rather than one, each with a jointed structure unlike most insects. Aside from that, their bodies are long and leech-like, similar to No. 1 specimens, but support a bulbous growth for a head covered with numerous vesicles embedded with what can be assumed are eyes.

Sizes outside have been recorded ranging between that of a gnat, to nearly the size of a small dog. They appear to act similarly to mosquitoes, but rather than just blood, they seem to also seek out technology. The camera was taken and corroded by such creatures on our men's escape.

Most of the venture, however, encountered these creatures as rather docile, not really interfering with those in our employ until a threat was registered to No. 387.

No. 7. The Builders:

Massive bloated versions of No. 6 the size of train cars, found in the central chamber of No. 387. Despite having wings and legs aplenty, these creatures do not move overmuch, rather focusing entirely on one goal: construction. It's suspected that it is they who are responsible for the construction of No. 387 in its entirety, though they were only found building the throne during our encounters there.

No. 387 B claims they were El Dorado's 'milk and honey; their promised. Their supreme,' and that it was by their hand that the great city of gold inside its tower had been made brilliant.

Before the last days, the caliphate had reigned glorious. The golden tower Al-Gahat, you can see it in the dreams. It was built for a reason, you know. The King knew he could not find the Bab-Ilim, the Babel of ancients, so be decided to surpass it. I saw it all in my dreams before I came here. The holy brothels. The canals. The temples there are not small like this one. They walk on beasts with seven legs, and they have blood and wine aplenty, did you know that? There was always indulgence in the Empire, and everything knew itself and its place. Beautiful Zoroth'at, too, El Dorado: the place I had sought foolishly thinking it a village of mere savage men who had too many trinkets. It is the old city, the place of a thousand flames, where all eyes were awake always, and aware of the truth of what reigned them… There is power in king's gold. In king's flesh. And before the end… all the servants in a hundred thousand worlds knew it.

- The Man in Red

This central 'chamber' within No. 387 was found at last after much journeying through the tunnels. The walls are entirely composed here with the bones and meat of various creatures, known and unknown, and at its center lies a deep vat of a dubious thick mixture of what No. 387 B claims to be blood of 'a thousand countries, a thousand nations, a thousand worlds'. Many of the creatures previously described above were seen clustering around the edges, feeding off of it. At the far end of the room, a throne some 20-30 meters in height was seen in construction by the so-called 'Builders', something that No. 387 B claims is 'the way back', that got 'broken' when No. 387 came here from 'Far Arabia'.

No. 387 C refers to what No. 387 B called only 'the Scientist', an unmoving humanoid 'giant' with ten arms and ten eyes, composed of various animal bones and rotting red, blue, and white flesh seemingly part of the growths on the walls of the central chamber. Ritualistic behavior is observed by everything within No. 387 towards No. 387 C.

He was an imam, once. From El Dorado, before the Portuguese came. Now he just sleeps, of course - but we'll wake him. I know we will. The Scientist knew the magic of the flesh, and it was he who saved this cathedral and took it here, when the Empire collapsed. A whole river of worlds the caliphate once spanned, brothers and sisters and children copulating under the Crown, forever singing from minarets in the name of the two suns, red and gold.

But that's all gone. Lost, forever.

I can't decide if I found the city of gold- or not.

- The Man in Red

While not much now is known about No. 387 C, based on reports of increasing vertigo and delusion upon entry into to the central chamber of No. 3873, we are led to believe that prolonged exposure to the room can induce physiological or psychological shifts in those present, making them more susceptible to the influence of No. 387. An autopsy of one of the bodies recovered from the room after a reinvestigation of the No. 387 site two weeks later revealed tumor-like growths on the inside of the brain similar to what was seen present on the No. 2 specimens, 'the Heralds'. It's very likely that such growths and effects were the precursor signs of the eventual fate of No. 387 B, and a possible cause of his apparent persisting undeath in the present day.

While further study of such unique Anomalia would have been optimal, unfortunately circumstances prevented the party from doing so. When the party attempted to leave to reconnect with the sentries outside, No. 387 B started crying, demanding an answer as to why they were abandoning him there. Despite repeated attempts to leave, No. 387 B's insistence became more frantic, and the other creatures within the ship seemed to awake from their trance.

While such creatures proved easy to kill with ordinary firearms, more drastic measures had to thus be undertaken.


No. 387 as of right now does not pose any known further threat, which is of great relief to us in spite of everything else. Due to a lack of any possible concealment procedures available on our behalf for Anomalia of this nature, rangers on site decided it best to deal with it in a direct manner: via the use of stockpiled dynamite from nearby abandoned railroad construction sheds.

While risky, when it became clear that No. 387 and its various components would not release the party that went inside of it without a fight, strategically placed reserves of dynamic were piled against weak points in the outer shell of the ship. Escape from No. 387 was secured by the party via the threatening of the Man in Red, who was shot in the head immediately after exit multiple times to sever his connection to what was preserving his body from death, the third casualty that day. As soon as the majority of the former party was seen escaping as best they can, the dynamite was lit, permanently wounding No. 387. Immediately upon contact with the smaller explosions, the ship fell to pieces, disappearing under the sand.

Most of the creatures flying outside of No. 387 seemed to immediately die, rupturing from the inside out in extremely hot torrents of blood and innards, falling out of the sky in droves - further confirming suspicions that they were extensions of No. 387 in and of itself. Those that did not die disappeared under the sands, and despite further excavation in those dunes, none were recovered. A few days later, sightings of a wounded beast with ten arms and a red eye slowly moving north towards the remains of the railroad were reported at sunset.

The only thing left from the rather timid explosion was No. 387 B's helmet, which had somehow survived the blast. No remaining magic, anomalous signatures, or other abnormalities were found associated with it.

As of today, despite frequent revisiting of the area of the explosion and the surrounding desert, it remains currently unaccounted for. Whether this supposed sighting is truly No. 387 C, or another induced vision residual of the Heralds that had inhabited No. 387 or even the ship itself, remains unanswered.

I came to America to discover the undiscoverable, to brave and to find what had been barred legally from our organisation for far too long. I wanted to make a name for myself, for my chapter in our grand society. The Bligh Charter was given to us for a reason, and I believed myself the man to prove that we were worth that reason.

Yet of all the things I've been party to something still brings me back to that one day - by the strange ship, on those sands. When blood rained from the sky, the dynamite lit, seeing that Red Man's head rupture in front of me and the monster attached to it rip like dry grass… The others were all cheering.

I could only think of how much of a waste it all was.

The red man, the servant, whoever he was - he called us Knights like him, Knights of Spur. Maybe a reference to when we were still serving under the Pope, though how he could have known that I can't deign to say. I didn't feel very knightly that day. Might it be that he was indeed as old as he claimed, old enough to have been one of our people, back when there was no Axton-Hornsby Exploration Society or Protectorate or any of that, and just the Auctoritas in its prime. Maybe he was just a delusion, like everything else in that place.

Whenever he spoke of the Scientist, that strange idol in that horrible room, he spoke of it like it was a brother. A friend. He spoke of it, and every time, he caught my eyes with his own. It unsettled me in more ways than I'd like to admit. His pupils and irises were so milky his whole eyes might as well have been white, and the thing that ate at the side of his head shuddered whenever his gaze met mine.

Maybe it's because he knew that I was the only one there who'd understand. That this beast, this monster who'd created some hellish pit here in the middle of nowhere wasn't really that different from me. It too came to these lands to try and prove something to its ruler. It too, this 'imam', this 'scientist', was scorned by its peers. I was the only scientist there in our party that day, the only learned man in that wily group. The others thought me evil. I don't think they liked my top-hat, or my gloves, or very much about me at all. I was just good at fixing them.

That's fine. Tolerance does not mean love, and that's a fact I've never been blind to

Maybe this 'Scientist' of old was thought the same. He came here to prove himself to a King so great his city spanned worlds, to prove he could be useful. To have a purpose in his King's grand design, in helping to build that empire, that grand Tower. The others at home scorned him, maybe even the others around him, too. He went out, adventuring through worlds upon worlds, to pave new venues for his country and king. To share that love he knew so well, that gave so little back to him in return. But then he crashed, and ended up here; alone, and lost. And then whatever place beyond time and space he hailed from fell. To massacre or disease, war or famine, like all the other grand civilizations in our own human histories. Like in the Bible, a tower had been built too grand and too splendorous for likes of the Almighty, and so it was laid waste, its people scattered and its language divided up forever.

Nothing lasts. Not even kings.

Were we truly Knights of Spur? Or were we Portugal, there to bring it all down?

It grows late, and I tire of asking maybes.

Good night.

- Arnold Ward, doctor in the Wright-Ward hunting party and later a famous professor in the field of paratheistic sociology. Written shortly before he died. 1910.

The following is the last recorded quote from the Servant, shortly before the final scouts left No. 387 for the last time.

I know not if I truly found the City of Gold, or if it were a devil's mirage- but grant me this kindness, from seeking knights to a knight who no longer seeks. We mean you all no harm, not I nor my companion, nor the creatures who stem from him. I know this has never stopped the killing of things by the church, just as Portugal slew innumerable innocents in the New World and the City of Gold.

I am thankful, at least, to know that my life is in the hands of Knights belike; rather than the silvery cold hands of a new age's machines. Even if those knights use strange weapons and strange terms, and come from an English land not of England. To be killed or saved by my brothers through time, that is the only kindness I expect.

All of us seek something, on our noble ventures. I sought the city of gold, I found a tower-city of it. My friend, here in this vessel, sought colonies in the same way a spurned pilgrim to our New World has done. I do not know what strange lands you men seek, what destinies you will manifest- as your government has said, according to my scarce visits. I cannot remember my comrades in arms any longer, our search is long over.

Do not find your own El Dorado, friends. The thrill is in the search. You will not like the golden forms that your final port takes. A man who reaches his goal with his men lying face-down on the road behind him is a sorrowful man indeed. A man who never finds his Tower, his City of Gold, but stays with his friends- that is a happy man. But one who climbs those final red peaks, friends not lying in the dirt but trembling still on the last porch in fear of him? One who lost his guiding light, his sight of himself in pursuit of his Tower? That is not a man anymore at all.

That is a monster.

- The Man in Red

Property of the Axton-Hornsby Exploration Society’s Anomaly Records

in collaboration with

Department of Aberration Concealment & Logistics

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