Paranormal Feng Shui High Strangeness in the Secret War

The truth is out there, and sometimes it's pretty weird. History is littered with accounts of strange encounters, odd occurences, and bizzare events which seem to defy explanation. Scoffed at by scientists and dimissed by the authorities, these stories are largely relegated to the realms of fringe literature, tabloid journalism, and outright fiction. Nevertheless, it's hard to deny that there are some things for which there are no easy answers. In the world of Feng Shui strangeness is a daily occurence, and the supernatural a fact of life. With this in mind, here are a few real-life mysteries from our world re-told in terms of the secret war. The first part of each entry provides a brief description and summary of the phenomenon, followed by a game-world explanation in the second part, along with statistics where appropriate.

Most of the background for these write-ups came from the book Unexplained by Jerome Clark (Visible Ink Press, c. 1993), with additional information culled from different sources on the Web. Go check it out… you might be surprised at what's out there.


The paranormal has been with us since the beginning of recorded history. The earliest peoples believed in ghosts, spirits, monsters, and magic. These beliefs thrived and flourished for centuries, until the advent of the renaissance, the age of reason, and the industrial revolution. Despite this, belief in the supernatural has never really died out, but it has been banished from mainstream notions of reality. The beliefs we once held as true are now regarded as little more than fairy tales, mythology, folklore, and ignorant superstition. In the modern world, the unexplained makes for great TV and movies, not to mention sensationalistic tabloid headlines, but not for serious study or research. Those who do take a somewhat more open-minded approach toward the paranormal are often deried, or at best regarded as somewhat eccentric and naive. The idea of a sober, unbiased look at paranormal phenomena by the scientific community at large is little more than wishful thinking.

This situation is no accident, but rather the long-term result of the efforts of the Ascended to suppress all knowledge of the true nature of reality. Were the secret war to be made public, it would jeopardize the Lodge's control of humanity. What's more, the revelation that the supernatural existed could possibly bring about the return of magic to the world. Needless to say, the Ascended are not eager to have this happen. Thus, as part of their long term goals they have waged a systematic campaign to discourage belief in the paranormal to the point where this disbelief is now the norm.

The primary tactics employed by the Asceneded the spread of disinformation, discrediting the reliability and integrity of witnesses, and discouraging serious research and inquiry into anomalous events. “Official” explanations reduce paranormal events to mundane occurrences, and thus the public rarely questions these occurences anymore. Reliable witnesses are portrayed as crackpots or fools, so few reliable witnesses are willing to come forward anymore. Scientists and journalists who attempt serious investigation are treated with derision and contempt, while actual frauds and kooks are subtly encouraged to take up their causes, thus discrediting them even further. Tabloids print outrageous stories about the unexplained, reinforcing the idea that all such stories are equally ridiculous. Meanwhile, Hollywood continues to churn out special-effects laden sci-fi and horror films which trivialize the paranormal, and promote the idea that their subject matter is nothing more than fiction.

Of course, the Ascended themselves take all such reports of paranormal activity seriously, and they carefully check such reports for evidence of secret war activity. When they do come across a genuine anomalous event, they work quickly to discredit or dismiss it in public while they secretly investigate to determine what is behind the disturbance, and how it can be most quickly and efficiently taken care of.



Mothman stands around 6 or 7 feet tall, has gray skin, and large batlike wings which it keeps folded against it back. It has glowing red eyes, about two inches wide and six inches apart, set between its wings around where it's shoulders would be. It walks with a shuffling gait, but can fly at high speed without flapping its wings, and it takes flight straight into the air from a standing position. It emits a high pitched squeak, and electronic devices such as televisions and radios malfunction in it's presence, also giving off a high pitched squeal. Witnesses report being overcome with feelings of irrational fear while in the creature's presence.


One of the weirdest, and most puzzling creatures in cryptozoological history, Mothman was first sighted on November 15, 1966 just outside of Point Pleasant, West Virginia. Two couples driving by an abandoned TNT plant just outside the city spotted the creature, which they claim followed them to the edge of the city, despite the fact that they were driving at 100mph. Other reports of the creature came in that same evening, including one by a man who claimed his dog disappeared after it rushed at the thing. The press dubbed the creature “Mothman,” and sightings continued throughout 1967, coinciding with numerous reports of UFO and Men In Black activity. Events culminated on December 15, when the Silver Bridge at Point Pleasant collapsed during rush hour, killing many people, including several Mothman, UFO, and MIB witnesses. Sightings of the creature and other unusual activity more or less dried up after this point.

The Truth

Early in the Summer of 1996 a Buro N-SER team (Netherworld Survey Exploration and Reconnaissance; informally known as “Answer Teams”) made a startling discovery — a portal which opened to 1966, specifically, to an area around Point Pleasant, West Virginia. This single portal provided access to an otherwise inaccessible juncture, and the Architects were quick to take advantage of this unexpected windfall. A task force, hastily dispatched to gather intelligence, reported there were no other portals and no secret war activity in the juncture, which was ripe for infiltration and takeover. However, because there was only one portal, and because the Buro needed to keep its existence secret, moving a large-scale force into the juncture was impractical.

There was, however, one other unexpected boon. The area near the portal sported an unusual topographical feature: a number of small concrete “igloos” used to store ammunition during World War II. These igloos created an unusual flow of chi energy that the CDCA surmised could be adjusted to recreate conditions similar to those in 2056. Thus, the Buro decided to establish a small base of operations near the abandoned munitions plant and begin “growing” abominations to serve as strike force. Because their facilities were so limited, the Buro scientists assigned to the project were instructed to develop a specific type of abomination that could be cloned from only a tiny amount of stored genetic material (most abominations require a whole demon or other supernatural creature to start with). The result was half a dozen creatures which would later be known as Mothmen. The project was a success; not only were the Mothmen fast, powerful, and highly efficient killers, they also possessed the ability to generate fear in humans intense enough to actually kill them. Unfortunately, the Buro team was the first to be on the receiving end of this power, as the Mothmen destroyed the base and killed the entire team.

Shortly afterwards Mothmen sightings began around the area. The Architects immediately dispatched another team to assess the situation and recapture the abominations. However, by this time the Lodge had caught wind of the situation and dispatched their own agents to investigate. The Buro team, caught off guard by these unexpected adversaries, and underestimating the power of their creations, were quickly decimated. The Buro reacted by sending even more agents, and the Ascended responded in kind. Soon there was a small but furious covert war going on in the area, as the Architects desperately tried to cling to their foothold in the juncture. Things finally came to a head when the Ascended's geomancers discovered the portal and surmised that a major disruption of the chi in the area would cause it to collapse. They determined that the best way to do this would be to destroy the Silver Bridge. Their hypothesis was correct, and with the closing of the portal, the affair largely came to an end.

As for the Mothmen: all but one of the six were captured or confirmed killed. The sixth was never recovered, and Buro Intelligence assumed that it escaped into the Netherworld. However, there have been one or two odd reports of encounters since then that leave this explanation in doubt. Reports that the Architects are working on or have created more Mothman abominations are unconfirmed.

Coral Castle


Located in southern Florida, Coral Castle comprises a walled courtyard and tower built entirely out of massive blocks of coral each weighing several tons. The blocks are fitted together with incredible mathematical precision that defies the explanations of modern engineers. For instance, the main gate weighs 9 tons and fits to within a quarter-inch of the walls, yet can be pushed on it's pivot easily with a single finger. The rest of the castle is similarly designed, and seems closely tied to astronomical observation, and includes a giant sundial and telescope, along with various carvings of the planets and the like. Many of the features of the place, such as the 25 half-ton chairs scattered throughout the courtyard, are specifically aligned to stars, the position of the sun, and other astronomical phenomena. Other noteworthy features include a low stone altar, a 40-foot high obelisk set into a six-foot deep hole, and a banquet table with perfectly balanced coral rocking chairs.


Coral Castle was built between 1920 and 1940 by a single man, a Latvian Immigrant named Edward Leedskalnin. Poor in health, and possessing limited education, modern investigators are at a loss to explain how Leedskalnin cut and moved blocks that modern day heavy equipment is unable to handle and how he set them with such precision. Leedskalnin himself kept his methods a secret, working only at night and using a simple block and tackle device and other crude tools. A group of teenage boys who spied on him claim that they saw him levitate the blocks, but they were not taken seriously. In 1936, when developers threatened to set up a subdivision near the castle, Leedskalnin bought 10 acres of land nearby, hired a tractor, and moved the entire structure to the new location. The driver was not permitted to be at hand when the blocks were loaded onto his tractor, and he could not explain how Leedskalnin could have accomplished this task. The castle was quickly reassembled, and eventually Leedskalnin opened it for irregular tours. He never revealed the secrets of his construction, other than to claim that he had rediscovered the lost principles which allowed the Egyptians to build the pyramids, and that it was somehow related to the relationship of the earth to the stars and the like. Some investigators have theorized that Leedskalnin learned the secret of the “world grid,” an invisible network of energy lines which criss-cross the globe and concentrate power at the intersection points. Whatever the case, Leedskalnin died of poor health in 1953, having never revealed the methods or the purpose behind his creation. Why Leedskalnin created the castle is also a mystery, but the story goes that it was built for his “Sweet Sixteen,” a woman from his home country who had refused his hand in marriage.

The Truth

Coral Castle sits on a natural nexus of chi energy, and is itself a very powerful Feng Shui site constructed using advanced geomantic principles and located on an extremely auspicious location. Leedskalnin himself was a skilled sorcerer, and the grandson of a sorcerer who served in the court of the Queen of the Ice Pagoda. When the four Monarchs were deposed from power, their followers were largely scattered to the four winds. Leedskalnin's grandfather went to ground in 1842. Fearing for his life, he chose to sever his ties with the Ice Queen in hopes of distancing himself from her enemies. He returned to his homeland and quietly raised his family, training his son in the arts of magic, who in turn trained his son as well. Edward Leedskalnin grew up to be a powerful sorcerer, but one largely ignorant of the secret war. He listened to his father's stories, passed down from his grandfather, of the time the Monarchs ruled the earth and how they were cast down. While he took them to heart enough to keep his magic use a secret, he never quite fully understood their meaning.

One thing he did understand was that magic was difficult to work in his day and age. His desire to find a way to make it easier led him to the study of geomancy, and in this he proved to be a true prodigy. Leedskalnin discovered how chi energy flowed through Feng Shui sites, and how attunement to them could be used to increase magical energy. He soon discovered the principles behind manipulating topographical features to improve chi flow, and then from there he realized that chi energy was not just tied to the earth, but was affected, and could be drastically magnified, by the relationship of the earth to other celestial bodies. From there he began to work on his plan for a structure that would produce this desired effect, a structure which would become Coral Castle. This represented a tremendous leap of intellect; much as scientists were able to turn Einstein's theories into an atomic bomb, so Leedskalnin was able to take the knowledge of the ancients and use it to devise and construct what would amount to a massive chi collection and focusing device. In fact, his only mistake was in failing to understand the true scope of the power of Feng Shui. He knew that attunement to sites could increase magical ability, but he failed to understand that it could also be used to change history.

After much research, Leedskalnin emigrated to North America and then to Florida, where he believed he had found the idea location. Using his magical powers, he began construction on Coral Castle. At first he had to summon various supernatural entities for the early stage of construction, since he did not have the power to move the blocks himself. However, once the first stages of the castle were in place, he immediately began to reap the benefits of the chi flowing through the area. He soon had enough power to levitate the blocks on his own, and construction continued apace. However, he also attracted the peripheral interest of the Ascended. Because Leedskalnin was not tied to the secret war, the Ascended largely underestimated the scope of his activities. Thinking they had a discovered a squatter on a Feng Shui site, they arranged for developers to take an interest in the land, and then largely forgot about it. However, Leedskalnin calculated that he could re-establish his castle nearby without losing any of its potency. Thus, he relocated and completed his castle, and began to reap the benefits of the site.

Eventually, the Ascended caught wind of what had happened, and they were horrified (imagine discovering that your neighbor is keeping a nuclear reactor in his basement, and you get the idea). However, Leedskalnin was powerful enough, and the castle had attracted enough attention by then, that there was no quiet or easy way to eliminate them both. Instead, they kept a careful watch on the situation, and eventually determined that Leedskalnin, although exceptionally powerful, was not only ignorant of the nature of the secret war but also extremely reluctant to use his powers openly. Furthermore, although the castle was a potential time bomb, it was also too powerful to simply waste. Instead, the Lodge compromised: they allowed Leedskalnin to live out the rest of his life naturally, and upon his death they arranged to have the castle turned into a tourist attraction. By altering features of the landscape in and around the castle, including the installation of electric lighting, signs, and the like, they were able to dampen the power of the site somewhat, if only mildly. Because the site is so open, the Lodge can't really gain the benefits of full attunement from the site. However, they still gain a small benefit from controlling it, and more importantly, no one else can get at it either.

Men In Black


Men in Black (MIB) are usually described as having olive or pale complexions, with vaguely Asian or Scandinavian features. They are often said to have thin lips and slanted eyes, and they sometimes sport garish wigs or bad makeup in an attempt to look more normal. They get their name from their attire, which is entirely black in color. They are often described as wearing black suits which look brand new, but which are several years out of fashion and made from some sort of odd material. They are also known to sport black hats, sunglasses, and gloves. MIB's are also known for their weird behavior. They are sometimes said to be clueless about common household objects, and they often ask bizarre or inappropriate questions. Some are said to have difficulty breathing or walking normally as well. They are sometimes described as walking and acting in a mechanical fashion, and they appear to run out of energy for short periods as well.


Men in Black are one of the more curious and bizarre offshoots of UFO lore. MIB's are weird, vaugely sinister figures who puportedly contact individuals who claim to have seen UFO's or who are in some way connected to UFO research. Their purpose appears to be to find out what their subjects know or have witnessed, and then to intimidate them into silence. Typical MIB reports involve them visiting and questioning UFO witnesses about their encounters, trying to find out what they know. They also attempt to collect physical evidence, or intimidate their subjects into destroying any that they may posess. Often, they already know a great deal about what the witness has seen, and sometimes a great deal about the witnesses themselves. They sometimes claim to come from some branch of the United States government or military, though they will also claim to be UFO researchers, salesmen, or something else unrelated. They travel in groups of one to three, and are known for driving large, shiny, brand-new black cars which are nonetheless twenty to thirty years out of date. The cars themselves often have strange features too, such as odd inisignia, missing liscense plates, or weird illumination coming from the interior.

The Truth

The modern juncture is a hotbed of activity for the secret war. Although under the control of the Asceneded, 1996 is so large and chaotic that operatives from other factions find it easy to slip in and establish footholds here. Keeping those footholds, however, is another story, as the Lodge is ever-vigilant in defending their territory, and they are swift and merciless with their enemies. As a result, the other factions in the secret war have had to set up their own intelligence networks to keep track of the Ascended and each other. When their security is compromised, they must move quickly to neutralize the threat, lest they fall prey to the Ascended. For these situations, the Architects employ a highly-secret cadre of elite agents that have come to be known as the Men in Black.

The Men in Black represent some of the most talented and experienced members of Buro intelligence, as only the best are sent to operate in other junctures. The primary function of the MIB's is to monitor developments in the secret war in their juncture, both to keep track of the activities of the other factions, and to see that the security of Architect operations are not compromised. When the latter occurs, the MIB's act to rectify the situation. For the most part, the MIB's remain invisible even to other secret warriors, much less to the general public. Threats to Buro security usually come from one of the other factions, and are dealt with accordingly. However, occasionally an innocent bystander accidentally sees something they shouldn't have. A Buromil craft is mistaken for a UFO, or a rogue abomination for an extraterrestrial. One of the tasks of the MIB's are to anaylze UFO sightings from around the world and correlate them with Buro activities. Of course, in most cases they have nothing to do with each other, but occasionally it turns up that someone may have indeed witnessed something related to the Architects' activities. The MIB then analyze and assess the situation, finding out all they can about the witnesses and the encounter. Finally, if necessary, they pay a visit to the witness and, if necessary, attempt to intimidate him or her into silence.

This is usually enough. The world the Ascended have fashioned actually works for the Architects in this case, as MIB visitations are lumped in with Bigfoot and Loch Ness Monster sightings. The people who go public are the ones the Architects know will be ignored or ridiculed. It's not that the Architects worry about the general public discovering them. Rather, they worry that these chance sightings could provide evidence to the Ascended of Architect activities, and thus lead to eventual discovery. Witnesses who are potentially a real threat are the ones whose stories never get told.

The origin of the Men In Black explains a lot of their peculiarities. Although Buro Intelligence is very competent when it comes to keeping track of events in the secret war, their knowledge of the other junctures is spotty at best (imagine having to blend into in 1936 when your only frame of reference is old movies, periodicals, and news footage). As a result, they miss a lot of the details, thus, the new-yet-outdated look of the MIB's vehicles and clothing (not to mention the advanced polymer-fabric which comprises their suits). The MIB's odd behavoir can also be attributed to the fact that they come from a different juncture, not to mention the fact that their work keeps them largely isolated from rest of the public in their own time, much less any other. Finally, the bizarre appearance of the MIB's themselves is often the result of proglonged use of arcanowave devices. Unfortunately, the most experienced Buro agents are those who have been using arcanotechnology for a long time. Thus, most MIB's are at least in the first stage of arcanowave mutation, while some are all the way up to the third. Their attempts to hide this are often even more conspicuous than the mutations themselves. The fact is, the MIB's are a weird group even among the general weirdness of the secret war. Even other Buro operatives give them a wide berth, finding them to be disconcerting and unpleasant. Make no mistake though, this is not an irrational response: the MIB's are responsible for maintaining Architect intelligence and security. They are very skilled at both, and in the latter case, utterly ruthless as well.

By the way, there are female operatives — Women in Black — as well.

Springheel Jack


Also known as “Springald” or “Spring Heeled Jack,” Springheel Jack was described by one of his victims as having a “most hideous and frightful” appearance, with clawed hands and eyes like “red balls of fire.” The same victim also reported that beneath a black cloak he wore a helmet and a tight fitting white garment like an “oilskin.” Other descriptions also mention a helmet and a tight fitting oilskin outfit, as well as clawed fingers and pointed ears. All accounts indicate that Jack was capable of effecting great leaps, and several report that he was able to breathe blue and white fire from his mouth.


Springheel Jack was a bizzare and mysterious figure who plauged England during the 19th century with a series of unprovoked attacks on women. Typically, he would hide in an alley or behind a hedgerow until his victim passed by. He would then leap out and assault her, ripping her clothes with his clawed hands and breathing fire into her face before either leaping away or melting back into the darkness. Jack made his first appearances around London in 1837, coming fully into the public spotlight the following year when he began making attacks within the city proper itself. Armed bands of vigilantes patroled the streets at night looking for him, but without avial. Attacks continued throughout the 1850's and 60's throughout the countryside. In the 70's he was reported to have slapped army sentries, and angry mobs apparently chased and shot at him, also to no effect. Whenever he was cornered, Jack would simply vanish into the night. A sentry who shot at him claimed that his bullet passed through him with no effect. Some have claimed that Jack was actually Henry, the Marquis of Waterford, an young Irish nobleman who supposedly used springs concealed in his boots to leap about. However, not only is it impossible to make huge leaps with bootsprings, but Jack continued his activities for several years after the death of Waterford. He was last reported in Liverpool of 1904, where he was reported leaping from the ground to rooftops and back again. Since then there have been occasional odd reports which suggest that Jack may still be at large, but these are sporadic and unconvincing at best.

The Truth

Springheel Jack is actually little more than a footnote in the secret war, noteworthy mainly as a failure on the part of the Ascended to control a rampaging supernatural creature in their own backyard. In fact, Jack first began his depredations during a period outside of the secret war, and he seems to have largely stayed out of it even while portals were open to his juncture. Nonetheless, Jack is a genuine supernatural creature, a demon actually, and thus is in some small way tied to the secret war.

Jack gained entry to our world almost entirely by accident. He was let in when a cabal of magicians operating in England attempted to summon a different demon and got him instead. Although spiritualism would not become popular in England for some time to come, there were still dabblers who experiemented with sorcery. Like the group who summoned him, most were made up of bored and jaded aristrocrats looking for a thrill. Most were harmless and clueless, but some, whether by chance or dilligence, did actually manage to achieve some small degree of skill. This is not to say that there were no real sorcerers around at the time, only that those who did exist were sensible enough to lay low and seek out more hospitible locales. At any rate, Jack was accidentally summoned by one such group, who quickly realized that they had no control over the demon. Ironically, the Marquis of Waterford was part of this group, and rumors of his involvement led to him being mistaken for the demon itself.

Springheel Jack, as he was dubbed, was as lucky to be summoned to earth as much as his summoners were unlucky enough in getting him. In the hierarchy of the underworld he was a minor demon, mainly responsible for torturing women of immoral character. Once free on earth, he displayed little ambition for doing anything else. And so for several decades Jack roamed England doing little more than attacking and frightening innocent victims, mainly young women, though rarely doing permenant harm. He apparently had no plans or schemes or even direction beyond these simple acts of self-gratification. He was, however, fast and cunning, and easily able to avoid the fumbling attempts of the Ascended in the area to reign him in. Eventually he disappeared from the scene, and the Ascended were content to relegate hm to the dustbin of historical curiousities. Most assume that he was eventually found by his demonic masters and dragged back into the underworld, but none really know for sure.

The Philadelphia Experiment


In June of 1943 the U.S. Navy conducted a top-secret experiment on a small destroyer escort named the U.S.S. Eldridge. Code-named “Project Rainbow,” the goal of this experiment was to make the ship invisible to enemy detection utilizing concepts in Einstein's Unified Field Theory, although whether or not this was meant to mean radar invisibility or true visual invisibility is unclear. Supposedly, the experiment was staged at the Philadelphia Naval Yard and at sea. The Eldridge was fitted with a massive amount of secret electrical equipment which was meant to create an intense magnetic field around the ship which would refract light and/or radar waves. On July 22nd the experiment was carried out. At first the Eldridge was enveloped by a greenish fog, and then it disappeared entirely. When the machinery was shut down, the green fog returned, followed by the Eldridge. When naval personnel boarded the ship, they found the crew to be disoriented and nauseous. A second test was held on October 28th, this time in full view of the S.S. Andrew Furuseth, a merchant marine ship. This time the ship vanished, only to reappear miles away in Norfolk, Virginia. After a few minutes it vanished again, returning once more to the Philadelphia Naval Yards. This time the effects on the crew were much worse: some were horribly burned, others driven insane. Five men were found fused to the bulkhead of the ship, while others were rendered invisible or incorporeal. Some simply vanished. The project was considered a failure and shut down, and all record of it was hushed up.


The exposure of the Philadelphia Experiment begins with an auto-parts salesman and astronomer named Morris K. Jessup. In 1955, Jessup wrote a book called The Case for the UFO and embarked on a lecture tour to promote it. During these lectures Jessup urged his audience to push the government to conduct research into antigravity and Einstien's Unifed Feild Theory, with the aim of promoting spaceflight. In January 1956, Jessup recieved a letter from one Carlos Miguel Allende (a.k.a. Carl Allen) chiding him for encouraging this sort of research. According to Allende, the Navy had already taken this course, the result of which were the events of the Philadelphia experiment, which Allende claimed to have witnessed as a sailor on the S.S. Andrew Furuseth. Although Jessup was intrigued, Allende could offer no proof of his claims, and so Jessup eventually brushed it aside.

The mystery resurfaced a year later, when Jessup was invited to visit the Office of Naval Research. There he was presented with a copy of his book, which had been mailed anonymously to the ONR. The book was filled with annotations which took the form of a conversation between three individuals designated “Mr. A,” “Mr. B,” and “Jemi.” The three appeared to have extensive knowledge of the Unified Feild Theory and UFO propulsion systems, with the implication that the writers were something more than human. Jessup recognized the handwriting of Mr. A as that of Carlos Allende, and he turned over his correspondence with him to the ONR. These letters, along with the annotated copy of Jessup's novel, were eventually reprinted together by the Varo Corporation, a firm involved with military contracts. Why they chose to do this is unknown. Jessup himself commited suicide a few years later.

Several books were eventually written about the Philadelphia Experiment, and a movie was made as well, but no real evidence ever surfaced indicating that it ever actually happened. Allende supposedly confessed that the whole thing was a hoax, then later recanted his confession. Information eventually surfaced which painted Allende as a brilliant but possibly disturbed individual with a history of telling very convincing lies, and there is little which supports the idea that the story is anything but a product of his imagination. Naturally, the navy denies it ever occured.

The Truth

In the late 30's the U.S. Navy, acting under the dictates of the Ascended, instigated an ultra-top secret research program, ostensibly into possible methods of achieving radar invisibility. Codenamed “Project Rainbow,” the tre purpose of the program was to create a device similar to the Architect's gatemaker using non-arcanowave technology. In other words, the Ascended was looking into a means by which they could open portals to the Netherworld at will. By June of 1943, they were ready to test out the results of this project. Technology being what it was at that time, a massive amount of equipement was needed, and so the U.S.S. Eldridge was chosen as a test site. The goal was not to transport the ship iteself — it simply served as the platform for the equipment which would be used to used to, ideally, open a man-sized portal into the Netherworld. The end result of the first test was far different from what the Ascended expected. Instead of opening a portal, the ship vanished, only reappearing when the machinery was shut down. Unfortunately, the crew was too disoriented afterwards to give an accurate account of what had happened to them. Nonetheless, the ship had gone somewhere, which, to the Lodge, meant that the matter was worth pursuing further.

After a few more months of working on the project, the Asceneded were ready to try again. This time, they were excited about the possibility, not of simply opening a portal to the Netherworld, but of being able to transport an entire ship there. They did not, however, get what they hoped for. The ship did indeed disappear, but it didn't make it to the Netherworld either — not entirely anyway. During the first test back in June the Eldridge phased out of reality, but was unable to phase back in until the machinery was shut off. The scientists working on the project could only speculate on what had happened, and on how to adjust it. The second time around the equipment was much less stable. Like light through a prism, the Eldridge was “splintered” throughout time and space, which is why it was sighted in Norfolk at the time of the experiment. Unfortunately, it also splintered into the Underworld. The crewmen who only went insane were the lucky ones.

Needless to say, the Ascended were terrified at the potential for disaster they had wrought. They ordered the project shut down. Most of the crew left alive had been driven mad, and so they were quietly locked away. Other crewmembers were left disoriented or confused, and the Ascended used advanced drugs and brainwashing techniques to make sure they stayed that way. Carl Allen, a high ranking pledged operative who took part in the mission, fell somewhere in-between. The Ascended debriefed him after the mission, and at first they believed that he was no threat to their security. Because he was a high-ranking and loyal operative, they allowed him to continue in his position. However, what they failed to realize was that a demon had partially taken possession of Allen while the Eldridge was in the Underworld. At first it lay dormant, but as time passed it subtly began to worm it's way into Allen's mind, attempting to control him entirely. The stress of combating the demon slowly drove Allen made, causing him to split into two personalities: his own, and that of Carlos Allende. Such was his mental state when he first contacted Morris K. Jessup. His tale of the Philadelphia Experiment was a bizzare mishmash of fact and fiction, created out of Allen's experiences and molded to fit Jessup's framework — in this case, UFO's.

Naturally, the Lodge became very alarmed when they discovered this leak, but by that time Allen had gone to ground, and his knowledge and experience from his service with the Pledged made him very difficult to find. Meanwhile, Allen's sanity continued to further deteriorate until he was no longer able to distinguish between fantasy and reality. Oddly enough, the demon inhabiting his mind was affected by Allen's insanity as well, eventually becoming drawn into his warped reality. As such, although Allen alone annotated Jessup's book, it was really three minds at work: his own, Carlos Allende, and the demon, who used the name “Jemi.” Although the annotations contained a lot of nonsense, they also contained a lot of highly confidential information. Unable to find Allen, the Ascended brought Jessup in to find out what he knew. They determined that Allen had told him a lot, but that it was so out of context as to be almost meaningless. They decided to keep an eye on Jessup, in the hopes that he might lead them to Allen. Although the Lodge knew that, by letting him live, the story would eventually be exposed, they also knew that they could spin it in such a way that no one would ever believe that it was true.

The Lodge's gamble eventually paid off: Allen eventually resurfaced and attempted to meet with Jessup. Somewhere within his tangled mind a synthesis of his personalities emerged — one which decided to tell Jessup about everything, from the true purpose of the Philadelphia Experiement to the existence of the Lodge. However, he never got that chance. Both Jessup and Allen were intercepted on the way to their rendevous. Jessup was murdered and his death made to look like a suicide. Allen was captured and subjected to intense brainwashing which was only partially successful. It completely ground his identity into mush, but it made him docile in the process. Although he would still continue to be erratic in the future (such as when he recanted his confession), he was no longer a problem. In fact, it actually turned out to be beneficial: by coming off as a liar and a kook, Allen helped to discredit his story. Ironically, they never realized that he had been possessed by a demon. Their mind-altering techniques essentially drove it back into dormancy, but they never got rid of it, and every once in a while it briefly resurfaces.

Of course, it would have been a lot easier for the Lodge to simply kill Allen as they did Jessup, but they decided to keep him around because they wanted to observe him for possible after-effects of the experiment. One of the legends surrounding the experiment was that some months after it had occured two crewmen from the Eldridge vanished in a bar right in front of a waitress. This is true. The Philadelphia Experiment had far-reaching effects that the Ascended don't really understand, and although Project Rainbow was shut down the Ascended have continued to the research, not so much because they want to open portals to the Netherworld, but because they want to know what happened. The events of the Philadelphia Experiment may hold the keys to understanding the nature of critical shifts, lateral reincarnation, and alternate realities, information which could be invaluable in the secret war. No one really understands exactly what happened to the Eldridge on Oct. 28th, 1943. The Ascended are desperate to learn, but also secretly afraid at what they might discover.

Winchester Mansion


The Winchester “Mystery” Mansion is a sprawling, 160-room complex spread out over 6 acres in San Jose, California. The Victorian mansion is remarkable, not just for it's size, but for it's complexity and bizzare architectural features. The mansion itself is a confusing jumble of rooms, hallways, and staircases, some of which were never completed. Within the house are stairs that rise into the ceiling, doors that open onto blank walls and 8 foot drops, and a staircase with two inch steps. There is also a seance room, 3 elevators, a bell tower, 10,000 windows (some of which are tiffany stained glass), 47 fireplaces, and a garden. The number 13 features prominently in the construction of the house — rooms with 13 windows, 52 skylights, 13 palms lining the drive — as do the numbers 7 and 11.


The story of the Winchester Mansion begins with Sarah Winchester, the Wife of William Winchester, the son of the man who founded the Winchester rifle company. Sarah's daughter died in her infancy, and 15 years later William died as well, leaving Sarah the heir to the Winchester fortune. After his death, Sarah supposedly travelled the world seeking advice on spiritual matters. She paid a visit to a bost spiritualist, who told her that she was being pursued by the vengeful spirits of those killed with Winchester rifles. She was told that the only way to evade these ghosts was to go west and begin construction of a mansion by the ocean that would never be finished. So long as she kept building, she would be safe.

Sarah took this advice to heart and moved out to San Jose in 1884, where she purchased an 8 room farmhouse. She immediately began construction, hiring dozens of servants and workmen who worked 24 hours a day for 38 years until her death in 1922, constantly adding and tearing down rooms according to Sarah's instructions. The strange design of the house was supposed to confuse evil spirits while at the same time attracting good ones. Supposedly, Sarah held nightly seances, which began with the ringing of the bell in the bell tower, during which she would communicate with the spirits of the dead. Other than that, she apparently only spoke to her servants and her secretary. She also slept in a different room every night until 1906, when an earthquake rocked the house. Because her house was so huge, it took the servants an hour to find her. Sarah believed that the earthquake was a sign that the spirits were unhappy. She ordered the front 30 rooms of the house boarded up, and she slept in the same bedroom until her death 16 years later. After her death the furniture was auctioned off. Eventually the house was renovated and opened to the public, where it remains a tourist curiousity to this very day.

The Truth

Geomantically speaking, there is likely no place anywhere in the Feng Shui universe that is more twisted than the Winchester Mansion. The house itself is a massive Feng Shui site, though not in any normal sense of the term. The chi which flows through the house isn't neither good nor bad, but rather warped and chaotic. The geomantic properties of the house aren't just nightmarish; they warp the fabric of space and time itself. The mansion itself is impossible to map. Although the well-travelled areas are stable, the more remote areas of the mansion seem to change of their own accord. There are, in fact, several closely guarded secrets about the Winchester house, which include the following.

Needless to say, the house is both a source of interest and a grave concern for the Ascended. After Sarah died, they tried to study the properties of the house in hopes of making use out of it, but were so stymied by the weird geomancy of the structure that they eventually gave up. They view the house as very dangerous and potentially catastrophic, and they would have just destroyed it had their geomancers not warned them that doing so could have grave and upredictable effects over a wide area. They've also tried to “tame” the house by renovating it, messing with the construction, and surrounding it with gas stations, movie theatres, and similar banal structures designed to divert the chi out of the area. None of it has worked. The house seems to have taken on a life of it's own, and all the changes just serve to make the chi even more chaotic around it. Incidentally, in 2056 the Architects have taken over the house and are attempting to study it, with no more success than the Ascended had. As it stands, no one in any juncture has any idea how and why the house is the way it is.

One of the biggest mysteries still surrounding the house is how it came to be. No one believes that it's construction was an accident. The geomantic properties of the house are too bizarre to appear naturally. The question then, is how the mansion came to be what it is, who was behind it, and why. Much speculation centers on the spiritualist who advisted Sarah to build the house. There is no record of her identity, and many assume that she was behind the design of the house, or that someone was behind her, though no one can figure out why. Others hold that, as Sarah claimed, the spirits themselves advised her on the construction of how to build the house, though it doesn't explain why they would want her to build a house whose design is anathematical to them. It also doesn't explain where they would have acquired the knowlege to build such an anomalous structure, or why they would want it built that way. Everyone assumes that someone was behind the building of the house, but no one knows who that is, how they were able to design the house, or why they did it.