Text of William Dyer’s diary (1931), Dyer’s correspondence (later 1930s), and Professor Donlevy’s commentary (2020). Donlevy’s notes are italicised. An audio reading of the diary can be found here.
[Out Of Character: Adapted from HP Lovecraft’s At The Mountains of Madness and From Beyond].
Donlevy: These notes analyzing this journal are by myself , Dr. Richard Donlevy, P. H. D., Esq. Level 2 probationary adept of the Nathaniel Pickman Order for the Arcane Sciences (of the Old Ones –too much of a hint for secret society) at Miskatonic University. Mr. Morrell has assigned me this task. (NPOAS I’ll earn my black fez for sure. If not, at least the opportunities for networking in occultist and mad scientist circles are priceless).
I, Dr. William Dyer, am a professor of geology at Miskatonic University and was leader of the disastrous 1930–31 Pabodie Expedition to Antarctica financed by the Nathaniel Derby Pickman Foundation at Miskatonic University. I am writing this journal to best record what I can recollect of that ill-fated expedition, lest I allow myself to believe it was all a dream or the doctors convince me it was madness.
I have told few outsiders and definitely not the press what truly happened outside of the inquest to the university and authorities. We of course, were not believed and had little evidence to validate our claims. I am all the more reluctant because my warning may be in vain.
My purpose now is to discourage any future expeditions. I am forced into speech because men of science have refused to follow my advice without knowing why. It is altogether against my will that I tell my reasons for opposing this contemplated next invasion of the Antarctic – with its vast fossil hunt and its wholesale boring and melting of the ancient ice caps.
Doctors at the Arkham state sanitorium decided the survivors had experienced trauma from exposure to the unholy elements of the frozen continent.
We know better because, otherwise our health so far remained excellent and though several savage windstorms had burst upon us from the west, we had escaped damage through the skill of Atwood in devising rudimentary aeroplane shelters and windbreaks of heavy snow blocks, and reinforcing the principal camp buildings with snow.
Our good luck and efficiency had indeed been almost uncanny, disproving any suspicions we were overcome by the weather. The university paid restitution to the families and the authorities filed no charges.
Lacking hard evidence, they just have our testimony and what remained of Professor Lake’s wireless reports. As a geologist, my object in leading the Miskatonic University Expedition
was wholly that of securing deep-level specimens of rock and soil from various parts of the Antarctic continent, aided by the remarkable drill devised by Professor Frank H. Pabodie of our engineering department.
We planned to cover as great an area as one Antarctic season – or longer, if absolutely necessary – would permit, operating mostly in the mountain ranges and on the plateau south of Ross Sea; regions explored in varying degree by Shackleton, Amundsen, Scott, and Byrd.
With frequent changes of camp, made by aeroplane—- Ha! Aeroplane! Sorry—and involving distances great enough to be of geological significance, we expected to unearth a quite unprecedented amount of material – especially in the pre-Cambrian strata of which so narrow a range of Antarctic specimens had previously been secured.
We wished also to obtain as great as possible a variety of the upper fossiliferous rocks, since the primal life history of this bleak realm of ice and death is of the highest importance to our knowledge of the Earth’s past.
That the Antarctic continent was once temperate and even tropical, with a teeming vegetable and animal life of which the lichens, marine fauna, arachnida, and
penguins of the northern edge are the only survivals, is a matter of common information; and we hoped to expand that information in variety, accuracy, and detail.
Beyond a range of mountains higher than the Himalayas, our expedition discovered ancient non-human ruins and much more best kept there. I am not as sceptical about old tales and fears as I used to be, and could see my account dismissed as fantasy.
We consisted of four men from the University – Pabodie of the engineering department, Lake of the biology department, Atwood of the physics department – also a meteorologist – and myself, representing geology and having nominal command – besides sixteen assistants: seven graduate students from Miskatonic and nine skilled mechanics.
Lake excitedly pondered a great deal over a strange triangular striated marking in the slate. Um, Lake was strangely convinced that the marking he found was the print of some bulky, unknown, and radically unclassifiable organism of considerably advanced evolution, notwithstanding that the rock which bore it was of so vastly ancient a date –
Cambrian if not actually pre-Cambrian – as to preclude the probable existence not only of all highly evolved life, but of any life at all above the unicellular or at most the trilobite stage. These fragments, with their odd marking, must have been five hundred million to a thousand million years old.
Lake’s sub-expedition into the unknown, as everyone will recall, sent out its own reports from the shortwave transmitters on the planes; these being simultaneously picked up by our apparatus at the southern base and by the Arkham at McMurdo Sound, whence they were relayed to the outside world on wave lengths up to fifty meters. The start was made January 22nd at 4 A.M., and the first wireless message we received came only two hours later.
Donlevy: Actually the reports were never made to the outside world and the Pickman Foundation intercepted all of them.
A later excited message from Lake’s moving plane, described a mountain range higher than even the Himalayas.
Thought of this titanic mountain rampart seven hundred miles away inflamed our deepest sense of adventure; and we rejoiced that our expedition, if not ourselves personally, had been its discoverers.
Some ancient non-human monstrosities, in the decadent days, had made strange prayers to those mountains – but none ever went near them or dared to guess what lay beyond. No human eye had ever seen them, and as I studied the emotions conveyed in the carvings we later found, I prayed that none ever might.
After aerial surveys and a false start, Lake had resolved to do some local boring and set up the drill and put five men to work with it while the rest finished settling the camp and repairing a damaged aeroplane.
The softest visible rock – a sandstone about a quarter of a mile from the camp – had been chosen for the first sampling; and the drill made excellent progress without much supplementary blasting.
It was about three hours afterward, following the first really heavy blast of the operation, that the shouting of the drill crew was heard; and that young acting foreman, Gedney– rushed into the camp with the startling news that they had struck a cave.
Early in the boring the sandstone had given place to a vein of Comanchian limestone, full of minute fossil cephalopods, corals, echini, and spirifera, and with occasional suggestions of siliceous sponges and marine vertebrate bones – the latter probably of teleosts, sharks, and ganoids.
This, in itself, was important enough, as affording the first vertebrate fossils the expedition had yet secured; but when shortly afterward the drill head dropped through the stratum into apparent vacancy, a wholly new and doubly intense wave of excitement spread among the excavators.
A good-sized blast had laid open the subterrene secret; and now, through a jagged aperture perhaps five feet across and three feet thick, there yawned before the avid searchers a section of shallow limestone hollowing worn more than fifty million years ago by the trickling ground waters of a bygone tropic world.
The hollowed layer was not more than seven or eight feet deep but extended off indefinitely in all directions and had a fresh, slightly moving air which suggested its membership in an extensive subterranean system.
Its roof and floor were abundantly equipped with large stalactites and stalagmites, some of which met in columnar form: but important above all else was the vast deposit of shells and bones, which in places nearly choked the passage.
Washed down from unknown jungles of Mesozoic tree ferns and fungi, and forests of Tertiary cycads, fan palms, and primitive angiosperms, this osseous medley contained representatives of more Cretaceous, Eocene, and other animal species than the greatest paleontologist could have counted or classified in a year.
Mollusks, crustacean armor, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and early mammals – great and small, known and unknown. No wonder Gedney ran back to the camp shouting, and no wonder everyone else dropped work and rushed headlong through the biting cold to where the tall derrick marked a new-found gateway to secrets of inner earth and vanished aeons.
When Lake had satisfied the first keen edge of his curiosity, he scribbled a message in his notebook and had young Moulton run back to the camp to dispatch it by wireless.
This was my first word of the discovery, and it told of the identification of early shells, bones of ganoids and placoderms, remnants of labyrinthodonts and thecodonts, great mosasaur skull fragments, dinosaur vertebrae and armor plates, pterodactyl teeth and wing bones,
Archaeopteryx debris, Miocene sharks’ teeth, primitive bird skulls, and other bones of archaic mammals such as palaeotheres, Xiphodons, Eohippi, Oreodons, and titanotheres.
There was nothing as recent as a mastodon, elephant, true camel, deer, or bovine animal; hence Lake concluded that the last deposits had occurred during the Oligocene Age, and that the hollowed stratum had lain in its present dried, dead, and inaccessible state for at least thirty million years.
On the other hand, the prevalence of very early life forms was singular in the highest degree. Though the limestone formation was, on the evidence of such typical imbedded fossils as ventriculites, positively and unmistakably Comanchian and not a particle earlier, the free fragments in the hollow space included a surprising proportion from organisms hitherto considered as peculiar to far older periods – even rudimentary fishes, mollusks, and corals as remote as the Silunan or Ordovician.
The inevitable inference was that in this part of the world there had been a remarkable and unique degree of continuity between the life of over three hundred million years ago and that of only thirty million years ago. How far this continuity had extended beyond the Oligocene Age when the cavern was closed was of course past all speculation.
In any event, the coming of the frightful ice in the Pleistocene some five hundred thousand years ago – a mere yesterday as compared with the age of this cavity – must have put an end to any of the primal forms which had locally managed to outlive their common terms.
Donlevy: Missing wire transcripts by Lake found:
“Fowler makes discovery of highest importance in sandstone and limestone fragments from blasts. Several distinct triangular striated prints like those in Archaean slate, proving that source survived from over six hundred million years ago to Comanchian times without more than moderate morphological changes and decrease in average size.
Comanchian prints apparently more primitive or decadent, if anything, than older ones. Emphasize importance of discovery in press. Will mean to biology what Einstein has meant to mathematics and physics. Joins up with my previous work and amplifies conclusions.”
“Appears to indicate, as I suspected, that Earth has seen whole cycle or cycles of organic life before known one that begins with Archaeozoic cells. Was evolved and specialized not later than a thousand million years ago, when planet was young and recently uninhabitable for any life forms or normal protoplasmic structure. Question arises when, where, and how development took place.”
Dyer: The remains of fourteen ancient life forms, completely unknown to science and unidentifiable as either plants or animals were found in that underground cave. The descriptions and the phrasing: “Can’t decide whether vegetable or animal.” shocked all my sensibilities. Their stratum location put them at a point on the geologic time scale much too early for their features to have naturally evolved yet.
Lake, sending more messages, told of the completely successful transportation of the fourteen great specimens to Lake’s camp. Um, The specimens were laid out on the hard snow near that camp, save for one on which Lake was making crude attempts at dissection.
Donlevy: The first alien autopsy!
Dyer:….Existing biology would have to be wholly revised, for this thing was no product of any cell growth science knows about. Upon observation and on the evidence of these one could hardly hesitate to call the thing animal; but internal inspection brought up so many vegetable evidences that Lake was left hopelessly at sea.
Clearly, it was amphibian, and probably adapted to long airless hibernation periods as well.
The nervous system was so complex and highly developed as to leave Lake aghast. Though excessively primitive and archaic in some respects, the thing had a set of ganglial centers and connectives arguing the very extremes of specialized development. Its five-lobed brain was surprisingly advanced, and there were signs of a sensory equipment, served in part through the wiry cilia of the head, involving factors alien to any other terrestrial organism.
Probably it has more than five senses, so that its habits could not be predicted from any existing analogy. It appeared to reproduce like the vegetable cryptogams, especially the Pteridophyta, having spore cases at the tips of the wings and evidently developing from a thallus or prothallus.
We had no name for it. It looked like a radiate, but was clearly something more and it was partly vegetable, but also had three-fourths of the essentials of animal structure. That it was marine in origin, its symmetrical contour and certain other attributes clearly indicated; yet one could not be exact as to the limit of its later adaptations. The wings, held a suggestion of the aerial.
How it could have undergone its tremendously complex evolution on a new-born Earth in time to leave prints in Archaean rocks was so far beyond conception as to make Lake whimsically recall the primal myths in ancient cultures about Great Old Ones who filtered down from the stars and concocted Earth life as a joke or mistake; and the wild tales of cosmic hill things from outside told by the folklorist and assistant professor in Miskatonic’s English Department Albert Wilmarth.
Naturally, he considered the possibility of the pre-Cambrian prints having been made by a less evolved ancestor of the present specimens, but quickly rejected this too-facile theory upon considering the advanced structural qualities of the older fossils.
Dyer: Everything would go wrong from that point.
Donlevy: They were unable to contact Lake since about ten AM. According to records, the pilot McTighe was awake at ten o’clock and tried to get Lake on the wireless, but some ‘electrical condition’ in the air to the west seemed to prevent communication.
Technological interference. Fascinating! The city or the mountains? Something crippled all the equipment on all 4 planes at once. Throughout the day they continuously tried making contact with Lake.
Dyer described the plane travel over the nearby massive mountain range.
Dyer: Every incident of that four-and-a-half-hour flight is burned into my recollection because of its crucial position in my life. It marked my loss, at the age of fifty-four, of all that peace and balance which the normal mind possesses through its accustomed conception of external nature and nature’s laws.
Thenceforward the ten of us – but the student Danforth and myself above all others – were to face a hideously amplified world of lurking horrors which nothing can erase from our emotions, and which we would refrain from sharing with mankind in general if we could.
It was as if these stark, nightmare spires marked the pylons of a frightful gateway into forbidden spheres of dream, and complex gulfs of remote time, space, and ultra-dimensionality. I could not help feeling that they were evil things – mountains of madness(add thunder) whose farther slopes looked out over some accursed ultimate abyss.
It was young Danforth who drew our notice to the curious regularities of the higher mountain skyline – regularities like clinging fragments of perfect cubes…
We were in one of the strangest, weirdest, and most terrible of all the corners of Earth’s globe. Something about the scene reminded me of the disturbing descriptions of the evilly fabled Plateau of Leng which occur in the dreaded Necronomicon confirming our growing convictions that this hideous upland must indeed be that fabled nightmare plateau. Of all existing lands, it was infinitely the most ancient.
Mythologists have placed Leng in Central Asia; but the racial memory of man – or of his predecessors – is long, and it may well be that certain tales have come down from lands and mountains and temples of horror earlier than civilization in Asia and earlier than any human world we know.
A few daring mystics have hinted at a pre-Pleistocene origin for the fragmentary Pnakotic Manuscripts, and have suggested that the devotees of Tsathoggua were as alien to mankind as Tsathoggua itself. Leng, wherever in space or time it might brood, was not a region I would care to be in or near, nor did I relish the proximity of a world that had ever bred such ambiguous and Archaean monstrosities as those Lake had mentioned.
At the moment I felt rather sorry that any of us had ever read the abhorred Necronomicon at the university library.
What a monstrous book.
I had seen dozens of polar mirages during the preceding weeks, some of them quite as uncanny and fantastically vivid as the present example; but this one had a wholly novel and obscure quality of menacing symbolism, and I shuddered as the seething labyrinth of fabulous walls and towers and minarets loomed out of the troubled ice vapors above our heads.
The effect was that of a Cyclopean city of no architecture known to man or to human imagination, with vast aggregations of shiny night-black masonry embodying monstrous perversions of geometrical laws.
I had considered in my mind that perhaps we had discovered the lost metropolis of R’lyeh (re as in ruh-lay) , but I recalled that great city sank beneath the present-day Pacific Ocean in a prehistoric cataclysm. The nightmare corpse-city of R’lyeh (re-lay) was built in measureless aeons behind history by the vast, loathsome shapes that seeped down from the dark stars.
There lay the great Old One Cthulhu and his hordes of spawn, in suspended animation in vaults awaiting a great awakening where they and the Deep Ones will rise from the ocean and
conquer the surface world. Like Pabodie and myself, Lake and even Danforth had read the copy of the Necronomicon in the university’s library renowned for its rare collections. Danforth was a pilot and a student of Pabodie’s, becoming a talented engineer in his own right.
Donlevy: R’leyh! (re-lay) Of course! Fabled pre-human city populated by aliens 50+ million years ago. Believed to be located near the Pacific pole of inaccessibility. The Cthulhoids? Cthonians? AKA: The Star-Spawn, held in suspended animation in the sunken city. Note: See Deep Ones in the Atlantic. See Innsmouth, Mass. Mi-go. Yith. Inhumanoids? Kaiju? Titans? Are all the myths and lost histories true?
Dyer: There were truncated cones, sometimes terraced or fluted, surmounted by tall cylindrical shafts here and there bulbously enlarged and often capped with tiers of thinnish scalloped disks; and strange beetling, table-like constructions suggesting piles of multitudinous rectangular slabs or circular plates or five-pointed stars with each one overlapping the one beneath.
There were composite cones and pyramids either alone or surmounting cylinders or cubes or flatter truncated cones and pyramids, and occasional needle-like spires in curious clusters of five.
All of these febrile structures seemed knit together by tubular bridges crossing from one to the other at various dizzy heights, and the implied scale of the whole was terrifying and oppressive in its sheer gigantism.
I was amazed at the size of a ramp that wound around a tower in the prehistoric city. It was like the kind once climbing outside the monstrous towers or ziggurats of antique Babylon.
The horror my colleagues and I found at the camp was a horror my mind partially concealed still to this day. In our investigation we found a destroyed camp and dead dogs and men. We had suspected the missing Gedney had gone mad and slaughtered them. The wounds and gore appeared as if some form of experiments had been done. We dared not entertain wilder possibilities.
It was hard work keeping our personal emotions out of this matter – and we later did not mention numbers or say exactly how we had found those which we did find. We had by that time agreed not to transmit anything suggesting madness on the part of Lake’s men, and it surely seemed like madness to mention the eight perfect specimens mentioned by Lake seemed to have been completely blown away.
Donlevy: On the first expedition to set up a permanent base that would become Dyer Station in 1999 we flew a plane over the imposing mountain range the 1931 survivors described. Everything was still there. The ancient onyx city Dyer described was there.
As the crews were setting up camps that would build the permanent station not far from the original site, I took a crew into the city following the same trail as Dyer and Danforth flew across the mountains, which they discovered was the outer walls of a vast abandoned stone-city, alien to any human architecture.
For their resemblance to creatures of myth mentioned in the Necronomicon, the builders of this lost civilization were dubbed the “Elder Things”, indeed. I concur.
Dyer: The graduate student Danforth and I learned from our study of the wall-carvings, that the city’s inhabitants, referred to as Elder Things first arrived on Earth shortly after the Moon took form when water still covered the entire planet. We had difficulty imagining an advanced civilization going back 1 billion years.
Donlevy: Holy shit the first ancient astronauts.
They settled first in the Antarctic Ocean. From what we gather, the Antarctic region would forever be their sacred homeland as they further spread their empire. These beings built huge cities, on dry land of Pangea and underwater. The Star-spawn of Cthulhu and the Mi-go, arrived on Earth shortly afterwards and came into conflict with the Elder Things.
Donlevy: Confusingly both the Elder Things and Cthonians, Deep Ones, Mi-go, and Great Race of Yith they warred with, were all referred interchangeably as Old Ones or Great Old Ones.
Then there’s the much more powerful Outer Gods or Other Gods (See gods of the outer hells) dwelling mostly beyond Earth such as Shub-Nugganoth, ruled over by Azathoth. Ny-ar-lath-otep, a tall man made of shadow, is the avatar of the Outer Gods, functions as an intermediary between the deities of this pantheon and their cults, roaming Earth before the Old Ones return. So many pantheons and cults!
Dyer: From everything we know and have read from ancient tomes like the Necronomicon, the Book of Azathoth, Unspeakable Cults, Tobin’s Spirit Guide and these drawings, the Old Ones are extraterrestrial and interdimensional aliens who discovered how to travel to Earth through space and time and from the space between spaces. This advanced civilization, the Elder Things, were the first extraterrestrial species to come to the Earth, colonizing the planet about one billion years ago.
During the aeons-long great wars between the The Elder Things and the Cthonian Star-spawn, Deep Ones, the Mi-go and the Great Race of Yith, the earlier colonists were driven for a time wholly under the seas.
The Elder Things saw this as a major blow to their expanding empire of interconnected colony cities on land and near water areas around the world. After Cthulhu’s colony city of R’leyh (re/ruh-lay)was sunk in that lost catastrophy the Elder Things’ cities dotted all the surface land and water areas again.
Donlevy: From Lake’s notes and anatomical drawings and Dyer’s notes and drawings, I am able to reconstruct a picture of their anatomy. They had barrel-shaped, ribbed bodies, wings, and faces like starfish. Though they could make use of both organic and inorganic substances, the Elder Things were carnivorous by preference. Intelligence did not equal vegetarians there. Take that vegans.
The bodies of the Elder Things were also amphibious, incredibly tough, and capable of withstanding the pressures of ocean depths. Being semi-aquatic, their faces resembled starfish. They were mortal though.
They rarely died except by accident or violence. These beings were also capable of hibernating for vast epochs of time. That seems to explain what happened to Lake’s camp. They were still alive after millions of years! We still have an opportunity to potentially locate live ones.
Interestingly, Lake found that unlike many other Old One races, the Elder Things were made of normal, terrestrial matter. They can be killed. Fascinating. How many other Old Ones can be killed?
Interestingly, they were extremely advanced but there has been no signs of advanced high technology. Travel was shown to be very frequent with constant commerce between different cities being extensive, yet no craft or ancient spaceships have been found.
Apparently from the notes of Dyer and the autopsies they made minimal use of high technology, as their natural resilience and movement abilities made many forms of life-support and transportation completely unnecessary.
The cyan soapstones found by both expeditions were suspected of being pieces of perhaps currency.
Dyer inferred their form of government must have been highly complex, possibly socialistic. Possible evidence of advanced directed-energy weaponry we may be able to reverse-engineer for defense contracting. Vertical Corp was hoping for a starship or a gate, but would still be very interested in Elderian particle weapons.
They were advanced genetic engineers, known to have genetically engineered many lifeforms. They engineered creatures called Shoggoths, amoeba-like biological automatons designed to carry out tasks, seemingly not intended to have full sentience. But as they were programmed with complex tasks, they increasingly developed consciousness and evolved.
Dyer: Allegedly the ancestral forms of all native life on Earth potentially evolved from the cellular material left over from the creation of the shoggoths.
Donlevy: My God. These Elder Things used these living machines to build their huge cities, both on dry land and underwater. Loads, were drawn by beasts of burden – shoggoths under the sea, and a variety of primitive and more complex vertebrates were also engineered for land use. Holy shit they likely genetically engineered dinosaurs as beasts of burden on land.
The Elder things were also illustrated to have had very advanced agriculture in vast underwater and surface hydroponic farms.
The murals on the walls described them as possessing extensive vineyards and having domesticated many prehistoric animals as workforce and as pets. They kept 6 foot tall blind albino penguins as livestock.
They even engineered a primitive primate that looked similar to humans and were kept as entertainment. So we were monkeys who danced for their amusement?! Well, humans might even be an industrial byproduct of their genetic engineering of the shoggoths after all. Disgusting thought.
Those Carvings Dyer found in the Elderian lost city in Antarctica, I can confirm, show they possessed an understanding of cosmology and physics at least equivalent to that of humanity as of the mid-20th century, and beyond.
From what we have observed, they were long lived and since they reproduced through spores, there was little biological basis for families as we understand them to form, and were thus grouped together with others with whom they would get along. Elderian “families” lived in large dwellings, where furniture and other decoration was placed in the center of the rooms, to leave the walls open for these ornate murals that served as a historical record of their society.
Dyer: Not ony did these Old Ones war with each other, but with massive native sentient species that dwarfed dinosaurs, that apparently emerged to protect their habitats, and ultimately the Earth.
Humans go back 300, 000? so years back. Humans, like ants at the feat of these giants, were an afterthought to these monstrosities, but in that city there were signs of genetically improved primates, Neanderthals and early humans that had been experimented on by the Elder Things, like starfish-faced mad scientists. I wish the anthropologist Dr. Trask was there to examine the remains.
There were carvings showing other civilizations including early advanced human ones, perhaps Atlantis, Mu, and Lemuria— rising at the end of this era of Old One wars and supremacy.
Another showed the recently speculated Agartha tribe that thrived under Tibet as many of these lizardmen were moved into ancient tunnels bored by Old Ones allowing them to survive dinosaur extinction. They worshipped a shapeshifting underwater Old One called the Dragon King according to the Necronomicon.
I noticed a shiny cyan soapstone on the floor and picked it up, noticing it was smooth like a pearl. The image of a black sky raining blood filled my mind’s eye with a flash.
I had a vivid waking nightmare of massive storms, seas boil– killing fish, dustbowls and deserts expand across continents, ice sheets melt at both poles. Dying Earth animals. The robed dark priest Ny-ar-lath-otep, raised his arms, causing an eclipse, except its Shub-Nugganoth moving in front of the sun.
On the coast of colonized continents, armies of Deep Ones ascend to the Elderian cities on land as Tiamat pulled down and sank towers and the tentacles and heads of Mother Hydra wrap around an underwater Elderian city and grabs onto bridges and crushing other non-human architectural structures.
The massive Dagon walks out of the ocean and onto land, attacking Elder Thing cities. Other Deep Ones rise from the waters and attack the Elderian population when they see Dagon. Members of the respective competing cults commit bloody mass sacrifices. Volcanoes erupt sending ash into the skies.
R’leyh(re/ruh-lay) and its Star-Spawn armies rise from the depths of the Pacific and the massive Cthulhu rises from the Pacific waters like a walking mountain, lurching toward Antarctica. Massive Earthquakes shake land masses, followed by tsunamis.
I saw ancient towers of unknown metals, stone, and glass fall in the cities of the Elder Things. I see mad crowds of the aliens infected by a plague turn on eachother, killing each other with anything they could get their so-called hands on. Their shoggoths attacked and destroyed anything in their path.
Giant eldritch monsters heralding extinction flooded my mind. The Japanese have an old mythological word for “strange beast”–kaiju. The massive native Kaiju of different shapes and types like Kraken, Leviathan and Behemoth arose from the Earth and oceans in response to the chaos and planetary upheaval and attacked all sides and attacked the Old One colonist cities. I collected myself and put the shiny stone in my pocket. The carving of a large egg caught my attention.
Donlevy: What caused Dyer’s vision? Is it the soapstone? Doctor Tate seems to have a cyan soapstone necklace. Doctor Tate is not what she seems…
Dyer: At the Elder Things’ most sacred site, the Southern pole of inaccessibility, they genetically engineered an Antarctic beast, a chimeric protector made in their own god’s image. The protector is attuned to the orgone, a kind of universal psychic field, swirling across the world and centred like a hurricane at geographic poles of inaccessibility.
The protector is drawn to respond to psychic distress, awakened and strengthened by collective faith. The Elder Things apparently engineered this creature to defeat Cthulhu should he awaken near the Pacific pole of inaccessibility. The chimera would hatch from an egg in the earth’s zero hour, to win the great war against the Cthonian Star-spawn. I could not find a name that matched anything in the Necronomicon. Just the word: “ Protector”. Other carvings show the egg was lost during the shoggoth uprising.
Donlevy: I think we may have found this egg–we have at least found the largest egg ever on record by taking core samples that lead to finding that massive egg, which seems unlikely to be a coincidence.
It must be the same ancient egg engineered by the Elder Things to fight Cthulhu. We still do not know what was in that mysterious mountain even the Elder Things feared so much. A greater undiscovered evil? Did they create another giant beast to fight the Old Ones?
I will not share this information about the Protector with anyone but Morell. What’s this chicken scratch Dyer wrote in the margin? Some kind of alien language? Could go for a bucket of chicken!
Dyer: The Elder Things also planted seeds for six Earthly creatures across the remaining six continents, great strange beasts, that would emerge in a situation of existential threat.
Eventually, their all-purpose servitor race the shoggoths rebelled. This upheaval hastened the decline and ultimate collapse of their civilization as more effort was invested in quelling the rebellions to the detriment of advancing anything else..
Although the Elder Things managed to initially subdue the shoggoths after their attempted rebellion, the shoggoths continued to evolve physiologically, increasing in intelligence and developing the capacity to live on land.
Donlevy: Danforth had the misfortune of being attacked by a surviving multi-eyed blob horror that matched the carvings of a shoggoth. Ultimately, it was the cooling of the planet during the last Ice Age that doomed them. The Elder Things last retreated to their underwater cities deep in the ocean, having no further contact with the outer world . Their last surface city, is the one located on a high plateau in the Antarctic, remains frozen in ice.
Imaging has discovered their last known undersea city is located directly beneath the Elder Things’ ultimate surface city in the Antarctic, and was apparently overrun by the shoggoths.
Those Shoggoths would make excellent urban pacification bioweapons if they could be controlled. Is that Vertical Corp’s angle? They dared refuse my laser mice! They at least have sights on marketing my krill shakes and Soylent rice cakes and were very interested in these frozen worms that I found using core samples into ancient ice.
While exploring the city with my group we located the giant one-eyed penguins used as livestock, and were attacked by a shoggoth. It killed everyone but me and the pilot. That ghastly inhuman image in my face I can only describe the pure otherworldly horror as—– [further notes unintelligible]
Dyer: I felt great relief that we survived, but it was tempered by dread as we flew away from the lost city in the massive mountain range. I can still hear the wind’s strange piping that reminded me of the penguins of the abyss and the shoggoths.
I wished that I had wax-stopped ears like Ulysses’ men off the Sirens’ coast to keep that disturbing sound from reaching into my mind. Sometimes I still hear it. My time spent at the state sanatorium and the shock therapy did little to silence it.
Danforth saw some final horror as we escaped and his encounter with the shoggoth made him hysterical. He convinced himself it must have been a mirage. I worry for his mind.
There seemed to be a culture of unorthodox grad students at Miskatonic. A brilliant student of Miskatonic University, Randolph Carter disappeared on October, 7 1927.
As with other experts from the University, not unlike the controversial medical student Dr. Herbert West who became obsessed with discovering the chemical basis for life to disastrous results—Crawford Tillinghast was a disturbed physicist expelled from Miskatonic University for his unorthodox experiments.
Pabodie and Danforth obsessively studied the Necronomicon, the Book of Eibon, and Pnakotic Manuscripts in the library as they attempted to reconstruct his invention, the Tillinghast Resonator, a device that made other dimensions detectable.
Donlevy: My kind of scientists!
Pabodie and Danforth turned the dangerous Tillinghast Resonator that made parallel universes around us “visible” into a receiving radio for broadcasts and signals from the future.
No deaths so far, only minor insanity. Possibly from disturbing alternate timelines. Danforth ranted about atom bombs, zombies, a mind controlling talking fox, and a death-star. A note by a psychward doctor said he was obsessed with “tele-vision”. He carved “No Fate” all over his padded cell. One future it was receiving signals from was clearly our present. Tachyons? Quantum entanglement?
Dyer: A hall was named after poor Lake and Pabodie went back to the engineering department. That we would discover that lost city on this expedition seems in hindsight not to be an accident of fate.
I hired local occult detective and Miskatonic University Professor Dr. John Harrison Faust of the Hob’s End Detective Agency to investigate.
He would later learn Professor Lake utilized the Necronomicon, Pnakotic Manuscripts, Atlantis and the Lost Lemuria by William Scott-Elliot for clues to the location of the Antarctic city.
There was an ulterior motive to the Nathaniel Derby Pickman Foundation financing this expedition.
Our discoveries were not being transmitted to the public. The public knows of the Miskatonic Expedition through frequent wireless reports to the Arkham Advertiser and Associated Press making no mention of our most radical discoveries, and the later articles of Pabodie and myself were discredited as the work of unstable cranks. The university has lost all the original wire transcripts.
As long as I live, I will stop any future Antarctic expeditions to that location.
According to entries in dusty tomes such as the Imago Mundi by Gauthier de Metz, Remnants of Lost Empires by Otto Dostman, and The Lost Prophecies of Michel Nostradamus there are entries that align with rumors of a lost city in Australia’s Great Sandy Desert. My hope is it is not harboring some eldritch horror to unleash on the world. I plan to be on that expedition in 1935. Finally, I’ll return to the Mother Country, starting with a visit to fellow travellers in Berkeley on the West Coast, before crossing the country to my home in Boston.
Dr. William Dyer
Letter from Nathaniel Derby Pickman:
Dear Mr. Pabodie,
We are encouraged by the news you have sent us of your current progress with the Tillinghast Resonator. We had feared the machine was irreparably damaged, but you have achieved unforeseen improvements far beyond anything we imagined. The information you have sent us is invaluable to our project.
Sincerely, the board of the Nathaniel Derby Pickman Foundation at Miskatonic University. Nathaniel Derby Pickman, Edward Morell, Algernon Machen, Clark Akshton, Daniel Upton, Amos Tuttle, Nathaniel Derby Pickman
Final note from Donlevy: I think I recall in 2014, or 15 a technology and science scholar Donna Haraway gave a talk entitled “Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Chthulucene: Staying with the Trouble”, where she proposed the term “Chthulucene” as an alternative for the concept of the Anthropocene era, due to the entangling interconnectedness of all supposedly individual beings.
Quote from Haraway: “Chthulucene does not close in on itself; it does not round off; its contact zones are ubiquitous and continuously spin out loopy tendrils.”
Interesting that The Foundation is selling their secret likely world domination(?) plans based on stopping the 6th Great Extinction. That’s my speculation though
The Foundation had to have been able to convince the U.S. and New Zealand governments and Silicon Valley guru Edison Fordham’s Vertical Corp with the promises of advanced genetic and other technologies that could be gleaned from this dead civilization that incidentally created most life on Earth. Probably helped that Fordham has a bunker in New Zealand hoping to ride out Climate Change.
Over the course of my study of this journal, I have corresponded with the Pickman Foundation. I sought clarification on why they chose to establish Dyer Station, given William Dyer’s dire warnings and the contents of the city. They have replied that if I sign a non-disclosure agreement and pledge allegiance to the Foundation, they can offer information, a pay raise, and more bottom boys like Morell and Upton. It looks like Doctor Tate is gearing up to seize control of Dyer Station, so I’ll head for greener pastures when flights resume after the Antarctic winter.