Today’s sample from Mince Pies & Murder is all about the man at the centre of the mystery, Jimmy ‘Hard’ Cheese. The third and final extract from the adventure will be out tomorrow and the adventure itself is released on Monday.
Jimmy ‘Hard’ Cheese
Born within earshot of the Bow Bells, Jimmy is a proper Cockney gangster. His whole family was involved in crime in some way but Jimmy took it to a whole new level. By the age of twenty he was already one the most respected, or more accurately most feared, gang leaders in the area. By the age of thirty he was the number one gangster in the whole of London with control of prostitution, gambling, opium dens, smuggling and extortion rackets all across the city.
His success came from his intelligence, ambition and total disregard for human life. A brutal, cold blooded killer when he had to be, Jimmy never lost a night’s sleep over his victims or the countless lives he ruined through his criminal operations.
Twice during his rise to power he had been charged with murder. Twice the trials collapsed when witnesses changed their stories, failed to appear or turned up dead.
Then something happened but exactly what, no one knows.
What is known for sure is that a young prostitute, aged just 14, was killed in one of Jimmy’s “Gentlemen’s Clubs”. Jimmy was arrested, pleaded guilty and was convicted of the girl’s manslaughter. Five years later, he was released from prison early due to good behaviour and immediately left Great Britain for a luxurious retirement in the USA.
Newspaper reports at the time claimed there was a lot more to the story than officially released. Several credible reports placed senior members of the British cabinet in the Gentlemen’s Club at the time. Some even went as far as saying a member of the royal family was also there. Speculation was rife that it was one of these VIPs that actually killed the girl and that Jimmy took the rap, but why?
The fact that Jimmy was a well known patriot and fan of the royal family gave credence to the idea that a Royal was involved. He had money and power, nothing a politician could offer would make it worth him giving up his criminal empire. But to save a member of the royal family? Perhaps to save the monarchy from a scandal that could bring it down? Just maybe that would be enough to make Jimmy give up everything.
Whatever the truth behind the story, Jimmy certainly isn’t saying.
He served his five years and then lived a life of wealthy leisure for fifteen years in the USA. He first bought a house in New York and then moved to California before finally settling in Georgia where he has spent the last ten years.
When the pictures of a frail Jimmy Cheese stepping off a liner in Southampton first appeared there was a lot of renewed speculation, especially when he said he had returned to the UK so he could die in his native land. The press eagerly reported the story nine months ago but since then, Jimmy has kept a low profile.
|Obvious||Jimmy is frail and gaunt. He needs two sticks to walk with and is very pale.|
|Moderate||1920s medicine is not very good at diagnosing problems but any one of a dozen diseases such as cancer could cause his physical condition.|
|Whilst Jimmy’s skin is pale, suggesting poor circulation, he has enhanced the effect with a light touch of make up.|
|Hard||Occasionally, when engrossed in conversation, he forgets himself and seems to move more freely and with more strength.|
Jimmy is really dying. Whilst he had been forming his plan against the Sleuths for some time, his diagnosis a year ago forced him to turn ideas into reality.
He plans to take no direct part in the attacks on the Sleuths, instead he will act as lure and decoy. Naturally the Sleuths will suspect him and he deliberately exaggerates his condition to distract the detectives. What he will do is provide alibis for staff members and lure detectives into suitable killing positions.
When being questioned, Jimmy gets a 4d6+6 resistance versus the Sleuths. Jimmy is an expert criminal and is used to lying and being questioned.
Mince Pies & Murder is being released on Monday 20th June 2011. It will be available as a free download but you can also choose to pay £5 for the PDF. Both PDF’s are identical but the £5 option gives you the Living Document promise and you also receive the next adventure in the series – Memory & Murder – free of charge when it is published later this year. On top of that, you get the warm fuzzy feeling that comes from supporting a small RPG company.