|The H.M.S. Nodens|
"'What rough beast slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?' - or in this case towards The City to be moored? Early risers in the Castle Park and the Financial District greeted the dawn with an uncanny surprise: the appearance of the Royal Empire's long lost dreadnought, the H.M.S. Nodens, sitting a bit to the south of The City's great harbor.
"Once again, dear readers, The City Confidential has the scoop.
"One of the greatest mysteries of the Great War was the fate of the H.M.S. Nodens. The Neptune-class Royal Dreadnought set sail to confront the Hun and engaged the foe in the battle of Judderland.
"Serious naval buffs will recall that the Hun's barbaric Kriegsmarine used horrific munitions in the battle: acid fog shells, amorphing artillery, and thaumaturgical explosives pitted and twisted flesh, and warped metal, while setting the seas aboil.
"After the battle rumors circled for months in both the Admiralty and the Kriegsmarine that the furious battle had awakened hungry dreamers from the depths. Many of the sailors and officers who survived Judderland reported that a host of abominations swirled between the vessels, skimming the slick of blood, chum, and oil at the surface, and sending probing eyes and tentacles into portholes and onto decks seeking charred and twisted flesh.
"The Nodens bore the brunt of the Hun's attack. The vessel was last seen blanketed by a nimbus of noisome yellow billowing clouds. The Hunnish papers crowed that the Kriegsmarine's unnatural hail of fire had rechristened the ship the "Noxins". When the cloud lifted, there was no sign of the Nodens.
"But now it has appeared in view of The City harbor, under tow from two stalwart tugs. Observers saw no signs of life on the vessel, but in a press conference today by Mr. Carl and Mr. Fredrick Staberinde, Rookend's ever-youthful, fraternal industrialist powerhouse duo, the plan was revealed.
"'Staberinde Industries found the Nodens and has claimed it in concordance with deep sea salvage law' Mr. Carl Staberinde declared. 'We have purchased a few blocks of Castle Park, which we will soon dub Battery Park' Mr. Fredrick Staberinde continued.
"'Once the vessel has been thoroughly searched, repaired and restored to pristine condition' Mr. Carl Staberinde declared,'Battery Park will become the Nodens' new home. By day, it will be a living museum to the memory of the Great War. By night,its searchlights and batteries will maintain a constant vigil protecting the city from incursions by sea devils and newts' completed brother Fredrick.
"The City Confidential has learned that Staberinde Industries will be hiring a number of specialists - naval veterans, steel workers, plumbers, scientists, nurses and medics to complete the restoration and readying of the vessel for it's new home in Battery Park."
-The City Confidential Daily, Today's Front Page Story
This is of course a campaign seed for Trey Causey's Weird Adventures pulp RPG setting. The PCs would be specialists investigating what happened to the Nodens, and helping ready the dreadnought for its future role as museum cum fortification protecting The City's southern tip. The idea came to me after reading Iain M. Banks' Use of Weapons, but Dungeon of Signs' HMS Apollyon campaign structure was an inspiration as well.