The Idol, as depicted in the moment of its destruction, from 6 Days a Sacrifice
|First appearance||5 Days a Stranger|
|Appearances||5 Days a Stranger|
7 Days a Skeptic
6 Days a Sacrifice
|Found||(5 Days a Stranger)|
(7 Days a Skeptic)
The Idol is a recurring item in the Chzo Mythos. A crude wooden effigy carved by an African slave as a reward for being rescued, it is indelibly linked to the soul of John DeFoe, which it contains. Any who touch the idol are possessed by the spirit of John DeFoe; the possession lasts until the one who touched it is incapacitated or kills another.
The idol is first seen inside a bell jar in the trophy room of DeFoe Manor. Trilby, a cat burglar who has been trapped in the house by the vengeful spirit who possesses it, pays little heed to the idol upon first seeing it. Eventually, he discovers the idol's powers of possession and eventually uncovers part of its dark history; wrongfully blaming the death of his wife on his despised second son whom he had locked away, Sir Roderick DeFoe attempted to kill him using the idol; in this very moment, part of the soul of Sir Roderick's other son was placed within the idol. When the mansion is burned to the ground after the successful defeat of John DeFoe's resurrected body, it is later retrieved by thieves and sold on the black market.
The idol is found within the metal box recovered by the crew of the Mephistopheles. When the engineer Adam Gilkenny unwittingly opens the box, he finds the idol, along with an Apron, a Machete and a Welding Mask inside. Relived to find that there is nothing living inside the box, he leaves it alone. However, the spirit of John DeFoe is released and affects the mind of the ship's physician, Dr. William Taylor, who kills his crewmembers in order to make a vessel for the spirit of John DeFoe. Eventually, Johnathan Somerset is the only crewmember left alive. After escaping Dr. Taylor's bid to kill him and take his eyes, John DeFoe orders Dr. Taylor to remove his own eyes to finish his monstrous creation. Resurrected, John DeFoe stalks the ship in search of Johnathan, who manages to trick him into walking onto the radio masts, which are deployed, stabbing him. The idol is dropped, and Johnathan throws it into the ship's external exhaust, incinerating it and ending John DeFoe. Shortly thereafter, the EFS Charisma boards the Mephistopheles, recognizing Jonathan Somerset as being one Malcolm Somerset, the son of the real Jonathan Somerset, whom he had murdered at the behest of the Caretaker. Unbeknownst to Malcolm, the destruction of the idol, which was the Caretaker's reason for influencing his actions, is part of the fulfillment of the Prophecies of Chzo.
Seeking the idol in order to prevent further calamity caused by the vengeful ghost of John DeFoe, Trilby finds that the idol has been purchased by professor Abed Chahal, who has put it on display along with other artifacts in the Clanbronwyn Hotel on Clanbronwyn Island. Trilby, assuming the false identity of antiques dealer Terence Railby, travels to the hotel in order to talk the professor into selling it to him, that it may be locked away from others. The professor agrees to let Trilby have the idol after the conclusion of the antiques fair; in the meantime, it is being held in the hotel's safe. As they talk, Matthew DeFoe's painting is mentioned, and Trilby remembers seeing it in the hotel lobby. He leaves the room to head for the lobby; however, he is influenced by his negative thoughts, causing the reality to shift, transporting Trilby to a dark, grisly and haunted parallel version of the Clanbronwyn Hotel. Exploring the dark hotel, Trilby comes across an envelope from Peter Lenkmann, an agent of the Ministry of Occultism whom he met earlier. Inside the envelope is a bottle of tranquilizers, which Trilby ingests to ease his mind and return to the light world. Trilby cracks the hotel safe, but finds no idol within. Traveling between the dark and light worlds, Trilby uncovers the history of the idol by touching relevant objects; the tree from which it was created once held the soul of Cabadath, a Celtic druid who attempted to summon the pain elemental Chzo and make him his servant. Unfortunately for Cabadath, Chzo proved much too strong and instead, tranported him to his World of Magick.
Throughout many centuries, Cabadath was tortured and put through tremendous amounts of pain, transforming him into an elongated mockery of a man. His soul was placed in a tree growing where his house once stood. It was eventually cut down and its materials were used for several objects, such as The Unicorn, a harpsichord and crates for transport, all of which incurred the wrath of Cabadath. A rescued African slave, M'Bouta, unwittingly carves a wooden idol from an O'Malley shipping crate, causing his death at the hands of Cabadath. The idol eventually passed into the hands of the explorer Roderick DeFoe, who would later use it in an attempt to kill his despised other son. As a result, his son's spirit was sealed inside the idol, along with the spirit of Cabadath, making him Cabadath's servant wraith. In this moment, Roderick DeFoe's other son was made the Bridgekeeper, the one prophesized to be the creator of the bridge between the worlds of Magick and Technology when his Body, Soul and Mind are destroyed.
Underneath the dark hotel, Trilby finds the stump of the tree that held Cabadath's soul; the center of the reality shift, where there is a constant shift between the light and dark worlds. Here, he encounters Lenkmann, who reveals himself to be an agent of the mysterious Order of Blessed Agonies, a masochistic pain cult who worship Chzo and work, in secret, to fulfill the prophecies. Seeking to bring Cabadath into the World of Technology, Lenkmann stabs Trilby, planning to use him as a sacrifice for Cabadath upon his arrival. Additionally, he reveals that it was he who took the idol, planning to return it to the tree from whence it came. In the meantime, however, Trilby dies, incurring the wrath of Cabadath, who takes his anger out on Lenkmann and leaves to assume leadership of the Order of Blessed Agonies. After being mysteriously revived, Trilby awakens next to the idol. With some help from the government, the idol along with John DeFoe's other possessions are launched into space, hopefully preventing them from causing more harm.