Image of Trilby
|First appearance||5 Days a Stranger|
|Appears in||5 Days a Stranger|
6 Days a Sacrifice
7 Days a Skeptic (mentioned)
|Alternate names||The Guide|
Trilby the Cat Burglar
|Affiliation(s)||Special Talent Project|
"Some call me Trilby, and as a name it suffices."
Trilby is a recurring character in the Chzo Mythos, starring as the main protagonist of 5 Days a Stranger and Trilby's Notes. He is portrayed as an eccentric gentleman thief, who steals only from the rich and never kills during his burglaries. His trusty tools are his Grolly, a grappling hook cleverly disguised as an umbrella, his mask, and his lockpicks. He always keeps a spare lockpick in his tie as a safety measure. His alias comes from the trilby hat he wears, his real name is never told directly in the series, but it is told in the commentary of 7 Days a Skeptic, that his name is Malcolm.
"Yes, this should be a painless and rewarding evening's entertainment."
Under the suggestion of his fence, Trilby seeks out the valuables of the reputedly haunted DeFoe Manor, making his entrance by breaking into the second-floor office of the manor using his Grolly. He is disappointed to find that the house's safe has already been emptied and decides to leave. However, he finds that the window wont budge, and assuming that the lock has jammed, decides to leave through the front door instead. He exits to the hallway of the second floor, where he encounters AJ, who is frightened by the mask he wears and runs away. Trilby shrugs the encounter off, removes the mask, and makes his way to the house's main hallway, finding the main door and any other possible means of escape immovable.
Exploring the manor, he finds a newspaper detailing the fate of the manor's final heir, and encounters Philip Harty, who explains that aside from Trilby and himself, three other people have been trapped inside the house. Philip suggests that they call a house meeting to fill Trilby in on how they all came to be in the house and for Trilby to introduce himself to the others. Trilby finds Jim Fowler in the front yard and Simone Taylor on the second floor; AJ is nowhere to be found. Despite this, they carry on with the meeting in the house's living room. After Trilby learns of the individual stories of his fellow prisoners, he assumes that they are being kept in the house by an unexplainable, mysterious force. That night, Trilby has a disconcerting dream regarding a man in a welding mask.
The next day, Trilby finds the body of AJ at the bottom of the pool in the front yard, his throat slashed by a huge knife-like weapon. Trilby decides to delve deeper into the family history, and finds a book in the mansion's library detailing the history of the house. He also finds the diaries of Sir Roderick DeFoe, the original owner of the house, and his son, Matthew DeFoe. The diaries speak of a sorrowful event that occurred when Roderick's wife Belinda died in childbirth; Trilby assumes that a second son was also born, which Roderick blamed for the death of his wife and kept away from a normal life. Comparing old plans of the house to the current-day layout, Trilby finds a hidden basement behind a wall in the kitchen, holding little else but a pair of manacles fastened to the wall. Attempting to make logical sense of the events that occurred on a specific date mentioned in Roderick's diary, Trilby theorizes that on that night, Roderick attempted to murder his despised son; Matthew, who had somewhat befriended him, attempted to heal his injuries and prevent him from dying, an action which caused the mentally deficient son to gain enough strength to kill his brother and father.
The next day, Trilby uncovers the bodies of Matthew and Sir Roderick in the old basement, confirming his theory. As this happens, however, he hears a noise from the direction of the trophy room, and find that a small bell jar holding a crude wooden idol has been smashed. Upon touching the idol, Trilby is possessed by the spirit of Sir Roderick's other son, and during the night, kills Philip Harty. Shortly after waking up in a daze, he is knocked unconscious by Simone, who now believes him responsible for the murders and locks him in the tool shed.
Trilby manages to trick Simone into believing that he is a psychotic, guilt-ridden killer, and she gives him his tie back to allow him to hang himself. Inside the tie is a spare lockpick, which Trilby uses to unlock the door and find Simone missing. With the house nearly deserted, he finally encounters Simone in the bathroom, who has just seen the masked killer again. As they talk, the welder appears, but they manage to pull out the bathroom rug out from under him and knock him out, revealing Jim to be the one behind the mask, another victim of the dangerous powers of the idol.
The next day, Trilby uses the machete, apron and welding mask, which he received from Jim, to make a detector similar to the one he used to find the body of Matthew DeFoe. Trilby uncovers the deformed remains of Sir Roderick's other son under the floor of the bathroom, and using a book of black magic found in the library, attempts to summon the vengeful wraith of Sir Roderick DeFoe's son into its human remains by clothing it in the effects he wore in life. Simone and Jim, who are holding Sir Roderick's rifle and Matthew's teddy bear respectively, are possessed by the spirits of their dead owners, and the night on which Sir Roderick attempted to murder his son is re-enacted. Simone fires the rifle, causing the resurrected son to collapse and fall into the fireplace, eventually setting the entire manor ablaze.
Simone and Jim escape from the house, believing Trilby to be dead when they notice his absence, all according to the young burglar's plan as the police begin trickling in.
"The following documents are taken from the handwritten notes of Trilby, an STP field operative whose real name remains classified."
After the events of the DeFoe Manor Incident, Trilby's thieving ability was severely compromised, and he was eventually captured by the authorities. Recognizing his thieving skills and powers of deduction, the Special Talent Project (STP), a secretive branch of government using the aid of captured criminals and volunteers to uncover mysteries, agrees to make him an agent. The survivors of the DeFoe Manor Incident are watched most carefully by the authorities, and when Simone Taylor becomes a recluse, Trilby decides to investigate after no word is heard of her in a long time. In her apartment, he finds her murdered with a large machete. Trilby begins tracing the movements of the leftover debris from the DeFoe Manor Incident, eventually tracking down the idol, which has been purchased by professor Abed Chahal, who has put it up for display as part of a small historical exhibit in the Clanbronwyn Hotel on Clanbronwyn Island. Assuming the false identity of Terence Railby, dealer in antiques, Trilby travels to the isolated hotel; by the entrance, he is greeted by Peter Lenkmann, who introduces himself as an operative of the Ministry of Occultism and briefs Trilby about some peculiarities surrounding the hotel. Entering the hotel, he immediately happens upon professor Chahal, who is more than happy to invite him to his room and talk about a deal regarding the idol. In the professor's room, Trilby discusses the idol and other matters with Chahal and his assistant, Siobhan O'Malley. As they talk, the room suddenly changes, and Trilby sees a mysterious figure; before he has the chance to fully comprehend it, the room returns to normal.
As they talk, he recalls seeing Matthew DeFoe's painting in the entrance hall of the hotel, and exits the room to investigate it, however, his mind is affected and he is transported to a dark, dilapidated and grisly location, with blood writing on the wall and mutilated corpses all around. He navigates the twisted location to find that it is an exact duplicate of the Clanbronwyn Hotel, with minor structural differences. After removing a corpse in order to open the bathroom door, he finds an envelope on the sink inside. Addressed to him from Lenkmann, inside is found a brief explanation regarding the reality shift and how it responds to negative thoughts, as well as a bottle of tranquilizers that eases one's mind and allows one to return to the real world for a short while. Trilby ingests some pills and is returned to the real world; upon his return, he instantly heads for the entrance hall to investigate the painting; upon looking at it, he feels it beginning to beckon him towards it. Trilby touches the painting, and witnesses a flashback of the day when Sir Roderick attempted to murder his hated second son with the idol. Upon awakening in the real world after reliving the terrible memory, he finds a small piece of paper tacked to the painting. The paper contains passages of scripture from the Book of Victims, an apparent religious text.
Traveling between the two realms, Trilby navigates the hotel, and finding more and more items relevant to the past, gradually uncovering part of the history of the idol as well as the mysterious figure he saw; a frightful liche known as the Prince, a servant of the King, Chzo. In one of the flashbacks, he witnesses the creation of the idol, made from a shipping crate from the O'Malley Shipping company. Assuming Siobhan to be of the same family, he asks to come to her room to discuss it. As they talk, however, Trilby is transported to the room's dark world equivalent, in which he encounters the Prince. Trilby manages to fight back, finding himself transported back to the real world and that he has knocked Siobhan unconscious, not the Prince. Trilby checks the contents of her backpack, finding a detailed account of the O'Malley family history, including from where O'Malley Shipping obtained the materials for their boxes. Upon seeing the name The Unicorn, Trilby faintly remembers something bearing that name. Asking Chahal about it, he is pointed in the direction of a shingle found in the exhibition room.
From here, he traces the origin of the wood to Clanbronwyn Island, where a mighty tree once stood. Underneath the dark hotel, he finds a tree stump; upon touching it, he is shown a vision of a Celtic druid named Cabadath, who tried to summon the pain elemental Chzo. However, Chzo proved much too strong for him, and he was himself transported into Chzo's World of Magick, where he was punished for his insolence and his spirit placed within a tree. On many separate occasions, all occurring on July 28, Cabadath appeared in the World of Technology to murder those who harm or misuse the wood of the tree that holds his soul. When the idol, carved from the same tree, was used to beat the second son of Sir Roderick, the child's soul was placed within the idol, becoming the wraith servant of Cabadath. Also, the child was made the Bridgekeeper, the one prophesied to be the creator of the bridge between the world of Magick and Technology, upon the destruction of his Body, Soul and Mind.
Upon the end of the flashback sequence, Lenkmann appears, revealing himself to be a member of the Order of Blessed Agonies, a centuries-old masochistic pain cult dedicated to purification through pain and fulfilling the prophecies of Chzo. In order for Cabadath to cross into the World of Technology, a sacrifice must be made; to fulfill the conditions of the ritual, Lenkmann, Trilby and the captured Siobhan serve as embodiments of the Blessed Agonies of Mind, Body and Soul, respectively. Lenkmann fails to notice that Trilby dies while he is performing the ritual; upon the arrival of Cabadath, the angry liche takes his anger out on Lenkmann, after which they both leave the area. The dead Trilby has a vision of a mysterious man clothed in red, who brings him back to life. Upon awakening, Trilby takes the idol, which is, together with the other personal effects of the Welder, sent out into space to prevent anyone from ever unleashing the evil again. Cabadath and Lenkmann, now the Puppet, appears before the Order of Blessed Agonies, bearing Trilby's jacket, which is covered in his blood. This, they plan to use to perpetuate the life cycle of Trilby, the Guide.
In 6 Days a Sacrifice Trilby does not make a personal appearance, but his clones do, spawned from the bloody vest he wore in Trilby's Notes. Doctor Samantha Harty (descendant of Philip Harty) creates the clone but then later stops. The Trilby clones are ordered by the Order of the Blessed Agonies to work for them. When one Trilby clone dies and all the cultists are gone except for one named Canning who is locked up a new Trilby clone appears and begins to work for Theo DaCabe.
Theo and a bunch of Trilby clones go into the DeFoe Manor (The Hub) and while Theo ventures through the building the Trilbies are killed continuously by the Tall Man. Eventually there is only one Trilby clone left and the Caretaker urges him to burn the manor down igniting a bomb in the basement. Chzo then takes both the Trilby clone and Theo to him, transforming Theo into the New Prince while the Trilby clone is tortured until his life force is harvested by Malcolm Somerset and transferred to the dying Trilby in Trilby's Notes.
- While his real name is never mentioned within the stories, the commentary in the Special Edition of 7 Days a Skeptic reveals it to be the same as Malcolm Somerset's.
- According to his file included in the 6 Days a Sacrifice Special Edition, his name was coined by a newspaper after his famous Valentine's Day Heist on February 14, 1989.