Investigator's Name: Father Richard Hunter
Sex: Male.AGE: 52
Place of Birth: Boston, MA, USA
Occupation: Catholic priest/Professor
Colleges: Miskatonic U., BA, MDiv, ThD
Richard was born in Boston Massachussetts in 1878, the son of a waitress at a seedy diner and a father who could have been any of a number of men. His mother cared for him the first few years of his life but eventually found that she couldn't afford the time or the money raising a child required and gave him up for adoption. For whatever reason Richard never found a home and, when he was five
years old was turned over to St. Anselm's Home for Boys in Boston. Despite the reputation such places have (at least in legend....) St. Anselm's was not a horrible place. It was far from ideal: discipline was strict, he had to work harder than most children his age perhaps do and he had less attention than he would perhaps like. But the staff at St. Anselm's did care for their charges and worked hard to provide a safe and stimulating environment for the boys. One particular favorite of Richard's was Father Andrew who organized football games for the boys and was fond of telling them stories of the lives of the saints -- these tales particularly fascinated Richard.
Richard received a typical Catholic school education and excelled at
his studies. He graduated high school near the top of his class in
1896 and, thanks to a scholarship in the memory of one of the
founders of St. Anselm's, in the fall of that year began his undergraduate studies at Miskatonic Univeristy in Arkham Massachussetts where he double majored in English Literature and Religion. When the Spanish-American War broke out he volunteered and served as a combat medic. When the war ended, he returned to Miskatonic and finished his studies in 1901, again near the top of his class.
Inspired by Father Andrew's tales of the saints Richard always felt
he had a calling to the priesthood, and his experiences in the war
only confirmed his faith. Richard therefore applied to and was
accepted to graduate study at the Harvard Theological Seminary with the intent of entering the priesthood and becoming a missionary -- the closest he believed he could come to following in the footsteps of the great men of faith Father Andrew had told him so much about. He graduated from the seminary in 1907 and immediately applied for, and was accepted to do, missionary work in rural China.
Richard loved his work in China and was quite popular with the people
there. In addition to preaching and ministering to the people spiritually
he taught those who wanted to learn English, cared for
them physically by applying his knowledge of Western medicine, served as a friend and counsellor, and helped in their day to day tasks. Richard became an accepted and respected part of the community and
made trips back to the States infrequently and only when required.
In the Fall of 1915 there were several murders of residents of Richard's
village and other villages in the vicinity. All of the victims were
torn apart savagely and partially eaten, as if by an animal. Late
one evening, Richard was walking alone down by the river that ran by the
village when he heard a woman screaming. He quickly ran to where
the screams were coming from and found one of the young women from the
village beset by a horrid creature with the head, fur and claws of a wolf
but which stood like a man. Richard attacked the thing with a walking
stick which he had been gifted with by one of the village elders and, although
he was clearly no match for the beast, succeeded in occupying it until
other men from the village could arrive and kill it. Richard, however,
was horribly mauled in the process. The thing had scratched his face
deeply and left four long, deep gashes running from his right shoulder
across his chest, just missing his abdomen. Worst of all, however,
was the damage to his left leg which was torn to shreds by the creature's
clawed feet. Despite his heroism and long relationship with the
village, most of the villagers wished to kill the priest believing that he too would become a man-beast because of his injuries. A shaman from the hills, however, noted that Richard had not been bitten and insisted that he be allowed to take the priest to his home and heal him. After several months of involved and painful treatment Richard was essentially healthy and able to resume his duties, although the leg never really properly healed.
Richard's experience with the creature left him with a deep interest
in the mysterious and occult and he began speaking with wise men and shaman
and visiting holy sites and places of spiritual power. After several
warnings from his superiors, Richard was eventually recalled to the States
in 1918 -- officially due to the injuries he had sustained but Richard
always suspected (rightly as it happens...)
that his superiors feared he had finally "gone native", as evidenced by his unhealthy interest in the occult.
When recalled Richard was given a position at Miskatonic University
as a chaplain and a professor of theology and languages at the seminary.
Hunter misses China but enjoys his work, especially as
chaplain and counsellor, and finds his teaching position and students intellectually stimulating and exciting. He has continued his interest in and studies of the occult, although circumspectly. At
the request of students he has investigated reports of "presences" in the library and dorms but has thus far not found anything concrete.