On their way to Bingham the team stopped off in Oklahoma City in order to visit the radio station from which the broadcasts of Reverent Cornfield are being transmitted.
There Mr Hatfield was able to charm the receptionist into gaining access to the back-catalogue of broadcasts which revealed that they had only started a few months ago and had always had the subliminal Yig-Worshipping references. The receptionist was so taken by Hatfield that for a nominal fee copies of all the broadcasts were made for the team to take away with them! The team picked up a portable record player to listen to the recordings and try and decipher any hidden meanings.
On arrival in Bingham the team checked into the Bingham hotel and then spread out around town to interview the citizens and try and find out what was going on.
They were able to discover:
- The Reverend Cornfield apparently has healing powers which have been demonstrated on several of the townsfolk, however each one seems to come with some sort of side-effect.
- The town is split between those who believe the reverend is sent from God and the best thing to ever happen to the town and those who think he is some kind of devil in human flesh come to plague the town.
- A worker at the lumber yard had his pelvis crushed and likely should have died, but definitely should never have walked again, the reverend healed him and now he not only can walk, but displays amazing agility.
- The assistant in the Barber’s shop was almost blind before being healed by the reverend, but now has a massive hunger with the ability to consume large amounts of food (possibly without chewing it), and then becomes lethargic/sleepy.
- The blacksmith’s wife had a terrible skin condition, but was healed and now has perfect skin, all at the cost of having to shed it once/month.
- Another woman, Mrs Shaw, almost died giving birth, but her and her baby were saved, the baby has scales and a folked tongue and Mrs Shaw now lays snake-like eggs.
- The Barber’s wife almost choked to death at dinner with the Reverend, but was saved, she now has a hunger for insects.
- Those who are ‘pro-Cornfield’ do not seem to see anything wrong with the side-effects.
- The Reverend went on a spiritual journey of 40 days/nights in the wilderness a few months back, and upon returning had these healing powers.
- The Reverend started to send out his broadcasts which seem to be drawing he faithful to Bingham.
- The Reverend sometimes takes people on journeys out into the wilderness for spiritual enlightenment.
On the first night in the town someone set fire to the Church, the Team were unable to catch anyone in the act, but did help put out the fire.
They later discovered that the pair who had set the fire were the Mr Shaw and Suzie Shoubalm (the Blacksmith’s Daughter), who were having an affair after being brought together by their disgust at the changes brought on to their family members by the Reverend’s healing.
Father Bob convinced Mr Shaw to be a good Christian and break off the affair with young Suzie, who seemed completely devoted to him.
The Team attended an outdoor service held by the Reverend the day after the fire which was held outside in spite of the burnt-down church. There Mr Hatfield was able to talk down the owner of the lumber-yard who was bent on shooting the Reverend in front of everyone by promising that there would be a better time. Father Bob and CC stepped into the service by volunteering to handle snakes with some other brave townsfolk, many of whom were bitten and had to have medical treatment! But in doing so Father Bob and CC were invited by the Reverend to attend his next journey into the wilderness the next day. During the service it became apparent that the Reverend was preaching worship of Yig under the guise of the usual worship of God.
That evening the town was rocked by the news that young Suzie had shot the Reverend dead! It seems that Mr Shaw had broken it off with her (as instructed by Father Bob) and in her grief she decided to take out the Reverend herself! She was being held in the Sheriff’s office and an angry crowd of ‘faithful’ were outside baying for her blood!
Father Bob and CC went to check on the Reverend, and he was indeed dead, and inspecting the body revealed that he was human (as far as they could tell), Bob was able to steal the Reverend’s personal bible which it turned out had been heavily modified to reflect his new snake-worshipping ways.
Hatfield spoke to the sheriff and got the impression that he had the same idea, though would not take action when anyone was watching.. when the crowd disbursed it seemed likely that Suzie would be taken out back and shot!
Recruiting Suzie’s father, the blacksmith, to help Hatfield began hatching a plan to break her out of jail!