Deals From The DarksideEpisodes

Hangman's Hood
Season 1 - Episode 8
Hangman's Hood

Steve was pretty psyched to win the Scottish executioner's hood at auction a while ago, but when he takes it to a leather expert, the man tells him he thinks it's more likely a modified feedbag than an actual hood. Steve is crestfallen, but he's not about to give up the fight.

Besides, he has something to smile about. He meets with the proprietor of The Occult Shop to check on some bones from a victim of torture who was sentenced to one of the cruelest deaths imaginable - death by wheel. The victim, who had their limbs bound, would have a wagon wheel dropped on their bones, shattering them while still alive. Professor Edwin Holland, a forensic anthropologist, checks out the bones and says the break is consistent with wheel breakage - a mix of straight and ragged breaks. And, judging by the wear on the teeth of the skull that came in the package, he can tell that the victim ate stone-ground bread, meaning they lived in the middle ages. The professor's assessment that the bones were not from the same body doesn't diminish their value - bodies would be dumped into mass graves, each skeleton overlapping others.

To help the local food bank, Steve is helping out in the annual zombie walk to raise awareness and collect food for the institution. But to bump up publicity and interest, Steve wants to do one of his extreme escapes. Rob has a bad feeling about this one, though, so he brings Steve to Wiccan High Priestess Tamarra James. Tamarra has a great many coins from the Campus Martius, the Roman field of Mars, where soldiers would make an offering by burying a coin in hopes that they would not be killed in battle. Tamarra invokes spiritual powers, and makes Steve swear - on the coin as well as on the Styx - that he will return her borrowed coin with his own hands once he is done with the escape.

Steve has a video conference with Steve Scouller, an expert in Scottish execution history. He takes one look at the hood and knows it's authentic. Not only does Steve have an excellent and very rare piece on his hands, but he won it for an extraordinary price.

With this good news, Steve and company go into the zombie walk, and as Steve unlocks a pair of handcuffs while a machete presses into his sternum, he has an extra burst of confidence knowing that he has to keep his promise to Tamarra. He manages the escape and returns the coin, but Tamarra knows Steve too well - she tells him to borrow it again, and return it after his next escape. Steve is all to happy to promise, but the best part about the whole venture was the truckload of food they were able to bring to the needy.

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