Vinny and Vera check on Rita Parker, and she's doing fine, although there have been inquries about her. Yes, there have been Russians about. Laura turns up some information on why Rita is a target. Vitaly Constantine wanted her to play the Queen in his symbolic chess game. Cliff recalls that the Queen, a Knight and several Pawns were missing from the game he was playing, and his Bishop was continually in peril. Cliff fills us in about Gus Milo and his relationship with Malinda Ruiz, suggesting that we might get to him by going through her.
Blake and Rosalita find a gypsy medium at Coney Island: one Madame Zorka. Whenthey tell her they want to speak to the spirit of Vitaly Constantine, she invites them to her camp at moonrise, instructing them to "Bring ze Bishop and ze Cannon." We go, and a sentry leads us through a mazelike forest. We are informed that although Madam Zorka will answer a question for ach of us, she will not contact the spirit of Vitaly, "because he is protected by Mother Bear."
Laura asks what someone might acomplish with a symbolic chess game. "It is a vay to kill someone who cannot be killed."
Rita asks why Madame Zorka keeps calling her Little Queen. "Because you have crown over head. You are placed to protect your side."
Vera asks about the consequences of putting Piotr into power. "Your side has two Queens now."
Cliff asks who the King is. Madame Zorka looks around and says, "The King is not here. He is protected."
Vinnie asks why he is here. "The zide is stronger when the Cannon defends."
Blake holds up the engraved cane and Madame Zorka hsses and spits. "I am owe you qvestion, Good Knight. Ve are done now."
While Vera scouts out the Four Seasons where the leadership of the Thule Society seems to meet on a regular basis, Laura takes this new information back to her arcane studies. There are very strong indications in all of this that the opposing King in the symbolic game we are playing can fly. It also appears that Vitaly was a highly placed follower, not the head of the Thule. Vera finds a way to secretly get us into the room where the Thule meet.
We decide to get another look at Vitaly's basement. Vera's hackles go up as we approach the front gate, but Cliff knows where the back gate is, and we go in that way, past a new padlock. The wind seems stronger near the house, and we hear a meancing growl. Thinking hellhounds, we pursue the better part of valor.