The Masks of Nyarlathotep
Dr. Eugene Erasmus Keck
A sweaty, diminutive man of intellectual disposition and intemperate appetites.
“Doctor” Eugene Erasmus Keck
Mister “That’s DOCTOR to YOU” Keck hails from the southern reaches of Prussia, from whence his parents emigrated in the 1890s. Growing up in the immigrants’ district of Philadelphia with an undistinguished educational background, he eventually earned enough money (through graft and some suspiciously fortuitous gambling winnings) to return to his homeland where he enrolled in “that distinguished abode of the parapsychological sciences” the University of Leipzig under the tutelage of the renowned Hans Driesch.
Upon completion of his study of “scientific occultism” he returned to the United States to ply his own trade amongs the well-to-do in Chicago. Rather abruptly in 1923, he moved to New York to pursue independent research.
For in truth, the good Doctor is a quack. True, he did attend the University of Leipzig – as a parttime student and a fulltime janitor. His abrupt departure from Leipzig coincided with the discovery by University police that large amounts of peculiar substances as well as some personal affects of the staff had gone missing since the Doctor’s appearance on campus. He also fled with forged certificates describing him as a Doctor of Parapsychology.
Depending on the company he finds himself in, he adopts either a heavy German accent (when among non-Germans), or puts on airs as a member of the British intelligentsia.
He’s rather fond of pharmaceuticals and knows his way around a laboratory.
As a young man growing up in Philadelphia he learned valuable skills – as a confidence man, a swindler and a burglar. He pursued a parapsychological education thinking that it would make an effective front for bilking the wealthy diletanttes of the upper class of their cumbersome lucre. He had no idea any of it was real!
Eugene is a nervous man. He cites the cause of his ‘nervous condition’ as a result of his studies, though it is equally likely that it was precipitated by a serious gambling debt accrued while fleecing gullible marks in Chicago with fake seances and snake oil tonics.