The Scrumtumbler Automatic Mole (Hollow Earth Expedition Ssn1 Ep2)

This post is part of an ongoing story set in the pulp-era world of Hollow Earth Expedition. If you are new to this series, I suggest starting at the beginning of the story.  

“Behold the mechanical triumph which will reshape our understanding of the very planet upon which we stand!” Professor Scrumtumbler spread his arms wide as if he were Atlas holding the weight of the world above his head. Behind him loomed the streamlined drilling machine, held upright by its launch struts like a steel tower that glinted in the desert sun.

Professor Limefellow barely glanced up from his notebook. “Poppycock,” was all he said.

Scrumtumbler’s arms wavered slightly.  He took a moment to collect his thoughts and study his rival. Finally, he decided to push his hands higher into the air and renew his speech with all the melodramatic force he had been practicing for the press corps he expected to begin arriving soon.

“They said it couldn’t be done!” Scrumtumbler boomed. “They called me a fool and a madman! But I will show them, and history will vindicate my theories and enshrine my name for all time. Within this very vehicle, I have assembled the most daring crew of adventurers to assist me as we bore through hundreds of miles of bedrock to pierce into a vast subterranean cave complex—”

“Poppycock,” Limefellow said, closing his notebook and placing it neatly into the breast pocket of his tweed suit.

Scrumtumbler dropped his arms to his side. “You’re just jealous,” he said petulantly.

“Jealous of a fool? I think not,” Limefellow adjusted his bolo hat. “I may be an anthropologist, but even I know that the crushing weight of the earth precludes the possibility of any such cave system as the one you propose.”

Gripping the lapels of his white lab coat, Scrumtumbler rocked up on the balls of his feet and mumbled something about Galileo’s critics. “Why are you here, Limefellow?” Scrumtumbler asked. “Did you want to get one final glimpse at me before the world starts carving statues in my honor?”
“On the contrary,” Limefellow said. “I am here to accompany you.”

“You—you’re what?” Scrumtumbler choked on his own words.

“That’s right. The Royal Society has agreed to dispatch me here to ensure that your scientific methodologies are sound. In other words, my dear sir, I will not allow you to bamboozle the public with your half-baked hoaxes.”

“No,” Scrumtumbler folded his arms. “You’re not coming. I forbid it. I—”

His words were cut short by a thunderous boom which echoed out from behind the drilling machine. Both professors flinched at the noise, and the crew’s wilderness guide stuck his head out of the drilling machine’s hatch to see what had happened. One moment later, the actress Scrumtumbler had hired for the launching ceremony marched out from behind the drilling machine, her hands raised high over her head. Behind her walked Clem, the engineer’s assistant. His black hat cast a shadow across his eyes as he held a colt revolver pointed at the girl’s back.


Hollow Earth Expedition was created by Jeff Combos and is property of Exile Game Studio. For more Hollow Earth Expedition action, check out

About Sechin Tower

Sechin Tower is a teacher, game developer, and author of MAD SCIENCE INSTITUTE, a novel of creatures, calamities, and college matriculation. He lives in Seattle, Washington.
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