Chapter 1: Entering Khazan, Part 4   Leave a comment

Turn 1:  Edurin

Edurin stepped up to the guard. Having learned from the others ahead of him, he said, “Edurin of Sonan Ie. I’m just off the ship, Wayward Sluice.” He pointed back to the docks, “Looking for an inn to settle into while I tour your city.” He pointed over the guard’s head into Khazan. “I’m hoping to find a nice souvenir or a good trading opportunity. What inn would you recommend for a mere sailor?”

The guard on the Sea Gate of Khazan looked at the bumpkin in front of him.  “Just off the boat, eh?” he thought.  “Let’s have some fun.”  Of course he didn’t say either of these things out loud.  “You want my recommendation.  You should stay in the Drowned Mermaid Tavern for your first few nights in town.”  It’s halfway down Fish Street, and you should have no trouble finding it.”

Edurin strode into the city of Khazan without a backward glimpse.  It was still early morning, and he had no need to find his inn so early.  Off to his right the streets seemed to be mostly filled with other humans.  To his left was a river district, and the streets  held a lot of Goblins, Froglins, and Lizard-Men.  Straight ahead the road lead into the heart of the city, and a signpost said Arena–1 league.  The woman who was ahead of him in line looked back over her shoulder and winked at him.  With a musical laugh, she walked swiftly up a right-trending street.

Edurin started to follow her, but he hadn’t gone 10 steps before a big, dirty man with peeling, scabrous skin lurched into him.  “Watch where yer going,  ya stinkin tourist,” growled the man.  Wine fumes spilled off him like a splash of salt water from a breaking wave.  The big man crowded him, and looked like he was ready to strike him.  Distracted as he was, he almost missed the feeling of fingers probing at his belt, starting to grip the handle of his dagger.

Turn 2:  Mensa

Grumbling because he had wanted warm food, Mensa took a piece of jerky from his pack and chewed on it. Mensa looked at the lock on the door. It was dirty, and he liked metal to be shiny. So he began polishing the lock and the rest of the cell door. He might have noticed the barbarian, but he was kind of preoccupied. He did so much like shiny things!

Turn 2:  Wulf

Wulf sat and slowly drank the bitter ale. He had had worse, and was glad for the draught. Hearing the Dwarf grumble about hunger, he asked the guard who gave him a drink if he could give a flagon to the dwarf prisoner. He quietly suggested that the little guy was perhaps a little short in the brains department.  Perhaps he was ill or just too hungry or thirsty to think clearly.
If allowed, he will give Mensa the ale and some of his field rations, dried fruit and hardtack, and ask him what he is in Khazan for.  And he will remember the pretty woman who smiled at him. What was that scent that she carried about her? He had noticed it in the line, but had not had time to think about it. It was definitely not something she wore…
Turn 2:  Lumlas and Weslyn
Lumlas made up her mind immediately to tag along with Weslyn.”That sounds like a splendid idea. I’m sure we’re going to get on famously”, she replied to Weslyn and started to match her new companion’s stride towards the Watch Station.As they proceeded, she started to ask questions about the theft.”Do you have any idea who might have been involved in stealing your wine? Does the fact that the guards are missing implicate them or do you think they may have been abducted or even worse killed? Do you think the City Watch are going to offer much in the way of help?…”Her questions tailed off as she noticed the obvious distress she was causing the young vintner and she switched the conversation to less weighty matters.”Is the weather likely to stay warm at this time of year so far north? Are there really enclaves for all of the different sentient races in Khazan?”
“Good, good.  I fear my guards may be slain or seduced, as I was.  Nobody at the inn I was staying at seemed to know exactly.  The thief I have seen, for he…found me at a time when I was somewhat…overindulging in the wine I was showing off for a potential client.”  Weslyn sighed again, remembering, as best she could, that hazy night.
Weslyn waved at the houses of Khazan, and tryed to shake off her dark mood, “Yes, every race tends to stick together.  Although I think the merchants go where their clients are most concentrated , still most business takes place in the great market quarter of the city up on the north side.  So there is little call for them to wander about because everyone comes to the Market to satisfy their needs.  Everything one could ever need is found in the Market, mostly divided by type of good.  Wine, for example, is part of the food sector, and there’s a big cooperative warehouse for the main merchants and producers.  We’ll be going there as soon as I’ve finished at the Watch station.”
Glancing up at the sky, she shrugged..  “Hmmm I don’t come here much in winter. When the roads close with snow, little trade gets done.  It does seem to be a mite warm.  You did say you were a sorceress, though, perhaps you could wizard up a cooling breeze?”
All this talking had brought the two women to the front door, and they were soon inside.  The sargent at the desk listened to Weslyn’s story for a minute, and said, “You’ll want records.  Hargbuk, get over here!” she bellowed.  A skeleton man in coarse gray robes shuffled over to the desk.  “Follow Hargbuk,” said the sargent. “He will check the records for you.”
“This way, ladies!” hissed the Skeleton.  Neither Weslyn nor Lumlas had encountered a Living Skeleton before.  At close range they could see that he did indeed have skin, but that it was utterly transparent.  He led them past the holding cells where the barabarian was talking to the Dwarf who had caused the disturbance, and into a back room.  He gestured at a couple of stools and indicated they should sit.  Then he walked to a desk where a huge folio volume lay open beside and inkwell and  a brace of quill pens.  He scanned the large pages and flipped backwards a couple of times.
“Here it is.   A wagon came in two nights ago, admitted after dark.  Driver gave his name as Kagleo Janoum — “
“That was a lie!” exclaimed Weslyn.  “There is no such person as Kagleo Janoum!”
“And you know this, how?”
“I am Weslyn Janoum.  That was my wagon of merchantdise.  Did he have any guards riding with him?”
“You can prove your claim?” asked Hargbuk.
“Not at the moment,” answered Weslyn.  The man who robbed me took most of my papers and money, too.  “Just tell me where he went.”
The Skeleton examined his book.  Says here he had a load of wines from the Janoum vintners destined for Castle Greybat up river..  Probably caught a riverboat yesterday.”
Turn 2:  Algris
Magic and madness. This is not what Algris wanted, but what could he expect? He had already come close to saying too much. That was not his way, that was Alter’s way. For Algris the plan now was simple: go to the guard, check in and listen. No mention of witches in the family or his conviction that Alter was dead–not unless it led to work. The family, the farm, what there was of both of them needed money–badly. Surely someone could use a wizard built like a laborer? Maybe he could get a job as a scribe, put that oversized intellect to use.  Trust luck, said the dead brother who had none.
He entered the Watch post, saw the Barbarian and the Dwarf talking near the door, saw the two women following a Skeleton into another room, saw several guardsmen sitting around on benches, saw some empty cells.  He stepped up to the desk and said, “I’d like some information about current events in the city.”
“Then you need to speak to the Captain,” said the sargent.  “He’s kind of busy today, but he should be out to  talk to the barbarian in a few minutes.   Why don’t you step over and join him?  Maybe the Captain can deal with you all at the same time.”
An office door opened.  A burly Minotaur accompanied by an old gray-bearded Dwarf stepped out and surveyed the room.  Algria looked at the Bull-Man curiously.  “Yes, that’s Captain Grynosk,” said the sargent in a whisper.    Get over there if you want to talk to him.”
Turn 2:  Perry
Perry sighed…for 2 reasons – first at the beauty of the girl (something stirred in both the elven and the human halves of his loins) and secondly because he never had been able to heed his mother’s warnings about his tendency to let romance lead him astray.
Either Madame Zolgah or the barman at the Black Dog might be able to put him on the trail of his hunter father and the latter ought to be able to supply at bed for the night while the former might be willing to teach him new spells in exchange for heaven knew what…
The unrepetently naive half-elf stepped up to the girl and smiled, giving his most winsome grin. “I’m new in this town,” he said, “and I certainly could do with a friend. What say we take a table at the Black Dog and get to know each other? The worst you get out of it is a friend and I have a feeling we may find common ground easy to find. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!”
With his characteristic half-bow, he swept his arm towards the tavern and crossed his fingers behind his back.
(L1SR on CHR)  Rolled 5, 3  added 2 for his level.  Failed.)
The girl looked at Perry, smiled slightly, then walked on past him.  “I’m sorry, Sir,” she called back over her shoulder.  “I promised my mother I’d never go into the Black Dog Tavern, especially not with a man.  And anyway, I’m on an errand.  I have to go bail my father out of gaol at the Wolf Street watch station.  No time to dilly-dally, no matter how handsome the temptation may be. ”  Having said all that in a rather breathless rush, she passed Perry and continued  up the street.

Posted May 6, 2012 by atroll in Uncategorized

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