Chapter 1: Entering Khazan, Part 5   Leave a comment

Turn 3:  Perry

Perry shrugged and replied “Fathers! Tell me about them. See if you can stop by here tomorrow same time and I will too. If you’re free, you can choose where we go.”
He sauntered over to Madame Zolgah’s whistling as he went, sure he’d being seeing more of that girl.
He called out a cheery greeting as he entered the premises, ready to seek news of his father and the city, looking to learn some magic and maybe get some work. He thought about the last time he’d tried to get a wizard to teach him a spell and how he’d spent 2 long, hard weeks shelling nuts only for the obviously bored mage to teach him the Nut Buster spell. Useful in a crunch but not something he’d share with Madame Zolgah at least until he knew her quite well.

A bell chimed as Perry entered the shop.  It was scarecely more than  a closet with a table bisecting the room.  Behind the table was a heavy gray curtain–it might have been black once upon a time.  In front of the table was a 3-legged wooden stool.  At both ends of the table were human skulls, weighing down the flimsy linen covering.  Candle stubs protruded from the top of the skulls, but they weren’t lit at the moment,  Perry stood there taking it all in.  A thick, burbly voice broke the silence.  “Sit down.  Madame Zolgah will be with you shortly.”

“Um,” said Perry.  He thought about simply turning and walking back out.

“Sit!” barked the voice.  “Or you will never know . . . what Madame Zolgah knows . . .”

Perry had a sense of deja vu. He was taken back to his childhood when he had run away from his elf-mother in a fit of juvenile pique – he had stumbled across a cottage and entered a darkened room, fragrant with incense, to find an old crone stroking a horned toad. His escape had many twists and turns and had left deep scars in the core of his being. Still, he knew that the surface was often far from revealing the heart and so he resolutely sat as he was told, keyed up for a testing time…what Madame Zolgah knew was something he was determined to share in.

Turn 3:  Mensa and Wulf

Mensa noted the barbarian (? Smelled kinda like dog.) but took no notice. As the door began to gleam, Mensa poked around with the lock. Did it seem kinda loose to him? He wondered what made it work, and if he could make one like it.

After a short time, a bit of a crowd gathered around Mensa’s cage.  A deep voice commanded, “Let us through”.  A tall Minotaur and a stocky old Dwarf pushed through the throng.  “I am Captain Grynosk of the Khazan Watch.  I understand some of  you have questions.  I will answer you as best I can once I’ve dealt with this troublemaker.”

The Dwarf came up to the bars and gave Mensa a hard look; then spoke in Dwarvish.  “Greetings (Literally May the Rock be kind to you!), Young One.  I am Silvertongue of the Khazan Watch.  How are you to be addressed?”

(Chet, play this as a conversation, one sentence or group of sentences at a time)

(Wulf, Agros, Lumlas, Weylan, prepare one question each that you would like to have answered.  You can prepare a second one, but hold it until you’ve gotten the answer to your first one, please)

Turn 2:  Edurin

Edurin smiled politely at the big, dirty man. Edurin grasped at the probing fingers by his belt. (L2SR on SPD to succeed.  Rolled 3, 4 = 7.  Failed.  He heard a yelp and then his dirk fell out of the sheath to the cobbled road.  Out of the corner of his eye, he caught a flash of motion as someone behind him jerked violently away from his gripping hand.  The big guy said, “Hey, you can’t do . . .” and his hands clutched at Edurin’s shirt.

“Pardon me,” interrupted Edurin. He closed his hands over the big man’s and swung around to flip the big guy into the sneak behind him. Defending with a pack and spear strapped to his back was not ideal. During the spin, Edurin took in the situation. How many muggers did he face? Were they armed? (L2SR on STR to see if he can move the big guy as he wishes.  Rolls 4, 3 = 7.  Success).  The big guy crashed into the sneak behind Edarin. Edarin crouched to grab his fallen dirk. He then sprung forward to bowl over his two immediate problems.  He drove his shouulder into the gut of the big man, sending him lurching backwards.  The smaller fellow sidestepped and looked worried.  “Help!” he said.  You could see the idea catch hold in his brain.  “Help!” he screamed, his voice surprisingly high.  “Murder!”  He skipped backwards away from Edurin. The big guy staggered and almost fell.  Somehow he kept his feet, and turned to run away.  He wanted nothing more to do with this surprisingly strong and quick stranger.

People stopped to turn and look.  What they thought they saw was a young man with a knife menacing a poor citizen while a big thug ran away.  The crowd drew back.  No one wanted to get in the way of a madman with a knife.

(Reaction?)

Turn 3:  Weslyn

“Castle Greybat?  How am I supposed to find that?  Never mind get there!  I was so certain he would be here.”  Weslyn groans.  ” I was certain he’d sell it here and I had something like a plan.  Now? I can’t go home and I can’t go on.”

“Perhaps I can find a merchant friend in the Market Square to fund a trip upriver, that’s my only hope.”  She looks at Lumlas, “I don’t suppose you’ve got a magic boat, do you?”
“Didn’t think so.”
The elf sorceress looked at her new friend with an expression of pity on her face.”Let’s not give up before we’ve started Weslynn. Even if your merchant friends cannot help us I’m sure we two are capable of tracking down your thief. Someone will know how to get to this castle – your friend from the City Watch may be helpful in that regard. And if all else fails, we could work passage up river.””It strikes me that you’ve been quite fortunate today after your bad luck. You’ve found a new friend in me (grins winsomely) and you’ve found out that your thief was here and where he’s taken your goods. It could have been much worse.”

“Come my friend. Let us rejoice for what we’ve discovered for now we know what we must do.”

Lumlas stood with her hands on her hips and her chin tilted in a stance of determination and defiance as if daring Weslynn to leap up and start swimming upstream immediately.

The Skeleton interrupted Weslyn’s expostulations.  “I wouldn’t advise going to Castle Greybat, young lady.  Rumor has it that the lord of the castle is a vampire and his guards are Ghargs.  Though it is only 2 days upriver, it isn’t really part of the empire and never has been.  I wouldn’t bet a copper piece on your chances of coming back out of that castle alive if  you go there. ”  He made a pushing gesture toward the door.  “Excuse me, I have the first records of the day to enter now.”
Ghargs too?  Oh really now?”Weslynn sighs again, “Will my troubles never cease to increase?”
Her shoulder’s droop slightly more, and then she steels herself ” Never mind the opposition, I have a debt to repay.  Bad enough they attacked me, and my guards – who I suspect are dead –    but stealing the shipment was an insult to the company’s honor and standing.  I can’t let that stand.  I would be better off, I know, cutting off my hands and enlisting in the Arena, but I will teach them the cost of making sport of me.”
“Thank you for the information, guardsman, ” nodding seriously in the direction of the living skeleton, ” I’ll take my leave now, and let you get back to your work.”  She looks over to Lumias, hoping she will follow, and they can discuss this further outside of the office.
“Lumias, are you still sure you want to get involved with this madness?  I know you said you were looking for adventure, but you seem to be more sensible than this.  Never mind that I think I like you, there is no shame is finding a fitter amusement.”
“Yes, I’ll need the help of friends to see this through, I think.  I hope we can find someone I know in the Winesellers Square to help finance a boat.  We don’t want to have to try to find a boat that will take unskilled crew going in the right direction at short notice, the longer this takes to organize, the further ahead he gets.”
She thanked the living skeleton for his help with the records, and then began to head outside.  “Let’s go see if fate is smiling and there are friends in town.”

Turn 3:  Lumlas

After a brief pause to take in all the new information and consider Weslyn’s suggestion that she needn’t join her on a quest to a vampire’s castle to take on an army of Ghargs (a cross between a GHoul and a wARG?) in an effort to retrieve her stolen wine. She then turned to Weslyn and said,

“I said I would help you and I would never go back on my word. However, it does sound like we may need some more help if we are going to succeed.”

The two women slipped out of the records room just in time to see a minotaur and a Dwarf approaching the holding cell with Mensa in it.  (Do you want to join the crowd forming there?)
Turn 3:  Wulf
 Wulf  saw that the Dwarf was busy in his own little world, and put his food carefully back in his bag. He saw the two women go by, and was mildly surprised to see the skeleton man as he was not familiar with such beings. Then the Wizard entered, and talked to the sergeant, and, when the Minotaur and the Dwarf came out, he rose immediately to his feet and assumed a parade rest attitude and posture out of respect for an officer. He had seen minotaurs before, but this was the first he had encountered in a position of authority. Still, he knew how to behave in a military situation, and did his best to look like the experienced soldier he was. As he patiently waited for his turn, he took a clandestine look at the two ladies, and thought he liked that view.
The Captain gave Wulf a nod as he walked by.  His nostrils twitched and he looked at Wulf more closely, but said nothing, accompanying the Dwarf over to the cell, and letting that conversation begin.  While the Dwarves were having their conversation, the Captain led Wulf and a few others to the opposite side of the room, and said, “Now, citizens, what is it that you would ask of me.  You, barbarian, I heard your name is Wulf, and you showed admirable presence of mind at the gate this morning.  What is it that you want?”
” I am Wulf Wayfarer, a soldier of fortune with experience. I came to Khazan to seek work, and Joruk, the guard at the south gate, said their might be an opportunity for a soldier to work with the city watch. If the Bear cult is active here, I bear them no love, for they helped our enemies drive my people from our home in the northland. I have been a bouncer. a soldier, and led men in battle and in sieges in the fiefdom wars north of here.
I have seen your excellent watchmen in action, and would be happy to join them in protecting the city and its good citizens.”
“So, you want a job?  You seem like a good prospect, Wulf, but you’d need to be tested.  There will be a training session for new recruits 3 days from now in the training grounds at the Khazan courthouse.  It will be 1 hour after dawn.  Be there and if you do well on the test, I will guarantee you a job.”
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Posted May 7, 2012 by atroll in Uncategorized

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