IK:The Good Ship Fortune
Attendance: James, Ryan, Joe
NPCs: Leto, Harrison, Dumas, others
I woke to find ‘Father’ Dumas hammering at the door. Again. Who made that old fool a Father in the first place? He’s clearly inept. That niece of his was living in this church for how long, and still he didn’t realize how much of an evil little madam she was. Foolish old man.
Anyhow, Caitlin – CaitMAN – Alistair, Dook and I went down to breakfast, and were pleased to find a change from the dreariness of oatmeal that seems to be standard fare here in this church to Morrow. Hardly glorious food for our glorious God, is it? If I were an ascendant, I’d expect my followers to eat lavishly in my name. At any rate, Dumas had laid on egg and ham, which I ate happily while Alistair mumbled to Dumas about the possibility that Caitman had been affected by infernals, leading to her current situation. I have my doubts.
Dumas had finally decoded Alexia’s journal, which mentioned a hidden temple of Cyrus to the North East of Corvus. He enjoined us to find the temple as quickly as possible, and stop whatever the dratted girl had planned. If she still had the evil sword, which Dumas told us was a dire omen of some sort or other (I’m not convinced he knew what he was talking about), we should recover it and return it to the church if possible.
Feeling rather – well – naked without my armour, I sweetly asked Dumas whether he would give me some sort of protection from our enemies, given that I was going on a quest that was, in some sense for him. Dumas refused for no good reason. Fool.
After breakfast we split up: I went to look for replacement armour in the city, while Caitman researched in the library, and Dook and Alistair left to find information on the temple in the city. I found some wonderful – some might say MASTERWORK – armour for a very reasonable price, with a little help from some hypnotism. Meanwhile, Dook attempted to find out some more information from people working on a Steam Engine, and almost managed to ruin everything from what he told me, but after ferreting away in the dust and grime he got a lead: The Honeysuckle Inn was a place where the union steam workers drink at, and they may know something about the cult of Cyrus.
While having lunch at the Inn, Dook was approached by a man asking him about the precepts of Cyrus. He was fascinated by the power of mathematics – I could have told him – which the man told him would ‘explain why his gun fires.’ I’d be amazed if Dook will ever be able to understand all of this, but I suppose it’s admirable that he is trying. This man suggested that Dook would be able to find the temple if he learnt more about Cyrus.
Alistair, meanwhile, was quizzing Dumas. Morrow is ambivalent towards Cyrus, as is Dumas. But the darker aspects of the faith – of which Alexia is surely a part – is a matter of some considerable concern.
While on the way back to the church, Helstrom accosted me asking me to do something or other for him. I, of course, declined without hearing him out. It was bound to be something menial, and frankly we already have a mission of some importance to be getting along with. I’m sure he’ll be fine on his own, and if not then Caitlin – Caitman – will have one less man to swoon over.
I’ve heard it happens with some animals in nature, actually: female chimps rubbing other female chimps, and so on. Perhaps I should let Caitperson know.
While Dook was on the way back to the church, a beggar approached him with a note. Inside was some old Rynnish money (worth 200gp before the collapse), and a note that suggested another party was interested in the reclaim of the sword, and had more money for us if we would give the sword to him instead of Dumas. I believe this party is Oberon, the lightning bolt clad man who teleported away when Alexia was getting the upper hand in the fight a few weeks ago.
After lunch we continued researching, Alistair carrying books, Caitlin reading – she’s trying to overcome her sex, bless her – and Dook getting food for the rest of us. While Dook was in the kitchen picking up food for us, an old man with some affiliation to Cyrus appeared and told him some more about the temple in an ambiguous form that struck me as incredibly primitive as I heard of it. The majority of civilizations have moved on from mere spoken word as a method of communication – the Trollkin being a notable exception, if you accept that the term ‘civilization’ extends to them, of course, a particularly puzzling proposition that I’m unsure why anyone who has spent any time with them would accept – and I don’t see why this cult of Cyrus should be so backward as to resent books. The man had an interesting belt which righted him whenever someone attempted to trip him. Dook didn’t steal it, which surprised me. Perhaps these goblins have some understanding of morality after all.
Dook and Alistair left soon after to spend some time at the University, but had difficulty finding anything of interest. They did find that in the area we must travel to a tribe of ‘Gatormen’ exist.
Caitlin and I found an extremely helpful looking book about the geo-ethnography of the region, but the relevant pages had been ripped out and a single black hair was caught within the pages. We deduced Alexia had been there before us. Trekking to the University we found another copy of the book, and discovered the location of the temple. It is twenty five leagues from Corvus, five leagues up the river, twenty leagues along the bogs, and at the second of two small lakes we travel south for one league and find the temple.
After agreeing that we need a boat, we headed down to the docks and look at those vessels on offer for hire:
The Dame Elaine, a beautiful looking ship, elegant, pleasing to the eye. An old dwarven monstrosity. A cheap looking Union ship, rundown, filthy, crawling with goblins. King Leto’s Warship Fortune, an ugly steamer. Comet, another ugly steamer.
I went straight up to the Dame Elaine, and had a disappointing encounter with the captain, a woman who clearly had no idea what she was talking about. Sadly, I struck the Dame Elaine from my list of plausible vessels.
Dook had already gone to the Union ship, but found it in dire need of repairs: fires were breaking out, and it would not be seaworthy before we needed to travel.
I go up to King Leto’s ship, and am assaulted by an officer of the King, for no good reason: he stabs me in the back with his dagger, drags me on board, arrests me, ridicules me, tars me, feathers me, and throws me into the water. I refuse to acknowledge that this was legal, and shall be looking into how best to sue when I return to the City.
Comet had just been chartered by some people gambling at the Fivefingers Inn, but the captain referred us to his friend on the Fortune. The skipper – an old dog by the name of Squint – told us we could rent his boat for a reasonable fee. I demurely accept, though the smell of tar means that my acquiescence loses some of its gravitas.
I let the others deal with the crew for the most part, while I gather my books together and continue to read about the region we are coming to, and the Gatormen that Pendrake had written about.
The river is filthy and smells horrible, and frankly I feel quite sick on the waves. At some point we find ourselves stuck behind a large gate that has been constructed over the river. The gate is locked, and although Dook manages to pick the lock, we need to go into the gatehouses to push the gates open. As we do so, we are attacked by some horrific undead, that I turn into dust without too much trouble. It’s just as well I’m here – I’m not sure what these people would do without me.