[a / b / c / d / e / f / g / gif / h / hr / k / m / o / p / r / s / t / u / v / vg / w / wg] [i / ic] [r9k] [cm / hm / y] [3 / adv / an / cgl / ck / co / diy / fa / fit / hc / int / jp / lit / mlp / mu / n / po / pol / sci / soc / sp / tg / toy / trv / tv / vp / x] [rs] [status / ? / @] [Settings] [Home]
Settings   Home
/qst/ - Quests

File: Lamia Legacy Colored.png (2.27 MB, 1600x1800)
2.27 MB
2.27 MB PNG
Thread LXIX:

Archive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Lamia%20Legacy%20Quest
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LamiaLegacy
Opening Theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RCQmQwKEEOM
Story Thus Far: http://pastebin.com/Ck2kTriw
Season: Early Spring

Money: 975
New Backpack - (Sealed)
Kozak Bladesx2
Repeater - Unupgraded

Sasha: Skill list
Ranching +4
Scholar +3
Marksmanship +6
Natural Ability (Lamia) +3
Intrigue +4
Casting (Draconic+4 Roc+3 Leviathan+3 Troll+1 Elemental+1)
Falconry +1

"So what do I have to expect when I meet this guy." You shout through the door, fidgeting with the uncomfortable formal business attire. You remember the terse conversation you had with the Colonel when you first discovered the pass through the mountains, and the anonymous tip that you were harboring the dangerous outlaw 'Two Hands' McCain. He'd been all business then, at least until you mentioned having a centaur under your roof, then he'd sent for the Schola and had been content to give Keel the run of the show.

McCain's voice comes through the door, "No clue, Keel never said much about his boss. Asked Liama, she says she met Colonel Braun once, and that he was odd, but not in a bad way. Wouldn't say much more than that."

Satisfied with your appearance, you slither out of your room, following McCain down to where he's got the carriage parked. "And how about your own take? You had command once too."

"I only rated Captain." McCain says while checking the horses harness. "Colonel is a whole different animal."

"You still probably worked under a few, yeah? More experience than I have."

"Well, the southern continent posting has always been where they put folks too awkward for mainland nitor work. I imagine that an officer posting would either be a punishment, or that he's just as strange."

You frown, "Keel seems to have a good head on his shoulders."

McCain shrugs, before helping you into the carriage, "He also hasn't brought me in, which means he's less by the book than your standard nitor officer. The fact his men seem in on it too is strange. I get a sneaking feeling Keel runs more than he lets on."

He shuts the door behind you as he steps down into the rapidly drying muck of the compound. The foul weather of yesterday has given way to a brilliantly sunny day, all but annihilating the last remnants of winter. From the window, you see Tai directing a few of Zhou's people to cordon off the cattle that are gonna be driven soon, herding them into a makeshift enclosure on the far side of the river, a side benefit of your new bridge as normally you'd have to wait for the waters to recede in order to do so. Leaving the workings of the ranch to their own devices for the moment, you focus on the meeting with the Colonel, and what you hope to gain from it.

>Acquiring the cavern is priority.
>Getting Zhou's people armed takes precedent
>Acquiring the cavern is priority.
that sounds nice :)
File: tegaki.png (5 KB, 400x400)
5 KB
is the thread dead
Takes a bit for folks to show up usually.
I'm down for whatevs
>Aquiring the caravan is priority
Rolled 88 (1d100)

As Traveler and Greenbriar pull out of the ranch, you wonder how you're going to convince the Nitor to let you acquire the cavern they are current pouring over. The owner, Karath, is in all likelihood being sought by the authorities for his connection between the faux McCain, his land acquisitions, and the late bandit's ties with the Phoenix invasion. With that in mind, its very likely his purchases will end up in UFK hands, to be auctioned or returned to the original owners in the case of wrongdoing. Unfortunately, with a little less than a thousand isens to spare, it'd take some doing to convince anyone to let the cavern go, especially with having proper sea access. Opening the roof hatch, you pop up next to McCain.

"Somethin' the matter?" Your foreman says, keeping his eyes on the road.

"Just trying to figure how we are going to get them to sell the Phoenix hideout."

For a while there's naught but the rattle of the carriage as McCain ponders the dilemma. Eventually he sighs, "Well, if'n you don't got the funds for it way I see it is either we lowball 'em hard, play up the problems with it. Or we offer them a deal some other way, a concession, letting them in on something. Working with them. Sorry, not the best at this sort of business." Shrugging apologetically he focuses back on the road. The improvements Serrak's workers did on the trail from the ranch to South Fork is evident. Namely the fact you aren't trudging through the mud up to your axles. It's nothing like the fancy roadways between the major towns, but at least it can stand up to the thaw. The spring chill starts to get to you and you duck back into the carriage proper. Looking out the window, you note the plant life hasn't got the message regarding the cold, as new shoots and greenery are starting to make themselves apparent. Wildlife hasn't made itself known yet, but it won't be long before you're gonna have to deal with coyotes again. Settling back into your seat, you just hope that more of those cougars from across the mountains don't find their way onto your land.

You roll into South Fork nearing midday, and are let out of the carriage by McCain and onto the thankfully clean boardwalk. Down the way you can see the Nitor office, and from here you can see the unmistakable bulk of Keel's Sergeant manning the desk there.

>Head straight to the Colonel
>Try and find Keel first.
>Head straight to the Colonel
Being early to a meeting is always a good thing.
"Best put my best face forward." You say to McCain, "Gonna go see if I can't meet with him early."

"Don't seem overeager. Their liable to raise what they want for it" He warns before adding, "Gonna see Enos about supplies for the cattle drive."

Letting your foreman make himself scarce, you head towards the nitor posting. Returning a few friendly greetings from nitor troopers, Keel's men you're sure, you approach the desk. The man seems engrossed in his book despite himself, holding it away from his body as he squints. Eventually one of the other Nitor coughs and he notices you. "Somethin' I can help with you with Miss Masterson?"

"Here to see the Colonel. I had a meeting?"

"Oh, right. Right." He says, setting down the book and digging into stack. "You're a bit early, but no matter. The Colonel's in the acting commander's room. First on the left."

Leaving the man to his novel, you head to the indicated room, seeing it shut, you give it a polite knock.

"Enter." Comes a muffled voice behind the door.

Opening the door you can see Colonel Braun at his desk tinkering with something, and he's not alone. Across from him sits a familiar face, the reservist Major who took those cattle rustlers off your hands. "Oh, I'm sorry I didn't mean to interru-"

"Do not worry, this was merely a social call." Says the severe looking woman who rises from her chair. "In any case I had made my case and was just leaving. I do hope you consider what I said Colonel."

"I'll give it all due consideration Evaline." Says the man who, as you see it now, is actively trying to assemble a small model ship in a bottle.

The Major primly exits, giving you an appraising glance that runs the length of your body. You suppress a shiver. Entering the office proper, you do your best to take up the now vacant seat and close the door behind you. You watch as the older man removes the tools from the mouth of the bottle. He then looks up, as if regarding for the first time and promptly claps his hands.

"So, Miss Masterson, Captain Keel says you wished to speak with me about something." He says, the hint of a smile playing on his features.

"Yes. There are some matters of business which I would like to discuss, Colonel Braun. First of all, I would like to inquire as to what is going to be done with the cavern that the Phoenix had been using as a hideout until Captain Keel and his men, along with my and my companions' aid, evicted them."

That sound good, or should I go less "proper"?
File: 1234966087647.jpg (148 KB, 650x805)
148 KB
148 KB JPG
Go with whatever you feel is appropriate.
I was asking anyone else who may have been here. I wanted to prioritize arming our men, but they voted for the cove first. I'm going to wait for a little bit to see if anyone else will come. If no-one does within an hour, then that >>1128876 is my response.
*within an hour of that post.
Alright, understood.
File: lamia9.png (976 KB, 900x643)
976 KB
976 KB PNG
"Yes. There are some matters of business which I would like to discuss, Colonel Braun. First of all, I would like to inquire as to what is going to be done with the cavern that the Phoenix had been using as a hideout until Captain Keel and his men, along with my and my companions' aid, evicted them."

"Well," He says expansively, "We'd like to talk to the owner. See how the Phoenix got themselves set up there. Fellow has gone missing, which some have suggested is an admission of guilt, but we will try and located him nonetheless. As for the land itself, if the owner is unable to turn up, it'll turn emminent domain and go to the state to be auctioned."

"And if someone were to say, put out an offer prior?"

"Well, it is highly unusual, but we would have a surveyer appraise it, see how much they figure it was worth."

"Has that happened?"

"Not formally." He says, slipping a paper out from under the model he was working on. "Though in such cases we would likely use the previous sale price, something we do have here."

You look at the paper he hands you, a bill of sale listed to Karath, buying up several dozen acres of swamp for twenty five hundred isens.

"That's quite a sizable bit of land." You say, trying to mentally map the acquisition.

"All swamp. We contacted the prior owner. Fellow was happy to be rid of it. Claimed to not know about the cavern and that the whole mess was untillable." The Colonel says eyes shifting back towards his model.

>Try to haggle down the 2500
>File it away, move on to the next order of business? (Specify)
*try and locate
And naturally the haggling would be a 1d20 roll should you decide to go that option. Difficulty depending on how far you want to slash the price.
Rolled 12 (1d20)

Karath, Hmm? Isn't he the prick that sent goons to attack us because we refused to sell to him? Did we have any evidence that he himself ordered this? I can't remember. . .

We're not going to be able to haggle this down. No-one in their right mind would settle for a lower price when they already have someone lined up to pay. We have nothing, to my knowledge that would get them to not sell to Karath, so we'd have to work that out with him.

"I see... The other matter of business that I came here about is a matter of security. I'm not sure how much you know about the Casimir lands on the other side of the mountains, however, it has come to my attention that there is a civil war raging amongst the Casimir, and the fighting is getting dangerously close to our border, my ranch. One of their skirmishes has already spilled through the pass. As I do not wish to trouble the Nitor's man-power any more than I already am, I was wanting to know if you happened to have any surplus rifles and/or munitions that you could give to us which we could use to protect our land on our own."
(Remembering that we are also willing to buy them. I'm going to go ahead and roll just in case.)
File: lamia7.png (180 KB, 700x900)
180 KB
180 KB PNG
"I see... The other matter of business that I came here about is a matter of security. I'm not sure how much you know about the Casimir lands on the other side of the mountains, however, it has come to my attention that there is a civil war raging amongst the Casimir, and the fighting is getting dangerously close to our border, my ranch. One of their skirmishes has already spilled through the pass. As I do not wish to trouble the Nitor's man-power any more than I already am, I was wanting to know if you happened to have any surplus rifles and/or munitions that you could give to us which we could use to protect our land on our own."

An intake of breath, "Not officially. No. Nor are we allowed to do trades in nitor arms to civillians. Against regulations. We have however salved a number of phoenix munitions from the cavern. Nothing particularly of note, but should be serviceable enough."

"You would be ok with that?"

"They're slated for disposal. Old things, muzzle loaders. Flintlock. Even older than the stuff our boys use."

"And how much would that run?" You ask, after all, its better than watching Zhou's people running around with pitchforks.

"Listing has it as three hundred for the lot, the powder, caps, and balls included."

(Pausing here, will try to resume early tomorrow if folks are amenable.)
Thanks for running Chem! I'm going to go ahead and put down my answer. I'll see you tomorrow.
"If it's been slated to be disposed of, would you be fine with me just paying for it to be shipped to the ranch plus ten percent (10%) for a small profit margin? It's not like you were going to sell it otherwise, right?"
"If it's been slated to be disposed of, would you be fine with me just paying for it to be shipped to the ranch plus ten percent for a small profit margin? It's not like you were going to sell it otherwise, right?" You ask, trying to keep your eyes neutral.

He frowns, "That's what the three hundred was accounting for."

"I can do two hundred."


"Done." You say, shaking his hand.

"Lets go make it official." He says, gently guiding you out of the office. Back in the hall, you can see Keel talking with the sergeant at the desk. He pauses, looking between you and the Colonel before giving a curt nod and leaving. It takes a minute for the sergeant to locate the forms, but eventually you sign a release form and a transfer order. You note how straightforward the contract is. Signing on the final line, you hand the paper to Braun, who takes it and looks it over.

"Everything seems to be in order. They should arrive in less than a week. Now, before we conclude, was there anything else?" He asks in a tone that suggest he really wants to go back and continue working on that ship in the bottle.

"No. Thank you for your time."
>file name
>a crate of nuggets
That would be nice to have right now. . .
File: lamia2.jpg (294 KB, 881x1000)
294 KB
294 KB JPG
"No. Thank you for your time."

With that taken care of, you watch as Braun meanders is way towards his office, talking animatedly with some of the troopers and patting others heartily on the back. He finally vanishes from sight as the sergeant hands you a handwritten receipt, stamped with the seal of the nitor. As you exit the office, you round a corner and see Captain Keel leaning up against the door frame of Enos' shop, watching as McCain and the shopkeeper load up supplies into the carriage. As you approach he calls out. "I take it everything went well?"

"Somewhat, cavern was far too rich for my blood, but Zhou's people will be putting those Phoenix guns to good use." seeing his eyebrow raise you add, "Didn't have enough rifles to go around, better to have something rather than pitchforks."

"I can understand that." Keel says. "McCain says you're doing a drive?"

"Gotta eat somehow."

"I'll switch up the patrols in any case. Something hit the Parson's ranch."

"The Phoenix?"

"Attacked at dusk. Couldn't tell, but according to witness they were armed, weapons from the UFK at that, so if it is them, they are scavenging." He says, making to return to the nitor posting.

"I'll keep my eye out then." You say to the retreating back. Turning back to the carriage, you see McCain tying the last bits of the supplies to the roof. "Nitor will likely be stopping by with munitions while I'm on the drive. Stuff they took from the Phoenix hideout. We'll use that to kit up Zhou and his boys."

He nods, "I'll go through the delivery, see what's worth a damn. Also, Enos got us a deal on supplies, but too much to stack on carriage proper, hatch is gonna be blocked. We head back now we should be able to get dinner that hasn't been warming on the oven as leftovers. Unless there was something else you wanted to do."

>Head back home? (Give me a 1d20 travel roll here. Lower is better)
>Do something in town? (Specify)
Rolled 4 (1d20)

As far as I know there isn't anything else that we need here. Let's go back home.
I keep forgetting to find time to read this. So much catching up to do.
You should roll too.
File: lamia50.jpg (5.9 MB, 2250x1800)
5.9 MB
5.9 MB JPG

Grumbling, you pile into the back of the carriage, noting that there are crates on the inside as well. Even with the generous amount of room set aside for yourself, you end up forced to look out one window the entire ride back. Thankfully however nothing of note happens on the way back, and sure enough you roll into the compound proper and see the beastfolk about to head in, spurred by the clarion call of Tai's dinner bell. A number of them pause as you dismount, and McCain sets them to work unloading the supplies. Keeping Tai's advice in mind, you let them set to work and see about getting your food.

Heading up to your room, you go over the plan once more. You will be taking two hundred head of cattle to Riverport with the help of Tai, Marie, and three of Zhou's beastfolk in hopes of beating the other ranchers there, and getting a good deal. McCain will remain behind to oversee the remaining five hundred head that makes up your herd. Everything depends on what the buyers are looking for, but you figure that selling roughly a third of what you bring will allow you to remain solvent until the next drive, with everything else being profit.

>Cattle drive starts tomorrow. Any final changes to your plan?
would it negatively effect anything to bring two more of Zhou's men? Given the news that another ranch was attacked we should be on the look-out.
There are plenty of guards at our ranch, what with Liama and her men, McCain, Zhou and his men that we're not taking, and Artyom, so the ranch SHOULD be safe enough. Having two more with the drive would make me feel a bit better.

Also, make sure to tell them (especially Artyom) about how Parson's ranch was attacked and how they should be on the look-out, just in case.
(Make it out to Artyom that you had a feeling that something like this would happen, so you're even more sure that he needs to stay at the ranch, to keep it safe.)
Don't see how it would negatively effect, though outside of Marie and Zhou's personal weapons, you've got maybe 3 rifles spare for all the beastfolk, so any additional would go without armament. Admittedly two of your confirmed drivers are fairly young, so it may be for the best.
We'll get two older beast-folk with us. The ones who would go without rifles get a knife or sword or something.
*more esperianced
In light of Keel's warning, you opt to move two more of Zhou's beastfolk onto drive team. Worried you might be shortstaffed, you check in with Tai and Zhou. The beastman assures you that the remainder will be able to pick up the slack, and that the wounded won't remain so much longer. Nonetheless, you make a point to brief Artyom on the issue, in no small part to distract the hussar from your prisoner while you are away. He vows to keep the ranch safe, and between him and Liama's crew you figure it'd take a small army to dislodge them.

The next morning finds you bundled in your hard wearing travel clothes, having just finished the last meal Tai's gonna make for the ranch for a while. Zhou informs you that the scouting teams across the mountains have turned up nothing, and for the time being he's having them stay closer to the pass than they were previously. It seems the teams have eschewed their weapons under the belief that they aide nothing to their primary mission, which gives the three adult beastfolk that are accompanying you proper arms. The wolfish one seems to be the most dominant of them, and has busied herself with overseeing the younger two, who are making final preparations.

Satisfied that all is in order, sound out the call for the drive to begin, and the procession gets underway.

Give me a 1d20 travel roll (Lower is better.) AND a 1d20+4 ranching roll to handle the drive.

>Any additional things you would like to do while driving the herd?
Rolled 20, 4 + 4 = 28 (2d20 + 4)

What the fuck is it with me an fours today?

Almost as soon as it began, things start to fall apart. You hear an earsplitting crack from the rear of the drive and as you turn, you see the chuck wagon leaning to one side. The sound echoes through the air spooking the cattle and sending a dozen off stampeding back towards the rest of the herd. It takes all your skill and knowledge as a rancher to prevent the rest of the herd from joining them as you send Marie and the beastfolk to extract the escapees from their flight. Confident they've got it well in hand, you go to check on Tai.

You find the phoenix man and McCain, who was seeing you off, looking at the underbelly of the chuck wagon. "Thankfully we'd yet to open any of the supplies, or we'd be in trouble, Miss Sasha." Your cook says, "My wagon wheel fell off."

"Looks like a stress fracture." McCain says, "Axle sheared right through its moorings. Axle itself seems fine though."

"How long until it can be fixed?"

He scratches the back of his head, "Half day at least, gotta reinforce the damn things, which means fashioning a bracket from scratch."

"Any alternatives?" You ask.

"Could rig up your carriage as chuck wagon, though it'd hardly be ideal." McCain says causing Tai to blanch.

"I would not want to risk ruining the interior. I would find my work far easier with this wagon, if we can spare the time." He says nervously. The pair look at you expectantly.

>audible sigh
Well, so much for leaving quite so early.
Fix it up as best as you can. We'll wait until you're done.
File: lamia8.jpg (49 KB, 400x600)
49 KB
You sigh, "So much for leaving early. Fix it up as best as you can. We'll wait until you're done."

It takes the better part of the day to fix up the wagon, unloading a significant amount of the supplies so that can get at the real heart of the issue. At one point they entreat you to heat their bracket, dousing the makeshift thing with magical flame till it becomes malleable. Impromptu forging handled, they finally set the wagon upright and restock it.

Shaking your head, you sound off to move, and this time you actually do get moving. Behind schedule, you are tempted to up the pace, but hold off for now to see how your newest mercenary-cum-ranchands fare. The beastfolk acquit themselves well, all things considered, keeping the herd together with a minimum of fuss and rather efficiently. The adults do treat the job more like an escort than a herding, eyes constantly scanning the horizon as they leave the actual business of driving the animals to the younger ones and Marie, who's taken to the air for the better part of the day.

You eventually make camp on the far bank of the river, probably not too far from South Fork, but you had hoped to make it a lot farther. Tai finally broaches the supplies, having made lunches for people prior to leaving, and fashions up a hotpot of stuff that had been bruised a bit from the bouncing. Tasted fantastic regardless, and you suspect its something of an apology for the time wasted.

Either way, you're up fairly early, and after a far less lavish breakfast, you set off once more.

>Select the pace you want to go.
>Any actions you'd like to while driving the cattle today?

And another travel roll if you would. 1d20 (Lower is better.)
Rolled 3 (1d20)

Kek has blessed this post. I'm not rolling too.
File: ComfySnek.jpg (109 KB, 500x469)
109 KB
109 KB JPG
If the troubles you had starting out were a bad omen, they haven't made themselves known. The weather during this leg of the drive couldn't have been better, and you keep the group going at good pace. It's never that good an idea to push a herd too fast, as you want them to be a healthy weight when you get to the market, but one of the advantages of heading out first is that you've got your pick of grazing grounds. You still take care not to push them too hard, but while you started out losing half a day to travel, you've all but made it back in the intervening time.

Along the way, you passed by the grounds of some of the competition, the small neighboring ranches. They usually wait for later drives, but as you pass through the agreed upon drive zones, you see that more than a couple seem to be gearing up for their own drives. Likely wanting to take advantage of the price spike themselves. Leaving the herd in your hands care, you meet with a couple of the ranch owners. Most are on edge, as news on the Parson's ranch attack has spread, but most seem to be of the same opinion as you. As you leave, you've no doubt that their drive timetables have been pushed up.

Marie manages to catch sight of a marsh that, while normally solid, seems to have bore the brunt of the meltwater rivers this year. It's a bit of a detour to bypass, but at your speed, it keeps you on pace with your expectations, and had you gotten mired down, it would have taken far longer. One evening you settle down into the camp and watch the hands macerate their way through another of Tai's meals, you note a familiar bend in the river that indicates you're on your last leg of the trip.

>One more travel roll.
Rolled 2 (1d20)

Nice roll
File: lamia27.png (2.8 MB, 1090x1800)
2.8 MB
2.8 MB PNG

The last leg of the trip is as smooth as you could hope, no issues, no disasters, nothing. It's almost disappointing. Fording one of the river tributaries, you run into the nitor cordon. After showing your credentials, you are guided into the prebuilt enclosures for the drives off on the far edge of town. You claim one of the smaller paddocks the cattlemen use, less for space concerns and more for the sake that they are right up front and center. With the last cow safely fenced in, you shut the gate and turn to your employees.

"Good bit of work, on time, on budget, and if we manage to get a good deal, we can just take the road home." You say aloud to the group.

"And if we don't?" Marie calls out from the stable where she's leading the horses.

"We bring all of them back."

The groan from the Marie and Tai is reciprocated by the beastfolk after a quick translation. In the meantime you decide to check in with the usual officials. The livestock barges are still inbound, but the major companies should have representatives in town. Finding them is another matter, as you've managed to beat the barges which usually signifies the buyers opening up their shops.

"You want I should make arrangements for everyone?" Tai asks, "We can probably get set up in the hotel you hired us at."

"Sounds like a plan." You say.

Watching Tai relay orders to the beastfolk, you then think of your next move.

>Visit the town, its been a while since you've been here last.
>Try and seek out the potential buyers, or see what the market is.
>Stick with Tai, its the beastmen's first exposure outside the ranch.
In any case I'm gonna need a 1d20 roll here, different bonuses depending on the option.
Rolled 13 (1d20)

While they may accidentally cause problems, I think that the Beastmen are smart enough to not intentionally do anything retarded.

>Try and seek out the potential buyers, or see what the market is.
Confident that the beastfolk can take care of themselves, or at the very least Tai will keep an eye on them, you head into town to try and find the buyers. The place is abuzz with activity, despite the cordon, and you spend more time trying to avoid the crowds than you do gleaning info. You are able to get a good feel on expectations however, and prices in all likelyhood have spiked even higher with the ranch attack. Of the big names, you pick out three that might be good people to contact.

Flynn's Meat Packing is a company based out of Stone hall, with the production facility on the shores right near the port itself. They've been a reliable buyer for years, and you remember more often than not your father filing away reciept with the Flynn logo stamped on the bottom.

The second major buyer is a relatively new company based out of First Wood. Elven run, First Wood Meat Products routes their purchases through the citadel itself, and has recently usurped the title of chief supplier to both First Wood, and White Tree. Given the populations of both cities, it's no surprise that the would likely be interested in bulk purchases.

The third is a complete unknown in cattleman world. Lemero fisheries is THE name in seafood for nearly a century now, and have apparently have decided to look into supplemental income, cattle being one of them. Originally founded business minded tribes of merfolk in Coral Gate, they used their natural advantages to corner the market on any riches from the oceans. While mer-founded, the organization seems to hire anyone nauticaly inclined.

Other than rumors and hearsay however, you can't seem to find any representatives for the business at this time and huff in frustration as a Lemero employee at the hotel bar next to you sadly informs you that anyone with a say in the matter is due in on the next barge, having not established themselves here in this capacity yet.

>Now What?
Hmm. . . The Lemero Fisheries haven't been here before, and if he manage to get a deal with them, we can likely take advantage of their inexperience in this market. We could also try to over-play the recent danger being faced to all of the ranchers down here. Maybe make it seem as though we had to fight Phoenix on the way up. They also would probably want to buy at LEAST as much as we have with us to get started.

As for what we do now, I say we take a look around. If Mari's not busy maybe ask is she wants to come along too. The Beastfolk and Tai can look after the cattle well enough without the two of us. She's also more fun and has a cocky accent, which is adorable.
Alright, will take that into the next update, which will have to be tomorrow unfortunately. As always, thanks to folks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed the ride so far.
Thanks, Chemlab!
Thanks for running again, Chem. I won't be able to participate between 14.30 and 21.00 EST tomorrow due to work, but I'll make sure to be back.
You sigh and turn to survey the hotel. Tai had already herded his charges up into their rooms, where you suspect they have passed out. The Phoenix man has been fairly attentive towards them, likely still feeling responsible for the initial delay despite your assurances to the contrary. In any case, that just leaves you and Marie and a few hours of daylight left. Figuring to make the most of the day, look for Marie, and spot the harpy sitting at a table, nursing a bottle of beer.

"Something the matter Miss Masterson?" She asks.

"Planned on seeing what Riverport has to offer, figured you might want to come along."

"Sure." She says, finishing the bottle. "Only a bit buzzed anyway. You have something in mind?"

"Not particularly." You admit, "Just want to keep busy, rather than sit around."

You pay for your accommodations and step out onto the street with Marie and tow.

>Head to the docks, there's bound to be something interesting there.
>Shops should still be open for a bit, peruse what is on offer.
>Go head into the residential district, people watch.
>Head to the docks
Rolled 18, 12 = 30 (2d20)

You begin meandering towards the docks. You do note that despite the nitor cordon, it appears business as usual in this part of the city, with people bustling to and fro even this late in the evening. Out in the harbor, you can see the Nitor mirror ship, the LSID, floating serenely near the inlet in tandem with another ship you can't identify.

"That's the mainlanders." Marie says with a touch of bitterness, "UFK usually keeps a ship out in the mouth of the Citadel waters, just in case the poor folks still in the ruins act out of line."

"Sounds dire." You respond, frowning at the newest chip on Marie's shoulder. "I take it you ran afoul of them?"

"Not as much no." She admits, "But back when the shadows were the REAL shadows, well, we'd take care not to provoke them. That and they answered to the nitor, so a lot of them were directed to public works. Of course those public works usually were about reclaiming the old citadel ruins, so folks would get a notice maybe three weeks in advance, then get forced out if they were still there."

"You don't have much love for them, I take it."

"Should I?" She says, slurring slightly.

"I can't rightly say either way, I've never really been on the mainland as far as I remember." You respond tentatively dipping the tip of your tail over the side of the dock into the water. Satisfied with the temp, you plop down on the edge watching the sun set as the harpy sits next to you. "But I remember my history. Citadel's been mostly ruins for near on five centuries now. I imagine the parts that weren't are getting right crowded."

"And who cares about the squatters, right?" She says sarcastically, before sighing, "The schola had a school on the very outskirts of the Citadel proper, open to anyone. Kids could learn their letters, numbers, and whatnot, and find places for them. Locals figured they were just trying to get them off their land like the companies were, but being far more gentle about it."

"Were they?"

"No. Not as far as we could tell."

>How to respond to the introspective drunk bird?
"Why do you think people stick around? It seems like a rough place to live"
File: NiceAndSlow.png (1.1 MB, 1090x1800)
1.1 MB
1.1 MB PNG
"Why do you think people stick around? It seems like a rough place to live"

She hops back to her feet. "It's simple Miss Masterson, its all they've ever known, and despite how rough it is, they've thrived there, so there's pride in it. Which is why it rankles so to be forced out."

"I suppose." You say, "Though are the alternatives that bad?"

"Pride." She repeats, emphatically.

Unconvinced, you opt get back to loitering around the docks. With the sunset comes the shift change, as the fleet of civillian ships begin to trickle back into the harbor with the tide. Opting to go with the flow, you amble towards the western ends of the docks, where the press of returning workers isn't quite as oppressing. Over the small stone wall seperating the harbor, you can see the Northern part of the residential district. Marie tells you that these are some of the few remaining buildings that formed the original phoenix colony that was wrested from their grasp back before the city was renamed. Local wags still call the area the Phoenix District, the more out of the architecture than of the ethnicity of the inhabitants.

>Give me a 1d20+3 perception roll.
Rolled 20 + 3 (1d20 + 3)

File: Balistic eyes.png (124 KB, 640x427)
124 KB
124 KB PNG
Rolled 15 (1d20)

You glance over the stonework, and have to wonder just how they managed to get materials to make the buildings. If you're not mistaken, there's jade etchings on the mayoral residence. Its hard to see in the fading light, but they definately look like it. Your gaze sweeps down the buildings and at the wall.

"Hey Marie."

"Yes Miss Masterson?"

"You read history a lot, yeah?"

"Yeah, why?"

"Did they figure out how they built these?"

"Forced labor, captives usually. Directed by an architect or master builder."

You decide to look away from what you are pretty sure is stained blood under lacquer on one of wooden gate pillars. That's when you notice the man. You'd seen him a couple times prior during your stroll through town, but now you see the hilt of a blade the man's gripping under his coat. He's not noticed that you've seen him yet, but you've got the sneaking suspicioun that he's been shadowing you this whole time.

>What do?
[whisper]"Mari; there's a man in a >insert coat colour< coat >insert his direction from us<. I'm pretty sure that he's been following us and he's gripping a blade under that coat of his. I want you to pretend to go back to the in through an "shortcut" and get into the air and watch to see if he's follows when I go a different way. Be careful, though. If he is following us, he probably has friends.[/whisper] You go on ahead. I'll stay here for a bit longer, then head back."
>What do?
Get Marie to make a distraction while you alert the Nitor about the fellow.
Nah, man. We need to make sure that they're actually after us. We get Mari on over-watch while act as bait.
I'll let folks deliberate on a plan, and we'll continue tomorrow, thanks again for following along.
Thanks for running, Chem!

I'll be waiting until someone gets here to deliberate the plan with.
Thanks for running.
"Mari;" You mutter, keeping your gaze ahead, "there's a man in a brown coat off to our left. Don't look at him, but I'm pretty sure that he's been following us and he's gripping a blade under that coat of his. I want you to pretend to go back to the inn through an 'shortcut' and get into the air and watch to see if he follows when I go a different way. Be careful, though. If he is following us, he probably has friends. If it all goes awry, try and get the Nitor."

Blindsided, Marie looks at you a second before the isen drops. "You sure about that?"

"You go on ahead. I'll stay here for a bit longer, then head back." You announce, staring once more at the bloodstained lacquer pillar and listening to the Harpy walk off. Five minutes go by, then another, no motion from your stalker. Figuring enough time has passed, you make to head back to the inn.

Keeping your ears open, you hear the faint footsteps well behind you keeping a measured pace. You round a blind corner, along the wall, sweeping your tail in a wide arc to provide an open target. Behind you, you can hear the footsteps increase in pace, before breaking into a run that comes closer with every passing second.

>Action? (Will also need a 1d20 roll.)
Rolled 9 (1d20)

>use tail whip
File: lamia26.png (4.1 MB, 2482x1500)
4.1 MB
4.1 MB PNG
Rolled 15, 4 = 19 (2d20)


You brace yourself, waiting for the man to round the corner before you strike. The instant you a shape enter your vision you whip your lower body around, hoping to catch him off guard. It works, somewhat. Clearly not expecting your reprisal, the man tries too late to block and catches your tail full on in the side. Knocked bodily away, he recovers admirably skidding to a halt a five meters away. Righting yourself, you get a good look at your assailant. Clad in nondescript brown clothes, with a dark bandana pulled up over his nose he flourishes a wicked looking blade, near on a foot long.

"Now that you've blown any element of suprise," You huff, "You gonna come with me to talk to the Nitor quietly?"

His response is an inarticulate scream as he charges for you once again.

"Guess not." You say, swinging your tail once more and tripping up the would be attacker. This time the blade skitters out of his hand and across the ground. You scramble to secure it but are unable as the man shoulders you in the side. Winded, you can only put more distance between yourself and him as he picks it up once more. Slowly circling you, he puts himself between you and the alley entrance.

>Battle plan? (Will also need a 1d20 roll.)
Rolled 5 (1d20)

See, this is why I wanted Mari to stay as over-watch. She could have caught him from behind. (We need to start carrying a knife on us everywhere.)

Claws out, spines out. We may not be amazing with our natural weapons, but they're better than nothing. (Paralysis poison, if we can get it to happen.)
As for the actual plan, distract him with our main body and get his legs with our tail. Once he's on the ground, sit on him. We weigh too much to be thrown off by a normal Human.
>my fucking rolls now
File: ATameRetelling.jpg (261 KB, 707x1000)
261 KB
261 KB JPG

Figuring it is better to end it quickly, you deploy your spines and claws, brandishing them in hopes of unsettling the man. It almost works, for a half second the man freezes before lunging once more with the blade. Weaving in and out of his range, you attempt to distract the man with your main body, goading out strikes and batting them away the best you can while you try and get your lower half into a more advantageous position. He refuses to fall for it this time, seperating with every swipe of your tail. All the while you try to milk out some of your paralytic venom, if you can scratch him, or hell, spit on the bastard, he'd not be an issue.

The man makes for a wide downward sweep, which you block with your left hand. Blade rebounds off claw as the force of his blow sends a shockwave along your forearm, effectively deadening it for the time being. Seeing weakness, he moves in for the kill. Out of options, you go for the spit, missing his face but coating his coat in the ichor. It's not nearly enough to put him down, but he doesn't seem to know that. As if on fire, the man tears off the coat, whipping it off to the side. It wasn't much, but it bought you a few more moments.

Enough time for a certain harpy to get a clear dive on the man. Marie, descending as a flash of red swearing a blue streak pounces on the would be assassin. Blindsided, the man tries to cover his face and bring the knife up only to have it battered out of his grasp. You watch the silvery blade skitter off along the roadway as your harpy ranch hand batters the man full force with fang, wing, and claw. He's currently helpless, but looking at the muscles the bastard has if he gets himself together your little harpy might be in trouble.

>Action? (Need a d20 here as well.)
Hit the cunt with paralytic poison.
Rolled 10 (1d20)

Dice for that
Rolled 19 (1d20)

Let's not fuck up this time. GO 10+ ROLL!

With no time to lose, you will yourself up a new dose of venom and close the distance between yourself and the man-bird melee. You see the man finally get a grasp on one of Marie's wings, pushing away and almost dislodging the harpy when you strike, sinking your teeth into the soft flesh of his upper arm. The man howls in pain, trying to tear free from the combined assault before it begins to set in.

You actually see the venom take effect as it begins to circulate through his blood stream, joints locking as muscles contract. Within thirty seconds he's fully immobilized. With the immediate threat taken care of, you look around to see if he had friends, before tending to another matter.

"You can stop hitting him now. He's gonna be stuck for a moment." You say, gently pulling Marie off the man.

She looks around, scanning like you did before simply saying. "Oh."

"Recognize him?" You ask, pulling the bandana down on the man and dragging him close to the light.

"Not so much, no. What do we do with the body?" She responds.

"He's not dead, just gonna be stiff for... probably an hour."

"Oh." She says again, a touch disappointed. "Nonetheless, what do we do now?"

We drag him to the Nitor and tell them what happened. I want to know why he attacked us and, due to the high likelihood of him having been payed to do it, who hired him.
>Take the blade and the body and skedaddle.
Oh yeah. Make sure to thank Mari for the timely intervention.
Have Mari check his person while we keep an eye out. Then drag his ass to the nitor. Have Mari fly top cover.
"Search his things Marie, maybe there is some clue as to who he is. Then maybe we can figure out why he tried this stunt." You say, "And by the way, thanks for the assist."

Leaving the harpy puffed with pride, you go to retrieve and get a better look at the knife he used. Picking it up, you note that it looks like someone did a hatchet job on a fleshing knife, tearing off the second handle and putting an point on the end of it. While reeking of improvisation it still is sixteen inches of steel that could have put you out of commission if it had taken you unawares. Looking around once more to see if he had any friends, you fully retract your claws and are about to do the same with your spines, before you realize they are probably the only thing holding your poor clothes together. Sighing at another ruined outfit, your attention is called to Marie half sprinting over to you.

"Miss Masterson. I think you need to see this." She says, handing you a piece of paper.

Unfurling it, you see the unmistakable image of phoenix script, and a fairly decent likeness of yourself. You can't read it, but the meaning is clear, this was no random mugging. Rolling up the paper, you look around once more. "Lets get this bastard to the Nitor."

Of course, saying that and doing it is another different matter. Dragging the man to the cordon, even through the largely deserted streets, is no easy feat, especially when you're trying to preserve some semblance of modesty. The sight of a lamia in full battle mode, half dragging a body through the city with a harpy circling overhead draws no end of gawkers, bystanders, and members of the populace with nothing better to do. When you do arrive at the cordon, you've got a couple dozen hangers on. At the very least it prompts a swift response. Soon another mountain of a man appears, this one in full nitor uniform and Sergeant's stripes and a coterie of nervous looking corporals, stomping towards you and bellowing in a voice common to sergeants everywhere.

"Back up, back up 'erryone." He roars, which leaves Marie and yourself suddenly alone in the center of a circle of people, "Now what in the name of the Kingdoms is goin' on he'ah."

This man attacked us by the dock. I paralyzed him. We searched him to see if we couldn't figure out who he is and found this:
>hand over assumed assassin contract
While I can't read Phoenix, that looks like an assassination contract to me.
File: Dickbutt 2.jpg (43 KB, 641x804)
43 KB
>how do we like slow-burn
It's O.K.
"This man appears to be on contract to kill me. He started a fight with me which I ended by paralyzing him. Can you make sense of the apparent contract?"
>Hand over the thing
"This man attacked us by the dock." You say, finally uncoiling the body.

"Any idea who the stiff was?" The man says, before adding "Sergeant Armstrong, and who might ya be?"

"Sasha Masterson, Lion's Head Ranch. And its is, he's just paralyzed."

"Oh." The sergeant says, stepping forward and living up to his surname and housting the body onto one shoulder. "Any reason he did it?"

"You expect us to know? Miss Masterson saw him stalking us by the docks and sent me away, to keep an eye out. He charged her with this." Marie blurts, holding out the blade that is taken by one of Armstrong's subordinates.

"That'll be enough Marie. Anyway, he had this on him." You say, handing over the paper. "Can't read it, but I think I can hazard a guess."

The man, with the other man still firmly stuck on his shoulder, unrolls the paper and looks at the sketch. "Alright. I'm gonna need you to come with me."

"Why?" Marie asks again, defensively.

"Because I need to get one of the schola boys to sort through this heah paper, and other than the word of you two, there's nobody willing to vouchsafe this story." Seeing Marie about to puff up again he holds up a placating hand. "I don't doubt ya, but I ain't about to let someone off when we ain't got all the facts, ya heah? Just come on us to the cordon outpost, and we'll see about this paper."

It's okay Mari. Let's go and deal with this. Also, Sargent? If you could let Mari go back to our inn to get me some new cloths, it would be greatly appreciated. I don't like keeping my spines out, but I'm pretty sure they're the only things holding my shirt together at the moment. If Mari going back isn't an option, I would appreciate a spare shirt at least.
File: WewSnek.jpg (33 KB, 843x473)
33 KB
"It's okay Marie. Let's go and deal with this." You announce, deflating the indignant harpy. "Also, Sargeant? If you could let Marie go back to our inn to get me some new clothes, it would be greatly appreciated. I don't like keeping my spines out, but I'm pretty sure they're the only things holding my shirt together at the moment."

Ignoring the jeers from the bystanders, Sergeant Armstrong shares a look with two of his men, who salute and escort Marie off. He then gestures towards the cordon outpost. Following him inside, the inside has all the hallmarks of a temporary structure that's rapidly becoming far more permanant. off in a corner, you can see an iron cage set into the ground. Armstrong unceremoniously dumps your assailant in it and shuts the door. He then turns to you. "It's usually a drunk tank, but we'll see what Big Ol' Rick says when he comes to. Now, we ain't got a second one, and considering the nature of this incident lets agree that we won't try to stop you from leavin' provided you don't try and up and leave. That agreeable, ma'am?"

"Not like I can argue it." You say, before a thought strikes you, "You know him? You said you didn't."

"Nah, I wanted to know if you knew him. Rick's a slaughterhouse man. Works near the docks. At least he says he is, more often than not we've pulled him in for drinkin' smugglin' and anythin' involin' unscrupulous types needin' muscle. He's like a third cousin to the local sherrif, which meant a lot of his stuff was overlooked. Ran up hard against the nitor though. Was just tryin' to figure if'n you were one of his crowd in a spat with him."

"You figured I was part of his crowd?"

"Never know around here. Folks love the UFK when its all peace and prosperity and the like, but the instant the phoenix start their saber rattlin' all the former enclaves get their blood up. Even if that blood is more UFK than Phoenix by now."

With that, he sends a rider out to 'find them schola boys' and sits down at a flimsy desk, leaning back and putting his boots on the table. A short while later Marie appears with her escort and a change of clothes. Appropriating a walled off corner, you shed your rags and get yourself into something more decent. With nothing else to do, you watch the movement of your victim, as the venom wears off. Eventually 'Big Ol' Rick' gets up and makes his displeasure known. Something Armstrong ignores.

Finally, you hear the rider return, and in strolls Horatio Vanderbuilt.

"Well, Miss Masterson, it seems we've a knack for finding each other." He says, a smile playing at the corner of his mouth. "Had some excitment today?"

"Something of the sort, yes. You can read that?" You say, gesturing to the paper.

"Something of the sort, yes." He repeats. Moving to take the sergeants place at the desk, staring at the paper intently.
"We'll take Rick out front and question him in the open. Shouldn't disturb you too much." Armstrong says, opening the cage and with the same ease as he handled the dead way, hoisting Rick up and walking toward the door flap. "It's formality at this point, but I'll have a couple of my boys stay with you for the interim. You can watch us interrogate him if'n you want." He adds.

>See to the letter.
>Watch the questioning.
>Watch the questioning
We can't read Phoenix, so we probably can't help, and Vanderbuilt will tell us what it says.
"May as well." You say, getting up and heading out.

"Then enjoy the show." Armstrong says. Walking over to the front of the cordon, where the crowd has situated themselves already. Seems this is a regular occurence. "Alright Rick. You know how this works." He says, setting the man down at the entrance with him blocking the exit. "What in all hell did you get into this time."

"Ain't saying shit." He growls, rubbing life into his limbs. "You can't make me say a thing."

"No, I can't." Armstrong admits, rolling a shoulder. "But I can keep you here on what you did do. Where'd you get the paper."

"No idea what you are talking about."

"Am I gonna have to go talk to the Sherrif? He ain't gonna be happy you got involved in whatever this is."

"Fuck him and fuck you."

"Can I quote you on that?" Armstrong says and you see the man's face pales, but his confidence doesn't wane.

"Not saying a thing."

It continues this way, with the same question being asked over and over. It's rather boring in all honesty. You look questioningly at one of the corporals, who just shrugs. Eventually you see Vanderbuilt walk out. "Find anything?" You call

"Well. It's real, insofar as I can tell." He says, loud enough for Rick and the sergeant to hear. "You're a wanted woman Miss Masterson. Doesn't say who it is, but you're looking at a price to the tune thirty thousand Isens. Dead or alive."

Fukkin' 'ell, thirty thousand. . .
[joking]I wonder if they'd accept anything less than my corpse as proof of death. . . Whatta'ya think, Mari? We fake my death and collect on this? [/joking]

In all seriousness, you sure it doesn't say who put it up? Any information on where to go if they get me?
My my my, quite the sum I command. I guess I have become inconvenient for someone important. Any thoughts, gentlemen?

Since my internet decided to shit the bed yesterday and we're firmly in page nine after running for a week I figure we had best call the thread here. Next thread will start with these taken into consideration, of course.

I'll try and keep an eye out until we fall off the board for any questions, comments, or feedback folks have on the setting or otherwise, especially regarding the slower pace I'm going for on the weekdays. I think it is working fairly well, but if anyone feels otherwise I'd be happy to hear why.

As always thanks for reading, and I hope everyone has enjoyed the ride thus far.
Thanks for Running Chem! See you next thread.

Delete Post: [File Only] Style:
[Disable Mobile View / Use Desktop Site]

[Enable Mobile View / Use Mobile Site]

All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective parties. Images uploaded are the responsibility of the Poster. Comments are owned by the Poster.