Missing: Stan [We REALLY need you to come back…]
When we last left the party they had just managed to kill a literal boatload of kobold pirates, save a few dozen people from a shipwreck and claim a second boat as their own. One of the men picked from the shipwreck, Captain Saldu, was inconsolable over the loss of his daughter. Gracie O’Malley was gravely wounded in the attack and was taken below deck by First Matron Mercy and Amon.
As Gracie is dragged below deck to be stabilized, Myles dresses his wounds and takes stock of the situation on the deck of the Renaldo’s Rage. Three dead sailors lie on the deck, and a gaping hole has been torn in the side of this ship by the kobold pirates’ ballista. He tasks the Bosun with attempting to repair the hole in the hull as best he can as he and Barundar lead the oarsmen in clearing the decks of the two ships.
Sometime later, the party reconvenes to decide the fate of the pirate ship that floats alongside the Renaldo’s Rage. Discussing with Mercy, they are confident that if they are to take it into port, it will need the party’s entire team of oarsmen [because SOMEONE ::cough:: Amon ::cough:: decided to burn the ship’s sails and main mast] to bring it in. They move the oarsmen to the former pirate ship and assign the Bosun to helm the ship for the short voyage into Reyshire.
As they approach the port, the party is taken aback by the scale of the city. Great walls line high cliffs and through a small gate along the seawall, sprawling hills in a deep valley are marked with many buildings. It turns out that Reyshire, being an independent city-state is quite a bit more fortified and larger than Otemshire. Darius and Amon notice a very old keep at the point of the bay, high above the water. They both get a very foreboding feeling when looking upon it and they remark about how it almost looks like it’s in a shadow. [Canopic jars a’hoy??]
The Renaldo’s Rage and the party’s new boat are stopped at a gate blocking the bay. Trumpets sound and many soldiers appear along the wall. Almost instantly, cries of amazement reach the party’s ears and it becomes apparent that the boat the party is dragging in is very well known. Darius’ keen ears pic up one of the guards saying “Is… is that the Deceitful Eel? How in the world did someone capture it, that’s the scourge of the sea?!”
The guard at the gate opens it and many of the soldiers cheer. When asked how they acquired the boat, Myles responds, “Well… you know… this is kindof what we do” And Darius add in, annoyed, “Yea… adventure just seems to find us” reminding Myles that, had they not stopped to pick up the people in the water, they wouldn’t have had to fight so many kobolds, and their crew and boat would still be in one piece. Myles, still waving to the soldiers triumphantly says, “Yea.. and we wouldn’t be heroes about to sell this boat, either…” The prospect of boat-selling-money puts Darius back in his place for the time being.
Once the boats are docked, the harbormaster comes by and begins to tabulate port fees. While looking at his ledger he makes the mistake of asking the group what kind of vessels they’re docking. Amon and Myles respond in unison, “Uhhh… Boats, duh.” The harbormaster looks very annoyed until Darius appears with Mercy. Mercy addresses the harbormaster saying, “Cut the crap, Hoyle…” Some negotiations occur in which the party informs Hoyle that they’ve captured a pirate ship and he eventually decides to waive the port fees, on account of them being heroes and all.
As the Renaldo’s Rage crew and the survivors of the shipwreck file off of the boat, Saldu approaches he party, once more earnestly requesting their help in finding his daughter. He reveals that there was another pirate ship that sank his boat and kidnapped his daughter. [This comes after an Abbot-and-Costello-esque moment; Saldu – “There were two boats!” Darius – “Yea, ours and the pirate ship, so what?” Saldu – “No, no, there were three boats.” Barundar – “Yea, ours, the pirate ship and yours that sank, you’re not making sense man!” Saldu – “NO, come on! There were FOUR boats.” Amon – “Well now you’re just being crazy…”] The party steps aside to discuss. Darius is very against the idea, saying, “We should have left him to prune in the water in the first place!” Myles looks at his many wounds and burns and reluctantly confirms that taking on another pirate ship is not really on his wishlist either. Barundar says, “Well… we’re heading North anyway, I don’t see any reason that we can’t bring him along but I’m with you guys, I say we don’t go out of our way to search for some girl…” This no-lose, no-commitment scenario eventually wins out.
Amon decides to deliver the message to Saldu in a most interesting way. As Saldu continues to sob over the loss of his daughter, Amon approaches and says angrily, “GODS, would you stop crying!? You can come with us as we go North but 1) we can’t guarantee that we’ll go looking for your daughter, 2) you’ll have to earn your keep on the boat and 3) if you keep crying I swear to God that I’ll thunderwave you straight to the bottom of the sea…” With no other options, Saldu agrees to accompany the party as part of their crew.
Five of Saldu’s former crew were among those plucked from the water [enough men to give us 2 extra sailors/gunners, not counting Saldu] The men trudge off towards the bar, followed closely by Darius and Barundar who intend to negotiate with them to join the party’s crew. Amon and Mercy carry Gracie through the streets towards the chapel to get her some good, old-fashioned healing. Myles stays behind with the Deceitful Eel to discuss options with the harbormaster. [SELL SELL SELL!]
Darius tails the sailors to a rather blue-collar looking tavern. Once inside, the pair scope out the scene and are somewhat surprised to see a relatively diverse clientele. Whereas Redmark’s population is typically 90% human, it would seem that Reyshire is more like 50% human with significant Halfling, Dwarf and even Elven populations. Barundar recalls that Reyshire used to be a Halfling village, but that gold and gems were discovered following a natural disaster [although he can’t recall if it was an earthquake or mudslide or what…] and that for the last 200 years, the city has been ruled by Dwarven mining companies.
After the history lesson, Darius reveals his plan. He intends to hide behind Barundar as the dwarf negotiates with the sailors to join their crew. When this inevitably fails, Darius will step forth with his crossbow and “convince” them to join. The first half of Darius’ plan goes well with Barundar completely botching the negotiations and causing all of the sailors in the bar to laugh at his offer.
Darius activates phase two of his plan, popping out of the shadows and placing his crossbow on the table pointed directly at the sailors. He says, “Listen here! My friend said that we need some sailors… and he made you a generous offer and now you’re giving him the cold shoulder… What are we going to do about this situation?” Half of the sailors get up, hands raised, and begin to back away from the halfling. Darius forces them back into their seats with his crossbow. Somehow the plan works and 6 men agree to join the crew for 60sp/mo. [This would give the party 3 extra sailors and potentially increase the ship’s speed!]
A dwarf across the bar stomps his iron-clad boot on the tavern floor and, with a booming voice, commands everyone to sit down. As the newly conscripted sailors falter, unsure what to do, it becomes clear to Darius that this dwarf is some sort of union representative, likely part of the sailor’s union. The loud dwarf informs Darius that the contract he negotiated with the sailors was not a fair wage, and that he broke protocol by not going through the union. Darius says, “Union, eh? You guys don’t need a stinkin’ union, you’ve got us!” At this, he picks up his crossbow and points it at the union representative and says, far overestimating his ability to incite revolt, “Now… who in here with WITH the union and who is AGAINST it?” Everyone in the bar stands and begins to close in on Barundar and Darius…
Meanwhile, across town at the docks, Myles discusses the Deceptive Eel with the harbormaster. Hoyle informs him that he’s not the right person to talk to about trying to sell a boat and that the man Myles is looking for has left for the evening and is probably at the tavern. [Great…] Hoyle does, however, give Myles an estimated value for the boat of 2,500gp [!!!!!] in its current state of disrepair. Myles sets off to the tavern, blissfully unaware of what’s happening there.
Darius is attacked by a mob of men, but uses the opportunity to sneak away behind the bar – leaving Barudar seemingly alone in the bar against 40-50 angry, drunken sailors and one particularly steamed union boss. Barundar is attacked by a number of the groups but is able to hold his own, taking only nominal damage before roundhouse kicking one of the men in the face [after a crit].
Behind the bar, Darius scopes out the 6 sailors the party had just hired and finds that one of them has a light crossbow on his belt. His Halfling brain whirrs and he comes up with a plan. He takes 5 of his crossbow bolts and plants them on the sailor, then takes aim and shoots the union boss, wounding him.
Outside the tavern, Myles and Amon cross paths and the two nonchalantly stroll towards the tavern. Once there, Myles opens the door for Amon and both are taken aback by the noise in the bar. They stand at the opening in utter shock as they arrive just in time to see the union boss get shot by a crossbow bolt.
Amon rushes in, throws the barkeep a few coins as a pre-apology and [after talking him down from thunderwaving] casts a Minor Illusion of the chandeliers in the bar exploding into flame. He screams, “STOP IT!!!!”
The wounded union leader and the angry sailors begin to stampede out of the seemingly flaming bar. Amon is trampled in the process and Myles is left holding the door open as 50+ hysterical men rush from the bar.
In the commotion, Darius leaps from behind the bar to cut off the union leader. He screams, “Hey! Watch out!!” and shoots the sailor upon which he had planted bolts right in the head, killing him instantly. He follows up, “That guy just tried to kill you! Look at those bolts he was carrying! We gotta get you outta here and somewhere safe!”
The wave of men finally subsiding, Myles is finally able to enter the bar. He steps in to see flames licking the ceiling of the building, 5 utterly terrified sailors standing at the bar, a dead man slumped to the floor with a bolt in his forehead and Darius, with his arm still outstretched from when he took the shot. Myles processes what likely occurred quickly in his head, sighs heavily and says, “Uhhhhh, maybe this is a bad time, but I’m here to talk to a guy about selling a boat?” The union leader, now screaming in both pain and terror points to the bolt in his leg, then to the dead man on the floor and says, “AAHHHHIIII’M A LITTLE BUSY!!!”
Amon snaps his fingers and dispels his illusion and the flames instantly disappear. He walks calmly to the bar and throws the barkeep a few coins, apologizing again and ordering a beer. Myles joins him.
Darius continues to lay it on the union leader, “Oh man, are you lucky I was here. I mean, that guy tried to kill you! Say, I didn’t catch your name, champ.” The union leader reveals his name to be Franthar. “Man, Franthar, that was a close one, you see, I was sent here to stop a conspiracy to kill you. I’m sorry I had to pretend to hire those sailors there for less than a fair wage, but it was the only way to weasel out the conspirator!” Franthar takes it hook, line and sinker.
After stabilizing the dwarf, Darius informs him that he does actually know a man trying to sell a boat. Franthar responds, “Well, I need to get home and rest, but have him come see me first thing in the morning at my office and I’ll be more than happy to do business with him. Say, what is my heroes name, anyway?” Darius doesn’t skip a beat and responds that his name is Renaldo. Across the bar, Amon and Myles choke on their beer.
The remainder of the party bellies up to the bar after Franthar hobbles out and heads home. They enjoy drinks as the corpse of the framed sailor slowly sinks further and further down. Eventually, the bartender sends out a [probably unionized] janitor to clean up. A guard stops by moments later and asks if there’s anything to report, “We heard some strange stories about this place being on fire!” The barkeep responds, “Just another union fight, I’ll bring the victim by tomorrow…”
As the party heads to turn in, Amon returns to Gracie, eventually falling asleep at her bedside.
In the morning, Myles, Darius and Barundar head to Franthar’s office to sell the Deceptive Eel. Franthar reveals that the Deceptive Eel has a sister ship, the Damned Whore, that is also a pirate ship that plagues the city. He continues that the Deceptive Eel is known for its speed and would be highly prized by many different types of buyers. Before they head down to see the boat, Myles tries to prepare Franthar for the ship’s current state, but the dwarf is still shocked by the damage.
Myles quotes the harbormaster’s estimate of 2,500gp and Franthar somewhat agrees but says that, together with the Damned Whore, the pairing could fetch upwards of 8-10,000gp [!!!!!]. Myles concedes that the ship is rather damaged [thanks, Amon…] and offers 2,200gp, but that Franthar will be more forthcoming should they manage to capture the Damned Whore as well. Franthar extends his hand and Myles shakes it.
[WE’RE RICH BEEEYOTCH!]
The party takes their new found wealth and discusses a plan. It is decided that they will each take 200gp of spending money, they will purchase a masterclass greataxe for sale to a noble/warlord in Hirflindr and keep the rest in a pool for group expenditures. Franthar explains that there are upgrades that can be made to the Renaldo’s Rage, but that the price/time will be dependent on what the party is looking to have done.
1 Masterwork +1 Greataxe (330gp)
870gp party treasury