Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Jack Rothwell » March 1st, 2020, 7:29 am

Meanwhile, in the docks of Port Lorrel, the Silver Hands were standing in front of an unusual building.

"This is The Clark?"

"Yep.

"This is a tavern?"

"Yep."

"...it's a ship."

Jade nodded. She'd heard about the place when she'd been under the employ of the Black Guard. Apparently the newest edition to the waterfront entertainment had arrived on a tidal wave generated by a giant sea monster and had been a raging success ever since. Leo pushed his way inside with a bemused smile on his face and began casting around for his acquaintance. Jade and Eve located a table away from the hustle and bustle of the clientele; most of whom appeared to be sailors, mercenaries, or starry eyed teenagers who'd probably read too many adventure books and thought a tavern was the best place to start a hero's quest or something.

"Is that girl wearing a witch's hat?"

Jade turned and squinted. "Yeah. Probably got it from that practical joke store on Renfrew way. You can see the tag sticking out."

At that moment a handsome young man strolled up to the two women clad in a set of armour that resembled flattened pots and pans strung together by strips of leather.

"That's from Cohaan the barbarian..."

"Ladies!" He beamed. "I am looking for brave adventurers to join my par..."

"No!" They chorused.

Leo arrived with a trio of glasses just in time to pass the dejected youth slinking away from the table. He frowned and set them down.

"What he did want?"

"Probably to avenge his father or something." Jade replied.

"Any word on your contact?" Eve inquired.

"Bartender said he'd be back in an hour or so." Leo shrugged. "We're not in a rush anyhow. I think you'll like this guy; I've known him for quite some time."
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Graybeard » March 1st, 2020, 11:15 am

"Ma'am?" a voice at Khoo's side said, startling him half way out of his skin. "Shall I take your luggage?" He turned to see who, or what, had spoken.

Actually, he couldn't tell whether it was a "who" or a "what". A large cart had materialized seemingly out of nowhere, with a uniformed figure holding its handle. At first glance it looked human enough, but as Khoo started to stammer something to the man, he realized that there was no man, or at least no man's face, between the body of the uniform and the cap. All there was was a shimmering curtain of light. It might have been concealing the bellman's face; it might have been there instead of a face, so that the whole thing was thaumatic. There was no way to be sure.

Either way, it didn't seem to bother Anna-Lisa. "Why, thank you, Jeeves!" she bubbled, and opened her Pocket Dimension. This magical contraption disgorged all manner of stuff, at least four suitcases' worth plus assorted odds and ends, most of which Khoo did not recognize. Mercifully, the miniature submarine remained within the Pocket Dimension. The steward, or whatever he was, said "Thank you, ma'am," bowed, and started wheeling the cart toward the ship.

"Was that your friend -- 'Takashi'?" Khoo dared to ask, dreading the answer.

Anna-Lisa smiled tolerantly, as she might toward a small child who'd asked a dumb, innocent question, rather than a boyfriend, not that she would necessarily recognize the difference. "No, silly, he's on board, he doesn't get his hands dirty with things like luggage! That was one of his avatars, of course."

"Of course," Khoo echoed hollowly. The word "avatar" had certain meanings to him that he really didn't want to think about here, so he didn't pursue the subject, instead asking something else he'd been wondering about. "But I don't get it. All that junk was well stored in our -- your Pocket Dimension." The fact that he'd started to think of such things as their communal property disturbed him no end. "You've already shown you can get out of it what you need." Even the personal submarine.

Anna-Lisa giggled. "You don't understand, lover."

"Understand what?"

Another giggle. "Oh, it'll all go back into a Pocket Dimension once Jeeves gets it on board. But the whole point is for it to be seen going onto the ship. Image, you see!"

"I ... see," said Khoo hesitantly, even though he really didn't. Laying aside the fact that a kid from the Small Islands really didn't grasp the "image" concept (but Anna-Lisa was from the Small Islands too, he realized; but she was ... different ...), who would be watching this display of ostentation? Anybody in Farrel who cared about that would only see luggage as a theft target, not a status symbol. Then he understood: the other passengers. And was horrified at the realization that he did understand.

He shook his head to clear out the thoughts of the luggage. "Well, we still have time to kill before the ship sails, lots of it according to this rune. Want to go --" he could barely get the word out -- "shopping?"

His girlfriend's face lit up, as expected! "Oh, lover! Just what I was thinking! Plus we have to find the Silver Hands and give them their runes." They set off, Khoo wondering how that last eminently practical sentence had found its way into the whirlwind of Anna-Lisa-isms surrounding it.
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Jack Rothwell » March 1st, 2020, 4:53 pm

"Leonardo!"

The Silver Hands looked up from their card game in the direction the voice had come from. It belonged to a flamboyantly dressed man covered in red silk and sporting an ornate, gold-embroidered cutlass at his hip. He doffed a pointed hat and made a beeline over to Leo; the resemblance between the two was uncanny.

"Moriarty!" The younger man rose and embraced the fancily clothed stranger in a warm hug, then turned to address his companions.

"These are my guild companions, Jade and Eve. Ladies, this is Moriarty Landau, a somewhat reputable merchant sailor."

"Captain."

"Excuse me, Captain, also my brother."

Moriarty favoured the women with a theatrical bow identical to his siblings and gave a dazzling smile.

"Jade. THE Jade you say? The woman you couldn't stop talking about last time you were home-"

"A pleasure to meet you." Jade replied. Eve simply gave a grunt in greeting. "Leo mentioned he had a brother." A mischievous smile crossed her lips. "Although he never mentioned how handsome you were."

"Anyway." Leo interrupted with a clearing of his throat. "We were in need of transport to the Southern Continent and I've heard you've been having a lot of dealings there lately?"

"Delah. Many." He chuckled. "Good iron and guns for spices and exotic food mostly. As it so happens the transports already been arranged. Some friends of yours came by and booked tickets on my new pride and joy."

"Oh? Does it have an overblown name like-"

"The Majestic Otter!" Moriarty exclaimed. "A luxury cruise ship courtesy of Saiko Mesuinu's finances. Equipped with a talented chef, servants to bow and scrape and, of course, the most charismatic Captain on any continent Southern or otherwise."

"Along with a few secret compartments loaded with stuff that makes the ship sit a few feet lower in the water?"

"You DID say 'somewhat reputable'." Moriarty grinned.
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Graybeard » March 1st, 2020, 9:15 pm

OOC in its entirety, while Khoo and Anna-Lisa are shopping (to the former's mortification and the latter's rapturous joy) and Elke is tending to Eisenfaust business:

Unless I'm missing something, I don't think this party has a real reason for going to the Southern Continent. (Elke has one: keep an eye on everybody else. But that's specifically hers, not the party's.) Yes, Anna-Lisa went off on a typical Anna-Lisa wild goose chase, based on "conclusions" she had drawn about the mushroom mage, that got everybody interested in going south. By now, however, Khoo, at least, has enough ... experience with her that sooner or later, he's going to figure out that it is indeed a wild goose chase. Presumably everyone else would too, sooner or later, probably later than Khoo but not much.

This doesn't necessarily prevent the merry crew from taking the cruise -- do you have something brewing with Moriarty? But it might make it harder to construct a plot line once the ship docks. Again, you might have something there. I don't.

However, I think there's enough stuff behind the scenes -- notably the mushroom mage showing up in the special jail cell observed by Choubei Masaki, Khoo's and Anna-Lisa's boss, that a real reason to go south could be constructed if you think one is needed. Want me to work on that? I'll be glad to if you think it's needed.

The merry adventures of the Tsuirakuan couple, and the considerably less merry ones of Elke, will resume once we've figured this out. In the mean time, back to you for the encounter with Moriarty. I'll have to do some reading up on him ...
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Jack Rothwell » March 2nd, 2020, 4:54 pm

OOC Tbh, going on a luxury cruise would be reason enough given the rough time the Hands have had (Jade especially) and the prospect of finding mysterious treasures to help her long-awaited golem project would be a second reason to go to the Southern Continent regardless of another plot devices in the mix. I didn't have anything overly planned beyond that.

Mortiarty's introduction: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=2295&start=140#p35520

Maybe a murder mystery plot on the ship to pass the time? Al a 'Murder on the Orient Express? No reason to rush to the Southern Continent./OOC
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Graybeard » March 2nd, 2020, 5:40 pm

[OOC:
Maybe a murder mystery plot on the ship to pass the time? Al a 'Murder on the Orient Express?[/i]

Oh MAN, does that give me an idea ... So introducing, with trumpets and fanfare, The Victim ... /OOC:]

One (relatively) good thing about shopping with Anna-Lisa, Khoo philosophized, was that she rarely actually bought anything. Her attention span was so short that as soon as she'd found something that piqued her interest enough to spend money on it (Khoo would long remember one particular brass-plated figurine of a monkey that howled some weird Tsuirakuan song when squeezed a certain -- from his perspective, wrong -- way), there'd be something else nearby that elicited an "OOOoooh! Shiny!" reaction and kept the sale from happening. If it wasn't another trinket, it could be a display case, or even a whole store. This latter possibility was enough to keep her moving at a brisk clip through the commercial district, with her boyfriend (he still struggled with that label) trying to keep up.

He was standing outside a women's boutique, puffing and sweating slightly (at least he didn't have to follow Anna-Lisa into this one), when he was startled by a tap on the shoulder.

Turning around, he found himself looking at a stout, overdressed man, the very picture of a mid-level Tsuirakuan bureaucrat. This worthy was looking at him as though examining a bug under a microscope, although the "bug" in this case was several inches taller than the examiner. "My card," the man said, without introductions or any attempt at bonhomie, and extended a business card, redolent of magic, to Khoo:
KAWAMURA Chigaku, D.Thm., L.Th.Eng.
Certified Investigator
Department of Homeland Security

There was no address, either physical or Crystal-net. Khoo suspected he knew why: this man would accept no calls, he would do all the calling.

Khoo regarded this card, and the incongruous figure who'd given it to him, with puzzlement, as the stout man returned the gaze with obvious distaste. "I'm sorry," said Khoo, "but I think you have the advantage of me, sir, or perhaps there is some mistake. I am Khoo Tan-Lian, on a mission for --"

The stout man cut him off, in a way that no Tsiurakuan could interpret as anything but an insult. "I know who you are," he said stiffly. "You are hereby informed that you are under investigation for misuse of government funds for a pleasure voyage with your bride." He practically spat the last few words.

"Bride?" stammered Khoo. "We're not married, never going to be if I can help it, and we're not spending government funds on this cruise, my -- girlfriend is paying for it all. She can afford it, used to work for Mesuinu Enterprises." (That ought to provoke some reaction, thought Khoo, although he wasn't sure whether it would be positive or negative. In fact, Kawamura didn't even blink.) "No government funds at all, for us or anyone else on boar--"

"We shall see," Kawamura said coldly, cutting him off again. "I shall be joining you on your honeymoon. And if I see any -- ANY -- evidence of the expenditure of Homeland Security funds on this voyage --" he leaned closer in a way that would have provoked a challenge to a magical duel in many parts of Tsuiraku, and delivered the last insult -- "your ass is grass, islander. And now, you will excuse me." He didn't wait for a reply, merely snapped his fingers and vanished.

[OOC: Now aren't we all going to enjoy getting this guy snuffed?]
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Jack Rothwell » March 2nd, 2020, 8:43 pm

OOC Cool. I love a little intrigue in a pass-along story!/OOC

A kobold and an elf? Really?"

Jade stiffened involuntarily at Moriarty's reminiscing. For the last twenty minutes the men at the table had been doing nothing but playing catch up while Eve and the blacksmith had been drinking or staring off into the distance.

"My right hand to Luminosita. Took them to Grendell and back weeks ago; they'd had some sort of run in with the Black Guard..."

Jade stiffened again.

"...the kobold, she had some sort of magic powers, was mightily pissed off at them. Then barely two days later I heard about some huge fight at a warehouse. Monsters lurking around, then some old tower half collapsing in the middle of the city. I tell you, I wouldn't want to be THAT woman's target."

"Erm... do you know where she is now?"

"Yeah. Took her back home several days ago. Who knows? You might run into her since you're heading the same way."

Jade thought back to the dock fight (OOC I've forgotten how to post links in text. Help?/OOC) where she'd been standing around in the open like a confused plank of wood... and then recalled the fight between Myra and the lightning quick, psychotic furry humanoid that had taken place right next to her.

"Do kobolds see well in the dark by any chance?"

"Of course they do!" Moriarty declared. "They're natural predators. Stalking prey on a moonless night is practically woven into their bones!"

Jade gulped.

"What do you say we take a look at this ship of yours?" Leo chipped in. "I'm curious to see what your employer and your ill-gotten gains have gotten you."

"Right you are." The Captain rose to his feet with a flourish. "Time and tide wait for no man as they say. Plus they're probably serving shrimp cocktails by now."

"I'm more of a sushi man."

"That too. You always were a fussy eater."

Jade drained her glass and followed the men; looking pale and feeling worse.
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Graybeard » March 3rd, 2020, 9:07 am

The interruption had given Anna-Lisa time to do what Anna-Lisa did best, and she came bustling out of the boutique with two large packages, which she stuffed into her Pocket Dimension. "Oooo! Lover! You wouldn't believe all the fashions in there -- what's wrong?" Under normal conditions Khoo would have been cringing at the thought of a store full of "fashions" to thrill a former Mesuinu employee, and Anna-Lisa would have simply ignored it if she even noticed. However, she was not totally without social sympathy, and it didn't take her more than a moment to see that whatever was bothering her boyfriend went beyond his rather stodgy fashion sense.

"Trouble," Khoo muttered, and explained the situation as Anna-Lisa listened with atypical full attention.

"But I didn't use any of --" she looked around to make sure no one was listening -- "Choubei's money to pay for these tickets!" she protested. "Takashi comped us most of them and I paid for the rest." (Including the honeymoon suite in that latter group, Khoo thought, accurately.) "See, the ship isn't anywhere near full, and Takashi thinks it'll be good for business to see young people on board, and --"

Khoo cut her off, not even needing a kiss to do it this time. "Yeah, you know that, I know that -- but this Kawamura doesn't know that. Which reminds me --" He could feel the business card, and its magic, in his pocket. Putting a finger to his lips with one hand, he held the card in the other and cast a Wind Sprite. The semi-corporeal puff of wind carried the card down the street at least a block.

"His business card," he explained. "It's almost certainly a bug." Anna-Lisa, still subdued -- was this setting a world record for Po seriousness when not under fire? -- merely nodded as he continued. "Hopefully someone will pick it up and --" He broke off as there was a soft but audible thump in his pocket, along with a brief flare of magic. He opened the pocket; the card was back.

This exercise was repeated, but only once; the reappearance of the card was accompanied by a distinct bit of warmth in that pocket, pressed up against some things that Khoo definitely did not want getting overly hot. He sighed. "Okay, I get the message. Guess we'd better find the Silver Hands and give them their -- complimentary -- travel runes." They set off.
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Jack Rothwell » March 4th, 2020, 8:51 pm

"Hey lovebirds!" Greeted Leo as the group turned into the street. "Hope you're making yourselves comfortable! I brought us a Captain!

Moriarty strode forward with a flourish and warm smile.

"My brother tells me you're friends of his, which makes you friends of mine! Moriarty Landau, at your service." He bowed regally. "I hope your trip with us is a pleasant one.

At the back of the group Jade shivered. The sense of foreboding she had cranked up a notch.
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Re: Farrel- Vengeance in the Mushrooms Woods

Postby Graybeard » March 5th, 2020, 12:38 pm

[OOC: The ship presumably won't sail for a few hours yet (Moriarty would probably be back on board if departure was imminent), so how about we create a few Suspects to go along with the Victim? Much of that can be done on board, but to get it started -- figure this happened five minutes or so before the meet-up that you wrote:]

To their surprise, Khoo and Anna-Lisa saw Kawamura once more, as they were approaching their reunion with the Silver Hands (and Moriarty). He'd changed dress-suit "uniforms," presumably to reduce his chance of being noticed, but he apparently couldn't change his distinctive physique nor his behavior, so he stood out in the ragtag harbor district like a sore thumb.

Now he was berating another couple in front of another excessively high-priced boutique, apparently giving them generally the same business he'd given Khoo. The man was small and nondescript; the woman was large, wide, and like Kawamura, badly overdressed. They stood absorbing the man's animus wordlessly, as far as Khoo could tell, although he was too far away to overhear the conversation if there'd been one.

Which was not to say the odd couple didn't ... react. As soon as Kawamura disappeared again with a magical flash (Khoo was relieved to note that if he left a magical spoor, it at least wasn't heading now toward him and Anna-Lisa), they looked around, faces filled with rage, particularly the large woman's. If looks could kill, we wouldn't have to worry about that guy bothering us on shipboard, Khoo thought, not without a tinge of irony.

"Wonder what that was all about?" he mused to Anna-Lisa, but got no response; she'd spotted the most darling tea service in a store window. Khoo sighed, grabbed her hand, and headed for the Silver Hands reunion.
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