Murder on the Majestic Otter

For in-universe game play. Journey through both familiar and foreign settings, explore lost ruins and forgotten cities, and try to bring light to the darkness of the world... or, you know, blow stuff up. Either way.
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Jack Rothwell
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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Leo took in this information with a poker face and a racing mind. The number of potential suspects had just tripled. He crouched with his back to the familiar with a 'hop on' and a moment later was piggybacking him down the corridor.

"This... uhh... go-to guy of hers." He said, picking his words carefully. "Is he the jealous type? The kind who'd resent having to share a woman? What about your master's squeeze?"
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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Edgar snickered. "Nah. They're not supposed to get emotional. They're just hired guns. For certain definitions of 'gun,' anyway, shooting stuff other than bullets." Waggled eyebrows were another thing that traveled well from human to familiar.

A few minutes later, they were standing in front of a cabin on the opposite side of the ship from Saraya's. No obvious lights or noises were coming from within, and the view through the porthole into the cabin was blocked. "Just a minute," Niranjan said. "I still have a little detection magic left over from my school days, not much but enough for a Sensory Enhancement spell. Let me put it on."

She did so and concentrated for a minute or two. "Hmmm ... that's odd," she said, dismissing the spell. "Can't pick up anything. No sounds of breathing, nothing. Are you sure he's in there? Could he be at breakfast?"

One advantage that a simian familiar had over others was the ability to do fully human-like facial expressions, and now Edgar's was showing concern. "He should be in there," he said. "The studs are supposed to keep a low profile when their, ah, services aren't needed. Have meals during off hours, stay out of the hot spots, all that. Too early for him to be up. So to speak."

-----------

I can't believe I'm doing this, Khoo thought to himself, as the submarine was lowered into the water, with him and Anna-Lisa jammed into it.

Before the steward gave a grudging approval to launch the thing, he'd warned Anna-Lisa about several things. First, since it wasn't part of the ship's equipment, they could assume no responsibility, blah blah blah. (Anna-Lisa had giggled and flashed her Mesuinu Enterprises ID at the man, and that took care of that.) Second, they had to be back at the ship's stern in no more than two hours. Third ... "This is very important," he said. "We're in fairly deep water here, no risk of running into anything, but you are not under any circumstances to go more than five hundred yards from the ship. That's part of the deal we have with the outfit that owns this harbor: nobody goes farther into the harbor without having ship's crew aboard. There's not room for another person in that thing, right?"

Khoo wasn't sure whether to expect Anna-Lisa to object to this rule or not, but she simply nodded and chirped, "Okay. We've got a good range-finding system. Here, just listen!" She reached down inside the hatch and did something that Khoo couldn't see.

Immediately, there was a PONG from somewhere on board the sub that sounded like the crack of doom to his untrained ear.

"Sonar," Anna-Lisa explained cheerfully. "Had it put in just in case we had to sink a pirate ship or something ..."

Does that mean we're equipped with a torpedo or two? Khoo wondered, but with Anna-Lisa on board, it didn't really seem like there'd be any need for one.
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Jack Rothwell
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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"No noise eh? Curiouser and curiouser. Hang on..."

Leo reached into his pocket and pulled out a leather bundle. He took a moment to look over his shoulder to make sure no-one was watching and pulled out a pair of thin shard of metal.

"A gift from my girlfriend. The skills I got from a disreputable life that my oh-so-proper Brother does not approve of." He purposefully avoided looking in Niranjan's direction. "Let me know if you hear anything, or someone is coming."

With that the mercenary got to work.
Last edited by Jack Rothwell on April 29th, 2020, 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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[OOC: Niranjan, not Saraya; Saraya is the missing lifemage that they're looking for. But I get the idea, so:]

For a second, Niranjan considered simply pulling out the master key that she'd brought from the bridge and opening the lock. That was what it was for, after all. She caught herself, however, and let Leo do what Leo did; it would be good to get a sense of how robust these locks would be against a skilled lockpick.

The answer would be "not very." The lock yielded to Leo's touch after only a minute or two. There were still no signs of life within, so somebody cracked the door ...

"OMIGAWD!" three voices chorused in unison, followed by rushes to the railing, seasickness bags being not immediately at hand.

There were probably enough detached, dismembered body parts inside the cabin to be reconstituted into one complete corpse, but it was hard to be sure, and it certainly wasn't on anyone's mind at the moment.

------------

"The autopilot is set so this thing will go in nice, calm circles for a while," Anna-Lisa announced. "Now we can enjoy ourselves."

Under normal circumstances, Khoo would have taken that last part to mean that they could use the sub's viewing panels to look around outside for coral, fish, other marvels of nature. The sub hadn't sunk more than twenty feet or so beneath the surface, and plenty of light was still filtering down from above. However, there didn't appear to be all that many fish to see, and there was a complete lack of coral. That part wasn't surprising, as he thought about it; if he understood correctly, the explosion that had formed this harbor had happened only about ten years earlier. That wouldn't have been nearly enough time for a coral reef to form, let alone for it to get populated "Huh?"

His thought was interrupted as he felt something tugging on his pants.

He managed to squirm around so that he was facing back at his girlfriend, and he immediately figured out that she was the force applying the tug. She'd already divested herself of her own slacks, and of everything else she was wearing.

"Oh, that kind of enjoyment," Khoo sighed, his voice a mixture of resignation and (he had to be honest) anticipation. He decided to assist in the disrobing process and proceed from there; after all, he'd never made love on a submarine before, and it had been at least forty-five minutes since the last round, so he could probably manage. He put his arms around her and prepared to do what his body told him he was there for.

They didn't get very far into proceedings, however, before there was another loud PONG from somewhere, and the sub lurched crazily sideways. Khoo had to admit: Anna-Lisa may have been a klutz, but she did have good reflexes, and she spun around to the controls before he'd even picked himself up off the side of the hull. As she was doing a quick scan of the controls, all business now (if not for long...), Khoo noticed a large, gray shape flashing (so to speak) in front of the forward viewing port. At first it wasn't clear whether this alarming apparition was a creature or an artifact, but as it passed by at much too close a distance, he could see a propeller spinning at the end of its stern; so man-made, unless nature in this area was particularly and perversely creative.

"Another sub," Anna-Lisa confirmed. "I don't understand. The steward said everything else from the ship was going to be on the water or in the air. What's it doing here?"

Khoo was still recovering his equilibrium, so he had no answer as she continued. "Well, thank the Sea God that the collision-avoidance system worked the way it's supposed to." She turned back around so that they were face to face again, and, well, loins to loins. "Now where were we?" she smiled as she embraced him, back in the moment. [And fade to black, light from above notwithstanding.]
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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Leo's stomach took a sharp lurch as he turned away from the cabin and the butcher shop display inside. He managed, barely, to stop the retching noise from rising to his throat with a few shallow breaths.

"Someone needs to get this quarantined (OOC Ooohhh topical!/OOC) off immediately." He managed. "We need... shit... a passenger list or something. The names of anyone associated with yon corpse over there, or what's left of it." He was breathing more steadily now. He turned squarely to Niranjan. "I'm going to get my companions. I don't know whether or not he's guilty but the fact is he's the only person we know of who'd have cause to kill his wife's lover. We have to take the Archmage into custody."

How the familiar would react to this was beyond Leo's ability to guess, but if It or the prime suspect was going to kick up a fuss he was going to need Jade. More specifically the magical golem blade in her possession. Eve's reflexes wouldn't hurt either. He also had a strong feeling that Khoo and Anna-Lisa might be the exact people to get on the crystalnet and research why the hell anyone would hack people up and take body parts. Psychosis? Magic? Both?

Of course how things would play out in the immediate future would depend on what Edgar thought of his master in a cell.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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[OOC: Quick, short one to keep it moving; there will be more later, but I wanted to give you the chance to react to this ...]

Niranjan didn't look comfortable at this assessment, but she couldn't really disagree with it. She nodded and said, "I think I remember the magic to cordon this room off. Fortunately, I checked the manifest and there's nobody in the rooms on either side of this one. Hang on and I'll get the spell going."

Edgar, however, raised a hand (or was it a paw?). "Wait a minute. Something doesn't look right here ..." He looked over his shoulders and nodded; between the passage of time (which he'd said would fix the insults done to his body by his boss) and the shock of what they were seeing, his gills were almost gone. "I think I can fly now --" he hovered momentarily, confirming this -- "and there's something I want to check out."

Before Niranjan or Leo could stop him (not clear whether Niranjan would have wanted to or not), he lifted off and entered the room, making a quick circuit close to the ceiling; he didn't want to get any closer to the mess than he had to, for several reasons. "I thought so," he said grimly when he alit back outside. "I didn't know this guy, just saw him with the missus once or twice ...

"But from what I remember of him, unlike what's splattered all over that bed, he definitely didn't have three hands and more than a dozen fingers. Now excuse me a sec." He took advantage of his position at the railing for another round of retching.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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Leo paled considerably at the entirely unwelcome information.

"He- grew another hand?" He managed. "Or was it... just... left there?"

He stifled a gag, but barely.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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[OOC: Kinda long, but there are several other parties needing to be heard from, so ...]

Give Niranjan credit: she was able to pull herself together after this grisly scene quickly enough. After a brief reflection, she said, "I'm not sure I'm technically supposed to be telling you this, but what the hell. This isn't the only place where body parts have been found on this ship in the last twelve hours." She went on to describe what had been found in the bilges. "I wonder whether that dismembered body is going to turn out to be missing a hand. The crewman who found it didn't say, and the one person who would have looked at it carefully enough to know ... is the person we're looking for." She let that sink in for a minute. Then: "Edgar? Do you know who the -- deceased was, what was his name?"

The monkey shook his head. "Nope. Not allowed to know. Part of the game." Somehow the "game" didn't seem quite so funny now.

She nodded. "I want to find out. Just a minute, this thing is secure and I can't use it with anyone else listening." She pulled out a crystal-ball-like communicator, not unlike what Saraya had used down in the bilge when she examined the body, and stepped a few feet down the railing. Presently a Damping spell surrounded her and the device, and after another two or three minutes, dissipated.

"Damn. I should have guessed," she said, returning to Leo and Edgar. "Bridge says his name is given as 'Jonnu Doisimi.'" She looked to see whether the name registered with the other two, lifting an eyebrow when Edgar denied it, but she continued, "That name, or variations on it, is upper-crust Tsuirakushitian for 'I'm using an alias, just so you would know, and if you try to find out what my real name is, bad things will happen to you, so don't ask.' Damn, again. Our reservation system isn't an upper-crust Tsuirakushitian. It is supposed to require real names of passengers, not pseudonyms, and to be smart enough not to take names like this. But the thing is --

"At least five other passengers are registered under that name as well. Damn," she finished again.

----------

"Do you think we should tell the -- (yawn) -- crew about that other submarine?" Khoo asked groggily, the first coherent sentence he'd been able to form since, well, since.

Anna-Lisa snuggled against him, there not being much space on the sub to do otherwise, after all. "Nah. They'd just pitch a fit and we wouldn't be able to go back out again later. 'Sides, I think it was heading the other way, away from our ship." On thinking about it, Khoo had to agree. "We'll just let this be our little secret," Anna-Lisa went on. "A naval mystery ... so romantic..."

----------

In many regards, Kevin was the anti-Khoo. One of those regards was that he wasn't reduced to near catatonia by sex; much the contrary, he felt invigorated afterward. Leaving Annabelle (who was much more Khoo-like in that regard) slumbering peacefully after their "breakfast dessert," he headed off to the fitness room for another workout. Annabelle wasn't able to enjoy her sleep for long, though, because Elke knocked on her door, just having missed seeing Kevin heading up to the deck with the amenities ("rec deck" in the ship's jargon). A hasty Hygiene spell (cast via a gadget; Annabelle didn't know magic herself) later, the two women were talking, rather more seriously than before as Elke described the Waffenbruderschaft ship. "I didn't think they were supposed to be welcome here," she concluded. "Any ideas?"

Annabelle's post-coital fog vanished quickly. "You don't suppose they're making a play for this place, do you? Seems unlikely. The Weisserhai knows every nook and cranny and inlet of Alctraziel. It'd take more than a warship to invade this place; more like a whole fleet. But --" She rubbed a temple. "Not totally sure about my memory here. But you remember that sobbing, squat woman, that I said I thought might be from some guild somewhere? If my memory is right, I'm not sure but what she is from the Waffenbruderschaft ..."

----------

Meanwhile, Kevin was discovering, to his great surprise, that the weight room was already occupied.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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"Then we've got at least five other leads to be following." Sighed Leo, his jaw was starting to throb again. "I vote we deal with the wizard first, then see if we can start corralling this shitstorm into something more manageable."

............

One thing jade had noticed that morning was that Eve's normal intensity in sparring had been turned up several notches. The blacksmith had found herself on the backfoot as the smaller woman threw a whirlwind of strikes as if the redhead owed her money. Her leg was already sporting a sizeable welt from a thump an overenthusiastic swing had raised, and her admonishment of 'Slow down girl!' had done little to dampen her down.

CLACK-CLACK-CLACK!

Jade retreated backwards again, trying to keep the length of her longsword between her and the hornet's nest of her ill tempered friend. Her back was nearly to the wall when the door creaked open and the strapping fellow who'd been in the company of Elke at breakfast stepped through.

"Morning ladies!"

Eve pivoted like an owl on a turntable at the sound of the familiar voice. She gave an uncharacteristically quiet greeting to the handsome lad.

"Oh... hi Kev-"

CLACK!

"Ow! Shit! What was that for?" Exclaimed Eve, now clutching the lump rising on the side of her head.

"Your dropped your guard." Jade replied.
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Re: Murder on the Majestic Otter

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[OOC: Going to put one word in Leo's mouth here:]

Niranjan considered. "You're right, we'd better go talk to him." She turned to Edgar. "How long will it take to get him sobered up, or at least over the hangover so he doesn't do something like that to us?" She gestured at what was left of his improbable gills.

It was Edgar's turn to think for a minute. "Not really sure. Usually, when he's sleeping off a binge, the missus can cast a Purification on him that speeds the whole thing up." [OOC: Note that in the cited case, Sister Rose could only wipe out what was still in her ill-fated sister's stomach, keeping it all from getting worse, but not the intoxication itself -- but Saraya is a full-fledged lifemage with all the tools of the trade, while with Rose, healing skills are just part of being a nun, she isn't a specialist. So:] "Problem is, she's not here, after all. I don't s'pose any of your people have Healing skills?" This last to Leo.

"Probably," Leo said. He'd got the (erroneous) impression that "Maud" and her servants knew some magic, or at least had some magical gadgetry that might help. (This part was basically correct.) Besides, if he understood correctly, Khoo and Anna-Lisa were on board somewhere, and as far as he could tell, there wasn't anything magical that Anna-Lisa couldn't do -- except exercise restraint. [OOC: Jade and Eve know that Khoo and Anna-Lisa are on board, but I wasn't sure whether Leo does. It doesn't really matter, that'll get clarified soon enough. /OOC:]

Niranjan nodded. "Let's find them, then. First, I want to stabilize this scene, before -- decay sets in. I think I have the spells to do that. Give me a minute." She started to concentrate. But:

"That will not be necessary, Ensign," came a commanding, and more than slightly condescending, male voice from behind them.

Leo and Edgar fancied that they heard Niranjan emit a soft "shit..." as they turned around to face the newcomer. He was a tall man, wearing an ornate uniform that looked like it had been pressed no more than five minutes ago. (Niranjan's, understandably, looked like it had been slept in.)

Niranjan winced, and forgot her etiquette as to who should introduce whom first. She turned to Leo and Edgar, and said, "This is --"

The overdressed man cut her off, but not without throwing a glare in her direction. "First Officer Morokuma. Among my duties to Mrs. Mesuinu is law enforcement on this ship. This is a crime scene. It is my responsibility. Your services are not required here, Ensign."

Niranjan blinked. "But -- but --"

"I repeat: you are not needed here, Ensign." There was menace in the man's voice.

Niranjan knew when she was beaten. "Very well. Let's go find your friends, then," she said to Leo. She did not bother with a "sir" or anything else to her superior, who was already at work casting some kind of filmy magic across the cabin door.

-------------------

Kevin's eyes lit up, as he briefly considered the possibility of a threesome, or even a foursome if Anna-Lisa came around. He had to take his girlfriend's threats seriously, though, so he just picked up a brace of nunchaku. For the moment, he didn't notice that they were emitting faint traces of magic. "Shall we?" he said to both women at once. "I'll just play defense."

[OOC: I'm not a martial-arts person, and I'm not good at writing combat scenes. Take this in whatever direction you see fit. What is the magic about? I don't know -- yet. All yours to come up with something.]
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