Ashes of the Empire

Turin's Journal 6

In the morning we decide to follow the courier to get a better idea of his routine. We wait near the casino for him to arrive. While waiting we hear the alarm bell being rung by an employee. In the distance to the east we see the courier and guard running in from the east. As the guard approaches he relaxes. The Ruby guard that had come from around the streets move towards the casino, employee addresses crowd, announcing new winner, a sturdy cart pass through gates surrounded by ruby guard escorting it. As it rolls by the crowd is cheering at a pretty woman inside, waving outside window with beaming smile. She is an elf in finery, upper-class. The cart keeps going to the south, slowly disappears and the crowd begins to disperse.

As things return to normal we see courier approach the employee, Karrauk stealthily moves through the crowd to hear what they are saying. The courier tells the employee they are here to collect the king’s cut. The employee reaches into a sack and gives a rolled sheath of paper to courier. The courier tucks it into a leather satchel. They shake hands and courier turns to leave. They head to the south following the map route. The courier is an elf, slight build, armed with a rapier or saber, accompanied by a large veln. We tail behind the courier towards the bank, there is a lot of commotion and ruby guard have blocked the entrance of the bank. We overhear a richly dressed veln complain about the wait. In front of the bank is the cart from the casino. All access to the bank is blocked and bank employees are unloading heavy looking bags from the cart. The courier goes through the security line into the bank.

A few minutes later the courier emerges and rejoins the escort. They veer off towards the Golden Hart and the courier sits down on a bench outside, the escort goes inside. After about five minutes the escort emerges with two sandwiches. They continue on to a less populated area so we continue ahead to the tax office to wait for them. The escort notices us but is not suspicious. We see them approach the tax office and the escort leans against a post and waits as the courier rings a bell. The door opens and an old veln emerges, his posture is bent and he is wearing thick spectacles. He peers are the visitors and then the courier says the tax documents sir, and he holds out two sets of rolled up papers, one obviously from the casino. The veln accepts the papers and says we will have these taken care of in no time, you boys have fun now, then leaves.

They then head north through the market square, abuzz with people. Many yelling their wares, people shopping for the day. There seems to be an unusual commotion, a crowd gathered outside a smith’s shop. The courier and escort stop to see what is happening. Standing outside the shop near the anvil there are 3 people, a bronze veln wearing a smith’s heavy leather apron, looking on with excitment and anxioty as an elvish man (adventurer) is holding a shining silver blade wearing leather armor, over his armor is a blue tabard upon which there is a silvery white symbol of a running dog. He says a fine blade Ta’nan i think youve outdone yourself, then he does a display of sword prowess, swinging the blade as the crowd oohs and aahs. We relize he may be most skilled swordsman we have seen. There is a 3rd person obscured by crowd, he is a gnome, few seen in haven, he is wearing the same tabard as the elf and is resting idly on a staff. He is looking on with a bored expression. The elf finished with a flourish and the crowds roars and applauds, the elf says there is a reason ta’nan is underdogs #1 weaponsmith. This is your best blade yet, keep this up and you will have dwarves fighting to learn your secrets, hands blade back to smith. The smith is very pleased. The elf scans the crowd and his eyes stop on the two of us and he stares at us for a moment, then his attention is broken when the gnome tugs on his tabard. Then it is hard to see them through the crowd. They seem to be a bit of celebrities (Underdogs). As it calms down we notice the courier and escort are moving away.

we following them across the bridge and see them having an intense conversation. The crowd is more sparse here except for members of Cold Steel. The reach the crossroads and stop and converse for awhile and the courier rummages through his bad and retrieves another scroll tied with a blue ribbon, shows it to escort. They talk some more and then the courier puts it away and they head north towards the barracks. I disguise myself with my hex to look like an elven fighter and Karrauk removes his cloak. We see the courier pull out his paper and remove the ribbon and looks over the note and rolls it back up and ties it again. The escort looks around but takes no notice of us. They enter the headquarters, we wait for about 15 minutes and then six armored COld Steel mercs come from the barracks and line up outside the office, then courier emerges and meets with mercs. As they come back we split up and appear busy as they pass. They continue southward towards the gate. We see a lot of traffic going in and out of the gate. The group passes through the gate. We follow them through and see the armored cart in a secured area that is fenced off with guards. The courier passes through into the secured area and he reaches into his patch and hands a set of sealed envelopes to the cart atendee. Then he hands the courier a piece of parchment and signs something on it, then the courier leaves back into the city. The whole route took about 2 hours.

We return to the Trenchers rest to wait for our meeting time, I finish my Acid Flask in the meantime. We head out and travel without light. We travel through a sparsely wooded area. Karrauk stops me and then points out some bushes and tugs me to the other side of the path. There is some movement from the bushes and then out from the bushes bursts 2 goblins and a goblin dog. The creatures charge forward and a goblin swings and misses Karrauk, and the dog bites him. I run around and use burning hands on the goblins, then karrauk slashes at the dog, goblin yells at it. One goblin retreats and shoots a bow hitting me. I fire and miss, goblin shoots me again. The dog tries to run and karrauk stabs and kills it. I shoot the goblin, Karrauk slashes other goblin. Goblin charges me with a short sword and misses. Karrauk strongly hits the goblin and it collapses in a heap and starts begging for mercy. Other goblin cuts me lightly, i hit him lightly with club. Karrauk comes to assist on my goblin. I strongly hit the goblin, then karrauk flanks him and stabs him. Then i finish off the goblin. I use healing hex on us. We search them and find 3 SS and 10 BS.

As we approach the windmill we hear a psst from the brush. We look and see Martiln, the black veln from the sewers. He beckons us into the brush and seems quite nervous. He says you have to turn back, we came early and an underdog squad broke up the meeting and took the others prisoner. We still have a chance to rescue Janvyre but its up to us. They were keeping watch but the underdogs came out of nowhere. He said they already made arrangements to free her, they contacted certain underworld elements to position the explosives near a maintenance gate near the fort. The cart is disguised as food crates, gate will be unlocked and unguarded. They need her location tomorrow in order to continue the plan. He trusts his brothers but there is risk of information being revealed, we just need to roll the cart up the hill to the fort wall and position it near her cell, light the card and take cover, grab janvyre and escape. He will be waiting with a boat at the eastern river with Davkul and our reward.

Karrauk asks who else knew of meeting, Martiln knows of noone else with knowledge of meeting. We discuss our options and decide we are unwilling to blow up the fort, Martiln volunteers to do that part himself, we tell him we are not likely to succeed at stealing from the courier with the time limit and he would be better hiring a thief. He is dissappointed but says he plans to try and free her himself.



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