Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara.   Posted by The Keeper.Group: 0
The Keeper
 GM, 1598 posts
Mon 27 Nov 2017
at 17:02
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
The narrow-gauge railway to Cuncudgerie had one train
daily: a freight train. Their accomodations aboard this train were far from luxurious, but they were able to stow their goods aboard the flat car with them and sit on makeshift seats made of crates with cushions crudely strapped onto them.

A few others shared that car, including some Kooris that sat at the other end of the car, giving them curious looks on occasion.

The day was scorching hot, and the empty watercourses they saw showed the Professor's words to be true that they were going into a dry land. Low trees traced some of these ravines, but nothing like forests or even copses existed. Absent were farms that would have dotted the countryside of a more well watered and fertile area. Nothing moved outside the train during their jounrey, except three very large birds, winging lazily far in the distance.

The journey was a very long and hot eight hours, but they had plenty of water and the Professor had packed them all lunches. When they arrived in the evening in Cuncudgerie, the mining town was still bustling. As they pulled in they could see thousands of horses, camels, and mules, hundreds of trucks, and buildings everywhere from ramshackle dwellings to small hotels, as well as well maintained houses. People in the street called out offers of all sorts, advertising businesses ranging from hardware stores to saloons to houses of ill repute.

Hiring a couple of porters, Professor Cowles lead them down towards the center of town not far from the station to a residence that stood out from the small town setting in terms of construction, quality and size, the mark of an owner of means and a prominent citizen in this small town.

To this company of soon-to-be explorers, the destination would be obvious: the residence of Robert Mackenzie, a friend of Professor Cowles that had been the connection between him and news from Arthur MacWhirr's expedition. Mackenzie had offered to put them up for the night.

Soon enough, they found themselves in a sitting room drinking a welcome glass of ice cold water being entertained by an affable gentleman.
Robert Mackenzie
 NPC, 1 post
 Age 41 APP 14 SIZ 13
Mon 27 Nov 2017
at 17:09
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
"Cowles, you old dog's good to see you out in these parts! As far out as we are, I don't get many visitors really," he said.

As Cowles had previously informed them, Mackenzie was a prominent citizen here with mining interests in the town. He was helping Cowles outfit the expedition.

"Now I've got a whole lot of guests!" he said, looking over everyone.

"Please, make yourselves at home. This isn't a big town and I know you're all only here for the night, but if you've any needs I can offer recommendations myself or you can consult really any member of my staff for the same."
Professor Anthony Cowles
 NPC, 18 posts
Mon 27 Nov 2017
at 20:11
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
"Robert, I think you can do a bit more than that for us," the Professor said, leaning forward a bit.

"We were hoping to get a look at MacWhirr's diary and the photographic plates."
Robert Mackenzie
 NPC, 2 posts
 Age 41 APP 14 SIZ 13
Mon 27 Nov 2017
at 20:14
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
"Cowles, I thought you'd never ask," he said, bouncing to his feet shortly. He went a small writing desk that was in the corner of his sitting room and jiggled a key into a locked drawer, from which he retrieved a weathered journal and a handful of photographs.

"I've got the plates elsewhere, but I've reproduced the photographs for ease," he said. He handed the photographs and the journal to Cowles, who handed them around for the others to see.

Charlie Booker
 player, 16 posts
 The Archaeologist
Tue 28 Nov 2017
at 06:51
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
Charlie took her turn examining the diary's pages and the photographs before passing them on to the next person.  "Very interesting, especially his description of the attacks.  It certainly doesn't seem like something a human could do in such a limited amount of time.  A sandstorm or maybe a wild beast, but both of those wouldn't happen so quickly." She lifted an eyebrow as she regarded Robert.  "He said that he'd saved six photographic plates.  Do you have photographs of the other two?"
Simon Snowden
 player, 32 posts
 Just call me Snowy.
 Ev'ryone does.
Tue 28 Nov 2017
at 13:36
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
"Read 'em aloud, perfesser, if y'will. No sense passin' 'em hand-t'-hand. Leastways not fer those of us as is not scholarly inclined."
Karda Banister
 player, 26 posts
 Age: 29 APP: 9 SIZ: 11
Tue 28 Nov 2017
at 13:45
Chapter 3.1: Into the Pilbara
Banister lingered momentarily on the details of Jock's demise before quickly passing the journal along, the tone of MacWhirr's thoughts on the native population making him hesitant to share his thoughts in the expedition's present company. Instead, he simply drank the remainder of his water and listened intently as the others spoke.