Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...   Posted by Keeper Arcana.Group: 0
Jebediah Clarke
 player, 19 posts
Sat 12 Jan 2013
at 10:55
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Jebediah frowned with concern as his dark skinned comrade recanted the tale. It was almost as if Jero had been the one who'd spent the evening drinking heavily rather than the preacher himself.
"It is probably some local bird, or the shadows of the night that fooled you...". Despite himself though Jebediah was disturbed by Jero's report. He'd heard wild ramblings of mad men in fear of god, but before now Jero had always been a reasoned man.
His stump thudded heavily as he stood and moved to the misty window and peered out into the darkness beyond to see if he could see anything.,
Keeper Arcana
 GM, 76 posts
Sat 12 Jan 2013
at 11:40
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
In the corner of the tavern the pair of robed men had been glancing across the room, frowning doubtfully at the commotion caused by Jero, though they were unlikely to have been able to overhear exactly what was said. The older of the pair shook his head and folding his hands into deep pockets began to lead the other toward the rear stairs which would lead to their lodgings. The Franciscan Tau cross that he wore slipped into the darkness of his heavy spun brown robe.

In a gentle voice he called unobtrusively to Rosalinde "Gracias seņorita. Buenas noches nos de' Dios.". His head bobbed with a polite bow while his younger companion stooped to collect a leather satchel that had been secreted in a corner under the table.
Arthur Wynstanley
 player, 22 posts
 Purser
 Gentleman & Scholar
Sun 13 Jan 2013
at 10:39
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Arthur watched on with much interest as Jero's hands worked away at the sketch. He placed his writing implements down and turned to his Captain.
"What do you make of the churchmen Sir?"
He asked as the men retired for the night.
Arthur Wynstanley
 player, 23 posts
Sun 13 Jan 2013
at 10:39
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...

This message was deleted by the player at 10:39, Sun 13 Jan 2013.

Ethaniel Drake
 player, 24 posts
 Captain
Mon 14 Jan 2013
at 10:04
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Drake looked up from his study of Jero's drawing, almost relieved to be distracted by Arthur. The illustrator's work had sent a shiver up the Captain's spine as he drew dark beasts and the desperate scream of a farmer snatched into the night. The charcoal he worked with led a menacing shadow to the work, but it was the reaction of Jero that Drake found most disturbing. Felipe was an intelligent man, not some superstitious sea dog. His visible trembling and the anguish in his eyes was troubling.

At Arthur's prompting though Ethaniel looked toward the robed figures for the first time. Before now his meeting with Rosalinde and other matters had distracted him from examining them closely.
"Y' know Mr Wynstanley, I'm wonderin' why if'n most o' town are running along t' mass, how come these boys are still here with the likes o' us? Maybes we aught t' ask the question. Politely o' course.".
Despite himself, Jero's experience had set Drake on edge and he eyed the men warily.

He had more questions for Felipe too.
"Are ye' sure it wern't the lightning that startled a bird n' farmer both? Could be just a coincidence ye' saw 'em both at the same time. Flash o' light could make a man's eyesight go funny for a few moments. He'd be forgiven for bein' mistaken...".
To Jeb who lingered by the window he called "Ye' see a cart out there Clarke? Jero's farmer friend come back yet?".

OOC - have the robed men departed, or can we still speak to them?
Keeper Arcana
 GM, 78 posts
Mon 14 Jan 2013
at 10:49
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Outside Jebediah could see naught but the shadows of the stable yard and smears of rain blurring the thick glass window pane. To examine further someone would need to go out there.

Back near the stairs the older of the robed men moved slowly, lingering incase Rosalinde were to respond.
(OOC - yes, feel free to catch their attention if you want to, or not.
If you examine Jero's drawings please roll 1D100 vs your sanity. Lose 1 sanity if you pass, and 1D3 if you fail the roll.)

Jeronimo Felipe
 player, 35 posts
 Surgeon, illustrator.
Tue 15 Jan 2013
at 13:26
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
In the first image a thin man with a wiry strong core from many years of exercise is looking at the artist, Jero smudges out the eyes and adjust them until he is looking up and to the artists right shoulder. The man has a hood on to protect him from the cold. But it is falling back just a little. His angular jaw and aquiline nose and small whisps of beard with no mustache surround a mouth agape in a scream of insane terror.

The image is close up, too close and it is very uncomfortable. But anyone looking at it should be able to recognize the farmer again.
Chickasaw Dauphin
 player, 22 posts
 Topsail hand, Able Seaman
Tue 15 Jan 2013
at 20:52
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
In reply to Ethaniel Drake (msg # 83):

Chickasaw pulls on the Captain's sleeve to bring Drake's head down...the group assembled at the table can see if not hear him urgently whispering to Drake.
Jeronimo Felipe
 player, 36 posts
 Surgeon, illustrator.
Wed 16 Jan 2013
at 04:16
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Jero completes his two other sketches.

OOC: will share in PM with those who want to look.

This message was last edited by the player at 13:05, Mon 21 Jan 2013.

Rory Spencer
 player, 17 posts
 Scamp Extraordinaire
 Cabin boy
Wed 16 Jan 2013
at 06:11
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Having brought the fire to life, Rory returned to Jero's side and couldn't help but look at what he'd drawn.  His mouth opened in surprise and he stared, unable to believe what he saw.  "W-what... what is that?"
Jeronimo Felipe
 player, 37 posts
 Surgeon, illustrator.
Wed 16 Jan 2013
at 21:15
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
It is the secret of Ronda.
Perhaps, we should complete our business quickly, or not at all.

OOC: any answer on weapons from the captain? Or a broader plan?
Rosalinde Delgado
 player, 19 posts
 Information Trader
 Beautiful Barmaid
Sat 19 Jan 2013
at 05:02
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Rosalinde draped the towel back over the man's shoulders, turning the other way to bid the churchmen a good night. She waggled her finger at Wynstanley and Drake. "No, you leave them to peace. The padre is just traveling through - let the man rest."

She stepped away to fetch the warmed broth and set a bowl of it nearby Jeronimo.
Jebediah Clarke
 player, 20 posts
Mon 21 Jan 2013
at 06:34
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Jebediah lingered by the window peering into the darkness beyond then shook his head."Can't see a thing out there. Whatever you saw jero is either gone, or weren't there in the first place.".
The preacher shook his head then frowned as he found the flask in his hand to be empty. Obviously drunk by some alcoholic fairies.
His peg leg thudded on the floor as he returned to the rest of the group.

"It is getting late. I suggest we decide on a plan for tomorrow then get some rest.".
Not wanting to be too forthright he glanced at the captain then continued.

"We are here to liberate wealth from a corrupt church. Unless anyone has a better idea I propose paying a visit to this cardinal tomorrow. Question is, do we send Rory and chick to sneak a look, or try a more direct play? I suppose I could play some role as a visiting priest?". Jeb looked unsure. The idea of introducing himself to a man of the inquisition was not appealing.
His gaze swung to Rosalinde.
"But you are the local here my dear. I imagine you might be able to shed light on our little heist? Perhaps you already know where the cardinal keeps his gold, or who holds the key? And what of Jero's creature and folk in town being afraid of our lord god?".
Arthur Wynstanley
 player, 24 posts
 Purser
 Gentleman & Scholar
Mon 21 Jan 2013
at 07:49
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Arthur leant forward to examine Jeronimo's art and shuddered. He looked at the dark skinned African with a grim expression, trying to catch a glimpse of truth in his eye."You really saw this? I don't know what to say....".
He swallowed uncomfortably, disturbed by the drawings. Jero was a fine illustrator and the images leant weight to the shadows conjured by his tale.
Chickasaw seemed most familiar with the imagery and Arthur shifted in his chair awkwardly."Anyone have any idea what that is? I'll be glad to stay indoors at least tonight. Rory, you want a space on the floor you're welcome to it.". He didn't have the heart to send the lad out to the stables while giant bats roamed the night.

When Jeb spoke of the morrow Arthur was glad for the distraction. Planning would take their minds off whatever demons flew above Ronda tonight.
"I know a thing or two about Moorish artifacts. If your cardinal has them on display I imagine is recognise them. Perhaps there are local experts on the matter Rosalinde?. As for surveying the cardinals domain...perhaps introducing yourself openly might be a little hasty Jeb. I agree that a little scouting by Chick and Rory might be more discreet. What do you say chaps?In the mood to get yourselves lost in a church?". He looked to the practical pair with a raised eyebrow.

Arthur himself was no hero. He had never been on one of Drakes excursions before and was unsure what to.expect. The pursur was no adventurer or sneak, but he could appraise value in an item or ask questions about town.
"It's your ship though cap'n. What would you have of me? Perhaps I should explore some distraction for when we make our gataway?".
Chickasaw Dauphin
 player, 23 posts
 Topsail hand, Able Seaman
Mon 21 Jan 2013
at 17:54
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
While the group's attention is directed to Arthur and Jebediah, Chickasaw draws Rory to the side and whispers something into the scamp's ear.


Addressing the group at large, he comments on the proposals that have been put forth,

Aye, I dinnae mind scoutin' 'bout in the morn, although I don' speak none o' these spaniards' tongue...be difficult fer me to report back anything we hears.  Still, I can spy on the actions o' the priests and get a decent enough layout o' the church.
Ethaniel Drake
 player, 26 posts
 Captain
 Alpha
Tue 22 Jan 2013
at 13:07
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Ethaniel picked up Jero's sketchbook and closed it shut. But not before lingering a moment too long on his crewman's sketch. An illustration that seemed to scratch at the back of his eyes, desperately reaching out to grab the ankle of his soul to pull him down into the depths of swirling darkness that licked up like black flames from the fathoms below, like the ocean floor in a cyclone waiting patiently for it's prey: ships like the Lucky Wind. Drake shook his head and respectfully placed the closed sketchbook on the table.

The captain sighed. The lanterns in the room burned low, some flickering on the last of their fuel. Drake's following words were deliberate and were naturally imbued with his unique brand of authority.

"Rory, Chick: on the morrow I want'ye t'get yer 'ands on whatever maps o'the town you can find. Draw it yerself 'f'y'must. I want'ye to find ev'ry in'n'out o'the Church 'n o'Marquez' home. What are his guards like, 'n how're they organised? Don't draw attention to yerselves, if't must be said." Drake nodded at the two.

"Senorita: If'n what Mr Felipe claims he seen," Drake gestured to the sketchbook, "has any skerrick'o truth'n it - I. Need. To. Know. Where to sniff this extrinsic truth out. On the morrow you'll take Jero, Arthur and I to someone who knows somethin'bout this... this..." Drake gestured with open palms and lightly shook his head as he searched for the right words, "...this shadow in the night."

And as if not to linger on this point, he added with a smile, "Rosa: I know y'know much more'n ye've shared so far. Now's the time. If you please. How's 'bout tellin' the lads'n I everything you know about the Cardinal. 'N don't you worry - I'll make sure you're well paid for your cooperation." He winked at the spaniard, above a cheeky smile - trying to ease the tension which seemed to have gripped them.



OOC - weapon wise, Drake has a couple of throwing knives, a cutlass, and a pistol.

This message was last edited by the player at 01:39, Wed 23 Jan 2013.

Rosalinde Delgado
 player, 20 posts
 Information Trader
 Beautiful Barmaid
Thu 24 Jan 2013
at 01:25
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Comfortable in knowing that the African man had been looked after, Rosalinde had taken a seat and was leaning back in the chair, tired from a long day of work.

"Promises, promises..." she said, arching an eyebrow at the Captain's offer. The corners of her mouth curled imperceptibly as she fought against the smile that tried to sneak it's way out of her. "Heard them all before."

With her left hand Rosa swept a long, beautiful curl off her olive-skinned forehead and cheek, tucking it behind a perfect ear. Her brown eyes narrowed, and whatever humour bubbled near the surface was quelled as she began sharing her knowledge.

"There is a man, si. A homeless man. He does the odd-job around the inn for food. Quite handy with tools, si. Carlos. Most people in Ronda do not respect Carlos, they prefer to believe he is not there. When he is drunk he talks like... like lunatic. The people are afraid of lunatic. One day, after fixing the stable roof, he eats supper inside and tells me of things he sees at night. Things like... like this man describes." Rosa gestures at Jeronimo.

"I thought he just ate the wrong mushroom, or smoke too many herbs. I never really believed him. I will take you to him after breakfast, if you think it will help you find peace."

Rosa nodded slowly, her eyes on Jeronimo.

"As for your mark," Rosa said, hinting that she knew enough about these sorts of missions Drake set himself on, "Marquez is... many things. To the rich, he is role-model; a leader; a teacher... and to the poor he is a dastardly villain of ill repute." The last two words she spoke with her best British accent, as if quoting something or someone; and with her hands gestured claws like a monster, as if telling a ghost story.

"The church is in the centre of Ronda. It is a large old building, adjacent to a stone town house of four floors, which Marquez resides in. The buildings are fairly secure; surrounded by a thick, tall, stone wall. It was a fort; a stronghold; once upon the time."

Rosa looked down at her fingernails.

"The compound is manned by guards. A normal mass is held twice weekly - but rich folk are privvy to private mass more often. He entertains the rich with feasts and ... entertainment ... of sorts. Some poorer people tried sneaking in, and stealing from him. They say his home is like... like museum. So he hired a regiment of men to stand guard. It has been this way for... for 26 months, 3 weeks and..." Rosalinde cleared her throat.

"The man is rich, si. He continues to buy outlaying land, forcing farmers into bondage. At first the farmers resisted... but then... they became more agreeable to his demands. Now many grow purely for him, his feasts and the rich. Our local market is not what it used to be. Since word of his thirst for wealth has spread, we see many travelling merchants at market now. The sell their exotic goods, fabrics and treasures. Marquez has been known to host these merchants in his home. So they say."

Rosa sighed, and pouted her beautiful lips.

"He is a zealot. Pious, greedy and cruel. Carlos says he is in league with... with Beelzebub, the devil himself. Carlos says he saw the leader of Marquez' guards, Vasquez, take five of his men into the woods and kidnap peaceful vagrants and recluses. Carlos believes Vasquez delivers the captives to Marquez, to be tortured for the personal entertainment of him and his guests of wealth... but Carlos is... wildly imaginative."

Rosa looked up for a moment, to the roof blanketed in soft shadows. Then nodded. "Si, that is most I know of him. I care little to participate in dealings with the church myself."
Jebediah Clarke
 player, 22 posts
 Preacher
 Drinker
Fri 25 Jan 2013
at 18:01
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Jeb retrieved a cloth from his pocket and mopped his brow. Despite the storm outside, he was starting to feel a little heated in the tavern.  Reaching into his secret inside pocket in his disheveled frock coat, he pulled out his emergency 'holy water' that he saved for occasion such as these.  With his first sip, he felt the harsh liquor hit the back of his mouth. The raw rough fire water scraped down his throat until the feeling dissipated and again he left that dark place where thoughts and memories dwelt, entering the hazy joy that all drunks long for.  Carefully restoring the flask in his pocket, he moved away from the window, back towards the table, at which the group were sitting.

He looked around the group, then slurring slightly, he addressed Drake.

"How can I play my part in this escapade Cap'n?  Being studied in Christian religions, I have a good knowledge of these papist priests and their ways.  May be I would be able to identify something important near the church if I went with Chick and the boy.  Besides, I have been in this area many years ago with an ... acquaintance."

He paused briefly, wetting his lips with his saliva, resisting the urge to scratch his leg stump.

"However, I also have learnin' in the ways of those afflicted with an unstable mind. Aye, I had in my flock those that were witless and those that were crazed.  Coaxing out a prayer of them was mighty hard. Unless you had something else in mind for me."

Having said his piece, Jeb sat down, picking up one of the half empty tankards to wet his whistle and proceeded to drain its contents.  Hopefully Drake wouldn't need his skills or knowledge tomorrow.  He would prefer to spend the day in philosophical contemplation of nature and heavenly providence.  Of course, Spanish brandy is well known for stimulating the cognitive juices as well as being highly regarded for its medical properties.

This message was last edited by the player at 22:16, Fri 25 Jan 2013.

Rory Spencer
 player, 18 posts
 Scamp Extraordinaire
 Cabin boy
Sat 26 Jan 2013
at 05:04
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Rory kept an ear open to Chickasaw's soft mutterings and gave a quick nod of his head to indicate compliance.  There was a bit of a smile plucking at the corners of his mouth and some of the gleam had crept back into his eyes at the man's suggestion.  Still, as he glanced back at Jero, he couldn't forget what he'd seen in the man's sketchbook.

Repressing a shiver, he hunkered down near the fire and gave it another poke, listening to Rosa's description of the man they were going to steal from.  Each mention of his treatment of the poor made Rory poke the fire just a little harder.  Whatever sneaking those people had done, he doubted that they knew the tricks of the trade.  Everyone was caught sooner or later, but Rory was better than most and the wily sort.  Even when he was caught, he could almost always wheedle his way out of it.
Arthur Wynstanley
 player, 26 posts
 Purser
 Gentleman & Scholar
Sun 27 Jan 2013
at 05:09
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Arthur opened his journal and scribed all that Rosalinde shared with them on the Captain's request. From his many years as Purser and other administrative duties he was conditioned to write minutes when facts were shared. It was somewhat an unconscious reaction than anything.

Arthur paused once or twice as Rosa spoke... There was something about the way she described the details... almost like she told the basic version, as if she were holding back the fine details.

Upon her closing statement, Arthur raised an eyebrow at Drake, curious to see his response.

This message was last edited by the GM at 05:16, Sun 27 Jan 2013.

Ethaniel Drake
 player, 30 posts
 Captain
 Alpha
Sun 27 Jan 2013
at 06:34
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
"Dastardly villain, indeed." said Drake, having listened to Rosa with slightly-pursed lips and intense eyes that watched her mouth intently, absorbing every spoken and unspoken detail.

"Aye, you're right Mr Clarke. Accompany Mr Dauphin and Rory in their scouting and mapping mission. In fact, Mr Purser I'll be havin' you join them too. Per'aps you'n your pencil'd care to draw the map o'town. Keep'n eye out fer any secure buildings that might be the Cardinal's warehouse or personal museum. You'll find a small cache o'equipment on m'horse to supplement your own gear, if'n you need to gain entry to'n otherwise inaccessible location."

Drake winked at Rory.

"Furthermore, it'll prove useful if'n you discover any points of interest in respect to rich folk. Where they eat, where they socialise, how they dress - that kind'o thing. I've a feelin' we'll need to get as close to the mark as possible, if'n we hope to learn any details. So we may have to infiltrate the Cardinal's inner circle by actin' and pretendin' to fit in. In my experience, the wealthy and powerful tend t'have tongues loosened by ego - 'n respond well to coaxing 'n baited questions."

It was clear Drake's mind was firing on all cylinders.

"Jero, Rosa and I will find Carlos'n extract all we can. Maybe we'll learn something from him that'll give us the upper hand. Our purpose'n venture may even pursuade him to assist us. I expect we'll move on't investigate whichever leads present 'emselves from our little chat."

Drake knew from experience what it was to hold a vendetta against another man. If Carlos had reason to believe the Cardinal was responsible for wrong-doings committed, there was a chance he may pledge his services to Drake. Especially if it were to bring some degree of vengeance upon a man whom anger and hate were directed.

"Let us meet back here 'fore sunset. If'n there be risk of misadventure after dark, I don't want none left outside - unless, o'course, we're all together, 'n armed. No exceptions. None whatsoever." He looked at each of them square in the eye as he gave this particular order.
Chickasaw Dauphin
 player, 27 posts
 Topsail hand, Able Seaman
Sun 27 Jan 2013
at 14:52
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Chickasaw nods as he receives his instructions,

Scout about, aye.  We'll circle that fort what they calls a church, locate any ways in.  The likes o' us, though, ain't gettin' near any fancy kitchen I tells ye...not done up like we is.

Mr. Wystanley, sir...y'er used to victuallin' the ship an' dealin' with these merchants...we should hit the market, with bein' seein' seen spreadin' some coin on some finer things.  Rich folk always be spendin' their gelt...we wants to fit in, we should do the same.  Rory and I can be you and Mr. Clarke's valets...just don't be buyin' nothin' too 'eavy,
he adds with a wink.
Arthur Wynstanley
 player, 28 posts
 Purser
 Gentleman & Scholar
Sun 27 Jan 2013
at 21:12
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Arthur chuckled at Chick's words.
"Valet's eh? Aye, I think I like that idea. We'll give you a reason to be there abouts, then its over to you boys to see if you can slip into the Cardnial's compound and get a little look around.".

He glanced at Drake.
"If you have no objections sir, I'll spend a few coins here and there from the bursary you gave me to hold. I'll be frugal though, just spending enough to give us leave to be at the market.".

Lastly Arthur leant back in his chair and appraised Jebediah carefully. "Might be that your way with words could pry a little from the locals then you think? They seem to be a'feared of god in these parts and who knows what they could reveal to a man'god. We just aught to be careful no one reports your presence back to the Cardinal. Might be he'll be suspicious of another holy man in town..."

This message was last updated by the GM at 21:12, Sun 27 Jan 2013.

Rosalinde Delgado
 player, 22 posts
 Information Trader
 Beautiful Barmaid
Mon 28 Jan 2013
at 05:10
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
"Is no extracting, not from Carlos." She liked the man, no matter what most of the other townsfolk thought of him, and missed any nuance to the word 'extract' that made it more of a colloquialism for simply talking. "He 'as been through enough. You let me do the talking, si?"

Despite that one addendum, she nodded in agreement with Drake's plan; she was quite impressed with it, in fact, as it was put together quite quickly and seemed to do well in utilizing all of his crew at their various strengths.
Ethaniel Drake
 player, 31 posts
 Captain
 Alpha
Tue 29 Jan 2013
at 11:11
Re: Chapter 2: A trip to Ronda...
Drake flourished his hand with an apologetic wave. "Ah sweet Rosalinde, 'course there'll be no 'extracting from Carlos. A fault with m' words, I'm no brute I can assure you. Jero and I will be glad to follow your lead, to hear the song of your voice. All I want t' figure is what is goin' on here b'fore we make our move w'out some critical tidbit of information.".

He flashed a dazzling smile then stood, slapping his thigh.
"Well, if that be all, then 't bed boys. Get a good night sleep; i'fn yeh can w'out the swell of the oceans t' rock you. Breakfast at eight sharp, and we'll leave by nine.

Me thinks adventure awaits!".