Encounter in Dechaine.   Posted by Dread Pirate Robert.Group: 0
Dread Pirate Robert
 GM, 100 posts
 Master of Fate
 Danger Pool: 7
Tue 24 Oct 2017
at 17:28
Encounter in Dechaine
What hath gone before: a member of the Explorer's Society (an archaeologist in Avalon) had sent a report to the headquarters about a sailor who claimed to have the legendary Black Pearl. Actually, the sailor didn't know it was that; he wanted to pawn it for its value. The shopkeeper wasn't interested.

Since this might be the infamous Black Pearl, efforts were quickly made to retrieve it. The rumor, however, leaked out, and the four major powers had put out rewards for the Pearl to be turned in to them.

The Explorer's Society assembled a team, half of them explorers, half of them ship's crew, and sent them to Wandesborrow to find the Pearl or this sailor.

In Wandesborrow, the team learned that the sailor had sailed on the
Iphigenia and the team set sail in pursuit.


So Albert, Carmen and Johann are now in DeChaine. If you don't yet know each other yet, that's fine. With your post, establish why you are in DeChaine (need help, ask), where in DeChaine you are (inn, harbor, stable, bathhouse, etc.), and what you are looking to do.

This message was last edited by the GM at 15:19, Thu 02 Nov 2017.

Carmen the Jenny
 player, 1 post
 Eisen Jenny
Tue 24 Oct 2017
at 18:18
Encounter in Dechaine
Her face hurt.

Resting in the bathhouse, Carmen had tried in vain to apply creams and ointments to the unsightly scar.  It continued to hurt, almost as bad as it had five days prior when she'd gotten slashed in the face.  The fact it was already a 'scar' and not, say, an open wound had puzzled her beyond compare, but then...

...a flashing blade with green sigils.  Trails of luminescent fog curled away from each of the strange runes.  She had no understanding of what they said, despite her great familiarity with languages.  The skin on her cheek burned as the blade passed over her.  Her assailant looked at her, puzzled.  His attack hadn't killed her.  Her face was marred, but she was still alive.  Guards burst into the room, and he slashed at their throats, killing them and running away.  Their skin curdled, mottled before her eyes.  She screamed, her face hurting, her body aching, two dead men shriveling on the floor of her room...

Sitting up from the warm waters, Carmen ran her delicate fingers along the unsightly mar and felt another wave of tears building.  She had to be strong.  She had to be strong, like the Eisen before her.  She might have no real attachment to the country, but Albert and Johann had told her about their homeland, about their parents.  She had to do them proud.

Sniffly, she got out of the bath, dried off, got dressed, and headed out onto the thoroughfare again.  That she'd run into her brothers while on her way to flee Montaigne was a delightful coincidence, and had she been more religious, perhaps she would have ascribed their meeting to some sort of 'fate' or 'intervention.'  But no.  Carmen had no such religious compunctions.  Instead, checking both ways before crossing the street, she opted for 'chance.'  A religious man might cross the road without checking, thinking his god would protect him.  The atheist checked both ways, just in case.

Running a hand through her distinctive hair, Carmen headed for the bunkhouse they'd hired for the night.  Albert's ship was extremely cramped, and Carmen had a feeling that a jenny might be more popular on the vessel than Albert was willing to allow his sister to be.  Still, he'd probably have to get over that soon.  They were supposed to meet up today, get the last of the supplies, and then head out before anyone...

No one was going to look for her, though.  No one would probably care that she wasn't around, would they?  She was just a jenny that the king liked.  Surely he had others, no?  Others without scars.

Fighting back tears again, Carmen moved towards the flophouse.

This message was last edited by the player at 13:05, Mon 30 Oct 2017.

Dread Pirate Robert
 GM, 106 posts
 Master of Fate
 Danger Pool: 7
Mon 30 Oct 2017
at 03:50
Encounter in Dechaine
While she'd been enjoying the luxury and solitude of the bath house, it was inevitable that Carmen overheard some of the local gossip. It was mildly entertaining listening to the problems of people she didn't know and wasn't likely to ever meet. Mary Skeffington had a new beau, Wilfred Maddock was drunk again, Janet Varney was pregnant again (her third), Boris Platnick had the ague, Miranda Grimm was missing... probably ran away with Henry Fenlon... or maybe she was the latest victim of the Beast of DeChaine, Thomas the Rude bought Old Man Eckelberry's printing business, Mrs. Mohney bought a new hat, Phyllis Frazer lost her virginity to either Miles Neidlin or Thomas the Dreamer...

Out in the streets again, Carmen found the locals rather pleasant, many of them greeted her with a smile, wave or "g'day", even though they didn't know her.
Johann Ravenkamp
 player, 8 posts
 Montaigne Swashbuckler
Wed 1 Nov 2017
at 00:56
Encounter in Dechaine
Six replacement spars. A yard arm for the sprung mizzen royal, no thanks to Albert’s little stunt on the Cape after the little altercation with that Avalon sloop. Heavy hempen canvas for the aforementioned royal. Oil. Tar. Enough blocks to make Han wonder whether or not the bosun was trying to embezzle them, and the tackle to accompany. He’d argued with the bosun, and had settled on the extra spars in case they needed to fish any more yards.

Bless Albert, but he seemed to get a kick out of pushing the Gespenst’s limits. A better hand at the helm couldn’t be found, to be sure, although at the expense of the bosun's rather frayed nerves.

For the most part, Han was ensuring their unexpected stint in Dechaine was well spent. Call him a romantic if you want, but a man had once told him some of the best spars came out of Montaigne, and Dechaine happened to be near enough to the Lock Horn to ensure ample supply. The collection at the ship-yard didn’t disappoint. No curls, no knots. Just straight, clean wood.  Han had to talk himself out of arguing to replace the whole lot of the existing yards, just in case the purser (if not Albert himself) decided to have his head.

In the end, the bosun had taken over such matters, and Han had dedicated himself to ensuring the Gespenst was ample loaded with enough sponge, worms, matches, priming-irons, wads and shot — bar, chain, case, langrage, grape or plain round — to keep her provisioned all the way around the Atabean, if need be. That was, presuming the steward was doing his job of loading the hold with adequate food.

It was a level more care than he’d usually take. In truth, it was mostly a manifestation of nervous energy. Carmen had excused herself to the bathhouse after a much shorter introduction than what he would have liked, and Han needed to do…

Something.

Anything.

Something that most definitely didn’t involve sitting still.

His head had been churning for most of the day, alternating between shock, surprise, relief, and about sixty other emotions he couldn’t even name. Meticulously pouring himself into his work always had a way of helping to keep his mind steady, and it was a long-time trick that Johann far too often relied on as a crutch. This was the end result. At the very least, it meant the Gespenst would be able to set sail wanting for nothing.

The Gespenst herself had been warped into the dock, sitting neatly under the derricks. The last of the supplies would be loaded shortly, and she’d soon be ready to set sail. Gulls cried overhead, the cold north wind carrying the sound into the stone square. Han cast her a final glance, and over little black shapes scurrying along the spar deck, before he tore his gaze away and tried to pick his way towards the boarding house.

It felt strange, being back. The colours, the clothing, the stone, the music, the dress. Being able to hear Montaignoise spoken freely around him again was heartening, in a way, but the stone streets felt almost as alien as they did familiar. He could still tell you where each turn would take you — to the bakers, the cobblers, the whorehouse, the market square — and the appropriate shortcut to each, but it didn’t feel like it should when you were returning to a place that could arguably be considered ‘home’.

Or maybe it did. What did he know?

Too much had happened.

Too much had changed.

He pushed the thought aside as he made his way through the sparse crowd, and, before long, caught a glimpse of dazzling white hair headed the same direction.

Han felt his lips purse.

If nothing else, his sister was conspicuous. That made him nervous just on the principle of it. It was a silly thing to feel. It wasn’t as though they were running from anyone, and he was sure no one was after them, but there was a bizarre sense of menace that was hovering over him. Over this town. Over this city. He’d already lost her once, and he wasn’t going to be comfortable until she was firmly bundled on the Gespenst and Dechaine was no more than a speck off their stern.

“Carmen?” he called, jogging a little to catch up. He wasn’t looking quite as put together as she was, given he’d foregone the opportunity for a bath in exchange for catching up with the ship’s business. Honestly, together with the early sign of a beard and his uncut hair, he was looking downright unruly compared to the last time they’d spoken, so many years ago.

A lot had changed since then.

This message was last edited by the player at 22:47, Wed 01 Nov 2017.

Carmen the Jenny
 player, 11 posts
 Montaigne Jenny
 HP: 0
Wed 1 Nov 2017
at 17:02
Encounter in Dechaine
A voice from the past called out.  Carmen turned around, all smiles, and waved at her brother.  Getting used to his new voice--it had deepened since the last time they'd really been together--was going to take a little bit of time.  The change had probably been so gradual for him that he hadn't really noticed, but for her, it was jarring.  He'd left and become a man, a proper man.  But there was still the Han in his voice that she'd grown up with.  The difference wasn't quite as stark as it was with Albert, but... maybe the familiarity, the closeness was what made the situation so...

It was that feeling of going down stairs and misjudging how far the next step was.

Carmen made her way through the crowd to him, giving him a hug when they were finally in proximity.  "Han," she murmured, "I thought that was you!  Were you on your way to see brother, or no?"
Johann Ravenkamp
 player, 9 posts
 Montaigne Swashbuckler
Thu 2 Nov 2017
at 00:24
Encounter in Dechaine
If Carmen was at all upset, she hid it exceptionally well. Or perhaps Han was just so pleased to see her he was subconsciously overlooking the subtle telltales. How long had it been? Nine? Maybe ten years? Carmen had changed, just as much if not more than he had.

She’d…

Well, she’d grown up.

It was easier to see now in daylight. She didn’t have a scar then, but the smile hadn’t changed much. There was something a bit more mature to her now, even though, logically saying, she was still young. The absinthe-green of her eyes hadn’t changed either; still as striking and familiar as they ever were.

“I was looking for you,” Han replied, after the hug broke off. There was something slightly surreal in just being able to hug her again, and he found himself speaking in slightly over-rapid Montaigne. “Plans changed. Albert’s waiting on the Gespenst, seeing the rest of the supplies loaded, then we’re ready to sail soon as the Harbourmaster can find a tow.”

That was the one advantage the Revanche had over the Gespenst. The Revanche had been small enough to push off from the docks and exit the harbour under oar, but the Gespenst was bigger, and unwieldy enough to require assistance.

He didn’t mean to sound overeager to get out of Dechaine either, but he’d be lying if he wasn’t antsy.

“Do you have anything left to do?"
Carmen the Jenny
 player, 12 posts
 Montaigne Jenny
 HP: 0
Thu 2 Nov 2017
at 16:23
Encounter in Dechaine
Oh.

Carmen swallowed audibly, deep in thought for a moment.  "No, that should be fine.  There's nothing in Dechaine for me at the moment.  Not that isn't on its way to a boat."  She grinned up at Johann and began to walk towards the dock, reaching over to hold his arm.  "Let's away.  There's... certainly an appeal to partake in adventure, just as you and brother do!" Conveniently, Carmen failed to mention the whole burning vengeance and painful scar thing.  Best to keep those hidden for now.

Not the scar, obviously.  But Johann didn't need to know how recent it was, did he?  Not yet.  She could tell him and Albert at the same time, once they were out at sea.  No need to frustrate them yet.
Johann Ravenkamp
 player, 10 posts
 Montaigne Sailor
Fri 3 Nov 2017
at 03:37
Encounter in Dechaine
The movement to lift his arm to allow her to link her hand under his elbow was so fluid that Han almost didn’t even realise it had happened until she’d slipped in next to him. A little holdover of muscle memory that time had seemingly forgotten. They’d always walked this way through the Broussard courtyards as children, and along the streets of Dechaine whenever Carmen wanted to go out.

Philippe never let her out without an escort. He hadn’t worked out why, back then, until later. As much as he was trying not to let the tainted memories of the past sour his mood, it was hard to keep the nostalgia at bay.

“We have time, if you do need it,” Han tried to assure her, a little bit more carefully. The little pause of hers hadn’t gone unnoticed. She might have changed in some respects, but other little habits of hers were still surprisingly familiar. “I'd say it's a while before we're away.”

Her idea of "adventure," too, might not be quite...

He cut himself off there. She hadn’t exactly signed up for a nautical lesson, and there was plenty of time to get her up to speed, though he couldn't help feel a flicker of worry. Ships had their benefits, definitely, but they didn't quite carry all the comforts of the King's Court.

... That was another thing he had to ask about.

The tips of the tops of the masts of the taller vessels were appearing over the buildings, and the stairway that lead down to port provided a glimpse of the distant sea on the horizon as they approached.

"I have a surprise for you, too," he announced firmly, "once we get to the berth."

This message was last edited by the player at 11:57, Fri 03 Nov 2017.

Carmen the Jenny
 player, 13 posts
 Montaigne Jenny
 HP: 0
Fri 3 Nov 2017
at 19:21
Encounter in Dechaine
"Am I an aunt now?" Carmen asked, an eyebrow raised. A little wriggle of pain went through her nerves as the scar pulsed unenjoyably, and Carmen hissed under her breath as the sensation passed through her body.  "There... is one thing," she finally confirmed, removing one hand from Johann's bicep and placing it over her scar.  "I'd rather tell you when we're with Albert, though.  So I need only say the stupid story once.  Do you mind terribly?"  She stared up at her big brother with as earnest a smile as she could muster.  "I think we could get some really useful information, if there's actually time we'd otherwise be wasting.  I just... don't want to be a bother."

Truthful or not, Carmen tried her best to be humble.  It was the only way to blunt her arrogance towards pretty much everyone other than l'Empereur and her family.  "But if you're telling me you or Albert has a child, and we're meandering towards the vessel to meet my new niece or nephew, I promise a punch straight to your face."
Johann Ravenkamp
 player, 11 posts
 Montaigne Sailor
Fri 3 Nov 2017
at 23:38
Encounter in Dechaine
Han couldn’t help but laugh. Partially because he had no doubt she would punch him in the face if push ever came to shove, and partially because of all the possible things to assume, why was her first guess that one of them had gotten someone knocked up out of wedlock?

… Okay, fair. He couldn’t really speak for whether or not Albert was hiding any family secrets, but if that surprise was coming, it was going to be a shock to both of them.

“Not that,” he assured, trying to get the grin off his face. Carmen’s earlier tone had all the hint of something serious to it, so whatever it was, it had to be important. He knew she was looking to leave Montaigne — which was strange enough on its own — and maybe he’d find the answers to the questions he’d so far refrained from asking.

If anything had happened to her…

“Albert was always better at the telling,” Han admitted with a partial shrug. “So I might leave him the honour. We’re nearly there.”

The bay spread out before them as they descended the stone steps, the horizon was dominated by two magnificent Montaignoise ships of the line, both seventy-fours, their prodigious forms flanking the harbor. Scores of merchantmen were spread about, the water peppered with long-boats, barges, launches, cutters, caravals, and sloops, and even xebecs and polacres from the north seas, right down to a creeping jolly-boat containing an enormous nobleman whose sheer bulk had it weighed down to a bare three inches off the water, while his beleaguered crew attempted to haul him to shore.

Han steered her past them all, heading towards one of the outer edges of the harbour and along a quay. Smaller craft were milling about, unloading and reloading goods. Docked at the furthest point was a handsome black frigate, her tall masts looming high over quay. Her people were repainting a stark white band across the chequered line of her gunports and up over her transom, the words Die Gespenst emblazoned in white along her stern. She was in the process of being loaded, a number of crates hanging pendulously above her weather deck by the derricks, her crew making short, disciplined work of the supplies.

Han pulled up, squinting over the sunlight bouncing across the water to see if he could catch the familiar outline of Albert standing tall on the stern. He turned to Carmen after a second, giving her hand a squeeze and offering her a smile that was, perhaps, a touch mixed in emotion.

“Welcome home.”
Carmen the Jenny
 player, 14 posts
 Montaigne Jenny
 HP: 0
Sun 5 Nov 2017
at 14:04
Encounter in Dechaine
Home.

This was home now.

Carmen felt tears burning behind her eyelids, but she angrily blinked them back.  Where once she had danced in the great halls of royalty, where she had held a fan over her mouth and whispered scandalous secrets to her fellow courtiers, where she'd evaded and dodged and ducked and redirected vicious rumor sharper indeed than any knife she'd encountered, where once Carmen had been part of a grand tradition and known her place and been happy...

Now this was home.

"It's really quite pretty," she acknowledged.  The white band and the artistry of the title, it was all quite something.  "Brother's up there, no?" Carmen asked, looking up at Johann and then back at the ship.  "I should hope you two don't have something nefarious planned..."

Tugging on Han's arm, Carmen started towards the vessel with a slightly imperious demeanor.  The common sailors had better get out of her way, her expression said, lest she walk over them!
Johann Ravenkamp
 player, 12 posts
 Montaigne Sailor
Mon 6 Nov 2017
at 00:04
Encounter in Dechaine
"Nothing nefarious," Han confirmed, affixing a smile that wasn't quite as cheerful as he hoped it would look. The old concerns were still playing. Life on a ship wasn't quite...

But this was what she said she'd wanted, wasn't it? And perhaps it was pure selfishness on his part, but idea of sailing away from Dechaine without her, after all they'd...

No. That sort of thinking wasn't going to help.

Not now.

Carmen's appearance, too, was evidently causing a bit of a stir amongst the crew. A number had  stopped what they were doing, and the two closest to them on the quay were outright staring, prompting a grumpy "Zurück an die Arbeit," (Get back to work) from Han in rather rough Eisen as they went past.

"He might be in his quarters," Han suggested in Montaignoise, having to quicken his pace in case she needed any assistance getting up the gangplank. The sea in the bay was calm this morning, so the ship wasn't moving enough to warrant his concern, but it seemed time and distance hadn't dulled his habit of being slightly more overprotective than strictly necessary.

This message was last edited by the player at 00:14, Mon 06 Nov 2017.

Albert Ravenkamp
 player, 7 posts
 "Legitimate" Captain
Mon 6 Nov 2017
at 10:02
Encounter in Dechaine
Albert had spent most of the morning overseeing the crew as they were restocking the ship with essentials.  While he didn't say anything or otherwise get involved, it was good for the men to see the captain watching them.  However his subordinates had everything well in hand, and the process should be complete by early afternoon. Trusting his crew to finish their work, Albert returned to his cabin.  He made a mental note to give the men an extended shore leave with some extra money as a reward for their hard work and efficiency.  He'd have to bring that up with Johann whenever he came back from fetching their sister.

Their sister.  Albert was still torn about the idea of seeing Carmen for the first time in years.  However thankfully the charts and ledgers at his desk provided ample distraction and Carmen was quickly placed out of his mind.  There was no use worrying about what could have been, not when their was revenge to be had.  Profitable revenge at that.  He'd always planned on paying the Broussards back for their 'kindness' to his siblings, and now the pieces were starting to fall into place.  He'd heard rumors of a disgruntled former employee of the merchant family here in Dechaine, and now all he needed to do was find the man.

However a sharp knock on his door pulled him away from his thoughts.  "Enter!" he barked.
Carmen the Jenny
 player, 15 posts
 Montaigne Jenny
 HP: 0
Tue 7 Nov 2017
at 00:51
Encounter in Dechaine
Carmen didn't mind the looks.  That impulse--staring at the strange looking lady--was what had gotten her the attention of the Roi.  She was all too used to turning that sort of attention into power, into opportunity, into success.  The grumpy snap from Han made her giggle quietly, and reflexively she covered her mouth when she felt the sensation nearing her lips.  She was, unlike her brothers, a thoroughly modern Montaigneer.  "Sie werden einen Aufruhr verursachen, wenn Sie nicht aufpassen," she murmured.  You will cause a commotion if you aren't careful.  "Es ist üblich für Männer zu schauen, wenn sie Frauen in einiger Zeit nicht gesehen haben, ist es nicht?It is common for men to look when they have not seen women in some time, is it not?

The angry bark of her brother sent little butterflies through her heart, and Carmen looked up at Johann before turning the handle to the door.  "Aye aye, Captain.  That is what they say on boats, no?"  Her knowledge of nautical goings-on were, unfortunately, confined solely to the penny dreadfuls she devoured every month.