2: Cats and Dogs.   Posted by The GM.Group: 0
The GM
 GM, 353 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Sun 18 Nov 2018
at 06:16
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Harysh
"Bath is at the end of the hall. Two more coppers for hot water."

Neva Borne
 player, 45 posts
Tue 20 Nov 2018
at 20:59
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
"Oh... I'd like that.."
That was no joke. The journey over the sea and her escapades today meant she could likely put her clothes upright. Neva sifted through her coin pouch carefully, making sure to make a show of counting the coins out as if concerned for the expense, then handed it over.
The GM
 GM, 360 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Thu 29 Nov 2018
at 00:09
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
The bath water had a slightly sulfurous smell, but it was hot and there was a great deal of room for Neva in the tub. Harysh had brought some simple-spun towels, and there was a sliver of a mostly-used cleansing stone. A tall tallow candle lit the room, and it mellowed the odor somewhat.

A large grey cat watched from the sill of the small round window high up on the wall.

Neva relaxed, and emptied her mind, waiting.
Thax'll'sys'vyrdra
Waiting... What?

Neva Borne
 player, 46 posts
Mon 3 Dec 2018
at 21:52
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva contently was soaking in the bath, letting the warmth relax tired muscles and wash away the long journey. She could easily fall asleep now, but kept enough of her mind afloat to rub away weeks of dirt and sweat. Appreciating the rarity of washing thoroughly she made sure to clean herself thoroughly. Only then did she relax and let her mind wander.
The GM
 GM, 368 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Wed 12 Dec 2018
at 03:09
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva knew the pact was still strong; wasn't her brief battle evidence enough? But communication was always frustratingly vague. She thought she knew patience, but this tried it. Maybe there was a thread, a link of a chain. She might have pictured a garden hedge maze, or a green prison. She saw ants, or fleas, and briefly fought an urge to scratch. The ants felt as though they covered her mouth and nose, and she plunged underwater. There in the depths of the ocean, down in the deep dark there was a rolling churn of tentacles. The long, barbed appendages wrapped around Neva's throat.

She erupted from the bathwater, gasping.
Neva Borne
 player, 47 posts
Thu 20 Dec 2018
at 22:30
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Coughing and sputtering Neva heaved herself out of the bath to steady herself against the wall. Her discomfort quickly turned to anger.
"Traveller's Balls! What in the blazing layers of the pits was that!?"

Growling she got a towel and dried herself quickly, wondering why she was shown such a thing. She got in her simple night shift (little more then a simple linen sack) and quickly cleaned her clothes in the bathwater. Still grinding her teeth she went to her room whilst keeping an eye out for the cats and locked herself inside. She put her clothes to dry, set aside her equipment, barricaded the door out of habit and went to the window to do the same. She took a look outside, listening to the cats about their nightly habits a moment, then closed and locked the shutters. With a sigh she flopped on the bed. It wasn't much but then again, Neva wasn't used to much. The floor not moving any longer at night was comfort enough for her. With her sword propped next to her she closed her eyes, thinking of the day's events. That sure had been more exciting then she was used to and she decided she needed to be a little more careful from here on. Get her bearings... make a plan... find the right people. Come morning she would begin asking some questions around the city to find the right folk.

Exhausted, sleep came quick to her..
The GM
 GM, 378 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Sun 23 Dec 2018
at 09:29
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
During the night there was a storm, rain falling in sheets. Splatter made the whole room sound like surf. A leak in the roof let drops patter in the corner, but well away from the bed. Nevas dreams were disturbing, but nothing as freakish as her vision in the tub. Dark waters and sinuous forms and a hint of a figure waiting in the shadows kept Neva company until the sudden cessation of the rain woke Neva. A large cat silhouetted in the window peered down at her, eyes reflecting dimly jumped away when she stirred.The rest of her sleep was undisturbed until a ray of  bright sunshine came through that same window.

OOC: Okay, next day. What would you like to do? We can do some Q&A, but if you can paint in broad strokes I can help things along with as much detail as you like.
Neva Borne
 player, 48 posts
Tue 25 Dec 2018
at 15:56
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Never an early riser, Neva stretched and got her bearings, then got dressed in her now-dried clothes. She looked to her hair a little, tried to make sure she could be as presentable as a changeling could be, then headed downstairs for some breakfast, once again diligently stepping around the cats.

She spoke a little with Harysh, asking a little more about folk heading out into Xen'drik and their expeditions, and where they would typically hang out and gather. Today she would begin looking into how folk did such things. She doubted she could get one of the expeditions to steer towards her own goal, but it might be worth a shot. The problem was that she couldn't pint to a location on a map. All she knew was what direction to go, like an invisible pull. But at least she could learn what was involved in setting up an expedition and then she might be able to launch her own..
The GM
 GM, 387 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Fri 28 Dec 2018
at 23:37
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Harysh was quiet, but communicative. The industry of expeditions had petered out a bit. The end of the war had applied the reigns of reckless exploration. And the steady flow of pilgrims from Metrol into the darkness of Xen'drik had ceased after the Day of Mourning. When the Tulita rose up against the City, the resultant massacre eliminated the source of inexpensive labor, and the local know-how for getting to the core of the jungles. The cost of expeditions went up, and their success rate went down, and the usual commerce of journeys out of Stormreach flagged. Now there were but a handful of places one could entail the sort of assistance that would result in a successful expedition.
If a person had significant authority, they could look to the Blackwheel Company. They had the wherewithal to make short work of many otherwise perilous quests. There's still interest from larger and shadowy organizations into discovery of ancient knowledge, but that way seems closed to Neva's purposes.
As far as arranging one's own trip, there were a variety of resources that could be used. Boats, horses, gear, were all still available, for the moment. There were maps, charts, journals and glyph books from other expeditions which could be purchased from the remnants of the crowd. Washed up explorers could be a fount of information. One way to get deep into the jungle was to take ship to a more remote coast, and penetrate the jungle moving west or east, though the Traveler's Curse made that less reliable than one might think. Some explorers sought divination for their fortunes, and there were still a lot of soothsayers available to see if the trip would hold good fortune or ill.
Havulak Prospecting was once such store that would cater to the supplies needed for journeys. The Thrifty Traveler, too and perhaps at a better price. Harysh also added that if one put about that one was interested in guides and the like there were people who would answer that call. Neva wondered if Rand Thorn was going through a similar process.

What was troubling to Neva is that the 'pull' she'd felt, as gentle as a spider's thread, no longer tugged even slightly. She thought she felt it pulling north, and then it would seem to pull south. There was no direction to head towards. It made her want to lay her head on the ground.
Neva Borne
 player, 49 posts
Sun 30 Dec 2018
at 18:17
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva decided she'd look into every lead offered by the feline innkeeper and then make plans, calculate prices, steal what was too expensive and then begin working on rounding up a crew. There was also a lot to figure out, like where a possible expedition had to go. Perhaps there was some lore to be found. It was worth a shot at any rate..

"Harysh, would anyone here know anything about dragons? Or keep a library on topics like that?"
The GM
 GM, 390 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Sun 30 Dec 2018
at 19:58
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Harysh
"I assume you don't mean the Dragon Below. There's the Dragon Tooth, but I think their association with actual dragons ends at the name. The only thing that comes to mind is 'The Prince of Dragons': Hassalac Chaar. He's supposedly descended of Dragons, and lives in a chamber concealed deep below the city. They say he's the most powerful sorcerer in Stormreach. But you  will have to ask others about him, for that is the extent on my knowledge. They sometimes sing of him--bards do. Go find a bard to tell you where they get their ideas. Onyx Gate."

Neva Borne
 player, 50 posts
Sun 30 Dec 2018
at 21:47
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
"Ech, bards it is. I just wanna know something about the flying kind that leaves treasure hordes fer enterprisin' folk to find. Nothing with magic-slingers or the thing below. Want none of that business, gods forbid." She made a quick hand motion warding off evil. She then let out a sigh. "Best be off now, might be back fer the night." She paid for her breakfast and then went out and about.

There was a lot to do, and plenty of time to do it. She would go take a look at the Blackwheel Company, Havulak Prospecting and the Thrifty Traveler, visit the bards to ask them who might know best about dragons and get a good feel for the city as any proper thief should. This was a new place and she needed to get a feel for the flow of the place, to see who is who, and how she might get things done, and one wouldn't find that out petting cats all day..
The GM
 GM, 391 posts
 Fair Winds and
 Following Seas
Tue 1 Jan 2019
at 05:47
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Nearest to the Ship's Cat, the Thrifty Traveler was a clutter of tents, outfits,
and odds and ends that might be handy in the wilderness. Neva could hear the call to prayer for the temple to Vol nearby. Thrifty Thom was an average looking man, weather-beaten, with salt-and-pepper hair and a wide smile when Neva approached.

"And what can I do for you me' dear?" he grinned.
Neva Borne
 player, 51 posts
Wed 2 Jan 2019
at 20:51
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva wondered at the temple of Vol... to see it worshiped openly was new to her. Maybe another thing to add to her sightseeing? At any rate that could wait..

"Just browsing!" She beamed back with a derring-do smile. "I wanted to figure out what it takes to get an expedition going out there and I was told this was the place ta look!"

A little flattery never hurt..
Thrifty Thom
Sat 5 Jan 2019
at 21:02
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Oh aye! Tell me what your questing for: ruins? Artifacts? Secret spellcraft from the dawn of civilization? There are millenia of secrets buried in the jungle and beyond. Can you reach and climb the Fangs of Argarak? Cross the Ash Cauldrons? Look across the Valley of Shadows? Are you looking to hunt? The most exotic animals await you in the dark continent, the thrill of a lifetime!" He patted his chest. "I can set you up, from guide to camp supplies. I can even find you a map! What did you have in mind?"

Neva Borne
 player, 53 posts
Sun 6 Jan 2019
at 18:37
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Well, that brought up an interesting point. She had no idea what sort of place she would find her quarry in. Maybe a cavern or lair, maybe some dungeon, maybe even something really nasty..

"Dunnow exactly yet, Y'see I'm not sure of the place where I'm going to find my score. I gotta do some research. You know any feller who'se got any lip on dragons and the like? Where they used ta live around here?"
Thrifty Thom
Sun 13 Jan 2019
at 03:55
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Aye. I know a fellow who knows a fellow." He brushed his hands together. He frowned and looked at Neva, then smiled. "You know, boy, I got a feeling about you. Let me tell you something, because I've got some time, business is slow. There are three kinds of treasure-seekers: There's the explorers, with their expeditions, laborers and budgets and goals, and then there's the adventurers--dilettantes--those who want to stand at the top of the ziggurat of Obsidian City and shout their name." He winked at Neva. "Then there's the others. Folks who got no reason, they just got a call. Do you hear a call, boy? You got that look. They go traipsing out into the jungle. There's secrets out there, the ancient giants kept them, and they can be the making of a man, boy. You find something out there... It can change you. Some have come back as great as the titans. Of course, they keep it quiet. Still, it's a great temptation, to go out and look for the secrets that would make you. Most often it just makes them dead." He rubbed his chin. "If you don't know what you're doing then the jungle will eat you up. And you don't even know where you want to go, do you? Dragons don't live in Xen'drik. They destroyed the giants, then left. If you go out looking for dragons, you'll find nothing but death." He held out his hand "You don't want that, do you boy? Let me help you, and you can help me, and we'll get you your jungle adventure and you in one piece."

Neva Borne
 player, 54 posts
Tue 15 Jan 2019
at 09:46
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva was slightly amused that Thom thought she was male. Then again, she could be if she wanted to so she wasn't as offended as some might be. What was more interesting was that the dragons were thought dead. Obviously, Thax wasn't dead. Then again, with magic in play, who knew in what sort of state he was now? Neva had no idea what dragons were capable of, but they obviously were powerful magicians. Or at least Thax is, to be able to communicate with her as he does. But Thom was on to something, in that she had no clue what to do, so she happily continued in her role as the ignorant lad..

"Well, they used ta live here though, just like tha giants did! Ah know of one in particular, y'see? Just gotta find where it lived. So ahm... what's yer play?

This message was last edited by the player at 09:47, Tue 15 Jan.

Thrifty Thom
Sun 20 Jan 2019
at 04:59
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Well, no, no." He grinned. "Lemme tell you somethin', boy, I'm not like those others. There are outfitters who will tell you 'yes, ser' and bow, and agree with all Eberron's nonsense that they get into their head. Now I'm telling you, the ancient history is not well-known, but it is known. The dragons did come to Xen'drik, oh, so many millennia ago, and they taught magic to the titans of old. The Giants became the masters of magic and the arcane. Nothing of this world was their match, save the dragons. The war came to them from beyond the world. The knowledge of what happened is full of translations and guesswork, but we know the giants used powerful magic to destroy the thirteenth moon. Some kind of arcane machine that they thought would end this horrible war. The dragons watched in horror as their students committed this terrible act." He had busied himself with cups and a kettle and while he spoke poured two cups or morning tea, which smelled very spiced. He blew, then sipped, and watched Neva over the brim.

"The giant's struggled to maintain the status quo but the ruination of the war and maybe even their moon-breaker brought their doom. Weakened by the war, and battling one another, the elves rose up. The elves had been the slaves of the giants, and they saw the time was right to rebel. The giants decided to use their wartime magics again, and this time, the dragons stopped the giants, permanently. Then they left, entirely. The dragons hid themselves and their magics on Argonessen. If you want dragons, you go there. But you won't come back." He sipped his tea again.

"But... who can say? Maybe in the wars, in the confusion, a dragon fell under the giant's power. Maybe it gets trapped. Maybe it's stuck in some magical cage for tens of thousands of years. We know that unexpected things happen during war." He finished his cup, set it down.
"So. What do you know?"

Neva Borne
 player, 55 posts
Sun 20 Jan 2019
at 21:53
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva never was one to turn away a free drink and was quite busy blowing and sipping herself, when she enthusiastically launched into her story.

"Uhh, well. The name. And that it's in Xen'drik, and that it's somewhat alive? It can't leave though. So maybe yer right about cages and such. Gots ta be a mighty big cage, aye? And don't them dragons have to eat? Anyhoo, ah gots ta find it. Dragons got hoards, ya see?"
Thrifty Thom
Thu 24 Jan 2019
at 19:13
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Ok. You have a name. There are records, ancient glyphs. Maybe we can look 'im up? If you want to do this 'expedition into the ruins' right, boy, you have to do yer homework. And it's waay to soon to be thinkin' o' hoards. Start by think o' what could kill yers. What's the name?"

Neva Borne
 player, 56 posts
Sat 26 Jan 2019
at 19:34
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
While Thom sounded every bit the helpful fellow, Neva had lived a life of many a scam and met the most crafty never-do-well's. As such, she had a care not to give away all of her goods just for a smile.

"I dunnow feller, It's my hoard, well, dragon notwithstanding... whatcha gonna do with that name?"
Thrifty Thom
Mon 28 Jan 2019
at 23:14
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Oho! Tell ye what: I won't ask fer a percentage; just a flat fee." He grinned and winked. "The histories are still with us. There's tens of thousands of years of records. Here:" He rummaged and brought out a large book bound in tooled hide. "The ir'Khovani Index. I'd start there, to see if the name appears anywhere in the last ten thousand years." He turned the first page, and Neva was dismayed to see not a single character that was recognizable. "Of course, it's in the ancient Xen'drik. You do know ancient Xen'drik? If it's not there then I'd consult with some other experts, personal friends, you know."

Neva Borne
 player, 57 posts
Sat 2 Feb 2019
at 18:33
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Neva had many skills, most centered around filching and doubletalk. Acedemics was most certainly not one of her strengths, on the account of there being little use for books in the underhive. She was glad she could do some basic reading, if that. So she guessed she could need Thom's skills after all..

"Awright, awright, you got yer skills, I gots mine. But I wants ta pay fer results, see? Not sum fairy tale."
Thrifty Thom
Sun 3 Feb 2019
at 19:56
Re: 2: Cats and Dogs
Thrifty Thom
"Oh but it is a fairy tale, since part of the way leads through Thelanis. No-one knows more about the millennia that passed in Xen'drik than the fae." He closed the book. "You're right, though, to keep your secrets unspoken. And, we have business to conduct. We're far from the point of departure into the jungle. We'll need more than just you and I and a pair o' sturdy shillelaghs.

Now, the most expensive way to go is the Blackwheel Company. They have the whole package, right up to an airship. Soup to nuts; the one hire gets you out to your site, get the place excavated, and then gets your back in your comfy chair with a cuppa tea. There's a couple o' catches: you need to tell them exactly where to go, and where to dig, and what you're looking for. And if they find stuff that isn't on that list, well that's just theirs. Lastly, they have their very own agenda, and they put that in your contract. They keep the right to cancel out, refund your cash, and take you home. I've seen that happen, and Baron ir'Lavan didn't even get his tea. A cynical person might think they went back without the good Baron to claim something that might have been on his list. And they charge five hundred, best price.

For less, we put together our labor an' arms, an' transport. It's not Blackwheel's day trip with sandwiches and wine; but you can keep what you find, including all your secrets, and it demonstrates your manliness.
"

He grinned widely.

"But even then, we gotta put in time, and a good bit o' glad-handing, and possibly flattery. We'll need someone else to put up money, as I'm thinking that you might not have the kind o' coin we need. We'll need backing, but maybe you can get it, a fella with your skills. Now I have heard, there's a fella who is casting about for an expedition to fund. Now ordinarily there would be a long line o' people ready to take the shill for all he's worth, but the thing is, he's a big Lyandar muckety-muck named Calynden díLyrandar. And it's not just that the House would look unkindly on his fleecing; he's a murderous hero of the Last War. He brought the storm that killed three-fifty.

And he's coming down from the Falconerís Spire for a big party in a few days. One of the Stormlord's family throws it when they want to be recognized and complimented, and the rich come out and pretend to be regular citizens that go to a pub.

See if you can get us a way in? Someone has a guest list."