Have you ever wondered why there aren’t more magical people in the city watch? I have. I suppose it comes down a matter of trust. If Jelician the Watchmage wiggles their nose and says “The dwarf did it” how can you be sure they’re telling the truth? Unless you get some other wizard to cast a spell on them and then how can you be sure they aren’t shining you on and so and so on. Still the entire process is based on trusting people either way so it seems like having the magic people on board would be better than the method of just hoping that someone saw it happen. There probably aren’t enough magic people to go around. Karta and regrouped upstairs to discuss our lack of progress.
“Is this how investigations normally go? I feel like we’re not really getting anywhere.”
“We’ve only interviewed half the suspects, something is bound to shake loose. Although, between you and me investigation isn’t really my thing.”
“Let’s talk about that for a moment. I happened to see a garrote in your room, that coupled with the facts that your boss had a stab wound, you’re staying at an inn, and you don’t want anyone other watch people involved stacks up to make me think that maybe no one here killed him. Maybe this is related to whatever secret shit you’re getting up to.”
“That thought crossed my mind.”
“And nothing. I can’t tell you anything about that.”
Before I could reply we heard a commotion coming from downstairs and we ran back down where we found Callon putting the boots to the merchant Weaver while Hilo looked on afraid and uncertain. Gorum and Kichwa were behind the barring clutching at each other in fright. Karta bellowed at him to stop and Callon did so reluctantly. Kichwa, near tears, pointed accusingly.
“Hey tried to take the key from Gorum!”
Callon spat near the merchant as he tried to get to his feet “He must have wanted to get out of here pretty bad. I wonder why that would be.”
I jumped up onto the bar “Gorum what happened?”
His voice was shaky “He asked me for the key and when I told him that he couldn’t have it he offered me money. When I said no again he showed me his blade and said that I should give him the key.”
Callon nodded “I saw him flashing his blade and jumped in. The kid froze. You’re gonna get yourself killed out on the street if you don’t toughen up junior. This is a rough business.”
“Especially when you’re out on the street I imagine. Okay first of all, and I don’t know why this hasn’t been done already, how about you search everyone for weapons and take them so we don’t have an incident like that again.”
Karta took the merchant by the arm “You want to talk to this one next?”
“Of course.” After she was marching the merchant up the stairs I cat whispered to Gorum “If you can talk to the kid, you know, quiet like, and tell him to find me when we can talk in private. I think he’s the weak link there.”
Weaver is a middle aged fellow balding fellow who is both chubby and fidgety. He was wearing a garish gold medallion around his neck that made me think of all my gold and jewels and where they were right now. If I don’t get that stuff back I’m going to be mildly annoyed. But that’s neither here nor there, well I guess it’s there but you know what I mean. He had a split lip but otherwise didn’t appear to be too banged up from the rough treatment he had just gotten.
“I’m a member of the guild! I can’t be treated like this!”
“Obviously you can, I think you mean that you shouldn’t be treated like this.”
“I don’t have anything to do with this, I just wanted to leave!”
“Don’t take this the wrong way, but are you stupid? Did you think threatening a guy in front of a watchman wasn’t going to end with you getting your ass kicked?
“I figured the dwarf would just give up the key and I could slip out, I didn’t really think about what I was doing after he said no.”
“Obviously. Why are you carrying a blade anyway?”
“My work isn’t always safe, I need to protect myself.”
“What kind of merchant are you exactly?”
“I sell various things to various people.”
I cat grinned “Yes of course, a various merchant. I think I see what you are now. That explains why you have a secret pocket in your jacket. What’s in there right now anyway?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“I’m sure, Karta, if you wouldn’t mind.”
Krata made a move towards the merchant who put his hands out imploringly “Wait, no, I have information! Kichwa is in league with smugglers! There’s a hidden room in the basement where she stores contraband. The watch lieutenant must have found out about it and that’s why she killed him. She works with Imma Shadowrun!”
“How do you know all this?”
“I . . . may have . . . been involved as well. From time to time.”
“That certainly is interesting. Now let’s have a look at that jacket. Do you want to take it off like a gentleman or does Karta need to rip it off your back? I know that some men like that.”
The jacket didn’t just have a secret pocket, said pocket was extra-dimensional storage like the one I used to have. I need to remember to get one of those again if and when I ever turn back into a person and need to wear clothes. Inside was quite the treasure trove, a tidy pile of gold, several gems, a dozen potions, several nice rings, several fake nice looking rings, various maps and letters, and an exquisitely made dagger in an elaborate gold inlayed scabbard that had the word “revenge” etched into the blade. It looked very much like what you might find in one of my secret stashes.
“This is quite a nest egg, the various goods business must be very good right now. Do you have receipts to show were you got all this gold? You’ve already admitted to being a smuggler, are you a tax cheat as well?”
“I didn’t admit to anything! I didn’t commit any murder and I’m only trying to help!”
“Indeed. Karta get the kid up here to watch him and let’s check out that secret room.”
Hilo came up to keep an eye on Weaver and we went back downstairs.
“Kichwa, are you going to make us find the secret room in the basement or do you just want to show it to us?”
Her face fell but after a moment she sighed “I’ll show you, but there’s nothing down there right now.”
The only way down was a narrow ladder, I could have probably made my way down it but I didn’t feel the need – I know they say cats always land on their feet but I’ve only been a cat for a little while now, I may not have the hang of it yet. Karta went down with her and confirmed there was a secret door that lead to an empty storage room. When they came back up Kichwa looked absolutely miserable.
“So, Imma Shadowrun?”
She nodded mournfully “I didn’t want to do it, but they didn’t give me a choice.”
“There’s really a lot going on in this one little inn, I wonder if you dig keep enough at any place if you find this kind of intrigue. You were really getting squeezed huh? Ferros on one side and these dirty criminals on the other. Are you sure you didn’t kill Ferros to get loose?”
She started crying “I just wanted him to go away.”
Once again before I could continue with my line of thought there came a hue and cry from up above. Karta and I ran up into the common room where Callon and the Kostelos woman were locked in a violent struggle. Karta ran to help him, but there was also a commotion coming from the second floor. I ran up the stairs to the room where we left Weaver and saw him half-way out the window with Hilo, who had a bloody wound on his head, struggling to hold him by the legs while getting repeatedly kicked in the face.
“Out of the way kid, I got this.”
Hilo looked confused and scared (which seems to be his perpetual expression at this point) but he was used to following orders so he let go. I summoned the magic of my tattoo and unleashed a dazzling stroke of lightening on the merchant before he could wiggle through the window and drop to the street. I can’t imagine being electrocuted is ever a good way to go, but you can imagine how being halfway out a window would lead to a really undignified way to get a bolt of lightning. The kid flopped to the ground in a sitting position, stunned.
“It was me.”
“I killed Lieutenant Cole.”
“He found out about Sergeant Skeen and Officer Saetirod. He was going to tell. They were going to get into trouble.”
“So you killed him?”
“They were nice to me. No one has ever been nice to me before . . . and he was a bad person.”
“Are you sure you did this on your own? Did Callon maybe tell you to do it? He shook his head numbly , not in a way that said “no” but more like he just couldn’t think about it. “What are you people doing? What’s the big secret?”
“We’re not the city watch, not really, we’re . . .”
At that moment Karta and Callon came pounding in.
“What was that noise?! What’s going on up here?”
“Weaver tried to bash the kid and then escape. I had to fry him. But he was the murderer. That’s what he said right Hilo? He confessed and then he tried to kill you too right?”
Hilo frowned “What? I . . .”
“You’ve got a concussion, don’t talk right now. He can tell you all about it later. The merchant did it, I heard him say so to Hilo. I guess we’ll never know why now, but the case is closed. What was going on downstairs?”
Callon seemed dubious “When we heard a commotion up here the savage went for the stairs. I grabbed her and she took a swing at me.”
“Well, anyway, I guess things are wrapped up here. And as a bonus you’ve got a smuggling ring you can bust if you want. Point is it’s time for me to be on my merry way. Let’s go downstairs and get that door open huh?
Turns out we were behind the curve on that one. When we got downstairs the front door was open and the only one still there was Rindol. He was sitting at table looking surly.
“When is dinner going to be served? I’m hungry!”
Hair regrowth progress : NA
Inventory: Animal Totem Tattoo (Lion), Enchanted Tattoo (Storm)
Revenge List: Duke Eaglevane,
Piltis Swine, Rince Electrum, watchman Gridley, White-Muzzle the worg, Percy Ringle the butler, Alice Kinsey , “ Patch”, Heroes of the Lost Sword, Claire Conrad, Erist priest of Strider, Riselda owner of the Sage Mirror, Eedraxis, Skin-Taker tribe, Kartak, Królewna & Bonifacja Trading Company, Hurmont Family, Androni Titus, Greasy dreadlocks woman, Lodestone Security, Kellgale Nickoslander, Beltian Kruin the Splithog Pauper, The King of Spiders, Auraluna Domiel, mother Hurk, Mazzmus Parmalee, Helgan van Tankerstrum, Lightdancer, Bonder Greysmith, Pegwhistle Proudfoot, Lumbfoot Sheepskin, Lumber Consortium of Three Rivers, Hellerhad the Wizard, Forsaken Kin, Law Offices of Office of Glilcus and Stolo, Jey Rora, Colonel Tarl Ciarán, Mayor Baras Haldmeer
Behind the curtain: TWO new maps added to the maps section. Look and enjoy and then tell ten fifteen friends about it.