Montagem 14 Year 888 (New Imperial Calendar) Part 2

I saw Blue and her friend walking up to me – I saw it coming.  At some point in the confusion, that confusion being me fighting to save her worthless hide as you may remember, she had found and put on a shirt.  It didn’t fit very well but still it was good, not because she didn’t have a nice set, but because I find that a woman looks very odd topless.  Nude?  Sure, fine.  Topless is just a bad look if you ask me and I don’t care for it at all.  Plus the shirt should help soak up the blood from her savaged back, which is a bonus.  Although you have to be careful with that because you don’t want the blood to dry in such a way that you’re stuck to the cloth.  It’s sad that I know that.  Anyway, I saw it coming.  And yet I was still very surprised when Blue – unsteady on her feet and being supported by her friend – spit directly on me.  I think she was aiming for the face but spitting isn’t an exact science, especially if you don’t practice. 

People get pretty upset about being spat upon, which is entirely fair, but if you ask me as far as bodily fluids go it’s pretty much the best of the lot.  Maybe you could make an argument for sweat, but do you really want someone else sweating on you?  I don’t.  I mean don’t get me wrong, obviously the best case scenario is that no fluids from another person hit you at all, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the last year it’s that there’s really not much reason to spend time thinking about the best case scenario.  I mean even it if happens, which it never will, it doesn’t require a lot of planning.  And of course I realize that spitting it meant as an insult no matter how you feel about it biologically.

“I’m going to assume that that’s your way of saying ‘thanks for saving my life’, it’s unconventional for sure.”

Blue seemed to want to say something but was panting too heavily to form words.  Martialla looked over at me and spoke instead. “Wow, someone just spit on you and you’re not going berserk?”

“I think I may have broken my pelvis jumping on a dwarf.”

“Ah, that explains it.”

Blue’s “friend” in the peasant dress did plenty of angry shrieking for both of them – mentioning several of those other fluids and how she’d like to hurl them in my face also, as well as the general generic insults that are hurled around about promiscuity and appearance whatnot.  It’s depressing that even when women are screaming invectives at each other they still follow the paradigms set forth by men.  I dream of a day when I’m berated and told to fuck myself in gender-neutral terms that are equally as belittling and provocative to everyone.

For one of the first times ever I leaned on my Walking Stick, using it for its intended purpose “What the Hells is your problem?  I did just save you, why are you pissed at me?”

Blue finally found her voice, choking back the pain “You’re the reason this all happened!”

“How do you fucking figure that?”

“You must have taken the money.”

“I mustn’t have done anything.  What I did was save this entire town from being burned down by a psychopath.  What I did was save you both from having the flesh whipped off your worthless ungrateful bones.  What I did was save that one armed deputy.  You two and your friends were the ones working with them to steal the money.  Don’t get angry at me because they turned on you.  No honor among thieves and so forth.”

“They only did that because of you!”

“How?  How did I do anything other than risk my life to save yours?” I sighed “Look, I think it’s safe to say that we’re all having a real lousy night, in the morning . . .”

“There’s no time!  They’re going to be coming.”


“Ukar’s men!”

“I am getting such a headache, how about someone tell me what’s going on here?”

Do you have your roster sheet ready to fill out?  Blue and her friends were smuggling poison for Nilda the assassin and shiver for Ukar and his band – the belt buckle gang – and some unknown commodity for the dwarf merchant.  This last thing was apparently somehow time sensitive so when the soldiers blocked Blue and her gang from getting into town they needed to cut a deal.  The soldiers let them into town so they could make their delivery on the condition that they help their wizard (who entered the town invisibly like a jerk) make contact with the merchant so they could come up with a plan to steal the money.  Thinking they were going to need some more muscle they got Ukar in on the action as well.  When the money wasn’t there Ukar’s men turned on Blue as fast as you like (probably because we framed her) and the rest of the conspirators got in on that action quickly as well because every knows that you can’t trust women – deception is the curse of our whimsical gender. 

I pointed a Nilda “So what’s your part in all this?  Why did you come to the rescue?”

“Blawen and I aren’t exactly friends, but we’ve worked together enough that I felt I owed her.  Plus I didn’t want those soldiers taking over the town.”

“But you weren’t in on the robbery?” She shook her head and I scowled at the blue-blonde whose name is apparently Blawen “So the only people you didn’t cut it in the scam were the only people that tried to help you.  That’s very interesting don’t you think?”

“We’re wasting time here!”

“So you think Ukar is going to gather his entire army of stupid belt people to come get the money?”

“You killed his men, they’ll be here for revenge.”

“What was this secret payload for the merchant?”

I looked around for one of the merchant guards to ask but they were gone – and I mean gone gone.  While the rest of us were talking like idiots they had gone to the coach-house and driven the coach away.  And more importantly the chest inside the coach.  And more importantly the money instead the chest.  I should have seen that coming.  They also killed Cloe, although if we’re being honest it’s hard to get too upset about that.  A search revealed that Mirran was dead as well, although it’s hard to say what happened there – there wasn’t a mark on him.  Maybe his heart just gave out.  Or maybe poison.  Or maybe some kind of magic.  Who knows?  The mayor was missing.  Or at least no one could find her.  I guess that’s the same thing really.  The one armed deputy (or whatever) turned up eventually with his other deputies (or whatever) as the only remaining authority figure in town.

“Well then, looks like we’ll be on our way then.”

One arm nodded and gruffly thanked us, but Blue was incredulous “What?  You’re just leaving?”

“Yes, the only reason we came back at all was to stop you from being beaten to death, I tell you this much – we should have just kept going.”

She shook her head “What kind of dirty bitch are you?”

“What the fuck do you want from me lady?!  You said the belt boys are coming to town looking for me so why would I stick around?  Probably they’re coming for you too, are you going to hang around and wait for them?”

“They’ll tear this place apart looking for us.”

“Why?  Everyone can say we left, which we will have done.” 

She shook her head again “You don’t know Ukar like I do.”

“What do you want me to do?  Hit them with my cane?”

“You seemed to manage getting quite a lot of other people around here killed just fine.”

“How many men does Ukar have?”

Nilda answered “At least a dozen.”

“Yeah, fuck that.”

Blue blocked my path as I started to leave “You caused all this and how you’re just going to let these people suffer for it?!”

I gave her a shove “Quit saying that!  You did this as much as anyone, you were the one who told those assholes about the money in the first place!”

Things went pretty much downhill from there.  Our bickering was as pointless as it was inevitable – Blue and I had had enough of each other before we even met it seems.   At one point I was starting to think about maybe possibly considering to potentially think about conceivably sticking around to “sort things out” but when Nilda said that she and her friend were going to be leaving within the hour.  That really holed that boat.

“You’re the only one who actually lives here!”

She didn’t seem happy about leaving but she did seem determined “Not by choice.  With the money you paid me I’m done with all of this.”

Blue was instantly suspicious “What money?!”

I glared at her “Shut up.” I turned back to Nilda “Done with what exactly?  Why is there an assassination team in a nothing town like this?”

One-arm piped up unhelpfully “There is a lot of traffic through here.  Cataola is a hub.”

Nilda looked grim/apologetic/resolute “I’m not an assassin, not really, I just needed money.  It’s a long story.”

I gestured “Well, we’ve got time, let’s hear it.”

“Actually we don’t.”

As she made to leave I threw out my final gambit “How much would it cost to hire you to take our Ukar?”

She didn’t turn around “I don’t do that anymore.”

I looked at Blue “Well there you go, unless you expect the six of us to take on this gang of yours there’s nothing to do but get gone.”

She had nothing to say, her look of disgust said it all.  Martialla looked more thoughtful “We are kind of leaving these people in the lurch.  And we’ve faced worse odds.”

I sighed “Not by choice.  I’m starting to wonder about you Martialla, you have a bad tendency to want to fight when we should run.”

“You always want to run.”



Funds: 53,040 platinum, 9,605 gold

XP: 923,451

Inventory: Flask of Endless Sake, Hat of Effortless Style, Tankard of the Drunken Hero, Ela’s Dazzling Garment, Belt of Physical Might +4, Ring of Urban Grace, Black Marketers’ Bag (5), Tidy Trunk, Whiterock Family Ring (Ring of Binding), Ela’s Extraordinary Walking Stick, Ela’s Elegant Boots, Ela’s Extravagant Necklace

Noble’s outfit (5) collegium ring,  pocketed scarf, wrist sheath, signet ring (2) assortment of fake signet rings, silver chain set with moonstones, gold and emerald ring (2), garnets (700), gold necklace with jade pendant, ivory combs, tax collector’s badge, gold bracelet with ivory inlays, silver necklace set with rubies, gold earrings with jade inlays, silver and gold brooch, silver necklace with ruby pendant, disguise kit, covenant ring, tiny diamonds (26), Saryah Phidaner gown, masterwork thieves’ tools, onyx (55) personal signet ring, tiara, masterwork red and black long greatcoat, Turnbill blade of first forging (one of three), darkwood and platinum music box, silver bracelet set with bloodstones, platinum ring set with fire opal, silver and moonstone bracelet, holy symbol of Kozilek 

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, Rindol the Sage, Essa, eyeless hag, Baron Saltwheel, Baron Harmenkar, Colonel Tarl Ciarán’s wizard soldier, those guys with the stupid belt buckles, Mayor Eryn, Chimera Trading Company