Chapter 5; 6 and 7

Chronicles of Mace

Mace at first viewed the early departure of the convoy as a problem, but it may now turn out to be quite useful.  He decides that the questions revolving around Zephyr and Gabibto can wait awhile.  He has other tasks he has to perform, including the confrontation with Chipral.  He returns home, as quickly as he can, spending little time to enjoy the summer evening.  On reaching home he prepares a list of the items he will need for the journey, then goes to find Chipral.

 

Mace explains to Chipral that he feels it is time for him to leave Zoon.  Chipral looks sad and listens quietly.  Mace feels bad about what he is saying and feels even worse when a small tear appears in Chiprals eyes.  The two men end up hugging each other in an emotional embrace.  Chipral pats Mace on the back, and wishes him well.  He assures Mace he will be ok.  Now that the news has been broken, Mace begins to get Chipral involved in his plans, and this visibly cheers the old man up, as he feels wanted.

 

Chipral looks at Maces list and tells him to wait there for a few minutes.  The old man returns with an armful of equipment, and explains that this is the gear he used many years ago on his travels.  Mace looks through the equipment and sees it contains a Backpack, Oil Flask, Sack, Sharpening Stone, Ball of String, and even a large Coat that should keep him warm when needed.  It is rough material and Grey, but should serve a purpose.

 

Chipral seems to have brightened up considerably, having been asked for his advice.  Mace listens to all he has to say but all Chiprals advice is from the old days and probably wouldn’t apply to Maces travels tomorrow.  Finally Chipral hands Mace seven days worth of Trail Rations.  Mace thanks Chipral, then speeds of to the market to buy the last few items he requires.  He buys a Leather Coat 6sp, Target Shield 35bp, and a Small Dagger 3sp.  He tried to bargain the prices down but found the Market traders weren’t in a particularly good mood this day.

 

Mace does hear in the Market that there has been a disturbance outside the old ruined Cremlan Temple and that on or two people from the Town have gone missing.  Blood stains have been found at the back of the Temple.  The locals are somewhat worried about the latest happening, but what it means no-one knows.

 

He rushes back to Chiprals and completes his packing.  Lying on his bed Mace waits for the evening to arrive and his meeting with Zephyr………

 

Chapter 6

 

A cloak of darkness falls over Zoon, as Mace clambers out of bed having rested for a few hours.  How important this rest has been, only time will tell.   A few last minute preparations and Mace feels he is finally ready to leave early in the morning.  This is the start of a great adventure.  He is looking forward to his last night in Zoon, and the company of Zephyr.

 

He lifts his Shortsword up form the bed where he had laid it, grips the handle tightly and begins waving the Sword around in a mock fight.  He hasn’t quite got the balance right, but a few minutes thrusting and swiping he begins to feel a little more confident.  Having decapitated a huge Rock Troll in his practice fight, mace comes back to reality and buckles his Sword to his side.  Stashing his Dagger inside his jacket he begins to feel as if he can take anything on at the moment.  The final item Mace picks up is a small Dagger he intends to give to Zephyr.

 

A quick glance out of the window, and a large step over the imaginary head of the Troll, avoiding the acid which leaks from the Trolls wounds Mace has inflicted, a wry smile and he is off out the door and on his way to the Koop Inn.

 

The evening’s weather is good, and mace particularly enjoys these warm summer evenings when everyone seems happy and jovial. Zoons children are up late and play in the streets, one or two just missing Mace as they play a game of chase.

 

He soon reaches the Koop Inn near the Southern Wall.  He settles at a table and is soon served by a young girl, who promptly brings him a small glass of wine. I is a cheap wine and mace grimaces as he sips at the glass.  He can hear some of the Militia going through some basic drill at the Southern Gate, which indicates potential troubled times ahead.  The Zoon Militia never used to do any drill!  Mace looks around the Inn and sees that there must be twenty people at least sitting at tables and grouped around the bar, indulging in idle chit chat, and paying no notice to Mace at all.

 

A few minutes pass, then mace spots Zephyr casually walking towards him.  He smiles and acts the perfect gentleman by pulling her chair out and offering the seat.  He also buys Zephyr a glass of Wine, which she happily accepts.  He does notice that she pulls a similar face when she takes her first sip.

 

Mace and Zephyr begin the evening by chatting about their respective families, and how they took the news of tomorrow’s departure to Laster.  Zephyr asks Mace how he got the job as a guard to which he explains that he just went in to Town and asked if there were any convoys heading for Laster.  It was when he was asking in the Market about convoys he learnt there were some jobs going, and hey presto he was employed as a guard.  Mace is quite chuffed at the pay of 2gp 5sp he will get, which isn’t bad money at all.

 

Zephyr asks Mace if he heard about the disturbance last night outside the old Cremlan Temple.  Mace replies that he had heard odd rumours but no details.  Zephyr explains that apparently a few local people have gone missing, and that blood has been found on the grass at the back of the old Temple.  It seems a fight had taken place.  Mace listens but adds nothing to the details given by Zephyr.

 

Zephyr then asks Mace what he thinks of Gabibto.  Mace obviously tries to avoid answering this question directly, merely saying that there will be plenty of time on the journey to find out what sort of person he really is.  Zephyr does hint that she thinks he is a bit roguish, but that he seemed to be a good companion for her to reach Laster with.  Mace smiles but says nothing further about Gabibto.  Mace does however hand Zephyr a small Dagger as a token of their friendship, and asks her to keep it hidden upon her person in case of trouble.  Zephyr smiles, and gives Mace a kiss on the cheek as a thank you.  Zephyr says the last word about Gabibto and the journey to Laster, mentioning that if they are on the same Caravan they will be able to look out for each other.

 

Some more general chit chat, then mace says that he thinks they should go home and have an early night.  They have an early start in the morning and he feels he needs a good nights rest.  Zephyr agrees, and Mace walks her home through the streets of Zoon.

 

Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Mace has a restless night, thinking of the journey to come, but does get some important rest.  He wakes just as dawn breaks, and is ready and raring to go.  Chipral is there to say cheerio, and shakes Maces hand firmly wishing him luck.  Mace walks to where the convoy is assembling in the Market Square, and climbs upon the Wagon he is to ride.  Just his luck, he is riding on a Wagon loaded with barrels of Ale.  The driver is a man called Tuppor, who looks and smells like he drank one the barrels last night.  Tuppor is slumped forward in the Wagon, and hardly notices mace climb aboard.

 

There are seven Wagons in the convoy, and it isn’t long before the signal is give to move out.  The Wagons rattle down the rough road through Zoon, past some Militia at the gate and out onto the open trial.  The old Cremlan Temple looms with menace as they pass the mound it sits upon.  A slumbering place of evil!

 

Several belches and a few more farts from Tuppor and they are well on their way.  Mace enjoys the warmth of the Sun as it climbs high in the sky.  Turning he sees that two Horses have joined the rear of the convoy, and recognises Zephyr and Gabibto riding at the back.  Mace spends the rest of the day just looking at the others who are on the convoy, and asking Tuppor in-between farts, what the other Wagons are carrying.

 

It seems that Tuppor has done this journey many times, which is lucky because the two Horses pulling the Wagon obviously know which way to go as Tuppor isn’t much good at directing them.  Mace sits back and relaxes as the Wagons trundle southwards.

 

Evening soon arrives and a circle of Wagons is formed, a camp and fire is built, and everyone prepares for the evening meal……….

 

Wagon Details:

 

Wagon 1: Jed and Juvi, married couple, late forties driving an empty Wagon returning to Laster after selling cloth in Zoon.

 

Wagon 2: Ricorn a 30 year old Blacksmith, on his way back to Laster to set up business and take advantage of the troubles there driving a Wagon carrying Blacksmith equipment, including an Anvil.

 

Wagon 3: Octon and Treem early twenties, transporting sacks of Wheat for sale in Laster.  They are brothers who work on their fathers’ farm just outside Zoon.  They are hoping to get a good price in Laster.

 

Wagon 4: Reilley Tyas a farmer transporting 6 young Sheep, alive to Laster and again hoping for a good price.  Reilly is 32, and only has one arm.

 

Wagon 5: Tuppor and Mace transporting a Wagon of Ale to Laster.  Tuppor is 45, fat, scruffy and unkempt and likes his drink.

 

Wagon 6: Beque and Manto Domer transporting salted Beef to Laster, specifically for the Militia.  Two fit and healthy 25 year olds, and look the Militia type.

 

Wagon 7: Slavin Petry and Gorsin Amperjil transporting Carpets, Rugs and a few baskets for sale in Laster and look like two rather feminine men, who look similar.  Both very thin and look underfed.

 

Convoy Outriders (front): Clyve Hiul (Convoy leader) and Fregyst Wesford, who are both in their mid 30s and look very fit and worldly, riding healthy looking Horses.

 

Convoy Outriders (rear): Gabibto and Zephyr Firefang.

 

Chapter 7

 

The evening meal goes well, and everyone is in good spirits.  Mace begins to notice that Clyve Hiul is not a very happy person, and seems to take life a little too seriously for Maces liking.  Clyve explains to Mace that he is to take the first guard duty tonight, and that at midnight he is to wake up Fresgyt for his turn.  Clyve has decided that as they are still fairly close to Zoon, they only need one guard.  If it was winter it would be different, because this area is frequented by large Timber Wolves, but they are far to the North at the moment.  Mace asks if Clyve would have enough time to show him some tricks which he could practice with his Shortsword.  At last, Clyve smiles, and promises that he will find time at the next campsite to show Mace a few things.  Perhaps Clyve is warming to Mace a little!

 

Fresgyt also says he is ready to show Mace a thing or two, but s he is on second guard duty tonight, he wants to have a short nap, but will find time tomorrow.  Mace nods that he understands, and although he doesn’t get any practice, he has shown willing, which could go a long way.  All that Mace does is go to the side of the camp and practices a few swings on his own against a bush and a tree.  He manages to kill both the Bush and the Tree, which he visualises as a Timber Wolf and Ogre.  Mace seems to have a rich imagination.

 

As part of his guard duty, Mace walks around the camp and checks all the Wagons out, which none of the owners seem to mind.  He does this early as several of the Drivers actually sleep in the back of their Wagons.  He chats casually to the members of the convoy, and even works the conversation around to religion learning the following;

 

Jed and Juvi (Drevlon); Ricorn (Xal); Octon and Treem (Xal)l Reilly (Eastall); Tuppor (None); Beque and Manot (Eastall); Slavin and Gorsin (Xal)

 

Whilst walking around the Wagons, Zephyr whispers to him, while Gabibto isn’t around, that she thought it best not to mention Gabibto about her knowing Mace.  Mace nods that this was a good move.  She also tells Mace that she is leaving in the morning for Laster with Gabibto, but that she will look out for his arrival in Laster.

 

The check on the Wagons uncovers nothing of note, and all the owners seem happy and charming to Mace.  Tuppor is the only grumpy one, mainly because he sports a permanent hangover.  Gorsin seems to take a bit of a shine to Mace, and asks him to stay for a while and chat.  Slavin gets a bit uppity at this, and Mace begins to feel as if Slavin is a little jealous oat Gorsins attention to mace.  Mace decides not to get involved and moves quickly on, excusing himself as he is on guard duty.

 

Everyone goes to sleep, and Mace continues to patrol the camp, feeling quite nervous with this being his first tour of duty and all the responsibility involved with it.  Midnight arrives, and Mace wakes up Fresgyt who takes over.  Mace settles down to sleep.

 

At 3am pandemonium wakes Mace up.  “Oi, stop Thieves, Raiders.”

 

Mace jumps to his feet and sees two figures running to the Horses.  In a flash the Horses have been mounted and are galloping away.  The whole camp is now awake and rushing about grabbing weapons and cursing the raiders.  Clyve shouts at people to get the Horses ready.  People rush about checking belongings.  Tuppor shouts out, “me money it’s gone, the bastards have robbed me.”

 

Clyve asks him if anything else was taken, but it hasn’t been.

 

Then the bad news is shouted out, “They’ve killed Reilly, slit his throat they have!

 

Everyone gathers around Reilly’s Wagon, and sees the poor man lying killed in his sleep, and presumably robbed as well.  Clyve shouts out, “C’Mon we can’t let them get away with murder; I want five volunteers to come with me.  The rest of you can stay with the Wagons until we return.

 

Mace, in a state of shock at this sudden and violent interruption to his nights sleep, makes the decision of whether to go with Clyve or what to do?  If he decides to go with Clyve he must decide on any precautions to take for these seem to be violent people they are up against.

 

GM Note:  The two attackers were other Player Characters, who had no idea that the convoy also had Player Characters on it.  They will know next turn that there was a Player Character on the convoy, but not who they were.