Perfectly Legitimate Adventuring Party

Wherein our party is in search of the PigKeeper.

Cog here. First, let’s get something quite clear. The name is Cogglefree Bridgewomble. Not Snorkeldink Covergirl or Bumblebee Cuckatoo or even Beetlejuice Cunningsnatch. And I definitely didn’t take it from a wandering player or anyone, and even if I had, he should have stuck to “Carlton” or whatever he used to call himself. So enough with the Bandicoot Moldyspore jokes already, ok?

So, Skrark summoned us because Chirreep had done what so many teenagers do, and decided that she had caused her family more than enough trouble so it was time to go and make some trouble by herself. Mind you, Skrark did this after having us drink the most ghastly cinnamon-based alcohol. At least I think it was cinnamon. Had to taste it twice to check it. But yes, the kid had gone off, and Bird-Dad was worried about her and would pay to get her back. She’d taken all her money (and probably a bit of Dad’s) and her clothes, and left behind a note saying she was off. This sort of gig we can deal with.

We headed off into the city, checking all the regular haunts. The ex-girlfriend Rakkakk hadn’t seen her, and seemed to be glad to be rid of the lass. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a bit of the whole broken-hearted-crush thing happening, and Rakkakk wasn’t too happy at being on the receiving end of numerous bitter notes and bad poetry swearing eternal misery for breaking young Chirreep ‘s heart so badly. But we did get word from the Western Docks that a young Tengu matching our friend’s description had been seen catching a boat to Kym’s Harbour, so we headed in the same direction. Skrark told us that his cousin Tweek worked on the Kym’s Harbour docks, so we had a contact.

Kym’s Harbour was an odd place – just the way I like it. Lots of people of different styles and races and such around, and lots of chaos due to the Great Tourney coming up, where knights and lords would choose who their squires and trainees would be. Tweek was easy to find (Tengu usually are), and he had heard that Chirreep had come through, but was surprised that she hadn’t been to see him. He reckoned that, as she hadn’t been seen leaving the city, she was probably somewhere inside still, and he directed us to the Saucy Shepherdess as a good place to stay. Mind you, the prices are Tourney prices – expensive accommodation, double-price food, and lots of people trying to flog standards and signs for the various lords, not to mention other cheap and nasty souvenirs. Gave me quite a few ideas for a business when I’m ready to settle down.

Next morning, a local guard pointed us to the Skives as being the sort of place where trouble happens. As it had happened, it seemed – some sort of ruckus down Murphy Street the previous night. The fuss had happened near the Purple Crow, so we headed down there, with Roderick going nuts over all the smells. Over a quiet beer (that we checked for poison – it’s that sort of area), the barkeep said that there had been a young tengu there, but she had left after an argument and had failed to show respect. I bought a round for the room, which did nothing for the information-gathering, but did result in a pair of lads upping and leaving shortly after. I trailed them until they split up: one went into a narrow alleyway, and the other into a dilapidated house. Discretion being the better part of valour, and more importantly, my skin being worth more than the embarrassment of being caught in such an obvious trap, I did not follow either lad but went back to the pub.

The others came out, and we were about to head to the watchhouse, when a group of ruffians accosted us. They let slip that a tengu had been a part of the affray the previous evening, and if we were friends of hers, we owed them for the injuries she inflicted. We politely declined their offer, and a combination of sleep spells, Roderick’s whacking and my brilliant skills, rendered the group ineffective. We grabbed up the leader and took him around a couple of corners into a nice discreet spot where we could question him further.

He told us that Chirreep had teamed up with a human lady who was looking to be taken up in the Tourney. This woman was tall, carried a flail or polearm, and was no longer in the Skives. We completed the negotiations amicably – we got to keep the ruffian’s money, and he got to keep his toes. I approve of these compromises.

From there we went to the Aspirants’ Parade, to the north of the Skives. The Heralds there confirmed that no tengu applied to be an aspirant, but that one was with a woman who was turned away. From her name, “Arabella of the Piggeries”, I gathered that she was not of the most prosperous or well-bred background. However, this lass had left the day before by the West Gate, and it behoved us to head in the same direction.

Here I decided to raise my own status in life. As a Halfling, I suffer from a lack of speed in comparison to the others, so the time had come to purchase a mount. I obtained a fine looking young donkey, and resisted the rather feeble attempts of the rest of the party to name him “Hoté”. Instead, I tossed around various possibilities, and for the time being have settled upon “Wallace”. (It’s actually spelled “Waleth”, but I’m not telling them that).

Needless to say, we were not to make our journey west without incident. With the next available tavern being about 2 hours away, a bunch of goons attempted to sway us from our task. With swinging axes, flailing swords, spells and my very own crossbows, we took them on. However, when one of them attempted to shoot Wallace, it was ON! Suffice to say that within a very short time, those who were not dead were tied behind Wallace while I tried to beg the others for a “Create Wind” spell. Maul gave the ruffians the option of conversion or death, and rather than take the sensible option, they agreed to present themselves at the Temple of Nimbus as new postulants .

And our last lead lay at this pub, where people confirmed that Arabella and a young Tengu were seen heading north where there were reports of a kidnapping. And on that note, bedtime.

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Reynardo

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