Fire on the Water

Fire on the Water – Attempt 1, Part 10

Annnnnd……

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I push on (now walking) through the Durenor forest before reaching the anticipated bridge, which appears the only way across the mile-deep (!) Rymerift river.

Try and say ‘Rymerift River’ five times quickly, I dare you.

There is a small hut in the middle of the bridge, manned by two guards, who are probably bored and spoiling for trouble.

In addition to the bridge, there is also a path heading north, parallel to the river, but my Kai skill of Tracking confirms that it is a dead end.

The guards challenge me, but upon hearing the correct password (as learnt in my previous instalment) let me pass without hindrance.

Interestingly, the book mentions that the guards only permit me to pass ‘reluctantly’.  I guess they hadn’t enjoyed a good brawl lately.  Or maybe they were just bullies.  Or Trump voters.

After some further walking, and as I start to think I’ve become a player in a Lord of the Rings-esque walk-a-thon, I reach a junction where, surprisingly, there actually is a signpost, which confirms that I am now only three miles from Port Bax.

As the sun sets on the tenth day of my quest, I sight Port Bax, and note with hope the Durenese fleet in the northern harbour.  I enter through an unguarded (!!) gate and pass the City Hall.  The doors there are also open and unguarded.

Aside : This whole ‘let any stranger wander into a major city and through the door of the City Hall without question’ approach to security is…..intriguing.  I wonder if it will catch on?

In any event, my Kai Discipline of Tracking again comes to my aid, with the recollection of stories from an older Kai master, who mentioned to me that the consulate was in the naval quadrant of the city, overlooking Alin Square.

Aside : That was an amazingly specific piece of information for what was, at the time, presumably nothing more than a reminisce about old experiences.  I can just imagine “I remember my days in Port Bax like it was yesterday.  The food was wonderful, and the people friendly.  By the way, my young Kai Initiate, it is important for my story that you remember that, in this city you’ve never visted, the Sommlending consulate in the naval quadrant.”

Its like that scene from Wayne’s World where even the protagonist mentions that the information given to him (that becomes vital later) was completely extraneous to the plot.

Enough of this diversion!

 

I use my sense of direction, and end up at the Port Watchtower, with further progress halted by a large red gate.

Project Aon link – Port Watchtower sign

Aside : Endurance is now back to 20 through Healing.

I enter the Watchtower and, confronted with two doors marked, respectively, ‘White Passes’ and ‘Red Passes’ start to remember my university study of the stories of Franz Kafka, notably The Trial.

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With nothing to guide me except my memory of playing through this book dozens of times (and the fact that the gate I wish to pass is red), I venture into the Red Pass door, and am met by a naval officer who mutters some bureaucratic nonsense about how I must have pressing business to apply for a Red Pass at such a late hour.

Project Aon link – Quill and ink

He demands to see my authorising documents and, since I don’t have any, I go for broke and show him the Seal of Hammerdal.  From all the commotion that subsequently ensues, I guess that’s like handing over the Hope Diamond as collateral for a child’s bicycle.

I am summarily shown into the office of the captain of the watch who, after hearing (presumably an edited version of) my story, immediately orders a Red Pass be issued at once with ‘top priority’

Well, its nice to see that someone thinks my mission is a priority.

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I take the Pass, leave the Watchtower and walk with a little more confidence towards the guards.  They accept my Red Pass and I enter the naval quarter.

Stats : CS : 17, E : 20, GC 50

Weapons : Broadsword, Mace

Backpack : Meal (x4), Healing Potion (+3 E)

Special Items : Map, Crystal Star, Shield (+2 to CS), Seal of Hammerdal, Red Pass

Final paragraph :202

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26 thoughts on “Fire on the Water – Attempt 1, Part 10

  1. ‘let any stranger wander into a major city and through the door of the City Hall without question’ approach to security is…..intriguing. I wonder if it will catch on?” ……yeh….doesn’t this underpin your whole political philosophy??

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi ighr I’ve missed you, you were being very quiet with Lone Wolf.

    I have to point out that Trump’s wall (like a city wall) is meant to keep people OUT while the Communist walls were designed to keep people IN. An important distinction. Also glad to see you finally admit that not all bullies are Trump supporters, although of course the reverse has not yet been proven.

    In defense of the Port Bax security department it should be pointed out that while the city gates were open (although you saw Durenor’s borders are secure with an entire Knightly Order dedicated to patrolling it) if you were stupid enough to get arrested you’d find that the spies sent after you had already being rounded up and jailed. Point to the Port Bax Guard Force.

    Couldn’t say Rymerift River quickly once, never mind five times. Also Wise Hawk (I didn’t name him) used to tell us stor(IES) plural about when he was Sommerlund’s Envoy in Durenor, so of course he’d describe where he worked. Yes, I am still chagrined that in 32 years I never twigged the Innkeeper was in on the plot. The number of other things you’re going to highlight tjat I missed … will be amusing. Should be plain sailing from now on.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Fenn, when I get time I will go back and read posts I have missed. I have 2 new joint ventures, trying to get investors for one of my projects, whilst also trying to have a romantic/social life. I think I need a PA. …A wall is a wall, which in itself is not bad…it is all in the intent. The Left want to keep people uninformed, unenlightened and mediocre, they use a wall to keep people herded like cattle. They are terrified of Free Speech, liberty, individuality, freedom of thought and expression, freedom of religion, the Right to Life, Innovation, enterprise…all the things so dear to my heart.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Amount you’re doing I’m impressed, good luck with all, just don’t assign your PA to handling your posts here (or your dates…).

        Good point on the wall, if the purpose is “to keep people herded like cattle” then whether its In or Out is irrelevant, the stated purpose is always defence while the real purpose is Power. Interesting perspective just from the Port Bax gates being left open…

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Indeed, it is all about Power, although you have to agree, the Left is more about monopolizing and centralising Power. Being a Libertarian is all about personal freedom and personal power- it is our Birth Right- governments should have minimal influence on these things (if at all).

        Liked by 1 person

  3. While my mom and stepdad have vacationed in Australia (he’s scuba dived the Great Barrier Reef), I’ve never had the pleasure of visiting, and your country and compatriots seem exotic to this American. Then I see you post Futurama memes and reference Wayne’s World, and I realize we’re pretty much the same.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I know – I always get amused by assumptions about the ‘outback’ and ‘kangaroos’ when I live in a city with around 4 million people.

      We’re basically taking over Hollywood anyway, what with Hugh Jackman, Nicole Kidman, Joel Edgerton, Margot Robbie, Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett, Geoffrey Rush, Naomi Watts, Guy Pearce, Rose Byrne, Peter Weir, Eric Bana, Jacki Weaver, Ben Mendelsohn, Rebel Wilson, Alex O’Loughlin, Toni Collette, Heath Ledger (RIP), Simon Baker, Chris & Liam Hemsworth, David Wenham and Baz Luhrmann (takes breath)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. And now I’m realizing that you learned about my hometown from Alice Cooper’s little history lesson in Wayne’s World. Then I remembered about ten years ago, my town’s basketball team drafted an Aussie native #1 overall. I checked the Wiki, and yes, Andrew Bogut is from Melbourne. Shame that injuries kept him from reaching his full potential.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I actually love alice cooper to death (heh – third album) and just bought his book Alice Cooper – Golf Monster. Andrew Bogut’s twitter account is well worth following – I don’t always agree with him, but he isn’t shy in calling it as he sees it!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. @ighr, two days for me to reply, lets just say there was sudden “progress” on family matters.

    When it comes to power I find the ideologies become labels thrown around to curry favour and justify decisions rather than the origin of the decisions. I’m sure you’ve also seen where the exact same decision is followed by opposing parties (I mean as each is in power) using different justification so they can do what they want. When I married an Indian girl it was a right wing politician who had just changed the laws so I had a massive headache bringing her to my home whereas when her best friend had married another Irish man 11 months earlier they’d had no problems (he’s no longer in power 🙂 ).

    Conversely when my mum ran the Campaign Against Bullying (aka CAB, the first anti-bullying group, I’m serious) she had supporters in the different mainstream political parties (in Ireland, Fine Gael (bit right wing, supportive of big businesses and large farmers), Fianna Fail (bit left wing but totally in with those with money, sound familiar?) and Labour (bit more left wing, always a minority party) BUT she also had opposition and problems from ALL the parties (and especially the Department of Education). Now some parties were worse than others but she’d still have supporters in those same parties.

    So, yes, I’d agree that worldwide there are problems with many parties on the Left, but there’s plenty of scary folks in the parties on the Right and the Centre too. Again, good luck with all your projects. Looking forward to seeing more of you here.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am also passionate about Bullying (Workplace), I have dedicated a large part of my career trying to eradicate it. The thing that scares me (yes scares me) about the Left, is their contempt for Life and blood lust for death ( abortion, euthanasia).

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Cool (the bullying part). Although my mums book was first called “Bullying A resource guide for parents and teachers” (1995) in the second edition (1998) it was shortened to “Bullying A resource guide”, especially as one of the chapters was entitled “Workplace Bullying” and most if not all of the types of bullying and ways of dealing with them in the schoolyard also applied in the workplace (neighbourhood, family, etc). She defined Bullying as “Bullying is abuse which causes only distress to the victim and gives gratification and power to the bully”. She also gave another definition of workplace bullying as “the abuse of power”. While she helped in many school cases with bullying she was also tied up with many cases of workplace bullying also, both in giving counseling and advise to victims but also there were one or two workplaces which invited her to try and deal with their own bullying problems. She’s 76 now and it causes her quite some sadness that she can’t be involved as she used to but it is good to know that there are still others who are opposing bullying around the world.

        On the local level when we had a Fine Gael/Labour coalition in the mid-90’s they passed much anti-bullying legislation, especially in the schools. But we then had about 10 years of Fianna Fail rule who systematically dismantled all of this while also giving the country a painful false boom and even more painful real bust. Fine Gael/Labour then got back into power and reenacted much of this legislation (good for my 8 year old son), but she’s still depressed because she’s seen it all before and knows how quickly the next government can just undo all the good work. Sorry about going on here but the Campaign against Bullying has been part of my family since 1984.

        Again, take care.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. One of the finest depictions of subtle and manipulative workplace bullying is in the (dark) workplace drama / comedy ‘In the Company of Men’. It was one of Aaron Eckhart’s first roles, and he nails the kind of horrid jerk that is in almost every workplace.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Agree, there are so many forms of bullying but the insidious covert bullying is the hardest to prove and often the most destructive. These types of Bullies are truly Machiavelli.n

        Liked by 2 people

      4. Workplace Bullying is a HUGE issue in Australia, it actually costs our economy BILLIONS in lost productivity. I work with organisations to mitigate their risk, by educating their staff about Bullying, how to recognize it and their duties and obligations. I am very impressed with your Mum’s work. I am working with some new lawyers (one of JV’s) who are designing a very high tech solution to eradicating Bullying. I can’t say much more except…WATCH THIS SPACE!!

        Liked by 2 people

  5. My mum, for instance in her book and presentations, like to recommend various comedy and fiction both for identifying types of bullying but also for ways of dealing with it. While she liked the Bullies tricks being shown for the audience to recognize in the real world unlike “The company of Men” she also preferred the bully to lose. Although I suppose technically one of the bullies loses in that movie.

    Good luck with your project, I’ll certainly be interested in seeing what comes of it.

    P.s., its hardly a secret and she’s largely retired now (but was never paid anyway), but Mum’s name is Vivette O’Donnell. I just googled her and on the first 10 she was in 6 references for her anti-bullying work. She had (and may still have) contacts in Australia as well (her site included links to the now closed South Australian Employee Ombudsman’s Office and SAEBOW – Bullies Down Under) but I never dealt with any of them myself so know no names. The older a site, the more dead links it has. Ciao

    Liked by 1 person

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