Shadow on the Sand

Shadow on the Sand – Attempt 2, Part 1

Lone Wolf rises from the ashes of that errant tree which broke (!) his fall in the Vassagonian capital.

Let’s just take as read that I make the same choices in preparation for this mission (although I neglect somehow to warn my reincarnated self about the Zakhan’s upcoming death, which would have saved me a LOT of trouble).

In any event, when we being me and the DOOMED crew) arrive in Vassagonia, and are confronted by Maouk and his henchmen, I decide to tempt fate (and hopefully confound my adversaries) by making a different choice and surrendering (!)

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In an inevitable (but still depressing) moment, I am stripped of my Backpack, Weapons, Gold Crowns and Special Items.  In a hopeful sign that I may recover them in the future, it is noted that I should record the lost items for future reference.

I get drugged and put to sleep, and I can only hope that I don’t wake up in an ice bath minus a few vital organs.

You know what I’m talking about.

Am I right?

Luckily, I wake up in what seems to be a cell, thankfully with all vital body parts intact, save my pride.  Eavesdropping on the guards outside my door, I learn that :

  • The Zakhan wishes for me to be brought to the ‘Great Hall’ at sunset.
  • One guard mentions that he has just come from the ‘armoury’ where he has appraised my possessions, with it being anticipated that they will fetch a great deal of money.
  • I wonder, what would be the going price for the Sommerswerd, knowing that if any non-Kai Lord wields it in battle, its power is lost forever?
  • The (incompetent, as per the trope) guard opens the peephole, doesn’t seem to consider the possibility that I am next to the door, and asks his friend to open the door.

Did I hear a call for a prison break?

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I use the element of surprise to swiftly take on the first guard, knock him to the floor, grab his sword and confront the second.  Without the Sommerswerd or my shield, my skill scores are much more mortal.

Lone Wolf : CS : 19, E : 20

Guard : CS : 14, E : 21

I apparently have a four round deadline to win the fight, and my first attack will automatically cause no damage.

Gulp.

I manage to wipe him out in the third round with my borrowed sword, only losing 3 Endurance in the process.

The first guard now stirs, and I resolve to try to subdue him alive, so that I may hopefully get some information about my location and possible escape routes.

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As I hold the guard in a chin-lock, he claims to be terrified of the new Zakhan, and only a simple gaoler.  My Sixth Sense sees through this rubbish, and confirms that he is just stalling for time until reinforcements arrive.

I am reluctant to kill an unarmed prisoner, so I continue attempting to press him for information.  However, he fights back and starts to break free before I finish him off.

Aside  : This is while he is ‘elbowing me’ and breaking free, so I no longer consider this murder of a helpless prisoner.

That and the text gave me no other option.

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Since reinforcements are about to arrive, I decline to search the bodies, but assume that I am able to keep my ‘borrowed’ Sword since it is already, you know, in my hand.

I dash off and reach an east / west junction, with a choice between stairs going down and a closed door.

Desperate to retrieve my loot, I see if the closed door contains anything useful.

The door is locked, and I don’t have the Gaoler’s Keys (presumably due to my reluctance to search the bodies).  However, my skill of Mind Over Matter enables me to manipulate the lock, and gain entry.

I spy a room (behind bars and guarded by a black-clad figure) that a conveeeenient sign labels as the ‘Grand Palace Armoury’.

convenient

I use my Discipline of Camouflage to fake a local accent, call out for the guard and then lay him out as he approaches.  His body contains little that is significant, apart from a set of Gaoler’s Keys, which, mindful of my previous difficulties, I pocket.

I open the unlocked (unlocked?? Que?) door of the armoury.

Project Aon link – Shield in armoury

Before I can search the contents, I leave you on a cliffhanger.

Base Stats : CS : 17, E : 20, GC 50

Modified Stats : CS : 19, E : 20

Weapons : Sword (Confiscated items : Sommerswerd (+8 CS), Sword)

Backpack : Nothing (Confiscated items : 2 Meals, 2 Laumspur potions (+4E))

Special Items : Gaoler’s Keys (Confiscated items : Map, Crystal Star, Shield (+2 CS), Sommerswerd, Padded Waistcoat (+2 E), Chainmail Waistcoat (+4 E) Blue Stone Triangle Pendant, Diamond, Ornate Silver Key, Dagger of Vashna

Kai Rank : Savant

Kai Disciplines : Camouflage, Animal Kinship, Tracking, Hunting, Sixth Sense, Healing, Mind Over Matter, Mindblast (+2CS), Mindshield

Paragraph : 83

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3 thoughts on “Shadow on the Sand – Attempt 2, Part 1

  1. The first time I played this book, I got captured and had all my gear taken from me. I remember being less worried about recovering the Sommerswerd than about the possibility that someone might realize what the Dagger of Vashna was and succeed where Barraka failed. A needless concern, as it turned out, but it showed the extent to which I’d been drawn into the world of Lone Wolf.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. You don’t actually KNOW that the crew lose their heads when you surrender, after all you don’t hear Maouk telling the Sharnazasim “Finish the crew” before you black out, you may have saved their lives (but potentially doomed Magnamund).

    If you woke up in an ice cold bath how much would your Kai skill of healing be able to repair? Seriously warped minds would like to know.

    Seriously the Sommerswerd would probably have a very high price in a bidding war. Even Darklords would be interested in examining something that could destroy their rivals while everyone else (Good, Evil and Neutral) would be interested in seeing could it give them an edge against the Darklords. Magic users would want to reverse engineer its abilities (remember Kazan-Oud). Finally Lastlanders and their allies would be frantic to get it back to Sommerlund to try and rebuild the Kai Lords. Of course whether the guards would survive the bidding war is another matter. But I digress.

    If it makes you feel better about killing an unarmed man, if you showed yourself to the guards first its made clear Vassagonian guards are less for the rehabilitation of one’s who’ve gone off the straight and narrow path and more on petty sadism. (The route you subsequently took avoided the torture chamber, an entry that has scarred me since 1985 😯) It remains important to me that there’s always a good reason for killing someone, even if its just because they’re a belieber…

    Finally while we all know that the armory should remain locked, with guards going in and out to paw over your loot its human nature to get tired of the rigmarole of fetching and returning the key and instead you end up leaving the gate unlocked. True story, we have a lockup cage in the stockroom of my store for spirits and loose bottles of wine. When it was discovered by immediate manager (aka Da Boss) that I had a copy of the key he changed the lock with a copy of the new key for himself, security and his favourite staff member (aka Stud). Stud was ordered by Da Boss not to let me have the key … but Stud just told me where it was and I used it as needed (Security considered my not having a copy of the key “stupid”). Then last April Stud was pressured by Head Office to leave so he took the redundancy package and gave me the keys both to the cage and the shop. As soon as this was known the cage lock was changed and the store keys were taken off me. For several months we had to go to Da Boss every time we needed to enter the key but our overall shop in scattered over three locations in a large shopping centre and he likes to hide (I’m serious, he’s also an expert at not answering his phone, higher management have tried giving him his own walkie talkie but he just turns the volume down or even ignores it when it suits him).This had two results 1) annoyed customers who couldn’t buy what was locked up 2) we got better at finding Da Boss. The first was something he could laugh at but the second was a personal problem. Result? He’s taken to sometimes leaving the cage unlocked all day (and I don’t bother locking it at night if he won’t be in the next day so other staff can keep the stock packed,there’s more valuable stuff on the shop floor anyway). As for the shop doors? Well they’re having problems with sickness among the security guards now so at night the managers in the main building frequently just give me the keys to lock up so they don’t have to. I haven’t changed, its just become easier to unofficially drop the standards. The same has happened in the Zakhan’s palace, its life.

    And on your cliffhanger I note that I too have survived 2016 and go for a long deserved sleep.

    Liked by 1 person

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