When we left our motley crew (and I mean that literally) this makeshift band of soldiers and / or mercenaries were somehow, through blind luck, steering our ship into the dock at the city of Rhem.
The mercenary captain, who has apparently seized command of the ship (!) orders everyone to stay on board overnight, before setting off once more in the morning. From his attitude, I’m thinking that this summarises his simple, yet strict, approach :
In all seriousness, the book seems to assume that all passengers / crew besides myself and the mercenaries have either died or made a conveeenient escape.
After a further day of travel, we reach the town of Eula, and I need to make a decision as to whether stay with the captain, the crew and the mercenaries or to strike off alone. Sticking with an armed escort on a ship seems (for the moment) preferable to striking off alone on my (doomed) horse, so I stick with the caravel.
Our company rides through Eula and carries on south towards Tekaro. As we approach the (war-torn) city, the captain spots the standard of the wonderfully-named Prince Ewevin (!), the member of royalty who has hired this mob. I can stick with the captain or (again) have the chance to strike off on my own.
Since it seems to becoming more and more seemingly apparent that the only way I’ll enter the city is through force of arms, I stick with the captain.
Aside : If this was a mystery thriller, the fact that the captain remains consistently unnamed would usually mean that at a suitably dramatic moment, the captain would be revealed as (1) a long-lost friend or family member, or (2) an arch-enemy such as Roark or Vonotar.
We shall see.
I wait with the men as the captain consults with the prince and he returns with the good (!) news that we are tonight to lead a frontal (!) assault across the main bridge leading into the city, to attempt to breach the (damaged) gate before it can be repaired.
Even a lawyer like myself knows that it sounds like a recipe for disaster, what with the many enemy archers having their bows trained on exactly this direct approach.
Did this prince swap places with Zapp Brannigan when I wasn’t looking?
The captain attempts to sweeten the pot with an offer of 1,000 Gold Crowns per man, but this falls on deaf ears since, as the cliche says :
The captain gives permission for all those that who don’t want to take part in this lunatic assault to leave, and you don’t have to tell me twice.
Leaving my (soon to be DOOMED) horse behind, I scout around the edges of the fortified city, despairing of finding a way in. There are numerous wounded soldiers around but, without the Discipline of Curing, I am little help to them.
At the point where the twin rivers (that run near the city) converge, I note that there is a (barred) sewer outfall at the base of the city wall. Eager to check out any structural weakness, I ask the local ‘Ogrons’, who simply mention that ten scouts were sent in to see what they could find, only to never be heard from again, apart from ‘horrible noises’.
Sounds like what happens after ten likely lads enter one of Melbourne’s dodgier, nightclubs…
I ask to borrow one of the their pontoons, but they prompty refuse, and are obviously going to keep an eye on me until nightfall.
I resign myself to swimming across.
I lose 1 Endurance in making it to the sewer gate, but promptly regain it at the next paragraph.
I enter the sewer and note, with some trepidation, that it is free from all rats and almost any other signs of life.
You know what I’m thinking.
GET BACK IN THE GAME, LONE WOLF – THINKING OF JULIE DELPY WON’T HELP YOU HERE.
Now – what was actually I thinking again?
That’s the one.
I reach a four-way junction, and have to make up my mind where to go, with no real hints.
If only I’d been clever enough to buy a cheap Map of Tekaro!
I totally did that.
[Opens map and confirms correct way to go.]
I travel east and, after a hundred yards or so, note a trap-door in the ceiling. This is obviously not yet my destination, so I’ll take the (calculated) risk of continuing forward rather than risking opening a trap-door in the middle of the enemy base.
I ignore another side passage and continue forward.
I then reach a narrow vault 150 yards further on, with an iron ladder reaching upwards to a sealed door.
I resolve to try my luck with the door…..on the morrow.
Aside : I can’t say then the next update will take place, as I have a date night (!) tomorrow where my lovely wife and I will be seeing this :
“If music be the food of love, play on….”
Base Stats : CS : 17, E : 20, GC 19
Final Stats : CS : 32, E : 26
Weapons : Silver Bow of Duadon(+3), Sommerswerd (+8 CS)
Backpack : Potion of Gallowbrush, Graveweed Poison, Rope, Tinderbox, Alether Berries (2) (+2 CS for one combat), Map of Tekaro, Mirror
Special Items : Silver Bow of Duadon, Jewelled Mace, Copper Key, 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, Quiver (6 arrows), Small Silver Key, Brass Whistle, Ticket to Eula
Magnakai Rank : Kai Master Superior
Magnakai Disciplines : Weaponmastery (+3 CS in Sword, Bow, Mace), Pathmanship, Divination
Kai Disciplines : Camouflage, Animal Kinship, Tracking, Hunting, Sixth Sense, Healing, Mind Over Matter, Mindblast (+2CS), Mindshield, Weaponskill (+2 CS in Short Sword)
Final Paragraph : 259