Introducing a bizarre circumstance for which the party is best suited to deal with and so they are asked to help.
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7 Nuzayel, 721
Arkalin Tamarie is welcomed into the service and invited to a party. Sir Autin invites her and Nina out for a drink and promises the others a drink in the near future.
8 Nuzayel, 721
After a night force to maintain a position, each individual is carefully helped by two knights, squires and/or soldiers first to the jacks, then past the kitchens to the main temple. There, they are granted their orderial badge (a hand-sized checkered shield with a pin on the back), and a dagger that looks like the traditional Laranian longsword (but smaller with an overly large hilt and a guard hardly worth mentioning).
They are carefully warned that to loose your badge and dagger is to loose your membership in the order. After a mass blessing, they are welcomed into the dining room to eat.
As their first day, Arkalin Tamarie is granted the day off, and Matakea Seenae gets to choose her tasks for the day. This is the first time she’s ever been granted that right. Nina is sick in bed.
9 Nuzayel, 721
It is in the darkest part of the morning when a bell is rung by an elderly squire, seeking out Sir Tirn and Sir Kjarri. He, and two younger squires, stay to help the two new young knights dress into their armour. Matakea Seenae is awoken by a young squire with a hooded lantern. He leaves the lantern behind so she’ll have light to dress.
She arrives downstairs in the temple first, to find Serolan Barald Palgen sitting on a pew waiting for them. He invites her to find a seat, saying the knights always take a while to get up in the morning. When the knights arrive, he bids them to sit or lean as is their comfort, and apologizes for waking them so early after so hard a night before.
He then explains that he’s received word of a bar brawl in the Safe Harbour Inn. The runner said that one dead body had been pulled out of the inn, but there could be more. So, since this group has had experience with a mystery, the Serolan thought to give the party another chance at success.
They go to the Safe Harbor inn on foot. Seeenae has a hooded lantern.
Tamarie, awoken by a young squire with a lantern on a hook, meets them there.
Once there, they meet Arkalin Sork of Andamen, the gent in charge of the militia unit currently holding 30 people. They cleared out the inn of folk and gathered them further along the block. Arkalin brings the party before a long tarp, and reveals 9 dead. The problem, as he describes it, is that initial stories only explain the presence of 8; and indeed 8 of them seem to be garbed in a similar fashion with fresh haircuts and a fresh-shaved face. The ninth is finer-dressed, with more expensive finishing and cuts. His hair hasn’t been cut recently, nor has he shaved today.
Eight died from bludgeoning; they sport broken noses, fingers, caved in skulls and numerous rips and cuts. The ninth had his throat opened, from ear to ear. But there is no blood on the body other than a few drops nearest the neck.
The party learns that there are four ships in harbour, the two with men in the Safe Harbour Inn are the Sheesha out of Golotha, a coastal trader through here about 4 times a year, and the Timivan out of Aleath a coastal trader through here about twice a year.
The group send a runner to the Sheesha and Timivan to notify there captains of the situation here.
An examination of the 9th man reveals the following;
- A ring is missing from his right hand; there is a band of untanned skin where it would lay.
- Writing implements in his pouch include a pen in a specialized pocket and two small vials of ink – black and blue.
The other sailor’s had the following belongings:
- 8 daggers (used for eating predominantly; dark stains on the daggers are not blood).
- Total of 22d (mostly in farthings)
- a length of strangling rope.
Tamarie searches the inn. Other than a locked chest under the innkeeper’s bed, she finds nothing relevant.
Seenae talks to Carals of Hilgenel, the innkeeper.
– His daughter saw them come in, wasn’t near the back table (all from the same ship).
– His son, Dralvin, heard the noise. He was in back “cleaning” one of the smaller rooms. He came up to the bar (as is the tradition) through the press of men, but couldn’t tell man from brawler.
– His wife, Delael, saw the fight, but was in the kitchen when it started. She went quickly to the bar to hide.
– Carals of Hilgenel admits to hitting one or two on the head with his massive cuddgel.
The party asks Sork what he saw and did when he arrived at the inn. He says that:
- 10 taken from the front; mostly drunk – fighting but their heart’s not in it.
- 20 or so in the back with their hearts set on murder; intent on killing the 8 – must have been 2-3 to a fallen man; but both sets had signs of damage.
Tirn interrogates the people from the combat/inn with Tamarie.
Some of the people from the inn are local townsfolk and villagers come to enjoy the fine air of Selvos. Their stories vary only a little. Being locals and in small groups, they took seats closest to the hearth. They were deep into their drink when the first lot of sailors arrived for some sort of celebration. Loud, but friendly enough; they took the big table near the bar and kept mostly to themselves. It was quite a bit later when the other eight came in. They were angry and charged the rear table directly.
Witin moments, Arain got knocked into Churinë who ended up throwing his beer at Ebrë. Garand, who bought the beer tried to strike out at Erdel, but he hit Orthel instead. Tent tried to step in to stop it, but Erdel and Orthel struck him and Iran jumped Sinë and Bjurth.
Most of these folk are visiting farmers and unguilded craftsmen from outer manors, spending the night and intending to leave in the morning. A few of the folk will stay an extra day; bedding down with friends, distant family or the inn here. While the curfew fell at 18h00, the townsfolk are often permitted to go from place to place so long as they don’t linger outside for long.
Endin (the merchant from the Timivan) tells a pretty straight story. Most of his men are both pretty drunk (heading towards hangover) and very inured. Not all can be questioned as two have broken jaws, and three have teeth and mouths so mashed, they cannot speak but only mumble instead. Endin is sorry that the battle went so far as to kill; but his men certainly gave as good as they got. He claims the 8 came directly to the big table near the bar. Once there, they accused him and his men of sporting black marks. They denied it, naturally. Alian stood up, faced the newcomers and said they could clap him on the arm to prove he wasn’t marred, but there would be no way they’d bear arm to such a charge. Well Alian got clapped, but it wasn’t on the arm; and that was that.
His crew includes: Alian, Lanasoa, Durron , Zuliran, Kobaras, Ranal, Ketta, Obrel, Gober, Yebain, Durastra, Buldanë, Bathan, Embra, Ulsain, and Stewyn.
They learn from Arkalin Sork of Andamen that there are two other ships in harbour, the Bera (a beer ship out of the Mainland – brings cider back, small crew usually sleep onboard) and the Fitacore (a white ship out of Melderyn).
Seenae and Kjarri check the 9th body. There is a slight indenture from a rope around his wrists; deepest top and bottom. They guess that his wrists were bound before he died, wrist over wrist.
Sometime after dawn, the party sends for the barber (who;s known to set up a stall at the port) and for physicians to tend to the injured.
Tirn performs Psychometry on the body; from his 15 minute trance he learns the body was made long before the bar brawl, placed in the kitchen (away from people) through the back door. The last person to touch it was a militia man, dragging it out.
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