And this judgment day is drawing near
And this confession is killing me again
– In This Moment, Beautiful Tragedy
Usivyen (Water Day) 3 Orhan 1, 6047 TE
The man said there was a pea under one of the shells. And there was when he showed them to you. He was even pretty good at fetching it away before inviting you to select one. Had this fool never heard of a Rhiani? He learned, briefly, before realizing that want of a larynx was extremely inconvenient. You hadn’t reckoned on his associate, though. He joined his compatriot in a journey to ambient temperature, though he injured you in the process. Luckily, there’s a Lay Healer nearby whose rates are reasonable for the skill they display.
Usivyen. You never could get the hang of Usivyens. Maybe that’s why you pulled the floater out of Black Heron Canal. You thought you saw him move, but usually that’s a bad sign – they say something can actually live in that soup they call canal water, and that it gets hungry. But pull him up you did. And he looked bad even for a floater. Something about his cough set your hair on edge. Your reflex was to unload him on Kurimudal and Ruven at the South Commons Clinic. They’re about the only folk who’ll fix someone up and then ask how they can pay, and damn sure it’s not coming out of your purse.
Kurimudal & Uinder
It’s the 3rd day of the New Year, your hangover has almost faded and that’s more than you can say for half the patients you’ve seen so far this year.
Today is different, though: Ruven has called you into a private space away from your patients, and nothing is happening to warrant that privacy. Closing the door, Ruven lowers his voice. “We’re about to have a problem if we don’t do something. Thog brought someone in this morning. At first glance, it looked like Canal poison, another floater he fished out for some reason. But I looked closer. Fellow had the start of blood roses in his armpits. It’s a sign of incipient Kadaena’s Revenge, and that’s a city killer. If one has signs, in a week or a month three will. I know a cure, but it involves ingredients we can’t afford in the amounts we’ll need. But if we move fast enough… When I was a student, I read about a Lay Healer name of Tulgendiril who had a preventative that involved a much less expensive preparation, so more to go around. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he was a senior Lay Healer at Zinvar Ducal Hospital, and that’s where his notes and ingredients will be. It’s not in Nomikos, I looked for it years ago.” From just outside the door, a gasp of “Oh, noes” comes clearly and distinctly.
Emerald and Bartholomew
Well, it’s pokings day again. You’ve gotten the hang of pokings day: The nice healers stab you and swab you just like they do every week. Then they write. Sometimes they frown. Sometimes they say “Huh.” You’re not sure which is worse. Today is different. They just got up and walked out of the room. They never do that. Emerald gives Bartholomew a glance, and he moves to the door they just closed because maybe they’re doing something interesting. After listening for a moment, he exclaims, “Oh, noes!” the door opens, the healers peering out at him in consternation.
Ruven sends the group to the Prince Chanik to find a captain desperate enough for this. He will stay behind to keep the doors open and gather early patients to avoid a panic.
Panic! At the Chanik
Thog skiffed the group to the bar Ruven recommended, the Prince Chanik. Sherren and Uinder tried to glide cool, but Bartholomew went directly to Captain Kleason of the Lost Horizon with an urgent need to declaim his patched (in shades that don’t match) red outfit. Emerald was able to diffuse the situation by taking Bartholomew out of the bar and showing him sailcloth. Meanwhile, when Uinder revealed the party is going to Zinvar all the sailors edged away from them and badtender wished the luck finding a captain that desperate.
Uinder, Kurimudal, and Sherren engaged the Captain, who after some discussion agreed to bear them to Zinvar that very night in exchange for a share of any treasures recovered from the place. Thog went to Byron’s Bicycles (what in the Six Pales is a bicycle?), and was able to secure a map. (Maybe a bicycle is a kind of map?) The group presented themselves at the Lost Horizon in time for the evening tide, and made way.
Not Exactly Sailors on the Seas of Fate
One day out, they spotted a Lankan slaver, but were able to outrun it. The second day found them aiding a downed Skyship whose pilot had been poisoned. Kurimudal and Uinder managed to come up with an antidote in time to prevent the poison from running it’s full course. A grateful Captain Ansus gave his name to Kurimudal and offered to sponsor him should he stand for admission to the Guild of Skysailors. The ship also gave the Lost Horizon 3 weeks worth of supplies, and the Captain’s spare hat to Bartholomew.
Several days later, the Xooban pirate ship Cry Sun spotted them and began chasing – and from this angle it seemed likely they’d engage. Worse, one of the deck hands had a personal issue with the enemy Captain over which there’d been a price placed on his head — surrender or terms would necessarily go poorly for him. Uinder and the Horizon’s crew was able to buy time through clever sailing, though it was inevitable that they’d come into missile range. Once that happened, Uinder was able to poison the enemy pilot with a very well placed shot and Thog – shocking everyone – put the enemy Captain to sleep with some sort of Essence spell! Between these, the Horizon was able to escape.
The additional supplies allowed them to avoid making port in Artha, though this proved little help because Essence-driven weather utterly becalmed them for a day before kicking up as a storm that propelled them far faster than any water-going vessel should be able to. When the storm ended, the ship was in sight of Zinvar, with some of the crew muttering about portals and many thanks being given to Neela despite the ruined sails and fouled lines. As repairs began, sacrificing most of Bartholomew’s beloved sailcloth, Seagulls(?!?) attacked from Zinvar’s shores, again only causing minor damage before being driven off -though Bartholomew lost his hat for a time and had some difficulty recovering it.
The Captain put the party ashore, assuring them that they would finish repairs and make for Port of Izar, expecting to return in a week’s time.
It is now Buryen, 22 Orhan 1, 6047 TE Nineteen days have passed since patient zero was identified.