A Short Stop in Basil Leaf….
Proves to be boring, and slightly dangerous. Being a gangly, goblin-blooded person, all of these chefs feel the burning desire to feed me, and if I eat one more cupcake, I’ll vibrate out of my skin! This place is dangerous to me, at least, and I’m just not comfortable here. Either way, we hightail it out of there, but Mera stays behind. So does Glade, too, who wants to help her perfect her Cupcakes of Healing.
Funny, I always thought she had nice cupcakes.
Anyway, we’re swinging north, back to Turtleback Ferry. Marika’s Varisian brethren will be there. Plus, we’re actually supposed to be meeting a caravan from Magnimar, which will have some kind of reward for us. We get to Ilsurian with time to spare, and we check in with the Constabulary at Hope’s direction. We meet with an old man who looks…official. Hope introduces herself, and my eye wanders to the dumpy frontier town outside. He knows her, though, or at least her father. After a conversation with the man that reveals absolutely nothing, we make our way to the docks.
Hope has a small conversation with the man, and we wait for a man named Mr. Eckhart. I don’t know about all these other goons- I mean, party members- but I’m perfectly happy to let the little girl to do all the talking. They exchange words, and Hope seems anxious to meet Mr. Eckhart’s daughter, Chelsea. I don’t know why, though. I’m always anxious about new people. Instead, I help load the supplies with Marika. Jeez, after all the dessert I ate in Basil Leaf, I’m just glad to be exercising again.
After we’re done unloading, I hear a strange grinding noise, right behind Marika. I casually stroll over towards Marika, and tell her to shut up so I can hear the odd noise. After that little social faux pas (and an instantly apology later), I find a little metal cat trying to eat or lick one of her daggers. Shbe tries to Hydraulic Push the thing, but it’s too fast. It scampers away with her knife, but Mr. Eckhart has some kind of magnetic glove that helps catch the thing. It drops the knife, having scraped Marika’s blade for rust.
Anyway, Mr. Eckhart tells us that he’s hired some personnel, and introduces us to a half-elf wearing some kind of scholarly clothes and a wide-brimmed hat with some sort of chainmail crevate, which I’ll bet chafes! And, he’s carrying a battle axe, and is way too happy about it. He looks a little, out of practice, though, and I wonder if he was an adventurer previously. We introduce ourselves, but Hope and I argue about calling me Stabbington or Tony. He tells us his name, and we call him Tal. He’s a music teacher, so he tells us. He became an adventurer because he was boring, and Marika chides him about wanting to kill things, but the man seems to be really, um, heartfelt. I argue a bit more about my name, and Hope tells me that I could eventually introduce myself as Stabs “Tony” Stabbington. Maybe it’ll grow on me…
We talk on the move.
We get accosted by some Scarny gangsters, and we already know how this is going to go down. We’re pretty much ready for battle by the time they approach. After some rudimentary conversation, Hope whips out the scarf and slices into the guy with the knife, and he curses at us. He’s not happy, and Marika offers to let them both just walk away- or live life as a filthy cripple.
“Oh, Sweet Norgorber!” one of them screams, “It’s Stabs Stabbington!” I feel completely validated now. But the now single gangster does not like his odds, and eventually runs away. Hope tells Tal that she’s the most trustworthy of the lot, and Marika and I crack up at that. Tal remarks that we’re some pretty rough customers, and that’s also true. Hope is still trying to find a name for us- before someone else does! Apparently, Tal has heard of us, from the group’s exploits in Magnimar and the pack of serial killers.
I guess we’re a little bit famous.
Meanwhile, Hope is settling on the name Sandpoint Seven, and Marika gets to know Chelsea’s cat, and we all get to know Tal a little better. We make camp for the night, and Marika wakes me up for something. There’s some tromping through the woods, and we discover that a couple of hill giants are upon us! We go into combat mode, ready to disgrace these fools. Turns out, the schoolmarm knows how to use that axe, slicing into the giant that threw a giant rock at Marika. I’m not really as accurate as I’d like to be, but I got it when it counts. My sword plunges into its side, and it falls over dead. The remaining giant sees the horror his buddy’s become, and lays the smackdown on Tal, who takes it like a man, draws a knife, and applies it accordingly. I finish off the other, ending the battle.
Hope goes off to the nearby river to wash off, and I congratulate Tal. He fended off one of those giants almost by himself before we stepped in. After we sort through the bodies (and Chelsea stops throwing up), we settle down for some breakfast.
All in all, not a bad start to the day.