The following morning they awoke to a major uproar in the tavern. A woman had been killed in the room next to Harrylock’s. They went to investigate; she was lying on the floor beside a dresser with a large mirror. Her throat had been torn out and she was covered in bite marks. There was blood everywhere. Sonny used his (flexi) Medical Skill to determine that whatever had caused the bites was big. There was no sign of entry or exit and no tracks on the floor. She had few belongings, only an explorer’s pack and some travel clothes. A quick check at the front desk showed she had signed in with the name “Elly”. They left the matter in the hands of the Peacekeepers and headed off to Dracogen’s manse.
“You are late”, came the voice from the air. “If you work for me, I expect punctuality. Help yourself to food, and then we shall talk.” There was a single door off the side corridor with a table laid out with food and drink. Everyone partook, except Harrylock, who still did not trust Dracogen.
“You did well at the floating island, so I have another job for you. A piece of low-life scum called Millian has stolen an item from me. I want you to retrieve it. It is called a Revitalizer.”
“What does it do?” “It revitalizes, that is all. Millian is somewhere in the city, it is up to you to find him.”
“Do you want him dead or alive?”
“I want the Revitalizer.”
Back at the ‘Queens Legs’ they discussed tactics. They started by asking around about Millian; he turned out to be a well-known petty thief and snitch.
“He lives in the Challimone Building, out near the city edge.”
“You know, you’re the second person asking about Millian today. Some woman called Ehvera is looking for him.”
A few more questions established that Ehvera was connected with the criminal underworld and was a gang boss. She was new here, some say she came from one of the islands. She could be contacted by leaving a message at a tenement block down by the docks.
They decided on a plan – Judson and Sonny would go and talk to Ehvera; whilst Galadiir and Harrylock would check out Millian at the Challimone Building *
The dockside building was a five-storey building straddling a dock. The building was run-down; they entered into a hallway leading to stairs up to the upper floors and down to the quay. The hall was filled with dropouts, scum, layabouts and junkies. The air was heavy with the smell of Bentlam. As Judson and Sonny entered, two men struggled to their feet.
“You’re not wanted here. Get.”
“We just want to talk to Ehvera”
“You deaf? Which bit didn’t you hear? Get out.”
Sonny decided to barge his way through to the stairs and moved forward, pushing the man out of the way. The hall erupted; they all stood, pulling out an assortment of weapons. Sonny reacted quickly, pulling his verred and plunging it deep into the man blocking his way; he crumpled to the floor, mortally wounded.
“There’s no need for this”, called Judson. “Life is too short, look how short his was. We just want to talk to Ehvera.”
“And you’ve found her”. The speaker was a heavily-built woman, wearing black leather armour and carrying a verred. She descended the stairs and looked at Judson. “Let’s talk”.
(GM: I’m not going into detail here as I don’t want to reveal spoilers)**
Arriving at the Challimone Building, they found that Millian lived on the 5th (top) floor. There was no elevator so Galadiir persuaded Harrylock to carry him up the stairs. *** On reaching the 5th floor they knocked at the door. There was no answer so Harrylock broke the door down. Immediately a ‘beeping’ noise was heard; in the middle of the room was a round metal sphere with a blinking red light. As they watched, the light blinked faster and the sound became faster.
“Down the stairs!” yelled Galadiir; they barely made it as the entire top floor exploded in a huge fireball. The blast carried down and the 4th floor was also on fire. From one of the rooms they heard cries for help. Harrylock kicked the door in; they saw a young woman and a badly injured man. Harrylock picked up the man and Galadiir used an Ice Onslaught to try and hold back the flames. They ran down to the ground, but it was too late; the man was dead. The woman was very upset and clung on to Galadiir.
“Can I come with you? We were new in town and now I’ve got no-one to protect me. Please? My name is Leema.” Galadiir was not happy with this, but found himself succumbing to her (she was young, frightened and VERY attractive).
Back at the ‘Queens Legs’, they had a council of war. Leema was not included but stayed as close to Galadiir as she could. After much discussion, they voted on a choice of action (again; I’m giving no spoilers – sorry).
Whilst this was going on, Judson noticed some activity at the bar; a man was securing the services of one of the resident whores. They headed off upstairs; then suddenly all the lights went out. After a few minutes they came on again and from upstairs came screaming. The man was on the floor, his throat torn out and huge bite marks on his body. The whore was sobbing that she didn’t do it and that she heard or saw nothing. Suddenly her eyes widened and she broke free and ran off. Leema joined Galadiir and they all retired for the night,
Galadiir: “Where’s Leema sleeping?”
GM: “With you. She is VERY grateful that you saved her life today.”
In the middle of the night, Judson awoke and sat bolt upright. His timer was beeping and showed three red bars. Within him the Beast stirred and swelled, bursting out of his body, On the other side of the room was Sonny, asleep on the bed. Beast-Judson flexed his claws; opened his maw and lumbered across the room … ****
* Yet again, they have split the party up!
** Let’s just say, they were on the horns of a dilemma.
*** According to Galadiir, he is not very strong and the climb would tire him out.
**** I had pre-determined this would happen, but from now on I’m going to use a real calendar and look at when the full moon is. If it’s around the Games night then there is a chance that Judson will transform. Easy to do and adds a little randomness to things.