Balance

Roebuck Chase

11th of Planting 383 ONT, The Roebuck, Upper Promethean River, Cainia, 6:31pm

“Mr. Rodak, collect my senior officers, and have them assemble in the briefing room… have the Bosun send a skiff to the Magdalen to assure they need no assistance and get a full report from them” Captain Kinnotox said, his voice showed his annoyance as the anchor took hold and he watched the Champions Boot flitter away behind the now flaming river.

“Aye Captain” The First Mate called as he snapped a firm salute and went about his business. The Captain turned to his Mate, a stocky dwarven women who had served for some time.

“You have the Bridge Ms. Carole, I suspect we will be hold position for at least an hour”

“Aye Captain” She said, stepping up to the helm and assuring all was as it should be. The Captain turned and stocked off the bridge, quickly heading down a short flight of steps and entering into the briefing room. It wasn’t long before a small dwarven boy, maybe twenty years of age entered; The cabin boy nodded to the Captain before lighting a brazier and placing a full kettle on it. He went to a near drawer pulling out tea cups and set the table. The Captain took his seat his fingers drumming on the table as he awaited his officers. It was under five minutes before they all drifted in, each knowing their seat and taking it. Once assembled the Captain began.

“Liam, how long before you can resuit the griffins into scouting armor?” The Captain asked, looking at one of the twins who sat at the end of the table

“Maybe fifteen minutes, but I wouldn’t recommend it Captain… They tire faster in the heavy barding, but that other ship as an eagle rider… a real one from Wing Hove… I guess what I am saying is he knows what he is doing, I wouldn’t want to risk the Griffin’s without their armor Sir” the half stammered out, he had always been more comfortable with animals then people. The Captain scratched his chin in thought before responding

“What’s the flight time that they can handle in the heavy gear?”

“Maybe twenty minutes Captain… I can stretch that to thirty if the wind is with us and we are gliding home, much longer and we can have troubles especially if you want them to be battle ready” Annaka replied for her brother. The Captain shot a look at his First Mate, understanding the unspoken question Khov spoke up

“Maybe ten kilometers of scouting sir… not much farther, and he is right… The eagle will catch them even if they are in their light barding… best be ready for battle when it comes” The Captain nodded briskly

“OK, keep them in the heavy armor for now… give them a fifteen minute breather and then have them do an initial scout… do not engage, just get eyes on the Champions Boot again for us”

“I can’t believe the crew of the Champions Boot would do this? Blow up the tavern? Murder guards? Steel our wages? Light the town on fire… it just doesn’t seem like them” Kennedy said a little sadly

“Actually lighting the town on fire is kind of their MO” Khov said with a bit of a grin, the Captain didn’t seem to find the jest funny though, giving his First Mate a stern glare

“Believe it…” he said to the sorceress “I have confirmation that this was the same command crew as at Kezranad, they committed these atrocities and broke the law… that makes them pirates, which puts this squarely in our domain”

“Pirates sir? Don’t you think that’s a little harsh?” Kenndy asked, knowing how her Captain treated pirates

“No I Don’t Ms. Martins… they robbed our store house, lit a peaceful town on fire without provocation or warning and opened fire on several ships. Good men and women are dead, some of them peaceful townsfolk… In my book they are murderers and pirates, and that is likely to good for them. The Champions Boot will be scuttled and its crew executed!” the Captain’s voice boomed, he appeared to be personally offended by this bunch, Kennedy had never seen him get this worked up before. But she gave the

“Aye Sir” along with the rest of those assembled

“Mr. Rodak… as I recall it is one of their sailors who is the Grippli?” The Captain asked… Khov reached into his satchel pulling a bunch of sheafs of parchment out

“Aye Captain… Flitt Fargazer, from reports of the dinner last night he appears to have made Bosun”

“How very fortunate for him” The Captain said dryly, venom dripping from his words “We will need some counter measures against him and that shark he was riding. Ms. Martins that was excellent thinking to lightning bolt the water, but we won’t be able to count on you having the spell ready always, Rodak, have something else in store for the Grippli before we encounter his ship again.” He turned looking further down the table “When you aren’t scouting I want you two practicing specific tactics on how we are going to bring that eagle down, we were lucky this time that their Strix didn’t get involved, but she is a known flyer, and we will have to assume that without archer support from land we will have to deal with both, a long engagement is not to our advantage”

“I have some thoughts on that sir” Kennedy offered, receiving a nod from the Captain “The way she changed after the archers hit her, and then alter changed back… she may be a shifter… or even a necromancer, siphoning life force from someone or something to maintain superior strength… we saw it before on that Orc Ship the Gromp Eye… If that is the case, she must have a magical item, usually a crystal or pendent that is allowing the siphon to operate, we should attack or disarm that and it should reverse the spell. Destorying it may even kill her depending on how much life force she has siphoned.”

“Excellent point Ms. Martins… make sure that memo gets to all crew members to keep an eye, and take targeted attacks when possible. What else do we have?” This time is was a short blond women who spoke up, her hair pulled back in a tight ponytail

“Well Captain, they are firing a standard bow facing Bombard, considering they seem to only have a three man team they were holding up a reasonable rate of fire. Their crew also responded quickly with a mix of pistols, muskets, longbows and crossbows, them seem to understand the benefits on black powder but are not dependent on it”

“Excellent point Master Gunner Hopkins… Rodak?” the Captain queried

“it is as you thought sir..” Khov said shifting through his parchment, “they didn’t have the bombard in Kezranad or Lockland, that is new… Their Master Gunner used to be Aurelia Ouellette… no sign of her on the ship or in Faurther Port… their new Master Gunner appears to be Sir Horace Altman… The Oakleaf Knight of Pelagius.” There was a sharp intake of breath around the table at this revelation, the Captain quickly interceded

“It is not Sir Horace! I don’t believe that the hero of Pelagius is burning down small towns… an imposter, out smearing his good name, and helping buy credibility in unfamiliar ports” The Captain Hrumphed

“That may be so… reports showed him wielding some kind of firearm, and there was no sign of his legendary sword, also no sign of magic use from him…” Rodak trailed off looking back over to the Master Gunner

“Either way sir, they are capable of putting up a reasonable ranged defense, but actually seem stronger in face to face combat…recommend extreme caution when boarding, most of their crews seems skilled with a blade, and none appear to have any misgivings about killing”

“Understood Master Gunner” The Captain nodded “Mr. Rodak, assure any boarding party is at least three to one odds in our favour, and assure that at least a third are fully armored before going over”

“Aye Sir” Khov said, making the appropriate notes. The Captain stood from his seat and looked down the table at the officers assembled

“Ms. Martins, please connect with Arjunn and OMAR, see what else we can find out about these Pirates and if there is any more information that we can use in battle” The Sorceress nodded to the Captain as he continued

“I want them found, and this business dealt with quickly, the good people of Faurther Port will need our aid in the rebuilding process, let’s try to have this… unfortunate business settled in the next three days. Mr. Nortron…” He said turning to his Master of Sails “let me know as soon as the river has cleared enough that we can be underway without distress”

“Aye Captain” he said

“The rest of you have your orders, see to them”

“Aye Captain” They intoned as they stood and shuffled out of the room.

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Argyle

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