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 Battered and Bruised

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Phlegm

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Number of posts : 751
Registration date : 2007-04-26

PostSubject: Battered and Bruised   Mon 2 Oct - 13:42:17

Battered & Bruised
Our situation was looking good, plans in train, red sashes burned and paid off, job on schedule and no one dead yet. One fly in the proverbial ointment though – the rumoured difficulties leaving by the water gate – the sparkwrights* on strike or whatever. Given Drass’ noted lacked of steering skills we decided that scouting the gate area would be a job best undertaken on foot. The gate lies at the north eastern tip of the city so we set out early: John Smith trailed Drass and I discreetly at a distance in case we encountered problems again as we went about our very nearly lawful business.

*Apparently they are not necessarily open all hours

Sentries were sparse and inattentive at this early hour and we headed into Crows Foot without incident until we reached the central square where we noticed that we were attracting the interest of two blue cowled figures. We subtly headed away from them entering an alleyway and cast about for a way to lose them: The alley was a dead end and the doors we tried were locked. Drass shinned up a drainpipe – not, tumbling ignominiously to the ground.

Our pursuers now entered the alleyway with the assured air of thugs secure on their home turf. They swaggered up to us and proceeded with the traditional tried and tested ritual of demanding money with menaces. Apparently they had taken offence at Drass inserting her favourite knife into our red sashed assailant on our previous visit. It appeared that self-defence was not a factor relevant to the conversation.

To explain things in simpler terms, one of our new friends found it appropriate to produce a cudgel with which to beat some understanding into me. I let slip my trusty crowbar from my sleeve and swung at him, sadly connecting only with the fresh(ish) air of the alleyway. He clipped my jaw with his counter as I mistimed my attempt to sway out his way.

Drass also got knocked back but unlike me kept her feet. Fortunately Smith then arrived and took our attackers by surprise, the first one went down knifed in the kidney and suddenly blue cowl number two found himself surrounded by three opponents. Smith shanked him too and after a brisk frisking of the two extremely poorly thugs we hurried from the scene, though not before Smith had made a wasted effort at some repartee with the unfortunates.

Pausing at a canalside to wash off some of the cities delightful mud scum in which I had unfortunately rolled, we made our way across to Nightmarket and entered the superbly architected station, as this and the associated marshalling yards occupied the entire area that might give us a view of how things were going at the gate. We had already seen large vessels moving towards the right area but we needed to find a vantage point to confirm our hopes.

We loitered for more than half an hour observing comings and goings. It became apparent that the mailroom was at a higher level from the demeanour of porters carrying mailsacks and we split up to see whether we could bluff our way to a room with a view. Smith and Drass managed to find their way eventually to a balcony where they could see that the gate was apparently operating normally for the moment at least.

I was less successful checking a couple of rooms without windows or facing the wrong way before I bumped into a clerk emerging from a toilet. I immediately deployed my cunning ‘I’m looking for the lost property office’ cover story, which took in the poor fool completely. Full of sympathy and pity he took me to the said office.

Or did he? There may have been a clue in his parting remark which was along the lines of ‘Hope you enjoy your thrashing Skovlan scum’ as he shoved me roughly through the door slamming it behind me leaving me facing a heavily built custody sergeant who appeared to have eaten one gross of potatoes too many, in what appeared to be the station’s brig.

To be sure it seemed that the sergeant was not a lover of citizens of the old country and our brief conversation centred on my forthcoming incarceration in his facilities and a number of modifications he proposed to make to parts of my anatomy that frankly I consider to be absolutely essential to my well-being, so I clobbered him with my trusty crowbar. And missed him completely.

We struggled for some moments, I had an unsuccessful head butt but he was as they say, a big man, but out of shape. Eventually I shoved his head against the wall stunning him and I gave him a good pounding as he lay on the floor. The pesky clerk who had held the door shut legged it and I swiftly rifled the Skovland hater’s gear and desk, pocketing his sergeant’s badge and a few documents that I thought might come in handy – blank arrest warrants and prisoner release papers for example.

I managed to find my way out downstairs, battered and bruised though I was and re-emerging on the concourse I met my two luckier comrades and we unanimously decided it was time to move on. We got back to base without further incident and I got a little healing and went to confession with Father Marik who was very upset with me. A little research revealed that our blue cowled friends were Azure Lords, top dogs in Crows Foot so probably not great enemies to make. Let’s hope they didn’t live to tell tales.

30.9.17
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