game date: + 13 days to Al-mer-Rabi; +7 days to Hadreem; +15 days back to Depository.
characters: Tarak, Greko, Ichonni
female horse trader and husband
Whilst at the depository:
Two octans of soldiers (16 total) from the House of Beryclus commanded by captain Fedrum arrives and makes camp outside the Depository.
A pigeon sent from Katapesh arrives in the loft with a message: “Request 21 × 5 crates. Stack floor to celling. Reed downwards. Contents to follow. RM” Characters unsure of the meaning of the message.
Information: The House of Abranul has routed the Army of Armis. Its leader Aref Sanjar was killed and his equipment, family heirlooms, have been taken by the victors.
Information: 60 enslaved soldiers from the defeated army of Armis have been paraded in the town of Kishtar.
Information: The Abranul army is now heading, unopposed, for the Armis’ home city of Fahradesh.
Information: A group of mercenaries attacked and freed 3 prisoners from the Eastern citadel in the town of Asharhn. 5 city guard were killed along with 3 mercenaries.
A bored Greko arrives back at the Depository. He was fed up guarding the miners (see last adventure). His friend the engineer has decided to stay on to learn some new skills and help out if he can.
The party decides to leave the cursed Samshi, the now bright sceptre of ascension and the shadows at the Depository while they head south-westwards to track down the bandit-trader Al-Serradin. Al-Serradin (pre adventure log) killed one of the starting characters, sold Greko into slavery and stole equipment from them, especially a rare compound bow.
The journey to the large oasis town of Al-mer-Rabi was uneventful. The Depository’s Haruspex suggested they start looking for Al-Serradin in this un-walled town. Camp was set up near the encampments of other travellers.
Tarak, Greko and Ichonni started to make their enquiries; no information was forthcoming. Greko remembered, from his weeks of captivity, that Al-Serradin would talk of trading camels and horses. Perhaps a lead could be found at the horse auction. Tarak said that he would use the visit to purchase a stallion if the right one was for sale.
The following day at the auction Tarak successfully bid on a stallion and Greko seduced a female horse trader called Sophos. She knew Al-Serradin – but was too busy selling her horses to be sociable. She agreed, however, to meet him that evening in his tent.
The evening arrived and Greko’s seduction of Sophos continued. The application of food and fornication produced the location of Al-Serradin. Unfortunately for Greko, Sophos’ husband and three associates found their way to his tent to teach him a lesson.
A brawl started. Greko was happily out numbered four to one, he was going to enjoy this. Tarak and Ichonni, who were away from the camp, rushed to help. Tarak cut the guy-ropes of the tent whilst Ichonni threatened the associates saying that the dispute was between the Husband and Greko. This evened the odds, but it wasn’t to last.
With fists flying the associates piled in to the brawl. Tarak and Ichonni instantly joining in to even the odds. The fight finished soon afterwards. The husband and one of the associates were unconscious and were carried away by the remaining two provocateurs. An adulterous Sophos, sheepishly followed to a fate unknown.
Greko smiled. In his opinion it had been a very good evening. And tomorrow they would be heading for Hadreem.
Seven unnoteworthy days travelling, the group arrive in Hadreem. A rough town where the guards extort money for entering through the gates, and more money for crossing ward (district) boundaries.
Greko’s information was good. In no time at all, Ichonni with his trailing skills, had Al-Serradin under observation. The mark stopped at a couple of stalls and a bar for a drink before heading out of town through the south-eastern gate. Outside the city walls Al-Serradin unaware he was being followed by Ichonni and the others, headed for his encampment. From a distance and without attracting attention the party scouted his tented quarters; 5 tents and 1 central gazebo, Approximately 12 men within.
As the party were leaving the area they noticed a middle-aged man arriving at Al-Serradin’s tent. They waited. A short while later the man left and headed back to town, the party trailing behind. Soon after passing back through the South-eastern gate, the stranger’s trail went cold. Ichonni and Greko deduced that he must be a local, whilst Tarak complained bitterly about how expensive it was to be going back and forwards through the gates.
They had their quarry, Al-Serradin. The party planned for an stealth attack that night to maximise surprise.
The stealthy attack on Al-Serradin’s encampment unravelled right from the outset. The party’s approach was noisy and clumsy. The alerted guards started to wake the other bandit-traders. Realising that surprise had been lost, Greko and Ichonni burst through the back of a tent to engage three of the bandit-traders. Meanwhile Tarak circled around the tents in order to provide some cover fire with his bow.
The sleepy bandit-traders took a few moments to understand the situation, thus giving Greko and Ichonni precious minutes to consolidate their position by despatching their enemy.
A poor shot from Tarak caused a light wound on one of the guards forcing him to take cover. Unfortunately Tarak was spotted by the last group of bandit-traders. They charged. Retreating, Tarak drew them away from the main battle; A bloody and brutal combat in and around the first tent.
Greko, the professional battlefield soldier, stood his ground in the entrance of the first tent. Another hole was cut in the tent’s side to get access to Greko but he continued to hold his ground killing one of the bandit-traders with his short-sword. Meanwhile, Ichonni killed the last of his current opponents, shouting to Greko that his tally was now three. Looking to gain a tactical advantage by skirting around the outside of the tent, he left through the back tear, only to encounter two more bandit-traders who were attempting a similar action.
After exchanging bow fire with one of the enemy, Tarak was eventually caught by the chasing bandit-traders. This was now blade on blade with two aggressive attackers and one more looking to press home the advantage. An exchange of blows; Tarak wounded one forcing him to retire, giving Tarak time and space to break from combat and join the savage combat around tent one.
Ichonni finished off his two opponents with a combination of falchion and shield bash. He then made his way around to the front of the tent to attack more of the enemy. Greko was still there and was now engaged with Al-Serradin himself.
The combat was ferocious and confusing. Although Al-Serradin was down and his life bleeding away, his minions continued to fight on. Tarak had been wounded but he remained on his feet. Not for long. Had it not been for his skill, the vicious attack would have severed his hand at the wrist, instead it knocked him to the ground unconscious.
With a man down Greko and Ichonni battled on, slowly gaining the upper hand and ultimately forcing the remaining four bandits to flee.
There was no time to rest.
Before a search could start Tarak was revived using first aid and healing herbs. The party looked for their missing equipment, especially the composite bow. Some of Greko’s equipment came to light, but not his prized helm. The composite bow could not be found and suspicion fell on one of the bandit-traders who had escaped. He had now routed in the direction of the town.
The party decided that compensation was in order, so gold and treasure was looted from the remains of Al-Serradin’s camp.
The party made haste their eascape, using Al-Serradin’s own camels to help cover their tracks. The camels were then released after a few hours.