26th July 2020
Sunday lunchtime has rolled round again and we're in Vicky's garden. The previous day's downpour had left the lawn unsuitable for a picnic, so instead we were sat at the garden table again.
But that didn't last, as what had looked to be sunny afternoon became a rainy day. Grabbing our characters sheets and our snacks, we retreated indoors, leaving the patio doors open to maintain social distancing.
Despite this, we still played on and continued Matt's 50 Fathoms campaign.
Location: At sea.
We had defeated Blackbeard and acquired 'The Sword of Amemnus'. Now we needed 'The Heart of the Archmage' and 'That which The Kraken had lost'.
We resumed our journey to Isla Dios.
Two days later we were sailing through a blustery wind and Califax was circling above. All of a sudden the parrot started flying strangely. He swooped down to a ship and landed in a heap and collapsed on the deck.
Califax began shaking, twitching and convulsing. Then, as soon as it started, it stopped?
Califax suddenly stood up and looked at us, then with a different voice, he began speaking.
Torquemada may have won, but the sea hags have lost.
Califax shook his head violently and looked around confused. His normal voice had returned. A message had been delivered and it did not look good for Tressa!
We continued on. The journey was long but uneventful. Isla Dios was located in 'The Grey Isles'. The sea ran shallow along the coastline here and we had to keep out to sea for fear of grounding or damaging our ships.
Looking at the shore, we could see a massive barge that was moored there, her flat hull allowing her to navigate the shallows. We estimated that the barge was at least a mile away.
Studying the barge with our spyglasses revealed a grim sight. Dangling from the rigging was a body, seemingly dangling in the way only a corpse can. Details were not visible from this range save for the shock of long red hair...
Other than this, the barge appeared to be empty, we saw no movement of activity on deck.
Unquestionably, the body had been placed there as a macabre trophy by Torquemada.
There was no doubt in our minds; this was the remains of Tressa the red.
Now we had to reach her and claim her heart.
Even though the barge appeared to be empty, I suspected a trap waiting for us.
This though, did not dissuade Win, she reasoned that Tressa might still be alive and need healing and there was no time to hesitate.
From a vantage point, Win leapt to the air and began gliding over to the barge.
Quickly we jumped into a jolly boat and followed, however even with our best rowing efforts, we could never hope to keep apace with Win's gliding.
Only Shia was left behind to command the ships.
It was a long way for Win to glide and she didn't quite make it! Instead of landing on the deck, Win ended up hanging by her fingertips from the edge. Luckily being an atani meant Win was light and her grip remained firm.
Whilst Win was contemplating her next move, she heard muffled voices from within the hull. Win's landing had not been quiet and suspicions had been raised. Hastily Win pulled herself on board and sought out a hiding spot.
Meanwhile, those of us aboard the boat continued rowing.
From her hiding place, Win saw some sailors come on to the deck and spot our boat cutting through the water towards the barge. Win heard them shouting for 'The Men of God'?
As we were bearing down on the barge, we all felt a wave of strangeness washing over us, we could help but shiver. Win and Rackham felt this shiver most intensely.
Finally our boar reached the barge. We were 'granted' a reception by the crew, this included four men in red robes.
The men in red robes stepped forward and greeted us, they seemed to know our identities and were expecting us? They went on to display further knowledge of us and our activities?
We explained that we were here to claim Tressa's heart and with it, to save the world. They replied that they didn't care, they just wanted to 'deal with' mages and anyone who 'conspired' with mages.
During this conversation, the crew was distracted. Win took the opportunity to begin climbing the rigging up to Tressa; hopefully unnoticed.
Unfortunately, it wasn't to be and Win was spotted, three sailors begun climbing up after her.
On the deck, our discussion had reached an impasse. The crew refused to recognise our point of view and I demanded to see the captain - or Torquemada - or whoever was in charge!
Pushing back the pursuing sailors back down, Win got to Tressaa and she was indeed dead. There with no chance of saving her.
There was nothing else for it but to get the heart. Win grimly reached for her knife...
Meanwhile, down below. The crew were insisting that we surrender and allow them to escort us to the cells.
We obviously refused. Some of the crew came at us with manacles, but we pushed them back before we could be bound up.
In the rigging above, Win gritted her her teeth and set her jaw. She slowly plunged the tip of the knife into Tressa's sternum.
"Butcher!" Shrieked a shrill voice.
It was Califax, he had flown over and was now assaulting Win!
Califax's attacks were ineffectual and Win managed to swat at the parrot and keep him at bay whilst clinging to the rigging.
Meanwhile, sailors below were once more climbing the rigging.
Back on the deck; the crew were showing clear signs of frustration at our lack of co-operation. They then pulled firearms on us.
There was nothing we could do, we were drastically outnumbered now and had no choice but to surrender.
Up above; Win had opened Tressa's chest, reached in the cavity and completed the grisly deed.
Win now had Tressa's gore covered heart in her hand!
I play, I paint.