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.
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 quite light and did not slip off.
Whilst Win was contemplating her next move, she heard muffled voices from the other side of 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 closing with them. 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 names 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 didn't work and Win was spotted, three sailors begun climbing up after her.
On the deck, out discussion had reached an impasse. The crew refused to recognise our point of view and I demanded to see the captain - or Torquemada!
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 were climbing the rigging again.
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!
19th July 2020
It's Sunday lunchtime, it had been raining and the sky is grey. Picnicking in Vicky's garden wasn't an option. Instead, we will be playing on the garden table.
Despite the uncertain weather and the late start, we managed to get some play in Matt's 50 Fathoms campaign.
Location: At sea.
Our ships were bearing down Blackbeard's ship - The Destroyer.
When my ship 'The Herodias' closes we flung hooks with lines on to The Destroyer's deck.
The Destroyer's skeletal crew hacked at the lines as we climbed, luckily they were fairly ineffective and we managed climb aboard without mishap.
This part of the deck was thick with skeletons and we fought to clear the way. It was not too long before we were joined by Shia, Baxter and Rufus who boarded from their own ships.
All of converged on the deck. Before us stood a horde of skeletons and behind them we saw Blackbeard. Draped in a dark aura was he. Orange flames licked across his titular beard. In his hand was a sword that glowed with what could only be magical light, what this The Sword of Amemnus?
It would be a hard fight getting to him.
Win had launched herself skywards and was now gliding towards The Destroyer.
As we steeled ourselves for the oncoming battle, there was then a lull in the fighting, a moment of unnatural stillness. No one seemed to be moving. The skeletons stood staring at us and we at them.
It was then that Blackbeard strode though his own ranks, smiled and issued us a challenge. "Do you want me to fight all of you at the same time, or one at a time?".
Rufus lunged forward, demanding a one on one duel.
Shia spoke no words, her only answer was at the tip of her sword. She struck at Blackbeard and the battle was joined.
Above us, Win struck Blackbeard with a stun spell, he was left staggered.
I pressed the advantage, throwing caution to the wind. I struck at Blackbeard with all my strength, paying no heed to the risk of counter attack. My blows should have felled him, but before our very eyes, we saw the wounds close up without any evidence of ever having occurred.
This did not bode well, no wonder Blackbeard seemed so confident.
Then Rufus lunged for Blackbeard. Rufus was a 'grael', naturally strong and stocky. He tackled Blackbeard.
None of this deterred Blackbeard, he shook off Win's spell and shrugged off Rufus' attack. Reaching for a pair of pistols, he unloaded at Rufus. Luckily Rufus was fairly sturdy himself and was still standing after the shots.
The fighting raged on.
From her aerial vantage point, Win hit Blackbeard with stun again, this time he dropped to one knee. We all attacked again.
Instead of simply grappling Blackbeard this time; Rufus put him into an armlock and twisted The Sword of Amemnus out of his grasp.
It was possible that the sword had some sort of magic that was keeping Blackbeard alive? Maybe we could kill him. Once again I struck him the strongest blow I could. In normal circumstances it would have nearly decapitated a man. Blackbeard however, was unaffected.
The sword was in our possession now and it was time to flee. There was one serious concern though: If we simple]y withdrew from combat, there would be nothing stopping Blackbeard from chasing us. The Destroyer was a formidable ship and could deal out a serious amount of damage to our ship.
So we came up with a simple plan.
We recalled being told a rumour that Blackbeard was cursed and could not leave The Destroyer.
What would happen if we threw Blackbeard overboard? At the very least, it would delay any pursuit until Blackbeard was rescued. It was worth a try.
With a mighty heave, Rufus lifted Blackbeard above his head and ran for the edge of the ship.
When he got there, Rufus simple jumped overboard carrying Blackbeard. Graels could hold their breath underwater for a long time, so Rufus wasn't worried.
Halfway into his downward watery plunge, Rufus gave Blackbeard a lob towards the sea. When Blackbeard hit the water, he was instantly killed!
The effect was also felt on The Destoyer', which began to dissipate. Without delay we dashed back to our ships. Picking up Rufus, we set about sailing away at our best speed. Soon The Destroyer was entirely gone.
We had defeated Blackbeard and acquired The Sword of Amemnus!
12th July 2020
Sunday lunchtime and we're sitting on picnic blankets in Vicky's garden. The BBQ was warming up and it was time for Matt's 50 Fathom's campaign to continue.
Location: At sea.
It was less than a day's travel back to Baltimus. We let the freed prisoners off here.
The question of how to acquire 'The Sword of Amemnus' still hung in the air. Edward Teach - Blackbeard was in possession of it.
Shia went ashore, spoke with her contacts and learnt several 'facts' about Blackbeard.
- Blackbeard had struck a pact with the devil, it was said. His crew could never leave their ship.
- Blackbeard has been seen more than once around the island of 'Perck'.
- Finally, Shia was warned against trying to find Blackbeard, he was considered just too dangerous.
After Shia returned we had an extensive discussion.
As well as the sword, we needed to find 'the heart of the archmage' and 'that which the Kraken had lost'?
In our last visit to 'Bluth's Crown', we had asked the mages there to help us answer these questions if they could. They told us to return at a later date - so we did!
The trip to Bluth's Crown took three days and was uneventful. The pillars that we had helped to save were looking even better now.
The mages welcomed us back and we talked for a while.
They explained that they could not help us with the 'Kraken question'.
They did know something about the other question. The heart of the archmage could only refer to 'Tressa the Red', we agreed. The last time we went to Tressa's home, she had vanished however!
The mages explained that they had learned that Tressa had been captured by 'Torquemada'. Tressa was being held prisoner at the Inquisition base at 'Isla Dios'.
Now we were faced with two choices: Head to Perck to try and track down Blackbeard, wherever he might be. Or travel to Isla Dios, which was on the other side of Caribdus to rescue Tressa.
Blackbeard's location was closer, but unknown. We had also been told that he was a most dangerous enemy.
Tressa's location was known, but was at The Grey Isles, about as far away from us as could be. Furthermore, Tressa was most likely being held in some sort of prison. We could only speculate how difficult rescuing Tressa from the inquisition could be.
In the end we decided to go and free Tressa first. Our reasoning was that once freed, Tressa might be able to assist us when we went against Blackbeard.
Leaving Bluth's Crown behind, we set off for Isla Dios.
Bluth's Crown shrank away as we made off. Later, we were surprised to see an old 'acquaintance' suddenly make his appearance.
Califax the parrot and pet of Tressa the Red; he must have appeared from somewhere below deck on one of our ships. He was flapping above us.
Califax spoke in a strange loud voice; telling us. "You must rescue my 'pet human' Tressa. Go to Isla Dios to do this thing.".
After this, Califax's voice returned to normal, he seems confused as he looked about at his current surroundings and seems surprised to see us. Nevertheless, he joined our expedition once we explained our goal.
We sailed on: Six days had passed since we began our journey, six days that had passed uneventfully.
On the seventh day however, we caught sight of a distant ship, nothing more than a black dot against the hazy horizon. Observing it through spyglasses, we could see it was a large ship and entirely black.
It had to be Blackbeard, no one else was known for a black ship, we altered our heading and made for the ship.
We could not let this opportunity to acquire Amemnus' sword pass us by, who know when we would next encounter Blackbeard?
Besides, It seemed too much of a coincidence seeing Blackbeard here and now. Maybe he was after us?
We discussed our choices as we drew closer. After some deliberation, we decided to attack Blackbeard!
As we closed in, we saw that The Destroyer was entirely black, it seemed to extrude an aura of wrongness and evil. Win and Rackham, our mages both sensed a sort of dark and powerful energy radiating from the ship.
Still we closed in .
'The destroyer' fired at us with its array of cannons. A shot struck Baxter's ship. It was no ordinary shot or cannon. It was thick viscous black liquid that splashed on to three of the crew.
They began screaming, rolling on the floor and convulsing, the black liquid burned away their very flesh until they died. Moments later they rose as the un-dead, making trouble for Baxter and his remaining crew members
Meanwhile, I returned fire with my ship's own cannons, striking tru, but they appeared to have no little or no perceivable effect on The Destroyer.
Still we closed in.
We could see The Destroyer's crew. It appeared to be manned by un-dead skeletons.
Rackham struck the ship with a spell, it conjured up some sort of hurricane that blew about the crew on the deck, a number of them were hurled into the sea.
Still we closed in.
Finally, we had reached The Destroyer and we're preparing to board her hopefully defeat Blackbeard and his weird un-dead crew.
28th June 2020
Sunday lunch time in my living room and logged into Google Meetings on my laptop.
This means it's time for Matt's 50 Fathoms campaign.
Unfortunately, due to circumstances out of our control, the session was cut short.
We had rescued Alain Amemnus and the other prisoners from L'Ollonaise and his pirates. The sword was still missing though and we had good reason to believe that it was in the possession of L'Ollonaise himself.
Baxter and I left the makeshift prison and returned to our companions. Staying just out of the perimeter of Tulago, we circled round to the north and close to the 'manor house'. No doubt L'Ollonaise was here.
Quietly approaching, we saw that unlike the other buildings, the windows here were not broken and boarded up.
The windows consisted of many small glass panels and shutters. Luckily for us, Baxter was quite practised at breaking and entry. Pulling out a knife, he easily worked a pane of glass free and put in arm to open a window.
After quietly climbing through the window, we found ourselves in some sort of extensive private library. The room was of course empty and unlit, as would be expected for this time of night. As we moved towards the door, a sliver of light catches our attention.
Our eyes were drawn to a desk and the book on it that had a peculiar shine. It definitely wasn't reflecting moonlight, this was something else?
A closer inspection revealed that it was glowing, or at least the metal foil on the cover was. There was no discernible source for the glow. Magic?
It turned that the book was L'Ollonaise's logbook. Instinctively I flicked through to L'Ollonaise's last entry, three weeks ago.
The logbook referred to Edward Drummond. L'Ollonaise had encountered Drummond's ship, 'The Destroyer'. L'Ollonaise was familiar with The Destroyer, so he sent some men with over with a gift for Drummond. There were sounds of gunfire and screaming came from the The Destroyer before it changed heading and left Toluga.
Whilst I was reading L'Ollonaise's log, Win and Baxter had left the room, looking for the Sword of Amemnus. As they moved about, they could hear noises from upstairs, the creaking of a bed perhaps or some other typical 'night time' noise.
Their search of the ground floor revealed nothing of use. As quietly as possible, they climbed the stairs. On the landing, there were four doors. L'Ollonaise would be in one of these rooms, along with the sword.
They approached one door and listened. There was snoring on the other side. They tried sneaking in, but as they opened the door, L'Ollonaise abrubtly sat up.
Baxter dived under the bed and Win hid behind some drapes next to a window.
I heard a voice from somewhere upstairs shouted. "Intruder!". The alarm was raised.
Downstairs, I had heard the shouting and positioned myself 'behind' the door. Hopefully, when someone entered, they would be distracted by the open window and would not spot me.
7th June 2020
Sunday lunch time, I'm sipping an energy drink in my living room and sitting in front of my laptop.
This can only mean it's time for Matt's 50 Fathoms campaign.
It's early morning and we're at the Baltimus docks.
As we're pondering our next move, two sailors walk past us and we could not help but overhear their conversation.
They were talking about infamous pirate 'Francis L'Ollonaise'. He had taken someone prisoner and was demanding a ransom for him. They intimated that he was 'Alain Amemnus', the son of the dead 'King Amemnus'. He was being held at the town of 'Tulago'.
This was significant news to us. Alain may know where his father's sword was, or may even have possession of it!
It was vital that we headed to Tulago. We checked our maps and discovered Tulago was on the far side of the 'Cunavo', the very island we were on.
The journey to Tulago took less than a day. As we drew closer, we could see seven pirate ships moored outside Tulago.
This seemed strange, as far as we knew, Tulago was not some sort of pirate stronghold or refuge?
We chose to drop anchor further out from the shoreline and observe the situation with spyglasses.
Whilst watching, we saw there was a large gathering in what passed as Tulago's town square. There were about three hundred people, they were cooking and eating, drinking, playing music, dancing and generally having a good time.
With further observation, it was noted that these did not look like normal townsfolk, nor did we spot any women amongst the revellers?
All of this made us very suspicious of events unfolding in Tulago.
Continuing to watch, we then noticed one man, sitting in a throne and not partaking in the carousing. He was being given well prepared food by the cooks and wine. Could this be the pirate L'Ollonaise?
It was necessary to explore the town, but it seemed just too dangerous to simply walk into Tulago. After some discussion, it was decided to wait until later. No doubt after too much food and drink, people would fall asleep or descend into a stupor.
This is indeed what occurred, it took until half-past midnight until events quietened down, everybody dispersed and stillness fell upon Tulago. We noted that the pirate who had sat on the throne retired to a large building in the north of the town
We moved our ships a half a mile to the east of Tulago and moored close to the coast line here. The settlement was close to the beach, but was surrounded by forest on all three other sides. Our plan was to approach Tulago from the cover of the forest. We landed some boats on the shore and told the sailors to wait on the beach and remain alert - in case we needed to make a speedy retreat.
The forest floor was uneven and it was dark, which made for slow going. It was close to an hour before we reached the perimeter of the village.
There were equal number of brick and wooden buildings in Tulago. It seemed unlikely to us that a prisoner would be kept in a wooden shack - it would be too easy for them to escape. So we decided to concentrate on the brick buildings.
Shia was concerned that Win and herself would not be able to 'blend in' if we were spotted in the town. Only Baxter and I entered Tulago. The others remained in the tree line.
We sneaked across some clear ground to the closest brick building and scouted it out.
Baxter looked inside, the interior was wrecked. The floor was littered with cutlery and broken earthenware. The place had been turned over, no doubt about it.
Quietly and carefully, Baxter climbed through a broken window into the room. Looking around, he found nothing. During his search, he did hear noise coming from upstairs.
He paused to a few moments and noises stopped, he could just about hear snoring.
This did not seem like a place to hold a prisoner, so we decided to move on. Luckily, the next potential building was just a few feet away.
Here too, the windows were broken and open. Looking in, we were not surprised to find a mess similar to the previous building and searching only confirmed this.
From here however, we could see another, larger brick building, just north. The windows were boarded up from the outside and each one also had three iron bars across the boards. This looked promising.
We reached the third building without mishap. From here, it was clear that there was a small hole in the boards of each window, perhaps to allow for air and light?
Before trying to gain entry, we cased the outside. We counted a total of eight boarded up windows, certainly the building was large enough for several rooms. More importantly, we noticed two guards at north west corner, by the only door in. Although both we slumped to the floor and propped against the wall with drooping heads, their chests rising and falling.
Choosing the window furthest from the sleeping guards, which was along the southern side of the building; we investigated. It was dark inside, but it seemed that there might be two people in the room.
Upon examining the barricaded windows, Baxter saw that the workmanship was quite shoddy. Without too much effort and noise, Baxter managed to pry one of the bars free.
This did however rouse one of the occupants. He seemed afraid and confused. We explained that we were here to help. During the conversation, he told us that there were ten prisoners here in all. Pirates had invaded Tulago and the ten of them had distracted the pirates well enough to allow their families to escape.
During this time, Baxter had been carefully removing the bars and boards until there was enough space to allow the prisoners out.
We had freed three men. They explained to us that they had been paraded in front of the pirates and tortured. And they did indeed bear the injuries of extensive torture. the pirates had wanted to know about their escaped families.
They said that the other prisoners were somewhere else in the building. We said that we would help them. We then told the three men to head east into the tree line, where they would encounter our friends, who would help them.
The three of them silently went to the trees, where they met Shia and Win, who used her Healing magic to ease their wounds.
Meanwhile we had moved to the south eastern window. Baxter once again managed to open up the window quietly.
Within the room were seven other men, they had clearly all received beatings, but did not display any signs of systematic torture.
The men explained to us that they were expecting to dragged out of the room one by one and tortured in the morning, before being slung in the other room.
We had found all ten prisoners, but none of them were Alain Memnus, so we asked if there were any more prisoners?
They told us that they had heard another prisoner in an adjacent room, but had no idea who he was and had never seen him. They heard pirates threatening him and were demanding something from him, which he quickly gave up.
We instructed them to quietly head east and into the trees to meet up with our companions.
After some deduction, we realised that the only window into this adjacent room was on the north side of the building and faced the town square. Not only would this leave us exposed, there were two guards sleeping just around the corner.
Baxter was concerned that the guards might wake up. So he went round the corner and gave each of them a gentle 'tap on the head', which sent them from a stupor into genuine unconsciousness!
Baxter then began removing the bars and wooden boards. As he was clearing them away, he saw a man sleeping soundly on the floor.
He was handsome, dark haired and extravagantly dressed. Might this be Alain Amemnus?
Once Baxter had cleared the window, he climbed in.
He then kicked the man awake, who promptly drew a breathe to shout! Baxter quickly slapped a hand over his mouth and told him to not 'panic'.
It took a minute, but Baxter convinced him that we weren't here to hurt him. Baxter removed his hand and then the prisoner immediately complained about 'being touched by a commoner'!
He was as we suspected Alain Memnus. Once Baxter told him that we were here to rescue him, he said we should leave without delay and tried climbing through the window, but tripped on the way out.
From the corner outside I saw Alain come out of the window and land squarely on his face. Baxter followed.
Now that we were all outside, Alain wanted to leave straight away. Alain seemed to be living up to his reputation.
We stopped him leaving and asked about his father's sword. There was perhaps a hint of shame on his face as he admitted that he gave up his sword to L'Ollonaise without any resistance.
We then told Alain to carefully head east and join the others in the forest. Instead of stealthy making his way there, he simply walked off. Utterly unaware of the risks.
When Alain reached the forest and met with Shia and Win, he asked what was going on. Shia explained that once Baxter and I returned with his father's sword, we would return to our ships and all escape.
Alain insisted that they make their escape now, however Shia refused and said that they would wait.
Back in Tulago, We knew that L'Ollonaise must have possessed the sword we had been searching for. We also knew where he was sleeping for the night. Unlike the others' L'Ollonaise was not drunk. Getting the sword would prove more challenging and a greater risk.
25th May 2020
We had skipped Sunday and it was a bank holiday Monday. I was sitting in front of my laptop in my living room and today is time for Matt's 50 Fathoms campaign.
I made my excuses to go to the 'gone to the toilet'. Instead I took the opportunity to explore the upper part of the house. Unfortunately, this yielded nothing.
Before returning downstairs, I ensured that the window in the bathroom was left open a sliver, so we could use it to sneak back in later.
Upon returning to the party I saw that it was beginning to 'wind up' and the guests were beginning to leave.
Soon, other than Bruno and his entourage and us, only a few other people were were remaining. We could not help but notice that they were all good looking.
At this time, the guards retired for the night and we were all led to a different room.
And what a different room it was!
There were drugs laid out on the table like food for a banquet.
There was a copious amount of alcohol here, including a wine fountain!
There were even numerous 'ladies of the night' present.
Bruno and his friends did not hesitate at indulging themselves in the debauchery.
Bruno himself immediately consumed a large amount of narcotics.
Several people, including Baxter simply dipped their faces into the wine fountain.
I restrained myself and watched from a quiet corner.
Meanwhile; Shia began to flirt with one of Bruno's friends, 'Francisco Valorez'. Shia convinced Francisco to show her around the house.
Francisco took Shia into a side room, just off the room we were in.
It was well decorated with an expansive bed as the room's centrepiece. Shia noticed that on all four walls, there were the dark outlines of numerous weapons such as swords and pistols that once hung on the walls here against the faded wallpaper.
Shia asked about the weapons and Francisco explained that they had been auctioned off. Shia expressed an interest in buying one, but according to Francisco, they had all already been auctioned off
Shia looked carefully at the outlines and spotted one that might match the description of the sword we were looking for.
Meanwhile, in the main room, Bruno was emerging from his drug fuelled stupor. Regaining his wits somewhat, he suddenly grabbed an unaware woman, threw her over his shoulder and lurched for the same door Shia had gone through.
As I made for Bruno, I saw several of his friends turn their heads towards him with looks of contempt. I had hoped to reach him before he reached the door, but I was not quick enough, Baxter followed behind me.
Bruno opened the door, saw Shia and Francisco and shouted at them to 'Get out!'. Francisco looked taken aback, meanwhile, Shia sat on the bed suggestively.
Francisco looked around and was confused, he took his leave as Baxter and I entered. Baxter closed the door behind him
Quickly I stepped forward gripping my dagger, then with the hilt I thumped Bruno on the back of the head. He slumped to the ground, unconscious. I picked up the hapless woman and explain that it seems that Bruno had slipped and knocked his head. She was angry and distressed, but we convinced her to leave the room.
I searched Bruno and I found a key and a metallic disc. The disc was the size of a coin, one side was entirely smooth and the other has some sort of pattern inscribed into it.
When I picked up Bruno to put him on the bed, I noticed beneath the bed there was a circular indentation in the floor.
We hefted the bed to one side and could see that the indentation matched the size of the metal disc. There was also a strange pattern in the indentation, possibly similar to the disc.
I put the disc into the indentation with the patterned side down. Nothing happened? We rotated the coin and there was a 'click', a hidden compartment in the floor popped open!
Searching it revealed a stash of coin, a strange compass and a book, a cursory glance revealed it was Byron's journal!
As I was occupied with the compartment, Shia quietly poisoned Bruno, who after a few seconds convulsed violently, before becoming still...
Shia left the room and spoke to Bruno's friends, she stated that she knew about medicine and it looked like Bruno had suffered an attack or an 'aneurysm' and had tragically passed away. It was quite convincing.
Bruno's friends did not seem too unhappy or concerned, they certainly did not push the matter with Shia and thanked her for her efforts!
What remained of the party now began to disperse. No doubt, rumours would begin to fly through Baltimus soon enough.
A carriage was summoned for us and we returned to the docks and our ships for the remainder of the night.
Late as it was, I spent the next two hours reading through Byron's journal.
For the most part the journal starts of as you might expect. But over time, it becomes darker and darker. Over this time his handwriting also deteriorates significantly.
Byron talks of his regret at the killing of the three Mallus sisters; Mala, Maka and Mana. Who were sentenced to death for killing their sister Mara - for 'dark reasons'.
By this time, the handwriting had become illegible, but I managed to discern one final reference; to the island of 'Sprith'.
On the next day at the break of day, we saw Manny Morkon rowing out to our ships. The news of Bruno's demise had reached him and he had come to thank Shia.
Morkon came aboard and handed over the sword Versalis that he promised.
In return, Shia gives her share of the coin that we 'liberated' from Bruno's house to Morkon and his daughter.
It seemed to us that a weight had been lifted off the man as he rowed away in the dawn light.
We unwrapped the sword and examined it.
The detailing on the hilt and crosspiece was ornate and exquisite. It depicted a map of the world before 'the flood'. It wass also inlaid with numerous jewels and precious stones.
Next however, we need to find the 'Sword of Amemnus'. Byron's journay had hinted at the island of Sprith.
17th May 2020
Sunday lunch time and I'm in my sitting room, logged into Zoom on my laptop and ready to play 50 Fathoms.
After Manny Morkon had left, we decided to investigate Bruno Baltimus some more.
On the next day, we looked into matters some more. It was fairly common knowledge that Bruno likes his drinking, whoring and drugs.
I looked into matters a bit further and it turns out that Bruno's 'party needs' are generally all met by an individual called 'Edgar Davies'. We also learnt where and when to find him.
Meanwhile Shia met with again Morkon and agreed to his conditions. - Shis will 'eliminate' Bruno and Morkan will provide her with 'Versalis'. Shia concocted a plan to poison the drugs that Bruno will take during the gala's 'afterparty'. Shia then went shopping for rat poison.
The invitation is for one person only - plus entourage.
We had to wait a couple of days for our clothes to be prepared.
During this time, there was much discussion amongst our company. We did not agree on how we should deal with Bruno and how we should deal with the situation.
The day of the gala arrived.
The invitation says to arrive at 6 pm, so we decided to turn up at 7 pm.
The gala is taking place at Bruno's mansion. It is a large and expansive two storey building.
Shia - under the identity of 'Vivian Veohiti' is welcomed and announced to the gala. After Shia is led to the ballroom, she is introduced to Baron Bruno.
As part of Shia's retinue, we are also granted entry, however we are essentially ushered into a corner with all the other 'hanger ons' so that the true nobility could mingle and entertain themselves.
The ballroom is filled with music, but we realised there was no band playing? The music must have been coming from somewhere else?
We notice sa small group of young men at one side of the ballroom. These were Bruno's 'friends'.
One of them was paying particular attention to Win.
Meanwhile the rest of us began to mingle. Rufus and Rackham were both in the possession of some 'strong weed'. They both proceeded to generously share it around the party and particularly amongst Bruno's friends, thus ingratiating themselves.
Meanwhile, I made some excuses and left the ballroom to go exploring the mansion.
As the gala is drawing to a close, we are all given 'tokens'. This must be something to do with the 'afterparty'.
9th May 2020
Saturday lunchtime and I'm sitting in the living room, in front of my laptop and logged into 'Zoom'.
The normal Sunday 50 Fathoms game is on Saturday this week.
Location: Outside Baltimus.
We entered Baltimus' port. Despite being early in the morning, it is already loud, busy and crowded with people.
We noticed that black flags are hanging out of various windows. We asked around about who was being mourned here? It turned out that 'Byron Baltimus' was still being mourned by some people in the city.
People are less enthusiastic about his son 'Bruno', who seen as hedonistic and uninterested in ruling the city.
After speaking with the harbour master, we were discussing our next step when some sort of commotion broke out.
A man was complaining loudly about the 'Baltimus family', accusing them of being treacherous and betrayers of King Amemnus?. Mostly the crowd boos and heckles him - although this seems mostly out of respect for the deceased Byron and not Bruno.
It appears that this man is well known for this behaviour as at least one person in the crowd knew his identity and told him to 'go home'. The man's name was 'Manny Morkan'.
We were in Baltimus was to find out about 'The Sword Of Amemnus' and we needed to speak with Bruno or read his father's journals, to hopefully find out more.
There were two possible approaches that we were considering.
The first was to get an audience with Bruno and explain that unless we rectify the situation, the world would slowly drown and that we needed his help. If this approach worked, we would have secured the maximum level of assistance from Bruno, but only if we convinced him. If he did not believe us for any reason, whether he saw us as con-men or just didn't believe us, then it make getting the journals even harder.
Since we knew how much Bruno liked to party, the second approach would require us to somehow get invited to or gatecrash one of his well known parties. Then we could 'attempt to ingratiate ourselves with him and proceed from there.
It may have seemed strange to say, but next we decided to go shopping for clothes! Either we needed to look respectable and serious, or we needed to look wealthy and decadent. In either case, we needed the clothes to match the roll.
I sold my used 'blue bear suit' and with the funds bought some sets of expensive clothes. The others more or less did the same thing.
Since the clothes were all fitted, it would take a couple of days for all them to be prepared.
By this time it was afternoon. I decided that I would investigate Manny Morkan, his talk of 'the betrayal of Amemnus, had piqued my curiosity.
I asked around and apparently, Morkan was well known for being something of a rabble-rouser and constantly going on about how 'Baltimus stabbed Amemnus in the back'.
I also learnt where he liked to go for a drink, an establishment called 'The Crow's Nest'.
We also learnt that there was a British actor who 'toured' around the area and would put on productions of 'Shakespearean plays' for the people of Ograpog.
Shia did some investigating of her own and discovered that this actor was a bit of hedonist himself and for being greedy and having what could only be described as 'shady' contacts.
Shia also managed to acquire a copy if the 'Macbeth' play and began reading it.
Baxter meanwhile, went exploring.
Shia had, a little while ago relieved Baxter of all his money, or so she thought. Baxter had slyly kept some funds in a 'hidden stash'.
Eventually, Baxter found himself in the audience for a 'Secret Play'!
The play was a rather bawdy affair that gently mocked and satirised the 'authorities', however towards the end became more serious. All in all, it lasted about two hours.
When the play finished, Baxter went drinking! During this time, he was approached by what could be described as 'three unsavoury individuals'.
They asked if he could transport some 'merchandise' for them?
Baxter said it was possible, but this depended on details such as price, location, etc.
The three individuals then asked Baxter if he was OK transporting slaves? Baxter said he 'would have to think about'.
As the day came to its conclusion, I went looking for Manny Morkan in The Crow's Next.
Luck is with me and I found him.
I managed to introduce myself to Morkan.
When I spoke to him, I explained that I found what he said about 'Balitmus betraying Amemnus'. Since I was not in Ograpog at the time.
But Morkan would only talk about Bruno, he seemed obsessed about it. He told me how Bruno treated people like objects and just used them.
I couldn't get anymore out of Morkan before he departed. After he had left, I noticed that a note had been left where he was sitting.
It said one word. 'Versalis'.
I did not know what this meant. It was getting late, so I went to meet up with my companions.
Ensuring that I wasn't being followed, I returned to the others.
It was at this time that Manny Morkan appeared.
He approached us and said he was looking for. 'People of vengeance, people not afraid to get their hands bloody and were prepared to stab someone in the back'.
We noticed in the background behind Markan, there was a young woman trying to look discrete.
We asked Morkan to explain was Versalis meant and he told us it was a 'mystical' sword.
He then went on to tell us that he had invitations to Bruno's next gala. He wanted us to go to the gala and wait until Bruno went to a private event at the gala and to murder Bruno!
By now, he had practically become rabid.
19th April 2020
It's Sunday midday and I'm in my living room, in front of my laptop, ready to play 50 Fathoms, although for this session, we're using Zoom for the 1st time.
Location: The Whip Islands
Now that we had all four elemental 'ingredients', we decided it was time to 'Bluth's Crown'. It seemed like an age since we were last there, but it was just under one year ago.
The journey to Bluth's Crown is uneventful, but when we arrived, we could see that the rocks were definitely the worse for wear.
We docked and upon disembarking we were met by a young Kraken we recognised, Parspaltry! We greeted him and made some chat.
After this, we handed over the four elements and he gave us our reward, eight potions and six thousand pieces 'o eight!
The mages of Bluth's Crown took the elements and used them in some sort of ritual. This took some three minutes to complete, then we watched as before our eyes, the rocks become regenerated and repaired themselves!
The magic generated by the ritual was immense, we all felt the magic, even those of us who were 'non-magical' felt this great sense of euphoria wash over us.
Once the ritual was completed, we spoke with the mages, our journeys and adventures had landed us with a number of questions that needed answering.
- Where or what is the sword of Amemnus? We know that Amemnus drowned years ago.
- What is the heart of the archmage? Although we think that this is to do with 'Tress The Red'.
- What is it that the Kraken have lost?
The mages tell us that we should find Bruno Baltimus - obviously at Baltimus. He may know something of the sword of Amemnus. Failing that, it was said that his father, Byron kept a journey. Maybe the journal will contain something.
The mages agreed with us that we must find Tressa The Red. She has gone missing though. The involvement of 'The Inquisition' is suspected.
Finally, with regards to the question of what the Kraken have lost, the mages could not help us. Although they said that they would undertake some research into the matter on our behalf, although this would take a week to conduct.
In the interim, Baxter decided to go drinking. It was a particularly heavy session and Baxter became what can only be described as totally blind drunk.
When he woke, he found himself tied to a bed and disarmed!
He also found himself stone broke, without a penny to his name. During his bender, Shia had relieved him of all his money and had given it all away!
We decided to go searching for Tressa The Red.
We scoured the area but only found a dishevelled Califax.
Win used her magic to heal the parrot, but it will take some time for him recover.
In the mean time, our next step was was to go to Baltimus. The journey was expected to last three to four days and was uneventful.
We have reached just outside the Baltimus docks.
13th April 2020
It's Easter Monday, Easter Sunday was a no-go for gaming, so we decided to reschedule for Monday as everyone would be available. So I'm sitting in my living room, connecting to the group via Skype.
Location: The Flotsam Sea
Our fight against the Octopods continued.
We are still battling the warlock and the giant octopus. Rackham manages to defeat the warlock and by using fire, Shia manages to vanquish the giant octopus.
We searched the enemies' ship and found some useful spoils of war:
- A sealed barrel of water, we examined this and discovered it was water from Earth. What we've been looking.
- We also found an unusual pair of cannons that exuded an air of magic, they were magical and apparently known as 'The Big Pounders!'
- A magical figurehead.
Rackham searched the dead warlock and found a glass eye in a pocket, he senses that it was magical in some way.
After this, we went deeper into the Flotsam Sea. Eventually we managed to acquire some elemental water without any trouble.
After this however, a thick fog settled on the water and as we pressed on, it became thicker. Navigating our way out of this was going to prove very trying.
As we are trying to get our bearings, a figure of a maiden or a girl seemingly materialised out of the fog? Even though she is not close, we easily hear her voice.
She told us the following. "Seek out the sword of King Amemnus, the heart of the archmage and what The Kraken have lost? Without these, our task will fail.".
With this she simply vanishes, lost in the fog.
A few hours later the fog evaporates and is quickly gone.
We spied some land on the horizon and now the sky is clear, we take some bearings. We are greatly surprised to find that somehow we have crossed the Flotsam Sea and found ourselves on the other side.
The island we spotted ahead, is part of 'The Whip Islands' chain of islands!
I play, I paint.