Session 65 – “It’s all fun and games until someone loses an arm” – Tuesday 29th May 2012 – by ShaunFreney and Frithhill
Elapsed time – 708 days real time, 563 days game-time (21st February 1604?)
Location – In pursuit of a fugitive who de-camped over the curtain wall of the Pertuese governor’s residence in Mao Kei.
Purpose – To avoid complications resulting from a fraught relationship with the Pertuese colonial authorities. To obtain the rewards of mercenary employment (a future in which being paid rather than giving it away for is a new leaf which holds a tantalizing prospect). To venture into the unknown interior.
“Zo, is account of great dinner and politic goings-on what might concern us, and brouhaha that happen for dessert. Pierre prefer pudding to conflict, but occasionally menu not accommodating. Shinzo Kamakura is on board after pirate destructions, is in chains and not cooking up delightful souflee for later (to continue to use food metaphor) but storing up bile. Is very unhealthy, can lead to many sicknesses according to barber-surgeon general.
“We arrive home (well, Mao Kei) after much sailing and learning on board of duties and things. Melchior, l’homme occulte, speak in mind to Prosperino the Wise and assure all is according to plan (or at least we not dead yet) while Guy decides to get to know sailors a little better and eat and drink. Thomas attempts to get Pierre into padded dogsuit to train attack hound again but Pierre is mysteriously not to be found, although Pierre find enough time to study with Li Kao to learn a little more about pretty arty words. Is hard enough to spell words with twenty-something letters plus diacritics and digraphs, let alone language with forty paintingwords for rice. Not even rice is word for rice. Is complicated, but Li Kao patient teacher and make Pierre wonder somewhat why he put up with it.
“Speaking of odd behaviour, Vittorio decide to talk to captive Cathay lady on behalf of Melchior (who bewitched her earlier and made her not friendly at all to him). He invite her to new quarters on ship, and they disappear for hour or two. Vittorio appear later ill-dressed and with smile on face, so is perhaps not difficult to work out what happen. Is always easy to tell when man get end away, like lighthouse of the pants it is, happyface visible out to sea for miles. Shinzo Kamakura who we captured is led off and kept in craphole where some others who shall remain nameless (not Pierre or Thomas, oh no!) but also he is pantaloonsless along with other pirates for just reward (har har!).
“So we arrive at Mao Kei with riches and booty (although some of us get more booty than rest of us, eh Vittorio) and quartermaster start dividing up riches between sailors and officers (we messieurs de la route, or gentlemen of road, have more simple mathematical cut of loot) minus cost of shiprunnings and wear and tear. We are invited to dinner at Pertuese Governor House (naminge?) which is mostly for General Qi but also us brave warriors riding on special event coattails. We attend in nicest clothes which is mostly silk Cathay robes which Pierre much like, although others take weapons which Pierre consider rude and not at all in keeping with local customs. When in the Eschatican, do as the Eschaticans do, as they say. But do not drink water or touch the women.
“So we all do to fancy-schmancy dinner bedecked in silks which Pierre notice good for sleeves, nice and long and excellent combat cloak stand-in. Guy stuffs pants full of pistols and everyone else wear fancy swords and whatnot for Europaean fancy-danciness. No-one can take offense because is barbarian cultural norm, although Pierre take handy knife in boot in case of tough meat or toe-fu (is some kind of bland fighting art, probably) to be polite. Pierre not take big sword or guns. Pierre is so smart.
“So dinner go well, we are seated at top of middle of table in Portuese dining hall down from top generals and governors but above middle paperpushers and non-peoples. Pierre hand off most spicy foreign dishes to Guy who devours like is no tomorrow, while Melchior and Vittorio keep an eye on proceedings where arguments going on at top of table. Pierre try to keep tabs on details but difficult in spray of rice from the fountain that is la Monstre Cookie de Guy. General Qi hold polite talks with Grand Secretary Xiao Gubai, a chubby man in good clothes who is chief of all south-east provinces and other assorted peoples. Apparently Portuese admiral/governor/pencilmasher is upset, is not our fault, is Prosperinoiac magickal force which get us here but he and underlings wonder how our ship get here with fresh food still good and water with no bugs in. Apparently means we have secret base close by, but if he cannot put two and two together Pierre not going to help simpleton with obvious riddle. Anyhoo, it cause problem so Li Kao come help himself to our food and fill us in on disgruntlements. We are kept abreast of issues and begin to formulate plans…
“Then great big bell go off, same big bell we saw earlier but discounted because was obviously no threat or problem. We so smart. Lots of noise and shootings which mean shit hit fan, because is thrown by escaping prisoners and spread smelly confusion everywhere. General Qi lead us out to prisoner yard where Shinzo is standing outside shitpit gaol and wielding swords with company. Qi is miffed and leads charge, and we dutifully follow.
(Which is to say, Pierre follow, everyone else go for other prisoners. Musketmen on walls taking sweet time reloading and not helpful anytime soon. Thomas is on ship. Pierre very put out.)
“General Qi, mighty warrior, go to toe with Shinzo and begin a great battle. Vittorio and Guy beat up pirate followers, Monsieur Melchior did too or something, hard to tell because the General fall to sneaky stab to chest right in front of us. Pierre feel funny, possibly because he friends with General, but usual kneewobbles and pantstrouble not kick in. Pierre annoyed and leap forward to defend gallant leader who only politician not wanting our blood right now. Pierre snap long sleeve of gown around foot and trip Shinzo to fall to ground for coup de grace, or is plan anyway. Dastardly bastard lift foot, step forward and bury damn Nihonese woku zashi shortsword in Pierre’s gut up to hilt. Pierre out for count, needless to say.
“Then (as told by comrades, later, though sadly they prone to exaggeration) Vittorio and Qi (on feet again, possibly with medical help from Melchior) lead charge and force Shinzo to battlements. Epic battle follows! Slash, stab, slash again, Qi helpful but Vittorio pulling every trick out of book, hat and occasionally arse. Sneaky feint, disarm attempts, whole ball of wax! Swish, swipe, flash of blades and Qi goes down! Is left to Vittorio!
“Melchior approach with musket from other side, Guy move up behind Vittorio with halberd, attempt to stab and hack too. Vittorio so brave, ducking and fighting and trying for opening. Then Shinzo whirl and slash down on Vittorio, and awful thing happen. After shock, Vittorio’s arm is lying on ground, with good sword no less.
“But what do Vittorio Tornadore, master swordsman do? He throw in towel? No monsieur! He shocked and battleweary but not beaten! Vittorio let out bloodcurdling scream and attack with main-gauche in left hand, he not put up with such bullshit from pirate scum! He press attack, and in face of overwhelming greatness Shinzo the Coward run leap from battlement to ground and run off into town. He leave big trail of blood, so he not lasting very long. Vittorio slump down tired, but we have won! Bon victoire! He not juggling anytime soon, but no doubt we can fix with modern medical science.”