“Where the hell are we?” Solvi asked Aldo as the Njord’s Blessing pulls into dock. As they went through a strict customs search, the Port Authority officer confirmed Aldos best guess, they had arrived in Ryelle.
Solvi asked Aldo for a chance to talk. The full party looked for a tavern, and found “The Salty Swine Saloon.” Aldo noticed that there was no division between Port Authority guards and City guards, they were all dressed with the crest of empire. Solvi cracked open a bottle of frostwine, in celebration of a defeated giant. After a couple of swigs, he begins to talk to Aldo.
Solvi decided that perhaps sneaking into Ruhnahiem from Ryelle might not be a good idea, a fact that Aldo agreed with. Solvi was willing to put a hold on his search for the dwarven armor he wants temporarily. He also thought the party should stay the night, and head back to Walgrim’s Cliffs in the morning. If he could get in good with the seabeards, they might make him some.
Three orcs sauntered through the doorway. Targ and Theia eye them with alarm and suspicion, respectively. Aldo and Solvi were too deep in their discussion, and didn’t pay them any attention. Aldo stated that since they were there for the night, why not see what they could get, then asked Solvi about what the supplies looked like.
Solvi flipped out a small log, and reported they were good. With a change of heart, Solvi requested that the party leave Ryelle quickly. Aldo wanted to see what the city had to offer, thinking that they might be able to get something here that can’t be found anywhere else, and they might not be coming back. Targ stated that anything he needed he can get anywhere.
“Ok, so what are we looking for,…captain…?” Solvi asked. The hint of insubordination in Solvis tone did not go unnoticed by Aldo who gave in to Solvis request.
As they stood up to leave, the tavern doors burst open. “Call to arms! all navy to the docks!” Shouted the guard in the doorway. The mobs of sailors rushed outside and headed for the pier. At the pier, the party could see a blockade of at least 25 vessels had blockaded the port. The enemy ships doused blockade runners with fire and acid from massive equalizers.
Solvi appologized for getting them into this mess with his search. Theia wanted to know what they were going to do now. Aldo stated that they were not helping them. Solvi just wanted to get the hell out of there. Aldo knew they had no chance. Njord’s Blessing might be fast, but it’s not blockade runner-fast.
Solvi noticed the flag on one of the blockaders and thought it might be Illyrian. He pointed out to Aldo who determined it to be a Wherrian flag. Since they’re not bombarding the pier, he sat back for a bit and watched how things developed.
Four hours passed, the navy was mobilized, and battle was engaged between the forces. The sea swarms with Ryellan vessels from all sides. The two sides squared off and blasted one another with equalizers, which light up the waters horizon with hues of reds, orange, greens, and blues.
They watched until the sun was low on the horizon. The skirmesh showed no signs of slowing, and Ryellan forces were waning. The crew decides to hit the market district before it closed. To their surprise, the vendors were all still doing their buiness as if they were oblivious to the cranage only miles away.
Solvi thought that being blockaded must be a regular part of their day, but wanted to find out if anyone knew better than they did.
Aldo found someone to ask, but soon realized that he had walked up to a slave auction. He went to turn around, not wanting any part of it. Solvi was interested and convinced Aldo to at least watch for a minute. They saw three orcs, two elves, and three humans all in wrist and neck shackles, chained together, one of the orcs stood next to the human auctioneer, who called out translated bids from the orcs in the crowd. The first orc is sold for 100 gold, and an arguement ensued once again between Aldo and Solvi. Solvi wanted to purchase as many as possible to round out the crew. Aldo was insistant that they were NOT BUYING PEOPLE. Ever quick witted Solvi spun it as not buying them, buying their freedom. So Aldo, hesitantly, began bidding, but soon got into a rythm and beat everyone on each subsequent auction. Aldo got all papers and keys from the auctioneer and the party took them back to the ship. The crew used their varied languages to explain to the slaves that they just bought their freedom and they would be set free at the next port of call.
Only Aldo and Solvi went back to the market to get the answers they were looking for. They find a general store after they passed by people openly selling sannish and vodare, two of the most restricted black market drugs. Solvi bought food, while Aldo asked the vendor about blockades and the frequencies of their occurance.
The vendor explained that they used to be a regular event back when Ket had an active interest in the political dealings of Ryelle, but they’ve never been attacked by Wherry before. And that the wherrians haven’t been involved in war for almost 90 years. He believed that the wherrians were simply biding their time. A customer interrupted with news from his brother who lives in Wherry. He said third handedly that they got a new ruler overnight! No one knew how he came to power, but everything was… different. The convesation took a slight turn as Aldo tried to gather info about how to slip past their navy. Solvi asked Aldo to speak with him outside and they left.
In the distance and closing quickly, they saw a young woman. She was barrelling down the street in a panic, her neck constantly craned to see behind her. Aldo tried to see what she was looking at. As she approached they saw she was wearing a filthy rag that only scantily covered her. Her hair’s dark and matted. About 50 feet behind her, four armed men emerged from an alleyway. One pointed in her direction and the group takes chase.
Aldo decided to let her pass. The woman closed quickly, still looking behind her. Not looking, she slammed into Solvi. The impact didn’t faze him, but the girl bounced back, staggered a bit before falling on her ass. She screamed and started crawling backward away from him. Aldo stepped between girl and chasers. She seemed to understand that Aldo was trying to protect her and whipsered “help me!”
The leader of the chasers spoke with Aldo briefly. Aldo gave them the normal one chance to walk away unharmed. They didn’t take it. Solvi cast ice slick, caught the entire group off guard and on the ground. They tried to regain their footing and turn the tide, but are sorely outmatched. Aldo and Solvi were victorious. Aldo and the girl, Aurelia, quickly looted while Solvi finished off any survivors, with Thor’s blessing, and the three went back to ship. Once back on Njord’s Blessing, Aldo asked about what he had missed and introduced Aurelia to Targ and Theia. They pointed out that Wherry was winning the blockade. They went below deck to get healing and sleep for the night.
They popped their head up in the morning to see the Wherry fleet had been reduced by half, but the Ryellan navy has been decimated. The blockade remained and began to open fire on the harbour. A mixture of chiseled stones and ballista bolts smashed into the docks and buildings nearby. Aldo, feltit would be safer to surrender, and decided to fly white flag and meet with the Wherry forces. Njord’s Blessing is intercepted by a sloop. The captain shouted “throw down all of your arms and prepare to be boarded.” A party boarded and Aldo is told his vessel was property of Emperor Droxalus of Wherry. Aldo tried to negotiate passage for Njord’s Blessing past the blockade, but his pleas were ignored.
The party was taken below deck and chained. Aldo hid his lock picks on his person, before someone came down to strip them of their poseesions. Once he was gone, and Aldo was sure that he wasn’t coming back, he took out his tools and got out of his cuffs. After releasing the other members of the crew and the slaves, they hit armory and armmed up. The party and slaves
split up into two parties and raided the upper decks.
During the first minute, Aurelia got hit badly and started to suffer a breakdown, as she began to turn into a werewolf. She attacked everyone in a rampage, and even Aldos attempts to reason with her fail. She killed most of the slaves that the enemy crew didn’t. The party retreated into the fore and aft castles, were Solvi finds his silver dagger. Once he handed the dagger to Aldo, Aldo was able to defeat her easily. As she morphed back into an elf, Solvi crushed her skull with his hammer.