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 The Big Pig Riot

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Rolzup

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PostSubject: The Big Pig Riot   Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:01 pm

Over the course of the day, things get increasingly loud. The chaos begun at the watefront transitions into a riot that spreads through the district and beyond.

The Hall of Injustice is pelted with rotten vegtables, and materials even less pleasant, and a few windows are broken by well-aimed rocks. Nobody is quite stupid enough to launch an open attack on the place, however, nor is the building set afire.

Henry Scatter's men manage to restore something resembling order shortly before nightfall, and loud declarations are made that anyone on the streets after nightfall will be beaten and thrown into the sea.

There are, perhaps, a few minutes of daylight remaining when a goblin tentatively enters the building, after first peering around the door to make sure that there's nothing aimed at him. It's the same one from the previous day, the man who delivered Distaff's message.

"I...ah...I have a package for Captain Artichoke," he says.

Making a show of self-confidence, he strides into the center of the room upon his over-long legs, and holds out a large wooden box for the consideration of all within.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:33 pm

Rolzup wrote:
Over the course of the day, things get increasingly loud. The chaos begun at the watefront transitions into a riot that spreads through the district and beyond.

The Hall of Injustice is pelted with rotten vegtables, and materials even less pleasant, and a few windows are broken by well-aimed rocks. Nobody is quite stupid enough to launch an open attack on the place, however, nor is the building set afire.

Artichoke makes sure everyone stays inside the place, not wanting to escalate the situation, but once the first rock is thrown, assigns Heyoka to sit outside the front door and Penelope (when he can persuade her to leave the pig) to go up to the upper floor and put a couple of arrows into the street in front of the next bunch of idiots to come by and try something stupid.

Quote :
There are, perhaps, a few minutes of daylight remaining when a goblin tentatively enters the building, after first peering around the door to make sure that there's nothing aimed at him. It's the same one from the previous day, the man who delivered Distaff's message.

"I...ah...I have a package for Captain Artichoke," he says.

Making a show of self-confidence, he strides into the center of the room upon his over-long legs, and holds out a large wooden box for the consideration of all within.

"Relax," says Artichoke honestly, "I have no quarrel with you. Put it on that table over there and open it, please." That better be a damn good payment, he thinks, Or Distaff and I are going to have words.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:44 pm

Rolzup wrote:
The Hall of Injustice is pelted with rotten vegtables, and materials even less pleasant, and a few windows are broken by well-aimed rocks.
Yatagan ejaculates into a bar mug then sprays the resulting ejaculate over the crowd through one of the broken upstairs windows.

Poetic justice thinks Yatagan or something to that effect.

He then roots around the wine cellar for a bottle of Pernod he hid there.

Quote :
"I...ah...I have a package for Captain Artichoke," he says.
"I do hope this contains an apology for your master's cowardice" says Yatagan pleasantly.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Mon Dec 08, 2008 6:54 pm

The messengers bows, opens the box, and takes a hasty step back.

There is no explosion.

Within the box, which has been packed with straw, are three things:

A longsword, in a needlessly elaborate sheath.
(An Inspiring Longsword +1 -- Power (Daily): Minor Action. Allies adjacent to you gain a power bonus to damage rolls equal to the enhancement bonus of the weapon until the end of your next turn.)

A small bag, sealed with Distaff's personal seal.
(10 Platinum pieces, so brightly polished that Artichoke can see his reflection in them.)

And a envelope, also sealed with Distaff's seal. Within this is, oddly enough, a folded piece of parchment, which bears the following writing:

Captain Artichoke:
I shall not insult you by tendering my apologies; any such that I could make would be woefully insufficient. Let me say only that the twin demons of fatigue and worry were whispering in my ear this morning, and that I, to my everlasting shame, succumbed to their blandishments.

When the captain turned his back 'pon us -- no, in truth, upon me -- I felt it such a gesture of contempt that I simply acted without conscious thought. That I attacked a man who was no threat to me, and that I struck him from behind, is a shame that I shall never entriely escape.

Even worse was my attack upon your man, which was born quite simply of abject panic. I let my guilt overwhelm me, and the scowl upon his face made him seem a veritible fury of justice.

The blade, and the coins that accompany it, are but small recompense, and I am aware of that. I shall trouble you no further, but will be forever grateful for those services you perfomed upon my behalf. If nothing else, your saving of Master Jobbernowl has left me forever in your debt.

(signed)
Henry Distaff

P.S.: I prepared Explosive Runes today.


OOC: No, that last line is not actually there. It's been a long day; permit me my (very) little jokes.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Mon Dec 08, 2008 7:25 pm

Artichoke examines the sword silently, thinking, That should come in handy, and the coins, before turning to the note. After scanning the first couple of sentences, he reads it out aloud from the beginning, for the benefit of the others in the League.

When he is done, Artichoke looks around the group and then at the goblin. "Thank you. Tell master Distaff that we accept his ... explanation and payment, and matters between us are now settled. Completely." He glances around the group again. "Right?"


Rolzup wrote:
P.S.: I prepared Explosive Runes today.
[/font]

OOC: No, that last line is not actually there. It's been a long day; permit me my (very) little jokes.

Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

As long as it's just a joke and Artichoke still has his eyebrows, I'm okay with it.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 11:07 am

When their guest is ready to leave, Odanais opens the door and casts a couple Thunderwave spells at the rock-hurling mob to clear a path for him.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:02 pm

shilsen wrote:
Tell master Distaff that we accept his ... explanation and payment, and matters between us are now settled. Completely." He glances around the group again. "Right?"
"I have no quarrel with Mr. Distaff now that I see he has quarrel with himself. He pays his debt of honor with the coin of shame."

Turning to the long-legged messenger Yatagan says, "If I should see one of your kind unjustly harmed, I shall aid them. With force of arms, if necessary. Despite the unfortunate events on the docks you should consider Sir Yatagan Fracas an ally."

... but if I see one of your kind committing an injustice, again... adds Yatagan silently ... I shall strike them down with furious anger and salty justice.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:19 pm

It seems that the party is planning on moving; when is this going to occur? Or are you waiting to hear from the Archprelate first?
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:30 pm

Rolzup wrote:
It seems that the party is planning on moving; when is this going to occur? Or are you waiting to hear from the Archprelate first?

Yes. Artichoke's plan is to have the group all ready to decamp and leave as soon as they hear from the Archprelate. And hopefully to be able to take over the heretical cult's headquarters once the PCs 'evict' them. I'll toss up an IC post about that soon.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:37 pm

Mallus wrote:
... but if I see one of your kind committing an injustice, again... adds Yatagan silently ... I shall strike them down with furious anger and salty justice.

OOC: Salty justice? That's, well, something all right.

* * * * *

Once the goblin has hurried off, Artichoke looks around at the others. "All right - here's what we need to do. Due to the recent events," he says, carefully not glancing at Yatagan or Heyoka, "Neither Scatter nor Petard are likely to be happy with us. Which means we need to get out of the Stagger and preferably stay out of whichever district Scatter ends up in charge of."

"So I propose that once we have recovered Sebastian and disposed of his followers for the Archprelate, we take possession of the building that they are currently in. It's not that I want to end up in the Shambles, but it's unlikely that Scatter will end up in charge of it, and we can treat it as a temporary situation. Especially if we do manage to capture Sebastian alive and recover the money he took, since that means Andrealphus owes us eight thousand gold." Artichoke swallows the sudden rush of saliva he experienced at the thought. "Now everyone get some rest, though we'll set watches, just in case."
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Rolzup

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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 2:28 pm

So, who would be on watch at, say, 6 AM. Or at dawn, whichever comes first.

Just idle curiousity, y'know.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:40 pm

I rolled randomly for it and got Asarlai. Since Artichoke would like to have two people on watch and we already established that the old coot and Artichoke wake up early, let's go with the two of them.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:46 pm

It's just before dawn when the sound of a resounding knock upon the front door is heard.

Artichoke, as he approaches the door, can dimly hear voices from outside....

"Sir, really, we don't have time for this. Can't we just...."

"We're going to make time, Mr. Call. Besides, this shan't take long. Standard deployment now, if you please."
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:51 pm

Crap! Now what? Weighing the tactical advantage of having everyone awake against the disadvantages inherent in them actually being present, Artichoke decides to risk waiting until he's certain there's trouble. He turns and exchanges glances with Asarlai, then sighs and waves until Asarlai looks up from his morning coffee at him.

With what little reassurance can be gained from having a crotchety and trigger-happy old warlock covering his back, Captain sighs again and opens the door, his other hand carefully hooked in his belt near the hilt of Distaff's recent gift.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:27 pm

The man at the door stands ramrod straight.

He wears a Port naval uniform, one entirely devoid of medals or badges of rank, and wears a sabre at his side. He looks to be about sixty years old, his precisely trimmed hair and beard grey, but still more than capable of cutting Artichoke in half with little or no effort.

" 'Captain' Artichoke, I presume? Stefan Petard. I'd like to have a word or two with you, if I may."

Without waiting for an answer, he steps forward, two men in uniforms similar to his following behind him. As the door closes, the pair take up a position on either side of it, staring into the middle distance, each with one hand resting on the hilt of their sword..

Petard looks around the room as he strides in, grimacing a little at the squalor. "Fine place you have here," he says with patent insincerity.

He seats himself at a table, produces an elaborate pipe made of brass and ivory, and kindles it with a flick of his finger. He takes a long draw upon, exhales a plume of faintly sulfurous smoke, and cocks an eye at Artichoke.

"So," he says, beginning to drum his fingers on the tableop, "I'm a pederast, am I?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:10 pm

Rolzup wrote:
The man at the door stands ramrod straight.

He wears a Port naval uniform, one entirely devoid of medals or badges of rank, and wears a sabre at his side. He looks to be about sixty years old, his precisely trimmed hair and beard grey, but still more than capable of cutting Artichoke in half with little or no effort.

" 'Captain' Artichoke, I presume? Stefan Petard. I'd like to have a word or two with you, if I may."

Gods above - I'm dead!

Quote :
Without waiting for an answer, he steps forward, two men in uniforms similar to his following behind him. As the door closes, the pair take up a position on either side of it, staring into the middle distance, each with one hand resting on the hilt of their sword.

Artichoke hurriedly steps backwards, saying, "Certainly, Magistrate, please come in." He makes sure both of his hands are very far away from his own sword-hilt.

Quote :
Petard looks around the room as he strides in, grimacing a little at the squalor. "Fine place you have here," he says with patent insincerity.

He seats himself at a table, produces an elaborate pipe made of brass and ivory, and kindles it with a flick of his finger. He takes a long draw upon, exhales a plume of faintly sulfurous smoke, and cocks an eye at Artichoke.

"So," he says, beginning to drum his fingers on the tableop, "I'm a pederast, am I?"

Yup, I'm definitely dead! Artichoke barely manages to keep from closing his eyes. After taking a deep breath, he says, sounding strangely calm even to himself, "One moment, Magistrate. Asarlai, would you please wake everyone and let them know Magistrate Petard is here and they should come down? Immediately."

Having bought himself a couple of extra seconds time to think, Artichoke then turns his full attention to Petard. Smiling ingratiatingly and looking slightly puzzled, he says carefully, with complete honesty, "A pederast? I'm sure I've never thought that you were one and certainly never said that you were." After a moment's hesitation, he adds, still speaking slowly and carefully, "But I did hear of some sort of commotion in the Quadrille based on obviously untrue rumors about something of the kind. Is that what this ... visit is about, Magistrate?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:24 pm

Penelope isn't shocked to hear that Petard's "visiting". If someone were to accuse her of pederasty, she'd certainly pay them a visit too. Well, that and shoot them, probably, or seriously hurt the bastards. Oh, wait. Hmm. That's not good for us.

After briefly considering just staying upstairs, Penelope decides it'd be best to come to the group's aid. The young woman smooths out the black material that covers her pajamas. She says a silent prayer to no god in particular, asks Sappho - politely, of course - to accompany her, and heads downstairs.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:16 pm

shilsen wrote:


Having bought himself a couple of extra seconds time to think, Artichoke then turns his full attention to Petard. Smiling ingratiatingly and looking slightly puzzled, he says carefully, with complete honesty, "A pederast? I'm sure I've never thought that you were one and certainly never said that you were." After a moment's hesitation, he adds, still speaking slowly and carefully, "But I did hear of some sort of commotion in the Quadrille based on obviously untrue rumors about something of the kind. Is that what this ... visit is about, Magistrate?"

"Is not this 'Yatigan Fracas' fellow in your employ? He's made quite a name for himself in the Quadrille, you know. A number of people recognized him...and of course, he is a rather...distinctive personality. He, and a number of accomplices, said some very unpleasant and completely untrue, things about me the other day, directly outside my offices."

Petard's smile sharpens. "By Old Imperial law, you realize, you are responsible for actions taken by soldiers in your employ. Even those of which you, yourself were wholly unaware. And do you know what penalty the Goetica imposed for bearing false witness? It was a legal system based largely upon irony, you know.

"So, if you wrongly accuse a man of theft, you lose your own hand. Of murder, you are yourself executed. And pederasty? The punishment for that was known as the 'High Seat.' "

He leans forward, staring directly into Artichoke's eyes. "It's impalement, standing upright, upon a very tall pike. The offender is bound, and suspended by ropes which will, ever so gradually, stretch under his weight. It's a slow, painful, terrible way to die."

He leans back again, taking another draw upon his pipe. "Happily, we live in more civilized times. Goetic Law is a guideline, to be sure, but the governor -- in his wisdom -- trusts his magistrates to apply the law in a just manner. But I have to admit...I am not altogether unfond of irony....

"But tell me, is Master Yatigan in residence at the moment?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:45 pm

Rolzup wrote:
"By Old Imperial law, you realize, you are responsible for actions taken by soldiers in your employ.
That's because the Imperium Goetia didn't comprehend the concept of personal responsibility thinks Yatagan as he briefly considers turning back up the stairs and jumping from a second story window while clad in plate mail.

But he considers this only briefly. What could possibly happen? He has the Dragon God in his heart and a god-to-be-named-later nestled in his codpiece.

Quote :
"It was a legal system based largely upon irony, you know. So, if you wrongly accuse a man of theft, you lose your own hand. Of murder, you are yourself executed. And pederasty? The punishment for that was known as the 'High Seat.' "
And they didn't comprehend irony, either.

Quote :
"But tell me, is Master Yatigan in residence at the moment?"
"It's 'Yat-ahh-gan', Magistrate" says the Dragonborn as he swings his bulk out of the stairwell. "I am here. I take full responsibility for the incident in the Quadrille." He says this in a strong, sincere voice that's about as close as dragon-kin get to contrite.

"I admit that I may have been mistaken."

OOC: in a better example of irony, Yatagan activates Astral Speech, lending his quasi-apology for accusing this man of pederasty the grace of angels.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:40 pm

Rolzup wrote:
He leans forward, staring directly into Artichoke's eyes. "It's impalement, standing upright, upon a very tall pike. The offender is bound, and suspended by ropes which will, ever so gradually, stretch under his weight. It's a slow, painful, terrible way to die."

Artichoke, who has been listening silently, partly not wishing to interrupt Petard and partly due to chewing his tongue in terror (and carefully keeping his expression vacant), simply nods. Eeeep!

Quote :
He leans back again, taking another draw upon his pipe. "Happily, we live in more civilized times. Goetic Law is a guideline, to be sure, but the governor -- in his wisdom -- trusts his magistrates to apply the law in a just manner. But I have to admit...I am not altogether unfond of irony....

"But tell me, is Master Yatigan in residence at the moment?"

Artichoke very carefully opens his mouth, considering what to say, and then...

Mallus wrote:
"It's 'Yat-ahh-gan', Magistrate" says the Dragonborn as he swings his bulk out of the stairwell. "I am here. I take full responsibility for the incident in the Quadrille." He says this in a strong, sincere voice that's about as close as dragon-kin get to contrite.

"I admit that I may have been mistaken."

Artichoke sighs. He's never been quite as happy to hear Yatagan's voice as he is at the moment. He slowly slides his chair back and away, noting that the others are following the dragonborn paladin down the stairs. Oh, this can't go well!

"Magistrate Petard," he says, "May I introduce Sir Yatagan Fracas?" Deciding that taking a little responsibility here is necessary, not only because it seems there is no way to avoid it but because it offers some small chance of channeling things to a non-explosive (and, remembering the punishment Petard just mentioned, non-anally-penetrative) end, Artichoke continues speaking. "While Yatagan is not strictly my employee, he does work under my comma..., under my guida..., make my life di...., well, we work together. And I, as I'm sure he does, apologize unreservedly for any inconvenience caused you by recent events. Is there any way my companions and I can express our regrets?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:54 pm

Odanais slinks down the stairs and casts a contemptuous glance at the uniforms of the Captain's guests. He thinks of the Naval officers who promised his parents they would track down the air pirates that kidnapped his sister. He thinks of the false hope they gave, of the outright lies they traded for generous bribes. He thinks, as he always does, of the myriad awful fates that could befall his dear sister at the cutthroats' hands and tastes a familiar bile rising in his thoat. He pours himself a brandy to cool the blood rushing to his head and readies a Sleep spell to cast at the first sign of trouble.

Then, with an emotion similar to glee, only more murderous, Odanais calls up the stairs. "Oh, Heyoka! Guess who's here?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 7:35 pm

Mallus wrote:
" 'Yat-ahh-gan', Magistrate" says the Dragonborn as he swings his bulk out of the stairwell. "I am here. I take full responsibility for the incident in the Quadrille." He says this in a strong, sincere voice that's about as close as dragon-kin get to contrite.

"I admit that I may have been mistaken."

One of the men standing by the door starts to take a step forward, but freezes at a glance from Petard.

"May? Strong words, from a poet." The Magistrate shakes his head, and sighs. "I'm getting old," he tells the room. "A decade ago, we'd have cleared a space among these tables and be duelling even now, Master 'Yat-ahh-gan'. And then, I rather suspect, you'd be finding how difficult it is to slander a man when your lungs are full of blood.

"But," he shrugs. "I am older, and perhaps even wiser. Or lazier; some days it's very difficult to tell the difference.

"I can assure you, though, sir: You are VERY much mistaken."

Petard's fingers are still drumming on the tabletop, their rhythm never varying, but now a thin streamer of smoke is rising from the wood at each point his fingers strike.

shilsen wrote:
"While Yatagan is not strictly my employee, he does work under my comma..., under my guida..., make my life di...., well, we work together. And I, as I'm sure he does, apologize unreservedly for any inconvenience caused you by recent events. Is there any way my companions and I can express our regrets?"

He exhales another cloud of smoke, which flows into the form of a perfect spiral as it ascends towards the ceiling. "On my first voyage as captain," Petard says, considering the smoke, "I was somewhat...overzealous. A common sin among new officers, as I've since learned. But I decided, one fine day, to personally investigate the ship's stores. Terribly arrogant thing to do, very much a slap in the face of the Quartermaster, but to be frank I was a little bored.

"I was somewhat appalled by what I found. The hardtack was moldy, and crawling with maggots. So I ordered it thrown overboard; 'Let the fish have a feast,' I said. The quartermaster protested, but I laughed, and told him not to worry. We were only a week away from making port, after all.

"Two months later, lost in the Deep Astral with supplies all but gone and no land in sight, the very thought of that hardtack was enough to make my mouth water.

"I swore, on that day, never to discard anything that still might have a use. Even if," he pauses, eyeing Yatagan once more, "It's. Infested. By. Vermin. Do you understand me, 'Captain' ?"
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:08 pm

Rolzup wrote:
Petard's fingers are still drumming on the tabletop, their rhythm never varying, but now a thin streamer of smoke is rising from the wood at each point his fingers strike.

Artichoke winces inwardly at the sight but keeps a bland smile on his face. I'm glad he's not really mad - or doesn't seem to be.

Quote :
"I swore, on that day, never to discard anything that still might have a use. Even if," he pauses, eyeing Yatagan once more, "It's. Infested. By. Vermin. Do you understand me, 'Captain' ?"

Artichoke takes a deep breath before speaking. Better to be completely honest with this guy. He's far too smart to try anything else. And he really has us over a barrel. "Yes, Magistrate," he says frankly, "Perfectly, I think. And I have no desire to quibble or argue with you about it, and not simply because you have us at a disadvantage. Yat..., our activities have inconvenienced you, and it is generous of you to not punish us for it. And I too think of myself as someone who sees quality and possible utility where others do not. This group, unusual and sometimes chaotic as it may be, is an example. I can honestly say we are more than the sum of our parts, and I believe we can be of use to you. More than you might think at first glance. If we can be of service in any way, I would be happy to."

gridley wrote:
Then, with an emotion similar to glee, only more murderous, Odanais calls up the stairs. "Oh, Heyoka! Guess who's here?"

Without turning around, Artichoke says, his tone flat and very serious, "If you do anything out of order, Odanais, or incite Heyoka to do so, I will ... well, stand aside and watch while the Magistrate does precisely whatever he wants to you."
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:35 pm

Rolzup wrote:
A decade ago, we'd have cleared a space among these tables and be duelling even now, Master 'Yat-ahh-gan'.
You mock my name when your own rhymes with 'retard'?

Quote :
And then, I rather suspect, you'd be finding how difficult it is to slander a man when your lungs are full of blood.
I've slandered men while spewing blood like a fountain..

Quote :
"I swore, on that day, never to discard anything that still might have a use."
"I see now you are a deeply virtuous man" says Yatagan solemnly. "Well acquainted with the virtue of using other people. Forgive me. Last night I allowed my passions to be roused to fire by the pernicious spark of rumor rather than the steady flame of truth. So now we will serve your purpose."

As you have served ours adds the Dragon Within.

Quote :
Even if," he pauses, eyeing Yatagan once more, "It's. Infested. By. Vermin. Do you understand me, 'Captain' ?"
"You've a real talent for metaphor" says Yatagan admiringly, if a tad dryly.
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PostSubject: Re: The Big Pig Riot   Fri Dec 12, 2008 12:19 pm

shilsen wrote:
"Yes, Magistrate," he says frankly, "Perfectly, I think. And I have no desire to quibble or argue with you about it, and not simply because you have us at a disadvantage. Yat..., our activities have inconvenienced you, and it is generous of you to not punish us for it. And I too think of myself as someone who sees quality and possible utility where others do not. This group, unusual and sometimes chaotic as it may be, is an example. I can honestly say we are more than the sum of our parts, and I believe we can be of use to you. More than you might think at first glance. If we can be of service in any way, I would be happy to."

"At the moment, I have no such need. But in the future?" Petard shrugs. "Who can say? There are limits on what even a magistrate may do, after all. And there have been times when I've seen a need for an...unaffiliated force, I suppose you could say?"

Mallus wrote:
"I see now you are a deeply virtuous man" says Yatagan solemnly. "Well acquainted with the virtue of using other people. Forgive me. Last night I allowed my passions to be roused to fire by the pernicious spark of rumor rather than the steady flame of truth. So now we will serve your purpose."

"I'm not entirely certain whether I should feel relieved or terrified by that prospect."

Mallus wrote:
"You've a real talent for metaphor" says Yatagan admiringly, if a tad dryly.

"Well," Petard admits, "I write a little myself."

The Magistrate pushes back from the table and stands up. "This has been interesting, certainly, but I need to restore order to this miserable district. Riots are terrible things; alas, the causes of this one seem unclear. No two people that I've spoken to have told me precisely the same story. That's all too common, of course."

He pauses on the threshold, and turns back to Artichoke to raise a single admonitory finger. "Do try to stay out of trouble, hmmm? Even my patience has its limits."
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