Geometric Archipelago:Gangs of Octagon Island/Chapter 08
Chapter Eight: Interrogation, Acquisition, and The New Guy
Kanzel and Eric's Conversation
<Interstate-5> ---BEGIN SESSION---
<Interstate-5> Eric nods. "Take it... I have no use for it... though you might be better served just letting the police have it at this point."
<Kanzel> "I was planning on letting it go back to Circle, but there are a few things that interest me.."
<Interstate-5> "That also works... look, can you just get me the money, and let me go?"
Kanzel holds up the wallet. "Few things first. I want your keycard. I also want to know what was in these boxes. Especially that tiny one."
<Interstate-5> "Most of it is just uniforms. That's legitimate cargo, cover for the rest of it. Two boxes of greatswords, one of magical rods that I... mislabeled, as being greatswords. That box is very valuable... and the small box is emeralds stolen from various... other things. They're not that important, just emeralds."
<Kanzel> "Hmm.. which box is that? the one with the rods."
<Kanzel> "And what rods are in there?"
<Interstate-5> "The one she pulled that rod out of," Eric identifies the W box in question.
<Interstate-5> "1 Splendor, 1 Withering, 3 Flame Extinguishing, 1 metal detector, and 4 Cancellation. 10 total, but the one lady already pulled out the Withering, I think."
Kanzel nods. "Interesting. Thank you." She holds out the wallet. "Now just your keycard."
<Interstate-5> "I'll sell it for 100 gold."
<Kanzel> "I'm almost positive there's more in this wallet than that. If you still want it that is, of course, I could just take your keycard... One way or another."
<Interstate-5> "The materials are worth far more than the 5000 payment that was offered."
<Kanzel> "That's true. But I intend to make sure these get back to where they belong."
<Interstate-5> "It occurs to me that you'll have a harder time explaining where you got the materials without the card. You have money, lady, I can tell. I've screwed this up enough, can you blame me for trying to get every penny I can out of this?"
<Kanzel> "I don't blame you for that at all. but then, you're going to need to run either way. And I think five thousand gold will go further than one hundred."
<Interstate-5> "5000 for the materials, 100 for the keycard."
Kanzel chuckles. "The way I'm looking at it, you don't have the five thousand gold, and you don't have the materials. What are you planning to do, struggle this cart all the way out of town? and what then?"
<Interstate-5> "If you're not going to give me the cash, then there's not much I can do about it regardless. I told you what I want. You can do what you want. Honor is yours. I don't have a choice regardless."
Kanzel sighs "Look, I don't have the hundred gold to give you, or I would. that's why I was making threats. I have no problem giving you this five-thousand gold, because you would have gotten it if they didn't try to kill you. But you've got to meet me halfway here."
<Interstate-5> Eric sighs. "Okay, I guess I misjudged. Fine, I'll take the 5000 and one of the emeralds from Yolanda's box instead."
Kanzel grabs the box and rifles through the box, holding up one of the bigger emeralds "Will this do?"
<Interstate-5> Eric nods. "Yeah, I can do that," he says, grabbing his keycard and holding it out.
Kanzel puts the bow away, and holds out the emerald and wallet with one hand, grabbing the keycard firmly with the other, but not pulling it away from eric.
<Interstate-5> Eric grabs the wallet and emerald and lets go of the keycard. "Thanks. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna head off this Island... maybe go to an Island that has a limited Circle Industries presence..."
<Kanzel> "Good luck. I hope they don't find you."
<Kanzel> "One last thing. What were all these for?"
<Interstate-5> "I didn't ask questions, but it's not like it's any secret that Green Team is making an offensive. That's what the swords and rods are for. The clothes were just cover cargo, they could have just bought them if they wanted to."
<Kanzel> "Interesting. How many swords and uniforms are in the boxes?"
<Interstate-5> "Can't you count them yourself?" Eric asks, annoyed. "But I think the clothing boxes are 20 sets, and the sword boxes contain 12 each."
<Interstate-5> "Anything else, or can I go now?"
<Kanzel> "Where or who were these gems stolen from?"
<Interstate-5> "Circle Industries has a small mining operation on the other side of the island. The gems were supposed to be integrated into weapons, but they were diverted from the assembly line. Not by me, I don't know who, I was just told they were there and to deliver them."
<Kanzel> "Those uniforms... what are they? disguises? and what of?"
<Interstate-5> "They're just spare Green uniforms. They were mainly there to provide legitimacy to the cargo report. They don't really care about them, though they'll take them."
<Kanzel> "Okay. I think that's all I needed to know. Sorry to keep you when you need to be running as far as possible."
<Interstate-5> "Yeah," Eric commented, starting his run without further comment.
Kanzel calls after him "Oh wait. I just thought of something."
<Interstate-5> Given that Kanzel tried to whisper, Eric is far gone.
Kanzel watches him run away anyway. She turns and goes through the Mistress's body.
<Interstate-5> Kanzel searches Yolanda's body, and notices her Studded Leather armor and a key. She also notices the rods in her hands, taken from the box. You cross-check with the box and notice that one's a Cancellation rod, and the other's the metal detector.
Kanzel pockets the key, puts all nine rods and the armor in her bag. she them pries open a uniform box and nabs five uniforms, shoving those in her bag too.
Kanzel goes into the building she saw Ascii and Brellius enter.
<Interstate-5> ---END PARTY SPLIT---
Ascii and Brellius's conversation with the Squadrom Leader
<mainstreet> ---BEGIN SESSION---
<mainstreet> The woman groans a bit but is not roused. Unconsciousness from wounds will do that to you, you know.
<Capn_Ascii> With Brellius keeping the woman gagged (for now), Ascii works his healing magic. Literally, in this case, wriggling his fingers and making a plea to some dark Lovecraftian horror to infuse her with tainted life force. ...er, I mean, praying to his perfectly normal D&D god to heal her. Eh heh heh.
<mainstreet> She groans a few more times, then her eyes flutter open.
<mainstreet> She looks at the scene in front of her, horrified.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii puts a finger to his lips, trying to not look scary (quite a feat for his face). "Shhh. Stay calm, and we can all walk away from this in one piece."
<mainstreet> She opens her eyes wider and struggles.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii frowns. "That's not staying calm. That's the opposite of staying calm. Stop doing that."
<mainstreet> She glares at you.
<Brellius> "...should I cover her eyes, too?"
<Capn_Ascii> "Wouldn't do any good. She'd probably imagine worse anyway." He turns back to her. "Now, listen carefully. We want to ask you a few questions. If you cooperate, you won't be harmed."
<mainstreet> The lady calms down a bit at this and raises an eyebrow.
<Capn_Ascii> "If, however, you try to call for help or escape, we will do terrible things to you." He grins evilly. "*Horrible* things."
<mainstreet> The lady glares and gets a hard look at that.
<Brellius> "Should I let her talk now?"
Capn_Ascii grins. "Just kidding. But we will beat you unconcious again if you try anything, so don't, okay? I don't like hitting women. Or children. Or cute animals." He nods. "Let her go, but be ready to clock her if she so much as twitches wrong."
Brellius unclamps her, but keeps his hands at the ready
<mainstreet> She cleans her mouth with her tongue, then glares. "What do you want? Why were you even following me in the first place?"
<Capn_Ascii> "We're...ah, looking into certain clandestine activities you and your group of friends have been up to. Sneaking stuff around after dark, trying to kill people, stuff like that." He makes it clear he's referring to what just went down. "So what's the dealie-o, hmm?"
<mainstreet> "It's called 'acquisition', and I do... did... what the Exalted Mistress orders. But... she died... and so... my life is pretty much over anyway. I was responsible for her safety. The other Mistresses will want me dead for such a failure... that's why I ran... trying to leave, get out of Moondale."
<Capn_Ascii> "What's a Mistress?"
<mainstreet> "Exalted Mistress... the highest rank in the Green Team, right underneath the Leader... the Leader chooses the Mistresses, but the Mistresses choose the Leader, at the same time... a nice balance. The Mistresses make all the major tactical and strategic decisions, and have absolute command. The title is almost every Green woman's goal. Including mine... was mine."
<Capn_Ascii> "How many of them are we talking here?"
<mainstreet> The lady thinks. "Five... uh... well, I guess four now. Exalted Mistress Yolanda... forgive me... she'd been an Exalted Mistress for... what, fifteen years? Perhaps even twenty..."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii suddenly feels mildly guilty for Kanzel having murdered her. Ah, well. "From the sound of things, the Greens are matriarchal?"
<mainstreet> The lady nods and gets a slightly evil-looking grin on her face. "Males are usually either personal property or cannon fodder to us."
<Capn_Ascii> "The whole gang? That wouldn't be a recent phenomenon, would it?"
<mainstreet> "No, it wouldn't. It's been Green Team tradition as far back as there's been a Green Team. You will find other organizations... taking the opposite approach. And we're not the only one that feels this way."
<Capn_Ascii> "Just curious. It sounds like something our friend would do, but she hasn't been here that long."
<mainstreet> "Friend? Green Team doesn't do 'friends'. And I have no idea what you're talking about."
<Capn_Ascii> "Heh heh. Well, see, it's like this. We're old friends of one of your members, and we're looking to get in touch with her. Maybe find out a bit about what she's been up to lately."
<mainstreet> "You're barking up the wrong tree if you think I can help you. I'm a marked woman now. I'm going to get out of here as soon as you let me go."
<mainstreet> "If you ever do."
<Capn_Ascii> "Well, not help us get *in*, obviously. We just want as much info as we can get before we go marching up to their leader waving our weapons and calling for blood."
<mainstreet> She blinks. "That doesn't sound like a 'friend' to me."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yeah, I meant it ironically. Long story short, Eralia's a bitch and we're going to beat the tar out of her."
<mainstreet> The lady whistles. "Whoo... the Leader herself... you don't think small, do you?"
<Capn_Ascii> "We don't know when to quit."
<mainstreet> "I'm not helping you. I may be marked, but I joined this team for a reason, and... Yolanda's rambling notwithstanding, we're actually... DOING something now. Moreso than we were, and it's all thanks to her."
<mainstreet> "Well, she'd been a Mistress long before our Leader was even in the organization... apparently she didn't like the rapid changes Madam Eralia was making... I tuned it out a fair bit, I'll admit, but I know she liked it better before Madam Eralia arrived... though, Yolanda may well have been the one to succeed Madam Katana herself had Eralia not been around to take power so rapidly..."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yeah, how *did* Eralia get to be in charge so fast? Isn't there some sort of senority thing in place?"
<mainstreet> "It's secret election among, and by, the Exalted Mistresses. So it's easy to see how *that* step was obtained. Two of the other Mistresses arrived at the same time as she did, and they're completely in her pocket. How she managed to force herself and the other two into the Mistress position... I do not know, but there were a lot of suspicious deaths at that level to create the openings. How
<mainstreet> they were chosen, I also do not know. I am not privy to the high politics of the Mistresses."
<Capn_Ascii> "Ah. So basically, dirty politics. What sort of changes was she putting in place that Yolanda didn't like?"
<mainstreet> "Well, the new hyperagression. I like it, though. Also, she just had a problem with the way Madam Eralia conducted herself in general... apparently treating the Mistresses like servants themselves at times. At least, she complained of that. I never saw that for myself, however."
<Capn_Ascii> "Why *is* Eralia trying to take over everything? Won't that upset the quasi-legal situation the gangs have with the cops?"
<mainstreet> "Oh, yeah... that, I think... is why Mistress Yolanda didn't approve of such matters... I think Eralia thinks she can take over the entire city this way, and eventually get the cops in her pocket as well."
<Brellius> "That's pretty gutsy."
<Capn_Ascii> "Knowing her, she probably can."
<mainstreet> "I don't know her well. I just know we're stronger, and better than we were before."
<Brellius> "Good thing we're here, then."
<Capn_Ascii> "Do the other Mistresses feel the same as Yolanda?"
<mainstreet> "I don't know. Mistresses don't typically communicate with us ordinary folk, unless we're being given orders. I know Yolanda well because my squadron was responsible for her protection. Each Mistress has a different squadron to protect them, though that's not all we do."
Kanzel wanders in, closing the door behind her.
<Capn_Ascii> "Heya. Where've you been?"
<mainstreet> "Can I go run away now?"
<Kanzel> "Oh you know. Dealing with people."
<Capn_Ascii> "Not yet." Ascii produces the small package he found on her. "What's this?"
<mainstreet> "Do you lack the intelligence to open and read?"
<Capn_Ascii> "No, but it's rude to open other peoples' mail. Plus it might be cursed. I thought I'd check with you first."
<mainstreet> "It's not cursed."
<mainstreet> "And I'm pretty sure assault and kidnapping are ruder."
<Brellius> "Don't forget battery."
<mainstreet> "That's soooo cliche."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii turns to the others. "Alright, cover me. I'm goin' in." And with that, he gingerly examines the package.
<mainstreet> The package opens, and Ascii finds a bunch of papers.
<mainstreet> The papers seem to be timetables and schedules, including a map of a small section of a city -- looks like a small portion of invasion plans, at least, the part for the squadron of the lady tied up in front of you.
<Capn_Ascii> "Oooh, looks neat. What was the overall plan for this invasion anyway?"
<mainstreet> "Weren't you listening? I took orders from Mistress Yolanda. I'm not aware of the orders she gave to other Squadrons, or others given by other Mistresses."
<Capn_Ascii> "Hmm. Yeah, I guess they wouldn't let you guys in on everything."
<Capn_Ascii> "Who are they attacking, at least?"
<mainstreet> "We're attacking both sides. I know that much. Red to our west, Yellow to our east, and I know perfectly well that if Eralia manages to eliminate them, she'll find another one to set her sights on."
<Capn_Ascii> "Both at once? Wow, that's ballsy."
<mainstreet> "Can I go now?"
<Capn_Ascii> "I suppose. I may as well return your gear; you're probably going to need them."
<mainstreet> "That would be nice. Especially my armor and sword. They've been good to me for a long time."
<mainstreet> The lady sits and waits for her shackles to be removed.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii pockets the documents along with the rod, then leaves the room. He returns moments later. "Your stuff is just outside the door. Take it, try not to die out there, and for pete's sake, don't rat us out. That'd be a really dick move." He unlocks the shackles and re-pockets them.
<mainstreet> "Only if I get caught," she comments. "Which I will try not to," she comments, getting up and walking out.
Kanzel follows her out, standing next to the cart.
<mainstreet> She puts on her armor, grabs her sword, and starts walking away.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii motions for the others and follows behind her, though far enough away that she can't immediately turn around and stab him should the thought cross her mind.
<mainstreet> She keeps walking... and walking...
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii waits for her to walk out of sight, then turns his attention to the cart. "So, what've you got here, Kanzel?"
<Kanzel> "twenty-four greatswords and ninety-five green gang costumes."
Kanzel grabs a greatsword, examines it and shoves it into her bag.
<Kanzel> "there were a bunch of rods in that one box,"
Kanzel relays all the rest she found out.
<Capn_Ascii> "Alright, so. We've got a box of captured supplies. The Greens are going to be looking for this stuff. On the one hand, it could be useful as a bargaining chip. But on the other, they're going to be pissed if they find out what we did."
<Brellius> "I don't think they'd be pleased with us even without this."
<Capn_Ascii> "I meant more about us assassinating one of their leaders. That's who she is." He nudges the body with his foot. "Speaking of which, we need to get her and this stuff somewhere hidden, ASAP."
<mainstreet> You all suddenly realized you're being watched.
<mainstreet> There's a figure standing in the shadows a block and a half away who has his/her eyes on you.
<Capn_Ascii> "...before someone...sees...us...aw, crap."
<Brellius> "This again?"
<Brellius> "They're not gonna have a chance to get away this time..."
mainstreet scratches out 'and a half'
Brellius hustles over to the observer
<mainstreet> As you get closer, you can see him a bit more clearly. He’s a hooded figure, dressed in a deep, dark blue – a risky color in this part of town, especially with the bright blue shoulders. There’s also a white cat trailing him.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii raises his shield and waits for the inevitable arrow.
Kanzel follows Brellius
Jarn looks up, and one of his eyes glimmers in the darkness
<Jarn> "So I see you've found me. Well done," he says as he walks out of the shadows, a wide smile covering his face, "I've some deals to figure out with you three." His hands are out, palms-up to show he has no weapon. The cat follows closely, meowing softly.
<Capn_Ascii> "Uh huh. You already shot at us once, why should we even give you time to talk now?"
<Jarn> "What reason have I to miss shooting you with an arrow? If I wanted to harm you, I would. And I could." His smile widens even more, and you can see his eyes glow faintly. The cat meows louder now, as if warning the figure.
<Jarn> "Besides, I can guarantee you I'm not here to harm you. I'm here to join you, and with my luck, I will."
<Brellius> "Eh, you might think twice if you saw me with all my crazy powers going."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yeah, even I'm leery about having you around, Brell."
<Brellius> "You'd miss my unique charm."
<Brellius> "And by that, I mean my ability to smash heads in."
<Jarn> "Your level of power is irrelevant, mine is the one to be in question, as I would hope it would be the main problem in this event of me joining your team." The cat meows again, louder this time.
<Jarn> "And another thing..." he reaches into his cloak and pulls out a small crossbow, "I can't shoot arrows with this thing."
<Brellius> "...is your cat hungry or something? It's making a lot of noise."
<Jarn> The cat hisses at Brellius, "No, we share thinking power, and thus I influence her emotions and actions sometimes. Her hostility is not mine, though."
<Capn_Ascii> "Then why is she upset?"
<Jarn> "She says she doesn't like his tone. She likes you, the heroic type, if that changes anything."
<Capn_Ascii> "You mean, it doesn't like Brellius." He turns to Brellius. "Dude, stop upsetting the cat. You're going to get the PETA guys after us again."
<Kanzel> "That was a nightmare..."
<Brellius> "It's not my fault if animals and small children find me scary..."
<Jarn> "If I may, I'd like to make my point again: I'd like to join your team of adventurers. You would find me useful."
<Jarn> "Allow me to prove my worth." He traces a circle in the air with his hands, strange blue symbols blowing out of his palms to for the circle. The circle expands to allow a semi-opaque creature to crawl out and look around. The creature opens its large maw to shout at Brellius, but before it does, he unwinds the circle by moving his hands in the opposite direction than before and the beats fades off. "Will that do?"
<Capn_Ascii> "So what? I can do that. And besides, I meant, why do you want to join *us*?"
<Jarn> "O-oh, well, I like adventures." His stance takes a bit of a curve into tiredness.
<Jarn> "I thought you were asking why I'd be useful... heh."
<Capn_Ascii> "Well, that too. Are you a sorcerer?"
<Jarn> "A damn good one, I'd say."
<Jarn> "Perhaps it would be best if I allowed you all time to think on such a decision. I am well aware it's about your bed-time, and I shouldn't take up any more of your precious time for your beauty sleep. Shall we speak in the morning?"
<Capn_Ascii> "Hmm. I suppose so. Tell you what, find us in the morning and we'll let you know."
<Jarn> "I shall keep my eyes on all of you, don't worry." He walks back into the shadows and disappears.
<Capn_Ascii> "Wow. That was...mysterious."
Kanzel blinks. "Yeah.. Let's get back to the cart."
<Capn_Ascii> "Oh, hey, wait!" Ascii calls out to the shadows. "What was your name?"
<Jarn> You hear a whisper from all directions, "Jarn Halar"
<Capn_Ascii> "Ah. K thnx."
<mainstreet> ---END SESSION---