Episode 19 : The Port Of Rombyosus
 

In the morning the ship sets sail for Rombyosus. During the next four nights Stefan did dream. The first dream showed a statue of a lady lying on its side in a cavern amidst a pile of gold coins waiting to be rescued. The second dream showed where this cache would be located. Stefan flew towards Rombyosus, then over the island to the north east to a forest where he sees Aristotle being hunted down, it continued on through a swamp to the coast, across a mile strait to a small island. The third dream found Stefan in a rowing boat heading towards an island. He is tipped from his boat and sinks to the sea floor, he stands amongst a city populated by sharks with legs who dress in clothes and attack his person. The fourth dream saw Stefan standing on a mountain in the morning light before a statue which has a gold coin in its mouth, there is also the soft sound of hissing in the background.

This morning brought the city port of Rombyosus into view. The port was the largest we had seen upon this plane. White buildings stretched up into the surrounding hills, that is apart from one area on a hill peninsular where there stands a blackened and burnt out tower. We pull into the docks, which are a hive of activity. {He who goes unnamed} sees some four dark figures lurking in the alleys disappear from view as our ship pulls to dockside. The ship is approached by a large and jovial man, he pronounces himself to be the Harbour Master.

We are welcomed by the Harbour Master to Rombyosus. He asks our business, we respond by saying we are on a mission from God. He requests our papers, they are inspected and returned. He indicates there has been some tension in the town recently and that we should feel free to avail ourselves of all the opportunities that Rombyosus offers and spend our money freely. On questioning about the tension and the blackened tower he reports that the tower was assaulted only a few days ago by a foul witch using illegal and arcane magic's. This witch was working in combination with the menace. He also reports that Aristotle the Wiseman had been in residence but since that evil night he has not been located. General Arciopous had taken charge of the search for these fiends and placed a 300 gold bounty on their heads.

At the docks we inquire about charting a vessel to take us around the island to a place we soon discover is called "Stormy Bay.". There is a fishing vessel that is willing to take us all for a fee of 30 gold. This vessel has just come back from a fishing trip and is in the midst of unloading its cargo. We will be catching the next tide which is at dawn of the following day. We thank the skipper and head off into the town of Rombyosus. Our path takes us up to the peninsular with the blacken tower.

The burnt out tower is guarded by two soldiers. We wait as one moves away on his rounds. Stefan introduces himself to the other and after a short conversation and the exchange of two gold coins the guards focuses all his attention out to sea. We slip unnoticed into the burnt out shell of the tower. Heinz Meier kicks up some of the fallen ash. His boot scrapes something metallic. We brush the soot aside to reveal a trapdoor. We open the trapdoor and descend into the large chamber located below the tower. {He who goes unnamed} cast facades and conceals our passing through the trapdoor. Heinz Meier waits at the top. Inside we find, on the floor, a large pentagram inlaid with steel. There are steel ingots in one corner and a padlocked chest. We determine there is a ward on the chest. Wilhelm Schults leaves the chamber to return with a captive pigeon, he tosses the creature at the chest, it is enveloped in fire and snap cooked. Wilhelm Schults strikes the padlock with his warhammer and then opens the chest. Inside the chest are six tomes, written in Ancient Elvish, they are spelllists.

At this moment there is now a crowd of people outside the tower. There are also another dozen soldiers. They enter the burnt out tower and begin to search. One soldier comes across Heinz Meier, "Where are your evil magic using friends?". Heinz Meier feints ignorance and raises his arms into the air. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt moves up the ladder and watches from the conceal trapdoor. He silently steps into the courtyard. Yiros Fetta Uzo tries to cast a spell, it goes wild the magic rips about him sending him crashing from the ladder to the floor. He remains unconscious for nine hours and can't cast any further spell for three weeks. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt crosses the courtyard behind the soldier and cudgels him on the back of the skull sending him unconscious.

{He who goes unnamed} cast invisibility and fly and exits the chamber saying for the others to remain here and he will rap four times on the trapdoor when the coast is clear. Stefan also exits the chamber, slips out the back and mingles with the crowd. Heinz Meier and Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt descend into the chamber and close the trapdoor. {He who goes unnamed} brushes some more soot over the trapdoor, concealing it further, and then positions himself amongst the pigeons on the rafters. The other soldiers come into the courtyard and discover their unconscious compatriot. They awaken him but discover the people they seek have fled. Their further search of the area reveals nothing and they return to their posts. Stefan watches from the crowd, one of the locals questions him but he says he has been in town for weeks. As the crowd starts to disperse Stefan heads to one of the Inn's near the docks.

After about half an hour, {He who goes unnamed} descends from his perch and raps on the trapdoor. The trapdoor is opened and Yiros Fetta Uzo is stretchered out. The party uses the back streets to make their way back to the docks. Stefan while at the Inn hears the latest rumour being circulated about the goings on in the city. It seemed that the two evil magic using women were sighted back in town at the tower, they were searching through the tower for Aristotle's treasure but the brave city guard scared them off. Stefan also hears that there was one who was dressed as a local, but he was an obvious foreigner and was acting as the lookout for the group. If they are caught they will all be strung up.

The party make their way on board ship and stays below deck for the remainder of the day. The night passes uneventfully. Stefan did dream, he saw himself climbing an island up to the very top. At the top stood the ruins of a temple, there was a statue, the same statue as the night before. Aristotle stands in front of the statue and puts a gold coin in its mouth then pushes both the eyes. There is the grinding of stone as the statue moves aside to reveal a tunnel with steps leading down. Aristotle turns and looks at Stefan, winks and starts down the stairs. Darkness envelops Aristotle, time passes, when Stefan sees Aristotle again he is covered in black soot and his hair has been singed. The dream ends.

 

 
(c) 2000 Hammerstein Rolemaster Campaign Journal by Ross Stopford  
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