It’s getting late in the afternoon, the sun starting to dip into the Chesepeake Sea. Which means the docks in Glowtown are starting to get busy with the fishing boats returning from the runs. One ship that’s pulling in though, is //not// a fishing boat. This one has a dragon head on the prow and is ‘loaded for bear’ as some might say – cannons and weapons etc. To the practiced eye, these aren’t just ‘normal’ weapons but techno-wizard wrought one and the sailors that beautiful ship has a look about them.
Not onboard today is the owner, Nix – a smallish redhead woman or her partners, Slaine being one of them and Auren, a tall sandy haired man. It’s just the ships captain and her crew and their unloading salvage. A lot of it and by the looks of it, some of that might Golden Age salvage at that.
In the water, a overly large Dolphin moves slowly, circling the boat and snorting water occassionally.
He’s still learning his way around the city. And somehow, invariably, he has gotten lost. Naturally. Not like John isn’t smart or anything, but his brain is not made for reading a map. Maps make about as much sense as that one thing Kaji had said… Calculus? Whatever that thingie is. Hands in his gray cloak pockets today, he is down by the docks and looking about, frowning to himself, even as he tries to figure out how to get back to Gran’s.
Then he see’s… the boat. A war ship. Intrigued, he makes his way closer towards where it’s going to dock without being too obvious about it, his head slightly downcast even as he makes a meandering path like a moth drawn to a flame. He isn’t quite sure /what/ those weapons are, but they look fascinating. And surely the vessel would have a couple hours work. Of some sort. Because he needs to earn more so that he can save up for his own stuff in the future. But today, he has no bag, only his black trousers and gray cloak.
Back into the swing of things. Truthfully Varos has slipped right back into his more mundane line of work quite easily, and it’s like he’s never left. It’s been relatively quiet save for the expected of complaints from Anyn and Sens, but the shop’s been closed for the day and with clean-up being the only thing to handle, Varos has been excused, and out here he’s come.
It’s a bit early to hit his favorite pubs, and he’s not quite anxious for a meal, and while it’s still chilly, the sea breeze is fresh so long as you don’t get a whiff right off the fishing boats, and at least he can admire the colors of the skies as the sun begins to sink into the horizon. And there are plenty of other things to see as well, even late in the day.
The visored clothier stands in his gray cloak, covering equally gray attire with a high collar, his arms resting over the battered wooden railing overlooking the waters, adjacent to one of the many docks nearby. His pewter mask with its amethyst-slits inset in a pattern that may as well resemble several eyes glints slightly in the waning red light with the tilt of his head as he turns it in the direction of the curious looking ship and its equally curious accompaniment.
The aroma from the docks is appealing. It always is. Of course, it competes with the stench from Glowtown with the stench from the vats at the tanneries. Now //those// really do smell.
As John draws nearer the ship, the crew swings a net with some it’s cargo out over the gunwhales to the dock, over the balcony right where Varos is standing. “Hey, you there. Lend a hand…” A stout fellow grunts at John as he tries to move barrels and cases. “There’s twenty copper cash in it for an hours work …”
As the net swings there’s a groan and one of the cables snaps, the precious cargo slipping precariously to right where Varos is standing – it might be saved, but if not, Varos is going to be squished.
“It falls….” People might have trouble working out where that clicking voice comes from, but the Dolphin leaps and … glows blue. The water around it seems to draw in and start to form into … something but still that net swings.
A simple nod is all the stout fellow gets from John, even as he glances at the net that starts swinging and possibly falling, before he frowns and tilts his head, bringing up those nimble fingers, tracing several runes in the air as he mumbles under his breath. Frankly, he looks like an idiot, even if its obvious that he is doing /some/ form of magic.
Then, all of a sudden, a stream of water spurts up from the bay and underneath the net, attaching to the side of the docks, and freezes as it spiral’s up and underneath the net, forming a small spire with four hooks formed of ice to help ‘cradle’ the net, even as John slowly lowers his fingers and stares at the ice as it finishes freezing. The hooks are six inches thick, and the base of the spire is about four feet thick, probably would be a bitch to destroy as well, before he starts maneuvering over towards where it could fall. Because he trusts his magic, and the strength of the spell is rather… surprising for a young man, in someways.
Varos pulls his hood over his head, his grin somewhat strained as he watches and feels the sweep of the heavy load so close by. He eases away from the railing, neck craned up as though to visually follow the movement of the cargo, because that’s what’s expected of anyone in such a position, isn’t it?
“…well that doesn’t sound good,” he mutters, his grin fading as he hears the snapping of cables, and he can see from an interesting perspective below as to just where the load has been compromised, even as that speaker calls out in warning. And then it blurs, part of his Sight enveloped in blue light that’s distracting, but he grounds himself with the view from the others present, and he’s seen enough to at least add in some effort of his own, even as he scrambles back.
He needs make no action as he gives a mental ‘nudge’ to keep the cargo more balanced just as water erupts towards it to catch it in ice. Well, at least he doesn’t have to fake his breath of relief, although Varos still moves clear of it all, ice or no. “Well! That could have been unpleasant! My thanks!” he calls.
“Watch out!” The portly fellow as Johns spout of water forms an icy platform, just as Varos manages to nudge the net out further so it’s not over him on the balcony.
Along with Johns construct, another spire of water begins to rise only to drop back into the bat with a resounding //slap//. The Dolphin leaps again and this time, transform into a dark skinned polynesian looking woman who’s bare feet land on the dock as she pads over. Her skin has a slightly metallic sheen to it.
She looks tired and worn and lacerations cover her body – the visible parts of it and there’s //a lot// visible at the moment, even though she’s dressed. “Get it to the ground before we lose it…” she grunts tiredly. “Well done and my thanks. It’s not often I find one as adept at using water as myself.”
Slowly the net is lowered to the ground and the contents removed.
There is a shrug towards Varos, as if its not a problem, but he remains silent as he glances to Malie. his eyes trail over her momentarily, before he frowns and tilts his head, and then says softly “Thank you…” Before he turns to go and help on the ship, because money. However, if one pays enough attention to his expression, one /might/ notice the faintest of blushes from the compliment and thanks, before he moves over towards the stout fellow, asking softly in that lyrical and slightly country voice of his, What you need me to do?”
There is a shrug towards Varos, as if its not a problem, but he remains silent as he glances to Malie. his eyes trail over her momentarily, before he frowns and tilts his head, and then says softly “Thank you…” Before he turns to go and help on the ship, because money. However, if one pays enough attention to his expression, one /might/ notice the faintest of blushes from the compliment and thanks, before he moves over towards the stout fellow, asking softly in that lyrical and slightly country voice of his, “What you need me to do?”
Ah, //that// explains a bit. Varos ‘glances’ over at the dolphin-turned-woman as she sets foot upon the dock now that the more immediate complications have passed. He makes a show of watching as the net is shifted to clear ground before turning his head back towards the two below. A corner of his lips ticks up in a bit of a smile, and in turn the clothier shrugs. It’s not as though //he’d// done anything to avert the near crisis, after all, or at least, nothing no one need know about. Besides, he’d been more concerned about being potentially crushed. After everything else, it would certainly be almost embarrassing!
He turns and starts to head back along one of the winding streets. Perhaps that’s a sign of having enough fresh air for now.
“Malie!” The Captain of the ship comes down the gangpank and stalks over to the woman with the metallic sheen to her skin. “Is the cargo intact?” Not is everyone else alright, just the cargo.
“Relax, Captain.” The woman speaks with an Islander accent “It is fine, thanks to this young man here and that gentleman I believe.” She gestures to the retreating Varos. The blush is noticed but dismissed – the woman can’t be much older than John himself, and yet she’d called him ‘young man’.
“I think you need to speak to Malie and the Captain, first.” the portly fellow mutters. “I think you just earned more than twenty copper cash.”
“Yes, yes indeed.” the Captain, a tall well built fellow with skin that shows the effect of the weather states. “Miss Nix wouldn’t be forgiving if her treasures were damaged.”
The darkskinned woman steps forward, an amused look on her face “I’m Malie Lehua and you have my thanks for what you did. How are you called?”
There’s some chests in that net. Sealed and waterproofed. Some of the haul is definitely Golden Age related, but some of it looks to be from the Dark Ages. One of the chests looks a lot like a chest Johns mentor might have had. The one that held books in it.
“John.” Is his simple response, even as he see’s the chest. his gaze looks on it for just a moment, before he turns his attention to the darkskinned woman, before putting his hands in his pockets, John’s head tilting a touch before he says quietly “I didn’t do much, Miss Malie. I just figured, well… Twenty copper for an hours work, that would probably count as me ‘working’ a touch, wouldn’t it?.. And this is Vesper, a city full of magic workers. I’m sure many others could of done what I did.” Then he just… Shrugs, like its no big deal, even as he cocks an eyebrow and gets the faintest of smirks, before saying softly “Although, might I ask about what your haul was like? Anything… Interesting?” his tone curious even as he tries to look ‘friendly’… It probably comes across a touch awkwardly, like he doesn’t smile much.
“They might have, John, but you’re the one who did something.” comes the woman reply as she shifts, easing her shoulder a little. Not only is she covered in cuts – some of the quite deep – but bruises as well. Seems like something went down and recently. “How’s the ship, Captain? What do I tell Nix?”
“Ships fine, Malie. You did well keeping that squid thing away so we could shoot it. Ain’t never seen the likes in my time.” The Captain shakes his head and claps John on the shoulder. “Come and see me when you’re done speaking to her and we’ll get you paid. For now, I’ve a ship to unload.”
“I don’t know what we found. A Leyline storm set off an underwater tremor and we found a section of the sunken city that we couldn’t get to before. This is what we found…” What a storage unit from the Dark Ages is doing there is anyone’s guess, but the Chesepeake has been explored many times. “… I haven’t had time to inventory it. We were too busy fighting off one of the creatures the Leyline drew forth.” She follows his eyes to the chest that looks different. “Of interest to you is it?”
Frowning, John is silent for a moment, giving the captain a slight nod even as he seems to ponder for a moment, before saying quietly “I don’t know yet. Depends on whats in the chest more then anything…” he trails off, before turning his gaze back to Malie, looking her over slowly and quietly. After a moments thought, he tilts his head before asking quietly “mind if I ask what this is about a squid… Thing? And how much damage it did?” He doesn’t seem overly conceerned, although he does seem to wonder what /did/ happen, even as he takes a step or two towards the railing, leaning back against it before taking out something that looks like a handrolled cigarette, before lighting it up with an ancient zippo lighter, not that many people know what a zippo is.
“So the answer is yes…” Malie smirks and lifts her chin to one of the other workers. They take the chest from the haul and inspect it before handing it to the young man. “It’s yours and you can sell whatever you find inside.” It’s a lovely piece, sturdily made but completely waterproof, even if there are runes covering it.
John is going to have to work out how to open it. Perhaps a necromancer and a spider professor can help with that.
“Mmmm? The squid thing? When Leylines storm, particularly underwater they call forth all manner of beasts and constructs. This was one of them. We just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or the right place at the wrong time, actually. It attacked, I held it off enough to let the ship loose some of its rounds on it. We didn’t kill it, just ran it off. I’ll be going back out shortly to find it and make sure it doesn’t prey on ships any further.” Malie looks out into the bay and sighs. “Damage? What you see…” she displays her arms. Either she’s very tough or it wasn’t … then again, he just saw her change from a Dolphin to a woman.
Nodding quietly, he takes the chest… And probably set s it down a moment after getting it, for the moment, even as he looks over the chest. he /might/ get the help of others, if he can’t figure out how to open it himself. The runes are probably a hint, though. John does, however, hesitating for a second before offering quietly “If you want some help with that, I could come along. if only to satisfy my curiosity…” he trails off, studying the wounds for a moment, but doesn’t offer to help mend the wounds, instead just taking a long drag from the faintly floral smelling smoke, before glancing at the guns around the ship, before asking softly “how hard do those guns hit, exactly?”
“Nix’ll have your hide Malie, for giving away part of her hoard. ”
“I’ll deal with Nix and tell her it was that or a heavy fine for damage to property. Besides this is coming out of my cut.” Malie shrugs at John. “Part of my deal for using the ship is that salvage split with the owner.” Nix apparently who has a… hoard.
“Is it the squid you want to chase? Or the place where we found all this?” She’s teasing a bit. Despite the shadows in her eyes, Malie seems… playful.
There is the slightest of crooked grins before he responds softly “Can’t I do both?” He seems a touch amused that Malie actually had to ask that question. Of course John’s interested in both, even as he nods slowly at the bit about how the salvage is split, before he tilts his head and says softly “So, you game to see about chasing this squid at some point?” At least he has a touch of confidence, even as he bends down to pick up the chest again. Because if Nix’ll be mad about the chest ‘mysteriously disappearing’, then he should probably vamoose with his hardly earned goods
“Perhaps” Malie answers. “I’m going after it once I’ve been seen to. Auren should be around Vesper somewhere. He might come with me too.”
The problem is going to be that she’ll travel as a dolphin and John,well she doubts he’s aquatic.
“I’ll be here before the sun rises in the morning. If you’re here, you can come.” She’ll work out something. Giving the man a smile and a wave, Malie turns and heads towards Market Street. Perhaps looking for… Auren.
Nodding, John is a man of many, many tricks. With a slight smile, he mutters something and flicks his fingers several times before the chest… Vanishes. Maybe invisible, maybe transported elsewhere, who can tell without looking? Then, he goes to see about the rest of the work helping unload, to earn a bit more coin