Thursday, April 20, 2017


It is Monday, April 24, as you reach Komar Limani.  The brothers will see their cousin and be happy that Enrico, Sofia and Kismet are willing to wait.  The players can crash during the afternoon, eat six lbs. of food each throughout the day and get back to a rested schedule.  This doesn't heal any hit points, but it does at least bring your sleeping around.

The brothers have to reach Igneada by the 5th of May.  It is a distance of about a hundred miles.  The brothers are willing to wait an extra day in Komar Limani if the party feels a desire to rest a day and at least gain a few hit points.

I would like to simply move the party along to Igneada.  I have no plans to take any hit points away from you and my rolls for five days of journey turn up no random encounters [some potential obstacles must remain in place].

Giving time for the roughness of the terrain and the short inconveniences of the Adrianopolis road between that town and Kallipolis, where the party would not be seen, you will arrive in Igneada on the 30th of April.  It is a cool day, with a gentle breeze and a clear sky.  Igneada is a very small village of about 20 buildings, one of which is a run-down little coffee house where the tables are outside on a veranda under a sloping roof.  It overlooks the Black Sea.  There's no ship in the very little harbor, little more than an indent of the sea, but the brothers assure you that one will be there on the 5th.

You have gotten to know the brothers very well ~ and with time, they have come to know your story now.  Their story is simple; they were born from a father who went off to sea to fight the Venetians in the late 1630s, who drowned there.  They were raised by their mother, aunt and grandfather, and they have always wished that they could go to sea like their father.  They have journeyed twice as crew for short stints - once to Chios and once to Thessalonika.  Signing permanently on board with a ship is their biggest dream.

They are Greco-Ionian in descent, with a healthy regard for the power of the Ottoman aristocracy but without the willingness to join the army.  It killed their father and they don't wish to die likewise.  They'd much rather be in business, find some way to gain a little plunder and perhaps own their own ships someday ~ one for each of them.

You can rest in Igneada until the ship arrives.  That is supposed to be in three to five days.  Is there any other information I can give until that time?


Kismet said...

[sorry a series of meetings, some unexpected]

I'm assuming this is not a market city, but is there any opportunity to purchase basic goods? (old cloth, food and other basics)

Are we camping outside of town?

Otherwise I am for (and will) resting until the ship arrives.

What does the rest of the party think? Rest and wait or rest until healed and move on?

Kismet said...

Also my food after one day of travel and one day of combat comes out to about 15 lbs. So not enough for anything prolonged without resupply.

Alexis Smolensk said...

No, the town is too small to have even a local market. There's no food for sale.

Alexis Smolensk said...

six days will cost you 24 lbs. of food each, over and above the 6 lbs. I already asked for.

But you have been moving through Thrace, so you will have had an opportunity to buy food on the way. I will sort out a price per pound.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Let's say a rock bottom price of 4 s.p. per pound, based on sheer opportunity of picking up random edibles on the way. It ought to be more, but since I'm rushing the party to the sea, I'll cut the price so it is cheap.

Kismet said...

I had accounted for the travel. And discovered afterwards that I had NOT accounted for cheese apparently. So I guess I was saving it.

Thank you for the market part.

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

Sofia buys 24 lbs. and recommends we await the ship.

"The road has been all well and good, but smelling the sea air stirs a longing for the sea. Perhaps we can pay a passage as the brothers say, or even sign on as crew if the brothers are able and willing to vouch for us."

Enrico Guerriero said...

Can Enrico buy feed for his horse?

Alexis Smolensk said...

Your horse CAN survive from cropping grass alone; it will not begin to lose muscle mass for a month at least, though in the long run the lack of meal and groats will begin to tell on the animal. However, the animal is designed to survive without such support.

Let's just say that for the time being, your horse has been able to make a meal here and there of more than just grass: a green apple here and there, herbs that are growing by the roadside, berries and heavier grasses. It's not the sort of thing you can rely on all the time, but when the DM is pushing you up the road to save time and maintain momentum, you can count on it.

Enrico Guerriero said...

Enrico does as Sofia and pays for 24 pounds of food, plus the 6 pounds we already ate.

I'm not sure how useful we would be as crew members, but apparently they are going to a battle, so perhaps we can sign on as mercenaries.

Sofia said...

(OOC: Internet touch and go where I'm at today, but will be checking in when able.)

Kismet said...

I didn't anticipate we would be signing on as anything but passengers. I did not look at this as a work opportunity but as an opportunity to have found a ship to take us to our destination without having talked to MANY captains and crew advertising that a group of our description is looking to take route X to our destination.

Kismet said...

If we do want to sign on, or have to, then I am not opposed.

I just heard no confirmation from the rest of the party this is something we WANT to do.

Till we meet the captain, Kismet will rest in town. Unless the party decides to leave earlier.

Alexis Smolensk said...

[sorry I'm late, all]

Can we get a consensus, as Kismet asks for? How do you want to sell yourselves? The brothers can tell you that the captain isn't a brave fellow, doesn't seem the type for adventure, but much more of a bean counter. He's a slight, nimble commander, who manages the ship through his brother, who is a jovial, friendly fellow. There are just five crewmembers, for the ship is only an 80-ton ketch with two masts. It is bound to have enough room for the party and Coraggio, for the right price.

Do you want to sell yourselves as passengers or mercenaries? Do any of you have sailing skill? I cannot recall. You can't ask for a crew's berth without it.

Sofia said...

Sofia has no sailing skills, so perhaps she's best suited as a passenger. The idea of signing on as crew was in keeping with Kismet's desire to level up before we meet the party and probably wasn't thought through on my part. I'm game to sign on as a merc if you guys are desirous and that's an option, but perhaps we open with looking for passage.

Kismet said...

Yeah lets book passage then offer our services AFTER the trip if we feel inclined. That way we meet and learn first.

Alexis Smolensk said...

And how do you intend to address the captain? Directly or through the brothers?

Enrico Guerriero said...

The brothers said they don't know the captain at all -- I think we're better off approaching him on our own. They're signing on as crew, and we as passengers.

Sofia said...

Yes, as Enrico says. Let us meet the captain ourselves.

Alexis Smolensk said...


Give yourselves three days of rest, with 1 hit point earned back per level for each day. Spend 2 lb. of food each per day.

The ship will appear and ~ quite literally ~ limp into the harbor. It looks in very bad condition, and not from a recent storm. Much of the exterior has accumulated pummelling and grease over a great length of time, while the ship requires a good layer of paint. The shrouds are the best part about the ship, but it is clear they've been repaired repeatedly.

The crew seems able enough as the ship comes into the small Igneada harbor. The hand at the prow can be seen apparently fixing the rope for the anchor just before pushing it over; you have some little doubt that the anchor was large enough to hold back the ship. It may have been a little small for its duty.

Kismet said...

Before meeting the captain or any crew other than those present Kismet will address the brothers.

"So your family has experience with ships? Does this one look... Like it will make it?"

I mean, I'm going to guess this is part of Alexis' ship and captain generation making for an interesting combination. And I'm guessing it will have a real effect on our trip.

Do we want to chance it?

I have deducted the food from my sheet. Tonight I'll do a blog update with my latest changes to my food inventory.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Pericles will admit that perhaps it doesn't look like the most desirable of vessels. "But our mother always said, don't shirk from an obligation. We've signed on and this is still better than Canakkale."

Sofia said...

We are not yet obligated, friends. The road or... this?

Kismet said...

Do you think there are many storms this time of year?

I guess that isn't the only potential source of issues....

But nobody would suspect someone if willingly getting in a ship like that!

I think I'm more interested in Enrico's response. But, if we need a vote maybe talking to the captain or whoever we would purchase passage from would help.

Sofia said...

We will await Enrico before we make a final decision.

When the ship is finished docking, Sofia will approach the quay.

"Ahoy! I represent a party of travellers interested in booking passage on your ship! May we speak to the captain!"

Alexis Smolensk said...

You may speak to the captain. He will come ashore from the ship by skiff, once the ship is firmly at anchor.

[I will need to take today and tomorrow off; I'm having back problems today and am finding it hard to sit in a chair, probably just the way I've slept. And I have a very, very good chance at having work by late tomorrow afternoon. It is looking good]

Enrico Guerriero said...

Let's ask the Captain what happened to the ship, what repairs he intends to make, etc. We are paying customers after all.

Alexis Smolensk said...

[The good news is that I have work in a bakery. The bad news is that it's 20 hours a week, cut into five four-hour shifts, with a 3-hr round trip commute. For minimum wage. That is how bad it is getting around here.

I'm not that happy about it; but it will serve to keep my stuff in storage for the time being without my losing it. I have other possible jobs in the wings, so I may not be at the bakery long. In any case, it is certainly a temporary situation, one that I will make the best of.

The schedule is 2pm to 6pm EST, but I'll be out of the house between 12:30 and 7:30 from Sunday to Thursday ~ the exact time that I've been using to run the campaign.

I can't say what's going to happen. I'm sure we'll be moving along slowly for awhile, until I can improve this with a much better cooking job closer to home. Don't expect too much from me this week, as I'm going to be adapting to this change. I will check the blog every morning and every evening, however, before and after the shift, keeping the game moving]

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

(OOC: Congrats Alexis and I hope this is a sign of better opportunities to come.)

Enrico, there's no reason to believe the captain would be forthright with us anyway and a chance we offend or upset him. I think we should instead rely on our own eyes and weigh the ship's appearance against the cost and expediency of passage. I'm going to read back over the above and formulate an inquiry with the captain this morning.

(OOC: Alexis, I really appreciate you easing the rules up a bit on food and market buying while moving things along. It demonstrates that while you continue to build incredible detail into your version of the game, and expect a certain level of commitment to that detail from the players,you are flexible and can read and respond to what's happening at the table. I think this is instructional for those who are reading along looking for tips on how to run a good game.)

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

Assuming Kismet and Enrico are present and can chime in if they desire.

"Captain, we have heard that your ship is bound for Kefe and are would consider taking passage if you are willing and the price is within our means. Are you in port long?"

In asking how long the ship is in port we may discover if he intends to make repairs. Judging by the overall appearance of a run-down and not recently damaged ship, though, I suspect not.

Alexis Smolensk said...

The Captain will say that he will be in port just three days, to take on water, to collect messages from one of his contacts, who operates a quarry about ten miles northwest of Igneada, before he will be bound for Kefe.

He asks who you are, how you came to be in this small town, and we can assume you have given him a sufficient story to ease his curiousity. Pericles and Anticles will begin to follow his orders, taking two small, empty barrels from the longboat and placing them upright so they can be filled with buckets.

Enrico Guerriero said...

Enrico quietly confers with his colleagues.

"Perhaps we can offer to collect these messages from him, or accompany him on the journey, in return for passage."

Kismet said...

I think this comes down to take it or leave it. Unless we want to be direct with questions, I think this is all we get.

I would venture to also guess the messages are in town waiting for him. It seems like a service the Café would have at least, or a trustworthy person in town.

If nobody else objects, Kismet will be more direct about the state of the ship.

"Has this ship made this journey before? Is this a regular route?"

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

Aside from conducting business with the captain, may we purchase more food per the rules previously provided, 4 sp per pound, or may I amend my quantity? It looks like some 30 odd hexes along the coast between Thrace and Kefe. I suppose there could be stops at markets along the way but how many and how soon? All this must be figured along with passage costs.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Kismet is correct, the messages are waiting for the Captain here in the town.

The Captain will speak with the party patiently at the cafe, between looking over his business. Yes, the ship has been continuously in operation on the Black Sea for nine years now ~ "And if I don't waste a lot of money on niggling, unimportant superficial expenses, then it is the reason I am successful merchant," the Captain will explain.

Yes, Sofia, please go ahead and continue the 4 s.p. per pound rule.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Obviously, the route wouldn't follow the coast. With a fair wind, the trip could be made in 8 to 11 days. The Captain is sailing direct to Kefe, he is planning on making no stops before reaching there. His cargo is due to be delivered on or before the 20th of May ~ but he will make more profit for every day he saves, as this will enable him to load sooner and leave sooner on his next trip after that. And while he loads, he plans to take the coastal town of Krym into his trade speculations.

The players should make up their minds definitely or not regarding whether they plan to take the ship or not, or ride on to a large port like Varna or Tomis to the north, or Constantinople to the east.

To forestall this wasting our time, the Captain will charge the party 1 g.p. per individual per day and will charge the horse 4 g.p. per day, "because of the excessive amount of room it will take up and the wear and tear on the hold."

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

I'm willing to go for 1 gp per day and will chip in a gold piece per day for Enrico's horse for a total estimated cost of 16-22 gp for Sofia. I'll be purchasing food enough to last 2 weeks and will post my updated character sheet once the party commits or comes up with another plan.

Enrico Guerriero said...

Thanks Sofia. I think we're better off with this ship, as unseaworthy as it appears to be, than with going to a bigger town and likely drawing attention to ourselves.

Assuming Kismet goes along with the plan, Enrico buys another 30 pounds of food (120 s.p.), plus the 30 pounds purchased previously (120 s.p.), and, if available, the equivalent amount of oats/hay/apples/whatever he can find that would be palatable to his horse... assuming that's also 120 s.p., he's in for 360 s.p., or 22 1/2 g.p. That plus the estimated cost of shipping himself and 3/4ths of his horse (thanks Sofia for covering the other one) puts him in at about 45 g.p.

I hope we find some plunder soon.

Kismet. said...

Kismet agrees to the sum of 11g and will pitch 11 to Enrico as well.

Though there is some apprehension about the potential for unintended delays increasing the number of days.

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

I can give you each 20 gp if that will alleviate any anxiety over traveling costs.

Kismet said...

Oh I HAVE the money. I don't want to pay for someone else screwing up somehow.

If we're feeding ourselves, and he had no plan of taking on cargo, and we stay out of the way, there's basically no cost for having us there.

That said they should have incentive to arrive earlier so it SHOULDNT be a problem.

But if this becomes a 3 hour tour I will be quite disgruntled when it comes time to pay up.

Alexis Smolensk said...

He seems to be as good as his word. The money for passage must, of course, be in advance.

I will take it as accepted that you are getting aboard the ship on the 4th, with your stores, in preparation for leaving on the 5th. I will calculate the travel of the ship this evening and it should be almost certain that you will be in Kefe tonight.

Alexis Smolensk said...

I should say that if you get a storm of the like that hit the other party last week, there might be some doubts about arriving safely. I'm not right now aware of what the weather will be, so I am blind regarding that too. Should be interesting.

Kismet said...

Yeah for a moment I debated looking general weather patterns in the region for the season, but the thought came up at work right before a meeting. So it promptly left my head.


Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...


Alexis, sounds good I'm ready to depart. Is the captain accepting 8 or 11 days passage as the upfront cost?

Offer of 20 gold stands if you need the cash, Enrico. Based on your response I assume you're good, Kismet, but let me know if that changes.

Sofia Viktorova Koleva said...

I inadvertently deleted some text above:

Kismet, check the weather but I'd probably want to do with it what I do now when I check the weather in real life... proceed with what I was going to do anyway. :-)

Kismet said...

Yeah, but if the weather patterns generally say, "frequent storms" it does seem like a poor choice to board a shitty ship.

I'm good to go.

Kismet said...

And besides, if we shipwreck maybe Alexis will take pity and we'll meet some merfolk. I'm not sure what kind of adventure it would be for Enrico's horse however.

It would be a win win maybe, Alexis would get to use more swimming rules, and we would meet underwater civilizations.

Kismet said...

"The ancient Greeks called it at one time Pontos Axeinos (the Hostile Sea), because of its storminess and lack of islands"

Also, same page said most of the storminess was in the winter. So there's that.

Alexis Smolensk said...

I've created a new post.

Kismet said...

So I'm getting a mix of both impatience to move along and including details that would bear apprehension. (Ship in disrepair)

Now I understand that we want to move along towards the 'interesting bits' but I hope Alexis understands we don't want to dive into a pit trap head first.

I also assume this is not so much selected by Alexis as either calculated or generated. Otherwise the details of the ship might be kept very light in the interest of helping us 'shuffle along'

I've read a few Lurkers Corners that suggest we've done some very stupid stuff, but at the same time am getting pressure to be less cautious. So it's a sort of mixed message.

Also, before it's said, NO. I DO NOT THINK THIS IS RAILROADING. If we the players did not want to go to our destination, or not go by ship or not go ANYWHERE but settle down and become pig farmers with a side business of an orphan fight club, I think that it would probably be an option.

An option where we might have to sit down and talk with Alexis about our change of heart, but an option none the less. (DMs do like to prepare for these things.)

I feel this is more of a, 'we both want to get to point X, let's get you there and focus on stuff that happens there.'

That said, I don't mind if the trip has a lot of adventure on the way. There was something to be said about realizing that the adventure that you set out on took a long time and you finally achieve it. (More in retrospect, at the time it didn't give the hit.)

Kismet said...

Urgh, don't mind should read, I like that there could be adventure along the way. I have a habit of using mild negatives when I'm looking for low end positives and neutrals.