Book Two: The Lone and Level Land
CHAPTER TWO:
House Golgadin

Berrona Umberdakarday

An account by Frankie

Frankie took a moment to gather her thoughts as her comrades took a breather in her uncle's airship's meeting area. She opened up a new journal, having handed off her old ones to her uncle for safekeeping.

Quite a few things had happened since she arrived in Cauldron.

Things were going as good as they usually did. Tiberio was getting ready to do a show with his old band, and the rest of the group was about their own business with no worry. Strange, since she couldn't wait to get into the Monotheocratic Order. The impending threat of an earth weird was enough to motivate her; she didn't want that thing smashing apart her uncle's airship trying to kill her. At least one good thing had come of her watching over Calibre: the thrall unit had been removed. Another mystery lurked inside of Calibre, but perhaps when she had the time to learn more technomancy schemas, she could discern what the ring portended. Or she could always ask Thalazar or her uncle. Hmmm, maybe her uncle.

Thalazar kept getting to be more interesting all the time. After he related his background, and having talked with her uncle about keeping an open mind, she had a new perspective on things.

Religion included itself in her ponderings. After speaking with Keratone, she had found out the religion of the Clockworks was racial specific. Kind of ironic that she wanted to see what was out there, and found that none of it was too her liking. Of course, this could have something to do with St Cuthbert manipulating the members of her group, and inadvertantly causing Domaldi's death in the giantish dungeon. Not that she was blaming that on the god, but he was certainly the one that instigated all of this. On the other side of the coin, chances are if I had not been tossed into this scrap-pile, I would have been killed by some unknown killer in the dark for the secrets she had shared with Prof Corrie back in Riot's Gate.

She thought of "Inquisitor Quinn". Not too happy with him, throwing secrets around that get people killed. Now my uncle bears this burden, this technology which could add more misery to a world laden with it's share. No, if she had to decide on a religion, she'd believe in what drove her: gnomivation balanced with ethical conduct.

A familiar kobold intruded on her thoughts, "The master has been kidnapped!". The familiar anger seemed to be missing at this intrusion into her thoughts, and gathered with the rest of her fellows to discover what has transpired.

It seems that fate had more in store for them in Cauldron: Tiberio had discovered Thalazar's erstwhile kobold companion near the manor he was going to be performing at. He decided to follow two thugs, and this led to a deadly confrontation with them. He returned to us, and we set out as his band's support team. I grabbed a few colourful concoctions that would make flashy and colourful explosions "just in case". After all, EVERY band worth their squeezy-easy needed an FXpert.

They arrived at the manor, and Tiberio sweet talked our way past the gate guards. They made it into the kitchen area, and soon were going down a secret entrance into the depths. Frankie soon found herself challenged by all manner of nefarious traps. It was good thing Baron Mastof Golgadin had not employed any Kantakerans in their creation or she would have been in trouble disabling them! As it was, she managed to do ok. Even the kobold showed some respect for her abilities. She smiled inwardly and looked forward to sharing this tale with her uncle and his friends.They finally managed to work their way to the Baron's study, which contained enough incriminating documents to put him away for good. They found quite a few other items, but unfortunately no Thalazar. Proceeding past this area, they came upon two conjoined doors which had a unique opening mechanism. She took care of these, and the next room was full of undead. The group began to combat them, Moradin's might punishing them as Arek asked his god for help. No one suffered any injury, and she managed to help by grabbing some
alchemist fire to toss into the mass.

Time was beginning to run out until Tiberio had to perform. With a sense of urgency we moved onwards, into a large laboratory. A strange construct of flesh with a clockwork's arm greeted us. Frankie recognized the schema it was designed on; whoever made this obviously needed to be educated in how to make these things properly. Taking aim, the purple "x" of her sighting ray locked upon the joining mechanisms of the poorly made construct and she let loose. The halfling's magic encapsulated each x-bow bolt with a slight purple cocoon that exploded in small magical bursts in the construct as each bolt struck home. "I think I can get used to blending magic with technology," she thought to herself.

Unfortunately, this fight resulted in some serious injuries. Even Nimbus was injured, but healed the wounds away in front of her eyes. She still wondered what just happened back at that temple to him.Looking about the room, she saw a trapped clockwork on a lab table. The kobold had tried to work him loose, and had almost succeeded. She released the last parts, and after a quick inspection realized that the bumbling Baron had unleashed his ignorance on this poor clockwork. It was also missing an arm. She went over to the construct and removed the arm hastily, making sure it suffered no damage. Her comrades went about their tasks while she revived the poor clockwork. Unsuprisingly the clockwork recognized her for what she was, and began to beg her for more repairs. Ah, to have the time for that. I haven't even begun to learn my techomagic schemas yet. No time.

She apologized and promised to fix up the clockwork at a later time, which identified himself as Ts'Elf. Her comrades had searched the area while she was busy, and soon discovered the area Thalazar was being held in. Another quick battle led to him being freed.

After being checked over, we soon discovered that he had been subjected to large quantities of Dream. It seems there is no end to the evil people will inflict on others, Frankie pondered.

Having had enough of what the Baron was doing here, she offered to safely blow the lab and study up. Arek backed her on this, with the other members of the group asking to do some last minute looting. Frankie had to admit that if Arek had not been a priest, he would have made a great engineer. He thanked her for the compliment, but with that familiar smile stated with calm certainty that his path was with Mauradin. Frankie returned his smile, and for a small moment envied Arek's devotion. What would it have been like for her, if she had found faith early on?

Clearing these thoughts from her head, she began to organize the supplies and Arek and her set about planting explosives all about the lab. Double checking their work, they made their way to the study. The group that had went ahead were slightly irritated, but quickly made speed back down the passage with no complaint as Arek and her started laying about the explosives in the study. She chuckled, Can't say their gears are calibrated for friction.

Finishing up in the study, the group joined up and two big questions were asked:
 1) How long were the fuses set for?
 2) Which path would they take to get away?

It turned out the answers were: long enough, and back into the city.

As they ran down the tunnel to the Baron's soap warehouse, the explosion went off and caused a nice seismic shake-up. That one was for you Professor Corie!

They ran into a set of giant skeletons. The new clockwork ran in and got itself smashed up a bit. Frankie made a mental note to have "the talk" with it.

After another short jaunt, the group came upon a warehouse. Nimbus spent a few moments and convinced every yard worker to find another job. She stiffled a laugh, since the yard workers obviously weren't noticing that the man addressing them was covered in rags with various broken limbs.

Cauldron greeted their them again as they made their way back to her uncle. Another stranger was waiting for them. Frankie only hoped that they didn't hold any more wrenches ready to toss into the gear works; that was one thing this group didn't need.

Next!
Thalazzar Dreams

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