Prologue: Gates of Stone
CHAPTER FOUR:

Independence Day
Cuthberta Eoselunday

From the travelling journals of Frankie

Monkeys, Dinosaurs, and Angels = Oh My

So the group arrived at the cable car station, and picked up some tickets. Domaldi bought me a ticket since I have no gold. I will have to ask him if he genuinely likes to help, or if this is due to his mental conditioning from being a religious zealot.

We found out that the wait was going to be for thirty minutes, so we decided to take a walk around. As Tiberio setup to perform on a street corner, I stopped to admire the fine craftsmanship of the gnome-made cable cars. Nimbus stayed with Tiberio, so Domaldi, Arek, and myself, went into the Billy Goat and Broadsword tavern.

Once we got inside, Arek and Domaldi asked me to see if I could find out anything concerning Irontusk. I said I would try. Found out nada, so the three of us ventured outside to watch the eclipse. This is when things started to get nuts. Thalazaar collapsed and looked sick, along with some others' in the crowd. I felt a "crack" go off, weird!

I tried to spot the cause of the disturbance, and felt it was magical in nature. Whoever was perpetrating a magical assault on this grand of scale had a big set of gears! Then a roaring and explosion went off!

We spotted a wagon nearby, and quickly used it for cover as the crowd went nuts. As I felt myself somewhat safe, another influx of crowd came over from the Steel Ward, followed by a monstrous roar.

Overhead two winged creatures flew above the cable barn and began to fight. I told my companions, "It's time to go!"

To make things worse, one of the creature's tossed some weird magical ball that caused a big chunk to go missing from the cable barn, taking along essential equipment with it! I envisioned the diagrams of what just went poof, and realized that the flying beings could be responsible for killing eight HUNDRED people if I didn't do something about it!

I jumped off the wagon and began to run towards the cable barn. I could already here the metal cables ripping apart, sounding the imminent death of eight hundred stranded cable car riders. I noticed out of the corner of my eye a gigantic lizard monster show up behind a group of organized people being led by yet another winged being. I just hoped I could save those people before I got ate, blasted, or who knows what!

Domaldi escorted me to the building, and I flashed my engineering papers at the cable barn police so they wouldn't club me. Apparently the battles waging about them proved enough of a distraction to get me by.

I entered the building and had to put the bodies of many innocent dead gnomes to the back of my mind. Domaldi asked how he could be of help, and I asked him to watch my back while I whirled some tools into action from my belt holsters.

I worked fast, and methodical. The solution was evident to me: I had to get the safe guards in place and improvise around the damage. Thalazaar called out to me, and I was so wrapped up in the repair that I could not relax to warn him away. One slip and my death would be a small drop in the bucket compared to those who would be falling to their deaths.

I managed to get the safeguards in place in record time! I went out the door and greeted Thalazaar, thankful that he didn't step into the cable barn to help me. He could have been torn apart in a second's notice by the loose cables.

We left the building on the south side and saw Corporal Picket show up with other watch members to combat the monsters in the street. Thalazaar and I began to help out with our x-bows. By this time most of the fighting had died down. Arek and Domaldi looked hurt, but were in one piece. There was also a LARGE gold lizard with wings, but it just turned out to be a dragon (I tried to keep a low profile so the dragon would not eat me).

As I was looking over the dragon, Grist and Woden walked up and introduced their dragon friend to us. What followed was kind of a blur, since all the death around me was beginning to sink in. I would be needing a good cry to come down from this one!

We began to talk, and Woden seemed to not really have time to listen about our need to help Plake. He began to go on about our group going into the Monotheocratic religious kingdom of zealots. I decided that we DID have the time to talk about Plake. Woden looked like he was pulling teeth, but Grist smiled and said he would help out.

(Mental note: build a thank-you tinker gift for Grist.)

I also mentioned that I was going to stop by Peppershot since I was super worried about my village and the encroaching withering plague.

The group was happy that Plake was going to be rescued, so in parting Woden had me help out with the wounds done to the dragon. The dragon Mnemonium turned out to be a real nice sentient and a good conversationalist!

My cousin Soubelknicker would be sooo jealous. His zoogoly (Editor's Note: zoology - gnomes in Frankie's family refer to zoology as "zoogoly", mostly due to it's non-technical nature) studies would have benefited greatly!

Next!
Woden's Font of Information

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