Chapter 1a: Unloading

Fresse looks anoyed. Damn women. They are always trouble! How are we supposed to pay the porters without silver?. Still, they need to move the items faster, since he does not trust the weather.

Fresse gets one of the carters when they return and asks him to fetch some friends of his so to make speedier work. He will remain with the supplies (he does not trust anything not breaking if he is not around), so Trond and the other sailor (he still has not learnt his name) can go explore a little bit the settlement. He asks him to look out for the women and make back with their pocket silver so he can pay the porters without having to open the sack with Quercus' silver. Quercus has never been discrete in his storing of wealth despite it having caused problems before. He keeps the sack with the silver (camouflaged as a cooking utensils bag) well in hand in any case.

Grumbling a little bit he sits down with Stanislaw and Miroslav. Miroslav passes him a bag of sour wine and he drinks a little bit. After a while the strong wine heats him slightly, but the chill air still cuts through his linen clothes and he does not socialize much, even if he is not disrespectful either. He tends to brood by himself, though. The sailors have known similar behaviours, and tend to leave him alone, even if they would have appreciated some more active conversation.

The porters return after a while with 4 more healthy guys and two more carts. With the help of the sailors and Fresse they keep loading and unloading the pile, and after a while their efforts start to tell, since the piles of stuff start to go down.

Fearghas, the older tawny-bearded Scotsman sailor mutters something at Fresse in his own language. Yulia and bitches are two of the words that sounds familiar though. Trond nods at Fresse and walks towards the town with Fearghas right behind him still muttering and looking just as sour as he usually is.
Half an hour later they come back and Trond brings out a small leather purse that he got from Yulia. Looks like the girls are enjoying this place already. Men flocking around them. He grins looking at Fresse and wishing Hjalmar was around to give him the same teasing look as well. He tosses the purse at Fresse. Here, payment for the carters.

Fresse isn't it better you go up to the warehouse and organize things there? Bring Stanislaw and Mikolaj with you as help. Fearghas and I stay here and help the carters load. Then when we are done with everything, Stan and Mik you come back here and watch the boats today. Right? Trond says. He addresses Fresse with a question but sounds more commanding at the others.

Fresse nods. Better to control what those porters are doing for sure. He is liking this Trond guy. Leaving the exposed pier for the more secluded alleys of the town is also something he appreciates. Sounds good. Ok guys, let's go. He, Stanislaw and Mikolaj leave for the warehouse.

(remember that anyone can play any grog :slight_smile:)

As I mentioned, the magi arrive to the warehouse early in the afternoon, while transport of the supplies is still ongoing. With the help of additional carts and men, the transport should be finished before afternoon's end.

What are you doing now?

Who wants to go check the water, beach and cliff beneath the tree? Japik will swim there as a dolphin but he would like some company so maybe we should take the rowing boat with us? Quercus would be needed if we are to check if the magic aura reaches all the way down to the water.
The more social types of our grogs should find out more information about the village people on the Oberland and lord Knud without visiting him in person yet.
The sailors should keep working on the cargo until it's all done.

Pytheas looks at the busy grogs, decide that they have the unloading well in hand, and turns to his fellow magi:

"I'd like to take the skiff and go check the cliffs from the sea. Is anyone interested in coming with me ?"

After speaking with Fresse and seeing that everything is going fine, Quercus follows Halancar to the boat. Myself. A perspective form the sea might help us to determine the exact extent of the aura.

I'm coming with you but I will swim myself as soon as we have left the port. Japik says.

Perhaps Fresse, Alice and Benarec could go up and talk to the villagers in the meantime, after the supplies are done of course.

I cannot see any of the women around except Alruna, and Fresse tells me they went to the market square a while ago. I assume they are already at it.

Prochorus frowns.

It was a sheer, weather worn cliff face when I last looked.

While you make your acquaintances, I will go see if Dietlinde has any spoils of interest; I understand she has had the better part of the day to plunder this settlement. She tends to favor babbles to baubles, so perhaps there is something we can use.

Alice walks through the street and arrives at the town square. It is much larger than bois de haillot. But what strikes her is the amount of diverse mechants that can be seen. This is a true market town! Walking across the lanes with her companions she watches wide eyed all the merchandise. Se has only seen so many types of textiles, spices, foodstuffs and wares when she has briefly visited the major towns in flanders and Bravant with Triamore's cellarer. Even Namur pales in comparison despite being of a similar size. She has to be nudged more than once by Dietlinde when she stops too long looking at local merchandise.

Despite the variety of wares presented at the market, the women soon realize that most of what is offered here is for the benefit of villagers who come here to shop for goods that they cannot produce themselves, as well as goods they come to sell to those who live in Meden. As such, there are few high-quality items in sight, although some merchants present samplers of such, with the understanding that they can be obtained from their shop should a buyer present herself.

Still, the variety is impressive. Foodstuffs abound, particularly those that come from the sea. Fresh fish is abundant and varied in size and color. Bread is also sold, although the price looks steep to the continental women. When asked about this, the baker explains that most the the island's grain is imported from the mainland and thus more expensive. There is a bit of cheese for sale, most of it apparently made by people living on the plateau. Dried seal meat, furs and skins. Spices from the mainland and abroad, but also some that are from the island -- from various plants that grow in the salt marshes to the north of the island, as well as some forms of seaweed. And if bread seemed expensive, salt is much less so.

Fabric is again mostly imported, although there seems to be some rather nice wools made locally as well. Most of it comes from England, but there is also linen from the mainland, but also some cotton and even silk. Leathers and furs are quite present, not only local seal but from a wide variety of nordic animals -- elk, wolf, bear and what one merchant claims is sea lion.

(Anything in particular the women are looking for?)

(I was just introducing the scene, so nothing in particular. I assume that Dietlinde will be hunting for gossip, though :mrgreen: Waiting for the other women to post something before retaking Alice).

Yulia stops at a stand with various tools, like hammers, knives etc. She picks up a knife and looks closer at it. She looks up at the young boy on the other side of the stand. "Good one this! Is your father blacksmith?" she asks in her loud booming voice. The boy turn his head down to look at the ground for a short moment and sadness seem to move across his face briefly but then he composes himself No it's my uncle. He is the best blacksmith on the island.
"I'm very sorry for your father." she says with some compassion."Where does your uncle have his smithy, maybe I will visit him some day? I know a bit about this trade as well but it would be interesting to exchange some experiences." she chuckles.
The boy points up along one of the streets but he looks a little disappointed when Yulia puts down the knife and walks away without buying anything.

She finds Alice and Dietlinde looking at some textiles. "Oh that is lovely." She pushes herself in between them and grabs the silky fabric Alice was holding up. "Where is this from?"

Dietlinde gives Yulia an unenthusiastic smile.

Eilert here was just telling us how - what was that lordling's name again, hmm? - anyway, how tolls and taxes are killing her. Such a dastardly thing, isn't it!

Don't worry though, Eilert dearest. Just between you and me, I will be staying on the island with my master from now on, and will be managing the garments of the entire household. I'll be sure to keep you in mind, my friend! She gives the woman a wink and a hearty laugh.

Alices let's Yulia take the robe. She has already evaluated it at being of a lower quality than what Eilert was telling them. Alice puts him in his mental list of "people that try to scam you slightly if they can". There were quite a lot of them around. She assumes that it is because they are obviously new to the place. The first impression of the marketplace fading, she is evaluating it with a more critical eye now. it can certainly provide all the needs of the covenant, but maybe the magi would do well to provide some of the supplies themselves. She already knows about the abilities of his master, and having seen the prices on wood and bread she thinks they can get something better if the master plays along.

She has also attracted the unwanted attention of a few lads in town, but she has more or less ignored their advances, even if this has boosted her morale and made her giggle.

EDIT: Changed a few "he" for the correct "She" and a few more small corrections.


((You should habe asked me before introducing the additional grog. This is way too soon, since he was not part of the initial resources purchased. All I can say is that this initial contact should result in nothing. It will be months before he actually becomes linked to the covenant.))

((Ah sorry Arthur. I just got feeling and wrote something but since no one has replied to it I can delete the post.))

((That's ok, I can understand the eagerness. :slight_smile: It's just that this is the first day that the group has arrived, and they'll have much on their plate already. Adding that facet right away, when the magi have made no efforts to secure a contact in the merchanting business, just adds noise to an already complex picture. I already have an idea of how he will get introduced. Your post might still have worked, just to establish his presence on the island, but no more at this time. So the women may have seen him, and perhaps even talked to him, but at that point he had nothing significant to offer to them.))