Council of Thieves

Marcello's Journal - Part 1

The Journal of Marcello Marcellano

The inn was as busy as normal the evening I met her. I had seen her around several times before, always lurking on the edge of my vision, never coming too close, but staying close enough to hear me tell my tale.

I thought she was from the Thrice Damned House of Thrune, maybe an agent of the Hell Knights or some other infernal organisation coming to stop my tales, stop me making my money, and stop the rumours.

Several people had already approached me asking for help, I had to turn them down, I mean, what could I do alone against the city! Ludicrous! But they kept coming, they kept asking, and I had to keep turning them away.

I think there might have been some tales spreading of me actually helping people! I hope they don’t spread! Hells take me if they do… She has just left. She came to my room this evening! I hope no one saw her, what will they think!

∞∞∞

She says she has “work” for me, she says we have something in common and offered me dinner. Perhaps she is just a lonely heart looking for a hero to console her? I don’t know how much I can convince myself of that. She has asked to meet at four tomorrow someplace I don’t know, some tavern in the more “respectable” districts. I will see how it feels in the morning before I decide. I cannot sleep. I have tried but thoughts of her, of her offer, of her potential trap intrigue me. I can feel my heart beating harder than it has in a long time or is that just anxiety? It is the day of reckoning today and I have decided not to meet this woman. It is obviously a trap, she knew far too much about me, what I eat, what I drink. I know she has been lurking around but she knows too much, so that’s it decided. I think I will have to lay low for a while, and that means less income lest I draw attention to myself. So that’s it settled, today I shall look for a less well known inn, somewhere I am unkown I have to say I am still intrigued. I have walked for miles, there are several inns that I can go to but my thoughts return to this woman’s offer, maybe I am reading too much into it? It is a couple of hours before we are due to meet, but I might go down and just watch for a while, just to see.

∞∞∞

My god, what a day! I did not even begin to imagine that at all. It started so interestingly and My God!

I went into the tavern, there were others there but I had expected as much but it was no trap, it appeared at first sight to be just a meal and then she spoke with such passion about the city and the House of Thrune – such treason she spoke.

She talked for an age about making a difference, about an underground, a resistance wanting to make a difference, and because of my stories she had “selected” me and the others present to join them. We have “skills and a like mind” she said.

The others are a motley bunch, A Half Orc who is obviously a nature worshipper of some kind, masquerading as a barbarian to try and intimidate people and distract them from her? True nature. There is a monk, this one is definitely female, although I am yet unsure as to her order as she appears to carry a broom in lieu of any proper weapons, and then there is a Human, a fighter by appearance but quite dour and grim. I still have no idea of names however I believe the monk is named Rayne, the fighter Kratz and I am still unsure of the Half Orc’s name as she? is too guttural in speech. I about jumped half out of my skin when the door banged, but it was just a breathless child barging in babbling, and then we were moving! I have never felt so breathless, hell Knights had somehow found us and were coming and we had to flee.

∞∞∞

Gods forbid but it was through the sewer, I could barely think, my breath came shorter and I had a dread sense of foreboding, but what choice did I have, the sewers or a death sentence!

We got down to the bottom of a ladder and were given sunrods and some potions of healing, I have no idea why we needed these to get to a “safe” house but I always believe never to look a gift horse in the mouth!

We were sent off one direction whilst our host went the other to lay a false trail, it all smelled a little like a trap, I felt like bait to lead the Hell Knights away from her! The others I was with went off though so I had no chance but to go with them, Kratz did look quite handy and at the least I could use him as a shield!

The sewers were fetid and dank, much worse than I remembered, I have no idea how I managed to keep going. My chest was burning and my cough was much worse, obviously aggravated by the musty, damp air.

We got to a junction, its sides covered in slime and mildew, god knows what was floating past, there was a makeshift bridge over the conduit. I could see much better in the dark than most of the others and took about looking for the symbols we had been told would lead us to safety! That was when the skeletons came out of the murk and raked me with their claws! I fell into unconsciousness!

The other used one of the healing potions on me and I regained consciousness a little while later, I was so rough, I felt like death warmed up! An amusing thought since death warmed up was what nearly ended my life.

We had to continue and it did not take much to find the symbols, we had to go over that infernal bridge, it almost tipped me in! what amateurs leaving such an obvious sign of where to go, no wonder they needed my aid.

I have no idea how later it was when we encountered some Hell Knights, time seemed to pass so slowly, they were reasonably easily dispatched! I have no idea what the fuss is all about, although this time I was ready to aid the other with my Art and I am quite certain this made the difference!

I cannot believe how long we were down there! It seemed hours before we stumbled across some goblins. Who would have credited that there were goblins in the sewers! Obviously the government has little control over the city to allow such an infestation to continue! The goblins were dispatched even easier than the Hell Knights by another of my incantations rendering them unconscious!

Another group of Hell Knights must have heard the commotion though. As we began to move off they rounded the corner, even though I was dog tired I managed yet another incantation rendering the floor slippery and Kratz soon dispatched them, the Monk did a little damage but she does seem rather a distraction, I am sure Kratz was looking at her more than his opponents.

I have no idea what the Half Orc was doing, how one of such low intellect has survived so long confounds me!

Well, after all that and a few more goblins we finally managed to get to the safe house which is where I write my journal now! I have no idea where we are, what we are to do, where our host has gone or what is to happen…

I am a little fearful, not of what has occurred so far or even of the sewers, but I did spot some unusual symbols in the sewers of a Necromantic nature, and they may well have held some power, and may well still do. Whoever or whatever placed them concerns me, for to gain such knowledge they must be either extremely talented or extremely old, my guess is the latter……

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