Thursday, May 15, 2008

Chapter 2.5 'Murder in the Alley'

"He whom edits history controls the game"

From the Journal of Misteline

Existing Questions:

§ So which one of Captain Murder and Marius Coppercup was murdered for a reason, and which (if any) to remove a witness?
§ How did the murderer know that Sandy had seen him, or was he just extremely careful? Did she see anything, as the alley would have been extremely dark?
§ It looks extremely likely Marius Coppercup was supplying Augustus Marrow with victims for some sort of distasteful cult / sexual practice, but this is not necessarily a motive for murder.
I suspect Bartholomus Pyle as well (this last bit has been confirmed)?
§ What is the blistering? I suspect a toxin; either they spank each other with nettles (Drake says that it has to be religious or sexual), or they are exposing themselves to an unknown drug, or possibly dabbling in alchemy. Alchemy doesn't work, and Augustus appears astute enough to know this.
§ From Silas: I speculate that Marrow the banker is behind this and had Lord Beauforque do the killing but, I need to know or have to find out about the connection between the vagabond and Lord B (this last bit is a bit out of date now)?
§ Why was Marrow fobbing us off with a transparent fake? Obviously to buy time, but for what? And have we thwarted him or is some plot already underway?
§ Where else do the drains lead, and who else has used them?

The 16th Augustus and Early Morning of the 17th Augustus:

Events continued over the next few hours:

Rufus went to the Apothecary and discovered (and defeated) several more Southerners. There was also a field kitchen set up to supply a fairly substantial group.

I went through paperwork in various rooms, so long as the city guards did not interrupt me. Silas, who enjoys some fairly substantial official status, did the same.
Marius Coppercup had been supplying 'birds' to Augustus Marrow for a bit over half a year. These may have been victims, but I cannot see why these appeared on the official books.
There was also a design for a huge circular arena or church, with sunken pit in the center. Fine work which Silas recognised as the work of Albrecht di Spear. He will be sought and questioned in due course.
Silas also discovered that Augustus had prepared himself in his bedroom.

Drake took care of the woman at first, and fetched Magda, who eventually took her to the inn.

And so to bed.

"Is that even phyiscally possible"?

The 17th Augustus:

We were faced with a number of highly important developments, which changed our perspective:

Augustus Marrow and Bartholomus Pyle had sent out for medicine, and a guard had supplied it. It was poison of course, and Pyle was dead, though Marrow (probably as he was more corpulant) was still alive when we found him.
We forced him to vomit, and Drake started seeking the poison, and an antidote.

The Southern Captain accepted Captain Leander Quartermoon's word that he would be well treated, if he divulged what he knew.
There was a plot to sieze power in Takshendal, with various key people being attacked this evening. The schedule may have been abandoned or brought forward (Aurore at least had escaped and may have brought word to the other conspirators).
Captain Quartermoon immediately took the rest of the paperwork and started to disentangle the plot; identifying targets, identifying conspirators and arresting them (or at least preventing them from leaving the city).

There was then a bout of confusing mayhem.
Rufus siezed a tramp for no readily discernable reason.
Captain Dogmoss was seen communicating with Tomas Fennel, who then forced his way into the kitchen of the 'Eel and Spindle' inn. There was an altercation with (I believe) Magda. Tomas was captured by Captain Quartermoon.
Captain Dogmoss ran away (from Rufus or Silas) but was brought down by an arrow from Drake (this may have been an enormous mistake).
Surviving prisoners were separated for interrogation.

"You kneel behind him and I'll push..."

I composed a letter to Adriana, to be taken by the first messenger that I can find.

For the eyes of Adriana Arabella Wormpole only, this being an urgent message from Misteline, on the morning of 17th Augustus 1622.

We have uncovered a revolutionary conspiracy, which Captain Leander Quartermoon is investigating at this very moment.
Tonight, many leading persons of Takshendal were to be assassinated by various agents including Southern mercenaries and cultists, one of whom is connected with the Association of Boltsworth.
We have, we believe, cut off the head of the conspiracy, but many agents remain at large.
Some may continue with their plans, others may have been warned and seek to flee, or to strike while they can.

You are in danger, my Lady.

I strongly advise that your family guards take appropriate action immediately.

This matter may be closely linked to the deaths of Marius Coppercup and Captain Murder, but we do not, as I write, understand the details.

Affixed with my seal [which is bloody complicated, artistic, cunning, and with built-in puzzles that few (actually, by no one except myself) appreciate] Misteline.

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All photo's courtesy of Oleg Zacharov

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