Redbadge's Solo Skull and Shackles (IC) - Page 3

1. Jhiv takes a few minutes to look around. He walks over to the cupboard with the silver behind it. Noticing that Kroop is asleep he pockets the silver, then tries to wake Kroop up.

•

• Fishguts awakens with a start. Blubbering a bit, and almost letting his bottle slip, he asks, "Who are you?"

• "Hello, I'm the new ships mate."

• Despite the cook's sorry condition, he stands up to meet you anyways, setting his bottle down with a thud in one of the few empty spaces available on the table. Right now, it appears that he is drunk, but not insensibly so. You might call it "sober enough."

He starts pulling down pots and pans, grabbing cooking utensils, and making room for the day's work, all while talking you through what will amount to your second job.

"Basically, you'll be helpin' me prepare meals everyday. We make new food every afternoon, which the crew'll eat after the 'bloody hour'. There'll be leftovers, as well, there always is. We use those for breakfast and lunch the next day. Some days, I may ask you to acquire some more food, fishin' 'n such.

Fishguts looks towards you, "Well that's it. Ready to get started?"

Cooking
You assist Kroop in preparing the day's meal, requiring a Profession (cooking) or intelligence check. If Kroop is sober enough, you gain a +10 bonus on the roll (this replaces the +3 total bonus that you can get from the kitchen and cookbook). Otherwise, you must make do by yourself. How well you roll determines how long the task will take and how well the food is prepared:
Code:
```Cooking Result  Time                 Food Quality
5 or less       Until "Bloody Hour"  Very Poor
6 to 10         3d4+1 hours          Poor
11 to 15        2d4+1 hours          Average
16 to 20        2d4 hours            Good
20 or higher    1d4+1 hours          Very Good```
After you know your Cooking results, consult the chart and make a roll to determine how long you spent cooking. Whether or not you finish entirely, the food will be served during the "bloody hour" and the food quality automatically counts as two steps lower than your roll would have normally qualified for.

• Jhiv gets started helping Fishguts cook the meal. While they prepare the meal Jhiv tries to get a feel for what Fishguts is like as a person and what the main characters on the ship are like.

• You get an excellent feel for the cook right away, as he is a friendly old salt at heart who likes to talk almost as much as he likes to drink. (OOC: When interacting with the cook while cooking with him, you gain a bonus to your Diplomacy roll equal to the number of hours the task takes).

Gather Information (Ambrose "Fishguts" Kroop)
Ambrose Kroop is a large, some would say fat, man, weighing well over 200 pounds and standing only 5 feet tall. He exudes an air of neglect, perhaps even despair, from the bushy tufts of black hair behind his ears, to his rotting teeth, to the stains on his filthy apron. He walks with a wallowing waddle, particularly when drunk, but is capable of surprising acts of strength. Kroop talks with a thick Shackles accent, which some people find hard to follow. He’s had so many lashes that his back is like tanned leather, and he claims to not even feel the bite of the lash anymore. After 44 years in the school of hard knocks, Kroop is a man who clearly cares little for himself or what people think of him. Nevertheless, he is at heart a kind man, and does his best to protect his cook’s mate from punishments brought on by mistakes made by either of them.

Kroop is the ship’s cook, nicknamed “Fishguts”by the crew, though whether this refers to the contents of his soups or the stains on his apron is unclear. His job is to bring the ship’s biscuits and leftovers on deck at dawn and noon for the crew, and prepare and serve the evening meal. Kroop is a drunkard, but not constantly inebriated, and is a potential ally for those who take time to talk with him. His unpredictability makes him a frustrating but ultimately useful friend. Like his friend Cut-Throat Grok, Kroop is from the school of hard knocks, but where Grok has become tough, Kroop has capitulated in the face of endless discipline and violence. In general, Kroop likes to cook and drink rum. He is usually insensibly drunk in his quarters during the evening, rarely venturing onto deck after serving the evening meal. Friends of Kroop have an easier time of influencing the quartermaster Cut-Throat Grok, and he'll lend any friends any equipment from the galley, though stealing it without his permission is easy enough.

For now, you also glean the following information:
DC 5: “Fishguts” might once have been a famous chef at that fancy place in Port Peril, but now all he cooks is fishgut stew. He’s so pickled in rum now, bilgewater is all he can make.
DC 10: Remember the last cook’s mate? Nobody does—only when he disappeared. Just up and vanished, that one, like he was spirited away, or maybe dropped in a pot...
DC 15: Kroop was so drunk once that he bet his life in a game with the captain, and now he’s little more than Harrigan’s slave.

A couple more days with the cook will probably garner more information and an even more accurate picture of Fishguts Kroop.
Ding!
Kroop has moved up two attitude steps, from indifferent to helpful!
Reward
+150 XP

At some point during this initial discussion, Kroop makes the following point, “It’s poison, this ship, but don’t let anyone hear you say it aloud. The hull listens, see, and the cap’n hears it all. Poison the Wormwood is, though, rotten to the core. You’ll not meet a more nasty, sour piece of work than Cap’n Harrigan in all your days at sea, and his crew’s the same, ’specially the first mate, Mr. Plugg. Vicious little sod, he is. He’d take his own mother’s liver to the butcher to make pies with, he would. But they leave me alone, mostly. They know I can’t ’arm ’em.”

The meal is finished well before Bloody Hour, and you still have about 4 hours left until you have to report to the mainmast for your punishment.

• With his task complete, Jhiv attempts to determine the layout of the ship. Since he has no time left, Jhiv heads to the deck for the Bloody Hour.

• Wealday, 18 Desnus, 4712 AR (17:25:00)
The Wormwood, Unknown Waters, Off the Coast of Garund, Inner Sea Region, Golarion

Over the course of a few hours stroll, you get a good feel for the layout of the ship.

The Wormwood

A1 - Foredeck
A2 - Poop Deck
A3 - Main Deck
A4 - Officer's Quarters - Locked at night, Unlocked during the day
A4a - Access through A4
A4b - Access through A4
A5 - Captain's Cabin - Locked
A5a - Access through A5
A5b - Access through A5
A6 - Middle Hold
A7 - Quartermaster/Cook's Cabin
A8 - Galley
A9 - Quartermaster's Store
A10 - Lower Hold/Crew Berths
A11 - Bilges

Unfortunately for you, Bloody Hour starts in the next 20 minutes.

 GM: Anything before the lashings begin?

•  OOC: Note to self - prepare abstemiousness to use for the cooking. Alternatively prepare Purify Food and Drink and/or Remove Sickness. Edit: I might be pressed for time trying to get everything done in the campaign by myself, (gathering information, making friends and influencing people, getting supplies, and so on). Would it be possible to use those NPC's we made to get some of the work done?

• Wealday, 18 Desnus, 4712 AR (17:42:00), Bloody Hour
Main Deck, The Wormwood, Unknown Waters, Off the Coast of Garund, Inner Sea Region, Golarion

You arrive on deck early enough, before the crowd has really started to form. The sun is still an hour or so from setting, and the crew is beginning to wind down the day's tasks while thinking about the evening's entertainments. You have just enough time to fully explore the main deck while you await your punishment.

Main Deck, The Wormwood
The ship’s main deck runs between the foredeck and poop deck. The mainmast rises from the center of the deck, extending 60 feet into the air and topped by a crow’s nest. Rigging connects the mainmast to the ship’s other masts and can be crossed with DC 10 Acrobatics or Climb checks. Several strands of thick rope are secured to the foot of the mainmast for use as a whipping post. An Escape Artist check (DC 20 + the binder’s CMB) is required to escape the bonds. The ship’s clock, a macabre brass-and-copper object depicting worms writhing through whale corpses, hangs from the mast above the whipping post. Not only does the clock keep time, but its bell strikes at dawn and an hour-to-dusk to signal the beginning and the end of the workday.

Two 10-foot-square hatches sit in the deck fore and aft of the mainmast. These hatches are thick wooden grilles (hardness 5, hp 30, DC 25 Strength check to lift) and open onto the middle hold (area A6) 15 feet below. At the fore of the ship, two doors lead into the officers’ quarters (area A4), while two doors aft lead to the captain’s quarters (area A5). A large wooden box bound in iron sits just beneath the bridge. This sweatbox, used to torment sailors, has just enough room to hold one Medium creature (and can be altered to confine a Small creature). It is locked with a good lock (Disable Device DC 30); Captain Harrigan and Mr. Plugg have the keys.

A small jolly boat (same statistics as a rowboat) sits on the deck next to the port rail. It has two sets of oars but no mast. Although designed to carry four Medium passengers, the jolly boat can fit six at a push.
At exactly 5:42 PM by the ship clock, long, deep gongs begin to echo out across the ship, signaling the start of the bloody hour. The crew files into a semicircle around the mast and clock, though few of the officers appear. Master Scourge and Mister Plugg aren't wont to miss their own show, however, and Scourge addresses the audience from the base of the mast while Plugg looks on from the poop deck.

"Welcome again, ladies and gents. Today, we've two shows for ye... Miss Quinn and her new pet fish! For insubordinance and general misconduct, I assign three lashes each." Seeing Sandara standing in the back with her pipe in her mouth, her arms crossed, and a look of impassivity on her face, the disciplinarian motions her forward. "Ladies first!"

Scourge has two pirates use the whipping post ropes to secure her to the mast, wrapping her arms around and tying them together, as well as securing her waist by wrapping more thick strands of rope around her and the mast and tying them off. Once the cleric is helpless, Scourge walks up and grabs the back of her bodice and leather corset where it is laced up the back and rips at the laces until they come undone. He rolls back the cloth and leather to fully expose her back and shoulders. A few of the male pirates cheer.

Scourge steps back and uncoils his whip to administer the punishment.
*Crack* "ONE!" cries the crowd.
*Crack* "TWO!" cries the crowd.
*Crack* "THREE!" cries the crowd, reaching a climatic frenzy. Sandara does not flinch once, instead continuing to smoke on the pipe she keeps in her mouth even while being whipped. Three long, red welts are left across her back. As the pirates untie her and help her down, Quinn crosses one arm across her bosom to keep her bodice from falling down and exposing her. As she retreats to lean against the the bulwark, Scourge looks to you, a sinister look on his face.

"Let's see how fish skin holds up to th' lash!" The crowd continues to cheer as you are led by two pirates up to the mainmast to undergo the same ritual Sandara Quinn just endured. Scourge begins to pull out a dagger, "Ye can pull off yer shirt afore ye're tied up there, or I can cut it once ye are bound."

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