"Maybe you're right, Kehlysch, but it looks like there's some other stuff down here! I think that's some leather armor, and over there, that could be a mice. Even some coins and an axe! Can we get that light, Karn, and maybe we can get a good look."
Despite her words, Louly doesn't move; she seems loathe to descend the ladder into the filth below.
Karn makes quick work of the mission, and he returns with two hooded lanterns. I told her that we needed these to find the bolts and daggers that she lent us.. He shrugs. Kind of true, anyway.
You can take 20 on perception checks if you want go take your time, but Plugg may wonder what's taking so long. If there for an hour or more, the heat will begin to affect you.
Kehlysch steps down into the murky water and begins retrieving the newly discovered items, directed by Louly (presumedly) if he misses something. He passes them back up to his compatriots. He also looks for the thrown daggers, any unbroken crossbow bolts, and finally, retrieves rat corpses as evidence the job has been completed. He will move to retrieve anything spotted by someone out of reach or on the ladder, as well.
Perception: 1d20 ⇒ 5
"Good find Lass!" Bosun Moon proclaims, impressed again by Louly's skill. "Them items will serve us well."
"Aye, Gregor, ol' Grok said the fiddle belonged to the halfling wench, she musta meant Rosie. The lass seems fond of you to say the least, maybe you outta tell her you got a surprise coming her way."
"Karn, you've a more glib tongue than even the Moon, let us take the rat carcasses back to Plugg and tell him the job was finished with skill and the others are cleaning themselves up after time in the bilges. It will be mostly the truth and if he asks any questions we can give him a bit of the run around. Louly, you're keeping the one dagger right?"
A quick but efficient survey of the Bilges yields:
Suit of leather armor
Finely crafted handaxe
3 heavy maces
There are more boxes strewn about, and more hands make light work. Anyone else up for a bit of a search?
Karn looks up at Moon with a nod. What are you going to do in the mean time? He doesn't seem like the most patient man, so I'm not certain how long I can give you.
"Ugh," Louly gulps, holding her nose as she drops down into the bilges.
"Let's see what we can find," she adds, her voice sounding strangely nasal.
"Tell him we want to make sure there's nothing else down here waiting to bite people," she calls to Karn.
Karn's diplomacy to buy time1d20 + 7 ⇒ (9) + 7 = 16
Karn leaves to try and put off Mister Plugg and Scourge for a time, though he looks none too happy about it. In the several minutes between his departure and return, you manage to come up with a few additional items:
Vial of what looks like clear water
One tanglefoot bag
After nearly half an hour, he returns, his expression one of concern. Plugg's on a tear now; he wants you topside...says there's work to be finished and he's not for laziness.
"We need to hide this gear, return our borrowed weapons, and present the rats we found down here to the ones topside." Kehlysch begins gathering rat corpses by their tails.
He looks at the pile of gear. "Does anyone have a suggestion for stowing those things?"
"Bendrauss has a good plan, stash them items in a barrel. Then let's return the goods we borrowed and get the fiddle back to Rosie. After that we can take the rat carcasses to ol' Plugg for proof we've done our job before getting back to work on our regular daily tasks."
Bosun Moon looks around the group for other ideas or suggestions?
"Save the fiddle for later, but otherwise it sounds like a good idea," Louly says. Though considering everyone else has weapons, maybe I'll try holding onto this one, see if Grok says anything."
She tucks the masterwork dagger into her belt, prominently enough that anyone can see it.
Depending on Grok's reaction, she'll return it or move it to someplace a bit less obvious.
Kehlysch will keep his dagger in hand, but stand near the back of the group when they return to the quartermaster. Depending on how Grok reacts to them, he will keep or return the masterwork dagger.
"It seems that someone else hid this gear down here before us...hmmm...the young man that was keelhauled...was he not found guilty of stealing from the ship's stores? I wonder if this was his cache. If it was, he has no need of it now. If it is someone elses, they will certainly notice that it has been found. I think somewhere other than down here would be a better choice, if the latter is true, but I can think of no other place less likely to have one of the crew come across it by accident."
Karn smiles at Bendrauss, then grimaces. Whatever we do, we should do it quickly. We'll need to stow them here or somewhere else, but I'm certain that Plugg will send someone else to fetch us if we don't show up shortly
Added booty to campaign thread for tracking
"Let us stow it here for now. Cover it with the straw and pieces of crate, and we shall have to hope no one finds a pile of debris particularly interesting."
Kehlysch climbs out of the filthy water and back onto the steps, his borrowed dagger and a few dead rats in hand.
Karn nods and follows quickly behind, holding out the rat that Moon had sent him up with at arm's length. At the Quartermaster's store, Grok seems noticeably relieved at your survival, and her eyes linger for a moment on Moon. She reaches down and produces the fiddle with a grin. Well, a promise is a promise. Here then; everyone, everyone hand over their weapons so I can keep me tally...and me skin.
She leaves you to putting them back into their cases, her attention on Moon. She wrinkles her nose at a rat and addresses him directly. Ain't seen rats that big in quite a while; whaddya' think brought them aboard?
Anyone taking advantage of her trust to stow away a weapon?
Bosun Moon keeps Grok occupied, just in case anyone wanted to stow away a weapon.
"Likely them rats been growing for a while, probably started as wee little vermin, then unchecked they just kept growing. Seems this boat don't have enough crew, thus the need to press gang us swabs, I's doubt anyone has cleaned them out of the bilges in a while."
"So, now that's we done our job in the bilges and we gots a fiddle to give back to Rosie I'm sure she'll play a few tunes this evening, can I have the pleasure of the first dance with you fair Grok?" Moon smiles and winks at the half-orc woman. "Don't mind this old peg leg, I can still move these pins with the best of them."
Grok's jaw flexes as if she was chewing on something distasteful when Rosie is mentioned, but it turns into a quick grin at Moon's invitation. Suren ye'd ne'er seen such grace as yer Grok's dancin! Wouldn' we be a sight, then. Yer right about that; ain't much work that gets donein tha' bilges until it gets so bad it needs ta' get done. Seems like tha' boss ain't worried 'bout much if it ain't movin' the ship er trainin' ta take another ship
As the party flops the rat carcasses in front of Plugg, Bosun Moon tries to improve their lot aboard this tub.
"Aye, Master Plugg, we've cleared the bilges, we found these beasts lurking in the funk down there, killed them all w did." Moon gestures to the rat carcasses. "We've also returned every borrowed item back to Grok and we counted them twice, we've done exactly as you asked."
"If'n it not be too much to ask, we'd like to be proper pirates aboard this fine ship. We've seen others allowed to carry gear, now that we've proven ourselves might we have the same luxury? Of course we'll acquire our own gear, a little coin from gambling perhaps, we're not asking fer handouts, just permission to be proper pirates?"
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23
Mister Plugg is, as expected, impatiently awaiting your return. His scowl deepens as you arrive on the main deck, a fine row of huge dead rats swinging with each step. Sure took ya long enough...and fer rats, eh...looks like we've got some brave new rodent killers then.. His scowl wavers a bit as he glances at the size of the rats, and more than one crew member calls out, remarking upon your impressive catch.
Master Scourge disperses the gathered crew with a snap of his whip. Enough a'tha' standin' around then...we all seen rats ba'fore. Back ta' work!
Plugg's eyes narrow at Moon's request, and those eyes seem to twitch involuntarily in the direction of the captain's cabin. An' whaddya' plan ta'do with yer weapons, Mister Moon - rough up more a' me men?
They attacked us first!
Louly barely manages to bite her tongue as she wants to defend Moon and herself and the rest of her new companions. She suspects, though, that it would only make things worse.
Moon seems to have a way with people, so I'll just let him handle it, she thinks, grinding her teeth.
"Nah, I'd just thump them with me peg leg if I wanted to do that." Bosun Moon grins at Plugg, "Besides, I took me lashes for that incident and didn't protest a one, sure enough I'll be expecting more if we rough house again."
Moon presses the advantage, seeing the indecision in Plugg.
"We be willing and able to join yer piratin' ways, give us the gear and give us a better foe than rats, we'll prove our worth, we will."
Bosun Moon stands proud and confident, never breaking eye contact with Plugg.
Mister Plugg scowls even deeper at your confidence, then his eyes glance beyond you to your fellow crew members. Sadira and Rosie look on intently, their hands tapping the hilts of their own weapons. Others nod at your words, each of them seeming to agree. Feeling the pressure of those attitudes, Plugg capitulates.
Pah! Well enough...git yerself some gear from Grok then, if yer able. She's not always well enough ta' part with good weapons. That's up ta' you, then.
He throws up his hands in irritation and stalks away, obviously feeling like his part in the conversation was at an end. Master Scourge steps in quickly, and makes sure that no hands turn idle. Back ta' work then! Thar's still more than enough ta' do an' too many a' ya' louts standin' about!
The day moves on much like any other, save for the fact that several of your fellows stop by to give a playful grin and shove or remark upon the huge disease carriers that you had fought. Rosie and Sadira both offer bawdy remarks when Bendrauss hikes up his trousers to show off his bite wounds. There's no punishment today, and the rum is brought out just after a hearty dinner. Grok offers Moon a lopsided grin as she doles out the rations.
Daytime actions were wrapped up rather well, especially with the assistance of your mates on deck. Night time actions, if you please!
Not sure what kind of action this will be, per the rules but I figured we can improvise (influence an NPC, sort of, maybe?)...
Louly will, after the meal, head to Grok's cabin to see if she can equip herself.
"Plugg said you could give us some weapons? What I'd really like, if you have them, are the pouches I had with me when I ... boarded ... the boat. I think Plugg said it would be OK."
What I really want is my father's pistol, but it's probably safest here still.
When she's finished, she'll go see Owlbear, to see if he heard about the day's activities.
Diplomacy: 1d20 ⇒ 10
Gregor approaches Grok to find her already speaking with Louly. He keeps a respectful distance away until they are finished.
Apologies Grok...but now that we've been given permission to arm ourselves wonder if you might have my personal sword in your storeroom. It's admittedly a bit big for standard pirate fare but it has served me well over the years. Could probably do with some oiling by now...
As the rum goes around, Bosun Moon finds a moment when Grok and Rosie are in the same vicinity, then he implores Rosie for a tune.
"Aye, Rosie, we's got yer fiddle back, as a return favor might I beg from you a song so that I can dance with me lady here?" Moon slides next to Grok, putting an arm about her waist.
That evening, Bosun Moon goes to Grok's stores, along with Louly and any other party members that are interested, and negotiates for the return of their gear.
"Aye, sweet Grok, name yer price for our goods, we've only a little coin, but we're good fer the rest of it, you have the Moon's promise on that. When we finally do be doing some piratin' our share of the spoils will go right to you to pay off our debt, it will."
Moon gives his girl a wink and flashes his chipped tooth grin.
Seeing Gregor give his girl a winning smile, Bosun Moon realizes he'll have to step up his game to compete with the suave Ranger.
"Aye Grok, that Gregor is a fine chap for sure, just don't be forgetting the Moon shines for you alone."
He beams her with a chipped tooth grin and a wink, while one hand slicks back his greasy hair.
Diplomacy (+4, +4, +2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21
Well...I'll leave the two of you alone. Grok...if I overstep my bounds just say so. I know how bad the captain's disfavor can sting; and I certainly wouldn't wish that upon you.
Goodnight you two...and behave yourselves. Gregor offers them a wink as he leaves.
Way to take one for the team, Moon. Way to take one for the team.
Congratulations! You've all regained your starting posessions; much more easily than I thought you would've, I'd say. Karn got his too; Bendrauss - feel free to roll for yours at any time
Grok seems more than happy with the added attention, and she laughs heartily at the competition. No shy maid, she smacks Moon on the backside as Gregor walks away.
Rosie is stunned, then overjoyed at the sight of her fiddle. She grabs it excitedly then promptly skips a nifty little jig. Her eyes are a bit misty as she nods her thanks, and even refuses to scowl at Grok. She starts in with an upbeat song that soon has everyone's toes tapping. Sadira insists on a dance before Gregor can leave, but Grok lets no one get in a spin with Moon.
The mood is infectious, and soon the pirates on the main deck are swapping stories and stomping their feet. Rosie, for her part, doesn't seem ready to stop playing anytime soon. A game of heave starts up, which Sadira explains is a rum drinking game, where the last one standing is the winner. Elsewhere, a few pirates bet on arm wrestling matches on a barrel top studed with broken glass.
Bosun Moon spins and dances the night away with Grok. Never a man to be concerned with condescending behavior or reproachful attitudes, Moon doesn't give a damn what the other pirates think of his relationship with the half-orc woman, she makes the Moon smile and that's good enough for him.
During the breaks between songs, Moon engages in the game of Heave, his well trained liver up to the task. That, and in his reclaimed gear is a dose of alchemical kindness, so he has no fear of being hung over the next morning.
"Aye, lads, tip cups with the Moon if'n ya dare. Me liver be bigger than yer first born and blacker than the night sky."
Despite his boastings, Moon will store his gear in Grok's store before getting to far into his cups, so that nothing adverse can happen to it.
The Mwangi woman, Shivikah stands up from her seat to allow you to face off against the half-orc mute, Jaundiced Jape. He sneers at you as you sit, his meaty fist clutching a cup that looks small enough to be a child's in comparison.
Heave is a game of consecutive drinks - a quarter ration a swig. It's a DC15 fort save to keep yourself upright, and the DC increases by +3 with every "round".
Jaundiced Jape taps a tin cup next to the table, wherein lies a single gold piece. He's apparently looking for a bet.
Once his skin has absorbed all it can of the refreshing sea water, Kehlysch quietly makes his way back up to the deck, and joins the crowd watching Moon.
Louly thinks for a moment at Owlbear's comment.
"I didn't know my parents. I was apparently abandoned, and the man who found me outside Alkenstar raised me. This is his pistol," she says, pointing to the sidearm now strapped to her belt. "When he died, I was ... lost. I started trying to find out about my birth parents. Turns out my father was a pirate, Adamar Voulge. I don't know if you know of him, but I guess he was famous. I was trying to learn more about him when I ... guess I made a mistake and ended up here. I still want to know more -- it's exciting being on the boat! -- but you're right. I'm not like everyone else here. I think there are ways to run a crew without killing them. They didn't do that in Alkenstar, and we had to work together just as much as we have to on the boat."