Episode 12 – Lost and Found
Knowing a Grik
large force will be arriving soon, the residents of
While the outer ditch provides a decent measure of protection against wandering dinosaurs, these defenses were never designed to be effective against a concerted attack. The heavy jungle surrounding the city largely precludes organized troop movement, leaving the beaches that extend from the jungle for several hundred feet on either side of the city as the most vulnerable part of the outer defenses. In addition, to this weakness in the outer defenses, the most gaping whole in the city’s defenses is that the entire shoreline is completely unprotected.
The only defense that can be built quickly to cover so much open ground is to construct an abatis out of readily available and abundant graint local bamboo. Even taking the ease of construction of such a simple obstacle into account, building enough abatis to cover several miles of beach is going to be a mammoth project. Supervising this work is a FORMIDABLE Complex Action of Intelligence + Craft / Carpentry or Intelligence + Knowledge / Engineering with each roll taking one day. If a Botch is rolled, the first one is per the rules. If a second Botch is rolled, the project can continue, but runs into a delay that adds 1d3 days to the construction time.
While building the abatis along the beach, six days into the construction, one of the workers shouts that they have discovered something. When the PCs rush over, they find that the digging has exposed the remnants of a ship’s boat. Not exactly an unusual discovery, but what sets this boat apart is its extreme age, and that not only are there human bones on the site, there are other antique artifacts including the remnants of a musket.
Properly dating the relics is a HARD Complex Action of Intelligence + Knowledge / Archeology or a FORMIDABLE task using Intelligence + Scientific Expertise / Geology with a time increment of two hours. Success will determine that the objects are roughly 200 years old and completely authentic. Examining the bones is HARD Complex Action of Intelligence + Medical Expertise / Physiology of a FORMIDABLE task using Intelligence + Knowledge / Archeology and reveals that they are the incomplete remains of three individuals, two adult males and one adult female.
All that remains of the musket is the barrel and the lock, but both are stamped with a crown and the letters H, E, I, C. Remembering that this maker’s mark is that of the Honourable East India Company is a HARD Recall roll (Intelligence + Willpower). It takes a second test of the same skill and difficulty to know that the East India Company did not become known as the the Honourable East India Company until 1708.
The discovery of the boat is the
first physical evidence that other humans visited the area long before
If several pages of the fragile
documents survived, they prove to be part of the journal of one Richard Pettigrew,
Esquire a gentleman en route to a posting as a solicitor in
The journal goes on to explain meeting with a ’most curious’ race that could only be termed cat-monkeys where Surabaya was supposed to be, how one ship insisted on attempting a return trip to England, that the others would sail east to Staten Landt, and how their ship was beset by a ‘Leviathan’ of the deep that stove their ship’s hull. Pettigrew and six others were the only ones to escape the loss of the East Indiaman the Earl of Pembroke. What happened to the survivors is lost when the pages become illegible.
If only a single page is recovered, the journal covers meeting with a ’most curious’ race that could only be termed cat-monkeys where Surabaya was supposed to be, how one ship insisted on attempting a return trip to England, and that the others would sail east.
Understanding the reference to Staten Landt is a HEROIC roll of Intelligence + Knowledge / Geography. If by
chance a PC succeeds, that character will have read of the early exploration of
the Pacific and that it was a Dutch explorer that discovered a pair of large
islands that he named Staten Landt in 1642, later renamed
Having a destination for the first Tail-Less
ones to reach this world gives the humans hopes that perhaps some have survived
until now, but that is will have to be a quest for another day as completing
the defenses of
As the last of the abatis is completed, the last of the scout feluccas returns with a report that twenty-one Grik ships are closing rapidly and will arrive in less than two days. The residents of run out of time and now it is time to make their stand.