Xontormia Express 1284

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Wir schreiben die letzte Woche des Monats Blütenregen im Jahre 41 des zweiten
                   Zeitalters. Es ist Frühling. (29.10.2022)

Vorwort

In letzter Sekunde erreichte die Redaktion noch ein Artikel, der trotz mürrischer Gesichter der Setzer noch in diese Ausgabe gebracht wurde. Viel Spaß beim lesen.



6. Welt

Aus Antarius kulinarischen Reisen 6te Welt, Neu- Tolfalas, Tusabulten, Wald: (Auszuege aus an diesen gerichteten Botschaften)

Antarius moege bitte zur Verkoestigung das Etablissement Schweigen der Laemmer?, Größe 1250, Festung, aufsuchen. Spezialitaet des Hauses sind natuerlich Lammgerichte in allen Variationen, die nicht am Tische oder in der Kueche geschlachtet werden, denn Schweigen ist hier das Gebot der Stunde. Der Wirt, der sich als Hannibal vorstellt, ist gerne bereit, Lektionen in der Zubereitung auf Wunsch zu erteilen. Selbstverstaendlich schaetzt der Wirt seine eigenen Gerichte sehr und verspeist keine Menschen, Aehnlichkeiten zu Hannibal Lecter sind mitnichten vorhanden, und das Verschwinden der Menschen von Elcors Ritterorden auf Neu-Tolfalas hat nichts mit kannibalistischen Speisegewohnheiten zu tun.

Die Vorspeise "Augäpfel des Lammes" zum genuesslichen Auslutschen sollte Antarius aber hoeflich ablehnen, der wahre Gourmet meidet Gerichte, die einem mit mehr Augen zuzwinkern koennten als man selbst hat, ein Zurueckweisen wuerde Antarius in der Hochachtung des Wirtes um einige Stufen steigen lassen.

Sollte Antarius Fischgerichte vorziehen (oder diese zusaetzlich zu Lamm geniessen wollen), wird Angelausruestung zur Verfuegung gestellt, um am Ufer des Binnensees getreu dem Motto "Selbst is(s)t der Halbling" sich mit Fischen, die anbeissen, versorgen zu koennen. Aber Vorsicht ist geboten, manche Fische in diesem Binnensee sind der freundlichen Angel sehr dankbar, die sie mit einem leckeren Halbling fuettern moechte.

Es gruesst der Traumtaenzer fuer die Sidhe von Zemur


New World

What Goes Around Comes Around

The ship bore no flag. Max had been looking at her for a good hour as she approached the shore. Sleek shape, expert maneuvers - she had to be crewed by aquarians. But something was off. The absence of a flag was just the first of those things. The fresh paint on the hull was another: a hasty job, unlike any that a self-respecting aquarian would allow on his vessel. But the most unusual were the maneuvers, and Max just couldn't put his finger on what exactly was off with them. And then it dawned on him: the ship was trying to stay unseen. All the way towards Eridani, she kept too close to land: very risky in unfamiliar waters but way more difficult to spot from the watch tower. With that realization, max packed his spyglass and hurried back to town.

---

Saskia led the recon group to the landing point. Max considered her too stern and untrusting, too hasty to label outsiders as enemies. This would not end well. When the group arrived, the ship was already moored, with a single sailor waiting for the welcoming party.

"Greetings, folks of this land!" - he smiled glibly - "I am a sailor of the sea, exploring the oceans of the south-east! May the wind be always at your back!"

Saskia stopped him with a raised hand: "What is the name of your people? And why is it that you bear no flag, and approach our base hugging the shore, like a fox trying to sneak into the chicken house?"

"It's nothing like that, your highness" - stammered the scared sailor. "We are just fishermen, not affiliated with any state, so we have no flag." Hearing no immediate answer, he turned glib again. "We came from the north-east in peace, and we would like to invoke the laws of hospitality".

"We? It was just you alone two minutes ago. You landed on our land, and before you can have hospitality, we will look over your ship to see if you're telling the truth."

---

The ship had the name Rainflow spelled on her hull. Saskia made it a point to have Max check for traces of a previous name but none were found. She still couldn't bring herself to dismiss her suspicions. Yes, these could really be just peaceful sailors from the north-east but what if these were the spies of Elivagar from the south? Just thinking of the hated name brought back phantom pains; the burn scars she sustained in the sacking of Tau Ceti itched, and she had to make a counscious effort to avoid touching them. To distract herself from those thoughts, she decided to scratch a bit of the paint from a bulkhead in the hold. What came through was burnt wood...

Saskia felt hairs rise on the back of her neck. The bukhead was charred with fire! Just like the fire that Elivagar used to burn down her home city. Aghast, she started to turn to Max to give the order to seize the glib sailor, when suddenly a figure burst from a sack nearby. As if in slow motion, she was looking at another aquarian, dagger in hand, lunging straight for her throat, too quick for her to block.

Thankfully, Max was more alert than Saskia. Saskia's assailant met a quick end by his axe. Saskia, seizing the initiative, blasted the glib one with her magic. The crisis was averted but this could not be the end of it. "Scrape all the paint off her, inside and out!" - barked Saskia as she made for the base. "I want to know everything that those bastards were hiding here".

---

The stripping of Rainflow took three days. Workers almost missed one detail but Max made sure to check everything personally. And so he found a little note scratched into the inside of the hull, close to the bottom: "What goes around comes around. Lt. Wis"

When Saskia saw it, she turned away to hide tears. After waiting for a respectful minute, Max asked: "So who was lieutenant Wis, major-general?"

She answered with a sadness in her voice: "When the Elivagar attacked, we tried to evacuate. Wis, he was like you, a soldier... A very good soldier. I didn't know how he died, until today. Guess those animals burned him alive. But trust me, Max, we will have vengeance. For Wis, for Tau Ceti, for all the evil they did to our people. What goes around comes around."