There are days, perhaps not as many as I might hope, that I believe the Faterinos are capable of becoming a force for good in this world the likes of which has seldom been seen. Our ways are inelegant, our company uncongenial to outsiders and those of good breeding, and yet of late our wanderings have allowed us to bring righteousness to a world beset by evil and inequity. Thinking back on the last few hours, it seems impossible that we have come out of it alive. Let me begin at the beginning.
After being rescued by Luvneiduring our botched attempt to prove our worth to the Silent Watchers, he tasked us to rescue a young initiate by the name of Isidro who had similarly failed in his task. We were informed that he would be held in jail in the old part of the city, and that we had until only 5 in the evening to return Isidro to the Soggy Mind in the Beastly District. We set upon our task in various ways.
Scratch decided to search the archives for blueprints of the jail after consulting with the Masons Guild and being told that the old building documents of the city are stored in the Conservatory, though such documents were notoriously inaccurate as a result of their age. He also decided to check in with the Builders Mutual Protection Society, which we were informed handle all public works. The rest of the Faterinos decided to observe the jail and see if we could discover any patterns of movement that might result in easy access.
Scratch tells us that he realized checking in with the old maps would probably be fruitless. At that exact moment, he caught an urchin trying to pick his pocket. The filthy cur! He is lucky that Scratch captured him, as Scratch holds a soft spot for thieves and scoundrels in his heart of hearts. The young scamp was lucky that Scratch only forced the boy to go traipsing through the shit-filled sewers in an attempt to find a secret entrance to the jail. Scratch was rewarded with excrement on his clothes, in the very pores of his skin. Still, his investigation would prove useful.
Meanwhile, Donaldinho Yorge, NabaYo Kinderhookian, Woodbine Grimsleep, and myself were able to discover that several revelers from the Gaiety Squad, as well as other drunks, were being carted in and out of the prison, sometimes escorted by proper soldiers from Marmarin Hall, not just the city guardsmen. With Scratch returned, we determined that there may have been another sewer entrance to the jail.
Donaldino was charged with distracting the crowd while a grate was removed to allow access to the city. We were unexpectedly interrupted by Plinkeratz and Brawny, two members of the Troubadors Guild who did not appreciate Donaldino giving an unlicensed performance. They gave us certain rules that Donaldino would have to follow in order to be allowed entry, but we really just wanted them to go away so our subterfuge would not be discovered. They told us to call upon them at their guildhall if Donaldino was interested in further work.
Once in the sewer, Scratch and I were able to discover and ancient rusted gate that seemed to roughly correspond with where the jail should have been above. We rigged up a makeshift rope-bridge by catching a throwing axe within the bar cells. Scratch was able to make his way to the other side of the bridge and successfully pick the lock, opening the gate. His resulting investigation did sadly result in Scratch being once again shat upon by the guards above, one would almost think he was beginning to enjoy the taste, but thanks to his slyness we were able to find a secret entrance into the jail cells on the lower level of the prison.
At this point the true escape was put into motion. Each member of the Faterinos played a part, and I could not be prouder. We are coming together, each member of the group supporting the others, our skills combining into a formidable storm that cannot be withstood. With Woodbine minding the rope, and Scratch and Nabayo waiting beneath the movable grate beneath the jail, Donaldino and I were tasked with the riskiest part of the escape. Donaldino, dressed in our captured tunic, escorted a supposedly drunken Thunderhead Gloamingborn into the jail, convincing the guard to take me below to the drunk tank. In the meantime, Donaldino was able to successfully use his bardic skill to charm a scribe named Blort, a high ranking member of the jail. Blort escorted Donaldino down into the cells.
Donaldino spun a tail fit for the proverbial Golden Loom, explaining that his grandfather had been involved in the construction of the prison. Rorhall and the other guard were skeptical, but they allowed Donaldino to wander around the cells under the “supervision” of Blort the Scribe. Meanwhile, Scratch silently stole into the room. I had to punch out a drunk who unfortunately noticed Scratch, resulting in the plan going somewhat haywire.
I am loathe to admit that in the name of the greater good, there do come times when innocents must unfortunately bear the full weight of our actions. I took an innocent man hostage, threatening to slit his throat with my hidden dagger if I was not released from the prison. The guards did not get quite close enough, but I was able to convince the other prisoners that they were going to be executed. With a timely assist from Scratch and his unfeeling crossbow, we were able to convince the guards to drop their weapons and the key. We freed the men, rescued a drugged Isidro, and released a hideous lizard to cover our tracks. I can still remember the sound of the freed prisoners being slaughtered above as we shut the grate and made our way far from the jail, but the world is a harsh place. I have no doubt that Moradin made the survivors of the battle stronger and braver men.
After freeing ourselves from the disgusting sewers, we were able to bring Isidro around a bit. He mentioned that he was addicted to Halfling-Leaf, a vile habit that has claimed better man than that mere boy, and that his task was to infiltrate a group called the Hellions. Before we returned to the Soggy Mind, we encountered a debtor named Crom Basserack, a breeder of animals, who had welshed on his dues to the Builders Guild. Perhaps in an attempt to balance the scales of justice back in favor of brave Thunderhead after the slaughter in the jail, I paid the man’s debt to the guild. He swore that when his next group of pups were ready, we would be given the pick of the litter. I could do with a pet other than Donaldino.
Once we returned to the Soggy Mind, Luvnie was impressed. After some discussion with Isidro, Luvnie mentioned that one among our number had proved his worth and mettle: Scratch the Thief! I must admit, I had thought the deeds of Thunderhead would have garnered more praise, but then again, Luvnie is a sneak and a craven, perhaps he sees some of himself in Scratch, though Scratch be no craven, but a leal and true friend. Still, if Luvnie is a force for good, perhaps there comes a time when even a Dwarf must admit that the axe cannot always conquer the whisper of a lie or the fleet hand or foot.
One thing did disturb us, the one somber note that overshadows all that went before. We were able to overhear Luvnie saying that he had a great task set ahead for Scratch, and that Luvnie would reveal a great threat to the realm when the time was right. This was not what afeared us, but his somber words that Scratch might have to lie to the Faterinos in order to “protect them.” We are not children who need to be coddled with gentle lullabies and promises of a golden sunrise to send away the terror of night. We are warriors and true. If there is a threat, I would never dare face Moradin in the great beyond and tell him I allowed my brother Scratch to go into battle alone, to face a danger meant for all, alone. I say thee nay, this shall not be. Still, now is a moment for celebration. Tomorrow, I shall overcome my test to enter the fighter’s guild. Tonight, we revel, and though I be but a Dwarf and small, I shall revel so that men shall call me, “Titan.”
-Thunderhead Gloamingborn, Soggy Mind Ale House, 57th Day Deidara, F.Y. 609