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Turn 3 News
News of the 66thth Day of the 2nd Year of the Reign of Her Most Magnificent Highness, Amlatta the Pious
'No news from Punt'
'That's odd, the caravan was supposed to be here by now.'
'Look, you're not getting me to stay here any longer - this is just the first attempt. What's going to happen when the Calipha - bless her name - starts sending more and better and bigger creatures to try and break in the tower? She was just one alchemist! That tower has stood in the centre of Abib for time out of mind and I for one am not going to hang around to find out what's going to come out of i!. That's if they manage to break in at all without destroying half the city. Yes, I know, it wasn't supposed to have that effect - but that's what they'll all say! Half the Red Market was blown over and the Street of Sighs collapsed and now there's a moat round the tower. I ask you, where's it all going to end?'
'You've got to joking.'
General Ghazi sends aid to Al-Hadeen
In a show of solidarity and leadership, General Ghazi Al'Altair has sent 500 of his men to the ruined city of Al-Hadeen to aid in the cleanup and search for survivors. Praise be to Shaliq that such a man was made general of the armies of Shalazar!
Slaughter in the North
'The Hadar and Kal'Nyak killed the northern barbarians you say?'
Joyous news in the House of the Yildun
The Noble and Pious House of the Yildun are pleased to announce the engagement of Sharee al Yildun and Al-Phariq, the Royal Toymaker...
'Ssssh! Don' talk 'bout that, issh gonna get yer killed.
Waitaminnit... okay, the coasht'sh clear.'
Northern trade route opened, declared for Jerezad
[Shortly after the Northern trade route is liberated from the northern Barbarians, an Emissary from the Jade Emperor arrives in Shalazar announcing the following]
Strange Tales and Snakeskins
[Heard in a bar from a drunken soldier]
'Still no news from Punt'
'That's really odd, the caravan should have been here a week ago. What can
Strange Whispers in the North
[Among the traders of the Fesk, men whisper that their friends in the Northern Tribes have stopped talking. Small caravans that used to find pitched camps and hunting grounds have found them empty. When a small group of hunters have been crossed, the speak slightly if at all. The word on their lips is of a man, the First Child of the Wolf.]
'I hear there's some kind of curse on the Bookwala family. That business with the wig-maker was just the start, now they're all growing hair and teeth and howling at the moon. Still there's more than one skilled alchemist in that family- perhaps they will be able to find their way out of the problem.'
'Prince Erasmus is too cowardly to fight his own battles! First he refuses to give the water djinn their rightful dues, then he deliberately provokes them by drinking part of the debt. When Nadir called him up on it, he cheerfully sent another man to his death. What a wimp! The mighty Hadar must be so proud...'
'Messenger gone missing!'
The Honourable Company of Messengers regrets to inform that the carpet messenger recently sent to the city of Karnak in Punt has not returned, and is believed lost. A full refund will be paid on all undelivered messages, and a repeat messenger will be sent out at Company's expense. The Company apologies for the delay, and any inconvenience caused.
'Did you hear? The Alchemist's guild has blown up!'
By pronouncement of the Bookwala criers:
'Rumour has it that a number of foolhardy adventurers plan to go and kill the bone-dragon. If past history is anything to go by, I'll be buying flowers for their families soon enough. Walid Al Din failed, and they will too, you mark my words...'
Calipha's general in tax evasion shocker!
By word of the Yildun messanger to the Calipha:
Calipha gets Big Bang
'Cor, it was the biggest one I ever seen!'
Calipha too kind?!
Psst! You know what I just heard? I just heard from my aunt, who heard it from her sister, who heard it from her friend, who heard it from her son's wife, that the Order of Khal Nayak aren't too happy with the Calipha at the moment. Yeah, honestly, she said that they think she's not taking a hard-enough line on religious issues. Yeah, I know sounds crazy doesn't it? But apparently that's what they think. Also, she said they may be plotting to keep her out of the way, you know, get her up in a tower in the palace with a load of advisors while the Order take over running of the Caliphate! SSSSHHH! Keep your voice down, they have spies everywhere! I know it sounds insane, but that's what she heard. Yeah, I know Shaliq would never stand by and let that happen, bu nonetheless, let's still hope it's just a rumour, eh?
Wilting in the Wine
'Wow, really? Is he alright?'
Beauties about Town
Well, I've not seen the likes of that in ages. what must be the most beautiful couple in all Shalazar just went walking down my road, and bought an apple from my sall! Oh no, you don't understand, these guys were REALLY beautiful, and I mean STUNNINGLY so. For exampl, this poor runner guy was so taken aback he ran straight into a wall!... Who were they? Well, the girl looked as though she was from around here, but she was wearing strange foreign clothing, and the gentleman was that Salim fellow, you know, the funny mechanic guy, from over in the next quarter... on my life, stunning they were, just stunning.
'Pygmy Slave Revolt'
Clouds and Skins
[A rumour begins, first in the Fesk Quarters, and gradually takes hold of Shalazar like a noose around a villain's throat. It is not clear from whence they came, but the Tribes of the North now ride beneath one standard, a skull and skin of wolf held aloft. The Fesk have ceased travelling northwards for the moment: their hosts' eyes are not friendly, and they do not feel safe there anymore.]
Standing is a measure of the relative strength of the Great Families of Shalazar. The Standing of a great family determines how useful it is to spend points of Influence on your actions each turn. The horizontal lines represent standing at the end of last turn.
The Jerezad, with the loss of their main trading centres and gem mines in Punt, have suffered a terrible blow. Some wonder if they have underestimated the pygmies they enslaved, while others wonder much darker things...
The Yildun, despite the annoyance of reduced taxation income along the northern trade route, have recovered from the attack of the Bone Dragon. News of a joyous wedding and continued influence at court ensure the success of the family.
The Bookwala suffer from the loss of trade with the Jade Empire, but have continued some trade with the Western Isles, and more importantly look more formidable in relation to the now-humbled Jerezad.
The Hadar wear the mantle of the conquerors, the liberators of the Empire of Jade, the defenders of the Calipha's trade routes, the butchers of several hundred [infidels/women and children, depending how you look at it]...
The Fesk are as they always are... doing well, doing badly, it's very difficult to tell with them.