Previously, our ferociously fighting Fable friends defended the Mystic Wave as repairs were being completed. The Wizard, Marksman, Gunslinger, Dr. Wolf, and Captain Crimson had left the group in search of the mysterious time-changer, leaving the Scribe, Distiller, Barkeep, Inventor, and the rest of the crew to repair the ship. The Scribe first noticed the mechanical sentries that sought to eradicate them from the island and tried to rally the crew to defend themselves, but he was too late. Just as the automatons were set to close in on the heroes, the Hero arrived to join the fray. The company was able to repel the attackers and we now find our heroes sorting through the aftermath…
“Quite a marvel, really,” says the Inventor in awe of the automatons. He rifles through the remains in his mechanical exoskeleton.
“How did you… I mean when… we saw you explode!” exclaims the Scribe to the Hero.
“Well, when I got yanked off the deck I was able to get my arm around to cut the piece of the frog’s tongue that I was stuck to off. The part of the tongue with the gunpowder keg on it continued to the frog and the other part with me attach fell into the water. The impact knocked me unconscious and when I woke up I had washed up onto one of the shoals surrounded by frog viscera,” explains the Hero.
The Distiller was standing in the surf, looking at the Hero’s wind board. The Inventor joins him to admire the workmanship. The actual board was made of driftwood and the mast was made from several pieces of the since deceased frog.
“I found part of that frog washed up on the shoal. The rib was flexible enough for a mast and i scavenged a bone from a leg for the boom. The frog’s leathery skin sufficed for a sail,” explains the Hero.
“Clever,” compliments the Distiller.
“So now we need to continue on and meet the others,” suggests the Scribe. “If we ran into this here, they might run into something even worse in the jungle and could use our help.”
The Distiller and the Inventor stand pondering the Scribe’s words when the Barkeep speaks up. “I agree, this island holds foes more mysterious than anything we could have imagined. These sentries prove that our opposition holds greater capabilities than we thought as well. We signed up to complete this quest and that’s what we should do. First-mate Cole can hold the ship until we return, right Inventor?”
“Weapons systems are fully functional now and the hull has been repaired. The crew could conceivably retreat to the water off the island and await our return. If engaged, the forward gun would provide adequate range and power and the ship’s other cannons would be effective against the armor we’ve seen here today. It would take a significant upgrade to nullify that advantage. Assuming that the nature of our adversaries doesn’t vary.”
“What do you mean by that?” questions the Barkeep.
“He means that our issues may not be just skin and bone or metal and oil,” replies the Distiller, “Strange things wander this world, asomatous beings, diverse monsters, or even lethal fauna could pose a threat to us and our crew.”
“That’s why it would be best to stay offshore, waiting for us,” replies the Scribe, “They can wait and keep an eye out. If a need for a quick exit arises, they can be there. If there is a need for fire support, the Wave is our best option.”
“When did you get so strategically smart?” questions the Distiller.
“I may have read a few of your books,” answers the Scribe sheepishly.
An indiscernible look passes between the others. It could have been amusement that the Scribe had the ability or the motivation to read on such a voyage. It could have been the apology for doing what the Scribe does. Or it could have been a simple glance of amusement. Who’s to say?
The moment is broken by the Inventor. “Well that settles it then, I’ll leave instructions with Cole and we will head off, straight away.”
The Marksman walks across the jungle floor over to the pile of scrap scattered across the ground with his throwing knife sticking out of it. The Marksman found that these automatons densely populated the jungle surrounding the mountain. PopulatED, as the Marksman has spent the past day de-populating the island of these machines as he made his way to where he stands now, the foot of the mountain. While they were formidable guards, they were no match for the stealth and handiwork of the Marksman.
This unlucky sentinel was traveling with a pair of other automatons. The first one (a scout with a crossbow attachment taking point), fell to an arrow to its head. When the other two automatons traveling with the recently scrapped machine arrived, they went into a defensive mode, scouring the surrounding jungle searching for the cause of their comrade’s demise. The Marksman took the opportunity to shoot the sentinel’s partner (an automaton with the spear and shield attachments) in the back, skewering the machine to the tree. When the remaining sentinel saw that the spear automaton fell, he turned in the direction the crossbow bolt could have come from… and caught a throwing knife to the face.