“Yeah, I know, right. The lords work in mysterious ways.” -Smaug
Day 1. Early Afteroon
Raggamuffin returns to town with a harvest of Dogweed. She speeds her walk after hearing the explosion. As Smaug and Max question the third assailant, Spot, she finds Ter-nin around the corner and sits to wait for him to finish.
The raider tied up on the side of the building, Fuse has a head injury and is not present to give any informtation. Spot, however, is all talk. Answering every question as best he can, and even balssing up enough to ask to stay with the town. He’s not a fan of the raider lifestyle and wants to retire. He and Fuse are put in the Locker while the town decides what to do.
Spot gives some basic information about the structure of the Burning Rags. They live in temporary and semi-permanent camps. He’s never seen more than about 50-60 in one place at a time, but is sure there are more scattered about. Their leader, Torch, moves between camps periodically. Supplies are provided by trucks that show up every few days.
Smaug asks Brace Win for support to grow the church when he comes over to thank him. Brace indicates it is something to look into and confides that the council has spoken about holding a meeting to encourage the town to formalize a government to keep the peace and ensure safety. He suggests that the church would be a good site and give some exposure. Brace will be asked to reform the militia and increase watches and checkin patrols to the outer farms.
Raggamuffin sets out her crop to dry. Ter-nin finds Mice to tell her he can get the fuel and that he needs his engine looked at.
Max returns home with his kill and dresses it. He gathers some of the fresh meat and some dried from before to trade in town. He and Foster trek into town. On the way, Max informs the kid that he has a stupid fucking name, and that he’s going to call him Chance from now on. They drop off the bulk of the load at Rufe’s and Chance heads home while Max makes further rounds. He finds Brace to offer to take in Spot, since the kid is familiar with curing leather and cutting dead animals. Then he heads out te gather a posse to check out the Rag camp.
Ter-nin, Smaug and Raggamuffin question Spot in the Locker. Fuse is still only half-conscious. Spot gives directions to the camp he came from and expected defenses and a ridge that might have a view.
Everyone ends up at the church. Smaug is called to the outskirts where Grome and some others has detained Yank, one of Smaug’s trade contacts. Yank hase been roughed up, but he’s allowed to head into town. He shows Smaug the thurible he mentioned during his last visit.
Back at the church, Smaug disappears for a bit. Max heads home to get equipment for evening.
Smaug opens himself to the Maelstrom, seeking guidance from the gods of Before, something he has been hesitant to do in the past. As distant and muffled music drifts into his mind he considers the things that might touch or enter such an open mind and recoils. He is left with the fading of that haunting music and the echo of a scent that reminds him of her, and those last moments with her. Those moments he mon’t remember or relive.
Finally, they head out to do the fucking night’s work. An hour or so from their destination is the westernmost farming cluster. It’s run by Cheyenne, one of Krin‘s most trusted men. The buildings are close together, and joined by a defensive wall. They let Cheyenne know what’s going on and rest a while before heading out again.