The Al-Qadim Game 3


Game Master: Andrew
Game Edition: 2nd Ed. AD&D
Players: Dave, Elijah
Starting Level: 1
 
Current Level: 1

Quote of the Evening
"That will cost extra." 

Introduction

It had been some time since we had played a game of the Al-Qadim, so everyone was a little rusty. We took some time to go over the character sheets, and the story so far.

Sadly Jeff couldn't join us so for a while, Elijah who played his twin brother controlled him, until Kaila decided to take over his character around scene four.

We left our Gnome Desert Rider Zubayr ibn Nijad (Dave), and our twin human Sha'irs Nyrexes ibn Tamir (Jeff) and Husam ibn Tamir (Elijah) walking with a Mamluk who was taking them to see his commander. The party had uncovered an illegal slave ring under the Dancing Girl Harem. They learned it had been run by Nefir, a scoundrel they had encountered in the slums. But they had no idea how far this would take them.

Also since Nyrexes and Husam are sons of a wealthy date merchant, we thought some Dates and Figs would be appropriate. 

 

Scene 1 Following the Mamluk

The mamluk brought them from the docks along the main drag. Sailors, merchants and entertainers filled the streets, but all parted for the mamluk. All but one.

A beggar ran from the crowd and grabbed Husam by his collar, shaking him slightly. 

"The Whispering Doom!" He said. "It is out there in their in the haunted desert!"

The Mamluk grabbed the beggar, just before Nyrexes threw the man to the ground, and pushed him back into the crowd. The beggar was Mad Asham. Twenty years ago he had gone into the Haunted Desert with a legion of mamluks. He was the only one to return, and was completely mad. He had been saying the same thing for 20 years, and no one knows what he is talking about.

Ignoring him, the Brother continued to follow the mamluk as he lead them through the streets. Husam noticed that there were not as many magic users about, but didn't know what to make of it.

The players thought they were headed towards the barracks, but the mamluk turned away leading them towards the fortress palace where the leaders of the mamluk ran the city.


Scene 2 The Palace. The General.

The Mamluk approached the palace gates and spoke to another Mamluk in a hushed voice. He turned and said tot he players that they were to be taken to General Ekuriyah Abd al-Wijad inside the palace, but the gnome would have to tie his tiger up in the stables.

Husam and Nyrexes were surprised that they were being taken to see the second in command of the city itself, but Zubayr was more concerned that he would have to leave his tiger Abed with strangers. And with that thought he had had enough of wandering around the city. And that is where our quote of the evening comes from. 

Zubayr told Husam and Nyrexes that it would cost extra for him to enter the palace. Fifteen gold pieces to be exact.

Husam protested, but Zubayr pointed out that he had been hired to escort them across the desert. They had mentioned nothing about entering a palace. Husam begrudgingly agreed that they may need the protection and paid him his coin.

The Mamluks escorted them to the stable where Zubayr left Abed the tiger with a caring and friendly stable boy. After ensuring his mount was well protected, Zubayr and the twins followed the mamluk into the palace.

Beautiful mosaics and frescoes adorned the wall in the palace, but an air of order and military efficiency hung around the place, unnerving the care-free band slightly. The Mamluk escort stopped at a intricately painted archway, and issued the party inside.

It was a wonderful room, a garden of lush flowers and plant life filled the edges, a fountain trickled in the corner and the General sat on a large cushion behind a desk. She was busy at work, and didn't even look up as the players entered. Zubayr stood in the back ground while Nyrexes and Husam approached the general.

Nyrexes, his usual cocky self, took as seat on one of the cushions while Husam stood behind. Continuing her work, General Ekuriyah asked the brother what they had learned about Nefir. And they told her of Nefir's illegal kidnapping and slave ring under the Dancing Girl Harem.

Though they had done a good deed, the General did not react as they expected her to. She looked up form her work with a sneer. She called them liars and told them that only their father's station had stopped her from locking them in the tower. She said that they would plead their case before the Emir the decision would be his. With that she snapped her fingers and four mamluks came into escort them to the Emir's audience chamber.


As the soldiers entered, Zubayr considered drawing his scimitar, but Husam made him stay his blade, and the three followed them through the palace.


Scene 3 The Emir.


Emir Hatit Abd al-Wijad was a mighty dwarf warrior. He had been elected Emir of the mamluks almost 16 years ago. It was well known that the Emir had been taken by the strange weapons the foreigners had brought over, coveting their guns almost as much as gold.


He sat on large cushion fumbling with a gun at the end of a grand hall. The marbled floors were covered in beautiful and wondrous patterns. Arches divided the room creating an area for the other six rulers of Qudra, who sat on cushions placing them lower then the emir himself. General Ekuriyah joined them sitting to the Emir's right. 

An older elf stood before the Emir and his council. He was having a heated conversation and it did not seem to be going well.

"But you highness!" He pleaded. "You have taken everything from me!"

"Enough Shams." the Emir said. "Nefir is to take over the slave market and that is final. You were given warning to leave town, and you chose to stay. Your assistants have paid the price for your arrogance. I ams ure you can show your self out."



The man bowed and truned to leave. When Nyrexes and Husam saw his face, they recognized him as Sham al-Ezai, the Qadi of the slave market. He was a powerful man, but there had been rumours he was to be replaced. it seemed the rumours were true.
 

As the mamluks ushered the party into the center of the the room, each of the generals and colonels looked sourly at the trio. Before the anyone could speak, the Emir pointed to his gun and explained a little bit about it. He claimed it was a blunderbuss, a powerful weapon that could injure an entire room of people, if used correctly. Rising from his cushion, he pointed the blunderbuss at each member of the party in turn and asked what lies they had been telling about his dear friend Nefir.

Husam protested stating they were not liars, and told the Emir their story. he did not believe them. Again only their station stopped him from arresting them on the spot, but he did warn them that if they started spreading rumours not even their station would stay his hand next time. With that the emir ordered the Mamluks to escort them out of the palace.


Scene 4 The Stable. Hide and Seek. Shams al-Ezai.

Grabbing the players roughly, they practically threw them out on the street before Zubayr had a chance to get Abed from the stables. Angered, he returned to the palace gate and demanded they let him have his tiger back. The Mamluk guards talked between themselves and agreed to let him but they would be escorted.

Zubayr found Abed playing with the stable boy, and began readying him for the ride. While he did this, Husam thought it would be fun to play some hide and seek with his gen who was very excited to give it a try. Nyrexes' gen wanted to play to, but Nyrexes would have none of it and his Gen snapped its claws in frustration and continued digging around in the dirt.

Husam's gen spun around and vanished while Husam closed his eyes and counted to ten. Husam looked for his gen for twenty minutes and found nothing. After he announced his defeat the gen retunred to him spinning with glee. It seemed that his Gen had misunderstood the game, and hid in its own elemental plane. Regardless it was pleased with it's victory.

Zubyar finished with Abed and the party left the palace without much idea of where they would go next. Just outside the palace door, they were stopped by Shams al-Ezai, the man the Emir had been speaking to. He told them that he had stayed and listened to part of their conversation with the Emir. He too had been having trouble with Nefir. He wanted to help, but wanted to go some place more private. He said Nefir had eyes and ears everywhere. He asked them to meet him at his quarters in the Slave market in two hours.

They agreed and left to go fins something to do. They all ate a light lunch in the market and then headed towards the Slave Market.

Scene 5 The Slave Market.

Shams al-Ezai had been the Qadi of the slave market for as along as the brothers could remember. He was not close with their family, but as a prominent merchant, their father had invited Shams to many social functions. They knew Shams was a sorcerer, and that his two assistants were twin sister Hakima's. Wise women who know the truth. Their guidance and his magic had made Shams a powerful man.  but it seemed that was all slipping away form them.

When the players arrived, Shams treated them to some dates, and explained his story. A week ago, a Mamluk captain and his retinue came to his tent with a decree from the Emir: he was to retire his position as the Qadi and give the title over to Nefir. 

When Shams tried to protest the mamluks threatened him saying they would arrest his assistants if he did not cooperate. Shams was not a man to be bullied and tried to take the matter through the courts, but the mamluks came and arrested his assistants, telling told him to leave town.

His assistants were locked in the tower, they had seen him begging the Emir to set them free, but there was nothing he could do. The court seemed bewitched. however he had done his own investigating.

Nefir had an account at the slave market, and Shams had discovered that he had purchased 1500 slaves, but only registered 500 of them for export. Certainly there hadn't been an influx of slave in Qudra, so where did the other 1000 slaves go?

He asked if they would help him.

The party thought it over and agreed. Shams was very excited and thanked the players graciously. He had more to tell them and other ways to help them, but again he wanted to be in a safer place. He invited them to his house that evening for dinner.

The party agreed and left the slave market planning the next stage of their adventure.


Scene 6 A Trip to the Market.

At this point, Kaila joined the group, and she took over Nyrexes after a brief explanation of his personality.

With some time to kill, the three decided that it was finally time to buy the supplies for their trip. They agreed to be prepared for any eventuality, but especially the need to flee the city as quickly as possible if it came to it. They all felt that Nefir had weaseled his way into power, but that made him a dangerous man.

Husam's job was to get camels, while Zubayr and Nyrexes gathered the rest of their supplies.

They each haggled well, but of course they had no where to store what they had purchased. Nyrexes decided to keep the food on his person, but the three camels with bags and saddles, the tents and the large water skins were kept either at the stables or with a merchant on the promise they would return. Nyrexes had also purchased some firewood from a lowly peasant, and paid the man to hold on to. They never returned for it however.


Scene 7 Dinner at Shams. A Fight. A Tragedy.

Feeling ready for a trek through the desert, and having spent enough time, the group headed towards the upper distracts and Shams house.

He greeted them and fed them a luxurious feast of roast pigeon, lamb, rice, lentils, eggplant plant, and dates with honey. All served with wine.


After dinner, Shams took the Sha'ir brothers up stairs to his study and told them a little more. He had gone to the customs office to investigate Nefir's exports, but no one would speak to him, except one man: a Clerk named Ghalib ibn Jawhar.


He worked as a file clerk in the sub-basement of the customs office, where the records were kept. It looked as though he wanted to say something to Shams, but before he could speak with him, Two mamluks came and escorted him out of the building. He had been barred form entering ever since.

Shams believed that some how, Nefir had bewitched the ruling council of Qudra, but he needed proof before he could get any help. He asked if the players would go speak to the clerk the next day, and find out what he had to say. Husam agreed, and as a small payment, Shams taught them three 3rd level spells:


Gust of Wind

Sand Sword
Water Breathing


Zubayr had continued to feast while the Brother learned all this, and was admiring a beautiful scimitar on the wall. It was a shame that Shams did not notice Zubayr's interest because he would have given the blade to Zubayr, but he was so caught up in his conversation with the brothers as he said his goodbyes that he missed the gnomes gaze.


The group left Shams house and headed into the street. As they left three men with long knives in their sashes pushed past Nyrexes heading towards Shams House.




Nyrexes was pissed and silently communicated to his Gen that he wanted to the trip the leader, but to to do it quietly. Well... The gen blew it. The thug saw the golden gen, and cried;


"They are Sha'irs get them!"

The thugs drew a blade and attacked the party. Husam asked his gen for a spell, and the Thugs attacked them. Husam was injured in the fight, but it was Nyrexes who suffered the most.

As his staff crushed one of the thugs heads, their wild swing slashed his throat deeply, killing him instantly.

Zubayr dealt with the remaining two thugs and went over to Husam who was cradling his brother's corpse.

Shams came running out of the house and told them to get him to the temple by the palace as soon as they could!

Husam asked Zubayr to help him, but the gnome again showed where his loyalties lay. He demanded another 15 gold to help him. Husam was shocked and offended. in the end he paid them gnome but then said he never wanted to see him again. With that they took Nyrexes' body to the temple.


Scene 8 The Temple. Husam's Sorrow.

The Clerics wanted 500gp to resurrect Nyrexes, but Husam was able to haggle that down to 200gp. After Husam paid them, the clerics took his body and asked Husam and Zubayr to return in the morning. Nyrexes fate was in the hands of the gods now.

Outside the temple, Husam repeated to Zubayr that he never wanted to see him again, and the two parted ways. Zubayr returned to his tent, while Husam sought out his older brother Imad's tavern.

He found Imad with his customers, put pulled him away and told him what happened to Nyrexes in private. Imad was shocked, but told Husam not to tell their father until they knew whether or not the resurrection had succeeded. Imad then gave Husam a room for the night, and left him alone.

Husam was shaken. In a few short days his life had been turned up on end. He had lost almost all of the gold his father had given him, his brother had been killed. It seemed like nothing could go right. 

With his head full of regrets, Husam then cried himself to sleep.


Scene 9 Nyrexes' Resurrection. Zubayr's New Contract. 

Imad awoke Husam the next day and the two of them went over to the temple to check on Nyrexes. The resurrection had been successful, and Nyrexes was the none the worse for wear, though he had lost a constitution point, and now had a grizzly scar on his neck.

He asked what happened and where Zubayr was. Husam told him the story of his death, and how he had dismissed Zubayr. Nyrexes was a little upset with Husam, and suggested that perhaps with Nyrexes death they could convince Zubayr to agree to a more reasonable contract.

Zubayr had a pleasant enough morning. Aside from a scorpion under his blanket when he awoke, there was no excitement, and he decided to relax and eat some of his dried meat until he figured out what to do next.

The twins found Zubayr at his tent and sat down to arrange a new contract with them. Here is a copy of it:


With the party reunited, they then decided what to do next. Should they go investigate the Customs office? Or should they flee the city?

And that is where we called it a night.


Conclusion 

Another great game! Elijah your role-play for Husam when Nyrexes was killed was amazing! Dave Zubayr's greed and professional distancing were wonderful and added in some great character conflicts. Kaila you played Nyrexes amazingly. You were cocky and arrogant really fit the ticket.

Now Jeff we apologize that Nyrexes suffered the same curse that every absentee player's character suffered in JADE. All I can say was I rolled a critical on you. Also, despite the loss of 1 Constitution, Nyrexes has the distinction of being the first character to be resurrected in a JADE game! And you now have a cool scar!

At the end Husam was getting pretty disheartened and really wanted to leave Qudra. Next time we will see if our players stay and brave out the wrath of Nefir, or if they flee to the desert to build their strength.



                          
The Al-Qadim Game 3 The Al-Qadim Game 3 Reviewed by Jade GamingNews on 5/13/2014 12:15:00 pm Rating: 5

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