7026/FATE: We Need A Bigger Boat

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FATE: We Need A Bigger Boat
Date of Scene: 31 January 2020
Location: Camp Drybone, Eorzea
Synopsis: Arkae and her crew manage to heist a fat blockade runner airship from a smug potato.
Cast of Characters: N'raha Tia, 7201, 6860, Arcadia

N'raha Tia has posed:
    Let it never be said that rich people are the best at handling assets. This is not a slight on Bibiwede Didiwede. He's got a seat on the Council in Ul'dah. He's got the cash to back that seat up. Hell. He even had more than enough cash to refit... well. This monstrosity.

    "This Monstrosity" is currently hovering 20 feet off the ground on the south side of Camp Drybone in Eastern Thanlalan. It's also not named. "This Monstrosity", It's the "Incidental Profit". And the Incidental Profit is currently picking up cargo. A small army of wagons are busy rolling on up inside of the lower access ports, chocobos squawking and bustling, as carts laden with ores and stones are hauled on inside. Bibiwede himself is all the way up on deck of the slow, flanked by a set of Brass Blades, and is doing calculations. "Right! We sould be fully loaded in a bell or so. Tell the crew I want us up and moving as quick as possible! Time is money, friend! Time is money!" He chuffs at himself. This bloody thing was going to pay for itself in just a few trips. The little tator tot waddles over towards one of the voice tubes and starts yelling. "Mr. Percival! I want that lift crystal hot and ready to go when we're taking off!" There's a reply grumbling from... wherever engineering is, and the crew goes about their business.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
Arkae's doing her own calculations. Namely, she's calculating how much the cargo is worth and how many rounds it'll buy her if she manages to sell it all off.

This here, this is the stuff of adventuring. Everyone in Eorzea (at least, most that she hears on the radio) talks up how corrupt the merchants are and how they have a grip on the beating lifeblood of the heart of Thanalan or... something like that. Bad people. Therefore by definition, stealing from bad people is a good act! Arkae is a good person.

(Arkae pings as firmly Chaotic Neutral on any reliable detect alignment spell.)

The plan put forth by the tengu alchemist, after giving it some thought, is simple: board the airship and take it over and fly it away. When it turns out that this is maybe too simple, she amends: board the airship *QUICKLY* and then take it over *QUICKLY* and then fly it away *QUICKLY*.

Potions of jumping are passed out to those who need them, and Arkae chugs her own vial of the glowing sky blue liquid. Her group holds behind cover in Camp Drybone till their other preparations are done, a countdown is made, and then-

-The tengu runs out and leaps high up, trying to clear the distance from the ground to the bow of the ship all in one go, or if not then to get up high enough to grab on and climb up to the top deck.

Katt (6860) has posed:
Katt was bored. A bored Katt sometimes goes out and picks a fight just because she can.

That may explain why she volunteered to come along as muscle. She is a little less interested in profit, though she won't turn it down; she just wanted to do something, and Arkae's idea had pretty good odds of that.

Katt, too, considers herself a good person. So why not go mess with the bad people's loot? (She, likes Arkae, did absolutely no checking as to whether this was true ahead of time; she took Arkae's word for it, which may or may not have been a mistake.)

Katt turned down Arkae's potion but liked the general idea. Which is why she's gone along with it, except her approach doesn't involve a bottle. Instead, it involves her running out from the brush at top speed, cat-paw staff in hand, until she plants one end of it on the ground -

And literally vaults herself upward. Twenty feet is doable for her, though she doesn't actually land on the deck; she splats into the side of the ship and begins to climb, digging in with her claws to get a good grip as she ascends with the staff kind of wedged under one arm. It looks more awkward than it is.

Well, no, it's pretty awkward but she's not going to admit that.

Arcadia has posed:
It turns out Arcadia isn't all that hard to convince to assist. Really all it takes is giving her the oppritunity to show off, to the potential opponents and her allies alike.

That it's disrupting some supposed corruption in the local economy that's supposedly undermining social stabilities with hording all the wealth and valuable materials for themselves is a morale bonus. As she comes from a culture that puts value on knowledge and contribution over pure wealth, and this wealth is not being contributed to society very practically!

The sphinx doesn't need the potion, though the effort to supply assistance is appreciated. She can already fly, and extremely fast at that. Fast enough that the sonic boom can be heard like thunder overhead, and she's already diving onto the deck by the time the rumble passes. Wings spread and her aetheric thrusters switch to hover mode while elemental energies can already be seen charging around her arms.

"Sorry folks, there has been a chance in the flight plans, due to high winds!"

Courtesy of her that is, as she points one hand at a group of the Brass Blades, being the ones most obviously armed, and unleashes the airbust to blow them backwards and give her partners in trouble some extra time to get up on the ship.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    So say that they weren't prepared for this is... well, putting it mildly. There four or five Blades up on the deck are scattered by Arcadia's sonic boom, the beefy roes and hyurs scattering on the deck, swords and bows scattering from the force of the attack.

    Bibiwede Didiwede himself is at least able to squawk and scatter himself inside of... well, it's probably the bridge or the captains quarters or something similar to that. There's the frantic noises of furniture moving, and then loud hollaring... which reaches the deck through little loudspeakers. "YOU! YOU! WHO ARE YOU! GET OFF MY SHIP! GUARDS! GET THEM!"

    The men and ladies up on deck are picking themselves back up, and there's more stomping around below decks. There's an uncomfortable whine building up in the innards of the ship, and dockworkers are frantically trying to get carts off the ship before it does something silly like take off with the holds open.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
Arkae shouts some quick orders through her radio, and then races across the deck towards where Bibiwede disappeared from. The consensus seems to be that his disappearance coincided with the shouting of orders over the loudspeakers, so... he's probably in charge. Useful!

Katt is hopefully dealing with the present guards and any others that respond to the alarm, and Arkae trusts that the... cat-person? Khajiit? Neko-American? Catfolk? Leonin? Jellicle? Bah, it's the situation with the rabbit all over again. Whatever she is, Arkae trusts that she'll be able to cover the tengu as she focuses in on the leader.

Presumably, there's a door between her and the leader. Fortunately, Arkae has a sword. She has lots of swords, and there is but one door. This is the sort of math that Arkae likes.

Arcadia has posed:
Arcadia glances over her shoulder to smirk at Arkae and Katt for a moment, then back to the matter at hand. Her visor flickers to a reddish hue as she switchs to the infrared enchantment, which brings up a -lot- of readings from various humanoids and workbirds on and around the cargo craft. That's a lot of people to keep from moving around too much... But she has just the sort of thing for this. She reverse dashes, throwing one hand up in a mock salute to the guards before backflipping off the deck and over the railing.

Reorienting in the air she looks down to spot one of the open holds and the workers scrambling to get valuables out of the ship again. The sphinx waggles a finger at the general group. "Tsk tsk. Don't you know it's dangerous to disembark an aircraft while it's powering up? Someone skipped out on the pre-flight safety regulations I think."

Arcadia disengages a few of her magitek funnel bits, sending them forward to line up at the sides of the openings. Electric sparks flicker around the devices and then shoots out to form a circuit with one on the opposite side, and make a barrier of the arcs to barricade the hold. To a degree. There's gaps between the beams that can be jumped through if people dare, but it's going to be harder to push those carts through without damaging them or their contents.

Of course while she's making a show of doing this she's wide open to being shot at or whatever else people around here do. Did some of the guards have bows? She didn't bother paying that much attention.

Katt (6860) has posed:
This is exciting! Katt has never been a pirate before.

"Can you even call yourself a pirate if you take over a land ship?" she asks herself, as she scrambles up the side of the ship. "Does it have another word?" This never came up before. She spends a moment thinking about that while she hangs just under the edge of the deck, getting herself and her staff into position.

Katt vaults up from the side and literally into one of the groups of guards. She is not adverse to bowling some over with the force of her arrival, and spins her staff in front of her as she does to shield herself from wild panicked slashes. It also makes her very obvious, which is good because it covers for the others doing their thing.

"Hey!" she says, before raising her voice: "HEY! Who wants some? I'll take you all on, one at a time or all at once! C'mon, you want a piece of this?" She actually sticks her tongue out, tail lashing in amusement. "Bring it on, you wimps!"

N'raha Tia has posed:
    Oh, if you thought these poor guys were trying to UNLOAD the cargo, you'd be sorely mistaken. Especially with a high powered beastlady magitek person in the ship with them. Anyone who hadn't already, is quickly abandoning their carts and scrambling every which way they can through that field shaping, taking the shocks if it means getting off the ship.

    That said, that scan indicates to the Enforcer that this ship, as inelegant as it is on the outside, has actually been laid out with more care inside. There's a massive heat source aft, probably through that bulkhead over there marked uh... well, it's in Eorzean, so she'll have to guess it's 'Engineering'. THAT is connected to larger crystal in the middle of the hold, which appears to be giving the ship its buoyancy.

    There's also a rind of smaller crystals on the inner bits of the ship, all bolted together in a giant harness. Give the Garleans their props, they know how to make a reliable, modular design.

    Oh, also there are a pair of people carrying long guns in the engineering room. Or. Uh. Swords. Sword guns? Gun Swords.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    Up top, the Brass Blades are joined by three more of their number who are fleeing up from Arcadia's nonsense downstairs. They skitter to a halt and pull out... oh, hells. Staves. Magic users. The lalafell yelps and a blast of ice crashes across the deck of the ship in Katt's direction, while razor sharp winds buffet Arkae from the other one. And then the armed Blades move in. One and two are quickly batted away by Katt, but they're going to need a plan.

    Akrae is chopping at the door, and inside Bibiwede can be seen frantically screaming into one of those voice tubes. But the noise isn't coming to the deck. Hmmm.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
Arkae takes some hits, but she remains focused on the door in front of her. It's like checkers, if you take your opponent's king then the whole game's over, right?

Through a literal crack in the door, she can see that he's shouting something. For not the first time, Arkae wishes her particular flavor of magic was not solely potion-based right now... Some sort of normal old silence spell would be nice. How can Arkae reach him to shut him up, when he's this far away?

It's a puzzle. What tools does she have available to solve puzzles right now?

"Oh, duh," she says to herself, reaching into her bag of holding, and drawing forth the Adventurer's Best Friend: an 11-foot long pole, which she tries to shove through the cracks in the door in order to jab Bibiwede in the stomach to shut him up.

Katt (6860) has posed:
"C'mon, don't you want to fight - whoop!"

That was the ice. Katt practically dances away from the crashing ice, but there's not a whole lot of room to maneuver without going back over the side of the airship, and - given she just came up from there - she would rather not do that.

Which means she's pressed when the armed Blades move in. Katt has a staff too, but she doesn't use it to cast anything; she sweeps the butt end of it low to try to trip the first that approaches, then swings the whole length like an extra-long baseball bat to knock the second into him. A third will be a problem.

"Coming through!" Katt is not really trying to beat any one of them into a pulp. She's trying to make a knot of absolute chaos, which is much easier - though if she can manage it without getting stabbed too badly that would be best. Step one: open up an area around her. She uses the length of her staff to jab, trying to keep the mages off their game - she would rather not have a better-aimed chunk of ice drop onto her head!

Arcadia has posed:
Arcadia does nothing to stop the people that have the common sense to bail out of the cargo airship. It's possible the gaps in the electric grid were specifically left large enough to do so, just they're not going to be able to carry much in illicit goods in doing so. Which is good enough. The ship itself is their main target, after all.

Which is what she turns her attention to now. This is clearly magitek engineering, but it's not anything like what she possesses or has seen before. She can only presume these energized crystals are utilized in the same way her flight systems use hyperglass for conduction and focusing, that's well out of her field of actual knowledge. It's not her job to know how her stuff works, just to use it.

The movement with the odd gun-sword-things is at the perepherial of her vision, but Arcadia doesn't bother with them. If they come after her, she'll welcome the challenge. But otherwise she's collecting information for her masters. And whoever Arkae gets to keep this air barge running once they've jacked it.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    It takes some poking, but that stick finally manages to JAB right in Bibiwede's belly, the portly little fellow toppling over and hacking and coughing and thankfully not losing his lunch in there. There's still a desk in the way of the door, but that should be... easier to handle, right?

    Katt is putting up quite the resistance. The casters aren't used to monks doing that sort of bullshit, that's for sure, but these lot haven't really faced anyone tougher than a drunk in some time. Never let it be said the Brass Blades hired the best and the brightest. Katt plows through a big fellow with a sword and shield, and manages to clock out the thaumaturge. There's the ice handled, at least.
    But Resistance is wavering. Mainly because there's Blades scampering overboard, leaving that lone conjurer up on deck, standing with her staff out, looking... very anxious.

    Below deck, the bulkhead door opens, and there's a motion, as a thickly precise received pronunciation Imperial voice carries out the door. "If you enter this door, Eorzean, we will all die. My compatriot is ready to set off this Ceruleum engine. Do not test us."

Arcadia has posed:
An actual voice gets Arcadia's full attention, partially in that it doesn't sound the same as all the mooks that have been scattering about. The sphinx turns her attention towards the opening bulkhead, scoffing a bit of a snicker as she does. "Well a good start would to not test *us* by assuming we're more of the local rubes," she retorts.

Could she rush the bulkhead with her speed and stop someone from blowing the thing out? Most likely. Would she know -who- or -what- to stop from doing so? Not so much, which puts their intended prize at risk.

She may be brave and brash, but she's not stupid. Not when surrounded by such a potential wonder to lay claim to, at least.

Instead the sphinx tilts her head to the side a little in regard of the new arrival. "By the willingness to blow everything up, including yourself, I'd hazard a guess you're either being paid -really- well, or don't care too much for the loudmouth upstairs."

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
Note to self: get some sort of... shrinking potion. Or way to get through tight spaces.

For now, Arkae pulls out and tosses aside the 11-foot pole, and then resumes hacking and/or shoving her way in as appropriate. If she's able to get in, she just simply tries to pin the leader down with one foot while she gets a handle on the loudspeaker.

"Hi! I'm in control of the ship and I have the captain pinned down right here!" she calls, cheerfully into both of the tubes he was yelling into. "Surrender, or you die!" she adds, in the same tone of someone announcing that ice cream was bogo at the grocery store when she did the shopping.

Katt (6860) has posed:
Katt didn't get through unscathed - she caught a couple glancing blows and a shield to the stomach that knocked the wind out of her - but a win is a win and she's going to pretend she's in better shape than she is.

She slides the dropped thaumaturge out of the way with one foot as she approaches the conjurer. If you were being racially insensitive you could describe her grin as 'cat that got the canary'; mostly she is just very pleased with herself.

"You can run off instead," she says, helpfully. "I know you're a healer. It's the staff, right? It's bigger than the other ones and that means healer here." She raises her own staff as if to emphasize it. "But if you do ANYTHING else I'm going to smack you so hard you won't know what hit you until tomorrow!"

She hears noise. Katt's ear twitches, but she can't make out the speech to Arcadia or whatever Arkae is doing.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    "...or you diiiiie" echoes out of the engine room.

    There's a quiet shift in the atmosphere, something more dangerous, something much more tense as the last of the Brass Blades uses the confusion to scramble to... well. Scramble. Anywhere but here.

    There's a quiet back and forth in the engine room. Male voice and female voice, in rapid fire tones.

    And then someone appears out of the Engine room. Tall-ish. Grease covered, ashen haired. World weary. A pair of goggles clamp to his face, he's got a wrench in one hand, and a long barrel handgun in the other. "My name is Savlens cen Titeus. This is MY engine." There's something worried in the man's face. More than fear.

Arcadia has posed:
The difference between the engineer and the rest of the people that fled this operation is even more stark when he comes into view. And not just talking about the being covered in grease. Interesting.

Sidebangs swish as Arcadia tilts her head the other way. She's not visibly armed, but this guy can probably tell her armor is magitek in the same way she could tell the ship operated on magitek, it's just very different magitek. "Your engine," she repeats. "... But not your airship." The sphinx doesn't really do 'nonthreatening' when it comes to appearances, but she at least attempts by clapsing her handpaws behind her back and not looking like she might immeadiately try to beat the crap out of him, even if she doesn't look too threatened by the large gun either.

"Do you really want to be busting your ass for someone that's just going to horde all the wealth earned from your hard work for himself?" Okay negotiation really isn't her thing, but she's at least attempting to keep him thinking about something instead of just shooting her.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
"Hi! Engineer person!" calls Arkae over the loudspeaker. "Wait right there, my associate is going to talk to you," she adds, a moment after Arcadia finishes speaking.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    There's a lady's voice spitting an eptitet back at Arkae, but nothing more. Sounded a little like 'more savages?'

N'raha Tia has posed:
    "...No dear, these are... very much not Eorzeans." Titeus shifts a bit again, and gently places himself directly between the door and Arcadia. "Offworlders, then. What... what would you want with an airship? Don't you people have... void ships and great bloody death rays?"

Katt (6860) has posed:
Katt is still covering the conjurer while making sure the fallen Blades don't get up, staff resting on her shoulder. She looks like she's just *waiting* for an excuse to let loose with it, and it doesn't seem she's real picky on the targeting. It was a nice short fight, but she's still raring to go.

Also it lets her talk to Arkae anr Arcadia for a moment, which she does, under her breath. Her brow furrows. "Hey, how many engineers are there on this thing?" she asks the conjurer Blade.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
"I want something reliable," says Arkae over the engine room loudspeaker. "All of that, the... void and death stuff. It's impressive, sure, but I want something more solid that I can rely on."

"And I was told that this world had fairly solid ships. That they've got a mastery of... stuff. The magic used to make them go. I know magic, and I trust that a hell of a lot more than sparkly fuse-on engines or whatever they're using on the death voiders."

Arcadia has posed:
Arcadia murmurs into her comm presumably to whoever is on the other end of the loudspeakers. This was Arkae's idea, the why is as much her thing to answer as anyone else. Which she does.

The sphinx grins a little afterwards. "Death rays may exist but they tend to be impractical and messy. Why blow up everything and have nothing to make use of afterwards?" Wings flick as she shrugs softly. "Yeah, and that. Reliable. Practical."

She unfolds her hands and holds them up, gesturing towards the crystal arrays and what not. "And this is pretty impressive, even compared to what I've seen before! That you can get it to work on this BOAT," emphasized as in 'it's clearly meant to have been a water ship and not fly' "Says something about the magitek -and- the skill of it's crafters."

N'raha Tia has posed:
    The lady's voice again, much more harried than Titeus. "And so you... what, liberate a scow from the Syndicate? Do you have any idea what this fool spent to get this... thing made? He won't let you get away with this."

    "Dear." Chiding. "...forgive my partner, she is the brains of this operation and we're... Not even supposed to be here. ...Not that you lot probably care about the politics of Hydaelyn."

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
"Listen, as far as the Syndicate or whatever... sorry, I don't think I got your names. I'm Arkae Zellar, Fearless of the Concord."

"But listen, I don't care *too* much about people coming after me? I take what I want, and I'm either strong enough to defend what I've taken... or I'm not, and it wasn't meant to be mine to begin with."

"If they think they can make me 'not get away with this', they're welcome to try."

"Also, sorry, if you're calling your current employer a 'fool'... maybe it's time for a job change?"

Arcadia has posed:
Despite their somewhat mechanical appearance Arcadia's ears perk forward much like a normal cat's would at the commentary from farther back. Then she laughs a bit. "Not other than it's a lot by local standards. All the more reason to take and put it to better use, if you ask me."

Then turns her gaze back to Titeus. "Not really. At least not related to this... though now I am curious about the 'not suppose to be here' part now. Are you prisoners? Exiles?" Her tail sways a little, curiousity even moreso perked now.

She cocks her head towards the loudspeaker. "Maybe you should offer them a job keeping your airship running. Probably pay better than that short snake you trapped up there."

Katt (6860) has posed:
Katt keeps an eye on the unconscious ones, but they don't seem like they're going to get up immediately, and Katt is not the sort of person who hits people when they're down (usually); she has no particular beef with these guys, and so she lets them be.

Instead she heads toward the captain's quarters to meet back up with Arkae - but backwards so she can watch and make sure nobody is pulling a fast one on her. She catches about half of the conversation, her ears flicking again as it becomes more intelligible with proximity.

"So are they giving up or what?" Katt asks Arkae, low enough that the speaker might not pick it up. Might. Though Arkae has the controls so it's probably fine.

N'raha Tia has posed:
    Titeus snorts joylessly. "Exiles. Something like that. The Alliance deigns itself to take in grand names like Nero tol Scaeva, but... the rank and file? Tch. Left to fend for ourselves."

    There's a clatter from behind the bulkhead, and the sound of the engine spinning up again. "Titeus, I'm lifting taking us up. We need to be out of here before the Immortal Flames get here!" The engineer's eyes go wide and he grumbles. "Come on, you. Up on deck. We need to away from here post haste." He snaps his goggles back into place over his eyes, revealing a dull white gem in the center of his forehead. Then he's moving to get the hatches secured.

Arcadia has posed:
Or the Warriors of Light or whatever it was they called themselves. Though Arcadia doesn't say that out loud, no need to get everything all tensed up again.

"She's right. Get the ship someplace less obvious and you can talke to Arkae directly about things an--"

Or right, the cargo hold. "I'll go shut that, you go talk." The sphinx spins on her heels and scampers back to disengage her lightning grid bits and find the control level to actually shut the hold up before they get too high into the air.

Arkae Zellar (7201) has posed:
"Right!" says Arkae. She goes in search of a steering wheel, or something familiar she can manipulate.

They've got the airship, they've got (most of) the cargo, they've got new camp followers (backspace backspace backspace backspace) new trained professionals for their cause.