Solside stories - Chapter 9

As we enter Norrmalm, we are greeted by a figure asking sheepishly if his problem is fixed. It takes us several moments to recognize the figure as Hans-Olof, and several more to remember his problem.

“Ah, the photo-guy. Yeah, your problem is solved, you dirty bastard.” Ola exclaims after some thought. Hans-Olofs demeanor quickly goes form “sheepish and nervous” to “happy and victorious”. He laughs out loud, thanks us and turns to leave.

“What about our pay?” Carola shouts after him.

-What pay? You took care of my problem, and with my problem goes the evidence! Hans-Olof says over his shoulder. The smile crossing his face quickly fades as he finds himself dangling by the foot, held up by Börje. Ola produces the photos and begin a long-winded explanation about what happens if they ever come out. Hans-Olof quickly pays up with whatever he has, it isn't much, but it's enough. Börje gives him a shake-down before dropping him to the ground. We leave the hurt and confused man behind and go on our way to Alma's place. We regale her with our long-winded tale of helping Selmon, going into the wild with Glenn and getting drunk at Hesselby. She stopped listening after “Selmon”, but she humors us nonetheless. Her attention is spiked again at the name “Bloodclot” and she tells us that whatever we do, make sure to NOT cross paths with him again. She says he's the type of guy you give a wide berth. Given the option, we are to rather cross the entire Krater than his path.

Lovely little home

Alma has another job for us. Astrid, the woman who got the mysterious letter wants to meet. She resides in Westerfall, a large town on the western border of the Krater. Börje asks about the name and is met by a blank stare. Ola notices in the corner of his eye a twitch in Börjes face and quickly produces a small bundle of flowers and leads the giant away. “Keep him on a short leash” is the advice we get from Alma as we leave.

Westerfall is indeed in the west, in the far west. Much further than we've ever been. This trek might lead us into some 'wild' country, but being the sensible adventurers that we are, we leave immediately and forget all kinds of preparation.

On our way we run into some bad folk. Some diggers heading east. Without much ceremony, we let Börje grind them into the ground. One of the diggers, with his dying breath whispers something about “the pit”, but we pay him little attention as we pilfer his pockets. About half-way between Norrmalm and Westerfall we find a very inviting cave. It's big, dark and just full of promises. The big sign outside reads “THE DEVILS PIT” and our crew quickly deduce that this must he be ruse of diggers. Hiding all their worldly goods in a cave and putting up a menacing sign. So, of course, we enter.

Lovely little hole

The cave has no digger, not one in sight. It is teeming with life though, spindly, pale and menacing life. Turns out the cave has a bad Ghast-infestation, and feeling altruistic, we decide to act pest control. These boys are different from your average digger. They're fair-skinned, tall and skinny things that have a certain love for sharp knives. They love 'em so much that they strap them to their fingers to act like claws. They might look tough and scary, but they offer little resistance to Börje. Deeper in the cave, we find what looks like their leaders. They're big ugly things that looks like someone smashed several ghasts together as one, and they offer some resistance. We're able to hold our own against these giants, but just barely. Their meaty forms gives their blows a surprising amount of power, but careful applications of stuns and slows keep them at bay.

Hot mutant on mutant action

The upside to these monsters is that their corpses are just filled to the brim with delicious loot, and it is here that our group starts regretting their hastiness. Our backpacks were already half-filled with loot, knick-knacks and an odd assortment of body-parts/trophies, so end up having to leave a bunch of it behind as we go on. We figure that the next group to brave the Devils Pit will probably have fun follow our bread-crumb trail of loot downwards. Leaving The Devils Pit thoroughly raided, we resume our course to Westerfall.

The closer we get to the great city, the more stiff resistance we run into on the roads. The bandits around these parts are used to raiding bigger targets than our little group, so they're more well equipped. Too bad that didn't account for our groups expert tactic of “throw Börje into the fray and support from far away”. While they are tough, the bandits go down like all the other before them.

Lovely little destination

After many bloody battle on the road, we finally are standing at the gates of Westerfall. With bags full of loot we enter the city, and at the main gate, two figures are waiting. One, standing in the shadows on the great gate watches on as the other one walks up and introduces himself.

“You must be Alma's crew! We've been expecting you. My name is Bobbo, and before entering, there are some things that you must know!”