Getting closer to Port Pearl the party finds that some merchants either aren’t sending out supplies from Port Pearl or some “bandits” have raided some of the wagons coming out of the city. Supplies are ok going into the city tho. In Port Pearl they discover the reason merchant/traders are not sending things out is now a small amount of fear of being raided ( not a lot at this time, more or less the seeds are being sown, or this is a prelude to a bigger confrontation between the craftsmen and merchant/traders.) Another warehouse was ransacked ; a ship in the dock was looted; a well to do traders daughter was kidnapped ; and yes bandits have struck some merchants. Since the city has a population of 50-55 k, it’s not much more crime then whats already going on.. but folks are beginning to take notice, and a keen eye can spot that some folks are starting to side with either the craftsman or merchant/traders. City/Government leaders would like to have negotiations going, but no one from the craftsman side is stepping forward.
Penelope talks to one of her noble ‘friends.’ He’s quite upset about relations between craftsmen and traders .. since it’s cutting into his pocketbook also. He’s worried about some lumber coming in from a lumber camp ( reports from the men there are saying strange sounds are being heard ). even tho 4 loads of lumber was to come in .. only 2 load where reported to arrive ( one load broke done, the forth was still waiting to become full at the camp). Being puzzled at this the party took no action since the noble wasn’t clear as to what needed to be done.
Also the noble is working on a ‘special deal’. It seams the Dwarfs have found a special type of drink they are calling gotts trinken, are going crazy for the stuff, and are willing to pay well for. ( altho drinkable to humans, humans find the liquor not that great tasting ). The noble has a deal with the dwarfs for 200 barrels of the stuff.
The party struck up a deal with the noble to broker a deal with a species called the Equines, who are the makers of such a drink. The deal the party got is 8000 gold, plus 2% ( of profits ) per year for the next 5 year ( if the party can acquire a 5 year contract with the Equines ). While the party feels this is a very small amount, the noble assures them this as fair as he can go with out hurting his own profits.
Things the party finds out about the Equines.
No one seems to know much about them, as they are a new race that the humans have run into.
They are ½ horse, ½ human ( like centaur )
They have not gotten along with ANY of the diplomats sent before. ( granted only about ½ dozen meetings tho.
They live in herds and roam.
They are excellent archery marksmen, a bit militant, and not to fond of the elves either.
They have treated humans rude, brash, unsophisticated ( at least according to the diplomats view). They sent a smaller member of their herd to be a negotiator/interpreter ( the diplomats referred to this equine as the ‘runt of the liter’/ and were quite offended that they were not aloud to talk with the herd leader )
They do not wear much for cloths, mostly vest type even among the female ( the diplomats thought this might even be a sign of rank in the particular herd).
There is a small place with a dock and one house that a human lives in in the Equine land, this is were the party will be going.
The party sets sail for the Equines land, believing this may be somehow relater to the phrase “Course the tail of hoof and hand” found in the Wondered prize poem.