Section: 15 May 2019 Up Main page Section: 5 June 2019 

29 May 2019

We got together the next day on Max’s boat, planning to look around Arawak Bay. Terry called on his… allies, who came glowing out of the fog, a group of sprites or something like them; their conversation didn’t seem terrible significant, though you never know. (They confirmed that the Hunts hadn’t been “here” for a very long time, at least by sprite standards.) When it came to runestones, there were a ot of them, but they represented easily-transferred power. After some consultation, they decided that a svartelf was now stuck here, and perhaps this was the seller? They’d be found with the other svartelves, though where we should look was trickier.
Svartelves were makers of gold and silver (and sometimes even iron), and they’d be found with the other silverworkers, “that way”, towards the city. The most likely overlap with shallows was in the “iron band” areas, to the west. And the stone itself… was perhaps still in the bay, or with the water-spirit we’d given it to.
And Federwell’s wings would have been a prize to any fey, after the amount of magic he’d eaten – having started off about their size.
About this time Max noticed that we were rather further out from the shore than we ought to be… and the sprites started to look nervous.
There was a boat out there, and we were drifting towards it. It turned out to be a small, but expensive, sailing yacht. When Max, Miss Yvette and I boarded, the door was opened by a balding man with dark hair, neatly dressed. (Though Miss Yvette could see that this was not his natural form, and got an impression of deep water; and Max, a sense of command.) He invited us all below; there was a spiral staircase which really shouldn’t have fitted inside the cabin, and we descended, quite a long way, as the air grew more humid but not quite chilly. We started to see strange creatures, floating and glowing in the darkness.
Miss Yvette heard music below, and we came out into something like a nightclub… with a certain rippling about it, particularly the smoked-glass walls, and some of the beautiful people were a bit toothy when you looked closely. Some of our clothes were floating, as was the pianist’s evening gown. Our host led us to a round table, and started to explain.
He would be known as Mr Gill. He asked if we knew why we were here, and Max explained our situation. Gill said that we’d forgotten something important; he gestured to the wall, and showed us the body of Federwell… and the body of the Hound. And those were corpses we had dropped into Her skirts, which was at best impolite.
By Gill’s knowledge, and the item was delivered to Federwell – having “passed through the waters”, legitimate attachments to it would be washed away. Her Grace was not happy, but was broadly sympathetic – if not able to intervene. And the young person who’d done the transfer in this realm was now visiting relatives abroad for her health.
The stone had left the water at the Notch, off Diamondback, promptly after we delivered it.
The Hounds would continue to pursue us. And while we accepted the legitimacy of the grievances against us…
Mr Gill agreed that the Hunt would be unable to pursue us across the water. Which would make our lives easier. We toasted the health of Her Grace, to an unnerving smile. And we returned to the yacht, and Max’s boat, and back up the coast.
We considered, and it seemed likely that Federwell had never received the stone, though probably it was someone looking like him.
We started looking for magical consultants. One, Dr Hüber, was by Fairacre Square, while Rhode and Thornton were closer to City Hall. We called on Hüber, Miss Yvette and Terry going in while the rest of us stayed outside.
Hüber was expensive, and curious, but Miss Yvette kept him out of the more dangerous side of the story, until he confessed that he couldn’t help without substantially more information – and that asking questions would mean that people knew questions were being asked.
She spilled the goods, and he didn’t immediately back off, though perhaps he wished he could. He admitted that he couldn’t do the whole job, but could do some research, and put us onto someone foolhardy enough to take it on; Miss Thornton, of that other firm.
Miss Yvette had two gigs that night, at The Firehouse, a small but new and popular club, and Tin-Tan, a larger and more forward-looking one. She went home to prepare; and at the stage door of The Firehouse, Lucio’s bodyguard ’Arry, with a large bunch of flowers and an invitation to a private party after the second gig. (With a hint that if one of us could look like a sugar daddy, so much the better. So that was my job.)
 Section: 15 May 2019 Up Main page Section: 5 June 2019