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Re: (TFT) TFT town --> Hiquet --> part 5

(C) 2004 by Richard W. Smith

This is the last that I have to say on Hiquet for
a while.    I must say that in general the response has been
whelming.     ;-)

List of Characters:
Ossateem LaForque, Med attr. Ruler and sexual predator.
Maqut LaForque, Med att. Ossateem's clever son.
Airquet, Med High attr. Master spy with many informants.
Quemm, Med low attr.  Leader of guards, friend of Ossateem.
Klimcate Med High attr.  Up and coming guard.  Disloyal.
Sliver, High. Chief torturer. Thinks himself a family man.
Mrot, Med.  Hates situation, but afraid to make waves.

Jarre, Med.   Wizard living on his father's inheritance.
Ston, Med High  Town's most famous merchant.  No waves.
Reetantai Med Low. Slaver, wealthy and cruel. Much hated.
Sookie Low attributes.  Madenning carvings sold by Maqut.
Hogan and Sotai Quett both Med Low. Poorish nobles & rebels
Marquet LaForque, Med Low.  Enjoys slumming and rape.

Rustmel High Attr, Nasty leader of a gang of tough adventurers.
Morrej Med Attr.  Only Friend who tries to help his people. 
Esourett Med Low. Rebel using his merchant status as cover.
Sun's Shadow High. Angelic being fighting Patient Man.
Mama Bear, Med High.  Creating a foreign merc. company.

Big Mrax, Med Low.  Friendly thug, 7 day hero.
Niggle, Very Low.   Sometimes accurate fortune teller.
Beans, Very low.   Street kid who likes bugs.
Bokkom, High.   Thief Lord, semi-retired, turned educator.
Isomempt, Med Low.  Animal lover & gambling den operator.
Margo, Med low.   Gossip monger who helps the poor.

Very high--> 60 attributes or more
High att --> 50 - 59 attributes
Med High --> 45 - 49 attributes
Med att  --> 40 - 44 attributes
Med Low  --> 35 - 39 attributes
low att  --> 30 - 34 attributes
very low --> 30 attributes or less.

Goings on in the poor areas of town:

Big Mrax - Thug
ST 14, DX 15 (13), IQ 10 (max), MA 12 (Racing + leather)
Whip (cat o' nine tails, treat as a Moringing star
doing -4 damage) Morning star Main gauche. 
Big Mrax is a huge man at 195 cm.  He has
permanent brain damage from a low protein diet as a
child and the parts of his mind that deal with long
term memory are weak.  He has a very hard time 
	However, he is 'people smart' and had done
fairly well by allying himself with a variety of
gangs.  He tends to leave the thinking to others &
concentrates on doing his part of thuggery what 
ever that may be.
	He is well thought of by his many friends.
They know that he generally won't remember promises
but he is a vicious fighter and has several times
risked his life to save a buddy.  He is always first
to volunteer for a dirty, or dangerous job and he
is well liked.
	He has had no permanent sexual relationships
but generally his size and looks will attract a
girl of some sort until she realizes how little he
is willing to offer.
	If he gets in serious trouble he simply
moves to a new section of town, where he readily
makes new friends.  This has resulted in him having
a sort of membership in several gangs in the lower
town.  If it became necessary to organize a variety 
of gangs Big Mrax (with some guidance) would act as 
an ideal diplomat / coordinator.
	If the guards ever got their hands on him
they would likely give him a quick trial and kill 
him, but they are not actually looking for him.
The Patient Man knows nothing about Mrax.
	A week ago Big Mrax broke up a slave raid
by Reetantai's men and killed two of her people.
	This has made him a 7 day hero in the lower 
town & has resulted in him getting an unusual amount
of female attention which he is greatly enjoying.
Reetantai knows of him and is making plans to have
him captured, tortured and killed.  Unless the PC's
interfere, her second or third attempt to capture
him will succeed.

Niggle - Fortune teller.
	ST 7, DX 8, IQ 15, MA 7 to 10 (depending).
Knife which he knows how to use & Thrown weapons.
Niggle also is stunted by a starvation
diet as a child.  His name comes from an 
epilepsy type wiggle that he suffers from, 
especially at times of poor food.  He has barely
survived by being friendly, useful and smart.
However, times have been tough and he is at the
edge of a physical and mental breakdown.
	A worshiper of the minor god XXXXX, he
has often prayed for his fits to stop / help for
his friends (and at one time for his family who
are now dead).
	The god granted him a very limited 
precognition.  If Niggle tells a fortune the GM
should secretly roll 3d6.  On a 5 the future he
sees is close, on a 3 or 4 it is accurate.  
Additionally if Niggle likes you, he will tend 
to see pleasant futures, if you are cruel to him 
the futures are less pleasant.
	(He does not control your future, but
the god finds him good or bad futures as 
appropriate.  Those who believe in his powers 
have gotten the hint.)
	He lives in a pit and barely survives.
A number of his friends have come to bad ends in
the last few months and he has gained a 
reputation of foretelling / creating bad luck.
He is currently starving, dehydrated and shaking
and twitching, half mad.
	When the PC's come across him he will
(like many other people) beg them for food or a
drink.  He will offer to tell their fortunes.
>From the reactions of the other people around him
the PC's should notice that Niggle's claim of
fortune telling carries weight with the local
population who are not happy to have him near by.
Normally when Niggle tells a fortune, he
uses his smarts and store of gossip to create
something plausible.  However he is on the edge
and knows nothing about the PC's so his first 
couple fortunes will be under-whelming.
However the next fortune will be a true
vision.  (It is just like the others save that
it has a bit more detail.)  It should be 
obviously useful to the PC's, warning of an
attack and foretelling meeting a useful NPC as
a result, etc.  Basically it should propel the
PC's into the relationships / plot hook.
	Niggle is ignored by the authorities &
by the Patient Man.

Beans - Mouthy kid   24 attr - 12 yr old.
	Beans used to be an adopted child of 
Esourett, but he bad mouthed his slow witted 
benefactor one too many times.   Esourett has
stopped helping him.  Beans secretly regrets this
but in public he claims he is better off without
the 'dumb head'.  
	Beans has one sister who used to look 
after him, but she has become more and more hooked
on drugs in a foul underground crib, and he is now
pretty much on his own.  He would like to help his
sister, but he is barely capable of looking after
himself, let alone have the resources to help her.
	Beans has lately hit upon a money making 
proposition.  He has built a race track out of a 
plank and some scraps of chalk and cloth and has
been racing roaches down the track.  His races
are 'fair' but he knows his bugs far better than
his customers which allows him to act as a 
successful bookie.  Sooner or later an older kid
will lose & wreck things but so far Bean has 
avoided betting against anyone who is likely to
make trouble.
	During the day, Beans collects shit and
carries it out to the fields for fertilizer.  
The foreman of the fields always lets him get a
drink of the polluted (bacteria / lead) crop
water and so he survives.
	The PC's will notice Beans because of a
bunch of happy children shouting around a corner.
Looking they will see one of his roach races & be
impressed by how he fairly pays out the pathetic
winnings to the other children, keeping '5 dead 
bugs' as his profit.  (Which be promptly eats.)  
	If the PC's hire him he will prove to be a 
knowledgeable guide to the very poor areas of town.  
He knows the tunnels quite well near Esourett's 
home and the more public tunnels else where.
Beans knows Margo (below) and sometimes
trades her gossip.  
	The authorities know nothing about him
but the Patient Man knows of his relationship with
his sister.  If the Patient Man needs someone to 
act as a suicide scout or distraction, he intends
to use Beans promising to help his sister.  (This
will be a lie, and he would intend to have Beans
killed in order to avoid having to pay up.)

Bokkom the Firm - Semi retired thief lord
	Looks like a friendly overweight man, but 
has several expensive magic items (~$50,000 range)
that give him a great deal of protection and
warning of imminent attacks.  His favored weapon 
is a heavy crossbow.  If he has time he will tip 
the crossbow bolts with a powerful poison.  He 
wields a poisoned Magic Bastard sword doing 4d+8 
damage before poison.
	10 years ago Bokkom was a terror, ruling 
the lower city with a combination of carrot and 
very big stick.  However he never enjoyed the 
punishments he gave out and in addition has 
mellowed in the last few years.  (A gaggle of 
grandchildren have softened him a bit.)  The up 
shot is tho he still is the 'ruler' of the 
thieves he has let things lapse, and no longer 
bothers about _unorganized_ and small scale 
operators muscling in on his turf.  Every two 
years or so someone tries to make trouble for 
him and then Bokkom rounds up a bunch of boys 
and makes another example.
	(A couple of would be replacements have
allied with him and are now his officers running
sections of the town.)
	Currently he is a Friend to a small portion 
of the town and uses this income to help maintain a
number of his buddies and officers.  This allows 
him to keep a feel on the pulse of the town.  With
other sources of income he is by no means the most
cruel Friend, and give a large number of very poor
people a break on water taxes in exchange for them
doing a bit of spying / gossiping for him.  There
are a lot of eyes in his section of town which will 
quickly report anything unusual to him.
	Bokkom thinks that a full scale revolution 
is likely & intends to sit it out, staying strictly 
	Bokkom owns a couple large warehouses left
over from failed business & has used them as a 
place to educate thieves.  The quality of the 
training has very gradually got out to the various
underworlds in the region & of late he has gotten
enough people traveling to Hiquet to turn this in
to a money making venture.  He sometimes will
introduce himself as a 'Friend and Educator'.
	He has a long list of blackmail material
on most of the guards (including a few things that
suggest that Kimcate is not as keen for the 
current authorities as they would like).  He pays 
a regular bribe to both Maqut and Airquet and so
the authorities don't bother him as long as he 
does not mess too much with the upper levels of
town.  (If he does, he has to pay bigger bribes.)
	Bokkom and Sun's Shadow have a minor deal,
Sun Shadow 'rents' space in areas underground from
the ex-thief lord in exchange for training a 
couple of his people.   Since these people are
worshipers that Sun's Shadow would train in any
case, Sun's Shadow is not compromising its 
	The Patient Man and Bokkom do not much 
like each other.  Each considers the other a 
rival, and each have sent people to attack the
other.  However the assassination attempts have
all failed, and neither wants to wipe out their 
troops in a full scale war.  They have made a
deal: The Patient Man will stop muscling in on
Bokkom's interests and Bokkom will leave him the
territory the other controls.  
	Neither trusts the other and if they 
could knock out the other they would do so at 
	Bokkom suspects that the Patient Man has
supernatural powers. 

Isommept - Small businessman.
	Isommept is a distant relative of Bokkom 
and has prospered living near his more powerful
great cousin.
	Running a gambling den / tavern he 
insists that his dealers and other workers run
honest games.  (They sometimes don't of course
but if he catches them he has Bokkom beat them
up and fires the bleeding remains.)  His joint, 
"The Backboard" has gained a good reputation in 
town and out, and serious gamblers in the area 
will often visit his place.
	However Isommept's true love is his 
animals, especially dogs.  He has a natural
knack about them and by spending 1 fST he can
make even the most aggressive and dangerous of
them to think he is something not to mess with.
He does not consciously know about this, but 
when the chips are down he just 'looks mean' 
usually the animal will back down.  This knack 
has saved him dangerous maulings 3 or 4 times.
	However, he loves animals and few can
match is knowledge of veterinary science, animal
handling, driving, etc.
	He has been breding large dogs and 
often gets orders from outside the city for his
beasts.  (Treat as wolves but with a ST of 0 to 
2 points less than a standard wolf.)
	People will often come to his place to
get accustomed to and train up with their war
dogs.  Isommept will some times give people who
really seem to love their animals free tokens 
for his games.
	Isommept has the right to sell water to
outsiders, but he is too far inside town to 
compete with the official sellers who service 
the travelers and caravans.  Mainly he uses this
to make his guests more comfortable and saves
them the expense of dealing with the corrupt 
official sellers.
	He has made a fair number of friends 
both in and outside of the town.
	The authorities don't much care about
him providing he pays his water tax.  But the
Patient Man has looked into capturing or killing
in order to gain a lever to use against Bokkom.

Margo - Mother
	Margo is a relatively happy woman.  She
has a job working as a weeder / farmer and she
is close friends with the foreman.  He lets her
several kids help for a few hours a day and they
all get as much as they can drink for their 
efforts.  Her major pleasure in life is gossiping
and (when she can) helping other.
	Margo's husband used to be a drunken lout
but he died 3 years ago.  He insulted one of the 
Disembowellers & they killed him, which left her 
materially better off.  (Since he contributed 
nothing to the house hold and abused her.)  
	The 'Friend' she goes to in town is a 
completely power mad, tyrant.  She has stopped 
dealing with him and gets all of her water on
the farms, which is inconvenient but safer.
(Mothers with 3 or more children should get a
ration of free water but this often does not 
	Tho she does not realize it, she is 
about to get involved in a nasty little plot.

	--- GM's don't start these events 
happening until the PC's have a number of 
relationships in the town, and have some stake
in things changing or staying the same. ---

	The field that she works on is a 
terrace plot in the hills beside the town 
proper.  There is a fault in the sandstone and
water has been leaking out of it for years.
(Local kids often sneak out to drink the shit
polluted water, and often die of the resulting
	The friendly foreman (Nonyovet) has 
decided to put a stop to this.  He got permission
to dig up that area of the field, rebuild the
stone terrace and line the area with clay in
order to stop the 'theft of water'.
	While digging out the fault, a strange
hard jar has been found.  Nonyovet kept this
thinking it might be valuable but Margo saw it
being moved to his shack.  Nonyovet paid the 2
workmen to keep their silence (and they have
done so) but he didn't notice that Margo saw
the urn.
	She has spoken about this to Niggle
(whom she likes) and to another gossip monger
friend of hers, Madam Tongue.
	The urn is practically indestructible
is immune to magical spying and contains the
lungs of a powerful Lich.  It hid the urn 
centuries ago in a completely anonymous cleft
in the soft rock and then buried it deep until
it was found last week.  The lich is 'alive' 
but buried under a hill side and is trapped
until the hill erodes away.  (A long story.)
	The lungs are highly valuable magical
	The 'beautiful jar' or 'rich looking
jar' as it is referred by the gossips and the 
story of its wealth and speculation of what 
treasures are inside of it has grown in the 
telling.  The following events are about to 
	1)  A local gang (Bet's Boys) will break 
into the office of Nonyovet and steal the urn.
While doing this they will critically wound a 
water guard who will die a few days later.
	2)  This will alert the authorities and
Klimcate will be asked to look into it.  He and
3 other fighters will show up the day after the
robbery and will question everyone.  Margo will
have LOTS of interesting gossip after these
interviews, and will learn more about the urn
from eavesdropping on the questioning.
	3)  The Patient Man will hear of this
and set his spies to finding out about what is
going on. 
	4)  The Bet's Boys will be unsuccessful 
in trying to break the urn.  Some of their louder
attempts will draw the attention of Esourett's
adopted kids.  They will tell him and he will
inform the Disembowellers of the location of 
the jar.
	5)  One of Bet's Boys (a little weasel
called Chel) tells an informant of what they 
found.  He hopes that Bet will be killed so he
and his brother can take over the gang.  The
informant is working for Airquet but sells the
information twice also passing the information 
on to Sotai Quett.  She gets the information to
the the Patient Man a couple days later.
	6)  The Disembowellers attack Bet's 
boys, taking the urn and hurting the gang badly.
(No deaths.)  Bet's boys do not recognize who
the attackers are.
	7)  Unable to open the urn, they ask 
Esourett to go to Jarre and open the urn magically.
Jarre recognizes the value of the urn but tips
his hand, showing too much interest in it.  He
tries to keep the urn offering Esourett a paper
receipt but Esourett refuses.  The fast talking
Jarre has him confused and in these situations he
wants to sit down and think about things. Grabbing 
the urn, he flees the wizard's shop.  Jarre tries 
to follow him but he and his guards lose Esourett 
in the tunnels soon after he flees the shop.
	8)  Jarre reports the 'theft' asking for 
a guard to help him.  Klimcate intercepts the 
message and deals with it himself, preventing
Quemm from knowing of the report of the jar's 
reappearance.  Jarre explains to Klimcate that
the jar is a powerful magical artifact that it is
vital to recover it.  Margo hears of the pursuit
of Esourett thru the town by '3 men, one of them
looking like a WIZARD!'
	9)  Airquet is secretly watching Bet's
Boys, and detects that the Patient Man's spies 
are also trying to get close to them.
10)  The Patient Man captures Margo and
tortures her, questioning her about the urn and
what the guard (Klimcate) knows.

	The GM should go to some effort to get
the PC's involved.
	This could go very badly for the resistant.
Airquet knows that the Patient Man learned of the
connection between Bet's Boys and the urn.  He 
will eventually question his informant and will
likely learn that he also sold the information to
Sotai.  This may be the crack he needs to prove 
her connection with the resistance and give him a
solid lead to the Patient Man.
	Esourett has the urn, and too much money
water and eyes are looking for it.  He will give
it back to the Disembowellers, but he is very 
likely to be caught and questioned by the 
authorities.  If that occurs, he will spill his
plans to overthrow the LaForque family.
	Lastly, Klimcate is likely to be the first
one to put the pieces together and find the urn.
He will be reluctant to turn it over to Maqut or
Airquet, and so his disloyalty will likely be

	The urn could be useful,  it generates
a powerful and subtle anti-scrying field around
it.  It does not show up as a 'hole' of no 
information, it just makes everything within
a 10 meter radius so 'uninteresting' that 
magical spying overlooks it.

	The Patient Man would greatly desire 
this, and should the PC's get their hands on it
he will offer them $16,000 for it.  Unless they
completely put themselves in his power, he will
deal fairly with them.  If they do put themselves
at his mercy he will demonstrate he has none.

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