Rants tag

Rants, ruminations, and rambling remarks from my mad, muddled, meandering mind.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tales from Tortage: Chamomile and the Duchess

Chamomile strolled through the marketplace of Tortage. While it was still fairly early, most vendors had arrived at their stalls and were preparing the displays for the day's bargaining. It had been a long night, and Chami had yet to return to her bed at the Thirsty Dog. The old man on White Sands Isle had helped her in discovering more about her past prior to the shipwreck, but there many gaps still.

Arias had given her much to ponder. As she wandered past the vendors, browsing their wares without really seeing them, a rather finely dressed woman standing in front of a poultry stall attracted her attention.

"Excuse me, milady," Chami greeted the woman. "Forgive me for saying this, but you seem a little over dressed to be selling chickens."

"Silly girl, I am not selling this rubbish. I am only out because I cannot bare to sit in my mansion these days. Oh, how I wish I could book passage back to Aquilonia."

"Ah, you are Aquilonian?" Chamomile asked with sudden interest.

"Of course, girl. I am Junia, of House Tarant, one of the oldest noble houses. The Tarants founded a dynasty in Tarantia, before the unification of the Aquilonian kindoms. You, on the other hand, have the look of the Southern Hills about you, if I am not mistaken."

"Hmm, yes, mayhap," Chami responded guardedly, storing the new clue to her identity away. "What is wrong with your mansion, that you do not wish to be in it?"

"Pirates, unchecked by the Red Hand, stormed the house some weeks back, and plundered most of the precious things inside. Since then, my house slaves have slipped away one by one. They are gone, camping with the pirates, and living off the profit from my family heirlooms. And there is no one left to maintain the house. Damn them all!"

Thinking of her own recent change of fortune, Chami looked up at the noblewoman with little sympathy. "You should let them be. They took their chance at freedom."

"What do you know of it, girl?" Junia replied haughtily, "Clearly you have never been in a position to own a bar of soap, much less a household which needs caretaking. I paid for my servants and they had a good life, considering their station. They deserve justice, not freedom."

At this point, Chami could think of nothing else to say. Junia looked down at her with a sudden idea. "You apparently have some fighting skill. I would be avenged of the wrongs done to me by those pirates and my ungrateful servants. How much would it be worth for you to take care of this situation for me?"

Chami gazed at the woman through narrowed eyes. "I must think upon this. Perhaps I will discuss it with you later, milady. Farewell."

OOC: This was the first quest in AoC I decided (at first) not to take. Normally, I am fairly mercenary about taking quests; after all, they're simply XP. Plus, WoW rarely, if ever, presents this sort of moral dilemma. But from a former slave's viewpoint, especially one I think would possess a higher sense of justice as a priest of Mitra, this seems an untenable quest to undertake. After thinking about it though, and looking into Junia and her quest, I realized the pirates she was referring to had given Chami a lot of trouble, chasing her through the streets of Tortage and even killing her a couple times. So I may end up taking the quest after all, out of my own sense of revenge.

And to answer a question posed by Adventure Historian, I am enjoying my time in Hyboria, though I can't wait to get away from Tortage, or be involved in the downfall of its current ruler. I don't know if the current regime remains unchanged at the end of my time here, but I hope not.


  1. Hey, I didn't take that quest, either! I didn't know it was a mission to kill pirates, but I definitely wasn't going to help recapture slaves.

    There were a few other missions I didn't take, either, but in these two cases I eventually relented: (very minor spoilers)
    - The beggar who wants you to kill people that are going to snitch on him. At first, I thought he wanted me to help him lie about members of the Resistance. Then I found out it was just killing more pirates; I have no ethical qualms about that.
    - The Resistance member who wanted me to gather poisons for Red Hand potions. That seemed like a low blow - and then I remembered I didn't like the Red Hand.

  2. I took the quest from the beggar. And I think I did the poison quest, I was gathering poisons from snakes and scorpions, right?

    I learned about the killing pirates part of the noblewoman's quest from the AoC wiki.

  3. Ha, I take them all, I just want the XP!

    But seriously though, there are definitely more than a few moral dilemmas in this game, but I usually do the quests anyway, because most of the time I want to see where the story will lead. That and when I was leveling up, there was no choice but to take them all anyway, if I wanted less of a grind. That should change with the offline leveling system as well as the expansion though.

    From what I've read, the expansion will be looking more into the moral dilemma issue, most evident in their new faction system and who you want to ally with etc. depending on what they stand for.

  4. A Priest of Mitra, actually a mercenary. hahah

  5. @AyAitch, What? is that a confirmation that they actually are mercenaries, or laughing at the thought of them being mercenaries. I haven't read any of the books, so I don't know. The AoC Wiki has no info on that.

    @GeeCee, I may just have to go ahead and get the expansion, I was going to wait 'til i was higher level, and see if I will stick with the game. I hope the "moral" dilemmas don't turn into "what-phat-lewt-can-I-get-from-each-faction?" dilemmas that the Aldor/Scryer split caused in WoW.

  6. No, it was just a joke. I was under the delusion that priests were actually okay people in this game's lore, but obviously that comes down to the player.

    And seriously, morale dilemmas rarely get beyond the "phat lootz" phase, even in real life.

  7. @Rowan, one thing I like about the AoC expansion is that they'll be adding new content to the lower levels so that people starting new characters can have new content to look forward to right off the bat. I heard that one of the new zones will be a 20-40 zone. No confirmation yet, but sounds logical, if there's going to be expansion stuff right out of tortage as they claim.