Episode 3 – Up a Lazy River

In which our protagonists head upriver to the Kurt Hills aboard The Flying Sea Serpent

Day 1

17 days after the Spring Equinox, The Flying Sea Serpent heads north from Jakálla. Master Cho estimates it will take 30-35 days to make the voyage upriver from Jakálla to Haumá in the Kurt Hills.

Tanic experiments with how water affects the wearing of armour. What happens when performing kata standing in water of varying depth? How does the drag of the water affect armour plates? How does the drag affect his maul?

Mnela gets impromptu swimming lessons from Master Cho.

Life on board is strictly regulated with everyone taking turns to stand 4 hour watches.

The sampan makes its way upriver using various techniques depending on wind and current. Sail: tacking to make best use of the wind. Crew and cousins towing the sampan from the embankment. Yulohing – where a crew member standing on the rear quarter twists a long oar in the water in a figure-8 pattern.

Master Cho’s Log

Day Equinox day km total km Observations
1 +17 20 km 20 km Learning the ropes
2 +18 20 km 40 km Master Cho shows Wuruli the view from the mast tops. 25km to the horizon. Meandering river channels visible either side of the embankments.
3 +19 25 km 65 km Monsoon starts unexpectedly early. Waterproofing of travel gear. All on watch soaking wet
4 +20 25 km 90 km rain
5 +21 20 km 110 km rain
6 +22 40 km 150 km rain
7 +23 10 km 160 km rain
8 +24 50 km 210 km rain. water level of river has risen. At dusk a wave comes downriver, 5m high, 500m long, over 20km wide.
9 +25 25 km 235 km ain. debris in the water. entire trees. flooding on both banks, over 50km wide
10 +26 20 km 255 km rain. muddy water. debris
11 +27 30 km 285 km rain
12 +28 20 km 305 km rain
13 +29 30 km 335 km rain
14 +30 35 km 370 km rain
15 +31 40 km 410 km rain. embankment damaged. wheelbarrow (73rd Imperial Engineering Company)
16 +32 20 km 430 km rain. embankment damaged. wheelbarrow (49th Imperial Engineering Company)
17 +33 5 km 435 km rain. floating mangrove forest
18 +34 30 km 465 km rain
19 +35 40 km 505 km rain
20 +36 50 km 555 km rain. section of a destroyed rope bridge
21 +37 60 km 615 km rain
22 +38 60 km 675 km rain. transit of the gallery


Day 22 Events at the Gallery

The river narrows and passes through a line of rocky hills. The path that previously ran atop the starboard embankment continues along a gallery cut into the side of the rock face. The cousins disembark while \textit{The Flying Sea Serpent} makes the passage against the rapids with Master Cho and a skeleton crew 
Halfway through the transit the sampan and the cousins are hit by archery from the far bank. One of the sailors is hit. Tanic and Mu’on abseil down the cliff. The cousins string their bows and return fire. Another sailor is hit. The attackers withdraw. Tanic, Master Cho and Mu’on cross the flooded river. From the far bank Juyami spots the path the attackers have taken and calls out. There is a brief exchange of fire, the attackers are killed, at the cost of several injuries. Several of crew and cousins will be on light duties for the coming weeks. Tanic follows a trail back to a cave, and discovers a well hidden camp in a rock fissure. with 3 bedrolls, a fire-pit and trail rations. Tanic returns from the fracas, ignoring two arrow wounds in his leg, until Mnela’s physician instincts kick in.

Mnela and Cheshan perform a quick autopsy on the two attackers. Both are similar. Male, mid 20s, short, fit with little body fat.  Wearing plain kilts. Barefoot. Lungs are unusual: significantly increased lung capacity. Callused knuckles?

The bow strings are unusual: waterproofed, and reinforced around the nocking point. The belts have some glyphs that none of the crew or cousins recognise.

Master Cho’s Log Continues

Day  Equinox +  Day km  Total km Observations
23 +39 10 km 625 km rain
24 +40 5 km 630 km rain
25 +41 50 km 680 km rain
26 +42 20 km 700 km rain. There is a gorge visible in another line of rocky hills. Scouts are sent out.

Scouting the Gorge

The river enters a gorge, with rocky hills to both sides. The water is turbulent. Sailing channels are marked out with buoys, some of which have survived the inundation. A few km upstream is a confluence of two channels which meet just downstream of a rocky promontory.

Scouting behind the right ridge line, with occasional foray to the top. The scouts spot three archers waiting in ambush.

Master Cho sails the junk up-river. The Little Ray of Darkness wards the sailors on the sampan. The cousins plan a counter ambush.

As The Flying Sea Serpent sails upstream, the archers emerge from hiding and open fire. Juyami’s ward keeps the crew safe from the worst of the archery. The counter ambush is sprung and there is a messy, running skirmish, along the ridge line above the river gorge. Eventually Tanic, Nebussa and Changi see off the attackers, and take one injured prisoner, but don’t have the chance to search the remaining bodies.

The Flying Sea Serpent passes the gorge safely  ..