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Issue Four Synopsis


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The journey from Triaden to Danio, the next city, takes several days. Rain taunts Rua over taking so long to recover from drinking the toxic water, and Miriam interrupts Rua's morning meditatons and sword practice. Apparently, in Tsien, there is no science, there is only the mystic arts. Miriam finds that a bit of a culture shock.
Back in Triaden, a freelance investigator named Arram is wandering through the streets checking up on various sources, including a somewhat suspicious youth, who tells him that last week, a man was murdered, an item was stolen from him and passed on, and that the victom, murderer and item all came from Ember. Should Arram find the item and the thief, it would be lucrative for him, but the only other thing he is told is the name 'Rain'. Arram next checks out the police station - he performs a similar function to Rua but is legal - and is told that there are two new wanteds and a murder. The pictures of the two new wanted people resemble Miriam and Rua. On returning home, he is met by a representative of the Flyers' Guild, the people who fly the message craft between city-states - apart from the message tube system, they are the only cross-city operators. The pilot tells him that they need information on whatever's going on about an artifact from Ember. The Flyers' Guild is weak, so anything hr could find would be a help. Arram has worked with them before.
Just outside Danio, Miriam watches a Flyer landing and realises that the Flyers and the message tubes mean that news can be spread rather faster than the three of them can walk - and the policeman in Triaden recognised them, which doesn't bode well, although it amuses Rua. It will make it hard for them to get money (Rain offers to steal some), but Miriam suggests asking the Cranks for help - there will be a group in Danio just as there is one in Ember, and they are also in touch with each other, however illegal that is.
Arram is approached by an emissary of the Guild of Notaries. The emissary tells him a client of the Guild has contacted them about an item they would like retrieved. When Arram asks about the item, he is told that his 'thief contact' has already told him what he needs to know. Somewhat perturbed, Arram asks about who to contct within the Notaries' Guild, but the emissary only states that 'the Guild are as one. There are no secrets among us. Unlike, for example, the Flyers' Guild'. Arram is also told that going further afield than usual would be worthwhile.
Miriam, Rua and Rain find the Cranks and are welcomed, although the Crank doesn't say how he knows about their situation (after Rua glares at him). The Crank tells Miriam a little about her father's research, although not more than that there was rather more to it than she had known about. She later asks to be told more, but the Crank ony directs her to his papers. Since she's going to Sarani - according to Rua, anyway - he tells her to ask the Cranks there about 'Second'. They stay the night with the Crank.
Arram makes the connections. The shopkeeper Quirin sold the artifact he is after, but reports three people asking after it, two of whom look like the wanted individuals, who appear to have been chased by the police just the other day. However, the wanted people, the artifact and the buyer have all vanished, and the involvement of the Flyers and origin of the item suggest this is a cross-city-state affair...
The next morning, the wanted notice arrives in Danio on the early flight. One of the pilots remarks that he's seen Rua's face before, although he can't remember where (and why would a Tsiennese be outside his city-state, anyway?). That same morning, Rua breaks in to the Flyers' Tower, stealing a flightsuit. He passes a couple of pilots who don't appear to recognise him, although after he's gone they remark on him. The older pilot remembers a Tsiennese pilot from ooh, fifteen years ago now... Rua goes to the records room to see if their descriptions have been passed on and finds that they have indeed, just that morning. Unfortunately for him, he is seen by one of the pilots who read the notice, who recognises him and gives chase.
Rua runs out of the tower and is caught by the pilot. Miriam and Rain were waiting for him, being worried, and manage to beat the pilot off, although Rua loses his glasses in the scuffle. They flee the gaggle of police and pilots all chasing after them, losing them in the side streets.
Rain goes back for Rua's glasses, which he needs, against Miriam's protests. She thinks the little thief will get caught. Miriam and Rua, however, are the ones who are chased, and they run to one of the funicular railway trains that run up and down the steep slope on which Danio is built. The police pile into the following train, but Rua disengages them from each other, breaking the circular chain and causing their train to crash at the bottom. They return to the Crank, who is distinctly unimpressed and tells them they're going to have to leave the next morning, given the amount of fuss they'd caused. Rain pops in with Rua's glasses, disproving the Crank's assertion that no-one could get into his building without him knowing.
Arram, meanwhile, goes to the Notaries' Guild to ask about some records. Records are not shown to the public, and he is told he must find the person who made the original request - whose identity he doesn't know. He gives up in the end, wondering where to go now. He doesn't have much on Dr White except her father's death - and that was ages ago, back when he last worked for the Flyers. There's no information on Rua or Rain at all. Nothing in Triaden, that is..



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