Bay 12 Games Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 45

Author Topic: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort  (Read 42554 times)

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« on: May 21, 2011, 12:01:09 pm »

[stone tablets found in a midden at an architectural dig in the mountain range of the Intense Spine, translated from the dwarven by Lekler Arala]

Quote
10th Obsidian, 200

Department of Military Affairs, Isakudil

Dear Mr Madushkubuk,

We are in receipt of your tablet dated 6th Obsidian 200. I have now personally reviewed your case. While we understand your feelings on the matter, unfortunately soapmaking is not one of the trades which permit an exemption to military service. Furthermore, your guild has not been formally recognized by the administration of this mountainhome and as such has no legal standing. Your application has therefore been denied, and you are requested to report to your militia captain at your earliest convenience. You do not have the right to further appeals. If you disagree with this decision you may of course lodge an emigration proposal with the outpost foundation tribunal, as long as said proposal is received by that office prior to the first of Granite.

Sigun Egulrigoth, General

Quote
12th Obsidian, 200

General Egulrigoth

I find it absolutely ridiculous that soapmaking has been denied preferred trade status--who do you think supplies the soap to treat the injuries that come out of your "danger room" deathtraps? Not only are such devices notoriously unsafe, they are in my view a way of viciously "hazing" new recruits, and I have no intention of submitting myself to such a backwards and barbaric practice. As for the allegation that the Soapmaker's Guild does not represent a legitimate commercial interest of Isakudil, I can only state that we have been in the process of achieving recognition of our guild for the past five years, and have been continually and in my opinion intentionally delayed by the current administration. I feel that I and my fellow guildmembers have been treated appallingly and I shall indeed be lodging an emigration proposal at the earliest opportunity.

Yours, G. Zephyr Madushkubuk, Soapmaster

Quote
16th Obsidian

From the desk of Cog Risenbasen, Guild of Cartographers and Traders

Dear Mr Madushkubuk,

I engrave with respect to your tablet dated the 12th Obsidian, regarding a suitable location for an outpost to be funded by the Soapmaker's Guild. You requested:

"Lots of trees and grazing land, good hunting, warm and pleasant climate where nobody will bother us"

You must understand that virgin unclaimed land with all the qualities you desire is very hard to find. Having searched our map archives I have located a likely looking and as yet uninhabited area described as "The Lonely Jungle". It would seem an ideal choice for you given your requirements and your stated intention. The climate may perhaps be a little warmer than you hoped, and the distance from the mountainhome quite extensive, but otherwise it would appear to be a perfect match.

Quote
17th Obsidian, 200

Att: Liaison Cog Risenbasen, Guild of Cartographers and Traders

Thank you very much for your recently received tablet, and your assistance in this matter. The suggested location seems, as you said, perfect. We'll take it!

G Z Madushkubuk, Soapmaker's Guild

Quote
19th Obsidian, 200

Dear Mr Madushkubuk,

Your proposal to found an Isakudil outpost at the location of the Lonely Jungle has been approved by the commission. However, I am obliged to inform you, in case you were unaware, that it is not our policy to provide military backup for startup expeditions in extreme areas such as these. You will be on your own.

D Gutidsarvesh, Dept. of Emigration

Quote
20th Obsidian, 200

Att: D Gutidsarvesh, Emigration

Why would we want to bring soldiers along? I'm not expecting to encounter any trouble in the Lonely Jungle. It sounds like a delightful place to live. I and my associates will be living a peaceful communal life, making soap.

Quote
21st Obsidian, 200

Dear Mr Madushkubuk,

As you wish. A heavily armed trade caravan is timetabled to pass through your area in late autumn of 201. If any of you remain by then and wish to return to the Mountainhomes you may do so at that time.

D. Gutidsarvesh, Dept. of Emigration
« Last Edit: May 22, 2011, 02:09:58 pm by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2011, 12:02:57 pm »

All right this is the deal

EVERYONE IS SOAPMAKER
NO EXCEPTIONS

Our civ has no iron and this embark has no metal. If we can get through the aquifer, which has about a million layers, we can learn to work gems as trade goods, because that's all that's down there (well, aside from microcline and something that's the same color as microcline IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN). I am expecting to rely on marksdwarves (bone bolts) and/or traps, but we need stone for that. As you can see from the region map we do have some lovely neighbors a couple of tiles away.

The embark is a 5x5 living terrifying tropical jungle. There's lovely mostly flat terrain with multiple intersecting streams and a one-z-level waterfall. There are phantom spiders, elephants, hippos, carp, all the good stuff, and on a prior scouting embark of the biome I saw my first ever foul blendecs. Shame you can't make soap out of them :(

My game is slightly modded: races are untouched but there are custom plants and some animals including a megabeast. I will introduce those if and when they pop up. I've taken the [GOOD] and [EVIL] tags off sunberries and sliver barbs because they don't spawn in .25 otherwise. Female dwarves have beards. Titans attack at 50 pop.

I would describe my DF skill level as poor to average.

Feel free to claim a dorf. Let's show those sneering snobs back at the mountainhomes what soapmakers can do.




NEW PLANTS (not an exhaustive list)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: May 21, 2011, 12:13:49 pm by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2011, 12:11:59 pm »

GODS OF THE SPATTERED LANTERN

ID
Id was most often depicted as a female dwarf and was associated with metals.

DATAN GOSMERIB, "Datan the Umbral Gorge"
Datan was most often depicted as a male giant rat and was associated with caverns and mountains.

KOVEST BER OSRAM, "Kovest the Earth of Fortunes"
Kovest was most often depicted as a female dwarf and was associated with wealth and jewels.

BER DATAN ASEN, "Ber the Irons of Gravel"
Ber was most often depicted as a female dwarf and was associated with minerals.

SASTRES ZIKELCUDIST AVUM IMKETH, "Sastres Fiercescald the Culmination of Justices"
Sastres was most often depicted as a male dwarf and was associated with victory, war and fortresses.

ANAM ULOLMELBIL, "Anam Lasttomes"
Anam was most often depicted as a female dwarf and was associated with longevity.



LIST OF NAMED DWARVES AS OF 27th GALENA, 207
« Last Edit: June 02, 2011, 04:38:53 am by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2011, 12:34:45 pm »

At first sight, it was everything the cartographer's guild had promised. Lush verdant jungles surrounded us on all sides, laced with streams of pure clear water. Silky spiderwebs glittered in the dewy light. I wondered why the elves hadn't claimed this exceptionally rich territory. No matter; we'd have plenty of use for all these lovely trees.

There were animals that I'd never seen before. Huge, fat, meaty-looking creatures with friendly faces. I couldn't stop looking at them as we forded the rivers and mentally tallying up the amount of tallow they might yield.



They looked too docile to be much of a threat.

Yes... this was going to be paradise. Of course there was the little matter of that tower we'd passed a few days ago, but surely that wouldn't be a problem. They wouldn't object to a group of soapmakers setting up here would they? Maybe we could even sell them soap...

We stopped the wagon by general agreement at a nice looking spot between three of the streams.



At that point, something a bit strange happened.



A deep, distant tremble shook the ground for a moment, as if something had caved in, far beneath our feet. As if something far below sensed our arrival, and stirred...

...I'm sure it was nothing.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2011, 02:05:23 pm »

I had had plenty of time on the long journey here to think about how this should be done. I motioned the doctor over and held out the tablet I'd been chipping at.



"What do you think?"

"What is it?" he said, coolly.

"It's... well, it's the plans. For our new home."

The doctor sniffed, and tilted the tablet towards the sun. "It looks like a big bug," he said.

"It does not! Anyway, it's only temporary. The real fortress will come later. Look, this is everything we need--bedrooms, space for workshops, wood to make lye..."

"Who's going to dig it out?"

"What?" I said.

"Who's going to dig it out? None of us are miners, Zephyr. Unless you know something about mining?"

For a moment I couldn't think of anything to say. I had been convinced I'd covered everything--how could I have forgotten something so fundamental? "There's... I bought picks," I said feebly.

The doctor sighed and put the tablet down carefully. He pulled a battered copper pick out of the back of the wagon and walked off towards the proposed dig site. I hurriedly grabbed the other pick and followed him. It couldn't be that hard to dig, after all.

"What do you want us to do?" one of the other dwarves said, as I passed by.

"Get rid of those horses, we don't need them any more. Start cutting trees down. Get one of those olivine blocks out and build a wood furnace." My mood lightened at the thought. "Let's make some soap!"




8th Slate

We'd dug out the first part of my design, leaving the second set of bedrooms and the big soapmaking area for later, when we had more time. Oh it was hard work, I never imagined it was such hard work. My delicate soapmaking hands were raw and blistered from handling the old copper pick. At least there was a kind of pride in it, even if it wasn't civilized work--I felt like a real dwarf, digging out my home with my own hands. And no matter how hard I had to work here, it was better than being back at the mountainhome trying to dodge wooden spears while some giggling halfwit yanked a lever...

"What in the name of Datan--bless his divine twitchy nose--are those things?" the doctor said.

We'd come up for air and a bite to eat. I hadn't seen much of the local wildlife recently, and I squinted to make out what had caught the doctor's eye. There were three of them, dirty yellow colored creatures moving purposefully in single file. "They're walking on two legs. Are they dwarves?"

"I don't think they're dwarves," the doctor said. "They look like goats if anything. If goats walked on two legs."

"Satyrs?" I said doubtfully, remembering childhood stories. Satyrs were good creatures, but mischievous...



In another moment the creatures noticed our camp. They changed direction at once and charged, screaming and capering like demented beasts.

"Not satyrs, Zephyr," the doctor said.

"Indeed."

"Should we run?"

"I... think it might be an idea."

But at that moment, Endok the marksdwarf, who had been using our single copper axe to cut trees, came wandering back towards us. The path he was following placed him directly in their sights. The approaching monsters spotted him at once and changed direction to focus on the nearer target, their howls rising to a fever pitch of hungry rage.



"What in the name of Armok?" the marksdwarf said, turning to look.

"Endok!" I shouted. Here was salvation--he'd done some military service! "Look out! Enemies! Use your axe!"

"I'm a bloody marksdwarf, I don't know how to use an axe!"

"Just pretend they're trees!"

Endok shot me one swift disgusted look, then threw the old axe dramatically to the ground. He clenched his bare fists and squared up to the charging fiend, weaponless.

"Oh, gods," I said.



"Zephyr!" the doctor said, shaking me back to full consciousness. "Zephyr, he's winning!"

It was three on one, but Endok was angry enough for all three of them. One of them gored his hand with its horns, tearing his glove and the skin beneath. This made Endok even angrier.





A monster staggered away, screaming shrilly, jetting gouts of blood from its ruined arm.

"I didn't see that," I said. "Endok did not do that. I refuse to believe that just happened."

The other marksdwarf came running up. He too refused the axe and charged the monsters with his bare fists. They fled, disliking the newly evened odds. The marksdwarves sprinted after them in opposite directions, too furious to heed any calls. One blendec tried to double back and actually vaulted over the fortress entrance, running right past the doctor and I. Endok caught up with it on the other side.



I heard the sickening crunch as his fist--his bare fist!--smashed its skull. He raced back to us, snatched up the discarded axe and was off again even before the body had stopped twitching, chasing after the third blendec, the one he'd bitten

In a few more moments, a distant howl of agony told us that Muthkat, the other marksdwarf, had cornered his prey at the edge of our territory.



The remaining blendec doubled back towards us, staggering and screaming. Endok came thundering up behind it.



He caught up with it right in front of us and started hacking at the dying thing. It gave one last piercing scream and went limp.



"Bastards," Endok said, shaking his hand to ease the sting. "Axe wasn't bad after all though. Hey, soapmaster, how's about making us some bloody crossbows, eh?"

Udib the carpenter chose this moment to pop his head up in search of more wood. He looked for a long moment at the scene of blood and vomit. "What'd I miss?"



Calmly, the doctor walked over to the food stockpile and selected a snack.

"I want to go home," I said faintly.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2011, 02:22:02 pm by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

magmaholic

  • Bay Watcher
  • "Hello again"- canadian stalker
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2011, 03:27:54 pm »

:v
it will be a real SOAP OPERA!
MOHAHAH!
Logged
I am a Goober.

thegoatgod_pan

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2011, 01:06:01 am »

Awesome concept and narrative! Following closely. Is it time to suggest Fight Club themed mega projects yet?
Logged
More ridiculous than reindeer?  Where you think you supercool and is you things the girls where I honestly like I is then why are humans on their as my people or what would you?

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2011, 02:15:32 am »

Absolutely. Soap related megaprojects and appalling soap related puns are all welcome.
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2011, 03:35:31 am »

27th Slate

We had three corpses of what I was now informed were probably "foul blendecs". I wasn't sure what a blendec was but foul they certainly were. And intelligent after a fashion; Endok insisted he'd heard one of them curse at him in some horrible goblinoid language before it died. We threw the corpses in our new refuse pile to rot. We didn't know what else to do with them. Certainly butchering their corpses would not be right if they were intelligent; we were no elves to cannibalize the dead.

"We need a drawbridge," I said. "Or something to keep those things out,anyway." I couldn't stop thinking of the eyeless skull of the blendec that had run past me with Endok in hot pursuit. The way it had turned that empty face to look at me. They could walk freely right into our camp right now, walk in while we were asleep. Oh gods.

"Well, we'll need stone for that," the doctor said. "Levers and such."

"Do you know how to make those?"

"Damn it, Zephyr, I'm a doctor, not a mechanic."

"I'll dig down and look for stone," I said, getting wearily to my feet. "I guess we'll all have to figure this stuff out together somehow."

I was getting pretty decent with a pick by now. Our dig was on two levels: the top layer had the main fort, with workshops, and below were bedrooms. When I dug down to the next layer, a layer of sand, to my surprise water bubbled in out of nowhere, filling the hole I'd made in seconds. I knew what that meant, every dwarf did. Aquifer. "We're doomed..."

I decided to start digging out the soapmaking area instead--or rather I asked the doctor to do it while I got started tallying up everything we owned. Our supplies that had seemed so generous at first were looking frighteningly spare now that we understood the reality of our situation. I wished we had more axes.



Date unknown:

Summer arrived, in the shape of fierce wet heat that brought with it clouds of horrible biting blood gnats. The spiderwebs strewn everywhere didn't seem to keep those ugly pests down at all.

I walked in to my office to get back to the bookkeeping, and for the third time in a row found someone eating a guilty meal at my table. This time it was Endok. I was a little afraid of Endok after that display with the foul blendecs.

"Look," I said reasonably. "I need somewhere to work. This is the only place I've got."

"And you've nicked the only table and chair in the bloody fort for it," the marksdwarf said through a mouthful of horse meat. "Stuff it. I'm not budging."

Perhaps he had a point. If we dug out some more space we could store the food safely underground, instead of leaving it up in the summer heat to spoil. A small dining room wouldn't hurt, either. I backed out of my little office and went back up stairs.



18th Malachite, midsummer

Ugh, more delay. "Migrants? What do you mean, migrants? They can't be migrants. Who'd come HERE?"

There were seven of them. They trailed in miserably with a miscellaneous collection of pets: a goose, a young turkey and a baby guineafowl. And...



Giant pack snail info:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

That was one expensive animal to be wandering around this godsforsaken place. How strange.

"So what's your trade?" I said to the dwarf in the lead.

"I'm a weaver."

"A weaver. Well, we make soap here. This is a Soapmaker's Guild outpost."

I moved on to speak to the other migrants. There was a glazer, a bowyer, a fish dissector, an unskilled peasant, a shearer and a tanner. Not a single decent soapmaker among them.

"I think you've all made a mistake," I said, highly irritated. "We don't have any use for your skills, and we can't feed you all. You'll just have to leave."

"You're sending us back out there to die?" the peasant said in a horrified tone. The weaver started to cry; the glazer, who appeared to be her husband, put a comforting arm around her.

"Excuse me," said a quiet voice at my elbow. I turned and met the eyes of the bowyer, who'd gone down previously into our fort to look around. "I can't help noticing you've got an aquifer problem."

"Yes, and?"



"I know a bit about engineering."

"Really?" I said. Wheels began to turn over in my mind; I changed my attitude. "Do you know how to get through them?"

The bowyer glanced shrewdly at his companions, then back to me. "We'll make a deal with you," he said. "We pierce the aquifer for you, you take us in."

"Better take them up on it, Zephyr," the doctor said. "Gods know we can't do it by ourselves."

I hesitated, but only for a moment. "All right then. It's a deal. You'll have to pasture your, er, snail up top for now."

The new dwarves, the Second Seven, began to file down the ramp into our fort. I wondered how we were going to stretch our supplies to feed so many newcomers.

"Excuse me," the glazer said.

"Yes what is it."

"My wife." He gestured towards the still teary-eyed dwarf. "She's a weaver."



"Yes, she said she was. So what?"

"Are you aware you've got phantom spiders here?"



"Y-es?" If that's what those weird translucent little creepy things were that left the webs everywhere. I'd slept outside in the grass early on and woken up to find one in my beard. Experiences like that stayed with you.

"Do you know how much phantom spider silk cloth can be worth if handled by a weaver of skill?" the glazer said.

That I didn't know. He told me. I told his wife she was excused from the aquifer deal, and free to take anything we possessed to build her loom.
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

Yoink

  • Bay Watcher
  • OKAY, FINE.
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2011, 06:18:30 am »

Oh WOW! :D This is classic!

Can I be the unskilled peasant? Name him Yem, if so.
Yem quickly becomes a great fan of soap, and aspires to be accepted into the ranks of the legendary soapmakers.
Or something. :P
Logged
Booze is Life for Yoink

To deprive him of Drink is to steal divinity from God.
you need to reconsider your life
If there's any cause worth dying for, it's memes.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2011, 06:19:56 am »

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

16th Galena, late summer

I didn't know what was going on down in the aquifer, but it seemed to involve a lot of splashing, cursing and shouting about "dangerous terrain". The bowyer had only reappeared for a brief time, long enough to ask Udib the carpenter to make a pipe and, bizarrely, an enormous corkscrew. Occasionally dwarves would clamber up the muddy ramp and squelch over to the booze stockpile, dripping wet from head to toe. I decided to just stay well away from the whole thing.



Oh what a lovely sight. Buckets and buckets of lye! And the dining room was taking shape too, though it was lacking a little something in the chair department.

I couldn't wait any longer.



Ah, it was so good to get back to the trade I knew, the trade I loved. The honor of making Soaplanterns' first bar of soap would be mine!



...Hm. Well, it wasn't as nice as I'd hoped, but that was a solid five dwarfbucks worth of profit right there. I'd do better when we had better materials to work with.

In the meantime, the migrants who weren't currently engaged with the aquifer project could build some sort of wooden stockade around our entrance, so that the snail would have at least a degree of protection if those things came back... or something worse. I was no longer convinced that the Lonely Jungle was the unspoiled paradise the Cartographer's Guild had claimed it to be.



20th Limestone, early autumn

"Migrants," said the doctor.

"You're joking."

"Nope."

"How many?"

"Six."

"SIX! We've got no food left," I said. "None! Are any of them at least soapmakers?"

"No, Zephyr. There's a woodcutter, though. And they've brought some animals with them."

"Pets?"

"Just livestock. There's a yak calf, a reindeer calf..."

"At least we can eat those then," I said. It might be enough. There were plump helmets in our farm plot but they weren't coming up very fast. If we butchered the animals straight away... that meant more tallow, actually, and thus more soap. I brightened up. "All right, let them in. They can at least help out with the aquifer thing. Send them down to talk to Koganomrist or whatever that bowyer's name is. And let's go dig out some more bedrooms."



The migrants were through the first layer of aquifer. I didn't understand exactly what they'd done, it was apparently something to do with quantum menaces (?) but there was a very damp yet undeniably non-leaky stairwell, and a dry sand floor. They'd found a layer of clay loam under that, dry!

But underneath THAT...



"A second aquifer? Two different aquifers? That's... that's not fair."

"Life's not fair," Medtob the bowyer said with a shrug. "We can keep going. We'll get through it eventually."

There was a sudden commotion.



Endok dropped the log he had been hauling and bolted for the refuse pile, a mad strange look in his eye. He snatched up a pile of bones, barged into one of the craftsdwarf workshops, threw an armful of bone bolts out through the doorway, and started to shout.

"Gems! I must have cut gems!"

"He's gone fey," I muttered. "Oh, that's all we needed." Endok berserk was not something I wanted to think about. "Cut gems? Medtob, how close are you to piercing that aquifer?"

"Armok knows. Probably nowhere near. No idea how many more layers to this new one."

"We're doomed."

"Zephyr!" Udib the carpenter shouted from somewhere above. "Someone's coming!"



"We're not doomed!" Please let them have a cut gem... and please let it be affordable.

At least my forethought meant we had something to trade.



"By Datan's divine twitchy nose, you're still here!" The liaison sounded flabbergasted. "We expected--"

"What?" I said.

"Er... well... anyone dead? Horribly injured?"

"No. We're all fine. Muthkat the marksdwarf's got a bit of a scar though. I'm sure he'll show it to you if you ask. Some sort of evil goat-thing gored him in the back earlier. He was quite annoyed about his cloak."

"Remarkable." He started to chip swiftly and precisely at a small stone tablet. "Absolutely remarkable. Well, in that case... have you got anything to offer us in trade?"

"We have some lovely soap," I said proudly.



He gave me a long look. "Anything better than soap?"

I counted carefully to ten, and reminded myself we needed to be nice to these dwarves. Endok needed a cut gem, or he'd probably kill us all. "How about... you set your things out, we'll bring our things out, and then we'll talk. We've built a trade depot."

"What do you want for next year? Assuming there's a next year, of course."

"There'll be a next year. Lye. You can bring us lots of lye. That's always useful."

"Don't you want... you know, weapons? Metal bars? Things like that?"

"I suppose so," I said. "Yes, why not? Steel bars."

The liaison finished whatever he was writing, sighed, then put the tablet away. "Can I give you some advice?" he said. "Get some sort of militia together. And do it quickly. We've seen signs of hostile movement on this trade route, and you're right in the way if they do decide to come through."





At the trade depot

"What's this?"

"It's a clear tourmaline."

"Does that mean a cut gem?"

"What are you, an elf?"

"Look, I'll buy it. How much do you want for it?"

"How much you got?"

"Erm... how about sixteen bars?"

"Of what, copper? Nickel?"

"No, soap."

"SOAP? Are you serious? Gods, you're serious. How do you even have sixteen bars of soap? That's more than most forts bother to make in a lifetime."

"Yes or no? Throw in that rock crystal and I'll take it up to twenty bars."

"Oh, gods. All right. Fine. Gems are yours, enjoy."

They seemed annoyed as they began to pack up their wares, muttering something about "all this way for bloody soap". I picked up the clear tourmaline and looked it over curiously. A moment later Endok snatched out out of my hands.



We were safe from his insane wrath, for now.



We had six dwarves, altogether, with some degree of military ability. Endok and Muthkat were professional marksdwarves, of course, but they needed quivers before they could be of any use. Ushrir Tobulurust, the tanner from the first migrant group, was an experienced macedwarf. Of the second group, Bomrek Rifotasmel, a planter by profession, had adequate ability with a spear. Momuz the woodcutter and Tobul the beekeeper both had a degree of training as axedwarves, and Momuz had brought her own axe along. We had two axes, five decent yak bone bows made by Muthkat-the-bowyer, and two copper picks.

It wasn't as bad as it looked, actually. I'd had the forethought to bring four pieces of tetrahedrite along with our embark supplies. They'd been sitting in a corner of the dining room for ages. If we smelted one of those now, that shearer with a bit of weaponsmith experience could make a copper mace for Ushrir. Udib could make wooden shields, we had unlimited wood.

In the midst of that thought, I was interrupted by Endok, screaming, thrusting an axe into my face.



Once I'd been brought back round again, and understood he wasn't actually a berserk lunatic (or more so than usual at least), I realized it was the axe he'd been shouting about. He'd made it.



"Not bad eh, Zeph? I call it Clobberedsly, after those sly bastards I clobbered in spring. If they come back again they can try it out at the pointy end! I tell you what, I feel like I've learned so much about bones now. I bet I could make some brilliant bone bolts."



The liaison, who had been loitering nearby, whistled through his teeth when he saw what all the fuss was about. "Not bad. That axe has got to be worth at least seventeen thousand dwarfbucks. Doubled your fortress wealth in one blow there. Lovely work with our clear tourmaline. I'll make sure to tell the mountainhomes how well you're doing so that they can send more dwarves your way in spring. Do watch out for those goblins, by the way--they won't be able to leave you alone when they get wind of this."

"Oh, gods," I said.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2011, 01:26:50 am by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2011, 06:22:14 am »

Yoink: Welcome to Soaplanterns! Just so you know, the peasant is female, married and has just become a pump operator through working on the aquifer. If you still want her I will certainly name her Yem and take her on as a soapmaker's apprentice :D
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.

Neyvn

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2011, 06:43:51 am »

This epic tale is epic.
If you ever get a Skilled Swordsman in the next wave, send him my way.
Logged
Quote from: Ubiq
Broker: Wasn't there an ambush squad here just a second ago?
Merchant: I don't know what you're talking about. Do you want this goblin ankle bone amulet or not?
My LIVESTREAM. I'm Aussie, so not everything is clean. Least it works...

Yoink

  • Bay Watcher
  • OKAY, FINE.
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2011, 08:49:49 am »

Well, our Yem's not quite some sort of heroic soap-flinging warrior, but I look foward to seeing what terrible fate befalls the dear old thing! :P
I'm definitely keeping an eye on this story. The Soapmaster is just awesome!
If we manage to survive for long, a great hall(made of soap) dedicated to the worship of soap could be in order. :)
Logged
Booze is Life for Yoink

To deprive him of Drink is to steal divinity from God.
you need to reconsider your life
If there's any cause worth dying for, it's memes.

zephyr_hound

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ubenudil, Soaplanterns - Soapmaker's Guild Fort
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2011, 10:10:12 am »

I called a general panic meeting in the dining room.

"All right, let's assume there are goblins. I'm asking all of you: How big a fight can we put up?"

"Not much of one," marksdwarf-Muthkat said. "If we give our two copper axes to Tobul and Momuz, that's two dwarves armed. But ONLY armed. They'll have no armor, no protection of any kind except for their clothing, and that doesn't do much against a blade. Same with Ushrir and Bomrek, if we make them a spear and a mace. I don't think we can weather an ambush with what we've got, not unless the goblins are worse off than we are. And they won't be. We didn't come here expecting a fight."

"So what can we do? Make traps? --But we've got no stone."

"We have stone, Zephyr," Medtob said.

"We DO?"

He hefted a dull brown chunk into view, and tumbled it down onto the highwood table with a heavy clunk. The table creaked. "Two good solid pieces of sandstone. Just fished 'em out of the aquifer ten minutes ago. That means we can craft two mechanisms. THAT means two cage traps if you can throw me together a couple of wooden cages. They won't be brilliant traps, but they'll work on goblins. Goblins are stupid."

"Cage traps," I said, slowly. "Can... can you get more stone?"

"Depends how fast we can break this layer of the aquifer, but yeah, should get a good dozen pieces altogether, I reckon. We're not through the aquifer, just so you're clear on that. This is the stuff we're clearing out of the way while we pump."

"I don't care, if it's stone it's good enough for me. All right, cage traps it is! And we'll put some more walls up outside our palisade to try and funnel our visitors over the traps. We've got two olivine blocks left--use one to build a smelter and smelt a piece of tetrahedrite. The other one can go for a forge." Thank the gods I'd thought to bring the olivine blocks when we embarked. I'd intended for them to go into wood furnaces and asheries for the soapmaking industry. "And--Udib? Wooden shields and a weapon rack please. Let's get these brave dwarves equipped."

"Um," said a voice. It was the weaver, Ezum Volalkib. "I've got an idea too. The merchants are still willing to trade, right?"

"Yes," I said, eyeing her.

"Why don't we buy some of their leather, then? We could make leather armor and quivers and all the stuff we need."

"Leather's expensive. We can't spare the soap."

"We could sell this," she said, holding up something that shimmered.



I'd completely forgotten about the loom. I'd seen her many times working away at it or wandering back and forth with handfuls of sticky web, but I hadn't even thought about it until now.

"Zephyr!" the liaison said in delight, clapping me on the shoulder. "Now there's the good stuff! You've been holding out on us, you sly old draft-dodger!" He turned to the suddenly attentive merchants, grinning. "Didn't I tell you it would be worth the trip?" Back to us again. "Come on, how much of it have you got squirreled away? Give you ninety-five dwarfbucks for that piece, right here and now. Yes? Deal?"

The merchants, suddenly much friendlier, willingly exchanged both of their bins of leather for six pieces of the silk cloth. I immediately ordered a leather works put up and four good sets of leather armor made, along with a pair of quivers for the marksdwarves. Ezum's loom might just have saved Soaplanterns.



As the meeting broke up, I was stopped in my tracks by another dwarf, one of those who'd come in the first migrant group. As with all the migrants, her clothes were damp and caked in mud; she'd been down below, working at the pumps.

"Can I help you?" I said.

"Erm... yes, actually. I'd like to help out, if I can. You see, I heard about the guild, and that's why I came here. I want to learn to make soap."

My interest rose. "Do you now? What's your name?"

"Yem, Soapmaster."

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

"Excellent. Well, Yem, soap you shall make."

As long as we aren't all murdered in our beds before Moonstone, I thought as I hurried away.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2011, 02:52:28 pm by zephyr_hound »
Logged
Soapmaker? Looking for a fort to migrate to? Come to Ubenudil! Lush tropical climate, friendly neighbors, rumors of terrifying curse on the land entirely unfounded. Probably.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=85057.0
This message brought to you by the Soapmaker's Guild of Isakudil.
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 45