A Crucible Vignette: The Taking of Borderpost 456

A Crucible Vignette: The Taking of Borderpost 456 – Sylvana WANTED poster

File: 680-8234-8950 B. Pomorele. Sharn 045 60°22′N 5°24′E

File: Sylvana Rija (No further name given).
Origin: Dimor
Family: Possibly related to the known criminal Enteva Rija? Investigation pending.
Note to Records: This is supposition at best.
Age: About 22
Previous convictions: See attached file.
Speciality: Lock-picking, manipulation of basic clockwork and mechanical devices. Stealth, agility, speed and cunning.
In short: Burglar and thief.
Details below.

Concerning the incident at [date omitted] Borderpost 456, The Bregurg Drifts, Gmina Slodkow, Borek. Shaarn. Unit 4

Whilst the above mentioned individual has no official standing with the Task Office, I draw your attention to the incident outlined in the enclosed Court Report. I have summarised this to omit the more irrelevant details such as the cooking rota of a Borderpost and instructions on how to pluck a skitch.

Please take note that all locks mentioned are those of the Task Office.

I believe that – despite Quest Office reservations about Thieves – this may be of interest with respect of the latest Fulfillment Request from the Temple of Orlyth.


Understanding that the minutia of Task Units may be beneath your expertise, I offer this detail:

When a Task is assigned, it is customary that a graphene Docket be handed to the leader of the Task Expedition. This Docket is to be carried at all times, affording the Task Unit free access through Borderposts to the area assigned for their Task.

Each Docket may be issued only by a recognized Task Office. Stamped with the Task-code, they allow free passage and the right to place any Vestige in the Borderpost strongroom. In exchange, the Borderpost Officer issues a Task Deposit Ticket (TDT) to the Task Unit.

Attempts to forge Task Dockets have been made but their absence of Vestic Blessings will always reveal them to be false to a TaskMaster.


Borderpost 456


Internal inquiry of the Task Office. Borderpost Division.
Courts of Internal Inquiry. Rzeczycal.
Held on [date supplied]
Under the Jurisprudence of Lord Provclaw. Worfrem Tanzik VII.

In attendance:
Borderpost Officers: Mazursku, Kowal. Wlodza and Bonselan.
Inquirer: Vlanek Pisaryz
Records Steward: Nildost Olobok.
Attendant Officers of Court.

Statement of Borderpost Guard: Jant Boneslan: 1st Officer: Bregurg Drift Borderpost. 762.
(With interruptions from Co-Officers Mazursku, Kowal and Wlodza)

First Officer Boneslan: I make this statement in the name of the 12 Mages, upon the honour of the Task Office and in the name of all its House Spirits, from Djarlen to Khresk. May my bones wither if I lie. (etc., etc.)

[reading from notes]

On [date supplied], the weather was fair, and visibility was good with only a low mist.
At the fifth hour of the aftnoon, three Taskers arrived at our Post. They informed us they had recently completed their Task beyond the Rogojowska Drifts, losing two of their number during the process.

We’d already had another visit from a Task Unit only a day before. They deposited their Vestiges with us in exchange for a Tastyposit.

Records Steward: Task Deposit Slip, Your Integrity.

Jurisprudence: Another visit? Are they common?

Records Steward: Quite the contrary, your Integrity. In the ordinary run of things, in the course of their career, a Borderpost would be lucky to entertain two such visits.

Jurisprudence: So we are to count these three … Officers as, perhaps the luckiest in all of Shaarn. Do continue Officer Boneslan.

First Officer Boneslan: Yus sir. We did reckon t’were a lucky omen. Then.

[reading from notes]

We found nothing suspicious in their manner. Or their baggage. Aside from a large box. We asked to inspect their Docket of Authorisation.

The Taskers presented their Docket. Which was in order, but for the Sypin District. Which is one hundred, twenty miles from us. We ask’d why their Docket was for a Task in the Sypin district. They told us the Task was mobile.

Jurisprudence: Mobile? Can a task be mobile?

Records Steward: In such a case as a Jrahgun your Integrity.

Jurisprudence: Quite so. As I thought.

Inquirer: Were you not aware that a Docket had gone missing in Sypin District?

First Officer Boneslan: At this time, we’d received no news of that. Sir.

Officer Mazursku: They ne’r tell us nuthin’!

Records Steward: Following the alliance between Ghazt and the Threnstortz Fealty, communications in that region are undergoing some … flux, your Integrity.

Jurisprudence: How unfortunate. Please continue.

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: The Unit said their large box contained a Vestige. Obtained during their Quest. They asked us to store this box. In the BorderPost strong-room.

Inquirer: After a careful check on its contents?

First Officer Boneslan: We asked to inspect the box. They told us the Vestige held a Wasting Curse. Which would damage us if the box was opened. This is why the box was so large. Because it had to be thick sir. To keep in the Curse, Sir.

Inquirer: And how did you know this man had the Wasting Curse?

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: One of the Task Unit had been exposed to the Wasting Curse. He showed us his deformed hands.

Officer Wlodza: They wuz horrible, your worship. Like they’d been mangled in a Tanning Press.

First Officer Boneslan: We noted they others kep’ their distance from him. Un we did the same. Sir.

Jurisprudence: Very well. Continue.

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: We accepted their Docket as Surety. And stored their box. In the Task Office cage in the Strongroom. ‘Way from foodstuffs. Or the Post.

According to procedure. Sir.

Both Officer Wlodza and I checked the locks on the box. The Task Office cage and the locks of the Strongroom itself too. All were secure and in good order.

We offered the Taskers shelter. Inside the Borderpost barracks. And use of the spare stable. For the Tasker with the Wasting Curse.

Records Steward: That is normal procedure, your Integrity.

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: Officer Mazursku, Officer Wlodza and I kept watch. Every hour, Officer Wlodza made inspection of the Tasker in the stables. At no point did any of the Taskers approach the building of the Strongroom. And we saw and heard no-one approach the BorderPost.

Inquirer: Who watched the Taskers through the night?

Officer Kowal: That’d be me, your worship. They never left the barracks, once, I swear. Oh – except for neces’sary visits to the pits between third and fourth hour of the night to sh–

Inquirer [interrupts]: And what alerted you to the fact something might be remiss?

First Officer Boneslan: The skitch, your worship.

Jurisprudence: Skitch? And do I dare ask?

Records Steward: A Skitch, your Integrity is a medium sized –

First Officer Boneslan: We ‘ave wild skitch nesting around the Borderpost. We feed them and collect their eggs your worship.

Anyone approaches the Post, they set to honking. Then we knows there’s some’ing out there. Out there, miles from anyone –

Officer Wlodza: It’s usually jus’ a gadger.

First Officer Boneslan: Gadger your Worship.

Records Steward: A Gadger, your Integrity is –

First Officer Boneslan: Smallish beast – about yay long – Eats birds. Y’worship.
Nastly little [expletive deleted].

Jurisprudence: Thank you, Officer Boneslan, for that colourful insight into local culture. 
Now – These, skitch, alerted you to something -?

First Officer Boneslan: ‘Deed they did sir.

[from notes]

At the second hour of the morning. We heard the skitch set to honking from the lower hill. And I awoke officer Kowal

Officer Kowal: I was off-watch you see sir. But always one eye open!

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: Officers Wlodza and Mazursku went either side of the flock. To investigate.

Officer Mazursku: To encircle them your honour. It’s a tactic –

Jurisprudence: Very like herding skitch, I imagine. Thank you.

First Officer Boneslan [from notes]: Officers Wlodza and Mazursku saw the Task Office Visitation approach. And they went to escort them in.

Officer Wlodza: Normal y’see sir, we’d know if they was coming. Normal, they do give us a letter of some weeks notice to clean up –

Officer Mazursku: Two Task Units to one day – our heads wuz still spinning with that but –

Officer Kowal: An ‘sidewise – Visitation – Tha’s reason for a Festivity Day! Leastwise, minor one.

Officer Wlodza: Tha’s tradition is that.

[Some commotion from the public gallery asking why they had no Festivity Day followed, occasioning the summoning of a local dignitary to assure the Court that no such Festivity Day was legally necessary in an emergency visit.

A separate inquiry is tabled to ascertain whether it is legal to budget for Festivity Days from Council funds]

Judiciary: In the event, the occasion offered no reason for Festivity. As I understand, their presence was occasioned by a more sombre task than mere tradition. First Officer Boneslan?

First Officer Boneslan: Sir?

Dignitary: You ascertained the veracity of the Visitation?

First Officer Boneslan: Sir?

Dignitary: The Visitation Commander presented their papers?

First Officer Boneslan: Sir. Indeed sir. They did. Sir.

[from notes]

The Commander of the Visitation presented-

Officer Wlodza: And there wuz a woman with them sir.

Judiciary: A female member of the Visitation?

Officer Mazursku: Don’ think so sir. Weren’t in no Visitation uniform nor did she be’ave like one.

Officer Wlodza: She were in a restrainin’ jacket.

Officer Mazursku: Small she was sir. Smaller than’ Kowal here sir. But very strong for her size.

Officer Wlodza: Nor like Koral.

Officer Koral: [Irrelevant to inquiry]

Inquirer: And, you have no notion of what this woman was doing with the Visitation?

Officer Wlodza: My reckoning is, sir, they’d captured her.

Officer Mazursku: Din’t say much at first but later on –

Officer Wlodza: Shockin’ from a little girl like that!

Officer Mazursku: Language like that, is no doubt she was from that Dimor city (cursed be its name to’ll law abiding).

Officer Wlodza: Dimor city. Def’nite! We said. Tha’s how they carry on. Won’t bring a sholf to a place like that –

Officer Mazursku: – A sholf you see y’r’honour is-

Jurisprudence: Yet another local animal. I think we can let sleeping sholf lie.


Jurisprudence: And did these men of the Visitation tell you the reason for their arrival?

First Officer Boneslan [From notes]: They asked to inspect the Taskers in the Barracks,. And the one in the stables.

Inquirer: After you told them the Taskers were there?

Officer Mazursku: No sir! They know’d they wuz there already!

Officer Wlodza: The acuity you see sir! They have that.

First Officer Boneslan: And then they arrested ‘em outright. Then they did ask to see the strong-room.

[From Notes]

Then they asked to see the strong-room. Under the supervision of the Commander. We unlocked the Strong-room doors and padlocks. We got inside. The Commander asked us to open the boxes which had contained items of value.

We found they were now all empty. Or filled with straw or similar material.

Officer Wlodza: Miraculous! Signs and wonders!

First Officer Boneslan [From notes]: The Commander then ordered that we open the Task Office cage. And ordered that we unlock all the boxes in there.

Officer Wlodza: All empty! Gone!

First Officer Boneslan [From notes]: The contents of the boxes were gone. The Commander ordered the keys for the Taskers box be brought to him. The Taskers said they had lost it. The Commander ordered his men to cut off the fingers. Of the Taskers. The Taskers found the keys and handed them over.

Records Steward: Standard practice your Integrity.

Jurisprudence: Refreshingly efficient.

First Officer Boneslan: The Commander told us to surround the box. We did and stood ready. One of the Visitation opened it.

Officer Mazursku: Well, we told him about the Wasting Curse, but he weren’t lis’ning.

Officer Wlodza: Jus’ orders that poor devil go right in and open that there box. Plain as stone.

Inquirer: And?

First Officer Boneslan [From notes]: All of the things missing were in the –


Well. It’s a bit – you see sir, the box was… All the missing Vestiges – and all the valuables missing from the rest of the Strong-room – they were all in that box. – And we din’t put them there! No-one did sir! No-one could’v. It were locked, see?

Inquirer: And did anyone offer any explanation for this remarkable event?

Officer Wlodza: The Wasting Curse. Badness and confusion – that’s how it works.

Officer Mazursku: I wunt want to be that officer of the Visitation that did open that box.

Officer Wlodza: In a few weeks, you’ll see – Like ‘eed been mangled in a tanning press.

[There is another thirty six pages of this, but I assure you that none of it has any bearing in the matter, being mostly supposition of cures for Wasting and details of how thoroughly the Officers accommodated the Visitation’s mounts. 
The pertinent facts are here – of concealment, skill in locking devices, the ability to evade a containment charm, to navigate silently in unfamiliar territory and the ability to pass skitch without their detection]

End of statement

Borderpost 456 FormTask Office addendum and Notes:

The loss of the first Docket in the Parcakken territory was embarrassing but may – as was alleged – have been simply ‘lost’ in the tavern.

Nonetheless, the use of that Docket in the Cyek BorderPost theft did alert us to the possibility that false docket crime was recurring for the first time since the Management of Rameshil Tlec Tlec 65.

The use of a Vestige Accuity in the detection of the second attempted theft (Court details and technical specifications appended) has considerably added to this Department’s reputation for skill and foresight. This can only do us good.

We were, nonetheless, fortunate that the criminals used the same scheme twice.

That the second Docket was obtained through deliberate murder of the Task Unit is more problematic. We had believed the black market in Vestiges was crushed under the directorship of Dilarnjil Tlec. Tlec. 35 but it is plainly re-occuring.

On a more optimistic note, we have identified and captured most of the individuals involved in these particular murders (See file: Vranoven Grat-Trilzoct: ‘Giant’).

Of particular interest here is the skills of Sylvana Rija (See attached report) which could be of use to our order. (To wit: skills necessary to open the three varieties of locks as shown in the enclosed report) If needed, she will be readily obtainable from the prison fields (See enclosed forms). Note the concerns of Task Master Vjleknataraji Tlec Tlec 147 as regards use of known Thieves for Tasks.

Lastly, I must touch upon the matter of false Vestiges. Were this aspect of the Task Office’s operations to becoming generally known, we would face a sad loss of credibility.

It is unlikely that Sylvana Rija was able to identify the Vestiges in Bregurg Drift Borderpost 456 as counterfeit.

Should any suspicion arise that she has done so, I recommend her immediate termination.

Together to form One.

Humbly Yours:

Tilarnanjdri: Tlec. Tlec 74. 3492373 – 7
Personnel Division: Task Office

Categories: Uncategorised

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Discover more from downthetubes.net

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading