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Yoshi's Caper in Calimport


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This is the full backstory for Yoshi's past intrigue involving the pirate mage trio. It is told in full here only for reference sake--no way will all of this material will be included in the dialogue where Yoshi recounts the tale! That will be a truncated version.


The conversation Yoshi shares about this will give options to


1) skip the backstory entirely (for those who wish just enjoy having Yoshi in the party for the entire saga without a lot of dialogue to read through)


2) skip the details and just get a bare bones account of what happened


3) hear an elaborated tale; a full sketch, although still a distilled version of what is presented here.




One year earlier Yoshimo sailed for four months on a pirate vessel, the Sea Witch. Among that crew was the mage trio. The trio's names are Torosan (spokesman), Demorthas, and Kesalo. From sailing together Yoshi becomes acquainted with them, but it could not be said that they become friends. The mercenary mage trio was a very tight knit group. They used their dire reputation and mystique to keep others at a distance in the cutthroat pirate world. Yoshi remains respectful toward them, and wary of them. (As does the entire crew.) See "Mage Trio Biographies" for info on the three personalities and a bit of their history together.


The Sea Witch requires repairs after a fierce battle. During that period, about half of the crew boards a ship to Calimport for some rest and relaxation.


While relaxing in Calimport, Yoshi visits the public bazaar of a very powerful local pasha's sabban (palace), pasha Karuman al Farshas. This pasha is renowned as an importer of exotic weaponry. There Yoshimo runs into an old friend, Harsham, who is running a stall there with a collection of rare swords (Harsham sidelines as a fence for stolen goods). Like most Calishites, Harsham loves to gossip. Harsham had trade connections for years with Kara-Tur and he has the most recent news of Yoshi's homeland. Plus, he has the latest news on other old friends of theirs. Yoshi and Harsham visit late into the evening in a back room of the bazaar. Harsham informs the palace guards who patrol the grounds that Yoshi is in the bazaar and will probably be leaving at a late hour.


Upon stepping out of the bazaar building, in the brilliant light of a full moon (which is also reflected upward as well from the waters of a fountain) Yoshimo spots the youngest member of the mage trio, Kesalo, on a second floor balcony--it is the chamber of the pasha's most prized concubine. Kesalo's invisibility spell had wavered momentarily. Kesalo's concentration lapsed due to his romantic passion. But it is clearly Kesalo. And there is no mistaking the expression or ardor on his face as he eagerly enters the room.


An opportunity has therefore presented itself to Yoshi. Yoshimo contemplates seeking to acquire a bounty for Kesalo. So he does a bit of casual research via his talkative old friend at the bazaar. He learns that the concubine is named Sarasina, and that she is young, only 19 years of age. Sarasina is exquisitely beautiful, daring, headstrong, and impetuous. And she is the pasha's prize concubine. Yoshi learns that Sarasina constantly tests limits, and gets away with far more than any of the pasha's concubines ever have. The pasha is completely taken with Sarasina's rare beauty and charms.


Yoshi decides to act on his bold plan. But before detailing that scheme, first, what are Yoshi's motivations for the betrayal of his young shipmate, Kesalo? Yoshi rationalizes that young Kesalo deserves such a fate for his perpetual recklessness (especially for one wielding such power). Yoshi also reckons that his plan figures to provide at least a fair chance of sparing Sarasina's life. Yoshi expects that the young woman will eventually be put to death when her affair is invariably discovered. In accordance with his faith, Yoshi decides that Sarasina, as a Calishite concubine, is a downtrodden member of society, and therefore merits his aid in this complicated situation. (Siding with the underdog is also very much consistent with TN alignment.) Another factor in Yoshi's decision is that he's had enough of sailing with the mage trio; they command far too great a share of the plunder anyway. But in the final analysis Yoshi's intrigue is an opportunistic act. It ultimately reduces to greed. Morally, Yoshi "has some growing to do." TNers are fundamentally amoral, which creates a hotbed for sociopathic impulses to arise.


Through Harsham Yoshi obtains a private audience with pasha al Farshas. To obtain the private audience, Yoshi tells Harsham only that he has a business proposition for a cache of rare weapons that no one else's ears should hear. At their meeting Yoshi informs the pasha that a swashbuckling pirate youth is taking advantage of one of his concubines. Al Farshas explodes into a fit of rage and threatens to have Yoshi executed for simply being the bearer of this outrageous news. But after the pasha's anger eventually dissipates a bit, Yoshi convinces pasha al Farshas to reward him with a huge bounty for delivering Kesalo dead or alive; preferably alive (hence calling for a bounty hunter's unique skills versus an assassin). Yoshi capitalizes on his knowledge that al Farshas is smitten with Sarasina's rare beauty; he correctly discerns that the pasha wants to continue to enjoying her. Yoshi offers to secretly fulfill the contract and thereby avoid the affair becoming a public matter that dishonors al Farshas' house. He tells al Farshas that he will confront Sarasina.


Yoshi visits Sarasina and scares her into helping him set a trap for Kesalo. Yoshi identifies himself as a friend of the al Farshas family. He states that his intention is to avoid public humiliation to the family from Sarasina's infidelity. Yopshi tells Sarasina that he has not told the pasha; and that he will not tell al Farshas, if Sarasina will comply with Yoshi's scheme to kill Kesalo. Sarasina's life can then be spared, and the pasha can never know--it will be as if it never happened. Sarasina has genuine feelings for Kesalo, if not superficial due to her youth; but at the bottom line she is terrified. Without hesitation she agrees to Yoshi's plan, and to remain mum about it. Sarasina will lure Kesalo into her canopied bed late at night (after the moon has set), where Yoshi will have placed a lethal number of snares. It is hoped that Kesalo will have no spell protections in place, since Sarasina will have mentioned to him beforehand that spell protections seem to have a subtle but unfavorable effect on their lovemaking.


The plan works to a tee. Kesalo is instantly killed. He never saw what hit him. At least Kesalo did not suffer. His body is later rendered unraisable by the pasha's soldiers.


Yoshi has devised an alibi for himself. He had himself arrested for trying to fence a stolen weapon that he knows others in the bazaar cannot fail to recognize. He claims ignorance but knows he will be arrested on the spot. He arranges for this to happen on the evening when he has set the traps for Kesalo. Yoshi is in custody at the local prison when Kesalo is killed.


Torosan and Demorthas are stunned by the news. When they attempt to retrieve Kesalo's in the hope of raising him they learn he is gone forever. The guards on duty at the time have scant information to impart, even under the mage's subtly cast enchantments. They relate that they have been informed Kesalo was caught stealing.


Later that evening Torosan and Demorthas enchant the pasha's security chief on his way home from the palace. The head of alFarshas' security force tells that all he was told is that Kesalo had been noticed more than once loitering in places that he had no business being on the palace grounds, claming he was lost, or was trying to find a latrine, etc. But valuables were missing during this period. A trap was evidently set for him. It is however highly unusual that the security chief was never made aware of any of these details. The security chief suspects that a rival among his detail at the palace is seeking to usurp his position with this matter.


As fate would have it (and fortunately for Yoshi) Torosan and Demorthas learn that one of Calimport's most skilled assassins left Calimport in haste within the hour following Kesalo's death. They track this assassin down on his way to Zazesspur. This lead turns out to be a wild hare. They catch up to him only moments after he has killed an assignment that was on the run from him. They are convinced that this assassin is not the killer of their comrade. They have however lost nearly four days in following the true killer's trail.


Growing impatient with the sleuthing involved, Torosan and Demorthas decide simply to kidnap the pasha and extract any information they can from the person most likely fully in the know about what happened to their comrade. One day, about two weeks after Kesalo's death, the pasha takes a stroll through one of his gardens and is never seen again. Torosan and Demorthas achieve this skillfully enough as to avoid leaving any traces. They thereby avoid drawing the ire of Calimport's government.


Sarasina has at this point fled Calimport. She disguised herself among slaves on a slave ship bound for the Border Kingdoms. The final destination for the slave cargo is Nimpeth in the Vihlon Reach of Turmish. An intelligent and resourceful young women, Sarasina successfully vanishes from Calimport without a trace.


Yoshi has by now been freed from prison (per his plan with the pasha) and has left the Lands of Intrigue. By the time Torosan discover from the pasha how Kesalo was killed, Yoshi and Sarasina are both long gone.

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So... a rather detailed intrigue this is, I realize. Hopefully it can be recounted in a way that the reader's interest will be maintained.


It raises some obvious issues about character for Yoshi. And this past in turn echoes upon his other deceptions and purely self-interested behavior, namely of not telling the party he was Irenicus' spy, and leading the party to believe he had fabricated the story about the mage duo back in Brynnlaw.


But Yoshi is undergoing an evolution through all of this, and he does want to become an honorable person. I would say the basis for that is a sincere faith in Ilmater, and his TN alignment (which favors the underdog in any conflict, for the sake of balance). For example, these two aspects of Yoshi's personality suggest that he should want to be guided by a basic principle to always protect the weak.


When Yoshi is confronted about his lack of integrity, failures of character, etc., it offers the PC a variety of responses that define what type of person <CHAR NAME> is. And of course NPCs wll have interjections that reflect their personalities and views.


I know discussion of this sort could easily grow longwinded and unwieldly, and I will try very hard to keep that from happening. It has to be digestable and hold the player's interest. So I have my work cut out for me. Hopefully the final product will be worth all the effort I have put into this backstory so far. If I do not succeed, however, I am fully prepared to scrap this in the best interest of the mod.

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