Thot Slayerearliest post first | most recent post first
The crew has taken to our garbage duty better than expected. Er, well, better than they would have before they lost their minds and became stumbling, drooling automatons.
As it is, they can follow directions for a short time but you've got to keep redirecting them when they forget what they were doing. So, we pull up the Thot Slayer to a street corner, I park it and open up the hold and start pointing them to the cans and dumpsters, then back up into the hold where they dump them out, then repeat till we've cleared it out and move to the next street corner.
It's really a shame the local authorities haven't instituted mandatory recycling and composting, but I'm going ahead and having the crew separate the waste once it's in the old. Oooooh boy is that going to need a clean out! But for now the crew doesn't seem to have a problem sleeping in it. Not like we have a way to wash them if we wanted! I'm sure that after the hold is full and we make it to the dump site, they're bound to have proper hygiene facilities for all employees. I mean, there are basic worker's rights everywhere these days, am I right?
Well I was able to moor the Thot Slayer in a section of this massive futuristic city that seems to be near where my unfortunate crew lost their minds. But oh the parking fees! I had none of the so called "clams" they were asking for, so instead have had to pay our way by accepting a job with the local garbage brigade. I may be able to earn a little more this way for the upgrades the Thot Slayer could so clearly use, and it gives the crew something to do with their time other than drooling and bumping into each other in the hold. It also allows me to seek out the one landmark I remember from that first fateful trip to this area -- the cyclopean ruins that those British castaways were held up in.
Ah! I hear the clatter of the city's dumpsters calling me now!
Things sure have changed here in the Bermuda Triangle. What used to be a mysterious expanse of semi-wavy but largely really boring water has become crowded with towers, spires, hyper-futuristic skyscrapers, elevated high-speed rail, holographic billboards, and hyperbolic antennae structures. Frankly the Thot Slayer is feeling like a beat up old junker in the face of all this shiny new stuff. How did I miss this the last time around? It seems like it all sprung up over night.
What became of the old ruins where the castaways came from? I'm still heading for the coordinates. Hopefully there we'll find some clue as to why the crew lost their minds, and some way to still recover them. HQ is still refusing my calls, claiming the Thot Slayer has been lost at sea. Those HQ boys and their pranks! Obviously continuing to hold a grudge over my Leading through Caring initiative. Well, it's only a matter of time till they see the light.
Upon setting foot back on the Thot Slayer, I was happy to find the crew still safely tucked away in the cargo hold. Granted, I'd locked them in, but you can't be too sure in an unfamiliar port! They'd gone through the peanut butter and bread and water I'd left, but found them oddly stoic. Nobody even said hi! Guess they're still getting over their trauma from our landing in the Bermuda Triangle.
Getting back to the Bermuda Triangle seemed like the best next step. Perhaps I could find some clue as to the crew's condition?
Heading out, I discovered that the Thot Slayer is now considered Missing in Action by both Zephyr Air Transport AND the General Airship Authority! What's up with that? Did the tags expire? I will need to check next time we're docked.
But for now, heading back to those odd ruins we discovered deep in the Bermuda Triangle. I'm sure the answers we seek lay there.
Sleeping at the Gilman House is SO restful! I swear I've never dreamed more intensely and vividly before. I dreamed of an enormous city of an extinct civilization, mammoth basaltic ruins, monstrous masonry and limitless caverns of eternal night. Frankly it got a little tiring, trudging through cyclopian hall after cyclopian hall in a giant heavy dress. Seemed like it went on for years!
Still, I woke up feeling great. It's been awhile since I slept that well, and I was perked up and ready to get on the move.
However, when I went to settle my bill with the Gilman's, can you believe it but they tried to bill me not for a handful of nights but for six years! Six entire years in that cute little (though slightly soggy) B&B? I wish! I pointed out the error in my bill and made my way out of their establishment, and back to the airfields where--obviously some sort of prank they like to play on tourists--the dockmaster also attempted to charge me for a six-year berth!
These locals can be charming, can't they? I gave the dockmaster a wink, but threw in an additional $3 as a tip for their good nature.
I highly recommend the Gilman House to anyone spending time in Port Nelson. While not especially talkative, the wall-eyed, gaping-mouthed British proprietors keep neat, if slightly damp rooms, and the sloshing, lugubrious sounds of their comings and goings provide a restful background to a peaceful night’s sleep.
I have also found the small library on premises highly conducive to putting one to sleep, containing such hideously boring old tomes as Comte d'Erlette's Cultes des Goules, Ludvig Prinn's De Vermis Mysteriis, the Unaussprechlichen Kulten of von Junzt, and even the surviving fragments of the puzzling Book of Eibon. Just try getting through just one page of any of them and I promise you'll be asleep in no time. Yawn-ola.
The Gilman house is also host a number of fascinating, if equally boring, antiques throughout their establishment. For instance, on a small table in my room is an object composed of a queer mixture of rods, wheels, and mirrors, though only about two feet tall, one foot wide, and one foot thick. I believe it to be some kind of clock, perhaps measuring the ebbs and flows of tides unimaginable. Whatever it is, it's keeping me up at night! I am attempting to find the off switch.
"Git aout o' here! Get aout o' here! They seen us—git aout fer your life! Dun't wait fer nothin'—they know naow—Run fer it —quick—aout o' this taown —"
I tell you there certainly are some characters here in Port Nelson! The old salty sailor almost knocked me over on his way out of the local eatery. What people will do to get out of paying their tab.
I, for one, feel it's our duty to help bring economic stability to establishments here on the frontier. So I had a wonderful sample of the local specialty--"Marsh Eggs" they call them, but it tastes like fishchicken to me. Observing the lurking, squishy staff of the restaurant I realized they bore a striking resemblance to those British castaways (with the bulgy, starry eyes) I rescued in the Bermuda Triangle who, in their enthusiasm to reunite with their loved ones leapt out of the ship and into the bay upon the Thot Slayer's approach to the landing fields.
"This is outstanding! My compliments to the chef!" I extolled to my waitress.
Her gills swelled and relaxed spasmodically.
Checked on the crew. They appear no more ready to assume their positions on the ship than before, still gibbering and drooling in the hold of the Thot Slayer, but are able to assemble peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on their own with the materials I laid out for them. They are also now able to attend to themselves in the WC which let me tell you is a big relief.
Since Port Nelson seems like such a nexus for enforcing regulations against the inhumanely desiccated and potentially possessed animal trade, I feel like we should make port here for awhile. I joined the townspeople in their odd, shambling gait through the downtown streets, and have secured lodgings at the local hostel, called Gilman House. It's time to settle down a bit with the natives and get a feel for the cultures that we hope to bring up to the level of enlightenment I've outlined in my Leading Through Caring Guidelines, which I am sure will soon be incorporated into the Zephyr Air Transport Mission and Values Statement.
The Import/Export Authoritarian Air Authority in Port Nelson is a horrific, terrifying mausoleum. Eyeballs of every size stare back from their jars with hideous curiosity. Racks of amputated wings flutter when your back is turned. Taxidermied tentacles reach out, frozen in mid-air, but the texture of their skin appears pliant, supple, and moist.
I set my box of potentially inhumanely harvested iguana tails on the counter. A grizzled clerk emerged from the shadows and eyed it. He then produced a small maraca, covered with beads, and shook it with a brief intensity over the box.
The box shifted on the table, as if its contents suddenly squirmed.
Ah! A small fee for processing the paperwork. I nodded in understanding and went for my wallet.
The grizzled clerk opened the antique cash register with a kaching!, grabbed a five dollar bill and handed it to me. Then he grabbed the box and took it back into the shadows with him.
I was expecting a medal, but I suppose $5 will do.
I heard on the short-wave about the WonderFly9000 transporting mummified cats. I should warn @Worded about the potential of inhumane practices in the mummified cat industry, so we can help put an end to Zephyr Air Transport's involvement in this abhorrent trade!
Well, I can't say much about the castaways' manners, but I am a bit relieved to have their slimy handprints off all the mahogany and brass.
As soon as we made sight of Port Nelson, it was plop plop plop as they walked straight out the main passenger doors and straight down into the ocean below. I guess they must be good swimmers! I'm afraid I didn't see any of them pop up for air though.
I've gone ahead and docked the Thot Slayer, made sure the drooling, gibbering crew was locked away safely in the hold, and am taking our backpack full of iguana tails directly to the Import/Export Authoritarian Air Authority to turn them in.
I'm sure a medal is too much to ask, but some kind of written commendation? How could they not?