(1310-11-15) Pont du Feu
Summary: Aurelie learns of a conspiratorial meeting, decides to play spy - even if that means putting herself at risk.
RL Date: 05/12/2018
Related: Tonnerre plot

Pont du Feu — Tonnerre — Namarre

In the aftermath of the Tonnerre party, Aurelie discovered a few things:

One, that there is a smuggling ring ongoing by the aforementioned Baron, and some of the things that turn up there happened to have been in possession of unfortunate unlanded lords and others that went up against the brigands in the roads.

Two, he's got people on his payroll. The day after she spoke with the loose-tongued courtier, said courtier appeared with a throat slit on a deserted street in Tonnerre.

She knows the culprit, at least. The question is: has he fled the town, yet? And to where?

Sometimes, intuition is proven right. Still, Aurélie heard of the courtier’s death with dread, aware that she had sensed impending danger, but had seen not enough justification nor possibility to prevent it. Upon receiving the news, she needs to sit down, and her hand finds the curve of her belly, even as her features are marred by a deep frown. “The seigneur… Where was he staying?”, she asks of one of the trusted guards provided to her. “We should… see if he left anything.” Some hints, maybe? Letters, in possession that could back up his claims against the baron de Vouzon? She moves to stand and looks towards the guards. “I want you to find out where he stayed, and to bring back any leads you may find.”

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Investigation+2: Success. (8 5 1 2 6 2 6 3)

It's a town-wide raid, several inn rooms are broken into, their contents turned and then turned around once again. They don't come away empty-handed from this, though.

The guards don't find much, but they do find a rubber stamp of sorts; if the noble was careful enough to burn his correspondence, he apparently forgot to check if the embers in the fireplace had consumed all of it. Half of a letter, detailing what was to be done to the victim in case they spoke too much. Upon questioning by the guards, the innkeeper, or so they report, said that the person had an appointment scheduled with someone in the taproom known as the Pont du Feu, a hangout known to be actively sponsored by Jean L'Envers as a place of privacy.

It is only ironic, thus, that a man working to conspire about the Lord would be there.

Aurélie waits patiently for the guards to return, and when they finally arrive, she hears them out with a grave expression on her features. “Pont du Feu…”, she repeats the name of the establishment in a low thoughtful murmur. “Did the innkeep say anything about when that meeting was to take place?” But her mind seems to be made up. “I insist that we go there and try to find out whether it has already taken place… And if so, if staff working there may have picked up anything.” Maybe prompted do act thus through the wild cocktail of pregnancy hormones, or perhaps spurred on by her wish to prove to Jean that she is learning to take care of things, Aurélie nó l’Envers insists that they go there. She is sensible enough to resort to an attire of dark grey, unobtrusive color — fine quality obvious to those with perceptive eyes. The guards retain their official colors of l’Envers, apart from two trusted men that are to wear neutral attire.

When they get there, they see that the tavern is well kept, with polished wood board floors and a podium for bards. Their culprit is there, somewhere; just as Aurelie is unobtrusive, though, so is the assassin as they wait for their appointment. It's hard to make heads or tails of why there's a crowd gathered so early in this Tonnerre watering hole, but that's for the Basilisque to find out.

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Investigation: Failure. (6 1 3 2 3 2)
Aurelie spends 1 luck points on Reroll Investigation.
<FS3> Aurelie rolls Investigation: Success. (6 3 8 2 5 6)

The hood of her cloak shields the blonde curls of her hair from the view of others, helping in making her blend in. Aurélie had ordered the official guards to stand back, before she had approached the Pont du Feu in the company of her two bodyguards. Furtive glances are had at the various people inside, especially the tables that are occupied by just two people.

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Perception: Success. (3 3 5 3 3 2 4 2 6 8)

She might be able to notice a few things; there's an empty table with a fresh pitcher of wine, and a half-open door in the far hallway, likely a place meant for more 'private business', such as it turns out.

Some unsavory men play dice in a table off to the corner and they can likely be questioned about that, but it could be only a matter of time until their person of interest is gone. The choice on whether to question or to venture into the door is up to Aurelie. Then again, if someone left a pitcher of wine on the table and hasn't paid for it - the tavern is known to employ knee-breakers - they must not have left yet.

Aurélie gives one of her incognito guards a discreet nudge to the side and inclines her head into the direction of the table with the pitcher of wine. “Keep an eye on there,” she murmurs to him as she moves over towards that hallway, as nonchalantly as possible as to look as if she had legitimate business to see to there. Her destination is that half-closed door, she opens fully to look at what lays beyond, before she slips into the room — in case there is nobody there.

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Stealth: Failure. (6 2 3 2 5 5 4)
Aurelie spends 1 luck points on Reroll Stealth.
<FS3> Aurelie rolls Stealth: Good Success. (7 6 7 1 2 3 8)
<FS3> Aurelie rolls Composure: Good Success. (2 6 8 5 7 5 6 5)

But there is. The two men are conversing. One of them is the agitated man from the fête.

"So you think he might have been killed by Gerard's men?"

"Absolutely. You saw what they did to the Chevalier sworn to Troyes. What do you think they will do to a wastrel of a lordling who was once the heir to House L'Envers? His head is probably being served on a platter to the Baron as we speak."

"And the other one? The loose-tongue bastard?"

"Taken care of. The only loose end is that little courtesan of Jean's, now…"

Just in time, when she was about to open the door fully, Aurélie realizes there are people inside of that room. She has enough wits to leave the door as it is and move behind it — after having a brief glimpse at the two men. Her hand lifts to gesture for her guard to stand back, even so, there is a faint line that shows between her brows as she listens to what is said in the room. Her green eyes lift then as she looks towards her guard, as she motions for him to get their reinforcements from outside — while she remains where she is, anxious not to alert the two traitors to her presence.

The conversation goes on for a little longer as they gloat about an ambush they laid with some farmer's wife. She's dead, too, they say. Either way, those words come to an abrupt halt when they finally notice the presence of a third person in the room. And just the person they wanted.

A miséricorde is drawn, pointed to Aurélie as the man with the menacing bearing rises to his feet, steps closer. (roll Leadership)

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Leadership: Success. (2 7 3 1 5)
<FS3> Aurelie rolls Composure: Good Success. (5 7 7 6 2 5 3 3)

She has been noticed, and for a moment Aurélie seems to be frozen in shock, as she realizes one of the men is coming at her with a thin blade, his intention obvious. There is no time to hesitate, however, and so the courtesan decides to act. Her thin disguise having been seen through, she lets the hood of her cloak fall away, to reveal the golden sheen of her hair, and Aurélie straightens and lifts her chin, green eyes bright from the sudden rush of adrenaline.

“Fools!”, she exclaims. “Stand back. Don’t you dare. If harm comes to me, it will bring down the wrath of our Vicomte upon you. Do you think you have a chance of getting out of here alive? Did you really think that I came here all by myself?”

The guards rush in after Aurélie's voice comes through the doorway, and the two men try to make their way to her, only to be stopped suddenly by the swords of the bodyguards.

A fight occurs, and it seems that Aurélie's men are properly motivated by her words, they have the upper hand. Soon enough, the gloating accomplice is killed, the other, who might know more and was presumably his handler, apprehended. The guards turn to her, following this with an inquiry:

"To the dungeons, my Lady?"

“To the dungeons,” Aurélie agrees, her tone firm, and her gaze full of disgust as she looks towards the man they apprehended. “He is to be questioned. Thoroughly.” The courtesan then looks towards the guards. “While we await the return of the Vicomte.” There is a flicker of concern in her young features. “In fact, I would like to have word sent to him, to inform him about what has occurred here.”

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