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Bertie bribes the train staff to run the train, which gets stuck, forcing Bertie to head into the tunnel on foot. Hamid, Sasha, and Zolf sail across the sea, trying not to drown.


Bertie arrives at the terminal for the train, which is crowded with people. The staff explain that they need to check for damp, and may have to close the train today. Bertie offers the staff member gold, critically succeeding. The member of staff is calculating the total sum required, eventually settling on 30 gold.

The conductor, who is a human male pokes out the side of a door. Only his left side is visible. He has a blue conductors uniform on with black pants. His eyes have bags under them. There is a squiggly line coming from his mouth that leads to the word: Doooom!

The conductor. Art by @skraak on tumblr. Used with permission.

The train is decadent with a huge engine and plenty of cargo carriages. On the train, Bertie overhears the driver talking to the bribed member of staff. When Bertie asks what time they'll arrive in Calais, the driver says that they will all die, shouting "DOOM!" when Bertie persists.

Bertie strikes up a conversation with the bookish Harrison Cambell, who discusses making another outfit for Brutor. Cambell sketches a very handsome, topless Bertie before asking him if he can use him in a future book, which Bertie agrees to. Cambell starts to dive into Bertie's romantic history, before the train shudders to a halt. 

Bertie confronts the driver, punching the door in, to find out what's going on. The driver explains that the tunnel is full of water and that the lightning from the train would kill Bertie, should he attempt to walk. He explains that it will take a day for anyone to come and assist them.

Bertie demands that the driver turns the train off, who says that they cannot turn the train off as it is powered by a lightning elemental.

To the left: an black and white image of Zolf, a dwarven man with short hair and a double braided beard. He holds his left hand to his chest and his eyes are wide on his face. His mouth is open in a gasp. To the right: Zolf is holding onto a piece of hovering stone, his bread is draped across it. Below him is Sasha, a human female. Only her head is visual as the rest of her is submerged under water. Her right arm is holding onto Zolf's left arm. The words: No! If you're going to do anything, take me, not her are spread across both images in the background.

Zolf attempts to sacrifice himself for Sasha. Art by @illusion-of-sea-axes on tumblr. Used with permission.

Far above the train, Sasha is thrown off the ship. Zolf casts his trident and chain mail into the raging ocean, shouting at Poseidon "No! If you're going to do anything, take me, not her!" Sasha and Zolf struggle to find each other and eventually get back to the ship where Hamid is still clinging on tight. They reach the eye of the storm.


Zolf: "Look, I’m sorry, alright, I’m sorry! I’ll do better! Don’t kill my friends!"
―Zolf calls out to Poseidon.

Bertie: "So, this seems a little more on the electric side than I was hoping for with the deactivation of the train. Perhaps I could speak to someone more on the supply side of the electricity. Perhaps the lightning elemental itself, hmm?"
Driver: "Do you have any idea what would happen if we release that lighting elemental for even a moment?"
Bertie: "No."
―Bertie attempts to get the train to Calais moving again.

Dice rolls and Mechanics[]

  • Bertie makes a Diplomacy check at the station: nat 20
  • Bertie makes a Reflex save to not slip on the stairs: 4
  • Bertie makes a Sense Motive check on the driver: 5
  • Bertie makes a Perception check as the train stops: 17
  • Bertie makes a Strength check to break the chain on the door: 20

Drowning Breakdown[]

  • Sasha drops below the water level with a Swim check of 2. 
  • Zolf pulls out a knife and severs the sail. He tells Hamid to stay down and hold on, and then throws his trident and chain mail into the water. He yells "No! If you're going to do anything, take me, don't take her!" and leaps into the water with a Swim check of 6 and is underwater.
  • Hamid hangs onto the boat.
  • Sasha fails to struggle to the surface, rolling an 8 on her Swim check.
  • Zolf rolls a nat 1 on his Perception check, losing sight of Sasha and the boat. He doesn't get above the water, rolling a 12 on his Swim check. 
  • Hamid crawls to the centre of the boat, taking 10.
  • Sasha surfaces on a Swim check of 10 and is at the whim of the storm. 
  • Zolf is still underwater and tries to find Sasha, failing on a Swim check of 5. 
  • A wave hits the boat and it begins to capsize. Hamid clings onto the boat as it capsizes, taking 10. He finds himself in the air pocket and changes his outfit to something that will keep him warm, but won't drag him underwater (goose fat and pants).
  • Sasha sees Zolf on a Perception check of 17 and swims to him, successfully making it on a check of 16.
  • Hamid attempts to drag himself up the side of the boat, but fails on a Strength check of 2.
  • Zolf gets his head above water with a Swim check of 12.
  • Sasha drops underwater with a Swim check of 5, but not before getting a sarcastic quip out.
  • Hamid casts ‘’prestidigitation to send red sparks into the air. Another huge wave hits the boat, and Hamid makes a Reflex save of 15, getting knocked in the head. His hands turn into claws to get a better grip on the boat.
  • Sasha stays underwater with a Swim check of 10.
  • Zolf summons a stepping stone and grabs Sasha to pull her up, but fails on a Strength check of 4.
  • Hamid sees the stepping stone with a Perception check of 24 and shouts at them. Zolf and Sasha each make a Perception roll to hear him; Sasha gets 24, Zolf gets 8.
  • Sasha tries to pull herself up the stepping stone, failing on a Strength check of 10.
  • Zolf attempts to pull Sasha onto the stepping stone, failing with a Strength check of 11.
  • An eerie calm settles around the three of them, although the storm rages around them. Zolf realises that they are in the eye of the storm with a Profession (sailor) check of 20.
  • During the reprieve, Sasha gets onto the stepping stone and Zolf swims the floating stepping stone to the boat.

Plot Notes[]

  • Harrison Cambell is the author of the romance novels that Zolf read while awaiting court martial in Dover.