Ep. 33 - Layover: The Iron(dale) Horse

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Content Warning for Discussions of Horse breeding ~59:45-1:02:40: Drix must confirm that two horses breed (we don't describe it) and Hannah talks about how that was a real job she had to do

The Pride of Duskwall triumphantly crosses the Void Sea and enters the city of Irondale on the Isle of Severos. Severos is wild country, the Imperial cities being relatively new and the vast plains being easy hiding places for Magicians and Outlaws who can live outside of Imperial rule. Drix meets some kin. Pippin shares some information. Andrel has a nice time riding a horse.

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For the full transcript, go to https://ghosts-on-a-train.captivate.fm/episode/ep-33-layover-the-irondale-horse.

Ghost Lines by John Harper. Music by Sebastian Black. Art by Yoshiko Agresta. Sound Effects for the Human Magic sequence by Cai Gwilym Pritchard! Check out more of their work on their podcast, Chain of Being!

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TRANSCRIPT:

Greg 0:00

Content warning for discussions on horse breeding. See the description for details and timestamps.

Radio Announcer Greg 0:06

The wild plains of Severos unfold before the single, incandescent eye of a familiar locomotive. The Pride of Duskwall, spouts a jet of fire and lets out a whistle, giving the impression of a mustachioed face admiring the clear skies in the Imperium's wildest island. In the early days of the Emperor's calls to unite mankind, Imperial settlers beat back the dark brush and thorny growths of Severos to find thick veins of useful ore. Cities such as Irondale were founded for the purpose of safely extracting these resources, which helped turn the dream of an Imperial Railway into a reality. An Imperial train like the Pride, though constructed in Akaros, was likely built with metal mined from Severos, making this entrance to Irondale a sort of homecoming for the noble locomotive. The Imperial cities of Severos are some of the newest in the Imperium, as the native people of Severos weathered the cataclysm within Arcane Fortresses tended by magicians. Though many saw fit to join the Imperium, the occasional sighting of a Severosi magician wandering into town only to leave as quickly is proof that these Fortresses thrive to this very day.

Greg 1:42

Welcome back to Ghosts on a Train! This is a podcast were we play Ghost Lines, an RPG by John Harper. I'm Greg, I'm your conductor, and I run the game.

Hannah 1:52

I'm Hannah, I play Andrel Anderson, horse enthusiast, apparently.

Pip 1:59

I'm Guy, I play Pippin "Pip" McKeel. One of us is under a duvet. I don't think that PIP has ever even spelled duvet.

Hannah 2:10

I mean, you don't need to spell it to be under it.

Guy 2:12

That's true. But it's, like, I'd like to express that I have more of an understanding of my current situation than Pip does, but that's just kind of true most of the time.

Stefen 2:23

I'm Stefen, I play Drix, and I will, or, I'm gonna go ho-ooo-ooome, he's gonna go home.

Hannah 2:33

Oh my God.

Greg 2:36

Yeah, that's right, Severos, baby! We just crossed the Void Sea, you guys beat that, that big watery spirit that was giving you trouble the last time you were here, and now you're heading into Irondale, a city on the, the far eastern coast of Severos. Severos is full of windswept plains and dark very thorny underbrush, I can't stress enough how dangerous wandering around outside is, because this is still the Shattered Isles, so even though you see that starry night sky out here, far away from the smog of Akaros, it's, it's still a, you know, a death land.

Pip 3:22

Also still, like, you know, the sun is still dead.

Greg 3:25

The sun is still dead. Or it's trying really hard.

Hannah 3:28

Long live the sun.

Greg 3:32

So, the Pride of Duskwall enters the lighting barrier of Irondale. Irondale, it looks like a, those frontier towns with their sort of basic, like, tall rectangular buildings, but as the name would imply, Irondale, these buildings are, have a lot of a metal protection from elements, or perhaps any robbers.

Guy 3:55

Hey, Greg, not to kind of step on the toes of your narration, but if most of the things are made out of iron, wouldn't that mean that it's not really as protective against rain?

Greg 4:05

Oh, we don't have to worry about rain.

Guy 4:06

That's true. How, you know with the sun being dead, how does the water cycle work?

Greg 4:12

I'm sure, I'm sure it rains.

Hannah 4:14

Rain is memories.

Greg 4:15

Probably just not that - well, no.

Hannah 4:16

We've already covered that.

Greg 4:17

No, no, not all rain is memories. That's very specific rain from a Black Wind. This is where, this is, this is, like, a desert. There's not a whole lot of rain here. We're in Severos now. Back in Duskwall, yeah, because it's basically England. Right now we're in the frontier. Heading west, baby.

Pip 4:35

All I'm saying is, John Harper, give me that, give me that Blades in the Dark source book about the water cycle. I want to hear it.

Greg 4:42

Tell us about the water cycle, John. You guys prepare to exit the train, having just been paid by Candace for an impressive clearing of a major ghost and a not-so-impressive, or at least not to her, coaxing of Gafou, Laudius Dalmore II's 12-year-old Elysian servant boy who has fallen ill and was spirited - spirited, haha - on the train -

Hannah 4:49

Shut up.

Greg 5:04

- onto the train back in U'duasha. He's very sick, but here in Severos he should be able to be cured by a proper Severosi magician, a miracle healer. It was agreed upon that Drix would meet up with Laudius, and he's probably gone before you guys head to Candace, but Candace, as she pays you your money and sends you on your way, she does inform you -

Candace 5:39

Hey, listen, I, I'm not gonna say anything to him about the kid, especially because it all worked out, but, um, you know, we're, we're spending a little extra time here. I got word when we were in Sunfall that Mr. Walker was coming to meet with us, and he's gonna ride our train and Mistport. He says he's got some business there, but I don't know.

Andrel 6:00

Okay. Is that, like, relevant to us?

Candace 6:03

Yeah, I mean, we're gonna, we're, you got a little, you got a little extra time.

Andrel 6:06

Oh, okay.

Candace 6:06

Downtime here.

Andrel 6:07

That's it though, right?

Candace 6:09

I mean, yeah. And your, our, my next direct boss is going to be on the train, so be on your best behavior when you come here.

Andrel 6:15

Okay. Candace, we're always on our best behavior.

Greg 6:18

She, her eyebrows furrow. She does, she does that meme that's been going around of, like, the normal eyes, angry eyes.

Pip 6:29

That's just my life. When Andrel asked sort of, like, how, how that's relevant, Pip sort of opens his mouth as if he's gonna say something and then stops himself.

Stefen 6:39

Can I notice that?

Guy 6:42

Yes.

Hannah 6:43

I don't think you're here.

Stefen 6:45

Oh, you're right.

Greg 6:46

No, no, no, he's here.

Stefen 6:47

No?

Greg 6:47

No. You've just been, Drix is going to meet Laudius later. You still need to get paid.

Stefen 6:49

Right, yeah.

Hannah 6:49

Oh, okay, Laudius is gone first.

Greg 6:52

Laudius is gone first, yes.

Hannah 6:52

Cool.

Candace 6:53

Get out of my office.

Andrel 6:54

Bye!

Greg 6:55

Let's describe yourselves physically here. Who wants to step out first, into the, it's not hot, it's not, like, really hot like Iruvia, at least not in the same way. It's a, it's a dry heat here. It's arid, because there's less of a, there's less smog cover and less rain than in Akaros. So it is, it is warmer.

Pip 7:14

Alright, well, Pippin McKeel steps out into the, I guess the the dust of Severos, on his four crab-like tendrils, as he can only be described as like crab centar. No -

Greg 7:33

Crantour.

Hannah 7:35

Guy, come on. That wasn't even, that wasn't even funny.

Guy 7:40

That was funny for me.

Stefen 7:41

He seems to be in stitches.

Guy 7:44

Pip is a rather pale, kind of long, greasy haired, English-looking lad with clothes that were probably once very very, like, high class and fancy that have since seen better days. Pip himself has sort of, like, darker hair and a long face and a kind of perpetual, like, gin blossom, like, flush nose and, like, face. He would be tall if he were not so hunched over, almost as if he's kind of just been beaten down by the weight of life.

Hannah 8:29

Hey, man who hasn't been?

Greg 8:31

Big mood. Next? Who, who comes out, maybe being suspicious of Pip from that look, I guess? If that's what we're doing here?

Stefen 8:39

Out steps a dark-skinned man with black, curly hair. He's tall and muscular, with, like, a bit of a barrel chest. He's wearing a -

Alexa??? 8:48

I can search web for that. Just tap that search chip below.

Stefen 8:52

What?

Greg 8:52

Search the web for a big man for you.

Guy 8:55

Professionals. Were professionals.

Stefen 8:57

Why? Why?

Hannah 8:59

Buy a himbo! Buy a himbo.

Stefen 9:02

Did I say okay, google or something? No, no -

Hannah 9:11

Oh, buddy.

Stefen 9:13

Okay. All right. All right. All right.

Greg 9:16

Carrying on.

Stefen 9:17

He's wearing a white shirt with the sleeves rolled up and a vest over it, he's wearing a black vest over it. Some, like, light materials, dark pants, and some, like, decently high boots with some spurs on them. Upon his head are, covering some black curls, a large black cowboy hat with a red band.

Hannah 9:41

I'm last! I'm Andrel. Andrel Anderson follows behind. A 13-year-old girl, Iruvian, so copper-skinned, dark hair, dark eyes. The hair is kind of short and messy, kind of boyish. I recently described Andrel to someone as, like, androgynous looking, which she is, like, kind of in a purposeful way and kind of in a child kind of way. She's got, like, Victorian orphan clothing of, like, little, you know, pants, little vest.

Greg 10:15

Little Oliver Twist.

Hannah 10:16

Little Oliver Twist, yeah. And eyes that shine of mischief. Oh, and she's got a dorg.

Guy 10:22

Dorg, dorg, dorg!

Ji'mani 10:23

Yorp! Yorp! Yorp!

Greg 10:24

A hairless, three-legged -

Hannah 10:26

Dog-like creature.

Greg 10:29

Dog-like creature, the physique of a German Shepherd but with two legs in the back, one leg in the middle in front, a single tuft of hair on the, like a lion on its tail, and a long, long, thin mustache.

Pip 10:43

In the shape of a friend.

Greg 10:45

The shape of a friend. Yeah, so you guys had outside the train. Somebody nearby is complaining to what at first doesn't read like a bluecoat, but you realize it is in fact just a bluecoat in its, in his Severosi, Severos, like, frontier gear, looking a little more ready to deal with the the dusty, arid plains of Severos. Which of course means I'm talking a, you know, wild west deputy looking motherfucker, but with blue.

Stefen 11:18

Yes!

Greg 11:21

And yeah, they're complaining. Somebody's like -

Citizen 11:24

Now listen to here. Coleman and his gang came through here not three hours ago, and I reckon they're still in town. Where's the law when you need them?

Greg 11:34

The bluecoat says -

Bluecoat 11:36

Well, I'm awful sorry there, but um, you know, we can only be so many places at once, so would you suppose that I leave the bank unprotected to check on your house? Or perhaps the general store? I'm sorry, sir.

Hannah 11:52

Greg's really going to stretch his fucking accent muscles during this one.

Greg 11:57

And the, the person -

Guy 11:58

Yeah, Greg has actually, like, a few cowboy voices, but he has one, like, cowboy voice in particular. Pay close attention, listeners, for that one.

Greg 12:07

Listen, I don't mean to brag, but senior year of high school -

Hannah 12:10

Oh, God.

Greg 12:10

- I was Colonel Thunder in Wild Oats.

Hannah 12:12

Oh my god, you were.

Greg 12:14

And we sold out every single night.

Hannah 12:16

That wasn't impressive.

Greg 12:17

Sold out every single night, somebody once, my English teacher said that somebody told them they pissed their pants, and half of the people who only sort of knew me that saw the show didn't realize I was playing Colonel Thunder. That's how fucking good I was.

Guy 12:32

Professional cowboy.

Hannah 12:34

He was, he was a lanky little nerd. You should not take any of this as anything impressive.

Pip 12:47

As soon as, as soon as the quarantine is over and Greg is fully vaccinated, he's going to be moving to California -

Hannah 12:53

No, he's not.

Guy 12:54

- to play a leading role in Knottsberry Farm.

Hannah 12:56

I need him to pay rent, he is not doing that.

Greg 12:59

But anyways, the first person, you know, shove their head along -

Guy 13:03

That was a reference for nobody.

Greg 13:05

- you know, sort of, sort of makes, like, an ah, to hell with you sort of motion to the bluecoat, sort of wanders by, sees you.

Citizen 13:12

Hey there! You just stepped off the train?

Andrel 13:14

Yep.

Citizen 13:15

Ah, you be careful. That no-good Coleman Kanatcher and his gang have been passing through here all willy-nilly.

Andrel 13:21

Oh, there's an outlaw?

Citizen 13:22

Yeah, he's got Dagger Isles blood in him, they say. And he can stop a train just by staring daggers at it.

Andrel 13:28

Oh, that's impressive.

Citizen 13:30

Yeah, it's awful, actually!

Andrel 13:32

I mean -

Citizen 13:33

I live here!

Andrel 13:36

I mean, why do you care if the trains stop, though?

Citizen 13:39

Because people rely on trains for supplies! And he's, he's always raiding them!

Andrel 13:43

I guess. Oh, he raids trains? I guess that's bad.

Citizen 13:46

Yeah. Anything that what comes from Thorne, or anywhere west of, west of here. He's all over it.

Andrel 13:53

Huh. Well...

Citizen 13:54

Your train from Iruvia is the first proper supply we've gotten.

Drix 13:58

He sounds pretty... pretty impressive,...

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