Lakeside Rescue

Cast: Majors, Ridely, Jock, Gayle
Premise: Sleazy bars and port side thugs come between a group of would be rescuers and a burning zeppelin.

rating: 0+x

//The Drinking Hole is as classy as ever. Suspicious booze flows freely and shady characters haunt the place. Perhaps a bit out of place in the rough and tumble tavern is a particular Englishman in a white suit. He holds a handkerchief to his nose in an attempt to cover the stench, in his hand is a dirty glass of 'beer' And visible from the window? is that a burning Zeppelin to the west?

Gayle is in the Drinking Hole. At the bar, drinking, as is appropriate in such a hole. While she doesn't look particularly shady, her rough-and-tumble pilot garb doesn't stand out too much. The Englishman with his white suit and hanky does draw a funny look. Though whatever's going on out the window distracts her from him. She squints toward the whatever-is-afoot.

A table of four, off near one of the walls, stirs, perhaps drawn by the fact that a good portion of the people in the bar are looking out the window. "Hell." One of the men at the table says, pushing a small forest of beer bottles to one side to get a better look. "Is that one of ours?" He asks. The oldest man at the table, Jock, shakes his head, scraping his chair backwards and beginning to stand. "Shouldn't think so, lads." He says, pursing his lips in thought. "Fireproof, our zeppelins are." By their accents, everybody at that table is British.

Steps carrying himself over the threshold and through the doorway, the man questionably known only as Ridley offers a passing glance at the burning spectacle through the dirty window panes. The dusty cowboy hat on his head is tilted upward momentarily to get a better glimpse before then being pulled low over his brow. Other than that, he continues on his way towards the bar, an empty stool appearing to be his destination.

Majors shudders slightly as he takes a sip of beer. "Oh bloody hell.." He grumbles. The man sniffs his handkerchief one last time then chugs the remainder of the bottle. The man's blue grey eyes then swing over towards the window and the burning Zeppelin. "My word.." He glances about to see if anyone else notices the inferno.

Those with sharp eyes might notice that it is a standard cargo Zeppelin of Argentinean origin that is slowly descending into the nearby lake.

Gayle still has her attention on the dirty window, neck craned around and eyes squinting to try and get a better view of the fire outside. "You figure it's serious?" she asks Ridley as he approaches the bar. Like he might know. Her own accent is decidedly American-made. Midwestern country, if one knows about such things. "Those big blimps make me nervy. Hate to fly in the damn things. All those explodable gases and all that canvas don't mix, I figure." The invasion of Brits is noted, her eyes flitting to the various tables they occupy, but the fire gets her attention back quick enough.

Jock stands, tugging his jacket to straighten it as he stands. His right hand goes into a jacket pocket and comes out with local currency, which he shoves under one of the beer bottles. "Binoculars, Smythe." He murmurs. The other three men at the table stand with him, and amazingly, one of them produces a battered binocular case from his baggy jacket, which is then opened, and the binoculars within passed to Jock. They're quite good binoculars, perhaps unusual from such roughly-dressed men. Jock raises them to his eyes, focusing on the zeppelin, then hands them back to Smythe, who stows them away. "Unusual for them to catch fire in flight." He takes a quick glance about the bar, looking at the others who are watching the incident.

Someone is talking to vagabond. Ridley's shaded gaze glances to the side once he's taken note that he's being spoken to. "Hmm?" he grunts non-verbally before looking back out the window a second time. "Probably." he states bluntly, turning back to the counter and sliding up onto a stool. "Sucks to be them." His voice as well is clearly American in origin, with a ever so slight Western twang. "Don't use'em that much. Perfer my bike." Fingerless glove covered knuckles rap against the counter, trying to get a tender's attention.

"I do say.. that is quite the fire they have there. Too close to be pirates I dare say." Majors says with the slightest of frowns. "Do hope they stay over water." And with that the white clad Brit orders another beer.

Through the glass lenses the action can be clearly be seen now. Small figures in blue uniforms frantically try to put out a fire in the cabin but is a lost cause with the rest of the massive man-made air cow going down. Some of the small figures have even decided that jumping out would be a better prospect then facing the fire.

"I'm happier in the sky than on land usually, but I don't hold much to the zeppelins. Give me a small plane any day. Never had one catch me up in flames." Gayle opines this before taking a deep drink of her beer. It's in a dirty glass and looks flat, but she doesn't seem to care. She turns to Jock as he gets a better look a the fire outside. "Might be engine trouble. If the machines start sparking in the air, the whole operation can start burning real fast." There's a tremor of sympathy in her voice she can't quite hide.

"That is _quite_ the fire." Jock says in agreement with his countryman, the group of four taking sticky, slow steps towards the window. The four roughly-dressed Brits stand in a loose group, all of them switching their gaze from the zeppelin to the other patrons of the bar every few moments. "It appears as though it's spread to the cabin. While I'm no expert at this sort of thing …" He waves his right hand in a loose, vague circle. "… I understand that that's rather bad news. Don't suppose you know if there's a rescue squadron or something of the sort in these parts?" Jock turns, his question addressed generally to the others in the bar.

If Ridley cares about the action going on outside, it's lost on the man's face. He makes his order once tender finally gets around to it, which happens to be a glass of straight scotch. "This is why I don't fly." he mutters, sniffing. "Screw that nonsense." he adds, taking a drink from his smudged glass. "But hey, fine time fer a cookout."

"Saw a fire like that on a Mexican ship during that whole Belize bollocks…" Majors offers absently. "Poor devils…" The man shakes his head and sips his beer, not enjoying it too much. "I do suppose calling the proper authories would be a waste yes? Ball of fire in the sky and what not?" He glances around.

The flaming wreck continues its lazy drift towards the water. The fire is increasingly becoming the object of entertainment at the bar. Bets are placed over odds and outcomes and more faces press up against the windows glass.

"My God…" Gayle murmurs, wincing as she continues to watch the fire. As for the authorities, she snorts. "I ain't seen much organized since I landed in this town. They must have a local fire brigade or some such, but I can't say I'd want my life staked on them."

One of the men standing behind Jock nudges another with a boot. "Glad you learned to use a parachute now, eh?" He murmurs. Jock sighs. "I suppose there is very little we can do, unless one of you happens to have a boat. I doubt anybody would thank me for trying to swim out there and save them." A quirk of the sides of his mouth which is almost a faint smile.

"Good entertainment, say that much." shrugs Ridley, who takes another drink, then shaking the ice in his glass. "There was once crude oil fire at a depo in Denver…looked kinda like that." the man says idly. "Though, that burned for days, smoke blocked out the sun for the first two."

"Hiring a boat wouldn't be too much of a hassel." Majors sniffs his hanky once again. "A spot of adventure perhaps? How long do you think it would take it to sink once it hit the water?"

"Ten to one all hands go down with the ship!" "Three to two on five or less survivors." Money changes hands as the bookies call out their odds.

Gayle narrows her eyes at Ridley's mention of 'entertainment.' She does not, precisely, approve. She finishes her beer in a gulp, setting the glass down purposefully and nodding to Majors. "Always somebody with a craft who'll go just about anywhere for money around here. Dunno. Depends, I suppose. Might float a good long while to sink if nothing pierced the hull of that thing and they aren't taking on water in the ship. That'd mean it'd burn longer, too, though."

"Could do." Jock says. "Still, a fellow has to try, doesn't he?" Behind him, another of the Brits unbuttons the cuffs on his jacket and begins to roll up the sleeves, possibly in preparation for a bit of swimming. "I suspect most people will watch for the sake of … ahm … entertainment." His voice is a trifle flat there at that last word. "And I suppose others might row out there to see if any of that cargo the vessel is carrying floats."

"Fifty on that second bet." Ridley calls over toward the bookie making said bets. Another drink from his glass, he doesn't look to aware of the displeasure in his choice of wording. He is however, picking out roll of ten's and tossing it the bookie's way.
"I do say we need to move on before the looters make a mess of things don't you two think?" Majors asks as he glances over at Gayle and Jock. "Thomas Owen Majors III and yes, that Majors family." He introduces himself.

The bookie grins a crooked smile at Ridley as the money is snatched out of the air greedily. "Got it senor. But fifty is such a small bet on an chance like this senor? Trust Carlos, I get you good odds."

Gayle nods shortly to Majors as she readies to join him on this outing. "Agreed. Gayle Fletcher, by way, is my right name." Not as fancy a name as Majors', but it gets her by.

"Jock Worthington. Of the Worthingtons." Jock volunteers. "How do you do." He takes a half step back. "Smythe, Barrington, Fellowes. Associates of mine." The three men behind him make vague gestures of greeting, nods and the like. "Well, if we can find a boat, we should get to it, then."

"A pleasure to met the five of you." Majors gives the faintest of polite bows then nods towards the door. "Shall we?"

Out the window one can see that the grand airship is not only a hundred or so feet off the water and the flames are still licking its sides.

The air smells of salt, carried by ocean winds and sprayed with mist upon the harbor docks. The ocean has not only brought halite to this port, but trade too - voices forming a hodgepodge of language, crates unloaded by muscled men and lowered with pulleys and rope. Ships dock here, belayed with names that convey distant places and exotic fare. In front of some, rickety tables have been constructed, and lines form of sailors signing to a new engagement. On distant piers, in quiet shadows, more surreptitious business takes place. Products must pass through the harbors, even ones spoken of in hushed tones and quieted whispers; contraband avoiding taxation, or simply the law.

After a bit of haggling the group find themselves in front of a Mister Gustavo a local fisherman willing to rent his rickety wooden ship out. As with the bar, most folks seem to be content on watching the airship sink. A few though are near their ships and waiting, a rough looking group with hungry eyes. 1

"Thanks, buddy. You're doing a good turn," Gayle says, flashing a bright smile at Miser Gustavo. Who probably values the money he's getting far more than her gratitude, but it can't hurt. She also eyes the hungry onlookers, narrowly, posture tensing a little. But she leaves them to their own devices as they just wait there.

Jock eyes the wooden ship with a cautious eye, taking a quick glance over his shoulder towards his men. There's the occasional glance and the nudge, as they seem to mark out the rough looking group. Smythe slips Mister Gustavo a wad of the local currency, and Jock heads for the boarding ramp, gingerly putting one foot onto the deck and pressing down, pausing to see if the entire boat collapses, and then, upon finding that it has not, continues on board, followed by his three British 'associates'. "Well, I suppose we're not going too far from shore." Jock says. "Which is quite the relief."

"I would sadly have to say that this vessel isn't the worst I've had to suffer through. Be a jolly bit for the novel I say." Majors says absently. The man seems more concerned with finding somewhere somewhat dry on the ship to sit.

Gustavo counts the money quickly before giving the group a thumbs up. With that he starts to shoo the folks onboard and works on the lines tethering the ship to the dock. The rough band just stare back though a few rude comments in Spanish are made and kisses are blown in Gayle's direction. As for the zeppelin, it has finally finished its torturous journey to the lake's surface with a mighty splash.

"Oh, this ain't so bad," Gayle says, plucky about the rickety vessel as she board it. "If I were in a flaming zeppelin, I'd take any ride I could get. I just hope we can get there quick enough. Terrible, being trapped in a fire like that." Her expression hardens at the cat calls, fists clenching, eyes sparking. But she just ignores them. Giving those boys bloody noses can wait for another time.

Jock makes a small series of gestures with his right hand, and he and Barrington take up position on the port side of the vessel. Smythe takes Fellowes to the other, where they begin to 'work' with some ropes, keeping an eye on the rough band while preparing to toss ropes to any survivors they might come across. "True enough, miss." Jock says. He seems comfortable standing, his legs keeping him steady despite the slight rocking of the boat. "Wonder who those boys are. Hope we won't have any trouble."

The small diesel engine of the fishing boat starts to whine as the ship makes its way to the wreck of the zeppelin. Gustavo glances over his shoulder and offers a polite smile. "Si? Es los hombres de Marcos Sapien. No te… Worry si?" He offers before his attention swings back to steering the ship.

Majors seems content to close his eyes and enjoy a smoke. He sways with the motion of the ship and tries to place a black and gold cigarette between his lip before offering his case around.

"Hmm." Jock says in a noncommittal response to the Captain's reassurance. He takes a hold of the railing, leaning forward as he looks into the water. On the other side of the boat, Smythe unsnaps the binocular case and raises the binoculars within to his eyes, focusing once more on the burning wreckage. "See anything there, Smythe?" Jock asks, turning his head back towards the person who must surely be his second-in-command. "Nothing yet." Smythe responds. "Incidentally, can you swim?" Jock asks, turning towards Gayle.

Gayle places one hand on the rail, though it seems more an idle gesture than out of any need to steady herself. She's got a decent pair of sea legs. "Looters, I'll wager," she says in a low tone. "Ready to get their grubby mitts off any luggage that floats off the blimp once it's toasted. Circle like vulture, they do." She chuckles to Jock. "Swim? Like a fish, my British friend. Not that I'm all that eager to dogpaddle."

Majors closes his eyes and enjoys his cigarette. "World has gone to hell since my grandfather's time." He offers in the way of conversation.

The wreck looms closer and the ship starts loose speed. There are people in the water, but from the looks of it, most of them are beyond help. A few dozen yards on the port side is a group of four clinging to various debris.

From the direction of the shore one can hear the roar of several engines.

"Port side! Four civilians, looks like they're still alive." Smythe calls, and Jock straightens from the railing. "Nor am I, Miss Fletcher." He offers, then starts walking towards that side, followed by one of his associates. He picks up a rope end as he walks, and hands it to his associates. "Right, then, steady." Jock says. "Just pull them in." He frowns a bit, hearing the roar of engines, and reaches into his jacket, unsnapping something, perhaps an interior pocket.

The Industrial Piers are primarily reserved for large oceanic ships - large bulk carriers, oil tankers, and the occasional military ship. Many of the piers owned by corporations and national concerns resemble more of a junkyard than loading areas, designed with rusting, semi-operational cranes for easy loading back when diesel was still piped back as waste product during the kerosene years. Replaced largely by cheap labor and the decline of goods being shipped out other than oil and distillate, the cranes cast long shadows on the oil-slicked but otherwise crystal clear waters of Lake Maracaibo.

Gayle springs over to help one of Jock's 'associates' with the rope for when it comes time to haul. Into the water she calls, "It's alright! We're here to help. Can you grab ahold?"

Majors rises to his feet slowly and leans on the rail and looks over at wreck with a deep frown. "I do suppose someone should check the inside?" He murmurs absently.

The group of four seemed quite relieved to see that rescue has come but their own safety doesn't seem to be paramount to them. Instead the bob in the water and try to tie the end of the rope to a particular bit of luggage.

The source of the engine noise becomes readily visible once two boats come into view. They are manned by the rough group from earlier and they don't seemed to be too pleased. The men are armed with various clubs and machetes and other weapons of the impoverished.

"I regret that of the many words that have been used to describe my swimming abilities 'like a fish' has not featured prominently." Jock says, frowning at the wreckage. "It seems that they'd like to bring their luggage on board." He frowns, then calls out, "I say, leave the luggage alone and take ahold of that rope!"

Smythe gives a short cough. "Other boat, sir." Smythe says, still holding the rope. "Unless they've changed the latest life-preservers to look like a machete …"
"Don't fret about your laces when your lives are on the line!" Gayle calls to the strandees in the water. "Get aboard before this lake does you in." She leans over the rail, easing the rope closer to the people in the water. Mention of the 'other boat' makes her turn her head, though. "Ah, hell."

"I think perhaps my good man that these fellows are not here to lend a helping hand." Majors replies as he crouches lower and looks over the side. "I do suggest we hurry this little endeavor along. I think these fine gentlemen mean to do us a great deal of harm."

The thug's boat tries to pull up hard to the fishing vessel once it nears. The roughians lean forward, eager to jump onboard once they are near enough.

Despite this, the survivors seem to be fairly intent on getting that piece of luggage onboard. Once the rope is secure, the weakly start to swim towards the boat. "Pull it up! Pull it up!" Comes the thickly accented English from what seems to be the leader.

"Pull it up, then get them on board." Jock says flatly to Smythe. His right hand dips into his jacket and comes back out with a revolver. "Then give us a hand. These fellows seem rather excitable." He spins the cylinder of his revolver open for a moment, checks to make certain that it is fully loaded, then snaps it shut. "Miss Fletcher, I do not suppose that you are armed? Or _extremely_ good at negotiating?" He crouches, not yet pointing the revolver at the oncoming thugs, but ready.

Gayle gives the rope a tug, putting her muscles to work to haul whoever, or whatever, in as quick as possible. "What the hell are they so keen on getting salvaged…?" she mutters. To the Brit toughs near her, but it's said more to herself than anyone else. She works the ropes while the survivors, and they're whatever, are trying to get aboard. But she looks around the deck for a handy cudgel.

Majors lets out a small groan as he pulls out a far too ornate semi-auto pistol. "Were are the half naked Damsels in distress and whatnot my good man?" The Englishman murmurs as he eyes the on coming boat.

Its a weighty object but the luggage floats well enough as it gets pulled in. The tired survivors follow after it. They flounder and dip under the waves for a few seconds but soon enough they are clinging to the sides.

A few of the more daring thugs on the ship try to jump onboard the fishing boat and make short work of the group with there machetes.

Gayle continues to work the ropes, intent on hauling the survivors, and whatever cargo it is they think is important enough to risk their necks for, into the boat. "C'mon! C'mon!" Encouragement! Into their boat of safety. That's being overrun by thugs. "Ah, hell…" she mutters again. She whips her head around, opening her lips to bark off some disparaging, spirit-curdling insult at the toughs. But she just can't do it. They're so downtrodden, with their dirty machetes and make-shift braining-weapons. It's sad, really.

"Repel boarders!" Jock barks, crouching and moving to the side of his three associates. Revolvers are drawn from somewhere within those loose civilian jackets that they wear, and the men take position behind whatever cover they can find. They aim and fire with a coolness that speaks to a good deal of having shot at people before, the men covering each other when they have to reload. "Good show, lads, lay it on them …" Jack calls, more softly, encouraging his men.

Finally between Gayle and the minimal help of Gustavo, the luggage clanks to the deck of the ship. The survivors on the other hand have a bit of trouble getting onboard. They mostly hand on the side of the ship and weakly try to pull themselves up.

The thugs are not as useless as one would think. The bullets fly wide of them as the deftly duck under the guns and try to press closer. Their weapons raised high as they try to make short work of the Brits.

Majors for his part is just another body in the melee. He fires off a shot that hits far wide of one of the thugs.

Gayle shoves the luggage unceremoniously into the side of the boat, shaking her head.
"Some folks need to straighten out their priorities." She ducks hastily as the gunfire starts flying, but her focus remains on the survivors near the side of the ship. She looks over at Gustavo. "Hold me steady, honey." With that, she loops the rope around her middle to steady herself and leans down, balancing precariously half-over the side of the ship, reaching a hand down along with her rope to help one of the survivors up.

"Well done, lad!" Jock cries, as one of his men connects with a shot, sending a tough reeling backwards. "Keep it coming, that's the spirit, boys." Jock stands now, prowling the deck behind his crouched associates as they continue to fire. Brass spills from a revolver as one Brit reloads, his motions calm, steady, and practiced.

"They're getting close, sir!" Smythe calls out.

Majors raises his ornate pistol and smiles slightly as he pulls the trigger. Another body is sent wheeling into the lake.

Seeing their two comrades dead and the prospect of pay becoming slimmer, the two remaining men take the boat hard to port and away from the fishing vessel.

Gayle is successful in pulling up a waif of a older gentelman. The balding sort, with a bit of a professor look to him.

"They're running!" One of the Brits calls, his revolver still up as he sights down the barrel. "Cease fire!" Jock snaps, opening the cylinder on his own revolver and carefully reloading any empty chambers. "Help the rest of these fellow up from the water." He thrusts the revolver back into what must be some sort of holster, and all four move to assist Gayle in pulling zepplin crash survivors from the water.

"There you go, Pops!" Gayle says as she helps the old gentleman onto the deck. She goes back down for another once he's steadied, glancing up at Jock as she ducks. "Those fellows of yours are handy to have around in a tight spot. Where'd y'all meet up, anyway?"
Majors lets out a small sigh as the other boat starts to speed off. "That was.. not exactly what I was hoping for." He says absently before sinking to the floor.

The balding man gives a small bob of his head before he scurries over to the luggage that was pulled onboard earlier and starts to check up on it.

Jock purses his lips slightly, crouching to help pull another survivor up onto the fishing boat. "Oh … ah, we all attended the same school, Miss Fletcher." One of the Brits also helping pull people out of the water gives a stifled snort. "Is everybody all right? Mr. Majors?" He calls across the deck. "Wonder what the deuce was so valuable in that luggage that these fellows would rather save it than themselves." Jock murmurs under his breath, turning back to the side of the ship.

"Must've been a hell of a school," Gayle observes with a crooked little grin. She straightens, hands on hips, turning her head to eye the old bird and his luggage. She's curious about that as well. But, after eyeing him a moment, her gaze goes to Majors. "You alright there?"

"Quite alright I assure you. Just a bit winded. Not the same as hunting loins and whatnot but I will most certianlly live. Got one of the bastards but not my best show wot wot?" He replies with a thin smile.

The old man eyes Gayle and Jock for a moment then slowly opens the case and peers inside. The three others that have been managed to be saved, while tired and battered weakly move to shield whatever he is looking at.

"It's a small institute in Scotland. Very private." Jock says mildly, his lips quirking in a momentary smile. "Good show, Mr. Majors. Excellent shooting. Wonder what those chaps were after." He shoots another glance towards the clustered group of survivors, but he makes no apparent move towards them. His men, however, are not quite so gentlemanly, and innocently begin to walk in a broad circle to see if they can see past the survivors.

Gayle sidles up to the survivors, partly out of concern, part out of curiousity. "Anything more we can do for you folks once we hit the shore?" she asks. Trying, as subtly as she can, to get a gander at their luggage.

The glint of gold and a crisp white paper can be glimsped by those with the sharper eyes. After a quick glance over the older man shoves everything back in place with the slightest of nods to the three other survivors. "Much money if safely get to hotel in city." The old man says with a slight bow.

Majors smiles fondly. "Yes well I am a bit proud of my skills. Mostly hunt.. but people aren't so differnt. Easier to track in any case." He boasts.
"I suppose we can give you a hand with that." Jock says, quickly glancing towards Smythe and the others. "Don't suppose you have any idea why the zepplin caught on fire?"

Gayle nods to the old man, concuring with Jock. "Yeah, sure. Glad to lend a hand. We've come this far, might as well go all the way." Especially if there'll be a pay-day at the end of it. That's something she hadn't foreseen. She doesn't press about the zeppelin, though she does listen closely for the answer.

"Faulty Wiring." Comes the old man's reply. He doesn't add more than that. Him and the others seem content on just hovering about the piece of luggage. "We talk later yes? After settle and safe." He adds shortly.//

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