The late monsoon storms are lashing the Bay of Bengal, so the Victoriana puts in to Calcutta to wait them out. Calcutta is a thriving community, with all the trappings of civilization, and Lady Macbeth is instantly caught up in the social scene, meeting the much travelled Emily Eden [link] among many, many. others
Gladstone, walking carefully with a stick, delivers a set of dispatches entrusted to him by CharlesElliot to the 'China' desk at the army HQ, and retires to the officers club to
"bore" tell the other officers of the latest news and action in China.
Wallace and Hamilton undertake the sending of a fund transfer of £1000 for goodwill and a promise of future repayment to Wallaces' creditors in blightly - after Wallace reveals the true extent of his debt £97,000. Hamilton then proceeds to try and buy a suitable cargo of teas for their return journey and sale in England. He is surprised to see a severe shortage of high quality tea from the higher estates, especially his families' holdings in northern Bihar. He and Wallace decide to go up and investigate.
After only a short period in Calcutta the party are soon aware of the delicate political situation in Afghanistan as the new ruler, Dost Muhammad, is not as well disposed towards the British as the last, Shoja Shah, and it can no longer be guaranteed to be the effective 'buffer state' between Russia and the valuable assets in the sub-continent. The great-game is afoot and Russia and Britain are struggling for influence in Afghanistan, and among the many major and minor maharajas and khans. There is an ongoing military campaign to unseat Dost Muhmammad and re-instate Shoja Shah.
Hamilton offers his services to the military in the discovery of information and events in his forthcoming travels, and is politely refused as the situation is 'too delicate' for a civilian. However as they leave Wallace is approached by SirHenryCreswickeRawlinson and asked to perform exactly this role, indicating that Mr 'Hamilton' is 'a local', being the son of the Maharaja of Bombay and related to many of the (loyal) Indian royal families.
So the expedition is put together as a "Tiger-Hunt", up country, and at the news Lady Elsbeth 'trigger' Macbeth is frightfully eager to come. Gladstone is also keen to escape the stifling damp heat of Calcutta in the monsoon.
Visiting the local clergy, Rev. Spooner, meets MonsignurTaberd, Vicar Apostolic of Bengal appointed by the pope himself, and doing great work in the town and colony to promote Catholicism. They share many similar goals, but differ on the nature of Christianity to be taught to the heathen.
Adrian - how many of your in-game skype comments do you want included here - or on your character sheet
He is searching for a replacement watch for the one he traded in China, when he meets the remarkable MrDavidHare . Gabriel is concerned when that the stout fellow, with similar interests in time keeping and good works, is struggling to make ends meet as a watch-maker while giving all he has to charitable and benevolent works. He buys the chaps whole stock for a very generous price and sets about quietly lauding Mr Hare's good works around the great and the good of the town, encouraging them also to give him their 'generous' custom - as the man himself will not accept charity.
On hearing of Hamiltons' intention to take 20 of his own armed Sikh guardsmen along on the tiger-hunt the British commander decides to send 4 Bengal Lancers along with Gladstone to ensure decorum. SirHenryCreswickeRawlinson indicates to Wallace that he will ensure that the local 'politicos' are aware of his presence and will try to 'help' when they need.
Before the guards and hunt supporters can catch up it has him on the floor again and is raking his legs as it launches itself at his head. Wallace plunges his dagger into it's neck as it attacks and feels the knife bite fatally home just as a rifle-shot takes it neatly below the ear.
Lady Macbeth apologies for shooting Wallaces' tiger as the fortunately well-equipped hunt medic bandages his many deep and bleeding wounds.