Ann Street Statues
Of course you’re brave enough. You’re not even quaking in your boots. You’re not even sweating, a sick taste in your mouth.
All the smokers stand across the road. The wind’s turned, it’s at your face now. The Boab tree beside the drovers shivers with its touch. Something monstrous has passed this way, and you are on its tail.
Even the sculptures seem nervous, as they reach out to the campfire. There’s no warmth there.
“You should have a silver knife with you,” Lissa says, as you stand by the statues. The Stirrer is waiting near the lights, trying to look like a real person. And it does look like one.
If you couldn’t feel it as the sickness it is in this place and time, you wouldn’t know it was there, until it had sucked the life from you.
“You know what the knife is for?”
“Well get to it. Just don’t cut too deep.”
Every Pomp has a scarred palm, from all the cuts they must make in the line of duty, Cicatrix City those cuts are called. You don’t even have a Cicatrix Street, you’ve never used the blade before. This is a big step, and you’re not sure you can do it. But that Stirrer must be stopped. You run the blade across your palm. It is a line of fire that rolls liquid fast over your fingers. Blood, dribbles onto your knuckles, drips onto the ground.
Lissa winces. “You need blood to stop Stirrers. Or as we like to call it, Stall. You need a Pomp’s blood to stall stirrers. Are you sure you didn’t cut too deeply?”
You shake your head. You’ve always bled easily. You want to make a joke about it, but the undead creature is close at hand. Its presence sucks any light out of the day, there is nothing to joke about.
Lissa growls. “We’re supposed to have a treaty with these things. But there are always rogues.”
You approach the Stirrer. It turns, sees you, more importantly it sees your bloody hand.
“No way am I going back,” it growls and kicks you in the stomach.
It sprints towards Tank St and Kurilpa Bridge.
“After it,” Lissa says. You start to move, and then you feel something drawing you to MacArthur Chambers. A kind of call thrumming in your bones. You blink, Lissa obviously sees the confusion on your face.
Oddly enough she doesn’t seem angered by your hesitation.
She smiles at you. “You’ve done a good job. Maybe this is too tough for you. I understand. Maybe I should call another Pomp, and take you to MacArthur Chambers instead. A dead soul can be a challenge enough.”
Santos Building – Tank Street: If you decide you haven’t come this far for nothing, run to Tank St near the Santos building and George St, 31 Tank St, to be precise, go now, this Stirrer isn’t after coffee. Just cross at George St ahead and turn right. Tank St is the next left after Turbot, the Santos building will be to your left as you approach Kurilpa Bridge.
MacArthur Chambers: Or if you find the siren’s call in your head now overwhelming, walk back to MacArthur chambers for a debriefing. Just go back the way you have come, and once at Queen St Mall follow it all the way to Edward St, crossing over the road. The blast doors are just past the lights on Queen St, near the wave-shaped bench.