Sixth Scene: The Road To Carita, Pajaran Empire/Banten Sultanate, West Java. March 13th, 1525

With aid of a partial advance from the court of Bogor, Macario increases his trading stock, particularly improving portable goods and especially matters such as family porcelian, silverware and such forth - trade items from refugees, eager for practical goods and coin. He even purchases a second pony, so great is the quantity of goods that he carries.

After a couple of days of preparation, the party begins it's journey of some 150 kilometers westward, skirting the northern edge of the Badui lands and mountains towards Carita, along with the dozen Pajaran warriors allocated to village for their assistance.

The weather continues to be miserable for the Europeans, with evening downpours and torrential lightning storms, and air so humid during the day you could cut it with a knife. The malay and the chinese of the party seem to accept these conditions as nothing unusual in the slightest.

With several days of travelling through such jungle and elements, and having passed only through only one village in the meantime, the party of noble adventurers is feeling a little worse for wear. Nevertheless Carita is very nearby, and certainly if the strength of the evening winds is to be believed.

It is under one such circumstance, as twilight approaches, that Banyak Tikkus hears a little voice in her head warning her of danger. For the more sane among the party, they would probably blame her obviously exceptional hearing and vision. She would claim it was the sprit-vision of her rat, Tikkus. Whatever the cause, the party is well warned of the two score Banten and other warriors who burst forth from the undergrowth, dressed all in white and with murderous intent. They charge towards the party waving cruel machetes, spears and swords. A couple even carry firearms.

As they approach those with appropriate language skills recognise the cries - they call themselves "Laskar Jihad", the Army of Holy Warriors and they seek "death to the infidel", "capture the slave" and, with no sense of irony, in Arabic "death to the foreigner".


Banyak Tikkus put her rat in a ponies pouch and prepares her bow and arrow, as Macario, Robert and Wen ready and aim their lengthy arquebus' in response to Macario's battle cry of "Protect the porcelain!". Suddenly confronted with three firearms a number of the Laskar Jihad, the Army of Holy Warriors, pause momentarily. Topeng starts waving his hands in an unusual fashion, chanting as does so, and the Pajaran warriors take the opportunity to entry the fray with shield and sword.

Babas Bibi runs into the undergrowth, protesting his innocence and praying that his testicles remain at one with his body.

Whilst it is difficult to differentiate between leader and subject, the party's three riflemen open fire on the most dangerous of their opponents - who are also carrying firearms. Almost simultaneously the guns fire, a headshot from Robert messily felling one as the enormous calibre strikes in the neck. The other opposition rifleman is disabled by less devastating shots from Wen and Macario, both of which hit in the chest and arm respectively.

As two Laskar charge Topeng, he throws his arms in the air and suddenly he seems surrounded by distracting scintallating colours which seem to hang in the air. Banyak Tikkus fires her broad-headed arrow into one striking him in the stomach and bringing him to ground. The second however reaches and strikes at Topeng with a cruel machete. None too quick on his feat, the blow just misses as he cries out for aid.

Meanwhile, the Pajaran warriors are fighting what appears to be a losing battle, albeit only just. Two of their number are down (and one is sorely wounded), compared to one of their opponents, but ten versus close to fourty or so are not good odds at the best of times. As Macario goes to aid Topeng (who is interestingly closer to the goods-carrying ponies), Wen and Robert assist their Parjaran allies.

Babas Bibi, following a rallying call from Robert, finds his courage and, brandishing two kris, charges to defend his friend Topeng waving them with suprising dexterity and mobility, as Banyak takes down another (of three) who was heading towards Topeng with a shot to the leg. Topeng himself is not so fortunate as he attempts to parry a head-bound machete blow with his kris, only to deflect it slightly, as it catches him on his arm and the side of the skull. Topeng gives a brief cry as he falls to the ground. Macario trades blows and parries with a Laksar who seems to be his equal. Both adopt guarded positions.

Striking with the speed of a snake, Wen takes down one warrior with a flurry of blows first to the legs and concluding with a downing blow to the head. A counter attack from a another is easily dodged and, amazingly, a third parried. Following in his lead and engaging with sword and spear point against the lightly armoured opponents, keeping one at bay and wounding another in the leg who screams with rage. Somewhat strengthened by the arrival of aid, the Pajaran warrior seem to gain a new level of confidence, pushing against their numerically superior opponents as another two Laksar fall without any loss on their party.

Still with the numerical advantage, the Laksar attempt to rally. The skilled Banyak takes down the one over the fallen body of Topeng with a direct and gruesome hit to the sternum. Babas Bibi engages an opponent must larger and with longer weapons than himself and instantly regrets his decision. Fortunately, he is quick and dodges the downward machete blade. Macario's opponent strikes and misses, leaving an opening for his cutlass which strikes true on the sword arm, disabling his opponent. Wen trips up an opponent with his staff and punches home a blow at the centre of their chest, as Robert, takes down with a stab to the abdomen the hulking brute that he wounded previously.

Although still with numerical superiority, they are clearly outskilled and the Laksar, not wanting to die just yet, almost to a man simultaneously turn and flee. The jubliant Pajaran give chase, albeit with discipline. Victory is yours.