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A Rock and a Hard Place is the first chapter of Among Thieves. After awakening inside a dangling train carriage, Nathan Drake had to climb his way up to safety or end up falling to his death.



Cliffhanger 2

The training hanging precariously off the cliff.

Upon waking up, Nate looked around, unaware of what was going on. After feeling some stinging pain, he looked below to find himself bleeding heavily from a wound in his abdomen. While he stared out the window, several objects began falling down toward him, and he realized that the carriage was hanging off the edge of a cliff. Nate's bench fell away, forcing him to make an upward leap to a higher one, only for it to fall down as well, sending him falling down as well. Fortunately, he broke his fall on the exterior handrail at the lower end of the carriage. After gaining a firm grip on it, he carefully climbed the wrecked carriage to reach safety at the top of the cliff. This carriage was being held up by a second carriage, which sat atop the cliff edge. As Nate entered this second carriage, it began to slide off. After running through the slipping carriage, he made one leap toward the cliff, narrowly escaping death at great heights. After climbing back up, he passed out.

The Lost FleetEdit

The Lost Fleet 1

Nate "meeting" Chloe.

In a flashback, Nate was alone at a beach bar, drinking before being approached by Harry Flynn, an old partner in crime. He informed Nate that a "client" was willing to pay a huge sum of money if they could steal an artifact from the Istanbul Palace Museum's Travels of Marco Polo exhibit. Nate initially refused, pointing out that both he and Flynn know two people who were killed pulling off this kind of heist, with Nate barely making out alive. Flynn was in need of Nate's assistance, mentioning that it would be a two-person job, with Nate correctly pointing out that it would be a three-person job, seconds before Chloe Frazer joined them. Nate, who knew Chloe as an old flame, was surprised to see her but kept quiet about their history when she pretended not to know him.

Flynn began laying out the plan, which was as follows: He and Nate would enter through the sewer before climbing up to the museum's courtyard. From there, they would climb to the rooftops, which they would scale across to reach the tower containing the artifact. Chloe would aid them by switching off the museum's floodlights, allowing the two to approach the building without any risk of detection. At this point, Flynn revealed what they were after: an oil lamp. Claiming that the artifact was worthless, Nate saw no point in going after it until Flynn revealed a journal entry, which he "borrowed" from his client. It was written sometime during the 13th century, and as Nate translated the Latin journal entry, he realized that it was written by Marco Polo. Translating the rest, he and Chloe realized that the entry referred to the "lost fleet". Flynn, initially believing it all to be gibberish, had no clue what they were talking about, therefore Nate filled him in on the details of Polo's voyage.

The Lost Fleet 2

Nate and his partners discussing the heist.

Marco Polo left China with 600 passengers and fourteen ships loaded with treasure from Kublai Khan. A year and a half later, he arrived in Persia with one ship left and only eighteen passengers. Despite recording every detail of his journey, Polo never revealed what happened to the thirteen ships, the passengers, or the treasure. Nate then discerned that this lamp was what Flynn's "client" was after. Examining the lamp image closer, Nate realized that it must have been a gift to Polo from Kublai Khan. Flynn and Chloe pieced it all together as they recited a line from Polo's journal: "The light of the great Khan shelters the faith of the thirteen." Nate pointed out that Polo probably hid a clue inside the lamp, something that pinpoints the site of the lost fleet. As a final thought, the three decided that they were going to betray Flynn's client and go after the treasure for themselves. With the plan in place, Nate agreed to partake, convinced that nothing could go wrong.

Back in the present time, Nate awakened atop the cliff and proceeded through the wreckage of the train, somewhere in the mountains, trapped in a blizzard. The wreckage was strewn around a snow-covered plateau. Throughout the wreckage, he passed the bodies of dead soldiers, and at one point, encountered a live one, who was quickly killed from an unexpected blast. As Nate proceeded through the wreckage, the fire around him caused a fuel carriage to explode. The explosion dislodged another carriage, which barreled down a slope and hit the carriage Nate was in, causing it to tumble over several times, knocking Nate unconscious.

Mostly ProfessionalEdit

Mostly Professional

Chloe and Nate's intimate moment.

In another flashback, Chloe arrived at Nate's hotel room, shortly after their beach bar meeting. They alluded to a past relationship before Nate questioned her about her current relationship with Flynn. As the two shared an intimate moment on Nate's bed, Chloe assured him that her relationship with Flynn was "mostly professional". Nate then inquired about the plan, which was just like they discussed before—split the treasure three ways, before disappearing together, abandoning Flynn. Before the two made out on the bed, Chloe warned Nate that Flynn could not find out about them until after they had found the treasure. Nate was worried that Flynn would be "pissed". Before she leaned in to kiss Nate, Chloe assured him that Flynn was going to be "fine".

The PhurbaEdit

The Phurba 1

Nate holding the Phurba.

Back at the present, Nate regained consciousness and proceeded on his search through the wreckage, constantly hindered by his wound. He eventually came across a Phurba dagger sticking out of the snow. It was clearly of some importance, and he clutched it tightly within his blood-filled hands. The story then flashes back four months to the museum heist.

The Phurba 2

The three en route to the museum.

Nate, Flynn, and Chloe, having acquired an inflatable speedboat, sailed towards the Istanbul Palace Museum. Flynn expressed his concern about not having a gun, but Nate assured him that they would not need them since they were only going to be dealing with museum guards and they had their patrols all mapped out. While Nate told him to relax, Flynn tried to remind him of the consequences of them getting caught, which involves them getting locked away in a Turkish prison, which Nate realized better than Flynn.

The Phurba 3

The three going over the plan for the heist.

Chloe pulled the speedboat right below the sewers that led them inside. By using a blowtorch to rupture the gate, they were able to get inside. Flynn led the way, wondering what would happen if the guards switched their patrols. Nate answered by saying they would figure it out as they go, claiming himself to be an adaptable person. They soon spotted the passage that would lead them into the museum. Chloe, shining her light in the opposite path, decided that was her way in. Before splitting up, Nate made sure they were on the same page, by reminding Chloe that the tower's floodlights need to be shut off before he and Flynn could get close. Chloe assured them things would go as planned and told them to meet her at the rendezvous point, where she would have the van waiting, provided they made it out in time.


Climbing the trainEdit

A Rock and a Hard Place gameplay 1

Nate scaling the carriage.

The first part of the chapter involves a climbing sequence that re-introduces the basic movesets from Drake's Fortune. To have Nate jump or pull himself up ledges, press X, and to move in either direction, press L3.

Once you have control of Nate, move left along the yellow rail to the left to make it to the rear end of the dangling carriage. Begin ascending up the train along the right side. As you climb up, a boulder will fall down from the top and knock Nate down to a lower section. From there, continue climbing along the right side of the train. You will be prompted to jump when you can no longer climb up. Press the same button again to grab the ledge, then again to grab hold of another yellow rail. Move along the rail to the left. When you are in the middle of the rail, an object will fall and stop you for a second. After it falls, continue moving to the left until you grab a tall, yellow rail. Climb up this rail until it becomes severed. The force of Nate holding onto it will cause it to give away and slam against the side of the carriage. You will then be prompted to hold L3 in the direction you want to swing and jump. After grabbing hold of the ledge, shimmy over to the left, then climb up to where you will be standing somewhat inside the carriage. Press forward on L3, and then jump to reach one of the benches.

A Rock and a Hard Place gameplay 2

Nate reaching the top of the train.

Pull yourself on top of the ledge, then jump to a higher bench. Upon grabbing it, pull yourself up, then make another leap. Keep pressing X until Nate stands up. Now hold down L3 and press X, and then X again. Now hold L3 to the right and climb along the train. Grab hold of the yellow rail here and ascend to its top. You can also jump up the rail. When the rail gives out, leap to the left and quickly pull Nate up. Continue climbing until he is at the very top of the carriage, and then jump to the yellow ladder, which he must ascend to pull himself up onto the train. The second he makes it inside the second carriage, he must now run forward, as the train will begin to slide off the cliff. At the very end of the carriage, make one leap to the cliff ahead, and Nate will pull himself up.

Searching the wreckageEdit

A Rock and a Hard Place gameplay 3

Nate entering the wreckage.

After the flashback, Nate will wake up, and gameplay will continue. Head forward into the train wreck, and keep walking along the path through the train. After Nate squeezes his way through the narrow spot between two trains, look for a 92FS - 9mm near the dead soldier. Approach the door on the train near the dead body and press Triangle to open it. Once inside, climb over the trail, and pick up some additional ammo for your firearm. Upon reaching the end of the train, hold L1 and then aim at the lock and press L1 to shoot it off. After opening the door, proceed to the right. You can also press L2 to reload your gun.

A Rock and a Hard Place gameplay 4

Nate leaping from one train car to the next.

When you come off the train, head forward and you will encounter a soldier. He will spot you and shoot at you. You can either shoot him back or just for an explosion kill him. After this, continue moving forward and pick up the ammo the soldier left behind. When you enter another train car, head to its back end and push through the slightly damaged door. Head forward and climb up the boxes. When at the top, climb up the rails to the top of the train. Jump off the train car and onto the other one. Walk to the end of the train and when you reach the door, press X to climb out of the train. The train he is in will get knocked over by another train car, knocking Nate unconscious. After the cutscene, move Left analog stick around to wake Nate up. Look for the opening in the train and jump to the yellow rail. Shimmy along the rail to the right and pull yourself up into another section of the train. Head forward and when you have fallen, continue heading forward to end the chapter.

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