The Lost Seas

The Short Happy Life of Kanker the Kank
Escape from Makla 2

Also, Halflings!

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Androcles.

Upon escaping Makla, the party encountered an unsupervised kank loaded with survival rations, days worth of renks, and several bags of sulfur. After a lengthy debate on how best to (ab)use the kank, it was decided that they’d take it with them and slowly starve it to death, leaving its body in the desert to mislead enemies into thinking the party had died. They named the beast Kanker.

The first several days of travel were relatively uneventful. The party encountered a pool of water to supplement their own supplies, and lucky Kanker greedily slurped up what was left after the party had had its fill. A few days later they encountered the ruins of an ancient inn from the Red Age and camped within the rubble.

After several days of peaceful travel, their luck ran out. During his watch, Androcles was alerted by a sound familiar from his childhood: the cry of a wild jungle bird. He awoke the party, and as Dazeel was preparing to stealthily pinpoint the origins of the sound, arrows rained down upon the party! Poor Bost was struck and fell into a deep sleep. Zuri was also struck, though he was able to stave off the debilitating effects of the poison, with some help from Androcles’ bolstering psychic effects. Together, the party slew the halfling raiders and offered them to Kanker as a feast! Kanker’s last days on Athas were proving to be among his finest.

After passing the fork to Kled, the party found themselves mere days away from the farming village of Bellinga. They stumbled upon a spring of clear water and, having resorted to half rations as their supplies dwindled, they were eager to drink. But something about the water seemed suspicious. No signs of life? No insects? This seemed unlikely, so the party led their kank to water and made him drink.

This proved to be a wise decision for the party, though not so much for Kanker. As they debated what to do next, whether to drink the water, scout the area, or continue onward, Kanker rolled onto his back, his spindly legs shuddering and twitching. They folded in on themselves, and poor Kanker was no more.

The party began trying to discern the source of the poison that had fouled the water. With her lower left (her least important) arm, Dazeel reached into the crevice from which the water poured and produced a bag of vile jungle herbs, which Zuri’s ritualistic magic determined were prepared and placed in the spring by Urikite halfling rangers. Danger was close by!

It was decided that word must reach Tyr as soon as possible, and Birel being the party’s fastest runner, went on ahead to deliver the news. Standing next to Kanker’s corpse, the party watched their dear elven friend disappear over the horizon. Sad days indeed.

Another day of travel found the party in a cactus field a day from Bellinga. That was when the arrows began to rain down upon the remaining party members…

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Time to get payed
Escape from Makla 1

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Zuri.

After their bewildering battle against the undead of the Black Wash, our heroes began discussing their present predicaments. The party had presumably completed their task for House Kish, but this success was accompanied by some unfortunate complications; namely the death of General Akkad by Bost’s hand, their newfound possession of Akkad’s Golden Lion of Urik, and of course the party’s outstanding business with the Smoking Crown Initiates. After hours of deliberation, the party decided that their best course of action would be to deliver the news of their success to House Kish first thing in the morning, concealing their involvement in Akkad’s death with a story of the general’s heroics in battle and his unfortunate demise at the hands of the undead horde. The ritual book borrowed from the templars of Makla would have to be returned so as to shield the party from any suspicion, and contact with the Smoking Crown Initiates would need to be avoided for the duration of their time under the rim of dawn. Of course, no word would be spoken of their possession of the Golden Lion. There was one reassuring thing that night though, the terrifying screams once heard in the darkness of the Black Wash had finally stopped.

When the party returned to Bloodyfoot the next morning, they were quickly reminded of one further complication that they hadn’t accounted of. During their meeting with Uday Kish, Uday enquired about the location of House Kish’s lent property, the genasi slave K’tek, whose miserable fate that journey is far too terrible to retell here. Thinking on her feet, Dazeel quickly modified the party’s cover story to include the shocking betrayal of K’tek, who, obviously still in league with the Smoking Crown Initiates, assassinated Akkad in broad daylight. The party had no choice but to put K’tek down once and for all. The other members of the party attested to this, and Uday seemed satisfied by this explanation of both Akkad and K’tek’s deaths, even going as far as to give our heroes a bonus for dealing with the no-good K’tek. A chit was issued to the party with instruction to receive their payment from Sazerak Saltcrosser in Makla.

Entering Makla, the party was met by Androcles, a veiled Balican human who claimed to be an associate of Plega, the mysterious brown elf encountered months ago at the Mahindrazal, presumed by the party to have perished along with the other unfortunate travelers ensnared by the foul sand bride Zindriel. Androcles claimed to have been sent by Plega to assist us in our mutual interests and then expressed some surprise at the party’s unhindered arrival, informing them that a crackdown of sorts had recently been imposed along the roads leading in and out of Makla. Being that our heroes were a welcoming bunch, and intrigued to learn what Plega may consider “our mutual interests”, Androcles was invited to accompany the party as they went to find Sazerak and get their reward.

Thankfully, Sazerak was similarly satisfied by the party’s accounts of what occurred in the black wash, and invited the party in to enjoy House Kish’s hospitality, bringing them refreshing broy and local zatla. Eventually, Sazarak left the room, presumably to procure the payment directed by Uday’s chit. Sazarak had been gone a long while when some of the party began to become suspicious. Dazeel leapt up to investigate, pearing out the front window where he observed a gathering of Urikite soldiers and a templar speaking with decidedly nervous looking Sazerak. Out the rear window was a similar scene, though decidedly less imposing than the one out front. After some bickering over how to respond to the situation, it was soon decided for them as a call was heard in the front demanding the surrender of the Tyrian travellers. One by one our heroes quietly crawled out the rear window. It was Zuri, who had foolishly made a point of exiting with Sazerak’s five foot zatla pipe in tow, that alerted the assembling soldiers to their escape as the pipe was heard scraping loudly across the ground beneath the window.

The battle quickly escalated and the party engaged the small assemblage of soldiers led by their captain and one of Hamanu’s templars. The Tyrians proved to be too much for the Urikites however, as they struck down the soldiers one by one, surrounded the captain on all sides, and resisted the empowered gaze of the fearsome templar. As the templar turned to flee, he was struck down by one of Zuri’s powerful psychic attacks. Before more Urikite soldiers could arrive, our heroes fled into the streets of Makla to plan their next move.

After witnessing the arrest of a Tyrian merchant, it was decided that Makla was no longer a place to be for affiliates of Tyr, and the party elected to flee the region as quickly as possible.

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A Tragic Reunion
Under the Rim of Dawn 9

As rememebered by Birel Windchaser.

Things were falling into place – we had the helmet, the ritual book, and the general. What we didn’t have was any idea how to cleanse the Black Wash, but we did a good enough job of pretending we knew what we were doing that no one seemed to notice.

Akkad seemed sullen during most of the journey, but Bost and Zuri were able to draw him into conversation, and Dazeel started up with some nonsense about battling the dragon (which was a bit far-fetched even for her, but at least it passed the time). At one point Akkad drew out the Golden Lion awarded him for his victories, and to my astonishment the phrase “Golden Lion” was not symbolic – the lion figurine that was actually made out of gold, large enough to be worth more than entire trade caravans. Urik must be more wealthy than I’d realized to be able to bestow such lavish gifts.

After traveling some distance into the Black Wash we found what we were looking for – the parched earth cracked open all around us and we found ourselves surrounded by undead Urikite soldiers, with Drewet at their center.

The next few moments remain somewhat unclear to me—I struck savagely at what I thought was my enemy, but when my blow landed my trikal had found not the pulp of rotting flesh, but the shell of Dazeel’s carapace. Drewet had cast some charm of confusion, and as I regained my senses I heard her yell “You threw it away!” as her bronze helm was proffered to her. Akkad was struck dumb, gazing despondently at Drewet, and whenever anyone else approached she swatted us away like flies, never taking her gaze off Akkad.

Even more strangely, the soldiers surrounding us did not attack, but silently stood their ground. We tried dispatching a few, but new soldiers crawled out of the earth to take the place of the fallen. We could not leave the battlefield, but at least we were in no direct danger from the horde.

Finally realizing that the only way to resolve this was to break the standoff between Akkad and Drewet, I shouted at the general to give up the Golden Lion, thinking that the gesture might satisfy the undead’s grudge. After hesitating Akkad complied, throwing the trophy at Drewet’s feet, but by then it was too late—she barely glanced at it, disregarding the treasure as if it were some worthless trinket. Incited either by magic or guilt, when the general finally raised his khopesh it was to strike at Bost. As if responding to a message in a language known only to Mul warriors, Bost struck back, but the exchange seemed like not a battle, but a ritual. A single strike was enough to end the general’s life, and as her former lover died fighting her enemy, Drewet, as well as her silent entourage, burst into flames which dispersed almost instantly into the scorching air. With one blow Bost laid to rest both the undead army and its un-living general.

While none of us completely understood the events of that day (or of the battle years past), we all felt confident that the haunting of the Black Wash we were engaged to investigate was over. Not only that, but we still had the ritual book we’d been hired to procure, Drewet’s helm, Akkad’s khopesh, and golden lion worth a fortune. Unfortunately, we also had the corpse of Urik’s most famous and beloved general, the details of whose passing would not be well received. We would have to plan our next steps very carefully.

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Havoc from the Hungry Hafling
Under the Rim of Dawn 7

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Bost.

The adventurers were amid the sallow muck of the Lake of Golden Dreams, searching for Akkad’s rumored bronze helmet. The bravest of the group tied themselves together with a giant-hair rope. The genasi and the thri-kreen stayed on the bank, remaining clean and dry.

As the group waded through the mud, they encountered a morbid-looking halfling. The group introduced themselves and the halfling did the same, stating that his name was Fa’ar. When the group asked Fa’ar about a helmet, he smiled, displaying teeth that were filed to a sharp point. Although Zuri telepathically chastised the group against premature judgments, everyone’s fears were realized when the halfling suddenly leaped to attack!

The group fought valiantly, that is except K’tek and Dazeel. The sultry thri-kreen was working on her tan and K’tek, for some odd reason, began spinning in circles.

Blow after blow, the group of adventurers struck at the halfling. Then suddenly, a tentacled otyugh appeared! And after that, a spiny chathrang! The otyugh quickly asserted itself, tentacling pretty much everything in site. Bost and the chathrang exchanged blow after blow, each attempting to wear the other down in a battle of slow attrition.

Finally, the Zatla Cowboys won out. Wiping the muck off of their limbs, they surveyed the field and found magic treasure AND the mysterious helmet they’d been searching for!

Dazeel finished her sunbath and helped everyone back ashore. K’tek, meanwhile, just kept spinning in a circle chanting a strange genasi verse. As he continued this strange dance, he very gradually, but with increasing conviction, transformed into a pile of kank dung. It was real weird, but he’s dead now.

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Return to Bloodyfoot
Under the Rim of Dawn 5

As remembered by Birel Windchaser.

After the morning’s battle we took a midday rest, but came across another band of undead in the afternoon. Like the others, their ragged clothes seemed to be remnants of Urikite uniforms, and several of them were heard to ask, “Why did you kill us?”. We managed to defeat them, but afterwards we were weary, parched, and running low on provisions, so we returned to Bloodyfoot.

Back in town we made inquiries trying to figure out who the undead we encountered were and how long they had been there, and what we found pointed to the Battle of the Black Wash.

Ten years ago the rivalry between Urik and Nibenay was particularly heated, and the Black Wash was home to several thriving obsidian mines controlled by Urik. Nibenay sent a force to seize control of these mines, and was successful for a time. Eventually, however, Urik mustered a counterattack to drive the Nibenese away, resulting in the famous battle, now celebrated in song throughout Bloodyfoot:

The Nibenese, the Nibenese, as lava filled the crack
Their green and purple uniforms were burnt to crispy black

This would seem to explain where an army of undead might have come from – except that uniforms we saw weren’t green and purple, they were yellow. And the commander of this famous charge, General Akkad, has since become a recluse, almost forgotten about were it not for the regular deliveries of copious amounts of broy that are still brought to his estate. Finally, if the victory was so complete, then why did it leave the Black Wash in such a state that few have dared to even set foot in it since?

Clearly, there’s more to this story than is widely told. If only we could talk to someone who had been there…

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Exploring the Black Wash
Under the Rim of Dawn 4

Recorded by scholars studying the life of K’tek.

The group set their first step into the Black Wash. An endless expanse of hardened black lava stretched seemingly all the way to some place that I’m supposed to know about in this universe that’s far away from here, like Tagaria or Fubungia or some other shit fucking fantasy name . The suns rays beat upon their brows as every step seemingly became heavier and more painful. K’tek was not as bothered by the heat because he was a fucking bad-ass lava dude and all these other guys were all weak and meaty, except for that crystal guy what’s his face, but even he was being a wuss and was heating up. Fucking guy made of crystal and he can’t take the heat?! WTF? well anyway K’tek is a boss and everyone should have been happy he was there to lay down some AOE badassery on a bunch of suckers if need be.

Why were all of the Urikite scouts that were sent to the Black Wash showing up on the backs of milk cartons? The group was about to find out. There were tons of precious obsidian to be had and money maketh the man walketh onto the lavaeth, it is said. After many hours of perilous treading through the otherworldly, almost supernatural terrain, our hero K’tek and the dorks he was with came upon the most wretched sight! A troupe of Urikite corpses dried to a crisp after months being battered by the gigantic crimson sun’s onslaught. But how were they killed, and why? Clearly it must have been the Smoking Crown. No matter, they looted their jerked husks and continued on there way.

Again, after what seemed like an eternity of traveling through the perilous molten expanse, our heros come upon another batch o’ corpses. However, these corpses were different. They were Smoking Crown Initiates! While everyone was being a moron and trying to find Newports in their pockets, K’tek ruminated in deep thought and with great care and intelligence as to why Smoking Crown Initiates would have been killed on their own turf? Why would they have come out here? That’s when K’tek, being as fashionable as he was brilliant and powerful, noticed a sick pair of volcano gauntlets on the corpse of Adwa, his boy that he used to be in a gang with. He put them on and he was like “FUCKING RAD” but no one noticed or cared. Everyone else muttered around their corpses looking under rocks and carving their names into ash and generally being stupid, but it was time to go. No 40s were to be tipped on this day.

And there was some more Urikite bodies and it was fucking hot and we got some more cool stuff. Listen, the point is that there was a bunch of dead guys and we were all like “OH SHIT WHO DID THIS LOL”, that’s the basic gist…

While the rest of the troupe puttered around, ran into shit, screamed nonsense to each other and were just generally moronic, K’tek though to himself, “Our enemy be not Urikite, nor Smoking Crown. Nay, may they be even of the living world?”. Clearly, K’tek was on the ball while everyone else breathed through their mouths and picked their noses.

It’s only when they came upon a massacre, 12 bodies, all of Urikite rank that shit started to get dark. The midday sun mocked them. It had been a long day and rest was needed. Just as the group settled in their makeshift tents a cataclysmic rumble rolled through the mirrored, sun-scorched ground. Smoke and hot ash shot through the earth as charred, bony hands clamored through the fissured ground. It was only when the dust settled and the shaking subsided that the group was surrounded by an army of undead, roasted, pissed-off Urikite soldiers. K’tek was right!

The undead soldiers shambled towards the group with a fervor in their eyes that could not be matched by even the most devout Initiate. “Why did you kill us?” the soldiers asked in howling, gurgling tones, which was a stupid question. You morons signed up to fight Initiates on the side of an active volcano, you really shouldn’t be surprised. Clearly the undead were not very smart, and also had enormous senses of entitlement. But who cared, it was AOE o’clock and K’tek was on time as usual. That’s when K’tek blasted the shit out of these punk asses and beat everyone at the same time while the rest of the group, Bost, Dealsey, Joe, and that other guy stood in helpless amazement as K’tek put the block on lock. This of course, was his house, and he reminded everyone of this fact in a fiery wave of domination.

As the last whiny entitled undead beef jerky stick fell to the ground, Bost was eager to have a campfire and hang out, which was a stupid idea and everyone thought so, so the group gave Bost a wedgie and split.

Onward to Bloodyfoot, the mystery had been solved, for now.

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Arrival at Bloodyfoot
Under the Rim of Dawn 3

…and the loss of another kank.

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Zuri.

It was an ambush! After a period of uneventful travel, the trail toward Bloodyfoot had proved to be as dangerous as Sazerak Saltcrosser had warned. Keenly sensing the impending assault, Dazeel bravely leapt behind the protective cover of the party’s lead kank. The trail began to rumble violently and a column of flame burst forth amidst our heroes, scattering them in burning agony and broiling the poor kank alive. The mysterious assailants emerged from the periphery, lead by a gruesomely burned human wielding a foreboding magmatic hand. Others in the attack party were similarly burned, apparently ritualistically, and the band was presumed to be affiliates of the notorious Smoking Crown Initiates. The surprise did not last long, and our heroes sprang to combat. Zuri, who had awoken that day feeling surprisingly resilient to the fiery attacks of the Initiates, proved useless on the battlefield as it flung chaos bolt after chaos bolt over the heads of the advancing fiends. Others of the party were up to the challenge though, braving the flaming assault with success and navigating the treacherous volcanic emissions of their surroundings with ease. There were some close calls, but one by one the assailants fell and the day was won.

Once in Bloodyfoot, the party was exposed to the dismal state of slavery present in the Urikite mining operations. Bost stilled his anger at the sight of such mistreatment, and pressed on with the plan. Soon the party met with Sazerak Saltcrosser and Uday Kish to discuss the beleaguered obsidian mine they had been commissioned to investigate. Accompanying the House Kish representatives was a stoic genasi slave, apparently a native of the volcanic territories. When pressed to provide reasons as to why Keema Kish had selected our heroes for such dangerous work, the party deceptively claimed that they had been approached by Keema based on their reputation for successfully resolving similar issues in the iron mines of Tyr. The cover story seemed to satisfy those present and Uday informed the party that their genasi slave K’Tek would be available to them on their journey into The Black Wash. K’Tek’s knowledge of the region would be at their disposal, as well as his familiarity with the ways of the Smoking Crown Initiates. Uday and Sazerak were initially taken aback by the party’s intention to better outfit K’Tek for the journey, even planning to arm him should the need arise. This was passed over by those at the table as perhaps a cultural misunderstanding with the free men of Tyr, and the party was quick to assure Uday that House Kish’s ‘property’ would be in safe hands and dealt with appropriately. With that, K’Tek was left in the company of our heroes.

During their private discourse with K’Tek, the party attempted to convey their revulsion for slavery and promised K’Tek that, if he stuck with them, they planned on releasing him from his bondage. Bost, an ex-slave himself, went to great lengths to convince the genasi of the enfranchisement that awaited him in Tyr. K’Tek did not seem too impressed by all this, and expressed that while he certainly held no love for his Urikite masters, his life in their service had so far been preferred to what might have befallen him under the fanaticism of the Smoking Crown Initiates that plagued his village.

The next day, after purchasing supplies for their journey, the newly expanded party set out for the Black Wash. Perhaps touchy after its poor performance in the day prior’s combat, Zuri exploded with rage at the Bloodyfoot outfitter for assuming that they would not require food and water for their slave. The outburst was unneeded however, as the flustered shopkeep had already mistakenly included unrequired provisions for the shardmind in his initial assessment, but still, don’t step.

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Zatla Cowboys Kill Burrowing Horrors
Under the Rim of Dawn 2

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Bost.

Birel and Bost knew that something was wrong when they noticed that the vegetation in the area was in disarray. Sure enough, a bunch of anakores soon jumped out of the earth and attacked the group.

This was a long and rough fight. Pretty much everyone in the group was on death’s doorstep at some point during the encounter. Whenever the group managed to damage one of these creatures, it simply dug into the ground for a little while before exploding to the top, and causing mayhem. And when the group finally emerged triumphant, they noticed that their kank had run off with their supply rations!

Without food or drink, the group pressed on towards their destination. On the way, they passed around Urik and Fort Courage. The group took notice of the martial outlook of the brutal Urikite society. The group struggled with dehydration, taking turns sharing the meager portions of food and water they were able to scrounge up. Finally, they made it to Makla.

Makla was a brutal place, even for Athas. All around, the group noticed the cruelty inherent in the obsidian trade. Giant slave pits were carved into the stone earth. Although austere and serenely white, these pits acted as virtual furnaces for those unlucky enough to be confined in them.

Exhausted, the group stayed the night at The Obsidian Crown.

The next day, the group met up with Sazerak Saltcrosser of House Kish. Staying to a cover story, the group attempted to determine the location of Uday Kish, their contact. They were told that Uday was off at a nearby obsidian mine called Bloodyfoot. Once again, the group stocked up on rations and commenced the journey to determine the reason behind the disappearances.

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Zatla Cowboys Get Out of Dodge
Under the Rim of Dawn 1

Recorded by scholars studying the life of Bost.

Back at the Golden Inix, Vilsis, Birel, Bost, Zuri, and Dazeel looked proudly at the ring of smoke that was arising from Little Draxa, off in the distance. Vilsis looked especially pleased, and the group had not yet seen the pensive eladrin with such a serene look on his face.

This moment of calm soon passed with news that the Crimson Legion, and Rikus, have returned to Tyr. Marching through the Caravan Gate, the Legion’s numbers seemed to have swelled with recruits from the villages, and a bound line of slaver prisoners (including Gretz and the Daughter Seizers) shuffled alongside the column.

The group hurried after the impromptu parade that sprung up with the Legion’s arrival. The commotion led them to the Crimson Legion headquarters. There, the group found the Legion getting good and drunk along with members of Tyr’s adoring populace.

Looking for Rikus, the group knocked on the door of the bedroom he shared with Neeva. Neeva answered. Looking a little pissed, she informed the group that Rikus had left. Pressed further, she admitted that Rikus, in a distressed state, had jumped out of the window and rode away on his kank. Neeva seemed to be upset and Rikus and clearly seemed to be hiding something from the group.

The Zatla Cowboys then left the Legion’s headquarters in pursuit of Rikus. Unwilling to let the man simply be alone, the Group was insistent that they fill Rikus in on all of the information they’ve collected since they last spoke. The trail of Rikus’ kank surprisingly led to Sadira’s residence. The Group then thought better of intruding on Rikus’ seclusion.

The group returned the next morning, and spoke candidly with Rikus. Although Rikus was aware of most events already, it was nice to catch up with the fellow. At this point, the Zatla Cowboys were beginning to feel a little concerned that their assassination of a diplomatic envoy of the Dragon might be a problematic thing. Hoping to lay low, the group decided to visit Agis of Asticles to see if they can take him up on his earlier offer of an adventure.

Agis put the Zatla Cowboys in touch with Keema Kish, a representative of Urik’s obsidian-mining House Kish (and Dazeel’s “fan” from a few days back). Keema was secretly a Tyrian agent reporting on Urikite happenings, and had been tasked by her house to resolve a series of disappearances near her house’s mines in Makla. In order to maintain reasons for her to travel back and forth to Tyr, she was interested in hiring Tyrians. On top of the House Kish fees, King Tithian had authorized small plots of land as a reward for whoever helped Keema. The group agreed to Agis’ offer.

After outfitting themselves, the group headed off on the long, dangerous journey past Urik and towards Makla. After passing Fort Skonz and Fort Iron, the group encountered a bunch of greedy elves at Silver Spring, who demanded an exorbitant entrance fee into their seedy little town. Unimpressed, the group passed the offer and continued on, only to be attacked by BURROWING HORRORS!

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To Kill a Dray
Reprisal Against the Dray 2

As remembered by Birel Windchaser

Sadira led us to a shop in the smith’s district, and manipulated a cilops statue to reveal a hidden door, which ultimately led to the cavernous ruins below Tyr. Along the way we passed the charred remains of real cilops, presumably dispatched by the Veiled Alliance’s previous expedition. We arrived at what appeared to be a solid wall, but Sadira dispelled the illusion for us, revealing a large fragment of a broken pillar blocking a crack in the wall wide enough for us to creep through.

A brief feeling of illness swept all of us when Sadira used her magic, similar (though by far less intense) to what we felt at the Dragon’s pit when it consumed the levy. She explained that she uses the same type of magic as the Dragon, which draws from animals rather than plants and earth. I suppose no harm was done, but I must say it made me feel a bit uneasy. In any case, we were on own for the remainder of the expedition – the Veiled Alliance was unwilling to risk being caught striking against the dray, and Sadira would therefore go no further.

We moved the column but the passage was dark and narrow, so Zuri sent his jankx Zeeto in to scout ahead. Zeeto’s sudden death informed us that we could expect a swift attack on the other side, but could provide no further details. Not having any other options, we crept in single file, Bost in the lead.

Sure enough, a grell was waiting for us. Had I space to swing my trikal or Vilsis to bend his bow it would probably not have been much of a threat, but none of us but Bost could even see the vermin, and it turned out to be quite adept at keeping us from emerging from the choke point. Eventually we slew it and got through, but it was a painfully frustrating fight.

Soon we came to some stairs going up to a door that seemed to be about where the dray’s quarters ought to be. Carefully opening it we could see Zalimxan seated at a desk, facing away from us and writing something. Dazeel stealthily entered the room to take stock of the situation, and managed to lock the one door that led to the rest of the building, and none too soon. Shortly after, whether by chance or because he heard the sound of the key in the lock, Zalimxan called to his companions and looked around.

We struck hard and fast. Being unsure of exactly what we were up against but quite sure that a locked door would not hold two dray back for long, we came at Zalimxan from all sides and with all our strength. Fortunately, this battle did not last long, and our target soon fell.

We wanted to leave quickly but a few of us couldn’t help grabbing a few items that were within easy reach, including the parchment on Zalimxan’s desk. Meanwhile Vilsis managed to start a fire, which might have been an excellent way of covering our tracks had not the dray burst through the door just at that point – I fear they saw his face before we ran back into Under-Tyr.

They did not pursue us however, (or at least not quickly enough to catch us), and we were soon through the broken wall where Sadira still waited. We replaced the pillar fragment and she wove the illusion back into place, so that not even a crack was still visible in the wall.

Relaxing later at the Golden Inix, we were approached by a monk wishing to speak with Vilsis. Apparently some personal matter had arisen that required his skills, and it did not take him long to decide to leave us for this new endeavor. I can’t say I was happy to see him leave, but given that the dray may be looking for him it actually may have made things safer for everyone for him to be gone from Tyr, at least for a time. May the wind cool his path.

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