We continue to fight the brogue until he gets up and runs for the stairs. Kalpa hits him with the Guardian’s Hammer for the final blow and then the giant is down.
Maetan sends off for someone to take care of the body. Another of her men comes in with a small box and examines the body, then starts doing calculations on paper.
Merielle notices a pool of blood that is seeping into the floor basically in a straight line. She asks Sam and Kalpa to cause a distraction so she can investigate further. Sam and Kalpa start asking Maetan’s men if they can make brogue jerky. Meanwhile I stealthily (thanks to the distraction) get a sample of the blood. Kalpa checks the satchel the giant was carrying and the parchments within.
Meanwhile Krynn examines the spear in the floor. He tries to jiggle the spear. Then he tries to get Sam to help.
Maetan’s man, Luskin, start placing crystalline objects on the brogue and then stands at the head of the body. This doesn’t seem religious. The crystals start to glow and pulse and then the body disappears.
Kalpa turns to Luskin and says, “what just happened?”
Luskin responds, “I sent the brogue back to Ra’an.”
“Can you show me?”
“How can you not have seen this before? You can apply for the transporters guild in Ra’an.”
Durian pipes up, “Can you transport us?”
Luskin looks at him strangely, “you can’t transport anything living.”
Maetan’s men prepare to leave.
Meanwhile Sam puts on his gloves and punches the floor. It sounds kind of hollow, but there’s no movement.
Gathalimay starts examining the murals and after a bit realizes that it’s really all one large picture of one large squid head.
Gathalimay, Kalpa and Sam pull three spears and try to jack open the crack. The stone floor lifts up about 3 inches. When they let go of the spears it falls again.
Merielle asks me to look for a mechanism. I find a slightly different colored section of the wall and press the panel. The floor starts to grind, but it seems like the mechanism is broken. Kalpa examines the crack and shard swarms to the stairs underneath. He sees the stairs and about 40 feet down into a hallway.
We hear Kalpa “Stand back! I’m going to try science.” and suddenly Kalpa’s wall appears. There’s a splintering sound and the floor collapses in on the stairs. Kalpa manages to dive out of the way and not get hurt.
From outside we hear “what the hell was that?”
Maetan runs in. Merielle says “Kalpa fell into this hole.” Kalpa pipes up “Oh my leg….”
Maetan says “what is this? People have been coming in here to look for something for ages. Who are you? You’re not actors.”
I let slip “you wouldn’t believe us if we told you.”
Maetan doesn’t seem to hear me and is more interested in the floor.
Gathalimay looks with her. “You want to go in?”
Maetan pulls out a brass tube, slides it open and light appears. She sees stairs and the hallway and yells for some more light. Sam tries to grab her, but she side steps him.
“You said we were friends, what’s going on?” she asks him.
Maetan continues down the stairs and down the long hallway to a set of doors. There are magical runes glowing all over the walls.
I follow slowly and lag behind the others. There seem to be glyphs of warding to open the door, and they trigger something but I can’t be sure of the effect.
Maetan pronounces, “Yeah we’re not equipped for this” and starts to leave.
Gathalimay, “Where are you going?”
Maetan: “Back to Ra’an to re-equip. Then we’ll come back for further investigation.”
The rest of us discuss whether we stay here and open the door or go back to Ra’an" Ultimately we decide to follow Maetan back to Ra’an.
When we get back out to the desert, Kalpa asks Maetan what all of this means. She responds, “I don’t know. I’m not part of the Psy Guild.”
We journey back to Ra’an at a fast pace; there’s no camping. Maetan is more withdrawn on the journey back.
On the way, Gathalimay looks at the items in the satchel. There appear to be drawings of a decorative box and keys. The keys look like the keys we have. It seems like the gist of it is instructions on how to revive the litch.
Merielle tries to make friends with Maetan and see what she knows of the glyphs. Kalpa continues to discuss how to join the guild and the returning expedition with Luskin. Luskin notes that most guilds select children and train them and that it’s not unheard of for adults to join a guild, but it is rare.
One of the men of Lubar says “we do hire caravan guards, even though it doesn’t look like it. And Maetan seems quite taken with you.”
Around us we hear the Ra’anites recounting our efforts in the battle.
Kalpa also asks Luskin what he knows about Lucy. Luskin says that there are lots of songs about the crystaline empress. Apparently, shortly after the first Saharabellum, Lucy unified all the nations by force, but then went to sleep, on a throne, in Saharabellum. He reports that many people have made sacrifices and re-enactments and tried to wake her up. In fact he notes that the once per decade event at Saharabellum is coming up later this month.
As we progress in our journey all of us notice that we don’t feel quite right. We continue praying to our deities, and our spells and charms keep working, but at the same time we all feel a little hollow and not as fulfilled as we used to.
Krynn and I spend some time comparing our gods and goddesses trying to find out if any overlap. We think we figure out that Krynn’s time is actually about a thousand years before our own.
Kalpa and Gathalimay continue to wage a battle to try calling Lucy with the talking stone. Merielle denies them the stone.
It takes us about 2 weeks to get to Ra’an. As we crest the hill and look down on the city, we see that where there were 30 foot tall walls there are now 15 foot walls. Now there are lush areas and gardens versus the plowed fields the last time we were here. There are tall spires, and brightly colored buildings and the shimmer of water streams.
Maetan offers us the hospitality of House Lubar to reward us for our help with the brogue. We accept. Gathalimay explores the marketplace.
We follow Maetan towards the center of town to a compound with brightly colored towers. Maetan rides in the vanguard. People run up to take the reins of her crodlu and an emissary escorts us to a wing. We are told to prepare for a feast in our honor this evening.
The steward escorts us to our quarters which are full of feather beds and pools for bathing. Racks of clothes are brought in for us to choose from.
As the sun sets low, the tone of the colors is less hard and much warmer. The stewards arrive to fetch us and take us through the hallways to a large banquet hall. There are great roast crodlus and so many wonderful smells. Maetan gives a rousing speech about us and music and merriment ensures.
Gathalimay heads towards the musicians and I try learning dances with the locals. Durian tries to dance and stumbles quite a bit and Sam tries and falls asleep.
Suddenly the music stops and the stewards open the double doors. An old guy in a floating chair floats in. We can guess that he is Commissar Alcok, who we have been told is also the head of the Psy Guild.
Maetan exclaims “Uncle, you’re joining us!”
Kalpa tries to approach the Commissar but is blocked by guards. He calls out “You throw a nice party!” He and the Commissar communicate in their minds.
The evening passes. Gathalimay enjoys the food and drink. Krynn finds an open air garden for some quiet.
Kalpa asks the Commissar if we can go back to Uutkleza. The Commissar expresses that he would rather his niece not go back and offers to let us lead the expedition. Kalpa also asks if Durian can join the psion guild, and the Commissar says he can take the test.
We all enjoy an evening with Ra’ans elite community. But what will we do next?