..Mother is Dya..but Koya would probably bridle at that..how about Drabarni which is the Romany for Fortune teller
Sandru waits until everyone is settled and then clicks his tounge at the horses which stt off out off the square heading for the North Gate..you head out through the sturdy archway and into the wilderness and soon the town is lost to view.
Ameiko raises her voice in an old song of farewell and you are truely on your way.
As Úlf rides near the middle of the caravan and off to the side slightly, enabling him to better reach the front or rear should they encounter something unfriendly, he quietly listens to Ameiko's song of farewell before he begins to sing a traveling song himself.
"Veier går noensinne ever,
Over stein og under trær,
Ved huler der aldri solen har lyste,
Av bekker som aldri finner sjøen;
Over snø av vinteren sådd,
Og gjennom de lystige blomster Sarenith,
Over gress og over stein,
Og under fjell i tåke.
Veier går noensinne ever
Under sky og under stjerne,
Likevel føtter som vandrende har gått
Sving til sist hjem til avstand.
Øyne som ild og sverd har sett
Og skrekk i hallene av stein
Se på siste på enger grønt
Og trær og åser de lenge har visst."
Over rock and under tree,
By caves where never sun has shone,
By streams that never find the sea;
Over snow by winter sown,
And through the merry flowers of Sarenith,
Over grass and over stone,
And under mountains in the mist.
Roads go ever ever on
Under cloud and under star,
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.
Eyes that fire and sword have seen
And horror in the halls of stone
Look at last on meadows green
And trees and hills they long have known.
Lissa hears Ameiko's song, but her mind is elsewhere. She looks out the curtain separating the interior of the cart from the outside world and sees Sandpoint shrinking into the distance. Just as the melancholy begins to set in, her eyes begin to focus on the sights of the Lost Coast, and Lissa grins despite herself. She takes a deep breath and takes in the salty smell of the sea air as the caravan begins to round Devil's Platter. Maybe this won't be so bad. And then I'll be a real adventurer too, just like Ameiko or the Heroes of Sandpoint! Lissa pulls her head back into the cart and leans back, visibly more relaxed.
The day passes slowly you drive for 4 hours take a 2 hour break then drive another 4 hours making camp about an hour before sundown. Nothing untoward happens during the night.
In the Morning you are up before the dawn ready to move at first light and the day follows the same pattern as yesterday. In mid afternoon you encounter a patrol of Magnimarian Cavalry the leader of whom nods to Sandru as you pass.Other than that it is another quiet day.
The Third Day passes in much the same mode as you come down off the high moors and into the grasslands bordering Ember Lake.Night Camp is made at an old Shrine to Erastil. About three hours after you make camp a Thunderstorm breaks but no damage is done to the Caravan.
The fourth day is also uneventful..by now the camp routine is becoming just that..routine and everyone is slipping into their roles nicely.Each evening Shalelu rejoins the party from her far scouting role and brings something for the pot. Ameiko keeps your spirits up Koya makes herself available to anyone who wishes to talk and Sandru keeps you all organised and moving.
Towards dusk on Day 4 you arrive in Galduria making camp in a field on the outskirts of the town.Lissa is now twice as far from home as she has ever been
Omara will tell stories and maybe do some sleight-of-hand tricks to help keep folks entertained so Ameiko isn't over-burdened.
On the outskirts of Galduria, she will wait until she is within earshot of the most people possible and say "Okay. Does anyone know anything about this town that we need to be aware of? Also, if someone asks, where are we headed, and how long are we going to be here?"
Úlf will spend those four days establishing a patrol routine for himself around the caravan, checking on the crew to make sure they're doing alright, seeing if they need any help with anything and generally doing whatever needs to be done around the camp.
When he can, he makes sure to speak with Shalelu about what's ahead on the trail, trying to get an idea of the kind of terrain they're heading into as well as wanting to be kept on anything that may be threatening to the caravan. While not near as stealthy as Shalelu is, he uses his bow if any game come in range of the caravan to try and increase their supply of rations.
Zaladrel will spend most of his time with Koya. At some point where it seems more appropriate he will note, Drabarni, Sandru said you had your own reasons for coming and though normally I would not pry... But surely we drive to the heart of danger... My heart sings to have you near but I must admit I fear that you might be in peril if we find more of the haunting undeath that awaited us in the cave. Are you sure this is the journey you must take?
To Omara Zaldrel nods, Known mostly for its trade in wheat and timber and the Twilight Academy of course. An institution rumored to practice strange methods. I hear the townsfolk do their best to ignore the Academy's activities as it had deep pockets and spends with ease on the town.
Lissa bounces between excitement and melancholy several times a day throughout the trip. Her frequent mood swings are beginning to become mildly irritating to those not used to dealing with emotional people often. She mostly keeps to herself, though when the caravan stops to camp, she disappears temporarily to practice her summoning away from the group. Best not to frighten those not used to such things. As the team nears Galduria, she becomes visibly excited.
"How long will we be staying here, Sandru?"
Sandru mulls over the question..
"Well we need to reprovision and do some trading..so we'll be leaving the day after tomorrow
The old woman chuckles at her last remark but her eyes still bear the sadness in her soul
If ever there was a person who has not failed our Lady it is you Koya. True we yearn to hear the magnificent song of the unknown road but our Goddess also charges us to keep safe that which we know and were it not for your dedication to that holy task how would I have fared? Zaladrel smiles warmly at the woman. No you are no failure and if this is your chance to see more then we will see all that this mystery affords us and then some! I travel the caravans because of the joy of life that humans carry, the sheer volume of living they pack into their limited years. You may not have as many years before you as you once had but you are Varisian to the core. Whatever time is left I know you will live it with passion and fullness.
Zaladrel looks over to Koya with a look of earnest well meaning, There would be no better counsel to be had on this journey than yours, drabrani...although...[b]Zal lets a faint smile play at his lips, [b]I know humans put great stock in age and wisdom which really means she should get wise counsel from me as you are but a child. Zal laughs at his jest but puts his hands up in a "I don't even want to come close" style gesture.
Zal will grab his sword and bag but leave his other arms and equipment behind. If the caravan is secure we should explore our new surroundings. Desna favors those who seek the new!
As the group begins to set up around the caravan, Lissa looks as her friends begin preparing to go into town. Lissa climbs out of the cart and stretches in the warm light of the setting sun (Quite an impressive sight, but Lissa seems oblivious of the effect it causes in some of the helping hands). Grabbing her new sword, she wraps the belt about her waist and goes to join the others. Any experienced warriors can tell by the way she carries herself as she saunters over that she has not only become more accustomed to bearing the blade about her hip, but her demeanor is that of someone accustomed to its use. One would hardly recognize her as the awkward girl from Sandpoint of a week ago.
"I believe I agree with Desna on this, Zal. I've always wanted to see Galduria."
Galduria is a bustling place the Lakeside docks having many river craft tied up alongside the quays laden with the grain and timber that give the town purpose.
Sandru heads for the Market square and is soon deeply engaged in discussions with the local Merchants.
As for the Academy,it sits foursquare on a small hill just outside the town proper looking more like a Fortress than a centre of learning.
Omara begins to talk with Zal, but is distracted, like everyone else, by afternoon stretches and especially its aftereffects. She looks down at her own body and sighs resignedly. Maybe if I wore a dress... She imagines herself trying to fight in a dress and tripping over the hem of her skirt. Her mood lightens considerably.
"This is the part I liked most about traveling as a little girl. New town. New sights. New smells. New tastes." She smiles, "let's go see what this town has to offer."
Runa glances out the back of the wagon, seeing the town and cringes. Having kept to herself for the trip so far, all the noise and smells threaten to overwhelm her. She sits on the tailboard, unsure what to do. She could go into town and look for ingredients for some potions she wishes to make. Her time with Tofa has taught her much about brewing and extracting magic into potions, and she is almost ready to try...just a bit more instruction..
And so she sits, and watches the locals walk by, looking at the small woman sitting on the rear of a wagon, dangling her feet, with a small fox in her lap.
Zal gives Lissa an approving smile and looks over to Omara as her words fade. Seeing her intentness on the new surroundings Zal subconsciously touches his holy symbol and nods briefly. Look back and seeing Runa lingers Zal begins to turn then thinks better of it.
Turning to Ulf instead Zal puts his hand on the warrior's forearm and leans in to whisper, She seems warmest to you my friend...I wonder if she would accept your invitation to join us as we see the town? I worry she will find me...too invasive if I were to ask. Zal tilts his head towards Runa to emphasize his point.
Straightening up to his full height and stretching Zal yawns slightly, Well my friends where to first? The academy seems formidable but perhaps there is something to see there? A place to find a drink or a spot of local fare? WE could follow Sandru to market and see what interesting things are for offer? What say your instincts?
Úlf leans down into Zaladrel's whisper, listening intently before nodding to him. Checking to make sure his axe and hammer are in the carry harnesses on his back, he seems to ponder Zaladrel's question for a few moments. "I told Sandru I would help him get trade goods to market, so I think is where I will be going first. I do not think academy would have much to hold interest for me, who knows nothing of magic." he answers, then looks back to Runa, calling to her in their native tongue: "Lillesøster! Sikkert du er trøtt av å sitte i vogn nå! Kom, strekke på beina med oss! Kanskje finner noen nye potion reagenser i markedet, ja?"
"Har du lukter nord Úlfheðinn Sigmundarson. Husker du snøen og vinden. Vi reiser nærmere hver dag, og jeg frykter at de kan finne meg. Jeg må være klar."
Runa looks to her fellow Nord, and shutters. Fear shows in her every move.
Do you smell the north Úlfheðinn Sigmundarson. Do you remember the snow and the wind. We travel closer each day, and I fear that they may find me. I must be ready.
Úlf frowns a bit at her response, looking to the town for a moment before jogging back to Runa and kneeling in front of her, looking up into her face as he responds, reaching up to place a reassuring hand on her shoulder. "Jeg vet ikke fra hva du kjører, søster Runa. Jeg vet ikke hva fortiden du har i nord at du frykter retur til deg. Er det ikke sant, men at du ville være tryggere med oss, vi som vil beskytte deg, enn her, blant de som ikke kjenner deg så godt, som ikke har adventured med deg? Du er ikke alene i disse reisene, Runa. Du har venner som vil holde deg trygg."
Runa give a weak smile at Ulf and Omara and says, "Thank you my friends, but I do not wish unwanted danger to fall upon you just because of what I am. I was sent south, I believe, to keep me away from them, the rulers of Irrisen. I was always told that if the white queen called, you would have no choice but to obey. The princesses would cull the towns and villages, looking for girls with the gift, then take them away. I can feel something, deep within me, pulling me north. Back to the winter winds and snow...and it is gleeful. Tofa says not to worry, but how can I not!"
With a great sigh, she slips off the tailgate of the wagon, head down, holding Tofa in her arms. She looks to her to friends, then to the north. "I do not think you understand," she says to Omara, "but thank you for your concern. Ulf, my brother, you know the stories, if I am not wrong. You know what they say about the Winter Witches. You understand why I am afraid. But I must be more like the northern self, and not the frightened Tien girl. I must face these fears, and bring them under control."
Úlf nods solemnly to Runa, huffing out a breath. "Yes, I know the stories of the Winter Witches. It is said they are descendants of Baba Yaga, herself, yes? Lords of Irrisen. Many fearful tales of them are told in Jol." he answers, seeming to be in deep thought for a moment before re-assuming his characteristic wide grin. "Bah! Even if stories ARE true, it does not mean you are bound to follow! You listen to Tofa! Your life is your own, Runa. Úlf cares not what any queen has to say! Is ok to be afraid. Everyone is sometimes afraid. More important than being afraid is not letting fear control you. And as far as unwanted dangers, I say bah! Who better to face unwanted danger with than your friends, yes?" he answers her, giving her a reassuring pat on the back. "Now! You come to town with us, yes?" he asked again, a playfully questioning sound in his voice.
"I will come with you. Perhaps if I can ready myself...well maybe it will never come to that! Thanks you my friends. This fear....ever since I discovered we would be travelling north...it has controlled me. Now, with your help, I think I will be able to fight back! Thank you!!"
With a small smile, Runa joins the group, setting Tofa on the ground. The fox gives a shoet 'yip', jumping about the feet of the party, then settles into following behind his mistress.
Sounds good to me. Let's be on our way in both senses.
Lissa has mixed feelings about her visit to the academy. She always imagined she'd be in awe of their wizardry, but instead it seemed to be the other way around. She wanted someone who could explain how her abilities worked, or at least how they might have came about. She returns to the caravan seemingly put out and oddly enough ready to be on the road again. After about a day or so, she seems much more pleased with herself about the quick stop. The feeling that she had actually surpassed (in her mind at least) some of her childhood ideals seems to have further bolstered her confidence.
Sandru returns to the caravan well pleased with the days work you unload 3 units of trade goods and load up with supplies.
Next Morning you set off along the lakeside road to Wolf's Ear arriving there in the late afternoon. You find the villagers a bit stand offish around strangers but Sandru is still able to dispose of two more units of trade goods.
Another 3 days of travel through the tangles of the Churl woodand you find yourselves on the banks of the Chavali river just at the point where it enters the Varisian Gulf. The familiar smells and sounds of the sea evoke thoughts of home within you as you cross the Estuary on a slow moving ferry, one wagon at a time.
Úlf doesn't bother to leave the caravan in Wolf's Ear, opting to stay and make sure no trouble reaches the wagons. He maintains a constant vigil in the Churl, the unfamiliar territory making him wary and watchful.
When the forest is broken through and the group begins crossing the Chavali, the warrior breaths in deeply the scent of the salty sea air. He remembers the vow he made that night on the beach, yelling his resolve into the black of the ocean sky.
He still tries to have conversations, however brief, with Shalelu when he can, though he also checks with Runa every so often to make sure she's still feeling better about their growing proximity to the Northlands they both hail from.
Roderic's Cove is a bustling small port with a number of ships in the roadstead.Sandru moves you quickly out off town however as he doesn't like placing temptation in the way of the ruffians who inhabit the plae.Once again you camp outside the town and Sandru then enters into protracted negotiations that last for the better part of a day and result in his managing to sell the remaining trade goods. You resupply from the profits and in the morning head off towards the north skirting around Riddleport by some distance.
The land north of the Cove is broken and the going isn't easy but there is still the remnant of the road to Brinewall.Here in the north the road is not patrolled by anyone but Shalelu's careful scouting enables you to avoid any trouble.
Passing within a days ride of Crying leaf brings a certain poingancy to Zaladrel and Shalelu's travels.
Finally after 9 days you emerge from the Mountain passses and find the broad grasslands that lead to Brinewall stretching before you by evening you are camped within sight of the walls off the Castle.
As you headed North from the Cove Ameiko seemed to become more and more withdrawn, a strange lassitude has come over her although Koya and Runa cannot find anything physically wrong with her.Tonight as you camp Ameiko sits silently by the fire..no songs or stories spring from her lips and her normal vivacious personality seems to have vanished.
Suddenly without warning she keels over in a dead faint.
Zaladrel will rush to kneel beside the bard and look over at Runa who seems well ahead of him in assessing Ameiko. What of her condition Runa? If others begin to crowd around Zaladrel will use his size and demeanor to exhort others to give Runa space. over 6 foot tall wise elf should be able to convince a few people to calm down. He will mention that someone should fetch Koya if she is not with us.
Lissa stands on the edge of the circle gathered around Ameiko, her hands over her mouth and worry etched on her face. What to do? I can summon monsters from another reality, but when it comes to helping friends my magic's useless! Oooo. She stands there feeling helpless as she watches Runa examine her best friend.
Úlf joins Zaladrel in helping keep others from crowding around Ameiko. If Koya is not with the group, Úlf will immediately rush to her wagon to summon her to the group to help Runa figure out what is wrong with Ameiko.
Omara stops in the middle of her story when Ameiko collapses. She had been telling stories and jokes since the camp settled, trying to cheer Ameiko (and the others) up. As the crowd gathers, She can only watch, knowing there is nothing she can do.
When she sees Lissa's distress, she puts her hand on the other woman's shoulder. She gives her a slight smile and returns her attention to Ameiko, clearly worried.
Koya moves as fast as her old bones will let her joining Runa at Ameiko's side..
Koya Heal Check1d20 + 11 ⇒ (2) + 11 = 13
Runa and Koya hold a whispered consultation and quickly agree that Ameiko is in a magically induced Coma.She is not feverish nor is she showing any sign of distress, she is merely deeply unconcious and you cannot rouse her.
Koya has Sandru and Ulf move Ameiko to her wagon which is the only one with a proper bed in it, as you settle her in she mutters something in a language that Runa can identify as Tien
"Beware the birds who wish to fly but cannot"
Úlf does what he can to help in keeping the crowds from around the unconscious Ameiko until the cause of her infirmity is identified. When Runa and Koya reveal it's a magically induced coma, he frowns. He's never heard of magic having this effect on someone before...but it must be possible, because the evidence is right in front of him.
He is happy to help Sandru move Ameiko to her bed, then cocks his head to the side in curiousity when she mutters in a language he doesn't understand. He looks to the others to see if any of those in earshot know the meaning of what she just spoke.
The artifacts of her ancestors kept the dead risen, I suppose it should be no surprise that this chain of events might affect her person, being a Kaijitsu. I find no coincidence that Brinewall sits within sight and Ameiko is somehow affected...
Zaladrel looks to the others, Any malady such as this is beyond our means and I do not dare to turn back for fear of the magic that has done this to Ameiko. We went out and found her hidden past before, I believe it falls to us to do so again. We should go to the castle.
Zal looks at the others to see what they think.
Whoops. Luckily I had the chance to edit to Zal!
"I agree that we should investigate the castle. Maybe we can find what is doing this to her." Omara looks up at the sky briefly, then looks at the others, her gaze ending with Zal. "But it is night time and most of us are human, and can't see in the dark."