Having finished your latest mission in the seas around Absalom, there is a brief rest between missions. Itami, sighing heavily, states that he believes his adventuring days are coming to a close-- or, at the very least, he needs an indefinite break. It is with no shortage of tears that the party assures him that they will make sure to visit whenever they are nearby. Moreover, Itami is of course to be given a place of honor at Hiiragi and Onna's wedding, and thus will be seen again before too long.
"Don't keep me waiting, now," said the old sorcerer with a wry smile. "My bones are half turned to dust already."
With that in mind, Hiiragi bites her lip.
"I will need some time to prepare... well, everything that needs preparing," said the miko, looking away from Onna with a blush before forcing her eyes back to the bard. "A Daikitsun and Shelynite wedding... oh, I'm sure there's precedent, but I fear I will need nine doves, which will of course need to be kept safe from nine holy foxes, and..."
She takes a deep breath. "I am no stranger to hard work and obscure traditions, but it will take time."
When the Grand Lodge sends for the group a few weeks later, they are sent to the Absalom docks, told to sail to Taldor and meet with the newest members of the group once they arrive.
Hiiragi insists upon seeing Onna off at the docks, and kissing her goodbye.
Ikari may, in fact, be feeling a little neglected. His teacher has had little time for him-- in fact, for anyone-- unless it was wedding-related.
And so it is that they hitch a short journey across the sea to Oppara, the grand capitol of Taldor. If Absalom is the "City at the Center of the World," Oppara is the City at the Top. Those who have been there before have seen the obscene decadence that gilds the seat of the Taldan Empire.
The Pathfinders' objective, however, is not to explore the wealth of the city, nor the broadening shadow of need that its glorious sunlight casts in its slums, but rather...
To visit a tackle shop.
The tackle shop itself-- lacking so much as a name, as unassuming a place as ever there was-- appears... extremely mundane. An old human man fiddles with some tackle on the counter, but doesn't seem to take a lot of notice as you enter. The smell of bait would fill your nostrils as you entered... but it's not that different from the smell of the docks you walked across to get here.
That said, you've been informed that a man named Muesello runs the place... and that, of course, this very place is secretly a Pathfinder Lodge.
Feel free to make introductions, or just dot and come back later! I'll move us forward once we've all gotten acquainted.