It is the early evening hours, prior to dusk – assuming “dusk” is still dusk in a world with no sun or moon – when the party makes their way into the small ant hill known as Tusnot. The local folk pay the newcomers little mind and the companions stay close to Tellanvar and Ravdet in this strange new place. As the group reaches the edge of the town Tellanvar informs the group that he is going to go look for a vendor to sell things to. He offers to take Nyx along and help her find a new dress. Nyx accompanies Tellanvar eagerly. Meanwhile, Kelsk (having spoken in hushed tones to Ravdet) leaves the group and the rest make their way into town to find a ‘kip’ (inn) for the night.
After speaking with some locals, Ravdet is directed to a larger building that is two stories and is a bit louder. Upon entering, the party sees an eclectic mix of humanoids of various kinds. Aside from a few glances to see the newest additions to the tap room, there is little reaction to any of the group’s presence. Ravdet leads the remaining group over to a table. A young woman asks them what they would like and Ravdet orders an “ale.” Each of Coverdale, Mera, and Gabriel order Ale as well and Ravdet tells the server to make it a pitcher for the table. Tired and uncomfortable, the group happily drinks their tasty beverages as Ravdet raises his glass “to new friends and old bloods.”
Meanwhile, Tellanvar and Nyx make their way to a local shopkeep who haggles with Tellanvar. Intrigued, Nyx watches with a close eye to see her guide exchange goods for coins (or ‘jink’). After she asks about the value of ‘jink’ and how this is different than what she is used to (bartering for goods). They make their way to a dress maker that was recommended to Tellanvar by locals. Upon entering the pair see a woman and her daughter tending the store. While Tellanvar talks to the woman, Nyx browses the wares until she finds a beautiful blue cloth that the storekeep says matches her eyes very nicely. Tellanvar offers to buy her the dress, but it will take 2 days to complete. They will check back in the morning with the shop.
Tellanvar & Nyx join the others at the local kip to discuss their plans after leaving Tusnot over food and drink. It is decided that the group will rest up and prepare for their journey in this town for 2 days. After which, Ravdet has promised that they will escort the youngsters to a small town where he knows there to be a portal to Sigil since that is where Mera and Adso both have expressed a desire to go. The portal requires a grey feather to activate it.
Mera is starting to act strange and Ravdet explains about the effects of alcohol and what it means to be “drunk.” Coverdale, emboldened by the same liquor determines to leave the kip in search for the elusive Kelsk.
Tellanvar takes Mera upstairs to her room with Nyx. He gives Nyx the key and explains about locks. He promises to tell the people downstairs to bring up water to bathe, which he does. Two shy young boys bring Nyx towels, water and a basin to wash up. Nyx is too naive to realize how beautiful the boys find her, even as unclean and exhausted as she is. The girls bathe, wash their clothes and turn in for the night.
Downstairs, Kelsk returns to the inn, ahead of the intoxicated Coverdale who went out seeking him. Roughly an hour later, Coverdale finds his way back to the inn as well. He asks for advice from Kelsk regarding…fighting. The hour is late and everybody heads up to their beds, bathes and washes their clothing. The young boys do not blush so much in bringing the bath water to the men as they did for Nyx.
In the morning, the group learns more about what it means to be “sick” and suffer. Both Coverdale and Mera are ill from the drinking the night before. Mera cannot leave her room immediately because she is unable to contain the previous night’s food. The rest of the group goes downstairs for food and then heads to the clothing store to order new apparel (Mera requests Nyx to pick out some “boy’s clothing” for her).
Tellanvar gives each of the party members 5 golden jink. In addition, Ravdet provides the book and necklace/symbol that belonged to the half-elf Himdal who died to the slavers. They are prayers to Rowe. The party members are all very appreciative of their rescuer’s charity (although Gabriel is slightly sad to see that there were no boots leftover from Himdal’s belongings).
Over the next day or two:
• Tellanvar & Kelsk train Mera and Coverdale with practice swords.
• Ravdet meditates with Gabriel
• Adso watches the swordplay and reads his new prayer book while thinking about the powers.
• Nyx wanders the town bored. She finds that the locals look at her so she finds a quiet secluded vegetable garden. Finally she decides to go looking for books to read and makes her way to the Mayor’s home. While the mayor himself is not at home, his wife is a wonderfully pleasant woman who chats with Nyx until she has to go and then gives Nyx the book. Nyx spends the remaining time eagerly reading the book of short stories and fables.
The group is rewarded for their waiting in town with new clothes from the tailor.
The group leaves Tusnot, heading away from the Spire towards Hopeless. They travel overland at a comfortable pace, with Mera and Kelsk at the front. They travel for 5 days. Adso collects a grey feather along the way. During the nights the following occur:
After dinner Gabriel and Ravdet are meditating. Suddenly, Coverdale (who was gathering wood for the fire) is slammed in the chest with a force that emanates from Gabriel. In response, Coverdale moves with lighting speed to stand in front of Gabriel. Neither is truly hurt but both are very shocked. Ravdet explains that Gabriel has successfully focused his first manifestation and guesses that Coverdale also has a latent ability. Coverdale begins training with both Ravdet and Kelsk.
Gabriel develops the ability to move small objects with his mind.
Mira expands her practicing to include wielding two swords at a time.
Adso continues reading through his new prayer book.
Throughout all of the travels and excitement, Nyx alone remains sad. A few more days of travel go by through marshy wetlands and Nyx’s mood does not improve as she is cold and wet.
The group of companions has learned a great deal from their rescuers. Not just how to mastery blades and psionic powers, but also about how to travel safely, watch for strangers, and keep guard during the night. Each of us took turns assisting at nights to learn how to best protect ourselves. During a night when the group made camp at a small ruined structure, Adso was helping watch. He heard a wagon wheel approaching. Tellanvar was his watch companion but he was asleep and Adso could not wake him despite his attempts.
As the wagon grew closer its lantern revealed an elderly man. “Greetings Grandfather,” Adso warmly greeted the stranger.
The elderly traveler introduced himself as Meglin and Adso offered him food and a chance to rest at our party’s fire. While the rest slumbered around them, the two talked. Adso cautiously told the tale of Aoskar and his recent questioning of his faith. The young priest is unnerved by the concept of multiple “powers” and he feels that much of what he has spent his life believing has been tossed into conflict. The two men shake hands and part ways, not before Adso tries to give the man all of his jink. Meglin very gratefully thanks Adso but does not take up his chartable offer, explaining that he has everything he needs but was thankful for the rest and food.
Adso wakes to Kelsk shanking his shoulder. Despite Adso’s insistence, Kelsk tells him that it is time for his watch to begin, Adso has apparently been sleeping. But the experience was so real, it couldn’t have been a dream. Adso was positive, but he didn’t want to argue with his new friend. He readied himself to begin his nightly watch and ponder the recent events.
He notices a white “heart” shaped symbol on his right hand…a symbol that seems to match the wooden holy symbol of Rowe he possesses.
As the group travels into a forested area, the weather warms up and the group is more comfortable. All are in good spirits as they travel, train and talk together. All that is except Nyx. Mira confronts her twin. After being rebuffed she decides to simply chant incessantly “What’s wrong? What’s wrong? What’s wrong?” Nyx ignores her and runs off into the nearby forest. Mira follows her, continuing to drone on with her sisterly chant. Soon, Mira loses sight of her sister…
…Nyx is sad and feels that her friends are moving forward in this strange new world, all of them making friends with their rescuers and new guides. But she longs for her comfortable bed back in the valley and wishes that her sister didn’t constantly seem to think she needed protecting. Her most recent “concern” drove Nyx into the woods in search for a place she could be alone. A beautiful multi-colored bird caught Nyx’s eye. It appeared to be beckoning for her to follow. It would fly to a tree just out of reach and look back at her as if to say “follow me.” This was a strange bird indeed but Nyx followed it deeper and deeper into the woodlands.
Finally, the bird led Nyx to a midnight clearing in the woods. She could no longer hear her sister but there was a beautiful lady in the center of the clearing. The wonderfully colorful bird lighted on Nyx’s shoulder. The woman tells her that the bird likes her. She goes on to express Nyx’s own fears (that her friends will leave her) as if she could read her young mind. The strange lady offered “gifts” that would make Nyx stronger so that she could protect herself and her friends, she could prove her strength to all of her companions with such gifts. All she asked was that Nyx enter her service – this would require her to perform 1 service when asked and to take the colorful bird as her companion and give him a name.
Nyx ponders the options before her and then agrees. This beautiful woman, who reveals herself to be the “Lady of the Forest”, will protect her and guide her travels. Nyx whispers the name “Aether.” The name flows out softly from her lips upon the wind and she feels a warmth fill her despite her damp clothing and the chill of the wind. The bird’s eyes smile at her upon being given this new name.
Nyx leaves the clearing, returns to the brightly lit forest where her sister is now franticly looking for her.
Back at the camp Mira expresses concern about the new bird companion. Rovdet inspects the bird and happily approves.
At a crossroads the young companions split from their more experienced guides. Ravdet, before leaving gives them instructions for getting through the portal:
- Head about 1 day, give or take, toward the spire to find the town.
- The portal is in the blacksmith’s forge. The blacksmith charges 10 jink each to go through the portal.
- Ravdet gives each party member 10 jink (they now all have 15 jink).
- The blacksmith’s forge has a blue roof on it.
- Use the grey feather as the item to open the portal.
Ravdet asks for 1 favor from the companions, which they happily and quickly agree to perform as thanks. He wants them to deliver a parcel to a friend in Sigil. The parcel is soft and not overly large (fits within a backpack). The package should be delivered to Atreli in Sigil. He can be found in “Greymoon Apparel” a Fur/Clothing shop in the Market & Guild Hall Wards.
He recommends that we hire a “tout” (guide) in Sigil to help us get around.
The two groups part ways and the companions are on their own….