Savaged Kith'takharos

Session 33

The morning is going … well at Darren’s house, though the day is still young.

Rikard Castleberry: “So, is there more juice?”
Mistress Bianca stands.
Darren stands as if by habit.
Mistress Bianca: “Well, now that that is out of the way. Someone get him some juice before we find out how he REALLY feels.”
Darren leans over, picks up the small pitcher on the table and proceeds to fill Rikard’s glass with a light green pulpy juice.
Rikard Castleberry: “Ah yes, I love this stuff.”
Rikard Castleberry takes a long drink.
Mistress Bianca: “So, I am going to go to the Transit Guild and ask questions. Let’s go there together; it will probably get better answers that way.”
Darren: “I know where they went…I mean, I think I do.”
Rikard Castleberry: “In town still, or is he not here anymore?”
Mistress Bianca: “Well, as I said three times already, last I heard he was in the swamp with Bjorn.”
Darren: “I remember seeing a document upon Jorian’s desk. A Transit Guild boat was spotted by the ruins.”
Darren: “A few days ago.”
Bart: “Has it been a few days?”
Darren: “Well, maybe 2.”
Darren: “This being the second.”
Darren tries to think about the passage of time for a moment.
Mistress Bianca counts in her head…
Mistress Bianca: “Yesterday you saw it?”
Rikard Castleberry: “Yesterday was a long day.”
Rikard Castleberry: “I walked into the strangest place…”
Darren: “Yes, it was the night before.”
Darren: “Anyhow, if we go traipsing into the Guild right now, we give up our in, if we head out and see for ourselves we may still be able to enter.”
Darren: “Once someone gets us asking questions, we will not be permitted back in.”
Bart: “We are to search the swamp?”
Darren: “We could start at the ruins.”
Rikard Castleberry: “The ruins we were just at?”
Bart: “There are a bunch of ruins in the swamp.”
Mistress Bianca: “The fallen pillar ruins?”
Darren: “Um…I think they are called the Harlass Orn ruins.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Hm.”
Darren: “Apparently, The Guild has interest there.”
Mistress Bianca: “Well that is one site I haven’t been to yet.”
Darren: “Well, no one has claim to them, it would not give us away to explore there and if we find Meryl, it’s a plus.”
Mistress Bianca: “I know of the temple, near the fallen pillars, and then there is the collapsed bridge, and the spider thing.”
Bart: “We were to head there anyway. They are connected with the Lost.”
Rikard Castleberry: “I’m not sure; we don’t really look like we’re ready to stay in the swamp for several days again yet.”
Rikard Castleberry gestures at his full body wrappings.
Mistress Bianca: “If we go there and find Meryl it may upset what they are doing, and that would be worse than going to the Guild.”
Darren: “Well I could probably find out if we went to the guild.”
Darren: “I got an idea of whom to ask.”
Darren: “And a picked lock or two would certainly yield something.”
Mistress Bianca flabbergasted, throws up her arms. “Finally!”
Rikard Castleberry: “I hope you aren’t suggesting that I pick a lock. Have you seen me with a fork?”
Darren: “Yes and every eel, fish or muskrat in the air trembles at your ferocity.”
Mistress Bianca: “We probably could just ask, hmmm, nicely.”
Darren: “Always nicely Miss Bianca but if you do it right, they might not even realize something has been slipped.”
Mistress Bianca harrumphs.
Mistress Bianca: “It would be interesting to see if I can still call that place home.”

The sound of a hammer rings through to the dining room, with repeated blows.

Mistress Bianca: “Bwah?”

The noise is coming from a distance outside of the manor.

Darren moves to the front door to look.
Rikard Castleberry: “What is it?”
Bart: “Shall I get the boat ready while you speak to the Guild?”
Darren throws open the door to take in what is happening.

Across the street at the Order of the Jade Leaf grounds you see a guard posting a sign on the wall near the gate.
A fairly large group of longshoremen form a gaggle around it on their way to work.

Darren letting the curiosity get the better of him, grabs Whisper from its stand near the door and heads out the door.
Darren leaves the manor, walking across the street to see what he will see.

Darren overhears a discussion involving Yavanna, and something of hers being stolen.

Darren pipes up at a Jade Leaf Guard…“What was stolen? So if I see it I can get it to her?”
Jade Leaf Guard: “I’m told if you know, you’ll know.”
Darren: “Hmm, well that doesn’t help those that find things out in the swamps.”
Rikard Castleberry shrugs and finishes his juice.
Mistress Bianca peers out a window.
Mistress Bianca: “You know Rikard; my room at the Sheltering Frond has its heat reduced.”
Mistress Bianca: “Just like my uncles study.”
Rikard Castleberry: “How’s that?”
Mistress Bianca: “I bet Aetius is behind it.”
Bart checks out Bianca’s chest for signs of seepage while eating some cheese.
Mistress Bianca: “I never did understand it, perhaps now that I can see magic I should see.”
Rikard Castleberry: “What do you suppose is going on outside?”
Bart: “Darren will let us know if it is important or makes him look good.”
Mistress Bianca: “I am not sure. I just don’t like crowds.”

_The gaggle of people seem as interested in finding out the same information as asked by Darren and are reluctant to leave. _

Darren walks up to one of them and says something that can’t be heard across the street at the manor.
Rikard Castleberry: “That’s a good point. It’s not like anyone’s screaming in terror.”
Bart: “So what are we going to do?”
Mistress Bianca: “Anyone got any dice?”
Rikard Castleberry checks his pockets
Rikard Castleberry: “No.”
Bart looks confused
Mistress Bianca: “It is a way the Black Adder made some decisions.”
Rikard Castleberry: “If he isn’t back in a couple, we should go look.”

_The longshoreman’s eyes go narrow as he looks in bewilderment to the left and right of him at his fellow workers, and then says, “Wha?” _

Darren says in a quiet tone, "C’mon, it’s not like it’s a big secret or anything.”
Longshoreman:” ‘tis a weeee bit early to be drinkin’ eh? But o’course you rich folks ain’t never had much sense any a ways.”

Mistress Bianca: “I will stay here…I really don’t like crowds.”
Bart: “Is that one of the Guild’s leaders?”
Rikard Castleberry: “I thought an adder was a snake. How does a snake toss dice?”
Mistress Bianca: “I… never mind.”
Bart: “You mean it isn’t a nickname. An actual snake? I guess they could use their tail.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Could a snake even read the dice?”
Bart: “Some snakes have very good eyesight.”
Mistress Bianca: “It is a character in a book. Bah, reading is prolly beneath you both!”
Darren says nothing as he turns around and heads back into the house.
Darren: “Yavanna has had something stolen.”
Bart: “What?”
Mistress Bianca: “What?”
Rikard Castleberry: “What was it?”
Darren: “1000 gold for whomever returns it.”
Darren: “And they aren’t telling what it was.”
Darren: “I’m going to find out what it was that was stolen.”
Darren: “Who is coming with me?”
Bart: “Why? If they wanted you to know they would tell you. I am not sure when we are supposed to follow their wishes and when we are not.”
Mistress Bianca: “I will, I know Yavanna. I gave her a bunch of things and she gave me my books.”
Darren: “Of course you did, now daylight is burning.”
Mistress Bianca: “If some of the cubes we gave her were stolen I would like to know about it.”
Darren steps back from the door and waits.
Rikard Castleberry: “Oh sure why not?”
Bart: “What about your uncle?”
Mistress Bianca: “Hmmm.”
Rikard Castleberry: “What if the thing she lost was Meryl??!?!?!”
Darren: “It won’t hurt to find out what she wants, besides you all still have healing to do.”
Darren does not look injured at all.
Mistress Bianca: “Well this should take 10 minutes. Uncle is either back or knowing 10 minutes sooner will change little.”
Bart hopes there is nothing shiny in the road on the way there or they might never make it.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Let’s go then.”
Darren waits for Bianca to lead.
Mistress Bianca leaves briskly to Yavanna’s residence.
Darren follows closely looking around to see if anyone is looking at them.

As you head out of Darren’s humid manor, you see whatever gaggle was outside of the Order of the Jade Leaf’s grounds is broken up and moved on.

Bart follows watching the clouds and birds.
Rikard Castleberry looks around for pretty girls.
Mistress Bianca does not look around.
Darren looks hard to find a pretty girl he hasn’t slept with yet.

Everyone arrives with Mistress Bianca to the lesser gate of the Jade Leaf grounds. There are two men with beards at the gate with a boy sitting in the shade inside of the gate.

Bart: “Isn’t Yavanna at the ruins also?”
Jade Leaf Guard nods politely at the assembled heroes of Kith’takharos, and Darren.
Rikard Castleberry: “Unlikely, otherwise how would she report something missing?”
Mistress Bianca: “Good Morning Gentlemen.”
Bart: “Didn’t we meet with her apprentice?”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Hello Mistress Bianca. And, how are you and your friends this morning?”
Mistress Bianca: “Sore, confused, and inquisitive, but other than that we are fine.”
Darren steps up and puts on his most charming face.
Darren: “It’s a damn shame what happened to Yavanna.”
Mistress Bianca steps to the side a little to let Darren up.
Jade Leaf Guard: “Well I’d be pissed if Tannert’s shit were poked about, let alone Yavanna’s. The god damned nerve of some of those Transit Guild scum. I won’t miss a damn one of them after tomorrow morning. That is certain.”
Darren: “Nor will we, in fact I’d like to ‘see them off’, if you know what I mean.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Well, get there early, if you are close enough to the keep you’ll get a good look.”
Mistress Bianca: “Tomorrow morning?”
Jade Leaf Guard turns his head a bit to Mistress Bianca.
Jade Leaf Guard: “You don’t know?”
Mistress Bianca: “I do not.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Then I will tell you.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Last night a Transit Guild officer and three of his men killed one of our most respected officers, Caleg Sinjon. A damn upright man who should’ve stayed retired if you ask me but never the less…”
Mistress Bianca: “Caleg! No!”
Jade Leaf Guard: “They were tried this morning and will be fed to the F’lunin on the morrow, at dawn.”
Mistress Bianca: “Serves them right! Caleg was a good man.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Did he take any with him?”
Bart: “Who were the officers?”
Darren: “But had done nothing like that before this new rabble has showed up!”
Jade Leaf Guard: “I don’t know their names. But they are part of the new contingent. “
Jade Leaf Guard: “That’s not all though.”
Darren: “What’s the swamp coming to?”
Mistress Bianca: “Gah, First they practically kick me out of my own home and now this!”
Bart: “What else?”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Right after the judgment, Meryl made a small speech apologizing on behalf of the Transit Guild. Then he stepped down handing the reigns to this son of bitch from up river.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “You mark my words, things are only gonna get worse.”
Darren: “Not Hightower?”
Jade Leaf Guard: “The one and the same.”
Jade Leaf Guard spits.
Bart: “Meryl was here last night.”
Darren: “Well that just turns in my craw.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Poor Caleg. He was just getting to be happy again.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “I can’t answer to that, though he stood up for the men who are to be executed. And what honorable leader wouldn’t try?”
Darren: “Well, I’ve heard it on good authority that Meryl and Mr. Hightower are at odds within the guild.”
Mistress Bianca: “My Uncle is a good man.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Yes, the new guys are pretty much a write off this morning. That old man knew which end of the sword was pointed. I’ll tell you that too.”
Jade Leaf Guard tilts his head a bit at Mistress Bianca’s words.
Jade Leaf Guard: “Yah, I reckon so.”
Darren: “Well, if anyone of them had anything to do with Yavanna’s study being pilfered, I’ll have words with them.”
Mistress Bianca: “I suppose my life in Kith’takharos is going to be very, very different.”
Rikard Castleberry: “When is the service for Caleg?
Jade Leaf Guard: “Tonight at dusk, here in the yard where he trained.”
Mistress Bianca: “Is Yavanna around? She showed me kindness and I would like to return the favor.”
Jade Leaf Guard lets out a long blow of air.
Jade Leaf Guard: “I’d not go near Yavanna, she returned last night and I swear she wanted to kill someone.”
Darren: “Well no doubt, everything she has is an important relic.”
Mistress Bianca: “That is too bad. She was so nice to me.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “We heard her tirade, or at least the volume of it from the barracks. Light, I’ve never heard her go on.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Even her assistant left for the day to let her cool down.”
Darren: “Well she should have opted for more guards if she went traipsing around the Harlass Orn for god’s sake.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Those are some brave words, but uh, if I were you…keep em to yerself.”
*Darre*n: “Oh. Yah, Sorry.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Now if you’d like I could send our runner in to see if she’ll see you Mistress Bianca…But, I’d recommend another time.”
Rikard Castleberry: “It can’t hurt to try.”
Darren: “Well actually, I have access.”
Jade Leaf Guard laughs.
Darren: “I’d like to enter.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “That’s an opinion Rikard, that’s surely an opinion.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “You have your chit?”
Darren: “Actually, there should be one waiting for me.”
Mistress Bianca: “Chit?”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Tannert!”

The boy jumps up out of a daydream as if poleaxed, then finding his orientation runs to the guard.

Jade Leaf Guard: “Go check the main gate for Sir Darren’s chit. MOVE boy!”

The boy moves.
In less than a few minutes he returns with Darren’s painted wooden chit.

Jade Leaf Guard: “Well then, that takes care of that. I’d let the rest of you in, but orders are orders.”
Bart: “Ok.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Tannert is it? I don’t recognize him. Is he new here?”
Darren steps forward in front of Bianca and holds out his chit to her from behind him so that the guard cannot see.
Mistress Bianca shakes her head subtlety.
Darren: “Well only one of us need go in and Bianca has her chit.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Yes, he is a new face here. His uncle from Port Lissup sent him up here for a rigorous upbringing. I’ve heard that he is just the sort of scoundrel we cure.”

The young boy says nothing while standing at the ready.

Mistress Bianca: “No, I think I will leave her alone for awhile, based on your recommendation.”
Darren: “Well I’ll go in”
Darren produces his chit.
Jade Leaf Guard: “Right, well if you’d be so kind as to leave me your chit you may enter.”
Jade Leaf Guard accepts the wooden chit.
Darren leaves the chit in the officer’s hand
Darren enters in search of Yavanna.
Bart: “So where to now?”
Mistress Bianca: “If you do send her a message, tell her ‘Mistress Bianca is sorry for your loss and is willing to help by offering her unique services.’”
Darren nods.
Jade Leaf Guard pulls forth a typical Jade Leaf pad and jots down the offer.
Jade Leaf Guard: “Good luck then.”
Darren leaves the party and enters the grounds while the others leave.
Mistress Bianca: “One more thing mister…Guard. I don’t think I caught your name.”
Amsted: “That is because you had not asked. Call me Amsted.”
Amsted: “Thank you Mistress Bianca.”
Mistress Bianca turns and walks away.
Mistress Bianca when quite a distance away from the gate, a hundred yards or more…
Mistress Bianca: “What the hell is the chit for and how do I get one?”
Darren tries to find out Yavanna’s whereabouts within the compound by asking those he meets along the way.

The first person you ask points you in the direction of the main hall.

Darren heads toward the main hall.

You are directed a few times and finally you stand in an older part of the main hall. You feel an odd standing in the hall as if your presence here is out of place. There is a wood door in front of you that supposedly leads to Yavanna’s chambers.

Darren taps upon the door, lightly.

A full measure of time passes and there is no answer.

Darren taps a bit harder.
Yavanna shouts, “I’m busy, come back tomorrow!”
Darren says through the door in an endearing tone “Tomorrow may be too late Miss Yavanna and so much has been lost already”

Minutes slip away after the voice told you to come back tomorrow.

Yavanna yanks open the door and stands glaring, “I don’t know you. Go away.”
Darren: “But I know you Miss Yavanna…Your passion, your thirst for knowledge. There is so much yet that we do not know about those ruins and those just like them scattered all around Kith’takharos.”
Yavanna: “And your point is…”
Darren: "It is convenient that you lose something so important to you there and Bjorn’s men were seen at that same location not a day before.”
Yavanna gives a slight smile. “Oh, were they? You may be pretty boy, but you are also a liar. Speak truth or leave me alone.”
Darren: “Well I know that their boat was spotted there and (whispers) I am here on Mistress Bianca’s behalf.”
Darren looks around to ensure no one is listening.
Yavanna: “In that case, I can give you a moment. Pray continue.”
Darren: “Could you not open the door? It would honor me to meet you…finally.”
Yavanna: “The door is open. I am here in the flesh. I am finding the hallway quite comfortable. If you disagree, leave.”
Darren: “Mistress Bianca has a lead but needs to know what was stolen.”
Yavanna taps her chin. “Has a lead but does not know what was taken. That must be some lead to offer so little information. Quit beating around the bush. Get to your point and do it quickly.”
Darren steps closer to her “Something very unusual is happening”
Darren: “I have witnessed it myself.”
Yavanna steps back as Darren enters her personal space. “You had your chance. We’re done here.” She slams the door in his face.
Darren speaks through the door, “A woman…fears to sleep as if her very life was at stake.”
Yavanna shouts, “You continue to speak riddles. I think I’ll have the guards remove you now.”
Darren: “Removing me won’t help get back what you’ve lost…if you tell us we can search for it.”
Yavanna: “So can Koran Thelig, and he’s a damn sight better than you.”
Darren: “He is only 1 pair of eyes and he can’t see what I can see.”
Darren: “I am guessing magical properties?”
Yavanna: “Even if you can help, it’s not my call. Speak to Jorian or Dorian. They handle such things. I overstep my position to say any more.”
Darren: “Very well Miss Yavanna…and for what it’s worth…I am sorry.”
*Darren steps away in search of Jorian.
*Darren heads to Jorian’s office.

You know the way; it is in the newer part of the main hall. You arrive and are standing at the door.

Darren knocks upon the door.
Jorian: “Who is it?”
Darren: “It is Darren Thorgoresh.”
Jorian: “Enter.”
Darren enters and closes the door behind him.
Darren: “It is very good to see you again Jorian.”
Darren steps over to his desk and extends his hand.
Jorian stands and shakes. “Sit down. I don’t have much time. My men have to arrange some execution. Who do you think puts those plants in the trees?”
Darren chuckles. “I would not like that work for certain.”
Darren clears his throat.
Darren: “Not much is being said about What Yavanna has lost or to be more specific, what was taken from her…though a very good thing for those that really wish to help, it gives difficulty to not know what transpired.”
Jorian: “Oh? Do you know someone who wishes to help?”
Darren: “I do, myself included. There are few that could call Yavanna an actual friend; she is hardly ever seen outside her study.”
Jorian leans back in his chair and rubs his eyes. “OK. I’m grateful for the good you’ve done, but I don’t have much time. Maybe smooth talk would work with some of the women. But I’d like you to get to the point.”
Darren: “Everything in her study is a relic or of some significance to the swamp, its history, to the people here. If something was stolen from her it was for a reason…was it a Guild member? Or worse, was it one of Hoyt’s men? Mistress Bianca wants to help her, earnestly, she owes her at least, such kindness she has received.”
Darren: “Before you go into some tizzy about trust, may I remind you what she has done in the past, and Rikard and Bart as well and nothing these people do is without some good attached to it”
Jorian stares at Darren for a few seconds, saying nothing. Then he opens a drawer in his desk, reaches in and pulls out something. He tosses it onto the desk in front of Darren. It is a chit. “Damn right she owes something. In that case, give her the chit. I’ll talk to her myself and find out how she wants to help.”
Darren: “She just wants to find what was taken.”
Darren: “If she knew what it was, it would help.”
Jorian: “Well, Darren, I’m sure there will be more work for you in the future and more money to be made. But I’m afraid I need to get back to work.”
Darren sighs and stands
Darren taking up the chit, turns to leave.
Darren: “You know, Koran may find out who initially stole the item, but he won’t find the item.”
Darren: “What he lacks, we have. Experience.”
Jorian: “You’re a smooth one, I’ll say. You want to fish, head for the docks.”
Jorian: “You have a question, ask it.”
Darren: “If the item is magical, I can see it.”
Darren turns to face him.
Darren: “If you want me to keep something to myself, I will.”
Jorian: “So, are you looking for work now, or is Bianca going to come in? Look, you were crystal clear the other day when your team reported. Why can’t you be as clear now?”
Jorian: “If you want to do a search, say: Jorian, I want to search and get the reward. Is that so hard?”
Darren: “There is a lot going on here in Kith’takharos that I myself do not understand. If I can help, I want to help…the gold offered is incidental.”
Darren: “I was happy with things, just the way they were.”
Jorian: “That’s a lot of words to say “I want the job” and I’m still not sure you said that. So, you want this job?”
Darren: “I do.”
Jorian exhales loudly. “Now, was that so hard?”
Darren: “Actually…”
Darren thinks on that a moment.
Darren: “More than one pair of eyes has to be helpful.”
Jorian holds up a hand. “I get it. But get Bianca in here. I need to talk to her before we agree on anything.”
Darren “Very well, as you desire Jorian.”
Darren nods and leaves the room.
Jorian laughs.
Darren heads to the door that he came in at.

_Meanwhile…outside of the OJL HQ… _

Rikard Castleberry: “I’m not entirely sure Bianca, I’m sure it’s either bought or something.”
Bart: “You betray your friends to look good I believe.”
Mistress Bianca: “I was about to ask but Darren said I already had one. So well, there ya go.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Surely the guards at the gate would know.”
Mistress Bianca: “I can’t ask now, apparently I have one. You would think they write who has one down and shit.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Ok ok. I’ll go ask him.”
Rikard Castleberry walks back towards Amsted.
Rikard Castleberry: “Amsted my good man, how do we go about getting our own chits?”
Mistress Bianca: “Wait!”
Amsted: “Hello again, back so soon?”
Mistress Bianca: “Don’t ask him, Rikard, it will look very strange. If I have one and Darren has one then we should know how to get one. You will need to ask another guard.”
Mistress Bianca: “Please Rikard.”
Rikard Castleberry: “So, you think I should wait until shift change?”
Mistress Bianca: “Yeah, that would be better. It isn’t THAT important right now. But raising suspicion would be bad.”
Mistress Bianca: “Bart, what do you think about what Amsted said?”
Bart: “Which part?”
Mistress Bianca: “The part where Meryl stepped down after someone killed Caleg.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Well Amsted, I was wondering if a message could be sent down to the boys working down in the forge?”
Amsted: “I don’t see why not, what do you need to say? Boy, get over here and listen up!”
Bart: “I am surprised. You said he wanted to get out anyway so maybe it wasn’t so hard on him. I am more worried about the killed guard. That makes no sense.”
Rikard Castleberry: “I just need to let them know that everyone has been dazzled and amazed with the job they did on my armor that they made for me. I don’t think they hear enough good words.”
Rikard Castleberry shows Amsted the armor.
Tannert repeats it back verbatim, once he sees your nods, he runs to deliver it.
Mistress Bianca: “Well, I am done guessing. I need facts. I need to speak with Meryl. He may have wanted out, but this sounds like a set up. And our friend Caleg took the fall.”
Mistress Bianca: “Well, no Meryl took the fall, and Caleg paid for it? Gah. I read about something like that too. I knew I would screw it up. It sounded better in my head.”
Bart: “So, to the Guild?”
Mistress Bianca sighs.
Mistress Bianca: “We probably should wait for Darren.”
Bart: “Shall we wait at Darren’s?”
Mistress Bianca: “And let him get in trouble and end up lost where we would then lose a whole day looking for him?”
Mistress Bianca: “Bart let’s talk about Rituals.”
Mistress Bianca: “You know of any?”
Bart: “I know ways to speak to the Spirits and appease them.”
Bart: “I can ask for their aid.”
Mistress Bianca: “I have hinted at something I want to do. I think with all that is happening I may want to do it tonight.”
Mistress Bianca looks around for eavesdroppers.
Bart: “What is that?”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “I think I can heal us, but it is with a magic that is new to me, and I know of no one else with it.”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “It isn’t like my powers, I am not sure if it is arcane at all.”
Bart: “Healing is a strong magic. It takes much out of a spirit.”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “It may have something to do with spirits, but I don’t know.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Amsted, I noticed your guard mate hasn’t spoken yet. Is he just being diligent?”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “I am going to use blood to power it.”
Bart: “How may I help? I do not use blood though I can see a spirit asking for it.”
Amsted: “I suspect he could if he had something to say?”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “Mine, yours, Rikard’s…And I need to sacrifice our little fiery friend.”
Jade Leaf Guard: “Bugger off.”
Amsted: “Right, then.”
Rikard Castleberry chuckles to himself.
Rikard Castleberry: “There’s always a good place for men of action and few words in this town.”
Bart: “If I can help you I will. Blood is a worthy sacrifice but why the creature?”
Mistress Bianca (quietly): “It is the cause of our wounds. I am piecing this ritual together from clues I have gathered from 3 books and I have already unlocked a power that helped me create those huge dents in my walls. So I know I am on the right path.”
Mistress Bianca: “Thank you Bart. I think I am a little afraid. That is why I have been putting this off. But I think we need to be healthy sooner than later.”
Rikard Castleberry walks back towards Bianca and Bart.
Bart: “It is not a path I walk. I ask the spirits for aid and if they grant it they enter your body and heal you. It is very tiring.”
Rikard Castleberry: “That sounds like it works better than a chest full of bandages and 3 days, though.”
Mistress Bianca: “I asked Lady Salmissra if she wanted to send any scholars or the like to watch the ritual, I said I would teach others what I could in case something happens to me it is not lost.”
Rikard Castleberry: “Won’t she be busy with the execution?”
Bart: “It works faster but there may be lasting effects.”
Mistress Bianca: “She may but she isn’t likely to watch anyway. “
Bart: “I will witness.”
Mistress Bianca: “I should pass along a message to her though that I am moving up the time to tonight, so that she can send who she wants.”
Rikard Castleberry: “There’s a lot going on tonight it appears.”
Mistress Bianca: “What better time than after a memorial than to have a healing ritual?”
Bart: “How much blood will you need?”
Mistress Bianca: “Well, I am not sure. But to be on the safe side, I believe a sizeable amount.”
Mistress Bianca: “Not enough to kill you, but well, think of it as you got to give to get.”
Rikard Castleberry: “That’s nice of you. I would prefer not to be killed in the process of getting healed.”
Bart: “I am not sure that you or Rikard are well enough.”
Mistress Bianca: “Rikard is. I may not be. But what is life without risk?”
Bart: “Shall we take the day to prepare?”
Mistress Bianca: “I think Darren should hurry up, honestly how long does it take to deliver a message?”
Rikard Castleberry: “It has been quite a long time. Maybe he got lost?”
Bart sits in the shade scratching Lil’ Mother behind the ears.
Bart picks ups something shiny and tosses it down the road.
Rikard Castleberry: “Hmmmm, shiny…..”

And so our company of heroes meets once again at Darren’s Manor, near 9AM.

Darren meets them at the Manor and lays the chit down upon the table.
Darren: “Jorian wishes to speak with you Bianca.”
Bart looks at the single chit.
Darren: “He would tell me nothing.”
Mistress Bianca: “Jorian? I thought you were going to talk to Yavanna? You know what? Never mind, Fine. I will make this quick.”
Mistress Bianca picks up the chit and heads to the small gate at the order, she hands whoever the thing.
Amsted: “Thank you Mistress Bianca, head on in.”
Bart: “Is there a room where I will not be disturbed?”
Mistress Bianca goes to Jorian’s room
Bart: “And has nothing breakable?”
Mistress Bianca knocks.

You knock upon Jorian’s door. There is no answer.

Mistress Bianca says quite loud. “What the hell?”
Mistress Bianca: “Anyone around?”
Jorian hears a familiar voice from behind. “You wasted little time.” He steps around her and opens the door. “Come in.”
Bart shrugs and wonders about looking for a closet, pantry or washroom.
Mistress Bianca hears a familiar voice from behind.
Mistress Bianca doesn’t even turn her head and goes in leaning on her staff.
Jorian sits down. He offers Bianca a cup of cool water. “Darren did a good turn, but that will only get him so far. He thinks I haven’t heard bullshit before? I know what it smells like. He has no idea what he’s talking about. The only truth he told was that he or you or all of you want a job.”
Jorian: “He convinced me to hear you out.”
Bart sits in the first room that seems to be quiet, takes a piece of fish from his pocket and places it upon the floor in front of him. He stares into Lil’ Mother’s eyes as he begins to chant.
Mistress Bianca: “I honestly don’t like talking to him either. I want the job, Yavanna gave me some books, and they have been quite helpful.”
Mistress Bianca: “What was stolen?”
Jorian: “First, let me say this. Things have changed in the Transit Guild. Meryl is out. Is the same true for you? That makes a difference here.
Mistress Bianca: “I assumed I would be, I grabbed most of my things yesterday and rented a room at the Frond.”
Mistress Bianca: “I am as out as Meryl is.”
Jorian: “Meryl has honor. We tussled from time to time but he was an honorable foe. By association, some of Meryl’s honor may accrue to you. This Hightower is something else altogether.”
Mistress Bianca: “I don’t know him.”
Mistress Bianca: “Did Meryl ever tell you how he got the job here?”
Bart’s features seem to change in the shadows of the room. Or maybe they don’t. When looking at Bart you see both him and a large Swamp Cat in the same place. His chant seems to also become the yowling of a cat and yet it is not. His had darts out and takes the fish, tearing into it with wild abandon. His movement more graceful then he had shown before.
Jorian: “He may thing his 200 men give him the upper hand, but we’ll see. In any case, you can speak for yourself without Darren. Here’s what I want to know: do you know anything about the undead?
Mistress Bianca: “We fought them. They said something spooky to us, and Bart is convinced there are spirits that need our help.”
Mistress Bianca: “He wants to go to some ruins, the swamp spirits are telling him to.”
Jorian: “OK. Then I should let you know that Dorian has already spoken to Meryl, and we are squared away. You are no longer on my shit list. I just ask you for complete honesty.”
Mistress Bianca: “That is acceptable”
Bart completes his spell, healing his wounds completely.
Jorian nods. “Now we are having one big love fest. I like that.”
Mistress Bianca: “Wait till I make you an offer you won’t refuse.”
Mistress Bianca: “You first though.”
Jorian: “Well, we will see. Now I’m going to tell you something no one outside the Order knows. A number of the colored bricks from the towers were stolen. Skeletal footprints were found nearby. I would ask Koran, but he’s up every minute of the day keeping tabs on Hightower.”
Mistress Bianca: “The cubes! I knew it! It just had to be the things I myself gave her!”
Jorian: “As well as others we found on our own.”
Mistress Bianca: “I have some still, are all of yours gone?”
Jorian: “Not all, but enough to be worried. I can show you the prints. Maybe Bart can follow them. He’s a queer one, but I hear he talks to spirits.”
Mistress Bianca: “Sounds good.”
*Mistress Bianca
: “I think he wouldn’t need the prints, the spirits will probably direct him there anyway.”
Jorian: “Then we need to get your whole team in here.”
Mistress Bianca: “Now for my offer though.”
Jorian puts some chits on the table. “Whenever you can get them together.”
Mistress Bianca: “You have men that were injured by the spiders?”
Jorian: “No one is still injured. They were lucky.”
Mistress Bianca: “Ok, then my offer is useless to you. I could have healed them.”
Jorian: “The best useless offer I’ve had today.”
Mistress Bianca: “Lady Salmissra may be too busy tonight but I was going to show her and some of the historians and learned types a ritual and because of recent matters I think moving it to tonight would be best.”
Mistress Bianca: “The ritual uses the spider we captured and will heal anyone wounded by them. Ask Yavanna for me if she will come?”
Jorian: “Sure, see you later.”
Mistress Bianca: “Ok, bye.”

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