The Cabin Sessions

Sessions Index

Seeking Direction

In which the party seeks a course of action, then finds one. These events took place via email. There are significant gaps in the action where various party members took their leave of the group to pursue individual courses of action.

Quaso 33 (evening/night)

As the sun sets the party surveys their quarters and realizes they're ill-prepared to move out on short notice. Everyone agrees that staying here for a last night, and getting gear organized and together is a good idea. Thyme says he has duties at the Tower he must take care of, and says he will likely be spending the night there. He agrees to return first thing next morning to help the party finish packing and move to new quarters. He also suggests finding common stabling or selling off the mounts still in the party's possession.

So, Thyme departs, and the rest of you make an effort to get gear organized and clean up some of the clutter that has accumulated in your rooms. The evening passes and eventually you all pack it in.

As everyone is settling in for the night, Nasir suddenly smacks himself in the head. "Blast!" He turns to his brother. "Do you know what tomorrow is?"

Fasheen shakes his head.

"It is the Day of Harmony, the Fall Equinox. We will have to join the others in the rites."

Fasheen sighs and nods. "So much for a productive day tomorrow."

As the pair settle back Zeb realizes he has lost track of the days as well. The Fall Equinox is a holy day for him as well. Perhaps it is time to take Nyota up on his offer to introduce him to some of the local believers.

Quaso 34 (morning)

Everyone rises fairly early to get going. It's going to be a busy day. Thyme must have gotten up very early indeed, because he's actually back at your rooms before the rest of you are really organized.

Fasheen and Nasir head towards the Sobar encampment outside the gates. They tell the party they'll arrange for the return of the animals and excess gear. Fasheen also suggests checking at the Inner Gate Inn (right next to the Inner Gate -- your current quarters) for lodgings. It's a fairly nice place. Since the big grain caravans haven't reached Ume yet, it's probably empty and you're likely to get a good deal.

Nasir says they'll be back before noon, and that they plan on returning to the Sobar encampment to join the celebration of the Day of Harmony in the afternoon. Expect them back late or not at all tonight.

Nyota is planning on continuing his work. He mentions again to Zeb that he's met a few of their own and Zeb decides to join him. Nyota has decided to take lodgings in the Manar section of the city and Zeb decides it would be better not to have Nyota off by his lonesome.

Zippy agrees to check on lodgings for the group, hopefully a suite of rooms that everyone can share. He will also arrange stabling. Thyme decides to go with Zippy. Zippy also says they should buy a good lock for the gold chest. Everyone agrees.

Bo is set on trying out his diviniation today to try and find out more about the flagless ships seen along the coast. The tides dictate this afternoon will be the best time to try so that's what he's planning on later today. He warns everyone to be VERY careful around the docks as there are currently double tides running and they arrive with brutal speed. Bo will also be carrying the new magic ring to continue the identification process. In the end he decides to go with Zippy and Thyme to arrange rooms.

Benik is planning on visiting his chapter house this morning to take care of some business there.

Everyone except Nyota and Zeb agree to meet at the Inner Gate Inn for lunch at the noon bell.

Quaso 34 (midday)

Zippy, Thyme, Bo, Fasheen, Nasir, and Benik meet back at the Inner Gate Inn as planned. Fasheen and Nasir have the camels in tow, and Zippy, Thyme and Bo have already transferred most of the party's gear to their rooms at the inn (and applied the lock they purchased to the group's chest of gold in the room). There are four room keys, given to Zippy, Bo, Fasheen and Benik (since Thyme is staying at the Tower for the most part, and Nasir and Fasheen usually stick together).

You have lunch, then split up to go your seperate ways:

Various private actions...

Quaso 35 (evening/night)

Various private actions...

Everyone is at the Inner Gate Inn! You sit down to a group meal, and everyone tells what they accomplished over the last couple days [GM Note: No, I'm not going to write it. If you want to share, share]. The meal is quite good and so is the wine. About the only bad note is the incredibly bad musician Padeen seems to have hired for the evening. He's just plain bad. I mean bad enough that his playing grates on your nerves.

You all continue to eat and drink, talking about what you've done and discovered, until late evening, when you decide it's time to break up and head for rooms. Nyota and Zeb head for their Inn, Thyme heads for the Tower and Bo heads off as well, leaving Benik, Zippy, Nasir and Fasheen the rooms above.

Nyota and Zeb reach the Setting Sun no problem. You make your way to your rooms and crash out.

Quaso 36-41

During the following days everyone does their own thing. Most are either concentrating on their own training, trying to find a course of action for the group, or just having a good time. Various things are heard/felt/learned by various members of the group including:

The party begins to express some interest in the sewers of the city during this time and Zippy does some legwork. He discovers a number of heavily barred drains scattered around various streets. Zippy is also contacted by a Vichese man who is looking for guards for an expedition into the Burning. They're going to be prospecting and want some experienced guards.

Quaso 41 (late evening)

Everyone has met back at the Inner Gate Inn, and after exchanging news and stories...

The party is breaking up, and eveyone not staying at the Inn is moving towards the door, preparing the make their way home. As Bo opens the main doors, Fasheen and Nasir both tense, then sniff the air. You all pause for a moment then realize what you smell: dust, sand, and deathly dry air. "By the light of the three, sandstorm!" exclaims Fasheen. He runs out into the street and gazes skyward. You follow his gaze and can already see the leading edge of the storm obscuring Yeotu's light. "Everyone inside! Looks like we stay here tonight." As he speaks the Militia horns begin to sound, spreading the alarm.

"Well guys," says Zippy "let's have a drink!"

With varying degrees of reluctance the group reforms at the table save Thyme, who elects to turn in early and heads up to your rooms. The rest of you stay up fairly late, but the common room remains quite for obvious reasons. You enjoy a few more drinks, then gradually filter up to your rooms, while outside the wind howls...

Quaso 42 (morning)

The next morning everyone goes their seperate ways once again. Bo and Zeb are off to go fishing, Nyota is off to work on his shrine, Thyme is headed back to the Tower, Zippy is at loose ends, Benik is spending time with his brothers in arms and his family, and Fasheen and Nasir are spending time with the other Sobar.

Quaso 42-45

Another pause for various training and study actions. Nothing much happens this time, at least nothing much the group is willing to share, except the following incident relayed by Nyota.

Just after dusk on the 43rd something very strange happens. You are heading back to the Setting Sun from the shrine, when you hear screams ahead. You silently prepare your armor spell and cast it, then move towards the disturbance at a trot. As you approach the source, a pack of people bursts around the corner and turns towards you, running full speed. Several are screaming in terror and a number of them are cut and bleeding. You easily recognize the wounds as claw or teeth marks.

Fearing the worst you move to the corner. As you look around the stone building you are surprised to see the near end of the street is empty. The far end is a different story. Four humanoid creatures, rotten and decayed, stand at the far end of the street, roughly 50 paces away. Between you and them, a lone figure stands, sword in hand. You pause for a moment, gathering yourself for whatever may come next. One of the creatures hisses, then as a pack they charge the man. You begin to call upon Talamai, preparing to call forth his power, when the man raises his blade high and calls out something in an archaic tongue. The sword blazes into pure greenish-yellow light that shatters and sprays across the area, As it touches the creatures they shriek in agony then collapse, one by one, into burning dust.

The man moves forward and looks over the remains. Several people come out of the buildings and side streets, but none are bold enough to approach. Without further ado the man sheaths his blade, then turns and walks down the street past you. He spares you a glance, but otherwise ignores you. You catch a glimpse of a sunburst symbol and something else upon the man's tabard as he walks past, but it is dark, and you still have spots dancing before your eyes from the blast of light.

Shaken, you examine the remains. With your spirit sight you look them over and catch a fading glimpse of spirit magic, very faint. As the Militia arrives you fade into the background and make your way home in a very thoughtful mood.

Nyota also invites the party members to the rededication of the shrine of Shojinatoq, his person project over the last several weeks. Many party members agree to attend.

Kaionesh 1 (sunset)

The ceremony of rededication (from the party's point of view)...

You set off across town towards the North Bend. Zeb leads you first to a small hostel in the North Quarter bearing the sign of the Setting Sun. "Bide a moment, I'll be right back!" He darts inside, then returns bearing a basket of fruit and a package under one arm. The others feel a momentary qualm of doubt, should you have brought something. Zeb assures you that nothing is expected, but that his faith requires an offering from him at the ceremony.

You continue further north into a tangled weave of streets. Fasheen and Nasir recognize some of the streets from their visit this morning. Finally you round a final bend and find a small crowd gathering near a open area at one side of the street. As you approach you realize there is a small courtyard there, and within stands a small circular structure, open on three sides. You see candles burning within, and Nyota standing on the first step leading up into the shrine and dressed in a flowing white robe marked with a circle and three diamond shaped symbols. Near the rear of the courtyard a white ox is tethered to a stone pillar.

Zeb tells you "You may find a place here," he gestures to the courtyard then glances at the sun, nearly on the horizon. "I will return in a moment." He strides through the crowd to the shrine, then pauses, kneels and lays his spear to one side of the stair. He rises then, and moves inside and kneels before the altar. After a few moments of prayer, he places the basket of fruit on the crowded altar, then rises, bows to the altar and exits the shrine. He turns to Nyota, bows, then offers his package. Nyota returns the bow then carries the package into the shrine and places it out of sight to one side.

Zeb retrieves his spear and returns to your spot in the crowd (as a group you have been slowly and unobtrusively been edging to one side). Along the way he stops to greet a couple of the other Manar present. As he joins you he whispers "We're just in time. The ceremony begins!"

Indeed, you look and realize the sky is darkening quickly as the sun slips below the horizon. Nyota raises his hands and calls out something in Manar, and the crowd responds with a rapid chant. The ceremony begins!

Though Zeb has no problem following along with the rite, the rest of you are lost in the rapid Manar. There is about 10 minutes of invocation and response between Nyota and the crowd, then two men dressed in plain white robes move towards the ox and untie it. They slowly lead it up into the shrine and before the altar as Nyota chants something rapidly in the Manar tongue. The two men position the beast before the altar, then Nyota, still chanting, enters the shrine, approaches the altar and kneels. As Nyota falls silent the crowd picks up a chant, a few drummers along the edges of the courtyard marking time.

After several minutes Nyota rises, and the crowd's chanting grows more intense. Nyota pulls forth a very long knife from within the folds of his robe and raises it high as he turns to the ox. The chanting from the crowd grows in intensity until finally, Nyota slashes downward with the knife. The chanting and drums cease as the blade strikes home. The blow is true, and a gusher of blood bursts forth. With a wild bellow the ox struggles, but the two men hold it firm as its life force quickly ebbs.

Finally the beast falls silently to the floor of the shrine. Nyota returns the blade to the altar, then raises a hand and gestures at something behind the altar. There is a burst of flame as a previously unseen braizer bursts into flame. One by one the two assistants strip off their blood soaked robes and toss them into the brazier where they burn with a faint sizzle. Finally Nyota strips his own robe away and tosses into the flame. He turns and clad only in a loin cloth stands before the shrine once again. He looks over the silent crowd and seems to catch each of you by eye. Finally he raises his hands once again and calls out something in Manar. Abruptly the crowd bursts into chanting interspersed with cheers. Nyota turns and reenters the shrine as the crowd continues their celebration. You notice small groups breaking away from the main gathering and heading down a side street towards a well-lit courtyard.

Zeb jerks his head towards the courtyard, "Come my friends. Now we celebrate!"

"What about Nyota?" asks Thyme.

"He will be along soon. He has final rites to carry out. The spirit of the beast must be appeased."

You follow Zeb down the street and find a party already underway. There are several tables spread with several casks of ale and wine, a spread of fruit, bread, cheese, roast fowl, a huge haunch of beef, and various other delicious looking foodstuffs. Already there are several musicians playing a lively tune, and someone a young Manar woman quickly grabs Zeb and drags him into the circle of dancers.

The rest of you decide to enjoy yourselves, and help yourselves to the feast. You're not exactly comfortable, and you draw more than a few glances from the Manar, but after 20 minutes or so, Nyota arrives and immediately approaches. He actually smiles, the first you've seen from him in quite a while. "Thank you all for attending tonight. I am honored to number you among my friends. Come let me introduce you to some people." In a blur you find yourself introduced to a half dozen Manar, Anula, Aba, Dela, and three or four others whose names you don't catch. Zippy is quickly dragged into the circle of dancers by Aba, while the rest of you remain near the food and drink. You note that Nyota is enjoying himself and eating and drinking heartily.

The party continues well into the night. Sometime after midnight you realize the crowd is thinking and that you've probably had too much to drink. You find Nyota and take your leave. Zeb takes his leave of the rest of you at the sign of the Setting Sun, while the rest of you return to the Inner Gate Inn and crash out in the rooms there.

Kaionesh 2-3

A majority gathers to discuss a descent into the sewers...

As dusk settles in over the city, Benik, Bo, Fasheen, Nasir, Zeb, and Nyota meet up at the Inner Gate.

The six of you (Benik, Bo, Nasir, Fasheen, Zeb, Nyota) spend the evening planning your tasks for tomorrow. Benik says he has some personal matters to attend to, while Bo, with Zeb as guard, is going to scry the sewers and the house in the North Quarter. Fasheen, Nasir and Nyota are going to try and meet with Nudik the Seer, gifts in hand this time. You all elect to spend the night in the rooms at the Inner Gate. Hopefully Thyme and Zippy will show up tomorrow morning and you can get everyone organized.

Eventually everyone meets in the common room of the Inner Gate Inn. As usual, Zippy is the last to arrive. You discuss your plans. Thyme tells the group he has good news. He's talked with Sindal at the Tower, and has a letter of introduction to the city architect. Hopefully he will be able to arrange access and possibly maps as well. He also warns everyone that there are wards in place all over the sewers, particularly on exterior entrances. He tells Bo it is probably a bad idea to try and force passage or use spells through the grate (though a scry shouldn't matter). He agrees to cast Infravision on Bo before the party splits up.

Zippy reports his mother has been robbed in her own house, and that a number of valuables of his were stolen as well. He's worried.

Fasheen, Nasir and Nyota are going to try and meet with Nudik today. They are going to try and find suitable sacrifices and offerings to appease the Seer.

Thyme and Benik agree to go talk with the city architect to see about getting into the sewers.

Zippy declares he's going to do some investigation into who might have robbed him.

Bo declares the tides are low this morning, and without further ado he and Zeb take their leave to go scry the sewers as best they can. The rest of you leave shortly thereafter.

The visit to Nudik as told by Nyota...

The three of you head out to the marketplace near Midway to find some sacrificial goods. Nyota seems to know his way around the marketplace fairly well, and you quickly secure a pair of fine looking young goats. You also buy a basket of food (bread, cheese, fruit, dried fish) as a gift.

Fasheen and Nasir lead the way to Nudik's home. Again you hear the sound of goats from within, echoed by the bleats of your own. Fasheen knocks on the door and eventually the same wizened figure opens it. He stares at you, taking in the goats and the basket under Nasir's arm. He spits forth a stream of Manar and Nyota translates. "You again? What is it you want? I see you have brought gifts this time."

Nyota offers up the gifts and explains the purpose of your visit. Nudik mutters to himself as Nyota speaks. Eventually he interupts. "Enough! Come in. We will see what we will see." You enter the small door and are immediately assaulted by the smell of goats. Nudik leads you through a large open room filled with the animals, and gestures for you to release yours into the flock. You do and follow him into a room more suited to human habitation. He turns at takes the basket from Nasir and examines the contents. "Good enough" he mutters. "Come!" he leads you up a set of stairs and into a large room on the second floor. A single white goat wanders the room. Nudik points and tells you to catch the goat while he prepares. He approaches an altar marked with the symbol of a half-lidded eye.

Fasheen and Nasir catch the goat and bring it to the altar where Nudik instructs them to tie it and place it in a stained depression on the top. That complete the seer waves you back, then stands behind the altar and begins to light various candles and incense there. The room slowly begins to fill with pungent smoke, and your eyes begin to water a bit.

Nudik turns back to the altar, raises his left hand over the goat there and begins to chant something under his breath. Nyota strains to hear but can't make out the words. After several minutes you notice the seer's eyes have rolled back into his head, showing only the whites. Finally the chanting ceases and Nudik raises a long blade overhead. As he calls out something in an arcane tongue the blade flashes downward and slices the goat's throat wide. Blood sprays over the altar and Nudik but you manage to avoid the spatter.

The seer continues to stand in silence behind the altar. Fasheen is about to speak when Nudik suddenly shrieks and begins to speak in perfect Vichese:

	Though you seek today, you shall not find. Of future deeds will I
	apprise.  Mios rises, and he who was stirs in the desolate lands.  War
	comes with night dark hand, though by the light will it begin.  Your
	path leads to burning horizon and beyond, where once the shard was
	found.  Seek first the key, second the light, third the tome, and fourth
	the night. When three touch the skies will the evil wake. Fate depends
	on the choice you make.

Nudik shudders and collapses forward over the altar. The three of you move to help him, but as you approach he stands and waves you away. He stares at you one by one, then shakes his head. "I cannot help you. You must seek your own path in this. Leave this place."

You protest, but he is adamant. Eventually you depart, realizing the old man will tell you nothing further.

It is afternoon when you depart the old man's house, and you are all hungry. You make your way back towards the Inner Gate Inn for a meal and to meet the others.

You are about to turn into the Inn when someone across the street shouts out "Fasheen! Nasir!" The two of you turn and nearly collapse as your father barrels into you hugging you both close. You exchange backpounding hugs and smiles all around as your father tells you that his caravan and the rest of the tribe has just arrived this morning. As the trio talk Nyota smiles to himself and slips inside the Inn, leaving the brothers to get reacquainted with their family.

When the party returns Thyme says he's arranged entry to the sewers at dawn on the 5th. Something to do at last...