Wandering Through Terran–Chapter 06

January 7, 2010



Chapter Six: The Next Stop

Where a Course is Set

and Mysteries Abound…

Dayspring’s party was ready to leave the Kingdom of Bris early the next morning, all anxious to get on their way. The night had been a long one, as the King insisted on entertaining them throughout the night. Slant managed to distract him long enough for most of his party to sneak off to bed, but most still looked exhausted as they prepared to depart. King Reul offered them a ship to speed up their travels as they tried to find Zev. He led the group down to the docks personally, where he arranged passage for them with one of his favored sea captains.

You won’t catch up to him over land,” the King explained as wished them off. “If Zev is in fact going to Aven, he’s probably already there and you would do well to sail to Dunn where you can arrange passage on an airship to Falston. Half a day’s journey as the crow flies. From there it is a day’s ride to Aven, at worst. Provided everything goes well, you could be in Aven by the day after tomorrow.”

How are we sure he’s heading towards Aven?” Dayspring asked.

Reports have led us to believe the creature unearthed at Calla Leto is at large in that area,” the King replied. “After my daughter returned, Zev advised me to send men searching my lands for it. There were numerous sightings of a creature that matched the description, but little of note or solid use. It moved fast and without hindrance across the plains, in the direction of Aven.”

And Zev would likely pursue this creature to whatever ends he happened upon,” Herb concluded. “I know Zev and he’ll want to see it through to the end. Probably taking it personally and blaming himself for getting Vera hurt and losing track of the creature in the first place. He’s a professional at beating himself up when he doesn’t deserve it. As you said, there have been sightings of a creature like the one that Vera described to us across Terran. That was actually my purpose in visiting the Temple, to investigate it myself. The locations of the sightings indicate that it is going to Aven. With the recent events in that Kingdom, I believe it is wise to assume there is a connection.”

So that’s the plan?” Eseen asked. “Aven by way of Dunn and Falston? How long will it take for us to get there?”

Likely a day to get to Falston,” Slant answered. “Another to get to Aven. Maybe two if it goes poorly. It’s half a day by sea to Dunn, saving us three days ride around the Iotian Sea and across the plains. The airships at Dunn will take a matter of hours to cover the leagues to Falston, then it’s a straight shot north to Aven. Could be there tomorrow morning, if all goes according to plan.”

Then let us be on our way,” Dayspring said.


The ship departed from Bris, taking advantage of the favorable winds that cropped up that day. With the need for haste, the King had arranged passage for them on the next trading ship on its way to Dunn for the Great Fair they annually hold. The crew was jovial and kind with the guests aboard their ship, offering a great many accommodations that the party had not been expecting. The ship’s captain, a boisterous and loud man, bartered and gambled with them for the two full hours until they reached Dunn. By that point Herb had won much of his money and his mood was considerably less happy.

Slant and Herb departed to arrange passage on the next airship bound for Falston while the others decided to tour the city. While no one disputed the mastery Bris held over the seas, no one disrespected its sister city across the Iotian Sea either. Known more for their skills beneath the water, the men and women of Falston were renowned for their abilities when it came to the fishing and pearling and all such tasks. Some believed there was a hidden congress between them and an unknown nation beneath the sea, but no one could confirm or deny that claim. Either way, the party spent much of their time exploring the city and sampling what the street vendors had to offer. Eseen, accompanied by Dayspring, one of his bodyguards and one of the ninjas, sampled the cuisine being put out by a particular vendor as they walked.

I’ve never had foods like this,” she said. “It is amazing.”

You’re too kind,” the young vendor said. She was a short, bouncy little blond woman wearing a dark red dress. She smiled giddily as Eseen paid for two full lobster rolls. “This is a recipe handed down for generations in my family. I am glad you enjoy it.”

Dayspring smiled as Eseen quickly ate the roll, smiling bashfully as she finished. She burped loudly, eliciting a smirk from the knight.

Forgive me,” she said. “I am being rather uncouth.”

Not to the worst extent you could,” he replied. “I’ve a soldier, so I can honestly say I’ve see worse. You don’t get out of the Temple that often?”

I was raised by a Dark Elf until the age of ten,” she replied. “For five years I was a child of the forest, enthralled by the power of the Dark Forest and being drawn in. For the last two years, I joined my parents at the Temple. I have known little of the world. This is really my first excursion beyond the desert.”

You were raised by a Dark Elf?”

For the most part… truth be told, he wasn’t much of a parent. He tried, but he ultimately failed. Not the same one who has been terrorizing your lands, although my father said he was a relative. He was not as horrible as his kind are made out to be. He was not the one who stole me from my parents, just the one who somehow recovered me after a timely accident befell the kidnappers. He was an enemy of my father’s, an old adversary. Fortunately he bore me little ill-will and kept me quite safe until my parents heard tell of a savage girl living in a forest.”

Sounds like a joyous time.”

Not nearly as depressing as it could have been.”

Dayspring nodded as they moved through the streets towards the airfield, Eseen carefully eating her second roll. As she wiped the crumbs away and licked her fingers, Eseen smiled at her companion.

I think I’ve been enough of a pig for today,” the young mage said meekly. “My mother said you were from the same area she came from. Up in the Tund. You aren’t from the lands traditionally associated with Tryps, yet you’re a captain in the Royal Guard. How did that come to be?”

Tryps went to war with the Clans of the Tund centuries ago in a bid to claim the territory,” he said. “We are very fierce warriors, and the armies of Tryps were stymied for a time. The King of Tryps at the time, seeing an opportunity, negotiated a truce with the Clans. The accord deemed it necessary for the people of the Clans to provide services to Tryps, the main way that is accomplished being through military service. I have advanced very quickly through the ranks while providing my service.”

So you are a skilled warrior who has angered the King,” Eseen surmised quietly.

It’s more a case of old prejudices coming back. Despite the truce, the people of Tryps do harbor some level of resentment for my people and all outlanders. Old habits I guess.”

Yes… my mother often spoke of returning to her home on the Tund. Is it nice?”

It’s cold, but it does have a raw beauty to it.”

Yes. Mother likes to tell me about the Tund, telling stories of her childhood. Not really sure I believe all of them.”

They walked out of the city through the east gate, moving down the brick road towards the airfield. The large zeppelins loomed ahead, a fleet of balloons tethered to the ground. They spotted Slant and Herb as they got closer. The others were already loading onto the ship as they arrived.

We’ll be in Falston by sunset,” Herb said. “We’ll put ourselves in Aven tomorrow night at some point if we ride hard.”

Any word on Zev?” Slant asked.

A few interesting points,” the Ranger replied. “Apparently Fenway was here, asking a lot of questions about the Guardians of Sorcery.”

Any reason why he’d do that?”

None that I can think of.”


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