These last few days have been incredibly trying. I’m not used to all of the long travels in such a hot climate. Thankfully our friend Sahil has been helping with the heat by casting a spell to allow us to not feel the elements as badly as others around us. Even so, the days seem to drag on, punctuated only by moments of action.
One such moment came while we were escorting the hobgoblin to Lastar for interrogation. We came upon a larger caravan that had been attacked. It was awful. It looked like the men had been tortured and many of them had been tied down and raped. Poor Setibyr. I didn’t know if he would run or fly into a rage. He’s incredibly brave and stood his ground. Instead of fleeing the awful scene, he broke their restraints and prayed for them. He was clearly very distressed, though. I really hope his night terrors don’t start again. I knew we would see some terrible things, but I didn’t think about what we might see affecting my brother so badly.
Later that night, I tried to keep a discreet eye on him. I know he wouldn’t want me doting on him in front of the other men. While we were sleeping, our hin friend, Tuck, took it upon himself to untie the hobgoblin prisoner, who promptly fled. Why, I do not know. It certainly made a lot more work for us as we tried to recapture him. We foolishly split up before realizing that separating in a desert was quite possibly a death sentence, especially in an area where we could easily become disoriented and lost. When we did get back together and locate the hobgoblin, he had died from the extreme heat. He had not been prepared when he fled our camp and had succumb to the elements. Now he was dead and useless to us. One of the members of our party suggested that we could possibly speak with him from beyond the grave, so his head was cut off and taken with us.
After another short monsoon, we came upon another caravan and a mob heading away from it. This one was ablaze! Shino and Danjo tried to put out the fire so we could look at the contents of one of the wagons, but it exploded once they poured water on it!! I’ve never seen such a fire or such an explosion! Not knowing any way to put out the fire, we fled. We were just outside of Lastar and were surrounded by a group of guards, who no doubt had seen the fire and explosion. They interrogated us and let us know that the rules of their city-state were incredibly strict before allowing us inside.
Once we were inside, we were beset by the townspeople who wanted to know about the trade routes from Assur and the state of the city. They were starting to panic and Tuck was able to work some kind of magics to calm them so we could head to the temple of Lucha. Finally I was back somewhere that I could be comfortable! I told the initiate about our job from the temple in Assur. We all serve the same lady, so I saw no problem in giving them the news of how the trade routes are and the conditions in Assur. I’m sure the Lady has revealed some of this to higher followers anyway. Technically, we are employed by the temple of Lucha so I consider them my employers as well.
We tried to find someone to give us information from the severed head, but the price was rather steep. The temple of Lucha would not let us ask questions or be present at the spell casting so we did not want them to perform the ritual. We tried bartering at some of the temples, but it would be at least 600 crintz just to ask three questions. Who knows if we would ask the right questions! While we considered our options, we went to an inn and tavern called The Eye. There were all manners of beings there, including one called a Beholder! I’m sure my eyes were bigger than saucers, and I hope I did not show how little I know of such exotic races. I have a feeling I will meet a great many more in this strange city!