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Chapter the Second, The Road to Canagadi

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Murometz:
Chapter I,  The Six Degrees of Joachim Ebellos is complete (though still confusing :P)

Here in this thread, we will begin Chapter II, The Road to Canagadi.

Murometz:
The following day the mismatched companions gathered outside Abodroc’s Bronze Gate.

The well-trod merchant’s road beyond the gates of the city, snaked north across drying tableland and grazing lands for many miles, veered east then north once more, now parallel to the vast Trade-Sea which lay less than a dozen miles to the east from this route.

From there, they would travel through no-man’s land for many more miles still. These would be lands outside the Ban-Ral-Sab Caliphate’s dominion, where independent (and highly paranoid) walled city-states still dotted the otherwise uninspiring landscape and where merchants still roamed, but also, where the perils of the wilds were all too real and palpable.
 
They would know they had arrived in Canagadi, their ultimate destination, when the Great Mountains of Seeneryp rose up from the horizon seemingly blocking all travel further north.

Somewhere in that small mountain-drowned country, where the clime was unusual and dozens of unique spice-plants flourished like no where else, sat the great stone keep of St. Hurdegilda and the Sisters of Silence.

--------------------------------

Hezzab snorted as Nisher Stryne strolled up to the group, leering all about. Zuan was busy checking the straps of his howdah, but managed a scowl at Nisher as well.

Iskander was already there, his arms crossed, a strange look of bemusement on his face, as if he was contemplating a great secret known only to him. Next to Iskander, arms also crossed, stood a bear of a man with an emotionless, disinterested look in his eyes. This was Tagu.

Saano seemed lost in thought as well as he joined the others, barely looking up from a tome he was reading, but nodding acknowledgement at his new companions.

The sun was shining bright this morning and the skies were clear.

An auspicious beginning?


(OOC: Bits of info sent to Iskander via PM)

Shadoweagle:
Nisher Stryne strolled up to the small group lazily, stretching and yawning - he was well rested; in fact, it felt like he had been out for a fortnight! Nish's eyes flicked over each of the party members momentarily, taking each of them in. A low whistle parted from the spellwriter's lips as he noted the large newcomer to their 'merry' band of travellers, and a wry smile appeared on his lips, "Well, who's this one, then?" Nish addressed Iskander, assuming the reason he was standing next to the stranger was that he was aquainted with him, "Not even out the gates and old Ebellos has managed to give us a surprise."
The spellwriter's eyes lingered on Tagu for some time - undecided on what to make of the fellow- before he walked over to Saano, making sure to give Zuan and his odorous camel a wide birth, but sneaking a sardonic grin at the Trade Priest. Nisher peered over Saano's shoulder to catch a peek at what the tattooed man was reading.

Nisher was truly in a great mood, today; although he never would admit such a thing! He liked travelling, and he liked throwing himself into the unknown, and he -loved- annoying the Zuan Coursi, so the day would be sweet. The platinum bezoom which Ebellos had given Nisher remained tucked behind his belt, unused - he was only two days in Abodroc and his travelling gear was not even unpacked so purchasing fresh equipment was not a necessity. He had spent his smaller coin on dried rations and general supplies. The request for money was only truly an act to see how eager the elder Trade Priest was to get Nish on this journey.
Yes, that snake-eyed look Ebellos gave when Nish had asked for some of his hard-earned coin remained fresh in the spellwriter's memory, and it put him slightly ill-at-ease. Nisher would be cautious. He felt that not all was as it seemed.

Chaosmark:
Saano

Hm...Byakhee...Byakko...Ah! There it is, B'kakor. Not much new information here, though that particular binding circle looks promising. A combination of aural and physical bonds, to chain the spirit and prevent it from fleeing...I wonder what the materials are for that...?

Saano took absent note of his companions as they gathered (Tagu needed no introduction, for his purpose and employer were obvious), and once Nisher joined their ranks, the last of the group to arrive, he marked his place in the tome and looked to each in turn, a half-smile on his lips that didn't quite reach to his eyes. "Are we all ready? I should think an early start will give us enough time to take a rest for meal during the worst of the mid-day heat. And the sooner we depart, the sooner we'll arrive."

valadaar:
"Yes, we should be off soon," said Iskander.  "Tagu here is a friend of mine who agreed to come long, as a favour to me," not elaborating that he had paid for this favour, painfully, in advance.  "He's a good fighter, but not one for conversation.  "

"I normally don't do this, but it may be useful to know our employer has not been completely fortright with us. It seems he has been getting around a bit , coming back from abroad shortly before hiring me.  Now, I don't begrudge a man his secrets, but it seems odd. What purpose did saying otherwise serve I wonder?"


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