9th of Wealsun, 383ONT, 9:14am, Theringrad Island Chain, 57 nautical miles east east south of Honactice.
The Champions Fist had pulled into this island chain yesterday, a string of about four decent sized islands and seven smaller ones. The locals here were friendly enough and it wasn’t hard for the crew to find a little cove to hole up for another two days before they had to head back to the mainland to meet up with their Captain. When they had passed the southernmost island, maybe half a mile in diameter Thaden had felt something, some strange disturbance in the Weave. Once the ship had dropped anchor two islands over, a larger one with a better beach that Teagan and frequented a few times, it had not been hard to convince the Mate to have a couple sailors row him back to the island to investigate.
Bidding his thanks to his large companions, they agreed to come pick him up in two days before they departed, unless he sent message somehow prior. With that Thadan was left alone on the beach of this strange island. He knelt and his left paw touched the sand, he could feel the weave pulsating through this place, Ahsla and Bogan, opposing factions of the weave rising and falling like the tide. Master Ben-Jie had spoken of this phenomenon once before, those who could wield and control both side of the weave were said to be Bendu, or in perfect balance. It was a crazy notion, thought to be too dangerous to pursue, but still that is what he was feeling now. He closed his eyes centering his focus and stretched his mind out. The source of these emanations was further inland, towards the centre of the island. He sighed, wishing that Aury were here, it would be a long jog without her. He moved his sword from his hip to his back and took a few moments to stretch. Then settling that it would never get done lest he start, the Waylan Guard Mouse began his steady lopping jog towards the center of the island.
9th of Wealsun, 383ONT, 1:14pm, Bendu Island, ancient temple at islands centre.
The journey had not been easy. The island was filled with snakes and twice he’d been nearly swallowed. He didn’t know if he was surprised or not, but before him stood an ancient temple, built with long stacked stones in a pyramid formation. The entire building, those easily thirty feet in height was scaled to the Littles. He drew his sword allowing the light blue gleam of it to caste its light in the darkened hallways of the great temple.
Carefully his caste each paw out feeling the ground for support before committing his weight. He had moved perhaps twenty feet inwards when the floor beneath his paws crumbled away. With reflexes wrought of years of Guard Mouse training he dropped his blade and threw himself forward, only just grasping the edge of the pit. His little paws dug into the edge as his feet kicked trying to find purchase, he looked below seeing the pit dropped maybe eight feet, a nasty fall for any little, and the bottom had several angry looking flesh eating scarabs chittering and snapping at the walls. Likely disappointed that their meal was being denied to them. Thaden calmed his breath and climbed out, calling on the weave to bring his blade back to his paws. He was not the first or the last adventurer to wonder how creatures trapped in these pits managed to stay alive during years of disuse, but filed the question away with other great mysteries such as why does glue not stick to the inside of the bottle, or if mirrors require light to work, why do subterranean creatures who rely on dark vision have them? He called on the weave once more to reignite the blue glow to his blade, and slightly more carefully then before continued his advance down the hallway.
The wall of the hallway was inscribed with an ancient inlay of carvings… the creatures appeared to be imps of devils of some kind, perhaps mutated littles, as many were mammals with the heads of snakes, lizards or birds. They were being forced to toil under the watchful gaze of a dragon of seven heads. Each of the toiling creatures held a great sphere, to some, the sphere’s appeared to be almost comically light, other creatures appeared to be nearly crushed under the weight of the spheres. As the light of his blade was caste over the spheres he could see that they were indeed coloured… with only a blue light to see by he could currently tell what colours they were, but all appeared to run from white to black in various shades of blue. Between the creatures carved into the walls appeared to be glyphs and runes of powers, some of the languages he was sure were infernal, he could also pick out Feline and Zeymayian as well, others appeared to perhaps be dwarven or even arachnid some still defied his knowledge of languages. He walked a few steps further and noted in the far corner, a scrawling into the wall, this appeared still ancient but was carved well after the originally art piece was finished. It was written in Waylen
The Great Hall you must discover, through this maze it will uncover.
Shun green if you can, but night’s good color
is for those of great valor.
If shades of red stand for blood the wise
will not need sacrifice aught but friendship should suffice.
Two pits along the way will be found to lead
to a fortuitous fall, so check, and check the wall.
These keys and those are most important of all,
and beware of trembling hands and what they will maul.
If you find the false you find the true
and into the columned hall you’ll come,
and there the throne that’s key and keyed.
The she of stone do more than
meets the viewer’s eye, wary you shall be or forever you shall tarry
You’ve left and left and found this catacomb
and now within it the races twinned of fate,
will be reborn, or the weave will die.
Master Guard Mouse Typhon, 47 ONT
Thaden read the inscription thrice more before deciding it was probably important enough to take a rubbing of. He had never heard of this Master Guard Mouse… not surprising it appeared he was over three hundred year gone from this place, still though… he recalled no writing of a temple on an island in these waters. If this had been a mission from the Guard, what could it mean? He read the inscription again growing in annoyance… he hated cryptic writings, why didn’t Waylens leaving messages just say what they needed to say? Why the weird riddles written in odd staccatos? He let our a frustrated breath and wiped the sweat from his brow, placing the inscription back in his pouch he moved further into the catacombs
10th of Wealsun, 383ONT, 2:14am, Bendu Island.
Thaden woozily staggered onto the beach, his wits were not fully about him… what had happened in the temple, why was he leaving… his hands clutched around the small red cube, he needed help. His wounds were vicious, looking down it appeared he had been in several fights. His normally brown fur was matted with both fresh and dried blood. His cloak was tattered, and thick sloths of black tarrish poison appeared to be coating two puncture marks along the side of his body.
“that’s not good” he heard himself say as he assessed himself… he was unsure of the date, or time… the sun was gone and the moon and stars were shining brightly, he needed help
“DIDA CHICK?” he heard a creature say. He leaned heavily on his sword putting the blade point in the ground he adjusted his weight and turned his head, coming from the ocean were a line of crustaceans, mostly crab like creatures or lobstrosities. Mangled and maligned teeth with eyes that betrayed intelligence and hunger. They stood at least two feet tall, with shells that went from brown to green to white to rust. They white jagged edges of their teeth made a constant grinding noise as their claws continually clicked.
“DIDA CHUM?” One Called
“DIDA CHICK?” the first questioned back… what were they saying, what were the questions
“I am Guard Mouse Thaden of Rootwallow, I mean you no…”
SNAP SNAP SNAP
“DIDA CHUM? DIDA CHUM?” muscle memory saved his life as he twisted his blade up and parried to snaps cutting at the claw the third time, the creature and the questions kept coming, his allies close behind.
“Is it the cube you want?” Thaden asked, more to himself then the creature… his mind was so foggy, he couldn’t remember what the cube was, only that it was important.
“DIDA CHICK?” the creature asked as two of its companions moved around to flank him, claws testing wildly. Thaden could feel his heart quicken, the weave began to flow through him more fully as battle was begun, it helped clear some of the poisons fog, but not much
“You’ll not have it!” Thaden said, his blade turning its brilliant blue again “Retreat now foul creatures, or face the wrath of the Guard!”
“DIDA…” the creature never finished its question, Thaden raced in with his blade and carved through its shell, killing the first of his many enemies
11th of Wealsun, 383ONT, 10:42am, Bendu Island, Western Beach
Thaden’s sword flew from his grasp as the great Decapod smashed him against a rock. The Guard Mouse had enough sense in him left to roll as a pointed leg slammed down, he rolled again and again as two more stabbing attacks followed. He tried to reach into the weave but found he was exhausted… he had nothing left. The curstatcean shot a snapping claw out at him…. It took a piece of his ear but little more.
“Aury…” he called weakly “I need you” he panted, extecting his war kitten to come tumbling out of the brush and do away with this final foe
The creature rushed again, it’s massive claw snapping for his neck. Thaden’s hands shot up each grabbing an end of the claw and trying with all his might to keep it from closing and sundering him in two
“Aury…” he called again through gritted teeth as he fought the creature… hunger and bloodlust in it’s eyes
“DIDA CHUM? DIDA CHUM?” It asked incessantly as it applied pressure… the inside of the claws were sharp, cutting the pads of his paws as he tried to keep the creature at bay.
“by the Weave Aury… I need you” he called, wondering if the kitten had abandoned him. With a final effort he pried the claws apart a little farther, kicking out at them; but there was no success to be had.
“DIDA CHICK!” the creature, sensing victory, relished. It slammed Thaden into the sand. Knocking the breath from him and sending his world into hues of grey.
“aury….” He called one last time, his vision fading
And like that, the creature was ripped from the ground, dropping Thaden in surprise… the Guard Mouse heard a distant splash… his head lolled around to see his faithful mount, in her sylph form
“watch out Aury….” He moaned as his wits fled… the last thing he heard was a gasp of surprise and “DIDA CHICK?”