Saturday, May 7, 2016

Ancient Dread: Enter Rod Kym Nar


As Strongbow, Alta, and Mug return to the ship, they discover that several members of the party have not returned, giving all indications that they won’t.  Frederick, Eddie, and Klyn had departed, taking all their belongings with them.  Echo had chosen to stay and continue the adventure.  Strongbow is glad of her company.  Several hours later, a new face appears.  From the Temple Dragonwright, a priestess by the name of Rod-Kym-Nar, declares her intention to join the party and assist them on their quest.  The Dragons have guided her to this place to help Strongbow and Echo succeed in finding…. What?  They still don’t know.  More supplies are needed.
They go through town to pick up gear for the extended journey.  Food, equipment, supplies, mules.. All the necessary items needed to survive the unknown.  Echo shows Strongbow part of her take from the slaver ship, a golden statue of some sort of bird.  Sensing its evil, Strongbow flings it into the harbor.  A sense of foreboding falls over the group as if some force is telling them it will make them pay for that.  
As they continue their sojourn through the markets, they notice a figure is following them.  A cloaked male, hunched over and creepy.  He doesn’t give the impression of hostility but instead one of wanting to communicate with them.  They grab a table at a diner.  Within minutes he slides up to the table and offers them a bag of …. Something… for sale for a mere 10 gold. 
“You buy, yes?  Master wants you to have. “ he says in a grating, whiney voice.
Echo tries to read his aura, the impression she gets is that he is ‘whole but crumbling’.  The party debates and decides to take him up on his offer, wondering who the ‘Master’ is.  The gold is exchanged and he places the bag on the table before shambling off.  Inside the bag is a ring.  Rod claims it and places it back in the bag for the time being.  They purchase the last of their supplies and head back to the ship.
For the first three weeks out at sea, things are uneventful.  As they sail past the Floenry Islands, the last known bastion of civilization in the south however, things begin to change.  The crew and passengers become anxious and stressed.  Tempers flare.  Several sailors get into a brawl remarking that they are not being paid enough to risk their lives like this.  Sailors who fought valiantly against a slaver pirate crew, magic users, and demons.  Strongbow seems unaffected by this malaise and uses this to inspire the crew.  He stands at the bow of the ship, facing the ocean head on.  They seem to sail through a wall, like the feeling of pressure preceding a storm front and the sensation of Doom and foreboding disappears.
The next day, shortly before dawn, land is sighted, a three island archipelago.  Sailing for a bit discovers a bay suitable to anchor in.  

 The party goes ashore along with their retainers and several crew.  Exploring, they see a mud covered native hiding in the jungle.  A shout by one of the sailors startles him and he bolts into the forest.  Strongbow and Rod-kym-na give chase while the rest stay behind on the beach.  Strongbow catches up with the native and indicates that the party is not hostile.  He learns the native’s name.. Te’ke, and they arrange a meeting for the following morning.  Strongbow and Rod return to the beach and they set up camp for the night, posting numerous watches as they are still unsure of this land and the inhabitants.
The next morning arrives early.  As the party trices up the camp, out of the jungle comes Te’ke and numerous members of his tribe including the tribe’s Shaman/Mind Mage Adisa.  Surprising the adventurers, Adisa speaks fluent, if archaic, Elvish. After some parley, the party accepts an invitation to the village, unarmed, in exchange for a representative (iow hostage) from the tribe, the ‘Beloved of Yetu’, to ‘visit’ the ship.  Rod slips on the ring she got back in Sulanok and understands the mutterings of the rest of the tribe.  Echo drinks a ‘Tongues’ potion and also understands.  The mutterings include dire threats against the party should anything happen to the ‘Beloved’ one.
The next day, a messenger arrives to drop off a little girl with the crew and lead the
team to the village of Ma’lwai’yu. Adisa gives the grand tour, and then—feast time!
After the feast comes story-time. Adisa tells of how she learned her skills. The Chief,
Hi’ng-tar’da, tells the creation myth of the islands. Strongbow retells a tale of defending a
village. Rod-kym-na’s story is a short but personal telling of being called to her god. Echo’s
is a highly self-indulgent and very tall tale of being awesome in a grand adventure.

After the stories, they move to the Chief’s hut, an indication that it is time to exchange gifts.  After story-time, the team gathers in the Chief’s hut for gift-giving. Strongbow gives
the Chief a pair of machetes for the tribe’s best scouts/warriors. In return, the Chief gives
Strongbow a mantle of leadership. Rod-kym-na receives a pouch, seemingly meant to hold
a large pearl. Echo gets a pouch of berries.

They are given a hut for the night and told to choose between Adisa, the Shaman, or Te’ke the scout, to guide them to meet the head Shaman, Ye'tu.  They decide on the scout.  Tomorrow they move into the jungle. 

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