Eye of the Beholder

Solishtari's Journal

Entry 1

What an odd group we are, but Master Gareth must have some idea what he’s doing considering the gravity of the situation. Still, I have doubts about the half elf and Vanar, Zumak and Rava by name. The unruly duo get into as many fights with each other as they do with others. I think they enjoy it. I do not think they are bad folk, but for this mission? I am not sure of Master Gareth’s reasoning at all. It is too soon to be sure of the human and elf. Karth is a monk of some sort. A very quiet fellow. I do not think he has much experience in the world. I feel sorry for his rude entry into the world and hope that Rava and Zumak will not introduce him to too many bad habits before the end of our journey. Cyton is also a quiet one, though he has already proved to be a good comrade through his diligence. The final member of our group, a gnome by the name of Sgt Striker, seems quite competent and easily the most outgoing of our motley group. I feel that if anyone can reign in the excesses of the Vanar and half-elf, it is he. Hopefully they will not get themselves or anyone else killed with their antics. I have already had to heal Zumak once after Rava animated a stool. The less said of that, the better.

I am particularly concerned with the Vanar’s petty thefts, which Zumak seems to enable by distraction. For the sake of our mission, I bit my tongue when I saw him steal the lady’s ring, but hopefully Rava will show other skills beyond avarice. Are Zumak and Rava working in concert or is Rava simply using the half-elf’s showmanship to mask his thievery? I have a feeling that Rava is not the fool he pretends to be. Zumak is a bit foppish and a little too interested in gathering an audience. Well, he is an entertainer, but surely he must be aware how dangerous our mission is. I feel we should maintain a low profile, but perhaps he intends to mislead any spies with a pretense of being a simple bard. Even if he was not incline to draw a crowd, his frequent quarrels with Rava ensure that we will be remembered by the locals no matter where we go. To be fair, Rava did start things by flinging his excrement at Zumak, but it takes two to quarrel. Rava is obviously from a culture which holds different values than the civilized lands. Zumak should be the better man and simply ignore the Vanar until he becomes bored with his games. Neither of them seem malicious; the Vanar is simply immature, and Zumak plays right into it.

After the fracas at the tavern near the airships, the two went on to make fools of themselves at the inn we stayed in upon arrival. I’m surprised the innkeeper did not throw us out, especially with the disruptions caused later that night. Some spy sent a construct to steal the map Master Gareth gave us to reach our destination. Cyton has some skill in cartomancy and so has altered the map. I will say no more on that in case these notes are compromised. I took care to sleep near the door and was relieved that Karth opted to sleep near the window, but it was Cyton who alerted us to the construct’s entry. The thing was so slight that we could barely see it in the darkness, though Rava was able to sense its presence, which he proclaimed loudly and repeatedly. I could sense evil but all our attempts to locate the creature failed. I even woke the strange monkey that the Sgt bought at a local junk shop, hoping that it might see what we could not.

In the course of the battle, a window was broken and the dresser much abused, bringing the innkeeper’s wife to the door. It goes against my nature to lie, but for the good of our mission, I advised Cyton to do so. For the ultimate good of this world, a little white lie would do her no harm. I was more worried that she might attempt to come into the room and be hurt by the creature.

But for all our attempts to catch the thing, it was Sgt Striker who finally disabled it with his magic. The inkeeper’s wife was aghast at the cause of the ruckus, fully refunding our money and giving us each a week’s worth of provisions. This was an unforeseen windfall, and I was half tempted to tell her to keep my 2 gold for her kindness. I apologized repeatedly for the trouble we had caused her earlier and sincerely hope that she never has such unruly guests as we six again.

We are now ready to begin our journey in earnest. Zumak has spent all his gold on giant lockpicks. He is also carrying the potion of levitation given us by Master Gareth. I think that will come in quite handy with the “giant” rope I purchased in town for the exorbitant price of 8 gold. I think the old man was simply having fun with us, but rope, giant or not, is sure to come in handy where we’re going. Hopefully we survive this trip and the experience will stand me in good stead when I am finally able to confront my enemy in Riedra.

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