The Observations of Avalandohamagannahnieventhallailmar
Skorot Goldshine, a wealthy Dwarf, wished to celebrate the new year with a fabulous and elaborate feast. Many of the things she wished to eat were difficult to acquire, and so she hired a small number of adepts to help her. My companions, and the shopping list we were given:
Fenrir, Windling Shaman
Fredi Dram, Dwarf Cavalrydwarf
Lasairfhíona Aul’ef, Human Swordmaster
Quis'Tan, Spirit Rider and fellow Obsid
1 dozen Earth Q'Wril
1/2 dozen Nightworm
1 Crocodile (extra large)
1/2 dozen Crakbill
1 Thunder Beetle
1 dozen Turfcutter Beetle Larva
1 Razor Boar
1/2 dozen Cloud Bird eggs
1/2 dozen Tundra Elk
(These lists are different! Skorot Goldshine did not express interest in eating any of us!)
We examined the list, and thought of how we could acquire each of these things. Getting all of them was completely out of the question in the short timeframe we had. Skorot suggested that as Adepts of second and third Circle, that we strongly consider not attempting to defeat an Azijin. We also rapidly concluded that attempting to do anything involving Cloud Birds was a very bad idea. Ruling those out, we whittled the list down to some hopes:
Earth Q'Wrils, often found near Borgan's Rest
Crakbills, possibly found near Borgan's Rest, possibly in or near the Servos Jungle
1 Crocodile (extra large), often found in the Servos Jungle
any of the plants we could possibly harvest
We set out for Borgan's Rest. Borgan's Rest was one of the first places I saw aboveground, and this road will always hold a special memories for me. One of those memories was of being attacked by Earth Q'Wrils. With the help of a spell from Fenrir that made us all highly aware of nearby animals, we were able to sense them even while they were in the ground. We made ready, and baited them to attack us. They did, and we dispatched them almost, but not entirely, without incident. One little Earth Q'Wril was so brave and mighty that she dealt Quis'tan an enormous wound, that might well have killed Fenrir outright. With help from Fredi, I was able to capture this brave creature. With later help from Fenrir, she is now happy to be my pet, and I have Named her Earthpike. She is helping me develop a much better understanding of Earth!
We hoped to encounter Crakbills somewhere along our journey. We were blessed by fortune, and encountered them on the same day as we had the Earth Q'Wrils. Fenrir's spell once again proved very helpful, and we spotted the Crakbills before they spotted us. We took a moment to breathe and prepare, and then they saw us, and swooped down for the attack. We were able to defeat them - a Spirit Rider and a Cavalrydwarf make wonderful companions when one is traveling on the plains - but not before suffering some minor paralysis. Crakbills have strong beaks, but stronger breath. Their breath is magical in nature, and can rob a Namegiver (or an animal) of the ability to move. Adepts planning to fight Crakbills should make sure that any shield they use is magical, and not merely physical.
We rested in Borgan's Rest, even though none of us were Named Borgan. The people who lived there did not seem amused by this joke.
We made good time into the Servos Jungle. The jungle is a different place when one is always aware of nearby animals. I did not realize how many of them it contained, nor how many of them were so well-hidden. If any reader has the opportunity to travel through this jungle with a Shaman, I recommend the experience! One of the things this spell revealed was some resting crocodiles. Fenrir was able to examine them from the relative safety of the air, and we concluded that they were only normal-size crocodiles and so would not be a sufficient meal for the likes of a Skorot Goldshine party. We continued on, in search of one that would. As we traveled, I began to wonder how large this crocodile would be. I began to think of the giant spiders I have seen, and how much larger they are than (supposedly) regular spiders. And of the giant ants, and giant bees. I began to wonder if this giant crocodile would be large enough to eat us all. We traveled on into the jungle. On our second night there, Quis'tan was disturbed on watch. She sensed some odd thing that was humming at us, weakening us. We soon realized that while we slept, we had been found by Nightworms, who were trying to ambush us! This was unfortunate, because we were caught unawares, but also fortunate, as it provided us with one more item on Skorot's checklist.
We fought the Nightworms, and I was poisoned. (Everything in Barsaive is poisonous, except Namegivers.) We defeated them, largely thanks to the efforts of Lasairfhíona and Fredi. While fighting them, we saw more and more things which indicated that Nightworms were not merely creatures, but Horror constructs. We were injured enough from the fight that we decided to abandon our search for an outsized crocodile, and return to Throal. We brought the Nightworm corpses (and the others) to Skorot, and admonished her that one should not eat Horror constructs, nor serve them for others to eat.