From the Journal of Caesar Bonaparte, Human Illusionist.
The Theatre scene in Throal seems dire this time of year, so I decided to check out what the hinterlands have to offer. A number of people recommended the Skyreader Island pastry Festival. I did not understand quite how far a walk Skyreader Island was, or I would not have bothered to set out. In addition, after the almost two week trip I was several days late and missed almost half the festival. A must unpromissing start. The entertainments were quite rustic, apparently they find it amusing to cover a pig in grease and set it loose to see who can tackle it. They tell me ihat in theory this was mostly for adolescents, but I saw a great many adults trying to tackle the pig. I must say it was amusing to watch.
They had several stages set up where anybody could perform, and I gave a rousing performance of King Theodopolis' speech on the eve of the battle of lake Vos. They awarded me a ribbon as an Outstanding Orator, but I noticed that most participants got a ribbon of some sort. The featured player of the festival was a person going by the name of P'iyed, P'ypur who played pan pipes. His playing was sublime, but during the performance, several of us in the audience noticed that enormous numbers of rats were gathering. Somebody screamed, and a panic ensued. The rats raced at the audience and started biting their ankles and climbing up them. While the majority of the audience (and even P'iyed P'ypur the performer) ran away in every direction screaming, Several of us in the audience fought the rats and managed to destroy or disperse and drive off the various mischief's. In the fight I got pretty badly bit.
After the fight those of us who had banded together introduced ourselves, in addition to myself there was Fenrir, a windling shaman, Thomas Atoh, a human beastmaster, and Drashk'a, a nethermancer. We examined the Pan Pipes, which the piper had dropped in his haste to flee, and Fenrir and Drashk'a both proclaimed them to be magical. Drashk'a said that he detected summoning magics upon them. Some guards hired for the festival (I understand that skyreacher island does not normally have full time professional guards) showed up and asked us questions, then asked us to investigate this incident further. We questioned the piper and he said that he had bought his pipes about a month ago in Sossanopa, at really strange shop. He said he got a really great deal for such nice pipes.
When we asked if anything else unusual had happened at the festival, we were shown an infirmary tent, where many festival goers were inflicted with red splotches on their neck and chests. The healers volunteering at the festival did not know what was causing it. We questioned each patient about their recent activities, and found that one thing they had in common was that they had all attended P'iyed P'ypur's first concert at "the Lawns" on the first day of the festival. Questioned about that, one mentioned that at one point in the concert, they had felt uncomfortable, like someone was watching them, and an itchy tightness in their chest. When that was mentioned, most of the other patients mentioned the same feelings.
We visited the site of the first concert, and examined it closely, My spell "See the Unseen" and my True Sight talent allowed me to spot a horror spawn called a "Plague" that had been hiding under a cloak of illusion. Acting like I had not spotted the disease riddled humanoid, I casually led my companions over to that side of the area, and then cast Monstrous Mantel upon Thomas, and pushed him in that direction crying "Get Him!". Thomas looked confused for a moment, but saw through the illusion as well. We quickly dispatched the horrorspawn. Reported its presence to the authorities, and supervised the burning of the corpse. The healers in the infirmary, finally knowing what the cause was, were able to effectively treat the patients and nobody else fell sick.
I enjoyed the remainder of the festival. The delights, though rustic and unrefined were a balm upon the soul and a reminder that Astendar dwells not only in the great opera houses, but also in every field where country folk gather together to dance, sing, and eat pastries.