4th day of the 9th Umbral Cycle, 1402 ( 9/4/1402 )
The sun sets quietly in the west and two adventurers walk into a small inn at the crossroads town of Krushis called the Saucy Sylph. The first man is a rarity in this village, a little kitsunekin—a foxlike race of monsterkin. He quietly pads over to an empty table and takes a seat. A friendly driderkin is working in the tavern and she happily skitters over to him and takes his order. She is very happy to see another monsterkin.
The second man who walks into the inn is also something of a curiosity in this town. He slumps onto a barstool and dejectedly pulls his wig off. The barkeep, a kind man with bulging biceps and a friendly smile named Roland pours the stranger a drink.
The man with the wig tells Roland that he’s had the worst day of his life and claims that the copper pieces he handed over for the drink are the last three he has to his name. The kitsunekin overhears this and doesn’t even hesitate. After eating a small portion of his underhill bread, he beckons to the driderkin waitress and tells her to bring the remainder of the meal over to the stranger.
The man at the bar wolfs down the calzone-like dish and gives the kitsunekin a smile, before taking a big chug from his ale and heading over to the kitsunekin’s table, sliding his immense pack along the floor with his foot. After a gruff greeting he sits down and tells the kitsunekin why this is the worst week ever:
According to the man with the wig, he is from Ostia, and at the beginning of the week, life went on as it always had, just peachy. Then his father and uncle both committed robberies and they are wanted by the authorities in Ostia. The man pulls out a wanted poster to illustrate. The poster shows two men side by side, both of whom look remarkably like the man sitting here. He explains that he looks just like his father so he fled to be safe.
The kitsunekin, already a bit tipsy from the local ale, doesn’t trust the man unequivocally, but he doesn’t really have any reason to believe he’s lying so he goes with it. He explains that he is from a monsterkin village near the coast named Exsilium, and that it was time for him to head out and find some answers about his childhood, which he can’t remember due to a strange amnesia.
The kitsunekin buys rooms for both of them so they can spend the night in the inn, and the man with the wig trudges off to his room. The kitsunekin, who is named Cypress, stays for a while in the tavern and chats with Aria, the pretty driderkin. She’s never met any other monsterkin and has only hazy memories of anything past about ten weeks ago. Aria is quite excited to meet another monsterkin. Eventually the two call it a night and Cypress heads off to his room, saying a prayer to Saha before bed.
5th day of the 9th Umbral Cycle, 1402 ( 9/5/1402 )
Both of our adventurers awake to the faint smell of smoke, which becomes stronger when they open their windows to investigate. They see a plume of smoke rising over the forest to the east. Despite the fact that the rogue is nursing a hangover, the two prepare to leave right away after having a short conversation while hanging out of their windows. Aria looks a little downtrodden when they rush downstairs and it’s apparent that they’re going to leave without breakfast. The human man takes the two breakfast plates from her hands and dumps them in his pack, tipping her generously, and the two adventurers set out.
Cypress realizes that his companion was lying about being broke and begins to more seriously doubt his claims. He reacts be charging ahead through the woods, offering minimal assistance to his hungover partner. After climbing a tree to get their bearings, eventually the two arrive at the source of the fire: the remnants of a small village.
After a quick search of the smoldering ruins, it becomes apparent that this was a monsterkin village. The party finds two dead monsterkin: a female centaurkin and a male dragonkin. Both look like they were wickedly tortured before they were killed, and their corpses are bloodied and broken. Cypress insists on giving them a proper burial, while the other man dons his armor and keeps watch, scanning the perimeter with his bow at the ready.
The two find many tracks heading down a path to the east of the village, and they decide to follow them, as Cypress is determined to aid these people, and even Locust the Lurker seems moved by a faint sense of injustice. Hoisting their packs, the two travel deeper into the woods…
Locust: Hungover (-2 penalty to STR and DEX, cannot run or charge.)
Cypress: fit as a fox!
Locust: 0 Combat XP; 300 RP XP
Cypress: 0 Combat XP; 300 RP XP