Friday, October 28, 2011

Point and Counter Point


Road to Quena, Veratar

My stay in Treehook was brief, but before I left I had a chance to interview a few people regarding Solan’s disappearance within the Shrinking Depths and the many resulting rumors. The comments of one Sidrani couple (Garyt and Celia) offer differing opinions as to what should be done to find the missing explorer.

Me: "Is an expedition to find Solan in order? After all, he’s one of your most important historical figures."

Garyt: “An expedition is needed. Solan may have perished, yet he deserves our efforts in view of all his deeds on behalf of society. A skilled search team must be hired, many supplies will be needed and a camp should be set up at the cave’s entrance ensuring no outsiders could impede the search. I’d volunteer myself if I was more fit for adventuring!”

Celia: “I disagree with my husband on this. We all know the Shrinking Depths to be a place of mystery at best, and death at worst. It’s better for us to memorialize Solan as a great man and let his disappearance serve as a warning for others who would intrude upon that place.”

This is how many of my inquires of the common folk here go. For every person favorable to such a mission, a practical voice intercedes with valid counter points. I wonder what you think about this? Me, I’m torn on the subject, but lean towards a search.

I rode out of Treehook a day and a half ago and should arrive in Quena today, after which I’ll search for lodging, good food and good ale. Arcan will be meeting me here within the next day or so, if he is not delayed.


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Tea in Treehook


Treehook, Veratar

Grimora and I arrived in Treehook without incident. Situated at the hilly base of the Zelia Mountain Range, Treehook’s elevation offers excellent views of the surrounding countryside. The town itself is bustling with small time merchants, traders and hunters. In general, there’s more going on here per square foot than in Featherune this time of year.

The reason for all the activity is related to preparations for the Tempestua, a slow moving weather phenomenon which blows in from the sea bringing cold winds, freezing rain and hail. During this time, airship travel is suspended for about three cycles months. So, pilots and passengers are busy preparing for their final journeys.

I’m sitting outside at a small eatery looking up at Hallon Hill where several large airships sit tied down to the ground. Walking up the hill are men, women and children carrying their belongings. Pilots stand motioning as a few Kirzan men (probably Anchors) walk around inspecting airship mooring lines.

As I sip some Karanae Tea, I wonder where these travelers are off to, what their lives are like and what they would think of our world. It takes them days to reach their destinations, for us it takes hours. They live in a world where no one knows what is happening across the sea, our televisions let us see all. They’ve never held an iDevice or laptop, while many on Earth would be lost without such gadgets.

I’ll stay in Treehook for another couple of days and then ride for Quena. It’s not too far from Treehook (due south). If all goes well, Arcan is supposed to meet me there within a weeks time.


Friday, October 14, 2011

The Journey South


Road to Treehook township, Veratar

After a few weeks in Featherune, Grimora and I are on the road again. Our first stop on the way to Quena is Treehook, due about 80 miles south of Featherune city. From what I hear it’s the biggest small town I’ve never been to. Treehook serves as a service and passenger pickup stop for airships headed north into the Kirzan kingdoms.

One story about Treehook tells of a band of Rogues who were foolish enough to attempt to take over an airship. They boarded at Treehook, attempted their hijacking and failed, only to be lowered off the side of the ship onto a cold mountain peak. Turns out airship captains have no tolerance for endangering passengers and crew. In fact, once an airship takes to the sky here, it has it’s own laws and jurisdiction, subject to whatever the captain decrees.

I’ve done a lot of travel by airship on Rynaga and I can tell you it’s the most relaxing experience one can have in the air on any planet. Unlike 747's, airships here move relatively slow, so there’s a sense of time moving slow as well. The floating transports also travel low enough to the ground for passengers to make out animal herds, farm houses and people dotting the landscape. Every now and then someone below appears to stop and wave up to the skies. Oh and bags fly free here too.

The road to Treehook is well traveled and patrolled. Rain is always possible this time of year, so I’ve come prepared for wet weather. We should pull into Treehook within the next few days or so, ready for a comfortable bed and a hearty meal.


A Ruse


Featherune, Veratar

Well, things change fast on Rynaga. Arcan was called out to support a search party. Turns out a family went missing two days ago along the road from Strata to Featherune. Saycia's guild mates arrived and she rode out this morning on an urgent assignment. From the looks of things I'm on my own again, for now.

Before he left, Arcan told me I could stay at his home as long as I wanted and we talked about meeting in Quena weeks from now in hopes of tracking down Dain, another former friend of Solan.

Dain used to live in Grynevia, but recently he and his wife decided to build a house on the western edge of Silentwood forest. Arcan suspects the two visit Quena every now and then for supplies, so tracking them down shouldn't be hard.

Today I'm making some arrangements for travel. Gathering up dried food. Sharpening blades. Packing tools. I took Grimora out for a ride this morning after having her ankle bracers refit. She seemed happy to get out of the stable for a while. I'm sure she'd be glad to know we'll be back on the road soon.