I followed Gareth and Deth to the marketplace; they seemed to be on a mission. I suspected that it was a mission similar to mine.
According to Shale, there is a way to keep the Quori here without them having to change when the dream changes. A willing host is required, although Shale did qualify this with “or stupid,” so presumably the willingness only needs to last until the process is complete. Since, in effect, he’d be melding with another individual, he might change anyway due to the fusion of two personalities, but that shouldn’t be much of a hurdle. We’ll simply have to find two individuals who are very attractive and rather dull.
My presence did not go undiscovered; as I’d half-expected, Pneu was along as well, hiding unseen until she chose to reveal herself, and me along with her. Oh well. Shale also said that, for a price, he could locate suitable individuals for Fahrezz’s and Deth’s new bodies. Price: 100,000 gold a head. Steep, but we ARE asking him to help with something rather labor-intensive. I shall make the appropriate inquiries and collect the necessary resources. I am sure that Gareth has Deth’s half well in hand, but if necessary, I’m sure we can combine forces. Our friendly barbarian is not what one would call a planner.
1 usefulness point to Shale for being a reliable businessman. He attempted to bargain for the item he’s been seeking, but gave up—or should I say, postponed his attempts for another time—when it became clear that Gareth and Deth would not part with it. I am curious as to what he wants with it; as long as it isn’t to destroy time and space or something, we may yet come to an arrangement in the future. Shale is certainly the most forthright of our self-declared opponents.
Gareth purchased a basket of tomatoes from his produce stand—really, that man has the most singular sense of humor. Shale, that is, not Gareth. Pneu warned him away from eating them. I examined one of them, but found nothing amiss. Was tempted to take a bite, but was unsure of the effect a tomato from Leng would have on my constitution. I wonder what this town will have become in a few years…
When we returned to the inn, Pneu decided to feed Cedric a tomato. For science. She concealed it within a sandwich she made. Cedric made a face and commented on the unusual flavor, but beyond that, no effects were observed. I shall have to keep a close eye on him in the future. I drew some blood as a sample. Aside from a faint smell of sulfur owing to his familial bloodline, it seemed to be ordinary blood. He complained, but then, he’s never shown himself to be of a scientific bent.
With that, we set off into the Mournlands. The carriage ride until dusk was long and boring; there is little to comment on.
Fahrezz paid me another visit in the night, and I explained the possibilities to him. He was uncharacteristically slow to grasp what I was trying to say at first. I left the choice up to him whether he wished me to proceed. He was very baffled as to why I wanted to help him stay around. I do not think he’s had much in the way of affection.
Just as a tool to be used, like you. Like everyone. He wasn’t sure if he wanted to remain stuck in one form for the rest of his life, which I could certainly understand. I’ve read in some of my books mentions of simulacra, artificial bodies into which one can transfer one’s consciousness. If such a concept could be applied to Fahrezz…
I mentioned this to him, and he again expressed wonder that I was going to so much trouble. He was also rather endearingly concerned that I would cease to find him interesting in a static form. I cannot imagine Fahrezz ever becoming dull, no matter his shape. This seemed to reassure him.
After some thought, he agreed.
To obtain: 200,000 gold.
Morning. Manufactured: 5 bombs, 1 cure light wounds, 1 extract of bomber’s eye, 1 shield extract. The scenery this morning was a bit more remarkable; we traveled across a plain of glass. In a carriage. Which did not seem to me to be the brightest of ideas, but I didn’t bother protesting until Gareth and Deth also spoke up. Honestly, the others can be so thick sometimes.
Midway into the Mournlands, we were greeted by a guest on the carriage roof: our old friend Rapier. He was as irritating as ever, but did give us some useful information about the size of the force we’d be facing in the warforged city—namely, that we had a snowflake’s chance in hell of making it out of there alive with a frontal assault. Obvious. We’d known that already. He did comment that he thought the Lord’s “god-rock” was a mistake.
He was willing to give us some information in exchange for Warmonger, who still screeched ineffectually every time we slotted her into Seeker. We’d gotten what we needed out of her, so we agreed. Who knew that the warforged were so sentimental?
According to Rapier, the only way to get the Worldstone was to challenge the Lord of Blades to a showdown, with it as the stakes. Well, it and our lives, of course. He seemed honest. These types that live by codes are very strange. I don’t think I will ever understand them, not if I live a thousand years.
In order to prevent collecting all the pieces in one convenient location for the Lord of Blades to loot from our corpses, we sent some of them back with Shel and Seeker. I do hope he’ll be all right.
AND SO WE WENT TO WAR. Or to challenge the Lord of Blades to a duel to the death. Same thing.
I was not sure the plan was going to work as Rapier had predicted at first; there were a great many of them and they didn’t like us one bit. He had the Worldstone on his person—machine?—er, body. Interestingly enough, he was quite a manipulative fellow. He was using the concept of a god to compel and encourage his subordinates. Didn’t believe in it himself, but I suppose it scarcely mattered. He had his gang in his pocket. Eventually, we goaded him into agreeing to the fight. He chose some of his subordinates to even out the odds, and we began.
I GOT HIT BY ONE OF THEM AND IT HURT. Drank: 1 shield extract. Drank: 1 cure light wounds potion. I avenged myself upon him; it was most excellent. After a long fight, we finally triumphed over the bastard and got the Worldstone. Left him alive, which COULDN’T POSSIBLY COME BACK TO BITE US IN THE ASSES LATER. Obtained: 236 gold. Amulet, ring, cloak, armor, spear. Divided up among party. Deth was quite insistent on giving all the protective items to Gareth, the fool. I suppose keeping him alive is good. Then we hightailed it out of there before some idiot warforged decided to avenge their boss. Kept: Short spear and leather armor. Of little use, but can sell it to begin amassing funds, anyway.
And then we started heading to Thrane.
You know, I quite like the Mournlands, actually. I can see myself building a very nice home here. A very nice life indeed. I’d nip out to the border whenever I started feeling poorly, of course, but there’s no downside other than that. It’s got a sort of majestic, austere beauty once you get used to it.
Seriously, let’s go back to the warforged city. There’s only hundreds of them. We’d be fine.
Thrane just sounds so dull, so very very dull, and I think we’ve done our part for this quest already.
He’s in Thrane.
I don’t suppose I can talk the others into staying around here, but that’s all right; they can go on ahead, and I’ll visit them later.
He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane. He’s in Thrane.
There is no need to panic. You are quite literally no longer the same person. It will be fine. Everything will be just fine.
I’m not entirely sure what day it is anymore. Oh well.
Ranking of companions:
Shale: Usefulness- 1 point.
Ranking totals to date:
Jaela: Usefulness- 13 points. Entertainment value- 8 points.
Gareth: Usefulness- 28 points. Entertainment value- 16 points.
Deth: Usefulness- 21 points. Entertainment value- 20 points.
Cedric: Usefulness- 23 points. Entertainment value- 9 points.
Pneu: Usefulness- 28 points. Entertainment value- 30 points.