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Adventures of Chance: Part III - "Riddles Upon Riddles" (IRC)

The Next Day

DM: The weak morning light rises you from bed early from a night of deep sleep.

Chance: I go meet Wendell for breakfast and send a page to take a message to let Christian know that he's got a free day.

DM: Wendell, long present at breakfast already, sits calmly with a half eaten apple in one hand and muses over a book of lyrics in his other. You find him in the common room, adjoining the kitchen. He has commandeered the largest chair in the room, adequate for his great mass and status in the guild.

Chance: I give him the note that I picked up last night.

DM: He takes a look at you slip it over the page he is reading and goes "hmm...."

Chance: I order breakfast. Some wheat toast, eggs over-easy, and some slices of ham.

DM: Wendell looks at the note and reads aloud, :

A tit for tat,
A name for scratch
And now he's naught but bones.

Find true his name
You'll find your fame
else a... "Don't know this language well nuff to say," says Wendell.

Seek there a wretch
By the water such a mess
And there you can call him home.

DM: "Hmm, quaint and unskilled, " he declares. "Try again, you will be a master of verse only if you apply yourself diligently young master Chance." He takes another bite of his apple and gives the note back to you. "A suggestion though," he says, "for mixed language poetry you should try to pick languages which are familiar to your intended audience." He goes back to his reading having said this.

Chance: "Thank you, Master Wendell. Your advice is much appreciated. I'll have to postpone my lessons with you for today."

DM: Wendell: "Oh?"

Chance: I take a bite of my ham and a drink of grapefruit juice. "I had some things come up last night that need immediate attention."

DM: Wendell: "Oh?"

Chance: "Are you choking, Master Wendell? Ha, ha. Yes, I entered a scavenger hunt last year in Karthay and was told that I'd hear about my part of the hunt within the year. Well, I got my clue," I say holding up the note. "The prize is a small library of books."

DM: Wendell: "Oh? Really..."

Chance: "Yeah...I'm not sure what language they'll be in though."

DM: Wendell: "Ah, well, good luck to you..."

Chance: "Why thank you, sir."

DM: He nods and goes back to his reading, bobbing his hand with the apple in time to the music he must hear as he reads the score printed in the book he holds.

Chance: "Would you know of anyone who would know this language?"

DM: "It is Tsalernon, old language from somewhere in the United Kingdoms before the place was founded. There is a book for translating such in the locked cabinet 3rd floor library."

Chance: "Thank you, sir. I must be off." I excuse myself and head for the 3rd floor library. Do I find the book?

DM: Well, it is in a locked cabinet, in a locked room. You'll need a key. These are rare and one-of-a-kind books in this room. The cabinets are fireproof with special preserving magics.

Chance: How do I get the key?

DM: One of the hall masters can let you in.

Chance: I ask Wendell if he can let me in.

DM: Wendell is still sitting in his chair down at he kitchen. He digs in his pockets, tells you which key and cabinet to check first and sends you on your way after handing you his keys.

Chance: "I'll bring these keys right back to you as soon as I'm finished."

DM: You go back upstairs to the 3rd floor library, and lo, the book you seek is right where he said it would be. The ancient red leather cover of he book is still soft in your hands. Well preserved by the powerful magics of this room.

Chance: I go through the lexicon and translate the line.

DM: The translations in the book are from Tsalernon to Darrini. After finding your way around the cumbersome language you arrive at the following translation:

A tit for tat,
A name for scratch
And now he's naught but bones.

Find true his name
You'll find your fame
Else a rotten bag of stones.

Seek there a wretch
By the water such a mess
And there you can call him home.

Chance: Hmmm....I leave the Bard's College and go to the nearest tavern and ask if there's a place called Wind'er Down. Or if there's a boat of that name.

DM: No one there knows of any place called that.

Chance: What about a ship of the name? I'll go down to the docks and ask about it.

DM: "A boat you think," cries the bartender, "If'n ya wants to know the dark of that I suggest you go down to some place near'r to the wharves and boaten centers."

Chance: "Good idea." I'll head down there.

DM: Which bay will you head to? The Kings Port is closed like the High Quarter to men of your status. But there is always the common harbor and the North Bay. Of course there are the various wharves quarters scattered along the seaboard of the city.

Chance: The common's the water that's a mess.

DM: Well, that's a couple hours walk. Anything you wanna do around here before you leave off for that nasty part of town?

Chance: I get armored before I go. I'll inspect the badge to see what the logo on it was. Oh, before I do that I'll get ready for that encounter with the representative from the Reef Place. I'll wear my satin doublet with a wool vest over that, good wool breeches and stout leather boots. I'm at a tavern near the Bards College. I'll head back to the Bard's College and get dressed as I said. I'll keep my dagger with me in its usual place. On my way I'll inspect the triangle badge more closely.

DM: Ok, the badge is triangular and has something that looks like a sparrow diving down with its tail at the top point. There are what looks like three words written on it, one on each side of the triangle, though you don't recognize the language. Though it is faded, it looks like there are medallions clutched in the feet of the bird. The medallions are faded though and are not clear enough to see identifying marks upon due to wear.

Chance: I'll take it to Wendell while I'm at the Bard's College. What does Wendell make of the words?

DM: You find him sitting still where you left him, orchestrating some musical with his hands while humming to himself. He stops and looks up at you as you arrive. "So you aren't so busy today as you thought?" he asks.

Chance: "Well, I thought that I would be able to make out the tooling on this badge, but I was wrong. Can you make them out?"

DM: He takes it from your hand and at the same time slides a pair of spectacles from his pocket - which he affixes to his pudgy face. "Hmm..." He rises, with effort and takes the badge over to the window where he can get some better light on it. As he places it on the windowsill the door to the room opens and Master Belgord enters within. You have yet to really get to know this man. He is overweight as well, though less so than Wendell. You see him often wandering the courtyard below, briskly walking about. He peers through his glasses into the room and espying Wendell his gravelly voice breaks the quiet.

DM: Master Belgord: "Underthank was a-lookin fer yous there Wendell, 'e has some ancient thingamajigger that pours forth some music, but the mechanism is stuck and 'e, knowing yer fondness fer such things was a-wonderin if ye would like to a-join 'im."

DM: Wendell turns his flagging face int he direction of Master Belgord.

Chance: "Wendell, please. I know that you'll be able to figure this out with little effort. I truly need to know what those three words are."

DM: Wendell: "I'm a little pre-occupied, but shall be there shortly...." he says, then suddenly, "Cripes, Gods be damned." You turn back to him startled by his outburst and see the badge fluttering out the window into the snow below.

Chance: "Damn!"

DM: He smacks the flats of his pudgy hands on the window ledge and stares down at the badge in the courtyard below.

Chance: "I'll be right back, Wendell." How far down is the court yard?

DM: With a huff he turns back to you, "Get that again for me, please?"

Chance: "No problem."

DM: The courtyard is about 20 feet down. If would be unprofessional to leap out the window though....

Chance: That's true. I'll run down and get the badge and then run back up.

DM: You arrive down in the snowy courtyard and make your way around to the south side, one of the gardeners is squatting down over where the badge was dropped, you can see Wendell peering down on you from above. As you approach you recognize the gardener. He's not one that you have spoken to though as you share no common language with him. But there are rumors about him.... He stands slowly, holding the badge before him in the light of the winter sun. His face is pensive and resolute, difficult to read. He holds it a bit closer and tilts it in the light and then frowns very suddenly and deeply as if both startled and troubled.

Chance: I motion for him to come with me and say, "Please."

DM: He sees you and then hands it to you pressing it into your palm and muttering something quick and disturbed sounding. His face speaks of concern.

Chance: I wave him to follow me again.

DM: He holds you by the hand which has the badge and shakes it meaningfully and says something else. Raises his eyes to the sky with a brief mutter and then continues to speak urgently to you.

Chance: I pull him along with me to Wendell. I'm not going to take no for an answer.

DM: Seeing that you really have no clue what he is saying he allows you to lead him away, holding his gardening shovel in the other hand. You arrive together back in the kitchens foyer. Wendell and master Underthank, the tinker, are hunched over the plain dining table and examining some object. "Ow see here... " mutters Underthank, "Dis part gews into dis place..."

Chance: "Wendell, could you please translate what this man is saying."

DM: Wendell looks up and recollection springs to his eyes as you hold up the badge and your friend in tow. He waves his hand to Underthank and walks - waddles - over to the two of you. The gardener is still muttering things in dark undertones and glances at the three of you here and often to your hand which holds the badge. "Well!" Says Master Wendell, "Joric Abnasian is not really my specialty but I'll give it a try."

Chance: "Please do."

DM: Wendell: "First though, what is this about, why the gardener here?"

Chance: "He seems to know the meaning of this badge."

DM: Wendell: "Really? hrumph." He looks at the Gardener and says, " Ju... com set eh?" The gardener looks at him in surprise and answers hurriedly, "Adulab."
    "Well Adulab, "says Wendell immensely please with himself for communicating with the gardener, "lets see what you know. This is Adulab," he says to you.
    Adulab bows.

Chance: Bow in return, "Chance Paedragn."

DM: "Now... hmmm, how to say it.... err, what shall I ask him?"

Chance: "What does he know of this badge?"

DM: "Alright then," turning to Adulab, "gobbledegook gobbledegook gobbledegook woo woo! Zang zot, shazam?"

DM: Adulab nods and then spits out a long stream of syllables that make your ears spin. Wendell turns back to you and waving a hand at the Abnasian he motions for him to slow down. "He says, "speaks Wendell, "That this token is part of the clothing that is worn, err carried? on some kinda uniform worn by priests (I think he said priests) of...

Chance: "Chishleen?"

DM: "Some god or being called... no not Chishleen, called O'reca. Never heard of him.... Anyhow..." He continues translating, "These are bad people and... slow down!" He says to the gardener. "Jeez. They are men who live in, err, not sure that's right, anyhow, men who live or speak in the future and...," he listens to the man who is repeating himself, "they abuse this knowledge, hunting down those whose futures do not align with their... purpose? They worship at a great black and green (or is that red?) temple, originating in Abnasia. Bad, very bad, he says." The gardener nods and points at the badge then speaks shortly.

Chance: I take out a piece of paper and scrawl the three parallel wavy lines and ask about them.

DM: Wendell says, "They are the reason Adulab left Abnasia. They were hunting his son because they saw his son opposing their will in the future."

DM: The gardener chatters away.

DM: Wendell: "Prophet. Each line is a rank, three is high."

DM: Then the gardener also shrugs and says something else.

DM: Wendell nods, "True, true... it is also recognized as the symbol of the Gremshan - wizards banded together who conduct slave trade through out the western lands. Not a sign often seen here in Tel-Akbar. We being an elite society which condemns such acts of barbarism."

Chance: I pull out the other things that I have with me and see if any of them make sense to him. First, the dagger.

DM: To each, neither Wendell nor the gardener has anything to speak upon. "I'd take the powder to an alchemist if I wanted to know what it was, "says Wendell.

Chance: Nothing of any of the rest of the stuff?

DM: The gardener chatters and bangs his shovel on the floor.

DM: "Yes, you may leave," Wendell beckons the man away and the gardener leaves.

Chance: "Thank you very much, Master Wendell and you, Adulab. Wendell, could you speak of teaching Adulab Thennish? I would be very interested in what he has to say of other subjects."

DM: Wendell: "I believe Adulab is a follower of Akeran, one of The Twenty, and does not speak Thennish not because he is unable, but because of religious observances. Master Talvor could tell you more about him. It was he who encountered the man side of the road out somewhere on the western seaside of the Hanois lands."

Chance: "Wendell, for all your help, I'll make a dedication in my next book to you," I bow and take my leave.

DM: "Wait", calls Wendell.

Chance: "Yes?"

DM: "The writing on the badge, are you not curious?"

Chance: "I thought that he had told you about that. Yes, what does it say?"

DM: "Totality, Wisdom, Purity."

Chance: "Thank you again" I take my leave. Okay... how much time do I have before I have to be at the Reef Place?

DM: You need to meet them at the tavern in less than an hour.

Chance: I go to the Laughing Frog.

DM: By carriage?

Chance: Yes.

DM: You arrive there at the laughing frog. Today being Nineday, there are no workers here making noises. Still, it is also quiet because it is afternoon and the laborers of the city have yet to stop in. So the only ones here are a couple half-elves sharing a pitcher of beer and the regulars who never seem to leave the place.

Chance: Thank the gods. I check with Neil to see if anyone has been here looking for me.

DM: Neil nods, "No-uns a lookin for you, but I've heard from several boys that there's folks watching you who want you to know it."

Chance: "Really? Who would that be? Who's told you or are any of the watchers here?"

DM: A wealthy looking courtesan enters through the front with two well-armed and skilled looking warriors to either side.

DM: "Several o your boys say they have had people come up to em and tell em to let you know that you are being watched. What'er that means."

Chance: I turn to check out the newcomers.

DM: The beautiful courtesan, dressed in elegant whites and crystal blue robes, sits down in one of the private booths. One of her guards stays there at the booths side, while the other walks over to the bar where you and Neil stand.

DM: "Drinks?" Inquires Neil of the man.

DM: "Yes, " he answers briskly as he claps the cold from his open-fingered gloves. Broderian Ale for two and a cup of Crysithium Wine."

Chance: "Who might you be, sir?"

DM: "Sir Cragoth of the Alterans." You recognize the second name as that of the cities elitist of guards, hired out to nobles and others of considerable influence or standing. Neil goes to get and prepare the drinks.

DM: "And you young sir?" Sir Cragoth asks.

Chance: "Chance Paedragn, Sir Cragoth. I believe I'm the one that you're employer has come to meet with."

DM: "Well met. You wouldn't happen to be the same Chance Paedragn demon-slayer and warrior against the vile necromancer Daglan Daegon, no?"

Chance: "Daglan - yes, and I am."

DM: "Good! Join us. I do believe you correctly to be the one the Lady Fharesi is looking for."

DM: Neil brings over three Broderian Ales and the cup of Crysithium Wine. At your inquiring glance as to the third ale he nods to you.

Chance: "Just a moment, sir" I go behind the counter and pour a flagon of the Paedragn Ale. Then, I follow Cragoth off to the table.

DM: "Ahem," says Neil.

Chance: I ignore him. I used to work there and I put a buttload of money into his damn inn. He can spare one flagon of my ale.

DM: You walk over with Cragoth and sit down across from the Lady Fharesi and gaze at her lovely beauty. Her face is veiled with gauzy blue cloth, but you can see her beatific eyes and perfect lips beneath.

Chance: I nod slightly, "Milady."

DM: The guards stand, one at the end of either bench of the booth, blocking view of you and the lady from anyone else in the bar.
    Fharesi glances demurely through the silken blue veil, her beautiful eyes are as captivating as enticing. "Welcome to my table," her voice is like a singers, elegant.

Chance: "Good day, Milady. I am Chance Paedragn and I have eagerly awaited our meeting," I say with a slight bow.

DM: "I am Lady Tormalaen Fharesi of the United Kingdoms." She slightly inclines her head.

Chance: "You've traveled far just to interview a simple entertainer such as myself." I grin.

DM: "Lord Killium is quite pleased that you have decided to come to his establishment to entertain his guests." Her soft voice purrs, "You are to be honored good sir Paedragn."

Chance: "It is my honor to entertain the nobility of Tel Akbar."

DM: She turns her head to glace out from the enclosed booth, the broad backs of her guards keeping what she looks at from your view. Then back to you, "My residence is this fair city, now at least, for some time."

Chance: "Ah, I see. What does Lord Killium wish to know of me before I spin a tale for him?"

DM: "Sir Cragoth?" She gets the intimidating bodyguards attention, "The purse, please?" She smiles to you through the veil, "Lord Killium has already investigated your social standing and need know nothing more before you are invited to his tables."

Cragoth nods and reaches behind his shined but well used breast-plate to retrieve a small black, silk purse. He holds it briefly as if weighing it and then sets it on the table between the two of you.

Chance: "He seems to be a most astute individual to study his entertainers. Why this pleasant visit then, milady?"

DM: "It is your fee." She speaks quietly. Her hand, gloved in the finest of thin lace gloves beckons charmingly towards the small black purse that sits between the two of you.

Chance: "You are most gracious, milady. I'm sure that however much it is, it is most generous." I wave my hand at the purse in dismissal, but at her gesture, I dip into the sack and pull out a coin.

DM: From the purse you pull forth a royal, a platinum crown, the edge of another can be seen within.

Chance: Is a crown worth 10 coins or just one?

DM: A royal is the equivalent of 250 gold.

Chance: Holy cow!

Chance: "As I said, milady, most generous. This could've been given to me at the Reef Place. What has brought you to this district?"

DM: "Lord Killium felt that a warrior of your renown and one of your tale-weaving talent, as has been said from the Master's Hall, deserved his personal attentions." She says.

Chance: "I am most honored. When would you like for me to perform?"

DM: "I, good sir?"

Chance: "When would you, as Lord Killium's emissary, like for me to perform at the Reef Place, milady?"

DM: You hear the heavy clump of riding boots cross the floor of the tavern towards the front and the ordering of a large number of drinks.
    "In three days time, for several evenings over the course of one week." She answers.

Chance: I peer beyond the backs of guards to see if I can identify the clomping boot-wearers. "That sounds agreeable to me, milady Fharesi," I say.

DM: From around the guard you only catch site of the lower half of a dirty suite of plated chain and leggings. As you turn your eyes back to her from around the guard you observe that she is already rising. Cragoth of the Alterans moves aside. After she has risen she looks back to you through her blue veil. "It has been most pleasant to meet you sir Paedragn. I look forward to seeing you at the Reef Place and watching your ample skills at work." Her Crysithium wine remains untouched on the table.
    Cragoth, dwarfing the Lardy Fharesi and ever his lady's man, stands between her and the rest of the bar while the other bodyguard moves out of your way so that you can stand also.

Chance: "It was a great pleasure to meet you, Milady Fharesi. I look forward to meeting you again." I turn to Cragoth, "Fare thee well, good sir."

DM: "Good travels Chance," is Cragoth's answer.
    The Lady Fharesi smiles at you through her veil and then her and the two bodyguards depart through the doors of the tavern to the sleek black and silver carriage which waits beyond.

Chance: I watch them depart and then collect my purse. I'll secret that on my person somewhere and then investigate who has just come to "visit."

DM: Now, turning your attentions to the rest of the bar, you see that a group of six large and capable looking warriors have made their seats over by the hearth. A large number of drinks sit on the table - left by Uaelna the tavern-maid. The warriors are dirty and look long traveled.

Chance: Any insignia on the warriors?

DM: You see no clear sign of to whom they serve, but you do see the mud covered and stained signs on a couple of them which indicate that they are of some standing in the militia, though not of Tel-Akbar. The designs are not immediately familiar. Before tucking the purse away you test its weight in your hands. The heavy unfamiliar coins inside clink quietly in the black bag. Maybe four or five lay within it.

Chance: I stand up and sweep over toward them. "Hail, good men and welcome to the Laughing Frog."

DM: "Hello." greets the deep and sullen voice of one of the warriors who wears a thick beard. A couple others raise their glasses to you.

Chance: "Where do you hail from as you look road weary?"

DM: "Just into this great city," Says a fellow whose hair might be red if it was not so caked with mud from a hard ride on horseback.
    "Most recently from Krakatos." Answers another. You notice he holds his glass with only a thumb and three fingers, the last missing.

Chance: What kind of accent do they have?

DM: Strong Thennish, like a north lander of the United Kingdoms.

Chance: "Mercenaries are you?" I'm putting on my best conversationalist face. The full schmooze thing going on.

DM: "No." Plainly answers the 'red' headed fellow. You observe that the others around the table don't look please with this short answer.

Chance: "Well, if there is aught else you need, just let one of the help know. Welcome to Tel Akbar."

DM: Most of them nod. "To Tel-Akbar" says one fellow as he takes a draught.

Chance: I move off to another table and then lose myself in the crowd. I read their lips and see what I can find out about them. I only do this for about 30 minutes and then I'll get my traveling clothes on to go visit the local alchemist.

DM: -better than Zakaren craft. We'll .. .. eye for er and see what Balen turns .. bitch is .. somewhere. - Other parts of the conversation become more difficult as they slowly lean towards each other to talk guardedly among themselves.
    - take forever .. turn over this town .. places to go. Who .. contacts could be ... - Hearing nothing that interests you, you get up and head out to find an alchemists.

Chance: Okay...I get changed and then slip out the back to go visit the alchemist's shop.

DM: At the northern edge of the Olive Bazaar you know of a small alchemists shop that you frequently pass by when entering the city. Its not too far from here and so it is to there that you go. The small shop is just a single story wooden building. "Rurimon's Herbarium" reads the placard posted to the right of the open door.

Chance: I knock on the door to see if there's anyone there.

DM: "Enter!" Calls a man's voice from within.

Chance: "Hello, good sir. I have a question for you."

DM: You enter and a middle-aged man sits grinding something with a pestle behind table. The rich smells of the various herbs is very strong.
    Man: "Ask away!" he says enthusiastically.

Chance: I pull out the pouch with the white powder and seeds and ask him what they are.

DM: "The seeds are `Witches Tits,'" he says, "A hallucinogenic that grows in the southern parts of the Dhaal Swamps. The other.... I'll have to do some testing on. Mind leaving it with me? A small sample would be 'nuff."

Chance: "I see. What purpose would someone have of these seeds?"

DM: "They are very addictive and rare - and probably illegal considering the laws of Tel-Akbar. As far as I understand it, " he speaks," they make the user acutely aware of the passage of time - making everything slow down. While from others point of view the user of the substance is shaky, eyes darting about. Dunno if it actually makes you faster though. And I hear you see some pretty weird stuff while using it too."

Chance: "Sounds pretty weird." I take out 2 of the seeds and leave them in my pocket without letting the man see. "Here, take this pouch and run your tests. I'll be back in the morning to find out what you know."

DM: He nods.

Chance: I'll go back to the Laughing Frog and light a candle in my room. Pulling out the note with the poem on it, I look closely where the missing lines are to see if I can see even the slightest of stains. I will also make a copy of the poem.

DM: All right. By the time you have returned to the Laughing Frog things are getting dark outside. The bar is beginning to fill up. You go upstairs to conduct your test and make your copy. You find that there is no hidden writing between the stanzas of the curious poem. You find no stains. It is as if the writing was made by incredibly careful and practiced hand for there are no mistakes in its presentation nor marks aside from the letters themselves.

Chance: What if I lightly brush the spaces between the stanzas with the end of the flame? Not enough to light the paper on fire, but to bring out anything written with lemon juice or milk.

DM: Nothing there.

Chance: Okay. I'll go to the Temple of Light and ask to talk with Isan.

DM: Its long after the city streets have gone dark when you arrive at the great temple to Lathidus. You arrive as one of a familiar looking postulate is closing the temple doors for the night.

Chance: "Good evening. I have need to speak with the Bishop. May I?"

DM: "The Bishop is at his evening prayers." Answers the postulant as he shuffles through a ring of large silver keys. "Is there something I can help you with, child?"

Chance: "I'm Chance Paedragn. I may be small, but I walk in the Light."

DM: "Yes, child. I know."

Chance: How old is the postulant?

DM: He is a youthful man in his late twenties, blond, well groomed, and softly spoken.

Chance: "I have a question about a rogue religion around Abnasia. Could you help me with it?"

DM: "Tell me more." He says.

Chance: "O'reca and the Gremshan's."

DM: "The Grem'sha?" says the Postulant. "You refer to the Totanic wizards of the Western Lands. Yes?"

Chance: "I believe so. I know very little of them. I know that they are different than the followers of O'reca, but could you explain to me either of these groups?"

DM: He nods. and moves to re-enter the temple, indicating for you to follow him within.

Chance: I follow into the Temple of Light. I remove my cap and say a silent prayer to Lord Lathidus.

DM: After you have entered within, he closes, but does not lock, the temple doors next to you and he. "The Totanic Order is an ancient cult of wizards who work the slave trade which spans the western lands of the world." He says, "It is also said that they practice ritualistic blood sacrifices and numerous other heathen practices."
    "They are a fanatical gathering, and quite rich from the numerous brain-washed slaves which they train to obey without question. Some are trained as assassins, some as body-guards, some as man-servants, others as specialists. Single-minded in their devotion to the will of those who the Totanic Order binds them to."

Chance: "They sound like pretty bad people. Do you know if they use hallucinogens in training their slaves?"

DM: "How they actually train the minds of the slaves to such singular dedication is unknown to me. I would not rule out the use of hallucinogens however."

Chance: "What about O'reca?"

DM: "That is the name given to the creature also known as 'The Oracle' which has risen to popularity somewhere in the far west I believe. I heard the name from a traveling merchant and follower of Lathidus some weeks ago. I do not know much else about it."

Chance: "I have this," I say as I pull out the badge and then also explain that I've seen a tattoo of 3 parallel wavy lines.

DM: He takes it from you to examine it, "There is not much else I could tell you that would help you with your quest, I'm afraid." You hear the sound of footsteps rapidly descending down the stairway at the end of the narthex - this hall.

Chance: "Thanks to you, good sir. Live in the Light and be well. Give my regards to Bishop Isan for me, please." I turn and look to see who the footsteps belong to.

DM: You turn your head to the sound of the steps descending into this room and see Bishop Isan approaching. "I heard voices down here" he says, "Who are you talking to?"

Chance: "Are you talking to me, Isan?

DM: He strides over towards you, "Who else would I be talking to?"

Chance: I point to where the guy I was talking to is and say, "Him."

DM: You point at nothing. The badge lays on the bare floor and there is no sign of the postulant who was standing there but moments ago.

Chance: "I was talking to the postulant who was closing the door when I got here a few minutes ago. What's going on, Bishop?"

DM: "Going on? Nothing I suppose. The temple was suppose to be closed for the evening and I was heading to the sanctum to continue my prayers when I heard voices down here that I didn't recognize."
    "Which postulant?" he asks.

Chance: "He kept calling me 'child' and said he knew who I was."

DM: "Who?" Bishop Isan says.

Chance: "I don't know his name but he was familiar to me. What do you know of the Prophets of the Grem'sha or of O'reca?"

DM: "Hmm." He bends to pick up the badge that lays on the floor. "Is this yours?" he asks you.

Chance: "Yes, sir."

DM: He hands it to you.

Chance: "What do you know of those I mentioned Bishop?"

DM: "The Prophets of O'reca?" he looks at you, "isn't that the upstart following of this thing they call the Oracle?"

Chance: "I think so. You don't know much of them?"

DM: He shakes his head. "Very little." That is a long , long way from here."

Chance: "Thank you for your time, Bishop. Good evening. Say a prayer for me." I clasp his hand in obeisance and then go back to the Laughing Frog.

DM: He nods and speaks a blessing over you and lets you depart. You notice that the doors are locked to the temple and that the Bishop has to unlock them to let you out.

Chance: "I wonder how I got in here...hmmm."

DM: "You said you were let in." Says the Bishop. "Don't know by whom though. Samellen left over an hour ago."

Chance: "If you find out, let me know, okay? For my own peace of mind."

DM: He nods.

You make your way back to the Laughing Frog. It is quite late by now.