Well, I’m back. The girls rescued my soul from a coma and managed to strip the taint from our souls. That Z’Bri has nothing on us now and I feel great. After the ritual, we lay low and hung out for about six weeks, recuperating and allowing our true selves to live and breathe once again. I started work on a new table, Cinder did a skit at Junks, Chigger helped me get some new decorations for the Bin ( she did trash the place after all ), Mana took up her weapons training again ( although she’s still mute ) , and Bastion, well he just sat around and looked pretty. Actually, I don’t know what he was up to!
Slash didn’t come around much. I suppose hanging around with a bunch of freaks was bad for the rep. That is until one day she came up to us in Junks ( before we got overly pissed drunk ) and told us someone wanted to see us . . . someone serious!
She guided us towards the woods on the far west side of Hom, near the Fallen Bridge. We followed a couple of animal trails towards a clearing where the most amazing and shocking sight greeted us. Joanites! The Watch! Before we could charge headlong into the spilling of blood and brains, Slash of all people, stopped us.
The leader approached us, unarmed, and Cinder seemed to recognized him. It was the Captains second, the one that was with her at the slaying of the pregnant woman in Bazaar! I looked at Mana, her head was down, eyes averted from the sight before her. I can’t imagine what was going on within her. Here was a perfect chance to get revenge, but she maintained her cool . . . and her silence.
” I come to help you!” he said.
” Bullshit!” we responded.
He began to explain to us that the Clinic, his Captain Monika, the slayings; all of it was coming from a higher order. Maybe, even the Elder Council. He also stated, that there was a traitor among the Elders of Hom. They where giving away information, on pregnant women, to the people behind the grisly acts. That’s how they know and how they lure the Fallen from the safety of Hom.
We asked him why he was telling us all this, and he said he had witnessed enough.
His name was Daryck and he felt that the scarring ritual was unjust and against the orders of TeraSheba and, most of all, dishonored Joan.
He also told us he would find out more information, but didn’t want to risk his place among the Tribes. We would have to do the dirty work of acting on whatever he gave us. And what did he give us? A key to the Clinic and a map to a secret meeting place where he could be reached.
They left shortly after that, lucky for them. . . we were ready to break his legs, just because!
Then the discussions began among the cell! We decided to send a few of us in, to scout out the place on the Map. Chigger, Cinder and Slash volunteered for that duty. Bastion, Mana and I were going to check out if there was an inkling of truth to Daryck’s claims, of traitors among the Elder council. How that was going to happen, we had NO IDEA, but we had a mission dammit, and we where going to figure it out come rain or storm.
Well, that’s exactly what occurred. Shortly after the girls left for Bazaar, to scout out the map, the sky began to darken and the wind picked up something fierce! A rust storm was coming and Hom went into lock-down mode. It lasted all night, and I remember wondering if the girls made it through or not. They did, as they came back the next day apparently saved because they received shelter in an Evan family’s’s farm. They said there were Scrays in the storm and that the farms entire livestock was cleaned to the bones. It would be a rough winter to come for those folks, that’s for sure. At least they helped out my friends.
Unfortunately, a sickness also descended with the passing of the storm, and people all over became ill. Some got by with hacking throats and headaches, while others fell into fevers that lead to death! Luckily, we faired okay.
Two warm summer days went by and it was decided that, with Bazaar in a likely state of recovery, it would be a perfect time for another attempt at scouting the map’s location. So they left on their journey with high hopes while we stayed and started asking questions.
Let it be known that uprooting a traitor is not the simplest of tasks! In fact, it’s downright next to impossible! We turned up very little over the next couple of days. The only thing that amounted to anything was that we managed to geta copy of the key to the Clinic made.
We were careful not to draw too much attention to our questioning and soon gave up, to avoid any serious repercussions. That’s when the Chigger and Cinder came back, less Slash on their side!