A shaman duel! Jongle immediately wants out, even as the Gordion shaman distributes small, sentient funginids for each participant to eat. The shaman eats his, and his fingernails grow and harden into talons. Jongle won’t eat his.
The shaman finally accepts that Jongle wants out, and starts to negotiate the terms: the shaman tallies that Jongle will owe him and the village 10,000 gold pieces, which can be paid upfront or — even better — owed as a debt.
As those negotiations continue, Valeria assesses the funginid Jongle refused to swallow. It indeed appears sentient – and Valeria senses that the shaman and many of the villagers are evil. She grabs the shaman, who in turn attempts to control her mind with a spell. Valeria drives her trident through him, killing him.
The gathered villages surround and rush the party. Jongle calls down an ice storm and the party retreats into the shaman’s tent, bringing his corpse. Earnest stands out front to guard them. The group searches the shaman’s body for the bone he mentioned — the one that contains information on the Wolf — but they don’t find it. They do find more jars under his bed, some of which contain small funginids, and some of which hold shimmering smoke.
They step out of the tent as the storm ends and discover that several of the villagers are untouched, but dead — roughly corresponding with the jars of the shaman that shattered when Valeria killed him and dragged his corpse inside. They realize the jars were phylacteries, containing the souls of the villagers. When they broke, the villagers died. They also realize — the bone may well be inside the shaman.
Jongle & Ragnaught cut him open as the others take walks and stand guard. The villagers are all hiding and afraid. Jongle’s ring of x-ray shows that one of the shaman’s forearm bones contains hashmarks and dots – they cut it out and take it. After hearing a story about whale bone penises, Ragnaught also cuts off the shaman’s genitals. After a word from the others, however, Ragnaught tosses it aside. The group leaves town.
A large plume of green smoke rises from the south, where they had left the funginid village previously. The sound of a storm rings out to the east. The party heads east, but takes refuge in a stone-shaped hut for the night.
The Pope is wary of Valeria’s actions in the village. He is unconvinced by her explanation that he was evil and deserved to die. He tends toward Earnest as the group settles in for the night.
Jongle deciphers the bone via a spell: it is a short and concise chronicle of the Wolf, and the village’s devotion to him. It states that the Wolf’s soul was separated into 7 pieces, but that one day it will be reassembled enabling the Wolf’s return. It likens the Wolf’s followers to sheep, who exist to feed their god, and whose souls are herded and tended to by the shaman.
The morning, the wild storm has passed. The air smells like lightning and blood. The party continues east.
After a few hours, they spy humanoids ahead on horseback, gathered around the carcasses of giant lizards. They are covered, head to toe, wearing goggles and masks — similar, but not identical, to Robuskinot the spell-fence — and carrying strange, long, narrow weapons. These outriders invite the party to camp and eat with them. One of them speaks Common, referring to it as “the old tongue.”
They trade myths & folktales. The outriders are followers of Nemo. They speak of a city to the north, beyond which is a “forbidden zone” where their “great khan” has assembled the Seven Tribes into an army. Now that the Chaos Storm has ended, this army is preparing to invade the urth in all directions — spreading out to find and gather the Rod of 7 Parts and return here to the old human kingdoms, where they will re-assemble the rod at White Plume Mountain, allowing the Wolf to return.
They are friendly, but the Revengers are cautious. All parties go to sleep, but separate watches are kept as night falls….
Gordion Shaman, 300
Outrider Meeting, 800
Group Total: 1100 Individual Award: 184
Earnest 10,184 (Cold Sentinel 10,000; Group 184)
Ervendio 10,184 (Stone Shaper 10,000; Group 184)
Jeff 10,184 (Conscientious Objector 10,000; Group 184)
Jongle 10,184 (Duel Dodger 10,000; Group 184)
Ragnaught 10,184 (Corpse Carver 10,000; Group 184)
Valeria 10,184 (Shaman Strike 10,000; Group 184)
holy armbone (Jongle)