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Cleric Journal: Day Thirty-Five



Boiling the frog brain down to use for tanning proved to be a better idea than trying to collect the rat brains. First of all, I’d smashed most of the rat skulls, losing the greater share of the brains. Second, that was a lot of scooping and breaking of bones. Using the frog brain just proved easier.

The day flew by. I’m telling you, having a project is a miracle. I stopped to eat some of the rat stew, but otherwise I just worked on the pelts. It was going to take me a few days to get the pelts ready, but for some reason it seemed an important thing to do. Besides I had plenty here to keep me busy.

After boiling the brain down to be used in the tanning process I boiled the giant frog skull. That would make a very nice addition to my raft. I’d mount it near the front so it could overlook where I’m going when I left. I was liking this idea more and more.

By the time night fell my hands were sore and my back ached, but there was a sense of accomplishment in a hard day’s work. Something I’d sorely missed these last weeks.

I would make thread from sinew and needles from the small rat bones. Once I had the pelts all ready, I could sew them together into a cloak or something equally impressive. Of course, it was muggy and hot in the swamp, so I wasn’t sure I wanted a cloak.

I’d worry about that later.

The act of meaningful work lifted my spirits like no other tonic. While worship with Sister Edna was among the most wonderful things I’ve ever done with my hands, this came a close enough second to put a smile on my face. Which led me to do something I hadn’t done in far too long.

I sang. Out loud and everything.

Brother Charles had managed to recover from being swallowed by the frog, and seemed to take great comfort in me boiling the blackguard’s great skull. However, he was shocked once I started singing. I didn’t care, I was so filled with joy that I didn’t care if he was like Brother Durham and jeered at me. Instead, to my utter surprise, he came around and joined me. For a little while, at least, we pushed back the oppression of the swamp and filled the day with hard work and song.

The rats didn’t come back. Once they realized the village was occupied they decided to steer clear. Perhaps aided by the lack of vermin, an aura of expectancy hung over the village — a feeling I couldn’t shake no matter how loud I sang or how hard I worked. It was as if the great Semaunya   (may her people survive a few days longer) held her breath waiting for my next action. It was a heady feeling. I was waiting for something, for true. I could feel it in my very bones.

I had barely made a dent in the stew so I decided I would load the cauldron on the raft. This meant I had to get it off the fire and let it cool down enough. Couldn’t carry it otherwise, and hot cast iron would not do well on a wooden raft. This seemed like the most logical thing to my mind at that moment. It was almost as if I were being guided somehow in my actions.

Loading the cauldron on the raft meant finding rocks. I was freaking brilliant sometimes. I found plenty of flat stones throughout the village, which I used to build a platform on the raft to hold the cauldron. Sheer genius. I considered if I could build a fire on those stones as well, but thought better of it. Not like I could pole the raft and keep the fire going. I’m good, but that was getting a little out of control.

Just as I was building my cauldron platform on the raft, I had a strong urge to spend the night in the village despite my earlier thought to hare off. Not quite a compulsion, but as if a tiny voice in my head just nudged me in the right direction. Almost like magic.

So I spent the evening working on the rat skins after all. With the first batch stretched out on sticks and staked over the fire to smoke, I prayed to my deities and Kithri. I asked them to help me find the Lizard Folk and if they would be so kind as to see to you personally. I think they heard my pleas. Let me know if you notice anything. Not that a visit from Kithri would be a shock to someone of your stature in the order. I bet you’d met her long before I left.

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What I'm Reading


D&D 5E Player’s Handbook


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The wild ox; strength and power.


Creativity; words, music, and art.


The troll cross; wealth and prosperity.


The sun; energy, honor, guidance.


Personally earned or lucky wealth and prosperity.


The harvest; patience and promise.


The chariot; journey and travel.

Note: This is not the real book cover.