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Cleric Journal: Day Thirty-Nine

DearFatherMulcahy

 

Liz and I talked about my dreams again today. She had shown grave concern over my description of her father healing the people of her tribe. She quizzed me on who I saw, the color of their ridges and fins, the accruements that hung from their belts or the variations of their scales. She identified certain individuals from my descriptions, whispering each name like an invocation that they lived. This exercise forced me to pay more and more attention to the details in my dream and we both came to the conclusion that I was not having the same dream over and over, but was seeing events as they unfolded.

We guessed that the Bullywogs were having her tribes folk go out and perform dangerous duties, due to the nature of the wounds, I’d say they were fighting. They were weaponless by the time they returned to their Shaman so I’m not sure exactly what was going on. I just knew they were being sorely used and we had to put a stop to it.

Of course, we weren’t much of a raiding party — one large bird, one small lizard girl and myself were not up to battling a foe numerous enough to capture and keep her whole village hostage.

So we planned how to sneak in and rescue her people instead of the full frontal assault. Seemed more reliable in any case.

She slept some in the afternoon so I had a lot of time to myself. Her company was different from any of the Sisters, which made it awkward. Good, though, to have someone who relied on me. Oh, I’m sure if you asked her, she’d say she didn’t need me one little bit, but I could tell she was happy I was there.

It was also nice to have someone way more familiar with the swamp than I was. After her late afternoon nap she tried to teach me the words for plants and such that we passed by. She thought there were some things I could eat, based on visitors they’d had over the last few seasons. Most folks who traded with her village did it much further north in a neutral zone, but several times groups of adventurers had come through, trading goods and seeking guides.

Her father had even healed a few that got in a little over their heads. We talked about her father a bunch as well. She had no desire to be a shaman when she was fully grown. Rather she wanted to be a warrior. She had visions of defending her people from the Bullywogs and worse.

There are worse things in the swamp, she assured me. Worse than the dead. Worse than that log with teeth. Worse even than the Stirges, if you can believe such a thing. Okay, maybe that’s my interpretation. She mentioned that the giant spiders didn’t harass her people too frequently, preferring hunting closer to the dry-landers. I think she said dry-landers, or a version. Either way, she spat when she said it, then looked at me and shrugged. I was an ally, but I was from a people that had treated hers with more anger than kindness.

Father Mulcahy, were you aware of these people’s plight? As they’ve been driven further east, it appears we’ve been driven west. Coincidence? She knows something very powerful and dark has infested the swamp, but doesn’t know what it is. Her father had grown fearful in recent seasons. He hadn’t shared why, but with the state of the swamp and the raids, I could only imagine what drove the imbalance of power.

We ate more fish and spent an hour in quiet, thoughtful prayer before she went back to sleep for the night. I would take us one more night into the darkness before we decided to find a new place to camp. We had the stew pot, so we could boil enough water, but I wanted to be as far off the path of the Bullywog raiders as we could.

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What I'm Reading

 

D&D 5E Player’s Handbook

 

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Uruz

The wild ox; strength and power.

Ansuz

Creativity; words, music, and art.

Othala

The troll cross; wealth and prosperity.

Sowilo

The sun; energy, honor, guidance.

Fehu

Personally earned or lucky wealth and prosperity.

Jera

The harvest; patience and promise.

Raidho

The chariot; journey and travel.

Note: This is not the real book cover.