see Martyn's log again... When he gets it up on the web. There's a hole! We walked away from it. But an eagle came and changed our minds (message from the gods, Ashe). Don't take the horrible thing to the druidess! Apparently Ravenna was terribly ill, or she would have insisted on going to the hole right then and there.

We walked towards the hole in the sky. It's really far up, and clouds sort of swirl into it. It kind of looks like a tornado might, if you were looking down at it from above. And if it was just humongous. When we reached the cave behind the waterfall, the hole was directly above us. Someone, I think Kyosuke, estimated it was a good fifteen hundred feet up.

Kyosuke scouted around for Slurk, but didn't find him. Goldrim said he thought the hole was getting bigger. I hope it is: I don't want to fail like I did in my vision because the hole's too small. This crystal had to go through that hole somehow. I cannot fail.

José took the crystal and cast his flight spell. Up he went into the air, towards the hole. But his spell failed him long before he reached it. Kyosuke took the Crystal back from him when he returned. Miara said something about needing a non-magical, non-crystal-based way to get up to the hole. Kyosuke said she was the only speaking sense and gave the rock back to her to keep.

She's probably right. I imagine a chaos-hole like that will protect itself and the crystal pretty handily. What we needed was a legend: a roc, or a dragon. A friendly one, which comes from no legend at all.

Goldrim was taken by one of his visions again. He was quiet, then told us what he saw.

"Violence. My home is ruined. Beastmen were killing my family. Rivers of blood. I sat on a throne before a mass of worshipping beastmen. I was a harbinger of chaos and I wrecked the world. I could move off the throne, made of bone and blood, and its blood ran through me. I was both worshipped and trapped.

"Then I saw two birds beyond the vision. A finch pointed to a spot in the distance. I couldn't see what he pointed at, but it was away from my fate. The other bird was a vulture and it beckoned me to the same spot, on the throne that trapped me."

Slurk is the way out? None of us liked that thought. We can't trust him, and we can't possibly give him the crystal. Even Miara, who's usually ready to follow Goldrim's vision off a cliff, didn't seem happy with this one. She said surely it wasn't literal; the finch and the vulture were figurative and the real meaning was hidden behind.

José called for Slurk, but he didn't show himself. Kyosuke used the Crystal to try to call Slurk to him. He failed in that, but the hugest (and closest) lightning bolt I've ever seen shot from Kyosuke up to the hole with a deafening clap of thunder. My ears rang for minutes. He tried it several times, but nothing at all happened like that again. Kyosuke said the Crystal wouldn't bring him Slurk, but he could tell where Slurk was: about a day from here.

Slurk is the way out? He has the heads of a finch and a vulture. But we don't trust him and we defintely are not giving him the stone. Jose calls Slurk. MK uses the stone to call Slurk. A flash of lightning extends from MK to the hole. Loud and frightening. He tries it again. Nothing happens. And again. He decides the crystals can't bring Slurk to him, but Slurk is in that direction (where we sent him), about a day's travel. MK thinks we need Slurk. Jose wants Ashe to call up a finch and a vulture. He tries. A bird lands in front of Ashe. He bows and it bows back. A crow. It can't carry the rock. Can he go fetch Slurk? It does preen and leave a feather behind. MM, R, A, J, and Bark try to build a tower. We feel dirty and dursty but nothing happens. Try again. (R rolls 3). Large number of small EEs come up out of the ground. We feel really dirty now (where's soem soap when you need it?). Keep working. THey push together dirt into apile. And it gets taller (20 feet!). It does look like we want -- tower with spiral staircase inside. So far so good, if slow. Still better than Slurk. It's on the ledge over the waterfall. Now it's a hundred feet. Now 200. The EEs are clearly using parts of the cliff to make the tower. And we get stairs down to us. Now 250. Now 325. Now 425. 515. 590. 640. 690. 750. 770. 800. 810. MK steps back 500 feet or so. 840. 870. 900. 930. 950. 960. 970. 980. 980. 990. 1000. 1000. 1000. 1000. 1000. 1000. 1000. 1000. Bark drops out 1000. Jose drops out 1000. R and A dismiss the EEs. They seemed exhausted, something we never saw before. We all start up the stairs (including MK and Peter). 1000 steps up. Trudge trudge trudge pant pant pant. Jose gives us lights. THis thing is solid rock. Nifty. Several hours later, we are tired, but we get there. No wind up here, but there is a metaphysical breeze. The hole looks bigger, which surprises none of us. We are tired out (MM and R used up 10 FP). PP gives Jose 10 back. THe rest of us rest and wait. R is fine again in 5 minutes. PP is exhausted. Jose only makes it 10 feet, then he falls right back down. This felt very weird to him. AE maybe? R pulls it up. But it doesn't come. We all try together. We get there, but we get a very firm metaphysical NO. The crystal said OK, but the essence of air said NO. Bark throws a stick 100 feet into the air, then it falls way down. There's no suck from here. Ballista? It's snowing and windy now. The snow is swirling around the hole. Peter suggests we wait until the hole grows down to meet us. MK believes metaphysically sending to rock up there wil be a faiure. He wants to go get Slurk. He decides to fly there. He does so, MM thinking that his death will be hard to explain to her uncle. He flies up towards the hole, gettin gfurther than Jose (of course, he's not carrying the rock). But then he starts falling. He calls on the rock's power and falls. He calls again, and flies again. He heads for the top of the tower and gets there. He lands. He proved we're wrong, he says. We can't fly up there, so therefore the rock will not be sent their either. MM and R agree with him, because neither of them think the rock will go along with destroying itself. He takes off again. And fails to reach the hole. But saves himself eventually, and flies off towards Slurk as fast as possible. And out of sight. How fast is the hole growing? Slowly. So slowly we can't tell how fast. Jose makes a few mackerels (he makes Australian spotted ones!). We cook it with magical fire. We eat it. We consider and come up with no answers. Gah. It's definitely getting bigger, but we have no idea when it will reach us down here. Many days at least. It starts raining fish. We think about beer, and a mug of beer slams into the stairs, shattering. Jose thinks about wings. After four hours, MK returns, with wings. He flubs his first landing, then makes it the second time. MM thinks this will be REALLY hard to explain to her uncle. We give him the rock to fly up there. He asks for a dagger, and the only one we have is the magical dagger which Carmella gives him. He flies... ### [slurk is the answer, but we've stalled out because we don't want to talk to him in anyway.]

Ravenna, A Monk of the Biancan Order

Part the First:
Blood and Mud

Part the Second:
Murder and Mayhem

Part the Third:
Puzzles and Crystals

Part the Fourth:
Dwarves and Rocks

Part the Fifth:
Diplomacy and Daggers

Part the Sixth:
Crystal and Chaos

Part the Seventh:
Sheer Insanity

~ The End ~