MK's part... ### Slurk admonishes against using rope to tie ourselves together. MM reminds all that we are not, after all, mortal, and we can fly if nec. Slurk asks mm if we're ready. yes. he leaps out onto the net. We all follow. We see a family of bedraggled cultists, halflings, (gma, gpa, mom and pop, child, baby (or puppy)) climbs from one cave to anoheer. They ignroe as the shild slips and then recovers. gpa grabs a piece of cloth that rips free, he falls screaming, and hits the bottom. the family watch impassvly ntil the crunch. Hail tzeentch, change, etc, they cry. We are led to Cave Seven. Slurk looks around. It's not a big cave, but it's darkish. Natural cavern. roughly 10 or 12 yards in diam. He waves to a woman and walks over to her. He introduces us to Peytra Tralbensaft. We have sworn allegiance to tzeentch and we hope to participate in the desctruction of the world. Follow me, she says, to the confession chamber. More net travel. R misses the net and falls a very short distance, but catches herself with panache. Peytra gives her a sharp look. (She didn't fall into death for Tzeentch!) Peter also almost falls to his death, but saves himself. We enter Cave Five. About the same width as 7 but deeper. It's laid out like a miserable church. Lots of benches (aka rickety benches) scattered around. At the back, a stone altar. Behind that is a curtain. Peytra leads us btwn the benches, past the altar, and through the curtain. She looks at each of us pierceingly. She chooses to start with Ravenna.

She asked me a bunch of questions, starting with who I was and where I was from, and then she asked how I came to Tzeentch. We here to infiltrate them, sort of, so I tried to say something that made sense without completely rejecting everything I stand for, which is not Tzeentch and the death and disorder he stands for. So I told her I fought with Tzeentch against Nergal: I fight against his disease wherever I go. That was my calling. And she accepted the answer, because it was mostly the truth.

But then it got stickier. She dropped a bunch of holy symbols representing every god I knew, and many I didn't recognize. She asked me to reject them all, to spit upon them. That, I could not do. I am Bianca's, and I would not reject her.

Peytra asked me if I would not set myself free of "the shackels of love that blind us to change", but that made no sense that I could see. I asked her to explain what the hell she was talking about, but she just shook her head sadly and said I wasn't ready. What, I wasn't ready because I didn't pretend to understand sheer gibberish?

She dismissed me and turned to the next person, and I considered that I was supposed to have tried to blend in so we could discover how to destroy the Crystal and save the world. But I couldn't see that I could have done anything differently.

Goldrim put all his heart into answering Peytra's questions, and he seemed quite a devout devotee of Tzeentch. Sun mumbled what he thought she wanted to hear, and he passed. Carmella, from that distant place she lives in, likewise gave her the answers she wanted. That hurt a great deal: where was my sister, who would have given all the wrong answers just to cause trouble, even if she really did believe?

Peter also passed. If he thought spit on Shallia's symbol and rejecting would get her to leave him alone, he was mistaken. Ashe did all right until Peytra insisted he give up his axes. That, he would not do. He came over to stand near me. José and Bark gave all the "right" answers and passed.

Even Miara passed, to my surprise. I didn't think she'd ever give anyone her swords, not to mention the Crystal itself. Peytra didn't seem interested in the Crystal at all, and I don't think she had any idea what it was. And, of course, with the ties we have to it, we should be able to call it back to us whenever we want. She pressed a little to keep her swords, but gave them up when required to.

Done, Peytra turned to Ashe and me and we followed her to the edge of the cliff. One more test: jump off the side. Not so much a test, than, as a way to get rid of the failed ones. Still, with the power of the Crystal, I don't fear a fall. I asked Ashe if he would jump with me, but he shook his head and stayed firmly where he was.

I jumped.

As I fell through the wind to the sharp rocks below, I called up an air spirit, which answered at the last possible moment. Damned rock. But it did catch me, enveloping me in the safe winds that kept me safe. I directed it to return me to the ledge I'd jumped from, and it did. I stepped out of its embrace onto the rock, although the air spirit's winds caused some damage to the net.

They were all (except for my friends of course) astonished. Feeling mischievous, I said, "apparently Tzeentch is not done with me yet". Peytra agreed drily, "apparently". She pushed at Ashe, trying to get him to jump or give up his axes, but he remained stubborn. When she insisted that Tzeentch asked them of him, he disagreed, but he looked at Carmella. He still believes she is the embodiment of Tzeentch.

Peytra finally gave up, and we all followed her, even Ashe and me, to another cave, where we were supposed to live for a while. Filthy place. Better not be for long. These poor people, who've been convinced that death and rot and yes, even disease, is the will of Tzeentch. They just lie around, waiting to do die. They don't even want me to give them what little help I can.

Before too long, all the cultists in our cave gathered at the mouth, looking out and up, and mumuring. We joined them, elbowing them out of the way so we could see, and they gave way easily. A sudden gust of wind pulled us all out into mid-air. At least we'd elbowed the cultists out of the way, so remained safe in the cave.

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 ~