Chapter 2: Allies
The Story So Far:
Thessana, a member of the Hunting Tiger tribe, has found herself in a small village. She discovered a church, and while there met an Elvin cleric. She learned of the town’s problem; a series of raids taking place at night, and was preparing to leave when the cleric loudly proclaimed, “You may cease hiding, you sulking rat! Show yourself!”
Thessana had barely enough time to be surprised before a large, strong human stepped from the shadows. However, as she looked, she began to doubt that he was indeed a pure-human.
His ears were ever so slightly pointed, and his eyes glowed gold at uneven intervals. He also seemed to radiate an almost impossibly strong aura of power, that seemed to turn her will to wisps of smoke, then nothing.
“Yes, father? How might I help you?” She was equally surprised by the voice. It seemed as a chorus: sometimes it seemed to be bass, sometimes alto, sometimes tenor. And yet, it never changed pitch.
“Sentalial! I warned you to stop eavesdropping,” the priest reprimanded. “Pelor shall dismiss you from his followers if you continue!”
“Unlikely,” Sentalial muttered, though he looked worried. “Pelor chose me at birth. I was blessed by him. He will not dismiss me if I remain faithful.”
“Pah,” spat the priest, “You will have to forgive me, my dear catfolk. Sentalial here is a highly inquisitive being, and has been constantly badgering me with requests to investigate the raids. I’ve denied him the right to adventure as he alone would probably fare no better than our knight.”
Thessana noted his use of the word ‘being’. When she inquired after his vocabulary, she was told that Sentalial was an Aasimar; a being not human, but not angel either. “Somewhere in the middle,” proclaimed the cleric.
“But,” interjected Sentalial, “if she investigates the raids too, I’ll be able to come with, right? I could come as a healer. I’m a good healer!”
He seemed to grow in enthusiasm with each passing word, until he finished his idea almost bouncing up and down.
“That you are, Sentalial,” the cleric said kindly. “Very well. I shall allow you to adventure, providing our friend here doesn’t have any objections?” Thessana had been engrossed in their quick verbal skirmish, and was wrenched violently from her state of revere.
“Oh, um,” she flustered. “Of course I haven’t any objections! I’d be glad to have you along!”
“Excellent,” proclaimed the priest. “You should hurry and find a room in the inn, my friends, and begin exploring in the morning.”
They did exactly that, and engaged in brief verbal exchanges, learning something of each other’s past. Sentalial was born on a distant island, which had very little contact with other groups of indigenous people. It had come as a shock, then, when a group of half elves landed on their shores.
“They claimed,” Sentalial said acidly, “To be lost sailors. They CLAIMED to be peaceful.” He was beginning to shout now.
“They overthrew us soon. I managed to escape through the grace of Pelor. I was teleported many miles to find myself in this city. I work at the church to pay off my debt to the sun god.”
They soon found themselves at the inn. As they walked in, they both noted the extraordinary amount of adventurers, mercenaries, and just plain tough people in the tavern.
“Perhaps we might convince one of them to join us,” Sentalial murmured. “They’d be a valuable asset to our group.” She agreed, and began asking around.
She had been refused for the fifth time now, though three of the men offered to take her out for a ‘wild night’. She sighed quite melodramatically.
She had been considered quite attractive in her tribe, but she had never imagined that ideas of beauty would be the same in catfolk as in humans. She was about to give up when she found herself face-to-face with a hairless, reptilian humanoid.
“I believe I heard,” she said in silky tones,”you ask that man to assist you in a journey you plan on undertaking. Perhaps I might be of assistance.”
Thessana barely registered her comment, being completely engrossed in her adversary’s clothes. They seemed to flicker between a suit of raven feathers, a royal gown and plain, leather garments. She was shocked out of her awe by her adversary’s final grand announcement:
“Bejik Thrae, warmage, at your service.”