Risk is part of the game. And risk is definitely part of adventuring, but also part of life! I took a big risk leaving my comfortable living behind and jumping onto the Jenivere to see the world. I took a risk in confronting that serpentfolk priestess in the underground temple deep below Smuggler’s Shiv. I took a risk deciding to be the discoverer of Saventh-Yhi (or die trying). I took a risk exploring the lost city, both above and below ground.
Now, I am fully committed to discovering the secrets of Saventh-Yhi. Whatever is to be found on the other side of that portal – most likely more serpentfolk enemies – must be exposed. I will not shirk that risk, but lately, it seems that my party members have been conspiring behind my back.
Leif hasn’t been the problem, he hasn’t really changed since the first time we met him rooted to the ground near an ancient crumbling Azlanti outpost. His skill set is extremely focused on the one thing he does best – bash in heads; his hate of the Chaaru-ka and Ketch is formidable. Up until a couple of weeks ago, I would have said that he will never change, but lately I’ve seen someone’s influence slowly waxing over Leif’s actions. That influence – Dadak.
I don’t want to think ill of Dadak, we’ve been adventurers for a long time, and we’ve saved each other’s lives on several occasions since we were shipwrecked together on Smuggler’s Shiv. While party members have fallen to the side – Pol, Chydak, Joffa, Goland, whatever that witch’s name was – Dadak has been a strong defender and rock at my side. He is quite formidable, as witnessed by his single-handed defeat of the Monkey King! Wow, that was some battle and I know I could not have fared as well as he did. That is one tough orc! I’ve also relied on his healing in the past. What was I thinking!?
But finally, I am realizing that Dadak’s true colors are starting to show. Sure, he directed me to Jask to cure me of the influence of the dark mold spores that seem to inhabit every square inch of each vault we go into, but it was Jask that cured me. Thanks to him, I am no longer under the influence of the paranoia caused by the spores. Physically, I know that I am not currently at the top of my game right now, a previous injury is definitely hampering me, but I’m not sure I should get healed by him again. He knows this, common courtesy compelled me to ask him not to cast anything on me before getting my ok, but yesterday, in a moment of weakness I permitted him to heal my wounds and he deliberately cast a different spell! I was watching him closely. I have some skill in reading a spell as it is being cast and the spell he tried was NOT a healing spell.
What? Did he think I would meekly stand by and let him have his way with me (I know how that sounds!). No! Even his companion, Kaylia is standoffish. That cat is quite intelligent and it also knows that Dadak is sketchy and shies away from him. Plain as day! And Leif just stands there, if he had a jaw, I’m sure it is just hanging there, slack. Warrior to warrior, there is some respect there, but I wouldn’t go so far as say “friendship” or remove him from my people to wary of. At this point, the only thing keeping me going back to the Free Captains of the Shackles camp is duty. Plus, of course, Kasada Lewyn is very mighty amongst the leadership.
So, I’m going to have to keep an eye on him, on all of them. Maybe after we clear this last vault and then return to Khalid-Sha’s domain to get the last crystals we need to open that portal, I might have to go on my own. I also have to keep a look out on whatever it is that is eating creature’s brains and replacing them with green goo. But for now, I will look over my shoulder, I will cautiously examine anything cast on me. Risk is part of the game.
—From the log of Kreshton Rel’Astra