In the first day out, Ixanti, Lilia, and Lyria fall to the roadside as a pair of grey uniformed guards from Moressley ride quickly east. Hopefully they'll be come and gone by the time the trio come ot the small village where they'll rest before heading north into the wilds. The village is little more than an Inn and a stable, truth told, but something much more interesting is afoot!
A caravan of elegant and colorful wagons has arrived and camped between the village and the river. It's a famed Elven Circus called Shadows Dance upon a Silken Moonlit Circle. That's the best translation that crude human languages can manage. No one quite knows what to expect, this circus has never before been seen in the lands north of the elven homelands in living human memory. And since the elves journeyed north to settle the Vale and the forests east of the Inland Sea only a few centuries ago, if Dancing Circle was here before, it's been a very long time indeed since they performed.
The Inn's common room is abuzz with the anticipation of colorful elven visitors. And so, when Harmonia, a stylish half-elven songstress appears and takes the stage (a table with good sight lines). Her performance is measured as she warms to this new audience, watching them for cues that she might use to better attune her renditions to their ears. She has the taproom's rapt attention.
Atreyu returns to the common room after seeing to the horses. The senior Mages of his cabal have taken rooms and a table and are debating finer details of arcane lore over pints. Bored of their endlessly predictable positions on contentious points of magical scholarship, Atreyu seeks fairer company and finds it in the form of Lilia, who despite being a bumpkin elf, is preferable to droning Magi, however august and learned they may be. Lilia has added her piping to the half elf's lute and song and the flute's eerie tones have cast a pall on the room. Atreyu, curious, asks if he might examine the eerie pipes. Casting a spell over the pipes, he assenses that they are magical, and though not yet attuned to Lilia, can cast a dark enchantment over those who hear their dark piping. The bones they're carved from are a Lemia's bones… a cunning and cruel creature from the sandy wastes and it is perhaps that alone which gives them their dark power.
Seeking to lighten to mood, Harmonia calls for requests. Sadly, she does not know MY BLOOD FALLS ON STONE, but before long, the room is clapping and singing along with an old favorite. The half-elven Bard invites the lot of new acquaintances back to her caravan as guests. She finds that she's chafing under the Circus' leadership and has decided to set off north with them on their adventure – but not before they all partake of the caravan's hospitality!
Next time: Leavetaking