Gate Tossing, Mip Hunting, and Other Sports





Gate Tossing, Mip Hunting, and Other Sports

  1. Baik Telor
    Baik Telor
    Late the next day, the lookout caught sight of another island to the south-east, one much more thickly jungled and so less likely to be inhabited. But skirting the coast, they found it to be quite large, on par with that of the Yaren, and on the southern coast they caught sight of a heavy palisade wall breaking the line of tropical forest. This time an even smaller party went ashore: Walliss, Shid Na, Bahasa, Mabruk, Achu, and a Merchant’s Guild marine nicknamed Javelin.

    They didn't see a gate or door in the seriously hefty wall, and so figured they might as well just knock. This seemed to do the trick, since they promptly heard shouts and/or bellows from the other side, then a section of wall started shaking. Uncertain of what was to come, they backed off, but it turned out this was the gate: several logs fastened together. It was lifted up and pulled aside by those within—who were revealed as some sort of anthroteric behemoths, something like a rhino's body with the upper half of a (huge) human where the neck and head should be.

    Parley ensued. Bahasa was in luck, finding that a few of the creatures knew Oroko, and it was soon clear that these were the Majuro, the great hunters Kraken's notes had referred to. From their talk, they seemed to respect strength and hunting prowess above all, so Shid Na hit upon a means to impress them; he had Bahasa tell them that Mabruk (obviously the strongest human present) would pick up and throw their gate. They were, naturally, dubious of this claim but happy to see him try.

    “Just pretend you're doing it,” Shid Na whispered to him. “I'll take care of the rest.”

    And easy as pie, Mabruk walked over to the Majuro gate, and as he bent down, the young wind-worker raised it in his arms. Mabruk, getting into the act, lifted it over his head—and then, with a theatrical grunt, heaved it twenty feet to land with a thud and a shower of sand. The Majuro grunted in awe and respect, and seemingly took no heed that Shid Na's face was covered in perspiration while Mabruk had hardly broken a sweat.

    Impressed with their guests, the Majuro chieftain extended an offer to take them "mip hunting," which the landing party enthusiastically accepted; only after hours hiking into the forest did it occur to them to inquire exactly what a "mip" was. (As it turned out, these were huge, tree-dwelling, chameleoid snakes... which were hunted for their fur.) After helping to bag a few of these unusual large game, it was necessary to camp for the night, and return to the village in the morning. The Majuro advised the humans to shelter in thickets, to avoid notice of the "scorpion birds" which roosted in the central hills.

    This, however, proved irresistibly enticing to such adventurers, who instead built a prominent campfire in the largest clearing they could find. In due course, they were indeed set upon in the night by a pair of flying creatures with stinging tails and 20-foot wingspans. One managed to carry Javelin off before being downed by Walliss' arrows and Shid Na's magic, but the lucky marine survived the crash landing in the trees. The other managed to sting Achu before being dispatched, but her hardy constitution pulled her through it, just causing some rather strong nausea and joint pain for the following day.

    Upon their return to the shoreside village, late the next morning, the Majuro made a gift of several mip hides already cured; it appears they retain their camouflage ability for several days after death, and the Majuro lay out colorful patterns beneath the curing hides to decorate the furs. Undoubtedly a valuable trading good, the adventurers accepted gratefully, giving in return several pieces of shell jewelry they'd acquired, with which the Majuro seemed delighted.

    They bid the travelers welcome any time they returned, and promised more trade of mip fur and other goods if they would only bring more of the wonderful delicate jewelry. Saying farewell, the party returned to the Sea Pansy and Jade Serpent, and prepared to resume the search for the Kamorro.
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