Wakanga takes the toast graciously, and while smiling nods his acceptance. "Master Rhino spoke of purchases, but you will not be able to gather anything tomorrow." he says sitting and starting on his plate. "Best if you make a list of the items you seek and allow my people to gather them before you set out."
Savoring the meal he excitedly adds, "The races usually have everything shut down. And tomorrow's race will be the grandest ever held. Not much will get done in the city anyway, so if you want, I could sponsor those who wish to enter Na N’buso’s Haka."
"Oh," Syndra cuts in. "I for one will be glad when this little scheme of yours is finally over and done."
Wakanga looks as injured as can be, but then looks in the groups direction. Expectantly. Hopeful even.
"You wish to sponsor us as racers?" said Obah, unable to hide his interest. As a boy, he had held the racers as heroes - everyone did. Never in his dreams had he considered the possibility of becoming one. It seemed a very bold plan, and Obah saw it for what it was instantly - a way to test these newcomers and to form a strong bond between them.
It was also a way to make a fabulous amount of money, and reputation as well.
To the others he said, "Oh, you must consider this offer - it is an excellent opportunity. You will not regret it."
The smile on the Merchant Prince's face grows wide. "Wonderful," he says with more mirth than you have ever heard in his already merry voice. "Tomorrow I will have Mowbula escort you, as I will have to be present with the other leaders. She will explain all the newer rules to you, all I can say now is that the main race tomorrow is a team event. And I am excited you all wish to participate."
For the rest of the evening the group learns that the great race will have multiple legs, each with a different dinosaur to represent it. Also the most exciting news is that it will be the first time they will be a race using the pteranodons, who the Merchant Prince's have been training for the last year for this. As Wakanga talks and goes from subject to subject, Syndra just sits quietly shaking her head now and then. You can almost picture a huge grin painted on the porcelain mask coming from the archmage.
When the evening storm has passed and Wakanga seems to finally be out of words the group is left to themselves in the little open courtyard of the villa. Twilight has turned to darkness and torch bearers wait patiently to escort the group back to The Thundering Lizard.
"Not very reassuring. But if there will be flying, I'm volunteering. If I somehow get off the mount, I can fly. And I can affect other riders at a distance. Do you know the rules of the race?"
Amil asks timidly.