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Glikzong and Colapius

Quest for Calatia Session 12
February 9, 2020

With My Lady secured in the temple, the sentinels stepped outside. The heavy snowfall from yesterday’s storm had passed in the night. Zedeki and Nami went on watch while Gongu and Ophinia conducted a short funeral for the girl. They dug a humble grave and laid the girl to rest, each saying a quick prayer to Hylia before joining their companions. Zedeki pointed out the near-fresh footprints of the bokoblins from the ruins of Acton. The bokoblins seemed to come up from the ruins and passed right next to the temple before going off into the mountain paths. But Zedeki spied a single campfire still in the ruins in what Nami identified as Castle Acton. Not wanting to be caught unawares from a threat at their backs, the sentinels descended the cliff and ventured towards the ruins. Gongu quickly cast a spell on each of them, allowing them to pass silently through the snow and rocks without making the slightest sound.

The ruins of Acton were a crumbling mess of old and fallen walls, vines wilting from the bite of winter, and three fresh inches of snow obscuring any level of detail in the architecture. The town itself was almost utterly wasted. Only a few walls still stood above a foot or two. The world was entirely white and silent.

The wind began blowing slightly, coming in from the west. “This will be a problem,” said Ophinia. “Bokoblins have a good sense of smell. If there are any others here, they’ll smell us coming before we get to the castle.”

“Let’s move quickly,” said Gongu. “Split up. We can surround it.”

Nami produced the map she had found in Paraba’s book. It had a diagram of the castle. “I’ll hide in the library,” she said. Gongu chose the outer wall by the servant’s chambers. Zedeki would fly low and around the castle towards the great hall. Ophinia went towards the Lord’s chambers, the source of the light of the campfire.

In his flight, Zedeki caught a glimpse of the small camp. He sent a quick message through his Kinstone. “There’s just one bokoblin. A short one. Female, I think. It has a spear nearby, but it’s kind of shoddy.”

Cautious, Ophinia approached the Lord’s chambers. Staying hidden, she produced Huk’s necklace and crushed one of its teeth in her hands. She spoke, in Blin, to the bokoblin. “You there! What are you doing here?”

The bokoblin huffed. “Eating fish,” she replied. She came around the corner towards Ophinia and held a fish out to her. “You hungry?”

“No, I’m… I’m fine,” replied Ophinia. She was surprised by the small bokoblin. Unlike those that she had met and battled in Hyrule, this one seemed unfazed by Ophinia’s appearance. The bokoblin was certainly female as Zedeki suggested. Ophinia saw that the bokoblin girl was shorter than her by a foot and wearing various furs of animals.

The bokoblin girl just kept munching on her fish. “What are you doing here in the castle?” she asked.

Ophinia and the bokoblin girl traded words for a short while. The bokoblin’s name was Glikzong. Ophinia explained that she and her companions were investigating the ruins because they were interested in what was up here. Glikzong seemed happy to have company and explained that her cruel master used to control this area and that the temple was very dangerous. But yesterday, the cruel master left. The bokoblin tribes that used to live in the ruins were happy to see the cruel master leave, and they all left to return to their own homes in the mountains. This bokoblin girl got left behind because she was the next sacrifice to the cruel master and, if he should come back, she would need to be eaten. Glikzong believed she was too dumb to go with them.

“Are you looking for treasure?” asked Glikzong. “Izik stole my boomerang, but he stole lots of other things from my friends. He hid them in the old well. If you go down there with me and help me get my boomerang, you can have the treasure!”

Ophinia and her companions were excited at the prospect of some treasures, though they wondered what kinds of treasures a tribe of bokoblins might have. The sentinels followed Glikzong to the old well, a collapsed structure leading down into the darkness below. Ophinia got a sense of something dangerous down there and insisted that Glikzong remained behind. She told Glikzong to warn them if anything else comes into the ruins and would put them in danger, to which Glikzong agreed. Glikzong produced a small flute from her belt and began playing some soothing music as she went back to her campfire.

Gongu began lowering Ophinia with a rope. Nami drew her bow and aimed down to the bottom of the well, ready to fire at anything that approached. Zedeki flew down with Ophinia. But the flapping of his wings drew attention of a large Gohma that slept quietly in a crag, and it ambushed the two. Ophinia was restrained by a blast of web. Zedeki, Gongu, and Namika pelted the Gohma with arrows until it collapsed. Ophinia cut her way out of the webs and cut apart the Gohma larvae that rushed her.

Ophinia took up a torch and went into a small tunnel until she came upon what appeared to be the collapse of a storeroom above her head. The floor in the storeroom had crumbled long ago and some of the bokoblins had ventured down the well to hide their belongings in the ruin. Ophinia recovered Glikzong’s boomerang and found a handful of rupees. She also found a strange gold and bronze gauntlet with a metal beetle attached to it.

As Gongu began helping Ophinia climb, Glikzong came rushing to him, screaming and pointing. Gongu and Nami looked up and saw a single hawk flying overhead. Glikzong seemed very distressed, and it was only when Ophinia could translate that they learned that Glikzong was worried the hawk would steal her fish. Evidently, the bokoblin girl was not going to threaten them in any way.

Ophinia felt impressed to give Glikzong directions to Huk and the Spring of Wellness down south. Glikzong seemed happy to know where to go now that she was abandoned by her tribe. She gathered as many fish as she could find, said a quick goodbye to her new friends, and began marching south towards the Steppe.

“What a strange creature,” said Zedeki.

“Yes, but I can’t help but feel bad for her,” said Ophinia. “The bokoblins here are different. They aren’t driven to fight like they are in Hyrule. Glikzong just wanted company. Huk wanted to be good. Something is different here in Calatia.”

The sentinels searched through the rest of the ruins, finding a few books kept safe by a group calling themselves the Acton Preservation Project, and some more rupees. They returned to the temple, gathered their equipment, saddled up My Lady, and ventured north. Gongu led the group through the paths he found while Zedeki and Nami kept watch. Whisper tagged along, smelling and keeping alert to danger.

The morning passed into the afternoon, and the afternoon passed into the evening. When the sun went down, the sentinels, led by Gongu’s expertise in the mountains, came to the foothills of the mountains. The foothills overlooked the Lellow Prairie, a vast land of hills, streams, and a few farms dotting the landscape. The snow here was sparse, but the ground was very cold. A cool breeze came down from the mountains, but otherwise the landscape was as silent as the temple of Paraba.

The sentinels began to make camp for the night, exhausted from the long travel through the difficult terrain of rocks and snow. Ophinia gave more feed to My Lady while Zedeki and Nami set up sleeping bags and blankets. Gongu set up a small fire and took the first watch for the night, Whisper at his side.

Hours passed in silence. Gongu looked to his friends while they slept, repositioning their blankets if they seemed cold. Whisper nudged Gongu and looked up. Gongu saw a bright meteorite streaming through the sky, casting an eerie red glow. Gongu watched the fire streak across the sky towards the north, but as it passed towards the horizon, it lit up the prairie just enough for Gongu to see three shapes of darkness silently charging towards the camp.

“Get up!” he yelled to his companions. “Monsters incoming!”

While his companions roused themselves, Gongu took Stonebreaker and fired a quick shot into one of the shadow beasts. It growled and hissed. They began firing arrows at the beasts to knock them back. With a quick shot by Zedeki’s Gale Force, one shadow beast fell to the ground and writhed.

“Don’t let them scream!” shouted a deep, booming voice from behind. The sentinels looked in dismay as another creature joined the fight. A large, muscular lynel charged towards the camp. He was wrapped in thick leathers that almost covered the majority of his features, save for the bulging muscular arms that carried a heavy glaive.

The sentinels prepared themselves to fight the lynel, too. But one of the shadow beasts instead turned around and slashed at the lynel. The lynel raised the glave and drove it into the beast’s chest, pinning it to the ground. “I’ve got this one, bring the other two down before-“

The lynel couldn’t finish the sentence before one of the shadow beasts let out a piercing shriek, echoing through the foothills and causing each of the sentinels to quickly cover their ears. Gongu and Nami fell down, paralyzed by the horrible sound. The lynel shouted again. “They revive each other with their scream! Kill them all, quickly!” The shadow beast that Zedeki had struck raised himself off the ground and continued its awful attack.

Zedeki fired Gale Force again, channeling his magic into the shot. The arrow burst apart as it struck, injuring two of the shadow beasts. Whisper charged and began tearing at another. The lynel swung again, impaling his shadow beast, but not enough to kill it. The beasts began screaming again, reviving each other and sending the sentinels to their knees from the noise.

Ophinia got on My Lady and charged. My Lady kicked one shadow beast away while Ophinia called upon Hylia. Divine energy erupted from her axe, now called Hero’s Honor, as she struck down two shadow beasts, sending them to the earth in misery and pain. Zedeki fired another shot, slamming into the last shadow beast and dropping it to the ground. The three beasts, now devoid of allies, withered away into dust and sand. The breeze from the mountains dissipated their bodies and they were lost to the winds.

The lynel, not sparing even a moment, raised his glaive in anger towards the sentinels. “What are you lot doing in the prairie, unaccompanied by a marshal or sentinel?!” he roared.

The sentinels did not back down, but instead stepped forward towards the lynel. “We are sentinels!”

The lynel was confused and demanded to see their badges. “Probationary sentinels, yes, but sentinels nonetheless,” he said, inspecting each badge in turn. His demeanor changed instantly, signing with relief and slumping down to the ground. He placed his glaive back into its holder strapped to his back and his face softened. “My apologies, probationary sentinels. It is my job to alarm and intimidate. I am the Scarecrow of Kanalet. Colapius is my name. You are in a most dangerous land, but since you are sentinels, I am not as worried as I would normally be. You see, most travelers that come through the prairie perish from the shadow beasts. It’s dangerous to go alone.”

Colapius offered to take the sentinels to a better shelter for the night, somewhere the shadow beasts had not yet attacked. Still tired, they took him up on his offer and followed him through the prairie for an hour. It was very late when they arrived at a small stream coming from the Hokani Mountains. The stream led to a small cave where Colapius had a camp fire looking a few wild fowl. Colapius dropped off his glaive by a large tent and went to tend to the cooking meat, offering it to each of the sentinels.

“So,” he said between bites. “Sentinels don’t come through here very often, save for the woman the other day. What are you doing in the Lellow Prairie, and where are you going?”

“We’re traveling north from Mabel Village,” replied Zedeki. “The town there was under attack by a force of cultists who worship a god they call Cruel. We followed a cultist into the mountains and met Cruel, who turned out to be a god named Majora. Another god was traveling with us, Paraba. Paraba did not survive, but we banished Majora. Now we’re heading north to warn the Queen and find the Northern Lighthouse.”

“That’s a lot of information,” mused Colapius. “I’ve never heard of Paraba or Majora or whatever, but I can say I don’t believe the Northern Lighthouse exists. Never mind me, though. I’m not exactly a scholar. There’s a Sentinel House in Kanalet that you’re welcome to visit. We keep a small fund for traveling sentinels such as yourselves, but Soveliss probably took it already. She might still be around if you want to visit with her. Kanalet is the major town in this area, about two days north of here. A day from here is the main road that can take you to Soutuna in the south or Chorus if you go north.”

“Perhaps we should go to Kanalet first,” offered Zedeki.

“Who is Soveliss?” asked Nami.

Colapius shifted towards his tent. “Another sentinel, like yourselves, but with her papers already done. She’s a healer of some kind, come down from Chorus. Says she met a weird fairy on the road that mentioned something about the Southern Lighthouse and a missing supply cart. Soveliss is going to go deal with that, but stopped to stay in Kanalet for a little while. Like I said, she might still be there.” He settled into the tent and drew up a fur blanket over his back. “If you don’t mind, I’m a little exhausted and very happy to have company. If you all don’t mind watching the camp tonight, I have not slept in days. I’ll make breakfast tomorrow and guide you to the road.”

The sentinels agreed and began laying out their own sleeping bags and blankets. Gongu and Nami offered to watch over the camp that night, and Gongu took the first shift. While everyone slept, he continued to gaze around the camp, watching for shadow beasts. As he looked, he saw in the sky another meteorite. The shooting star was glowing white this time, once again illuminating the land, and Gongu sensed that Whisper felt at ease when the meteorite passed into the night.

While Ophinia slept, she dreamed. She was back in Elsith’s Safe House, but no one was there. Inside the hallway, she could see the faint glow of the hearth from the parlor. She walked down, quietly, and found Paraba seated by the fire. His armor was gone and he sat alone with the wrappings still on his body, his futile attempt to disguise himself during life. He turned and motioned to Ophinia to sit.

“I’m sorry we didn’t get a chance to discuss things,” he said. “Back when I was alive, I mean.”

“It’s alright,” she replied, nervous. “What is-“

He held up his hand. “No questions. Not yet. Remember when we first met? You wanted to play a game of cards?”

“I remember.”

Ophinia sat down and watched Paraba produce a deck of cards. He placed them face down on a table between their chairs.

“Here are the rules,” said Paraba. “We will keep it simple. Both of us will draw a card. If your card is higher than mine, you can ask me a question. If mine is higher, I ask the question. Answer honestly.”

They each drew a card. Ophinia won the hand and Paraba smiled warmly. She asked, “What did you mean about Malanya? That he isn’t what I thought he would be?”

The smile faded from Paraba’s face. “He’s…. he’s not a bad person. The horse god is unlike the rest of us lesser gods. He demands a sacrifice before his services are rendered. I’m sorry, Ophinia, but his sacrifices often have a very high cost. Not in rupees, but in something else.”

“Servitude?”

“Perhaps. It depends on the magic he is asked to perform. He’s a very chaotic individual. I really cannot say what sacrifice he will demand of you. Should you meet him, prepare yourself. You may be disappointed in what he asks.”

They each drew a card. Ophinia won again. She asked, “What is your connection to Hylia?”

Paraba laughed. “That’s a good question! Hylia is my friend. At least, I think so. I haven’t spoken to her in so long, but that may be Majora’s fault. I was one of Hylia’s warriors back when the world began and Skyloft soared above the clouds. We fought against Demise and his demons. We were victorious, to a degree. Hylia offered herself to resurrect eternally as the Princess of Light as a means of sealing away Demise’s descendants. I was one of her champions and she asked me to become a god like her and help protect the lands should Demise return before the Princess is reborn. My mission was to be the patron of heroes in Calatia. Yes, Hylia gave me my divinity and was my mentor for ages upon ages. I am sorry I ended up failing in my mission. Perhaps that’s why she chose you. You’re someone I can guide and assist.”

They each drew a final card. This time, Paraba won.

He leaned in close. “Tell me, Ophinia. Do you desire power?”

“Power?” she asked, confused.

“In the past, I bestowed great strength to my chosen. To those that make a pact with me, I offer my magic. Dead as I am, my power resides in your axe. Should you choose to use it, Hero’s Honor can channel my magic for you. Serve me and I will serve you.”

Ophinia was confused. “What about my pact with Hylia?”

“Oh, nothing there would change,” he replied. “I served Hylia as best as I could. Your service to the goddess will not change. Think it over, Ophinia. If you can, converse with Hylia. Feel her presence. While Majora persists in Calatia, he is somehow able to block our connection to the goddess. Do what you can. My offer will never be rescinded. My magic can be a great boon to you, though I can sense the magic of Hylia flows powerfully through you already. If it is your desire, I can add to that power. Think on it. We shall speak again.”

With that, the dream ended. Ophinia awoke in the morning and saw Nami silently watching the horizon as the sun began to rise.

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