Brinewater Market

So chasing down colorful animals in the swamp is not the brightest thing I’ve done. Turns out blue popplebumps are magical. Their poisonous secretions are used in anti-magic potions, poisons, and spells. Worse, the little buggers are raised by these evil, vile, foul, frog-faced monsters who like to coat the barbed tips of their spears in the poison.

To be fair, they may have been upset because I was eating frogs’ legs.

I’ve been languishing in Brinewater’s healer hall for the past week or so while my leg heals and the seizures stop. I’ve been pestering the apprentices, and this is what they told me about their home, Brinewater Market.

 


Photo by Chloé Lam on Unsplash
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Get yer Feets Wet!

While doing research on the mercenary companies I found a record of Phoenix Company that included all of their residence halls.  One of them is located in a place named Feets-Wet Cross-Market.  Well, with a name like that, I had to check it out.  Feets-Wet is in the middle of a place called Wobble-Grass, a swamp covering a large portion of the south-central part of the continent.  Feets-Wet is a big city made of living bridges and buildings, and it was beautiful as well as terrifying.  I also found out that “Market” is the title given to any town large enough to create and sustain trade.  There is only one Cross-Market, where all the trade routes of Wobble-Grass come together.  I found references to only two other Markets: Pantano Water-Market, on the coast of Pantano Bay, and Water Drake Hunt-Market.  A Water-Market is a port.  “Hunt” is the title given to any community that focuses on hunting.  Water drakes are 6-8 feet long reptiles that look like a dragon mated with a crocodile.  These people literally make their living hunting the most dangerous animal in the entire swamp.

Anyway, click this link for a brief description of Feets-Wet Cross-Market.


This beautiful photograph is by Chloé Lam on Unsplash

 

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This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

 

Mercenaries of Erde

After learning about the Alley Cats I’ve done some research on the adventurers of Erde, and discovered they have a guild all their own: the Mercenaries’ Guild.  Now these people don’t just go exploring wild places looking for old ruins to loot or goblins to slay.  They’re the ones who take on all those random quests that we Terrans think of as “side quests.”  Cities and nations (and in between) contract mercenaries to fill out the ranks of their armies.  Merchants contract them to guard shipments.  There are nautical companies that contract to work on ships, guarding against pirates on the open water and bandits in port.  It’s a fascinating subculture, a sort of cottage industry of violent tendencies.  Kinda like my family.

Click the link to read a little more:  Mercenary Companies


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Erde’s Shape-Shifters

I had made the climb to the Bright Mother’s Fountain, and this gave me the right to be there.  But I was still uncomfortable in this company.  Not because they are predators – a bunch of my family are cat-people, or dog-people.  We’ve even got a family of dolphin shifters.  No, it’s because this was clearly a sacred place to them, and I was very much an outsider.  So, although I was invited to join them around the Fountain and be part of the Ritual, I politely declined.  Instead I wandered the plateau and talked to people.  And I discovered they were terrifying and fascinating, lovely and terrible, haunted and driven, kind-hearted and killers.  Their power is seductive.

I miss my family.  I think after this I’ll go home for a bit.

Click here to learn a little more: The Shape-Shifters of Erde


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

The Fountain of the Bright Mother

Hello fellow World-Walkers!  I’ve been off on a grand adventure the past couple of weeks and I’m only now returning to civilization.  I also learned there are places on Erde where my ship cannot go.  That was new and different.

Near the border of the Yoremba and Unhur’ahn, where the desert meets the mountains, is a high plateau.  You can’t get there unless you climb, or have wings.  I tried.  I tried really hard because it’s a long climb.  Had I realized my ship would not take me to the plateau directly I’d have planned better.  But I made it!  And because I made the climb I was also made welcome by the most diverse, wonderful, chaotic, terrifying group of shape-changers I’ve ever met.  (And some of my family are shape-changers.)  I will not share the details of our celebration: that was private (if you can call a gathering of a couple thousand people “private”).  But I will tell you a little about the plateau, and the well known as the Bright Mother’s Fountain.  <— Click the link!

May the Bright Mother bless you as well, and warm you in your travels!

 


 

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The Place of Wisdom

I find myself back in Mawali, in the Great Library.  I could spend many years in this place, combing through books and scrolls.  A team of researchers could spend their whole lives in this library and not touch half of it.  I found an ancient scroll with strange markings on the case, marks that turned out to be impressions of a labyrinth.  The librarian had to cast some preservation magics before we could handle the scroll inside, and we were rewarded with a beautiful full-color illustration of a labyrinth.  We have yet to decipher the writings.  We combed the wall for other scrolls, and found a few references.  I’m going to get some lunch then go back to trying to translate the old scroll.  You can read what little we found here: Mahali Busara


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Photograph [Paphos Archaeological Park. House of Theseus: Mosaic of Theseus killing the minotaur – Labyrinth ( detail ).] by Wolfgang Sauber used under CC license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode