Archive for July, 2005

Travel Journal – 1369 DR – Early Autumn

Tuesday, July 5th, 2005

THE SEA – Oh, dear diary, I’m afraid our time in Mulhorand came to a
surprisingly abrupt end.  Eventually we each figured out
independently that almost everyone in that poor, dry land is a slave.  As though the weather weren’t enough!  Once we’d universally realized and acknowledged that at least some of the markets in Skuld – their capitol – were slave markets,
we immediately beat a hasty path to the local constabulary to turn in
the scurrilous dogs who would sell their fellow sentients into
ownership by others. 

The people there apparently did not understand our indignation and thought we were asking directions, not demanding justice
They couldn’t seem to get around what, to them, seemed the obvious
explanation of our interest:  we wished to purchase slaves of our
own.  Gah!  I have rarely been so bothered by the laxity of
local authorities.  Sooner or later we sorted it all out, at least
in terms of understanding the situation in that place, and agreed we
could not in good conscience keep sitting by the river and drinking
dacquiris if they were made and served and cleaned up by slaves.  Disgusting.

I should note, diary, that I suggested we simply overthrow the
Pharoah and make with the emancipating.  I mean, honestly, we
managed to tear down Zhentil Keep on our own, more or less, and this place’s gods had already snuck out the back before we’d even arrived, so, in all honesty, just what kind of fight could they muster against the Tinker Trading Company?  The interns, I should note, were entirely in my corner on this idea, but everyone else coaxed me back onto the boat with an assurance that we’d come back to fight some other day.  That we are on vacation is the only reason I didn’t leave that place a smoldering (but liberated!) crater. (more…)

Travel Journal – 1369 DR – Summer

Tuesday, July 5th, 2005

MULHORAND – We have (finally) landed in Mulhorand.  We are frequently told, on asking – or not, as they are loath to
miss an opportunity to remind us – that Mulhorand may be the oldest of
all current governments.  The people here are a strange and
foreign lot, with a language that looks all like tiny pictures. 
Lovely, in a sort of abstract, two-dimensional way that may appeal to
those with impaired depth perception, but not the easiest to
read. 

They claim that their gods ruled this place in a rather direct fashion
until very recently, and I suppose they and my experience with Need
have managed to confirm one another.  God-kings!  Quite a
lofty title, and I confess I had chalked it up to the usual
aggrandizement of royalty.  I really did not expect that both
terms would be so literal.  Now they have a “Pharoah,” which we
are given to understand is Squiggle for “king,” most importantly one of
“divine lineage,” which I think is a polite way of saying “able
to be stabbed in the kidneys to deleterious effect should he get
uppity.”  I have tried to assure these people that they are better
off without unpredictable gods lounging around the joint being expected
to do dull things like set agricultural policies, but they seem quite
attached to the idea of their gods being right at hand, if you
will.  As you well know, my darling journal, being face-to-face
with a persnickity god is not exactly my preferred way to spend an
afternoon, but I am assured that it would be unwise to go around saying
things like, “Well, the last place I visited where a god was enthroned,
we tore down his infrastructure and fought him until he ran out of the
room crying for his mama.”  So I don’t.

They are utterly uninterested in the Beautiful Word, and they tell me
Sune is one of the funny, foreign gods of whom they’ve heard and in
whom they are disinterested.  Snobs.

This place is a desert, anyway, all crumbling temples and sand, and it
plays havoc on my hair.  They do a fine assortment of alcoholic
beverages, though, and the rates are entirely reasonable.  Keth,
poor ape, has never been more out of his element, though the weather
has finally gotten him to set aside his bear-skin attire.  The
rest of us
are relaxing nicely. (more…)