As Azela, Kael and Geb arrive at the western side of the mountain they find the remains of the camp used by Geb and his former associates. Tracks point to two groups having visited the site, but with Azela and Kael quite out of touch with life as mortals they decide to brush up on their social skills rather than pursuing unknown people. The three undead leave their entourage in the caves behind them and heads towards the closest town - Javibara.
Marsching for two days and night they reach Javibara and manage to gain entrance into the city. As Azela doesn't speak the language they decide to rent a room for a week to learn and study local customs. As the situation in the province appears tense and outlanders are seen with great mistrust it seems like a good decision. As Azela starts to learn to speak cira they discover the town is fairly calm and quiet, despite many of its soldiers having travelled east to join with the army rebelling against the Empire.
To avoid attracting too much attention the group decide to pose as merchants seeking to find wares. As Javibara mostly imports from the rest of the province they find weapons to be the only viable alternative as the city produce more than enough to cover its own needs and war makes setting up such business seem more believable. While Geb is left to set up a contact network Kael and Azela head back to Zhend to fetch their treasury. Two weeks later they seal a favorable deal with the local commander of the garrison, Daccarim, and equipping themselves with mounts, wagons and an escort of mercenaries they head north towards the city of Lao-Din. The journey is uneventful but Kael learns from the soldiers that the pantorian army has been victorious and the threat from the Empire is neutralized - at least for the time being.
Lao-Din proves to be a city rich in contrasts, apparently suffering more from internal conflicts than the ongoing rebellion. To avoid getting dragged into the city's politics they rent a room only for the night and plan to leave on the following morning. They learn the trouble in the city is due to an ongoing feud between the city's lord, pasha Jaccarin, and the grandmaster of the local wizard house, Kanadir. The mages have apparently been confined to their own estate and shut out from the rest of the city.
Before they leave they sell their mounts as they'll be going by river boat and prefer a light load. They reach the next major city, Sunn, in three days and make arrangements to stay for another two. Introducing themselves as merchants from Sarinia they receive little attention from the quite preoccupied citizens. As this suits them just fine they settle in and even work a bit on their social skills - with mixed results as the undead soon find themselves in the gutter after a meal and drink due to their lack of working bodily functions.
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