We meet up outside of Tain‘s estate at Ten Bells to find that the eccentric Reigar has gone through another change of tastes. This time, with his bright blue mohawk and dress reminiscent of the plague-ridden scholars Ef Utan and I met while travelling The Stair, he definitely seems to have outdone himself; or maybe it’s the strong young men in togas carrying him along like he’s some kind of Pharaoh of Refuge. As long as he doesn’t expect me to peel grapes for him, I’ll play along though.
Eventually we make our way through town behind the entourage and Tain is set down in front of a bar called The Epic Helm. I wonder if they are named after the Spelljammer? As I am pondering this Tain gets up and knocks three times on the door as he scatters glitterdust with his other hand. Before us the door starts to change… until a symbol of a snake swallowing its own tail appears upon it. The same symbol that we saw so long ago in our attempts to flee the Demiplane of Dread.
“Mitchifer, I’m BA-ACK!” Tain announces as he flings open the door and we once again enter the World Serpent Inn, the multi-dimensional bar where if you’re not careful, your trip to the toilet may last for decades in another dimension.
We shuffle in behind the exhuberant Reigar and quickly scan the area for any of the usual suspects out to get us, but instead once again find someone I hadn’t seen since Ef Utan and I had our little adventure: Gimras Silveroath. Ef Utan quickly makes his way over to say hello, and once I get a glance at who is with him, I quickly follow suit. Let the others get drinks from the bar if they want… when someone willingly associates with that many snakes, it gives me the willies.
Illustration by Syreene
As I walk up I can pick out bits of conversation about Sigil, but it quickly turns to the tall mechanical caped creature standing with him.
“May I introduce Word of Wisdom,” Gimras says as he turns to the creature at pats it on its stony arm. “I met him when we both got our hides out of Sigil.”
“Forgive my impertenence, but… what are you other than a Tinkergnomes wet dream?” I ask in disbelief as Tain also comes up to inspect him with taps along his…well… armor, I guess.
“I know, right? I’m surprised I haven’t had to pry them off by now,” Gimras replies before chugging an ale.
“I am a Warforged… or more specifically, a Psiforged from Ebberon,” Word explains. “I escaped my masters and was found by Gimras here, who said he could help me in my travels.”
Now this is interesting. The rest of the group eventually join us as Word begins his tale and we barrage him with all sorts of questions from “Do you dream?” to “Do you eat or breath?” Good things to know, right? Especially if one of us ever ends up in the middle of the Flow again.
After what seems about an hour Gimras burps loudly and announces that he’s leaving Word in our capable care while he goes off to find a bathroom. Oddly enough… I don’t think there IS a bathroom down the hall he stumbled down, which means…
“Crap! He just stuck us with the bill, didn’t he?” Vedis groans. I chuckle to myself, as I probably would’ve done the same thing.
“Small price to pay for a new friend, right?” I say as I clap my hand on Word’s shoulder and try not to wince as my hand reminds me what he’s made of.
“I don’t suppose Gimras told you what you’re getting into with us, did he?” Lenata asked with chagrin.
“No… but he did say that you go on many travels and that I would see much with all of you,” Word offered.
“You’ve got no idea,” Ef Utan mutters before taking a swig of his ale.
“It’ll be a crash course in multi-racial multi-dimensional world saving!” I grin.
“Hopefully without the crashing part…” Vedis adds.
“Yeah, we don’t need another time like…” Ef Utan retorts
“Well anyway, it’ll be fun!” I finish quickly.
We spend the rest of the night sharing stories and doing our best to fill Word in on some of the different places and races we’ve seen while he explains his world of Ebberon and how their ships are powered by Elementals instead of Helms.
Eventually we take our leave of the World Serpent Inn and make our way back to Refuge and our ship, where we ask Hatuk to set up quarters for Word while the rest of us try and sleep off our nights festivities. I happily find Dassam and while resting in our hamock tell him of our amazing new friend and his amusing “swishy” walk. I swear… the way he manipulates that cape all the time, you’d think he was a stage performer.
The morning thankfully comes with no interruptions, and I am able to climb the stairs to the deck without being teleported to who-knows-where. I do see an interesting sight, however, as it seems Ef Utan and Word are going to do some morning sparring exercises. I know Ef Utan has been dying to have something other than a ship mast to spar with… but I don’t know… Word looks pretty big and tough to me, despite the cape.
“Well this I’ve got to see,” I say with a raised brow. No sense in staying down here where I might get hit with flying debris, however. I look up into the rigging and see that the Hadozee have the same idea as they cheer from above. With a grin I run to the mast and quickly make my way up to join them. “Ef would probably kill me if he heard this… but my money is on the new guy,” I say to the cheering watchers. “I think he’s got mental powers like Vedis does or something.”
We all eagerly watch the battle below and whistle and cheer when Word floats into the air and surges forth in a charge and the sparring begins. I almost fall off my perch with laughing when Ef Utan slips and accidentally punches Lenata. “That’s the problem with being a referee,” I joke between chuckles.