Weston's Redemption

With our necromancer friend in tow, we decided it would be a good idea to head for the ship, before my sister came looking. For a couple seconds, we argued over what to do with him. Red-eyed Lynn, who I would later learn was a manifestation of one of our Samsaran friend's past lives who went by the name of Kashmere, was intent on killing him. My uncle, on the other hand, was a fan of second chances.

We booked it towards the ship, and apparently Jack had stopped by to tell the crew that he was going to stay behind to create a false trail for my sister, so we could make our escape. He was more clever than I gave him credit for.

When we set sail, we got down to business. Our interrogation of Weston began. We had a lengthy conversation, and learned much. Most importantly, we learned that The Jester was not one single person. Rather, he was a curse of sorts. Anyone that bore the arcane tattoo, like Weston, was prone to being controlled by him. He had existed for a great many years, and his influence seemed to have been spread by a cult that worshiped chaos.

We also learned more about Lynn; she was exceptional, even under Samsaran standards. As the last of her race, her past lives were catching up with her. Lynn herself was alive and witnessed much of the last civil war. Kashmere, the red-eyed persona was a victim of intense experimentation by the cult of chaos. They were testing the exceptional physiology of the Samsarans, trying to create the perfect warrior. Most of them did not survive the process, but Kashmere not only survived, but was a successful test subject. They altered her body in horrific ways; apparently she was the eight-armed swordswoman of old. So the Empire wanted Lynn because Kashmere held the key to the successful physical modification.

Lady Ephrin, her black-eyed persona, was older. She had been a famous diplomat for the Samsaran people. Notably, she knew of the sacred city of Nirvana, and how to get there. So that was why the resistance was after her. The girl's importance was certainly not exaggerated.

Most of these answers were not given by Weston himself, but by the Jester. He assumed control of his body to have a nice little chat with us. We deduced that Weston was probably, in fact, innocent. As innocent as a necromancer can be anyways. The Jester had forced his hand, in meeting Lynn, in kidnapping Nadine, and who knows what other atrocities. Ultimately, after Kashmere and I had blown off some steam, we decided it would be best for us to leave the necromancer's fate to King Leonidas, as we were headed back to the Nethicite Islands.

We arrived, and I regaled the king with our story. Iroh also told him that Jack himself bore the mark of the cult of chaos. It was unclear whether or not he was a traitor, or just another victim of circumstance. Regardless, the king asked us our next move, and I told him my plan. The Civil War was, in my view, ultimately unnecessary. It was the result of the antiquated, power-hungry policies of the empire. The people yearned for peace. If we could unite the provinces in a joint declaration of ceasefire, maybe we could break the cycle of violence.

The Jester did tell us, cryptically, that the wars were all his games. And this would be the last game.

In any case, my plan for the moment was to seize Rozaria. We could count on Leonidas and the Nethicite Islands, and probably Cavalia. My sister wouldn't allow for Rozaria to side with the neutral parties. Our only choice would be to take control of Rozaria ourselves, and to do that, we would need approval from the majority of the wizard saints.

In the meantime, Lynn had been deciphering the book that we had stolen from the Necromancer's library. It contained some information on the cult, but more notably, a spell that could remove the cult's mark, and the Jester's influence along with it. Iroh studied it, and with it we were able to remove Weston's scar.

Needless to say, he was grateful, and, as a wizard saint, we could count on his support. Next on our list was the Divination school. We embarked without further ado.

As we approached the swamp that held the divination tower, disaster struck. Something struck the side of the ship — something very, very large. We dashed to the starboard side to find a large dragon-turtle, getting ready for another charge. It looked like it was aiming to sink the ship. I launched a lightning bolt at it, though it didn't seem to do much to the creature. It rammed us, punching a giant hole in the ship and snapping the mast like a twig. Thinking quickly, Iroh pulled out Weston's spellbook and shouted to the beast to back down. He told it that we meant no harm. The beast hesitated, and from behind my uncle, Lynn's oldest persona, Lady Ephrin, spoke. She knew the beast by name.

A deal was struck. Lynn was to be carried on the dragon turtle's back to meet the divination saint. The ship was propped up on the back of another dragon turtle, and we were told that if we so much as moved off the ship, we would be killed. The beasts had their orders, and couldn't be blamed for it.

We surveyed the damage, and found that Eli was missing. We identified the damage, and were led to the conclusion that wisps had somehow interfered and carried him off. My uncle was itching to go after him, but the dragon turtle would certainly attack if he left the ship. With a few fast words and an invisibility spell, I distracted the turtle and aided my uncle in his getaway.

With Lady Ephrin speaking with the Divination Saint, and my uncle tracking down Eli, I was left on the stationary ship. All that was left was to wait.

I picked up my violin, and began to play.

—Matau Ing'um

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