The Un-Made Crown

I hate writing journals, pt 5

Into the Shadows

This whole shadow walker thing has me so unnerved. After entering Bolger’s shop to investigate, I could see the shadow realm portals in the corners of the room. I tried to head Liddie’s warning about what might be there, and also my own fear of who might detect me using them when I approached them. Yet my caution did me no good, and I was sucked into it anyways. Thankfully, it was just a hall with some tables and some packages on them. I quickly grabbed one and attempted to return, mindful of how upset the others were at my previous disappearance. Thankfully I was able to go back to them okay.

Then my aunt showed up. I wonder if she CAN track me through the shadows. And if she can, what else can. I know Liddie seemed to think this is a skill I need for what lies ahead, but I don’t trust it. And I am used to trusting my instincts. I know the others were upset that I did not tell them of my new skills, or that Esmeralda was my aunt. How could I tell them, when the news was so raw and unsettling to me still? I would have, once I had wrestled it into some form I could deal with. I just was not given the time to do that. I am sure they have lost trust in me. But that would not be a new situation for me. Just it makes me kind of sad, as I do like most of them. Esmeralda seems to still be under the effects of the binding, and her magic contained. I don’t like her or trust her, but I feel like she was telling us the truth about not being involved in Bolger’s death, and about the connection between it and the slavers we fought. Yet I am sure there is more to it than that, and that she has her hand in the mix somehow.

I refused to go back into the shadows on my own, so to return the package (which was likely just some treatment for this albino lord), I got Roh to go with me. I was able to bring her through, so that was a comfort. It was still just the hall with tables, and we put the parcel back, but this time I took the time to look around. We found Bolger’s ledger, and were able to account for all the packages but one. The one missing contained something called a frost egg. Whatever that is. But seems like it might have been the reason that Bolger was killed, so likely something valuable or powerful.

Finding nothing more of use in the shop, and unnerved by our encounter with Esmeralda, we decided to go visit Roh’s mother. The nuns would not let us in. I could see why immediately, but could not tell the others while we were still in the presence of whatever was pretending to be the nun. I could see the emanations from the shadows around her. Slyph managed to go see Roh’s mother, from the doorway, but I did not like the whole situation. Something was off. Very off. I left to go outside, so I could prepare a disguise. When the others came out I greeted them discreetly as one of the nuns, before slipping inside. I was able to get to the room without incident, and indeed it did seem like Roh’s mother was there. Until I slipped further into the room, when the nature of the illusion was revealed. It was like a painted screen was there but with no substance to it. The room was in fact quite empty- Roh’s mother was not there. More emanations from the shadows were present, but I could not tell from when they were made.

When I got back outside and told the others, several wanted to storm in and demand answers. I was not one of them. I had no idea how many were not as they appeared, or just what the nature was of those replacing the regular nuns. Of course, we went back in. We found what seemed to be Roh’s mother, on her bed in her room. Yet she was not quite herself, and when we confronted her, what we got was a hag. The damn things are everywhere. After a fight we managed to subdue her, but not before the hospice was set ablaze. On our escape, we found some of the real nuns slain in the main entrance area. Someone set the blaze while looking like Connor, and so when we exited, several cried out that he was the one responsible. The authorities arrived and we had to explain that it was not Connor. Thankfully there were a few witnesses who I spoke with that could confirm that Connor could not be in two places at once, and one of them ran off to get Liddie at my urging.

We managed to convince the authorities to let us question the hag. She was a piece of work, and twisty and cunning. Still I think we got some truths out of her. I am concerned about who the hags work for. This one seemed almost afraid while still in awe of whatever she answers to. The hags run the slavery business it seems, and there is much more going on that just that. I am not sure what part we play in all this, but they took Roh’s mother for a reason, and maybe it was to get our attention, or maybe something else. The hag tried to rewrite history, which must be one amazingly powerful spell, but Connor and I were not affected. Once more we made our escape. Soot was most insistent about where to go. The cat led me to another shadow portal, and entered it. Not quite sure what kind of cat Soot is, but clearly an unusual one. Grabbing hold of the others, forming a chain, I entered. We had a place where we could take, even if I was not sure what might be listening to us.

We must go find Roh’s mother at the place the hag told us. Roh knew where it might be from the hags cryptic reply.



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