Commodore Sinache, Tavist that is, and Kaolin proceed to plot a course to Herdspace through Realmspace, Refuge, and Spiralspace. While doing so Tavist regales the hadozee priestess with spacer’s stories about Herdspace: the roving Megafauna who crush the magic out of the soil with their footprints, the inhabited interior of the sphere, and other odd stories.
Meanwhile Taj Pach and Grim hire on some fresh crew including two former EIN soulknives (a brother/sister team) who they assign to security at the Bralian offices. Whle doing so an EIN messenger brings them a message from the Admiralty requesting to meet at the air planet Edill on their way outsytem.
As they form up their ships and perform last minute checks and supply loading High Mage Sar Casualik arrives with a contingent of fleet elves and a large crate. It is a gift from the EIN comprised of twenty “airsuits.” Full body canvas suits with glass fronted helmets they use an alchemical filter to recycle one’s air when in vacuum systems like Truespace.
Sar tells Tavist he has the blood of Dydd and of silver dragons from edill. That Priest of Io, the Dragon God of Balance, back him. In addition he reveals to Tavist that he is actuially an ancient gold dragon. While the stunned Tavist absorbs this new info Kaolin and Taj have gotten a Giff book of manners from which they are studying trying to learn about this strange things called “tact.”
Taj, Tavist and Kalin decide to take to the air and make the rounds of the other ships in their armada while flying the air worlds atmospherics. They then return to the ships and prepare to launch.
As the armada prepares to move out Kaolin makes fireworks and launches them into the sky above panicking some of the newer members of the crew. Tavist, once again, drags her off by her hair. The Seven Star’s ships move into formation and depart for Realmspace.
The trip through the Flow is uneventful and Taj uses the time to enact more body modifications in the ship’s surgery giving herself a scorpion-like tail. Kaolin brews up a new batch of beer and spends the rest of her time practicing her archery. Tavist continues with his trapmaking practice.
The ships enter the Realmspace sphere and Kaolin takes two days to magically renew the atmospheres of all four ships while the crews get a few hot meals and a smoke. They take a oneweek break here before departing for Refuge using their new star charts. .
Other than a school of delphids they encounter nothing until about two days outside of the Arcane ruled sphere. As they approach the smallish crystal sphere are formation of three Shou dragon ships are sighted ahead. Our heroes decide to slow their speed, remaining behind the Dragon Court ships.
As they approach the sphere they see a ring of flow beacons outside the sphere, each one pulsing with light in synch with the others. Upon entering Refuge they are met by twelve hammerships and are boarded by guard in gilded plate mail. After the guard makes his inquiries with the “Commodore” they sign the requisite forms and proceed. “Commodore! There will be no living with him now, ” mutters Taj to Kaolin.
Escorted by a hammership they proceed to the moon of Refuge. As they approach they pass the Guardian Ring, a ring of derelict ships and parts that encircles the planet below (which is called Below by the natives). They land and meet with the harbormaster, who Tavist gets along famously with. They rthat air tax here is super cheap, roughly one silver to the gold cmpared to what they are used to. Taj immediately sets up a shore leave schedule with ship captains that keeps no more than 25% of crew off ship at any time. Taj then delivers a speech giving dire threats to crew about behaviour while in port.
Kaolin is inspirred by seeing squads of giff troopers on the docks to try sending a message to Ozzy. Like all prior attempts since their separation her attempt fails.
Taj Pach’s New Tail: 2d6 points of piercing damage. Once per encounter, it can deliver a potent venom (DC 15 + wielder’s Con modifier) that deals 1d6/2d6 points of Strength damage if it affects a target. The tail also defends the user against flanking (giving the enemies no bonuses) and provides her with a +1 bonus to his natural armor.