After we arrived at the Courts, our "guide" had some words for us. He would not take us back unless we paid him even more. The man was starting to infuriate me. Surely, he should know he would be rewarded for his efforts, yet he insisted on discussing the details at every instance. He is lucky I do not kill him, but for now, he is needed.
After dealing with his "pay," I got down to business. The area we were in seemed to only be the outskirts of a once great city. The styles were primitive, and representative of a thousand worlds, yet the they were built and laid out with modern planning and detail. It was as if someone were building a replica of an ancient time.
I saw no technology, but signs of sorcery abounded. Some of the buildings were scarred with the remnants of eldritch might, while others were more worse for wear from the hands of looters. I tried to find an official building, but most of them seemed to be temples or other places of worship. The language was mostly my own, but I saw others as well.
The dog ran to and fro among the buildings while I explored, Anna and my guards at my side. Zorah simply slept on his rock, clearly uninterested in anything we might have found.
After many hours, my child approached me and asked if I had thought to bring food or water. She did not want to ask him, and I don't blame her. Unfortunately, I had not. And her question brought me back to think of the trifling details of my exploration.
As much as I hated to admit, the task before me required days, weeks, perhaps months or years of research, exploration, and sorcery. I would need to send out search parties, and carefully prepare spells to ferret out the information I needed. And this required my home...and the only man who could bring it here, Zorah.
I steeled myself for dealing with the unctuous man, and made arrangements for him to bring us back to The Floating Nile, and bring the Floating Nile here. While we journeyed back, I searched through my treasuries, pulling out long discarded implements of prayer and power. I would need them to prepare the spells I required.
The plan was simple, and yet utterly complex. The remainder of the poisonous ones would form search parties, and report to me the lay of the land. I would use the information in conjunction with my spells to find places of interest, which could be searched out in more detail.
It would long, and arduous, and I would hate every minute of it, but I had to know. I needed to find the secrets of my past.