A Journey to the Moon
Pulling ourselves together, we moved cautiously into the caravanserai, seeking the back room where we had met the Yellow King previously, and where Ray said he had seen a strange figure there in his earlier scouting.
Inside the back room, pouring over some of the books, was a rather gangly gentlemen who called himself Mr Wanderlust and who seemed to have a rather obsessive interest in accountancy. However, he did not try to kill us or drive us insane, and indeed seemed quite willing to have a chat.
He told us that the shantak up on the roof belong to a lady named Weiralai. We have heard of her before – she was the slaver that Count Lowles sold our souls to, and we even ran into her back in Thrushmoor when we thought we had slain her.
Mr Wanderlust was a Bogeyman, a type of fey that delights in spreading fear and terror. They feed on that fear and use it to heal themselves. Though we had noticed a sensation of unease when we first approached him, most of us had no more room left for any further fear that day.
He says that he is carefully seeking answers to the universe, whilst Weiralai seeks the same answers uncarefully. When asked about the Yellow King, he said that he thought Weiralai had taken him to The Prison – I could hear the capitals in that term, and he obviously thought it required no further clarification. Unfortunately there were obvious gaps in our knowledge, and he needed to clarify that he meant the Prison on the Moon.
On the Moon.
I had to consider that for a bit (and write it out again). Though I have some academic knowledge of the Dark Tapestry in which Golarion is but one world, and know that it is theoretically possible to move between such worlds with sufficient magic, actually encountering people who considered such travel normal was shocking.
Apparently the Prison on the Moon is where the Moon Beasts take dreamers who have transgressed the laws of the Dreamlands, or simply annoyed someone powerful enough to get them sent there. We had no means of getting to the Moon ourselves, but one thing we knew about shantaks was that they can move between worlds.
Up on the roof one shantak remained, with a howdah strapped to its back. They are not mere animals, and apparently not entirely aggressive, for it was not only willing to not eat us, but also willing to converse with us. It (he? she?) was hungry, and found the howdah itchy. We did point it at the recent corpses (lightly cooked) of the yeth hounds and night gaunts, and it took to eating those with some delight.
After some bartering, it agreed to carry us to the Moon. We assumed that the Howdah would be able to protect us on the journey (though we performed some level of magical investigation, there was an element of hope there). After a night of rest (though by ‘morning’ it was still night in our Dream), we boarded the shantak and it took flight for the Moon.
The flight to the Moon took some ten hours. The Moon of the Dreamlands is different to the Moon of Golarian, for it is smaller and has far fewer visible features. Much as we imagined it though, the Moon was mostly barren and stony. Where we arrived there was a lake of some dark viscous fluid that lay between some low hills, and a rather squat windowless building sat nearby. Above us was the Dreamlands.
The front of the Prison was blocked by a large metal portcullis, and was watched over from a guard house by a creature that called itself Graywick. It was most impolite and unhelpful, and told us in no uncertain terms to fuck off, threatening to use its scrolls on us. However, it did admit that Weiralai had been here, and had dropped off some creature, but that she had since left.
Exploring the outside of the Prison we found a side entrance apparently used for food delivery, where it was possible to enter through a very narrow grill. Catiana was able to move through the grill, and explore some of the interior, but was limited by how far she could explore by her tether to me.
So we returned to the front door, and Ray turned invisible and tried to mage hand the scrolls away from Graywick. He succeeded initially, then was spotted. Presumably still unable to see Ray, Graywick dimension doored out of the guard house near to the rest of us, and screaming expletives dropped a fireball. There is a short quick fight, but Greywick was quickly dispatched.
The fireball caught all of us apart from Ray, who moved away from the battle wanting to preserve his invisibility. Erasmus was able to use his channelling to heal us, and Catiana drew on her link to me to grow in size, charging towards the ghoul.
However, as with all ghouls, this one could paralyse, and Catiana was taken out of the fight before she could achieve anything. Though Ray returned to help at the end, and was infected with a form of ghoul fever for his trouble, it was mostly down to Gregor and his arrows that Graywick was defeated.
The noise did not seem to have roused anyone else, and a quick look around the front gate showed us that there was an empty guard room on the other side which we could potentially dimension door into. I hastily finish these notes as we prepare to make our entry into the Prison, in the hope of finding the Yellow King.