Part 4: Interlude 2Interlude
Aria and Minar stroll into the common room of the Swan, emerging from the dark blanket of night behind them into cheery lamplight. Most patrons have already made their way to bed, but a few members of the party linger - Urist helps Sapphire clear the table from dinner, while Athtar sits in a cozy chair by a window, nose in a journal. They look up as the two humans enter and nod polite greetings.
"There's leftovers if you're still a little hungry," offers Sapphire. "Not that I expect so after at night at the Chatty Archer, Lei and Hunter do a fine job between them."
Minar mumbles his thanks and scoops up a half-finished loaf and some discarded cheese before retreating upstairs. "Sorry about him," Aria offers with a roll of her eyes. "'Long day', he says."
"Oh, it's no bother," replies Sapphire, who quickly whips up a plate from what remains and slides it over to Aria. "Please, take your time! I'll leave something extra out for your friends once they get back, too."
Aria takes the plate gratefully and wanders over to the chair opposite from Athtar, who stays glued to his book. "Reading diaries now, Ath?"
The knight pulls a slightly sour look. "This journal belonged to Sonia, the deceased heir of Lady Fairfax. It's our only lead to discovering the danger threatening the Fairfaxes and who this 'Kyric' is, before it's too late."
"Heavy." Aria gets to work building a sandwich from her scraps. "Have you shown it to Urk or Deepmind yet?" She sees the expression on his face and adds "I mean, they're pretty good at figuring out stuff like this."
"They're still at the Drunken Hog. And anyway, we should all take the time to read it," Athtar thumbs the book open to where he left off.. "And come up with some sort of plan. I don't like sitting around waiting for danger to strike."
Eventually, Urist wanders over, his pipe in hand. He begins to puff to life whatever unidentified substance he'd packed into it earlier and is soon wreathed in pungent smoke. He offers the pipe distractedly to his companions, who both wrinkle their nose at it, before shrugging and smothering it with his thumb. "I believe you mentioned something about Celyse asking us to win the trust of the villagers."
Aria chuckled through a mouth full of food. "Is that why you've been washing up for Sapphire? Infiltrating the Swan, maybe?"
Urist reddens slightly but continues. "I only mean that perhaps, if no immediate course presents itself, we could busy ourselves productively in town and see what we uncover. We're adventurers, are we not?" He waves vaguely into the darkness beyond the window. "We'll simply adventure our way forward."
"We can work out the particulars in the morning," says Athtar, finishing the book and handing the slim volume to Aria. "In the meantime, see what you can glean and then pass it along. We'll compare notes."
Aria takes the book a hint reluctantly. "You know, I became an adventurer to escape doing homework."
Half of maximum stamina recovered
(No specific puzzle to solve this time, but feel free to pull out anything you think might be useful from the journal!)