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Through the gate we went, bein’ as stealthy as we could, tryin’ to avoid any Anal Slavers, or hill giants what might be wanderin’ about.

Anal Slavers is cruel and ugly lizard like creatures with faces like dogs and scales stickin’ outta their backs and they always travel in packs, each o’ ‘em carryin’ a heavy stick with a big long knife tied on to the end o’ it with rawhide. And believe me, they’s just itchin’ ta cut somethin’ up into little pieces with it!

Hill giants saunterin’ along, grumblin’ and mumblin’to themselves, lookin’ fer somethin’ to whack with the huge clubs they’s carryin’. And they always has their shamans with ‘em and those shamans is really nasty, with powerful magic what they hurls at ya!

Or Mind Flayers what like ta suck yer brains out right through yer ear and leave ya standin’ there, babblin’ like an idiot! ‘Cept men don’t have to worry so much ‘bout mind flayers, ya know? A man can loose a good deal o’ his brain to a mind flayer and it don’t bother him one bit. Like I said a few pages back, most o’ a man’s brain is just paddin’ anyway.

On top o’ all that, Thrym could decide at any moment ta drop a load o’ dragons or a huge purple worm or a bunch o’ dire bears right down on top o’ us! Oh geez! Arik really is a horrible place ta be walkin’ ‘round in!

Anyways, Sun-Ok lead the way, doin’ her scoutin’, clearin’ traps and lookin’ fer monsters, makin’ sure the path was safe fer the rest o’ us. Shortly we found ourselves in front o’ Njord’s temple with the boys arguing ‘bout whether we should go in or not.

Durok and Walis was thinkin’ they knew a better place to start their huntin’ for the seed what Frankie was needin’. And Port was jumpin’ up and down, his face gettin’ all red and blotchy lookin’ with spittle shootin’ outta his mouth, stompin’ his foot, insistin’ Njord’s temple was the place to look first!

Well Durok and Walis, and I aint’ sure who else, went off to do their lookin’ in some other place, and Port, Bel and a few o’ the others made their way into Njord’s temple leavin’ me standin’ there between the two groups watchin’ them each go their separate ways.

Well I’ll tell ya! Bein’ in Arik with a bunch o’ folks is bad enough . . . but when the group splits up, with each goin’ their separate way, its just about the worst thing ya can do in a place like this! I just don’t think men is too bright, ya know?

Anyways I’m standin’ there alone realizin’ that now I ain’t part o’ either group and I better join one soon or for sure I’ll be seein’ Garm again! I chose ta go along with Port ‘cause he always seems ta be good at findin’ things we’s lookin’ fer.

With Port, it’s almost like he’s been to the place we’s lookin’ in many times before, and he knows just where ta look! Well . . . mayhap in another life?

I followed Port and Bel inside, and straight off we were set upon by a bunch o’ water elementals but they ain’t caused us much o’ a problem. We poked around a bit and found a few pretty sashes, purple ones! The color matched perfect with the trim on me armor! And they was infused with magic too!

There wasn’t much else in the Temple so we headed outside again and glory be, Faith was standin’ there makin’ small talk with Durok, Walis and all the others who’d returned, tellin’ them she’d decided she was gonna help us in our quest!

Well, I can’t think o’ anyone better ta have along then that girl! She can conjure up some potent magic! Now back together again, the bunch o’ us made off to another Temple, this one close by, and built in honor of Loki. Once inside, Port found a key what was tucked away in an old chest. We decided to keep it, thinkin’ it might unlock some doors to other places in the lost city.

Loki’s temple was dank with a bad odor to it and gloomy too, and I ain’t wanted ta stay any longer then I had ta ‘cause I just don’t like Temples o’ any sort, so when our searchin’ was over I was the first to leave.

I made my way out the door and walked away from the entrance and through the gate, breathin’ deep, gettin’ some good air back into me lungs. I happened ta glance up and ohh geeeez! Not twenty paces in front o’ me was Father McGreggor and with him, at least five Aloonies! And they was all headin’ straight at me!! Oh geez!

Well, fer sure I ain’t no hero, and I was determined not to be dyin’ again that night so I gave McGreggor me nicest smile and said “Hello Father” and “Goodbye Father” in the same breath, gave him a quick curtsy, turned and ran like hel away from them wicked things as fast as me legs would carry me!

I guess when Bel, Port, Faith, Sun-Ok, Durok, Walis and Voran came outta the Temple, they was more than a match fer McGreggor and the aloonies. I ain’t sure ‘cause I was still runnin’ ya know? I ran all the way to that hut near the house where the slavers eats their meals, and climbed in the hole what leads into the basement and after I stopped shakin’ I curled up into a little ball next to the wall and went to sleep fer three days!

I’m sorry I can’t tell ya anymore ‘bout what happened that night in Arik. I ain’t seen anyone all week ta ask. Foothold’s pretty much deserted these days, ya know.

But we’s all goin’ again tonight. Yup! Back to Arik! Mayhap we’ll find the damm seed what Frankie’s needin’. Mayhap we’ll find some other things too. We’ll see, I guess.