I was talking to the orange party's rogue when Murphy, who worked for the royal family, nudged me. "Something is happening," he whispered worriedly. I looked where he pointed, and there were the two lovers who had been singing so happily just this morning, quarreling. As the fight grew louder, the others in tavern grew silent. As near as I could gather, they were fighting because the young nobel wanted to marry the girl he'd been singing to, but she refused. Apparently the royal family was cursed, so none in the line could have children. I guess that taking on the curse was too high of a price for her to pay.
Eventually they both went running out the the tavern in angry passion. When the door slammed behind them, the tavern erupted in murmers, questions, and speculation. I rejoined my group, and our bard told us a little bit more information about the curse that he'd been able to gather. It could only be removed by somebody taking the enchanted cup from the bar and taking the curse on themselves -- well not exactly on themselves, but on their duchee. I would not have minded to take the curse myself, for I have no family and no line to worry about extending, but I cannot do that to my dutchess.
We resumed our meal, and we were nearly through when things started to get much stranger. Somebody came running in exclaiming that the two quarreling lovers had just been struck by lightening! Then they came back into the tavern.... only it wasn't really them. It was their bodies, but the words they spoke were totally different.
The two strangers spoke of having been gone for 700 years. They spoke of some old feud that they wanted to rekindle, now that they had bodies again. It was all very mysterious. They nearly began swordfighting right their in the tavern, dueling to the death! But then, instead, they decided to have a trial. They were each trying to prove that the other gender was not to be trusted. They used examples of people within the tavern, four for each gender. Really the whole 700-year-old feud was beyond my comprehension, but it worried me because the bodies who would be slain were not their own. They agreed to meet in the tavern in 24 hours, at noon the next day. Then the two collapsed like puppets, and when the rose again they were themselves again. It was all really creepy, and our group finished our meal quickly and departed.
Two of our party, I think it was Jonah and Rutger, left the inn shortly before the other 4 of us. When we emerged, they were nowhere to be found! I was very concerned, because we knew we needed to stay together in this strange land where magic was so strong. We had talked about returning briefly to our sleeping cabin though, so we started heading that direction, hoping to find them on the way. Another group, dressed in green tabards, happened to be walking in the same direction as us. We asked if we could join them, since we were missing 2 party members.
As we approached the bridge, we saw a large group of Wolven blocking the way. Then, on the other side of the monsters, on the other side of the bridge, we saw our missing members coming down the path! But we were separated by around 6 wolven, and they had a strong advantage on the bridge. The bridge was narrow, and their swords prevented us from getting very near. Two of the creatures turned to the other side of the bridge to face our friends. The other 4 faced us, and there was no obvious way to get past those swords! Things were looking grim.
Then our mage, Cedric, came through with a great spell. I don't know exactly what it did, but it rendered the two wolven facing our friends across the bridge helpless. As soon as they collapsed, our friends dispatched them with their swords and ran across the bridge. Now we had the advantage, because our friends were able to surprise the remaining wolven from behind. The battle quickly became chaotic, as battles do, but when the dust cleared -- all of the adventurers, our group from Keer plus the green group, remained standing. None of the wolven were alive.
We retrieved some nice treasure from the wolvens' bodies, and we shared it with the green group with our thanks. It was fortunate that they were there when we were split up by the enemy like that.
Our next goal was to visit a group of nomads called the Macai, or something like that. We'd heard they were very close with nature, and might be able to help us find the elemental spheres we sought. On the way though, another strange thing occurred. Our faithful guide, Young Lord Ted, complained to me of feeling dizzy. "Do you want some water? Should you sit and rest for a moment?" I asked in concern.
"Yes, maybe I should sit down..." and as he began to sit onto the path, he collapsed and lay unmoving on his back. Sunflower, our healer, hurried over, but she was not sure what had happened. It came out of the blue; he hadn't recently touched or done anything unusual. Just as suddenly though, he woke up. He said he'd had a vision while he was asleep, that we needed to help Esmeralda.
"Who's Esmeralda?" I asked in puzzlement. The others remembered though; she was one of the gypsies, a fortune-teller. Somebody more clever than I realized that one of the accusations that the Scary 700-Year-Old People had made was against her. The accusation claimed that she was taking money for her own greed, and giving false information and prophesies in return.
We realized that Ted's vision meant that somehow we had to help her disprove this accusation. Things were getting tense: we had found none of the 6 magic objects we were seeking, we had no Knights coming to help us, and now we needed to prove an unknown gypsy woman innocent of a crime we did not understand.