“By order of the Wardens, the Wastes border of Cinnea to the Village of Adesta is hereby quarantined. As further cases of Swansong are confirmed we will extend the quarantine. Further, anyone found to intentionally be spreading the disease should be reported to the Wardens. They will be arrested for the crime of enacting the will of a demon through free will that causes harm to others. No citizen should attempt to approach these individuals themselves as they are extremely dangerous.”
Tamlin had given this speech multiple times and was growing hoarse. Ferra village was the last village before the border though. Mapping which tribes and caravan’s in the Wastes where infected and making sure they don’t move until the disease passed would be their next and more complicated task. Mereesha had an idea where certain tribes should be at this time of year but there was no guarantees in the Wastes. Tamlin read over his notes again and cast a concerned glance at his guide.
“The plague in the Wastes, you’ve seen the briefing right?”
“Dasura’s Gift,” she spat and touched her fingers to her forehead before continuing. He noted the index and middle finger ended in sharp talons “I know what it does to my people. The report spared no detail”
He nodded “I didn’t want you to go in unaware.”
“My lab was ransacked by the Infernus Blades. I couldn’t get both the spiritual poisons you asked for.” Toxin was annoyed rather than apologetic. “And they took one of them along with the Escari blade venom and my disease jars.”
Her contractor hadn’t moved or reacted much merely weighed up this knowledge.
“They are building an army.” He said finally “Which poison do you still have?”
She produced a bottle of blue green liquid from her satchel but hesitated. “Thankfully this one – but if I may, why this one? You agreed this was far too dangerous to use on our kind”
She started to put the bottle back when every muscle in her body froze solid.
“Toxin, hand me that bottle” he extended his hand and she fought the compulsion inch by inch but was overpowered by the command.
“I don’t like the Figment, I never have, but if you use that you’re more of a monster than I thought.” She said.
“I know” he said “hopefully it wont come to that.”
If she wasn’t mistaken, there seemed to be some genuine sadness in those words. The moment passed almost as quickly and he resumed his demeanour of command.
“Now, to other matters, tell me of the tribes of the north..”
Tamlin hadn’t seen Djinn before, the fiery spirits moving among the dunes were strange to him and smelled strangely of spiced tea, treacle cakes and pumpkin pie. They were treating the illness with Purifying Flame and easing the more troubled to sleep. Meeresha still seemed wary.
“They want something, they always do” she had said.
The night spent in their camp was the most rest he had had since this patrol began. Dreams of home flooding his mind. In the morning it was hard to leave and continue on their way.
The oasis was empty save the few priests that had been sent to cleanse the waters of Dasura’s corruption. The trackers said the Hierophant and his cultists had retreated deeper into the Wastes but they were impossible to follow once sandstorms set in.
At least there would be no fresh corruption from here. Once the infected were treated this plague would be passed at least. But with the Hierophant of Dasura still out there who knows for sure.
The Hierophant, his cultists and his blessed children continued deeper into the Wastes. The Wardens had been foolish but his mistress was patient and the favour had been returned. They had been warned of what was coming. What they did now was up to them.
Upon the sunset the ruins he sought came into focus. The broken stone of what once was a market town centauries before would provide them shelter while he did what he must.
Once the sky darkened he entered a trance and cast himself to the edge of the prison. His mistress sat within her lab and did not look up.
“They have rejected your offer of aid, my lady” he said.
“Of course they did. But they will come crawling back before the end.” She replied continuing to work…
Sometime later he returned to himself and addressed the faithful.
“Our mistress has given us a task. We leave at dawn”
- Quarantine is in place along the Western Border of Cinnea. Cases of Swansong are being contained in the area but reinfections are still occurring. Medical supplies are now getting through.
- The source of Dasura’s Gift has been cleansed and the infected are being helped by the Djinn of the Caravan of Delights.
- The Hierophant and his cultists are still at large
- The fae have nicked a nasty blade venom that does stuff to Escari.
- There is a bottle of Something Nasty™ in unknown hands.