Ladies in Hades and the Dyval Wears Prada
Journal - Trent - Entry 23
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I guess I have a few minutes for a brief update here in this accelerated time room. Assuming the animated dead surrounding me continue to leave me alone. But let me back up.
I met up with my companions in Lazlo. Pall Mall told me he went back to Calgary and discovered the Calgary rift still exists, it’s just somehow been placed into a dimensional space along with its connecting ley lines. I guess that was what Baaz was doing by killing Athena? I have no idea for what purpose, though. It also turns out that Steve from the House of Gary actually IS a human, and not a monster. Somehow that monster appearance is some kind of second skin, sort of like a living power armor.
Pall Mall invited us to his lair and I took us all there. We wasted no time in gathering in a large summoning area he created and taking out the rune artifact sword to examine it. I stopped time around it so we could all see its true form. It looked just like I saw in the retro-view. Which reminded me that Baaz didn’t even hold the artifact with his own hands while wielding it – he wrapped his rune-robe around his hand while holding it! Jescha sensed that it emanated evil, but with everyone else still debating what to do she stepped forward to grab the sword.
I’m not sure why she ultimately decided to do that – but once she grabbed it the sword became visible and she got a strange look, like she was listening to something. Then she dropped the sword and a weird portal unlike anything I’ve ever seen before appeared. Jescha said something like, “He needs our help” and then “Only seven can go through.” Well, this wasn’t exactly how I thought this reunion would go. We never even got to pull out Solomon Kane and figure out what his deal was, and what he remembered happened. The portal did not look stable, and before we knew it both Steve and James ran through it!
I looked at Jescha and she was still dazed. But it seemed apparent that she wanted us to go through so I grabbed her and the two of us walked through. I figured it would be easy enough to transport us back if things got too crazy or dangerous. Plus, I didn’t feel right that Steve might get stranded in another dimension. James, well, I guess if I pulled everyone else out, I’d have to offer to take him too. He’s really gotten on my shit list lately though. But that’s for later. The last thing I remembered was what sounded like McGreggor yelling “My lady!”
We woke up on the sand. James, Steve, myself and Jescha. Looking around I also saw McGreggor, Pall Mall and Sonja laying with us, as well as an 8th body – some guy with no clothes. We all groggily got to our feet and took in our surroundings. Except there were none. Just sand as far as we could see. While we all took this in, the naked man got up and started walking in a direction. We tried communicating with him but he just babbled back nonsense at us. Even the Tongues spell wasn’t able to make sense of what he said.
The others tried to interact with him some more and I was content to just let him walk off, but Jescha (still somewhat out of it) said we had to help him. I asked her to make sure it was that guy she was referring to, and she said it was. I pulled out one of my energy spheres and tried casting a few spells on the guy to try and get him to be able to communicate. Nothing worked, but then we had the idea to try to cast the Tongues spell on him – and that worked!
Not that it helped. This guy couldn’t tell us anything – not who he was, not how he got there, not even where we were. He just kept walking in that direction. I kept Jescha’s words in my mind and we all decided to follow him and see what was up. As we walked we all noticed a few things. A giant tower off in the distance came into view, though we weren’t heading in that direction. We could also tell that the magical energy in this dimension was very low. Nothing like the Earth dimension we just left.
The dimension we just left. I still can’t get over how that’s not my true home dimension. Will I ever get back to my home dimension? What about my mother? My brother was killed by the Coalition, and I never knew my father, but does my mother still live? I need to remember to ask Jescha about her family, any brothers or sisters she may have – I wonder just how close the parallels run between our families too?
The most distressing thing I noticed as we walked, though, was that my sense of time was out of whack. It normally is reliable across dimensions, and I use it all the time to ascertain the different rates of time that can exist between one dimension and another. But here, it was telling me that we had traveled backwards in time!
Absolutely absurd, of course. The time stream cannot be traversed in reverse, only forwards.
After some time walking, we came within sight of a small city. Jescha thought it looked like an ancient Earth city – she had come mostly back to her senses, though she couldn’t elaborate about what happened when she held that artifact for those few moments. She thought it reminded her of a place she read about from her Earth’s ancient history, called Babylon.
I’ll continue this later.
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