Feb 052011

Priestess Haila has accepted my invitation to attend the Festival of Lyss and speak with the princes. To be honest, I’m nervous about speaking with them. Usually when I am solving the problems of allied groups or nations, it doesn’t hinge on my ability to impress royalty with witty conversation. To calm my nerves, I decided to explore the Forum Highlands with my friends Alarion and Rajas. As we left from Tihark Orchard, we found several groups of Vabbian guards patrolling the outpost.

Kamveh chatted us up as we approached the Grand Forum of Vabb. He had a problem with the recent war between the skree harpies and heket tribes in this area. It has disrupted the trade routes and if we could eliminate their leaders he would pay us handsomely. I really doubt that last part, but I’m always happy to lend a hand.

Looking at the Grand Forum of Vabb, it seems like something straight out of a painting or a dream. Everything has been touched by either gold or magic here. My companions liked the idea about retiring here after battle and having a feast.

Back to the task at hand, the skree harpies and heket are locked in a fierce battle. Once they make eye contact, rage overtakes them and a fight to the death ensues. Kamveh gave us orders to kill their leaders, so that the two groups wouldn’t have a strong force to rally them.

It didn’t take us long to bump into Render, the skree harpy leader. We only let her strike a few times with her spear before Rajas blinded her with his air magic.

Next up, we had to eliminate Harrk Facestab. I wondered how he got such a, umm descriptive surname. Alarion laughed aloud in battle when I shouted the heket’s name to target our enemy. Perhaps embarrassing our enemy is a good tactic in battle. We didn’t get slapped in the face by his tongue even once!

We lost the smiles on our faces when we noticed a rather large group of djinn and roaring ethers ahead of us. Really, the only way to defeat them was to lure a few with my bow and the aid of a monk’s protection prayers. Korshek the Immolated waited for us by the water fountain, hoping that we’d cluster up nicely for his powerful fire magic. I had the foresight to bring a broad head arrow to daze him while the rest of my party eliminated Korshek’s minions.

These mirrors caught our attention from the beginning when we left Tihark Orchard’s gates. They look rather crude compared to the rest of the structures in Vabbi. Anyways, we followed the path lit up before us to an interesting door.

Through the crack in the door, we noticed a treasure trove. Rajas picked up the faint sound of chanting djinn and cautioned us against disturbing them. I think my time with Margrid has begun to blind my actions, because I felt compelled to loot it no matter what! I asked my friends to stand back while I reached into the crack and pulled out a few platinum coins and a golden item. In a matter of seconds, a group of immolated djinn appeared next to me. Because they focused their attention on me, it gave Alarion and Rajas the opportunity to eliminate them with little risk of hurting the rest of the party. On the other hand, I was set on fire! After the battle, our henchmen cast their healing spells on me, but I still smelled of smoke.

Later on we spotted Churahm, Spirit Warrior: a djinn boss. Thankfully it was easier to kill than Korshek.

We headed towards the passage to Vehtendi Valley, a lush area full of heket. After fighting a bunch of djinn, I welcome the sight of heket. Seriously though, I’d welcome the sight of anything that doesn’t engulf the whole party in flames.

I’ve encountered so many heket in Elona so far. I wonder if there are any other large populations of these frogmen in Tyria? I’m sure they would fit into the Maguuma Jungle just fine. If they suddenly started eating all of the wind riders in sight, I don’t think anyone would mind!

Rajas, Alarion and I ended our afternoon partying at the Grand Forum of Vabb. As promised, I also treated my friends to a feast. Our chef was a bit hesitant to serve a bunch of “brutes”, but a few shiny platinum coins changed her mind. After trying their Vabbian wine and prime cuts of grilled cobalt mokele, I can see why it’s so easy to become a glutton here.

Prized Spoils: 5 golden items
Outposts: Tihark Orchard, The Kodash Bazaar, Jennur’s Horde
Exits: Vehtendi Valley, Garden of Seborhin
Friends: Alarion M., Rajas I.