Well, for what that’s worth. We arrived safely in Sewe. Sewe is an amazing city, all islands, harbours, little causeways, ships that people live on all the time, dozens next to each other. Bamen was really excited about it all, but for most of us, there were just too many people, and also a lot of things that felt like pure spirit. Later we learned that Sewe honours people who have done something good by not allowing Naigha to take their spirit to the beyond the stars, but try to keep them in the city. I think that that ‘s evil, but the people in Sewe disagree.
It wasn’t hard to find Bamen’s mother — we already knew where to go before we entered the city over the big causeway through the marshes (lots of pink birds there!). But when we tried to get there, we found we couldn’t take the horses, the cart and the ox. The “streets” were just too tiny. But there was a little temple with a courtyard, and when we went inside to ask if we could leave our animals and cart there, it turned out to be a Temple for Anshen, and the priestess was Khas! That really excited Fikmet, of course, and while we first had to bring Bamen back, we promised to go back there in the evening.
Bamen’s mother was very suspicious of us, she even dared to accuse us of being the ones who had stolen her son, and other children in the neighbourhood. But Bamen convinced her that we were honest and that we were actually bringing everyone back we knew of, and then she hugged us, and hugged Bamen and was very happy.
She lives on one of the small boats, and sells colored powder to make paint of. You make different kinds of paints by mixing in different kinds of things, glue I guess, or water.
There was a celebration, and we slaughtered the last three sheep, and contributed the meat to the feast. The Ishey were a bit sad, since we now no longer had a herd, but then, we had to go on a boat to Velihas and Valdyas anyway, so we also needed to get rid of the horses, the ox and the cart.
But first, we went back to the temple, where we slept. During the night, Fikmet became a Journeyman, as the Valdyans count that when learning their semsin powers. She was visited by the Gods, she said, but she hasn’t told us what they told her, or asked her to do, only that she had to grow up and wasn’t any too happy about that. But she was also reassured by something that the Gods had given her, so it’ll work out in the end.
The next day, we went out to find passage to Velihas. And to change our coins to something that we could take with us in something else than a bucket, and that people in Velihas and especially Valdyas can use (in Velihas, coins aren’t used a lot, not outside Istila or Cuytim, in any case). For both things, people told us that we’d have to go to the Temple of Mizran, which was on a biggish square, where there was also a little House of the Order of the Sworn.
The people in the temple of Mizran became very friendly once they saw what we had in our bucket and in our pockets, and now all of us have got a letter that says how much coins any temple of Mizran anywhere should give us if we ask for it, some Valdyan coins to go on with, and I’m keeping a really big Letter that says how much money all of us have for our common work! We also learned about a ship going to Velihas, a Valdyan ship, the Albatross.
We also went to the Order House, of course, but before we arrived there, we passed a sail manufactory… And Mahesi realized that she felt she was done travelling, at least for a good, long time. She decided to apply as a journeyman right then and there. So she’s going to stay in Sewe as well as Bamen: not altogether a bad thing, neither will be as lonely as Jakham back in Izarrak.
At the Order House we met the captain of the Albatross and her first mate. Both were in the Guild of Anshen, so we were sure we could trust them! And they were happy to take us aboard, if we’d buy our own provisions, and if we wanted to work, so much the better! They would leave the next morning.
That just left us time to swap our cart, ox and horses with Bamen’s mother for a cask-ful of paint powders, all in leather bags, that we might be able to trade in Istila and Cuytim. As Fikmet said, time to bring some bright colors to Velihas!