Search for Dimlai
Week 4, Bringing Salindera
Ashleigh, Alag, and Kate, having taken their leave of Kumner, rendezvous with the rest of the group--save Cantrel, who is still training for the Outer Guard--on Fast Times. We quickly decide that the most chaos would occur if we could get Her Ladyship Salindera to Marlin for the wedding ceremony. We travel forward a day after our departure from Salindera--a few objective weeks after our brief visit to Kelmerian and Marlin--and Ashleigh, Alag, Kate, and Lorelei visit Her Ladyship again.
They fill Salindera in on their discoveries and proceed to discuss various theories and suspicions for the true reasons behind the wedding. The ladies also try to convince Salindera to come to the wedding. She agrees with Kumner that "sparks would fly" if she were to show up unannounced at the ceremony but demurs from the ladies' offer.
Salindera points out that Count Riotri is enormously hungry for military might and power. And while there is some question whether Dimlai or her brother would inherit, the Kelmerian lands are large and attractive--reason enough for the marriage. Now, Dimlai's father--who is Salindera's second cousin--could make Dimlai's brother the true heir but Salindera believes this would be a foolish move. This support our theory that the rest of the Alatar family is being coerced somehow but a land swap seems an insufficient motive.
Salindera also points out that Count Riotri is irrationally jealous and fearful of other magicians. Only a few of his Inner Guard--perhaps the one we saw escorting Dimlai to Marlin--would have any kind of magical ability and if magic were used in his keep or even in his town, it would certainly be noticed. Her Ladyship points out that Riotri is quite powerful, adding that "only someone of Telmeric's character would set themselves against him".
The discussion turns to possibilities for rescue. Her Ladyship is certain that Dimlai is well inside of Riotri's magical guards and wards. (Lorelei experiments with a psilencer: both Alag and Salindera are able to detect that something has happened but cannot determine the nature of what it is.) Lorelei and Salindera also exchange notes on telepathy magics. Tactical matters are also discussed.
The broad outline of a plan is formed: Salindera, now willing, will return to Kelmerian Manor to stir up any dormant issues there; Cantrel and others will try to obtain more detailed information about the interior of the castle; and, an attempt will be made to contact Dimlai, if possible before the ceremony begins. Salindera asks for a day to prepare her domains before departing.
Copyright © 1998, Jim Burrows. All Rights Reserved.