The group was able to take on the remaining assassins though they almost died. The Tribe is able to take the treasure into Tyr (luckily Ja’th was able to drive one of the skiffs himself since one of the pilots died in the last skirmish). They are paid handsomely and are told they always will have a job at House Wavir with Rhotan.
The group goes to find the contact for The Veiled Alliance. After searching through the market, they come across what seems to be a waste of open space: rocks formed into small piles with some created into short rock people. It’s quiet and creepy at first but the eerie silence is broken by a familiar whistle. On the deck of what seems to be someone’s home, is Jericho, sweeping with a hay broom. He sees the group and welcomes them with a wave.
Jericho was told by Arisphistaneles to go to Tyr and work for the Veiled Alliance members there. He now works for Karlen, head of the Veiled Alliance here in Tyr and also owner of this shop of trinkets. The group meets the halfling, Karlen, an old man who is trying to renounce his ways of cannibalism (as common for halflings). They meet him and he says, “It’s good to finally meet the enemies of House Tsalaxa. They deserved what they had coming to them. Back in my day my clan would always have problems with them on our hunting ground. But I guess they didn’t like us too much since we used to, you know, eat them. Anyway, that’s behind me now. I’m with the Veiled Alliance now. The Templars here in Tyr have been very concerned of our recent activity. Now that you have completed your test and are officially with the Veiled Alliance now, we could definitely use your help.”
Before continuing Ja’th asks if he knows anything about who The Gardner is and Karlen says it’s him though he hasn’t been called that in many years. The halfling explains that he’s always tried growing things here at his shop for many years and usually it would never work, but he was diligent and was given the nickname “The Gardner.” Ja’th explains his dreamlike prophecy from the Chief to find him and ask about the purpose of the Desert Seed (even though Ja’th doesn’t know what that is). Coraline reveals that she has the Desert Seed, given to her from Jericho who received it from the original Chief.
After running some alchemical tests on the Seed and verifying that it actually is the Desert Seed, Karlen says, “The Desert Seed is a powerful item that is fabled to show the way to a great place. This remarkable seed can guide the one who ingests it where this Promised Land is, a place where there is no pain or suffering, just life. But the bad news is that the one who eats the seed WILL die before arriving at the Promised Land themselves. History shows,” as he begins to pull out scrolls, “that if they take the seed, it will give them vision for the next step to the Promised Land. It’s quite extraordinary really. Many thought it to be folklore but you showed me otherwise.”
The Tribe now must face a decision: someone must eat the seed now so that it can never be taken away, but who will be the bearer of such a burden? The group all make their cases saying that they each should take the fall and eat the seed. They all agree Coraline, as the Chief of the Tribe, should not eat it. They also think that Coarline should choose who will eat it since everyone is arguing that they should sacrifice themselves. Seluku makes the case that he should take it since life for him has been never ending and now this gives him a chance to not only do something good for the Tribe but also experience a new adventure he has never experienced before: Death. Coraline makes the hard decision and gives the seed to the shardmind who takes it into himself. He feels an energy he’s never felt before and the seed embeds itself into his forehead. He has a vision from the original Chief who says: The Face in the Stone. A lost shrine where evil stirs. Find it, and you will find the Crown of Dust.
The group rests there at Karlen’s shop for the night before heading out to the bazaar.