Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Yun-Bai-Du: City of the Clouds Part IV

The map is finished except for the street names. By the next posting, I should have the street names in and a side view of this chunk of the city, which is constructed on the slopes of one of eight divine mountains. Here's a few more locales ...

29. Shanties: This low-lying, mucky area of the city-state is covered by a many shanties, the people living as beggars, thieves, fishermen and collectors of refuse. Many have benefited from aid by the Silent Hand, and the children of the shanties are a good source of information for those do-gooders. Notable among them is Juchidug, a recent arrival who claims to have been a captain of the Tiger Empress’ guard in Khatan. This is, in fact, an exaggeration, but he was a member of the royal guard and a favorite concubine of the empress. His indiscretions about his time in the palace and his stories of the empress have reached the ears of Buga [63], and his eventual death at the hands of an assassin is assured.

33. Armorer: The doors of this 2-story brick building have been closed and locked for over a month now, opening only to admit stores of food and fresh water. Smoke billows from the chimney night and day, and people wonder at the presence of a strangely beautiful man in robes of the deepest dye and fringed with the feathers of a white crane. The building belongs to Oorchin, a master armorer of Yun extraction who is very tall and quite fat, with hard eyes and a square jaw. Fearless and haughty, Oorchin has never been shy in bragging of his skills, and the shugenja Kuzhaidan has taken him up on his boasts and has ordered him to complete an enchanted wakizashi. The finished weapon is intended to be a +1 weapon capable of launching arcs of flame when swung. A piece of jet has been shaped into the form of a skull and will be implanted in the hilt of the weapon, while an essence of efreet blood is to be injected into the length of the blade. Kuzhaidan does not permit visitors, other than the aforementioned deliverers, and he allows Oorchin only brief naps – the armorer now regrets his bragging.

40. Healer: This three-story building has lovely wooden accents, carved in the shape of raccoon dogs and cobras. The bottom floor is a parlor of sorts, with a small pantry and kitchen attached. Here, the resident of the house, Temyshid the Healer, entertains prospective patients and friends on red velvet couches around a teak table, also richly carved. Stairs hidden behind a tapestry give access to the second floor, Temyshid’s operating chamber, where she provides such services as acupuncture and minor surgery. She is assisted by her husband, Kaik, a pleasant little man who uses too much cologne. The third floor contains the family living quarters, a chamber for Temyshid and Kaik and another for their four children, as well as a short hallway lined with shelves of glass jars and bottles containing medicinal compounds, herbs and a few odds and ends taken from former patients. Temyshid is younger than her husband, and entirely too bright for her own good. She has golden skin, black hair and blue eyes, with a neat, scholarly appearance. Although a healer, she is unfeeling and immoral.

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