Rafael's Journal

Rafael started keeping a journal shortly before meeting the other adventurers.

Journey to Eltro

Today our journey to Eltro ends. d'Ooh'n'Ooh said I'm supposed to meet some people there. His exact words were, "Go to Eltro. Take the goose. No need to rush but don't get sidetracked. When your arrive there will be a big event going on. There will be some people there you need to meet." I pressed for more details but that's all he would give me. I guess we'll see.

I hope they like Goosifer.

The Magic Circus

I saw a tame displacer beast today! Oh and Goosifer has totally redeemed himself from all those nips and nibbles growing up. He basically saved my life today when we were ambushed in the circus. The main guy, a green goblin, ran the circus effects from an heirloom mask he wore during the performance, and I guess the other gang, the purple something or others (also goblins), saw the giant tent and advertisements and figured, now's the time. I don't know if I believe... Rag Whizzle-something?'s warnings of doom and gloom if this mask ends up in the wrong hands. Unless this was the "big event" d'Ooh'n'Ooh had in mind? It must be. We're gonna have to see this through I think. Hopefully our new friends Elysia and Sister Bridie are the open-minded types... they didn't seem to mind Goosifer's bloody celebrations.

Maybe they're both bad?

The green goblins and the purple goblins both claim to be the heroic guardians of the mask, over generations. So we stashed the mask with Sr Bridie and Goosifer to avoid trouble when reporting to Rag. Of course we neglected to grab all those papers of goblin writing. Good thing Rag was distracted with his circus troubles.
Bridie is really going through it right now. She shouldn't have even been in a position where she had to defend herself.
Maybe we can't rely on her to say "no" when we put her in a bind like that. I have to embrace a leadership role here to protect the one person in our group that actually feels regret when she kills. Elysia has been numbed by her training, Goosifer is a wild animal, and I am far from innocent.
I managed a drink tonight after a hunt. It would be better to just grit my teeth and abstain like I did at the dojo, but I look so ghoulish doing that, it raises too many questions. At least it was deer and not mice.

PS - It feels like there might be a way to use my curse to my advantage. With all the lying today I started to get a sense that this hunger is connected to social skills somehow. Worth exploring.

I almost died today

We were fighting a pair of man-sized spiders and one of them bit me in the shoulder with some awful venom. I nearly killed it, but the second bite took me out. I blacked out. Sr. Bridie was leaning over me when I came to a moment later, and she must have restored me with magic. Simple as that.
I wonder if she will find a way to balance giving and taking life, or if her faith or will is strong enough to stay in danger's path with us and only protect.
Speaking of protection, Elysia got an ancestral boon from some kind of Tabaxi graveyard pool thing. Her ancestors leave a piece of their life behind to help future Tabaxi. It happened right here where we're camping. I can see the water glowing.
I don't deserve these people. I know how to take life, not how to give it. The best thing I can do is stop someone else from taking a life I care about. But my intervention always means there is less life in total, at the end. That satyr Pinkleton doesn't know the half of it.

PS - more thoughts about lying while I was on first watch.
I figured out how to combine my hunger with the weave. It's hard to put into words, but I think I can twist up my heart, or whatever part of me it is that other people can feel subconsciously, in a way that will make me just an incredible liar. Actually I bet it makes me better at anything social. I don't know what it will cost me, but I'm going to try it. Not on my friends though.
Hmm. I guess I've decided not to lie to them any more. I hope they understand.

Why can't I just trust people?

I told Elysia and Sr. Bridie about my curse. They were surprisingly sympathetic. More curious than worried, it seemed. But I messed up. I couldn't bring myself to admit to Goosifer that he wasn't my first pet. I think he knows I left something out; he's been giving me the stink eye all day.
My idea about harnessing the hunger has proven true. I can't tell if I'm sharing my hunger with other people, as a desire to believe me, or if this is linked with insight, but the end result is, I have a silver tongue.
I bet I could even send some extra pain along with my arrows and swords. A wave of "I might actually die" to go with the physical injury.
If Olx turns out to be as much of a weasel as Rag, or if he figures out we have the mask, I'll be ready to try it.

PS. I can't sleep. So I wrote a letter to my parents. Here's a copy:
Mom and Dad,

I'm okay. I'm sorry I haven't written sooner. And I'm sorry I left without setting things straight, or saying goodbye.
I'm an adventurer now, in Oro. I have a pet goose. I'm good at archery, and at talking myself into and out of interesting situations. I have more self control than I did when I was younger. I'm also a lot more careful about who I befriend. I'm traveling with a tabaxi and a nun. I think you'd like them.

I'll write again when I have time. If you want to write back, I would love to hear how everyone is doing. If you send a letter for me to Hollowrest, Oro, I'll pick it up next time I'm out that way.

They change color??

Rag (Oln!) is working with an evil god, which apparently for goblins changes the skin color. He changed his whole identity, and was probably duped himself into serving Zarn, who plans to "rule Finmyre with an iron fist" as Olx put it. Nasty business. I wonder if Oln can be reconciled with his brother after this.
Today's fight with some firesnakes validated my archery training. It's much safer to fight from a distance! Also, I think my scale armor was weighing me down more than I realized. I'm glad I sold it. Studded leather lets me get a better draw and the long hikes don't hurt as much. I had to sell the dulcimer, but I can make another one once we get a stretch of quiet in one place. I really need to learn to play though.
Note: Firesnake fangs are a key ingredient in some kind of life extension potion. Actually that makes me wonder, maybe Aggie knows something about vampires.