From the Memories of Fierce Chaos
The Year of Great Change
“True fearlessness is not the reduction of fear; but going beyond fear.”
I was traveling with Go Gin and Cobra Dallas. We had all come to the south side of the River of Laughing Idols at the behest of Syanya of the Simbara. He told us that to the south of us the Jungle of Lost Tribes was currently swarming with servants of Tiger. Because of this, the Council had decreed that for their own safety, all settlements should be moved north of the river. Unfortunately one tribe, the Katimaya had flatly refused to move, claiming that they did not see the danger. Syanya wanted us to travel to the Katimaya and convince them to move, and he introduced us to a lacerial flyer named Chitter to act as a guide
We soon had set out. Chitter talked constantly the entire journey. He wasn’t annoying like Ffft was said to be, but he was incessant. We did hear some interesting tidbits from him, including something about a castle on Lake Koro and that many kretch had been seen within the Jungle of Lost Tribes.
Suddenly, we came across a group of black leopard katanga doing battle with a group of korobokuru. We opted to wait to see what happened at first, but soon we decided to help the korobokuru. After the surviving katanga had fled, the korobokuru introduced themselves to us as members of the Katimaya tribe. They were more than willing to lead us to their village.
When we arrived, Chief Yrbom heard our recommendation that they move their village. He seemed unconvinced. We asked if there was anything we could do to help him decide to move, he told us that we would talk about that after we had a party. That night we had a massive feast. Then Yrbom himself started us out with a great boasting competition. The whole tribe participated in the competition, leaving only the witch doctor Kural to do something else. When one boaster, named Makalra shared how he had personally stopped the earthshakes, Yrbom’s young daughter Kat’i convinced us to participate as well. We did the best we could.
Before we slept, the tribal council including Yrbom, Itzipan, and Kural heard our arguments again. Kural brought up that the Tiger was the totem animal of the Katimaya, so there would likely be no conflict with Tiger when they came. Itzipam stated that any people who were not willing to fight for their home do not deserve their home. It seemed we had failed to convince them, but Yrbom did decide to send a group of hunters into the Jungle of Lost Tribes to learn what was happening there.
That night, Cobra Dallas was awakened by a sound. Leaving the hut, he saw that the village was under attack by a group of Akathasa, the flying insect-like bat creatures that served the Tamara were attacking the village. We fought them off as best we could. Afterward, we discovered that they had stolen Yrbom’s mask of the tiger, the symbol of his authority over the Katimayan people. Yrbom resolved to lead planned the expedition into the Jungle of Lost Tribes himself. We couldn’t convince him to remain behind.
Soon, Yrbom, Itzipan, six of the tribe’s best warriors, Cobra Dallas, Go Gin, and I had set out. Kural had provided each of us with a means to avoid the taboo of the region, though he seemed to do so only for show.
It was a quick trek through the wild to get to the border of the Jungle of Lost Tribes; from there we traveled nearly a day and a half into the taboo region. Once we reached some ruins, we entered into what we thought was a cave, but turned out to be a long tunnel. It exited near what appeared to be a massive caldera, though it was obviously an ancient ruin and not a natural formation. In the center were dozens of the green furred ape-like kretch. They were hard at work building another structure in the center. It was a wide, open, flat, dais much like a ring. Once it was completed it might even be completely circular. Around the edges were dozens of unfinished cages with natural channels running from them to the center hole. In the center stood another structure, a square stone of obelisk of some sort.
Yrbom had seen enough, he felt it obvious that the kretch were up to no good and doubted there could be peace with them or Tiger. As we turned down the passageway we had come in order to leave, we were interrupted from behind us by a voice. It was Kural. He had betrayed the tribe and claimed that all Katimayan would now serve Tiger. Seemingly just to showcase how despicable he was, Kural presented the young daughter of Yrboom, Kat’I whom he had killed and brought back to a mockery of life with dark magic. He ordered her to attack us, and she as well as more than a dozen kretch moved in to kill us. Kural himself vanished with some sort of spell.
Yrbom was next to useless in the fight, as he could not seemingly recover from the violation that had been done to his daughter. Itzapam helped as best he could, but it was obvious that they were too powerful for us. Just as things looked bleakest, they took a turn for the worse. A group of black leopard katanga charged at us from behind. I was able to stop Go Gin from attacking them, and this may have been our saving grace. They seemingly didn’t care for us. One, whom we recognized form our earlier battle even warned us to flee while we still could.
Soon the two groups were joyfully killing each other, though I thought the katanga were outmatched by far. This did give us some time to escape though. We made our way out of the tunnel and back toward the village of the katimaya, not even stopping to rest as we traveled as fast as we could.
When we made it back, Yrbom announced what had happened. He also announced that Kural was a traitor. Sadly, the drum beats from the distant Big Chief Bagoomba had already given even worse news. Bengoukee had been attacked and nearly killed by the traitor Kural. A poison was working its way through his veins and it was doubtful that he would survive.
Yrbom then announced that the Katimayan people were moving north of the River of Laughing Idols. He guessed that they could be packed up to leave by morning. Before they left however, he asked a grave favor of Cobra Dallas, Go Gin, and I. He said his people would need time to move, and need protection from the forces of Tiger. He hoped that we could stay behind and fight off the kretch for as long as possible, which would give the people of Malatra more time to prepare. It was likely a suicide mission, but we all agreed.