Malatra Redux

The Lost Tribe of Fire Mountain

The Year of Awakening #10

From the Memories of Yamboya Mosswalker
Big Chief Bagoomba
The Year of Awakening
“What is lost is often found.”
I was waiting in the hut of Bengoukee with some other heroes of the jungle. Black Chaos, and Mowgli I had traveled with before and knew them to each be capable in their own way. The one hero I didn’t know was a tiger katanga from the Wise Ones called Malinsar. Eventually Bengoukee joined us. The aged korobokuru shaman told us that late last night they had received word from a member of the long-thought lost Cantambi tribe sometimes referred to as the Tribe of Fire Mountain.
The Cantambi were korobokuru and were believed to live under Fire Mountain. The messenger who had arrived was near death, and asked for help from Big Chief Bagoomba. Apparently, following the cataclysm that happened on Fire Mountain nearly a year earlier, the tribe had migrated. Now there was an enemy intent on wiping them out. Bengoukee had decided to send us to find the Lost Tribe, and help them if we could.
We set out at once, following Bengoukee’s instructions we passed an old dead tree. As we passed, we heard the sound of whimpering. Investigating we discovered a group of flying spiders feasting upon a dead dog who was protecting a litter of puppies. Fighting off the spiders was a chore, but we survived. Everyone but I took a puppy to look after, I figured I was already their friend so I would let someone else take them for now.
That night, we each had bad dreams. Each was similar, though each featured an enemy individualized for us. They seemed to warn that if we proceeded, we would be destroyed. It was rather creepy, but we continued onward anyway.
Eventually, we found the cave which led into Fire Mountain. It was slow going at first, due to the darkness and treacherous footing, but eventually we came to an area with flowing fire rock. We skirted this hazard and arrived at an underground river with a canoe waiting for us there. We assumed that the canoe must have been left by the messenger that made it to Bagoomba’s village. So we guessed we had to go down river to find the Cantambi.
We were able to fit all of us on the canoe, though Black Chaos had to take monkey form to do so, and Malinsar and I were the ones forced to do all the paddling. We had made our way downstream and were approaching a shoreline near a vast lake when a massive giant crocodile attacked the boat. The boat was destroyed and Malinsar nearly was eaten by the creature, but we were able to save him and make our way to shore. We opted to rest for a bit and recuperate rather than continue immediately.
When we were ready, we explored the tunnel which led from the beach. Nearby we found more canoe’s and some additional oars. This meant that we at least had a way to leave when we wanted to, though we would have to pass the giant crocodile again. We also found a path further into the mountain, which we followed.
In the next chamber we were attacked by a large group of strange looking creatures led by an incredibly ugly woman who we couldn’t get a good look at. The strange creatures outnumbered us three-to-one, and they were tough. What was worse, was that we lacked any strategy when we attacked, and soon Black Chaos was separated from us, and Mowgli was surrounded. It was the worst battle that I had ever taken part in…though eventually thanks to Malinsar’s retreating, we were able to win the day. Several of the creatures and their leader had escaped however.
We rested again, rather than push our luck, but eventually moved on. We couldn’t find our opponents, but were discovered by a young korobokuru girl named Gilroukul. Her nubari was spotty, but we were able to learn that the enemy we had faced also threatened her village, and had come from a crack in one of the caves which had appeared recently. She led us to her village and to her witch-doctor.
The Cantambi’s witch-doctor was named Hilkouri, and he was identical to Bengoukee. We asked him about this, and learned that the pair were cousins. Hilkouri told us that two of his villages’ best warriors, Duncrawl and Jythin had been able to fight off the villainous Liztarie when she recently attacked, but she would return. Liztarie was apparently an evil caiman katanga, and had been the leader of our mysterious opponents earlier.
We were asked to share in a concoction with the elders and speak of our great past deeds before they would judge to see if we could help them. Our stories were few, as we were all relatively new to being heroes, but they judged us worthy enough. Before we had even finished the audience, we were alerted that the village was again under attack.
Liztarie had returned with her bizarre humanoid allies, which Hilkouri called troglodytes, what was worse was that she had somehow enticed a gnasher garuda into helping her. The combat was worse than everything we had experienced beforehand, and we only survived thanks to frequent healings by Hilkouri and the assistance of Duncrawl and Jythin. But eventually we took down first Liztarie, then her garuda, then her men.
Having rescued the tribe from their danger, we returned with a few of them to the surface and to meet with the Tribe of Big Chief Bagoomba. Hilkouri and Bengoukee were very happy to see one another again after many, many, years. Good relations between the two tribes seemed enviable…

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