81st Turn, Seventh Year, Seventeenth Cycle, Marday
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From the Journal of Aframos Longjourney, Pilgrim

With notes by Avos Torr, Scholar of Rheve Library

Marday, Seventeenth Cycle, Seventh Year, 81st Turn

Twenty-Seventh Day in the Trees

We were visited again last night.

This time, they left three robes, sized to my frame. They are in light shades of blue, like my stripes, and made of something like silk. However, it is much, much tougher than silk.

My old robe was gone. This is perhaps the most disconcerting thing of all, for I had been wearing it while I slept. Once again, I did not wake until morning. Nor did Torne. I am certain now that we are dealing with magic.

They also left another string of beads. These are yellow and green, and on a much shorter string. They are just the right length to wrap around Torne's wrist, which I do not think was a coincidence.

Torne is not too worried. "If they had wanted us dead," he explained, "a dagger would suffice. They left gifts, you said, and in time will name their price. Don't be in such a hurry to have yourself a worry, you know tomorrow's pain can wait. If hostile ferocity's behind this generocity, it will come another date."

I suppose that he is right. If there is a danger behind it, there's little I can do now. Worrying will not help.

I will still have difficulty sleeping tonight.

Our travel today was uneventful. I saw a bird with the head of a lizard. Or perhaps it was a two-legged lizard with feathers. It appeared to have wings, but did not fly. It did manage a short glide from a high tree branch, landing on the path ahead of us, clutching a large dragonfly in its mouth. It did not run when I approached, though it did look up curiously. Its feathers were a deep green, with red scales running along its belly, and on its head. I saw that its wings had three small fingers about halfway along their length, which it used to hold the dragonfly while it ate1. After we had passed it, I looked back in time to watch it climbing a tree near the path, evidently to catch more dragonflies.

When evening came, we made camp at the base of a hill. The side of the hill is steep, and we piled thornbushes around our camp. It will be much more difficult for someone to sneak into our camp tonight.

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