Writings of Rion the Scholar - 1st Entry

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This note is found in the northeast corner of the Cairan Docks.

I must admit, this place is truly a jewel in the desert. In my travels I have been to the farthest reaches of the world, seen and experienced much, sadly most sights did not live up to their own tales. This place, however, is a marvel that exceeds even the grandest of stories. Transcribing its beauty and grandeur may prove challenging even for me.

I arrived via ship at the Cairan Docks late last night. My charter, a merchant vessel called Spire, packed to the gunwale with fine goods from distant shores; its captain, a stalwart and grizzled sailor whose dedication and leadership shone through in the motivation of his crew. Like a finely tuned machine they deftly navigated the dangerous waters west of the Korvan River delta.

We first spotted the grand port while still at sea, miles before entering the river where it is located. The Cairan beacon shone brightly over the horizon. I do not know what magic powers that ubiquitous signal but its intense light draws vessels from the seas like moths to a flame. As we sailed upriver, the port began to reveal itself to us like an eager maiden. Countless warm yellow lights gently illuminated polished sandstone structures, some more than five stories tall. Beautifully crafted statues and fountains proudly stood watch over the gardens and public spaces that flowed through the grand bazaar.

The port itself was ablaze with activity. Containers hoisted to and from ships, dock workers and merchants closing deals and crews taking leave in bars and fine brothels. Mere moments after I set foot on solid ground, for the first time in weeks, I was greeted by my local contact. A beautiful woman of middling age with an effortless and enticing gait further enhanced by the lovely gold embroidered gown that hung over her figure like a graceful waterfall. She guided me away from the pier to the heart of the port city, and my lodging for the night; which I politely offered to share with her, an advance she graciously denied. Not even this could dampen my mood however and, albeit alone, I had the greatest night of sleep in my life. The bazaar gently rocked me to sleep with the melodic hum of its ceaseless activity.

This morning, my path takes me north to the capital, Korvan City. I shall join a small caravan that travels there daily along the immaculate stone roads leading to the heart of the city from the four cardinal directions. I can see the path now, as I sit and wait in the lovely garden bower just outside my lodging. Its stonework shines in the gentle morning sun. Immaculate golden leafed braziers mark its boundaries as far as the eye can see.

If the next leg of my journey rivals the first, it shall truly be the experience of a lifetime.

See also: