Garkhen looked surprised. “You sailed here, then?”
Almonihah snorted. “Yeah.”
The half-blue dragon looked over at the huge griffon. “Ah… I had not thought a ship would be sufficient for Zakhin’Dakh.”
Almonihah shrugged. “Lot ‘f strange things get shipped from Midport. Just had t’ find th’ right captain.”
Tirel laughed. “Somehow I don’t think it’ll be that easy, Almonihah.”
“Least now we have someone who can look human.”
The tiger-man grinned. “It’s not often that I get to be the most normal person in a group.”
Almonihah snorted, shifting his wings slightly. “May have t’ get used to it ‘f you keep following us around.”
The Wyre shrugged slightly. “We’ll see. I could always just stay in my Wyre form if I wanted to keep you three company,” he added, grinning.
“I think it will be wiser for you to assume human form, my friend,” Garkhen interjected, also grinning. “As you have pointed out, we shall have enough difficulty as it is purchasing passage.”
They traveled quickly, but it still took several days to reach the capital city of Ferd. Tirel did, indeed, assume human form as they neared the city. The group still got some weird looks, but… it was clear from speaking with the guards at the gates of the city that the story of Almonihah and Zakhin’Dakh coming through the town when they had arrived in Ferdunan had spread… and Garkhen’s tale seemed equally well-known.
Once they were out of earshot of the guards, Almonihah muttered, “Guess a reputation’s good for something.”
“A good one is, yes,” Garkhen agreed.
They soon found that their good reputation was not sufficient to find passage easily. The captains they spoke with pointed out—quite rightly—the many challenges of transporting a creature like Zakhin’Dakh. Many spoke of how crews would likely not work well with a giant griffon about. None were willing to take the chance, in spite of the offer of significant quantities of gold.
It was nearly a week before they finally had some luck. Another ship from Midport had come in, and while the captain was reluctant at first, when they brought up the subject of payment, he grew more agreeable.
At last he said, “Well, if you feed him and clean up after him, I’ll take you aboard.”
I apologize for the late post. Here, have a picture of Zakhin’Dakh fighting a behir to make up for it. 😀
I feel like I glossed over the difficulties of shipping a giant griffon a bit too much on the way south. It may be a bit more of an issue now…