The First Mate was back on board, snippy and smug as ever. Lotye took that for a good sign. His remark made her remember that there still was one more to rescue. Peino. Not that she would have forgotten about him, there just had been some more pressing issues on her mind, like pulling up the guy who had tried to rescue him. Now though, it rushed all back to her and she suddenly became very anxious. Is he still alive? He was the last time I saw him, wasn’t he? What about the dragon? What are the Prince’s chances to survive down there? With a worried expression on her face and her arms still shaking from the effort of pulling up the rope, she followed Beau to the castle deck, where she saw Jeneyeru and the Captain speaking.
The airship began to descend. Lotye’s stomach began to grumble again. Whether it was the descent, the exhaustion or her nervousness, she couldn’t tell, though, if she had had to guess, she’d have said it was a combination of all three. She watched as the ground came closer and the grumbling grew louder. It was like they were falling, she felt pressure on her ears. The ship was moving more turbulently now, quite contrary to Lotye, who tried not to move at all and held on to the piece of wood closest to her. It didn’t help very much. With a rumble and noises as if every single plank would break, every single rope on the ship would snap, the Calinda sat down on the rocky clearing. Suddenly all the movement stopped, but around Lotye, everything was spinning.
It took her moment to realise that Jeneyeru talked to her. Lotye took the pot of salve with a grateful nod. For the first time she really looked down at her hands. By the gods, what did I do? Interestingly, her hands didn’t hurt as much as they they should have, judging by how they looked. They were full of red weals and bloody scratches where the rope had cut into them. Around that, her skin looked even paler than usually, anaemic and sickly. When she moved her fingers, it seemed like her palms were swollen. I certainly won’t pick any pockets with those in the near future. Cautiously she applied the balm on her palms, her teeth already gritted in expectation of the burning sensation that always followed when one put salves on open wounds. It wasn’t as bad as she would have thought. It hurt only a little bit and after a few more moments, she could already feel the swelling going back and scratches being cooled.
Her equipment for the “shore leave” was quickly put on. The clothes she wore were already wet through and through, Lotye herself was wet to her bones too and there wasn’t enough time to completely change, but the strong outer wear and the heavy coat Jeneyeru gave her was quite welcome nonetheless, if just for the little bit of additional warmth they provided. Out of her bag, Lotye fished a short ribbon to bind her hair, which appeared redder being wet, to a long ponytail.. Much like an afterthought, she looked into her bag of holding to check for her healing supplies and then ran back to their quarters to get a few extra bandages and powders. Feeling ready for everything, she was among the first who made the little jump off the ship.
Dawn was long over, but the sun hadn’t climbed very high above the mountains tops yet. Large parts of the mountainside were still covered in deep shadows, the forest around them was dark and looming, as were the grey clouds of the storm above them. To have solid ground under her feet again was a strange feeling for Lotye. It was odd not to feel any movements, not to feel the ship riding gusts of wind like waves. She never would have guessed, but it would take her some time to get accustomed to being on the ground again. Lotye shook her feet and looked around. There was a lot of ground to cover and the terrain would be difficult. She had travelled through the wilderness and over mountains before, but parts like this were what any sane traveller avoided. If they wanted to find Peino quickly, they’d have to have a good strategy. But right now, Lotye wasn’t the one to come up with one.