Motion rune Methe the Traveller Communications rune

I am Methe, daughter of Erdern Wing-Wind, and I sit on the Ring of the Belovaking clan. I call upon you, Talking God, as you told me to do. I call on you, Lord of Tongues, to fill my mouth with stories of foreign lands. I won't talk of obvious things like how people from Keanos talk funny, or how in Saug they carve Mastakos's wheel backwards. I will speak about many unusual things I have seen in my travels.

She is truly wise
who's travelled far
and knows the ways of the world.
She who has travelled
can tell what spirit
governs the men she meets.

East Ralios

Kolmast Rivermaster, King of the Pranute, is not an initiate of Orlanth Rex! Instead, he worships Doskior. The wrongness of this is proved by the fact that instead of gaining generous favors from Orlanth, he has to humbly beg Doskior not to flood his miserable flat lands.

There is one tale I will not tell tonight, since there are men present. The story of Red Woman's love magic is for women only.

In the Mokevogi clan, the women worship the troll goddess Xiola Umbar, who eases their childbirth.


All of the hsunchen tribes worship their totem animal. Their god provides magic to turn into that animal, but it's difficult to cast, and they usually do it only once a year. Sometimes the transformation isn't complete -- I had a hard time not laughing when I saw one of the Alekki walking around with the body of a man but the antlered head and four long legs of a moose.

The hsunchen live in large tents shaped much like our own houses. They paint them with magic designs. Birkiska Leaves-No-Tracks, chief of the Raccoon People, owns a huge tent all of us here could fit in. It's made from a single skin, though I couldn't tell what animal it was from.

Among the Deer People, shamans wear the clothing of the opposite gender. One of them told me that dressed as a woman, he was able to seduce the more powerful spirits, or fool the weaker spirits so they didn't flee when they spotted him. His wife took a bow and hunted to help with the ruse.

The Galanini are the only hsunchen I visited who worship gods besides their totem and the Hunter. They worship the sun Ehilm, who their queen once wooed and married. Only certain people are allowed to worship Ehilm. The queen's sons worshipped their father after he returned to the sky, and so did the sons of her daughters. Only sons of women who trace their mothers back to the queen can worship him. These men hold themselves above others of the tribe. Eurgan made this verse:

Goldenhaired Godspawn rules Galanin's herds,
ever since their queen rose from Ehilm's embrace

Some of these people use flint-tipped weapons. Though not as impressive or sturdy as bronze, they can still deal unpleasant wounds. Strangely enough, the dragonewts of Ormsland also use flint weapons. Eurgan made this verse:

Beast-brothers wield black glass blades,
Dread dragonspawn does the same.


I never saw anyone eat a baby or sacrifice an alynx while I was in Naskorion, but they were probably all on their best behavior. The Naskori know the Greeting, but they don't worship Orlanth properly. For one thing, their temples are square and have roofs. Their farmers are not allowed to worship, nor can they own horses.

The city of Estali is made entirely from red clay bricks. Even the streets are paved with bricks. Some of the houses tower like sheer cliffs, three floors tall. They have windows which are filled with clear, flat glass.

In Safelster, people use silver trade tokens called danars. Those from Tara are noteworthy. They all show the queen on one side, but no two are alike on the opposite side. They show such things as winged horses, flaming trees, couples making love, warriors smiting dragons, dragons devouring armies, children playing, and any number of other designs. A young, healthy cow is worth over a hundred of these small silver pieces.

The largest horses I have seen come from the land of Helby.

Many people in Safelster actually worship Arkat! I swear this is true. They are otherwise good people, considerate and kind to their wives and children, but they pray to the Destroyer.

Graceful boats sail Lake Felster, making it as easy to cross as any valley.


The warriors of Vesmonstran do not take the heads of brave enemies they kill, and they burn their dead instead of returning them to Mother Ralia. They carry turquoise stones as charms against being wounded in battle.

There are temples where the Talking God is scarcely worshipped, and crass merchants have set up shop, haggling over grain and chicken eggs, and using the Create Moot spell to hold weekly markets.

Instead of keeping knowledge alive in their heads, priests of the Knowing God try to record it by making black marks on scraped sheep skins. This is like trying to get milk out of a cowhide.


I once saw a huge, hairless troll swing his knobby club at a Healer, even though she was wearing the white and green garb of her office.
Copyright ©2000 David Dunham. Last updated 28 May 00

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