So, after a bout with the strange aquatic thing that swallowed me, I managed to escape via sharp objects and some fortitude. The water was electrified, but once I realized I was able to deal with it, I promptly swam to land. Discovered a staircase up the mountain that had the Nockmaar statue, upon the summit was a caldera with an oasis and a ship in it. When the rest of the party finally caught up, a woman descended from the ship… She seemed familiar, though not to me directly, I don’t recall details though.
The woman explained how she held Xerxes’ daughter captive (I think) and that was why she wasn’t being bothered. She invited us in due to nightfall, also taking the time to show off the interior of the ship, which was malleable if one willed hard enough. It was easy going for me, of course. However, none of the mental constructions can exit the ship, it is only effective inside. She also mentioned the entire area The Games took place in was under Xerxes’ mental hold, including night and day. This also meant that the whole ‘if you survive the night you win’ was a scam, as dawn would never break until Xerxes willed it. Addendum: The woman has been here since before Xerxes and has been running an ‘experiment’ for many years.
Also, additionally, I found out Xerxes had changed his outward appearance, but as he had not initially suspected my capabilities, he took no effort to suppress his true self when I shook his hand upon our initial meeting. I had obtained the genetic information of his true identity, that of an old race called the Narlepse. They are tall, grey, humanoid, very lanky compared to most races. Ridges or spines protrude from my back, but they are not terribly useful. The jaw is… difficult to explain. Most fascinating, I perceive time differently. Instead of in fluid motion, I perceive it as many ‘snapshots’ that I can review at will. I have not attempted to review them when in my standard form, I will have to see how that works out for me later.
The woman mentioned an experiment to reverse the… process that Xerxes’ soldiers had undergone. Metis volunteered and managed to subdue most of his newfound primal instincts apparently. He was swiftly knocked out and the experimenting happened. While this was going on, I took the time to hand Perguis several Fluid State Inducers and caged myself, attempting to shift into the Borgum to see if I could maintain control. It Did Not Work. Addendum: The woman does not have DNA that I can utilize. Most interesting.
Speaking of Did Not Work, the process by which Metis was to be recovered was not going smoothly. The lady said she would attempt something but I can’t recall specifics. She also revealed herself to be The Gatekeeper… Metis’ fate has yet to be seen. Theoretically, if I stay in here long enough I can take some time to attempt to master things that I could never master in the Wasteland.