You signal to Reltskan that you'd like to visit Ametown and he starts leading you down and along the bottom of the sea bed.
The three of you turn and see a female SKAN swimming towards you. Reltskan grins.
Pindra! Glad you could make it. You finally manage to get the Dirasos settled?
Not a chance. I just came here for a break and found you showing this visitor around. So are we going to Ametown or what?
As you near the town, Lapis starts to slow down somewhat.
Getting tired, Lapis? Reltskan asks teasingly.
No! the Dragon says indignantly. Just don't wanna go to Ametown.
Lapis, is there something you're not telling me?
No. Well, kinda. See, remember that churin I brought back?
Ye-es, Reltskan says, suspicion clouding his voice. You puzzle over the word churin for a few minutes and Pindra turns towards you, obviously picking up on your mental processes.
It's what you call an amethyst. Lapis doesn't yet know all the words in your language, so he tends to substitute. What were you saying, Lapis?
And how I told you that Lithara had given it to me?
Go on, Reltskan says.
Well...she kinda didn't. I snuck it from her whilst she was busy with the last visitor.
WHAT?! The halfbreed's incredulous and furious answer can obviously be heard in Ametown as you notice Salrinds coming out to see what the fuss is about.
It was only a small one! Lapis protests.
Give it to me, Reltskan orders. The Dragon sullenly pulls you over and hands the halfbreed a glittering purple stone the size of your fist.
It's lucky you told me, Reltskan snaps. Lapis, if I ever catch you doing anything like that again, you're banned from your town. Do you understand me?!
I don't know why Reltskan always asks Lapis that, Pindra says. He understands just fine. That has nothing to do with it.
You nod to the purple Salrind. So far, you're the only one who's seen it approach.
Blaming him for being a thief, huh? Pindra says to Reltskan. Where do you suppose he learnt it? Hey Lithara.
Don't start that again, Reltskan says irritably. Oh...sorry Lithara, didn't see you there. I brought this person to meet you. They might be able to give some Salrinds a home with them.
Could you? Lithara wants to know. You nod emphatically and endeavour to explain with one arm that that's why you're here, at the same time wishing there was some more dignified way to communicate.
They say that's exactly why they're here, and they apologise for the abruptness and foolish appearance of their answer, but they have to keep contact with Lapis or else they drown, Pindra interjects, giving you a smug look. Reltskan looks irritated.
Hah. The voice of Lapis sounds in your head. That's one advantage of a purebred SKAN over a halfbreed. They can hear and interpret things directly, even when the thought isn't directed at them.
Reltskan doesn't answer. Pindra glances over at him.
Look, I didn't-
Forget it, Reltskan says. Pindra shrugs.
Okay. It's forgotten. I should be getting back to the Dirasos now. She nods to you, then turns and swims off. Reltskan pulls out the map again.
Gold Tower-The gold and highest ranking Salrinds
Reef Castle-More impressive than Gold Tower, Reef Castle is home to the second highest ranking Salrinds, the silvers.
Coral Caves-Home to the third highest rank, the black Salrinds.
Ganir Town-The living area of red Salrinds and fourth rankings
Lapisville-Home of the blue Salrinds
Terrville-Living area of brown Salrinds-second lowest in rank.
Perdorit Village-Home of the green Salrinds, lowest ranking.
Portals-Houses those responsible for taking care of the portals, the 'misc' Salrinds. These don't have any rank.