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Around the World . . . Eventually

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(I think, here in Kaede's case, we've got another two-parter on our hands.)

The trip through Dragon's Lair was a rather pleasant one. Kaede accepted an invitation to join a group of other adventurers rather than taking the henchmen with her. In the end, the group did opt to bring Lina in its final opening, all other monks in the area having already been in teams of their own. During the course of the mission, the group's elementalist seemed to fall into daydream quite frequently, missing out on a fair portion of the battles. Overall, however, there were few problems, and the group stopped after each Facet was defeated, allowing for skill captures.

It was a late decision to battle Glint, but all were game. So one of the warriors hoisted up one of her eggs, and the fight began. There were a fair number of deaths, in spite of Kaede's best efforts, but things were considerably less messy than she had expected. The elementalist had snapped out of her listless state and added her ablilities into the mix. In the end, the group managed to defeat Glint before moving on to Droknar's Forge.

Nothing of note really happened during the Ice Caves of Sorrow, or on the inital run through the Iron Mines. However, Kaede decided to go back and complete the latter's secondary objective before moving any further. She joined a group for this one -- a group that also held a clearly less experienced monk. But Kaede is a diplomatic sort, and thought little of it. But it quickly became clear that the other monk had little interest in aiding the group. He threw around a healing spell from time to time, but Kaede was largely on her own as the healing duties went. Once, the group took an early wrong turn into a group of Jade and Mursaat, and not everyone was yet infused against Spectral Agony. Fortunately, Kaede and a few others were, and with some effort, the enemy was defeated.

The group got back on track, but were nearly wiped out in a narrow cave by a shadowy creature using Spiteful Spirit. Kaede retreated before death could claim her, and waited for their foes to slink further back before resurrecting her companions. Things continued on smoothly after this, and the secondary objective was completed. Others still needed to complete the mission, and thus the team remained together. The final battle resulted in some back and forth movement for Kaede, as the group stretched its lines a bit, but it was nothing she was unable to handle. While healing, though, she noticed something strange; her fellow monk was casting Spiteful Spirit. Kaede couldn't help but smile a bit at the oddity.

In all, the mission was a success, and Kaede now stood before the great dwarven capital: Thunderhead Keep.