Gaias searched Willow’s room at the inn, unable to find Kageto or the Abyssal but seeing that nothing but Kageto’s gear had been taken. Noting the faint scent of a strange perfume in the air, he returned to the tea-house where Willow and Mai tended the wounded and Whispers rested for her journey into Sumar. Whispers’ attendants kept themselves to her room and promised to watch over her. Gaias informed Willow that Wataru and the Abyssal were missing, to which she did not react well. Gaias suggested they mount a search of the surrounding woods.
Zephyr made his way into town in the early morning, approaching openly on the road. Three Oaks was mostly deserted, save for the tea house where he encountered Willow Gaias and Rami as they were leaving it. Both sides warned the other against staying in the area as it was known amongst them that the Wyld Hunt was coming. Willow made it plain that she was a demon, a target for the Hunt and Zephyr responded that it was his intention to fight them when they arrived. A quick, if limited alliance was formed with Zephyr promising to help find their missing people in return for compensation from Willow. During this exchange, Willow presented herself as someone with extraordinary wealth and made it seem as though Gaias were her bodyguard and Rami her servant. Gaias and Rami left with Zephyr to try and track down the two missing men by starting in the room at the inn where they had last been seen. The incredible assortment of artifacts, finery and a dead, decaying corpse was not lost on Zephyr. The three began their search which eventually led them toward the woods outside of town.
Willow returned to the tea house to meditate and regain her composure. Having the promise of sorcerous knowledge dangled in front of her and then taken away so many times had exhausted her (not limitless) patience.
Meanwhile, Kageto went to check on the Abyssal only to discover that he had escaped and left the silk cord he was bound with behind him. Wraith decided to take the opportunity to begin her ritual hunt immediately. Taking the silk cord with her, Wraith went into the woods to hunt him down. Unable to keep to himself, Kageto followed after her. He began his search by checking for the Abyssal’s tracks outside the farmhouse. He discovered that Gaias’ dog, Aesis had recently been there, but was unable to tell how old his tracks were. He picked up the Abyssals trail and followed it through the woods. He followed his trail to a small road which led into town. He surmised the Abyssal had collapsed in the road and been found by travelers who took pity on him and carried him to Three Oaks. Having lost the trail, Kageto cast about looking for Wraith whom he found sitting in a tree and watching his investigations. Kageto told her he thought he knew where the Abyssal might have been taken and that they might still find him there. Wraith agreed that they should follow after him and transformed herself into a rat and climbed into the pocket of the (somewhat shaken) Kageto’s jacket. The two then headed into town and stealthfully approached the tea house.
After many hours of fruitless searching, Zephyr managed to find the trail they sought in the early evening hours. They found footprints of a small woman, a tall – but injured – man and the bootprints of Kageto. As soon as they had picked up the trail, Aesis came out of the woods and sat at Gaias feet. Frustrated and annoyed, Gaias called off the search and Zephyr headed back into town alone. Gaias and Rami, with dog in tow, returned to the tea house to conference with Willow.
When Willow awoke from her meditations, Mai told her she had a visitor who had insisted on seeing her as soon as she was available. Intrigued, Willow went to her sitting room to discover the much sought after Abyssal collapsed on the floor. After making him more comfortable, the two struck a deal. The Abyssal agreed to cooperate with Willow and accompany her to speak with the tree god if she returned his weapons, armor, and the enchanted mirror she had taken. Willow also sweetened the deal by offering to patch up him up. Willow sent Mai out for Rami to seal and sanctify the bargain while the two made polite conversation.
Mai returned with both Rami and Gaias. Willow described her bargain to Rami who questioned the wisdom of it, but the pair were interrupted when Gaias confronted the Abyssal and demanded to know the name of his master and who had sent him and his brother here. The Abyssal rose from his chair and looking down on him, said that if Gaias wanted to know more about his master he would have to go to Thorns and ask him personally. Gaias, angry and insulted, kicked the Abyssal ferociously in the leg, breaking his knee and sending him crashing to the floor. Willow rounded on Gaias, reminding him cruelly how much she had done for him and how often she had healed him saying, Was it so much to ask that she be allowed this one thing for herself? Gaias left the tea house and waited outside.
Kageto watched with Wraith from the shadows as Gaias emerged from the tea house, followed minutes later by Willow and Rami (who carried the Abyssal on his shoulders). The pair stealthfully followed them to the clearing of the tree god while Rami tried to cheer Willow up by teaching her some of his native language, Flametongue. The party approached the clearing, stopping to make obeisance to the tree god, and called her down to complete the deal they had begun days earlier: they would trade the Abyssal for the sorcerous knowledge Willow desired. Kageto and Wraith remained hidden in the trees.
Back in town, Zephyr had secured himself a sniper’s nest with a vantage point of the square in front of the Council Hall. He hunkered down there for the night only to be awoken by a clumsy citizen’s patrol. He noted that they were searching every building in town inside and out and decided to check on the room at the inn where the party was keeping its belongings to see if they had been disturbed. While there, he took a further inventory and decided to “liberate” several valuable items and stash them in the woods. Afterwards, he returned to his vantage point and went back to sleep.