23 July 2006
On leaving the church service and discussing the role of the Roman Catholic Church on Benedict’s life, Akshainie insisted that he see a bit more of what she was fighting to protect. It only seemed natural, she argued, that he understand her as well as she was beginning to understand him. When he pointed out that he had already been to Iravati, and met some naga close to her, she reminded him that his view of the place was as something of a prisoner, and it was about time he get the chance to really know it. He agreed, on those terms, and they began to make their way south.
The idea was simple, really. Instead of traveling straight there, they would make a trip through some of the areas he had encountered the Brood of Nachash before, and they would take a look for any evidence of another hidden chamber or dread god like the one in Ohio. Once they reached the shore, they could seek passage to Iravati in a manner that wouldn’t force Benedict to get thrown through the River Network. Now that she understood his distaste for it, of course. It had seemed odd before that he would have a problem with water; now that she knew he was a being of fire, it all made sense. And, on the way, they had the opportunity to talk more. Benedict told her more of his story, she told him more of hers, and they took the occasional opportunity to spar and learn how to fight better together. The need to use these skills rarely came up. The Brood had either been properly eradicated in the areas they checked, or had become much better at hiding. The most hassle they ran into on the way, in fact, was when Benedict checked in with his superiors who were annoyed at the length of time it had been since his last message.
But now they were in Miami. They ran out of places with a known former Brood presence a couple states earlier, but by the time they hit the Georgia line they just kept going. Miami was the end of the line. They could go no further without a vessel of some sort, and it was the sort of place to have plenty of options. Benedict assumed they would take a plane, or some kind of mundane ship to get to Asia, but Akshainie reminded him that her identification was not entirely legal. They debated options for a couple hours, but in the end, she won out. They began looking for a spirit ship who would go as close to Iravati as possible. Finding one, however, proved harder than they expected.