Fragment 19 – The Death of Irillo

Diaries The Saga Of Berra — Fragment 19


1This fragment appears only in the Suppressed Saga, dating from c. 1630 and ordered burned in Esrolia. We discuss it as a matter written close to the time, despite its rather extraordinary central premise. This fragment is often understood as being in the Scorpion Folk style.Late was the hour at the mansion of Women
Clan of Saiciae feasting the Merchant2Irillo is never directly named here, hence the association with the Scorpion Folk
Robed was the Sword of the Northern Humakti
Armoured in robes3There is no indication of enchantment here; either Berra wore a combination of robes and armour as per the fashion of the later Temple of the Path, or robes were considered sufficient. as the guard of her Master

Water as pale as the clear-wine drank Berra
Nothing she ate as her master was feasting4This would have been considered correct behaviour among Humakti, and rather odd among the Esrolian set of the time, who are likely to have considered the female Berra to have been a guest as well as a guard. The duality of Humakt the champion who is feasted, and Humakt the protector, is here apparent.
Little her lips were to pass in sweet word-play
Little her eyes were to miss in a crisis

Fire came from high in the chamber of eating
Formed as a dart from the bow of Assassin
Striking the wall through the heart of the Merchant5Even an attempted assassination, as is understood to have happened at this juncture, would have been shocking. Given the understanding here that Irillo was killed, we must look for future hints of his being replaced in related fragments of the Suppressed Saga
Piercing him through as he stood for his toasting

Berra cried out with the Shield of her Truth Rune
Placing her body between him and danger
Trusting companions to heal or to help him
Berra stood tall in the way of Assassin

Holding her hand to the danger before her
Berra caught fire in the form of an arrow
Cast it before her to die on the floor there
Guttering out with the life of her Master6Several oral recitations after this point hint at a Resurrection ritual, used to find where a spirit had gone, or a replacement of the dead Merchant with a living relative rehabilitated from the ire of the House Grandmother. No such action, and indeed no such death, is considered feasible by any serious writer. Alleyn considers this fragment unreliable, while Garin acknowledges only the existence of the manuscript, without commenting on the contents.

Dormal and Nala split off from the group. Irillo took the others to an inn, and negotiated a rate for Sid that was less than the full Dark Troll rate. They (Irillo guarded by Berra, Serala and Rajar) then went to visit Irillo’s grandmother, who was pleased to see him after he proved his worth with clearwine and some very fine gemstones. Grandmother told them that the three women were going to go to the temple tomorrow, which surprised the two women in the room. As they were preparing to leave the House, Berra asked when they would meet the other woman, as if it were a done deal, and was told by a flunky that it would be that evening at Dinner. A few minutes later one of the house guards got Irillo to read the scratchings on a sling-shot. It read ‘Dormal, Hultinga recognise you. Return it.’ It had been delivered straight to Dormal’s chest.

Dormal and Nala arrived, and Dormal avoided questions on what the ‘it’ was, repeatedly. Berra tried to push it, and Dormal left.

That evening, Rajar went to be with the guards at the party, keeping his weapons by him. Nala, dressed as a High-class woman of Esrolia, was present without armour. Berra was armoured but had added a light robe to make everything look more polite.

Politeness was shattered by an assassin in the minstrel’s gallery, and a fire arrow that whistled past Irillo. Berra put up a shield and got enough in the way to tell that the next arrow was aiming for Irillo, not her. It failed to break through her shield. Meanwhile Rajar arrived at full speed with a throwing axe, which he put into the assassin’s left arm, hard. Nala pushed Dormal to the floor and cast Slow at the assassin, and an Orlanthi in the crowd launched a lightning bolt, bringing them down. They were successfully kept from dying. At no point did Irillo get killed or replaced.

“We only have half a Dormal…” – Nala
“The half that doesn’t talk. I’m in favour too.” – Berra
“You say that.” – Nala

“Tiwr: They are oppressing me by not letting me eat this hedge.” – Berra

“That way there, you can buy any number of interesting things painted to look more expensive than they are. The paint comes off. This way should be a real market, as I recall. But it’s mostly used by people who don’t speak Heortling. There are a lot of those who do, and some Praxian speakers, and even some Grazelanders. All in little clans and tribes inside the city.” – Berra
“Serala is looking unconvinced. “But why would Grazelanders live here? They can’t gallop in there. You can barely see the sky.” – Serala
“You’d be amazed. There are proving grounds and horse markets. A lot of horse markets. I can’t pretend to tell you why they are there, but there are places you can see the sky really well.” – Berra

“There was a big fight just up there. My sword-master died.” – Berra

“Okay. So. it would bad to kill the snake?” – Rajar
“Snakes are good.” – Berra
“Snake Pipe Hollow begs to differ.” – Rajar

“Good gait, high arching step…” – Berra
“All his own teeth” – GM
“And some other people’s.” – Berra

GM: scritches cat on camera
Berra: bats at GM’s hand. bites.

“She clearly feels better in the company of someone who’s done this city.” – Serala
*gape* – GM
“Only some people in this city.” – Berra

“Bubble bath.” – Berra
“No unicorns allowed.” – Berra

“Bloody Hell!” – NPC makes recognise check on Berra
“He was heavy infantry, up on the wall.” – GM
“GANREL!” – Berra

“He draws you aside…” – GM
“I’ll speak for her, and if /he/ causes trouble I think I can stop him.” – Berra
“That wasn’t it.” – Ganrel
“Helpful, though?” – Berra

“How long have you been in the city?” – Ganrel
“A few hours?” – Berra
“Lanasha’s still here. I think she holds a grudge.” – Ganrel

“But of course, Sword. We will take your word.” – Flunkette
“Initiate.” – Berra

“However, grandmother, I was able to get you these.” – Irillo
“Nipple tassels. He’s brought her nipple tassels. It’s all going to go wrong!” – Berra

“I like this bit where the GM has to roleplay with himself.” – Serala
“Watching the GM play with himself….” *lost to history* – Nala
“I was waiting for one of you to say that.” – GM
“I’m not ever interrupting if the GM is playing with himself.” – Berra

“My complex is flash-flooding.” – Nala
“Is that a euphemism for Zola Fel’s bounty?” – GM
tact” – Berra

“Also, Berra, Dormal has knees. You wanted the nakedness” – Nala
“No, I didn’t.” – Berra
“Also, I have seen him in cycling gear.” – Berra
“That’s way more horrific.” – Berra

“Nala looks like she’s thinking VERY hard and staring at Dormal and Irillo.” – Nala
“Berra’s mostly grinning.” – Berra

“Just didn’t need Berra up in my business.” – Dormal
“Nobody does.” – Nala

“Rajar, I’m planning to go off into the city where a crazy ex-girlfriend of mine might be, and she knows where I’m going… so I’ll see you at dinner.” – Berra

“And cast Detect Enemies.” – Berra
“You’re in Nochet. That’s not wise!” – Dormal

“Mute button and crisps.” – Berra
“It’s the way forward.” – Rajar

“Serala gets a Sid!” – Berra
“Sid. A girl in every stable.” – Nala
“….” – Berra
“Rajar, you should keep him company some times.” – Berra
“I should, it’s true,” – Rajar

“Sid is lovely. I should know, I’ve been sleeping with him for three seasons!” – Nala
“He’s very good at night.” – Berra

“Why did you have to tell anyone? Can’t we just go to the temple? They tell people things.” – Berra
“Berra looks pretty puzzled.” – Berra

“Dormal did it. No, he didn’t do it. I mean…” – Nala
“Keep digging.” – Berra

“That could be unfortunate.” -Rajar
“Bloody hell, yes.” – GM
“^^^ GM: rolls dice voluntarily” – Berra

“He has been partially healed.” – GM
“He’s always going to walk with a limp something.” – Berra

“It’ll be fine. Trust me.” – GM
“I have religious troubles with that.” – Berra