Journey to the Naqsái Lands
29 Dohála 2371
Mridék asked me to look at a box of medicines and herbs that one of the marines bought. The box was made of leather sewn at the sides with a close-fitting lid. I didn’t recognise many of the herbs and medicinals since some were dried, some were ground to a powder, and none was labelled. Tékuna recognised about half of them. One bundle had a salve to cure the bite of the “foot ants”. These ants live in the sand along shorelines and impart numerous bites to people’s feet and ankles. The bites sting and can cause swelling, but are not toxic or debilitating. There were also sticks of a particular wood that was effective for staunching blood. I took the box to my cabin in order to label those items we could identify.
As we pulled out of the harbour a Mu’ugalavyáni man of war came sailing at a quick pace from the northwest. We were unable to turn around as we were hemmed in by sandbanks and the odd submerged buildings. The oars were quickly put to use and the marines assumed their positions on deck. The Mu’ugalavyáni ship passed the mouth of the bay without a pause, and apparently without noticing us. After waiting to see if there were more ships coming, we pulled out into the main channel and continued on sailing northwest. We decided to sail on during the night in spite of the shoals, but also posted extra guards.
During the night we could hear drumming and could see fires and figures leaping on the shore. The sounds of flutes and other noisy instruments drifted to us from the shore. Large animals were being roasted on spits.