After everyone takes a breather, Nodame explains that her sword is for her, and her alone. She can control the power within, but others may not be as effective in using it. It’s magic, and magic comes with a price. Taylor apologizes to Terrence, but Terrence stays weary of the man who attacked him with a sword.

The band continues gathering information on the spider creatures that attacked them and that are killing the street walkers. Nodame says she may have a way of gathering information, and steps out into the alleyway where the last victim was found.

Nodame prepares to talk to the spirits of the objects around her to see if they saw where the titanspawn went. Meanwhile, Beau tried speaking to the dead again, with the same results. She sees the death scene of the victim in repeat. She’s about to turn off her sight when she sees a ghost walking down the alley. She yells at it and is surprised when the ghost talks back.

After some sassiness from Beau, the ghost reveals that there are various types of ghosts. Those who are murdered violently will be stuck repeating their deaths over and over again. He’s not sure what would stop the cycle, but suggests the ol’ “Solving the murder” would suffice. Others who die natural deaths could potentially stick around until they’re ready to move on, but soon lose awarness of the fact that they’re dead and become only shadows of their former selves. And then there are those like him, who know they’re dead but are not ready to move on and wander the earth as they please, being unseen, unheard, and for the most part, unmolested.

Beau tries to force the ghost to tell him more, but finds she cannot affect it. The ghost walks away from the girl with the attitude, shaking his head going “Kids today…”

Meanwhile, Nodame has a conversation…with the wall, the spirit of the wall. The wall manifests a face and though slow witted, is able to answer her questions. She speaks slowly to it and discovers that the spider went down the alley way and into a hole in the ground. Nodame thanks the wall, pats it nicely, and turns off her boon.

As a side note, the only thing the rest of the party sees is Beau talking to thin air while Nodame speaks to a wall. Nodame leads the way down the alley and discovers a large grate going down into the sewers. They go in.

The sewers of Las Vegas go on for miles in various directions. As they’re about to pick a side, Beau sees the spirit of the old gentleman from before. He says he’s willingly to help because he doesn’t want to see the girls spirit stuck like it is. Beau refrains from giving him attitude. At least, less than usual. They follow their invisible guide down the sewer lines. As they walk, the ghost says he’s heard of these creatures before, Arachnarids, but that he’s never seen them so active before.

After walking for a long time, they reach a junction that begins to turn into rock rather than cement. A stream of water follows down the cave. In an alcove, Beau sees the vicious murder of another prostitute. She struggles against an unseen force, trying to claw her way free. She is dragged along the floor, and is then vivisected. Beau turns away from the mutilation. The ghost says though he can’t be hurt, he won’t go any further in, but says continue on your way. Stop these things, he says, and vanishes.

After walking for a long while still, the cave route leads to a massive cavern, with the walls covered in cement. It looks man-made, with the stream now a river. A large waterfall leads to the bottom, who knows how far below. There is a small path that leads against the wall to the other side. There is only enough room for one person to walk at a time, so single file like, they continue their journey.

Half way down the cavern, they hear noise over the rushing waters. Using their boons and flashlights, they see a row of mini-Arachnarids walking along the ceiling. They come out to the middle of the cavern with bones and limbs in their mouths. They drop their parcels into the waters below and then go back down the opening they came in.

When the light hits them, the Arachnarids turn their attention to the Band.


After a battle with various Arachnarids, the band is able to push their way through the opening. They continue down the path when the tunnel ends, this time into a giant cavern that was most defiantly not man-made. There is unnatural light inside and though dim, they are able to see the ceiling alive with thousands, if not millions, Arachnarids. The band prepares for a massive battle when the ceiling parts and a giant, gaping hole in the ceiling opens up. From out of the hole, Mama Arachnarids descends from her giant cobweb.

It says in a screeching voice, “Who dares disturb my sanctuary?”

The band gulps a bit, and braces for battle.


The Long Road to Heaven darkshifter