I began the day in Quin’s study, reviewing his maps over coffee. Satori is the sea region to the east that sports some vegetation. The region to the northeast where, on this clear morning, I can see rock islands, trees and other plant life, is called Tao. There is a huge tree up in the sky above Tao, with no visible ties to sea level. That will not be easy to get to. But first, to the north and Kamar, where I begin to scout the area.

In my walk from the castle across the series of bridges to Quin’s building, I spotted a sailboat on the northside of Selenitica. At low tide I must be able walk there, the most difficult part being finding a good spot to get down off of these high islands.

Having reached the sailboat, I headed north toward the entrance to a large bay. Here was the Japanese-style building I saw last night from the castle window. I landed near the house and walked around to the front, which faced north to the ocean. Inside the house was empty. A staircase led to an opening and out onto the roof, a simple, one room house with a rooftop observation deck. The ocean to one side, the bay, with its interesting trees and plants, to the other. This would be a good spot for a writer to getaway. (Although most any spot in this world could serve that purpose.) Yes, I will use this house…as no one else is. The room in the castle and this house by the water, they will do nicely.

I walked back to the boat and sailed east for Tao. It was mostly open sea, my main focus being that giant tree in the sky. I sailed south into Satori to confirm that it too, was mostly open water. There may be interesting plant life to see below sea level but I am not prepared for that sort of exploring today. So back north to Tao, to stare up at that tree.

Stare was all I could do as there was no visible way up there. This calls for extreme measures. As revealed on these pages some 20 months ago while on another trip to the Devokan worlds, I can fly. I prefer not to but sometimes there is no other way. This was one of those times. Maybe Quin or Dot know another way up to that…that tree tower…but I do not. And so, left with no other choice…

I flew straight up to view the leaves at the top of the tree. Interwoven through them was a multi-level stone walkway. Flowers here and there. I walked around in circles on these walkways, then flew out from them and down a bit to look at the roots of the sky tree. At the end of some of the roots were rounded…pods. I moved in for a closer look. Well, look at that! These pods looked bigger on the inside than they were on the outside, I know that sounds ridiculous but it was true. And on the inside, they were entire rooms! Furnished rooms. A study, a living room, a drawing room, a laboratory. Books everywhere, some artwork on the walls. This was astounding! I entered one of the pods and took a seat in a comfy Victorian-style chair. Wow! Does Quin use this or does it belong to another? With that thought, I jumped to my feet and left, just in case.

That was truly unexpected. Nothing would top it. My day of exploring was over. I returned to Selenitica, to my room in the castle, to write in my journal of the days’ sights and wonders. I went to my bags and the secret pouch where I kept my most important papers…and pulled out a bottle. I poured a drink and reached for pen and paper.

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