You decide to take a shot at speaking his language
“So you’re looking for guidance? I might have something for you, then. Rider’s looking for a book about Alexandria.”
“Alexandra, or Alexandria?” Mantis asks. “They were two quite different cities, despite the similar names.”
You think back on that. You’re pretty sure Rider said Alexandria, but he might have gotten it wrong.
“The title mentioned a desert, so probably that one.”
“Alexandra, then.” He goes silent for a while, but that’s hardly new. “It does not help. There are traces, but they are too faint to follow. Do you know the author’s name? That might assist me.”
You don’t know what he’s on about, but might as well tell him. If nothing else he can help Rider find the book, and then you can get back to the gateway.
“Christopher… something. I don’t know the last name.”
For the first time in a good while, Mantis’ expression changes. He actually looks a little worried.
“I see,” he says. He turns around and starts to walk away.
That’s when you feel the floorboards start to shake.
You’re now Rider.
You were on your way to check in with Mudviper. She might have the book, and even if she doesn’t, you can trust her to find a way to get it to you. You hope it doesn’t come to that, for Long’s sake, but you’ll do what you must.
Unfortunately, you just ran into a diversion that you can’t ignore.
Rider, save the squib, be the Ghost of Animal Whisperers Past