Success brings a night’s respite, and the following morning all, including Tarak, are recovered. At dawn, Malharath and Bami depart for errands in the city with Qq’s leave, while he takes the rest to High Spot to be seen among the upper echelons of Kantan’s factions. A number of slaver cheifs and owners are there, including the Three Winds, Burning Robes, Cold Hands, House Dun’ka, and their upcoming opponents, the Old Eyes Hive. Intrigue abounds, and Garret makes arrangements to secure an advantage in the next match.
Before long, the time for the day’s bout has arrived. The trial pits them against a band of Shrikes, strange insect-like constructs, and their hive mother. Pau and Garret are paired off directly with an opponent, while the others start from the arena edge. From the outset, the party does not fare well, Garret and Pau are badly wounded by their opponents and swarms of larva released by the Hive Mother. With bloody determination, they turn the tide of battle back to their favor, but Pau and Garret nearly pay dearly. Finally, Daren closes upon the Hive Mother and slays her with two righteous blows.