It is a quiet, somber mood that holds sway over the Mooncreek as the caravan prepares to leave. The explosion of the mill has shocked everybody. And suddenly everybody noticed the neighbors - wooden constructs created in the mill to feed it. They are now without anything controlling them, without knowledge of the world, and truly without purpose. Some constructs choose to stay in the place of their creation, but most join the caravan, to find their place in the world somewhere far away from any reminders of how they came to be. But even as new people join the caravan, there are also those who are making their farewells. Ruby returned to the Almond Retreat near Mooncreek, and Firestone had stayed behind in Harmony Lake to help out the God there. Welcoming new friends and saying fond farewells to old always leaves a bittersweet feeling in the caravan.

And so the caravan leaves Mooncreek behind, once again braving the dangers of the road. While the caravan moves on from town to town, it is slowly and forever shifting. Travellers finding spots that speak to them as a place to call their own and stay, or grow weary of a life always changing quickly between each village they visit. At the same time, there are those that feel drawn to the freedom the caravan promises, that feel the lure of the wondrous sights out there in the world, and they join the caravan - for a while, at least.

The shifting terrain is never the same as it was last time, with new landscapes appearing among the old, and areas growing in size. While roads expand with the world, they fall victim to the changing terrain. Roads may sink into swamps or turn into untraversable mountain passes. So new passages have to be found. But for this part of its journey, at least, the caravan sidesteps these issues. With the help of the wooden constructs, rafts are built to drift down the river, onwards until they reach the shore. A vast ocean greets them, and the caravan travels along the shore for a while, until it reaches the village of Sunset Shore. A trade nexus, connecting land, sea and air. Ships crowd the harbor. A narrow cliff juts out of the center of the village, reaching up and culminating in a lighthouse on its top. Around the lighthouse are walkways out into the sky, along which airships are moored, undergoing repairs, or preparing for their next journey. Roads reach out over land to other villages and towns. There is intermittent communication and trade with the underwater civilizations living in the ocean as well, and there are caves that extend downwards. As a trading hub, this is a place where caravans often pass through, and it is weird if there isn’t at least one other caravan or travelling group around; this is no place where a caravan is a rare sight every few years, and it is a major cause for celebration and the center of attention. The sheer number of people passing through here is grounds instead for excitement within the caravan; with this many opportunities for new adventure in different directions, this place truly feels like endless opportunity at everyone’s fingertips. It is perhaps no surprise then that Sunset Shore is a place that changes caravans. People stay behind to join other groups traveling in different directions, while new people join. The caravans that come to Sunset Shore get reshuffled before they leave.

While the caravan is at Sunset Shore they experience the Festival of Lights. People let lanterns float into the sky, while couples that want to have a child send glowing orbs of light of their own into the sky, where they will be stars for a year before falling back down as children next spring. And with the festival, spring ends, and the fifth season, Mellon, begins.

Mellon is a season of empathy. During this season, everybody gains the ability to feel what other people are feeling. As such, it is also a season of relationships. New ones are formed as you notice people who have feelings for you, while some existing relationships may become strained. And it is a season of song. People are able to feel what others are feeling, and you can slip further into this and become very much in sync. Musical style songs, where random strangers join in, are possible and happen during Mellon. There isn’t always a song happening, of course, mostly life goes on as normal it can in a world so heavily magical while everybody’s feelings are exposed. And even when there is a song, people are not forced to join in - it can be tempting and addicting to give in to the songs and just move with the music, but there are always those that don’t feel like it and go to do something else. The music numbers grow larger and more elaborate throughout the months, from a few friends singing a duet or quartet to whole streets performing elaborate dance routines with multi-melody choruses. It all culminates in the finale, where people sing to the sun until it explodes into a shower of light that falls as a luminous rain to the ground. It seeps into the earth, which will then glow throughout summer, restarting the cycle of magical seasons that the players have been witness to. And being in Sunset Shore in Mellon, with all of the different directions open to travel and all the travellers passing through, can lead to decisions about the future and new romances that at any other time of the year might never have come to pass.

It is thus a much different caravan that moves on, downwards into the depths. Through caves that shift and grow with time much like the landscape above - but down here there is no sky to orient yourself on or look down on the landscape from above from. There are few landmarks to guide your path, and so the journey through the caves is treacherous without guidance. It is a road traveled often to keep it properly marked and safe. A group of guides travels back and forth continuously, noting any changes and updating their maps.

Down in the depths the caravan reaches Glowshroom Caverns, a village set deep below the earth. Light is scarce down here, with only a few bioluminescent mushrooms providing some gloomy light. And yet the village is brightly lit, by specially grown sunflowers. Every year during summer, the sun is infused into the earth, causing it to glow. During that season, the light down in the caves is as bright as above - brighter still, perhaps, because it comes from the ceiling and walls as well. The sunflowers greedily drink in the light, and during the rest of the year slowly dole it back out, shining with sunlight.

It is a village where no children are born - with no access to the sky, no stars can fall here. Couples that yearn for a child need to go to one of the neighboring villages on the surface to participate in the Festival of Lights. They tend to stay there for a year watching their child grow in the sky before returning to the Glowshroom Caverns.

But eventually, even this village is left behind. Yet there is always another to go to. The caravan travels on, changing as the people it contains leave or join, and as they too change. Villages, too change. You can go back to a place you’ve been before, or meet an old friend, but they won't be the same - and neither will you. The past is gone forever, and with each step, each action, you take you lose a bit more of yourself to it. You might be tempted to hold on to the past, to stay in the present, but that too is an action and becomes past. And as you try to cling to what was, you lose a bit of your future. There is so much there, in the future, in potential things to see and do, and with each moment you delay more of these possible marvels. So no matter where the road may lead you, you boldly walk towards your uncertain future. And once you get there, it will be the same - onwards to new experiences once more, because what you’ve just reached is already past.

The road does not turn back.

The Road Goes Ever On.

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