Rif and Rhene discover a wolf-child while walking along the beach.
They carry the barely-conscience wolf back to their home in the Ferret village.
Rif decides to try to identify a strange box that the child was found carrying. He first seeks help from Sakka,
leader of the Ferret's Builders Guild, but is unable to get any useful information. A casual remark by Rhene leads
to Rif traveling to the Rat Complex -- not that Rhene seems happy about that.
Instead of being allowed to talk to Sist (leader of the Rat Tribe), Rif is told to query
another Rat. This turns out to be Scorry, the Rat that beat Rif in the last Puzzle Tournament. After some verbal sparring,
Scorry gives Rif a clue on how to open the box.
Inside the box is a human artifact that Rif doesn't recognize, but he does notice that
something like a "light-catcher" (telescope) is attached to one piece of the artifact. Instead of traveling back
home, Rif instead journeys to Tycho Northpaw's house. The Dog astronomer and cartographer is able to identify the
artifact as a sextant. Tycho procedes to give Rif a multi-day lesson in using the navigational aid. Rif also learns that
Tycho is losing his sight.
Meanwhile, Rhene is trying to go about her daily routine while tending the now awake cub.
Sandy is unable (or unwilling) to provide any helpful answers to Rhene's questions.
Rif returns and gets in an argument with Sandy about the box.
The next day Rif takes Sandy back to the beach where the child was found,
hoping to locate clues. They find a fragment of a sail that Rif suspects come from a fishing boat.
Sandy confirms he "sort of" fell off a boat, but won't devulge any additional details.
They do not return to the Ferret village alone -- a shadowy figure follows them.
Back home, Rif discovers that a Hare has delivered a message from Elara, Matron of the (currently lost)
Orb of Storms, requesting that Rif and Rhene come to the Sanctuary of the Orb. Sandy joins them om
the trip to the Sanctuary. Elara has a short discussion with the wolf-child, and then she asks Rhene
to deliver an important message to Prince, leader of the Dog Tribe. A Hare guides Rhene to the castle of the Dogs,
but Rhene must enter the castle alone.
Rhene's audience with Prince does not go well. His Majesty becomes irate that Elara is making
demands of him, and Rhene's attempt to correct his understanding of the message leads to Prince
ordering his guards to lock Rhene in the tower.
Go to Part 2