Like all good farm-folks the extended Rozier family was up before dawn working the land. I got the impression they were trying to subtly imply that I should be helping with the chores – that’s a long wait for a horse that ain’t coming as my grandma used to say – she was a horse breeder you know. I slept until way past the cock crow and then helped myself to some good downhome breakfast while the Rozier women slaved away at their pots and pans. Maybe after I kill Duke Eaglevane I’ll keep his wife around as a scullion.
In late afternoon Mr. Rozier and his sons-in-law took a quite break so we could nip on over to the “town” of Gromlet – and by town I mean four buildings and a well, one of which was the local temple to my favorite god Strider. I set up a pretty sweet deal for the Rozier clan where they borrowed the money to buy “my” farm and all they had to do was put up both farms as collateral – what a steal! They should be able to handle the interest payments, god willing and the creek etcetera.
After that it was time to head downriver to Malgareth. I figured I could catch a barge headed that way eventually so I started off walking along the river bank. It dawned on me that this was possibly not the safest idea but there was nothing for it. Watching all those gladiators hack each other to pieces for a bloodthirsty crowd made me wonder if maybe I should get some training on how to fight but it seems like a very hard and sweaty endeavor – and not the fun kind.
After a few hours of walking I was started to get mightily annoyed that I hadn’t come across any boats yet – sundown wasn’t far away and camping has never really been my forte. Plus I was getting hungry. I stopped to rest under a tree and those problems were solved by much worse problems. I saw three figures flying in the distance and as they got closer I determined they were people – and as they got even closer I saw they those people were my old friend Erist and two other Strider type people. Who in their right mind would worship a god that has such mundane raiments? Say what you will about Enumu the Lord of Drought but his followers know how to put an outfit together – those robes they wear are spectacular.
Erist and his two friends settled to the ground as lightly as fallen leaves, leafs? Leaves. They appeared to be ready for a fight but I greeted them warmly which seemed to put them off balance slightly.
“Why aren’t you running?”
“I’m not really wearing the right boots for that.”
Turns out visiting that Strider-temple wasn’t the greatest idea, Erist had spread the word across the land to his brethren that he was looking for me and the priest in Gromlet had ratted me out. I hate snitches. Yet I love snitching. It’s a real puzzler. Erist looked mildly confused and pointed his staff at me in what I assumed was supposed to be a threatening manner and ordered me to surrender.
“Okay. Do you have anything to eat?”
Erist’s two companions were shooting him looks and were as flummoxed as he was – they had clearly come loaded for owlbear and ready to fight. He tried to take control of the situation.
“Surrender or die!”
“I already surrendered, you did it, you got me. Good job! Now what are you going to do? Surely you’re not thinking about taking me into the bushes and ravishing me while your friends watch and pleasure themselves – that’s a horrible thing to suggest! Why would you even say a thing like that!”
I started to sniffle.
“What? I . . . no . . . you . . .”
“I’ll grant you, between you me and this tree here it’s been a while since I had a good ravishing.”
“What? I . . . stop talking! I’ve captured you!”
“You sure did buddy, I feel like we’ve covered that a few times now – do you have short term memory issues? I knew a guy like that once, got kicked in the head by a mule he did – had to pin notes all over his overalls to remember his chores. My cousins and I used to write silly notes and try to pin them to him without him noticing. This one time . .”
I frowned “There’s no need to be rude. As your prisoner aren’t I entitled to certain rights? Like food. Do you have any tarts in that purse of yours? I would murder someone for a tart right now.”
“It’s a courier bag not a purse!”
I winked “Of course, of course, our little secret. So we’ve established that you’ve captured me. Now what? Are you going to kill me? That seems a bit harsh.”
He looked at his friends for a moment “No . . . I’m going to turn you in.”
“To whom? You were the one smuggling a wanted a criminal out of town – what exactly would you be turning me in for? Stopping you? Seems like you’d be the one hung in that scenario but I suppose you should do as you see fit.”
“I’m sure you’re wanted somewhere.”
“Not that I’m aware of. If you took me back to Duke Eaglevane’s court his wife would probably have me murdered but that’s not a legal matter, more of a personal vendetta. You see when you’re a nobleman’s consort it’s a bit of a fine line you walk – you need to keep them interested but not so interested that the wife starts getting jealous. Jealous or envious? I always get those two confused.”
“You took my stuff!”
“Spoils of war. I think they call it booty – this guy knows what I’m talking about.” Erist scowled as his friend nodded. “Besides you took my money first so I’d say we’re square. You seem unsure what to do here so think back to seminary or whatever you Strider people do – what does the good book or books or whatever say you should do in this scenario?”
The three of them conferred for a moment before coming back and saying that the just thing to do would be to take all my stuff and leave me like I left him.
“Maybe that makes sense. Here’s the problem with that though – we were right outside of town when I took your stuff. Plus you have magic and know how to make your way in the wild – you taking all my stuff is the same as killing me. It’s worse actually because it will be a slow painful death by starvation or falling in a ravine or something. I’m a pampered city slicker, I won’t last five minutes out here without my stuff. Actually, I may not survive as is – doesn’t your god protect travelers and whatnot? I’m a traveler – I hereby formally request escort to Malgareth with all due piety and religion . . . isness.”
I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone at such a loss of what to do. He and his friends started to confer again. I stood up and dusted off my peasant skirts.
“Look Erist, may I call you Erist? Look Erist, we clearly got off on the wrong foot – I was sick and I came to you for help. I thought you scammed me but if you say you did your best and your god just isn’t powerful enough to cure a simple illness I’ll accept that as truth. The point is I was upset about it. Then you were trying to doing some illegal stuff and I ruined that for you.”
“She was innocent!”
“She sure was, and that’s why I helped her turn herself in as a witness – where would she be now if she had gone with you? Did you have a plan for her once you were out of the city? But that’s not important, the point is we can put that all the in past can’t we? We’re here, we’re talking , we’ve got a dialog going, there’s no reason we can’t be friends is there? How about this – how about you three fine priestly sorts get me safely to Malgareth as is your holy duty and once we get there I’ll make a generous donation to the local parish or whatever you people have. Now what could be wrong with that?”
Later as they were setting up camp I grinned at Erist.
“I have a feeling we’re going to become fast friends. Does your god have any songs? I have a marvelous singing voice you know.”
Funds: 7312 gold
Inventory: Peasant outfit, wooden box, Signet ring, Ring of Many Garments, thieves’ tools, land deed, Bag of Tricks (rust), gold ring, Cap of Disguise, Secure Pocket, candlerod (9), masterwork dagger, succubi carving, Disguise kit (6 uses), Domiel family ring, walking stick, aquamarine, masterwork playing cards , +2 Studded Leather Armor, +2 Light Steel Shield, +1 Keen Shortspear, hematite armbands (2), mithril hair clasps (3), Sir Humperdinck memoir, Mazzmus’ Wand (unidentified), Brooch of Shielding, Potion of Invisibility (3), Oil of Animate Dead, Potion of Cure Moderate Wounds (2), spinel and peridot holy symbol of Kralten, platinum necklace, Pouch of Magic Stones, flask of acid (2), alchemist’s fire (2), giant wasp venom (10), oil of taggit (2), alchemist’s kit, formula book
Revenge List: Duke Eaglevane,
Piltis Swine, Rince
Electrum, watchman Gridley, White-Muzzle the worg, Percy Ringle
the butler , Alice Kinsey , “ Patch”, Heroes of the Lost Sword, Claire
Conrad, Erist priest of Strider, Riselda owner of the Sage Mirror,
Eedraxis, Skin-Taker tribe,
Kartak, Królewna & Bonifacja Trading Company, Hurmont Family, Androni
Titus, Greasy dreadlocks woman, Lodestone Security, Kellgale Nickoslander,
Beltian Kruin the Splithog Pauper, The King of Spiders, Auraluna Domiel, mother
Hurk, Mazzmus Parmalee
Rumors : Exiled noblewoman (Reoccurring), vigilante “Litheria”(Reoccurring), murderous Halfling (Reoccurring)
Teams – Labors, Brute Squad (Robbers and two teams of Soldiers)
Graltontown Buildings – Mill