In retrospect I’ve given Peronel too much credit when it comes to not hesitating to employ swift and blinding violence. With his magic as back-up I think he had enough men to take out the Ardint city watch. I’m pretty sure that was the entire city watch since last time I was here they didn’t even have one. He could have killed all the law men in Arindt and then taken over the entire town – which you may remember as the plot of the Eight Cavaliers. I enjoyed that book but I think people give it too much credit for having one of the “cavaliers” character be Kostelos.
First of all that character gets very little attention and undergoes no development of growth throughout the story, and secondly the character also in no way presents a shred of authenticity about the Kostelos experience. IF anything what it really represents is the same stereotype of the subservient mystic barbarian who helps out the very people who are destroying his way of life. But more importantly, even if that character was well done and a good representation of the Kostelos people who cares? How does that help anything? Kostelos don’t read and if they did why would they give a shit? Having a character in a book doesn’t give them their land back. Nor give them any status in the Kingdom. Nor make them be alive again.
But they’re dirty barbarians anyway so screw them. Peronell missed his chance (maybe being a drug dealer doesn’t mean you’re willing to engage in mass slaughter of the legal authorities and the flouting of the King’s sovereignty) and we were all taken into custody. I figured that would be fine since the mayor and I are old chums but he didn’t seem to be around. Instead there was some pinch-faced magistrate that looked like a schoolmarm (gender aside) who seemed to be in charge of the situation. Whatever they were going to do it seemed like it was going to take a long time so in the confusion I changed appearance (Peronell’s anti-changing magic seemed to have worn off) and walked away from that mess. Just to be on the safe side I snuck (sauntered really) out of town and slept under a hedge like a dirty knight errant.
That’s two times now (or three depending on how you account for it) that Peronell has managed to avoid being revenged upon by me. It’s starting to get annoying. Maybe he’ll get hung and I won’t need to worry about it. Once upon a time I was very strict that I had to be the one that took care of people on my list. I’m not so worried about that now, with some of them at least. There are just so many people that I need revenge against and I can’t be revenging all day you know? Maybe I should make two columns on the list – a premium tier of people who I need to destroy personally and a lower level of miscreants who need to come to a bad end but it doesn’t necessarily need to be at my hand. Then I can start contracting out some of the lesser revenge jobs. Revenger smarter not harder.
Traveling the road to Graltontown there was nothing much going on and I was feeling a bit blue so I entertained myself with one of my old games. As I was traveling I would take on a different appearance and persona with each fellow traveler I came across. A group of young fellows were out running the road, training for a long distance competition of some kind, I talked their ear off as Lemiel the stuttering ratcatcher. Buckleuck a greedy witch hunter came across a scruffy priest of Strider and a few acolytes. They claimed to be roaming the the land helping those in need but you and I really know how those Strider people really are. Buckleuck regaled them with grisly tales of witches and the terrible fates of their victims while bragging about his victories over such demonic enemies.
A veteran back from the front on the way to visit the family farmstead got into a blistering row with Leoet Violetteus a nobleman disowned for his drunkardness – and if you know anything about nobles you have to be fantastically drunkardly to get disowned for that. I was in my own form when I came across a skinny fellow drawing the scenery. I accused him of being a Vielander spy and he ran away. So I must have been right. When I was tired I sat down on the ground with nary a comfort to be had, retrieved some rations from my Greatcoat pocket and chewed on the vile “food” and felt sorry for myself. You can’t indulge in that too much or you become melancholy and gross but it’s okay every now and then.
Emotions need to be stuffed deep down inside where they can’t interfere with your decision making but every now and then you need to trot them out and give them some air otherwise they fester and grow like things that live in caves. Mushrooms? Some like that. Mold maybe. You need to drag them up into the sunlight every now and examine them to make sure that they’re not undermining your tower of self-control. Emotions hidden TOO well have a way of insinuating themselves into your mind all sneaky like and making you react in unproductive and unpredictable ways. Not giving your feelings a good kick occasionally can impact your ability to make reasonable, thoughtful decisions.
Think about someone who know who’s a real disaster (if you can’t think of anyone it’s probably you). That person is at the mercy of their emotions. They feel abnormal, weird and avoid sharing them. They feel lost and don’t know how to pull themselves out of their misery. Feeling sorry for yourself can be helpful, just don’t go overboard with that bullshit right?
It’s okay to moan and groan and think that the whole world is against you. Just be mindful that you’re doing it, and teach it who the boss is. You can cry and whine for about twenty minutes and then you’re done. If you do feeling lousy right it can be quite cathartic and energizing. But the path to change and feeling better is action, feel crappy for a little while and then get over it and crack on.
This ends Ela’s book corner and self-actualizing workshop. Fifty gold please. No refunds.