So there I was, wandering aimlessly along the quiet and dark streets of Kingsport, lost in my own solitary ponderings on life and the road that lay ahead when I heard a voice.

“Psst, hey buddy, wanna join a dungeon run?”

Looking around I saw no one. At least no one near enough to be talking to me. The good citizens of Kingsport were ignoring me with great impunity. I think it’s a game we play.

“Who? Who there?” I asked meekly.

“You wanna do a dungeon run? We could use bait, err, a guy like you.”

“Um, did you just say bait?”

“No, no, no. You must have heard me wrong.”

“Are you sure? I’m quite sure I heard the word bait.” And I was quite sure I did.

“No, no, no. These ethereal communications can be spotty and dodgy. You obviously heard me wrong,” explained the spotty and dodgy ethereal voice.

“Oh, well, that does indeed make sense,” I agreed. “So, where might you be speaking to me from, voice in my head?” I questioned.

“In the dungeon of course. Would you like to come along?” it asked from parts unknown.

“Is there a high chance of death?” I asked nervously and talking into the air.

“Most assuredly!” it exclaimed.

“Ah, well, I’m not doing anything constructive at the moment, so I can spare a few moments. Yes please,” I said looking around on how I would travel to his mysterious voice in the night.

And then I was hurtling through time and space and found myself back in a familiar scene. A familiar, yet unsettling place – Chillblain’s Compendium of Pain and Suffering.

“Oh, this place again,” I said looking around. “Oh, hi Alley, was that you speaking to me from across the great void?”

“I was whispering to you, yes. Knock it off with the “great void” business and get ready with the sword, we don’t have all night.” Alley turned and addressed the rest of the group, “Lich time!” she said with great relish.

“Oh, the Lich room? Lovely. What could possibly go wrong?”

And with that the battle plan was laid out which mainly consisted of running into the corner and swinging at anything and everything that moved. A simple plan I can follow, I like it!

Then the battle started. To the corner I ran and up onto the pedestal. And I started swinging. Now, if I hit something, it would have been a miracle and dumb luck. There was far too much confusion to know what I was doing. The was flashes of fire, black clouds of Death Magic and the heavy clang of steel on bone. There might have also been the dull thud of iron against stone and I slashed at hacked at the pedestal not realizing I had the wrong target in my sights. But I was a spectacular flurry of motion and that’s what’s important.

But then silence fell. I was still alive. Death had not come for me? Was he on vacation or something?

No time to think as the group raced off to the next locale to savagely attack a room full of chest mimics until their oversized tongues sagged on the floor. And then it was over. The Dungeon Run was complete. Bayridge, Alley, Jobe and others jumped in exultation as I stood confused.

“No death tonight?” I asked bewildered.

“No tonight my metal clad friend,” said Jobe with a pat on the back, “but there is always tomorrow!”

“Hmm, well, yes, tomorrow. I might be busy then. Maybe the next night,” I explained, but Jobe and the rest were gone.

“Oh yeah, right, we’re done here.”

I followed suit and ended up back in the Braemar cemetery. The small band of seasoned warriors divided their loot and made plans for their next brush with death. It appears they savor the idea of staring death in the face, poking him in the eye and then running for cover. Well, I suppose it beats sitting at home with nothing to do.

I bid them all a good evening and made my way over to Kingsport. There was some trouble with the ale shipments and I meant to get to the bottom of the matter. We do indeed live in dark times if ale cannot be delivered.

Anton is the man to talk to, although he has a tricky way with words. After explaining that I had been sent to discuss the matter by Flynn and Thomas, we seemed to reach a conclusion. The ale could be delivered as long as not too many questions were asked and plenty of coin changed hands.

“Wait, are you implying bootleg hooch?”

Anton said nothing, smiled, tapped his nose lightly and went back about his business.

I was about to take my leave when I spied something on his desk. Hey, isn’t that one of the books the students over in Ardoris are looking for? Anton is a bootlegger AND a book thief? Has he no shame?

With a slight distraction to avert his gaze, I pinched the book and stashed it away. I strode casually past and took my leave. I then had a quick chat with Thomas and Flynn so they could decide on what they want to do about the ale. I don’t see why we can’t make the stuff ourselves. Flynn is running the stuff through old socks and dirty dish rags as it is. Even if it came out of an old boot, it couldn’t be any worse. I mean, how hard can it be?

It was not long after that I ran into Alley Oop again, who it turns out was on her own quest for books. It appears she has the inside track on where these books might be found. Of course, some rather unscrupulous people are selling them at the Public Vendors. The Virtues get lost some times…

Turns out a couple of these books are over in Ardoris, at the temple of Khasi and Siranto of all places. If the students in your own town are looking for these books, why do you … well, let’s just forget about that. Make no mistake, I pinched those too!

Then with great stealth and dexterity it was over to the East Perennial Trial because rumor has it the mad moonshiner has ill gotten gains of his own. His swampy hideout is looking worse than the last time I was in these parts. We have bodies and skeletons floating in the marshy water.

Finally, and with much trepidation, it was over to the Tower of the Shuttered Eye. Last time I was here, I was running for my life so I didn’t note all the details, but I recall this tower had a pretty vast library. Probably full of all sorts of forbidden and arcane knowledge, but a vast repository nonetheless. However, the book we were looking for was callously chucked aside and left outside where it was not only exposed to the elements, but all to those skeletons, slime and whatever else lurks in that brackish water. This is no place to sit and read! What are people thinking?

Reaching the limit of what I could carry, I bid Alley a good evening and went back to Braemar. I will hide these books away for the moment as there seems to be some nefarious types out there looking for them. I know there are several more left to discover, so the search will continue.

SotA_05-04-15_21-04_1

Oh, hi everyone! Sweet fried chicken you got there!

SotA_05-04-15_21-15_1

Oh, loot! Looks like the ingredients for one heck of a soup. I wonder if we can use that flaming chicken?

SotA_05-04-15_22-16_1

Oh dear. It seems this chap didn’t have money to pay the ferryman and it all went wrong.
I suppose the polite thing to do would be to at least kick the bones into the ocean so no one trips on them.

SotA_05-04-15_20-48_1

More hearty adventurers that sleep with the fishes. You would think one of the guards would clean this mess up or at least stand sentry and shoo people away who are trying to jump from this great height.

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

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