Aug 28

At the Tavern

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*Note this is a place for in character (IC) role play and discussion. All events described below take place in game, between events.

Please pull up a chair and enjoy some mead next to the fire, thank you*

+ Settled comfortably along the road between Cailenstadt and Trinity Lakes, the Mountain Run Tavern has long provided a refuge for adventurers, bards, tradesmen and common folk alike. The family of the hospitable barkeep turned king, Foster, built the tavern up from nothing and has made it a place of respite in these dangerous lands for all. A fair price brings a warm bed and a hearty meal. The hearth is fired year round; those who draw near to enjoy some wine, mead, cider, or a smoke can always hear a song, share a tale… or find adventure. +

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The midday sun was shining through the shutters when K strode through the doors of the Tavern. While few patrons took note of the arrival, Foster came around the bar to take the offered hand.

"Ah you’re back”

“Yes, and no more wiser for the journey, and I think I am developing a cough” lamented K, as he coughed into his sleeve. Everyone looked up at him. “Whaat?” he whined adjusting his pointed red hat, the afternoon light streaming into the tavern fell on the K's dusty burgundy robes, glinted on his many fetishes, and highlighted his wizardly accoutremon.

 

K hobbled over to a chair by the fire, taking out his pipe. "What news of late?" He threw the question over his shoulder at the barkeep.

"A group of Wardens passed this way yesterday," said Foster. "They drove off a band of orcs that troubled the villagers in foothills, but it seems they've been dealt with."

 

K looked up at the mention of orcs. Foster noticed that K’s right hand dropped unconsciously for his sword grip and then he fidgeted nervously. Remembering that he had taken it off and left it outside with his pack, K smothered another cough, his throat dry from the road, and leaned back in the chair as Foster anticipated his need poured him some mead.

 

"You are on your way from the south, then?" asked Foster. K nodded. "Aye. There is growing unrest in the southland and I fear that even now the plagues are spread north. We’ll be inundated with cases here by harvest if my calculations are correct. Nothing seems to stop it except that amulet Brennen Farno has, but he is only one man.” he added as he drained the cup of mead.

 

Foster refilled the cup, smiling. "Oh, that doesn’t sound promising. Maybe if you hadn’t opened that portal to the abyss and let in those demons..."

K simply nodded, looking into the fire. "Yes, my liege," he said - seemingly half to himself, as Foster returned to the bar. "I'm sure we’ll sort it out." K drew on his pipe and gazed into the fire, lost in thought, and wasn’t so sure.

Aug 29Edited: Aug 29

The man arrived in the night. A traveler wrapped in a cloak and hood with boots trailing mud as he entered. The fire was low and only the passed out drunk and a man in red robes and a pointed hat were visible in the tavern at this hour. And yet like clockwork Foster appeared behind the bar to offer this traveler respite as he had for all who entered Mountain Run Tavern.

 

"Good evening sir, is there anything I can get you to shake off the cold?" asked Foster. Making sure to keep his head lowered so the cowl of his hood hid his face, "I'm just getting my bearings. Won't be here long" the traveler replied, "Though if you have it, I wouldn't mind some salted pork for the road"

Foster smiled "Easy enough." he said. The traveler watched Foster walk back behind the bar and out of sight. His gaze now shifted towards the fire and he took a seat beside the hearth, the wooden chair squeaking as he did so.

 

The man in red stirred at the noise, but the traveler paid him little attention as he was focused on the parchment, quill and ink he was removing from inside his cloak, and using the light of the fire began to write. His quill scratched frantically as his thoughts became words and the man in red slowly began to gain consciousness next to him.

 

The traveler continued to write and as he did he found himself muttering allowed pieces of his thoughts. "......hidden enemies.........false allies...........demons may have friends...........not safe, but no choice..........must be warned.........proof....."

 

"The food you ordered sir." Foster said as he laid a wooden plate down. The traveler jumped nearly spilling ink on his writings. "Thank you" he said with a hint of embarrassment, as he began packing up his things, grabbing the pork in the process and shoving it into a small satchel at his side.

 

At that moment a strong wind blew in from the night causing the firelight to dim to near blackness for an instant only to be replaced by the soft orange glow just as quickly. The passed out drunk awoke from his stupor and immediately rushed outside to relieve his stomach. But as Foster's eyes adjusted to the sudden change of light he noticed the traveler had disappeared. Foster looked down at the seat and table he was just at and saw both coin for the pork and a small piece of parchment. It read...

 

 

"To all iT may concern,

The world is in danger and tHere are some who want it that way. BE careful who you tRust, enemies can hide in plain sight but Eventually they all come to light. They work in the shAdows, and may have helped the demons enter our world. KeeP your eyes and ears open and maybE you'll see my signs and heaR my whisperS.

The Friend"

 

As Foster finished reading the parchment, he became startled as the voice of the still drunk man erupted from behind his shoulder. "Whoever wrote tat dunt has gud writing skills. His putin big letters in wrong places. Kinda spooky stuff he be saying doh, I'll have to tell me friends when day come round next."

 

Elsewhere, on the road, the traveler pressed on into the night. Now comforted by the taste of salted pork.

 

Aug 30Edited: Aug 30

Ceannric stomped into the tavern, old knees creaking as he negotiated the stairs, and headed straight for the bar, sliding a large wooden tankard & a few coins onto the counter and motioning to Foster. "Some of that mead an' wine mix if ya please, Foster, fill 'er up." He nodded his appreciation as the trusty barkeep poured from two different bottles, the heavenly nectar just the thing to soothe a parched palate and assuage the pains of the trail.

 

Taking a long pull, the big knight clasped his pouch shut and turned to survey the room, spying K over by the fire. He headed that way, pulling the massive, rune-engraved greatsword from its sheath on his back and leaning it against the wall before settling down onto a rough-hewn chair with a sigh. He nodded to the red-robed wizard, "Evenin', K. You look like I feel. Ill news all around an' no mistake, aye? Sickness and plague abound. We'll need to be doin' some demon-hunting afore long, else we'll have no one left to drink with."

 

The wizard nodded sadly, "Aye, it's a conundrum. We need to find a way to stop it on a large scale, one amulet won't be enough. Will you and the Portal Guard be lending your arms to the effort?"

 

Ceannric chuckled grimly. "Serve ya right if we didn't, you know I advised against openin' that portal! But what's done is done, now we get to clean up the mess. An' I don't know about the Portal Guard, bein' as there really isn't enough of us to even call it a 'guard'...but I'll pledge my blade to the cause, an' that of my Squire, at the least. Ya know, so long as we can keep from bein' frakin' possessed again. Just make sure there's enough mead on hand to take the edge off th' plague, aye?"

 

With that he gulped down another hefty measure of the amber liquid and settled back in the chair, content in the companionable silence, eyes half closing as he watched the flames dance in the hearth.

Sep 9Edited: Sep 9

Evening approaches at the Mountain Run Tavern. In the corner an inebriated bard strums a lute boisterously as his elven companion sings to a different tune. The tavern is filled with the sounds of people talking and grousing about the day and its troubles and joys.

The tavern doors swing open with a bang, silencing all the chatter, as a dusty figure in a wide-brimmed hat, and a travel worn coat and boots enters the smoky but well-lit interior. His boots thump on the wooden floorboards as he strides up to the bar, sweeping his hat off his head. A winning smile and mischievous eyes greet the patrons who have paused their drinking to eye down the newcomer.

The new traveler relaxes on a stool next to a depressed knight deep in her cups. At the far end of the bar, a large man in red nurses a mug of ale. Around the corner strides Foster, who passes a mug of ale to the knight.

“I don’t believe I’ve seen you here before,” says Foster to the newcomer. “Who are you?”

The stranger responds in a distinctive drawl, “Jeff Decorum, at your service. And this is my first time in this fine country.”

“In that case, welcome to Nova Regnus, traveler! Can I get you any food or drink? Our prices are fair and the fire is open to all.”

Jeff takes a long sniff of the air. “I’ll have whatever chow’s already cookin. Smells delicious. As for drink, tea if you have any.”

Foster raises an eyebrow, “An odd request, but I’m sure we have some.” He walks back into the kitchen, wondering at Jeff’s bizarre accent. He shakes his head at the endless variety of portal travelers he has seen.

Back at the bar, the knight next to Jeff taps him clumsily in the shoulder. “Hey, you should wash yer tone… Thash King Foshter yer talkin to… Show some reshpect.”

Jeff raises both his eyebrows in surprise. He had heard of King Foster from other travelers on the road and had planned to meet him during his visit. He did not expect to meet him in a tavern.

Foster takes this moment to return with a steaming plate of roast chicken and vegetables and a mug of tea.

“Everyone behaving all right here?” Foster asks.

“Yesh yer majeshty. Jusht makin sure the new guy shows you proper reshpect,” the knight mumbles.

Foster smiles, “Thank you Gretchen.” Gretchen nods contentedly and returns to her cups.

Jeff takes a deep whiff of the sizzling and steaming food before, savoring the aroma of the meat in particular. He pulls out a handful of coins and places it on the bar for Foster.

“Thank you, your majesty,” says Jeff. “I would like to speak with you further, but this food’s makin me weak with hunger.”

Foster smiles as he sweeps the coins into his apron. “Take your time. I look forward to hearing your story.”

Jeff nods and tears into his meal with ravenous intensity as Foster moves to another section of the tavern.

Half an hour later, Foster returns to find Jeff sipping his tea contentedly, his plate empty except for a pile of chicken bones and some gravy.

“My compliments to the chef,” says Jeff.

“She’ll be pleased to hear that,” responds Foster with pride.

Jeff leans forward. “I must say, I’ve never met, nor heard tell of a King that tends bar.”

Foster raises an eyebrow, “Met many Kings have you?”

Jeff grins. “Maybe. So why the tavern?”

“It’s what I did before these people crowned me King. The work keeps me grounded. How about you? What drew your wandering feet to my home?” says Foster, turning the conversation to Jeff and his mysteries.

Jeff sets down the now empty mug of tea. “I have wares your people might be interested in. I’d like to do business here. With your permission of course.”

Foster stares at Jeff intently. “What kind of wares?”

Jeff’s grin grows wider as he responds, “Spells.”

The large man in red at the end of the bar perks up.

Sep 16

News may not travel as far or fast in Nova Regnus as it did in their home world, yet Tris and Imra had still managed to catch wind of the plague that was sweeping the realm. Artorias had been kind enough to send a letter to where they were staying, one which Imra still kept folded in her book. It warned them. Told them of the disease and of its origins. “I wish we would have talked it through more,” Imra said, a cautious glance cast over her shoulder as the pair made their way towards the dimly lit doorway of the tavern. “Laya asked me what I thought of opening the portal. It felt like we were being pressured into it.” One hand brushed back the hair that had fallen into her face, and Imra looked back over to her long-time friend and confidante. Tris’ bag was overflowing with herbs and flowers, recently harvested from their careful planting experiment along the magical veins that ran throughout the land.

 

Another strong breeze blew through them, and Tris tightened her cloak around her shoulders. The healer was determined though. A plague was no laughing matter; they had to demolish it as fast and as thoroughly as possible. Tris readjusted her makeshift mask made from clean linen bandages, and handed one to Imra as they walked. “If we can observe the affliction closely enough, I may be able to come up with a more natural and widespread cure.” Both women looked at one another for a moment, pausing before the door to the tavern. “Magic isn’t the end-all be-all, Imra. I don’t trust it when healing a person...not fully.” That had been a mild point of contention between the friends even in Sylbion, Imra’s warmage training had always left an uneasy feeling in the pit of the herbalist’s stomach. But they complemented each other well in that their opposing ideologies let them see the issue in a more complex and complete light.

 

“I know, Tris.” A confident hand was clapped on the herbalist’s shoulder before Imra pushed open the tavern door. Already, the setting was a welcome change. She broke from her friend only long enough to purchase warm meals and cold beverages for the both of them, a polite smile and generous tip left behind after paying. “Hope you’re fond of stew,” Imra commented, not noticing at first that Tris was staring at a decree posted on the wall. “Tris?” The mage looked around, spotting her friend who looked to be just a touch paler than normal.

 

“There’s...an amulet,” Tris said low, hands gripped tight around the strap of her satchel.

Imra’s brow furrowed and she ushered the woman to the side, giving the parchment a cursory once-over. Her lips moved silently as she read K’s decree. Familiar names were listed, but the most important part was that amulet. Wide-eyed, the women returned to their table and started to quickly dig in to their food. “If it was broken once before,” Tris said softly,” What’s preventing it again?”

 

There was a healthy dose of fear behind those words, and as they finished their meal both Imra and Tris continued to go over more of what they might need to make Tris’ herbs more potent and powerful. “Information,” Imra said. “Above all else, we need information.” The woman poked at a stray potato with a fork and hummed. “But how…”

 

Tris could only smile, for once having a surprise for Imra rather than the reverse being the case. “Oh, I have a way.”

 

“Do you?”

 

“Just an old friend you’ll be happy to see.”

It took a moment, but Imra’s eyed lit up at the insinuation. A little too excitedly, she grabbed Tris’ forearm and beamed. Maybe this wasn’t all lost after all.

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