Monday, June 14, 2004

Fantasy: 'ero's Wanted: Come in bar

As you saunter though the of the Dirty Elf Tavern, in the bowels of Waterdeep's Adventure Quarter, you are greeted by a strange weathered note pegged to the door frame by what looks like a large animal fang. In nearly illegible common is scrawled the words, "'ero's Wanted? Come in bar! Cee Spiky Dwarfs!" At first glance one must wonder if this is the note has been written by a four year old, and proudly pegged up by his father, (the barkeep?) for all to see. On second glance your realize no self respecting four year old would right so messy. Filled with a bizarre curiosity you, as I was, you might wander in to the Dirty Elf to have a gander at what this sign might mean. Now if it should happen that the last fool to stand where you did followed up on this sign right and proper you might not be greeted by anything but a dusty old tavern filled with adventures and has-beens sucking back a few pints and glorifying the time the beat up the Orc Widow. On the other hand you might see what I saw on that fateful day on the Sword Coast. Before I illuminate what I saw, I want to talk to you about some math, now I hear this form of math is all the rage in Candlekeep, as snooty old sages discuss at length how best to get from point A to point C with as little fights at point B along the route, the call it Optimizacracy, a special subset of Divination I am told. What this fancy number magic might tell you is that if one were standing at the door and were to find the perfect seat at the bar that's the optimal distance from the bar, the outhouse, and the nearest fight, then the two men I met were at that spot, and if you nothing about those men you would say they were powerful sorcerers, but in fact they don't have half a brain between them to make one eighth of a brain for magic. If we can see our way clear past the math of it, you will find standing that this probabilistically perfect spot two men, and I say men in the loosest of terms, because what I saw where two four foot tall creatures, armour from top to bottom in the a mishmash of tattered hardened leather scraps riveted together, but looking as if they are mostly held together by old grog stains. Mixed into that mangled mess of so-called armour are spikes, and by spikes I mean jutting sharpened steaks of partially rusted iron. Topping these stout figures is a pair of beards that could rival the main of any savannah lion. To the left the red headed one with a full head of hair and beard that don't differentiate on where one starts and where ones ends, and generally spread outward until it his a fuzzy region of tangled food remains and crusted grog. To the right is bald on top but braids all the way down, and dyed green, or perhaps moulded, I pray not check to deep, as neither one has a temperament or a smell that tolerates investigation. Who are these dwarves, they are the "ero's" Mombo and Scobar, Heroes, Warriors, Drunkards, Battleragers. Should it happen that you have cattle to save from ravaging Orc's these are not the heroes to call. If it were the case that Troll's ran off with your daughter these are not the heroes to call, but if hundreds of dragons were swarming an orphanage of help less children and maidens, then call Scobar and Mombo. For in the thick of battle and destruction, when the odds are insurmountable, and survivability drops to nil, that is where these two will put an ale in one hand axe in the other, and screaming at the top of their lungs charge headlong into battle, and win. To the dragons who here this tale I warn you one thing, if you dare to spill that ale, then no longer will your death be swift and gentle, but like the winds of Hades burn you until your flesh melts away into dust and death.

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