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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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I consider saying more to try and calm him, but I think the paladin needs his space right now, so I simply let him be. Instead, I break off and slither across the floor, trying my best to fit in and look like I’m not making a beeline to Sir Barkley. I say hello to some of the people I met the other night, trade a few jokes and short stories, and generally look like I’m trying to be the life of the party I usually am. I actually make it almost all the way to Sir Barkley, before I am interrupted from a somewhat unexpected source. Lady Rowena Barkley sliding in alongside me, and motioning for me to follow. Not really understanding, but not wanting to compromise our relationship, I fall in beside her as she leads me off to a quieter corner of the party.

I don’t know what is about to happen, but decide against speaking out, it might seem foolish. Obviously she has something to tell me, so I simply wait and let her say whatever it is she wants to say.

“Solaron, I have spoken with my husband about the possibility of having your elf friend examine the staff.”

“Oh good. What did he say?”

Rowena looks worried for a moment, wringing her hands. “Actually, he seemed upset that I had asked. My husband may be a right old fool, but he has always been a good man. Easily distracted, often set about following the mad whim of the moment, but a goodly man, and quite kind. He usually tells me important things like this, or at least listens to my advice, even if he does not follow it. But this time he fully rejected me when I spoke to him, he has never seemed this irritated about something.”

I frown, worried that my request may have inadvertently caused Lady Rowena some level of harm or difficulty.

“I apologize my lady, if my request has done you harm. I was simply attempting to offer the help of my friends.”

As I say this, my mind is racing to make sense of the simple tidbit she had just told us. Really there is no reason for Sir Barkley to refuse our help in this matter, it could only help him. Unless he was the one at fault in this whole situation. I had been leaning towards blaming Sir Aquitaine, his personal manner seeming very much like the kind of person who would orchestrate a theft like this. But refusing our aid? For no good reason? The only explanation I could come up with was that he was actually the villain here, and was trying to keep people away from his staff at all costs, lest they discover the truth about it.

“No harm done.” Rowena sighs, “I have long ago learned to deal with the oddities of my husband, though they still often cause me difficulty. I will wait until he is calmer and discuss the matter with him again, he is so on edge ever since Aquitaine forced this party on him.”

Now that seemed like an interesting tidbit to follow up on. I had already seen that our two prime suspects did not like each other, but what else could Rowena tell me about how they knew each other?

“I saw the four of you going at each other when they first arrived.” I say, “I got the feeling that Sirs Barkley and Aquitaine have known each other for a while. Dislike of that order is something earned through long acquaintance, not simply picked up.”

Rowena nods. “Oh yes, my husband and Sir Aquitaine have known each other for years. I had heard that they were once friends, but that was long before I met my husband. By the time I knew him, they were already bitter rivals. Oh how they fought, back and forth and back and forth.”

“What kind of fights?” I asked, “Did they ever attack each other?”

“Oh no, nothing so crude.” Rowena assures me, “But they were always antagonizing each other. Anything that one could do to hurt the other, he would do. My husband once saw that Aquitaine was on the verge of buying a tract of land to expand one of his farms, so he bought it instead. He had no use for it, simply to deny Aquitaine the use of the land. Then there was the time that Aquitaine snuck a species of predatory fish into one of my husband’s fishing lakes, killing off the entire stock he had placed there. The entire lake had to be purged and restocked before it could be used again. Forcing my husband to host this function on short notice is just the latest skirmish in their long running rivalry.”

I nod. Such rivalries were not entirely uncommon back in my homeland, though I did not know them to last very long when my father was involved.

“I understand, thank you for confiding in me. I can understand why your husband wants this staff, he probably thinks that it is the final trump card in his conflict with Aquitaine. The thing that will finally prove himself superior for good.”

Lady Rowena nods. “Yes, I imagine that is what he thinks. Honestly, this entire feud is rather silly. My husband would be much better off just to forget the whole thing. If he devoted the time, energy, and money to actually furthering the assets of the family rather than fighting his private war, he would have left Aquitaine in the dust long ago.”

I nod consolingly. “I hope you can be the voice of reason for the man, you are certainly the kind of woman who can help to reign him in.”

Rowena smiles at me, for the first time of the night. “I am glad to hear you say that, but I should tell you that flattery has not worked on me for many years.”

“I’m serious!” I say, “You are just the kind of wife he needs. Without you around to rein him in, I would shudder to think of what he might have done by now. You’re smart, levelheaded, and possess a solid head for business. I think that he would be a lot worse off without you.”

Rowena smiles again, this time her cheeks turn an interesting shade of red. “And you are a consummate flatterer. But I accept your compliments. For what it is worth, I am grateful for your help as well. I have been bearing this strain for a long time, and it wears heavily without someone to share it with. I shall speak to my husband again, once his nerves have settled.”

“Until then milady.” I say, bowing.

I consider continuing my course for Sir Barkley, but decide to hold off. Considering how flighty I now know him to be, if I address him directly it might seem like I was being overly confrontational. That might send him scurrying back to check on his staff, which could send him straight into Blake as he rummages through his private chambers. Instead I opt to observe my quarry from a distance, watching as he traverses the party floor, exchanging meaningless pleasantries with the various guests, and trying to contrive as though he is not glaring daggers at the back of Sir Aquitaine’s head whenever the latter is facing a different direction.

Speaking of Aquitaine, his wife appears to be approaching me now. She is wearing a long black dress this time, the glittering light of diamonds shimmering from her rings and necklace.

“How does this evening find you milady?” I ask politely as she walks over, grabbing a glass of wine from a passing serving tray.

“It finds me in dire need of entertainment.” She says, sipping her wine. “There is only so long that I can listen to my husband drone on about some business deal or another before I have a splitting headache.”

I smile conspiratorially. “Entertainment is my specialty.”

“Oh, I’m sure.” She says, examining me with those uncomfortably piercing eyes again.

“What would milady desire for tonight?” I ask, hoping that I can stay on good terms with her, at least for as long as was needed to get the job done.

“Oh, sing a song why don’t you?” She asks, sipping her wine.

I nod, not really wanting to press her further, and conjure up the words to some old tune. It’s sad and it’s sweet, but I knew it complete, and it seems to go over fairly well. At least it doesn’t make her upset, though she seems to be listening only occasionally. She is either looking out over the party with a disdaining eye, or examining me with that same frightening curiosity. Eventually I finish my song.

“I trust that was pleasing milady?” I ask, maintaining an air of respectful distance.

“It was fine.” She says without looking at me.

We sit there in silence for a long time, me not really wanting to break the awkward silence. Eventually though, I have no choice.

“Lady Constance? Have you had a chance to get any of the information I requested?” I ask, hopefully.

“No, I have not.” She says.

I wait for her to go on, but she doesn’t seem to want to talk about it, so I let the matter lie. Honestly I’m a little disappointed, I had hoped to get a lot more useful information from this relationship, but alas, no such luck. At least I got something interesting from Lady Rowena. Nonetheless, I look at her expectantly, hoping she is going to follow up on why she didn’t get the information. It seems that no explanation is offered though, as she simply sits in silence and sips her wine.

“Well then, I am glad I was able to entertain you for a little while milady, but I have matters to attend to.” I say, rising. Hopefully something more interesting would present itself before too long.

“Oh, don’t go so fast.” She says, catching hold of my trailing arm with an all too strong grip.

“What is it milady?” I wonder, hoping this will not take too long.

“I think you are not nearly done entertaining me. I think you could do a lot more.” She says, “But perhaps this is not the setting we require. Perhaps a more quiet venue, for a private performance?” The smile seems nice enough, but the steel in her eyes makes it clear that she does not consider this a request in any sense of the word.

I think about it. While I would not be entirely opposed to getting to know her further, and hopefully getting her on our side, I did not particularly like her. Besides, if I left now that would leave Blake hanging in the wind, and I could not allow that to happen.

“Perhaps another time milady, I am sorry but I have prior obligations tonight.”

She looks upset. Not in the way I would expect though, more like if some clumsy servant almost dropped the fine ceramics.

“Tomorrow then.” She commands.

I think about refusing, but I am on thin ice as it is. “Very well milady, where shall I meet you?”

“Your bedroom will do, no need to raise a fuss.” She says, getting up and walking away.

“See you then milady!” I call after her. But she does not respond.

Shrugging, I head off back to the party.
Bumping because I'm back.
Yay, my I can finally feed my Solaron addiction! keep writing!
Bumping so somebody can see this.

I stick close to Sir Barkley after that, not really wanting to get pulled into another conversation with Mr. or Mrs. Aquitaine. Everything seems to be going well so far. I had not thought it would take Blake this long to find the evidence he was looking for, but at least none of my friends had come with news of his capture, or armed guards had flooded the hall. I took both of these things as signs to stay relaxed and not panic about what we were doing. Nonetheless, I grabbed a glass of wine from a passing tray and gulped it down with far more alacrity than such a fine drink deserved.

I consider speaking to Barkley again, but see him engaged in what looks like a very heated conversation with some other noble, and don’t really want to get involved. I look around the room, searching for my friends, seeing the distinctive robe of Sal’vir as he walks the floor, trying not to be engaged by any passersby in conversation. He sees me a moment later and walks quickly over, ignoring an inquiring lady as he passes.

“Solaron, thank goodness I found you.” He says, seeming quite unsettled.

“What is it?” I ask, hand instinctively going to my saber. “Did Blake get caught? Is the scheme up? Is this about to get violent?”

Sal’vir looks at me, a little confused for a moment.

“Oh heavens no, nothing so dramatic. I just can’t put up with this party any longer. I think I’m going to go mad if I have to explain the basic fundamentals of magic to another bored socialite.”

I nod, trying not to look like I came within inches of panicking. “I understand completely. These people are far too bored for their own good. I mean honestly, some of the things they ask about. Just because a guy’s got scales suddenly makes him the conversation piece of the room.”

“To be fair, they are quite fascinating.” Sal’vir says, stealing a glance at the ridges that run down my back in parallel rows.

“Really? Huh, never really thought they would make me look as interesting to you humanoids as, well, everything about you does to me.”

Sal’vir half turns to me. “You find us interesting? How so?”

I consider, looking the elf up and down.

“Well, I found your eyes a little creepy at first. Round pupils you see, not anything like what I was used to. I got used to that eventually though. Skin is also interesting, I’m used to everyone around me having scales, even little tiny ones that you can barely see. And hair everywhere! Seems like that could get annoying really fast in my opinion.”

“Really? I would have thought you would have been more interested in legs to be honest.” Sal’vir says.

I shrug. “Some breeds Yuan Ti have legs, so they aren’t that new a thing to me. Then of course you have the smell. Not bad mind you, but still, weird.”

Sal’vir considers this for a moment. “Well, I take your point, I find you rather interesting as well. Those ridges on your back for instance, do all Yuan Ti have those?”
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Anybody here tonight?

Don't be shy, we need to bump this up a bit so that people can see the story is back up.

Have a picture from my lizards folder.

Yes, I have a lizards folder, It would be more surprising if I didn't considering the pictures people post in these threads.

I crane my neck around to take another look at the twin rows of spike-like ridges running down by back.

“No actually, those are unique to my family. A few generations back one of my ancestors had a relationship with a lizardman with ridges like these, and had a half breed child. The child had a child with a Yuan Ti, and so on and so forth, until we were basically one hundred percent Yuan Ti again. The ridges look like they’re here to stay though, my father and all my siblings have them.”

“Huh.” The elf says quietly as he examines the ridges again.



The elf looks up, “What, oh sorry.”

“No, it’s not that.” I hiss, looking over at Barkley, who seems to have tired of his conversation. In fact, it looks like he’s decided to retire for the night, heading back to the staircase leading up to his personal chambers. And Blake.

“We have to stop him!” I hiss, quickly slithering off after him.

“How?” Sal’vir asks, looking around the room in a panic.

“I don’t know, um, I’ll talk to him, you go create a distraction. Just go!” I say, pushing the elf away as I race after Sir Barkley, composing myself as I draw near.

“Hello Sir Barkley, having a good night I trust?” I ask, unable to think of anything else to say.
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I will continue to bribe you with reptilian character art if that is what it takes.

“Doing fine.” Barkley says tersely, not slowing his pace.

“Are you sure?” I ask, “You seem a bit stressed about something, perhaps I could help, a good song can do wonders for the nerves.”

“No thank you Solaron, I simply wish to go to bed.” Still he does not slow.

I’m starting to panic by this point, surely if he returns to his rooms he will find Blake there, and then we will all be in very big trouble. I wrack my mind, thinking of something to say, something to do to prevent what seems to be inevitable disaster.

“Care to hear about Yuan Ti mating rituals?”

Nothing, not even a surprised look. I contemplate shouting ‘fire!’ to get some attention, but decide that wouldn’t be a very good idea. Especially since I can smell something burning. Wait a second, that’s smoke I smell. I turn about, looking for the source, seeing a thin line of smoke wafting up from a table, the candles on it overturned. The tablecloth suddenly bursts into flame, sending party guests recoiling in terror. Barkley curses under his breath, rushing over to direct a startled serving girl to pour some water on the fire. Sal’vir sidles up to me, trying and somewhat failing to look completely innocent.

“That was the first thing you thought of for a distraction?” I ask, “Setting something on fire?”

“I just thought of the story you told us about rescuing Sloane from the orc camp.” He says.

I open my mouth to argue, but close it again, realizing how silly I was about to sound.

“Right well, at least we stopped him from walking in on Blake.” I say.

“Yes, I generally don’t appreciate that.” Blake says, right next to me.

I jump a little, and look down at the diminutive rogue beside me.

“Did it work?” I ask.

Blake rolls his eyes. “I’m so glad you’re alright Blake, great to see you again Blake, I was afraid you’d been captured or horribly killed Blake.”

“Right sorry. I am very glad that you are both alive and intact. It is good to see you again. Now did you find anything?”
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Bumping with another pic because of dinner time.
Anybody actually here?

I'll try to have some more content here in a little bit.

Blake pats a part of his coat, his knuckles rapping on the hard surface of what has to be a book.

“You found the ledger?” I ask, astonished.

“Yes, and I did one better.” He says, looking at my curious expression.

“Come on, Let’s get the guys together, we’ll talk about this in a more private setting.”

I nod, and we go about the process of rounding up the rest of the party, heading back up to Sloane’s room, where we await Blake to show his evidence. Sadly, he seems a lot more interested in telling us the hair raising tale of how he stole the books. Not that I would usually have a right to complain, given my occupation, but the short one seriously lacks my abilities as a storyteller.

“There I was, trapped, and alone. Before me lay the locked chest, behind me the corridor, and who knows how many guards lie in wait. I carefully crept forwards, and picked the lock, careful to not make even the slightest sound to betray my position. Then, at long, agonizing last, the door swung open, revealing THIS!”

He produced the book from his jacket with a flourish of his hand, laying it down upon the table. Actually, no, not book, books. There were two here. One was a simple, slim volume with a black cover. The other was a more substantial book, bound in soft leather.

“What are we looking at Blake?” Sloane asks, “And spare the theatrics please.”

“This one is Barkley’s secret ledger.” Blake says, indicating the black volume. “And this, is his private journal.” He says, smiling as he taps the other book with a finger.
Yes, I am here, and very glad that I have done more than just catch the end this time.
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Oh God Sol's going to get raped.

Well, someone is here. Don't know how much more I will be writing tonight. So we'll see.
I imagine that would be really REALLY hard. You know, considering the snake-D is internal and all that.
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More is on the way.

And here, have another lizardman.

“You took the man’s journal?” Sloane asks, “Do you know if anything in there is even useful?”

Blake smiles his most insufferable smile. “Oh I did a few quick peeks, checked a few dates against each other, these two little books blow this entire investigation wide open. All the evidence you need is right in here.” He rubs the spine of the ledger fondly.

Sloane rolls his eyes and pulls the books away from him, opening them up in front of him. He flips a few pages in the ledger, searching for a specific date.

“Here we go.” He says, tapping a page with his finger, “This is the transaction which corresponds with Barkley hiring us to retrieve the staff from the bandits.” He opens the journal. “Now, if we cross reference the date on this transaction with the corresponding entry in the journal, maybe we can shed some light on the circumstances of our hiring.”

He flips through some sections, eventually finding the correct passage. We all wait with baited breath as he reads the passage corresponding to our hiring.

“Perhaps these mercenaries will solve my longstanding problem.” He reads, “I have heard from my old acquaintance Mrs. Bing that they have some skill, and that their discretion can be counted on. Still, best to tell them as little as possible about the true nature of their work as possible. If I tip my hand to Aquitaine then he could make things quite difficult for me.”
It would be pretty difficult. For a woman at least...
Oops, meant to reply to>>26396602

Sloane looks up from the book, the implication of what we just read sinking in.

“So, he did hire us to steal the staff from Aquitaine.” Buri says, stroking his beard. “Wouldn’t have pegged Barkley for that kind of man, but I guess looks can be deceiving.”

I nod. “I agree, he seems a bit distant, and a trifle irresponsible from what his wife told me. But he still doesn’t strike me as the kind of man who would order something like this. Maybe there is more further back, search back a bit in the ledger.”

Sloane nods. “We should be as thorough as possible about this.” And flips back a ways.

“This all looks fairly normal here, business dealings, land purchases, convoys hired. Wait a moment.”

He leans in to examine a passage more closely.

“It says here that Barkley hired a group of armed guards, orcs to be precise, for a classified shipment. I’ll check his journal for this date.”

He flips through the book, eventually finding the corresponding entry.

“At long last I have recovered my staff. I fear though that Sir Aquitaine may attempt to recover the artifact from me, so I shall hire a group of guards to protect it on the way to my country estate. I regret dealing with these orcs, but they are both strong and stupid, unlikely to ask too many questions.”

I tilt my head and consider this new development.

“So, Barkley hired a group of orcs, to protect the staff, because he was afraid Aquitaine would steal it, because Barkley stole it from him?”

Sloane nods, trying to make sense of all this.

“I should keep reading.”
Goodnight /tg/

I shall have more story for you tomorrow.

If anyone helps to keep this thread alive overnight, you have my deepest gratitude.
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have one more lizardman before bed.
Bumping to keep thread vaguely alive.
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Thanks for keeping this alive.

Will post more in a little while.

We all nod and make general noises of affirmation, as the paladin continues to scan through the texts.

“It says here, that Barkley hired a spy to infiltrate the house of Sir Aquitaine. Using the information he gathered from him, he arranged to steal the staff right out from under his nose. And before that, Aquitaine took it from him by hiring a spy of his own to take it out of this house.”

“How far back does this cycle go?” Galen asks.

Sloane flips back through the ledger, scanning some of the earlier dates.

“Nigh on a decade it would seem.” He says. “The oldest journal entry says that they were feuding over the staff, and each thought they had the greater claim to it. Since then they have been stealing it back and forth on a near constant basis.”

I rub my chin thoughtfully. “Rowena told me that the two of them were friends long ago, but had a falling out. Perhaps this staff is the reason they took to disliking each other?”

“Could be.” Sal’vir says, “But I am more interested in the staff itself right now. They have been fighting over it for years, if it is as powerful an artifact as they each seem to think it is, then why has neither of them used it before?”

“Well, Rowena told me that Barkley doesn’t know how to use the staff.” I say, “Perhaps Aquitaine hasn’t figured it out either, neither of them seem like very wizardly types to me.”

Sloane nods. “Whatever the case, we have to put a stop to this, people have died because of this feud. But I still don’t want to just rush up and put them each at sword point. We need to know who started this entire feud to begin with.”

I raise my hand. “I will be meeting with Lady Constance tomorrow, perhaps she can tell me something?”

Sloane frowns. “Why are you meeting Mrs. Aquitaine. And besides, I think we need the whole picture.”

“She wants me to entertain her with a private performance.” I say, shrugging. “I’ll try to arrange for Rowena to join us. Maybe when I put them together in the same room they’ll let something slip.”

Sloane looks hesitant for some reason, but eventually tells me to go along with it.

Our day done, we all head back to our rooms for some well-deserved sleep after the excitement of the day.
How would I go about reading the previous parts of this story? Im new here.

Welcome. You can find the Archive here.

you got a new fan mang. I love me some scaly people.
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Then you're in the right place.
yes, yes i am.
Working here can’t be easy and you must feel tired and lonely out here by yourself.”
Yeah, it's a lot more fun when people comment.

Should have more story for you soon, in the meantime, enjoy the archive.
Oh I am indeed. Snakes ona horse.
> I hope a necromancer steals your food
Is this a thing on /tg/ because I cant stop laughing at this idea.

/tg/ is my new favorite board

comments people are making on your stories in the archive.
right, thought that sounded familiar, but I forgot where it was from.

I awake the next morning, and push through the vague sense of wrongness which still pervades me whenever I try to sleep in this house. I chalk it up to what looks to be a rather interesting day, even if all goes well. I don’t seem my friends at breakfast, they must either be off preparing for the big confrontation, or simply didn’t feel like dining together. Can’t say I blame them, I’m a little apprehensive about this myself. After breakfast I go over the ledger and journal again for a couple hours, hoping to find something useful, some last tidbit of information that was overlooked, but there is nothing I can find that could help us here. After that I try to calm my nerves by reading my book for a while, which sort of works.

It’s about noon when I put the book down, deciding that it’s high time I got to work for the day. My main job for the moment is going to be convincing Rowena to meet with me tonight, so I set out to find her before anything else happens to distract me. I inquire with a few servants to point me in the right direction, and it seems that Lady Rowena has decided to go for a walk across the grounds. I decide to follow, I need some fresh air this morning to settle the butterflies in my stomach in any case.

I slither out into the warm sun, realizing it’s been days since I felt it on my scales, and waste a few moments basking in the noonday sun. That little diversion out of the way, I scent the wind with a flickering tongue, searching for the scent of Lady Rowena. I detect it after a few moments, and head on after her.

I glide over the warm grass, eventually getting close enough to see Lady Rowena walking along a garden path. It seems that she wanted to be alone for a bit, she didn’t bring any servants with her. She is wearing a light summer dress and carrying a lacy parasol with her, shielding herself from the sun. I don’t want to barge in on her unannounced, so I simply wait at the edge of the garden she is walking through and wait for her to notice me. She does after a minute or two, and waves me over after a moment’s consideration.

“Good day milady, enjoying a little time out of doors?”

She nods, her little smile still fixed on her face. “Yes, I don’t get as much time to myself as I would like. I have far too many things to do usually to simply enjoy the sunlight.”

“I hope I’m not disturbing you then?”

“Oh no, I could use a little bit of company, especially someone who isn’t going to badger me about some trade deal or formal declaration.”

We fall in beside each other, the sweet smell of the garden wafting on the warm air.

“Tell me, do all Yuan Ti dress as minimally as you do?” She asks, a wry smile on her lips.

I look down at myself. I hadn’t bothered putting anything on today, no point really until the party tonight.

“We just don’t see the point of wearing something when you don’t need to.” I say, shrugging. “The humanoid fascination with big complicated garments is honestly very confusing to me.”

She nods, “I suppose you don’t really need it. Still, must cause quite a stir wherever you go.”

“I guess a lot of people find the difference interesting.” I say, thinking back to Sal’vir’s comments, and the words of a great many interested partygoers.

“Certainly.” Rowena says, “You’re quite different in a lot of ways, I should suspect.”

“And much the same in others.” I say, nodding. “We both enjoy trips through lovely gardens for instance, the feel of a warm summer wind, good music and fine food, though I suspect our specific tastes might differ a bit there.”

She laughs, a clear ringing note on the summer air. “I should think so. Your homeland must be an interesting place. Though you must be lonely this far away, does anyone wait for you back there?”

“Well, my mother and father, but it was they who sent me away in the first place.”

“You’re unmarried then?” She asks.

“Yes, no spouse for me. No loves either, but I suspect I will find those eventually.”

“Is there that much a difference between a wife and a love for you?” She asks, turning to face me.

I think about that, this is probably another cultural difference of some kind.

“Well, in Yuan Ti society, you marry to bind two bloodlines together. It is a legal and formal union, which usually deals with the inheritance of property, and the sharing of business assets and possessions. It is sometimes arranged to seal important deals, two individuals choosing to bind themselves together in the venture, so that they will share the profits or losses from their joined interests.”

“We do a similar thing here.” She nods, “I was lucky enough to avoid being bound in such a fashion. I would shudder to think what my life would be like if I had been forced to devote myself to someone I did not love for some political agenda.”

I frown, trying to understand. “Why would marrying someone prevent you from still looking for love elsewhere?”

She looks at me, seeming quite surprised.

“What in the world do you mean?” She asks.

“Marriage is a legal union between two people, nobody ever said you had to love them, or that you needed to stop looking for love in other people. That’s how we do things at any rate. One of my father’s friends never lived with either of his wives actually. Though he did have children with his mate.”

Rowena continues to stare at me, seeming quite surprised, but she eventually relaxes a bit.

“You have a very interesting way of doing things where you come from, though I don’t know if it’s the way I would have thought to live.”

“It’s worked for us for centuries.” I say, shrugging again.

We are both silent for a while after that, simply taking in the sweet summer air.

“Milady, I must confess, I had an ulterior motive for coming to see you this afternoon.”

“Yes?” Rowena asks, sounding strangely tense.

“I came to ask if you would pay me a visit tonight, back at my room for a little entertainment. I imagine that between your husband giving you trouble, and the stress of the party, you could so with a little relaxation.”

Rowena turns to face me sharply, frowning. I worry that I’ve upset her.

“This isn’t to do with your marriage customs is it? Because I assure you that is not the way we do things here. Besides, that might only cause more problems than it would solve.”

I think about that statement for a moment, trying to find the connection between what she just said, and what I asked. When I find none, I decide to press on regardless.

“Why, I have no idea what you are talking about.” I say honestly, putting on a charming smile to try and calm her nerves. “I simply wished to spend an entertaining evening in your company. I can assure you that I wouldn’t tell anyone, it you’re worried about that. I can also assure you that my abilities will ensure a very enjoyable evening for you as well.”

She gives me a long hard look, as though judging me in some way.

“You had better not be trying anything young man.”

“I assure you, I’ll only try what you ask me to.” I reply.

She considers for another few moments.

“Very well, but I have my eyes on you. I warn you, I am hardly defenseless, regardless of what I may look like.” With that she walks off through the garden again, clearly wanting to be alone.

“I’ll see you at about six then.” I say after her, before leaving.

Not even bothering to try and make sense out of that bizarre conversation, I simply turn around and head off across the grounds to enjoy the sun for a while longer.

The day wears on, and I head back inside for lunch a little while later, finding Sal’vir eating a sandwich by himself. I slither over and chat for a little bit.

“You ready for tonight?” I ask.

“I certainly hope so.” He nods before taking another bite, “If not, we’ll all find out rather quickly. I’m looking forward to getting a hand on that staff, be interesting to see exactly how well it’s enchanted.”

I nod. “Would be nice to learn about the thing at the heart of a decade long feud.” I say.

We eat in silence for a while after that, nothing else to say, until Sal’vir eventually breaks the silence.

“Had a chance to talk to Lady Rowena yet?” He asks, wiping crumps from his robe.

“Yes, she’s agreed to meet me tonight.” I say, gulping down a piece of chicken.

“That easily? What did you talk about?” He asks.

“Oh, you know how charming I can be.” I say, smiling, “We talked about home a little, then discussed Yuan Ti mating rituals a bit.”

Sal’vir chokes on his sandwich, reaching for a glass of water to help him clear his throat.

“Mating rituals?” He asks, coughing a little.

“Yes, a little about our marriage customs, nothing too in depth really, but she found it interesting. We’re meeting up later during the party tonight. Actually, I should probably go get ready, we’ll be starting in a couple hours.” I finish my lunch and start heading back to my quarters.

Sal’vir looks after me. “Uh, have fun?” He calls, shakily.

“I’ll try!” I call back.

I spend far longer than normal in front of a mirror that afternoon, tweaking my outfit to seem just right. I was going to be spending the evening in the company of two noble ladies, even if I had my misgivings about one of them. I had to look just right if I was to entertain them, as well as get any useful information before we confront their husbands tonight. Finally satisfied that I’m looking as good as I am going to, I strap on my saber, sling my guitar over my shoulder, and head on down to the party.

I pass Sal’vir along the way. He doesn’t say anything, just nods tight lipped, before heading off himself. I glimpse some of my friends out of the corners of my eye, but I don’t go over to say hello. We all know what we’re doing tonight, no need to draw any attention by grouping up and talking in hushed whispers in the middle of the banquet hall. I grab a glass of wine and empty it, trying to calm my nerves about the night to come.

“Sure you want to do this drunk?” I hear a familiar voice say behind me. “Might interfere with your ability to perform, and we don’t want that.”

I turn to see Lady Constance wearing a rather slim silvery dress, a remarkably simple garment for her.

“No need to worry milady, it’s rather difficult to get me drunk, believe me, I know how much it takes.”

“Really?” She raises an eyebrow in interest. “You’d be surprised how many men say that, then lose their senses quite quickly.”

“No, really.” I say, “I mean I weigh a lot more than the average human, more mass you see. Therefore, it takes a lot more to get me drunk than a human would take.”

“I’ll have to test that someday.” Constance says, with a smile that does not bode well for my health and well-being.

“Sounds interesting.” I say diplomatically and finish my wine.

Constance smiles again, twisting a length of her hair. “Well, we should probably get going then, no point in wasting time. It’s not as if I’m having any fun here.”

I nod. It will still be a little while before Rowena meets with us, but maybe I’ll get something from Constance if I talk to her alone for a bit beforehand.

“Sounds good, my room is this way.” I say, leading the way with a sweep of my arm.

Constance falls in beside me as if it is the most natural thing in the world, and we head back to my bedroom. I try to strike up a conversation along the way, but she doesn’t respond to any of my words, simply gazing at me with that same unnervingly piercing stare. Eventually I simply give up and lead her on into my rooms, entering the comfortably appointed sitting room adjoining the bedroom.

“Well, here we are milady. I am here to entertain you, what can I do for you?”

“You can dance for a start.” She says, sinking into one of the padded chairs.

I nod, going into the clear space before her chair. I choose not to use one of my usual barroom dances, they’re not really fit for a situation like this. Instead I start up a more formal dance, something usually reserved for fairly somber occasions. She doesn’t say anything, but I think she likes it judging by the way she’s watching my twisting coils intently.

“You should take off your clothes.” She says.

I would tend to agree, this outfit is rather too much for my private rooms, but I am entertaining a noblewoman. Still, what she says goes, I have to stay on good terms with her. I pause my dance and start to pull off my scarf, but she stops me.

“No, keep dancing.”

I shrug and continue dancing. Constance makes an annoyed noise in her throat.

“No, no, no, take them off while you dance.”

I am a little confused, but decide there’s no harm in this. Perhaps this is some kind of ritual or local tradition, I know many of my ways seem strange to these humans. So, resisting the urge to ask questions, I go back to dancing, shrugging out of my vest as I do so. A few minutes later I’m beret of clothing, and let my dance wind down.

“Was that what you wanted?” I ask, hopefully. I don’t really like her, but as a performer I can’t resist the desire to know if my performance was well received.

“It could use a little work honestly.” She says, nonplussed. “You’re quite alluring in many respects, but your technique could use a little refinement.”

I try not to look disappointed. I don’t care a great deal what she thinks about me, but it still stings a little. But at least I’m ‘alluring’, whatever that means for her.

“Well, I’m sorry you didn’t like it, I have many other talents, if you wish me to entertain you in another way, or perhaps we could talk for a little while.” I want to talk about the staff of course, but no need to push her.

“Oh, I’m hoping your other abilities are good enough to make up for that ‘dance’. As for talking, we can talk after I’m done, if you’re good enough to make me want to stay afterwards.”

“What now?” I ask.

“Bed of course.” She says, opening the door to the bedroom.

Surprised, I follow after her.
It's a trap! ..Ah heck it's another woman wanting to rape him for the snake-D, be a bad day if they all joined forces.
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Pretty dead today. Anybody reading today?
Reporting in.
I'm lurking as per usual.
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So Solaron is a stripper now?
He's naked all the time, he's slithering green scaly eye candy.

And constance is a bitch.
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Now I'm thinking of Sol putting on some clothes then slowly taking them off again.
As am I. Which is not as bad as I would have thought.

What would he wear though? All he's worn besides his coat is a vest and scarf, and a few strips of cloth.

I come through the door a moment after Constance does, and see her assessing the bed and surrounding room.

“Bed looks big enough.” She says, poking the sheets.

“Quite comfortable.” I concur, wondering where this is going.

“How good are the springs?” She asks, smiling at me, like a piranha about to strike.

“Pretty good I guess?”

“We should give them a better testing, they need to be good and soft for this.”

I briefly try to picture Lady Constance Aquitaine jumping on the bed, but my upper brain functions recoil in fear and confusion.

“If that is your wish.” I say.

“It is.” She says again, in the tone of voice you use with your servants.

“How do you want to proceed then?” I ask, hoping this conversation is going somewhere.

“You can help me with this dress for starters.”

This just keeps getting stranger and stranger. Still, not wanting to seem uncomfortable when faced with strange human customs, I slither over to help her out of her dress.
anyone else hearing the theme music for jaws playing in the background...?
I'm thinking a long, loose fitting robe, maybe some tassels or feathers or something as decoration.
Solaron striptease! Anon's let's make this so! If we make it sound cool enough writer dude will include it!

I shudder inwardly, remembering the ordeal of getting Mrs. Bing’s dress off. I look at the thin laces holding the dress together from the back, and pull on one of them. To my surprise, and well concealed relief, the entire thing promptly falls apart, the silvery material of the dress fluttering to the ground without any fuss.

She steps out of the ring of cloth on the floor, and turns to face me. She wasn’t wearing anything underneath the dress. She looks at me expectantly, though with no idea what she wants, I just stand there and wait for her to say something.

“Well?” She asks.

“What?” I wonder.

“Anything you want to say?” She says, seeming a little upset about something, gesturing down to her naked form.

I look her up and down. Usually when a woman is acting like this, they want a compliment. I mentally smack myself.

“You look beautiful.” I say. Truthfully, I am no judge of what humans consider beautiful, but Constance seems in good shape for a woman of such noble position, no excess of fat or unsightly blemishes. I look her up and down, still fascinated by human appearance, so many strange bumps and curves.

“That’s more like it.” She says, walking over in a way that makes her hips twist strangely. She runs a hand over my chest.

“Anything else you want to say?”

I think for a moment, but my thoughts are interrupted when there is a knock upon the door.

Why stop at three?
It's every female character plus Sal'vir
Time for a full on orgy. Gender is no object, Solaron's passion is universal.

how many could he satisfy at once I wonder. If he ever figures out what sex is

“Excuse me a moment.” I say, turning for the door.

“Hurry back, I’m waiting.” Constance says, running her hands over me, despite my leaving the room. She shuts the door behind me, and I open the door into the hall. I see Lady Rowena standing there.

“Lady Rowena.” I say, smiling. “Thank you for coming.”

“Should be a nice break from the stress of the last few days.” She says, coming into the room. She looks down, seeing my clothes where the lie on the floor.

“I didn’t interrupt anything did I?”

“Oh, never interrupting. I was hoping you could help this along actually, it’s not going very well all told.”

Rowena frowns at me. “What are you up to Solaron?”

“Nothing terrible I assure you.” I say, reassuringly.

I slither over to the bedroom door and open it a little, slipping my head in. I see Constance laying on my bed, smiling down at me.

“Ready to come to bed ‘darling’?” She asks.

“In a moment, I just want to talk to Lady Rowena.”

She sits up in bed with a jerk, clapping her arms over the bumps on her chest. “What! Rowena is here?”

“Yes, I just let her in, I wanted to talk to her so I.” I cut my sentence short as Constance storms over, pushes me back through the door, and slams it in my face.

“Having problems?” Rowena asks, eyebrow raised in a smirk.

Hopefully because Sol told Rowena it's normal for Yaun-ti to have multiple mates she'll think he's being ignorant instead of bad?
They did talk about mating rituals, and Sol did mention that one of his dads friends had two wives, though he didn't have kids with either.

“None whatsoever.” I say, resisting the urge to rub the eyes with the backs of my hands. “I’m glad you came tonight.”

“I’m not sure if this was a good idea, but I must admit I’m curious now.” Rowena says.

“Just a moment, I’ll see how things are coming.”

I slither over and try to open the door to the bedroom, finding it locked.

“Just a moment!” Comes the impatient voice from the other side of the door.

“I know that voice.” Rowena muses, “Do you have Constance Aquitaine in there?”

A moment later the door flies open, Constance herself standing there, adjusting the hem of her dress.

“Speak of the devil.” Rowena says quietly.

Constance stalks out of the bedroom, flashing me a glare.

“I didn’t know you planned on bringing more company. I thought I made it clear this was to be a private affair.”

“No need to worry.” I say, as calmingly as I can. “With my abilities I am more than capable of entertaining you both for as long as you wish.”

Sadly, this did not have the effect I intended.

Both women slowly turn to face me, and I feel a very unpleasant sensation in the pit of my gut.

“What?” They both ask at once, in the same low tone of voice.

“I said that I am more than capable of entertaining you both. I have kept considerably larger groups than this going and having a great time without any trouble, so I think the two of you shouldn’t be any trouble.”

“Why I never.” Rowena says, walking off alone.

Constance doesn’t seem very happy either. “Solaron, I thought I was clear that I wanted you all to myself tonight.”

I shrug. “Rowena wanted to come over as well. It’s more efficient to just take both of you at once.”

Constance opens her mouth, but can’t seem to think of anything to say, so she just shuts it again.

“And how exactly did you think this would work?” Rowena asks. “Surely you didn’t think I would be okay with this.”

“I thought I would play some music.” I say.

“That’s just what I thought, wait, what?” Rowena says.

I pick up my guitar and strum out a few notes. “I was going to play for you, then tell a few stories, I danced for Constance a little while ago, I would for you as well. I wanted to make you both happy, you know, that kind of thing I do.” I give a rather pained smile. I had hoped this night would have gone a lot better than it did. A shame.

“Oh.” Rowena says quietly, “I didn’t realize, I thought that… That’s actually quite sweet.”

“Sweet?” Constance snorts, “It’s disappointing is what it is.”

“Wait, you wanted him to do, that, didn’t you?” Rowena says, jabbing an accusing finger at Constance.

“Well I for one came here to get laid, not listen to an amateur bard serenade me all night.” Constance says.

“He wanted to make you happy!” Rowena says, “Which is far more than a viper like you deserves.”

“Viper?” I ask.

“No offense Solaron.” Rowena apologizes.

“None taken.” I assure her.

“I wanted him to make me happy you insufferable little shrew!” Constance says, practically spitting out the words. “But he could have made me a lot happier in bed than with his two copper serenades.”

Rowena is beyond words it seems, her cheeks puffin up and her face red.

“What’s wrong?” Constance teases, “Did you want the serpent for yourself? I imagine he might be a lot more enjoyable than that oaf of a man you call husband. Or is it that you wanted a younger man, who hadn’t had that much experience? He would probably have thought you were the best woman in the world, considering how little experience he seems to have.”

“Why I, I… I would never…” The Rowena’s face goes suddenly, completely calm.

“Solaron, could you please get me a glass of something? There should be a bottle and glasses in that cabinet over there.”

I slither over to the cabinet glad for a brief respite from the two women. This is not how I imagined this going at all. I find a wine bottle in the cabinet and a pair of glasses. I slither back to the women, who are still glaring at each other. I pour one glass and offer it to Rowena, who takes it graciously.

“Thank you Solaron.” She says, sipping it, “You have been very kind in a difficult situation.”

Constance snorts. “I doubt he would have been complaining if you hadn’t interrupted.”

Rowena smiles her warmest smile. It still chills me to the bone. “Oh Constance, I just want you to know, I’ve wanted to do this for years.”

She reaches out her hand, and splashes the glass of wine over the front of Constance’s silvery dress. Constance gasps and looks down at her stained dress.

“What have you done? You, you whore!” She cries.

“I think there is only one whore here Constance.” Rowena says, still smiling, “And I think I know who it is judging by your actions tonight. Tell me, do you hop in bed with every handsome young man who passes your way? Or just the ones you think you can trick into thinking you’re a rare beauty?”

She was about to say something more when Constance smacked her full across the cheek.

“Hey!” I shout, slipping between them, fangs itching to extend. “That is enough!”

“Out of the way!” Rowena says, pushing me aside with surprising strength. She pulls back her hand and smacks Constance across the face as well, the other lady looking at her aghast.

After that they are upon each other, a whirling maelstrom of smacking hands and flying hair. I try to intercede, but am smacked repeatedly about the head and shoulders and sent flying. I think it would take my saber to separate them at this point, but I am unwilling to use that kind of force. Their fight proceeds into the bedroom, where they crash against the bed, pulling at each other’s hair and shrieking like banshees.

I barely hear another knock at the door over the noise they are making.

I take a gulp of win from the bottle in my hand and open the door, finding a rather excited looking Sloane waiting for me in the corridor.

“Solaron, good. Something is happening down in the main hall, I need you to come on and…”

That’s when he sees my clothes lying in a heap in the middle of the floor. He looks back over my shoulder into the bedroom. I follow his gaze, just able to glimpse Constance and Rowena rolling about on the bed, still tussling with each other. He looks down to the bottle of wine in my hand.

“Sol, what in the name of Pelor were you doing here?”

“This is quite simple to explain.” I assure him. “Both Lady Constance and Lady Rowena wanted to meet with me for a private show, as it were. I decided to do the efficient thing and take them both on at once, but once they met it seemed they were more interested in each other.”

Sloane blinks, his mouth falling open. I gesture back to their grappling forms half glimpsed on the bed.

“They’ve been going at each other for a few minutes now, the last time I tried to pull them apart and get between them I got thrown across the room. It’s probably best if we just left them to it.”

Sloane seems to regain his wits, nodding slowly.

“Yes, yes that would probably be best.”

He grabs the wine from my hand, taking a long gulp as we head into the corridor together.

“Now, what’s going on in the banquet hall?”
Keep going

Sloane gulps the wine again, before handing the bottle back to me.

“Barkley was arguing with Aquitaine. Things got heated fast, they started threatening each other. Barkley left for his rooms, but he said that when he came back he would put an end to their rivalry, permanently.”

“He’s going for the staff.” I reason, quickening my pace.

“That’s what we thought as well, I want everyone ready in case we need to stop Barkley. If he’s figured out how to use that staff, and it’s as powerful as we think, then he could blow the whole house in half on accident.”

We reach the banquet hall a minute later, seeing something of a commotion going on. Aquitaine is standing in the middle of the banquet hall, the rest of the guests hovering around the walls, not coming near him. The cause is evident, when we follow Aquitaine’s unblinking gaze. Sir Barkley stands upon the staircase leading down into the banquet hall, the long staff in his hands. The staff is made of long, greyish metal, a frosty glass globe mounted on the end. Barkley is slowly advancing on Aquitaine, a very grim look on his face.

“We need to get down there!” Sloane says, racing down the staircase. I follow as quickly as I am able, hurrying to join my friends at the edge of the crowd.
Shit just got real
French fried noble anyone?

“We need to get out there!” I hiss at them, “Come on!” I slither out into the cleared space, not quite getting between Barkley and Aquitaine.

I glance over my shoulder, reassured that my friends are following a few feet behind.

“Out of the way Solaron.” Barkley says, his face set.

“I’m not moving.” I say, squarely coming between him and Aquitaine. “You’re going to have to blast us both. And half the room most likely.”

Barkley shakes the staff in his hands, glassy orb pointing straight through me at Aquitaine.

“Don’t push me Solaron, this rat has had this coming for a decade now.”

“You’re not going to kill me.” I say with a calm confidence I wish I felt. “You’re not going to kill him. I know little of you Sir Barkley, but I know your wife well enough.”

He looks at me, “What are you saying?” he asks, while Aquitaine sniggers.

“I’m saying that I’ve been talking to her. I know she’s a very kind woman, and that she cares about you. Even if she thinks you’re a bit daft at times. She loves you though, and I don’t think she’s the wife of a murderer. She still thinks of you as a good man. Are you going to prove her wrong?”

I think I’ve gotten through to him, but he shakes his head.

“No, I have to do this Solaron, now get out of the way.”

Aquitaine laughs again behind me.

“Oh don’t worry Solaron, he doesn’t have the guts to do it.”

I half turn to face him. “What do you mean?”

“I mean that he’s a spineless coward. That he is so obsessed with beating me because he could never hope to actually surpass me. I’ve always been better than him. Better house, better finances, better wife.”

“Take back what you said about my wife.” Barkley growls.

“What? That she’s a wrinkly little shrew? Or that she has the business sense of a brain dead beggar?”

I shrug. “Actually, I think you two have some differences to work out.”

I slither out of the line of fire, watching as the color drains from Aquitaine’s face.
Moar, for the love of Pelor moar.

“W-Wait!” Aquitaine says, raising a hand as if to defend himself. “Barkley don’t do this!”

“This is for insulting my wife you wretched piece of slime.”

He takes the staff in a firm grip, and points it right at Aquitaine. Barkley puffs up his chest and shouts
“Klaatu Brada Nikto!” At the top of his voice.

Nothing happens. No great surge of eldritch energy is summoned forth to consume Aquitaine where he stands. Barkley looks down at the staff in his hands.

“I don’t understand. Klaatu Brada Nikto!”He shouts again, to equal effect as before.

Aquitaine slowly starts clapping.

“Oh marvelously done you fool, fantastic. You had me dead to rights and managed to mess it up! This is a new height of accomplishment for you.”

Aquitaine turns to look at me, smiling, before breaking into a full laugh.

“Like I said, he’s entirely pathetic, below me in every respect. Why I might just take his house after all this is over, maybe then I’ll take his”


Whatever Aquitaine was about to say is drowned out by Barkley’s scream of rage as he runs forward, brandishing the staff over his head like a cudgel.
Blood for the blood god
>Klaatu Brada Nikto

What you did there: Seen.
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Just be glad he didn't fumble the pronunciation.

Aquitaine barely manages to duck underneath the swing that would have smashed his head in, the heavy staff swishing just over his head. Barkley winds up again, swinging down at Aquitaine, who jumps aside, making a noise like a mouse being stepped on.

“Take back what you said about my wife!” Barkley shouts, trying to stave Aquitaine’s skull in.

“Never!” Aquitaine shouts back, punching Barkley across the face when he was distracted.

Sloane runs over, his hands outstretched. “Break it up!” He shouts, “Come on, break it up!”

He tries to pull Barkley back, but gets thumped across the chest by the staff for his trouble, staggering backward gasping for air.

Barkley stabs at Aquitaine with the end of the staff, but the other noble grabs onto it and pulls, almost knocking him off his balance. Barkley pulls back, and they stand there, locked in a struggle for the staff, neither moving.

At least until Aquitaine started kicking Barkley in the shins.

Barkley hops on one foot, cursing, before he starts kicking back. I consider trying to intervene, but am worried I’ll take a hit like Sloane, so I just slither around the outside of the fight, making vaguely restraining motions with my hands.

“You were never as good as me!” Aquitaine hisses.

“Tell yourself whatever you like Aquitaine! I’m a better man than you could ever be!” Barkley hisses back.

They struggle and strain against each other for a few more moments, kicking and spitting and hopping. Then I see Sal’vir raise his hands up and say “Enough.”

Neither of the combatants seems to hear him though, as they continue fighting unabated. Sal’vir storms forward, making a chopping motion with his hand. “Enough!” He shouts again. But it seems the nobles are too intent on each other, and the elf’s speech has about as much effect as Barkley’s magic words.

Sal’vir’s face twists into an angry snarl I have never seen on it before, and he pushes into the brawl with all the subtlety of an angry troll. He grabs the center of the staff in his hand.

“ENOUGH!” He shouts, his voice filling the room.

As I watch some sort of shock of energy flows through his hand and through the staff, blasting each noble away from it so that they land on their hindquarters with a thud. Sal’vir looks down and examines the staff in his hands, his mouth falling open as he gazes at it.
Rolled 3, 1, 5, 3, 2, 6, 6, 1, 4, 6, 2, 3 = 42

and now he knows its power
ignore that roll I forgot to get rid of it

“Give that back!” Barkley demands.

“The staff is rightfully mine!” Aquitaine protests.

“SILENCE!” Sal’vir shouts in a voice far too loud and booming to belong to the slight elf.

“I shall speak, and you shall answer!” He booms again, the nobles unimpressed by his display.

“Do you expect us to be cowed by a loud voice?” Aquitaine asks.

Sal’vir focuses, and begins to spin the staff in his hands, his motions sending his robes flowing. As he does so, the room starts to darken, the candles sending out less and less light, the shadows seeping from under tables and from darkened corners like things alive.

“I shall speak, and you shall answer.” Sal’vir says again, in a voice of deep confidence. “Explain how this all began. Who had the staff first?”

“I did!” They both shout at once.

They begin to bicker with each other again, but Sal’vir silences them by banging the staff on the ground with a booming noise like a thunderbolt.

“One at a time. Barkley, you speak first. When did this all begin?”

Barkley straightens his jacket.

“This began ten years ago. When sir Aquitaine and I were adventuring companions.”
but you rolled 42.

Clearly this is a good sign.
well in that case.....

Sal’vir simply looks on, small storm clouds seeming to gather over his head.

“We worked together for a few months, exploring old castles, charting paths through the woods. The wealth we gained from those days helped us increase our families in status and stature. One day we learned of the tomb of a powerful wizard, containing a trove of magical artifacts. We went down there, avoided the traps, and eventually found my staff.”

“My staff!” Aquitaine contradicts, earning a glare from Sal’vir’s eyes, which seem to be glowing slightly in the gloom.

Aquitaine doesn’t say anything more.

“Anyway,” Barkley continued. “we reached the staff, and found that it was the only thing left intact in the trove, everything else had been destroyed by the passage of time. We each claimed ownership of it, seeing as it was the only thing there, and we began to fight over it. We’re still fighting over it today.”

“All this over one staff?” Galen asks.

“Only one of the most powerful staffs in existence!” Aquitaine snaps. “The power in that piece of metal is enough to propel my house to fame and glory, I must have it!”

“It belongs to me!” Barkley says.

“Wrong!” Sal’vir corrects, waving the staff over his head.

“This. Staff. Is. MINE!”
ladies and gentleman... the elf has lost his mind.
its probably more like the one ring, so powerful everyone wants it.

He whirls the staff about in his hands, turning it in great arcs. Vapor trails coalesce at the tips of the staff, and the room darkens even further. Sal’vir’s robes billow about in a sorcerous wind, a deep, booming filling the room as he begins some eldritch chant. The light in his eyes glows brighter and brighter, his chanting gaining speed as he continues.

His words are booming throughout the banquet hall, the words of some long dead language echoing off the stone walls, filling the room with the voice far too powerful to be that of the elf I know. Finally, he throws back his head and shouts “KLAATU BRADA NIKTO!” as he raises the staff high over his head.

Quite suddenly, all the magical effects in the room disappear with a little ‘pop’.

Sal’vir taps the staff on the floor a few times, flicking the crystal ball on the end with his finger. He experimentally points it at a wall and mutters something under his voice. Nothing happens. He swishes the staff through the air a few times.

“Huh. Guess it really is nothing.”

“What?” Aquitaine asks in a small voice.

“It’s not magical.” Sal’vir says simply. “I knew from the moment I picked it up.”

“That’s not possible.” Barkley says, “We found it in the trove of the wizard!”

“Oh yes, I imagine it belonged to a wizard at one time. It was probably his favorite walking stick. It’s a very fine staff, but it has no powers to speak of.”

“But… but… but…” Aquitaine mumbles to himself, reaching out as if trying to grasp threads from empty air. Barkley looks equally lost.

Sal’vir twirls the staff under his arm and walks back towards us, grabbing the bottle of wine from my hand.

“Come on boys.” The elf says, taking a swig of wine. “We’re done here.”
It's a dud... who forgot the batteries..?

also...So the elf didn't lose his mind...he just turned into a epic elven badass...how do you even get a elf that way? it's not natural!
well that deflated the wind right out of those two to know they were fighting over nothing.
Righto, I'm tired and done writing for today. Over twelve hours of writing, over twenty pages written...

I like these days.

Thanks for reading, I will try to have some more tomorrow.
good night
Good night, I enjoyed this segment greatly.
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Have one more lizardman before bed.

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