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+ THE ADVENTURERS +
+ Epic II +
+ The various characters contained in these writings are +
+ copyright 1994 by Thomas Miller. Any resemblance to any +
+ persons or characters either real or fictional is utterly +
+ coincidental. Copying and/or distribution of these tales +
+ is permissible only under the sole condition that no part +
+ of them will be used or sold for profit. In that case, I +
+ hope you enjoy them... +
+ Thomas Miller +
+ email@example.com +
+ THE PARTY: +
+ Belphanior 12th/13th/13th level high elf w/m/t (CN) +
+ Ged 13th/13th level grey elf priest/mage (NG) +
+ Arnold 11th level human warrior (NG) +
+ Mongo 15th level dwarf warrior (CG) +
+ Peldor 18th level human thief (N) +
+ Rillen 15th level human warrior (N) +
+ Date: 12/27/572 C.Y. (Common Year) +
+ Time: midday +
+ Place: Ged's castle, near Greyhawk +
+ Climate: extremely cold +
+ "In this business you either sink or swim or you don't." +
+ - David Smith +
CXLV. Peldor the Businessman
As Rillen rode toward Ged's partially-finished castle, he
noted that construction was proceeding as rapidly as before.
The place would probably be finished within a month, at this
Ged: (wanders out of the castle, pointing upward) There's
my main gate. (he walks across a drawbridge) And there's
my moat. Yes, things are going well. Say, nice to see
you. It's been what, two weeks now? How are things?
Rillen: Maybe not so well. Guess what has happened?
Ged: Uh...(knits his brows) Peldor robbed the city vault?
Rillen: Hmm, interesting guess...but no.
Ged: Damn! Well, what is it, then?
Rillen: Mongo has left the city - headed eastward, I think.
He told no one, but simply rode away, all by himself.
Ged: Hmm. Strange. I hope he's okay. That business with
Flint, and everything...
Rillen: Aye. There is more, though. Peldor has...how can
I put this? He _bought_ the Green Dragon Inn.
Ged: He did WHAT?!?
Rillen: Bought it! Paid the last owner, old Roscoe, some
sum of money - enough, I would suppose, to ensure a happy
retirement for the old fellow. Peldor has taken over all
operations of the place.
Ged: Wow. Maybe this means we'll get free rooms while in
Rillen: From Peldor? I seriously doubt it. But anyhow-
Ged: You mean there's more?!?
Rillen: Of course.
Ged: Let me guess. Peldor's trying to get the temple of
Pelor, god of light, renamed to suit him?
Rillen: Not quite. Actually, Belphanior has dropped from
Ged: Hmm. Not surprising.
Rillen: It has been two weeks. Unusual, even for him.
Ged: True. Say, have you seen Arnold?
Rillen: No. Why?
Ged: I sent him into town to pick up his armor. It should
have been fixed by now. No matter - I'm sure he'll turn
up sooner or later. He's getting fairly competent at
taking care of business; I dare say he's matured a good
deal since I first hired him on.
Rillen: That is good. Well, how goes the castle?
Ged: Well. It should be done well before spring. With any
luck, people will move out here, farmers mostly, and I'll
have a small township going.
Rillen: Sounds like fun.
Ged: Yea. Of course, the only temple in the area will be
that of Boccob...
They kept on talking, and before long, the day had passed.
Then the next day passed, and the next. On one occasion,
they went to Greyhawk, to check up on Peldor.
Ged: (he and Rillen enter the Green Dragon Inn) Let's
see what he's up to-
Ged: It's completely remodeled! And in only two weeks?!?
Boccob's blessed bones! I never-
bouncer: (standing six-foot-eight, he blocks the way in)
bouncer: Excuse me, gentlemen, but I'll have to ask you to
please leave your weapons at the door. (he points to a
nearby counter, which is manned by a grizzled dwarf with
a waist-long beard) With him, if you please.
dwarf: (grins) Hand 'em over, fellas.
Ged: Sure. (he hands Lightbringer to the dwarf) That's
it for me.
Ged: Shh. The rules are the rules, you know.
bouncer: Are you wearing any armor today, gentlemen?
Ged: Not me.
Rillen: Me neither. (reluctantly hands over his staff)
I would have hoped that Peldor might have made his rules
different from every other classy inn of Greyhawk.
Ged: Nah. That's why they're classy.
dwarf: Heh heh. You got it, dude.
bouncer: I assume you know our owner, from the way you
speak of him. (he signals to a serving wench) Go find
waitress: (bustling) Sure thing!
bouncer: Old friends, eh?
Rillen: Indeed we are.
Ged: (makes his way into the inn, where an attractive woman
is busy tending bar) Did Peldor hire you, too?
woman: Of course. What's your pleasure?
Rillen: Nothing for me, thanks.
Ged: (thinking to truly test the quality of Peldor's new
establishment) Wine. Velunan wine, white if you have any.
bartender: Coming right up. (she looks through the racks
of bottles behind the bar, about fifteen feet from the
Ged: Pretty competent. And pretty.
Rillen: For all we know, she can fight, too.
bartender: (returns, with a wine bottle and a glass) Yep,
I can. (she gestures to a scimitar hanging over the bar)
Beat a lot of so-called swordsmen, back in the old days.
I can also hit you with a dagger at fifty paces, climb a
sheer wall, and hear things said about me by people who
don't know I'm listening.
Rillen: (stares dumbfounded)
waitress: Sure you won't have a drink?
Just then, Peldor walked into the room, chatting merrily
with a couple of local politician-types.
Peldor: Ah! My old friends finally show up!
Ged: Well, we were kind of in the area and just figured
we'd see what you had done...
Peldor: I've done all kinds of things. (he ushers the
two men into a padded booth, where they are instantly
catered to by some waitress) Improved the security -
Vinnie there's not only a good bouncer, but he's polite
too. Customers like that, you know.
Ged: Yea, we noticed.
Peldor: But that's not all. I also paid off most of the
waiters. Any place run by Peldor has got to have plenty
of comely young waitresses.
Peldor: And I've more than doubled our alcohol selection.
A wise investment for me, at this point. Also we have
some of the finest chefs in the land now! (he grins)
Rillen: So instead of merely being an excellent inn, this
is now an outstanding inn?
Peldor: Something like that. We've also added a casino
upstairs. In fact, I had three additional floors added
Ged: Three floors?!? Already?!?
Peldor: Yup. That's over two dozen more rooms. And I've
had all the rooms refurbished - they're a lot nicer now.
Rillen: I am impressed. You really are taking this thing
Peldor: Of course. Why, you wouldn't believe the sorts
of people I've had to hobnob with, due to my new status
as a city mogul. Politicians - see those two over in
the booth there? One's the mayor's assistant, and the
other is on the city council.
Peldor: That's not it, though. There's also leading magi
and priests, merchants, generals, nobles...why, they all
know me. Or soon will. Being a businessman is a serious
undertaking, you know, both socially and economically.
bartender: (refills Ged's wine glass)
Peldor: (points offhandedly to the bartender) Say, I'm
sure you've met Tanya here...
Rillen: Yes. Most impressive.
Peldor: Isn't she, though? All that, and she can make
drinks, too! What a deal! Good help _is_ hard to find,
but once you've found it, you're set.
Ged: Must be your charming personality.
Peldor: Yep, that's what I figured. (to Tanya) For the
record, these are some of my old adventuring buddies.
They get the VIP treatment whenever they show up.
Rillen: (looking around at the many happy patrons) Looks
to me like everyone is getting the VIP treatment.
Peldor: Maybe, but I want my staff to know who you guys
are. Ahh, 'my staff'...I like the sound of that...now
where did I put those cigars?
Ged: Well, we really must be going.
Peldor: No, no, no! Stay for dinner, I insist.
Ged: Can't do it - I've got a castle to check on. Say,
do you know anything about Mongo? Or Belphanior?
Peldor: Not really, why?
Ged: They've both dropped out of sight. Word is, Mongo
left the city.
Peldor: And he didn't even see my place yet! How rude!
Ged: Oh well.
Rillen: Does this new business mean that your adventuring
days are at an end?
Peldor: Oh, heavens, no! Anytime the need arises - or
the desire strikes - I'll leave the staff in charge and
split. That _is_ what I hired them for...
Ged: Hmm. Well, we've got to be going.
Peldor: Okay. If you need to find me, you know where I
am. (he heads upstairs)
Rillen: (he and Ged leave, and wander along the streets
of the city) That was interesting. Moreso than I ever
suspected it would be.
Ged: Yea. You know, it wouldn't surprise me in the least
if the scoundrel was running a den of thieves from that
place...(he looks at Rillen)
Rillen: (looks at Ged)
both: Nah, couldn't be.
Before the day was out, they found Arnold, who was busy
shopping (!) for new clothes in the marketplaces of the
Rillen: I think I shall stay in town for a while. I need
some peace and quiet to read those books I have.
Ged: Very well. We'll see you when we see you.
next time : what Belphanior's up to
notes : I hope this episode was as refreshing to read
as it was to write.
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