Chapter #379

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                                +   +
                              +       +
                            +           +
                          +               +
                        +                   +
                      +                       +
                    +      THE ADVENTURERS      +
                      +                       +
                        +      Epic II      +
                          +               +
                            +           +
                              +       +
                                +   +

+    Many of the locations, non-player characters, spells, and      +
+  other terms used in these stories are the property of TSR, Inc.  +
+  However, this does not mean that TSR in any way endorses or      +
+  authorizes their use, and any such items contained within these  +
+  stories should not be considered representative of TSR in any    +
+  way, shape, or form.                                             +
+    The player characters contained in these writings are copy-    +
+  right 1991-6 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                    +
+                           +
+  THE PARTY (or a fraction of it, anyway):                         +
+                                                                   +
+  Alindyar       16th level dark elven wizard                  (N) +
+  Lyra           13th level female dark elven wizard           (N) +
+  Peldor         19th level human thief                        (N) +
+    Bosco        11th level halfling thief                     (N) +
+    Tanya        5th/11th level female human fighter/thief     (N) +
+  Date:        1/22/576 C.Y. (Common Year)                         +
+  Time:        early evening                                       +
+  Place:       the Golden Phoenix, in Greyhawk                     +
+  Climate:     cold outside, cozy inside                           +
+  "There's no place like home."                                    +
+                                    -Dorothy, _The Wizard of Oz_   +

                    CCCLXXIX.  A New Home

  Not long ago, Peldor did Alindyar a great favor and helped him
purchase some land and a spacious mansion within Greyhawk's High
Quarter.  Now, after some other things have been taken care of,
those two adventurers are walking through the high halls and rooms
of the newly-inhabited home...

Peldor:  (looks around, whistling)  Damn.  Hard to believe you
  only got it a week ago...
Alindyar:  Indeed.  (shrugs)  Given modern advances...spells of
  teleportation and such, it is possible to move one's entire
  stock of possessions within a single day.
Peldor:  (runs his finger across an oaken tabletop, finding no
  dust on the furniture)  Imagine that.
Alindyar:  Then again, we didn't own that much in the first place.
  (he eyes a large, empty room to one side)  That, however, will
Peldor:  (nods)  This place is awfully clean.
Alindyar:  'Tis the unseen servants.
Peldor:  The what?
Alindyar:  Invisible beings, summoned into being to perform all
  manner of simple tasks.
Peldor:  Oh.
Alindyar:  Still, the dust collects swiftly in this house...I have
  no idea why.  The servants will surely stay busy.
Peldor:  Dust problems?
Alindyar:  (shrugs)  'Tis the nature of an older home, I suppose.
Peldor:  Hmm.  So you haven't seen any ghosts?
Alindyar:  (regards the thief oddly)  No.  Why do you ask?
Peldor:  No reason...this mansion just looks like the kind of
  place that could be haunted.
Alindyar:  Oh?
Peldor:  It's's's's quiet...
Alindyar:  (nods)  Precisely the way we wish it.
Peldor:  Hmm...well, it's different, I'll give you that.
Lyra:  (appears from a side chamber, a stack of scrolls floating
  along in the air behind her)  Fear not.  We'll clear out the
  cobwebs when we host parties.
Alindyar:  (watches his mate go by, and smiles thinly)
Lyra:  (vanishes into another room)
Peldor:  Heh.  She looks happy.
Alindyar:  Oh, she was.  I suspect that the idea of our own home,
  up here on the surface world, had never occurred to her.  'Twas
  quite a surprise...
Peldor:  But a good one?
Alindyar:  (his eyes sparkling)  Oh, indeed.  Lyra was...most
Peldor:  Glad to hear it.  So you're all moved out, already?
Alindyar:  Aye, days past.
Peldor:  Hmm.
Alindyar:  What of our previous room, in the Green Dragon?
Peldor:  Bosco wants to move into it.
Alindyar:  Oh.
Peldor:  (shrugs)  Who can know the ways of a Bosco?
Alindyar:  Who indeed?  Such things were perhaps not meant to
  be pondered.  At least, not by the sane.
Peldor:  Nope.  (they enter the study, a large chamber lined with
  bookcases, many of which are empty or nearly so)  Whoa.
Alindyar:  Please, excuse the mess.
Peldor:  What mess?  I thought it was fairly neat.
Alindyar:  We are still in the process of building our library.
Peldor:  Oh.
Alindyar:  It could take years.
Peldor:  Maybe you should raid some wizard's lair.
Alindyar:  (rubs his chin)  Not a bad idea...
Peldor:  Hey, I was just kidding.
Alindyar:  Not I.
Peldor:  Hmm...well, be sure to let me know if you go out on some
  such "trip"...
Alindyar:  (nods slightly)
Peldor:  So, did you get all the necessary paperwork done?
Alindyar:  I believe so.  (he counts off on the fingers of one
  hand)  Property taxes...home taxes...ownership papers...
Peldor:  I know.  It seems like a mountain of documentation, for
  a simple house.
Alindyar:  'Tis ridiculous.
Peldor:  Heh.  Just be glad you don't run a business out of it.
  That's when things get _really_ complicated.
Alindyar:  Well...hopefully all is complete now.
Peldor:  Remember, like I said - if you need any help or papers,
  talk to Simmons, in Greyhawk's Commission of Land and Property.
Alindyar:  Thank you, I shall.

  They moved through the mansion, Alindyar showing Peldor the
various rooms and their new contents.  As Peldor knew, there were
six bedrooms, a kitchen adjoining a high-ceilinged dining room, a
sunken den with a built-in bar, and of course, the study.  Three
of the bedrooms had their own private bathing rooms; the master
bedroom's bathhouse was huge, with a sunken tub that could be
heated from beneath.  All of these rooms were spread across two
floors, the public chambers exclusively on the ground level.
  Above the second story, the roof sloped to a point, and within
this section was the mansion's attic, accessible via a hidden
staircase at the end of one hall.  In addition, there was a large
cellar, with only a single entry stairway and no windows, beneath
the mansion's main floor.
  Within, the mansion was almost all wood:  wooden floors, wooden
walls, wooden doors, wooden railings.  Alindyar doubted that the
place contained any stone, save in its cellar and foundation.
It had been built more than a century ago, in a time when beauty
and appearance were more important that anything else.  Indeed, in
these modern times, using this much wood in a house would have
been ridiculously expensive.  All ceilings were unusually high,
another common property of such old homes; some giants could have
walked through the mansion's halls comfortably.

Alindyar:  So far, we have accompanied our stone golem throughout
  the house; even the attic floor has proven solid enough to bear
  his weight without collapsing.  This house was exceptionally
  strongly built!
Peldor:  Hmm.  Still, that's an _awful_ lot of weight to have
  roaming about.
Alindyar:  Aye.  That is why Lyra and I are looking into new forms
  of golems...constructs that are formidible, yet not bulky.
Peldor:  Sounds like a good idea.

  In addition to the furniture that had been left in the place by
its previous owners, there was more, purchased by the drow over
the last few days.  These pieces matched the existing ones so well
that a visitor would never have known the difference.  Whoever had
lived here before, their preferences at least partially matched
those of the drow, an odd coincidence indeed.
  Alindyar had tried in vain to learn the identity of said owners.
The farthest back the city's records went was three years, when
a visiting delegate from a faraway kingdom had rented the mansion
out.  The man had mysteriously disappeared two years ago, and no
one had truly lived in the place since then.  Alindyar found this
unusual, though if he had lived in Greyhawk long enough to truly
understand the High Quarter and the sort of people who usually
lived there, he would have found it even more unusual.

Peldor:  Sounds like the mansion has its share of secrets.
Alindyar:  Perhaps, though we have found no secret doors, rooms,
  or traps.
Peldor:  Well, that's good.
Alindyar:  Aye.
Peldor:  What about security?  This is the sort of place that
  thieves might have their eye on.
Alindyar:  We are...unconcerned with that.  Measures are being
  taken to deter such activity.
Peldor:  (nods)  Well, if you need someone to test out your
Alindyar:  I wouldn't recommend that.
Peldor:  Err...okay.
Alindyar:  A variety of guards and wards shall be placed on the
  windows and doors.  The defense shall not be perfect - not yet -
  but we are researching new spells to change that.
Peldor:  Ah, I see.
Alindyar:  In addition, we have our stone golem...and there shall
  soon be other guardians.  (he looks around, smiling)  No, any
  would-be-intruders shall be most rudely surprised.

  Alindyar completed the tour, surprising Peldor with the amount
and quality of furnishings he and Lyra had acquired.  Peldor was
a good deal wealthier than most "wealthy" people, but he found
himself wondering just how much money the drow had.  Or maybe it
wasn't money, but rather resources.  In any case, they had done
an awful lot in a short period of time, and the thief was amazed.

Alindyar:  We shall have to have you and Tanya over for dinner
Peldor:  That would be nice.  (he turns to leave)  I've got to
  be going - Tanya's expecting me home for supper.
Alindyar:  I understand.  (he gestures to the front door, and
  it opens silently)
Peldor:  Hmm.  See you later.  (he leaves)

  After his friend had departed, and the door had closed, Alindyar
headed back upstairs.  Though things were indeed shaping up nicely,
he and Lyra had much work left to do.  All in all, however, they
were quite pleased at being new homeowners.

  Shortly thereafter, in the Green Dragon Inn...

Tanya:  Sounds like they're living it up already...
Peldor:  Yeah.  We may have to get a house someday, too.
Tanya:  Maybe we could build one, outside the city walls, like we
  were talking about the other night.
Peldor:  (nods)  I think that's what we're going to do.

  Since Tanya wasn't working at the moment, she and Peldor shared
a drink at the bar, in relative peace.  Relative, that is, until
a certain halfling made his appearance...

Bosco:  (slides around the corner, his socks allowing him a whole
  new range of motion on the polished wooden floors)  Yippee!
Peldor:  Bosco!  What are _you_ so happy about?
Bosco:  (adopts a serious look)  Oh, nothing.  (as quickly as he
  appeared, he vanishes)
Tanya:  Wonder what he's up to?
Peldor:  No good, I'm sure.  He doesn't usually act like this.
Tanya:  (thinking of Alindyar and Lyra again)  A new house...I
  can't think of anyone who deserves to be happy, more than they.
Peldor:  I know.  They've been dealt such a run of ill fortune,
  it was a pleasure to help fate smile on them.
Tanya:  (nods)  Peldor the humanitarian.
Peldor:  (smirks)  Don't let anyone hear about it.  My reputation
  would be shot all to hell.

next:      a new tangent
ftp: in /pub/access/dpm/rpg/stories/adventurers
mail:       (preferred)
notes:     Thanks to Paul Haust for reminding me that I never dealt
  with the drow moving into their house.  Sometimes I forget even
  the basic things.
    I'm considering making the index, FAQ, and similar documents
  accessible on the WWW only; in other words I won't regularly mail
  them out or post them.  I think the Web is here to stay, and is a
  better way to make these documents available to readers.  If, for
  some reason, you aren't able to web-browse, let me know.  I'm just
    Mark (Rillen) and Ashley (Ged) and some others and I went out
  the other night to eat and catch up and play pool and darts.
  That's Mark's way - he just calls you to let you know he's in town
  and that it's time to go out.

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