Chapter #466

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                                +   +
                              +       +
                            +           +
                          +               +
                        +                   +
                      +                       +
                    +      THE ADVENTURERS      +
                      +                       +
                        +      Epic III     +
                          +               +
                            +           +
                              +       +
                                +   +

+    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                    +
+                           +
+  Alindyar      17th level drow mage                           (N) +
+    Lyra        13th level female drow mage                    (N) +
+      Felicia    1st level female human thief                 (LN) +
+  Bosco         11th level halfling thief                     (CN) +
+  Date:        5/4/576 C.Y. (Common Year)                          +
+  Time:        lunchtime                                           +
+  Place:       the Green Dragon Inn, in Greyhawk                   +
+  Climate:     cool as a cucumber                                  +
+  "Insanity runs in my practically gallops."           +
+                - Mortimer Brewster, from _Arsenic and Old Lace_   +

                 CDLXVI.  The Magnificent Seven

  Six halflings, announced by Bosco as his brothers, have just
trooped into the Green Dragon Inn.

Vinnie:  (buries his head in his hands)  Oh, dear lord.
Felicia:  (eyeing the six newcomers happily)  You have brothers?!?
Bosco:  Do I ever! (he embraces each of the halflings joyfully)  I
  thought you guys would never make it!
Vinnie:  (clutching his money-wallet tightly in his hands)  That's
  it, I'm on my break.

  As the halflings chattered amongst themselves, Alindyar and Lyra
exchanged quizzical glances (and thoughts.)

Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  My, my.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Incredible.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  We never knew he had brothers...did we?
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  We never asked.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  True.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  They seem like a playful lot.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  That, my dear, is what scares me.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Oh, don't be a grouch.  They're harmless.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  No halfling is harmless.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Hmm, true...
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  I suppose Felicia will want to sit with
Felicia:  (tugging on Lyra's sleeve)  Can we sit at the same table as
Lyra:  Um...I don't see why not.
Alindyar:  (checks his pockets absentmindedly)
Bosco:  (turns toward them once more)  Alindyar, Lyra, Felicia...let
  me introduce you to my brothers!
Alindyar:  (muttering)  I cannot wait.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Be polite!
Bosco:  (gestures to the nearest of the halflings)  First off, this is
Rosco:  (a rascally-looking little fellow)  Charmed, I'm sure.
Felicia:  I am!
Rosco:  I meant me.
Bosco:  (ignoring Rosco)  And Paco...
Paco:  (a slim one, for a halfling, he grins)  Hi, there!  Nice place
  you have here!
Bosco:  It's mine, Paco, not theirs.
Paco:  Oh, sorry.
Bosco:  And then there's Tuco.
Tuco:  (a sly-looking halfling, he nods slightly)  Pleased to meet you.
Bosco:  Tuco's the schemer in the family...well, next to me, anyways.
Tuco:  Hah!
Bosco:  (gestures to the next of the six)  Tiko...
Tiko:  (a shy-seeming, quiet one, he bows politely)  Nice to meet you
Bosco:  Tiko's twin brother, Riko...
Riko:  (a handsome little fellow with sideburns, he bows deeply)  The
  pleasure is all mine.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Hard to believe they're twins...
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  Remember, anything is possible where
  halflings are concerned.
Bosco:  Last, but not least - there can't _be_ a least in this family -
  I give you...Spocko.
Spocko:  (a serious-looking halfling in a deep blue vest, he raises an
  eyebrow)  How do you do?
Felicia:  Seven brothers...
Lyra:  Amazing.  Truly amazing.
Rosco:  And we haven't even gotten started yet!
Bosco:  (looking around, he quickly spots a vacant table that will
  seat the entire group)  This way!

  Bosco led the merry band toward the large, round table, and within
moments, they had all piled onto the plush circular couch that nearly
encircled the table.  There was room to spare, too.  Before they could
even get comfortable, barmaids were putting mugs of ale and mead before
the (mostly minuscule) diners.

Bosco:  It's good to be the king.
Rosco:  Ale!  Mead!  Wine!  Beer!
Tiko:  And some lemonade, if you have any.  (to the barmaid)  Thanks.
Paco:  (finishes his mug)  Urp!
Lyra:  So, what brings all of you here, to Greyhawk?
Alindyar:  (ESP-ing to Lyra)  The lure of easy money, no doubt.
Lyra:  (stifles a laugh)
Rosco:  We heard that Greyhawk was a great place to be...and to work.
Bosco:  Well, it is, but-
Spocko:  Actually, we journeyed here at Bosco's request.
Paco:  Yeah...something about showing us his new place...
Rosco:  Heh.
Tuco:  (flipping a coin along the fingers of one hand)
Paco:  (discussing lunch options with a barmaid)
Riko:  (to Lyra)  So...what's a fine elven girl like you doing in a
  place like this?
Lyra:  (nearly chokes on her drink)
Alindyar:  (frowns)
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  I do believe he's trying to pick me up.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  <sigh>
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Good thing he doesn't stand a chance, eh?
Riko:  (ever-persistent)  Can I buy you a drink?
Tuco:  (to Felicia)  You're a friend of Bosco's, then?
Felicia:  (nods)  He helped me out once, and I've never looked back.
Tuco:  I see.
Felicia:  He's a good friend.  (she smiles as she drinks her cider)
  I'm happy to see that he's got all these brothers.
Tuco:  What about the casino?  Is it rigged?
Felicia:  How should I know?
Paco:  (wolfing down food even faster than Bosco's been seen to do)
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Good thing this isn't a buffet.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  Aye.  He could give Mongo a run for his
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  How can such a little body hold so much
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  Merely another of life's mysteries, my
Rosco:  (casing out various patrons, he notes their apparent wealth)
Bosco:  No, no.  No robbery in here.
Rosco:  Huh?
Bosco:  I know that look.  I see it every time I gaze in the mirror.
Rosco:  Who, me?
Riko:  (busily discussing past romances with Lyra)
Lyra:  (coyly ignoring the halfling's innunendos and passes while
  managing not to be rude)
Rosco:  -and then we fled the tent, right as the whole kit-and-kaboodle
  came crashing down!
Paco:  Boy, what a time we had that night.
Alindyar:  How did you seven come to be?
Spocko:  Well, it all starts with a kiss-
Tuco:  Our father was a traveling performer...after he got married he
  kept on moving.
Paco:  (working on his fifth plate of food)  Just took us-  <glmph>
  -along as we were growing up.
Tiko:  Never a dull moment...
Riko:  Lots of charming ladies...
Rosco:  And daring adventures...
Lyra:  Did it ever end?  The traveling, I mean?
Paco:  Yep, eventually.
Rosco:  Pop settled down in Havenhill, hell, a good fifteen years ago.
Bosco:  (raises his mug happily)  I was eight!
Tuco:  The youngest of the brothers, but one of the most clever.
Spocko:  (nods)  On numerous occasions, young Bosco stole whatever he
  could lay his hands on.
Riko:  (nods)  No fear...that's our Bosco.
Tiko:  Hey, remember the time with the cookies?
Paco:  (frowns)  Those were _my_ cookies.
Lyra:  Bosco in the cookie jar as a the training began
Rosco:  You betcha.
Bosco:  (ignores the others as he chats with Felicia)  What _really_
  scares me is that these guys are just about the only ones who have
  a shot at cleaning out the casino!
Felicia:  (giggles)

  Just then, conversation was interrupted by a growling, grumbling
dwarf who ambled toward the table, talking with another fellow...

Mongo:  -waste of time!  We may never know who the hell that fuc-
  (he spots the table full of halflings, plus the drow, and simply
  stops talking)
Gorin:  (counting halflings)  -five, six, seven.  I'm not even gonna
Lyra:  (gestures to an empty space at the table)  You two look rather
  thirsty - why don't you join us?

next:      Ged
ftp: in /pub/access/dpm/rpg/stories/adventurers
  in /pub/users/zac/rpg/adventurers/
mail:       (preferred)
notes:     The premise behind this episode was dreamt up while a
  couple of friends (Lance Dooly and Mitch Reeves) and I were away
  vacationing in Florida earlier this summer.  Just an example of
  how random thoughts can sometimes coalesce into something neat.
  Actually, this has happened a lot since I've been writing.
    The story arc in Zeif owes much of its plot and inspiration to
  Leonard Bottleman.  I had forgotten to mention this in the last
    If you liked the story about the KISS concert, you should read
  this interesting article I found in the Atlanta paper the day

> Did concert promoters Alex Cooley and Peter Conlon really dress up
> like members of KISS when the band performed Tuesday at the Omni?
> (A clause in the band's contract requires promoters at all shows
> to wear full makeup, the band.)  Nope.  They did
> something even better.  Hired four dancers from the Cheetah and
> had _them_ paint their faces like Kiss and go to the show.

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