Surviving that encounter was close. Though it will not be my last. Just another in a long line of being stabbed, beaten up, or straight up nearly murdered. I need a better day job. Still, I committed another act to protect my life, how will the Trinity see me when I leave this plane. Will I be one with It or will grabbed by Amordous of Abysuss. I might find out soon.
Enough thinking of that sort of thing.This was the day. I became an Adventurer …
One good thing about Lake Merrin, it is not hard to find your way around. Looking down at the dead and unconscious two. “You know Ratty; you do bleed a lot.” Spying a water barrel. “You should have just ignored me, and you still would be kicking.”
Once washed off I look at the Brute. Pull my knife out; the hand is shaking. I haven’t committed blatant murder since the army. I did hate being a scout, taking out sentries who were not aware of you was not fun.
Sheathing my knife. “You are lucky today, not starting a day off with a honourless murder.”
Turning, feeling a wetness on my cheek. Must have splashed me. Let me think, if I hop this fence, I could make it onto Market. And just a stone throw away is the Hall. Looking back at my two fallen foes, I give them a salute. Stupid but brave.
The hustle and bustle of early Market Street. The smells of baked goods, the fishmongers yelling out their wares and no Malik or Dock Boys. This is not their territory, it is for the Wilted Flower Gang, and they are more about the subtle approach to thievery. Pickpocketing and the like.
There is a team now, love seeing them in action. Four walk up and bump. They walk away with a poor sods wallet. Been on the end of that a couple of times, until I made them realise why I should not be messed with. Ratty and Brute-boy found out the hard way.
What a beautiful day. Living through that death trap, appreciating life, and now off to the Hall!
Is that a pie shop I spy, and it sells beer too? My lucky day. Lukewarm beer, questionable meat pie, and if I can join a Charter today as well, it will be the most perfect day ever!
Arriving at the Hall on the corner of Market and Coin. This place always gives me goosebumps. The feeling of history seeping into you. This is where the great heroes who made their names here, and the money to be had. Just being here makes me think I could be one of them.
Ancient banners, relics thought lost to time and chilled ale. There is always a sight to see. Some random people are beating on each other in the duelling pit. I like the look of the armoured one. Is that, no, couldn’t be, Order of the Shield?
What is a member of the Order of the Shield doing in here? I’ve only ever seen them on the battlefield. Once a prat, always a prat! Always ordering us around like we were nothing. I wonder why he is here? When you join, it is for life. Is he a Shield? The armour is a dead give away. But still, by the way, he is moving with that fellow with the hammer, I can see he has trained in their ways.
Half-breeds and other scum like me never had that level of training. We were wall-fodder, as long as we could swing a sword and not die, our commanders like Shield-Boy didn’t care. But being a halfie, gave me more opportunities than others. I now know
Nevertheless, I would still put some slips on him, no matter how much they are up themselves. Their skill with a sword is always top-notch. Now a travelling Halfling Bard has come in to share his talent—gotta love free music.
Best day of the week is the sixth one. Buy two cups of ale for the price of one. Such a bargain. It might even be cheaper once you are registered. So looking forward to that sixth day now! I do love me some beer or an excellent ale, as long as it is cheap or free.
In a wink of an eye, the fight is over, or was I thinking too long about beer? I’m too late to put any money down on the match. If I did, I would have won. Oh well, off to talk to the administrator.
Big hammer fellow is getting dragged past me by a tough-looking guy and—hold the presses! —It’s Lana from the Travellers. Wow, only heard stories about them. Are there any other members of that Charter here? Can’t wait to see all of them.
Oh my Trinity, there is a bloody line-up. Let’s play the waiting game. I played this game a lot in the army. We wait here; then we wait over there.
As long as you looked busy, the Captain didn’t care. But had to look busy when the Sarge was walking around. If you were wasting time, she would find something for you to do. She busted me slacking off all the time! The number of latrine holes she made me dig; marching drills for hours on end, that wasn’t fun; and I never saw her have a drop of grog ever—not even once!
Even if she was weird, I did learn a lot from her. Wouldn’t be here today if she didn’t save me from the wrong end of a sword. From that day, I always have one silent toast in her honour.
After a stroll down memory lane, I can only think of sixth day two for one. Wonder what that beautiful girl that I occasionally have relations with is doing?
I’m just standing here; there is no one in front. Thank you, tired brain, for making the queue go away.
I walk over, and the administrator looks at me and says in a raspy voice, coughing up phlegm, “Come on, lad, been watching you stand there doing nothing for five minutes now. What do you want?”
That was shocking. Five minutes? I shrugged. Oh well, no queue.
“Come on; I haven’t got all day to watch you daydream. If you don’t tell me what you want, I’m going to have to ask you to leave!”
I shake my head and apologise, “Sorry, was jumped by some goons earlier today. Must be a little frazzled still, or it could be the pie.”
I can see Royce is becoming a little annoyed.
“Sorry. You don’t care. Um, I’m here to sign up!”
He looks me up and down. “Do you wish to start a new Charter or do you want to apply for an opening in an existing Charter, if one is available?”
“Just wanting to pay Hall’s dues and put my name down for any open spots.”
I stood there just grinning.
“What’s so funny, boy? You look like some grinning idiot. Take this paperwork and fill it out. The annual fee is four gold slips.”
Every time I come into the Hall and ask about Charters, Royce gives me the same speech and then forgets me. Bloody senile human.
“This does not guarantee you a spot in a party, just allows you to apply for jobs and covers the administration of your documents …”
Wow, this guy can prattle on. I can’t stand listening to people who think they are smarter than me. Or annoying people. Like this guy, just talking about stuff that really doesn’t matter.
“And after you are done with that there—”
He suddenly stops and looks at me. “Did you hear anything I just said, boy?”
“Of course I did! All this paperwork isn’t going to do itself. Here are the four slips, and may I borrow a quill and well to finish this?”
As he passes the writing kit over, I spy an empty table. Time to fill out this unnecessary paperwork. Looking at the forms, there are some interesting questions. Place of birth, okay. Name, I can do that. Skills and ability, well, that will be a short list. I can swing a sword, take orders, march, and scout—can’t forget that one.
Being a half-breed, they just give you the ‘fun’ jobs. Okay, I can see in the dark—so? Bloody typical, racist lowlifes! I can ride a horse too. Well, my horse. I loved that horse. The only one that would come near me. Can’t remember its name now. Another typical fantastic trait of my half-breed background.
A bit of sand to help it dry and done! Back to Royce. Such a bothersome administrator.
“With all your lollygagging, I thought this would take you longer.” He smiles and looks down at the form. “Let’s have a look at this … An army boy, haven’t seen that much.” He chuckles to himself. “This all seems in order. Here is your receipt. So, do you want your name in the pool for open Charter?”
“So, no Charters are looking for anyone? Willing to do any sort of job, even if they don’t want a new signing member. Ready to be signed on for a job or two.”
Royce says, “I have a group upstairs looking for a few members. I can put your name down, but …” He pauses to point to a strong Folk and then to an armoured knight from the pit before. “Those men seem to be more experienced than you. You are—no offence—a bit on the medium side.”
Wow, try being told that you are pretty much useless—well, average. Mela, Jara, Jenell! When I served, I might not have been the cream of the crop, but I still wasn’t one of those ‘special’ cases, who didn’t know their left from their right. They were good for one thing: following orders, as long as you took the time to explain it to them thoroughly.
“Come on. Okay, I’m not like that knight in shining armour or that savage, but don’t dismiss me. There must be people looking for someone, even just a body to fill a sentry spot.”
“Come back in a few days, see if any other parties are coming through these parts.”
Such a waste of time. I turn to leave, but Royce is still talking. “Well, there is one job on the Board. I don’t think they will mind too much for a solo to petition for this job!”
He coughs a little, and I think, Wow, do all older men have a phlegm factory in the back of their throat?
“As I was saying, the town Watch patrol is looking for bodies to fill the rank for an upcoming tour of the Duke. Three days’ work, good pay, and they aren’t too worried about experience.”
Well, it is a job from the Hall. Beggars can’t be choosers, or is it lazy people like money, hmm?
“This would help me get out of a jam. Put my name down!” I exclaim. “So, what are the chances of me getting this job?”
Royce looks up. “I send over the parties that wish to do the job. I put you as ‘Lone Solo’. Not much of a name, but it will do.” He’s doing that old man chuckle; more phlegm and coughing than laughter. “They seem a bit rushed with this, so your chances are good.”
“You put me down as a party named Lone Solo? Okay, it is pretty stupid, but if it gets me some slips, then I’m fine with it.”