Narrator: The trip from Asher Exports back to the Boar’s Tusk is a short one. Two blocks in total through the snow dusted city. Upon approach you can tell why the inn sees the amount of business it does. Despite the cold outside it looks as warm and inviting as a spring day. It’s thatched roof is home to a large stone chimney that billows wisp of slate smoke. Her windows sag just a bit, as though lazing about in their fading years and the door is heavy rich mahogany that looks like it could melt the ice form the poles.
Once inside you all notice that the crowd is thinner than the evening prior. The mid afternoon lull has left the innkeeper with time to rest his feet on a stool while nodding off. Two older gentleman play cards by the hearth and a group of nobles are getting an early start to their drinking for the night.
As you all make your way to the bar the innkeeper perks up at the sight of your group, stands and begins to fuss with something behind the counter. He produces an envelop kept closed with a wax seal and presents it with an outstretched arm…
“Reed had his apprentice drop this off for you all not five minutes ago”
Peidmondar: “Ah, we believe it must be of some importance. A voucher for more food and drink, perhaps?”
Eolian: “Sealed envelopes are always full of news. What do you think, ‘Mondy? Thick letter, good news? Thin letter, we’re in trouble? Heavy, clinking, metal contents, clearly intended for me?”
Anna Darksbane: “Any time you want to open the envelope boys.”
Peidmondar: “We will give you the honor.” Peidmondar graciously waves his leafy hand and gestures to Eolian his approval to open the envelope.
Eolian: Eolian’s pupils widen as he takes the envelope into his hands. After a second’s pause, he deftly removes a small dagger from a hidden sheath and slices the envelope open. Removing a single sheet of paper, he scans the message quickly, then takes a deep breath to read aloud to the group. The message reads…
Narrator: “Dearest Guest of Fairmar,
As soon as you left my humble shop today, I set about researching the Tanner Mausoleum further. How such a historical landmark eluded me for so long I haven’t the slightest. In any case, I discovered part of a charcoal rubbing in my records. It appears to be the Tanner family crest. While a blood crest would normal not hold my interest, a pictorial history of an event in Fairmar is also a part of the emblem.
Any information you could bring me on the symbols or if by some miracle you could bring me the actual crest, I would be happy to reward you all handsomely.
Regards, Reed, Master Archivist”
Eolian: Eolian gestures to a table in a secluded corner of the tavern, one that affords a bit of privacy but with a line of sight to the door.
“Since we have no idea what awaits us in the Mausoleun, we should think about a plan of attack.”
Anna Darksbane: “Let’s discuss our plan over a light dinner. We need to make sure we have all of our strength. Oh and something to consider is that it will be nightfall by the time we get to the Mausoleum. That could work to our advantage, since they won’t be expecting us.”
Eolian: The Tavern owner collected their orders and disappeared in the back to prepare their food. A light meal for the heavy work ahead.
Eolian took the longest, and at last pushed his plate away. “So… introductions? How about you, my fine firred friend? What brings you to not-so-Fairmar?”
Anna Darksbane: “Things in my life haven’t really worked out liked I had planned, and I am not ready to go home yet and disappoint my family. So I just need some work and some time until I figure everything out.”
She leaned back in her chair and quietly sipped on her drink.
“What about you?”
Peidmondar: Peidmondar pulls his cloak around his face more to hide further in shadow, trying to retreat from the conversation that has just begun.
Eolian: Assuming Anna’s question as directed at him (because it’s it always about him?) Eolian sighs.
“Not much to tell, really. By trade and talent I am A Father’s Disappointment. O, I can see by your face that that can’t possibly be an avocation, but it’s true. I am the last son of the last son of a line charged with the protection of the East Barony of It-Doesn’t-Matter, just beyond the hills of No-One-Cares. The men in my family made up a line of arcane swordsmen who protected their people from the Dark Forces of Whatever. But that line appears to have died with my father. So here I am, with you, trying to do something the matters, before I am not merely written off from the family books, but irrevocably erased.”
Eolian then glares pointedly at the plantlike creature sitting at his left.’
Anna Darksbane: Anna rotates her chair slightly and tilts her head in Peidmondar’s direction waiting his introduction.
Narrator: Between dinner and light conversation, three hours have passed of the four you all set aside to rest. The tables in the Boar’s Tusk have started to fill with patrons. The way folks keep entering and shaking off their coats and hats you all can tell that the snow has come back and quicker than the night before.
With much attention paid to a new leafy compatriot and very quiet ranger still not forgotten, you all miss the young man two tables over who continues to return his gaze to your troupe. He is smartly dressed in fine blue fabrics, trimmed in amber and seems content to wait for your conversation to end before he makes his introduction.
Eolian: Eolian mutters quietly to no one in particular, “That’s enough flirting, I think,” and pushes his chair back as he stands from the table. In full stride, Eolian walks with outstretched hand to the young man sitting alone.
“Greetings, my azure-clad friend. Eolian Palaver, pleased to meet you. I couldn’t help but notice you noticing us. It’s a shame to drink alone when you can join strangers for awkward conversation, don’t you think? Please. I insist you join us and buy us drinks.” Eolian winks broadly at the young man to let him know the last part was a joke. Probably.
Narrator: “I…um…sorry about that” The young man stands to meet Eolian’s outstretched hand with his own. The hand shake is warm, firm and confident. “Ern Lonerail, son of Count Theodore Lonerail and if you don’t mind I will buy you all that round of drinks”.
As Ern and Eolian walk back to the rest of you, Ern signals to the innkeeper to bring the drinks. “Well then, as I was just telling your half-elf friend here, I am Ern Lonerail. Word about you folks is spreading fast around our city. Taking on bandits and the like. My father, Count Lonerail, could use the help of adventures like yourselves.”
Before Ern can continue his introduction, the innkeeper arrives with five drinks and pass them out amongst you. When he finally steps away, Ern continues. “Now, before I get ahead of myself, I will tell you all that I was simply being courteous. I was planning a more formal introduction, but did not want to interrupt your conversation. I have a bit of a sharp ear too I’m afraid, a skill that comes in handy more often than not. But, I believe these two gentleman were about to introduces themselves to your all first.”
Ern turns an open palm to the seats occupied by Peidmondar and Varis.
Peidmondar: Peidmondar stands with a fluid grace of a growing vine and stretches out his hand directing it at himself then to the ranger, “We are known as Peidmondar and this new found compatriot is named Varis. If you seek to employ I am sure our fine friends here would lend an eager ear and thoughtfully consider any offer you have to make”