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Rats

Discussion in 'Creativity Surge' started by Merlanni, Aug 1, 2010.

  1. Merlanni

    Merlanni ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    There bee rats!



    Quinton the rat-breeder was looking at his last litter of rats. Big rats which ancestors were made big by magic. Mean rat, rats for in cellars, rats for rituals, rats just to scar big girls since big rats would not scar but terrify little ones. And for terrifying little girls you had parents. Quinton knew how it was suppose to go in this world from the moment his dad tried to make a man out of him at the tender age of six. Human years not dwarf years, he liked to add to people who tried not to pay attention, or dog years, when he was on a roll. Now the hard part of his job was about to happen: How to feed the coins into the rats, so that the would be heroes the drillmaster was shouting at could get that genuine first mission feeling. It is tradition, just like the sign said: “There bee rats!”

    His apprentice was an eager ambitious type. Keeping the knives out of reach was not an option so he postponed the last trick of the trade until he either was tired of living or found a better apprentice. And living next to a brewery made life a lot brighter for him. Still his mind went to the fat baker who just lost her husband due to an extraordinary accident. Details and gossip were running wild. Never a quiet day in the rat business. He used his trick and fed the coins without losing his fingers. If only they knew how simple.

    After he released the rats he got his feet up. A dozen rats for four morons right out of nobody ville without any training, to get killed for a few coins. Statistically two would survive, one wounded and rescued by the other one who would go looking for persons with exclamation marks on their head. He tried once to sell those on a hat, but it was not the same thing as the magic ones. Cost are cost, but the mages had the monopoly on those signs. Rats it is. Meanwhile the screaming started. Ten minutes later the little girl dragged the bully out leaving the two muscle-heaps behind. A typical day.

    The drill sergeant paid Quinton but did not place an order for the next day. “I am sick and tired of rats, and I have been told that a spider merchant is in town.”
    “You don't want that, think about the cost of cleaning. With rats the stink is part of the scenery.” He gave a mop, and bucket to his apprentice.
    “I am not going to clean up the pee again!” Quinton however knew that trouble was just an few steps away and went looking for the spider merchant, but the drill sergeant stopped him. “Spiders clean up the mess so what are those cost again?”
    “It is a package deal, the rats, cleaning and the gold-piece in the big ones. Gold they spent buying the weapons the dead recruits left.”
    “A little competition never hurt.”

    A few hours later, and a lot of arguing with a quarter drow male, and 3 quarters rat he stepped into his shop to find the gloomy apprentice. “She stripped the lot of that exercise dungeon, even the loose stone she tried to sell. She went in empty, waited until the fighting stopped and looted the other three. A real piece of work whit that perfect face, overdone curves and long blond hair. I wonder if she will stay in town?”
    “You will get stabbed in the back within a month.”
    “But a happy month it will be, and if I die, I have a resurrection insurance.” Quinton smile in the inside of his body. “Not if you mean the one in your footlocker. I sold it to pay for your wages.” Happy Quinton went to bed staring awhile at the poor sod with the question mark above his head standing outside the tavern. Stupid heroes.
     
    T2Bruno likes this.
  2. Merlanni

    Merlanni ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    page 2

    But still, after a few days four new volunteers showed up and confronted the spiders in the dungeon. The huge barbarian survived after a few days sick of the poison. The spiders were a success since the barbarian had no time to loot the other bodies. If only they had bought one of the potion for sale. Everybody was happy except the rat trader who saw his pension go up in smoke.

    Nin'jal the spider trader woke up the next day, cursing the sun and every previous day he was forced to live on the surface. One little mistake and he had to ploy his trait on the surface. One little mix-up with the wrong slaves to act as appetizer for the spiders back home in Menzoberranzan. Those adventurers were a lot stronger than they looked, and even managed to escape. Nin'ja knew that he was to blame and made a run for it. He still prayed to Loth not to be found. He had to get up at least just before noon to fit in into the community. With a silly hat on his head he got into the routine to check his spiders to find them all in order. They had a good day and got fat on three adventures. He just had to be care full that the spiders did not get to big. With two venom bottles he walked to the alchemist not sure who was following him. The alchemist was a valuable tool since it was the only legit way to get the antidote to the hero's for a price. The alchemist was happy to peddle the potion in his stall just before the entrance of the dungeon. Quinton waited and got his change and sabotaged the antidote.

    And within a few days four new fresh faces showed up for the famous dungeon that got so many parties their first level up in a semi-controlled environment. They got their welcome, their meals and paid entrance fee an a potion each. The thief and the barbarian looked at the four while the barbarian had his hand on the bottom of the thief. The four walked into the dungeon an after half an hour no one came out. That was not how it was suppose to happen, always one would get out. Reluctant they opened the door and saw the spiders skitter away. The barbarian and thief were re-comissiond to check the dungeon out. Ten minutes, and four looted bodies later they got their rewards. The official level up gong striker stroke his gong. And earned his copper pieces of the day.

    Quinton knew that the potion trick could not work a second time. So with the spiders in their cages and the dungeon empty he got in to take a look at the traps. He sabotaged the two traps, and place a few healing potions. It took a little longer for four faces to show up this time. Two fighters, a thief and a wizard. A wizard with the most terrible hayfever south of Cormanthor. In they went and out they came, all four of them. Four times XP, bought at a high price(nothing is free), four times gold coins and a lot of dead spiders. With not enough XP and gold around the town had to dig into their reserves negating last times profit. The gong striker even earned a silver.

    This called for a town meeting to figure out what was going on. Two fails runs could mean anything or nothing. They argued for hours and got after enough alcohol into a fight. The spiders were to blame said Quinton and the town agreed, but it was not the end of the spiders. They got a final change. And the people made sure that the dungeon worked as it should and it did. The screaming was in order, the thudding of the big tap and the agony of dying was in order. The panic for the spiders and one survivor was all as it should be and the spiders were reinstated as effective. The barbarian sat on a stool sound asleep with the bushes behind him moving rhythmically. The thief and the wizard came out after they were done and looked at the boasting dwarf. What a strange dwarf. She kicked the barbarian awake and spoke to the dwarf. All four got to the man with the question mark above his head and accepted his mission. The sign changed into an exclamation mark after which he collapsed due to fatigue an malnutrition.
     
  3. Merlanni

    Merlanni ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Part 3

    And so the four heroes undertook their second quest to find the lost crypt of Angamop the delirious. And as expected they got lost in the shrubbery and occasional tree half a day outside the village. It was the wizard who pointed out both the marking on the map and the sign on the road. Next to it was a sigh saying witch. The barbarian just looked at it and ignored both roadmarkers. The thief looked at it sideways just to be sure. The wizard was babbling about the handwriting and type of wood until the dwarf gave him a shove. From the ditch he saw the dwarf relieving himself against the sign. He got up and recognized the plants. Just after his prayer the sneezing started.

    The crypt had a door with a portcullis in front. Two man had to keep the portcullis raised for the thief to pick the lock. Once in, it closed with a loud clang, barring the way back for ever, or until two people were willing to raise it again. Dusty, dark, damp and defiled the dungeon beckoned them. The thief took point, slowly, and saw a marking left by unknown hands in the little light-circle made by her torch: “Mind the steps!” The first hitpoints of the day were lost. After that the wizard took point with his lighted crystal on his staff. The skeletons came, enthusiastic, like football supporters, mindlessly towards the wizard. The fight was short and unrewarding. Undead always were so darn cheap. After two hours of getting your clothes dirty they were triumphant over the Ghoul they found eating one of the losers from the first dungeon. It left a key to the backdoor.

    The backdoor opened into a shop ran by the witch. “Healing, Curse-lifting, disease removal all in a days work, how can I help you? First the got a curselifting for the dwarf who was paralysed into being the proverbial garden ornament. The barbarian and the wizard had picked him up. Strained the wizard let go just a bit late so the dwarf plunged on his toe. The barbarian was sorry and made friends with the wizard with all the effort to get the grin of his face. The thief started to haggle while the wizard looked at the merchandise. Ornamental miniature lost crypts of Angamop, lost crypt of Angamop cutlery, an action set with four heroes, the front portcullis and extra's... The wizard never recalled how he got outside and why he had a purple spell-bag with the lost crypt of Angamop logo on it. He looked at the receipt and almost started to cry. To poor to go back into town, they scoured the country side looking for actual work an no questing at a loss. The state they found the town is was perfect, something horribly was wrong.

    But first they had to find the man with the exclamation mark. Strangely the quest-giver did not stand on the exact spot that they left him. Tornado's, ride's of apocalyptic horse(wo)men or even very violent out-brakes of herpes. Nothing withheld a quest-giver from leaving his or her post. Even the orchestra left an iceberg-stricken ship sooner. Patiently they were of to find the questing office and lost a day due to odd business hours.

    First, upon entering, they had to get a number from a clerk stating their reason and nature of their problem. Second they had to wait in a empty waiting area opposite of three civil- servants. After a while a booth opened and the thief got up. “We are here to file a complaint regarding the quest called the lost crypt of Angemop.”
    “Please state the nature of your complaint.”
    “The quest-giver is not to be found to give us the XP and reward after completing the quest.”
    “You have the wrong department, you need personnel. Next!” Agitated but still docile the party went trough the motions. “Did you report him missing, no, so how do we know that he is missing. Report it to the authorities and with a copy of that report return here so we can fill out the forms.” Three days later they were in court explaining the accidental death of the substitute quest giver.
     
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