June 7th

Worms for sale, worms for sale!
Attention Catherine! Worms for sale!
We’ve brought them from the tundra’s glare
They’re here for you! We’ve worms for sale!
They’re fit, agile and new
Come start your very own worm zoo
We’ve a queen and babies here just for you
Get in at the start for a business new!
In five years they’ll be mounts
On this unique deal you must pounce
Packing power right where it counts
Come and purchase these awesome mounts!

We strode into Catherine
Riven’s bag full of worms
Harlen’s dealing was fantastic
We dealt in reasonable terms
Quickly a rogue stole the bag
We chased him down the street
Willow the squirrel jumped from roof
And lay low villain of fleet feet.
The rogue was now grounded
Ko-lag tossed him over arm
And on our return down the street
A mob approached with intent to harm.
A huge brawl thus ensues
Harlen and Spoony take casters
Cain and Wolf slay the seedy rogues
Riven’s blade keeps us from disaster.
Now with opponents slain
The remaining for divulges plan
To drop worms into the sewer
To be picked up by a hooded man.
Down in the sewers we wade
The poison darts bring forth blood
Harlen disarms with brilliant flare
As we trudge forth through the mud.
Down the sewer we chase
The hooded goon is a dead ghoul
Into battle the heroes charge
By the light of shining jewel.
The ghouls raise their minions
And keep us pinned in the sewer
Willow unleashes devastating blast
And leaves few for Ko-lag to skewer.
Soon the mighty foes slain
Evil corrupters of the deep
Again the adventurers triumph
Leaving bones left in a heap.

(Story overheard in the Pheonix’s Flame, a bar in what used to be the nicer part of town but is now relatively run down and slightly seedy.)

“So there I was. I heard some hubbub about there being sommat new for sale – you know how I’m always onto new things in this town – so I went to check it out. Turns out some adventurers were selling these worm things…straight outta tha tundra! I guess they was lookin’ for someone to raise em up. I don’t have that kind of time – too many things going on right now, ya know – but looked like they found themselves about a dozen or so lookin’ to make a deal. I popped in to see them close-up…odd white worms that are eventually gonna be mounts. I don’t know if I believe all of that, but I already decided I wasn’t gonna buy but I was curious sommat like that would go for in case another group came in I could mebbe make a profit. Anyways, some thug ran off with the bag affore they could finish the deal! Down the street they chased ‘im and a good thing too. Honest business men benefit from those thieves getting what’s comin to em. Well, I never seen the like before, I swear to everything whut’s holy,” (here the man pauses and makes a holy sign in front of his face, wide-eyed) “this frakkin squirrel comes out from nowheres and jumps right in his face! Oddest thing I ever did see! The man went down jus’ like a stone. By that time this huge thing came up behind him. Ten foot or thereabouts, built like he was made ‘o stone. I thought for sure he’d finish the guy right where he stood, but nah, calm as you please knocked him a good ‘un on the back of the skull and tossed him over his shoulder like ‘e was a bag ‘o grain! They went back to make good on their deal – and I tells ya, more people oughta make sure they’re good on theirs too…say don’t you owe me a beer Jonny? Yeah, that’s better. Anyways, they go back to turn over the goods and what comes down the street but another buncha thugs.” (At this point the man takes a long draught of his fresh beer and shakes his head sadly before solidly thumping down the mug and wiping his face with his sleeve.) “Well, someone had hired ‘em that’s for sure cause they had some durned mages with ‘em. I ain’t never trusted a mage in my life and that there’s why. Always selling themselves to the highest bidders. At least the mages hereabouts. Anyways, you could tell those folks was itchin’ for trouble. They come right at those adventurers, greed and hate in their eye. That was all that the big’un needed to see, I guess, cause he started wading right inta them bodies, plantin’ some weird spikes all over the ground. And right nexta him was this ugly guy fightin’ with the hugest wolf I ever saw in my life. They had some other fella with ‘em…looked like he was made ‘o the earth and spittin’ lightening. Then wouldn’t ya know it, the squirrel what attacked the first thug, she turnt right into a gnome! Short little thing started summonin’ animals all over the place! The next thing I heard was some loud bangs comin’ right off the top of the Jenkin’s place. It was hard to get a good look with the sun comin’ right in my eyes and all, but there was a woman in nearly no clothes pointin’ and wavin’ and singin’ some strange song I ain’t never heard hereabouts. She coulda been an angel, she was so beautiful. But if the one nexta her on that roof was an angel, he’d a been tha angel of death, that’s for sure. Seemed like every time that boomstick of his went off, one ‘o the thugs in the street just fell over. Took about five minutes or so, and a bunch of us stood in the lane and watched. As soon as they was finished the big one, Kro-lag or summat, picked back up the first guy the squirrel took down and ast him what was goin’ on. They musta found out somethin they didn’t like cause off they went again, runnin’ for a side street. I figured on bein’ the first ta know so I waited a bit and went down. Here those crazies went right down inta the sewers! The sewers of Catherine! Can you imagine? I didn’t know if they was stupid or brave, so I hung out – just a bit back cause ya never know what might come back up outta there, even in the day – and I heard a whole lotta noise. Fifteen minutes or so they was down there. Odd moans and screams again, and more echoes like tha little miss was singin’ again. I thought I heard some swears too but a girl like that…nah she’d never utter somethin’ like that. Anyhows, soon the clashes stopped and they filed up from the sewer. I ain’t never smelt something so bad in my entire life as what came up out of there! I tell you, they musta paid a fortune in inn fees to get the bathwater to get rid o’ that stench. Smelt worse than polecat on a hot summer day, or rotten meat in a midden heap. I hightailed it outta there and came right with you fellas with the story, since I knows I can trust you to repeat truth. Those adventurers, yah, I think they must be brave but maybe also a little crazy too. And who’s to say more dead ghoolies in the sewers isn’t a benefit to us all? Aye! Let us have another round over here! Aw, look, Sammah you just got here, eh? You just missed this tale! Oh, well I suppose if I had sommat to ease my throat a little…oh Sammah you’re a real pal! So there I was…”



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