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Epic Fantacea #16 In Vino...
Epic Fantacea #16 In Vino...
Prydomahn, the history books would tell us was the greatest and most magnificent city ever crafted by human hands. It was in this bastion of humanity's folly that King Futur ruled with a daemonic fervor. In his own mind, King Futur was the saviour and messiah of the human race, and of the entire world. Even the elves and dwarves would bow before his greatness.
It had taken more than twenty years, and a lot of taxes to construct this great city, and his royal palace, glimmering with gold and precious stones.
From his palace, in the heart of Prydomahn (itself the heart of western civilization), King Futur met daily with his political and military advisors.
His goal was to make the world in his image, to allow all of the uncivilized and unenlightened ones the opportunity to know his glory and greatness. Once they recognized his greatness, and all bowed before him, then there would be new age of peace and prosperity.
In his great capital he could do no wrong. He was the greatest god, and no one would tell him otherwise. And this was how it should be.
"That will be all," said the monarch, "we've heard enough," he said dismissing the servant with a disinterested wave of his hand.
His lost army had been found. Close to three thousand armor-clad corpses had been found strewn about across two fields of battle. They had not deserted after all.
"A pity," said the king, absentmindedly grooming his fingernails. "I was fond of that commander--what was his name?"
"Baron Noriova, milord," offered one of the king's lackeys.
"Oh yes, Noriova. Send word to the magistrate there. He is to come to Prydomahn to be knighted. He shall be named the Baron of those lands."
Travler, though more comfortable in the open country, was rather adept at blending into any large crowd. He sat in the corner of a run-down shanty, that was trying for all its worth to pass for an inn, deep within the slums of Prydomahn, that part of a city where the hardest working hands were rewarded with the least amount of bread, as is true in almost all so-called civilisations. Far removed from the view of a demented and disillusioned king and his cronies, this is where the heart of a people may be found--in the tavern's drinking away their money to forget the hardships they endured to make that money.
But what more to life is there, than to forget one's troubles, by drinking, smoking, singing, dancing, and if the mood is right--escaping into a bed chamber, loft, or alleyway and making Love (or lust at least) to someone who is beautiful enough for a night?
Travler sat quietly, sipping a mug, as so many others did, listening with an acute sense of hearing. To anyone who would have ventured a gaze at this ranger they would have seen that his eyes were busily engaged watching the tantalizing movements of a pair of scantily-clad women dancing seductively upon a table to the music being played by a couple of local bards.
Travler's ears, however, were listening to the gossip and complaining of a small group of soldiers seated on the opposite end of the bar.
He learned much from those drunken knights, pages, and squires, and said to himself the words of a long-dead sage, "In wine is truth...indeed."
Harold, a very dirty and bad-smelling old man, walked down the street in front of the run-down inn, passing easily as he went, as the people upon smelling his approach gave him much berth. He smiled to himself, mumbling as he went.
"The messenger strange and queer, certainly he is here, but what remains unlear, is the message I fear...So let us wait and see what in Syn for us awaits, when our misled tracker enters her gates."
--to be continued--