“We got it! We got it! We got it!” Rosie came bursting into the inn with a scroll in her hand.
“Slow down there, little one.” Victor had nerves of mithral and could keep others calm in even the most intense situations. Rosie smiled and handed the one-eye soldier the scroll.
“We got it! We got the charter. All the diplomacy and talking and gold finally paid off. We were named the fourth and last group to get a charter to explore the Greenbelt.” Rosie was a naturally over-the-top character. Her personality worked well for her when she was entertaining others with Susanna, singing and telling stories, or histories as she would call them. Sometimes it could be a bit much but this time, along with the news, made even Victor smile.
Lapis uncurled from her place by the fire. It was rare to see a catfolk away from her tribe but not unheard of. Lapis turned heads everywhere she went and, just like a cat, enjoyed the attention. However, she was most at home in the wilderness and the mountains she grew up in. Between her catfolk heritage and her time in the wilds, her tracking skills were unparalleled. “I think it was my… attention to the lordling last night that finally made the difference” she said with a satisfied smile.
Mirek slid out of the shadows. “So when do we get underway?” It had taken a while for the group to get used to this behavior. You could be looking right at the shadow when the elf appeared and still not see her before she chose.
“I wish we could wait for the others. It would be nice to have Aethalwulf’s hammer and a little more magic backup, even if it is from that flighty dingbat wizard.” Victor was always a little miffed when the wizard disappeared. She was great in a crunch but sometimes her distractions cost someone an eye.
“Don’t let Aethalwulf hear you call it a hammer” said Lapis smiling. “It’s an Earth Breaker and it’s been in his lordship’s family for generations.” Lapis enjoyed twitting most people but especially those of noble birth. “Besides, his family obligations won’t take long. They are as uncomfortable in his presence as he is theirs.”
“And the wizard will show when she remembers the charter. You know how she is. She doesn’t mean to get distracted. She just sees something she thinks she can fix and off she goes.” Rosie seemed to understand the wizard the most, probably due to growing up with the traveling entertainers and tinkerers. The wizard had traveled with them for a time and could often fix things that seemed un-mendable. Then again, sometimes she decided to improve on things that were already working and, well… the outcome was less than predictable.
Victor looked around and you could see the plans starting to form. “In that case, Rosie, see if you can arrange travel for us with one of your contacts. Offer guard duty in exchange for half-time riding in the wagon. Lapis, please take care of provisions for the trip. With a caravan, it will take us a week to arrive at the trading post. Mirek, please look around for any other jobs or bounties we can pick up while we are out that way. Might as well get paid twice for the same work if we can. I will set up a guard rotation and coordinate with the caravan once Rosie has arranged travel.”
The old soldier stood, his full frame hardened by a life a use. “I don’t have to tell each of you how important this is. For me, this is my retirement fund. I have played by the rules all my life, and I don’t have much to show for it. If Restov and Brevoy want to finally get the Greenbelt under control, fix the bandit problem, and stick it to the River Kingdoms, well, they are going to need people with special talents to make it happen. They have tried in years past and things didn’t work out so well. This time, it will work, and we are the ones that will carve our names in the histories!”