Medievia Mudslinger

April 22, 2001

Sentry Duty: A view rarely seen - logged by Excrucior

"Anything?" asked the Greycap hopefully.

"Nope - nothing in sight," replied his companion.

"Typical, just typical. I felt like a bit of interest today, not this," he gestured around at the empty gateway. "Let's face it, Riverton has how many entrances?"

"Three," replied his colleague who had heard it all before.

"And how many guards are put on the northern entrance? Three, maybe up to five for busy times. That's where all the dragons land and the adventurers swarm in. That's interesting, something to do all day. And on the west? How many guards?"

"One," said his friend, stifling a yawn.

"And that lucky so-and-so has all those traders rushing by and all those adventurers wanting to go in the mines. He's so busy he doesn't know it's time for the next shift until his relief turns up. I reckon the mayor fancies him. How many of us for this place?"

"Two," answered his companion, yawning loudly.

"And look at it! No-one comes here! Occasionally we get a wandering wombat, but that's about all we see. I let them in, me - livens the place up a bit. The only adventurers to come here are usually the ones looking for the Inn and they've got lost."

"Hmmm, the Inn. You reckon we could get a swift tankard in before anyone notices we're missing?"

"Doubt it. First time we go awol some guys would come looking for us. You know what the mayor's like when a wilderness mob gets in, she gets all unnecessary."

"Which is why you let them in of course," said his partner, a comment that was answered with a quick grin. He continued. "That said, I know who keeps going awol all the time. Xythe - he's seeing Anel I'm told."

"Never!"

"As I live and breathe - it's true! I saw him in his smithy the other day with an onyx key - he was making a copy. You try and tell me that's a coincidence, then."

"Well I never... I always preferred those peasant women myself. Less snooty than the ladies around here and they tend to be somewhat more... generous. Besides, if you don't get on with one there's plenty more that look exactly the same all over the place."

"True," mused the other Greycap. "Hang on - someone's coming" They darted to attention, hands on the emerald hilts of their swords as a large caravan of creaking wagons trundled up to the road to their station.

"Ho there," demanded a rather baffled looking warrior. "Where Riverton?" The Greycaps looked at each other out of the corners of their eyes but didn't dare move any other muscle. "Where Riv," reiterated the leader of the group.

"They can't be navigators," called a mage from the rear of the group.

"Damn and blast," said the warrior, "I need to find that trade post. It's my first run here..."

"Oooh, what you said," exclaimed a cleric. "You'd better mind your language or you'll get frozen..."

"Now look here..." began the warrior.

"Excuse me?" interjected the Greycap.

"So, you can talk after all. What's with the deaf and dumb act?" demanded the warrior.

"We're not supposed to help, but since this is your first time here I'll cut you some slack. You have to go north from here until you see the park on your right. Go east into there and when you see a statue ahead of you turn south."

"Inside the town? The trade post is always outside, I was told," protested the warrior.

"Oooh - we like to have a few special trade posts here and there. Anyway, when you turn south just before the statue you have to cross over the lake. You see all this crystal here?" The warrior nodded, taking in the shining paving and walls. "Well, we've got a crystal bridge over the lake and the trade post is on the other side. It's a steep bridge, mind, so you'll have to take a fast run at it. It's also very clear crystal - you'll hardly notice it's even there. It looks invisible if the sun hits it just right."

"That's a great help," smiled the warrior.

"Excuse me?" began a thief in the front rank, but he was quickly hushed by the warrior. With a battle cry from the distant past he lead the group onwards into the town in a mass of whinnying horses and rumbling wagons.

"That was evil," said the other Greycap who was now allowing himself to laugh.

"Wasn't it, though? The looks on their faces when they get back are going to be priceless. I don't know how I kept a straight face. I've got a good idea on how to get away with it as well." He stuck two fingers into his mouth and gave a shrill whistle.

"What you got in mind?"

"You'll see. Ah..." he replied as a gnasher bounded towards the gates, drool dripping from its muzzle. "Here boy, lovely city with plenty of lamp-posts." He indicated the streets inside the city, and it only took the gnasher one look to decide that this was a very attractive option.

As it bounded past, however, the Greycap quickly drew his sword and plunged it deep into the gnasher's chest. He withdrew his blade from the rapidly cooling corpse and shook the blood liberally onto the ground.

"That ought to do it," he mumbled as he sacrificed the corpse.

"So those traders come back and find spots of blood on the ground, then they think we've been killed?" His companion grinned with the simplicity of the idea.

"And we'll be in the Inn, laughing about it. I did the thinking so it's your round first. Let's go..."

Here the logs do fade and become indistinct...

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