Boof of the Fathers 8b

From: Bill Thompson <>
Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 00:54:42 +0100

We are ready now to leave The City of Gods. Geoffrey has once again procured horses and Richter, weapons and armor. I see Richter looking at me and I ignore the grin on his face. Geoffrey is more circumspect but I can see his shoulders shake from time to time with supressed mirth. We have one more horse with us now upon it sits the reason for my brothers merriment.

        Marie looks down at me from her horse and I ignore her as well. She had met my brothers and I at noon yesterday, as I had suggested. I introduced her to them and they greeted her most cordially. I had already given them a brief on the past nights activities and maybe it was my wound or perhaps my fatigue, but this time I had held little back. So knowing that this young woman had saved my life with a well thrown Videli blade put her in their favour.

        We had eaten together and though I had little appetite Marie had badgered me into eating more than my fill. When I protested too much she even picked up a spoon and hand fed me. This seemed to cause my brothers no end of amusement and often her laughter would join with theirs. At first I was perturbed, being the subject of their mirth, but then I realized that I had never before seen my brothers laugh. So I let them continue and after a time I joined in.

        After we had finished our meal we retired to our suite to take care of some unfinished business. My brothers sat by the fire place, wineglasses in hand, and seemed well pleased with themselves. Marie and I sat at the center table upon which rested the large purse that I had appropriated some days before. I opened the large purse and withdrew the four smaller purses which lay nestled inside.

        Marie looked from the purses to me and said,"Five times the value, remember."

"I remember," I replied somewhat distantly, for now that I had the
purses out I saw that two of them shone with enchantments. I looked at her as she sat there, the beginning of a grin tugging up the corners of her mouth.

"Well," she said. "Are you going to open them or not?"

        Carefully I began to unweave the threads of the enchantments. When I had finished I upturned the bags and spilled their contents upon the table. In the distance I heard Geoffrey choke on his wine.

"Who...?" I was at a loss for words. I looked at her and noted
that my brothers were standing by her side, eyes fixed upon the table.

"Whose purse did you cut?" I asked.

"Drester Jornson," she replied.

        I stared at her without understanding until Richter spoke.

"High priest of the Temple of Ehilm," he finished in a quiet voice.
Then he moved to full volume. "God's voice girl what have you done to us." His fist thundered on the table. "Do you realize that the whole city will be looking for these artifacts."

        Marie stood up before him and her voice cracked like a whip. "What I've done to you. How dare you. I would have been long gone from this city if it wasn't for your brother and whatever little schemes the three of you are involved in. Don't you dare come at me with that attitude."

        Her hand was in his face and he stepped back. Richter stepping back from a little slip of a girl. I laughed. I couldn't help myself. I laughed hard. When I had calmed somewhat I saw Richter looking affronted. I swept a hand at the table.

" I agreed to pay her five times the value of the purses," I
managed to say.

        Everyone's gaze returned to the table. "I doubt that even House Lofting would have enough to pay a debt like that." I looked at Marie. "You set me up."

        She smiled, teeth catching the light to match the sparkle in her eye. " Maybe I did," she said. "So what are you going to do?"

"Will you take a personal note of debt?"

        It was her turn to laugh and I think Geoffrey joined in. "The way you operate you'll be dead and I'll never be able to collect," she replied. "No the way I see it is you boys just gained a partner."

        Richter was very loud for a while but Marie stood up to him. The simple truth was that she had us and she knew it. Richter finally calmed down when Geoffrey pointed out that not only did we owe her (Nice of him to say "we") a huge debt but that in addition to that she had saved my life.

"Very well," he said. "Welcome to the club. We leave at dawn
tomorrow. That gives us the rest of the day to prepare. We need new mounts and supplies." He looked at Goffrey. Geoffrey simply nodded.

"Do you have a horse Marie?" Richter asked

"Yes, but if we are travelling far then I'll need a remount."

"Far? Hell's yes girl we're traveling far. We're going to the
Istakahixa Falls. Troll country, and when we get there we're going to start a war. You still want in?"

"Of course I want in. How else am I going to protect my investment"

        Richter looked at me. "Youv'e been carrying the purses up until now, right?"


"So they've been masked by your Conceal the whole time?"

"If they put a lot into it they might have found it while I was
wrapping things up in the warehouse. I was awfully weak by the end."

"You mean, you were awfully close to dead at the end of it," Marie
interjected. "But what does it matter? Jornson serves a false God, he has no real power."

        Richter was speechless for a moment, but only a moment. "God above girl. Where did you take your Catechism. Ehilm may not be the One true God but he is still a being of incredible power and now he is looking for what's on that table."

        Marie scuffed the floor with the toe of her boot. "I have'nt been to Catechism since I was six," she admitted. "But I've learned a lot of other things since then, I've learned how to stay alive. A lesson I think you three haven't mastered yet."

        Richter looked her up and down and said," Indeed you may be right girl but if you are to come with us then you will have to apply yourself to the Teachings. I will assist you as I can so you should not find it to burdensome."

        I almost felt sorry for her. Until I remembered the smile she had when I emptied the purses.

        So now we leave the bright city. My brothers have adjusted to our new member and they seem to have recaptured their sense of humor. We are heading Northeast to the shores of the Nalar where we shall take passage up the Doskior.

        As we left the gates of the city behind Geoffrey commented that depending on the water travel we may get to the headwaters sooner than Father had anticipated. Marie asked who Father was and at first I said nothing but then I remembered that she was one of us now. So I told her. Her face became very still and I could see that she wanted to run away. Still, she took it well, though my laughter may have made it more difficult for her....

more later....

Bill Thompson

"Ask me a riddle and I reply:
"Cottleston, Cottleston, Cottleston Pie.""

End of The Glorantha Digest V5 #653

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