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Library: A Witch and a Wardrobe (no Lions)


Author: bogle
Date:Jul 26 2017

A Witch and a Wardrobe (no Lions)

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."
- Mark Twain

The sun was nearly set when the witch closed the door to her bedroom.  At a
low angle the rays of light coming through the window cast shadows in the now
empty room.  The open face chestnut wardrobe on the west wall had seen many
sunsets.  The witch owned many things magical but the wardrobe was not one of
them or so she thought.  Over the years magic from nearby books, staves, and
even the hot tub had seemed into the surrounding objects.  Chestnut is a
common wood, but also a fine magic receptor and so over time it had been
imbued by the surrounding objects.  With little effort the witch could have
detected it but to her it was just a wardrobe.

Inside the wardrobe the vestments of the old witch themselves were conscious
to some extent or another.  Among her favorites were Old Alabaster Snood, she
didn't go in much for black pointy hats, and the many-pocketed Practical Long
Skirt.  A variety of other clothing resided in the wardrobe with some pieces
being added over time, but rarely was anything thrown out.  Over time as the
clothing resided in the wardrobe it grew to consciousness as the magic
permeated the cloth.  The wardrobe would have been loathe to be compared to
some police box, but it was in fact larger on the inside than on the outside
and always knew what clothing to bring to the front for the witch.

A short aside on the nature of magical clothing.  Most types of cloth are only
weakly magical this includes cotton, cloth, burlap, fur and wool.  Notable
exceptions are silk and neo burlap.  Neo burlap is particularly magical but
clothing is not common as it is a fairly precious material.  

On a particularly sunny day Red Sundress came to the fore declaring that she
would be chosen today along with Big Brim Floppy Hat for today was picnic day
out on the mountains.  The only danger was from berry stains though the witch
would cantrip away stains as she noticed them.  This day Red Sundress and Big
Brim Floppy Hat were indeed chosen.  At the end of the day Big Brim Floppy Hat
was missing and Red Sundress was charred around the edges and weeping as she
was returned to the wardrobe.

Old Alabaster Snood pushed through the other clothing to ask what was wrong. 
Through the sobs Red Sundress recounted that while out on the picnic the witch
was blasted by a troop of demonspawn.  "The blast vaporized her tea and made
her very angry."  The demonspawn were not afraid of the sunlight and fell
mercilessly upon her while she was eating and chatting with a second witch. 
Most of the clothing were shocked.  For as long as they could remember there
had been peace in this land as the witch's presence kept away bandits and
ne'er do well monsters.  For a troop of demonspawn to be seen in the area
something must've been behind it.  According to Red Sundress a battle ensued
and the witch was a bit too slow in dodging a small fireball.  "Big Brim
Floppy Hat is no more!", she declared and then broke down sobbing.

The next day Herb Scented Full Apron was pulled out of the cupboard along with
Burgundy Leggings and Cinnamon Blouse.  The wardrobe, along with most of the
smarter clothing, realized that today must be a brewing day.  On days when the
witch brews she prefers an apron.  Small critters, herbs, and bits of metal
are the main components for potions and at the end of the day all three came
back smelling of a variety of scents.  They reported to the wardrobe residents
that all day the witch brewed offensive and defensive magical potions.  "Seems
like we are gearing up for a fight." stated Herb Scented Full Apron.

And so it was, indeed, the next day the witch donned Old Alabaster Snood,
Practical Long Skirt along with Fine Green Gloves and Primrose Surcoat.  The
witch even pulled on her leather potion bandolier.

After leaving her home the witch climbed steadily downward into a series of
ravines.  She was using a homing spell to track the demonspawn.  Steep rock
faces surrounded her as she scrambled down into a gully so deep direct
sunlight was not to be seen.  Snood, with the better vantage point, warned,
"stay on alert, this place reeks of demonspawn."  A few moments later the
witch pulled a small yellow vial from her bandolier and threw it to the
ground.  A great orb of light filled the area illuminating the cavernous
chamber and following along after the witch.  Small creatures skittered away
from the light.  In the distance a wooden gate banded with iron and set into
the rock face of the underground chamber could be seen.   

The witch proceeded to the citadel and noted the fresh scratch marks on the
gate.  She rapped on the gate and several dark skinned lithe figures appeared
in a window above.  Using her full force of personality she asked after the
demonspawn.  Old Alabaster Snood lent power to the call as her power lies in
the persuasive arts.

One of the lithe figures spoke, "our house owes you nothing witch, but in this
case we are inclined to maintain the pact that has brought peace between the
underdark and the overland for so long.  A pack of demonspawn came to this
very gate and were driven off.  We know not whence they came.  Demons are
extremely violent and evil, and should not be messed with. You have been
warned." The witch snorted loudly in derision but could detect no falsehood in
the drow so she left and continued deeper into the underdark.

Wandering further into the underdark the witch stopped, a scent of sulphur on
the wind.  With a sudden realization Old Alabaster Snood realized there was in
fact a slight breeze.  In the underdark there should not be a breeze,
something was amiss.  Snood nudged the witch to follow the scent.  Green
Gloves quivered in anticipation.  Practical Long Skirt shortened the distance
by aiding her strides.  Even for old clothing it is hard to count the passage
of time in a place like the underdark, but soon enough the scent strengthened
and they came upon a hole in the ground.  It was clearly a demon hole because
it stank like one, all the clothing agreed.

Capering about the edge of the hole were several small imps.  Upon noticing
her they darted toward the witch.  Fine Green Gloves aided in deftly selecting
a vial and tossing it toward the oncoming demonlings.  The Green Gloves knew
that to try and hit a small agile target directly was a losing proposition so
they selected a small area of effect vial and tossed.  A small electrical
storm engulfed the imps and after a moment they fell to the ground wriggling
and then stopped moving entirely.  The death squeals of the imps attracted
further attention from the hole and from it emerged a large many-tentacled
monstrosity.  As it climbed from the hole a piece fell off and turned into a
small slithering spawn.  Primrose Surcoat muttered, "well now we know where
the demonspawn are coming from."

The witch sighed and addressing the monstrosity said, "I'd heard of you, but
hoped I'd never have to send you back to the abyss."  With that she reached
for a particularly large vial.  The Green Gloves nodded in agreement at her
choice. With a deft move the witch tossed the vial and uttered a few short
syllables to make the vial explode a few paces away from the mega-spawn.  The
acidic explosion tore into the spawn but did not slow it down.  It lashed out
with its tentacles.  Practical Long Skirt dodged the first tentacle.  Old
Alabaster Snood made the witch aware and allowed her to duck the second.  The
third tentacle hit the witch leaving Primrose Surcoat hanging in tatters; the
witch stood strong the magic of the clothing having absorbed the force of the
blow.  Dashing inside the reach of the fourth tentacle the witch detached her
potion bandolier and dropped the whole thing into the maw of the mega-spawn. 
Skirt swirling she then darted away.  As the maw crunched down on the potions
the mound of flesh exploded sending sizzling and charred gobbets of flesh
everywhere and momentarily lighting up the underdark searing a blind spot in
the eye of anything that happened to be watching.

The witch grunted in satisfaction and then looked sadly at her torn surcoat. 
The hole started to seal itself up as the evil which had opened a passage to
the abyss lost coherence.  Satisfied with herself the witch trekked back to
her abode.  As she opened the chestnut wardrobe that evening she brushed away
some dirt and carefully tucked Old Alabaster Snood away with the rest of her