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Library: Bardtale: a visitor

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Author: kyynel
Date:Dec 27 2004

It was raining outside as the door opened. A tall dark man entered. His
clothes were wet and water dropped from clothes through a wooden floor. 'A
pint of ale', he wanted and stepped inside. He took some logs from a pile near
the fireplace. Acting distinguished, he quietly whispered a solemn word and in
seconds the fireplace bursted into flames and the tall dark man was sitting by
the fire, drying his clothes. The innkeeper approached the visitor.

"We do not have a kind word to be said for strangers, who use magic", he said.
The visitor stayed quiet and kept his look on the fireplace. It was crackling
wildly as the old logs were slowly burning and providing warmth to the inn.
Innkeeper grumbled and mumbled something by himself, went back and brought an
ale to the visitor. The visitor stood up, grabbing his ale and walked to the
bar counter. "Every item has a story of its own", he said and took a worn-out,
water-beaten pipe from his pocket, filling it with something black. He ignited
it with a small zippo and gave an impression that he doesn't want to upset
anyone once more. The smoke coming from visitor's pipe was grey and its weak
scent filled the atmosphere near the bar counter. He cleaned some ash from his
pipe to ashtray and begun his story.

"Not everyone knows how to cope with strangers", he said, and continued
telling his story. Referring to his pint, he kept going on and on. It's not
easy to get in touch with strangers and many people avoid that, since you
never know their nature, before you get to know them better. "This pint
reflects the story of friendship", the visitor said raising his pint in the
air. "Innkeeper, I'll buy an ale for everyone, as that is the best way to get
friends, and in return I only wish that each one will tell a story of one of
his items." As the innkeeper was bringing beer, an old man begun his story
first. He was telling about his old whistle that he used as a moose call.
During his younger days, he claimed to be a hunter. Now he was retired, a
rum-drinking drunkard, with always a taste for more. Nonetheless his story was
about a moose, and a moose call that he used for luring mooses out of the
woods. It wasn't much of a story, but more like a drinking contest against
himself. "Very well", said the man and emptied some ash from his pipe and did
a gesture that the next one could go on.

The last pints of beer were on the table and the innkeeper sat down to listen
to the next storyteller. Old bald man stood up wanting for attention, as if
people wouldn't have listened already. He was enthusiastic to tell about his
daughter, who was only five years old and already a skilled rider. She had her
own horse, even though his father was needed to lift her up to the saddle. The
story went on and on and it seemed there was never an end, nor was there
anything interesting to be heard. Finally the story was over. "Thank you for
your story. Even though your story wasn't about any item", said the visitor.
The innkeeper stood up claiming for his turn. His story was about an old
rumkeg and was at least as boring as the previous story and the story was also
getting unclear and hazy. Finally the story was over.

"A very good story indeed, but the best of items is still to come.", said the
visitor and continued "and that is my pipe with small black powder that
produces a drugging incense when burning it, which slowly puts people to
sleep." The door closed, and the visitor was gone, and so was all the valuable
belongings that people had with them as they came to the inn.

                                                   ++Kyynel


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