Returning from the bandit’s camp, the company is glad to be all in one piece. Arden’s men-at-arms took quite a beating, but none were killed. Four bandits can’t say the same. In fact, they can’t say anything at all as they are trussed up on several horses making their last ride.
Two of the company’s horses have been recaptured and although several bandits fled, Arden hopes this will quiet the bandit activity down for at least a little while.
The company rides into the Keep. The guards no longer challenge them as they approach. They are becoming well known among the citizens of the Keep. The guards shout “Huzzah!” As Arden and Company bring the wanted men into the Keep.
The Bailiff is there to meet them [FU die rolled, 6 result…”yes, and…”] and also the Guild Master. He is overjoyed to hear that the bandits have been crushed and wishes to invite the Company to dinner at his apartment this evening.
The Bailiff takes custody of the bandits and all the horses are properly stabled. Arden and Company settle into the tavern to relax and have several ales.
That evening, the Guild Master and his wife host Arden, Thane, and Martin to a fine table. The food is excellent and several bottles of good wine are opened.
“Have you been to the capital city?” the Guild Master asks of his guests.
“Careen was too far to the south for me to see it yet, although I’d do hope to one day to go,” Arden replies.
Thane shakes his head, “I’ve not been, but I would like to see the great armorers of your capital.”
Martin nods his head, “I’ve been there only for a brief time. I received my holy orders from the Cathedral of St. Swithin in Careen. I stayed but a week. I suppose it was my upbringing in the countryside that made me feel trapped in the city. Too many people, too much stonework, too little greenery.”
“Yes, I can understand, but many creature comforts are found in the capital, unlike the Keep here. My dear wife longs for the shops and the culture that Careen offers.”
The Guild Master’s wife smiles pleasantly, but her expression confirms it.
“Soon, dear. Now that these brave men have rid the countryside of the bandits, we can travel with ease again. I plan on returning to Careen before the snow falls.”
He offers his guests more wine and the rest of the evening is spent in pleasant conversation of adventures and sights yet to see.
The Guild Master tells Arden and Company that men with their skills would be very useful to the trading houses of Careen. The trade routes to north have fallen into danger. It is unsafe for merchants to take the Old Trade Road to the north into the mountains of the Five Kings or northeast into Falmead. The route is no safe. Great riches lay in store for any braves adventurers who can make inroads into these areas.
The Guild Master also gives the men a reward for killing the bandits. He hands Arden a linen sack, heavy with silver. [There are 250 silver pieces inside.]
Arden tells the Guild Master that the Company will consider working to help the merchant guild. One task they will continue is the exploration of the Caves of Chaos.
But for now, the Company turns back towards the Inn to rest for the evening.
Arden wonders to himself, I haven’t heard from Corwin all day, hopefully his studies are nearing their end.
More to come….