Our quest was over. We had cleaned the mines of creatures that were plaguing the city of Monkalakaboomistan. The only down side at this point was we had just killed the man who was to pay us. Nebrion was dead.
The chest that was supposed to hold our reward was unlocked and empty. I wonder how that could have happened... The perimeter of the room contained a series of large wooden armoires. They were protected by a trap, which I easily removed. However, the lock was a different story. It was a custom lock with some sort of magical spell preventing anyone from opening it without the key.
I thought we could just smash them to bits. After all, they were only made of wood. However, no one was willing to aid me in this venture. I even explained that Nebrion himself pointed out that our belongings were in the armoires.
Unfortunately, the party's trust in Nebrion had long since evaporated. Thus, they had given up the idea of obtaining their long lost belongings. Further, they were fond of the items they had collected on the adventure.
It was then that I thought that Nebrion should have the key. Gudrid had searched him for valuables and the items he had were useable only by an evil wizard. They would be of no help to Glaf. However, the key was among the items.
I used the key to open the armoires one by one. To everyone's surprise, the armoires were filled with our items. A few had items from other adventurers. In any event, we had our belongings back.
"Where did you get these items?" asked Gudrid.
"Those?" I replied. "I have had those for a while."
"I do not remember you having that stuff," added Glaf.
"You cannot even wear this armor," added Jean. "It is way too large for you."
"I was going to sell it at my earliest convenience," I said. "Why is everyone so suspicious of me?"
"Spill it!" demanded Thorvald.
"Okay you caught me," I admitted. "While you all were discussing the mission with Nebrion, I opened the chest. I just wanted to know what our reward was going to be. Before I knew anything, all of my items were gone and I woke up in a mine looking like a lizard."
"Hey!" exclaimed Glaf.
"Yeah!" shouted Gudrid.
"We are no longer reptilian!" shouted Jean.
Jean and I embraced. Then she smacked me across the face. After all of the things I had done for her, she was not going to thank me. Perhaps it was the fact that there were other people around. I guess I should have been grateful that she did not swing her orc-slayer at me.
We had all of our belongings and our appearance had returned to normal. Nebrion's quest had clearly ended. What do we do next? More importantly, how do we get out of this tower?
There was a lever in the corner, which did not appear to have an obvious function. At least it did not do anything the four or five times I had pulled it the first time we were in this room. Perhaps Nebrion protected its use. Thus, I pulled the lever. I heard a loud crack somewhere in the tower, but it had no other effect.
Gudrid gave it a try and we were immediately transported to another room in the tower. I was expecting to return to the carpet. After all, it was how the previous owner of the tower entered and left the isolated tower room.
Regardless, we found ourselves in the company of a beautiful woman. She was tall with long fire-red hair. She was dressed in silver plate trimmed in gold. She had a winged helm upon her head.
"I am Leela Monkalakaboom," she declared.
We each introduced ourselves. I flirted more than usual to make Jean jealous. Leela naturally took a shine to me. Jean pretended not to notice the sparks, but I could tell she had seen.
"I thank you for ridding us of our plight," she continued. "For a long time we have suspected that Nebrion was luring adventurers to our fair city and robbing them of their goods."
"He is also responsible for the monster attacks," added Thorvald.
"He changed us into lizardmen," declared Glaf.
"Ummmm -- we got better," I added.
"Apparently," continued Thorvald. "He would alter the appearance of these adventurers and dump them into the nearby mines. If these individuals made it out of the mines alive, it would appear that they would attack the city."
"Nebrion was also responsible for the monster attacks," Glaf conjectured.
"I believe all of what you say is true," responded Leela. "My brother Paul was sent to investigate and his armor and some other items appeared some time later."
"Paul?" I mumbled. "Does everyone in this town have some link to him?"
"What?" asked Leela.
"We encountered a Paul in the dungeons above the mines. He was hungry but well."
"I am relieved from this news," added Leela. "With Nebrion out of the way, I can return as protector of the city. You have given me back my tower."
"And your rug," added Glaf. "We gathered the pieces and it allowed us into Nebrion's room."
"Thanks for the update genius," I whispered to Glaf. "She has been watching us you door knob!"
"Your journey has been long and arduous," Leela continued. "You shall be rewarded for your deeds. I will pay you handsomely for any treasures you have collected in your adventure. Our citizens could begin rebuilding the town with these items."
She paid us handsomely for our extra goods. I had to hand it to Glaf; it was a very profitable journey for us. There were plenty of times when I doubted that it would be, but the coin in my pocket proved me wrong.
We rested the night in Leela's tower. She threw a large feast in our honor and the entire town showed up. The wine was good and the mood merry. Even the temple guardian Nather showed up. He was strangely quiet. A large smile seemed to be unnaturally affixed to his face, which prevented his normal talkativeness.
I flirted with many ladies at the feast. If Jean were not going to thank me personally, an attractive local would have to do. There were plenty from which to choose. The choice would be difficult. Perhaps more than one...
Nebrion's quest was over, and now it was time to decide what was next. That story is for another time.Posted by deg at January 21, 2007 6:42 PM