Hollow's Last Hope

An Awkward Meeting

“Two gold and not a penny less” said Cobrin the Butcher.
Red Eye was not amused. He knew he was being cheated on a grand scale but what was he to do? He knew he was a freakish looking monster to the people of Falcon’s Hollow and it would take a LOT to change that. He’d even been more than happy to help clean and prepare the body of the adventurer that had been sacrificed in some gruesome kobold death ritual. He’d done such things far too often and was very familiar with the Rights Gentle of Repose. It helped if the body didn’t smell so badly at the funeral. The only thing that smelled worse than corpse was a corpse on fire. He’d cast his spells and said his prayers to Gozreh to take his spirit amongst the clouds. Yet they still stared at him throughout the funeral as if he were cursing their children. Some probably had said as much and it was unlikely he would be able to change the minds of the locals anytime soon. But yet he had to try.
“That seems quite steep for beef jerky. Couldn’t I interest you in a reading of your local weather in trade? I could tell you if there was a tempest brewing or…”
“The sky looks clear enough for me! God’s know even IF we had rain it would just help business.” Cobrin leaned forward and gave him a stare. “Rain and weather can hide monsters approaching unwary hunters… Sensible people stay in town” . Cobrin had just finished his statement, which Red Eye understood too well as a barely veiled Get the hells outta my town, when the door opened and someone stepped in.
Red Eye glanced behind him as he was putting his helmet back on to leave and stopped as he recognized the half-elf standing before him. He was of the same height as Red Eye. The half -elf was wearing an unadorned but well built coat of leather plates over a full length tunic that was long enough to brush the floor. He had very long ears for a half-elf, although the whites of his eyes gave his half breed heritage away. His long hair was pulled into a pony tail on top of his head. Red Eye also noticed the large and very shiny axe handle poking over his shoulder and that some of the leather plates were discolored as if they’d had blood recently scrubbed out of them.
He’d first seen the half-elf at the funeral but the town was full of stories even Red Eye could overhear. He was one of the adventurers who had brought the body back and rescued the local children. Red Eye had bolted from the funeral immediately after the rights and had not spoken to any of them yet. He’d not had time to assess if they would be friendly to him or not.
The half-elf flashed a grin at Red Eye and said, “Green Faith’s blessing on you Sir.” The half-elf then addressed the butcher and said “Am I intruding Cobrin?” The butcher waved at Red Eye to be off and spoke “No he was just leaving”.
The half-elf looked wistful and said “Indeed… it’s a shame. I’d wanted to speak with…” the half-elf raised a questioning hand at Red Eye as he trailed off his statement.
“I’m called Red Eye, follower of the Lord of Storms.”
“You may call me Dhohar. I’m pleased to finally be able to meet you. Corbin did you manage to get Red Eye’s purchase already?”
“He was not willing to pay the price I asked.”
“And what price was that?”
The butcher at least had the grace to blush as Dhohar patiently awaited his answer. “Two gold for 5 lbs of beef jerky.”
Dhohar whistled. “Beef jerky has gotten more expensive since I was in town last.” Dhohar turned to Red Eye. “So in celebration of our acquaintance let me purchase that for you.” Dhohar reached into his pocket and pulled out two dull and beaten gold coins and placed them on the butcher’s counter.
Cobrin looked shocked, and even redder in the face, as he murmured something about coming back and hurried to the back of his store to retrieve the jerky. When Cobrin was out of earshot, Dhohar whispered, “May I speak with you later? Privately?”
Red Eye knew this adventurer was either looking for an opportunity to rob him or could genuinely be reaching out to him. So he had but one course to sail. “I’m camped outside the town to the west by the river. You can find me there.”
“Wonderful.” Dhohar whispered. “I’ll see you in an hour or so. We might have need of your talents.” Dhohar changed to louder voice as Cobrin approached with the meat from the back of the store. “Ah… your victuals have arrived. A veritable feast of… salted cow.”
“I brought you my personal stock,” replied the butcher, “It’s even flavored with eleven herbs and spices. Nothing but the best for my… customers.” Cobrin handed the package quickly to Red Eye and attempted to say cheerily “God’s be with you!” but it just sounded like he was trying his best not to pass gas.
“Thank you Cobrin, and thank you Dhohar. I will not forget this courtesy.” And with a nod at the butcher and the man with the axe Red Eye walked out of the butcher’s shop contemplating who the “We” Dhohar was referring to could be.

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Zandu Aggressor100

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