The Tales of a Sheep Killer

Kwoo tossed and turned in his sleep. He was profusely sweating, despite wearing nothing but a pair of red pants. He was sleeping on a simple brown robe sprawled out on the grass between a cluster of trees. He dreamed of sheep. Sheep burning alive until they went to ash and the fire extinguished. From the ashes arose a single sheep.

“My name is Bah,” it said as it approached him, with complete darkness in the background.

Kwoo looked down to his hands to find them covered in blood. He looked back at Bah, “You can speak?”

“Of course I can, human. You wronged my kind, now you must seek repentance.”

The sheep spoke to Kwoo, instructing him on how he could correct his offenses. He talked of Lance Waltham, the man who owned the sheep that Kwoo had killed a moon before. As he spoke of Waltham, his tone shifted towards anger. He told the wizard that Waltham treated his fellow sheep very poorly. The vivid white of the sheep began to fade. In his final moments he asked that Kwoo free the remaining sheep under Waltham’s possession.

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  • Kwoo packed his robe and threw on his blue wizard hat and began searching for bracken to kill as his mind wandered. After killing a few trees, he failed to notice a man approach him.

    (Varouf): Good day, Comrade!

    (Kwoo): Hello!

    (Varouf): How is our garden today?

    (Kwoo): * bol flas *

    (Kwoo): Slightly more lively than usual.

    (Varouf): Ah, the Blood Moon!

    (Kwoo): Aye

    (Varouf): Not the miners' favourite, I confess.

    After a slight pause, Kwoo broke the silence.

    (Kwoo): Have we met before?

    (Varouf): I don't think so. I'm Varouf. One of the senators...

    (Varouf): I was elected two moons ago.

    (Kwoo): Fairly plain clothes for a senator. I like that.

    (Varouf): I am a miner too.

    (Varouf): And you are?

    (Kwoo): A wandering wizard.

    (Varouf): Mysterious, like most of your kind. * smiles *

     (Kwoo): What brings you outside Andris today?

    (Varouf): Oh, I was just going for a jog, before going back to the mines.

    (Varouf): I kept a shift, even if I am a senator now.

    (Kwoo): That's very noble.

    (Varouf): To remind myself of those hard days.

    (Varouf): I shall not interrupt your hunt any longer!

    (Kwoo): I'm sure your citizens like that about you.

    (Varouf): The miners do. The others, who knows. Always so worried with cloths, and riches...

    (Kwoo): You may join me if you'd like. Can you fight?

    (Varouf): I can, yes.

    Varouf brandished a flail that had been hanging from his belt.

    (Varouf): I did not bring my armour, but I have my weapon.

    (Kwoo): Ah, you’re a warrior?

    (Kwoo): I can keep most things from hitting you.

    (Varouf): I have a little bit of time.

    The unsuspecting duo headed towards the giants that reside north of Andris, when they crossed paths with Uberh.

    (Varouf): Good day!

    (Uberh): Hmmpf.

    (Kwoo): Oh, isn't that who was the other candidate?

    (Varouf): Yes. Hasn't spoken to me since. He'll forgive me one day.

    (Kwoo): I actually wanted to vote for him.

    (Varouf): You did?!

    (Kwoo): I wasn't present on election day, however.

    (Varouf): Are you an Andrisian, then?

    (Kwoo): I've spent my time here.

    (Kwoo): Was the vote limited to only citizens?

    (Varouf): I think it was only citizens, yes. But I hear people asked for temporary citizenship.

    (Kwoo): All those years in the mine have made you strong.

    (Varouf): That, they have.

    (Kwoo): Well, at any rate.

    (Kwoo): I knew Uberh, but I didn't know you.

    (Varouf): It is normal that you didn't know me.

    (Varouf): I spent most of the time at the mines.

    (Varouf): I never thought I'd have to become a senator.

    A few giants interrupted their conversation temporarily.

    (Kwoo): What's the day of a senator like?

    (Kwoo): Any changes you plan to make?

    (Varouf): There is the morning breakfast.

    (Varouf): Where we discuss the state of the city.

    (Varouf): For now, I want to make sure all of late Falov Ellychas plans become true.

    (Varouf): He was a worker, like myself.

    (Kwoo): What were those plans?

    (Varouf): Free school for every child.

    (Varouf): Better health care.

    (Varouf): Fair wages.

    (Varouf): A regulation of the merchants' taxes.

    (Varouf): The merchants are a strong class in Andris.

    (Varouf): They don't really care for workers, most of the time.

    (Kwoo): Andris is a city with much historical wealth.

    (Varouf): Yes... which is good, in some ways.

    (Varouf): But the money has to be used for everyone's benefit.

    (Kwoo): I'm sure some don't like the change.

    (Kwoo): The wealthy prefer to get wealthier

    (Varouf): So true.

    (Kwoo): It can be intoxicating.

    (Varouf): Some of them are really hard to convince.

    (Varouf): But we will get there!

    (Kwoo): You seem like a very good man, Senator.

    Varouf didn’t seem to pay much attention to Kwoo’s last statement, instead he began to admire a rock formation they had come across.

    (Varouf): Ooops.

    (Varouf): Sorry. I can't help but study the rocks.

    (Kwoo): Haha, we all have our passions.

    (Varouf): What are yours?

    (Kwoo): I enjoy thinking and killing. * smiles *

    (Varouf): Thinking is important.

    (Varouf): Killing a necessary evil, I guess.

    (Kwoo): I think of killing as keeping evil at bay.

     (Varouf): In many cases. Yet some do it for fun.

    (Varouf): They kill the innocent.

    (Varouf): Like that issue with Waltham... I mean, Waltham is a merchant...

    (Varouf): But poor sheep!

    (Varouf): They did not deserve that fate.

    Kwoo had forgotten he was in the presence of a Senator.

    (Kwoo): Haha..Right. About that.

    (Varouf): You know the story?

    Given to Varouf:  25 Bundles of Wool

    (Kwoo): Have a look.

    (Kwoo): Can you guess what that is?

    Varouf looked as though he had seen a ghost.

    (Varouf): Is this wool...?

    (Varouf): No!

    (Varouf): Can't be!

    (Kwoo): Very observant, Senator.

    (Varouf): Did you collect it from Waltham's pens?

    (Kwoo): Aye.

    (Kwoo): I am the wizard that killed them.

    (Varouf): But ... did you murder... Oh my.

    (Varouf): Why? You sound so decent.

    (Kwoo): Not everything is as black and white as it may seem

    (Varouf): Did you have a revenge against Waltham?

    (Kwoo): I'm afraid at the time, I did not.

    (Varouf): I know he is very difficult.

    (Varouf): Look. You should be careful.

    (Kwoo): Why is that?

    (Varouf): He has half of his staff looking for you.

    (Varouf): And he is known for his anger.

    (Kwoo): Can I have the wool back, by the way?

    (Varouf): Of course.

    Taken from Varouf:  25 Bundles of Wool

    (Varouf): Poor poor sheep.

    (Varouf): I will not tell anyone I met you. You still sound decent enough.

    (Varouf): Oh, Helda.

    “Ah, there you are, Varouf.” Kwoo, lacking basic observation skills again, heard the words being spoken before he saw Senator Helda Grantham approach them.

    (Varouf): Good evening.

    (Kwoo): Oh.. hello senator.

    (Varouf): I was just hunting with a friend.

    (Grantham): I see.

    (Kwoo): Well met.

    (Varouf): Two wizards. * smiles * No need for a miner!

    (Grantham): Good evening to you sir.

    (Grantham): I am Senator Helda Grantham.

    (Grantham): Who might you be?

    (Kwoo): I am Kwoo, a simple wizard.

    As Kwoo finished his introduction he tossed a fireball from his hands to kill a Harpie approaching the group.

    (Varouf): * cringes *

    (Grantham): Kwoo?

    (Varouf): Shhh!

    (Varouf): Don't say that too loud!

    (Kwoo): Hmm?

    (Grantham): Senator, please. A word.

    (Varouf): Helda, I must confess I find this gentleman less harmful than his reputation.

    (Grantham): Guardsman,

    (Varouf): I worry for his head, if Lance finds him.

    (Grantham): Look after this gentleman.

    (Varouf): As much as I don't like what he did.

    (Guard): Yes ma'am.

    (Grantham): I see, you know already.

    (Grantham): I heard from a witness.

    (Varouf): I do, yes.

    (Varouf): He just told it to me himself.

    (Kwoo): Ah, you know as well then, I take it?

    (Grantham): A confession. Excellent.

    (Grantham): And he has not yet been decapitated.

    (Varouf): Lance is in Mirith.

    (Varouf): I saw him leaving earlier.

    (Varouf): But his staff may find him.

    (Grantham): Yes.

    (Grantham): It would be as well for you, Kwoo to make reparations.

    (Kwoo): Reparations?

    (Varouf): Mr Waltham only cares about money.

    (Varouf): Bling bling.

    (Kwoo): The gold that this "Lance" asked for?

    (Grantham): *nods*

    (Varouf): The sound of coins may appease him.

    (Varouf): Do you have money?

    (Kwoo): Not even the wealthiest man in Andris has that amount of money.

    (Grantham): If a fair price is paid, Andris will ensure Lance behaves himself.

    (Kwoo): What is the fair price for a single sheep?

    (Grantham): *whispers to Varouf*

    (Grantham): *nods*

    (Grantham): In view of the crimes, and the injury to property,

    (Varouf): I believe that's the current price.

    (Grantham): and the upset caused to poor Anthea,

    (Kwoo): Wait, wait.

    (Kwoo): Who is Anthea?

    (Grantham): Five hundred pieces of gold per head of sheep.

    (Varouf): Lance's lovely wife.

    (Grantham): Anthea Waltham.

    (Varouf): Who found the dead sheep.

    (Grantham): She's something of a scholar.

    (Varouf): She is still very upset.

    (Varouf): Such a kind soul!

    (Grantham): Will you pay, Kwoo?

    (Kwoo): How many sheep were there?

    (Varouf): Five hundred pieces times ... twenty-five? Was that the number?

    (Grantham): *nods* I think so.

    (Varouf): Could you could the bundles?

    (Kwoo): * takes out bundles *

    (Varouf): We don't want to be unfair.

    Dropped:  Bundle of Wool

    Dropped:  Bundle of Wool

    Dropped:  Bundle of Wool

    Kwoo began to lay out the wool, counting them as he did so.

    (Grantham): *observes*

    Dropped:  Bundle of Wool

    (Kwoo): 1...2...3...

    (Grantham): That will do.

    (Kwoo): 23... 24... 25

    (Kwoo): Yes, you were right

    (Grantham): Twlve thousand five hundred pieces.

    (Varouf): Do you think it is doable?

    (Varouf): I could offer you a place in the mines.

    (Varouf): If you need to earn some money.

    Kwoo pulled out his coin purse and began estimating his current wealth.

    (Kwoo): Hmm... It seems I only have five thousand gold.

    (Grantham): I hope you come up with the money quickly.

    (Kwoo): I could take out a loan from an old friend..

    (Varouf): And we will talk to Lance to make him accept that sum.

    (Grantham): You should be grateful to Andris. Lance can be most vindictive.

    The wizard's mind moved to the dream he had the night before.

    (Kwoo): But I will only pay my "debts" if Andris looks into Waltham's business practices.

    (Varouf): He won't be happy, but I think he'll accept.

    (Grantham): The Senate of Andris acts on behalf of the people of Andris.

    (Varouf): What do you mean? He exploits his workers?

    (Grantham): *nods* Even the workers.

    (Kwoo): Those sheep I killed looked very poorly kept after.

    (Varouf): The unfair wages he pays his workers are well known.

    (Varouf): The union is dealing with that.

    (Kwoo): I'm more concerned about the animals.

    (Varouf): Oh, you say they were mistreated? Badly fed?

    (Grantham): You are concerned?

    (Kwoo): I believe he is cutting cost

    (Kwoo): costs

    (Grantham): You that poisoned them?

    (Kwoo): Those sheep would be worth maybe 250 a head.

    (Varouf): Their wool seems good enough.

    (Grantham): You are in no position to bargain.

    (Varouf): But I am worried that the sheep suffer.

    (Guard): Shall I apprehend him, ma'am?

     

    (Kwoo): The wool only looks this good after countless hours of washing and treating it.

    (Grantham): No, guardsman.

    (Varouf): Helda, I will ask for advice from the stables on the matter of sheep well-being.

    (Grantham): *nods*

    (Varouf): If needed, we will inform Lance that he needs to change his methods.

    (Varouf): But you still need to deal with him.

    (Varouf): If you love your life.

    (Kwoo): That comes after the audit, I'm afraid.

    (Varouf): He can get extremely angry.

    Kwoo felt slightly at ease with Varouf's last statement. Maybe his dream had some truth to it.

    (Varouf): What do you think, Helda?

    (Grantham): Kwoo should pay.

    (Varouf): * nods * It would be fair.

    (Grantham): We will investigate, but we are not bargaining with a poisoner.

    (Varouf): Lance fired his shepherds. People lost their jobs.

    (Kwoo): If it turns out that the sheep are being treated as poorly as I say, then I shouldn't

    (Kwoo): Have to pay the full amount.

    (Grantham): Treated poorly? By passing wizards with too many dragon's teeth?

    (Grantham): I leave the rest to you, Varouf.

    Senator Grantham had clearly had enough of Kwoo’s antics, and stormed off.

    (Varouf): Wait!

    (Grantham): Good day.

    (Varouf): You needed me?

    (Varouf): You were looking for me.

    (Grantham): Later.

    (Varouf): Right.

    (Kwoo): Left.

    (Varouf): Well.

    (Kwoo): As in "That went well"?

    (Varouf): No, that did not go well.

    (Kwoo): Hum..

    (Kwoo): You think?

    (Kwoo): I think it was okay.

    (Varouf): I would still advise you to stay away from Lance.

    (Varouf): And to pay some sort of compensation.

    (Kwoo): He is in Mirith you say?

    (Varouf): I promise I will look into the conditions in which the sheep are kept.

    (Varouf): He was in Mirith, yes. He may have returned.

    (Varouf): Helda will always defend the merchants' rights.

    (Kwoo): His men.. are they strong?

    (Varouf): The tailors and shepherds? Not really. But nothing stops him from hiring mercenaries.

    (Varouf): You look like a good man.

    (Varouf): I would hate to hear that Lance took his revenge.

    (Kwoo): That would be a sad day.

    (Varouf): Promise me you will try to solve this issue.

    (Kwoo): Even if I believe Lance to be a bad man?

    (Varouf): He likely is.

    (Varouf): But he is right in being angry.

    (Varouf): If we were to kill and destroy every bad man's work, we would live in a desert.

    (Kwoo): Andris wouldn't exist, that's for sure.

    (Varouf): I want the sheep to be well treated. I will order that to Lance.

    (Kwoo): * nods *

    (Varouf): But you still need to do your part.

    (Kwoo): Don't ever change, Senator.

    (Varouf): You did murder twenty-five of them.

    (Kwoo): I killed 25 of them.

    (Varouf): Changing the verb doesn't make it nicer.

    (Varouf): They are gentle, innocent beings.

    (Varouf): They deserved a cleric, if they were not looking healthy.

    (Varouf): Not poison.

    (Kwoo): I'm not sure I can agree with you there.

    (Kwoo): Do you eat meat ever?

    (Varouf): I do.

    (Kwoo): I'm sure someone as strong as you needs a healthy amount of protein

    (Varouf): I do not need 25 sheep.

    (Varouf): Nature needs balance, as our druids would say.

    (Varouf): We don't take more than needed.

    (Kwoo): The food was not wasted.

    (Kwoo): And the wool will not be either.

    (Varouf): Poison is not good for meat.

     (Kwoo): It was cooked out.

    (Varouf): At least that.

    (Varouf): Anyway, I must work.

    (Varouf): I hope this matter is sorted soon.

    (Varouf): It was still a pleasure to meet you.

    (Kwoo): You as well

    (Varouf): Stay safe!

    (Kwoo): Likewise.

  • (TL;DR: Kwoo meets newly elected Senator Varouf. After conversing for a few hours, Varouf discovers that Kwoo is the sheep killer. Varouf found this situation rather difficult to handle, as he had grown to like Kwoo, but before he can think about how to handle the situation, Senator Grantham approaches. Kwoo announces his identity to Grantham, and she immediately recognizes the name, demanding that he pay his debts to Lance Waltham. Kwoo agrees, on the condition that the city of Andris look into Waltham's business practices.)
  • edited August 2018

    With people (and possibly even mercenaries) looking for Kwoo, he was unsure of where he should go. He knew he wanted to avoid Andris, since that is where Waltham typically resided. He also knew that he was currently in Mirith, and would likely be coming back to Andris on the path sometime soon. Kwoo decided he would have to disguise himself from his typical apparel, so he took off his blue wizard hat and put it in his pouch and he ripped up his pants and rubbed dirt all over them. As soon as he felt confident in his disguise he saw something catch the light in the corner of his eye - it was a ring.

    He was planning on heading towards Marali, but did not want to risk the chance to become serpent food, so he began to cross the wooden bridge between Andris and Mirith. Here he crossed paths with a man sporting a fine black robe and black plate arms. Panicking, he tried to put on an accent that he had not practiced before.

     

    (Lance Waltham): Hello.

    (Kwoo): 'ello mate

    (Kwoo): Oi

    (Lance Waltham): What?

    (Kwoo): Fancy arms you got there

    (Lance Waltham): Thank you.

    (Kwoo): Might a poor soul have a bite to eat?

    (Lance Waltham): Pfff. I don't like beggars.

    (Lance Waltham): Go work.

    (Kwoo): Please, sir!

    (Lance Waltham): No.

    (Kwoo): You look like you could use some help!

    (Kwoo): I could work for you!

    (Lance Waltham): You could?

    (Lance Waltham): What do you do?

    (Kwoo): Aye, I'm quite the cleaner!

    (Lance Waltham): That is Anthea's business.

    (Lance Waltham): She deals with the cleaners.

    (Kwoo): Who's Anthea?

    (Lance Waltham): My wife.

    (Kwoo): Ahhhh

    (Kwoo): Lovely name, sir. Truly.

    (Lance Waltham): Who are you?

    (Kwoo): You musn't worry about my name, sir.

    (Lance Waltham): I don't.

    (Lance Waltham): I don't really care about you either.

    (Lance Waltham): Beggar.

    (Kwoo): Sure you can't spare some food?

    (Lance Waltham): Go ask in Mirith. They have many like you.

    (Kwoo): I could trade you some plants for food?

    (Lance Waltham): We need to keep the streets of Andris clean.

    (Kwoo): Or maybe some logs?

    Kwoo began reaching into his pouch and laying items in front of Waltham. First, a handful of ginseng, followed by a couple logs. The wizard knew that Lance had no need for either of those things. He felt the bottom of his pouch and felt the cold of a tiny, metal ring on his finger tips.

    (Lance Waltham): What's that ring?

    (Kwoo): I also found that, but I'm not sure what it is..

    (Lance Waltham): I'll take that.

    (Kwoo): What could you give me for it?

    (Lance Waltham): Cake.

    (Kwoo): I'd like one of your rings as well.

    (Kwoo): A ring for a ring

    (Lance Waltham): Pfff.

    (Kwoo): * points to the ring on his left hand *

    (Lance Waltham): And you say you are hungry.

    (Kwoo): Please sir!

    (Lance Waltham): No.

    (Lance Waltham): Goodbye.

    (Kwoo): I need to be able to afford a meal later!

    (Kwoo): Fine, fine.

    (Lance Waltham): Not my problem.

    (Kwoo): A ring for cake.

    (Kwoo): Fair trade my mum always said.

    (Lance Waltham): Give me the ring.

    Given to Lance Waltham:  Pure Crystal Ring

    (Lance Waltham): * passes some crumbles * There.

    Taken from Lance Waltham:  Andris Banana Cake

    (Lance Waltham): Now, goodbye.

    (Kwoo): * eats the crumbles like a rat *

    (Kwoo): Thank you sir.

    You are beginning to feel full.

  • A FASHIONABLE ENCOUNTER
    Letter to Nial of the Marali Vanguard

    Day 213 of the Bleeding Moon

    Dear Nial, 

    You will never guess what happened after that messenger called you away!

    Arduis and I had virtually completed our task of restoring the cemetery to peace and quiet. It was now the middle of the night and my brother Rebel was chasing one last Bone Mage down the woods. I heard some unknown voices approaching and shouted to Arduis that we had visitors. This strange couple advanced towards the cemetery gate - it was Anthea and Lance Waltham! After an exchange of courtesies and the necessary introductions, we got the impression that the lady wished to hire us for something. But let me tell you, they must be a right pair of skinflints … I heard the husband suggest a remuneration of 20 gold pieces per hour! Arduis manifested his outrage not so much at the sum, but at the idea of being paid at all! He renders his services free for good causes, he is no mercenary, he likes to point out.

    They then entered the cemetery and we wondered what they were up to at that time of night. Maybe look for the murderers of their sheep in the crypt? I shivered. Nonetheless, we politely followed them and, to our surprise, they displayed an interest in brown shirts. We had none to offer right then. Reading the surprise we must have betrayed, they explained about having to cater for the needs of a younger generation. I am sure you will find it hard to believe (as we did) but there is a new fashion amongst the young - they like to wear Zombie clothes (eww…) and hang out in cemeteries singing depressing tunes!  

    As if by magic, a lot of undead rose and surrounded us. We got rid of them as fast as our combined skills would allow and thus the Walthams were able to gain a supply of those horrid brown shirts. It was at this stage that I spoke to the lady and mentioned that you wished to see her. I had to explain you were a ranger of the Marali Vanguard as they were unfamiliar with your name. The husband grew alarmed, demanding to know what you could possibly want from his wife, but of course neither of us could satisfy their curiosity. I warn you Nial, that husband of hers is most peculiar - very impatient, authoritative and positively jealous of his lady.

    At one stage I heard him mutter something about thugs, and was ready to give him a piece of my mind, thinking he was referring to us - well, you know how the stench from the cursed (and cursing) Zombies makes one feel dizzy… then Arduis reassured me Mr Waltham was referring to Maralians (don’t ask me!).

    We then parted from this odd couple of merchants and returned to town.


    Your friend,


    Rosina Biancavalle

    Also on behalf of Arduis de Gispard



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