Lady Dee's Best TipOctober 990 M.R.
Far from her humble roots as a common tavern wench, the Lady Dee now reigns as one of the premiere nobles of the Realms: Duchess of Glenndale, a position of which she is more than worthy. But, however proud she may be of her current status, Lady Dee is equally proud of her past. It is no surprise to any long-time inhabitant of the Realms to enter a tavern at a quest or tourney, and order a drink from the duchess. And occasionally, if she is in the right mood, (and perhaps been sampling her own wares), she will tell tales of her days as a young wench working in the taverns f he Realms, and of the many strange and wonderful things she saw and heard in her early years.
This is one such story, copied just as it was spoken by her Ladyship, the Duchess Dee of Glenndale, one one long and stormy night:
Now, I'm telling you this tale in the strictest of confidence, and I'll not have you writing this stuff down. Well, if you must, you must, but you'll not go putting this tale into that yellow rag you call a newsletter, you ink-stained scoundrel. You spread this tale, and I'll deny every word. I'll call the biggest liar this side of the Southern Waste. Don't go looking all innocent-eyes at me--this time, you'll keep your promise to keep silent d'you hear! Oh, all right, just a drop more...
Well, it was a raw, rainy night, much like this one. I was just getting my start at the wenching business, 'bout fourteen years old, maybe, and we were getting reading to close up for the night, when the door opened, and this stranger walked in, all wrapped up in a long black cloak, all you could see under it was shiny black boots and a bit of grey fuzz here and there. In those days, I apprenticed to a Master Wench, Tessa the Buxom. Now she took one look at our customer and pulled me aside to explain, with great pleasure, that the fuzz meant a fur-lined cloak, which meant money, which meant big tips. So, me being young and cute, she sent me over to serve.
Now at this point in my young life, I'd never seen a rich man. But I still wasn't sure about this one. I mean, my image of rich men was kind of fuzzy, but not this fuzzy. I mean, when I was taking his order, I could sort of see under the hood of his cloak, and he was fuzzy. As in furry. But the Master Wench was never wrong, so I smiled sweetly and served him.
A few minutes later, the door opened again, and another stranger came in, with another long black cloak. This one, however, wasn't displaying any fuzz. He joined the other cloaked stranger at a shadowy back table, while Tess wiggled her shoulders happily, and sent me back to serve him too. This one, I could see under the hood, really wasn't fuzzy. He was scaley! Nearly scared the panties off me, I'll tell you! I hate scaley things--lizards and snakes, yechhh! Ever since that run-in with the dragon...but that's another story. Anyway, startled as I was, Tessa had me trained well, so, in proper wenchly fashion, I pretended not to notice. Also and in proper wenchly fashion, I found a couple of tables that desperately needed scrubbing, just within eavesdropping range.
The fuzzy one took a swig of ale, then said to the scaley one: "Look old friend this has gone on long enough. A joke's a joke, but this is beginning to interfere with my research, not to mention my social life. Let's call it a draw, and forget about it."
The scaley one nodded under his hood. "Yeah, I know what you mean. O.K., but we'll take them off simultaneously, so there's not cheating. I know you to well to trust you very far, my friend."
"About as far as I trust you, " said the furry one. "It's a deal. The inn's stables should be empty by now. We can take care of it here."
"Lemme finish my drink first, said the scaley one.
Me being the ever curious wench that I am, I took this as my cue to sneak out the back door and up to the hayloft, where I could observe the entire stables from above, out of sight and in perfect comfort. Seconds after I was settled on my lovely pile of straw, my two customers walked in with a lantern, which they dropped on a hook by the door. I could see everything plain as day! They glanced around as if checking for watchers. Then they unfastened their cloaks. Only my intensive wenchly training kept me from crying out, I as that startled. There, in plain sight, and standing in the tavern's stables, was a six-foot, long-haired grey rabbit, and a slightly shorter, more heavy-set komodo dragon. They both raised their hands, or pas,or whatever, and gestured and with a flash of light, they both transformed into two perfectly normal looking human men.
The one who has been a bunny stretched, and grinned at the ex-lizard, and said "That's much better! I'll never wear a fur cloak again!"
"At least fur's soft," said the other. "Try scales some time!"
"I did -- last week, remember?" said the ex-bunny.
"Oh yeah," said the ex-lizard man. "That was a good one. Well, it's been fun, old friend. See you in class." And with a snap of fingers, he vanished, taking his cloak with him.
The ex-bunny picked up his own cloak, then collected the lantern from its hook. Then just before stepping out the door into the rain, he turned and looked back at the hayloft, right up at where I was hiding, gods know how he knew, and he said: "Never trust a mage. You'll never know what you'll wake up as..."
Best tip I ever got!
Created by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 01-05-21 01:34 PM
Last Modified by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 01-05-21 01:34 PM