Long Live the Prince…(as long as he stays lost?)
Crossing, Zoluren: Shorka 360
Uncharacteristically silent and demurred, a young dwarf enters the tavern. He is dressed in a hardened leather coat (which still sports a neat hole where the barbarian paid in steel to the Rock Troll that previously own it). Baresh sees him approaching one of the empty stools and grabs a shot glass and a bottle of spiced rum. He serves a shot and places it in front of the dwarf.
“Thank you Baresh,” the young dwarf says.
“Are you spending the reward money?” Asks Baresh with a hint of smile in his eyes.
Solrac raises his eyes and another smile answers Baresh’s. “Nah… actually I am a little worried of rewards after the announcements by the prince-in-fact, Sirolarn,… after the funeral of the Prince…” Solrac drinks his shot and motions Baresh for another.
Baresh complies, and since the Tavern appears rather slow, stays in front of the barbarian.
“You see, I am not the only one who has noticed that something does not add up in the words, information and rewards offered. I checked out the message board in the back, and I see I am not the only one. Give me another? Let me be able to say I was just drunk. It works to my protection both if I am wrong as if I am right…” Solrac empties his glass and gets some coins from his coat.
Baresh serves him a long shot… one on the house now and then is not bad for the business. Solrac eyes Baresh appreciatively and gives sort of a good bye kiss to the rum… his tongue proving the whole glass and getting every last drop (and making Baresh wonder how safe would it be to put the shot glass back into the â€˜General Community’ again).
“The points that called my attention from the meeting held after the Funeral where these:
- The Prince was not only very old for a human, but was also sick and was to die soon anyway.
- Vorclaf, as well as the â€˜regent’, Sirolarn, knew about the sickness and imminent demise of the Prince.
- The â€˜Regent’ told us that both a magic targeted at the royal blood and poison where used in the assassination.
- He himself had been affected by that Targeted magic, but being only half of the blood targeted in fact was able to survive.
“Got to be really drunk to tell you this.” Solrac eyes grow bigger as he observes the shot being served. Baresh can see his black eyes are surrounded by a red web of veins.
With slurred speech Solrac continues. “Now points one and two… actually would appear to clear Vorclaf of suspicion, his father was to die soon, and he would get the Throne… no motive for him to accelerate what would come soon and easy enough.. Unless someone can think of some kind of time table that required the moment of his ascension to be now… rather than tomorrow.” Solrac leans as if about to fall but regains his posture. “The “Regent”, dam it; What was his name? (Solrac scratches his bald head as if raking his brains for a name)
“What his Face, ah.. Sirolarn, he says poison was used, but gave no information on that, now, what he said about the magic targeted at the royal blood… that is interesting.” Solrac closes his eyes for a second…
“Points three and four make it appear that both the Prince and Vorclaf would have died… except the prince apparently ran away… and that “What’s his face”, Sirolarn, would had been the only survivor.”
Solrac chuckles to himself. “Point five… with all the rewards for the return of the real and brand new Prince Vorclaf, is disturbing… No one seems to be able to control or stop that magic used against the dead Prince, thus no one would be able to prevent the dead of Vorclaf, if he returns…”
Solrac finally falls from his stool. Baresh leans over the bar and sees the dwarf still awake and apparently unaware of his fall.
“What is the use of bringing back Vorclaf is there is still an unchecked magic spell running around that would certainly kill him? That would be like bringing and old pet pony to the slaughter-house, just so he can be kill… Now, Sirolarn, if Vorclaf dies… would have to endure the power of the throne… poor thing.” Solrac closes his eyes and half sleep murmurs… “That is what the frog wants, to be thrown to the marshes!”
Hours later, Baresh could hear, between snores that made his fine glasses tingle, how Solrac, in nightmares, kept mumbling about a Centaur and about his father being a man-horse…