The Scribe sits in the corner as this unlikely fellowship begins to take shape.
“...no matter how good of a fighter you are, you will be wrong to think that you can get your family back without your friends helping,” said the Wizard.
“What do you mean I can’t get my family back without them?” The Gunslinger motions to the Barkeep and the Hero.
The Scribe scribbles furiously.
“What have you heard about the Time Changer?” asked the Wizard.
The Hero interjects, “It’s nothing but a dwarven legend devised by a bunch of overzealous dwarves enchanted by their own handiwork.”
“Or is it? Our time-travelling Gunslinger knows about alternative timelines, but what if there was a way to change your placement in time, placing the Gunslinger you are now back into your own timeline. Just creating a parallel timeline. What if these dark dwarves created such a magic item, then decided it was even too dangerous for themselves and hid it at the ends of the earth? ” muses the Wizard.
The Gunslinger finds the Wizard’s understanding of time-space time travel rather advanced. As did the Hero, whose eyes were locked into a thousand yard stare, mind blown by the possibilities put forth by the Wizard.
The Gunslinger turns the idea over in his head. “What do you have in mind?” asked the Gunslinger.
“You will need to seek out a spectrum of skilled adventurers, as well as advanced weaponry and supplies, and most importantly, knowledge,” muses the Wizard. “Gathering together these pieces is of the highest importance.”
“What’s wrong with my pistols,” asks the Gunslinger as he draws away his cloak, revealing the revolvers resting in their holsters.
“Nothing, dear Gunslinger, if you’re hunting lowly bounties. But I assure you, you will need more firepower to face the things to come,” quips the Wizard.
“Well where are we off to, we waste time dilly-dallying when we could be off carousing and time-changing,” guffaws the Hero.
The Scribe switches to a new sheet of parchment, sure that the following will require at least a sheet’s worth of space to record.
“First,” proposes the Wizard, “it would be imperative to find transport to your destination. There will be raging seas, deceitful monsters, and mystifying tests along the way. There is a pirate, who sails for gold and glory, with a flowing beard of ruby crimson. A horrifying blade hangs at his hip, with an arsenal of flintlock pistols hanging from his bandolier and a blunderbuss concealed behind his long, caromine cloak. He is always accompanied by an exotic bird that perches itself upon his shoulders. He’s a gruff and shrewd pirate. A fierce swordfighter and a cunning captain, but there is a heart of gold that resides deep in that barrel of a chest.”
“He sounds like a load of fun,” booms the voice of the Bartender, returning with pints in arm, knowing that such extended conversation tends to parch the tongue. “Where would one look for the pirate?”
“I can be of assistance.”
The light but strong voice piped up from across the room, causing the friends to turn and face the voice that had not yet graced their discourse.
It was the Scribe. His writing ceases and he stares intently at the group. He continues, “I write communique for all, both the royals and the common, the good and the, well, less than reputable. Very little written information passes through the realm that hasn't flowed forth from the point of my quill.”
The Barkeep looks at the Scribe, as does the Gunslinger, Wizard, and Hero, thoroughly impressed.
The Gunslinger eyes the Scribe, sizing him up. He lowly but firmly drawls, “Continue.”
The Scribe, not being used to being the center of attention, now feels a little self-conscious, but continues. “Rrreports have told of his adventures in the far western seas, but those in search of crew work know that he makes landfall in a coastal village nestled on the bay. He stops for supplies, crewmen, and most importantly, rum.”
“I’ll tend to that responsibility,” quickly chimes the Hero. “I’ll search for the village and meet the women...” the Hero coughed and then corrected himself, “I mean, the Captain. He sounds like a pleasant fellow and if he’s less than hospitable, I would wager my blades against his on any day.”
“Now that we know where our priorities are…” the Barkeep sneers. “It’s just a ride to the coastal realm to find the good captain, you should do well with your... congenial personality.”
“What’s next Wizard,” asks the Gunslinger.
“You will need a ranger, someone who can navigate any terrain, track anything, scout ahead, all without being seen. He should move like a shadow, but strike like a snake. Such a fellow usually has fair command of a bow, which would provide some variety to our current skill set,” concludes the Wizard.
“Again, I may be off assistance,” volunteers the Scribe. “A memorandum was sent out from one of the northern kingdoms, offering a reward for who could kill a nightmarish apparition. Information coming from that kingdom recently speaks of such a Marksman, only this Marksman has been claimed to have even hunted the devil himself. His accuracy and range is said to be unmatched, and bystanders says they never see him walking anywhere. He just ‘appears.’”
“The devil himself?” replies the Wizard, “That would indeed fit the description, but you would need a tracker as accomplished to find him.”
“I will find him,” the Barkeep announces. “A man such as this, who travels much and performs deeds such as these, cannot move without a trace. My network of tavern owners can be of assistance. He has to drink, eat, and sleep somewhere.”
“Splendid! Now, I also believe you will need the services of an engineer. I have encountered one in my business dealings. A dwarf with a beard as ruddy as clay mud. He’s strong as three oxen, but only as high as a bush. He has a mighty forging hammer and a pair of thick, green goggles resting upon his shaven head. The last time I saw him, he was crafting weapons for the realm’s guards. He will be invaluable in providing weapons that will handle the opposition that surely lies in wait,” said the Wizard.
“And what, pray tell, lies in wait, dear Wizard?” asks the Hero.
“Well, sir Hero, I’m glad you asked,” answers the Wizard turning to the Scribe. “Scribe, if you are to be a part of this expedition, you will need to be of service…”
“No, no, no, there Mr. Wizard,” interrupts the Hero. “Scribe, with all due respect, in this present context the pen is not mightier than the sword. In all actuality, it is much weaker than the sword and we do not seek to carry passengers on this journey.”
“I have to agree with the hero,” agrees the Gunslinger. “We wouldn’t want to endanger this Scribe. The path of danger isn’t for this one.”
The Scribe stands up quickly, sending the chair falling backwards. He throws down his pen. “I AM going. I have copied down deeds of great men, and retold adventures relayed to me from those who were there. I have dreamt of something such as this for my entire life. I once prided myself on nothing but my beard, but now I can pride myself on my deeds and character. I will not have this adventure recited for me, to record it for the annals of history, I will be there myself. I will smell the sea and feel the air as it buffets my face. I WILL be there,” challenges the Scribe.
The party, taken aback by the outburst, was quiet. Finally, the Wizard breaks the silence.
“Of course, dear boy. They need you more than they know. Your knowledge will be critical for the journey. In fact, your objective is to convince the dwarven engineer to assist in this quest, for once he understands the goal of the mission, he will be unable to deny his participation given his dwarvish heritage. Go to the Eastern realm, and study from the Great Halls this Time Changer, then proceed to meet with the Engineer,” commanded the Scribe.
The Scribes chest fills with a mix of emotions varying from fear, anxiety, curiosity, and excitement, pulsating from the tips of his ears, to his toes, and to the ends of his well-kempt beard. He has gone from the boring unassuming Scribe, to a Scribe with wild intent. The Scribe wanted an adventure, and now he has one.