Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Campaign: The Beer Garden

The rain ceases to fall in the early afternoon, though the weather remains gloomy for the remainder of the day; the high hills to the southwest of Dachau retain a shroud of fog into the evening, with no sign that it will lift before sunset. It is, altogether, a dreary day.

In the afternoon, a message arrives from Johann Mizer as to the location of the beer garden, and an indication that Tiberius and his friends should meet him there at six bells. It is not a great distance; Helmunt, ever eager to please, offers to send a boy with the party to show the way, if only a copper piece is given. One way or another, through the wet streets the trio find their way to the garden, which at first glance is unfortunately in the out of doors.

Stepping through an arch constructed of latticework and holly branches, the party finds a group of wet wooden tables and benches. The latticework extends over their heads, and weaved into the frame are more branches, not quite thickly grown with holly leaves—this will take a few weeks yet. In the sunshine it would be a beautiful shaded recluse.

To the group’s delight, however, it is discovered that half the beer garden is roofed, and a solid structure built on three sides. On the fourth side is a roaring fire, fully eight feet wide and four feet deep, in which burns hemlock and yew. Stepping between a few puddles still filling the hollows between the exposed benches, Tiberius, Anshelm and Delfig join the hearty throng of forty people sitting in the warm comfort provided by the fire.

Mizer is there; he happily greets each one of you; introductions are made, and Mizer pleasantly insists that he buy the first round. The day did not begin too well for him; but an arrangement has been made and a silversmith is to be ousted from his rented property a few miles out of town, so that it will be put under Mizer’s ownership.

While hearing this tale, the trio cannot help noticing that the barmaids are exceptional—all beauties, all quite young and with remarkable ashen skin and near-perfect teeth. This last, of course, would be quite rare to their experience, and Mizer will laugh when he sees his companions noticing it.

He’s quite happy to explain the happenstance. The beer garden is in part owned by an adventurous young fellow, who a few years ago took part as a mercenary in the war, in Saxony, and made his fortune in silver. This young fellow, a paladin, Eberhardt Hornung by name, has since become the darling of the town, and this beer garden a contribution to his fame. It is true, adds Mizer discreetly, that Hornung also holds a string of harlots…the “cleanest” harlots in Bavaria, since none ever suffers from any disease, not even in their mouths. But Mizer suggests not spreading around any rumors a person might be told in a beer garden.

25 comments:

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

Anshelm chuckles to himself as Mizer tells Hornung's story.

"This silversmith...what'd he do?" he inquires after a moment, keeping his tone as neutral as possible.

Delfig Kôlhupfer said...

[OOC- I had to laugh. I did a Google search on "Eberhardt Hornung" just in case there was something significant about this person.. and this very post is the #1 result.]

Delfig will be very pleased to see the eye candy and indeed he will wink and nod and flirt as would best befit a place like this. (In other words, he'll try to blend in with the general mood/feeling, but he's all about enjoying the ladies.)

Are the two gentlemen who I overheard at the play yesterday here at the garden?

Alexis said...

Anshelm,

Mizer will answer, "Oh, nothing I suppose. But it's not his land, is it? I might have a look at his books, see if he's worth having as a tenant...but I'm thinking I'd like to turn the land over to cattle. There might be some trouble, depending on what sort of man he turns out to be--but I'll send a group of hooligans if I must."

Delfig,

There's quite a lot of flirting all around--the wenches seem fond of it. But no, you don't see the gentlemen here.

Delfig Kôlhupfer said...

"Why would there be trouble?" I ask rather innocently.

If it seems appropriate (and if none else are playing), I will take out my lyre and begin strumming and continuing to enjoy pleasant conversation/eye candy with the girls. The type of music will be quiet and celebratory, meant to make people feel at ease and enjoy themselves. If it's not appropriate (meaning that my medieval sense of manners knows this would be a Bad Idea), then I'll continue to listen quietly to answers.

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

"Indeed. Sometimes you just need to crack a few skulls when tenants become insolent."

After Delfig asks his question, Anshelm leans forward. "Yes, the folk 'round these parts seem the petulant type. Have you had trouble before?"

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

...and do we recognize Hornung's name, by the way?

Alexis said...

Delfig,

There seems less pleasure at your playing that there would be at the Pig or than the cotters offered. A few of the patrons scowl at you. It is likely they are used to a bard who is at least a member of a college (which you wouldn't be, until 2nd level).

Mizer will answer Anshelm: "Oh, these country bumpkins, they think they have rights because they pay their money. They never understand that these shacks and flimsy wheels they slap together hardly substitute as privileges of land."

Anshelm,

Hornung? I don't know...do you?

Delfig Kôlhupfer said...

Then at the first sign of lack of appreciation, I will stop playing and go back to listening.

"Has there been much unrest from the commoners recently? We encountered quite a shocking sight as we entered the city through the North Gate, recently. We wondered if there had been an uprising."

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

(hehehe...I suppose we wouldn't recognize the name if we needed an explanation)

Anshelm nods at Delfig's question and waits to hear the answer.

[blackbox word is "verse"...I think it's an omen, friend bard... :) )

Alexis said...

Mizer: "Oh yes, the matter of the north blockhouse. Very similar to what I was only just saying. That was nothing more than Von Asper invoking his family's rights. The inn was never on private land...and for the defense of the town against the valley bandits it was voted six months ago that the blockhouse be converted into a defensive fortification. I understood there was some resistance to the law, and matters came to a head...the innkeeper was hanged?"

Delfig Kôlhupfer said...

Delfig listens impassively and shrugs. "Was it the innkeeper who was hanging next to a woman in front of the blockhouse? I didn't know and thought it best not to ask. Is it normal for the good Baron to take such an involvement in matters like this to where a vote was needed?"

[OOC - hey Tiberius - get to the askingforthejobandearningcoins thing! :D]

Alexis said...

Delfig,

Mizer will answer, "That would certainly be the Baron's privilege."

(OOC: Tiberius is hopelessly busy today; feel free to just ask yourself, and assume Tiberius is backing your play)

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

Anshelm makes an impatient gesture.

"Yes, yes. Very much the baron's privilege, and you've got to make an example of the rabble else they all get it in their heads that they can defy the word of law, eh?" he says with a forced smile.

"So, what is it you'd like to speak with our friend Tiberius about? You need someone to provide another example for you, then?" Again with the best smile Anshelm can muster.

Alexis said...

"Who is Tiberius?" asks Mizer.

(OCC: Seriously, Anshelm, just go ahead and act as Tiberius' voice in this. The campaign can't work if we have to dogmatically depend on people being present. I won't let you bring Tiberius to any harm, but in cases where a player isn't present, presume that he has turned to you and said, "Anshelm, will you please explain matters to my friend Johann?")

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

(So noted! Makes good sense, too.)

I would guess that at this point Tiberius would break in and explain that Anshelm meant Adelbert Volkmann, and Tiberius is a nickname. Then he would thank Mizer again for his help at the courthouse and inquire as to why this meeting was requested.

Alexis said...

Mizer was only being polite and pleasant, offering a get-together for an old business acquaintance. I believe Tiberius was interested in getting the party a job of some kind, but the subject has not been raised with Mizer.

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

Ah, whoops.

Tiberius tells Mizer (after thanking him again, etc.) that he wanted to inquire about work for him and his companions. We've skills of various sorts that could be useful to him.

Alexis said...

Mizer seems amused. It has to be explained to him that Tiberius is no longer working for the Baron; whereupon he would have to say that he has no "soft" work to be done.

But he looks at Anshelm and says, "Various skills? Have you tried your hand at collections?"

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

Anshelm scratches his chin and looks to Delfig and Tiberius for a moment, trying to gauge their reactions.

"Collections, eh? I've not had the pleasure myself, though I can't speak for my compatriots. You've a pressing need for such employment of late, I take it?"

Alexis said...

"Yes, of course. Someone will have to explain my rights to the silversmith."

Tiberius said...

"I think you'll find us to be very persuasive men, Johann. And we're not above a little hard work."

Alexis said...

Mizer will answer, "Very well then. Come around to the Guild in the morning and I'll pay each of you 5 g.p. up front, and up to four other men besides. I'll send a dogsbody along with you to find your way, and a flat sum of 100 g.p. for all of you once I have proof the action is taken and Herr Meyer is off my land."

Meyer, of course, would be the name of the smith.

"...And since you're now in my employ, allow me to get the next round, too."

Tiberius said...

Tiberius grins. "You're a very generous man, Herr Mizer. I hope this will be a fruitful relationship for all of us." Tiberius lifts his mug, salutes his new employer, and downs the beer.

Delfig Kôlhupfer said...

Throughout the negotiations, Delfig has remained very quiet. He just pulls on his beer and listens

Anshelm Helbelinc said...

Anshelm takes a sip of his beer and nods. It's employment, he reasons.