The Nightmare Plague

Special delivery by Corbie

The letter is in gnomish “DataSquish” code and fits on a 5 inch x 5 inch scroll.

Delivered to The Giant’s Burial Mound By the Wings of Corbie, Bonded Familiar to Robin “Rabbit” Thrumbedknackers Giltword Wartgnasse

Dearest Mummy and Diddy,

I hope this letter reaches you in good health. And I sincerely apologize for leaving in the middle of the night, and I know you’ve been worried sick. Which means it might find you in poor health. So I hope you haven’t been worried sick.

We are now a week’s journey from home by land and by sea; I’ve seen some pretty terrible things that I think even Diddy would be frightened of, but I assure you I’ve not once been harmed and in fact have tried to make myself quite helpful to my companions.

I’m traveling with the tall folk, and, except for the dwarf (a wonderful priest of Moradin with really nice looking armor) and the elf (a skilled woodsman), they’re about as hardheaded as you’d imagine. Trying to talk sense into most of them is like trying to speak gnomish to a Xorn. They’re all frankly a little blood thirsty, but at least they’ve been keeping me safe.

And Mummy and Diddy, I hope you won’t be too alarmed by this, and I pray that this letter doesn’t go astray, but I have to tell you: I can do magic. And I don’t just mean that bit we can all do with the lights and the cockroaches out of our hats, I mean I can make the ground go all oily, I can make people fall asleep, I’ve been using an “unseen servant” spell for over a year to do chores at home, and I can make people harder to see. I can do other things too. Remember how Gargitomitoshigan didn’t get mad after I smashed his flower bed accidentally chasing after Lilly? Yup.

Characteristically, no matter how helpfully or benignly I use these skills, everyone just freaks out all the time about it. It’s very frustrating. I’ve tried to be good and helpful as Carl demands. I don’t take things from others unless the owner can’t possibly use it anymore. (Much thanks for that I get . . . Smedley, the old Librarian at Ashenport, took something that would have been extremely helpful to us, going on about some secret society that everyone knows about as if creating a piece of jewelry were enough to keep everyone out!) I don’t hurt anyone, not even the big scary nightmare monsters. (Everyone else hurts them for me.) The worst I’ve done is try and read some books.

I know not all of this makes sense to you. I’m sorry about that. It’s hard to write in the dark by firelight. (We’re camping outside, above ground, and it’s creeping me out. At least there’s trees.)

When you see me again, I hope to bring home a slew of new and wonderful pieces for Diddy’s store. I’ve already found a harp (again, someone took it) and a ring (again, someone took it), but there are also scrolls with magical writing on them and I’ve seen a goblin set its hands on fire. And the book! Did I mention the copy of Gnomish Nudes Throughout the Ages? Wait until I show you how it works!

Please don’t worry too much, and if my bird reaches you during the day, please give him some grasshoppers if you can catch them. They’re his favorite. Oh, and he likes to be scratched between the wings and NOT on his head. Also, if he reaches you during the day, please send back a short reply letting me know whether anyone else in the village has had bad dreams. Help is on the way for that, I hope.

Love and Blessings, Rabbit

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jonspatton

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