The Farthest Coast
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The miser Menas has your coin from the fresh pressing, eh? That's the last you'll be seeing of that silver, mark me well. He'd be on the Council in place of the Master Trader if he cared to look up from his gold - aye, too much greed to be a Councillor, there's a thought to go with the ale!

The old trader wasn't always so devoted to coin, leastways not until he brought back ten blue coins from the Farthest Coast. The Master Trader's lackeys have the Coast Road now, aye, but not when Menas led mules about the Known Roads for the Guilds. Headed to Cael with glass and red iron he was, making camp for the night high up where the Road touches the cliffside before the Watch of Trees. Aye, something to be said for watching the moon out over the Unending Sea while far and away from everything; the fisherfolk know that and more.

More ale! A seafarer could die of thirst afore you'd even notice! Aye, the hook on the story, eh? The first cool mists of the season came rolling in the next morning and Menas was Lost afore he knew it. No Watch of Trees, not the Coast Road nor other travelers; just the Sea, cliffs and hills all mist-covered and strange.

Aye, the coins, not found lying in the grass, no. Menas and his mules met an old whitebeard of strange manner and clothing, wandering the cliffside with fishing line and a fresh catch. Menas is a trader - they traded, what did you think? Fish, strangers' coin and the way through the mists in exchange for glass, red iron and mules besides. To hear the way the old miser told it, he bargained with the greatest trader in all creation; with the Fisher in Darkness, some say. Aye, but I say he would have given his right hand and purse besides to a drunk thief to see the Coast Road again, and there's the truth.

Still, ten blue coins it was, and he has them still after all these years. Wizardry there, if you will; coin that brings out the greed for counting in a man. Aye, all thoughts for you to mull over while Menas is counting your silver, eh?

[ Posted by Reason on March 11, 2005 ]