Visitors on Paved Streets
The Enclave > Known Roads > Three Stones > Local Color

Aye, I've traded good Port rope in this market afore; in Gold Vale besides, and that's a way to travel from the salt air for an old seafarer. Your City Within, it has a feel to it, it does - a man's not to know what he might see around the next corner. Aye, and I have a tale for you from three seasons past, last I and my mules gave up good coin for these lead bits from your Temple. Good for weight on a line and precious little else, I say; even Visitors know the worth of gold and silver. But lead? Let the priests keep it all if they like it so much, and that's the last I'll say on that.

Aye, the tale, the tale. I'll be expecting good ale on your lead this night! It was here, right here in the Grand Market, in front of a hundred folk - Guard spears too, for all the good they did. Just as well, like as not; Watch blades would have stepped up with their armor and their pride and then who's to say what would have happened? The Visitor wasn't a man, but big he was and man-shaped at least, red and steaming like fresh offal in the snow, the cut of his face like a sail trying to catch the wind. I wouldn't have bothered any dockside folk with that look to them; aye, and I'll wager those Guard spears sized him up and thought that and more. All too soon and that was that, a Visitor striding and gone just as he came, looking neither left nor right.

Talmur retainers took the rest of my rope for too little coin that day, and I set to thinking. Visitor more than Trespasser, I thought, and his was the look of Lost and scared - aye, and too proud to show it. A young one he was, for all his bulk, from some place deep in the Farthest City ... shame on us folk for letting him go by without a word offered in help. Afore I passed the Gatehouse for the Trade Road the next day, I left coin for the Beautiful Stranger.

[ Posted by Reason on May 18, 2005 ]