After what felt like an eternal march to the east, I finally reached ›Ramshorn‹ in the early morning hours, a city that was already visible on the horizon a day's march before. As I stood in front of the huge gate where a dragon could get through, I looked along the seemingly endless wall that protected the city. At the gate itself I found a small hole at eye level through which someone stared at me. »What are your concerns in the city?« asked a grumpy male voice, to which I replied with a brief »trade and repairs«.
It took a few seconds before the huge gate opened by a crack. Just enough for me to pass through. »Go on Drow. And no foolish things! We've got an eye on you!« came a grumpy voice from the elderly man, who, judging by his eyes, must have been the one behind the hole. I didn't react, however, and just kept walking down the street where trash was gathering left and right and people in shabby clothes were begging. Especially Tieflings, Githyanki and Gnomes. Father would probably give them every gold piece he had.
A good walk later I hit a wall again. I wonder what is hiding behind it. I payed duty at another gate and quickly found out that those who could afford it settled here.
After I got my replacements from a tailor, I walked towards the tavern ›The Maiden and Chain‹ and was jostled by a human.
»I'm sorry« he apologized hastily as he bent down to pick up his documents.
»Nothing happened« I assured him and helped him.
On the papers I found drawings of weapons, extraordinary armor and unknown symbols. A little astonished, I took a closer look at the man as I handed him his papers. Blue-grey eyes behind round glasses, short brown hair, a 3-day beard, a soft, warm aura and well dressed. He seemed confused and distant. Babbled almost through incomprehensibly to himself. When he had all his documents back, he looked at me briefly with sparkling eyes, then down to the floor and started to stutter slightly »I beg your forgiveness again«. His nervousness was hard to overlook. »Forgive me milady« came from him again before he turned around and hasted on. ›Why did the young man look so familiar to me?‹ I began to think and noticed in the corner of my eye that he turned briefly in my direction again, smiled at me and brought a gentle smile on my face.
I had just opened the door to the tavern and was not quite inside when I saw the first couple who seemed to be enjoying themselves. Apparently she was having a lot of fun kneeling in front of him and … I caught myself looking there longer than I wanted to. No, I had to get out of there. I'm sure it didn't have much to do with a maiden and I returned on the doorstep. Maybe I had just misunderstood the tavern sign?
A short walk further on I found the next tavern, which also offered rooms. ›The Filthy Fish‹. If this is another tavern like the one before, I'm going crazy. Carefully I opened the door and took a quick look inside. No naked women, no lecherous men. Perfect. The woman behind the counter assured me a room, which I booked for the next 7 days. When she heard my stomach rumbling, she recommended the ›Deep-Fried Sweet Potato Wedges‹, whatever they might be, and gave me a cup of tea to welcome me.
I was just sitting at the table, a young Tiefling with a tight top and a small brown jacket jumped around me, whose energy seemed to be endless and didn't even let me answer a question.
»You are a Drow? Are you? Are you?«
»What are you doing here? You surely experience many adventures? What is that animal on your shoulder? Can I pet it?«
›Why can't I sit somewhere and have my peace and quiet?‹ I thought angrily and tried to ignore this shrill voice when someone from the bar shouted »Sanise, leave my guests alone! What do you always do in this district?« but instead of answering the one at the bar, she seemed to think I wanted to listen to the answer.
»You know« she began, when she finally sat down, »I just don't want to live like this anymore. I want to get out, have adventures, see the Underdark, like you. All this gold just corrupts and everybody here already know me.«
»What do you want from me?« I could finally get out and looked into her eyes
»I want to accompany you. May I? May I? Your eyes are beautiful, by the way. Did you know that? How do you get your hair so beautiful?«
Even though she kept asking me questions all day long and was annoying, it had the advantage of having someone with me who knew the way around this labyrinth of streets and similar-looking houses. Finally I gave in and allowed her to accompany me for the days I was searching for Tarlyn in the city, on condition that she went home to sleep or booked her own room.