Bruno woke up to a sharp rap on his behind from Black Lightning. “Yowch!”
“It’s time to get up” said Matar.
“Owwww. You could have just shook me.”
“I could, but this was more fun.” said Matar.
Bruno rubbed his sore rump and grumbled under his breath about being woken up so rudely and wishing he was back home. It was only the first day… This was going to be a very long week. Bruno went about his business getting ready for the day. He noticed that Matar was already dressed and practicing his martial art with his staff.
“Two men died last night at the Pig Tits. Word on the street is that it was one dwarf and another man.. It seems a fight broke out, well a fight breaks out at the Pig Tits almost every night, but this was a particularly bad one. Apparently there was a bit of a mix up. Room 203 was busted open, found empty, and chaos broke loose as everyone frantically searched for a dwarf about 5 Queen’s feet tall. They found one named Grobbel. They beat him up and insisted that he tell them where the mine was, but of course poor Grobbel didn’t know anything about such a mine. He knew about other mines, but none that were untapped. They assumed he was lying to protect his gold, so they continued to beat him, until he died. The other man, Khimph, was hit in the fracas and was trampled to death. Eh, what’s one less dwarf? But unfortunately Khimph was the man I was looking for. He was my lead.”
“Lead for what?”
“There’s a certain someone I need to meet with. Unfortunately I don’t know his name or how to get in front of him. I was hopping Khimph could tell me. Khimph is an old colleague of mine so to speak. Our social circles intersected quite a bit let’s say and leave it at that.
“You’re trying to meet with a man. You don’t know his name, or how to find him, and your only lead just died? Oh please let’s go home now.”
“Ha! Not my only lead. This is Black Oak Village. This is the city to go to if you want to disappear, but also the city where people tend to know people. I’m sure someone in this town knows something about my mystery man. Once you’re all washed and dressed, we’ll go to a tavern with some girls dancing and snoop around a bit.”
And so they did. They walked into the well lit Naked Snake. On the way in, Bruno noticed the sign outside hosted the image of a snake, wrapped around a pole– no, a cane, wearing a corset and a top hat. This made young Bruno bulge eyes in curiosity because he wasn’t sure if the image implied a male or female snake, and was suddenly worried that this was a tavern for Lizardians. He had no idea that Lizardians were capable or interested in reproducing with members of their own sex. He imagined that must be very confusing for them.
They sat down and ordered drinks; ale for Matar, spring water for Bruno. The scalely green skin of the waitress confirmed that this was indeed a tavern for Lizardarians. Bruno had never seen one before, only read about them from his books. They… looked like regular people. If it wasn’t for the variety of colors and patterns of skin, the sharp teeth, occasional fangs and fins, the shifty slit eyes, they looked just like Bruno.
Bruno and Matar conversed loudly. Oh yes, shame about Khimph. He had many valuable friends. Oh yes, me too, I need to talk to some interesting people, I’m not sure their name. Oh? I should start by asking a Lizardarian. I can’t say I know too many… Not ten minutes passes on of this rehearsed conversation when a Lizardarian asks to sit down at their table. “Excuse, me gentlemen. Is this sseat taken?”
Bruno and Matar continued to talk about Pig Tits and how to find people who knew things. Where they last heard a rumor about gold or odd jobs around the city.
“Ssorry to intrude, but you didn’t happen to mention Khimph, did you?”
“Oh yes, Khimph was an old friend of mine. It’s a shame what happened to him. Twice a shame because, he was going to set up a meeting with a certain someone in town.” said Matar.
“Yes, quite the shame. I share in your ssorrow for Khimph. He was a friend of mine too. But… our ssocial circles overlapped, perhaps there is ssomeone I can help get you in touch with?”
“Well yes actually.”