Somewhere in Kormyre, a well-dressed man sits thinking at a large oak desk in a lavishly appointed room. Fine tobacco mixed with incense permeates the air.

“This Count shows some ego, issuing such a widespread challenge, welcoming assault upon himself. To be frank, I am surprised more have not taken him up on it for truly if one was to be King now all they would need to do is kill this man and rip the Kingdom from his cold hands.  Perhaps Kormyre is a dying place doomed to eventually fade, and perhaps like carrion crows her enemies circle from a distance and wait... “

The man pauses during his muses and swirls a dark liquor in a heavy crystal glass before taking another sip.

“Nevertheless. It could be an amusing game, to try to take the keys he so boastfully claims to possess. What of this City Pelindor? Has this man positioned himself so cleverly to silently lord over other kingdoms as well? The influence and leverage that such a city creates is unfathomable. I would rather fancy running such a city and perhaps this is the true goal, far more lucrative than ruling over the ashes of a burning culture.

As I did win the last little game we played, it is my turn to choose the game this time. This one shall be cooperative, and the prize is this City. Later we might wager on the keys to Kormyre, but first a prize of strategy. One does not rush headfirst into Kingship. Inform the rest of the Society of the game and do tell the Londwynian gentleman that the people of Travance might have found him charming, but that I have no tolerance for being sloppy enough to have been caught so handily.”

The man stares pensively into his drink, a small smile playing at the corners of his lips. The time for parlor games and petty amusements such as the game with the killers was past. Now is the time for higher stakes and much more interesting games. He sips the liquor, savoring the depth of flavor and the subtle burn of the alcohol. Now the real games could begin.


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