The Green Dragon Inn was where many of her old friends tended to congregate. While the Wizard’s Hat was one of the best-kept secrets in Greyhawk’s river quarter, the Green Dragon Inn was one of the river quarter’s most notorious hangouts. The Green Dragon Inn’s clientele was tough and crude, made up of thieves, mercenaries, dockworkers, common tradesmen, and other lower-born folk both honest and dishonest.
The City Narrows
Airk and Revafour were
astonished by how well Amyalla seemed to know her way around Greyhawk. She had
led them into the city through the Duke’s Gate, and taken them through the
city’s wealthier districts. From there, Amyalla led her companions south
through the internal Garden Gate into a district she called Greyhawk’s river
As Airk and Revafour
looked around them, it didn’t take them long to understand why Amyalla’s people
called Greyhawk the ‘Gateway to Everywhere’. The city’s streets were thronged
with more kinds of people than Airk and Revafour had ever seen. They saw
fur-clad Frost Barbarians, golden-haired elves dressed in the multicolored
robes of Celenese wizards, doughty warriors bearing the distinctive shields of
the Knights of the Watch, Baklunish merchants carrying exotic goods from Ket, independent
Flan foresters and hunters, even the odd orc and goblin, among others. All
these visitors mingled easily among the native Greyhawkers, who seemed to
welcome them all, whatever their background.
Airk and Revafour were
utterly bewildered, although Amyalla didn’t seem the least bit fazed by it.
“A lot of first-time visitors react this way,”
Amyalla smiled, her lips turned up in amusement as she noticed her friends’
reactions. “Matters of race and culture don’t matter much to most Greyhawkers.
The only thing they care about is money.”
“So it’s a city of
thieves,” Revafour muttered.
“Some are thieves,”
Amyalla corrected him, “but most are just rather greedy merchants and
craftspeople. You’ve both heard tales of the Wild Coast, I take it?”
The sour looks on
Airk’s and Revafour’s faces confirmed to Amyalla that they had heard of the
Wild Coast, and also confirmed to her what they thought of the place.
“Now that’s a place of
scoundrels and rapscallions,” Amyalla laughed. “But here’s an example of the
better side of Greyhawk,” she grinned as they stopped in front of a large,
homey-looking building. Airk and Revafour saw a sign hanging above the
building’s door, identifying the place as the Wizard’s Hat Inn. Amyalla paid
the sign no notice, pushing the inn’s door open with the ease of someone who
had visited the place many times before. Smiling, she gestured for Airk and
Revafour to join her.
Despite the raucous
activity going on outside, the Wizard’s Hat Inn was comparatively calm and
peaceful, an island of tranquility in the chaos of Greyhawk. Airk and Revafour
glanced around at the clientele, who chatted quietly to one another in low
voices. None of them seemed to take much notice of the companions, as Amyalla
led her friends up to the bar at the far end. A trim middle aged-woman was tending
the bar, and her eyes lit up as she saw Amyalla coming towards her, Airk and
Revafour close behind. Grinning, Amyalla leaped up onto one of the barrels
lined in front of the bar to serve as stools. Reaching out, she hugged the
bartender tightly, embracing her old friend
“Hello, Dwaven,” Amyalla greeted Dwaven May.
“How long has it been?”
“Too long,” Dwaven
smiled back, before turning her attention to Airk and Revafour. “Your
companions, I take it?” she asked.
“Just so,” Amyalla
nodded, as she hopped off the barrel and back to the floor.
“Welcome to Greyhawk,”
Dwaven greeted them with a bow. “Is this your first time in the city?”
“Just so,” Airk nodded.
“It’s certainly...vibrant,” he finished, searching for the right word.
“And noisy,” Revafour added
with a half-smile. “Tell me,” he said, glancing up at the menu written out on
stone slates set above the bar, “might we have something to eat? I don’t know
about you, but I could use a good meal,” he sighed, somewhat weary after all
the walking they’d done.
“You make it sound as
if it would a chore,” Dwarven tittered. “Now then, what would it be?”
Before Airk or Revafour
could answer, Amyalla reached into a pouch at her belt and tossed a pile of
coins on the bar.
“We’ll be needing two
rooms,” Amyalla said in a businesslike tone, “and whatever these fine gentlemen
will want. This should cover whatever they’d like,” she continued.
gathered up the coins and placed them in an apron pocket, glancing expectantly
at Airk and Revafour. Airk was about to order some stout, when he saw Amyalla
turning to leave.
“Where are you going?”
Airk asked in confusion.
“I’m going to visit
some old friends,” Amyalla replied airily, as she headed for the door. “It’s
been too long since I’ve been in Greyhawk, and I do so want to catch up with
Revafour and Airk
looked at one another, and then at Dwaven, who only laughed.
“She’s always been like
that,” Dwaven informed them. “Come now, what would you like?”
“Some of that venison
would be good to start,” Revafour nodded, looking up at the menu again, “and
some of your potatoes. Is the venison wild, or farm-raised?”
“Wild, of course,”
Dwaven nodded, pleased at the wide smile that crossed Revafour’s face.
“It does give the meat
that distinct flavor, doesn’t it?” Revafour grinned.
“Why do you think I get
it wild?” Dwaven pointed out to him.
Airk requested a
similar meal, and it proved to be exactly what he and Revafour had needed after
the long day of walking through the city. Airk washed it down with a tankard of
fine stout, although Revafour, predictably, only requested water.
Amyalla knew that Airk
and Revafour would be in good hands at the Wizard`s Hat Inn. Dwaven May was
always a dear, although it had been a while before Amyalla had befriended her.
Amyalla had come to Greyhawk after she’d fled the Duchy of Urnst, honing her
skills among the lower-born rogues of the city. She so wanted to see her old
friends again, and so she knew she would have to visit them in their element. Few
of them would ever have come to the Wizard’s Hat Inn.
The Green Dragon Inn was
where many of her old friends tended to congregate. While the Wizard’s Hat was
one of the best-kept secrets in Greyhawk’s river quarter, the Green Dragon Inn
was one of the river quarter’s most notorious hangouts. The Green Dragon Inn’s
clientele was tough and crude, made up of thieves, mercenaries, dockworkers,
common tradesmen, and other lower-born folk both honest and dishonest.
Even though it had been
several years since Amyalla had last visited the Green Dragon Inn, everything
seemed the same. The old rogue Ricard Damaris was tending the bar, and the air
was filled with drunken songs, curses and threats. The inn was crowded, despite
it being early in the evening. Glancing around, Amyalla didn’t see anyone she
recognized, but she wasn’t particularly surprised. She had seen evenings when
the Green Dragon Inn might have a hundred people or more customers, with people
coming and going all night.
Walking up to the bar,
Amyalla ordered some beer and roast fowl, before sitting down at a table near
the door. Her meal was not fine cuisine, but it was serviceable, at least. Once
she had finished, Amyalla, started back to the bar for another mug of beer.
Before Amyalla could reach the bar, however, she was surprised to see a burly,
huskily-built woman coming towards her.
Louella was perhaps the
only female dockworker in all the city, having her husband Royo’s job to
support her family after Royo had lost his arm in a work accident. Now, Royo
took care of their children during the day while Louella earned the family a
living. Louella regularly came into the Green Dragon Inn to relax after a hard
day’s work, as she enjoyed the rough atmosphere she could share with her
“Saint Cuthbert be
praised, it really is you!” Louella said brightly as she recognized the
halfling. Louella joined Amyalla in walking up to the bar, before they purchased
some beer and sat down at Amyalla’s table.
“Where have you been?” Louella
prompted after the two women had toasted and had their first sip.
“Out and about,”
Amyalla replied with a smile. “I wanted to see what the rest of the world was
“And what brought you
back home?” Louella asked.
“I’ve been seeking some
new challenges,” Amyalla replied, “and some new work. I’ve made a few friends
who I think can help me with that.”
“The gods know I could
use your help right now,” Louella said, an edge of sadness in her voice, “as
could several other people.”
“Why is that?” Amyalla
asked, now slightly alarmed.
Louella explained, referring to one of her daughters. “She went to the market
to buy some food and just…disappeared a few days ago. I don’t know what
happened to her!”
“Have you told the city
watch?” Amyalla asked.
“They couldn’t find anything,”
Louella frowned. “And I’m not the only one who’s suffered this, either-a number
of children have disappeared in the river quarter. We’re at our wit’s end as to
what to do, Amyalla-what if…what if they…”
“If they’re still
alive, I’ll find them,” Amyalla replied determinedly, her small hand clasping Louella’s
larger one. “And my friends will help too,” she added.
Amyalla had no doubt
that Airk and Revafour would agree to help her.
If they refused for
whatever reason, however, she would have no compunctions about abandoning them
then and there.
The next day, Amyalla
met Airk and Revafour in one of the rooms they had rented at the Wizard’s Hat
Inn, where she told them Louella’s story.
“Of course we’ll help,”
Revafour answered as Airk nodded in agreement. “But how are we going to find
whoever’s kidnapping these children?”
“Leave that to me,”
Amyalla smiled as she adjusted the hat on her head. To Airk’s and Revafour’s
amazement, Amyalla seemed to grow in size to just under five feet in height, as
her red hair turned chestnut brown. Her traveling attire became something
rather more immodest, tattered and revealing in all the right places. Gaudy but
cheap jewellery hung from her necklace and ears, and her face was decorated
with just the right amount of makeup.
Airk and Revafour just
stared askance at Amyalla, who had somehow changed into a human prostitute of
the kind so often seen on the streets of Greyhawk, particularly in the
lower-class parts of the city. The prostitute simply winked and kissed at them,
before adjusting her necklace. She immediately resumed her natural halfling
form, laughing at the embarrassment of her male friends.
“It’s amazing what some
men will tell the women they’re with, once they get enough liquor or drugs into
them,” Amyalla explained. “And of course, my hat proves its value once again,”
she finished with a smile, doffing the enchanted hat she was wearing and taking
a mock bow.
“…So you have a magical
hat,” Airk said suspiciously as Revafour only blinked. “What else don’t we know
“Never you mind,”
Amyalla smiled, as she headed for the door.