Greyhawk 636 CY: The Rise of Asmodeus

The Case of the Misguided Guhl (Part III)

Planting 10, 636 CY

The Case of the Misguided Guhl III

Entering the presence of the Sultan can be an experience. He is larger than life and twice as loud, at least twice as loud as life in Hollowfaust. So it was a bit of a shock to be in his presence for the first time. He said on a raised dais on opulent pillows, almost lounging. Although older, the Sultan maintained a vibrancy that would have put a young man to shame. His smile rarely left his face as he stood up and came down from his elevated pillows to greet us.

“Such fine young men!! From Hollowfaust by the looks!”

His daughter Fadia bowed to him, “Master Jeremy Moonrise of Hollowfaust and his friend and bodyguard Fredrick Wolfsmith, an unfailing.”

She turned to us, “Sultan Fouad Al’ Razi, Sultan of all Baklune, Lord of Western Passage, Beloved of Al’ Akbar, Terror of the Faithless…”

“And so many titles,” the sultan interjected, “No bother with that Fadia.”

“One day, father, you need to let me finish the whole list or I will forget all the titles.”

“Such a daughter…a man is blessed with such a daughter! So, my friends, what brings you to Zeif?”

My master stepped forward. “Most honored sultan….”

“Enough…I can already see this is a visit of importance: One far too important for honorifics. Sultan is fine.”

“Sultan. We come with a message for one of our necromancers who will be coming to you in the approaching weeks with a band of heroes on a quest that brings them to your lands. Our message for her is of the utmost importance to the security of our city. We did not wish to wait in shadow and secret, so we are letting you know of our presence and intention to speak to someone who will be a guest under your hospitality.”

The Sultan smiled. “A fine thing to come so openly…You will have rooms, food and entertainment.”

Jeremy objected, “We do not require…”

“Enough,” the sultan bellowed with a smile, “You are my guests.” He called to the servants, “Prepare two adjoining rooms as if for honored guests.”

The servants moved like lighting out of the room to fulfill his orders. The Sultan sat down on the dais and ordered coffee and nuts to be brought for us. “Sit my friends and eat. I have a favor to ask of you.”

We sat.

“Am I correct that Master Moonrise is an investigator, and that he is indeed one of impressive skill and insight?”

Jeremy bowed his head, “The truth flatters me.”

“HAHA!! Well said, humility must not be dishonesty. What fine young man…insightful, wise…indeed a fine husband you would make; but more on that later. I have a delicate matter that I would be grateful if you addressed. It will be a little intellectual exercise to pass the time. “

Jeremy lowered his head in a bow, “I would be honored to assist in any way.”

“Good man! We have a thief in the palace…someone who is seeking my family’s ruin, and I believe who can shape shift.”

We looked at each other. I repeated the words of the man at the gate, “Perhaps it is that a Great Ghul has infiltrated the palace in the shape of a trusted servant. And the Sultan needs men from the City of Necromancers to seek the culprit. Mayhap a grand chase through tombs and time to uncover ancient keys and treasure.”

“What’s that?“ asked the sultan.

“The guard at the gate told us perhaps he would put us in a bedtime story for his child. My master asked what we would be doing. That was what he said.”

“AHHHHH…” the sultan bellowed again, “It seems fate has decreed you were involved in this to begin with. Perhaps the man was an agent of fate in disguise, a wise Djinn.”

Jeremy mused, “He bore none of the signs, strange eyes or mildly pointed ears…if a djinn, he was a greater one.”

“You are wise in things I would not have expected master Moonrise.”

“We had a Baklunish nanny.” My master said.

“So you know our ways and tales…you could raise Baklune children I would think.”

My master blushed, “I think I should find the gatekeeper.”

The sultan smiled, “our conversation on parenting will keep…I will remember.”


Davidnic Davidnic

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