TolrinFor an older man, Tolrin was still quite spry for his age. Though his commission had ended over a year ago with the Terrum High Guard, his old injuries did not hold him back. He had seen too much in his long life time to give up. Plus, he was not going to die in bed, but instead in glorious battle. From paladin to the Old King to solder in the new world to now mercenary, Tolrin''s life had been quite adventurous. He glanced around the small rectangle room he rented at the inn.

It was small, and just enough room for his two chests that held his gear, a small rickety table next to the bed. The bed was, well another story. He had slept on better bedrolls on the ground. What the maid had called a bed was about a foot shorter then he was and had several unidentified lumps in it. This bed had been well used and should have gone to pastor years ago. Yet, this place was dry and there seemed to be plenty of work around the small city. This brought another thought to his mind. The people here called this a city, however, other than the ruins outside town, he would consider this simply a large village.

There was a knock at the door. "Who is it?" Tolrin said. The only answer he got was another knock somewhat quicker than before."Who is it?" he shouted with some irritation in his voice. A small meek sounding female voice came through the door. "I wanted to let you know sir, that supper is being served in the dining hall. Would you like me to bring you up a plate?" Tolrin was hungry, however he did not need anyone wrench waiting on him hand and foot. "I will go down in a few." then added, "Thank you." He may as well be polite, this made was just doing her job. He could not blame her for being persistent or annoying. Bar maids in general did not make that much coin. Most of their income was supplemented by tips from patrons. However a few would get their tips by what they found in patrons rooms. He did not want the later to happen. There was nothing really that valuable that he could not replace. However, he did not want to have to take valuable time nor coin earned to replace items that were stolen by a sticky finger employee of an inn.

Another knock at the door. This time it was softer with a more deliberate tempo. Tolrin was aggravated now. "I said I will be down when I am good and ready!" he shouted through the door. Some maids were just too persistent. "Sir I am not here to serve you food. In fact I have an offer for you if you are interested." The icy voice was soft, almost a whisper, yet he could hear it quite clearly through the door. Curiosity got the better of him. Putting his left foot behind the door, he opened the old creaky thing just enough to see who was there. A tall figure in a dark cloak and robe stood patiently and Tolrin thought he saw a gleam of a smile. "I bring you an offer which I believe you will not want to refuse." The stranger said.

"I have no time for games old man." Tolrin said. And started to close the door. "Games is not what I had in mind. If I may?" The stranger pulled down his hood exposing an older man''s face. His grey, uneven, stringy hair fell down almost to his waist and there were creases etched in his face. Tolrin felt somewhat more relaxed and stood aside. "Hurry about this," Tolrin said, " I have other things I need to get to." Tolrin closed the door behind him and when he turned around, the old man was sitting on one of the small trunks Tolrin brought with him. A sense of calm fell upon Tolrin, as he went over to sit as well.

"Please sit, we have a bit to discuss Tolrin." The old man said. Tolrin tried to get comfortable on the lumpy bed, choosing a place just aside the table so he had a clear
view of the old man and the door way. Even though he was feeling a strange sense of calm, Tolrin knew to always trust his gut. And his gut was telling him that something was not quite as it seemed. This stranger knew his name and that unsettled him. Even though he thought it might just be that his reputation proceeded him. That has happened in the past. Farmers wanting him to take care of a ravenous ware wolf, or the wiry lad wanting him to save their love from heathens. This was not too uncommon. Yet, something was still off about this old man in front of him.

The old man smiled briefly and his eyes glimmered. "I am being rude, Let me introduce myself. "I am Baltison, Master mage, Chief executive to Lord Chambers, ear and advisor to his lordship, King Eos and personal friend to her Ladyship, Queen Ellest." the old man said as he bowed as low as he could while sitting. His long wiry arms went out in a flourished bow and his hair dropped just touching the ground. Though he never looked away from Tolrin. Then as suddenly as he stopped the stranger continued, "I come on an important mission seeking a select few. And you, I''m sure, are one of those I seek." Tolrin realized he could not quite place this man''s age. Then again, if he was a mage, then perhaps that might be why. He had seen many strange things in his line of work, yet never met a real mage before. Those eyes were clear, sharp and did not appear to miss a single detail. Yet his face was etched with lines of age.

"Well then, get about it old man. I am curious I must admit, however I do have other things to do." Tolrin tried to put on an air of importance, but only his irritation came through. Baltison smiles and Tolrin calmed down a bit more. As he began to speak once more, Tolrin noticed that the man had a small, tapered scroll in his hand. He had not noticed that befor. "I can pay you well, and give you the honor you think you lost as well as a glorious adventure if you will only accept this quest. It is of great danger however. This I must warn you. Though being charged by the Queen herself, your rewards will be great if you are successful. And you shall not die in bed a crippled old man. But be remembered as a hero."

Glory? Honor? Now Tolrin was really curious. These are things he really did miss. And his fear of dying old and alone was true enough. But how did this man know? "If you accept," Baltison continued calmly, "Then please meet me at the town square tomorrow even at midnight. I will fill you in with the rest of the details when we meet again." With that he pulled out a small folded piece of paper along with a small dark pouch and handed them to Tolrin. Tolrin accepted and noticed that the pouch was heavier then it looked. "This should be enough to get the rest of the supplies you were hoping to get." I bid you good even and sleep well." With that, the old man got up and exited the room with more agility then Tolrin would have suspected. The door closed silently behind him.

"What a very strange old man." Tolrin said out loud to himself. "There is something about him..." he continued to think to himself before shrugging that thought off. Setting the folded piece of paper on the bed, he weighed the pouch in his hand bouncing it up and down listening to the coins inside clink together. Well, this is better than waiting to find work in this dirty old town, he thought. Then he heard the crier outside exclaiming it was midnight. "Damn!" Torren exclaimed, "I missed supper!" He slipped on his over coat, put on his belt and hilt and headed out the door. "Perhaps they have something for me to snack on before I go to bed." With that Tolrin went downstairs to fill his stomach before the long day ahead of him tomorrow.