7. Live and let die
22nd of the Last Seed
Poppo wakes up early to leave Riften and bring the keg of Black Briar mead he got from Romlyn too Ivarstead. Poppo eats an apple pie for breakfast and at 7am he is outside the gates strolling to the west.
It is still pretty cold, but at least it is not raining. Poppo comes by Merryfair Farm where a Dark Elf is already at work. His name is Dravin Llanith and he has recently been robbed. Some thieves from the Ratway in Riften have stolen his bow. Dravin asks Poppo if he could be a doll and walk into the Ratway and fetch his bow for him. Since Poppo tries to avoid thieves, or rats for that matter, he kindly refuses and continues west.
Poppo spots a wolf behind some trees and succeeds to shoot it with his bow before it sees him, almost like a true adventurer. He loots the pelt of the animal and strolls further west, but now with a bit more confidence. Actually a bit to much confidence because he almost ignores a fortress up ahead, Poppo sees just in time and sneak behind some rocks. He carefully scans the fortress’s walls and spots a couple of sentries. They are probably bandits so Poppo tries to sneak past it by pressing himself up against the wall.
He clearly fails because when he is halfway, he hears one of the sentries yell: ‘there is one, release the hounds!!’, well that can’t be good. Poppo starts running as fast as he can, he can hear the dogs behind him and the bandits are soon chasing him as well. Poppo is almost out of breath when he spots a watermill on the opposite side of a river and without hesitation he jumps in and swims across.
Poppo passes a boy who starts yelling because of the approaching danger, the bandits are clearly not giving up. Poppo runs into the house next to the Heartwood mill and finds Grosta inside, who immediately tells him to leave. Which is not that surprising since he is leading a bunch of bandits and wolves into her house. Poppo steps outside and sees the bandits fighting a guard, since there are about 5 bandits the guard is quickly beaten to death. There is nothing Poppo can do about it, so he sneaks into the woods hoping the bandits will stop the pursuit and leave Grosta and her son alone.
Poppo feels bad about the guard and the Heartwood mill residents, but he is kind of relieved he still lives. He managse to find the road too Ivarstead again and hopes he will not endanger any more people until he gets there, but it seems like there are more dangerous looking fellows up ahead.
Two Redguards with red robes and curved swords are walking in the same direction as Poppo. A courier passes them in the opposite direction and since the two warriors let him through Poppo decides to carefully approach the Redguards. When within hearing distance one turns around and asks Poppo what he wants, without even drawing his curved sword. Poppo starts telling them what happened but they are not interested and just continue walking down the road. Kind of rude, but Poppo does not need a best friend right now, he just needs some fellows who will fight wolves and bandits for him until he reaches Ivarstead and these two seem more than able to do just that.
Poppo stays close and not in vain, because at the next road turn 4 wolves jump them. One bites Poppo in the arm, but one of the Redguards slays the beast, before it can do any real damage. Before the Milkdrinker can say ‘ouch’ all four wolves are dead on the ground. One of the Redguards turns to Poppo and tells him he looks quite ill. Turns out that even though the wolf bite was not serious, Poppo did contract Rockjoint. Luckily they are near Ivarstead and when it’s 3 in the afternoon Poppo and the two Alik’r Warriors enter the Vilemyr Inn. Poppo looks around the Inn and he immediately spots a very pretty lady: Lynly Star-Sung. Sadly Poppo has business with Ivarstead’s lesser beauty: Wilhelm the Innkeeper.
Wilhelm was expecting the delivery from Riften and pays Poppo a copper circlet for his trouble. Poppo finds himself getting quite angry when he thinks of all the trouble he had to go through on this way here and that it was so not worth the 50 gold he might get from selling this stupid circlet. However, it is to late to travel to another city right now without running the risk ending up in some cave again. Besides it might be better to travel with the Redguards again when they leave tomorrow. So Poppo rents the room from Wilhelm and after a bottle of ale with the two Redguards and hearing a song from Lynly, Poppo goes too sleep.