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Talbert's Tavern

Once upon a time, there was a village deep in the heart land of Lapazine. In this village lay a grand castle, and everyone who lived around the castle looked with pride and distinction and the knowing that they would always be safe in the village grounds.
The village was swiftly developing into a city, thriving with markets and trades from all over the lands, even from over seas.

The Empress, Elizabeth, whom lived in the castle, kept a careful eye over the village, ensuring that the people, who lived around the castle, were happy and living there lives in peace and the way they wanted.
Within the village, on the corner, lay popular tavern with a happy bartender named Talbert. He worked very hard each night, collecting many gold coins from the travellers and merchants that passed though the village each day.
He ran the tavern with a half Cephorian named Edward, his young apprentice.

They had been working together for many years and had learnt so much about there trade.
They met all different kinds of creatures from Pixies to Elf's, from Munchkins to Dragons, but, one late night that was kind of slower than usual, with not many drinkers at the bar, this shadowy figure appeared at the tavern door.
He was dressed in a long dark cloak that reached all the way to the floor that he shook off the rain from.
He then took a seat at the bar; ordered a drink and sat quietly for sometime, listening to what was happening.

After a while, when most of the people had left, he started a conversation with Talbert at the bar, talking about his travels and adventures. Talbert, not being one who had travelled, much listened carefully to the strangers stories.
They sat together until all the customers had left and Edward, after having a hard day work, finished cleaning ready for the morning and set off home.

Talbert, so intrigued by the strangers stories, kept the tavern open to hear more, but, when they both where alone, he changed from talking about his adventures, to talking about money and treasures, he then went on bragged that he had much experience in trading and was a skilled merchant and trader, he went on to tell a story about how he had stumbled across a peasant that was selling odds and ends from his house, just clearing space, and how he come across some old spell scrolls, buried within the junk.
Later, he went on, saying that he learnt that the spell scrolls were old forgotten magic from the ancients which were banished from the lands, long, long ago, and striped of all their powers, for reasons one would not care to recall.

Talbert was listening very carefully now, as wizards were often talking about magic within the tavern and showing off their powers that never failed to impress the travellers and passers by.

He went on explaining that he spent much of his time acquiring the information and putting it all together, so he could work out what the spell could be, As ancient magic was not of this land and far forgotten by any wizard or sorcerer, however, from what he knew and what had been worked out that the spell could be something of wealth.

The stranger went on saying, because the magic was banished and he was going though a rough time it would look awfully suspicious if one would become wealthy instantly over night and looked at Talbert and asked if he was willing to share the wealth, going on explaining how a tavern could be the perfect cover to become wealthy, but, only if he promised to keep his identity a secret and not mention his name anywhere, not even mention his presence to anyone.

Talbert, looking around at his tavern, noticing more than ever, all the bad things that could be fixed or upgraded, also the tavern was in need of a over-due upgrade and was running low on funds, just managing to pay the bills.

He was left thinking all the ways he could make his life much more easy, so there and then, he said "Yes", he was willing to risk the magic, after all the stranger was to cast the magic so what was the harm? He could just say he had some good nights at the bar, so he agreed.
The stranger then finished off his drink and told Talbert he would be back tomorrow night to cast the spell after everyone had gone.

That night Talbert had the best dreams that he had in a long time, dreaming of all he could do to his tavern to make it perfect, fixing all the pipes, getting new drinks delivered from over seas, even taking a break from all the hassle, after all, he wasn't getting far from the ways things were going at the bar.
He woke up and got to work quite quickly, keeping himself busy as much as he could, looking forward when the stranger might appear.
The more time went on the longer it seemed to Talbert, trying to keep himself busy all day.

Night begin to dawn and the customers started to drop.
He stood at the bar listening to the rain drops falling from the roof, peering at the door expecting the stranger to walk in any second. Then he appeared, dressed in the same clothes he wore the night before. He approached Talbert with a scroll in his hand. Before Talbert could say hello, the stranger said "Shall we?"
Talbert nodded, and locked the taverns doors. They cleared a space in the center of the room, then, the stranger began to take out crystals out from his deep pockets of his rain coat and placed them in a circle on the floor. He then went on to pull out a sack of magic dust but not the usual colour, this was much more darker.
The stranger sprinkled it in the center of the crystal circle and unravelled the scroll. Talbert took a step back as the stranger started to speak the enchanted words written on the scroll. The crystals started to glow and with a puff of smoke the room lite up in a purple haze. Luckily Talbert had closed the curtains before.

After the smoke cleared, there on the ground, in the circle was indeed, was a pile of gold coins.

The stranger, with a smile on his face, exclaimed "It's worked!"
The stranger and Talbert then went on counting the gold coins which they had deep into the night which came to a huge 784 gold coins.
The stranger filled his pockets with coins and then went on to say "I must go now. You can keep what I cannot carry." then left swiftly.

Talbert excited to buy renovations for his tavern as soon as he could, cleaned up the evidence of the spell and placed the scroll and gold coins in his safe place.

For the next week Talbert went out purchasing new equipment and renovations for his tavern and when he got the tavern just like he wanted it, he had a grand reopening, inviting the castles top magician to open the tavern.
Many of the villagers came and Talbert had a great day collecting many coins. Business was great and at the end of the week he counted up the coins, however, noticed some of the gold coins which he had spent from the spell had come back to him. He didn't think anything of it, yet, as the days past more and more of the coins came back until they were all in his possession again.
Weeks past and Talbert had spent a lot, re-spending the coins until they had gone but they always came back to him. This made Talbert nervous.

One night the Empresses Magician's came in to see how things were going for Talbert, pulling up a seat at the bar and ordering a drink, yet when paying for the drink the magician looked at Talbert curiously, handing over one of the gold coins.


Collect many of these coins do you, Talbert?" asked the magician.
Before thinking Talbert's honesty gave him away.
"Yes many." He uttered
"You know what these coins are don't you, Talbert?"
"Yes they are gold coins." Replied Talbert
"No, these are not just any coins; they will make one very wealthy, how they do this is, they will always come back to the owner anyway they can, however, they also bring despair to the holder in many ways such as bad health, fatigue and depression." The magician said.

They talked for an hour or so about what happened to Talbert and how he come to own the coins.
After listening to what the magician had to say, Talbert agreed hand over the scroll which he had kept so he would not get into trouble with the Empress and to allow the magician to undo the magic and destroy the ancient scroll so it could not harm or lure anyone else to use this banished magic.

That night Talbert and the Magician went up to the Empresses castle and into the Magician's quarters which was filled with all sorts of magical equipment such as staffs, potions, magical power and such like which impressed Talbert no end as he had never been in the castle grounds before.

The Magician pulled out a book from the bookcase and blew off the thick dust that had gathered on it.
After afew minutes he heard "Ah, here it is." Echo around the room. The Magician had found the spell.

He took hold of his staff and held it in the air, spouting out words that Talbert could hardly understand, then, in a flash of light, Talbert felt like weight and worry had been lifted from his body.

All done." Declared the Magician.
"Talbert, if you come across any ancient magic please come and see us at the castle, using the magic can have critical consequences." The Magician said while walking Talbert out of the castle.
"Thank you. I'll remember that." Talbert said at the door.

When Talbert arrived back to the tavern to his surprise everything had changed back the way it was before when he had met the stranger but with a smile on his face, opened up the tavern once again for business as usual.

The End

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