By late morning the weary group reached Ravelin, a small village along a shallow stream. If it wasn’t for the threat of war, the group would’ve been welcomed to see the idyllic town. Pastures of grazing cattle and wheat fields surrounded the tight group of buildings. A mill sat on the edge of town, its large wheel turned in the stream.
“Please say I can kill Ildonians here,” Jarik juggled his knife between hands.
“Do not attack any Ildonian,” Arlin instructed his companions. “We are here to observe, not fight. I do not want to risk the mission to dispatch inconsequential troops.”
“Was a scout supposed to be here?” Firae said.
Arlin shook his head. “We are supposed to check this village for troop gatherings.”
“Looks clean from here,” Thothen said. The village did not have much movement about it. Only a few commoners walked between the buildings, just as one would expect from a sleepy little village. “If there’s an amassing of troops then they’re good at hiding.”
Firae waved his fingers and his eyes went blank. “I don’t sense any mass spells protecting this land. Unless they can mask powerful magic, I would say this village is clean.”
Miirik rubbed his stomach. “I bet we could get a good home cooked meal down there. It would be wise for us to investigate closer before declaring this village devoid of military gatherings. There could always be catacombs under the street hiding troops.”
The group rode to the village and made their way through the scattered buildings. Their plan was to split up and investigate the village. They would regroup at the tavern later. A gray haired blacksmith nodded at the passing young men, he hammered away on glowing steel upon an anvil. A cobbler’s door was open, the elderly woman inside smiled at the travelers as she worked on a pair of leather boots. Smoke wafted up from a tavern’s smokestack in the middle of the town, scents of bacon reached the group.
Gaston licked his lips. “I’m with Miirik, the tavern smells like a grand place to begin investigating. Perhaps a fair maiden would indulge us with information and eggs.” Mirrik and Gaston rode towards the tavern.
Thothen approached the blacksmith. Swords hung from hooks along the shop’s walls. Each blade glistened in the morning sun. The smith wiped a lock of gray hair from his brow. “What can I do for you? Shoes for your horse, perhaps? Or a new blade, maybe?”
The dwarf pulled a sword from the wall and felt its weight and balance. “You have fine craftsmanship and a large assortment of blades. I wouldn’t have expected to see this many in a village this size.”