Aug 3, 2017
The following story takes place in The Fallen Times setting after the first story arc of that campaign. It focuses on Henri and Caelwich two NPCs that were central to the campaign's plot. Caelwich was a runaway prince and Henri was his best friend and bodyguard. The first half of the campaign revolved around helping Henri find and rescue Caelwich after both of them were captured and sold into slavery shortly after when this story occurs. The party, with Henri, traveled from Crosston to Homlan to Badikhayat then Katei, before finally finding Caelwich in Gurthesteltol. THEN they had to get the wayward prince back to his home in Terre Des Sept.
With this story I wanted to show some of Henri's hidden and confusing feelings for Caelwich. He was somewhere between demi-sexual and asexual but he was still in love with his nymphomaniac, pansexual best friend (not that he could realize it). His overly serious nature and unwillingness to address his own emotions made him fun to play, especially against Christine's hyperactive and highly emotive acrobat.
I hope you enjoy the first of the two stories I wrote set in The Fallen Times.
“Crazed? This city is amazing! So much to see, to hear, to do!”
exclaimed Caelwich as they walked through Crosston’s market.
“Indeed,” Henri said sourly, thinking of Caelwich’s last point. They’d been in the city two days and already they’d been mugged AND kidnapped.
He was pretty sure he could’ve handled the muggers by himself, though allowing himself and Caelwich to get kidnapped by those cultists stung a great deal. Part of him wanted to blame the fact that Caelwich had been so eager to be seduced by that scum Razon, but a bigger part of him felt that he should have seen the treachery (or at least the crowd of people in dark blue robes) coming.
Still… Caelwich had never had this much freedom in his life. It was no wonder that it was going to his head. Henri could indulge him a little.
“Look, we’ll leave first thing tomorrow morning. How’s that?” Caelwich flashed that smile of his at Henri. There was such joy in him right now, despite the setbacks. Henri hadn’t seen him like this in months, maybe years.
“Fine. We’ll leave tomorrow morning,” sighed Henri knowing full well that Caelwich was not a morning person.
A huge grin spread across Caelwich’s face and he grabbed Henri’s head by the hair on the sides. He pulled their foreheads together, a show of camaraderie he knew made Henri uncomfortable, and looked into his brown eyes.
“Oh Brother Grump,” he intoned reverently. “Thank you for this kindness… I’m buying you a whore.”
“WHAT?!” Henri squeaked pulling back, ignoring the twinge of pain from Caelwich’s continued grasp on his scalp. Women made him uncomfortable. Well, social engagements of any kind made him uncomfortable. The only social skill he’d shown any promise in was the scowl. He’d only ever been able to relax around Caelwich, and only that because they’d known each other since childhood.
“Look. You can’t call yourself a Follower of Love if you haven’t been with someone.” Caelwich mocked lightheartedly.
“I’m not one, I Follow Justice.”
“Well you’re an honorary one since those Keeper creeps kidnapped you. Besides, it’s an INJUSTICE to let those rugged good looks of yours go to waste.” Caelwich teased with a wink.
“Huf- buh” stammered Henri. Caelwich loved to tease him like this. He knew how much Henri valued his opinions of beauty whether women, music, or art, and how flustered the knight would get if Caelwich turned that on his insecurities.
“I’ll even pay for the lovely girl, boy, or elf if that’s your preference.”
That gave Henri some solid ground to stand on. “The coin is BOTH of ours!”
“So, which one do you like?” asked Caelwich.
The brothel owner looked at Henri expectantly, sure that he was going to make a good profit from these two foreigners.
“Uhm…” Henri looked over all of them. None really caught his interest. The closest was a girl who had rather nice shoulder length blonde hair, but the rest of her wasn’t attractive to him. The worst part of all of this was that he didn’t even know why none looked good.
“How about this one? She has rather exquisite breasts.” Caelwich said gesturing to a buxom young lady. “You really do my dear.” He flashed her his smile, and her hardened shell seemed to soften a little. Caelwich winked at Henri, knowing how charming he could be when he tried. Henri sighed and rolled his eyes.
“No? Perhaps this tasty little morsel?” Caelwich suggested. He stood next to a boy who was probably a year or two younger than himself. Knowing Caelwich, Henri was certain he’d act like he was far more worldly than the “youngster.” Still, the young man stood up a little straighter when Caelwich pretended to inspect him closely. He’d already made up his mind about the boy, and Henri knew he preferred his men to look harder than this soft child.
Caelwich smiled his toothy smile at the boy who smiled back. He uses that charm of his far too much on people he doesn’t even know. They can’t even tell when it’s a tool and when it’s true like Henri.
“No. Not him.” Henri flatly stated.
The smile vanished from the boy’s face. Caelwich whispered something into his ear causing him to quickly glance at Henri. Then the smile reappeared, though clearly under constraint.
Worried he was going to lose business, the owner said “If you want I can fetch an elf I know who would be glad to tend to your needs. It would be a little pricier, but there is no human who could give you such an experience.” He raised his eyebrows suggestively. Caelwich raised a single matching eyebrow with a look of intrigue. Henri’s scowl deepened.
“Look,” Henri began sharply. “I don’t even want a whore. What does it matter if none of these interest me. I can tell you clearly want one, so just pick already.”
And just like that the mood in the room had soured. The smiles and hope left the faces of everyone. This was why he left beauty to Caelwich. His only skill was violence, as seen by how quickly he killed the mood.
Caelwich pouted and twisted his lips to the side; a face Henri knew meant that he was truly displeased. He could feel red creeping into his face. He had to say something.
“Uh…” was all he could think of.
Caelwich smiled a true, quiet little smile. “Well then! Maybe I’ll just take his custom as well!” He winked at Henri letting him know he was off the hook. Behind him the eagerness returned to the working boys and girls.
“For starters, let’s have you, my dear.” He said looking into the eyes of the beautiful busty brunnette. She came towards him and kissed him on the cheek. He feigned naive surprise causing Henri to roll his eyes yet again.
The boy Caelwich had examined earlier perked up. If he had chosen her, then he was likely to pick him as well, right? Henri knew better, and Caelwich didn’t dissuade him of that notion instead saying “I’ll be back for more later.” He wouldn’t though, not for the boy anyway.
Covering his mouth partly, Henri let out a loud yawn. The rhythm
of riding was putting him to sleep, a trick any soldier worth his
salt learns. Could he afford it though with Caelwich?
“Heh, and I thought I wasn’t a morning person.” Caelwich said cheerfully. He was in a good mood and felt well rested. Even waking up early for a long ride didn’t dull his mood.
“Yes, well you actually got some sleep.” replied Henri tiredly.
“You know you don’t have to watch over me ALL the time. If there was a place you could have rested it was that brothel.”
“I’ll be fine.”
Caelwich’s lips twisted to the side as he pouted. “You’re not fine. You’re about to pass out on that horse’s back. Then where will I be when my knight falls from the saddle and cracks his head. Do you REALLY want me to try and treat your fractured skull?”
Henri smiled a little. “I’d probably end up with the faculties of a boy after such a thing.”
Caelwich chuckled then said “You as a horny teen; horrifically or amusingly awkward? I’ll never know. Besides, with my recent luck you’d become enamoured with me like the boy in that brothel.”
Henri reddened turning his face away despite Caelwich riding ahead of him. To change the subject he said “So what was it that you whispered to that kid that was so amusing?”
Caelwich halted his mount. Henri slowed his own as he pulled up beside him. He wasn’t certain but he thought the blush was gone when Caelwich looked at him.
The prince opened his mouth to say something but seemed to think better of it. He smiled that irritatingly charming smile of his at Henri.
And he winked.