5th of August, 9:41 Dragon
In exchange for us not introducing their guts to steel and open air, those two ambushers agreed to bring us to their base and their leader. They took us to this great big chasm outside the city, where a dagger-faced elf mage cast some spell that whisked us across to the other side in a puff of smoke. Now, the fact that the only ways back involved another magic trip or a long walk along the chasm edge set my whiskers a-twitching. I expected an ambush or a double-cross, but so far these folk seem to be relatively honest. We were brought to this… well, calling it a “village” is frankly giving too much credit, “pile of tents and huts” is more like it. Anyway, we were taken to the largest and least shitty-looking of the huts, and out comes the leader of this rabble: a blond, baby-faced elf who seems to have come to Denerim from elsewhere, as we suspected. We chatted for a while, and on the face of it his motives seem noble enough: the point of all this was to create a place for city elves to go to get away from the awful conditions in the Denerim alienage. Still, there’s the little detail that elf-boy and his friends stole a whole bunch of stuff to build their little haven, and left a whole bunch of pissed-off merchants back in Denerim as a result. We suggested that perhaps he and his lads might gather the bits they didn’t need together to give back as a peace offering, while we went to go track down our wayward warehouse guard, who was apparently patrolling somewhere outside the camp.
Well, as it turns out, our wayward warehouse guard managed to find that other team that was ahead of us. Seems they were after the bounty on these stolen goods as well. They had a dwarf, an elf, a human mage, and a great big fuck-off Tal-Vashoth — which is a Qunari that’s not a Qunari, if you’re not confused enough already — all armed to the teeth and battle-hardened, by the looks of things. Naturally Mr. Guard, displaying the same amazing lack of tactical sense as the rest of his buddies, decided to pick a fight with this scary lot, and took the Tal-Vashoth’s mace to the melon for his trouble. We managed to chase them off, but the guard was already dead and gone by the time we made it to him. Oof, not looking forward to having that conversation with his wife and kid. Well, obviously we couldn’t just leave him there for the crows, so we cleaned him up, wrapped him in my bedroll, and took him back to the camp.
So, we get back to the camp, and we see that all the elves and elf-friends are running around in a tizzy. Turns out that other group took all their supplies and started heading back to town, and none of baby-face’s boys were able to stop ‘em, because apparently they can’t fight their way out of a wet paper bag. They had horses for us to borrow, though, so we rode out after the other group, and managed to catch them as they were making their way along the chasm. (Still not sure how they managed to get so far ahead of us, since they only had the Tal-Vashoth dragging that big old wagon all by himself. Magic, I suppose?)
Now, at this point, we could have tried to pick a fight with the other group; they were wounded (or should have been — again, mage), and we could outflank them, but if anyone screwed up the supply cart might have gone over into the chasm, and then nobody would’ve won. And frankly… why bother? After all, this group’s done nothing but try to return stolen goods to their rightful owners. A day ago, we were doing literally the exact same thing. And yes, the situation’s more complicated than that — when isn’t it? — but it would have been hypocritical, petty, and frankly damn stupid to risk losing everything in a fight on that cliff face. So we had a chat, like civilized folk, and decided to split the goods up. They get their share of the bounty, and we get ours. The two Dalish are going to take their share of the goods back to the elf-friends, while me and the mage will ensure everyone gets paid. After that… well, we’ll have to see. Like I said, conditions in the Denerim alienage are nasty, and apparently there’s a sickness in there that they need medicine to treat. And it seems that baby-face and his elf-friends need some serious whipping into shape if they’re actually going to make this plan of theirs work. Looks like we won’t be wanting for things to do if we decide to stick around here for a while.