I knew I was in trouble when four people walked through the fireplace.

I had been casing this game for weeks. High stakes, spells as currency, and very exclusive. You had to be a dwarf.

It took quite a bit of persuasion to get the potion I had been using. For the past week, I had choked down the smell stuff, walked into a dwarf bar and lost money. I only had two vile vials left when I got the invite to the game at the Hound’s Tooth.

Finally it was my night. I got to the Hound’s Tooth early. Early enough to see the three little-folk arrive conspicuously separately. It takes a con to know a con. These three were working together, but seemed small time, unlikely to disrupt my play. If anything a little ruckus at the right time would help.

But then a knight and three half-elves come strolling into the bar. Not through the front door mind you, but from the fireplace. And not just any knight. A knight with a 50,000 gold piece price on his head.

I had a different game to play tonight, but once I cleaned these dwarfs out, I could probably make some quick money on my way out of town. Any bounty hunter in 100 miles would pay handsomely for the whereabouts of these four.

Cheating is easy when you are actually a foot taller than you appear to be. My marks have no idea I can see their cards quite clearly from up in the rafters. That’s all the advantage I need to start cleaning up. I just need a bit longer when I feel the potion wearing off. I need a distraction, and if on queue a table flips over.

Perfect, just the ruckus I need to quickly down another slug.

But then it gets to be just a bit too much rukus. The dwarf swings his wand towards the halfling circling behind the table we all duck, but I can’t get under the table.

Jarl Shueniff tries to shove my head down, but instead he pushes my back and my chest bounces of the edge of the table and he knows something is up. I draw my dagger to make sure he never figures it out when suddenly I’m not worried about it anymore, and it appears neither is he.

A halfling has an arrow through his hand and the knight is screaming at some girl, but I’m quite calm and ready to get back to the game. The darkly dressed half-elf starts a tune. A halfling is run through behind me and I get my feet out of the way. Despite all this I am feeling calm.

Until the priest throws some holy water in the air and suddenly I remember that I may have to kill Shueniff. That thought is quickly forgotten when a massive human hurtles towards us. This human missile turns the third member of the halfling tro into pink mist before throwing the table into the fire.

Shueniff seems to have bigger worries than me and he and the others leave the smoldering remains of the tavern. The four travelers pay no mind to me as I pick up the discarded spells. An even bigger night than I had planned.

I don’t overstay my welcome and leave just in time to hear a darkly cloaked, drunk dwarf talk of a safe house.

I don’t think these four have an idea what they have gotten themselves into. They would be better off walking back through that fireplace.

I’m currently playing through a campaign DM’d by the indomitable Erik Maxwell. As a writing exercise I’m giving myself 30 minutes to recap our weekly adventures.