FreeHolds Adventure, Cycle 2 Part 3b

FreeHolds Adventure, Cycle 2 Part 3b

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There was a tangible level of excitement in the main office of Roburns Trading Company, Adwin was unsure the cause though. Since coming into the office shortly after dawn he had noted many of the Maldorn employees smiling enthusiastically, something had happened to get them all stirred up. He had settled into the work he had left from the previous day, copying ledgers that detailed the trade coming in from the north. Most of it came from Swampdon and a fair amount from Brisken. Mainly herbs and medicines from Swampdon, copper and tin from Brisken, as well many other diverse items. At one point he had asked the scribe sitting beside him what was going on, but Kallen, the man not the moon, had no more of an idea what all the excitement was about than Adwin.

Senior Clerk Addath came out of the boss’s office with a bundle of new folders, she deposited most of them at her desk and distributed a few to the scribes, or as the company called them, clerks. Addath was something else, in Adwin’s experience, he had not met anyone like her previously. She was attractive, tall, charismatic, smart and always knew what to say in any social situation he had seen her in. Her voice was melodic, it was pleasing to listen to her talk, even if it was just about the days business. She seemed impervious to the cold; he had never seen her wear hat, gloves or coat, even in the late autumn snow storms. Typically she wore three-quarter length pants, white shirt, with the sleeves rolled a third of the way up her arms, under a stylish vest and either shoes or sandals with a slight heal. Her pants and vest were usually a size too small, her shirts were never done up much past her breasts, there were a lot of curves, which caused Adwin no end of distraction.

This was not the sort of job you could do well distracted, Adwin returned his attention to the work at hand and focused on finishing the folder. He had done the main ledger and was just making copies of the notes from the managers and agents operating at those two northern trade centres. The Swampdon notes contained plenty of additional information on the war efforts against the Tannicans, with requests for more weapons, munitions and food. Apparently the Pwhanna tribes were in the regions around Swampdon, helping to fight the Tannicans. There were also orc involved somehow and a report on numbers of airships controlled by something called the Combine. The last note from the Swampdon office manager suggested that any number of any sort of religious icons or artifacts would sell well in the area as there seemed to be an unusual amount of religious orders from across the freeholds helping with the war efforts.

When he was done with the copy work, he sprinkled his last page with a bit of fine grained sand and set it aside to dry properly. He took the time to look around and to see what Addath was doing. She was at her desk reading through the stack of files she had brought in from the boss’ office, absently curling a lock of hair with one finger as she read, lips slightly pursed. Adwin’s mind wandered and he imagined what it would be like to kiss those lips.

Lost in his fantasy he was surprised when she glanced up and caught him looking at her. He felt himself blush and then she asked, “Clerk Adwin, have you finished the copy of the northern imports?”

Startled, he reached for the papers in front of him, cleared his throat and said, “Yes Miss, the ink is just drying.”

“Good, leave them at your desk for now. The boss wants a word with you.”

Adwin wondered what that was about, but he took a breath and then stood, straightened out his clothing, made an attempt to tidy his unruly hair and realized he had not shaved in over an eight-day. When he was ready Addath lead him to the door to the boss’s office and knocked.

“Come in.”

Addath opened the door a bit and stuck her head in, “Sir, Clerk Adwin is available.”

“Very good, both of you come in.”

Addath glanced back at Adwin then swung the door wide and stepped in. Adwin followed. Unlike the main copy office, the boss’s office was panelled with dark hardwood and the floor was covered with Tannican carpets. It was a corner office and well lit by a sizable glass window on each of the two outer walls. A large desk was in front of one window facing the door and a small table with a couple of nice looking chairs were in front of the other window. To either side of the door Adwin had just walked through there were bookshelves, mostly ledgers and business records by the look of it. On the fourth wall was a large map of GreensBridge. Addath took a couple of paces in and stopped in front of the desk, Adwin came up beside her and gave a slight bow to the boss.

Grey bearded, balding on top and a face full of wrinkles his boss’ gaze bore into Adwin, “You are younger than I expected.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Addath tells me you are good at your job, never late and no days missed. Your file indicates you recently moved into the company’s accommodations here at the warehouse. How do you like our setup?”

“Very best sir, it’s warm, comfortable bed and the food is great. Much better than the rooming house I was at. The plumbing is amazing and I’ve never seen such good quality glass before.”

The boss chuckled, “Well I’m glad you are getting along well here. Your Maldorn is very good, considering that previous to your employment with us you did not speak the language.”

“Thank you, sir.”

“Do you enjoy your job as a clerk?”

“I do sir. Though I have to admit that fact surprises me a bit.”


“Well, when I left home in the spring, I was seeking adventure and wanted to see what the world’s oldest city was all about.”

“Did you find some adventure?”

“I did, sir.”

The boss glanced at something on his desk and frowned a bit, “It says in your file that you came from Hadden’s Fort. Did you come this way via Sharlok’s Hold?”

Adwin felt a bit concerned with the turn in the conversation, “I did, yes, sir.”

“Do you remember when you came through that hold? The time of year or month?”

“Um, yes sir. First month of summer.”

“Oh, that is interesting.”

“How so, if I may ask?”

“Were you aware that we have a couch and courier service in Sharlok’s Hold?”

“I am now sir.”

“But not at the time you travelled through there?”

“Not so much so, no sir.”

“Well now. Were you in Calameer at any point during your trip?”

This conversation was quickly becoming uncomfortable, “I believe so, it’s east of the border town of Domkee I believe.”

“Good lad, just so. We had some operational issues around the time you may have been there. Were you aware that someone burned down our warehouse in Calameer?”

“I mostly just passed through the town, sir. I did not see any large fires when I was there.”

“Oh well. I was hoping we might have been able to gather some more reliable intelligence on that matter. The local marshal seems to think the arson was done by some murdering outsiders who he claims travelled through the hold causing all manner of troubles throughout the late spring and early summer.”

“Ah, I see.”

“Regardless, we’re pretty sure we can attribute most of those problems to one of two sources. Our primary suspects are the Fingures family. Are you familiar with the Fingures?”

“Yes sir, they are the largest crime organization in the freeholds.”

“Indeed they are. Were you aware they are also one of our main problems we deal with in our operations throughout the freeholds?”

“No sir, I had not realized they could be that big of a problem.”

“Sadly, not many people are aware of just how much influence and power they have. Especially here in GreensBridge, which we believe to be the centre of their operations.”


“Luckily for us they have recently run into some difficulties. They have lost their main operations building, much of their liquid assets and seemingly their leadership. Which is why you are here now.”

Adwin felt a cold shiver run up his spine, he was unsure what he should say to that.

The boss continued, “Due to recent developments, we find ourselves with a great opportunity at the end of what has been an excellent year in general terms of business growth and overall profits. With the Fingures’ recent difficulties much of their assets and properties in the city are now available, or more available than they were just an eight-day ago. As a result, I’ve initiated the formation of a new Acquisitions Team. Addath has been promoted to head the team up, and we would like to promote you to her be her personal assistant. She feels, and I agree now that I’ve had some time to talk to you, that you appear to be the ideal face for the freeholds. The sort of face the locals would trust. You are literate and a quick study. We would like to offer you a promotion to Agent-in-Training and a spot on the new team.”

Adwin was stunned. Too many questions and too many circumstantial parallels for his liking. They were both looking at him now, expecting some sort of response.

The boss misunderstood his reticence, “If you need time to think about it or make arrangements for personal matters we can give you a couple of days. Consider this though, training as an agent and a few years of operational experience, will get you further ahead in this company than you realize.”

“I’ll do it.” Adwin said, surprising himself.

“Good. Glad to hear it son. I’ve great expectations for your future with us.”

Adwin nodded and gave a bit of a bow, “Thank you, sir.”

The boss gave a satisfied nod, “Miss Addath, the two of you are dismissed. The paperwork will be finished in the next day or two and by the new month you will be active. In the short term you need to get the rest of your team together and I expect you will be able to get Adwin up to speed regarding his new duties.”

“Thank you, sir.”

Adwin followed her out, wondering what he had just agreed to.


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