© 2015-2016 Nat One Productions. All rights reserved.
Brent never understood human markets. "The price is as marked, we don't haggle here." How are you supposed to develop a good relationship with a vendor if she doesn't give you a deal? It did make for a much quieter market than those in Vondar. The goods are all ordered neatly on shelves, and no one is screaming and pushing for a better position in the "line". Plus, the humans are so obsessed with cleanliness that everything is neatly wrapped and organized, and since they banned animals within the city limits, opting to use magical constructs to do their menial work, there wasn't even any smell. All of the animals in Dasport were exactly as Brent liked them, dead and ready to be cooked and eaten. If he was being honest with himself, he didn't miss the battle- he hated when he'd squash his squash in the fracas... okay, maybe he did understand human markets.
He let out an audible 'squeal' - at least as close as an orc gets to squealing - these were the most attractive apples he'd seen yet this year, and they were going to look awful sexy stuffed into the quails he had just picked up.
"Mr... Brent! Always so nice to have you here, has business been picking up?" Brent was always impressed how humans could be both 'concerned' and cutting at the same time. All of the vendors knew that Vonfar (his restaurant) was so far undiscovered by the trendy crowd in Dasport.
"Not yet, but I have a pretty large party coming in tonight. Some kind of meeting hosted by some dwarf, The Professor- they took up the whole space for the night."
"The Professor? He's... quite a character- I'd be curious to see what his friends get up to on a night out."
He made his way through the crowd, a full half a head taller than even the tallest humans. He came to Dasport to make his name as a chef, but has found that most humans were too... uptight for service in the Vondari style. Humans expect certain things when they come into a restaurant- they expect to come in and order something. In Vondar, you come into a restaurant and you eat what is served, how it is served, and if you get too drunk you are welcome to stay in one of the rooms upstairs. His first guest was none too pleased to wake up wrapped in a quilt in one of the 'beer beds'. Apparently humans expect to be kicked out at the end of the night and left to fend for themselves, hardly a community attitude.
A small golem pulled a rickshaw/chariot full of food behind him, another one had a keg of beer on each shoulder, leaving Brent free to watch the city bustle around him. He was always impressed with how clean Dasport is- with the exception of a couple of villages and the Tower of Walt, pretty much all of the humans on Orchard Island live here, yet they somehow keep it immaculate. Brent knew that this was the handiwork of a host of small golems; and he wondered briefly if this offended him as an Orc. Mayhaps somewhere down the line the morality of keeping golems as laborers would come into question, but the two behind him seemed simple enough not to mind their porting duties. He spent the rest of the day prepping with his sous chef, a quirky human lad named Terry: Quail-in-a-pie, spicy corn soup, huge mounds of cheeses with fruit and a selection of pickled vegetables and mustards, the finest halfling salamis, a huge 'vegroast', beans braised in wine with a huge piece of pork fat, and berries floating in cream with cheddar biscuits for dessert. Brent sent Terry home before any of the guests arrived, The has specifically requested that he was the only staff member present for the party.
The door to his restaurant opened and closed, but Brent didn't see anyone enter. Then the smallest halfling that he had ever seen popped up onto one of the stools at the dining counter. I bet they call him a quarterling, he mused. "I'm here for The Professor's reservation, it appears that I am the first to arrive, could I start with a stiff drink? I'm Adrian, by the way."
Brent opened his mouth to respond, but the door opened and Adrian turned away and watched the rest of the party parade in. The Professor brought up the rear, beard tucked into his vest.
The Professor cracked a wide grin "Adrian, you're always a punctual chap, making me look bad." Adrian hopped off of the bar and shook The's hand.
"You look well as always, even though you should be dead the way you eat and drink." He chirped. Brent smiled, that was almost exactly the same as a popular greeting in the Vondari langauge. His smile fell away as the other guests began to doff their cloaks. Suddenly the room was populated by a wide assortment of species, including those explicitly barred from Dasport. How did Bullywugs and a Hobgoblin get past the guards in this town, even with the help of illusion magic?
Adrian balked when he saw the rapidly changing forms, "Can the staff of this establishment be trusted?"
The Professor clapped him on the back, "I've had my eye on this place, I think this is the start of a beautiful friendship." He turned to the, now seated, assortment of characters. "I'm glad that we were able to all get together..."
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Brent woke up the next day with a crushing hangover- Orcs don't get hungover, how much could I possibly have had to make me feel like this? He half walked, half fell down the stairs into the dining room. The young halfling that kept his books and organized his reservations greeted him with a soul-cutting squeak, "You need to get going, we are completely booked tonight!" Brent stared blearily at the reservation list. This was more guests than he usually had in a week; he turned the page, and the next one, and the next one. He was booked solid for the next four nights. Suddenly the door popped open, a gnome walked in dragging a trunk that was audibly full of jars, pots and pans, and other assorted cooking implements.
"Hey, I'm McQuill, I heard you needed more kitchen staff." Brent just stood there with a pained and confused look on his face. McQuill reached into his pocket and produced an envelope. "Adrian said you'd say that, and he told me to give you this once you did."
Brent opened the envelope, still having trouble wrestling with this strange reality. The letter read. "We had a great time last night, glad your restaurant is getting more attention. -T&A"