Hello everyone, this is Asclepius, with the next exciting chapter of
The Story of Kobold Skrek’Kex
Written by Kobold Skrek’Kex
Background music by Smartsound
Skrek’Kex was unable to wind out of the vice like grip of the much bigger Kobold and whimpered a little. What had started as a fool proof plan was certainly not going as he had expected! The great hall they had entered was dimly illuminated by torches. It was decorated in classic Kobold, lots of metal and red velvet dominating the scene. In the middle of the great hall on a dragon bone throne sat a huge Kobold scaled in a sickly green and yellow. He was not only very tall for a Kobold but also possessed immense girth which his studded leather jerkin and pants struggled to contain. On his clawed fingers he wore bejewelled golden rings in abundance, and his head was adorned by a large bear head, the teeth having been replaced by craftily cut rubies.
As Skrek’Kex and his escort entered, the great Grakkazh was busy whacking a Kobold in a purple and orange jester’s dress on the head with a turkey drumstick. “Nooo!” he bellowed at the jester “Grakkazh not like! NOT FUNNY AT ALL!!”. The jester ducked and whimpered “Me’se sorry for not pleasing Great Grakkhaz! Njoghgrok can do another trick, please!” The Grakhkazh had meanwhile noticed Skrek’Kex and eyed him with disdain. With a dismissive gesture towards the jester, who gladly and hurriedly left the room, he turned toward the guard “Why you bring trash in my hall, Kraz’Boom?” suddenly his eyes narrowed “HAS HE DONE SOMETHING TO MY PRECIOUS BARBELED DRAGONFISH?!” he shouted, and before having ended the sentence the Grakkhaz, with an astonishing speed for a Kobold his size, had jumped up and violently knocked the dinner table in front of him over so that the plates and tumblers on the table flew across the room.
“No, oh your magnificent Dreadfulness!” Skrek’Kex hastily squeaked while he cowered in anticipation of another violent outburst. “Skrek’Kex would never touch holy fish! Accident with holy fish last time was a very bad misunderstanding, Skrek’Kex swear!” after the dreaded beating had not happened yet Skrek’Kex relaxed a little and, from his cowering position, looked up at the Grakkhaz who now stood in front of him, tapping his claws impatiently against the shaft of his huge spiked mace. “So?” the Grakkhaz asked. Skrek’Kex nodded hastily “Me’se bring important and troubling news from the hoomaz! Facing grave dangers, all for the good of the tribe, Skrek’Kex has managed to acquire this from the stores of a mighty wizard. Me thinks the hoomaz are planning to attack!” he explained and eagerly presented the Grakkhaz with the crumpled paper.
Impatiently the Grakkhaz snatched the paper from Skrek’Kex outstretched claw. Turning it up and down and left and right he harrumphed a few times meaningfully. Although the Grakkhaz was far from stupid, he had never learned to read anything but basic Kobold. There was always one of the skinny brainy types around to do his bidding in exchange for a non-beating after all! After a few more acknowledging grunts the Grakkhaz felt he had shown enough that he understood the importance of the document and bellowed “Zap’Hex! To me!” And only a few moments later a small gnarled Kobold in purple and golden robes with an intricate feathered headdress walking with the help of a silver cane entered the hall from a door in the back. “Yes, your Maleficience?” he asked “Do you have need of my services?” With a grunt the Grakkhaz shoved the even more crumpled paper towards the court magician. Zap’Hex gingerly tried to smooth the paper out and with his index claw pushed his wire frame glasses up a bit. Relaxing a little at the sight of his old mentor Skrek’Kex couldn’t help but notice that unfortunately none of the pie crusts, that had been left over and now lay strewn across the floor, had landed close enough for him to try to stealthily pocket them.
After a while Zap’Hex sighed and shot a meaningful glance at Skrek’Kex who in turn managed at least to look a *little* embarassed. Zap’Hex of course was not fooled by Skrek’Kex’ story, he had studied the humans and their customs for decades and promptly and adequately had decided the note was meaningless. Still, he decided against telling the Grakkhaz of Skrek’Kex blatant lie. Skrek’Kex was a nuisance, a liar and a thief (even more than most Kobolds) but he had his talents.
Zap’Hex had taken on Skrek’Kex as a student in the past until he had been forced to expel him from the courses because he wouldn’t stop “borrowing” the chickens, kept at school for some of the nastier experiments, to roast them and sell them to the other students during lunch breaks, he was also caught multiple times selling the other students’ alchemical copper pots on the market, when he could get his claws on them, and even drawing in his fellow students book so they would get their incantations wrong resulting in some nasty accidents with demonic surprises. Still, he had been talented as only another handful he had trained, if he had only seen the long term benefits of refraining from immediately breaking all the rules so he could learn the skills to break much more later… but Skrek’Kex had never been one for long-term-goals.
The Grakkhaz, whose attention had been fixed on Zap’Hex, failed to notice the quick exchange of looks and impatiently asked Zap’Hex “What do you make of it? What are the hoomanz up to?” Zap’Hex weighed his answer carefully “Well, this is certainly a *fascinating* document here, but in regards of an attack plan, I… can’t be sure. I think it prudent to send out a group to investigate.” The Grakkhaz nodded his agreement “We will send Zod’Utgrakhz, Drab’Farkh, Bang’Grakh and Slit’zhok” turning towards a guard he motioned him with his hand “Notify them they are to gather intelligence, Skrek’Kex will lead them to where-” Zap’Hex coughed, interrupting the Grakhhaz mid-sentence, bowing his head slightly in apology “As for Skrek’Kex I have another proposal, if the Great One would care to listen to his humble advisor?”
Although not pleased the Grakkhaz motioned the old court mage to continue “I have heard rumors of an Elder Dragon close to the human settlement of Serenite. As Skrek’Kex is quite adept at human customs and language and also skilled in the magical arts I want to send him and a handful of trusted Kobolds to investigate there if the rumors are true. An Elder Dragon our tribe could serve would be great news to all.” With a fanatic glint in his eyes the Grakkhaz nodded agreement. “An Elder Dragon! By Gaknulak, this – if true – is great news!” turning to Skrek’Kex “You will head out immediately after everything is prepared.” Skrek’Kex could only nod. It was an honor to be sent out to search for or pledge allegiance to a dragon – if only they weren’t always so hungry. Skrek’Kex hoped he Grakkhaz would send enough Kobolds with him so the odds of being eaten would be low…