Far, far from Shoushi proper, across a wide river and through the grazing fields of the Auroch bulls and reedsharks alike, is a great fortress in which myriad drudges, mosswarts, and armoredillos make their home.  So great in number are they that many a brave adventurer who had intruded upon their grounds in order to seek his fortune met his demise instead.  This was a big warning flag to Mu, who much rather preferred the relative quiet of the nearby tower, inhabited by this "traveling archmage", no doubt yet another charlatan who merely used a title in order to attract customers to her pitiful stock of spell components.  However, she was pleasant enough, and did not immediately kick Mu out of the tower, which was far kinder than any other such person had been to him thus far.  He was, however, not allowed to sleep on her futon, which was all he really wanted.

The tower was right smack in the middle of Auroch country, and occasionally an ornery bull would get a bit too curious as to the flavor of its inhabitants.  This was where Mu earned his keep, as he would excise the offending creature most forcefully as it got its fat self stuck in the too-narrow doorway, while the "archmage" looked on.  Hmph.  In any case, a few decent Auroch steaks here and there helped to engender enough goodwill with the archmage to keep Mu out of the rain while he waited eternally for mana.  (Note:  Reedsharks are not stopped by a doorway.  Oops.)
Although the archmage’s selection of reagents was sorely lacking, the tower was a good location for other sorts of experimentation, namely the discovery of methods to kill enemies from a safe haven like a coward!  When bored by the archmage’s dull conversation, which mostly revolved around what a hard bargain Mu drove while he sold off extra talismans for well below their market value, he would patrol around the parapets looking for victims.  Before too long, the tower grounds were relatively free of such dangerous creatures as black rats, phyntos wasps, reedsharks, and all manner of vicious and evil cattle.  Soon there were so many steaks lying around the tower that the archmage would have been well-advised to open a restaurant, a store which would not only be better stocked, but which she would probably be more qualified to run, judging by the quality of her magical component selection.
Fortunately, once in a while other people came by the tower grounds, who were infinitely more interesting to talk with than the archmage.  On the left is Kala bon, a figure who is hard to not encounter if one travels the Shoushi area.  Constantly adventuring with all the vitality and zest of someone who was smart enough not to study war magic, he had ample opportunity to meet folks like Laine Myer, kneeling on the right, a well-travelled and informed individual who had even heard of Mu’s previous home, a dark and hateful place called Britannia which sucked a lot.
The problem with leaving the tower is that eventually one may encounter a monster.  Encountering a monster means combat.  And combat, for Mu, means running out of mana.  Fortunately, he had progressed in his study of fisticuffs, taking up a study of something called Tae-Bo which, although utterly worthless for real combat, was a fun and mass-marketed way to get fit.  Luckily, he won most of his knock-down drag-outs in the way illustrated at the right:  with a swift kick to the jimmy.
All of these things… the cheap slaughtering of cattle, the conversations with other travellers, even his mastery of the art of groin kicking, were not nearly as important to Mu as his primary quest, which seemed fulfilled one evening as he hauled up another load of T-bones to the meat locker.  Surely the nameless archmage would not notice him if he slept for a little while, up here, on the proper bed?  This question was soon answered as the archmage, preparing for her own night’s rest, came upstairs to find a naked Mu blissfully asleep in her bed.  It was then that Mu learned that she did indeed possess a magical ability to hit him really hard in the head with a ceramic mug.  He wondered if he would ever find the object of his quest, as he made his way to the ground… from the outside of the tower.

 

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