Throughout the land, the questions rose… "Where is Musashi, that humorous bard, with his rapier wit and sardonic take on this bizarre existence we all suffer mindlessly through?"… "Has anyone seen Musashi… I have missed the company of this most excellent travelling companion."… "Bah Mu, WTF are you I need money!"  (Yes, it’s true, Kagero was not gone for good after all… *sigh*)  Truth be told, Musashi had been away from his duties and lands, some say purposefully, perhaps to find a meaningful existence in other spheres, or just to escape the dreaded daemon Lagg which was perhaps the largest mote in the collective eye of all denizens of this world.  Still, he was eventually tempted back when it was announced that negotiations between the Lost Order of Akalabeth and the Wind Elders was taking place at the village, and a "show of force" was requested.  Musashi showed up anyway, and did his best to look intimidating… however, his jet black attire, although quite dashing up close and on the ballroom floor, merely made him a shapeless blob in this gathering.  Even the salesman visible at the corner of the guildhall was apparently a more formidable opponent.

While meandering about the clearing some time later, trying his best to impress some commoners seeking the order (easily identified by the white robe and burgundy cooking aprons they are forced to wear as part of a bizarre hazing ritual), an odd chap calling himself "LOA Killer" stepped into the clearing and began firing upon the more formidable members of the Order as they were torturing a water elemental summoned for that very purpose.  Needless to say, he did not survive for long, but one of the fiend’s arrows creased Brewman de LOA’s robe, misplacing several threads!  The robe was cast upon the ground, and another blow for superficial rainment elitism was struck!  As Musashi cursed the attacker’s disregard for fashion sense, he gazed about at the gathering, and silently pondered that that particular battle had already been lost.

You can’t keep a good man down, nor a stupid one, so it seems.  LOA Killer returned and, carefully choosing his target this time, leapt upon Musashi with a fearsome dagger!  Musashi valiantly attempted to keep his composure as his shaking hands fumbled through his assortment of overpriced weaponry he was inept at wielding, while four or five energy bolts flew in from the periphery of the scene, for once not all directed at the tailor.  During this period, temporal fluctuations became apparent, and Musashi quickly concluded that this "LOA Killer" was in some sort of sinister league with the Lagg daemon!  Perhaps he was more formidable than his quick deaths indicated…
Impressed by his ability to hold his water whilst beset by an idiot with a dagger and a practice bow, the more senior members invited Musashi along on what seemed to be a quest of some import!  (The fact that he gave free quipment away may have also been a deciding factor.)  The reader here is spared visions of the hour-long trek through the tunnels beneath Buccaneer’s Den… suffice to say, for such an intimidating place, there was absolutely nothing to fear except for death by boredom.  Not a moment too soon, the party made their way to the surface in order to look for a chest (it took this long for Mu to figure out what the point of all this was).  Here we see Avariel the Elf of the EoA, Brewman, and Musashi’s boss Stubby Grunhard standing with Mu, no doubt snickering at the bad clash between Musashi’s robe, cloak, and rather ducklike helmet, which he had donned out of fear in the tunnels.  Let this be a lesson:  fashion is always more important than personal welfare.

Perhaps the one redeeming feature of the lawless frontier town of Buccaneer’s Den is the presence of a bathouse.  Far from home, and in a land of unwashed heathens, Musashi almost cried when he gazed upon the vast basins, and stripped and entered as quickly as decorum would allow.  Brewman is here turning his back towards Mu, possibly out of a sense of propriety but more likely to make a joke about the anatomical differences between the men of Sosaria and the men of Nihon.  The next tub is occupied by the ever-practical Stubby, wisely choosing to take this opportunity to wash out his aqua robes while he bathed.

What causes a man to go mad?  Is it the stress of living, the pressures of one’s duty to one’s guild, or perhaps just unbelievable boredom?  Musashi didn’t have a chance to ask, as Avariel the Elf finally snapped, muttering throughout the entire trip behind his ugly bone helmet about the treachery of the townsfolk, how they had mystical powers, how they were the uncaring Red Gods in disguise, and so forth.  Unable to stand it any longer, he flew into a mindless rage in one of the shops of the pirate’s metropolis.  Here he is chasing down a somewhat surprised townswoman.  Impassive and jaded, Mu simply stood and watched incredulously as the poor peasant was cut down… in a town where no laws are present, it is sometimes hard to evaluate what comprises justice, and perhaps the elf was correct in his assumptions.  Stubby was too busy dancing in the background to comment.

What were we here for again?  Who could remember… word had reached us that indeed there was no chest in the Den, and all of our efforts were for naught.  Theories flew back and forth, arguments postulated, and generally the quest was bantered about while Musashi sank ever deeper into his malaise.  Finally, blubbering like an idiot, weeping rivulets of anguished tears behind the confines of his helm, Musashi babbled on and on about the angst that consumed him every moment of the day, while the other three watched in an uncomfortable silence, shaking their heads sadly now and again.  Was this a devious test to see the limits of Musashi’s patience, thereby evaluating his potential for further questing?  Unknown, but as of yet he has not heard of further missions of import, and perhaps it’s for the best.

 

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