Location: Daggerfall Spire
Lord_Of_The_LEGO wrote:“We’re Cate, Adrian and Hans, by the way.” offered Cate.
The man raised his eyebrows, but smiled.
“Er…” Cate added, “Cate Slacs-Sicl, Adrian Seojton, and Hans Lentawl.”
“Well met.” said the man, “I am Graygon Tillshire-Falconis.”
"Tillshire-Falconis!" said Adrian, gawking, "as in 'Queen Helen Tillshire-Falconis'???"
"My mother," said Graygon, almost apologetically.
"Cool," said Hans. "Then you're the Graygon of the Misfits! I've read all about in Bjarn's memoirs!"
"You must be a friend if you only call him Bjarn," said Graygon. "Yes, I am Graygon of the Misfits, and I would wager that I use my surname even less than you three do, Hans, Adrian, and Cate."
Taking a friendly attitude towards the three young travellers, Graygon turned with them back across the courtyard.
"So you are seeking a look at the Wolfpack Archives," he said. "I am curious as to why. Very few strangers come to read the Daggerfall tomes."
"We were, uh, hoping to find some rare volumes that were stolen from the Dark Forest," said Hans, decided on an element of the truth. "We were doing some research there, and we discovered that the volumes we were hoping to find were gone."
"Taken by the Wolfpack in war?" said Graygon. "Sounds about right. Well, you have fallen in with the right man to help you. For ignoring my current Falcon-related positions, I am the Chief Lieutenant to Willem Blackcloak, and there is pretty much nothing in the kingdom that I do not have the authority to see.
"As for the Archives here," he continued as they came back indoors, and found themselves in a very well-appointed palatial setting, "you won't find them to be nearly as large as those in Orion or Drullen Bell, or most the great capitals- Best wipe your feet before stepping on the rug."
Obediently, the three teenagers wiped their boots before going further. They were in a large parlour-room, richly carpeted, with wood-covered walls, covered lamps, and fine oil paintings on the walls.
"As you can see," said Graygon, noting their impressed looks, "we are not in the administrative parts of the spire, or in the parts allocated to the troops. No, we are in the personal palace of Willem Blackcloak."
They continued on, passing through a pair of large, ornate wooden doors into a long, carpeted hall lined with suits of armour.
"I didn't think the Wolfpack ever had knights like this," said Adrian.
"They didn't," said Graygon, "but Gineus Blackcloak, Willem's predecessor, furnished his palace in style. These suits of armour were imported from Falconis City. Most of the furnishings were imported, some of them coming from as far as Peregrine. Gineus Blackcloak did things in style, as the Wolfpack have always done. He moved the capital here in the 1960s, claiming that Striastrakahn was too murky and dingy- and too close to the Dark Forest. As you can see, he chose a very defensible location, and spared no expense to make it one of Dametreos' grandest palaces. Sadly, hardly anyone outside knows of its opulence, since the Wolfpack have typically not been on very good terms with those in most of Dametreos- and we prefer not to invite visitors."
They went on, until Graygon led them to a small staircase, leading down.
"Here we leave the palace, and enter the governmental part of the spire," said Graygon, "although, since we are going underground, I'm not sure if calling it the spire is still appropriate."
The three friends followed Graygon pretty much in silence, taking in the surroundings, and listening to his descriptions. They had come to the bottom of the staircase, and were about to descend another.
"We are now descending to the second sublevel," said Graygon. "Down here is where the valuables of Daggerfall are kept: the treasure vaults, the archives- the food supplies and the vintage wines."
The staircase led into a large chamber with several tunnels branching off into torchlit darkness.
"Each of these tunnels," explained Graygon, "has a purpose. One leads to the wine cellars, one leads to the food cellars, one leads to the Archives, and one leads to the treasure chamber."
"Excuse me," said Cate, "but there are nine tunnels."
"Ah," said Graygon with a sly smile, "those are the decoys. Two come back and become two of the others. And one just leads... nowhere. It goes around and around and around and finally... stops. I recommend you take number two on the right. That's the Archives tunnel."
"Why have you let us down here?" asked Adrian, "if this is all so secretive?"
"Because Willem and I got a letter two weeks ago from Bjarn about you three," said Graygon. "He had a feeling you might not find what you wanted in Hemlock, and wanted to see if the Wolfpack intelligence knew anything. I checked it out, but didn't find anything. Still, you're welcome to check the Archives, if you want."
The three companions headed off down the second tunnel to the right. They soon arrived in a small, well-shelved room, filled completely with papers. A weaselly-looking scribe sat at a desk.
"Quite dry in here," said Adrian.
"Aye, it's been dry since we came underground," said Hans approvingly. "Good for the paper."
"You're looking for something?" asked the scribe, clearly thinking their very presence to be a sign of permission.
"Yeah," said Hans, "anything on Nathaniel, Earl of Wells. Specifically to do with his visit to Ikros."
"That sort of stuff won't be here," said the scribe. "It's either pre-1950, so it'll either be in the old archives or in the public library, up in the Administrative levels."
"Thanks for your time," said Cate, as they flusteredly made their way back to the circular room they had entered from.
"Whoa!" said Hans, "we just saw the record-keeping room of the Wolfpack spy network!"
"Totally cool!" said Adrian.
"Um, boys," said Cate, "which tunnel did our staircase come down?"